An independent auditor appointed by the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has found a gap of Rs 2,915 crore between the wireless revenue reported by Reliance Communications (RComm) to the stock exchanges and to Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI). This has resulted in underpayment of licence and spectrum fee of Rs 315 crore to DoT, the report says. The special auditor conducted audit for financial year (FY) 2006-07 and FY 2007-08.
RComm has denied these charges. “Auditors’ alleged comments are biased and appear instigated by corporate rivals,” said an RComm spokesperson. “Premature leakage of confidential report to media reflects special auditors’ prejudice/bias.”
A DoT official confirmed that the department has received the auditor’s report. He, however, refused to divulge details.
“Our report reveals that there has been under-reporting of revenue for the purpose of payment of revenue share and under payment of licence fee and spectrum fees,” the report by Parekh & Co, a copy of which is available with Hindustan Times, said.
DoT, in March 2009, had initiated the audit process following allegations that there was a gap between RComm’s revenues reported to stock markets and to TRAI for the purpose of payment of licence fee.
Telecom operators have to pay to the government a licence fee of about 6 per cent of annual gross revenue on long distance services. For domestic access services (mobile and fixed line) the licence fee is up to 10 per cent.
In April, DoT started special audits of accounts of all integrated telecom companies.