New Delhi: To an effort to boost its rural broadband plan, state-run telco BSNL today said it is planning to install WiMax base stations in 1,000 blocks across India by the end of this fiscal that will provide high-speed internet access to 25,000 villages.
“We will be installing WiMax BTS in 1000 blocks out of country’s 6000 blocks by the end of current fiscal,” said BSNL CMD Kuldeep Goyal.
Rural India is divided into 6000 blocks of population. BSNL has rights to 1000 blocks and has invited tenders for installing a WiMAX base station in each of those blocks to provide connectivity to villages.
By the end of this year, the company expects to provide high speed internet access to 25,000 villages through Common Service Centres (CSCs).
At present, BSNL is actively holding discussions with few vendors for BTS (Base Transceiver Station) equipment and the pilot project is on. “The proof-of-concept is being installed and will be completed in few months,” added Goyal.
At present, BSNL’s WiMAX equipment is being supplied by US vendor SOMA Networks.
The CSCs are telecom kiosks to be set up in the villages and are equipped with infrastructures like PCs, printers, software and staff for delivery of e-governance services related to health, education and agricultural information.
As a government run company, BSNL has two distinct programmes in terms of rolling out WiMAX, one to provide commercial broadband services, another to connect rural India to government services online.