In what could be a major step to fight off the competition from private data providers, the state-owned telecom operator BSNL on Wednesday reached an agreement with social media website Facebook and mobile wallet MobiKwik, reported news agency PTI. The state-run operator which is facing stiff competition from private telcos like Airtel and Reliance Jio, also launched a new solution in partnership with Data Infosys to offer bulk email services to government and private companies.

According to the agency, the pacts have been signed as BSNL looks to popularise the internet and its value added services among customers. These pacts were also signed to commemorate the World Telecommunication and Information Society Day.

The deal that has been signed with Facebook will also act as a major push for government’s digital Indian campaign. Under the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Facebook, Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) will provide connectivity for the social network’s `Express Wi-Fi Program’. This is an initiative by the social media network to provide internet facility to users in rural areas of the country with the help of public hotspots, in partnership with telecom operators.

Meanwhile, BSNL signed another MoU with Mobikwik which will allow the company to work with digital payments firm to co-create a BSNL mobile wallet to facilitate payment for its products and services. The wallet will be available exclusively to BSNL customers in India, BSNL said in a statement, as per the PTI report.

The statement further added that another MoU was signed with Disney India that will provide premium online gaming services to BSNL customers. – Financial Express