RCom may have inflated revenues, evaded licence fee to govt

RCom may have inflated revenues, evaded licence fee to govt

New Delhi: A government appointed auditor is understood to have found inflation of revenues by Rs2,915 crores by Anil Ambani group firm Reliance Communications in 2007-08, besides evasion of Rs315 crore in licence fee -- findings termed as “biased" by the company.

When contacted DoT sources confirmed receipt of the report by auditors Parekh and Co and said that it is yet to examine the findings. DoT would ask for RCom’s response later.

“RCom is in full compliance of licence terms and conditions," a company spokesperson said, adding that “Auditors’ alleged comments are biased and appear instigated by corporate rivals... Premature leakage of confidential report to media reflects the Special Auditors’ prejudice/bias.

“All revenues for FY07 and 08 are correctly reported in RCom’s audited account. Alleged comments of special auditor do not reflect any under-reporting of revenue... licence fees.“

The special audit committee report that has been submitted to the DoT found that for FY08 actual wireless revenue earned by the company was only Rs12,298 crore as against Rs15,213 crore reported to the shareholders, which is an over reporting of Rs2,915 crore.

It also found that RCom evaded licence fee and spectrum fee to the tune of Rs315 crore.

DoT is awaiting the report of four other companies namely Tata Teleservices, Bharti Airtel, Vodafone and Idea from the respective auditors appointed by it and the government, if warranted, will take necessary action after examining the reports.

Sources, quoting the report, said that the telecom firm may have also violated TRAI and DoT rules.

Alleging overstatement and fudging of revenues, the auditors have said that the company accounted twice, a revenue of Rs617 crore in two different accounting years.

Elsewhere, Rs379 crore allegedly fudged by way of selling expired pre-paid cards to two companies namely Macronet Pvt Ltd and Inference Systems ltd, an ADAG company.

The report on RCom would now be examined by a four-member committee of Department of Telecom, headed by member (Finance), sources said.

The special audit was initiated to check if revenues by the company were diverted to segments which attracted lower licence fee.

In case of wrongdoings detected during the audit, sources said the operators could be subjected to penalties under the provisions of licences.