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Posts Tagged ‘Pune’

IBM To Partner With Five NGOs In Pune Corporate Service Corps

Nine IBM professionals from around the world will come to Pune to work on projects of five different NGOs. The company today announced the successful completion of the first phase of its Corporate Service Corps initiatives in Pune for the year 2010. Besides Pune, Hyderabad and Bangalore are among the 17 cities around the world hosting the first phase of IBM’s ambitious program this year.

IBM Corporate Services Corp (CSC) involves its employees working into emerging and developing countries to address core societal, educational and environmental challenges. Between February and May this year, 30 CSC participants from around the world are arriving in India to work on a number of key socio-economic development projects. In Pune, these IBM professionals are working closely with organizations like Yashwantrao Chavan Academy of Development Administration (YASHADA)Teach For India,ChaitanyaFilm & TV Institute of India (FTII) and Software Institute for Rural Development (SIRD) to implement a variety of developmental projects.

The projects in Pune attracted IBMers from Germany, France, Austria, Romania, Australia, USA, Canada and Japan. These are among the 30 global professionals who were selected for project. The project which they are going to work on include:

  • Development of basic architectural design for a web-based Distance Learning Method (DLM) to be offered through YASHADA, the administrative training institute of the Government of Maharashtra, for expanding the reach and coverage of training.
  • Development of a strategy and related action plan to assist Teach For India in expanding to all major Indian cities and related rural areas.
  • Development of a marketing strategy to help Chaitanya, one of the pioneers of self-help group movement in Maharashtra, improve its visibility beyond the Indian development sector.
  • Designing a solution that will help FTII with scheduling of academic resources, manage as well as track assets and inventory in the sound department and eventually to be replicated across all departments.
  • Help with the design and architecture development of SIRD’s rural banking software and related bank management information system capabilities

In 2009, IBM’s CSC program saw 430 of IBM’s future leaders from 44 countries being selected for similar international assignments. Last year India hosted 40 IBM professionals from 19 countries to work with 11 different NGOs and not-for-profit government organizations in Mumbai and Ahmedabad while 100 IBM India employees travelled to five emerging markets.

IBM Corporate Service Corps is the corporate version of the Peace Corps. IBM has committed to enable 1500 of its emerging leaders to participate in the CSC program through 2011. More than 15,000 employees have applied to the program so far and about 1000 employees have been selected. BM announced the first wave of 100 IBMers representing 33 countries in 2008. 20 out of 100 IBMers representing India were selected for specific projects in Ghana, Philippines, Romania, Tanzania, Vietnam and Turkey. IBM spends $150 million annually on CSR initiatives worldwide and is in constant lookout for new areas, where a difference can be made.

Attentat de Pune : l’Inde n’est toujours pas un pays sûr

Est-il possible de faire confiance aux autorités indiennes pour assurer la sécurité de leurs citoyens et des ressortissants étrangers dans leurs frontières ? Cette question est une nouvelle fois soulevée par l’attentat qui vient d’être perpétré à Pune, à l’est de Mumbai, au Mahastra, faisant – selon le bilan officiel – neuf morts et une soixantaine de blessés [aucun des contacts de MagIT à Pune ne semble faire partie des victimes ; nous avons pu en contacter plusieurs durant le week-end et tous semblent en bonne santé, ainsi que leurs proches, à commencer par Devidas Deshpande qui nous a signalé l’attentat, NDLR]. L’attentat semble lié au groupe terroriste Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT). Tout l’état du Maharastra – dont Mumbai en particulier – serait placé en état « d’alerte maximum. » Alors que les médias auraient reçu l’ordre formel de ne pas s’approcher des victimes – pour raison d’état –, nos confrères du Financial Express s’attache à souligner que, pour le coup, il n’y a pas matière à blâmer de renseignement indien – alors que plusieurs éléments indiquaient que cette boulangerie allemande de Pune constituait une cible potentielle pour les terroristes. Les familles des victimes apprécieront.

