417 BSNL employees take VRS
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417 BSNL employees take VRS

January 31, 2020

Mysore/Mysuru: Over 417 employees of Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL), Mysuru and Chamarajanagar Circle, will join the 78,000 BSNL employees who will retire today (Jan. 31) in one of the largest Voluntary Retirement Scheme (VRS) drives in the country.

The 417 employees include 95 employees from Mysuru General Manager’s Office and the rest are from Chamarajanagar Circle. Speaking to Star of Mysore this morning, Deputy General Manager (Administration and Planning) Rangaswamy, who is also retiring tomorrow, said that retiring employees come from various grades starting from lineman, clerks, engineers, Deputy General Managers, Assistant Engineers, Divisional Engineers and Executive Engineers. 

Reducing the number of employees is one way for the cash-strapped BSNL to find a way out of the financial crisis they find themselves lodged in now. “Approximately 78,300 employees have opted for the VRS as per data received from all the Circles till the closing of the scheme. This is as per our target. We were expecting reduction of 82,000 headcount. Besides VRS applicants, around 6,000 employees also retired,” BSNL Chairman and Managing Director P.K. Purwar told reporters in New Delhi. There would be over 85,000 employees left after the retirement drive. 

BSNL expects to save as much as Rs. 600 crore monthly on wages and is now eyeing monetisation of company-owned land assets worth Rs. 73,000 crore in order to turn profitable.

According to the retirement scheme, all regular and permanent employees of BSNL including those on deputation to other organisations or posted outside the corporation on deputation basis, who attained the age of 50 years or above are eligible to seek VRS. The amount of ex-gratia for any eligible employee will be equal to 35 days’ salary for each completed year of service and 25 days’ salary for every year of service left until superannuation. 

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The State-owned Telco with a revenue-to-wage ratio of 75 percent had floated a scheme for voluntary retirement after the Cabinet’s approval in October 2019 to bring down its huge salary burden. The current employee base of 70,000 would be a reasonable number to support the network. BSNL will however continue to meet salary expenses of those retiring till Jan. 31, 2020.

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