(a) the population and the areas of the country, especially in Uttar Pradesh which are covered by the Mobile Telephone Service, State-wise;

(b) the details of expansion and development work of mobile telephone service in the country, especially in Uttar Pradesh which is under consideration of the Government;

(c) whether the mobile telephone service of BSNL is functioning unsatisfactorily in the country;

(d) if so, the details thereof;

(e) whether any review has been made regarding the working of officials of Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL); and

(f) if so, the outcome of the review in this regard?

Answer given by the minister


(a) At present around 65% of the geographical area of the country has got mobile coverage. The number of mobile telephone subscribers in Uttar Pradesh is 27820571 as on 29.02.2008.The service area-wise number of mobile telephone subscribers is enclosed as Annexure.

(b) Government has issued 120 new Unified Access Service Licenses in January 2008 for increasing competition which will help to roll out mobile services in uncovered areas. As per terms and conditions of the licence alecensee has to cover 50% of district headquarters in the service area within three years of effective date of the licence. In order to expedite the roll out of these services in rural and remote areas, the Government is providing a total subsidy of approximately Rs. 587.88 crores over a period of 5 years through Universal Service Obligation Fund for a scheme for setting up and managing 7871 infrastructure sites (towers) in 500 districts spread over 27 States where there is no existing Fixed Wireless or mobile coverage.The agreements, effective from 1st June, 2007 had been signed with successful bidders in May, 2007 and mobile services from these towers are likely to be launched in a phased manner by the end of year 2008. 150 towers have been set up under this scheme till 29th February, 2008.

Further, BSNL has a tentative plan to add 126 lakh cellular mobile subscribers including 12.3 lakhs in Uttar Pradesh only during 2008-09. Bharti Airtel is planning to install 8 Mobile Switching Centers, 4802 ns Receive sites during 2008-09. Other operators are also having similar expansion plans.

(c) & (d) The mobile telephone service being provided by BSNL is working satisfactorily, in general, meeting the Quality of Service (QoS) parameters as prescribed by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India. However, congestion has been observed in its network sometimes at some places for which BSNL has initiated action for augmentation of its network. This would enhance coverage capacity and QoS. The network is also being continuously optimized for its performance and monitoring of the network has been strengthened by BSNL to ensure performance as per Quality of Service parameters as prescribed by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India.

(e) & (f) The functioning of BSNL officials are being assessed regularly and their performance is quite satisfactory resulting in overall positive growth of BSNL’s network across the country.