However, the situation in villages is even worse. I had to shift to living in a city in 2000 because of the need for internet access and even today I cannot go back to living in a village as I would like to because of this lack of internet connectivity. Recently, a retired professor of microbiology has started staying in the residential school we run at Kakrana. He says quite rightly that in today's age schooling is incomplete without access to internet. So we started scouting around for ways of overcoming this problem. Our researches revealed that the cheapest way to do this is by the use of a technology that is called wireless hopping. Very simply it means the signal from a point where internet access is available through OFC landline is transmitted by radio frequency to another point at a distance which does not have it through antennae which have built in radio transmitters and receivers. This can be used to hop over distances as large as forty kilometers with the only proviso that there should not be physical obstacles like hillocks in the radio frequency line of sight. Even this can be overcome by providing repeaters at these points. This has been tried out all over the world and it is a very good and cheap technology but requires a little technical maintenance from time to time.
Ideally BSNL should take up this technology and spread it widely in remote rural areas to provide internet access to the whole of India much more cheaply than through OFCs. In fact in the few places that this technology is being used in India people are doing it on their own by using BSNL landline points and they have proven the technology to BSNL. Yet it is a commentary on the cussedness of the Government system in India that BSNL has not rolled out this technology widely despite it having a huge commercial potential.
We are now trying to implement this wireloss hop ourselves with the help of some people living in rural areas who have done it themselves and will probably have internet running in Kakrana soon. But the point remains that this should have been done by the Government in the same way as it should provide decent primary education and primary health care to remote rural areas. But in the same way as education and health are in the doldrums in this country so also smart villages will remain a distant dream for some time to come and the prospects of smart cities aren't too bright either!!!