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IT boon or bane ?

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This is one of the hot topics under discussion in another forum where i participate.

I have just borrowed the subject, would invite members to get cracking.

Admin : I will not resort to copying any of the posts but i guess it is ok to articulate some of the points discussed in the other forum.

The discussion there is polarized into one section arguing for IT and emphasizing it's benefits while the other section argues against IT faulting it for the price rise and lack of the "trickle-down-effect". Infact one member vehements criticises "trickle-down-effect"
IT's success in India

I think there is no doubt if we consider the business perspective India is doing well in IT. Just think of the direct jobs it produces, the family depend on those persons, the increase in salary and opportunities on the dependent jobs (Banks,Real estate,tourism to automobiles and auto driving) etc etc. I cannot imagine what will happen if there is a slowdown in IT. Of course this has contributed to a high inflation in major cities particularly in Real estate sector. And it has its impact on the labor charges,malls and other services too. But all cities are not much affected by IT boom.If we don't want IT we can go to small towns in our country to lead a peaceful life with minimum income.The choice is ours.Its a typical city life .People earn more and spend more . People who already owned land are getting huge benefits.The qualified people are getting good pay.Others are also make use of it. Govt has to change its policies to contain inflation (For example if both are employed in a family they can be given no benefits for purchasing homes , same applies for a second home etc). The same is required to motivate people to do research work and join Govt organizations which unfortunately wont happen.

I still feel technically India hasn't much achieved in IT . But comparing to other sectors , yes IT is doing well. Still we are buying our armaments from Russia , USA and other countries. Telecom,transport , Power,infra whatever you take India will be lacking other developed countries and we are unable to produce/use qualified human resources.
IT is both a boon and a Bane in India. I am an IT Professional residing outside India at the moment. I see things from a distance and not up close and personal as some of our members who have seen the wrath and sun-light of IT boom.

Its a boon, because there are a lot of jobs floating around for people who did no do their Computer Engg or could not afford Engg collages. Here I am refering to call centers. These high paying jobs floats more money into circulation, people spend more and businesses get more money. Of course if all businesses and persons paid their taxes correctly and did not circuvent the system, this would mean more money to the government, which would in turn give us better infrastructure and facilities.

But the fact of the matter is that this is not happening. People have a lot of money, they are still not paying the entire tax amount due, taking advantage of legal loop holes, and govenment is still very corrupt to do something useful to the nation.

Well, I know Govt has improved a bit in the last couple of years, but it is still not at a point where it can handle the rate of growth of economy and India's popularity in the world.

Another reason that it is a bane is that the salaries of IT professionals have sky rocketed in the last couple of years and soon, India will lose its edge over other countries like China and Indonesia. And when IT moves over to those countries, inflation will grow and stocks will fall and people who have invested heavily into IT firms will lose a lot of money ( most of their money saved will be in black) and it will be chaos all over.

Thinking of the average Raju next door, who works at a factory or plant, he will be effected the most. Because of inflation, cost of medical care will be so high that he will not be able to afford the knee surgery for his father. Resorting to govenment hospitals, which we all know what state it is in.

In my recent visit to India, I shared a sad exp of a couple who were farmers, their only child admited in a hospital in Coimbatore for over 2 months. Not being native to Coimbatore, they had to stay at the hospital's public room, which is long hall and can accomadate 30 people comfortably, but had 80 people sleeping in there. After 2 months and getting false hopes from the damn doctor (GOD complex), they were almost penny less. They had to sell their farm, their house and their machinary and the only good thing that came out of all this is that their son would be able to talk. Moving his hands and legs were a distant future.

What is the point of this sad story? Well, I was at that hospital for a month, visiting my relative and I/our family was able to afford the 2 month stay at the hospital (8 lakhs) in medical expenses, since I was in IT. But thinking of the farmer, even today I can recall the sadness in his eyes and his wife's.

So, there is no real side one can take with IT's impact on India, its economy or its effect on people's life.

