The five-year deal would make TCS accountable for overall implementation of ‘India Post 2012’, an IT automation programme announced by the Department of Posts.

Tata Consultancy Services is close to bagging a Rs 1,100-crore systems integration contract from India Post as part of the latter’s drive to modernise its technology infrastructure, it is reliably learnt.

The five-year deal would make TCS accountable for overall implementation of ‘India Post 2012’, a multi-faceted IT automation programme announced by the Department of Posts (DoP) three years ago.

As a precursor to formalising the arrangement, DoP issued a Letter of Intent last week to the country’s largest software exporter, sources close to one of the bidders told Business Line. TCS is expected to sign a contract with DoP in the next two weeks.

When approached, a TCS spokesperson declined to comment.

The sources, who did not want to be identified, say that TCS was selected as the core systems integrator on a quality-cum-cost basis, a methodology in which weightage is given to both technical and pricing aspects while evaluating an e-governance bid. Although, nine IT vendors were vying for the contract, IT majors HP, TCS and Tech Mahindra-Mahindra Satyam had emerged as the frontrunners, they said.

As part of ‘India Post 2012’, eight contracts were set to be given out in the fields of hardware, software and systems integration. The CSI contract makes TCS responsible for overall integration of all the solutions (including those owned and delivered by vendors chosen through other contracts) and thus responsible for successful implementation of ‘India Post 2012’ project across channels, functions and locations.

In addition, TCS will setup a customer services call centre and manage the India Post Web site. Of the eight contracts under the DoP’s modernisation plan, five have already been decided. TCS had bagged a Rs 14-crore contract for change management last year, while its rival Infosys won two deals, namely for rural systems integration and financial systems integration. While Sify has been engaged for network integration, Reliance Communications Infrastructure was roped in as the data centre services provider.

‘India Post 2012’ aims to transform the Department of Posts into a ‘technology-enabled, self-reliant market leader’. Once the project is completed, the DoP is expected to become the largest electronic network in the country.

adith@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on March 24, 2013)
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