India to spend Rs 18,000 crore to provide broadband connectivity to all villages
eCommerce in India is mainly entrenched in the large hi-tech metropolitan cities. One of the reasons holding back the eCommerce growth in Indian is the lack of internet connectivity in small and remote villages in India. Many villages simply do not have internet connectivity and those who do, suffer from poor service that is so slow and erratic that it might as well not exist.
Now, a note-worthy step taken by the Government of India will revolutionize this status quo.
The Government of India has announced that is planning to spend Rs 18,000 crore over three years to lay a five lakh km optic fibre cable network to provide broadband connectivity in every gram panchayat of the country.
This decision will help equalize the technology revolution in the country and will enable villagers living in the smallest and remotest villages to access the internet to look for information, to pay bills and even shop.
The Government of India has formed a Group of Ministers (GoM) with officials from six ministries — telecom, HRD, rural development, economic affairs, ministry of panchayati raj and information technology to oversee this herculean task. Under direction of cabinet secretary K M Chandrasekhar, this committee will monitor and review the implementation of this broadband initiative. It will also create a roadmap for extending affordable broadband connectivity to all villages by leveraging existing infrastructure and augmentation of optical fibre wherever necessary.
Once this project is completed, online merchants will be able set their sights on a new set of customers that were previously inaccessible by the internet i.e. they will be able to reach out and capture customers located not only in the biggest cities but also in the smallest panchayats across India.