We missed this earlier
The Department of Telecom has floated a tender for setting up over 500,000 WiFi hotspots across gram panchayats under the BharatNet program run by the Bharat Broadband Network Limited (BBNL), PTI has reported.
The project is expected to be rolled out by the end of this year. The telecom department earlier approved Rs. 4000 crore for installation of 5 lakh WiFi hotspots in GPs BharatNet broadband infrastructure.
BharatNet’s multiple missed deadlines
BharatNet’s first project was to connect 250,000 villages with broadband by laying down high-speed optical fibre cables in rural areas. Launched in 2011, it has been plagued with deadline deferrals and a change of hands at the centre. Originally supposed to be completed in 2013, the UPA-2 pushed the deadline to 2015. The NDA then pushed it thrice — the final deadline is December this year. As of now, about 150,000 gram panchayats have been linked reports ET.