Monday, December 7, 2015

BSNL has a surplus of Rs 672 crore: Ravi Shankar Prasad

CLOSE on the heels of the government ruling out any disinvestment proposal for the state-owned BSNL and MTNL, Union minister of communication and information technology, Ravi Shankar Prasad on December 6 claimed that Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) recovered from the loss in the past 14 months and was now in a...
surplus of Rs 672 crore.
After chairing the review meeting of BSNL's Wi-Fi and other service in the parliamentary constituency of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the minister told reporters in Varanasi that BSNL was in the profit of Rs 10,000 crore when Atal Bihari Vajpayee demitted his office in 2004. When Narendra Modi became PM in 2014, he received BSNL at a loss of over Rs 8,000 crore and now the BSNL was in profit due to efforts of their ministry.
The company’s income from services grew 4.16 percent to 27,242 crore in 2014-15, the highest in the last five years.
Administrative expenses are also on the decline in 2014-15.
BSNL registered an impressive growth in mobile connections in recent months — it went up from 900,000 in May this year to 1.6 million in July. It has also adopted mobile number portability (MNP) from July 2015, and has since then added 1,57,564 subscribers.
“We are confident of achieving the target of becoming cash positive by 2018 and all 225,000 employees are committed to achieving this,” BSNL CMD Anupam Shrivastava said. Earlier, the government ruled out any proposal to disinvest stake in BSNL and MTNL as part of their revival strategy. In a written reply in Lok Sabha, the Prasad said every attempt with effective monitoring is being undertaken to revive the two companies and make them competitive.
"The results are positive. There is no proposal to disinvest them as part of revival plan," Prasad said.
The minister further said the government provided financial support of Rs 169.16 crore to BSNL and Rs 458.04 crore to MTNL for surrender of spectrum in 800 MHz band. In reply to a separate question, Prasad said Rs 7,795 crore was allocated and authorized by BSNL in 2015-16 for expansion of communication network capacity in various telecom services.

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