Monday, April 04, 2011

India - Ministry has made progress in preparing national broadband plan to go to cabinet in coming weeks

[express buzz] The Telecom Ministry will send National Broadband Policy to the Union Cabinet over the next few weeks for approval.

This was stated by R Chandrasekhar, Secretary, Department of Telecom, while addressing the interactive meeting on the National Telecom Policy 2011 organised by the industry chamber 2011 here on Wednesday.

The National Broadband Policy aims at setting up a network worth `60,000 crore to facilitate high speed data and e-governance.

“The telecom department will send the national broadband policy to the Union Cabinet over next few weeks before which it will be cleared by the Telecom Commission,” Chandrasekhar said.

The broadband plan is expected to lay strong foundation for broadband infrastructure for fixed lines and wireless.

Last year, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) in its recommendation on National Broadband Plan had estimated the cost `60,000 crore for setting up the network.

The project, according to TRAI, would be financed by the Universal Service Obligation (USO) fund operated by DoT and loans from the Central Government.

To be established by 2013, the network would be an open access optical fibre network for all the habitations with a population 500 and above.

The network will provide easy access to high-speed data and information to citizens, promoting thereby efforts in the field of education, health and others.

To roll-out the nationwide networks, TRAI has also suggested setting up of state-owned— National Optical Fibre Agency (NOFA).

Broadband policy taking shape

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