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Quotes from industry leaders on Budget 2008-09

“While the 100,000 internet-enabled Common Service Centres (CSCs) and State Wide Area Networks (SWANs) will play a major role in taking the benefit of IT to masses, the number is still insignificant for one billion technology deprived Indians,” Pankaj Jain, president and COO, Webdunia.com, has said. “This effort needs at least five-fold increase every year to ensure higher reach.”

“While the 100,000 internet-enabled Common Service Centres (CSCs) and State Wide Area Networks (SWANs) will play a major role in taking the benefit of IT to masses, the number is still insignificant for one billion technology deprived Indians,” Pankaj Jain, president and COO, Webdunia.com, has said. “This effort needs at least five-fold increase every year to ensure higher reach.”

“The emphasis on building India into a knowledge society through a series of proposals — setting up three new IITs, scholarships for innovation, R&D and a national knowledge network to connect universities — is very welcome,” says Pradeep Gupta, chairman, CyberMedia.

K Ganesh, founder and CEO, TutorVista.com, has said, “IT infrastructure in rural districts will get a boost with the grant provided for broadband centres. It would have been good to see specific allocation to ensure the Rs 34,600 crore is actually spent correctly without leakage of funds. So, earmarking a small percentage for auditing and monitoring would be prudent.”

“This is the right time to stimulate the economy further to continue our growth path, and that’s exactly what the Finance Minister has attempted. The measures on income tax revision, reduction in the general CENVAT rate on all goods from 16 per cent to 14 per cent to stimulate the manufacturing sector, reduction in duty on convergence products from 10 per cent to 5 per cent and full exemption from duty specified parts of set top boxes and specified raw materials for use in the IT/electronic hardware industry are all welcome steps,” M P Vijay Kumar, CFO, Sify Technologies, has said.

“However, it is disappointing that corporate taxes have not been reduced to stimulate growth even further. It is also unfortunate that the service tax on cyber café and broadband services have not been removed, nor has the duty on PCs and laptops been brought down further. These would have been positive measures to spur the growth of PC and internet penetration and use in the country at a time when we are faring very poorly compared to even other developing countries,” Vijay Kumar has added.

Highlights of Budget 2008-09

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