BSNL announces new postpaid plans with more data, unlimited calling

Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd, the publicly owned telecom services provider, announced liberalization of its plans for postpaid customers, a month after doing so for prepaid subscribers.

While it offers 1 GB data plus unlimited calling to prepaid subscribers for Rs 339, for pospaid, the cost of the unlimited calling pack has been kept higher at Rs 599 plus tax, which will come to almost Rs 800 per month.

For this amount, BSNL is offering 6 GB of 3G data, unlimited voice calls and free roaming. In other words, for the extra Rs 450, the postpaid subscriber gets free roaming and 5 GB of 3G data.

The plan has been announced on a promotional basis for the next four months and is seen as a reaction to the kind of tariffs offered by competitors like Reliance Jio, Bharti Airtel and Idea Cellular in the market.

After four months, the operator said, any subscriber who remains on the plan will be charged Rs 799 plus tax per month, which will come to over Rs 900 per month.

However, given the direction of the overall telecom market, BSNL is unlikely to be able to withdraw this postpaid plan without offering something comparable in place of it.


In addition, the government-controlled player also expanded the data allocation under its various top-up plans for postpaid customers as well to bring them in line with its new prepaid offers.

Early in February, it slashed its 3G data tariff for prepaid customers, doubling the data on most of its popular plans. Today, it did the same for postpaid customers as well.

With this, the Rs 549 data add-on pack will give 15 GB, in line with the prepaid offering of the same value.

Similarly, the Rs 290 data top-up will yield 8 GB.

Besides this, for people with sparse data usage, it also announced a yearly pack of Rs 365, or Rs 1 per day. It gives the user 425 MB of usage per month.

Telecom operators in India tend to have only about 3-5% of their total users on billing or contract plans. Most users prefer to use recharge vouchers to keep their phones working, instead of letting companies bill them at the end of the month.

The ratio may be higher for BSNL as many government officials and landline users prefer the company’s postpaid services.