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December 2007 - January 2008

Business Forum

India - The Information Technology Superpower

by P. Venkataramana

It is common knowledge that products can be copied; that technology and training can be duplicated;that all mankind moves ahead with change being the constant factor while history does repeat itself in a most weird manner for those who look upon all life and all progress as one inter-knit twine of Fate,Destiny,Progress...confounding?truly confounding yet true.

INDIA - be it for the East India Company of yore or for Mr.Bill Gates or the world’s most powerful Nations of the World Today still allures - not for its mysteries of para-psychological import or the power of its Spiritual sojourns in myraid forms but most singularly for the strength and innate capacities of its human resources: INDIA enjoys a highly motivated set of people; people who care - for their Organizational goals, for their set -goals;for the translation of the supposed ‘impossibilities’ into ‘real,tangible results’...It is in this very frame of mind-set that we shall explore the triumph of the Indian Information-Technology field and its outstanding performance in the World-arena.

India is the largest generator and exporter of Software in the world.Largely steered by the policy evolved by the Government of India and ably monitored by the National Task Force on IT and Software Development set up in 1998,umpteen number of entrepreneurs set up shop to benefit under a dynamic National Informatics Policy.A special website was created to act as a forum for receiving suggestions, analyzing them and hosting them back on the website as a structured and classified digest of suggestions from IT professionals in India and abroad.The Ministry of Information and Technology took a lead role and serves as a nodal point for facilitating the initiatives required in the country to achieve targets such as the set-goal of US$ 50Billion for Software-exports and US$10 Billion for Hardware-exports by the year 2008 !

Another note-worthy feature is that the satellite WAN, using VSAT -technology, has facilitated reliable and quick-access from remote areas(the VSAT-technology works as an overlay for the terrestrial WAN by providing back-up links between the backbone sites;international-connectivity is achieved through gateways at NewDelhi,Mumbai,Bangalore,Hyderabad,Chnnai and Kolkotta).

The Indian Electronics and Software Industry shared less than 1% of the world-market in 2001-02 whereas today, India has attained the capability of designing and building supercomputers using massively parallel processing-technology to address national requirements in science and engineering applications ,mission-critical applications and in business-computing.The overall production-base of the Indian Electronics Industry is widely distributed - there are more than 3500 units engaged in Electronics production(including 13 central public-sector units with 29 manufacturing establishments,over 65 units in state public-sector and nearly a thousand in the organized private-sector with another 5000 in the small-scale sector ).

A major concern is software-piracy, a global

phenomenon.That is an ill which refers to the illegal installation, distribution, sale and use of infringing software.INDIA has brought in major changes to the Indian Copyright Law in 1994 making it one of the toughest Laws in the World. It defines a Computer-Program and clearly explains the rights of the copyright-holder, position on rentals of software, the rights of the user to make back-up copies as also the heavy punishment and fines on infringement of copyright of Software.Also, to protect the IPR(Intellectual Property Rights)of Software-companies,besides cracking down on piracy,the Government of India has also made several policies to actively discourage piracy(for instance, Authorized-sellers of imported software are allowed to reproduce Software in India and sell it without import-duty and local software-manufacturers are exempt from excise-duty.) All these welcome changes has seen MNCs coming in hordes into India to capture this Investment-opportunity - what with the changed scenario of vastly improved infrastructure and terrestrial Telecom-facilities.Global internet-leaders are attracted by the potential user-base..A new brand of IT-Professionals came to emerge in the international circles of business&technology,viz; the IT-Professional from INDIA! Initially chartered by private industries and IT-professionals who aimed to be amongst the best in the world,a bunch of upstarts a decade back unleashed a trail of remarkable achievements ,that has cascaded and catapulted INDIA to the enviable position of numero-uno so far as the IT-sector is concerned !

In the last five years, the IT-Industry has recorded a compounded -annual-growth-rate of more than 40.50% which is almost double the growth-rate of the IT-Industry in many of the developed countries.- : this is certainly a good indicator of where and how effectively are the investments taking place To the uninformed,business-scenario in INDIA has greatly evolved with business practices, infrastructure, knowledge-base and all other sorrounding circumstances have tremendously improved to help in development-process of those who participate in its economic-growth. Very Special,privileged red-carpet treatment is accorded to the investors of this Industry in India : State patronage by providing all support ,including fiscal-benefits(such as trade-free zones,Software-technology Park schemes,zero import-duty on Software and 100% exemption on profits from Software-exports),the availability of high-speed data communications and infrastructure have all added up to the jettisoning of this crucial Industry.

INDIA is therefore now the IN-place to do business in and the IT- Industry especially the field in which to invest your monies in.

Yet another striking justification for this special achievement of the clan of Indian IT-professionals is the triumph of ‘people-power’ over ‘system-power’:people are the key enablers and live organisms while the organizations(read companies)are systems in addition to their independent-parts.It is in this industry that individuals can deliver at the frontier of performance- they understand where the company is going and do succeed in influencing its path by dint of their stellar efforts and single-minded contributions to efficacy and performance(they realize that they are the ones who are entrusted with the competitiveness of the organization: they are the repository of much of the knowledge and skill-base that makes the enterprise competitive). No company can be successful with a detached and unmotivated work-force!

On close-examination ,the HR-policy of the IT-Industry in INDIA can be seen to rest on the basic premise that a successful IT-Company must be able to craft a special-relationship with its personnel - it must be able to live the ideals of

people-power,rather than merely talk about them;it must fulfill the business-needs to :

* continually improve performance and enhance value to the shareholders,

* enable the company to attract and retain top-talent,

* motivate all personnel to work to their fullest potential,

* develop the skills of white -workers and other staff,

* balance the interests of all stake-holders including the share-holders, employees, unions, Government and the society.

IT-Industry in India has accomplished these goals by navigating a tricky road most dextrously,studiously and in a smooth fashion. Like a corporate bigwig once remarked, ’the only thing you can rely on is your ability to end up where the invisible hand of economy wants you to be ’owning your own employability...!’

In summation, a path well worth being treaded upon by those who would like to make rood returns on the boom and stability of the IT-Industry : you my of course ,contact the INDIA LINK INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS FORUM for specific avenues and opportunities to invest in the IT-Sector in INDIA ,without much ado . All the best ,dear Readers!

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