GP serves legal notice to President seeking arbitration: Minister

Posts and Telecommunications Minister Mustafa Jabbar on Thursday said Grameenphone has sent a legal notice to the Bangladesh President through a legal agency in Singapore seeking arbitration with Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) over its unpaid.

The minister made the disclosure at a views-exchange meeting of Telecom Reporters’ Network Bangladesh (TRNB) at his office.

“This is, I think, is very regretful that an institution doing business in Bangladesh has served a legal notice to our President to create pressure [on the govt] for arbitration…this is not easily acceptable,” he said.

About government steps about the notice, the minister said, “The top level of the government has been informed about the notice. They’ve talked to lawyers, too. There’s nothing to be worried as Grammenphone only wants arbitration. But there’s no scope for arbitration defying the court order,” he said.

“We’ll go for arbitration if the court orders so. There’s no chance of getting justice disobeying the court of that country where a business institution runs business. We’re on the right track,” said the minister.

Responding to a question whether Grameenphone will move international court, he said, “They’ve given such an impression that they’ll move the international court if there’s no arbitration. But it’s my observation that it won’t be possible to do anything in international court after a defeat in the country’s court.”

On November 24, the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court asked mobile phone operator Grameenphone to pay within three months Tk 2,000 crore of the Tk 12,579.95 crore dues as claimed by the Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC).

The BTRC claims dues of Tk 12,579.95 crore in 27 sectors from GP. Having failed to recover the money, the BTRC on April 2 sent a notice to GP threatening to revoke its licence.

Later, GP moved a lower court seeking a temporary injunction on the BTRC’s notice which was turned down on August 28. Later, it filed an appeal with the High Court.

source: UNB