Bharat Net Project – UPSC Prelims

Ministry/Department :  Ministry of Communications
Objective : The project seeks to provide affordable last mile high speed broadband connectivity to 2.5 lakh gram panchayats across the country.
  • BharatNet is Union Government’s ambitious rural internet connectivity programme which is implemented by Bharat Broadband Network Limited (BBNL).
  • Earlier National Optical Fibre Network or NOFN failed due to slow implementation.
  • NOFN is now rebranded as Bharat Net.
  • At present, a special purpose vehicle, Bharat Broadband Network Ltd (BBNL), under the telecom ministry is handling the roll out of optical fibre network.
  • The project is being executed by BSNL, Railtel and Power Grid
  • It is world’s largest rural broadband connectivity programme using Optical fibre
  • The project is being funded by Universal Service Obligation Fund (USOF).
The revised BharatNet Project:
  • It will be implemented through Public-Private Partnership(PPP) model.
  • The project which initially aims to connect all the gram panchayats of the country through optic fibre for providing broadband services; it will now have two new components:
    • BharatNet will now extend up to all inhabited villages beyond the gram panchayats (GPs) in the 16 states.
    • Project will also include the creation, upgradation, operation, maintenance, and utilization of BharatNet by the private sector partner who will be selected by a competitive international bidding process.

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