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India to have 600 mn broadband connections by 2020, says Manoj Sinha

Govt has planned BharatNet project to provide 100 Mbps broadband connectivity to all Gram Panchayats

IANS  |  New Delhi 

Cable operators are successful in rural areas where they use local resources. Linking them with a national fibre-optic network to provide broadband to their subscribers will give them income, provide employment to people. Photo: iSTOCK
Cable operators are successful in rural areas where they use local resources. Linking them with a national fibre-optic network to provide broadband to their subscribers will give them income, provide employment to people. Photo: iSTOCK

There were 422.19 million and the penetration (subscriber per 100 populations) was 32.86 per cent in the country as on March 31, 2017, Communications Minister Manoj Sinha informed Parliament on Friday.

In a written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha, Sinha said the National Policy-2012 envisages 600 million connections by the year 2020.

He said that the government has planned the project to provide 100 Mbps connectivity to all (around 2.5 lakh) in the country.

Under the first phase of the project, one lakh (GPs) are to be connected by laying underground optical fibre cable (OFC). The work is under implementation.

Under Phase-II, targeted to be completed by March 2019, connectivity will be provided to remaining 1.5 lakh in the country using an optimal mix of underground fibre, fibre over power lines, radio and media, the Minister said.

Sinha said the provision of last-mile access to the network and service provisioning shall be through or any other access technologies in all 2,50,000 in the country.

As on July 23, 2017, under the project, OFC laying was completed in 100,299 and connectivity was provided in 25,426 of them.

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