"The rural economy is set to go hi-tech with promises made for internet and telecom connectivity.
By the 60th aniversary of the country's Independence, on August 15,
2007, each of the 600,000 villages are promised with a village
knowledge centre (VKC) based on broadband internet connectivity. There
will be one million knowledge workers within this year.
A national alliance of 150 partner
organisations, which consists of both foreign and Indian NGOs and
institutions, has launched Mission-2007 for the purpose. The alliance
says that VKCs will disseminate relevant information relating to
agriculture, animal husbandry, fisheries, health, education, rural
enterprises and disaster management. As a first step, the alliance
partners have planned to connect 25,000 villages with knowledge centres
The Union minister for communication and information technology, Dayanidhi Maran, says that the government will set up 1,00,000 common service centres (CSCs) with broadband connectivity at the remote village level by 2007
by leveraging the infrastructure at the state level. The state
governments concerned, the private sector and NGOs will be partners. It
will be an integrated three-tier structure - at the central, state and
At present there are about 10,000 KCs, out of which 5,000 are
managed by ITC Ltd. There are, of course, a few other initiatives by
government and non-governmental sectors like EID Parry's Agri-line project, Kissan Kerala, Akshaya in Kerala, Bhoomi in Karnataka, Drishti in Haryana, SEWA in Gujarat, E-Sewa in Andhra Pradesh, N-Logue of the Indian Institute of Technology, Chennai, Gyandoot in Madhya Pradesh, Maha-Agri in Maharashtra and Tarahaat in Delhi. [links added in, bold is mine.]"
Update: Changed the title to 600,000 villages from 60,000 villages - missed one vital zero earlier - my bad :)