AIGETOA Meeting with Restructuring Team on 15.02.2021:

AIGETOA Meeting with Restructuring Team on 15.02.2021:

The Recognised Representative Association of BSNL Executives i.e. AIGETOA was invited by the BSNL management for the formal discussion with Restructuring Committee on 15.02.2021 to present executive side view on the ongoing restructuring process including cadre strength reassessment. The meeting was held under the chairmanship of respected Director (HR), Shri Arvind Vadnerkar ji, where other members of the restructuring committee comprising of Shri R K Goyal PGM(Pers), Shri Saurav Tyagi Sr GM(Estt), Shri A M Gupta Sr GM(SR), Smt Samitha Luthra GM(Rectt), Shri Rajeev Kumar GM (Finance) and Shri Manish Kumar GM (Restructuring) represented the management side and the association side was represented by Shri Ravi Shil Verma – All India President, Shri Wasi Ahmad – General Secretary, Shri Badri Mehta – Vice President and Shri Sunil Gautam – Asst General Secretary.

The meeting lasted for more than two hours where AIGETOA presented the implications of BSNL’s proposal on the career aspects of the executives and consequent stagnation associated with the proposed man power plan by BSNL. AIGETOA also presented it’s detailed presentation and model for the upcoming cadre Restructuring along with the positive implications of the proposed hierarchy by association. We categorically mentioned to management that any reduction in posts beyond stipulated norms can not be accepted. In the discussion, AIGETOA Team highlighted the apprehensions in the mind of executives due to VRS and suggested solution to fade the resentment so that motivation can be achieved at each level in executive cadre for mutual benefit of employee as well as the organisation. The association categorically put on record that long term stagnation of any grade will be harmful to the growth of the organisation and executives should now atleast be given proper opportunity to excel in their careers. We once again highlighted our firm opposition with respect to MT recruitment and emphasized that two levels of entry in organisation is not acceptable to us. We also presented the model of Internal fast track promotion policy as per the stand of the association .

The whole discussion was held in an amicable atmosphere with a positive thought process and a clear intent to come at a best possible solution without any dent to the caterer aspects of executives. It was heartening to note that our concerns were appreciated by the members from management side including Director HR. However, we have clearly highlighted our stand with respect to the restructuring process and career aspects of executives across various streams and cadres.

The meeting was positive and submissions were well taken by the Director HR and Committee Members. It was agreed that management will work over the proposals submitted by the association and the more deliberations shall be held if required.

Thereafter two more meeting of Restructuring Committee has been held in two days and we hope that target assigned by CMD BSNL with respect to restructuring process as per assurance given to us in the meeting is achieved. Once there is clarity in numbers of posts, promotion process in other cadres and streams (Except JTO to SDE DPC which is already in process and shall be notified once the judgement of Honble CAT Jabalpur is received) shall be initiated. We once again reiterate that though there is improvement vis-a-vis initial proposal by Deloitte but still we have miles to go to achieve our objective and we sincerely hope that management will definitely consider our submissions with respect to the proposed career prospects of executives to avoid resentment and unrest amongst executives.

Meeting with CMD BSNL on 10th Feb 2021:

Team AIGETOA comprising of Shri Ravi Shil Verma AIP, Shri Wasi Ahmad GS, Shri Badri Kumar Mehta VP and Shri Vivek Kumar OS met with Shri P. K. Purwar ji, CMD BSNL in his chamber and discussed various issues pertaining to Restructuring, Stagnation in Promotion, Salary disbursement, 4G Service rollout, Cluster Penalty Issues, FTTH MSO/TIPs issues along with its slow penetration and its speed issue especially east zone, Standard Pay Scale reminder from BSNL to DoT etc. The meeting lasted for more than an hour and exhaustive deliberation held on all aspects with the hon’ble CMD BSNL, who gave a patient hearing to all the points raised by the association and acknowledged them in right perspective and explained his position also as well agreed on many proposals put forward by the association.

