NEW DELHI: State-owned telecom firm BSNL has urged the telecom department to deploy adequate number of senior ITS officers on key managerial positions to ensure uninterrupted service to its customers. The company has rolled out voluntary retirement scheme to reduce the number of employees and related expenses.
The BSNL has also raised concern before the Department of Telecom about orders being issued by it for repatriation or deputation of some employees to other organisations, which is creating indiscipline among certain quarters of the deployed officers.
After the announcement of VRS, BSNL Human Resource Director Arvind Vadnerkar has written to the DoT citing its Chairman and MD PK Purwar request in July for deployment of 200 additional ITS officers apart from existing 550 personnel already deployed at the organisation on important senior managerial positions at the public sector firm.
"BSNL is passing through a crisis situation where manning all the key managerial position is the need of the hour for ensuring uninterrupted service to valuable customers in the best business interest of the company," Vadnerkar said in the letter.
The government in October approved a Rs 68,751-crore revival package for loss-making BSNL and MTNL, including 4G spectrum allocation and voluntary retirement scheme, as well as their merger.
Vadnerkar said that the periodical change in the posting of officers is desirable to meet urgent manpower requirement across the field but some officers engage with the DoT to seek favourable order to stay in the circle or area where they were posted.
The BSNL HR Director said there are some 32 ITS (Indian Telecommunications Service) officers seeking their relieving from BSNL, who have either been selected for deputation or to be repatriated back to DoT in accordance with the orders of the department. "Such a tendency of circumventing orders of competent authority in BSNL shows growing evidence of indiscipline among certain quarter of deployed officers," Vadnerkar said.
According to ITS Association, the officers deployed at BSNL by the DoT have repeatedly expressed concern over the delay in payment of salaries, dues and discriminatory treatment meted out to them at the organisation demotivates them to work for the PSU and therefore demanded their repatriation.
The association representatives said that the BSNL is running short of officers because it has offered VRS to 803 senior level officers out of which 458 have opted for it. "When BSNL needs Grade A level officers to man important position, the management should have not offered them VRS. Instead of demanding ITS officers from the DoT, BSNL should send back around 550 ITS back to the department. This will help them in saving of over Rs 500 crore," ITS Association President PK Jain said.
Total, one lakh BSNL employees are eligible for the Voluntary Retirement Scheme (VRS) out of its total staff strength of about 1.50 lakh.
The effective date of voluntary retirement under the present scheme is January 31, 2020. Over 92,000 BSNL and MTNL employees have opted for VRS. BSNL is looking at a savings of about Rs 7,000 crore in wage bill, if 70,000-80,000 personnel opt for the scheme.