BSNL Rubbishes Report Of Closure, Says Government Working On Suitable Packages


Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) has finally denied a news report claiming that the finance ministry is planning to shut down the PSU. The declaration was made two days after the Financial Express newspaper reported that the ministry has recommended to close down both debt-ridden MTNL and the BSNL.

BSNL Rubbishes Report Of Closure


According to the report, the finance ministry is not in favor of approving the revival package of BSNL and MTNL. Also, they are planning to draft cabinet note on the same. On the other hand, the Department of Telecom (DOT) has sought Rs. 50,000 crore for a voluntary retirement scheme and 4G spectrum for BSNL. The report also states that in case of closure of the PSUs, the government has to spend Rs. 95,000 crore, which is much higher than DOT is looking for the revival.

Meanwhile, BSNL has also issued a statement and clarified that there is a plan under active consideration for the revival of BSNL by the government of India by giving suitable packages in terms of the VRS/4G spectrum and allowing monetization of assets available with BSNL. However, there is a catch. The VRS package will be approved by the Union Cabinet and Telecom Commission.

BSNL is making losses since 2009-10, and both MTNL and the BSNL have faced an issue in clearing their staff salaries, in the recent past. Meanwhile, Business Standard reported that the employees of BSNL have urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to approve a bailout package for the PSU. The revival package has been prepared by DOT.

"The employees are very confident that BSNL can be revived in three to four years and made profitably," K Sebastian, general secretary, Sanchar Nigam Executives Association, was quoted by the newspaper. Adding to that, "The government did not allot 4G spectrum to BSNL, although BSNL's 3G service is superior to the 4G service of other operators at various cities, as per Telecom Regulatory Authority of India data."

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