CAG Criticises Reliance Twice in One Week

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Reliance Industries has found itself at the receiving end of the Comptroller and Auditor General(CAG)’s criticism twice in one week.

A report on Communication and IT tabled in the Parliament on 8th May alleged that Reliance Jio Infocomm had received the undue advantage of Rs. 3,367.29 crore after the Department of Telecom allowed it to provide voice calling services using BWA spectrum under the new licensing regime.

The IT report also cornered Reliance Jio stating that even after four years of auction the roll out of BWA services by the company had been negligible.

This is the second time within a week that the Reliance has come under sharp criticism by the CAG.

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A CAG report on Natural Gas development tabled in the Parliament on 5th May targeted Reliance for quoting its marketing margin for natural gas in US Dollar resulting in an additional fertilizer subsidy burden of Rs 201 crore.

“Charging of marketing margin for KG D6 gas in US$ instead of Indian rupee for a commodity produced, marketed and consumed domestically is incongruous with the Indian market. The amount charge towards this was equivalent to Rs 244.31/mscm(million standard cubic meter) in 2010-11, and it increased to Rs 325.51/mscm in 2013-14 owing to US$ exchange rate fluctuations,” the auditor stated.

 The CAG further added, “The decision to grant permission to an ISP licensee with BWA spectrum to operate in the voice telephony space also helped the ISP to circumvent the restrictions imposed by their license at the time of auction, which were known to the ISP at the time of bidding for the BWA spectrum.”

JKR tried to speak to a Reliance spokesperson, but he wasn’t available for a comment. We will carry the company’s response as and when we receive.

 

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