As Punjab deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal reiterated to make SAS Nagar a future IT city on the first day of the two-day Progressive Punjab Investors Summit, IT giant Infosys displayed replica of its upcoming centre at an exhibition held on the Indian School of Business (ISB) campus.
To be setup at the upcoming IT city in SAS Nagar, the upcoming centre would act as a major boost to the IT industry. Promising creation of 20,000 jobs, Infosys would be the first IT giant to setup a campus over 50 acres of land in the IT city.
Punjab deputy CM Sukhbir Singh Badal had laid foundation stone of the Infosys centre at IT City, SAS Nagar, in February 2014, in presence of founder and executive chairman of Infosys NR Narayana Murthy. But the construction of the campus could not take off and is awaiting requisite approvals to initiate the project.
Rs 425 cr investment to begin with
In the first phase, Infosys would make an investment of Rs 425 crore to create a built-up area of 6.5 lakh sq feet to seat 5,000 software professionals within 24 months from the day the construction begins.
It will be self-sustained campus
Building a self-sustained campus, Infosys would be setting up a food court in addition to the office space for employees and a recreational area for outdoor sports activity.
Considering the demand of about 2,500 employees of Punjabi origin who are keen on shifting to SAS Nagar was one of the reasons for the IT giant looking for expansion here.
The campus has been designed by RSP Design Consultants and will be developed and executed as per the highest-rating guidelines of Green Rating for Integrated Habitat Assessment (GRIHA) and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED).
Many innovative ideas have been incorporated in the building design, energy utilisation and water consumption patterns. The building will leverage radiant cooling technology, natural lighting, water recycling and environment-friendly material will be used in its construction.
Chandigarh campus spread on 30 acres
This is the company’s second campus in the state. The first campus in Chandigarh has been operational since 2006 and has a built-up area of 11.3 lakh sq ft on 30 acres with seating capacity for 6,000 employees. The company has invested Rs 332 crore in the campus and the current annual turnover from the development centre in Chandigarh is Rs 1,300 crore.
Industry sentiment upbeat
“Such summits bring along positive sentiments and the local industry is bound to grow. The new incentive policy to promote investment in Punjab will bring good results and create more job opportunities,” said president, Mohali Industry Association (MIA), Sanjeev Vashisht.
Former president and chairman, government liaisoning, MIA, Anurag Agarwal said, “SAS Nagar industry needs more clusters for growth. Influx of investment would definitely boost the economy, which in turn will boost the local industry. SAS Nagar has scope for growth of IT industry.”
GMADA fails to make the most of it
Even though by the deputy CM is promoting SAS Nagar as future IT city, Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA) had failed to cash in on it as a majority of investors have surrendered their plots in the IT City promoted by GMADA. Though GMADA officials claim that coming up of IT giants like Infosys would boost the demand for residential plots and they claim it to be temporary phenomenon which was result of speculative investment.
Protest against ITC marks first day of summit
As a mark of protest against participation of the ITC (Indian Tobacco Company) in the summit, an SAS Nagar-based NGO Generation Saviour Association held a peaceful candle-light march. President of the association Opinder Preet Kaur Gill, said, “While the state government has taken a positive step in declaring November 1 as State No Tobacco Day, hosting an event wherein ITC is one of the prominent participants creates a conflict of interest. This brings the steps taken by the government for tobacco control under scrutiny.”