When world’s attention was on Hyderabad

M Somasekhar Hyderabad | Updated on January 09, 2018

Colour and light (clockwise from top left) Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Ivanka Trump, advisor to the US President, shakes hands after inagurating the Global Entrepreneurship Summit in Hyderabad on Tuesday

Delegates at the venue of the Global Entrepreneurship Summit in Hyderabad on TuesdayDelegates at the venue of the Global Entrepreneurship Summit in Hyderabad on Tuesday

Artists performing the dance during the Global Enterpreneurship Summit 2017, in Hyderabad on Tuesday. Photo: G. Ramakrishna   -  The Hindu

Laxmi Narayan Tripathi a transgender activist and Writer Shobhaa De at enGENDERed Dialogues 2.0 as part of Global Entrepreneurship Summit 2017 at Trident in Hyderabad.. Photo: K.V.S. Giri   -  The Hindu

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj before a meeting with Ivanka Trump, Advisor to the US President in Hyderabad on Tuesday. PTI

Telangana’s capital gets Metro Rail, even as PM Modi, Ivanka Trump and other delegates arrive for the Global Entrepreneurship Summit

For Hyderabad, November 28 will go down as a historic day, with the launch of an ultra-modern metrorail service by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and the landing of various dignitaries — including US President Donald Trump’s daughter Ivanka Trump, and about 1,500 innovators and investors for the GES event.

If the arrival of Ivanka, Advisor to the US President, entrepreneur and high priestess of fashion, raised a lot of hype and excitement, the rollout of the ₹14,132-crore Hyderabad Metro signified a major milestone for the burgeoning metropolis.

The day ended with a fabulous dinner for 101 at the heritage Falaknuma Palace Hotel, featuring the world’s largest dining table.

Hyderabad is often ranked among the best cities to live in India, and the Metro ride by Modi, Governor ESL Narasimhan and Chief Minister K Chandrasekhara Rao (KCR) promises improved traffic flow and easier commuting for the city’s denizens.

The loco pilot who drove the first official trip of the Metro, from Miyapur to Kukatpally and back, was a young woman, S Supriya, caused much cheer as well.

The 30 km stretch will be open to the public from Wednesday. It is expected to help lakhs of IT employees here.

Icing on the cake

For Telangana, three years old and brimming with energy in the start-up and innovation spheres, the chance to host the Global Entrepreneurship Summit was the icing on the cake.

The three-day summit, being jointly hosted by India and the US, was inaugurated by Modi and Ivanka.

The even is focused on women entrepreneurs, and Ivanka was the lead speaker. Women constitute approximately 54 per cent of the 1,500 participants from over 150 nations, said the organisers.

Among the ‘who’s who’ of participating women are Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman; Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj, Cherie Blair, barrister and wife of former British PM Tony Blair; Miss World Manushi Chillar, tennis star Sania Mirza; author Shobhaa De; transgender activist Laxmi Narayan Tripathi; and Kuchipudi dancers Bhavna and Yamini Reddy.

A city at work

The 426-year-old city has been working hard on summit preparations.

The State government, which has been criticised for a decaying road infrastructure, worked overnight to deck up the important roads and thoroughfares through which the PM, Ivanka and top foreign delegates would pass.

The Metro routes were all painted and ‘greened up’ while the flyovers got some 3-D art, courtesy the creativity of the Cyberabad workforce.

The facelift cost the exchequer nearly ₹100 crore, and came four years after the Biodiversity Convention in 2013, which brought delegates from over 150 countries.

The government also faced much flak as beggars were allegedly rounded up and dogs poisoned as part of the city’s cosmetic change.

T-Hub success

Hyderabad’s T-Hub, the country’s largest technology incubator, has emerged as a significant incubator mentor for start-ups, and its success has excited the government enough to plan a mega facility with four towers.

The Summit, is expected to give a further fillip to the start-up ecosystem and entrepreneurship culture in the city.

Further creating a buzz is the special dinner of Hyderabadi cuisine at the Falaknuma Palace (now on long lease with the Tata Group’s Taj).

Top industrialists and foreign delegates will join Modi, Ivanka and KCR at the table for 101.

NITI Aayog is organising the summit. Companies such as Amazon, Amway, CNBC, Cognizant, Dell, Google, Intel, Kauffman Foundation, Salesforce, Silicon Valley Bank and Walmart are supporting the event.

The 2010 edition of the annual GES was hosted by Washington, followed by Istanbul, Dubai, Kuala Lumpur, Marrakech, Nairobi, Kuala Lumpur and Silicon Valley in the subsequent years.

Published on November 28, 2017

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