The employees associations of Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) have asked the government to refund Rs.18,500 crore paid by BSNL for 3G and broadband spectrum and threatened to go on strike if the demand was not met with.

The BSNL management and Communications and Information Technology Minister A. Raja had urged the government to return the money keeping in mind the social obligations and commitment that BSNL had to fulfil by providing connectivity to remote areas.

Now the Joint Action Committee, a group of over 3 lakh executives and non-executives of BSNL, has demanded the refund of the money as well as exemption for the PSU from paying the licence fees on fixed lines.

They pointed out that BSNL was not given the option to bid and choose circles of its choice like private players, and was later forced to pay high spectrum charges. They have called a meeting here on Monday and union leaders are likely to give a strike call to pressure the government to refund the money.

Keywords: 3G spectrum

More In: National | News