Today everywhere in the world is accessible by technology. Before, when you went somewhere new, getting directions was always tricky. You had to stop and ask passersby how to get to your destination. Today, armed with a smartphone that’s got a high-speed internet connection, you can just use Google Maps to find your way. Other things like ordering food online, shopping online and paying bills online have never been easier. But what happens when you don’t have high-speed broadband at home? Which is exactly the case in Goa. Even though the state has broadband, the quality seems to be less than mediocre, leading to a lot of problems.
Goa to get high-speed broadband soon according to government
According to TOI, the state government plans to make a fresh attempt to get high-speed broadband connections out to all Goan households. The article states that IT department is ready to take up 4 constituencies by May, this year, on a pilot programme as mentioned by the IT minister, Rohan Khaunte.
It’s a clear fact that the existing broadband connectivity in Goa is almost nil. Given this fact, the IT department is also looking into revamping the existing broadband network that exists in Goa. The same is currently operated by United Telecoms Limited (UTL) in collaboration with the state government.
“The vision of this government is to touch upon every household,” Khaunte told TOI. “Like a basic electricity, water, or gas connection, every household will have a broadband connection,” he said.
Back in 2006, an agreement was signed between United Telecoms Ltd.(UTL) and the then IT minister Dayanand Narvekar to ensure all villages and homes were given broadband connectivity. The Bangalore-based company had to complete this project by September 2007. Broadband connections should have existed in government offices, educational institutions, panchayats, and households by then. However, the project eventually fizzled out once the scope was hanged and it never moved beyond the panchayat level.
Plans for the future
Khaunte did say that rural Goa has zero connectivity. Additionally, there is no reliable internet in the state where the government is trying to push tech startups and innovation. To drive the IT ecosystem and enhance learning, Khaunte hopes that high-speed broadband connectivity will enable children and youth to take up some of the Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). In addition, adults should be able to avail government services without visiting government offices. “Today every house needs connectivity,” Khaunte said. “Even the remotest place needs connectivity.”
“We are looking at two options; one is continuing the same contract with improvements in infrastructure. The second option is a whole new network which can be put in. We have to contemplate which would be better, faster and economical,” Khaunte said.
Information credit – Times of India