We apprised our concern over inordinate delay in the ongoing restructuring exercise and emphasized that it is resulting in stalling of various other activities on this pretext. We further raised the points of cadre restructuring where many sections are giving varying information w.r.t. to proposed strength in various grades under different stream. We explicitly told that any reduction of sanctioned strength in promotional posts affecting the career progression of the executives will not be accepted by the association. Detailed deliberations were made on various aspects and future career growths including incorporation of Fast Track Mode in Promotions for the meritorious executives. It was also highlighted that now its high time that proposed cadre restructuring should immediately be discussed and deliberated with the Recognized Representative Association to take viewpoint of executive’s side by the concerned authorities else the whole exercise will be a futile one. CMD BSNL acknowledged our concern and explained that being an important activity, it has taken some time and he expects proposal to be ready by 2nd week of March 2021. He further assured that nothing will be finalized without discussion with recognized representative association. He said that formal discussion will be done with the association in this regard. He also categorically told that management is not averse to the career growth of our employees and he will ensure that a fine balance is kept between career aspiration of our people and the need of the organization. He also told that how he has already given clearance to go ahead with the SDE Promotion immediately after our discussions on 9th Dec 2020 but unfortunately the matter got stuck up at Hon’ble CAT Jabalpur. He assured that other promotions will also be executed, once they arrive at a figure without linking it with approval of restructuring plan. He said that while its duty of management to ensure the necessary career progression but at the same time employees should also not try to put unnecessary blockage and should apply prudence in thought process.

We also highlighted the need for introduction of fast-track promotion channel in all grades (at least till DGM) for certain number of posts to encourage our young meritorious executives for pushing them up in their career with sufficient age profile on their side which will also give a solution for the management succession plan. He was kind enough to agree with the proposal and in fact supported strongly and assured to bring some policy in that direction in next 3-4 months.

We raised matter of timely disbursement of Salary to the employees, which is their basic right as well as requirement to run the household in which they are facing acute hardship. The CMD BSNL said that he understands the pain of the employees but explained that he is finding himself helpless in meeting the deadline to disburse the salary on last working day due to non-improvement in cash flow and mandatory payment of EPF/GPF/GST/TDS and requirement of the system i.e. Electricity Bill/HSD/Cont. Payment in first fortnight of the month. We said that it is the duty of the management to priorities the payment and some way must be chalked out to find a solution for disbursement of salary on the last working day of the month. We said continued delay on salary is giving rise to huge unrest and finally association will have to take a call on conclusive actions in this regard.

We also discussed about inordinate delay in 4G rollout and the association explained its deliberation held with the DoT officials and demanded that if the new procurement is getting stuck up in the policy matter with the government then at least the service can be rollout through up-gradation of existing network especially in south and west zone, which we are saying right from the beginning of BSNL Revival Program. CMD BSNL informed that now clarity has been received on this aspect from higher side and so the department is moving in that direction and some headway has been achieved. But once again it was emphasized by him that early, stable and pan India 4G rolling out with Indian core is highly unlikely due to non-availability of the equipment as on date in the market and its future development and behavior. Although the queries raised in the pre-bid meeting is being evaluated and the same will be submitted to the DoT in current month itself for a final decision. 

A detailed discussion held about slow acquisition of FTTH customers due to several bottlenecks e.g. Speed Issue, Fluctuation in backbone network, Capacity constraints, Higher Initial cost charged by MSO/TIPs to customer vis-à-vis other TSPs, No control on MSO/TIPs etc. The penalty clause limiting to only 15% and issues associated with it also discussed and the association made suggestions on various points. CMD BSNL acknowledged all suggestions and highlighted the efforts are being made the BSNL Board but at the same time assured to look into the proposal suggested by the association for implementation. With regard to the consistent breakage in the backbone Network specially between Chennai and Kolkata, a thorough discussion happened and CMD BSNL assured that corrective action shall be taken immediately.

