Telecom Minister Vaishnaw’s ultimatum to BSNL staff: Perform or pack up
Union Telecom Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw has given a stern warning to the ailing BSNL employees that those who are not performing as per expectations will be forced to compulsorily retire and sent home packing. The Minister said that poor maintenance will not be tolerated, and heads will roll.
Vaishnaw reportedly warned the 62,000-strong workforce of BSNL that there should be no doubts regarding the ultimatum issued. In a meeting with the senior management of the struggling telecom PSU, Vaishnaw – who just spearheaded a massive Rs.1.64 lakh crore revival package for BSNL — said, “You have to do what is expected of you. Otherwise, pack up. You should not have any doubt about this. This will be the norm, and this will be the new normal – perform or perish.”
Recently, the ailing PSU telco BSNL has been given a revival package of a massive Rs.1.64 lakh crore comprising of converting dues into equity, financial support, and allocation of spectrum in a bid to turn around the loss-making telecom PSU.
The Centre is now in no mood to let its employees continue with ‘sarkaari’ attitude of ‘aise hi chalta hai‘ (let it be as it is) and wants a higher degree of professionalism and accountability from them.
The Minister said MTNL has ‘no future’. “MTNL does not have a future. We can’t do much there. We all know the constraints of MTNL and what problems it faces. We will do a different exercise for that, and determine what should be the next steps,” he said.
Sources say the Minister has asked the staff to be fiercely competitive now, especially as they have to fight top private sector companies such as Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel for customers.
“People who do not work are free to take VRS and go home. If they show resistance to taking VRS, we will use 56J (a Rule used to order premature retirement)… So, you have to perform the best or be ready to pack up and go home. That’s absolutely clear. Don’t have any doubts about this in your mind,” Vaishnaw said.
He said that apart from managing operations inefficiently, the staff of BSNL has also failed to provide a clean and hygienic environment at the telephone exchanges and their offices. Giving an example of the dirt and filth that he faced at a BSNL exchange in Jharsuguda, he said, “Chullu bhar pani main doobne kaa mann kare, itni gandagee thee. (I was ashamed to see the filth over there). It was so dirty, and in bad condition.”
“The top leadership will be chopped off. I am being very clear. The top leadership will have to go home. People working there and the supervisors over them are also responsible. I am being very clear.”
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