There are over 250 villages across West Bengal where telecom services including mobile and internet service are yet to reach. The state information technology and electronics (IT&E) department is discussing the issue with several telecom providers to come up with a plan to cover all the shadow zones of the state.
According to estimates with the IT department, a total of 263 villages across nine districts of the state in Alipurduar, Jalpaiguri, Kalimpong, South Dinajpur, North Dinajpur, Murshidabad, Nadia, West Midnapore and Bankura are without mobile and internet connectivity.
"These are the shadow zones which are yet to get mobile or internet connectivity. We will again meet this month with suggestions and feedback as to how shadow zones could be eliminated," said a senior IT&E department official.
The IT department officials tried to understand what would make the service providers to extend service to these areas as well. "Several issues were discussed including formation of a telecom right-of-way policy, possibility of coming up with an incentive framework, a uniform fee structure and other factors to see if the telecom coverage could be extended to these shadow zones," said an official.
Officials said that the telecom service providers and operators came up with a suggestion if a single window approval mechanism could be framed. "The operators will be provided with land map of the shadow zone areas.-TOI