Karnataka government mulls jobs for locals in IT

KarnatakaBANGALORE: The Karnataka government is pushing IT companies to boost employment opportunities for locals.

“We can enforce (local employment) it if it’s not being done by them. We have asked IT industry body Nasscom to conduct a survey to assess the level of opportunities provided to locals,” IT/BT minister S R Patil said on Thursday in reaction to a question from the media.

He was speaking on the sidelines of an event organized by Whitefield Export Promotion Park Industrial Association (WEPPIA) to discuss issues faced by companies operating in the Export Promotion Industrial Park (EPIP) area.

The Karnataka government has partnered with Nasscom to conduct a study on the impact of the IT sector in the state. “The survey will be a pointer to potential IT ecosystems outside Bangalore by assessing the available inventory of skill sets in different districts. If the IT sector has to employ 20 lakh people by 2020 from the current 7 lakh, we have to identify other IT destinations where jobs can be moved,” said KS Vishwanathan, vice president – industry initiatives in Nasscom. The report would be completed in 4-5 months, he said.

Karnataka contributes about 40% to the country’s IT exports. The state recorded IT exports of over Rs 1.35 lakh crore during 2012-13 and is expected to touch Rs 1.50 lakh crore in the current financial year. The IT sector contributes 20% to the state’s GDP. The government is planning to set up a high-powered committee to act as a single window agency to accelerate infrastructure clearances in the Information Technology Investment Region coming up in Devanahalli.