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Infy gives thumbs up to H'bad

In contrast, a senior Infosys official chose to paint a not-so-rosy picture for Bangalore, known as India's silicon valley.

india Updated: Apr 03, 2006 15:26 IST

Overwhelmed by the "pro-active" government and infrastructure that are in place in Hyderabad, a senior Infosys official on Monday made no attempt to hide either his admiration for the Andhra Pradesh capital or contempt for this Karnataka capital.

"It's good that Andhra Pradesh is doing what its doing. Because frankly, Hyderabad has possibly the best infrastructure for IT in India today", Infosys Chief Financial Officer TV Mohandas Pai told reporters after an industry meet organised by the Andhra Pradesh government.

"Roads are very good. There is a very proactive CM. Lot of investors are coming in. If you go to Hyderabad today, you see a sense of newness as if the city is new. There is a great drive to improve the IT industry. So, we are excited," Pai said.

In contrast, he chose to paint a not-so-rosy picture for Bangalore, known as India's silicon valley.

"Morale of IT industry in Bangalore is low. You can't bash up people in public. People's sentiments are bad. I guess it will take sometime for people to feel wanted".

Asked if he thought Bangalore was losing out, he said he does not want to think that way, but felt it was India that was gaining.

"It's good to have competition between the States. It's good for us to feel wanted. Because we had torrid times in Bangalore when people told us that we are not wanted..That they fear...See us as alien creatures".

"It's good that we are wanted (in Hyderabad). At least Hyderabad wants IT industry. I guess people will go where they are wanted", he said.

About five years ago, Bangalore accounted for 65 per cent of the total IT capacity of the country. "It has come down to 25 per cent. This trend is going to accelerate".

He then defended the IT industry, saying: "Look, let's admit one thing. We (IT) are the people who invest and create jobs...Quality jobs. We are the ones who market. Any place which makes you feel wanted, we will go for expansion".

He said "exciting things" were happening in the cities of Kolkata, Jaipur and Hyderabad, where political leaders were taking deep interest in IT because it brings high quality jobs.

Pai indicated that Karnataka's tax revenues were growing by 20 per cent annually over the last three years mainly because of the IT sector.

"What's growing in Karnataka. It's IT industry...Garment industry and may be construction. Construction is being driven by IT industry. You need an anchor industry and anchor industry (IT) is here".

Asked to comment on Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy's view favouring job opportunities for backward class members and rural youth, Pai said: "We have been talking to the government to say that we have created a very unequal system in India, where a great majority of people are deprived of job opportunities in the sunrise industry, primarily because of lack of a good education system".

In rural areas, the education system is pathetic, he said. "People in rural areas are deprived of a good education system because of lack of investment from the government and the language issue".

"My personal view is that not teaching English is a conspiracy against people who are in rural areas, because they are deprived of job opportunities. We are creating an unequal, unfair society. We have been talking to the government they should start special training programme in English so that they get equal opportunities".

First Published: Apr 03, 2006 14:52 IST