Speaking to mediapersons here on Wednesday, Mr Vivek Harinarain, secretary (information technology department), Tamil Nadu, said, "the government on Tuesday formalised a 50 per cent cut in the stamp duty and registration fee. This is a major step we have taken to encourage more companies to set up centres in Chennai."
Responding to a query on the proposed six-lane IT expressway between Madhya Kailash and Mamallapuram which has been on the anvil for quite some time, he said the project is expected to be completed by July-August, 2005.
Mr Harinarain said, "tenders have already been floated for the construction of the six-lane road. The work is expected to start by October or November this year and it will be completed by July-August, 2005."
The Tamil Nadu government has further submitted three propasals to the Central government asking for financial assistance. "We have requested the Central government to sanction Rs 40 crore for the Tamil Nadu State Wide Area Network (TNSWAN) project. In addition to this, we have asked for a total of Rs 8 crore to fund projects including Electronic Delivery of Services (EDS), rural connectivity and e-security," said Mr Harinarain.
While speaking on the creation of space for IT companies, he said the government has given clearance for five million sq.ft. of space in Chennai. Out of this, construction work has already started on 2.2 million sq.ft. of land. More than 1.75 million sq.ft. of space have already been booked by some of the IT companies, he said. The government is further looking at creating another 500 acres of space adjacent to the Siruseri Information Technology Park, which has been completely sold off.
On the ITES policy which would be released shortly, he said that it would focuss on generating employment opportunities and on positioning Chennai and other Tier 2 cities like Coimbatore and Hosur as a destination of choice for ITES companies.
Mr Sudeep Jain, managing director, Electronics Corporation of Tamil Nadu, said that the first phase of the work on the proposed Knowledge Industry Township will begin in two months. "The township will be built on 5,000 acres of land. In the first phase, work will start on 520 acres of land which has been identified between Siruseri and Sholingannalur," he said.
The Tamil Nadu government and the Confederation of Indian Industry will jointly organise Connect 2004, the fourth ediiton of the state's annual ICT show between September 22 and 25.