DoT rejects Vodafone-Idea request to recalculate dues

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New Delhi, Jul 18: The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has rejected a request by Vodafone India and Idea seeking to recalculate their dues, according to a report by a newspaper.
The department has said the numbers are fine and that the two telcos should pay the dues to get the final approval for their merger.
“The department’s calculations seeking bank guarantees and cash payment from Idea Cellular and Vodafone India, respectively, are correct and have been communicated to the companies,” a senior DoT official told the newspaper.
DoT had demanded Rs 7,268 crore upfront payment towards dues it said that Vodafone India and Idea owe, in a conditional merger approval given two weeks ago.
The amount is split between a bank guarantee of Rs 3,342 crore on account of one-time spectrum charges claimed from Idea and cash payment of Rs 3,926 crore towards market price for non-auctioned airwaves held by Vodafone India, the report adds.
The two telcos had flagged some alleged discrepancies in the figures and requested the DoT for recalculation of the dues.
The merged entity is expected be India’s largest telecom operator, with a subscriber base of around 430 million.
The two companies are however likely to keep the two brands separate and not rush into creating a new brand immediately after their merger.