The Advisor to Governor, K Skandan on Saturday asked the concerned departments to expedite the process to operationalize the Hi-Speed Internet facility to Gram Panchayats (GPs) in the State.
He made these remarks while reviewing the status of the Union Government’s National Optical Fibre Network (NOFN) scheme in Jammu and Kashmir.
The Advisor reviewed the strategy document and gave his inputs and suggestions while advising to update the document and come up with the final version by the end of the workshop with conclusions and recommendations on various parameters.
While chairing a two-day workshop on ‘Extension of Broadband and Internet Connectivity to all Gram Panchayats’ of the State under BharatNet, Advisor asked the concerned departments including the service/telecom operators to expedite the process so that the facility would be made functional at the Gram Panchayats.
MD, JKIT Infrastructure Corporation and MD SIDCO, Ravinder Kumar, Chief Engineer PDD, Qazi Hashmat, Project Manager, JaKeGA, IT Department, Irfan Rather, representatives of telecom operators and other concerned were also present during the occasion.
During his address, he reiterated how existing PDD infrastructure for laying of State Level Dark Fibre and integration of existing Points of Presence (POP) available on fibre from PDD can be utilized. He said the PDD infrastructure can be utilized for BharatNet and its integration with the fibre from the block headquarters with minimum 100 Mbps speed to each and every panchayat.
On the occasion, a presentation was also given where the Advisor was informed about the progress to rollout BharatNet in GPs of J&K State.
He was informed that out of total 4486 Gram Panchayats, 386 have been covered under Phase-I through OFC, while 281 GPs are ready under Phase-I till date through OFC. It was also given out that 1685 GPs are to be covered in Phase-II through VSAT, of which 583 GPs are ready. Number of GPs to be covered under Phase-II through OFC is 2415, the presentation informed.
The workshop also discussed the OPEX Model (Bandwidth Hiring) and CAPEX Model (Fibre laying and owning) by the State Government.
While asking the concerned departments to explore various other options, the Advisor urged them to explore the use of VSAT for completely non-feasible sites and subsequently lay the fibre optic cable, use of bandwidth hiring (OPEX Model), laying and rollout of Dark Fibre from Blocks to GPs (CAPEX Model).
He also asked them to explore the utilizing of existing deployed fibre from private and Government Service Providers and the sharing of passive infrastructure from Mobile Service Providers on a mutual basis.
Concluding the session, the Advisor termed the project as a big leap to revolutionize the GPs of the State with huge economic benefits, adding that with the help of Internet facility in GPs various services in rural areas can be launched. He added that applications like e-health, e-education and e-governance, etc can be provided to rural masses without any hindrance.
The workshop is expected to come with recommendation and conclusion on the future strategy for further implementation of BharatNet in the State.