Airtel’s Mittal says Indian Telecom sector was under stress

Sunil Bharti Mittal (File photo)
Sunil Bharti Mittal (File photo)

Bharti Airtel boss Sunil Bharti Mittal on Wednesday (19) said that the Indian telecom sector has been under stress for the last three-and-a-half years and the government should focus on its sustainability.

He made the statement after meeting top finance ministry officials.

He revealed that the issue of pending dues arising out of the Supreme Court ruling on Adjusted Gross Revenue (AGR) was not discussed during the meeting.

He asserted that the telecom industry is vital to the nation and the digital agenda of the government.

“The only thing government needs to do is to focus on how to ensure the sustainability of the sector,” Mittal said.

He clarified that Airtel has already announced its plans to pay the dues that arose from the apex court ruling.

The company has paid Rs 100 billion out of its estimated liability of over Rs 350 billion.

Mittal clarified that the company has now started calculating its liability.

Vodafone Idea Chairman Kumar Mangalam Birla, who had met the telecom secretary on Tuesday (18), also met finance ministry officials.

It was not clear if they met the officials together or separately.