Students of around 38 central universities will finally be able to access free WiFi in university campuses in places including libraries, hostel, canteens and study areas.
A proposal will be tabled in the project approval board of the HRD ministry next week.
The high-speed network will have a bandwidth of 2Gbps allowing students to download data from sites, barring banned ones, through hotspots. The universities will get high-speed connections of 2Gbps; in case there are many colleges within a university, they would get at least 2mbps of bandwidth.
Officials said though the project was announced in the Union budget, it has now been put on fast-track. Most universities will be covered by March 2016 and bigger campuses may take a few more months. The project is in sync with the government’s ‘Digital India’ project.
“Pipelines were laid under the National Knowledge network and we are going to use the same for providing WiFi in universities. The idea is to cover all those specific points that are frequented by students, including restaurants within the campus and hostels,” said a senior HRD official.
The UPA government had launched a scheme to provide WiFi to all educational institutions under the National Mission of Education through ICT but its implementation was slow.
In 2014, HRD minister Smriti Irani in a Lok Sabha reply said her government was working on a programme under which WiFi access would be provided.
But officials said to ensure students do not use it at odd hours, especially in hostels, the control system and server will be provided to the vice-chancellor so they can decide upon its implementation and monitoring.