High-speed internet in 75,000 villages

The government has expedited the laying of the optical fibre network under the BharatNet project, which has so far connected 75,000 villages and would extend it to 1,00,000 by the end of March 2018.

“Since digitisation is growing fastest in India, the government is making all efforts to connect every gram panchayat with broadband network at the earliest,” Telecom Secretary Aruna Sundarajan said at a function here on Saturday.

As of July 2017, 2,21,925 km of optical fibre cable (OFC), covering 1,00,299 gram panchayats, had been laid and 75,000 GPs were provided with broadband connectivity.

The government has set March 2019 as the target to complete BharatNet. Though its initial implementation was slow, it has been speeded up by seven times in the past month.

While the government was undertaking 150 installations of electronic instruments a day, it has now reached 800 installations, the official said.

Hooking gram panchayats to high-speed broadband is crucial for the government as it wants to deliver most of its services via the internet.

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