“Is there no law left in the country…It is better not to live in this country and rather leave the country”: Supreme Court

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The Supreme Court on Friday lashed out at the telcom companies and the central government over the failure to implement the top court’s order related to the payment of dues worth thousands of crores of rupees. A bench comprising Justices Arun Mishra, S Abdul Nazeer and MR Shah minced no words as they said, “We don’t know who is creating this nonsense, is there no law left in the country.”

Supreme Court

The bench, according to NDTV, thundered, “It is better not to live in this country and rather leave the country… “I am anguished. I feel I should not work in this court.”

According to Livelaw website, Justice Arun Mishra said, “What is happening in this country? All these companies haven’t even paid a single penny and your officer has the audacity to stay the order? Does the Supreme Court have no value? This is the outcome of money power!”

The Supreme Court last month had rejected the telecom companies’ plea, which sought a review of an earlier order allowing the government to collect dues worth Rs 92,000 crore from them. This was after the Department of Telecommunications in an affidavit told the top court that, according to its calculations, Airtel owed Rs 21,682.13 crore as licence fee to the government, while dues owed by Vodafone stood at Rs 19,823.71 crore. The DoT had further said that Reliance Communications owed a total of Rs 16,456.47 crore, while the government-owned BSNL owed Rs 2,098.72 crore and MTNL Rs 2,537.

The top court summoned the chiefs of Bharti Airtel, Vodafone, MTNL, BSNL, Reliance Communications, Tata Telecommunication and others directing them to be present in the court during the next hearing on 17 March.

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