The Government of West Bengal has considered spreading IT/ITeS Sector to destination beyond Kolkata and Salt Lake. To create more employment opportunities and to promote small medium scale organizations in IT and ITeS sector, IT Parks are being constructed not only in the State Capital regions but in Tier-II and Tier III cities of the Districtsof the State also. There are 17 nos. of Govt. IT Parks, including those in Tier-II and Tier III cities, viz. Durgapur (Ph-I&II), Siliguri (Ph-I, II & III), Kharagpur, Asansol, Bolpur, Haldia, Taratala, Howrah, Kalyani(Ph-I), Rajarhat(Ph-I), Barjora, Purulia, Malda and Krishnanagar. The average occupancy till 31st Dec 2019 in these IT Parks is 82 % [100% for 3: Rajarhat(Ph-I), Durgapur (Ph-II) and Kalyani(Ph-I)] with 281 IT companies and 3978 direct employments (data as on 31st Dec 2019). These IT Parks are having a bouquet of facilities including plug & play, uninterrupted power supply, support services and common facilities to suit the needs of IT Start-ups and Software units. The Department has so far received positive response from the local IT units in the Districts. Four more IT Parks are in indifferent stages of construction in Sector-V (BN-9, BN-4), Rajarhat (Ph-II) and Kalyani (Ph-II) with ±40% works complete. Five more IT Parks have been sanctioned in different locations viz. Sector-V(BN-6), Durgapur (Ph-III), Belur, Darjeeling and Kalimpong and are proposed to initiate construction in the next financial year 2020-21. Additionally, one more IT part is operational in Kalimpong at a rented space.
One Electronics Hardware Park has been set up on 72 acres of land at Sonarpur under Rajpur - Sonarpur Municipality in South 24-Parganas District. The park is ready with core infrastructure for establishment of electronic hardware manufacturing industries. 13 plots are ready for allotment in this Hardware Park. Process of online allotment is operational. One IT unit has already been allotted land in this Hardware Park in 2018.
To provide an ecosystem for local electronics hardware industry in the State two (2) Electronics Parks are being constructed at Naihati on 70 acre of land and at Falta on 60 acre of land. Both the parks have received the final approvals from Government of India while the projects have primarily identified the anchor investors. The projects are targeted to provide word-class infrastructure for attracting investments, creating jobs and to boost domestic manufacturing in the Electronics Systems Design and Manufacturing (ESDM) sector. Pricing of land for the two EMCs has been approved by Cabinet in 2018. The process for allotment of land to IT companies in these EMCs has been initiated.
The Government of West Bengal has set up Bengal Silicon Valley as a world class state of art IT Hub in an area of 170 acres of land of WBHIDCO in Action Area II of New Town, Kolkata. The project was launched on 13th August 2018 by Hon’ble Chief Minister, West Bengal to attract even more investments and to create job opportunities in IT/ITeS sector. The Bengal Silicon Valley is envisioned as a pioneering IT Hub for cutting-edge technologies and innovations in the country. This will help to nurture and develop a unique ecosystem for emerging technologies leading to Industry 4.0 with focus on research and innovation. Tenders have been called out for all 170 acres of land in 4 phases and more than 40 applications were received.
To create a Startup ecosystem, the Department has established a Startup warehouse in 2015 in collaboration with NASSCOM for benefit of new ventures and Start-ups in the IT/ITeS sector. Up till now, ‘NASSCOM 10K Start-up’ Warehouse has successfully incubated 101 start-ups. Another 34 start-ups have received funding. Out of which 11 received second round of funding while remaining 23 have received first round of funding.
The Department has initiated an online Technology Competition where any individual/ team could participate. This had been an outstanding journey to develop technological solutions based on the problem statements catering to daily societal challenges and enhancing public service delivery. The competition was named as "BENGALATHON- ac state level hackathon " and started in 2017-18. In 2019-20 (3rdYear), this competition has participation of 2500+ teams from 15 States with solutions in Citizen Feedback System, Quick Accident Response, Elderly Care, Health Prediction, Maximizing Soil Productivity, Water Quality Monitoring, Solid Waste Management, Safer Roads and Smart Water Metering. 614 concept notes were submitted out of which 136 were shortlisted for the final round. 39 teams have already been evaluated in 4 locations viz. Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai. The rest 97 teams were evaluated on 17thNovember, 2019 in Kolkata. Finally 15 top solutions were shortlisted and given prize. Feasibility of implementing the top solutions in Newtown Kolkata area are being assessed.