Airtel made a few lakh of rupee SLD revenue in 2002-05, but faces Rs 650 crore penalty

Telecom operator Airtel urged the DoT to follow a rational and transparent policy in the Rs 650 crore penalty demand notice.

The mobile operator says it’s shocked and disappointed to receive a demand notice of Rs 650 crore from the DoT pertaining to the service of Subscriber Local Dialing to its subscribers between 2002 and 2005.

Bharti Airtel on Thursday said it believes that the demand for penalty of Rs 650 crore is devoid of any merit and has no justification both on facts and in law.

Bharti Airtel had in 2002 launched the SLD service. Airtel says the telecom regulator had found this service to be customer friendly and in compliance of the license conditions.

The company claims that it generated a few lakh of rupees from this controversial SLD.

Bharti Airtel says it was not given an opportunity to discuss the issue with DoT. DoT has after 8 years has issued a demand notice of Rs. 650 crore in complete disregard of the natural process of justice.

READ MORE: Airtel faces Rs 650 crore penalty by telecom department

“We are disappointed that the DoT – which has the bounden duty to act rationally, has thought it fit to issue such a baseless penalty order, leaving us with no choice, but to litigate. We wish the DoT was mindful of the damage such meritless demands have on investor sentiment and the frustration such actions cause to the companies engaged in vital infrastructure,” Airtel added.

[email protected]