1 min read.Updated: 10 Aug 2020, 12:09 PM ISTIshita Guha
Modi said, besides enhancing national security, the project will improve internet connectivity in the islands, enabling its citizens to use net banking, e-commerce, online education and telemedicine facilities
NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday launched the submarine optical fibre cable project that will connect Chennai and Andaman and Nicobar Islands and boost 4G services on the islands. The rollout of the ₹1,224 crore underwater project comes amid concerns over national security following the India-China geopolitical tensions.
Modi said, besides enhancing national security, the project will improve internet connectivity in the islands, enabling its citizens to use net banking, e-commerce, online education and telemedicine facilities. He said higher data speeds will enhance tourism and attract tourist, thus creating jobs.
He said the cable link will not only allow BSNL to provide 4G data services, but will enable other telecom operators render such services on the islands.
The 2,313 kilometre undersea cable will connect seven islands of Andaman other than the capital city Port Blair. The sevens islands are Swaraj Deep, Long Island, Rangat, Little Andaman, Kamorta, Car Nicobar and Greater Nicobar.
The department of telecommunications-funded project was executed by state-owned Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) in less than 24 months. The cable will be used to provide internet speeds of up to 400 gbps, or gigabits per second, till Port Blair, while in other islands, customers will receive speeds of up to 200 gbps.
"Once inaugurated, the submarine OFC link will deliver bandwidth of 2 x 200 Gigabits per second (Gbps) between Chennai and Port Blair, and 2 x 100 Gbps between Port Blair and the other islands," according to a release from the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).
Modi emphasised on the need to connect the islands through air, water and land, saying that the four ships being developed at Cochin shipyard will be delivered in the next few months and will improve water connectivity among the islands and with other nations.
The foundation stone of this project was laid by Modi on 30 December, 2018, at Port Blair.