The Universal Service Support Policy came into effect from 01.04.2002. The guidelines for universal service support policy were issued by DoT on 27th March 2002.The Indian Telegraph (Amendment) Act, 2003 giving statutory status to the Universal Service Obligation Fund (USOF) was passed by both Houses of Parliament in December 2003.

The Rules for administration of the Fund known as Indian Telegraph (Amendment) Rules, 2004 were notified on 26.03.2004. As per the Indian Telegraph Act 1885 (as amended in 2003, 2006), the Fund is to be utilized exclusively for meeting the Universal Service Obligation.

Vision of USO

Enabling rural Indians to achieve their fullest potential and participate productively in the development of the nation by virtue of being effectively connected through a reliable and ubiquitous telecommunications network, access to which is within their reach and within their means.

The goal of universal service has been sought to be achieved via various projects which have been categorized into streams.
Stream-I:   Provision of Public Access Service by provision of Village Public Telephones and Rural Community Phones:
Stream-II:   Provision of Household Telephones in Rural and Remote Areas (Rural Household DELs) as may be Determined by the Central Government from Time to Time:
Stream-III:   Creation of Infrastructure for provision of Mobile Services in Rural and Remote Areas

1.   Mobile Infrastructure (Phase-I)
2.   Left Wing Extremist Area (LWE)

Stream-IV:   Provision of Broadband Connectivity to rural & remote areas in a phased manner
1.   Wire Line Broadband
2.   Rural Public Service Terminals (RPST)

Stream-V:   Creation of General Infrastructure in Rural and Remote Areas for Development of Telecommunication facilities.
1.   National Optical Fiber Network(NOFN)with BBNL

Stream-VI:   Induction of new technological developments in the telecom sector in Rural and Remote Areas:
1.   Solar Mobile Charging Facility(SMCF).
2.   Sanchar Shakti