Chennai-Andaman and Nicobar Island Submarine Cable System’

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  • Published
    17th Aug, 2020


Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the first ever undersea optical fibre cable project for Andaman and Nicobar Islands which will provide high speed broadband connections in the union territory at par with services in the mainland.


  • The project envisages better connectivity from Chennai to Port Blair and seven other Islands -- Swaraj Deep (Havelock), Long Island, Rangat, Hutbay (Little Andaman), Kamorta, Car Nicobar and Campbell Bay (Great Nicobar).
  • The project has been implemented at a cost of ? 1,224 crore. It is funded by the government through the Universal Service Obligation Fund under the ministry of communications.
  • According to official data, internet with speed of 400 gigabyte (Gb) per second will be provided at Port Blair and for other islands it will be 200 Gb per second.
  • The foundation for 2,312-kilometer Chennai - Andaman and Nicobar Islands (CANI) connecting submarine optical fibre cable project was laid in 2018.

What is Submarine Communication cable?

  • A submarine communications cable is a cable laid on the seabed between land-based stations to transmit telecommunication signals across stretches of ocean and sea.
  • The optical fiber elements are typically individually coated with plastic layers and contained in a protective tube suitable for the environment where the cable will be deployed.
  • Compared to satellites, using internet connection through submarine cables is more reliable, cost efficient and of large capacity.

Why Andaman and Nicobar islands?

  • The Indian Ocean has been the centre of India's trade and strategic prowess for thousands of years.
  • Now that India is following the new policy and practice of trade and cooperation in Indo-Pacific, the importance of our islands including Andaman and Nicobar has increased further.
  • Under the Act-East policy, Andaman and Nicobar's role in India's strong relations with East Asian countries and other countries associated with the sea is crucial and it is going to increase.

Significance of the development

  • Digital connectivity: The project - said to be first-of-its-kind in the country, is expected to give tourism, business, e-commerce and digital education a boost in the union territory, which is also a strategically important frontier in the Bay of Bengal.
  • Digital connectivity plus tourism: 2,300-km cable will not just boost digital connectivity of Andaman Islands with the mainland but also boost tourism. Tourists going to Andaman will get a huge benefit of this facility because better net connectivity has become the first priority of any tourist destination.
  • Ease of living: The project is a commitment towards ease of living. Be it online classes, tourism, banking, shopping or telemedicine, thousands of families in Andaman-Nicobar will now get its access.

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