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The Delhi High Court has reportedly dismissed Vodafone's appeal seeking directions to the Income Tax department to fast-track the process of claiming for refund worth Rs 4,759 crore from the FY 2014-15 to 2017-18.
According to PTI reports, a bench of Justices S Ravindra Bhat and Prateek Jalan declined to grant any relief to the company, saying there was merit in the tax department's argument that substantial outstanding demand was pending against the company and there was likelihood of more demands being made after the assessment for the AYs in question were scrutinized.
It said there is some merit in the revenue's (tax department) argument that substantial outstanding demand is pending against the petitioner. Further, the likelihood of substantial demands upon the assessee after the scrutiny for the AYs is completed, cannot be ruled out. The bench added that "The Revenue should have the right to adjust the demands against the refunds that may arise but have not yet been determined due to ongoing scrutiny proceedings."
Furthermore, it noted that assessments for the years in question were either facing a special audit or pending before the Assessment Officer (AO) for scrutiny and since scrutiny assessment of earlier years had led to raising of substantial demand, the tax department had decided not to process the company's returns.
Meanwhile, there is another report which says that Vodafone Idea has requested the telecom ministry not to hold spectrum auction till 2020.
"For 5G to work, a robust 4G network is a must. Accordingly, telecom service providers in India are currently focused on optimizing 4G networks and making them 5G ready, for which they have sufficient spectrum," the news agency quoted an email from the operator.
To recall Vodafone completed its merger with Idea Cellular to create the largest telecom company in the country.
The merger is expected to generate Rs.140 billion annual synergy, including opex synergies of Rs. 84 billion, equivalent to a net present value of approximately Rs.700 billion.
The entity will have 1850 MHz of total spectrum holding, over 200,000 unique GSM sites and 235,000 km of fiber, the merged company offers superior voice and broadband connectivity across the country, covering 92 percent of the population and reaching nearly 500,000 towns and villages.