The Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) on Thursday directed Etisalat DB to respond in two weeks to a petition filed by Reliance Infratel in which it has sought to recover Rs.1,200 crore from the Abu Dhabi-based firm for using its telecom infrastructure on lease. The Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group (ADAG) group firm had approached TDSAT on Wednesday.
The Tribunal said that next hearing on the case will take place March 5.
Counsel for Reliance said the firm was apprehensive about Etisalat''s business after the Abu Dhabi-based company announced shutting down its services in India following the Supreme Court order cancelling 122 spectrum licences, including 15 of the company.
Reliance Infratel said that the company wanted to secure its due amount, which is around Rs 1,200 crore. Etisalat DB is a joint venture between Etisalat of United Arab Emirates and Dynamix Balwas Group of India. The JV had telecom services license to operate in 15 circles.
In 2009, Etisalat DB had entered into 10-year pact with RITL for leasing infrastructure to provide GSM services after getting 2G spectrum.
RITL had disconnected Etisalat in January following non-payment of dues.
Etisalat DB is a joint venture between Etisalat of United Arab Emirates and Dynamix Balwas Group of India.
The operator, which has over 1.6 million subscribers across the country, has said the official cessation date will shortly be communicated to its customers.
Earlier this month, Etisalat had written off its investments worth $827 million in Etisalat DB.
Etisalat DB has said it would reconsider entering the Indian market when there is clarity on the auction process and the regulatory environment governing the sector
Etisalat DB Telecom Pvt. Ltd. is a joint venture between Etisalat and Dynamix Balwas Group. Etisalat DB and its subsidiary has the Unified Services Access License in 15 circles including Andhra Pradesh, Delhi, Gujarat, Haryana, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, Mumbai, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu (including Chennai), Uttar Pradesh (East), Uttar Pradesh (West), Madhya Pradesh and Bihar.