Additionally, the Department of Telecom requested all states to provide a list of unconnected villages so that all of them can be connected with telecom services by 2020. "After rural exchange rollout in the country when telecom services started, this is the biggest project involving domestically manufactured products for the entire project", Sundararajan further explained about the upcoming project, which will be launched by Telecom Minister Manoj Sinha, Law and Human Resource Development Minister along with IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad. By December 2017 it will be fully completed. More than 85,000 Global Positioning System are service-ready now and 75,000 Global Positioning System can start providing services to the villages now, he added. The second phase is expected to connect 1.5 lakh panchayats.
"We want to bring revolution in schools, like there was operation blackboard in 1970s". BharatNet is an integral part of Digital India.
For instance, Airtel has promised to adopt 30,500 Global Positioning System to connect its 4G broadband network using BharatNet's optical fibre.
The government aims to bridge digital divide in rural and remote areas of the country by providing affordable broadband at minimum 100 Mbps speeds through robust network infrastructure through the Rs 45,000crore Bharat Net programme, which was earlier known as National Optical Fibre Network (NOFN). The company, in partnership with BharatNet, also plans to connect its last-mile 4G network using BharaNet's optical fibre, the official said. "Little or no progress had been made.Ever since I have taken charge, I have personally been invested in this project and have made sure that all the updated timelines are met", he added.
With optical fibre connectivity now available at 1 lakh gram panchayats under Phase I of the project, the Central government will sign MoUs with the states for staring BharatNet Phase II.
Telecom operators like Reliance Jio, Bharti Airtel, Idea Cellular and Vodafone have evinced interest in providing services under BharatNet, she said, adding that the government will give a support of Rs 3,600 crore to telecom service operators for rolling out Wi-Fi in villages.