Digital India to Digital Bharat (Download PDF)

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The proposal of DoT for setting up of Public Wi-Fi Networks by Public Data Office Aggregators (PDOAs) was given approval by the Union Cabinet. This will provide public Wi-Fi service through Public Data Offices (PDOs) spread across length and breadth of the country.

The Public Wi-Fi Access Network Interface will be known as PM-WANI.

Salient Features

Salient Features

Public Data Office (PDO)

  • This will establish, maintain, and operate only WANI compliant Wi-Fi Access Points.
  • This will also deliver broadband services to subscribers.

Public Data Office Aggregator (PDOA)

  • It will act as an aggregator of PDOs.
  • It will perform functions relating to Authorization and Accounting.

App Provider

  • Developing an App for registering users along with discovery WANI compliant Wi-Fi hotspots in the nearby area.
  • Displaying the same within the App for accessing the internet service.

Central Registry

  • This will maintain the details of App Providers, PDOAs, and PDOs.
  • The Central Registry will be maintained by C-DoT.

Objectives and Benefits of PM-WANI

  • Through online registration portal, PDOs, PDOAs and App Providers will get themselves registered.
  • Within 7 days of the application, without paying any registration fee registration shall be granted.
  • More business friendly and in line with efforts for ease of doing business COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Many subscribers would be able to get access to table and high-speed Broadband Internet (data) services including the areas with no 4-G mobile coverage.
  • The proliferation of public Wi-Fi will create employment.
  • No License Fee for providing broadband internet services using public Wi-Fi Hotspots.

Availability and use of Broadband will enhance:

  • Incomes
  • Employment
  • Quality of life
  • Ease of doing business etc.

Significance of PM-WANI

Digital Divide

  • It refers to the gap between demographics and region having access to modern information and communication technology.
  • According to TRAI, only 54 % of the Indians have access to the internet.
  • PM-WANI can bridge the digital divide.

Huge Spatial Digital Divide

  • Internet density in rural area is lower than in urban areas.
  • A per 75th National Statistical Organization Survey, only one-fifth of the population possess the skills to operate internet.
  • PM-WANI will widen the internet coverage with the sue of public Wi-Fi hotspots.

Mobile Internet Congestion

PM-WANI will improve speed and quality of internet access as 99 % of all users in India access internet on mobile phones, with only 88 % of them are connected to 4-G network.


  • Security and Privacy concerns.
  • Local storage of ‘community interest’ data is a concern over data protection.
  • There is no Data protection law in the country.

- Published/Last Modified on: May 21, 2021

Science/Technology, Health, Govt. Schemes/Projects

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