A total of Rs 122.4 crore has been paid out as commissions to Village Level Entrepreneurs (VLEs) who help facilitate routine operations in Common Service Centres across the country, the ministry of IT and communications informed in a Rajya Sabha query. VLEs are individuals who help CSCs in completing routine operations such as: -Government to Consumer (G2C) services that includes issuance of Birth Certificates, PAN cards, Aadhaar Cards, Pass port services, etc. -Business to Consumer (B2C) services including Mobile/DTH recharge, IRCTC bookings, ecommerce services, bill payments, etc. -Educational Services like tutorials, courses, literacy schemes, etc. -Financial services including Pension, Insurance, and other banking schemes. There are 199,325 Common Service Centers (CSCs) across 29 states and 7 Union territories as of March 2016. A total of 23,245 VLEs are women, according to the IT ministry. However it did not disclose the total number of VLEs registered in the country. BharatNet connectivity The IT ministry has also instructed the Department of Telecommunication to link all CSCs under the National Optical Fibre Network (NOFN) project, which was introduced in 2011. Bandwidth under NOFN is being offered at “a promotional tariff of Rs 700 per Mbps bandwidth per year for each gram panchayat.” The NOFN is a Rs 20,000 crore project, which aims to connect 2.5 lakh villages with broadband connectivity. Additionally, state governments have been instructed to relocate or co-locate all CSCs outside the reach of the NOFN program to gram panchayat premises having connectivity. One of the key purpose of CSCs include…
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