There was this article in the Hindu, which talked about the Cabinet Secretary looking at investing 18,000 crore to provide broadband to rural areas. Justifiably, there is a doubt on what possible technology to use - 3G, Fiber optic, etc.
Eventually, fiber optic is the only scalable medium that can carry incredible amounts of data - voice, internet and even television.
However, for short term cost effectiveness, the best possible way is to use home grown low cost technology - like AirJaldi.
I have written about AirJaldi in the past - and I believe that a low cost, free, open technology that is already being used to provide connectivity using the Dharamsala Community Wireless Mesh Network. They built 300$ systems that would otherwise cost 10,000$ and provide 45km 5mbps network link in mountain terrain.
This is already in place and field-tested in the harshest of conditions, why dont we go ahead and work with this.