A different take


Interesting thoughts.

Re : the poor parents whom you saw at Cbe, my take is this :

Pre IT, they could not have possibly paid Rs. 1000 & get good medical care

Post IT, they are not able to pay Rs. 10000 & get medical care.

A different way of looking at this is that, IT or no IT, access to healthcare for the poor in India has remained a pipe dream.

What IT has done is that it has created a small community of people with higher disposable incomes. But the infrastructure in every sector has stayed where it was.

Net result is that more money starts chasing the "same volume of goods and services" resulting in price increase.

As much as IT is blamed, i often wonder whether we are equally demanding of our Govt in creating the infrastructure.

The argument of IT expanding the gap between have and have nots, though true, is, IMHO, weak in construction.

If an industry has the power to alter the fate of every Indian, well, despite Suresh sir's protests, not a single temple will be left. Every temple would be converted into an ODC.

The Govt has not realised that it will ALWAYS have a certain proportion of its citizens who are not perhaps IT savvy and cannot be absorbed by the industry.

The fault therefore has to first, fully and squarely fall on the Govt which has not created an environment where everyone - IT or non IT - can participate in the path of progress and development.

IT industry definitely cannot be "entirely" run on altruistic principles. It can and has been doing it's bit for the society but to blame IT for not fulfilling expectations, which in the first place are unrealistic, is pushing fundamental issues under the carpet.
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Dear Sri Hari,

Being in IT also, and having spent a couple of years in India, managing the start up operations in India for my company, these are my observations:

1. India never had a 'leadership' position in anything in the world, since She was conquered by the Moguls. The Y2K issue has thrust India in to the limelight of Global competition and has socialized to the western world the immense human capital the country has.

2. IT success should be viewed as a catalyst. With the WTO treaty, India has joined the world community of commerce and has to compete. This means that, unless India is competetive in the Manufacturing sector, She will lose out. (Any administration in the Center knows this, and therefore, Communists not withstanding, will amend the restrictive labor laws to suit the WTO charter).

3. Competition with China (who by the way has a strategic POLITICAL equation with India), will force India to have no other alternatives but to grow at 7 to 8% annually. And this can happen only if India invests in policies that create investment and thereby wealth to her citizens.

4. This is why IT has done good. But IT will only be a small part of the economic pie, down the road. As I said, it is a much needed catalyst.

IT boon that is the reason this site exist and the professional who feel for their brethen meet and contribute. I am a security professional and i stay outside the country. I say to myself that if i live in india i would have paid couple of laksh as tax. I will try to give this to needy. But giving as process does not perculate well in our society. They will go and put money into hundi which is once agiain looted by government [ corrupted politicains, busienssman and officials ] but will not put in the plate of a needy.
IT is boon because it is giving employment to so many educted young people. Money flows into the economy. When money is spent by IT guys it goes into the economy.

IT is bane becuase, we are exporting raw material [ code are written by indian but the product and ipr goes to the MNC ] and importing the finished good that is the software products.

Unfortunately all so called software gaints are short sited to be raw material provider like hindustan lever whose forexincome use to come in export of cash crops. No company is concentrating on development of a product. Myself and my spouse medha had developed the product www.my-lending.com unique model of people to people lending for which my spouse has a pending patent in USA[aug 2001]. But trust my words, we have run from pillar to post to raise money. However a varint of the same model who came subsquently could raise 20 million usd in 2004. That is the level of our concentration on products so IT will be bane on the long run
IT is capable of making wonders

I believe IT has done so many good things and if used properly can do wonders.IT has given the people easy access to information. It has played its role in making distance meaningless.With less expense anyone is able to communicate with others.A person here in India is able to listen to the lectures of US universities. If the companies follow a good strategy to make the location of the employees meaningless , Or atleast spread the branches in a calculated manner I believe many of the inflation related things can be moderated. I feel in our country Govt is also have a role in moderating the inflation which they ignored very much.
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