Burdwan of West Bengal has become the first district in India where all the panchayats have been offered a broadband connectivity for communicating with its district and state headquarters.
While inaugurating the multi-crore project, the State Minister for Information Technology Debes Das stated that the new set up has connected all the 277 gram panchayats, 31 blocks, six sub-divisions of the district with its headquarters. Through this network, all panchayats can send and receive data, voice and video. The network is expected to help daily administrative work, locally and at the state-level. The project is an expansion of the existing State Wide Area Network (SWAN), a Union government initiative under National e-Governance plan (NeGP). The project has incurred a cost of INR 6.2 crore, which includes INR 4.96 crore from the NeGP. The West Bengal Electronics Industry Development Corporation Limited has installed the Webel ISP for wireless transmission while a Kolkata-based company has provided the software for the video conferencing purpose. The local bodies of the state have already tested the network by holding several conferences with the district and state headquarters.