The Union Cabinet yesterday approved the provision of a Universal Service Obligation Fund (USOF) Scheme to provide mobile coverage in two districts of Assam namely Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao and Arunachal Pradesh under the Comprehensive Telecom Development Plan (CTDP) for North Eastern Region (NER).
The project has been sanctioned at a cost of Rs 2,029 crore including operational expenses for five years which will be funded by Universal Service Obligation Found (USOF) which is targeted to be completed by December, 2022.
The project envisages providing mobile coverage to 2374 uncovered villages (1683 in Arunachal Pradesh and 691 in two districts of Assam) with the work related to provision of 4G mobile services in identified uncovered villages to be awarded through open competitive bidding process as per extant USOF procedures.
The provisioning of mobile services in remote and difficult uncovered areas of Arunachal Pradesh and two districts of Assam will enhance digital connectivity useful for self-reliance, facilitate learning, skill up-gradation and development, disaster management, provision of adequate support to educational institutes for knowledge sharing and availability for job opportunities.
Bharti Airtel was said to be closer to the execution of its installation of 2000+ towers in the North East under the agreement with USOF (Universal Service Obligation Fund) which was announced back in 2017 end.