Meeting with Director (HR) BSNL Board on 10th Feb 2021:

Team AIGETOA comprising of Shri Ravi Shil Verma AIP, Shri Wasi Ahmad GS, Shri Badri Kumar Mehta VP, Shri Yogendra Kumar AGS and Shri Vivek Kumar OS met with Shri Arvind Vadnerkar, Director (HR) BSNL Board in his chamber, which was attended by the PGM (Pers) and Sr GM(SR) BSNL CO New Delhi also.

JTO to SDE Promotion issue was taken up with the Director HR and reminded about inordinate delay in issuing of the order. On this the Director HR agreed with it and accepted that the order couldn’t be issued as promised due to the court direction but said that management is determined to overcome the setback and issue the order. PGM Pers informed that all preparatory works are ready and once a relief obtained from the Hon’ble Court, management will not take time to issue the order. We requested for moving application for intervention for early pronouncement of the judgment, which was agreed, and suitable direction was issued to MP Circle in the meeting itself. We also requested for notification of the LDCE simultaneously for expediting the long awaited process. It was apprised to us that the preparatory process for LDCE is in advance stage and formal approval for notification will be processed without any further delay.

Then restructuring discussion was started and it was explicitly told that it will be a futile exercise if the views of the staff side is not taken through recognized association for protecting their promotional avenues. During discussion, we were apprised about the current proposed figure for various grades. It is understood that though the figures have considerably improved from the initial proposal and many of the suggestions given by AIGETOA with respect to new structure has been accepted but still the same is not in line with our satisfaction level.  We said now its high time that formal deliberations with AIGETOA be initiated to present the staff side viewpoints. The Director HR agreed to the proposal and invited us to give representation on restructuring to accommodate aspiration of executives. Accordingly, the AIGETOA will be giving its presentation in the coming week.

The SDE to AGM and AO to CAO promotion was thereafter taken up with the Director HR and it was requested to start the preparatory works for these promotions. The Director HR sought some more time to go ahead on the process and assured to take up in the month of the March after getting some clarity on restructuring. The discussion with respect to settlement of reservation issue also needs to be intiated immediately.

On the reversal issue, it was assured that the issue will be resolved in the direction as agreed earlier. The PGM Pers has been asked to reinitiate the process once again for settlement. The list-9 finalization and circulation of provisional list 10 for VY 2007-08 was also discussed. PGM Pers informed he will move towards finalization of the list in the next month and the association will definitely be consulted before arriving on any decision. We however emphasized that there is no scope of any deviation with respect to already agreed line by BSNL and AIGETOA shall be furnishing all documents/evidences in support of the VY wise seniority in the cadre. The only thing which needs to be amended in the list in incorporation of Rota along with Quota.

We also drew the attention of the Director HR on non-formation of the committee on pay loss issues of 22820/-, E1+5 and DR JTO from TTA despite AIGETOA giving its detailed submissions as per the decision taken in Agenda meeting held in September. He assured to look into it as submitted by the association. We shall be strongly pursuing on this issue.

Team AIGETOA also highlighted that action with respect to clarification on the discriminatory clause for GATE JTOs and Bond related issues has yet not been initiated by Establishment Cell and the same needs to be initiated immediately. Further online mechanism for capturing request transfer cases has also not been started yet.  It was told that action on these issues shall be initiated immediately.

Finally we requested Director HR to convene second agenda meeting in continuity of the first agenda meeting held on 15.09.2020 with the recognized association to assess the progress on the agenda items submitted by the association. He asked the Sr. GM (SR) to convene the meeting in last week of Feb, 2021 with para wise update on all issues discussed in the first meeting.

SAB Account Update

Team AIGETOA CHQ continuously monitor the SAB contribution and it’s timely deposit with various authorities in the management and LIC for updation. Now the last contribution made in Dec-2020 by the BSNL has been updated in the SAB account. All BSNL recruited employees are requested to go though the portal and verify their SAB account updated contribution.

