New Delhi: Reliance Infocomm Ltd today expressed its inability in the Supreme Court to pay the remaining Rs84 crore to BSNL in view of the charges on the incoming international calls, but was willing to execute a bank guarantee for the amount.
A bench of Justice N Santosh Hegde and Justice S B Sinha before which the company made an application seeking modification in the court''s earlier order, directing it to pay the amount within four weeks either by cheque or bank draft, posted the application for hearing on January 3, 2005, by which date the payment was to have been made as per the court''s earlier order.
BSNL had claimed a total of Rs182.7 crore for illegally routing international calls as local calls. Out of this amount, Rs84 crore was still to be paid. In its last hearing on December 3, the Supreme Court had referred back the case to the division bench of the High Court. The apex court had earlier directed the company to make the payment and asked the Delhi High Court where the matter was pending to decide the case on merit.
Specifically, the bench had said the High Court would consider BSNLs argument that no one, neither the Court nor an arbitrator, except the Telecom Dispute Settlement Appellate Tribunal had the jurisdiction to adjudicate this dispute.
The apex court had fixed January 31, 2005, as the outer limit for the High Court to give its verdict on the petition filed by Reliance challenging the demand of Rs182.7 crore raised by BSNL.