Assam on the fast-track of IT led development: CM Sonowal


In a major boost to manufacturing development goal of Assam, Union Minister of Electronics and Information Technology Ravi Shankar Prasad and Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal jointly laid foundation stone for two electronics manufacturing units (EMU) and a common facility centre named Start-up World of Innovation in Future Technologies (SWIFT) at Electronics Manufacturing Cluster in the Tech City at Bongara in Guwahati on Saturday.

The SWIFT centre is an initiative of the Information and Technology Department of Assam government, which is supported by the Ministry of Electronics and IT, Government of India and implemented by the Assam Electronics Development Corporation Ltd. (AMTRON). The SWIFT centre and electronics manufacturing units once completed would significantly boost economy and innovation in the State.

Speaking on the occasion, Union Electronics and Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said that the Government of India is promoting governance to digital platform as a result of which the country is emerging as a big digital power. He said that people of the north east being hardworking, dynamic and creative would be an active partner in this transformation.

Stating that big start up movement is rising in India, the Union Minister also observed that the IIT and IIITs are no longer job seekers; rather they have emerged as job givers. He hoped that once the Tech City grows fully, it would significantly boost innovation and generate employment for local youth with more small and medium electronics manufacturing companies setting up their units here.

Underlining the success of the union government in the electronics manufacturing sector, Prasad said that when the NDA government came to power there were only two mobile manufacturing companies in the country, which has now shot up to 127 providing more than five lakh employment directly and indirectly. He added that the North East Digital Vision Document would be a major boost for the region in this regard.

The Union Minister also said that north east as the gateway to the ASEAN is the vision of the union government and it puts best efforts to create opportunity for a golden future for the region. He also informed that the central government has already sanctioned separate BPO project for north east as a result of which five BPOs are currently being operational in Guwahati and five more are coming up at Nagaon, Silchar, Jorhat, Kokrajhar and Diphu.

On the other hand, Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal while delivering speech on the occasion said that a new era in the electronics manufacturing and digital communication emerges in Assam with these new projects at the Tech City. He thanked Prime Minister Narendra for his vision of digital India and said that new electronic manufacturing and innovation projects being taken in the Tech City would immensely boost the same.

Informing that implementation of projects worth more than Rs. 2500 crore have already kicked off in the State after the success of Advantage Assam: Global Investors’ Summit, Chief Minister Sonowal appreciated Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad for reviving a closed project of electronics manufacturing cluster and rebuilding it as Tech City taking special permission from the Prime Minister.

“It is the dawn of a new era in electronics manufacturing for Assam and this would be a big step in terms of employment for the youth”, he said and averred that in the digital movement, Assam would not lag behind. Spelling about the state government’s aim to make big inroad into the digital and electronics sector, Sonowal further said that another 100 bighas land would be allotted for the Tech City.

Highlighting the vast opportunities being opened up by the Act East Policy for the north eastern States, Chief Minister Sonowal said that the State government is putting all out efforts to boost trade and commerce and people to people contact with the South East Asian countries under the new policy. He said that as a result of state government’s deep commitment, Bangladesh and Bhutan governments have set up their consulates in Guwahati and Druk Airways is going to start its flight from Paro to Singapore via Guwahati from 1st September. He further informed that more flight to South East Asian coutries would start their operation from Guwahati in next couple of months.

State IT Minister Keshav Mahanta in his speech said that the 1.4 lac sq. ft SWIFT centre would provide the right environment and impetus to the youth of the region to grow with their innovation. He also mentioned that the electronics manufacturing units of Hyderabad based JnJ Powercom Systems Ltd. for smart meter production and Kolkata based SIMOCO Telecommunications (South Asia) Ltd. for manufacturing LED lights, for which foundation stone was laid today, would not only help generating employment but also lead the state in electronics manufacturing sector.