Kerala Government’s free internet project, “K-FON” by December 2020

Kerala Fibre Optic Network (K-FON), a project launched by the state government of Kerala to provide free internet access to the poor will roll out by December 2020. Considering the internet as a fundamental right, the Government of Kerala has planned to setup an optical fiber network across the state to its citizens. It will provide high speed internet connection to homes and around 30,000 offices and will also provide free internet access to about 20 lakh economically backward households in the state free of cost and at affordable rates to others. The scheme is envisaged to check the existing bandwidth of the State Government and other private telecom service providers, identify their deficiencies, address them and set the required bandwidth for the future. The project is being implemented by K-FON Limited, a joint venture between KSEB and KSITIIL. It has completed the study and tender process required for the timely commencement of the project and has awarded the contract to a consortium headed by Bharat Electronics Limited for the implementation of the project. The consortium includes Bharat Electronics Class Limited, Railtel, LS Cable and SRIT.

An optical fiber network will be established in the state to provide equal opportunity to all service providers (cable operator, telecom operator, internet service provider and content service provider). High speed internet is available at IT parks, airports and ports. More than 30,000 government and educational institutions will have internet connection speeds ranging from 10mbps to 1Gbps. K-FON will facilitate areas such as artificial intelligence, blockchain, Internet of Things, startups and smart cities. Small enterprises can sell through e-commerce in rural areas also. K-FON will help increase efficiency by adding more bandwidth to government services such as e-health, e-education and other e-services. This project will also help streamline the traffic management system and to install high quality surveillance cameras.