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Tata Tele follows TTML in not offering equity for AGR dues

Tata Teleservices (TTSL) has followed a stance similar to its listed subsidiary, Tata Teleservices (Maharashtra), and decided not to convert its accrued interest on deferred adjusted gross revenue (AGR) dues into government equity, said government officials.

Meanwhile, they said the calculation of Vodafone Idea’s accrued interest is ongoing, and some clarifications on the date of share price conversion have been sought from the finance ministry. “The government’s estimates for TTSL, like in the case of TTML, were different from the telco’s calculations,” said an official aware of the development, adding that both companies have withdrawn the estimates they had provided.

TTSL had informed the telecom department of its desire to convert interest dues of Rs 4,139 crore into government equity, which was an option given in the telecom relief package announced last September.

This week, its listed arm, Tata Teleservices (Maharashtra) or TTML , withdrew from this option, since its calculations over the net present value of accrued interest differed from those of the Department of Telecommunications (DoT).

The telco had estimated the amount to be about Rs 850 crore, which would have meant a 9.5% stake to the government, but the latter’s estimates show it to be Rs 195.22 crore. This means TTML will have to pay more dues compared with its own estimate.

Both TTSL and TTML’s quantum of equity was subject to mutual agreement between the DoT and the telcos. The Tata Group company has AGR dues of Rs 16,798 crore, of which it has paid Rs 4,197 crore.

With the Tata group companies withdrawing their offers, all eyes are on whether the DoT accepts Vodafone Idea’s calculations. “The calculations are still on, there are some checks on the date taken for share price conversion.

Details have been sent to the finance ministry,” said another official. Vi on January 11 had said since the average price of the company’s shares at the relevant date of August 14, 2021, was below par value, the equity will be issued to the government at the par value of Rs 10 per share, subject to confirmation by the DoT. The financially stressed telco has offered the government a 35.8% stake and has estimated an NPV of Rs 16,000 crore at a par value of Rs 10 per share. Pehal News

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