Gangtok, June 18:
The State Government is facing challenges in rolling out e-governance applications in a meaningful manner because of poor Internet connectivity. This in turn meets out significant limitations in providing electronic services to its citizens particularly in rural areas.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, it was observed that the administration faced severe problems in reaching out to the public at their door steps for delivering Government facilities, the problem of poor Internet connectivity in the State was conspicuously experienced. It was also seen that the students faced tremendous problems and hardships in attending their online classes.
Considering the urgency of the matter and as per the vision of the Chief Minister of Government at the doorsteps, the Information Technology Department has envisaged a mobile / Internet connectivity in association with Reliance Jio to provide Internet connectivity till the Block level and GPU levels. In the first phase 134 locations that covers 16 Blocks and 118 GPUs would be connected. This would go a long way in improving Mobile / Internet connectivity in rural areas.
Mobile towers would be installed in the identified land of BACs and GPUs on a monthly rental basis. In this way, we are aiming to improve Internet connectivity as well as generate revenue for the grass root level institutions.
A tripartite agreement among RDD, IT Department and Reliance Jio was signed in the IT Department, today in the presence of Hon’ble Advisor / IT, Shri Tenzing Lamtha, Shri Raj Yadav, Secretary / IT Department, Smt. Sarika Pradhan, Spl. Secretary / RDD, Shri S.T. Wangdi, Addl. Director / IT, Area in charge Reliance Jio, Sikkim and senior officers from IT Department. It is planned to complete the work within a period of one year. This project has been patronised by the Hon’ble Advisor / DIT who has been very vocal for improvement of connectivity at the rural areas.
Rural Development Department would be providing the land to install these Mobile towers in coordination with the BDOs and GPUs. Department of IT would be coordinating with Reliance Jio and Rural Development Department for speedy implementation of the project.
In the second phase, other blocks and GPUs would be covered for which survey has started.