Why in News?
In the Budget 2018 the government has proposed to allocate Rs8,000 crore for Bharat Net project for providing broadband services in 1.5 lakh gram panchayats.
FACTS FOR PRELIMS
It is a project of national importance to establish, a highly scalable network infrastructure accessible on a non-discriminatory basis, to provide on-demand, affordable broadband connectivity of 2 Mbps to 20 Mbps for all households and on-demand capacity to all institutions, to realise the vision of Digital India, in partnership with States and the private sector.
The entire project is being funded by Universal Service Obligation Fund (USOF), which was set up for improving telecom services in rural and remote areas of the country. The objective is to facilitate the delivery of e-governance, e-health, e-education, e-banking, Internet and other services to rural India.
Important Telecom Infrastructure Projects mentioned in the Budget 2018-19
i)The Union Budget on Thursday proposed an overall allocation of around Rs14,500 crore for the 2018-19 fiscal to augment telecom infrastructure projects, which include an alternate communication network for defence services, in the country.
ii)The government has made a provision of Rs4,500 crore for Network for Spectrum project — an alternate communication network being built by the state-run BSNL for defence services in lieu of spectrum given by defence ministry for commercial mobile services.
iii)Rs524 have been allotted for setting up additional 156 towers in the Naxal-affected area and upgradation of bandwidth at 302 VSAT sites from existing 512 Kbps to 1 Mbps.
iv)DoT will set up test centre for 5th generation telecom technology with IIT Chennai. As per budget document, the FM has proposed to allocate Rs134.48 crore for setting up of the “5G connectivity Test Bed”.