Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday inaugurated the 2,313-km long Chennai-Port Blair submarine optical fibre internet connectivity project, built at a cost of Rs 1,224 crore. The project, funded by Universal Service Obligation Fund (USOF), was started late in 2018, and aimed to connect seven island in the Andaman group, apart from the capital Port Blair, with high speed broadband.
“Internet connectivity service has already been started in major chunk of the seven Andaman & Nicobar island. Mobile and fast internet connectivity, for which India is world famous, will now also be available to these islands,” Modi said while inaugurating the project. The seven islands, apart from capital Port Blair, which will be connected are Swaraj Dweep (formerly Havlock Island), Long island, Rangat, Little Andaman, Kamorta, Car Nicobar and Greater Nicobar.
To further improve the connectivity of the islands to the mainland, other projects such as increasing the capacity of Port Blair airport, apart from process of making new airports at Car Nicobar, Campbell Bay and Diglipur was also underway, Modi said while inaugurating the project.
While the capital Port Blair will be able to get speeds of up to 400 gigabytes per second (GBPS), the other seven island being connected will get speeds of up to 200 GBPS, Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said. The project was executed by Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL).
Apart from this, the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) is also working on connecting the villages in border areas of the country, Prasad said, adding that a tender worth Rs 337 crore had already been awarded for the work.
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