Move to liquidate and privatise Bharat Sanchar Nigam

The Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd. (BSNL) management has planned to reduce the retirement age from 60 to 58 years. It has also planned to offer voluntary retirement scheme to all workers aged 50 and above. Both these measures will lead to loss of jobs for over 54,000 workers, which amounts to 31% of the workforce of BSNL. Both these measures are being justified to reduce the losses BSNL has been incurring for the last few years.

The real cause for losses has been the deliberate neglect of the BSNL with a view to privatise it in due course. While all private telecom companies are offering 4G mobile service, BSNL has not been allotted any spectrum for 4G service. This has made BSNL uncompetitive. The other reason is the price war launched by Mukesh Ambani’s Jio since 2016, with the open backing of the BJP led central government, which has led to every telecom company in the country incurring heavy losses since then.

More than 1 lakh workers of BSNL went on 3-day strike from Feb 18 to 20 2019 with the primary demand of the allocation of 4G spectrum to BSNL. The allocation of the spectrum has not been done despite the assurance given by the Minister of State for Communications, Manoj Sinha, in January 2018. The strike was called by All Unions and Associations of BSNL (AUAB) – a united platform of various organisations of workers and officers. The strike was supported by the United Platform of Central Trade Unions, which extended full support to the struggle of the BSNL workers and officers and demanded that the government concede the just demands of the BSNL unions, both on the allotment of 4G and the expeditious wage revision, pending since 2017.

BSNL is the only public sector telecom company offering mobile services in the remotest parts of the country. Further it has valuable land assets, estimated to be worth Rs 1 lakh crore all over the country. BSNL is therefore an attractive target for capitalists of the country. The reduction of workers through early retirement and VRS is being done to make it even more attractive to capitalists, when it is privatised.

The government argues that BSNL is incurring losses due to over-staffing whereas in 2004-05, when there were a lakh more workers in the company, BSNL made a net profit of Rs 10,000 crore. The company made operational profit even in the financial years of 2014-15, 2015-16 and 2016-17. So the real problem is not ‘excessive  workforce’, but the policies of the government in favour of the big monopoly capitalists in the telecom sector.

In the period 2017-18, the aggressive price war launched by Reliance’s Jio, with the full supported of the government, led to heavy losses for nearly all private telecom companies. Vodafone-Idea had incurred a loss of Rs. 5,005.7 crore in just one quarter (October to December) of the FY 2018 – 19. BSNL too suffered as a result of this. In 2017-18, BSNL had an annual loss of Rs. 7,992 crore whereas in 2016-17, the loss was Rs. 4,793 crore.

Deliberately turning profitable public sector enterprises, created by the wealth of our people, into loss-making ventures by consciously allowing their loot and destruction, and then handing over these enormous assets to the private monopoly capitalists at throw away prices, has been the policy consistently adopted by the government over the last 20-30 years. This is what is happening in the case of BSNL.  

The nefarious plans of the government to privatise BSNL must be exposed and the just struggle of BSNL workers must be supported.

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May 16-31 2019    Struggle for Rights    Rights     2019   

पार्टी के दस्तावेज

4th Congress DocumentThe Fourth Congress of the Communist Ghadar Party of India was convened in the last week of October 2010.

The Report of the Fourth Congress was presented by Comrade Lal Singh on behalf of the Central Committee elected by the Third Congress. It was discussed at length and adopted by the Congress. It was been edited for publication by the decision of the Fourth Congress. This publication also contains the Resolutions adopted by the Fourth Congress

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CGPI - 3rd Congress Report

Towards the Rule of Workers and Peasants and a Voluntary Indian Union

This document entitled Towards the Rule of Workers and Peasants and a Voluntary Indian Union contains the Report of the Central Committee presented by Comrade Lal Singh, General Secretary of the Communist Ghadar Party of India, which was discussed and adopted by the Third Congress of the Party, held in January 2005.

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This keynote speech, entitled "Crisis of Capitalism and the dangerous course of the Indian State points to the urgency for communists to prepare for the proletarian revolution!", was delivered by Comrade Lal Singh, General Secretary of CGPI, on behalf of it's Central Committee  at a conference of Indian communists in Nov 2002.

This paper, entitled Only Communism Can Save India! was presented by Comrade Lal Singh, General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Ghadar Party of India, at the Kanpur Communist Conference, 2000. The publication also includes the resolution adopted at the Kanpur Communist Conference, 2000.

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Preparing for the Coming Storms—: Challenge Facing Indian Communists

This report entitled Preparing for the Coming Storms—  Challenge Facing Indian Communists, presented by Comrade Lal Singh, General Secretary of the Communist Ghadar Party of India, on behalf of its Central Committee, was discussed and adopted at the Second Congress of the Communist Ghadar Party of India, held in October 1998.

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  • Year: 1999
  • Author: CGPI
  • Languages: English
  • Mediums: Print
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Description: Consultative Conference - Renewal of India, Call of the New Century