Delhi’s much-awaited plans of becoming an IT hub will finally see the light of day. The Centre has cleared the proposal for setting up two Special Economic Zones in Northwest Delhi.
Delhi State Industrial and Infrastructure Development Corporation (DSIIDC) will set up the two SEZs — one for Information Technology and the other for gold and jewellery — at a 67.4-acre land in Baprola. The project will cost Rs 785 crore.
The IT hub will provide direct employment to 36,000 people, said Chetan Sanghi, chairman and managing director of DSIIDC.
“Over a lakh people will get indirect employment due to the IT SEZ,” he said.
The gold and jewellery hub, bigger than the IT one, will have specialised infrastructure such as identification, grading and certification of diamonds as well as a world-class gem and jewellery training institute.
Gem testing lab and an assaying course have also been planned. The facility is expected to provide direct employment to 18,000 people and indirect employment to another 54,000, Sanghi said.
While Delhi has a large number of small manufacturing units — mostly family owned — dealing in gem and jewellery trade, the volumes of business are low and the working conditions are poor.
The Indian branded jewellery market is growing at 40 per cent and its expected market size will be $2.28 billion by 2010.
Delhi contributed one per cent of all gold exports from India.