The National Knowledge Network (NKN) of the Centre expects to connect 1,500 knowledge institutions by March 2013.
The network, which was started in April 2009, has already linked 670 institutes including IITs, IIMs, NITs, according to RS Mani, chief technical director, National Informatics Centre (NIC). He was speaking to the media on the sidelines of a seminar-cum-workshop on NKN here. NIC is the implementing agency of the NKN project.
The purpose behind NKN was to create a country-wide broadband access network by utilising its existing optical fibre network, and to facilitate interlinking of agricultural, medical colleges, research institutions and other academic organisations by equipping them with high-speed, high capacity broadband network in a phased manner, said R Chidambaram, principal scientific adviser to Government of India and chairman (high-level committee), NKN.
Of the total project cost of Rs 6,000 crore, around Rs 1,500 crore has already been invested in developing infrastructure.
NKN would help stakeholders transfer knowledge using specialised applications, which permit sharing of high performance computing facilities, e-libraries, virtual classrooms and huge database.
Mani said, “The collaborative research will get a boost through this network, and we hope to get some products out of this.”