Our Bureau

Bangalore, Oct. 21

SOFTWARE major Infosys Technologies Ltd placed facts in the public domain on Friday to counter the recent charges levelled by the former Prime Minister and Janata Dal (S) supremo, Mr H.D. Devegowda.

Mr Gowda had questioned the "indiscriminate land allotment by the State Government" to IT companies, including Infosys. He had sought details of land allotment against the employment generated by these firms. The State has constituted a sub-committee under the Deputy Chief Minister, Mr M.P. Prakash, to study the land allotment issue.

Infosys said the State Government had approved its request for 845 acres on Bangalore outskirts though land is yet to be acquired. Infosys said no special concessions were sought. The company expected to generate 25,000 jobs in the new development centre, and create residential facility for its employees by investing Rs 1,500 crore in the first phase.

The company said it had totally invested about Rs 1,744 crore in Karnataka, and accounted for 14 per cent of the State's software exports. It has created some 22,000 jobs in the State, which account for almost 50 per cent of its total workforce of 46,000. It has also generated employment for over 2,500 workers engaged on jobs such as housekeeping, landscaping and so on.

In Mysore, the company has been allotted 315.60 acres, wherein it has built a Global Education Centre spread across 218 acres in the first phase. It expects to start work on 40 acres shortly as part of the second phase, and set up an special economic zone in about 50 acres in the third phase.

In Mangalore, the company has been recently allotted 311 acres at market rates with no concessions, of which only 50 per cent is usable because of the undulating topography. The usable land will be utilised fully with an investment of Rs 300 crore, to create 6,000 seats in the first phase.

Expansion plans `put on hold'

INFOSYS has put on hold its expansion plans in Bangalore till such time, as charges over land allotments made by the former Prime Minister, Mr H.D. Devegowda, are resolved.

"The company may wait till such time the entire issue is sorted out before deciding to expand in Bangalore," sources said.

Besides, sources said that there was no land available for the company to expand its operations in Bangalore. As a result, the company was rapidly expanding its existing campuses in Chennai, Pune, Hyderabad and Chandigarh, they added.

States such as West Bengal are aggressively pitching for investments from Infosys.

The company, sources said, might soon decide on setting up a campus in Kolkota.

In addition, it may also expand operations in Rajasthan where its subsidiary, Progeon, recently opened a 2,000-seat facility in Jaipur.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated October 22, 2005)
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