Click here for the link for SAB details

Team AIGETOA Meeting with PGM (Pers), BSNL CO New Delhi:

Team AIGETOA CHQ team consisting of AIP Shri Ravi Shil Verma, GS Shri Wasi Ahmad, AGSs Shri Sunil Gautam and Shri Yogendra Kumar met PGM Pers and held discussion on following issues:

1. Status of Jabalpur CAT Judgment: We apprised PGM Pers about the current position of the case and sought further course of action. PGM Pers told that since decision is expected shortly, there is no point in reaching to higher court as it may further delay the things. As far as the preparedness of BSNL is concerned, they have completed all the preparatory exercises and as soon as go ahead, is received from Hon’ble Court, BSNL is fully prepared to issue the promotion orders. We however requested him to direct the BSNL Counsel to mention the judgment pronouncing at the tribunal, so that it can be further expedited.

2. List 9 finalization: We discussed the issue that list 9 (for VY 2006-07) which was published in August, 2020 is still provisional while the provisional list 10 for 2007-08 has also not been published yet. We further told that some executives, whose VY needs to be upgraded has also not been done yet. PGM Pers told that the list will be finalized in this month itself. We further told that there should not be any second thoughts on applicability of VY based seniority in the lists and any deviation from the agreed line will be opposed strongly. PGM Pers told, before finalizing anything, matter shall be discussed with association and no unilateral decision shall be taken. Once list 9 is finalized, list 10 shall be published.

3. Promotions from SDE to AGM and AO to CAO: We requested to initiate the preparatory exercise for the same and necessary approvals which needs to be taken to start the process. PGM Pers told that this needs to be discussed at higher level to achieve clarity in the process. Accordingly association shall be discussing the same with CMD BSNL and Director HR on the same.

4. SDE 2007 Reversal issue: PGM Pers assured to initiate the discussion on the same expeditiously for a full and final settlement of the whole issue.

5. Pending Transfer Cases in Accounts and Finance Cadre: We once again highlighted the continued delay on this and requested to issue these orders. PGM Pers said matter is under discussion and he hopes for an early consideration of the requests.

All the above matters shall be discussed once again with Director HR and CMD BSNL in meeting to be held this week.

Team AIGETOA Meeting with GM(Restructuring):

Shri Ravi Shil Verma AIP, Shri Wasi Ahmad GS and Shri Badri Kumar Mehta VP met GM(Restg) BSNL Corporate Office New Delhi and discussed the ongoing restructuring works in detail. The detailed discussion happened about the ongoing restructuring of various vertical levels and cadre structure. The association presented the view points on both aspects and it was emphasized that the cadre restructuring should be carried in such a way that the career progression of the executives shouldn’t be hampered. It was appraised that the promotional avenues should be kept intact to bring motivation among executives to give their best for the organization in this tough scenario, where all constraints are being faced by them in field units. It was further explained that the role of executives have been further enhanced due to change working pattern and bringing of SLA based maintenance as well as provisioning by outside agencies. It was requested by the association that the exercise is abnormally delayed and continued lingering on of this exercise is leading to huge level of uncertainty and frustration in the minds of all executives. We further requested for immediately initiating the formal discussion with AIGETOA to streamline and finalise the process. We categorically emphasized that any further delay is not acceptable to this association and restructuring should be completed at the earliest now. GM Restg told that he will apprise the views to higher management also. He further told that discussion in this regard has been on. He told that Establishment section has been asked to give input on the cadre strength. He further told that AIGETOA view points with respect to the BA Restructuring has been taken into consideration while processing the amendments to the structure. He said management is open to all suggestions to keep the career prospects intact. It is further learnt that view points given by AIGETOA with respect to cadre strength and promotional Avenues during varous meetings with CMD/Director HR has been given due weightage and some change is there with respect to initial thought process of keeping the posts to be a bare minimum. Now things are getting improved but still it is not as per satisfaction level of executives. AIGETOA is keeping due track of this exercise and any dent to our future prospects shall be strongly opposed. The restructuring issues shall be further taken up in the meeting with Director HR this week.

