Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) has been slipping into heavy losses ever since the start of the data tariff war in the telecom sector, after the entry of the Mukesh Ambani led telecom operator, Reliance Jio. The BSNL board has been thinking of moves which would pull the state-led company out of the pit of losses, and it has already thought of a few steps. However, in a recent development, the BSNL board has given a green flag to merging of circles to make them more efficient.
BSNL to Merge Circles for Improved Efficiency
The new update comes from Deccan Herald, which has reported that a highly placed source in the company said, “There are certain circles which are not benefiting the company. The board has approved the merger of circles in a bid to increase efficiency.” It is worth noting that the company boasts of having 24 circles and three training institutes, but as per the sources, the board has said that these circles are no longer useful for the company. The source said, “There are around 12 such circles.” As per this new report, the circles which will be merged after this new decision include - Punjab and Haryana, Western Uttar Pradesh and Eastern Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Jharkhand and Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, among others.
As per the sources, the responsibility of dealing with redundant staff will be given to the human resources department of the company since there are going to surplus employees after the merger of these circles. Regarding this, a source has said that mostly these employees will be parked inside the company only.
To recall, BSNL has also agreed to cut down its workforce by a massive 54,000 employees, a move which was not well received by the existing workforce and has also become a topic of debate in the country. On the same lines, the company has accepted the proposal for reducing the retirement age of its employees from 60 years down to 58 years and the state-run telco will also be introducing Voluntary Retirement Scheme (VRS) for all employees aged 50 and above.
DoT to Make Decision on Retirement Age After Elections
Notably, the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has already floated a cabinet note on VRS and allocation of the spectrum. It has, however, stalled the decision of bringing down the retirement age for a post-election date after an intervention by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).
It is also crucial to note that the DoT has gone through with the appointment of 4 new directors in the state-run telecom operator for Finance, Human Resource, Consumer Mobility and Enterprise Business on a temporary basis for three months. As per the sources, the company needs 10 directors, but until now it had only 4. The seat of the Finance director has been filled in the company after a vacancy of three long years.