All Govt Schools To Have Internet Connection By 2012: Raja

All Govt Schools To Have Internet Connection By 2012: RajaUnion IT and Communications Minister, A. Raja announced that under the rural broadband project by 2012, all Gram Panchayats, Government High Secondary Schools and Public Health Centres will be provided broadband connectivity.

Speaking at the National Round Table Conference on ‘Telecom Sector in Education Development’, the minister said that funds from USO are being extensively deployed to increase broadband connectivity at each block and village level.

“The Universal Service Organisation (USO) Funds is being extensively deployed on a large scale to increase the broadband connectivity in rural area. We are making continuous efforts and committed to extend communication facilities with broadband connectivity at each block and village level. Once these facilities are in place, the broadband connectivity will be available on demand,” said Raja.

While commenting over the need for spreading education through broadband and development of content in local language, Raja said, "It is heartening to note that efforts have already been initiated in this direction. We need to make available free tools and fonts to the public for all the major Indian languages. Then only, the domain of knowledge can be easily extended to our common man.”

The Minister further added that the government is trying its best to make broadband ready devices available at an affordable cost.

“The government is planning to launch bundled schemes of broadband along with customer premise equipment, including PCs with the subsidy support from USO fund”, said the Minister.

Later, speaking at a separate function in the capital, Mr Raja said that the impact of the current global economic recession would be comparatively less on Indian telecom sector due to the inherent strength and faster anticipated growth in this sector. According to Raja, the country is well poised to surpass the set target of 500 million telephone connections by 2010. He, however, lamented that the telecom growth in rural areas has not kept pace with that in urban areas.

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