For the whole of the year 2020, the BSNL employees have not got payment of their salary on the due date. Despite the fact that, the salary bill of the Company has been cut down by 50%, due to the retirement of around 80,000 employees under the VRS, the Management does not want to disburse salary on the due date. Besides, despite allotment of 4G spectrum free of cost by the government, extending Sovereign Guarantee for raising Rs.8,500 crore through issuing of bonds, etc., the present BSNL Management has not been able to show any improvement in the financial condition of the Company. In fact, it is an undeniable fact that the BSNL Management has totally failed in utilising the opportunities provided by the government, to revive the Company. BSNLEU has written a plain - speaking letter to the CMD BSNL, with the hope that, a course correction would be done by the Management.
BSNLEU is relentlessly knocking the doors of the Corporate Management for the immediate holding of the JTO LICE, as well as other Limited Internal Competitive Examinations. The commitment given by the Director (HR), in the Formal meeting held on 28.08.2020, regarding holding the JTO LICE, has been thrown to the winds. BSNLEU has once again written to the CMD BSNL, demanding to immediately hold the JTO LICE and other Limited Internal Competitive Examinations.
The DPE so far has not issued order for the payment of 5.5% IDA w.e.f. 01.10.2020. One more instalment of 6.1% IDA has also become due w.e.f. 01.01.2021. On 08.01.2021, the DPE has already clarified that the freezing of three instalments of IDA is not applicable to the Non-Executives of the CPSEs. Even then, it has not issued an order for the payment of the two instalments of IDA. Under these circumstances, the Assistant Solicitor General has informed the Hon’ble Kerala High Court today, in connection with the writ petition filed by BSNLEU, that the freezing of three instalments of IDA is not applicable to the Non-Executives of the CPSEs. Hence, BSNLEU has once again written to the Secretary, DPE, to immediately issue instruction for the payment of 5.5% IDA w.e.f. 01.10.2020 and 6.1% of IDA w.e.f. 01.01.2021.
On 07.01.2021, BSNLEU wrote to the CMD BSNL, demanding that periodical interactions should be held between the CMD BSNL and the unions and associations, to discuss about the developmental activities of the Company. BSNLEU has also pointed out that, such periodical interactions were taking place during the tenure of the earlier CMD BSNL. In response to this, CMD BSNL has written a letter to BSNLEU on 11.01.2021. Appreciation is there in the CMD BSNL’s letter, regarding the positive contribution of the employees, for the development of the Company. As regards, his interaction with the unions and associations, the CMD BSNL has only made some vague mentioning. Hence, BSNLEU has once again written to the CMD BSNL, not only demanding periodical interactions, but also demanding to fix the date for the first meeting.
Every month, BSNLEU is writing to the CMD BSNL, demanding on time payment of salary to the employees. However, Management continues to default on time payment of salary to the employees. BSNLEU has once again written to the CMD BSNL today, demanding immediate allotment of funds to the circles, for payment of December, 2020, salary, to enable the employees to celebrate the festivals of Makar Sankranti/Pongal/Lohri, etc.
BSNLEU has continuously been taking up the case of Scheduled Tribe employees of Maharashtra circle, who were told to get their caste certificates validated. BSNLEU has cited that, this decision of the BSNL Management is violative of the DoP&T instructions on the matter. Still, around 400 retired ST employees have not got their pension settlement and are getting only provisional pension, on the pretext that their caste certificates are not validated. Recently, the Parliamentary Committee on the Welfare of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes has stated that only the caste certificates of the ST employees appointed after 1995 should be subjected to validation. Based on this, BSNLEU has once again written to the CMD BSNL and the Member (Finance), DoT, demanding that, action should be taken based on the direction of the Parliamentary Committee on the Welfare of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.
There was a time in BSNL, when regular interactions were held between the CMD BSNL and the unions and associations, to discuss about the developmental activities of the Company. However, this practice has been stopped ever since Shri P.K. Purwar, took over as the CMD BSNL. BSNLEU has already informed Shri P.K. Purwar that, regular interactions between the CMD BSNL and the unions and associations are essential, for coordinating the efforts to achieve BSNL’s early financial revival. Once again, BSNLEU has written a letter with the reasonings, to Shri P.K Purwar, in this regard.
The DPE has issued guideline for freezing three instalments of IDA. However, it is categorically mentioned in the DPE order dated 19.12.2020, that the freezing of three IDAs is applicable only to the Executives and the Non-Unionised Supervisors. It implies that the freezing of the 3 IDAs is not applicable to the Non-Executives. However, the DPE has so far not issued guideline for the payment of 5.5% IDA, which has fallen due w.e.f. 01.10.2020 to the Non-Executives. BSNLEU has already filed a case in the Hon’ble High Court of Kerala. At the same time, BSNLEU has also written to the Secretary, DPE, demanding to immediately issue guideline for the payment of 5.5% IDA w.e.f.01.10.2020 and 6.1% IDA, w.e.f.01.01.2021 to the Non-Executives.
BSNLEU has been demanding from the very beginning that, the transfer liability of the Non-Executives should not be disturbed, consequent to implementing the Consolidation of Business Areas. The Management has accepted this. However, by way of issuing ambiguous letters, the Corporate Office is giving handle to the unscrupulous officers at the circle and district levels, to involve in mischieves. Recently, one such mischief has been done by the GM, Tezpur. Hence, BSNLEU has written to the Director(HR), demanding strongly to effect changes in the Corporate Office letter dated 27.08.2020.
