September 21, 2005

IT demands and solutions

Even as the IT sector began to reiterate its demands for better infrastructure in Bangalore, the Karnataka government responded strongly by asking the sector what contribution it has made to the state, and raked up the issue of jobs for Kannadigas. R. Raghavendra in turn posed these questions to J Veeraraghavan, managing director, Novell India, and who is also a member of Bangalore Forum for IT (BFIT) which boycotted this year’s edition of IT.In.

   What has IT sector given to the state which makes your demands valid?


IT has contributed directly to the state’s economy and has also played a key role in providing jobs across several ancillary industries. Indirectly, IT has had a positive impact on other sections of society where it has created more jobs. Besides the taxes the IT industry pays to the government, it has also generated wealth. Employees of this industry have largely contributed to the state’s economy, and this is the result of the wealth it has created.
   Besides job creation and wealth generation, how has IT contributed to society?
While it is true that Bangalore has grown as a result of IT, it is important to understand the ways in which this sector has also helped the city grow. The demand for better infrastructure is to make the lives of Bangaloreans easier. IT companies have a huge sense of corporate social responsibility and support various sections of society — spastic societies, under-privileged children, old age homes, tsunami fund raisers among others.
   What are your views on providing more jobs to Kannadigas in the IT sector?
MNCs worldwide are known as Equal Opportunity Employers. When a company sets up shop in any part of the world, it always hires the best-in-class talent. Hiring has always been on meritocracy and not on caste, colour or race. We have no problem in hiring Kannadigas, as long as they meet the requirements of the industry.
   Is this really a tussle between the IT sector and state government?
Our demands are not new. We are only trying to do something for the betterment of society. I personally feel this is being wrongly projected as an issue between the IT sector and state government. We are speaking on behalf of all the citizens of Bangalore.

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