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DoT hikes penalty on Reliance to Rs 526 cr
November 12, 2003 13:32 IST
Reliance Infocomm will have to shell out Rs 526 crore (Rs 5.26 billion) towards penalty for offering roaming like services on its WLL phones, instead of Rs 485 crore (Rs 4.85 billion) recommended by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India.
As per the calculations of department of telecom, Reliance would be required to pay Rs 1096.01 crore (Rs 10.96 billion) entry fee, in case the company decides to migrate to the new unified access services licence regime, besides a penalty of Rs 526 crore [Rs 41 crore (Rs 410 million) more than Trai's figure], sources said in New Delhi.
When contacted, Trai chairman Pradip Baijal told PTI, "We had given the indicative amount... final figure has to be of DoT."
The difference in amount could be due to the different prime lending rate considered by Trai and DoT for calculating the accumulated penal interest, sources said, adding Trai is believed to have considered PLR in a different year whereas DoT has calculated the amount based on constant PLR on the date they (Reliance) signed the licence agreement.
Sources also said the penalty amount has also gone up as the interest for the month of November would be added.
In case they (Reliance Infocomm) decide to migrate to the unified access services licence in the month of December, the penalty amount could go up further.
According to sources, the total amount in case of each basic operator could vary depending upon the number of circles the operator wanted to migrate to.
DoT has given circle-wise calculation based on the difference between the entry fee paid by basic service operator and the fee paid by fourth cellular operator in that particular circle.
The new regime came into effect from November 11, 2003 as the DoT also issued an addendum to the existing new telecom policy (NTP-99).