The estimated maximum viability gap funding approved for the PPP model is Rs 19,041 crores.
GN Bureau | July 1, 2021
The Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has approved the revised implementation strategy of BharatNet through Public-Private Partnership mode in 16 States of the country. BharatNet will now extend up to all inhabited villages beyond Gram Panchayats (GPs) of these states. The revised strategy also includes creation, upgradation, operation, maintenance and utilization of BharatNet by the concessionaire who will be selected by a competitive international bidding process. The estimated maximum viability gap funding approved for the above PPP model is Rs. 19,041 crores.
The States covered under the cabinet approval are Kerala, Karnataka, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal, Assam, Meghalaya, Manipur, Mizoram, Tripura, Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh. An estimated 3.61 lakh villages including GPs will be covered.
The Cabinet also accorded in-principle approval for extending BharatNet to cover all inhabited villages in the remaining States and UTs. Department of Telecommunication will separately work out the modalities for these (remaining) States/UTs.
The PPP Model will leverage Private Sector efficiency for operation, maintenance, utilization and revenue generation and is expected to result in a faster rollout of BharatNet. The selected concessionaire (Private Sector Partner) is expected to provide reliable, high-speed broadband services as per the pre-defined Services Level Agreement (SLA). Extension of reach of BharatNet to all inhabited villages with reliable, quality, high-speed broadband will enable better access to e-services offered by various Central and State Government agencies. It is expected to enable online education, telemedicine, skill development, e-commerce and other applications of broadband. Also, that revenue will be generated from different sources including a proliferation of broadband connections to individuals & institutions, sale of dark fibre, the fiberisation of mobile towers, e-commerce etc.
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