The government has decided that only Indian companies, registered and headquartered in India, can provide core network of Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL). As a locally designed and manufactured network for BSNL provides an opportunity to the country to become self-reliant in telecom.
Accordingly, BSNL has come out with an expression of interest (EoI) for the upcoming 4G tender for installation of around 57,000 sites.
As per the EoI, the core shall be Indian and the IPR or licence/copyright for the source code of the software should be owned by an Indian company, and it must have unrestricted, irrevocable access and licence to modify the source code and provide software support for all future versions of the software.
However, For the radio network like base tower stations (BTS), global firms can bid but they need to deposit their source code in an escrow account. “The escrowed version of the software shall be upgraded/updated regularly and will be the same as the version in the field,” the EoI said.
Further, 20% of the radio network will be reserved for ITI, which can partner any Indian company for sourcing the equipment.
As per NK Goyal, chairman, Telecom Equipment Manufacturers Association of India (Tema), “The requirement of Indian core and source code will go a long way to promote Atmanirbhar telecom bharat. This is one of the rarest and boldest decisions taken for Atmanirbhar Bharat.”