On Monday 10 August 2020, Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated India’s first-ever undersea optical fibre connection for Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited is the one who has made this initiative successful for the two Union Territories of India.
The undersea optical fibre internet connection is capable of delivering Ultra-Fast 4G internet service to the islands. According to the report, the submerged optical fibre is 2,312 kilometres long which commenced from Chennai and bridge the gap till Andaman and Nicobar islands.
“From Chennai to Port Blair, Port Blair to Little Andaman and Port Blair to Swaraj Dweep, this service has started in large part of Andaman Nicobar from today,” Modi said after inaugurating the project.
The Prime Minister of India laid the foundation of this underwater optical fibre project back on December 30, 2018. The entire cost of the project is Rs. 1,224 crore and apart from Port Blair the optical fibre will also incorporate 12 other islands which include Long Island, Little Andaman, Kamorta, Greater Nicobar, Swaraj Dweep which is widely known as Havelock, Rangat, and Car Nicobar.
It seems this is going to be a game-changer of the regions of Andaman and Nicobar as both the islands where underprivileged for a long time without a high-speed internet connection. This initiative will unlock the potential of 4G and the upcoming 5G network as well.
“We hope the Department of Telecom will accelerate the deployment of USOF for building such infrastructure backbone to complement the efforts of telecom operators to bridge the digital divide,” said Airtel.
According to PM Modi, this is the government’s responsibility to provide modern telecom connectivity to every part of the nation for last-mile network connectivity. According to the report, with the help of this CANI optical fibre link, all the telecom operators in India will be able to expand their mobile and broadband services for better offerings and connectivity.
“The optical fibre connectivity project to connect Andaman and Nicobar with the rest of the country and the world is a symbol of our commitment towards ease of living,” Narendra Modi said.
Inauguration of the submarine Optical Fibre Cable in Andaman and Nicobar Islands ensures:
High-speed broadband connectivity.
Fast and reliable mobile and landline telecom services.
Big boost to the local economy.
Delivery of e-governance, telemedicine, and tele-education. pic.twitter.com/GWGFUGFMw1
— PIB India (@PIB_India) August 10, 2020
Official data claims that Port Blair will receive an internet speed of 400GB per second and for other islands, the internet speed will be restricted till 200GB per second which is good enough considering the number of users in those islands.
The Port Blair air terminal is being improved to deal with a limit of 1,200 travellers. Alongside this, the air terminals are prepared for activities in Diglipur, Car Nicobar, and Campbell Bay. According to PM Modi, India is also building four ships at Kochi shipyard which are going to improve the water network between the islands and the territory.
It seems the government is focusing on Port Blair because it is a huge tourist attraction. Due to the ongoing pandemic, tourism got disrupted in all parts of India, this can be the preparation by the government to attract more tourists once everything goes back to normal.
We have always underestimated state-owned telecom operator BSNL, but it’s a proud moment for BSNL as it’s the one who has worked for laying submerged cable links from Chennai to Andaman and Nicobar. The telco completed the work in 24 months.
“The new fiber link marks a major milestone in India’s digital transformation journey as this critical infrastructure reaches the strategic archipelago. We are grateful to the Hon’ble Prime Minister for taking the time to launch this key digital infrastructure,” said Sunil Bharti Mittal, Chairman, Bharti Airtel.