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Aircel files contempt petition against DoT in the Supreme Court

February 11, 2019
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Aircel’s resolute professional (RP) has filed a contempt of court petition in the Supreme Court (SC) against the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) for failing to refund Rs 2.98 billion to the appellants by January 24, 2019 despite repeated orders by the SC. The SC has scheduled the case for hearing on February 12, 2019.

Aircel needs this amount to maintain its assets so that they can be sold for a better value.

This dispute started when Airtel gave bank guarantees for Rs 4.53 billion and paid Rs 2.98 billion in cash to the DoT on behalf of Aircel, after adjusting the amounts against its Rs 35 billion deal to buy Aircel’s 4G spectrum. The DoT had asked for these payments in order to clear the deal.

Following this, the SC passed an order to cancel the bank guarantees, which meant that Airtel had to pay Rs 4.53 billion to Aircel, while DoT had to return Rs 2.98 billion to Aircel by January 24, 2019.

At present, Aircel is under a debt burden of Rs 190 billion and is also in the last leg of a corporate insolvency resolution process, which is being run by a resolution professional (RP) from Deloitte.

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