AIGETOA Meeting with senior officers at DoT, Sanchar Bhawan, New Delhi:

Team AIGETOA comprising of GS Shri Wasi Ahmad, AIP Shri R. S. Verma, VP Shri Badri Kumar Mehta, AGS Shri Yogendra Kumar, AGS Shri Sunil Gautam, OS Shri Vivek Kumar Singh and Smt Roopmala Priydarshi met senior functionaries of the DoT at Sanchar Bhawan New Delhi. The meeting held in different span including Smt Anita Praveen Add Sec(T), Shri P. K. Sinha Member(Fin), Shri B. K. Member (Services), Ms Anshuli Arya Administrator (USOF), Shri Sanjeev Gupta DDG (PM), Shri Shahnwaz Alam DDG and other officers of the DoT, Sanchar Bahwan on two days (3rd and 5th Feb, 2021) and a range of subject related to BSNL viability, 4G rollout, clearance of pending amount by USOF to BSNL, Standard Scale E2-E3, 3rd PRC was raised by the association and discussed in detail.

In the meeting, Member (Fin) raised his concern over slow progress in other arms of revival package and emphasize faster rollout of 4G, renting out of vacant space and land monetization to gather more revenue to improve financial health of the company. We raised our concern and requested for requisite support from DoT for sustainability and clear roadmap for revival of BSNL. He assured that the DoT is committed to extend all support within the frameworks but asked us to find the ways to improve the system within BSNL also and raise it to the management. We apprised how young executives, who joined the department after 01.01.2007 is still suffering with the loss of pay, whereas standard pay scale proposal of E2 and E3 is still pending at DoT. The 3rd PRC didn’t implemented in BSNL on the reason of non-profitability clause whereas BSNL is being asked to implement 4G rollout with certain condition. The proposed condition is commercially non-viable option in compare to other TSPs rollout and it is also delaying full-fledged rollout of 4G, which will ultimately result in the loss to the employees in terms of delay in Salary and non-extension of PRC and other monetary benefits. He acknowledged our concerns and explained position of the DoT and the government and suggested various measures.

The meeting with Additional Secretary(T) and Member(Services) also held but the matter were discussed in brief due to their prior engagement. The AST advised us to have a detailed discussion with Joint Secretary (A) and after precipitated talk, the matter may be taken up at her level for final decision. The association will be pursuing with the Joint Sec (A) with detailed agenda points in the coming days especially for E2-E3 and 3rd PRC implementation.

The meeting with Administrator (USOF) held on the matter of the pending amount to be reimbursed by USOF to BSNL. We apprised matter in detail in line with our letter of Jan-2021, which was accepted by her and assured that she will direct the concerned official to settle it earliest. Thereafter the team met with Shri Shahnwaz Alam DDG in this regard and explained the matter of Rural Wi Fi Hotspot and its claim raised by BSNL, which is pending for payment. Smt Roopmala Priyadarshi accompanied in the meeting and explained the subject matter in detail. The DDG gave a patience hearing and assured positively.

The meeting with DDG(PM) also held in detail and discussion carried out on 4G rollout by BSNL. It was apprised to us that 4G rollout has to be implemented through PoC route, whose formal order is expected to be given in March, 2021. In a recently concluded pre-bid meeting after floating of EoI, many potential bidders have participated and some of them have come forward to implement 4G in the PoC Model under the lead of System Integrator (SI). The association highlighted that in the absence of 4G, the BSNL Revival Program is not going to succeed, which is evident from the fact that the organization is still stagnant in terms of the earning even after completion of one year of the VRS, whereas other TSPs have increased their revenue by 15-20% in the same period. The association highlighted that every delay is causing serious effect on health of the organization and ultimately employees are suffering. The employees are not getting salary on time and delay of three weeks are persisting since long time and other remuneration are also at its bottom. The Promotional avenues are completely stuck up and the filed constraints are also very high. The look after arrangements for higher responsibilities are continuing since years together in spite of sufficient number of vacancies and availability of candidates. This has left the executives completely devastated and their resentment are growing with each passing day. The DDG(PM) gave a patience hearing and explained all aspects in detail.

