New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Thursday heard the Department of Telecom’s Adjusted Gross Revenue (AGR) case and termed as totally impermissible’ the demand by the DoT for dues of Rs 4 lakh crore in the AGR from PSUs. During the hearing, the top court said the DoT must consider withdrawing it. However, the matter has been adjourned for Thursday. Also Read - SC Junks Plea on 'Favouritism' by Registry, Imposes Rs 100 as Cost
The top court bench of Justices Arun Mishra, S Abdul Nazeer and M R Shah raised questions on the demand raised by the government from the PSUs and said that its verdict in the case was misinterpreted as the issue of their dues based on AGR was not dealt with by the apex court. Also Read - ICAI CA Exam 2020 to be Postponed? Feasibility of Conducting CA Exams to be Assessed, ICAI Tells Supreme Court
The bench said this is wholly and totally impermissible while referring to the demand raised against the PSUs. Also Read - After Ban on Chinese Apps, Plea in Supreme Court to Cancel All Business Contracts With China
Appearing for the DoT, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told the bench that it would file the affidavit explaining as to why the AGR demands were raised against the PSUs.
The top court also asked private telecom operators to file affidavits giving details as to how they will pay the AGR dues.
The apex court had on May 18 lashed out at Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Idea and other mobile phone operators for self-assessing their outstanding telecom dues, saying they need to pay past dues with interest and penalty — an estimated amount of Rs 1.6 lakh crore.
The apex court had also came down heavily on the DoT for allowing companies to re-assess what they owed to the government, and said its order — passed on October 24, 2019 — on revenues for calculating dues was final.