Information Technology sector in the country is on the threshold of a growth phase, said Union Minister of State for Planning, Culture and Parliamentary Affairs V. Narayanasamy.

Speaking at the Graduation Day 2010 of Vel Tech Dr. RR and Dr. SR Technical University on Saturday, he said that the government was taking efforts on promoting innovation and growth in hardware technology.

There would be a need for importing hardware worth $490 billion in the next five years if we fail to focus on indigenous research and development of computer hardware, he said. “Our strengths in software should be matched by innovation and manufacturing of hardware.”

Mr. Narayanasamy emphasised the need for more students contributing to research. “There is a need for reduction of ‘lab to land' delay,” he said.

Over 1,500 universities are required for the country and increasing partnership of private sector with the government to educate lakhs of students would be the best option, he said.

He said that more companies were in the process of holding discussions with the government on commissioning research laboratories in Tamil Nadu.