MTNL-BSNL merger proposal rejected by PMO

India’s Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) has rejected a proposal to merge MTNL and BSNL, two telecom operators owned by the government.
BSNL Kerala offersThe meeting chaired — by Nripendra Mishra, principal secretary to prime minister Narendra Modi, and attended by Department of Telecommunications Secretary Anshu Prakash, BSNL chairman PK Purwar, among others, — decided to look into the merger matter later.

The PMO did not approve a proposal to set up a special purpose vehicle (SPV) for monetisation of land and transfer of BSNL’s Rs 23,000 crore loan and an equivalent land, BusinessLine reported.

The PMO has approved capital infusion for the 4G rollout, the Voluntary Retirement Scheme and monetisation of land, optical fibre cable and towers.

The revival plan approved last month recommended capital infusion of Rs 14,155 crore into BSNL by the government to acquire 4G spectrum and VRS for employees above 50 years.

BSNL, DoT and the Department of Investment and Public Asset Management will jointly monitor the monetisation of land in order to meet BSNL’s expansion plans.