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BSNL to Invest INR 1,600 Cr. on Wireless Infrastructure

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Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) is planning to invest INR 1,600 crore in infrastructure facilities that will support eight million broadband connections for the government.

BSNL has further plans to add 9 million connections by end of 2009 and keep adding 3 million customers every year. Moreover, BSNL is also planning to reach 1,000 rural blocks through its wireless broadband (wimax) technology, and to set up terminals at affordable prices for customers to use broadband through its 22,000 telephone exchanges across the country. Currently, BSNL has around 200,000 broadband customer base in rural areas. BSNL is in talks with the government for using the Universal Service Obligation (USO) fund to provide broadband in rural areas at subsidised rate. Further there are also plans to provide one call data record (CDR) for all its services by the end of 2009; and BSNL is also hopeful that its 3G service in Chennai will start by February 2009.

Company's new ventures include the target to further roll out Internet protocol Television (IPTV) connections to 50,000 in 93 cities from the present 4,000 in 9 cities. There are also plans to set-up 23,000 new telephone exchanges mostly in remote areas with initial marketing funds of INR 500 crore

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