No Supreme Court Judgment or High Taxes in India – the €1.9 Billion Losses may have actually been caused due to years of diversion of Rs. 200 Billion short paid to Government & kept hidden from shareholders!!...
The facts which speak for themselves in face of the avalanche launched by him against the Supreme Court Judgment against the 'industry' and the Indian Government for high taxes give away any sense of basis for the same.
The legal proceedings arise out of terms of the revenue sharing arrangement and hence are not something that was created now by either the Indian Government or the Supreme Court.
When the Hon. Supreme Court settled the longstanding disputes between DoT and Telecom Service Providers (TSPs) regarding payment of dues to the Government in terms of LF & SUC, it merely paved the way for TSPs to fulfil there payment obligations and for DoT to realise the public money held away and diverted by TSPs to fund dividends, operations and expansions for decades.
These liabilities till 2016-17 purportedly come to around INR 35000-40000 crores for Voda Idea with a significant portion of this amount relating to liabilities of erstwhile Vodafone subsidiaries i.e. Vodafone India Limited (VIL) and Vodafone Mobiles Limited (VML), as discussed in the earlier columns following the Supreme Court Judgment.
Non-provisioning of LF & SUC dues in books, diversions based on masking disclosures to shareholders and on pretentions that liabilities would never arise could only get this far.
Reliance is placed on the past columns and therefore facts are not being repeated for sake of brevity.
Vodafone's statements in the news release of 12th November 2019 were a clear over-reach of law of the land and institutions such as Government of India and the Supreme Court. A swift realisation and thus prompted an immediate apology by Vodafone CEO Nick Read to Prime Minister Modi, Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and DoT Officials. Is the apology accepted?
Will this wash away what Vodafone has risked for years i.e to being accused of playing fraud upon the investors and shareholders for lack of transparency and for neither paying LF & SUC nor provisioning the actual liabilities in their books of accounts. And of course, judicial over-reach of the Supreme Court, by call the judgment to be against the 'industry' as against 'defaulting TSPs' need more explanation, lest a tutorial on this may be the next big elephant liability Vodafone has exposed itself to!!
Dr. Manoj Kumar
Founder and Managing Partner, Hammurabi & Solomon Partners
Dr. Manoj Kumar is the founder and Managing Partner of Hammurabi & Solomon law firm. Dr. Kumar has been representing various leading Indian and International Corporates, Government Bodies and International Law Firms. An alumnus of prestigious world class institutions such as the Harvard Business School and the National Law School (NLSIU), Bengaluru, Dr. Kumar received his professional andleadership skills from distinguished & globally renowned Professors such as Padma Shri (Dr.) NR MadhavaMenon and Prof. Nitin Nohria, presently the Dean of the Harvard Business School. He is a recipient of theprestigious Mahatma Gandhi Samman 2017; was awarded at the House of Lords, London; he is included inthe A- List Lawyers rankings 2017 by India Business Law Journal (IBLJ) recognizing him as one of the top100 private practice lawyers in India. Dr. Kumar has been named as one of the 100 Legal Luminaries of India,published by LexisNexis in 2016. Known as the Best lawyer in the Corporate M&A, Strategy and Policy &Regulation Practice space in India, Dr. Kumar is known for his innovative, out-of-the box strategies pertainingto most critical and complex matters related to FDI, Cross-Border Transaction, Negotiations, Structuring, Restructuringand advising on the multitude of international agreements. Lawyer, Policy Expert, IndependentDirector, Author, Strategist, Columnist, Philanthropist, Thought Leader and Guest Faculty (at top of the lineLaw School & the prestigious Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Dr. Manoj Kumar has many introductions