Calls rival’s charges on IUC ‘frivolous’

Mukesh Ambani led-Reliance Jio shot off a letter on Monday to the regulator TRAI asking it to take action against Airtel for “mischievous and frivolous submissions made” on the ongoing contentious issue of interconnection usage charges (IUC).

The letter, responding to Bharti Airtel’s claim last week stating it had suffered a loss of Rs 6,800 crore in the last five years due to low IUC, comes ahead of a meeting scheduled this week in TRAI on the issue.

“All the contentions of Airtel are fallacious, not based on true facts and are misleading in nature,” Reliance Jio said in the letter.

“The authority (TRAI) may take appropriate action against Airtel for such mischievous and frivolous submissions made well post the time allocated for additional submissions by the authority during the open house discussions,” it said.

‘Misrepresentation’

“Misrepresentation of facts and wrong interpretation of data has been carried out purposefully to create a smoke-screen to hide its ill-gotten profits and to support its false pretence of loss under existing IUC regime,” Reliance Jio said.

Reliance Jio has claimed in the letter that the present value of gross surplus recovery by Airtel stands at Rs 46,958 crore. The data related to IUC receipts are not disclosed by operators, so Reliance Jio explained that it had based on certain assumptions and disclosures made by Airtel as part of its financial results, the letter said.

However, as per Airtel, even if Reliance Jio’s claims were assumed to be correct, the present value of surplus recovery will be only Rs 7,443 crore. – The Hindu