Odisha capital Bhubaneswar to be first fully WiFi enabled city in India. The State Government has finalized a roadmap on this regard.
The Information Technology (IT) Department has engaged the Software Technology Parks of India (STPI) as the implementation agency of the project. IT Minister Pranab Prakash Das said this project is important as the State Government is batting for inclusion of Bhubaneswar in the Prime Minister’s ambitious Smart City programme. On Thursday, the STPI submitted the terms of reference (ToR) for the project which would be send to the Government of India for its in-principle approval. Soon after the Union Government approves the proposal, the process for implementation of the project would be started, the Minister said. “We have asked the STPI to submit a detailed project proposal (DPR) in two months, following which open bidding will be conducted, and within next six months tender will be awarded,” he further said.
Before executing this project, it is essential to make a detailed feasibility study, making available various advanced technologies, imbibing best practices in other cities if any, examine requirement of a ‘proof of concept’ (PoC) study and sustainability of the project. The STPI would conduct the PoC study at four to five places in the city. “It will be not be a fully free WiFi zone in the city.
The service may be considered free of cost for about 20-30 minutes in a day as introduced in other cities. A best revenue model will be worked out in consultation with the STPI,” the Minister informed. Sources said the STPI would study the best practices adopted by the cities both in the country and abroad. Other cities having WiFi connectivity are Patna having a 20-km free WiFi zone, Bangalore (Mahatma Gandhi Road and Brigade Road) and Connaught Place area of New Delhi.