Government is studying proposals from three telecom companies which are keen to convert interest on deferred spectrum and adjusted gross revenue (AGR) dues into equity, telecom minister Ashwini Vaishnaw told Rajya Sabha on Friday.
Responding to a question in the Upper House on whether the government has any equity in private telecom firm Vodafone, Mr Vaishnaw said that a one-time option was given to telecom companies to either pay upfront the interest on AGR dues or convert it in the form of equity in lieu of that as part of the structural reforms announced in September last year.
The one-time option was given to telecom companies to ensure the government's revenue is not compromised, he said.
"Three companies have exercised that option. We have received their letters and we are examining them," the minister informed Rajya Sabha.
The option was also given because the telecom sector has been going through a tough phase for many years, due to which, the balance sheet of many companies is not good today despite heavy growth in the telecom sector, he added.