The government has issued demand notices totalling over Rs. 23,000 crore
to telecom companies including Bharti Airtel, Vodafone and BSNL, for the
excess spectrum they hold beyond the prescribed limit.
"The notices have been issued to the operators Wednesday," an official source said.
government is likely to get Rs. 4,251.83 crore from retrospective
charges, and Rs. 18,925.82 from prospective charges for excess radiowaves
held by mobile operators.
In all, around Rs. 23,177 crore is expected from levy of one-time spectrum fee, sources added.
BSNL will have to pay around Rs. 6,912 crore, followed by Bharti Airtel -
Rs. 5,201 crore, Vodafone - Rs. 3,599 crore, MTNL - Rs. 3,205 crore, Idea
Cellular - Rs. 2,113 crore (includes Rs. 231.5 crore of Spice), Aircel -
Rs. 1,365 crore (includes Rs. 14 crore of Dishnet), Loop Mobile - Rs. 606
crore and Reliance Communications - Rs. 173 crore.
telecom firms were given 4.4 MHz spectrum along with licence for Rs.
1,658 crore for pan-India operations and later they were entitled to get
another 1.8 MHz on fulfilment of certain subscriber-base criteria.
November, the government decided that the operators should pay for
holding spectrum above 6.2 MHz retrospectively, from July 2008 to
January 1, 2013.
After that, for spectrum above 4.4 MHz, they
would have to pay for the remaining period of their licences based on
auction held last November.
Sources said the Department of Telecom
(DoT) has tentatively fixed provisional rate for spectrum in 1800 Mhz
band for Delhi, Mumbai, Rajasthan and Karnataka circles where it did not
receive any bids, as also for the more efficient 900 MHz band.