State-run telecom firms BSNL and MTNL have released over Rs 10,000 crore for employees who have opted for voluntary retirement scheme, according to a statement.
A total of 78,569 employees of BSNL and 14,387 staffers of MTNL have opted for the voluntary retirement scheme (VRS) which closed on December 3, 2019.
"BSNL has released Rs 4,100 crore exgratia payment on Friday and Rs 4,900 Crore for leave encashment on Monday. Similarly, MTNL has also released Rs 1050 Crore towards payment of leave encashment, EPF, CPF and gratuity," the communications ministry said in a statement on Monday.
The government had in October approved Rs 29,937 crore for the firms' VRS (Rs 17,169 crore on account of ex-gratia on VRS and Rs 12,768 crore due to preponement of pensionary benefits spread over 10 years).
The move was aimed at reducing the wage load of the telecom PSUs and curbing their losses.
BSNL's loss swelled by over 2.5-times to Rs 39,089 crore during the April-December 2019 period.
The public sector telecom firm had recorded a loss of Rs 14,904 crore in the previous financial year 2018-19.