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Fibre optic cables to be installed in villages in two years: Sibal

New Delhi, Thu, 26 May 2011 ANI

New Delhi, May 26 (ANI): Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal today said the government would make as many as 5,00,000 villages broadband-enabled in two years, as part of an ambitious fibre-to-home plan.


Fibre-to-home is a term for any broadband network architecture that uses optical fibres to replace the usual metal local loop used for telecommunications.


Sibal said a high-powered committee has been set up to implement the optical fibre network.


"We have set up a high power committee, Sam (Sam Pitroda, telecom advisor to the Prime Minister) is chairing that committee, co-chair is Nandan Nilekani. Sam told me that he will try and implement this (fibre optic cable network) in the next two years," Sibal told reporters on the sidelines of the 6th annual FTTH (Fibre to Home) Council Asia Pacific conference and exhibition here.


"Now, whether that happens or not, that's our endeavor and so it should happen because of the commitment of Sam and the commitment of the Government of India," he added.


Sibal further said though state-run BSNL (Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited) would be the major player in the project, the private sector would not be excluded from the programme.


"These are policy issues and we have decided, and it's not that the private sector will be excluded, it's for the private sector to use this network. See, ultimately the private sector will ride on it," he added.


The broadband connectivity was so far offered to metropolises and other cities. The government is now focusing on connecting 5,00,000 villages in the country by 2013, while 20,000 broadband booths have already become operational. (ANI)


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