Kerala government is planning to provide high-speed, affordable internet connectivity to its people by the end of this year. Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said that over 30,000 government institutions will get free wifi connectivity through under Kerala Fibre Optic Network (KFON) Project. It is estimated that 20 lakh families will be benefited from this project.
With the KFON project, the Kerala government has promised to deliver internet free of cost to 2 million families living below the poverty line. The project is funded at a cost of Rs 1,548 crores, according to Livemint.
KFON is a joint venture of the Kerala State Electricity Board (KSEB) and Kerala State IT Infrastructure Ltd. A consortium of firms led by the Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) has bagged the project. The project will use the electricity network of KSEB to reach last-mile connectivity. The project aims to establish new optic fiber networks and Wi-Fi transmission centres across Kerala. KSEB has a presence in 95 per cent in Kerala households.
Meanwhile, Kerala State Financial Enterprises (KSFE) will join hands with Kudumbasree and other agencies to provide free laptops to financially weak families to "bridge the digital divide in the state," said Kerala Finance Minister Thomas Issac.