Government launches BharatNet phase 2 project

DoT to organise conference to showcase utilisation models leveraging Bharat Net infrastructure

Bharatnet project: 1.5 Lakh Panchayats to be provided with Broadband connections

It will be fully completed by December 2017.

"The total project cost of BharatNet is around Rs 45,000 crore, of which Rs 11,200 crore have been used for the first phase". The company, in partnership with BharatNet, also plans to connect its last-mile 4G network using BharaNet's optical fibre, the official said.

Though, the government move encourages domestic companies, it is seen as a snub to Chinese telecommunication equipment manufacturers such as Huawei, ZTE and others who are working with Indian private carriers.

"Most of the TSPs had shown interest with different revenue models and they are doing things in innovative ways", Sinha told reporters here, adding that the tariff rates for the Teecom Service Providers have also been brought down by 75 per cent. BharatNet is an intergral part of Digital India.

By December 2017, all 1, 00, 000 Global Positioning System will be operational on the BharatNet infrastructure.

Nearly 90 thousand installations have been completed and broadband services are expected to commence in 80 thousand Gram Panchayats soon.

Under Phase I, 1 lakh Global Positioning System or 3 lakh villages were connected.

Under the Phase-II, the government will establish fiber optic cables connecting mandals to gram panchayats covering 6,657 gram panchayats across Telangana State.

MoUs were also signed between the DoT and seven States: Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Telangana, Jharkhand and Gujarat.

These states will roll out the project on their own with partial funding from the central government.

The Government of India launched BharatNet Phase II project on Monday.

State-run Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) will roll out optical fibre in eight states - Assam, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Jammu and Kashmir and Sikkim, and Power Grid Corporation of India in three states - Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Odisha, the telecom secretary said. It will also generate employment of 100 million mandays during the project rollout.

With the subsidies, telecom operators can make use of the existing optic fibre connection to build Wi-Fi hotspots and deliver wireless internet service sooner in the villages without burdening the users with premium charges.

Sundararajan said there are already around 38,000 Wi-Fi hotspots in the country now. "We will initially cover 30,000 village panchayats and will set up nodals in every panchayat as the government expands BharatNet", said Mahendra Nahata, Director, Reliance Jio. "We expect telecom operators to provide at least 2 megabit per second speed to rural households".

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