The Appellate Division today ordered mobile operator Grameenphone to pay remaining Tk1,000 crore to the Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) within three months over its disputed audit claim.
An Appellate Division bench, led by Chief Justice Mahmud Hossain issued the order today after Grameenphone filed a review plea to extend time for depositing rest of the amount Tk 1,000 crore as per court order.
In its observation, the court said, "We want foreign companies to run businesses in Bangladesh and they should do their businesses according to the law. In the full verdict, we will ask concerned authorities to let GP do their business peacefully."
On Sunday, Grameenphone paid Tk1,000 crore to the BTRC as the Appellate Division, on November 24, last year, ordered Grameenphone to pay Tk2,000 crore to BTRC out of its disputed claim of Tk12,580 crore dues within the next three months.
Later on January 26 this year, Grameenphone said it did want to pay the telecom regulator Tk2,000 crore. Grameenphone wanted to pay Tk575 crore or 25 percent of the principal audit claim of Tk2,300 crore.
On February 3, BTRC Chairman Jahurul Haque said they will not accept Tk500 crore out of Tk2,300 crore dues from mobile operator Grameenphone.
He also said BTRC will appoint administrator in Grameenphone if the mobile operator fails to pay the total due amount by February 24.
On Wednesday (February 19), Grameenphone offered Tk100 crore to BTRC to continue dialogues over its disputed audit claim. However, the telecom regulator rejected it saying the court has an order on the issue and the BTRC cannot take any decision bypassing the court.
How it all began
In April last year, the BTRC demanded that GP pay an unpaid audit claim of Tk12,580 crore, which the company refused to pay questioning the BTRC's audit process.
The telecom operator moved to the lower court, seeking a temporary injunction on the BTRC's claim. But it did not get it. Then, GP moved to the High Court with the same prayer.
In October, a High Court bench issued a two-month injunction against the BTRC move.
Later, the BTRC appealed to the Appellate Division, seeking a stay order on the injunction and won the legal battle.