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MTNL & BSNL sheds 4G Plans, ask for BWA Spectrum refund

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Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Limited (MTNL), the India’s first 3G Mobile Operator & Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) has both decided to stay away from the 4G Revolution. Both the companies are no longer interested in High Speed Internet and are seeking BWA Refunds to re-structure their debt & expansion plans to turn profitable.

As a part of new strategy, MTNL will offer VRS (Voluntary Retirement Scheme) to about 20,000 of its employess in Delhi & Mumbai which would cost about Rs. 2000 crores. MTNL has approached the Govt. to surrender its broadband wireless access (BWA) licence in Delhi & Mumbai that it got by Default at market determined prices of Rs. 4600 crores.

Rather than being a part of 4G revolution, MTNL feels its important to improve & expand its present network. MTNL has posted a loss of Rs 929.7 crore for the quarter ended December, 2011.

On the other hand, BSNL too has almost similar plans. It has requested a refund of Rs 8,313.9 crore for surrendering the BWA Spectrum in 20 circles. BSNL has submitted 2 plans, One for Pan India Spectrum surrender and the other proposal is to return spectrum in Maharashtra, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Kolkata, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu only.

BSNL has made a point that it had initially planned plan for WiMax technology to offer 4G services but now whole industry is adopting the LTE technology. BSNL cannot fully utilize the spectrum allocated to it in 2.5 Ghz Bands as the LTE-TDD technology is such bands is still not fully developed to offer commercial services.

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