Senior General Manager, Visakhapatnam Telecom District, R.M.M. Krishna said on Saturday that BSNL had been commended by the Election Commission of India for providing broadband connections and facilitating webcasting at all polling stations.

At a meeting organised in connection with the World Telecommunication and Information Society Day here he said the latest digital satellite telephones were provided for use in the remote areas and Agency areas during the elections. Mr Krishna said Broadband and telecommunication became an integral and indispensable part of modern society and brought about transparency in administration. He said proliferation of broadband has done away with the need of writing letters. Information could now be obtained at the click of a mouse and the use of IT services to link government subsidies under the Aadhar scheme was a step in the right direction as it allows transparency and eliminates pilferage. Citing an example, he said BSNL had given broadband connections to some ration shops in East Godavari district as part of a pilot project and it was executed successfully.

Savings to the tune of 80 per cent was noticed in the public distribution system and this had resulted in checking of pilferage to the tune of 80 per cent. It was a different matter that the Aadhar scheme was not implemented due to the elections.

Mr. Krishna said that the broadband penetration was 80 per cent in the advanced countries, whereas it was only 20 per cent in India and felt that it should increase to enable the people to reap the benefits of IT. There were 38,000 fixed line broadband connections in Visakhapatnam district. He said recently BSNL had doubled the speed without any tariff hike to the customers.

He said there were 1 lakh fixed landline phones in Visakhapatnam and the department could provide up to one lakh broadband connections without any hassle. Broadband services have been extended to Paderu, Chodavaram, Anakapalle and other areas of the district. BSNL registered a growth of 1.5 lakh mobile users with the number going up to 6.5 lakh users in the district.

The National Optical Fibre Network installed at Parawada on an experimental basis in the district to provide broadband connectivity to the rural was functioning well, he said.

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