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Vodafone Idea to shut if it doesn’t get relief: Birla

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New Delhi, Dec 6 (IANS) The country’s largest telecom operator will shut its business and move towards insolvency if it does not get any relief regarding the over Rs 40,000 crore adjusted gross revenue-based (AGR) dues it has to pay the Department of Telecom, Kumar Mangalam Birla, Chairman of Vodafone Idea, said on Friday.

Speaking at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit here, Birla said that the issue of AGR is needed to be resolved urgently.

"We will shut shop if we don’t get relief, it could be the end of the story for us. There is no company in world that could get that kind of money in three months," he said.

He further said that there will will be no further infusion in to the vent ure by either the Aditya Birla Group or Vodafone, however adding that, added that his telecom business cannot be called a failure.

The Supreme Court in a recent verdict allowed the Centre to recover Rs 92,641 crore in total AGR from telcos, which impacts Airtel and Vodafone Idea the most.

In November, the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) sent notices to the telcos, asking them to pay the AGR dues on a self-assessment basis within the next three months.

Speaking at the event, Birla, also said that the government has realised that telecom is a critical and strategic sector.

Following the statement by the Vodafone Idea Chairman, shares of the company on the BSE slumped and at 1.13 p.m., its shares were trading at Rs 6.84, lower by 0.47 paise or 6.43 per cent, from its previous close.