Indian Railways has awarded the telecom contract for its closed user group (CUG) across the country to Reliance Jio Infocomm, reports the Financial Express.
Reliance Jio will provide the mobile phone connections for Railway employees from January 1, 2018, with officials estimating the reduction in railways’ phone bill by at least 35 per cent. With the new contract, the Government, which foots the bill for Indian Railways will reportedly save Rs 30 Crores.
On November 20, a Railway Board order issued said it ‘had assigned the responsibility to RailTel (railway PSU) for finalisation of fresh CUG scheme for Indian Railways as the validity of the existing scheme is expiring on December 31, 2018’.
It added that fresh CUG scheme is now finalised and Reliance Jio Infocomm Limited has been awarded the contract by RailTel to implement the scheme.
For the past six years, Bharti Airtel had been bagging the contracts for CUG at Rs 100 crore a year bill. They used to provide 1.95 lakh mobile phone connections.
The scheme will see Reliance providing 4G/3G connections and calls at free of cost. There will be four packages- 60 GB plan for senior officials, 45 GB plan for joint secretary level officers, 30 GB plan at a rental of Rs 67 for Group C staff and a rental scheme for bulk SMS. The plan will also see Railways not charged for calls outside its CUG.
Swarajya had earlier reported that a four-way competition between Airtel, Jio, Vodafone-Idea Joint Venture and state-run BSNL was ongoing for the contract.
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