BSNL to roll out 4G services in 18 to 24 months, Sanjay Dhotre tells Parliame

State-owned Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) expects the rollout of 4G services to be completed in 18-24 months, Parliament was informed. The government has no plan to privatise BSNL, Minister of State for Communications, Sanjay Dhotre said in a written reply to the Lok Sabha.


BSNL had invited an Expression of Interest (EoI) on January 1, 2021 for registration and proof of concept from Indian companies interested in participating in BSNL’s upcoming 4G tender, the ministry said.


“BSNL will follow the applicable Rules/guidelines/Public Procurement orders of the Government, including Rule 144(xi) of the General Financial Rules, 2017 in this regard,” he added.

BSNL expects the rollout of 4G services to be completed in 18 to 24 months, Dhotre informed. The government had approved the revival plan for BSNL in 2019, which includes an administrative allotment of spectrum for 4G services through budgetary allocation to the company.


Dhotre said the telecom department, at present, has no plan to frame legislation to regulate internet shutdown in the country. “Temporary Suspension of Telecom Services (Public Emergency and Public Safety) Rules, 2017 has been amended vide Gazette Notification dated 10.11.2020,” Dhotre added.


The minister said, “the fact cannot be denied that the social media platforms operating on internet are also being used by terrorists/anti-social elements to disseminate hate and violence thus disturbing the social harmony”, while acknowledging the role of internet.

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