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Internet connectivity in northeast will get a boost as Communications and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad is all set to lay the foundation stone for the much-awaited international gateway for internet at Agartala on Saturday.
Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar will also be present in the event. The IGW is an international gateway that is being installed at Agartala for extending internet bandwidth to northeastern region of India through Cox Bazar Cable Landing Station of Bangladesh.
"This will help the government to save a lot of money," Prasad said, adding that at present northeastern region get connectivity from Chennai landing station via Kolkata and Assam.
"To strengthen the network, alternate connectivity is being extended from Agartala through Akhaura and Cox Bazar in Bangladesh," he said, adding that 10 gigabyte (GB) bandwidth, capable of being enhanced till 40 GB, will be provided for the internet traffic of seven northeastern states- Assam, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Tripura, Manipur, Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh.
The agreement was signed between state-run BSNL and Bangldesh Submarine Cable Company Limited for leasing of international bandwidth during India-Bangaldesh Summit on June 6.
The BSNL will lay the optical fibre cable network from Agartala to the Integrated Check Post at Akhaura near the international border to connect Cox Bazar's submarine bandwidth.
The project is likely to be commissioned by January 2016, entailing a cost of Rs.19.1 crore and annual operational expenditure of Rs.7.2 crore approximately, which is being funded by the the department of telecommunications.
At present India has five international gateways in India - New Delhi, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata.