USOF, Prasar Bharati and ONDC Sign Tripartite MoU to Expand Digital Services in Rural India

The Government of India, through strategic partnerships and initiatives, aims to extend affordable digital services across the nation, fostering inclusivity and socio-economic development.


  • USOF, Prasar Bharati, and ONDC collaborate to proliferate affordable digital services.
  • Integration of broadband with OTT and e-commerce platforms targets rural connectivity.
  • Initiative aims to expand digital services, including education, health, and agriculture.

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USOF, Prasar Bharati and ONDC Sign Tripartite MoU to Expand Digital Services in Rural India
The Universal Service Obligation Fund (USOF) under the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has signed a tripartite Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Prasar Bharati (under the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting) and the Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC), a Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI) initiative of the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, aiming to proliferate affordable and accessible digital services across the country.

Bundling Broadband with OTT and E-commerce

The MoU, signed with Prasar Bharati and the Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC), aims to leverage BharatNet infrastructure to provide affordable digital services across India.

Also Read: Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw Unveils Telecom Reforms, Including Spectrum Sandbox

Under the agreement, broadband services will be bundled with Over-the-Top (OTT) and e-commerce platforms, addressing connectivity, content, and commerce needs in rural areas, the Ministry of Communications said on Tuesday.

The MoU was signed in the presence of key officials including Neeraj Mittal, Secretary (Telecom), and Niraj Verma, Administrator of USOF, T Koshy, MD and CEO of ONDC, A K Jha, ADG, Platforms, Prasar Bharati, and Sunil Kumar Verma, Joint Secretary of DoT.

Empowering Rural Connectivity and Commerce

The Ministry emphasised USOF's role in facilitating high-speed broadband and mobile connections in Gram Panchayats (GPs) and villages in the country.

Reportedly, this MoU will enable bundled Prasar Bharati OTT as a service, including linear channels, Live TV, and on-demand content, among end consumers, while USOF will ensure high-speed broadband services in rural and remote areas. Additionally, ONDC will contribute technical expertise to enable digital commerce in products and services.

This initiative will be expanded to cover more services like education, health, training, credit, insurance, agriculture, among others, the Ministry said.

Reported By

From Arts and Journalism background, Yashika closely monitors developments and updates in OTT Space.

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