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Bangalore fulcrum of IT in India: Shankaralinge Gowda

Written by: Staff

Bangalore, Apr 9: Maintaining its pre-eminent position in the Information Technology sector in the country, Bangalore will be the fulcrum of the country and there was no competition from any other State, Karnataka Principal Secretary for IT M K Shankaralinge Gowda has said.

Talking to UNI here, he said Bangalore was continuing to log higher than the national growth and registered a total export of around 8.5 billion Dollars in 2005-06, a 32 per cent growth. The next immediate competitor Mumbai's figures were approximately four billion Dollars, followed by Chennai 3.5 billion Dollars and Hyderabad three billion Dollars.

Mr Gowda said that notwithstanding the hue and cry raised about the city's infrastructure, Bangalore housed over 650 multinational companies and their tribe was growing. Bangalore continued to be the preferred destination because of its manpower strength.

Stating that Karnataka was not keen on luring companies with subsidies, he said the State focussed on promoting tier-II cities, besides emerging as a facilitator by taking up capacity building activities to enhance the talent pool available in the State.

Capacity building would be in the form of increasing educational institutions and improving the housing stock. The State was on the right track to achieve the target of 20 billion Dollars, set by the NASSCOM-McKinsey report, he added.

Mysore and Mangalore have emerged as alternate destinations to Bangalore and others such as Belgaum and Hubli were on the horizon.

The State had planned to hold an investors' conference in Hubli next month to attract IT and BT investments, he added.

Referring to various measures being taken up by the Government to improve infrastructure, Mr Gowda said the Bangalore-Mysore highway would emerge the IT pipeline of the country. Besides, a hi-tech city was also being planned. Efforts were also on to tap private investment for the Bangalore-Unwired project, wherein a radius of 50 km encompassing the city would have wireless internet connectivity. The Government would only be a facilitator for the Rs 20 crore project, for which expression of interest had been shown by 13 players, including multinationals such as AT and T and the State-owned Indian Telephone Industries. Pune and Hyderabad were also planning similar projects.

An expert committee, formed to go into the project, had held its preliminary meeting in the city recently and it was decided to form a sub-committee to narrow down the requirement and identify the technology. The project was initially mooted by Intel. Instead of one player, a multi-player environment was likely to be created, official sources indicated.


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