Online classes now a culture in Covid times, says PM, hails New Education Policy

Illustration by Soham Sen | ThePrint

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New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi Saturday highlighted the importance of Digital India and mentioned how India’s online classes have become a “culture” with the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

“Online classes have become a culture during the Corona times… digital transaction and online classes, all of it is the new norm now. This goes on to show how the Indian people have started accepting the new normal,” the PM said in his I-Day speech.

The prime minister also talked about the steps that will strengthen the reach of the internet across the country and give a major boost to online education in parts of the country where internet access is an issue.

“Until 2014, only five dozen gram panchayats were connected with optical fibre. In the last five years, we have connected more than 1.5 lakh panchayats with optical fibre. Going ahead, the government has decided that all 6,00,000 villages will be connected with optical fibres in the next 1,000 days,” the PM said.

According to the latest National Statistics Office (NSO) survey for the year 2017-18 released last month, only 24 per cent of the households in the country had internet access in the survey year. The proportions were 15 per cent among rural households and 42 per cent among urban households.

The government’s plan to extend optical fibre in 6,00,000 villages is likely to increase internet access in a large number of households.

The government aims to achieve this through the National Broadband Mission, which was launched in December 2019. The ambitious mission under which the government promised broadband access in all villages by the year 2022 involves laying of incremental 30 lakh km route of Optical Fiber Cable and increasing the tower density.

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