No downturn in IT sector, reports are wrong, jobs will come: Ravi Shankar Prasad

Ravi Shankar Prasad

Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Sunday dismissed the reports of a downturn in the Indian IT sector as “completely wrong” and said a good number of people will get jobs in the current fiscal.

Noting that the IT industry worth Rs 9 lakh crore today employs about 40 lakh people directly and 1.4 crore indirectly, the IT minister said firms like TCS and Infosys have said they would recruit thousands of professionals in the current fiscal.

“Coming to the IT sector, a lot of things being told about downturn. It is completely wrong. I want to deny it,” the minister said.

The minister’s statement comes against the backdrop of media reports that IT firms in India were in the midst of the industry’s largest retrenchment drive due to US President Donald Trump’s protectionist policies.

“Coming to the IT sector, a lot of things being told about downturn. It is completely wrong. I want to deny it. The export of Indian IT companies outside is close to Rs 7.4 lakh crore. And the STPI (Software Technology Parks of India) helping entrepreneurs to export (services) worth about Rs 3.5 lakh crore,” he told a press conference in Kochi.

He said 6 lakh appointments have taken place in the last three years of the Narendra Modi-led government.

“I asked Chandrasekaran, the chairman of Tata sons… he has said TCS alone has appointed 2.5 lakh IT professionals in the last three years. And they are going to appoint 20,000 new graduates in 2017-18,” the minister said.

Prasad said he also met recently Infosys COO Pravin Rao, who too completely dismissed the media reports on massive jobs cut.

“Rao said last year Infosys appointed 20,000 people and this year they are going to appoint 20,000 more,” he said.

Prasad claimed that retrenchment of 100-200 people had happened in the sector on performance ground.

The minister said the Indian digital economy was going to become $1 trillion in the coming 5 to 7 years.