Google CEO Sundar Pichai during the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to company headquarters on Sunday announced making internet facilities available at 500 railway stations in India.
Pichai wrote in a blog that internet facilities will be made available for more than 10 million people by connecting 100 railway stations initially, followed by the rest in quick succession.
"The network will expand quickly to cover 100 of the busiest stations in India before the end of 2016, with the remaining stations following in quick succession. Even with just the first 100 stations online, this project will make Wi-Fi available for the more than 10 million people who pass through every day. This will rank it as the largest public Wi-Fi project in India, and among the largest in the world, by number of potential users," he wrote.
"I'm very proud to announce that it's the train stations of India that are going to help get millions of people online. In the past year, 100 million people in India started using the Internet for the first time. This means there are now more Internet users in India than in every country in the world aside from China. But what's really astounding is the fact that there are still nearly one billion people in India who aren't online," he wrote.
Talking abou his connect with the country's largest transport network, Pichai wrote, "When I was a student, I relished the day-long railway journey I would make from Chennai Central station (then known as Madras Central) to IIT Kharagpur. I vividly remember the frenetic energy at the various stations along the way and marveled at the incredible scale and scope of Indian Railways."
Pichai reminisced the days when he travelled to and fro from Chennai Central railway station saying, "Just like I did years ago, thousands of young Indians walk through Chennai Central every day, eager to learn, to explore and to seek opportunity. It's my hope that this Wi-Fi project will make all these things a little easier."