Even as India aims for faster and more reliable communication through 5G networks, in thousands of villages of India, your mobile phone will be as good as dead. In 27,721 villages of India, there are still no mobile connections due to various issues, said Sanjay Dhotre, MoS for Communications, Human Resource Development and Electronics & Information Technology, in a reply to a question in Lok Sabha. The reasons for not having mobile services in these villages include remote and tough terrain, areas diversely located with scattered population and commercially non-viable operations, the minister added.
Odisha trails the most with 6,549 villages without any mobile network. Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, and Andhra Pradesh follow Odisha with 2000-3000 villages without any mobile network. On the brighter side, Haryana has only one such village with no network.
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In this fast-moving world, connectivity is the fundamental requirement for growth. However, going by the current statistics, in terms of mobile communication, the inhabitants of nearly 28,000 villages of India are completely cut off from the market and the world, restricting their growth and prospects.
Meanwhile, the government has said that the mobile coverage in the uncovered villages in the country is being provided by the government and the Telecom Service Providers (TSPs) in a phased manner. Under Left Wing Extremism (LWE) affected areas Phase-I project, 2355 towers have been installed by the government; under LWE Phase-II project, installation of 2217 mobile towers have been approved; a comprehensive telecom development plan for mobile connectivity in the North has been approved; and under BharatNet project, broadband connectivity in all the Gram Panchayats in the country at an estimated cost of Rs 42,068 crore has been approved, said the minister.