Quoiqu’il en soit, selon l’Hindustan Times, la sécurité serait renforcée à Ahmedabad, déjà durement frappée en juillet 2008. De fait, au travers d’un restaurant de Pune, ce sont les étrangers qui seraient visés, ces apporteurs d’affaires et de devises. A Bangalore, les SSII indiennes font déjà largement appel à la Central Industriy Security Force pour combler les trous de leurs dispositifs de sécurité.

En décembre dernier, lors d’un entretien téléphonique, John Samuel, président de Verizon Business India, nous concédait ainsi que « oui », l’industrie IT indienne est une cible de choix pour les terroristes locaux : « les installations sont généralement organisées en campus distribués entre de nombreux clients. » Une raison de plus, pour lui, pour travailler à la sécurité non seulement logique mais aussi physique de ses bureaux, ainsi qu’à vérifier consciencieusement le passé de ses collaborateurs.

Une précaution qui semble d’autant plus importante que la menace ne trouve pas forcément sa source dans un quelconque ennemi extérieur. En décembre dernier, au plus fort des échanges sur la division de l’état d’Andhra Pradesh avec la création d’un état indépendant du Telangana, c’est toute l’industrie IT d’Hyderabarad, grande source de richesse locale, qui a été mise sous pression. Au point que, selon l’Hindu Business Line, certaines entreprises IT et de MPO locales ont, début janvier, préféré délocaliser leurs activités… dans des hôtels. Pour des questions de sécurité ? Officiellement, non : simplement pour éviter les retards de plannings liés à des problèmes de transports en commun…

Maharashtra eyes cellular services for revenue

The revenue hungry Maharashtra government has turned its eye on the mobile ringtones and caller tunes offered by the cellular operators. The state government is mulling on levying entertainment tax on these services. Even cyber cafés and video theatres will also brought under the ambit of this tax.

Narayan Rane, revenue minister of Maharashtra today announced these plans in a press conference. The above plan forms some of the recommendations made to increase the revenue of the state. Rane said, « The time has come to review the definition of entertainment devices. These service also offer entertainment to the consumers. Hence a tax can be levied on these services and items. A proposal to levy the tax will be sent to the government and government will take an appropriate decision. »

Caller tunes form a major part of the value added services (VAS) offered by almost each cellular operator in country. If the proposal comes into reality, Maharashtra will be the first state in the country to levy surcharge on mobile VAS.

A two day conference of the divisional commissioners and district collectors concluded today. Rane was briefing about decisions taken in the meeting.

Pune : 8th largest eCommerce hub in India, according to eBay

eBay India announced today Pune was the eighth largest eCommerce Hub (All Selling (Global & Domestic) + All Buying Transactions on eBay from the city/ state) in the country in its eBay India Census 2009. New Delhi leads the pack with Mumbai following the suit. Last year, Mumbai was at first place and New Delhi was second.

In eBay Census 2008 also, Pune had ranked eighth after Mumbai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Bengaluru & Chennai. Mr. Ashish Shah, Head-eBay Motors today unveiled the eBay Census Guide which documents the key findings and trends in online buying and selling across India’s Top 100 eCommerce Hubs, 28 States and 7 Union Territories. eBay Census also revealed export trends to 172 Countries.

According to the report, India’s Top 5 eCommerce Hubs are Delhi, closely followed by Mumbai, Chennai, Jaipur & Bengaluru. The key findings are:

India has over 2,471 eCommerce Hubs with even Lakshadweep making its debut in the report this year. The IT Hubs of Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Maharashtra and Gujarat were the most wired states in India with the most cities generating eCommerce.

Rural Indians are active online shoppers: Online shopping is active in 747 rural towns in India. Rural India featured in the report for the first time with towns like Bundi (Rajasthan), Thevaram (Tamil Nadu) and Tezpur (Assam) witnessing active buying and selling trends. In fact, 181 rural towns are active entrepreneurship hubs – selling to buyers in India & worldwide.

India has 226 Export Hubs where Indian entrepreneurs sell a variety of products to millions of eBayers in 172 countries around the globe. Indian exports include horse saddles, Freemason collectibles, Bollywood memorabilia, Steel Dabbas and cricket bats.

