Millennium Post

India's tattered telecom sector hinges on govt aid after $13 bn fine

NEW DELHI: The Indian government's win of a long-contested dispute over telecom fees could end up a Pyrrhic victory, as the billions of dollars in levies now owed are seen as burdens too big to bear for two of the country's three main carriers.

Vodafone Idea Ltd, India's biggest carrier by user numbers, is widely regarded as most on the ropes, with parent Vodafone Group calling the situation "critical" after the unit was saddled with about $3.9 billion in fresh payments due.

That is the biggest portion of the $13 billion incurred by the sector after India's Supreme Court last month sided with the government in how spectrum usage and licence fees are calculated.

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