After initial hiccups, the Information Technology industry is all set to grow in Tirupati, especially in the Special Economic Zone developed near Renigunta airport.

The SEZ project remained a non-starter due to glitches in land allotment between the AP Industrial Infrastructure Corporation (APIIC) and the TUDA.

It required the intervention of none other than IT Minister Ponnala Lakshmaiah to resolve the issue. The disillusioned technopreneurs, who have been patiently waiting for the dust to settle down, are now heaving a sigh of relief, as the ball has been set in motion.

Though projected as the fourth largest IT destination after Hyderabad, Visakhapatnam and Vijayawada, the nascent industry faces many stumbling blocks.

The Software Technology Park of India (STPI) is functional for a decade, but the response to it is far from satisfactory due to the high maintenance costs.

The temple city’s proximity to Chennai and Bangalore is both an advantage and a disadvantage. The availability of faculty from these cities is an advantage, but the migration of qualified students in search of greener pastures in the immediate neighbourhood is the negative fallout.

Tirupati Information Technology Association (TITA), the 500-strong forum of IT firms, software professionals and students, aims to achieve synergic effect with the creation of a common talent pool by training students of allied sciences.

“The technical needs of the TTD, APSPDCL and universities are met by IT companies based in Bangalore, Hyderabad or Chennai. They should have a local business address and their staff should become our members,” says TITA president Hari Pendyala.