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BPO centre now on the countryside

Started by sajiv, Aug 09, 2009, 04:12 AM

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BPO centre now on the countryside

SRIRANGAPATNA: Amidst the sugarcane fields and jaggery crushing unit, about 100 youth from rural areas work on state-of-the-art computer systems in what is reckoned to be the country's first rural BPO centre.

Located off the Bangalore-Mysore Highway and close to the Cauvery bridge near Srirangapatna, a decrepit rice mill at Baburayanakoppal has been re-jigged and the noisy machines used in post-production of rice to remove barn and husk, has made way to computer machines where youths from surrounding villages will provide services and cater to domestic market at a fraction of a cost of their urban counter parts.

The 100-seat BPO centre will be expanded in due course and this is first of the four Rural BPO Centres to be established by the Government of Karnataka this year. A new initiative to stem migration to urban areas, the concept is expected to help enhance the IT skills of rural populace while creating jobs in the rural areas. On the anvil is a rural BPO centre at Gundlupet in Chamarajanagar while one each will be established in Hassan and Haveri districts.

This is part of the Government's novel initiative to create jobs on the countryside, with agriculture becoming non-remunerative.

The Baburayanakopal unit has been established under private public partnership and has harnessed the State Government's policy aimed at providing capital investment subsidy to the tune of Rs. 20 lakh for establishing a 100-seat BPO. It will provide Rs. 10,000 an employee towards manpower training and extend Rs. 5,000 an employee by way of subsidy for rental and internet connectivity.

The Rural BPO was inaugurated here on Friday and the Minister for Information Technology and Bio-Technology Katta Subramanya Naidu said the State Government planned to create 10,000 jobs during this year and the aim was to create one lakh jobs in IT sector in rural areas in the next five years.

Mr. Naidu said the Government planned to establish 100 such Rural BPOs and has earmarked Rs. 40 crore for subsidy and manpower training.

Mr. Naidu was confident the concept would click with the rural populace and would be emulated across the country adding these rural BPOs could emerge as sub-contractors for IT majors who handled international clients. The low cost of establishing the units, poor attrition rate and low recurring cost by way of salaries and wages could turn the tide in favour of Rural BPOs and encourage entrepreneurs, he added.

Ashok Kumar C. Manoli, Principal Secretary, Department of IT, BT and Science and Technology, was optimistic that the novel initiative would help take the IT to rural areas in a big way and the time had come for the IT to move from cities to the countryside.

B.S.Venugopal, Director, Mpro Solutions which is running the rural BPO at Baburayanakoppal, told The Hindu that the domestic BPO sector was not affected by economic slowdown as it was not dependent on international clients.

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