New Delhi: The government on Wednesday said two state-run telecom firms BSNL and MTNL have collectively paid Rs1,132.06 crore in the last four years as rent for the buildings they have hired for technical and administrative offices.
MTNL has paid a total of Rs108.16 crore since 2008 and BSNL has paid Rs1,023.9 crore during the same period, minister of state for communications and IT Milind Deora informed the Lok Sabha.
He also informed that the government has not received any dividend from MTNL for 2009-10. The telecom company had paid 10% dividend in 2008-09 and 40% in 2007-08.
Of the total paid-up capital of MTNL, which stood at Rs630 crore, the government held 56.25% amounting to Rs354.36 crore, Deora said.
Replying to another question, he said BSNL has installed 20,461 Base Transceiver Stations (BTSs) in its network till 2010-11. MTNL fitted 336 BTSs during the same period.
He added both BSNL and MTNL are losing market share.
Market share of BSNL has fallen from 18.98% from 31 March 2009 to 13.37% till 30 June 2011.
In case of MTNL, it has came down from 14.64% to 9.62% for Delhi circle in the same three years. In Mumbai, it declined to 12.17% from 20.21%.
Reasons for decline in market share are stiff competition from private players and churning of fixed line subscribers, due to their preference to mobile services.
To improve the customer base, both the companies are taking various steps, including upgradation of customer service stations, introduction of call details-based billing and increasing the points where customers can make payments.
To yet another question, Deora said telecom regulator Trai has reported that it has been receiving complaints from customers regarding activation of value-added services.
Trai had issued directions to service providers that service providers have to obtain a confirmation from users within 24 hours of activation of value-added services through SMS, e-mail or fax in writing, falling which the services shall be de-activated without any cost to the customer.