A tripartite Memorandum of Understanding has been signed between BBNL, Department of Posts and BSNL to provide broadband connectivity of BharatNet to Post Offices in rural areas.
BSNL would provide broadband services. The infrastructure expenses and the operational expenses would be paid by the Department of Posts. BBNL would facilitate and coordinate the entire project.
BharatNet is Centre’s rural internet connectivity programme which is implemented by Bharat Broadband Network Limited (BBNL). It is world’s largest rural broadband connectivity programme using Optical fibre. Bharat Net seeks to connect all of India’s households, particularly the rural areas, through demand, affordable broadband connectivity of 2 Mbps to 20 Mbps to realise the vision of Digital India. The project is being funded by Universal service Obligation Fund (USOF). The three-phase implementation under the BharatNet project is:
- Under the first phase, one lakh gram panchayats would be provided connectivity by laying underground optic fibre cable (OFC) lines by March 2017. This phase is nearing its completion.
- Under the second phase, connectivity will be provided to all 2,50,500 gram panchayats in the country. It is to be completed by December 2018.
- Under the third phase from 2018 to 2023, state-of-the-art, future-proof network, including fiber between districts and blocks would be created.