New Delhi : The Supreme Court sought responses from the Centre and Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) on two separate pleas of private telecom majors against a Delhi High Court verdict holding that the top auditor was empowered to conduct revenue audits of the firms.

The bench comprising justices K S Radhakrishnan and Vikramajit Sen, which also issued a notice to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), said “the issue relates to the important question of law and requires hearing. Fix it for hearing on February 11.”     Senior advocate Harish Salve, appearing for telecom firms, said “the (HC) judgement is erroneous. The accounts of private firms cannot be audited by CAG under section of 16 of the CAG Act.”  The counsel, appearing for the Centre, opposed the plea of telcos saying in a private-public partnership ventures, the revenue generated by the licensees are required to be shared with the central government as per the licences agreements.

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