Friday, 3 January 2014

GS, AGS (HQ) and Advisor (HQ) met Jt. Secy. (Telecom.) DoT and discussed

(a) 78.2% IDA pay fixation of BSNL pensioners: We requested for early decision on 78.2% IDA pay fixation of BSNL Pensioners. JST mentioned that DoT proposal of 78.2% IDA pay fixation of BSNL pensioners has been cleared by DoP&PW and now being sent to Department of Expenditure after the clearance of internal finance of DOT.
However, he mentioned that ruling position on notional pension fixation has been cleared by DoP&PW and DOT finance is also supporting the proposal, hence there should not be any problem in getting clearance from DOE. He assured an early action in this regard.
(b) Standard IDA pay scales E-2 and E-3 in BSNL to JTO/SDE equivalent executives: We expressed our serious concern against non implementation of E-2 and E-3 IDA pay scale in BSNL to JTO/SDE equivalent cadres. JST mentioned that BSNL has sent thrice the proposal of E-1A, E-2A and E-9A pay scales to DOT but the same has been turned down on the basis of DPE guidelines and replied to BSNL. We requested that DOT should impress upon to BSNL for implementation of standard IDA pay scales E-2 and E-3 instead of intermediate IDA pay scales E-1A and E-2A.       
Jt. Secy. (T) mentioned that BSNL management is pleading that in case the E-2 and E-3 IDA scales are implemented for JTO/SDE equivalent executives, then the IDA scales of DE and DGM equivalent executive has to be upgraded and it will put more financial implication on BSNL. We strongly protested against such arguments and clarified that in case the intermediate pay scales are replaced by standard IDA pay scales and DE/DGM scales are upgraded to one step higher, much financial implication will not be there, since most of the executives on revision of pay scales will be fixed up equivalent to their present pay in the upgraded pay scale also. But it is a matter of status in higher grades. We further explained that BSNL management is not implementing standard IDA pay scales E-2 & E-3 on the pretext that BSNL has to pay more pension contribution on its highest of IDA scales to DoT. JST told that this issue has not been highlighted by BSNL.
However, he mentioned that today in the cabinet meeting MTNL pension under Rule-37-A and payment of pension contribution on actual basic pay of MTNL employees is being discussed (which was deferred in the earlier meeting held on 26.12.2013) and after its approval the case of BSNL  employees pension contribution on actual basic will also be taken up. He further mentioned that in case the HR issues of BSNL and MTNL employees i.e. Govt. pension to MTNL employees and similar pay scales in BSNL & MTNL are resolved, the merger of BSNL and MTNL may also get the momentum.
(c) Viability of BSNL: We requested for early refund of BWA spectrum charges to BSNL and payment of rural subsidy to BSNL (Rs. 1250 + Rs. 1250) =Rs.2500 crores to BSNL on the basis of TRAI recommendations. JST mentioned that BWA spectrum charges will be refunded to BSNL shortly as per Govt. decision but on payment of rural subsidy (Rs. 1250 + Rs. 1250) =Rs.2500 crores, Govt. has not taken any decision.

Regarding BSNL viability, he mentioned that BSNL should now mainly concentrate to grow its landline and Broadband business by providing quality services as already Kerala and Odisha Telecom circles in BSNL are doing well.