BSNL has received a reply from the Empowered Technology Group (ETG) regarding the comments it made on using locally made gear for rolling out 4G services. The group had allegedly declined to consider BSNL's views on not using local gear. BSNL recently approached the DoT saying it couldn't trust domestic core network. The telco also opposed the government's views of stopping investments on 2G network and deploy 4G networks. We recently reported that BSNL Employee Unions are complaining of the high prices quoted by local vendors for a 4G tender compared a tender from global vendors.
ETG Has Not Considered Suggestions Put Forward by BSNL on Local Gear for 4G Tender
As noted, the ETG headed by K VijayRaghavan as Principal Scientific Advisor (PSA) reportedly rejected to consider BSNL's views on the usage of local network gear. "The panel in its virtual meeting today has not considered suggestions put forth by BSNL against the telecom department's (DoT) committee that recommended using core network from domestic companies, and building an Indian telecom stack with a focus on national security," a source familiar with the matter told ET Telecom.
The Indian government is pushing telecom operators not to use network gear from Chinese vendors like Huawei and ZTE. For the unaware, ZTE deployed a lot of gear for BSNL in the past.
In a recent letter to DoT, BSNL rejected to consider the views provided by the department's technical committee of cutting down investments on 2G networks. The telco urged that 60% of its customer base are still on 2G and cutting down investments will impact them badly and could also impact the revenues. Furthermore, BSNL noted that having separate core networks for 2G & 3G and 4G is not an ideal choice.
The latest reply from the ETG will disappoint BSNL Employee Unions. The ETG is expected to draft the 4G tender for BSNL by the end of this week.