According to NDTV profit it is highly likely that the Indian government IT related contracts will change the way it operates from April 1st onwards.
As per the NDTV sources, the motive for the new IT norms, the government says, is to give a boost to the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). A big boost for SMEs may be on the way. If the IT ministry has its way, the ministry of information technology is planning to introduce a new clause to help SMEs. The government’s IT outsourcing contracts may now have to be shared with SME players.
Shankar Aggarwal, joint secretary in ministry of information technology, said, “We will introduce a condition in our RFP that whoever gets the contract has to get atleast 20 per cent of his work, that is 20 per cent of the goods and services have to be procured from the SME sector. And then they have to submit a certificate to that effect.”
Currently, most of the Indian governement contracts are being awarded to companies like TCS, Infosys, Wipro etc… The IT spending by Indias’s public secotr is expected to go beyon $5 billion by 2011. The new decision will give SME’s a reason to fast track thier processes
Raju Bhatnagar, vice president of Nasscom, said, “It’s a good initiative that the government is taking. It will benefit the SME sector in a big way. We have not seen something like this here in India. As an idea it’s not something unique, but it’s a welcome change.”
While this clause might boost the SMEs, is there likely to be opposition from the bigger private IT players?
“No, I don’t think so. Even today they are getting work done through the SMEs. It’s just not in a formal manner. It’s between the big and small player, and the government is playing no role. But if we introduce this condition then it will be obligatory on the part of the bigger player to get work done through the SMEs,” Aggarwal said.
Well, one can imagine the scope this clause will open up for the SMEs. The Indian railways plan to automate crew management and train scheduling at a cost of upto $2 billion.
Indian post plans to set up automated kiosks for various citizen services. Also, the government is looking at automation of healthcare records across the country.
The opportunities that will open up for the SMEs are endless.