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?Technology is driving economy?

india Updated: Feb 10, 2007 12:15 IST

OBSERVING THAT India today was totally different from what those on the wrong side of 30 had seen, former ONGC chairman Subir Raha said the advent of technology was the biggest single cause of transformation of our society and economy.

Raha was addressing the inaugural session of Indore Management Association (IMA) National Management Convention 2007 on ‘Business Renaissance: Innovative Architecture for Tomorrow’ at Abhay Prashal in the City on Friday.

A galaxy of the City’s elite including industrialists, academicians and government officials were present on the occasion. The convention was formally inaugurated by IMA chairman Ravi Mohan.

Raha, who is also All India Management Association (AIMA) president, said globalisation was nothing new for India and even centuries ago India was actively engaged in global trade exporting spices, silk and steel among other goods. “Now we are getting back to where we belonged to begin with at the global stage, and the business renaissance is a very apt theme for this convention,” he said.

Raha said the biggest single cause of transformation of our society and economy was the advent of technology like cable TV and cell phones in the 90s. “Now a person need not be literate to stay in touch with what is happening around the world,” he said.

Giving an example of how different India was today, Raha said “Twenty years ago when we went to any bank to cash a cheque, we stood in a queue, got our token, went out to have a cup of tea and then returned to get the cash, but now the ATMs have changed all this and even banks are coming to our doorsteps.”

IMA president O K Kaul said Indian economy was undergoing a sea change and it was estimated that in this calendar year the country’s industrialists would invest more abroad than the FDI (foreign direct investment) coming into the country. He said it was a significant achievement for the country, which had only few weeks of foreign reserves left in  90s.

Earlier, IMA vice-president Rakesh Jain delivered the welcome speech. He also expressed regret that IMA’s international partner for this convention Zimbabwe’s representative Peter Madara was unable to attend the function.

‘Right time to think of metro for Indore’
THE TIME is ripe to think about a metro rail for Indore, but at present buses are the best means of public transport for cities like this, said Delhi Metro Rail Corporation managing director E Sreedharan while addressing the Indore Management Association (IMA) national convention here on Friday.

Sreedharan, who was presented the ‘lifetime outstanding achievement award’ by IMA, said if a decision was taken now it would take another five to six years for the project to materialise and by another five to six years time the City’s landscape would change making it tougher to build a metro. Indore, he said, has a population of about 2.6 million now and any city having a population of 3 million needs metro to manage the public transport.

Sharing his experiences of Delhi Metro project, which was completed in a record time, Sreedharan said during phase I of the project, the whole team adopted the culture of punctuality almost like a religion. “Delhi Metro is probably the only metro in the world which has a delay tolerance of 60 seconds,’’ he said, adding, “I don’t think any other metro rail even in cities like London and Hong Kong has this kind of punctuality norms,” he said.

The whole project, Sreedharan said, was completed with the same sense of urgency and even big tenders were finalised within weeks while it took only few hours.