The Indian government plans to reach rural areas by rolling out 500,000 kilometers of optical fiber that would provide high-speed broadband connectivity to rural areas, reports the Wall Street Journal.
The project, led by Bharat Broadband, which will cost around 200 billion rupees ($3.5 billion), will offer government-to-citizen services, including e-services and e-applications nationally, according to The Hindu Business Line.
Bharat Broadband was mandated to set up the National Optical Fibre Network and provide broadband connectivity to rural areas. It is owned jointly by the federal government and the Universal Service Obligation Fund. The Wall Street Journal has reported that the USO fund gives grants for connecting rural areas and telecom networks which are not commercially viable.
A statement from the government said that the “creation of the network, and sharing it with other telecom operators, will help lower connectivity costs for companies.”