DoT to slap Rs.650 crore penalty on Bharti Airtel

New Delhi, June 25 (IANS) The Department of Telecom (DoT) has decided to slap a Rs.650 crore penalty on Bharti Airtel for violating roaming norms in 13 circles between 2003-2005.

It is learnt that Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal has approved the penalty and a notice to the company will be issued this week.

The telecom service provider will be charged Rs.50 crore for each circle for routing national and international calls as local calls till 2005, although it was asked to stop this in 2003. The company's action had caused losses to the government exchequer and the Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL).

Reacting to this, Bharti Airtel in a statement said: "We haven't received any communication from DoT in this regard and, therefore, would not be able to comment."

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