In a major success for the Union Government's push for reviving the state-owned telecom behemoths BSNL and MTNL, as many as 92,700 employees, around half the total workforce, have opted for the lucrative Voluntary Retirement Scheme (VRS) floated last month, reports Economic Times.
The development would help the two debt-laden companies save around Rs 8,800 crore annually in salary bills.
The BSNL and MTNL have received applications for VRS from as many as 78,300 and 14,378 employees respectively.
"Approximately 78,300 employees have opted for the VRS as per data received from all the circles till the closing of the scheme. Besides VRS applicants, around 6,000 employees have retired. This is as per our target. We were expecting reduction of 82,000 headcount," BSNL Chairman and Managing Director P K Purwar was quoted in the report as saying.
The company estimates that the reduction in employees strength will help the company reduce the wage bill by about 50 per cent to Rs 7,000 crore annually from Rs 14,000 crore at present, he said.
Meanwhile, the reduction in workforce size would help MTNL cut short its salary spends from Rs 2,272 crore to Rs 500 crore. This would help the company which in 2018-19 reported a loss of Rs 3,398 crore.
While the BSNL has around 1.6 lakh employees, the MTNL has a workforce of around 18,000.