Addressing reporters here on Saturday, BSNL Chairman and Managing Director Anupam Shrivastava said talks were on with government in this regard.
He said BSNL had written to the government seeking 5MHz block on 700 MHz band through equity route. “We are seeking financial support from the government in this regard,” he said. He was reacting to the need for additional spectrum to reach out to the entire country following the digital initiative of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The premium radiowaves in 700 MHz was up for auction earlier this year, but did not attract any players due to its high cost.
Interestingly, BSNL had been avoiding 4G as through SWOT analysis it found that it does not have the right kind of spectrum to roll out 4G. The idea to meet the competition of 4G services provided by other operators is to have wifi hotspots in the country. “We are planning 40,000 of them. They are 4G hotspots,” he said.
He also said BSNL had got 2,500 MHz spectrum from the Union government and is seeking Expression of Interest from private operators to join hands with the company. Meanwhile, BSNL took on the competition from Reliance JIO by offering unlimited free call facility at a cost of `144.
This comes in the wake of Reliance Jio offering `149 entry plan in India.