CPI-M demands withdrawal of higher licence fee for BSNL

New Delhi, June 16 (IANS) The Communist Party of India-Marxist Wednesday asked the government to let state-run telecom company Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) pay the licence fee for 3G spectrum at par with private operators.

The party termed the department of telecommunications order asking BSNL to pay a higher licence fee than the private operators as ‘unjust’ and ‘discriminatory’, and demanded its withdrawal.

The CPI-M politburo said while the private operators had been asked to pay the licence fee on their income, the BSNL had been asked to pay on its revenue. ‘This will put additional burden on the premier public sector undertaking amounting several thousand crore of rupees,’ it said in a statement.

‘This development once again underlines the pro-private sector stance of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government, in general, and Telecommunication Minister A. Raja, in particular, which should be resolutely opposed by all those who want to defend the public sector,’ the statement said.

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