Association also tried to meet Hon’ble Secretary (T) and requested for appointment which couldn’t be granted immediately on account of his busy schedule especially due to ongoing parliament session. The association will try to meet the honorable secretary very soon to apprise him about the hardship being faced by us due to no progressive growth of the organization, delayed salary, pay loss and stagnation in the career and we will request to intervene in the matter.

Faith and Patience will take us all forward :

Finally Tamilnadu Circle realized and accepted that with reversal order kept in abeyance, the earlier reverted SDEs should be treated as regular SDEs. In the name of clarification to BSNL CO, they were trying to undermine their seniority and were trying to treat them as JTOs.

After pursuasion by BSNL CO CHQ Team and AIGETOA Circle Team of Tamil Nadu, finally the issue is settled and they have been extended DE LA. Though we never endorse extension of LA promotions when sufficient vacancies and candidates are available for regular promotions and we always advocate for regular promotion instead. But such type of small small issues which were being kept in lingering mode specially for BSNL Recruits earlier have now started to see their rightful path. This happens only when right team is in place at all levels.

Yes, we do agree that pace for resolution of the issues is slow but we all have to understand that we are working in an environment where nothing has favoured us in all these twenty years and whatever we have achieved till date has been obtained after consistent struggle and fight. The wrongs of twenty years needs to be converted into rights and all this will take time. This become further more difficult when our own family members start pulling the legs of those who are up in the line forgetting that this leg pulling will result ultimately harm those also who are trying to delay the things. We can hope that let good sense prevail all to understand that with respect for each other, we together can move forward.

With respect to promotions, extensive discussion has taken place in last 2-3 days and we can hope for the output soon, both on DPC as well as LDCE. Recently, a petition challenging the preparation of list 9 on Vacancy Year wise has been defeated at Honble Madras CAT through active involvement of AIGETOA Chennai and TN team who impleaded in the case. The list will soon reach to Finality and subsequent lists shall also be published thereafter including the seniority revision of those who were promoted through DPC and later got their seniority upgraded through LDCE. Request transfers in the case of Account and Finance Cadre have also been pressed hard and a meeting is scheduled to be held at the level of Director to settle the genuine and rightful transfer cases. Various pending Rule 9 cases shall also be processed soon with a well defined policy for settling these cases is under process. The clarification for GATE JTOs with respect to admissibility of Rule 8 transfers for them is also under process. With respect to bond related issues, AIGETOA Team is on Job and we shall be ensuring it’s resolution soon.

The promotion in AGM cadre ( Both Telecom and Finance) are also in active pursuasion and we are hoping for a start once the JTO to SDE DPC is completed. Promotion in other cadres like CSS, Civil, Electrical and Architecture are also being pursued.

Friends, we do understand that since last five months of ourselves taking over, output is not that much visible but the ground work which have done is huge and results will be seen in coming days. The inertia of the system and desperation to override the next person is the major cause of sorry state of affairs in the HR front but that doesn’t mean that the things can’t be sorted out or the delay is going to be endless. We are very sure that we will be overcoming all these obstacles with our efforts which will be a mix of perseverance, persuasion and organisational actions.

Yes the major cause of worry remains is the not so positive stand of management with respect to the issues related to Pay and SAB. In the next agenda meeting, we are going to focus on these issues only and a timeline shall be intimated failing which association will adopt the path of organisational actions.

We once again request all to have faith and patience. AIGETOA is fully committed to take all issues to its logical conclusion.

AIGETOA writes to the Administrator (USOF) for releasing the CAPEX and OPEX subsidies in 25000 rural Wi-Fi Hotspot Project to BSNL:

GS AIGETOA has taken up the matter of releasing of the pending CAPEX and OPEX subsidies for 25000 Rural Wi-Fi Hotspot Project being run by BSNL under USOF. BSNL has successfully completed the target of the project as given by the USOF and raised the claim, which is awaited the payment. In the absence of the requisite payment of subsidies, it will be very difficult to run the prestigious project of rural Wi-Fi Hotspot in this financial stress of the organisation, which is very important to address digital divide of urban and rural population.

Click here for the letter