KLI submarine cable system

NEC completes KLI submarine cable system for BSNL

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Tokyo, Japan and New Delhi, India: NEC has completed the Kochi-Lakshadweep Islands (KLI) submarine cable system for BSNL. The system spans around 1,870 km linking Kochi and Lakshadweep Islands, providing digital connectivity to remote islands and supporting its economic and social life.

KLI submarine cable system

NEC Corporation India (NEC India) and NEC Corporation today announced the successful completion of a flagship optical submarine cable system connecting Kochi and Lakshadweep Islands in Southern India.

The Indian government developed the KLI submarine cable system under its Digital India mission. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had inaugurated the new system recently. During India’s Independence Day speech in 2020, PM Modi announced the initiative to link the Lakshadweep Islands with a submarine optical fibre cable within 1000 days.

Under the Indian government’s Department of Telecommunications (DoT), the project was funded by the Universal Services Obligation Fund (USOF) and Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL), a state-owned telecommunications company executed it.

BSNL awarded this subsea cable system project to NEC India in September 2021 and was completed ahead of schedule in June 2023. Spanning approximately 1,870 km, the system offers an initial capacity of 2×100 Gbps, expandable up to 1,600 Gbps per fibre pair.

The system connects the Indian port city Kochi with 11 Lakshadweep islands: Agatti, Androth, Amini, Bangaram, Bitra, Chetlat, Kadmat, Kavaratti, Kiltan, Kalpeni, and Minicoy.

Voice and Data Connectivity

Providing ample bandwidth for voice and data connectivity, the cable supports e-governance initiatives, facilitates new enterprises, and enables e-commerce facilities. Aligned with the Digital India Mission, it aids knowledge sharing in educational institutes and ensures electronic access to government services for citizens.

“The successful completion of the KLI cable project, our second venture with BSNL, marks a pivotal moment in NEC’s collaboration with the Government of India towards building a connected nation,” said Aalok Kumar, Corporate Officer and SVP – Head of the Global Smart City Business – NEC Corporation, and President and CEO of NEC Corporation India.


“This initiative not only puts Lakshadweep on the digital map, it also galvanises the socio-economic growth of the region. With a forward-looking data capacity and a focus on connecting people globally, we’re proud to facilitate comprehensive internet connectivity for the islands, aligning with the Digital India mission and fostering opportunities in e-governance and digital empowerment across the region,” added Kumar.
“After the successful completion of an optical submarine cable system, connecting Chennai, India and the Andaman & Nicobar Islands (A&N Islands) in December 2020, NEC is honoured to yet again take part in this prestigious project which we hope will open a wide range of opportunities for the people on the Lakshadweep Islands,” said Atsushi Kuwahara, MD – Submarine Network Division, NEC.

“We would also like to thank USOF (DoT), BSNL, the Indian government agencies and especially the people of the Lakshadweep Islands for welcoming this project and helping to bring it to completion,” Kuwahara added.

The KLI project exemplifies NEC’s dedication to connecting the unconnected and empowering communities through cutting-edge technology.

(Image credit – NEC India)