Technology is India’s favourite traded vertical category contributing to 44% of transactions in eBay Census. Lifestyle category at 35% came second in popularity for online Indians. For Global Trade, Lifestyle is the clear winner at 64% of all transactions followed by Media & Collectibles at 15% each.

Region-South buys, West sells: South India has the most active buyers at 41% of all transactions, followed by West India at 27%. West India has the most active sellers at 46%, followed by North India at 28%.

Metro India bought the most blackberry and dual sim handsets, Bharat bought the most touch screen cell phones while Rural India bought the most value handsets.

Craftsmen in Ludhiana exported golf clubs to international eBayers in USA, Germany and France.

Failed WiFi public network project in Pune

The ambitious project taken by Pune Municipal Corporation has gone awry. The plan to provide wireless networks in the city have remained on the papers. Even though the officials justifies the failure citing recession, the project seems to have been shelved for good. The case in Pune was a unique one because the access here was to be provided without any charge or password. PMC was providing Wi-Fi service in co-operation with Microsense company.

Anupam Saraph, chief information officer of Pune Municipal Corporation said, « We had proposed to Microsense that a mechanism involving Citizen Facilitation Kiosks should be set up. The company had promised us to provide the facility within one year. The deadline given by the company is over since long but nothing has been done on that front. »

Saraph has another thing to say about the viability of WiFi. « Since the day this project was started, six more companies came into the picture. Some of the companies told us that they have their own infrastructure. They did not require our help. Also, this network was supposed to cease to be free long ago. But the ISP company failed to form a business model to run it. Now, looking at the recession scenario, I do not think there will be any progress in the project for at least coming six months. »

The WiFi dream in Pune started in 2006 when Pune Contonment first started WiFi connectivity. PMC declared to provide this facility withing a 20 km radius of Shivajinagar, Deccan Gymkhana, Aundh and Baner from July. The project was started from Sambhaji Garden on April te 4th 2007. When Pune Mirror checked the situation on Wednesday, there was no connectivity in the same garden.

The WiFi project received poor response from service providers. Before Microsense, PMC had signed a contract with Dish-Net. But that plan could not be realised because the Wi-Max policy was to be finalised. The WiFi experiment was going on under the supervision of Saraph. But he has left PMC few months ago. Since then, R. V. Erande is looking after the IT departmnet. But Saraph claims that even though he does not see day to day affairs of IT related matters in PMC, he is looking after special projects like WiFi system. These projects are termed as Vision 2020 and work on them is going on for about two years. Whereas PMC commissioner Pravinsingh Pardeshi confirmed that Saraph is no longer working PMC.

Writen with Siddharth Gadkari.

Animation Village to come up in Maharashtra

As Pune is fastly emerging on international animation map, attempts are being made to tap the artistic talents in and around the city. A proposal put forward by the Mahratta Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture (MCCIA) envisages setting up of Animation Villages in the state. Maharashtra government has approved the proposal and it has been incorporated in the new draft Information Technology policy of the state.

Second International Animation Day Fair was organised by International Animated Film Association (Asifa) India and MCCIA in Pune. Informing on the sidelines of the event, Capt. Anand Khandekar, head of animation and gaming sub-committee of MCCIA, said, « The new draft IT policy of Maharashtra is almost ready and the concept of animation Special Economic Zone (SEZ) has been incorporated in it. MCCIA had taken this matter with the state government. Also, we want that animation training institutes here should get the benefits equal to IT industry. This matter is still being discussed. » According to Khandekar, several companies are in the process of building animation SEZs in IT parks.

Anant Sardeshmukh, joint director of MCCIA said, « A new concept of Animation village is approved by the state government. We want to tap the local talent and also offer local content. The animation village will fetch us both these advantages. Also, it will also facilitate to train the new manpower for the animation and gaming industry. »

Meanwhile, Vani Saraswati, Asifa India president said, « This is the seventh animation fair in India and second in Pune. MCCIA came forward for promoting the animation which prompted Asifa to respond positively. As the companies in Pune are making their mark on International level and the talent, trained workforce as well as training facilities available here are very good. It has attracted many foreign companies to Pune. »

Pune, the new Indian Silicon Valley ?

