Measures suggested for the industry's growth in Vizag
Participants in a session on ‘IT industry in tier II cities: prospects and challenges' held here on Tuesday expressed their concern over the lack of adequate number of people for recruitment by the IT industry.
According to them, nearly 700 engineering colleges in the State are producing four lakh graduates every year but the IT industry is not able to find the required personnel. Secretary to the State Government's IT and Communications Department Sanjay Jaju, APIIC Executive Director C. Sreedhar, Collector Lav Agarwal, secretary of ITs AP P. Bipin Chandra, VUDA Vice-Chairman Kona Sasidhar, CMD of AP EPDCL Nadeem Ahmed, Municipal Commissioner B. Ramanjaneyulu, co-convenor of CII's AP ICT panel G.S. Siva Kumar, executives of some IT industries discussed the IT industry in Visakhapatnam and suggested some methods to boost the industry. COO of Visakha Container Terminal Sriram Ravichandran presided.
There was a general understanding that the IT scenario here was akin to the situation in Hyderabad some 10 to 15 years ago and a major advancement was on the anvil.
Mr. Sanjay Jaju said HR was the biggest problem for the IT and ITES sectors and felt the need to work out on many models to fill the gap. He suggested to the local units the Hyderabad experiment of some companies providing training to students and getting them placements. They could also utilise the funds from National Skill Development Corporation and the tests for students being conducted by the NASSCOM. Grading of the colleges would help in finding the best talent. Mr. Jaju said that the Jawahar Knowledge Centres at degree colleges were now being brought under the purview of district administrations and this should be helpful to the IT industry. Regarding the scenario in Visakhapatnam, the Secretary felt that the city could explore the present situation wherein the IT industry was moving from big cities and expensive countries to cheaper places (like Philippines and Vietnam).
He said that the Chief Minister and IT Minister assured all help to IT sector and the industry should also honour its commitment of providing employment for getting land allotted for the units.
Mr. Agarwal wanted major IT and ITES players to come to the city and urged the local entrepreneurs to use their connection with their foreign units in this regard. He was confident that anyone would be impressed with Visakhapatnam once he or she visited the place. It was an urban area with a rural touch, without traffic jams and other problems associated with a big city.
“Come here with a good business idea, work hard and the district administration, GVMC, and VUDA would support you,” Mr. Agarwal said. Dr. Sreedhar said a HITEC City similar to the one in Hyderabad would come up on Hill No. 2 at Madhurawada. An incubation centre in the city and an exclusive hardware park on 250 acres at the multi-product SEZ at Atchyutapuram would be established soon.
VUDA would be ready to take up housing projects for the IT units since walk to work was the latest concept, said Mr. Sasidhar. VUDA would provide space for an investors cell on its premises, he announced. It had already provided space for an incubation centre.
Mr. Nadeem said that an alternate supply line was being laid to the Rushikonda sub-station and doubling of the capacity of the sub-station would be completed by September end. Another sub-station would come up near Kapulauppada to meet future needs.
Mr. Bipin Chandra wanted the local IT units to work with coordination among themselves and with the local authorities. This has fetched good dividends in Hyderabad, he said.