Indian vendor Tejas Networks has confirmed that it has received a purchase order from state-owned telco Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) to supply equipment for the latter’s 4G/5G rollout. In a regulatory filing, Tejas reported that, with Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), it has received a master contract for the supply, support and maintenance of RAN equipment for BSNL’s pan-India 4G/5G network. As part of the contract, Tejas received a purchase order valued at INR74.92 billion (USD899 million) for the supply of 4G/5G RAN equipment for approximately 100,000 sites. Tejas added that the order would be executed during 2023 and 2024.
As noted by TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, BSNL’s deployment of 4G is more than a decade behind its competitors, with rival Bharti Airtel having launched its LTE network back in 2012. The cash-strapped cellco initially struggled to secure spectrum for its rollout and, once the award of frequencies had been approved as part of a revival programme in 2019, arguments over the terms of its equipment tender then forced the firm to scrap and re-issue the tender several times. As such, it was not until May 2023 that the company finalised negotiations with TCS for its national 4G rollout.
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