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03 May

The North-East gets a Voice

By: Chandni Goel
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May 03, 2017

Ever since independence, the North-Eastern part of India has been neglected. Surrounded by foreign nations and connected to the mainland just by a thin land corridor, the Seven Sisters have lagged socio-economic development because of lack of infrastructure and connectivity. Plagued by difficult terrain including heavily forested areas and recurrent tribal insurgency, the sparse population in the North East has remained virtually isolated from the bigger world.

Though past governments have promised infrastructure and development to this region, few have managed to deliver and that too erratically. But in 2014, a change was set in motion, when the Central Cabinet cleared an ambitious Comprehensive Telecom Development Plan for the North-Eastern Region. Now, the first of the two-phase project is ready to roll out as BSNL gears up to deploy 2817 mobile towers across 4118 villages across Arunachal Pradesh and two districts of Assam.

After successfully bringing connectivity to Left-Wing Extremism affected regions in India, BSNL has once again picked VNL for bringing connectivity to the North-East. Under this USOF backed project, VNL is likely to deploy 1893 mobile towers  covering close to 4000 villages, thereby connecting millions to the bigger world. One of the most notable aspects of this landmark, USOF backed project, is that VNL plans to complete the deployments using indigenously developed sustainable technology. Where no grid power is available, mobile towers in the NE will be run on eco-friendly solar power, thereby protecting the region’s pristine environment.

This project is another step towards fulfilling the PM’s vision of Make in India. The benefits of connectivity have been manifold in the LWE regions where VNL had successfully completed deployment last year. Areas such as public health, banking, governance and education have been positively aided. Similarly, the North-East will soon be connected to the bigger world. Making sure that the sun shines finally, on this infrastructure deprived area for the first time since Independence.

 

Know more about VNL's telecom deployment in the LWE Region here.

 
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