Uttar Pradesh has immense scope for an information technology (IT) revolution. This was the underlying thought of the first panel discussion of the day at the Hindustan Times-Hindustan Uttar Pradesh Development Conclave held in Lucknow on Saturday.
The session was keenly watched in the backdrop of the new government having signalled its intentions of developing the IT sector in the state. Chief minister Akhilesh Yadav and bureaucrats were among those present.
Dr Bharat Bhaskar, professor of IT & systems and head of the Internet Commerce Research Centre at Indian Institute of Management-Lucknow, moderated the session.
He revealed an 'IT fact' about UP that not many know.
"In 1980, UP was the leading state in electronics in the country. Do you remember Uptron? By 1990, we lost that edge and became number 2. By 2000, we slipped to number 5. I guess UP now is number 6 in the IT industry that is also called the sunshine industry. Globally, outsourcing is a $ 450 billion industry. But UP's share in it is only $ 4 million. Things should change. We should vie for a bigger share of the pie."
Dr Anupam Khanna, chief economist of NASSCOM, said: "UP has tremendous potential for becoming the growth engine for India. But if UP has to be on IT map, it will have to change the ground realities and its image."
Ashutosh Chaddha, director of corporate affairs group, Intel South Asia, said knowledge was the new currency and technology its new highway.
He told chief minister Akhilesh Yadav from the dais that Intel would like to participate in education and IT transformation of the state.
Sanjay Kumar Panigrahi, CEO SREI Sahaj e-village limited, emphasised on application of information technology in rural areas.
Suneet Singh Tuli, CEO, Datawind, felt the CM's idea of giving tablet PCs and laptops to students might bring in an education revolution.
Arun K Tiwari, CEO, Indo US healthcare, asked the government to deploy tablet computers for public health.