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Telecom majors, including Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea, on Wednesday, sought an open court hearing of their plea seeking review of Supreme Court directions on the recovery of past dues amounting to Rs 1.47 lakh crore from telecom service providers.

The recovery of past dues by the government was based on the adjusted gross revenue(AGR)  of about Rs 92,000 crore, agencies reported

The plea seeking an open court hearing was mentioned before a bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra, who said he will talk to Chief Justice S A Bobde and decide accordingly.

The apex court had on last year October 24 upheld the AGR definition formulated by the Department of Telecom (DoT) and termed as “frivolous” the nature of objections raised by telecom service providers. The court said the sector had long reaped the fruits of the Centre’s liberalised mode of payment by the revenue sharing regime. However, the service providers failed to fulfil their obligations to the government and raised frivolous objections.“The telecom service providers, in spite of the financial benefits of the package, started to ensure that they do not pay the licence fee to the public exchequer based on an agreed AGR,” the Court had said.

— India Legal Bureau

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