India's growth in the IT sector, especially in the ITeS and the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) has been largely driven by availability of low cost skilled manpower, huge English speaking population and appropriate infrastructure. With the BPO industry flourishing in India, more and more companies began establishing their opetations in metropolitan cities to capitalize on available human resource talent and physical infrastructure. But the prodigious expansion of BPO companies in select metropolitan cities has caused intense pressure on available human resource in these areas as well as physical infrastructure which has led to shooting up of costs for manpower as well as infrastructure.
Due to these factors some IT, ITeS and BPO companies are now looking at smaller towns and villages. The low cost of operations and lower employee attrition levels are the key benefits that these companies derive from their rural operations. In order to provide an impetus to this advantage, Government have decided to set up Rural IT centres namely Tehno-Lodge Scheme, typically advantagous to IT companies which are looking for reducing operational costs. This scheme of Technolodge envisages developing a small building which has a capacity of seating about 25 employees for IT, ITeS and BPO operations.
The main objective of this scheme is to encourage ITeS and BPO companies to operate from low cost rural centres and thereby to create employment in rural areas. The Technolodge centres will be set up in old unused government buildings, buildings belonging to government organizations, panchayaths or other tocal bodies. Preference shall be given to panchayaths, who provide their existing buildings/ community halls free of cost for the scheme.
Kerala State IT Infrastructure Limited (KSITIL) will be the main implementing agency for this scheme. The KSITIL, may wherever it is not directly able to set up Technolodges , nominate an agency like Technopark, Infopark, Cyberpark or other IT related non-profit organization to operate the scheme on it's behalf. The selected buildings will be renovated and refurbished by the implementing agency. Necessary power back up and broadband facility will be provided by the implementing agency and they will also market these Technolodge centres to IT, ITeS and BPO companies.
In the IT Policy 2007 Government declared that IT Parks will be set up in all districts except Thiruvananthapuram and Ernakulam. Accordingly, in the G.O. read above sanction has been accorded for the setting up of IT Parks in the Districts of Kollam, Alappuzha, Kasargod and Kannur. Proposals have also been received for the setting ip of rural IT Parks / Technolodges in small towns and Rural Panchayats wherever unutilized land/ buildings are available with Government / Local bodies. Some IT companies have expressed interest in migrating to rural areas to reduce their operational costs. Tecnolodges can be setup in small towns and rural Panchayats inbuildings with a built up area of about 10000 sq. ft. or land measuring at least one acre. This Scheme will provide employment to rural youth, taking IT to smaller towns and cities and making use of utilized Government / local bodies buildings etc.
Government have examined the matter in detail and are pleased to accord in principle sanction to Kerala State Information Technology Infrastructure Limited (KSITIL) for setting up rural IT Park / Techno lodges in small towns and rural panchayats wherever unutilized land / buildings are available with Government / Local bodies at free of cost. These lands / buildings will be jointly identified by Revenue and IT Departments. The value of land / buildings shall be treated as share capital contribution of Government in the equity of the KSITIL and the value of land/ building will be fixed by Government in consultation with the District Collector concerned.
Panchayats where Technolodges are being sanctioned