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Vodafone Idea, Bharti Airtel shares surge; DoT may reconsider levying one-time spectrum charge

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In what might be a relief to telecom operators, the Department of Telecommunication has submitted an affidavit to the Supreme Court of India saying it wants to reconsider levying the one-time spectrum charge on telcom operators, citing stress and the possibility of a duopoly, CNBC-TV18 reported.

Vodafone Idea, Bharti Airtel shares surge; DoT may reconsider levying one-time spectrum charge
Shares of Vodafone Idea rose as much as seven percent on Tuesday as concerns over the company’s survival faded.
In what might be a relief to telecom operators, the Department of Telecommunication has submitted an affidavit to the Supreme Court of India saying it wants to reconsider levying the one-time spectrum charge on telecom operators, citing stress and the possibility of a duopoly, CNBC-TV18 reported.
Despite government measures, most telecom service providers are suffering losses and a one-time spectrum charge would lead to a financial burden of Rs 40,000 crore, the Department of Telecommunication told the apex court.
The decision will have to be taken after scrutiny, though. The telecom department has sought three weeks for review, CNBC-TV18 reported.
Meanwhile, Bharti Airtel shares also inched higher in trade today, reacting to the development. At 11:42 am, the stock was up 2.1 percent at Rs 695.20 while Vodafone Idea shares rose 4.7 percent to Rs 11.90 on the BSE.
Separately, a media report that the government has urged the founders of Vodafone Idea to inject fresh capital of about Rs 40,000 crore also contributed to today’s upmove.
Another media report said that the Centre is exploring how to abolish the existing spectrum usage charge as part of the next set of reforms, having scrapped the fees for airwaves to be brought in future auctions. This is also likely to have boosted investor sentiment.
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