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SC agrees to hear DoT on Bharti Airtel amalgamation

New Delhi

03-July-2019

The Supreme Court Wednesday agreed to hear the Department of Telecom's (DoT) plea challenging an order of TDSAT, a telecom tribunal, which stayed its demand of Rs 1,626.89 crore from Bharti Airtel Ltd. The court has scheduled the hearing on July 8.

A bench comprising Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices Deepak Gupta and Aniruddha Bose after hearing the initial arguments on the plea by the DoT, which sought urgent hearing on the matter, passed the order for hearing next week. 

The Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) had looked into Bharti Airtel's plea challenging the DoT's stand, which sought spectrum fees. The tribunal later stayed it. The demand was made for the completion of amalgamation of Bharti Digital Networks Pvt Ltd, formerly known as Tikona Digital Networks Pvt Ltd, with itself. The amalgamation was recently completed, said Bharti Airtel.

In March 2017, Airtel had come out with its decision to acquire 4G business of Tikona Networks, which comprised of broadband spectrum and 350 sites across five telecom circles. It was estimated at about Rs 1,600 crore. 

Tikona had second largest ecosystem of 4G devices in telecom circles in eastern and western UP, Rajasthan, Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh. It had 20 MHz spectrum in the 2,300-MHz band. IANS