Hinjewadi IT Park, Pune

« Pune is emerging as the Intellectual Property (IP) city for the software products. So future developments regarding software products will essentially take place here, » said Subash Menon, chairman, Nasscom Product forum and founder chairman, MD & CEO, Subex Limited, Bangalore. Menon was in the city for a discussion of Nasscom Product Forum.

Nasscom has conducted a study of software products all over the India. The study covered the growth of the industry as well as opportunities in the sector. Menon addressed the queries of city entrepreneurs on the backdrop of this study.

Speaking to the Pune Mirror, Menon said, « Softwares till now were designed as per the perception of the makers of the software. Now the customisation has to be done and new realities has to be taken into consideration. That was the main object of this study. »

Asked about the role Pune played in this study, Menon said, « The study was done all over India. But we found that companies in Pune are contributing more in terms of Intellectual Property. A lot of innovation is going on here. That is a specific angle for Pune in the study. »

The Study

Named Software Product Study, this study was released just by the end of August. It goes on to describe how evolving incubation and funding support ecosystem is complementing industry actions. Out of 38 incubation centres all over India, seven are located in India and two of them are located in Mumbai.

La technologie reste au cœur de l’enquête sur les derniers attentats en Inde

Depuis le mois d’août, les technologies de l’information et de la communication semblent centrales dans l’enquête sur les attentats de Bangalore et d’Ahmedabad en juillet dernier. Ils sembleraient qu’elles le soient, effectivement.

La police du Maharastra assure qu’elle vient d’arrêter des terroristes de premier plan impliqués dans ces attentats. L’un d’entre eux, Mansoor Asgar Peerbhoy était ingénieur en développement logiciel chez Yahoo, avec un salaire mensuel de 190 000 Rs. Surnommé Mannu et résident à Pune, on le soupçonne d’avoir finalisé les e-mails de revendication des attentats. Le second, Mubin Shaikh, état conseiller technique dans une entreprise IT dont le nom n’a pas été précisé.

Tauqueer, l’ancien salarié de Wipro soupçonné d’être le cerveau des attentats court toujours.

Mais, apparemment décidé à rattraper son retard sur les terroristes, le contre-espionnage indien vient de recruter 6000 personnes pour renforcer ses effectifs de 25000 collaborateurs dédiés à la lutte contre la cybercriminalité. 

Wi-Fi networks under scrutiny

Investigations in the recent bomb blasts in major cities have brought security of Wi-fi networks in the focus. While the attempts are being done to make the network in the city, it could not be implemented because decision makers in this regard are not in Pune. 

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India has asked the government to ask Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to educate their consumers about the security measures. The case in Pune is totally different where wi-fi access is provided without any charge or password. Pune Municipal Corporation is providing Wireless Fidelity service in co-operation with Microsense company. Ignorance on the part of ISPs and consumers are putting these systems at risk. 

Anupam Saraph, chief information officer of Pune Municipal Corporation said, « Open wi-fi access is being provided in other cities like Delhi, Bengalore also. We had proposed to the Microsense that a mechanism involving Citizen Facilation Kiosks should be set up. Any wi-fi user must get a user name and password from these kiosks to access the network. But the decision makers of the company are in Chennai and only engineers are in Pune. Therefore that proposal did not came into reality. In fact, we are trying to make Pune most secure city. » 

A delay in forming business model by the company has also delayed the commercial operation of wi-fi network. This network was supposed to cease to be free long ago. But the ISP company failed to form a business model to run it. 

Deepak Shikarpur, Chairman IT Subcommmittee, Mahratta Chamber of Commerce Industries and Agriculture said, « This has become a big issue in the wake of terrorists and criminals hacking into innocent peoples wi-fi access. There are issues with routers and firewalls that has to be understood before using wi-fi system. » 

He said, « If you use a Wireless Router to access internet at your home or office, the wireless signals of the Router work till 60-70 ft without walls or restriction and any person within this range can connect to the wireless Router and use your internet connection. » 

Both Shikarpur and Saraph welcomed TRAI’s move to ask ISPs about educating their customers about security. 

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