It has become very clear now that, the BSNL Management is treating the Non-Executives with a stepmotherly attitude. Umpteen times, the Management has assured to hold the JTO LICE without further delay. But, not implemented. BSNLEU is knocking the doors of the Management since January, 2019 (for the past 2 years) to hold the JE LICE. But, nothing is done. BSNLEU has also repeatedly written to the Management, demanding to hold the JAO LICE, JTO (OL) LICE, and Special JTO LICE for Draughtsmen. However, holding of all the exams for the Non-Executives are being unbearably delayed in the name of "Restructuring". At the same time, the Management is proceeding fast to effect the promotions of the Executives. BSNLEU is not against effecting promotions to the Executives. But, our only question is, why the Non-Executives are being neglected. Perhaps, the Management is thinking that the Non-Executives are useless and that, the Company can be run with the Executives alone. BSNLEU has written a strong letter to the Management. But, this is not enough. The Non-Executives' organisations have to come together and put an end to this atrocious attitude of the Management, treating the Non-Executives as wastes and scraps.
The All India Centre meeting of BSNLEU, held online yesterday the 22.12.2020, finalised the views of the Union on the proposals given by LIC regarding the Non-Executives’ Group Term Insurance (GTI) Scheme. Based on this, BSNLEU has written letter to the Sr.GM(SR), BSNL Corporate Office. BSNLEU has pointed out that BSNL is a very big corporate customer of LIC. Hence, the BSNL Management should make hard bargaining with the LIC to reduce the premium amount. Further, BSNLEU has also pointed out the condition laid down by LIC that, 70% of the Non-Executives should join this scheme, should be made flexible, so that the launching of the GTI for the Non-Executives is not hampered by this condition. Read BSNLEU’s letter for full details.
The Assistant Solicitor General of Government of India has informed the Hon’ble High Court of Kerala, that the decision of the government to freeze the three instalments of IDA, falling due from 01.10.2020, 01.01.2021 and 01.04.2021 is applicable only to the Executives and the Non-Unionised Supervisors that it is not applicable to the Non-Executives of the Central Public Sector Enterprises. Based on this, the Hon’ble Kerala High Court has quashed the order freezing the IDA of the Non-Executives working in the FACT. Hence, BSNLEU has written to the CMD BSNL, demanding immediate payment of the instalment of IDA that has become due from 01.10.2020.
From the beginning itself, BSNLEU has been demanding that the present transfer liability of the Non-Executives should not be disturbed due to the implementation of consolidation of Business Areas. BSNLEU has been assured umpteen times by the Management that, the transfer liability of the Non-Executives would remain within the SSA, even after the implementation of the consolidation of Business Areas.
However, in flagrant violation of all these assurances, five Non-Executives of Nagaon SSA have been transferred to Tezpur SSA, in Assam circle. Com.P.Abhimanyu, GS, has discussed this with Shri Manish Kumar, GM(Restg.) in the Corporate Office and has demanded that the Corporate Office should immediately send instructions for the cancelation of these transfer orders. In continuation of this, the CHQ has written to the Director (HR), demanding cancellation of the transfer orders.
Salary for the month of November, 2020, is yet to be disbursed. Every month BSNLEU is writing to the BSNL Management on the issue of non-disbursement of salary. The COVID-19 pandemic situation has eased in most parts of the country. Hence, BSNL Management cannot take shelter behind the reason of dwindled revenue collections due to the pandemic. Hence, BSNLEU has written to the CMD BSNL demanding to immediately disburse the November, 2020, salary and to ensure timely disbursement of December, 2020 salary in view of the New Year.
The AUAB which met on 05.12.2020, made a threadbare discussion on the issue of BSNL’s 4G roll out. The meeting decided to draw the attention of the Hon’ble Prime Minister on the following issues.
a) BSNL should not be compelled to procure 4G core equipments from Indian manufacturers. BSNL should not be discriminated vis-a-via the private operators in procuring equipments. .
b) BSNL should be permitted to upgrade it’s 4G compatible BTSs.
c) BSNL should be permitted to purchase equipments through Add on purchase from the tender for phase 8.4 network expansion.
Accordingly, the AUAB has written letter to the Hon’ble Prime Minister.
BSNLEU has already written to the CMD BSNL, requesting to permit the retired employees to retain the staff quarters 6 months beyond the normal period of retention. BSNLEU has also written to the CMD BSNL, requesting to mitigate the suffering of the retired employees due to the exorbitant rent hike. Since no action has been taken, BSNLEU has once again written to the CMD BSNL requesting to extend the period of retention and also to exempt the retired employees from the rent hike.
Following the discussion that Com.P.Abhimanyu, General Secretary, had with Shri Arvind Vadnerkar, Director (HR), yesterday the 10-11-2020, regarding removing the deadlock that has arisen in the functioning of the National Council, BSNLEU has submitted the letter attached hereunder. BSNLEU has pointed out that the only way to break the stalemate is to utilise the discretionary power given to the Management, by the Hon’ble Kerala High Court. It has given the discretionary power to accept or to reject any nomination to the council, made by the Recognised Union. The General Secretary, BSNLEU, has requested the Director (HR) yesterday that, the Recognised Unions should be given the power to nominate even non-members to the Councils.
It observed that the DoT and the BSNL Management are not showing seriousness in attending the conciliation meetings. No DoT officer has attended the conciliation meetings during the past one year. BSNL Management is also deputing junior level officers who are not empowered to take decisions. As a result, the conciliatory meetings have become rituals. Hence, BSNLEU has written to the Chief Labour Commissioner (Central), demanding that the conciliation meetings connected with BSNL should be conducted at the level of the Deputy Chief Labour Commissioner (Central).