Eminent scientist and Bharat Ratna winner Prof. CNR Rao has lashed out at the IT Boom in Bangalore, here- http://www.dnaindia.com/india/report-eminent-scientist-cnr-rao-hits-out-at-bangalore-s-it-culture-calls-it-intellectual-garbage-2036036
Of course, I do not subscribe to his views here. But I won’t resort to filthy abuses or trolling him in social networks just like how Indian fans reacted when Maria Sharapova said that she wasn’t aware of Sachin Tendulkar.
So, with due respect to Dr. CNR Rao, I’ve decided to voice my opinion through this blog post.
Yes Sir. There are lots to hate about the new Bengaluru. The traffic is terribly managed here despite the efforts of traffic police. The city has added more cars and bikes to its relatively narrower roads than any other city in India. Pollution is on the rise. The lakes have been encroached to reside IT campuses. The land value has soared. Trees have been swelled. The city isn’t that clean as it used to be. The tag of being the Garden City is questioned. So, is the case with the tag ‘A Pensioner’s paradise‘.
But is IT the main culprit? What would have happened to Bengaluru if IT hadn’t come?
I agree when you say that IT Parks should have been planned on the outskirts rather than in the heart of the city. The authorities concerned should have made sure that specific towns were created like the Electronics City or should have commissioned IT Parks in places like Devanahalli or Kengeri.
But I believe, your other remarks on the IT is myopic. First and foremost, the IT exports contribute a major chunk to the economy. IT has given Bangalore, a global image. The world knows Bangalore, for its IT exploits, not for the pre- IT days. Global companies come all the way to Bangalore and set up their offices here. When they say Bangalore is the Silicon Valley of India, it’s a token of appreciation of the city’s IT Talent. I was shocked when you said, “Our society has created a bunch of icons and role models who are distorting not just the future of this city but of India and our sense of values.” Of course, you were taking a dig at Infosys’ NR Narayana Murthy. I do not know if you are ignorant or act if you do not know. When you look deeper into the origins of big Indian businesses, it would either be with the government aid, foreign investment or a family business. Murthy and other co-founders of Infosys were the first ones to break that myth and went on to creat Infosys. There lies the success story of Infosys. No political connections were sought and Infosys went on to become the first such company to foray into the NASDAQ National Market in the US. That to me and my generation, is a humungous achievement in itself. It justifies the icon status of Murthy, the very thing you had ridiculously taken potshots. More than the NASDAQ listing, why do you turn a blind eye on the job opportunities that are generated by Infosys and other IT companies. At a time when the Unemployment was on the rise (it still is), it was the IT boom which had employed lakhs of our youths.
Yes, Bangalore’s life style has changed. Just like that of any other Indian city. Pubs and breweries have sprung up. Quaint cafes have come up in almost all the streets of Bangalore. But Bangalore continues to welcome everyone and makes them instantly feel at home. Namma Bengaluru pride still remains in tact, just like our awesome weather.
Time for some retrospection, Dr. CNR Rao!!