Mayor K. Satyanarayana’s observation that the information technology (IT) sector has not contributed to building Bangalore has drawn sharp reactions from those representing the sector.
When contacted for a reaction, T.V. Mohandas Pai, who leads the government-constituted Karnataka ICT Group 2020, said he believed the government should stop asking corporates and others to do what is essentially the government’s job. While he conceded that Bangalore’s billionaires or the rich living here have not done enough for the city, when compared to what happens abroad, he said that citizens will be inclined to contribute if they can trust the government. “And that will come with clean governance. They must first use the taxpayer’s money properly. The Mayor and councillors should look at corruption, poor collection of property tax, the garbage mafia that takes over Rs. 600 crore and doesn’t do its job. If these are set right, then citizens and corporates will queue up to contribute.”
Biocon chairman and managing director Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw reacted sharply to the accusation. “What of the million jobs [the sector] has created and the tax contributed to the exchequer?” she asked. “I’m sure many among us in IT/BT will be happy to adopt and maintain public facilities. But when the Mayor can ask us what we have contributed to Bangalore, one wonders what the government’s responsibility will be if we start maintaining parks and roads.”