Over the last few months, we have seen BSNL Employee Unions blaming the government for not allowing it to launch the 4G services. The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) is now said to take a final decision on the launch of 4G services by BSNL, according to ET Telecom. However, a senior BSNL official told the publication that the telco can’t commit any timeline for rolling out the 4G services. BSNL is eagerly waiting for the DoT’s final decision so that it can start working on bringing 4G services to its subscribers across 20 circles. Recently, it was reported that BSNLwould become a pan-India operator in early 2021 by rolling out services in Mumbai and Delhi circles.
“We can’t commit any timeline for the 4G launch. It is for the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) to take a final call in this matter,” a senior official from BSNL said to ET Telecom. Last year, the government stated it is offering a revival package to BSNL and MTNL. As part of this package itself, BSNL was supposed to launch 4G services.
On March 23, BSNL released the first draft for procuring 4G equipment, however, that was scrapped due to differences with the DoT. Earlier this month, BSNL wrote to the government that the delay in 4G rollout and non-procurement of 2G equipment would impact revenues badly.
BSNL employee unions also urged that the company’s 4G services will be a “potential threat to Mukesh Ambani’s overzealous ambition of monopolising the entire telecom sector.”
The DoT had asked the telco to cut investments on 2G networks, however, BSNL says that 60% of its customer base is still on 2G network.“There were some unrealistic expectations by the panel that included discouraging 2G investments and time-bound Proof of Concept (PoC) which we have opposed,” added the report further.
BSNL customers across the country are hoping the telco to bring 4G services at the earliest.