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Govt wants BSNL, MTNL shut down; bleak future ahead for 1.98 lakh employees

The Week 2019-10-09 00:00:00
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In what could be the most upsetting news for around 1.98 lakh employees, the  Union finance ministry has suggested that ailing public sector undertakings Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) and Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Limited (MTNL) be shut down, reported the Financial Express.

The ministry had earlier rejected a proposal of the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) for a Rs 74,000 crore revival package. The DoT proposal was turned down soon after the meeting convened by the PMO for revival of BSNL and MTNL turned inconclusive on September 27.

Quoting sources, the report, however added that in the event of closure of the two PSUs, the cost won’t be as high as Rs 95,000 crore as argued by the DoT.

The pioneering companies have been struggling for some time now and it was reported last month that BSNL would ask nearly 50 percent of its employees to resign. 

In the event of closure, the report said, the Indian Telecommunications Service (ITS) officers in the two PSUs need not be given VRS, but can be redeployed to other government departments. And, those who are direct recruits are very junior staff and their strength is less than 10 per cent of of the overall staff. 

However, those who came from other PSUs or government departments and got themselves absorbed in these firms need to be compulsorily retired by giving some form of VRS.