FT Online

Published:
2020-02-04 11:21:52 BdST

BTRC to appoint administrator if GP fails to pay dues in time


Chairman of the Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) Md Jahurul Haque on Monday said they will appoint an administrator to mobile phone company Grameenphone if it fails to pay the dues by the stipulated time fixed by the Appellate Division.

“If there’s no change in the decision of the Appellate Division and if GP fails to pay the dues by February 23, we can take any decision and we’ll start the process to appoint an administrator,” he said while talking to reporters at his office.

Meanwhile, Grameenphone’s chief executive officer Yasir Azman expressed the hope that the row over the dues with the government will be resolved within 3-4 weeks.

On November 24, the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court asked Grameenphone to pay within three months Tk 2,000 crore of the Tk 12,579.95 crore dues as claimed by BTRC.

It had also said the two-month injunction on realisation of the dues slapped by the High Court will be vacated if the mobile phone operator fails to pay the amount by the deadline.

On January 24 last, Grameenphone filed a review petition with the Appellate Division seeking permission to pay Tk 575 crore in 12 installments as an ‘adjustable deposit’ to the BTRC.

While exchanging views with reporters at the GP House in the city, Yasir Azman said there will be no GP SIM in the market after one or two weeks as they were barred from selling those.

Mentioning that 30 lakh inactive SIMs have already been piled up for recycling, he said they are also unable to recycle those for lack of permission from the BTRC.

He also informed that 53.1 percent of GP SIM card holders are using internet.

On October 17 last, the High Court imposed a two-month injunction on realisation of Tk 12,579.95 crore dues from the mobile phone company.

Later, the BTRC moved the Appellate Division against the HC order.

The BTRC claims dues of Tk 12,579.95 crore in 27 sectors from GP. Having failed to recover the money, BTRC on April 2 sent a notice to GP threatening to revoke its licence.

Later, GP moved a lower court seeking a temporary injunction on the BTRC’s notice which was turned down on August 28. Later, it filed an appeal with the High Court.

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