The Telegraph
Wednesday , September 3 , 2014
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NICT hoists decade of enabling NE

- Two-day event begins today

Guwahati, Sept. 2: The Northeast Information & Communication Technology (NICT) exposition has scored a perfect 10.

In its tenth year now, the two-day annual event which gets under way under the banner of The Telegraph here from tomorrow, promises to be bigger and better as it crosses a milestone in its quest for enabling and empowering the business community of the region with the power of IT.

Assam chief minister Tarun Gogoi has consented to grace the event as chief guest. Also attending will be agriculture minister Nilamani Sen Deka and member secretary, state level advisory committee, students and youth welfare, Debabrata Saikia.

“Over the past decade, NICT, much like Infocom in Bengal, has succeeded in creating awareness about information technology in the Northeast, created more job opportunities and opened doors for investment. So we look to replicate the success achieved by Infocom, which has completed 13 years, through NICT and build from there on,” said D.D. Purkayastha, managing director and CEO of ABP Pvt Ltd and chairman of NICT. The exposition has emerged as the largest B2B (business-to-business) platform for the Northeast that showcases the development potential of the region to the national investor community.

“This year is special because it completes 10 years. Coinciding with the tenth year, we have introduced the NICT Perfect 10 Awards that celebrates the lives and contributions of 10 individuals from the seven northeastern states who have contributed significantly to the growth and development of the region and created sustainable solutions,” Purkayastha said.

The highlights of the tenth edition with its theme Enabling the Northeast will comprise discussions on exploring the region as an investment destination, leadership spotlight with mountaineer Jamling Tenzing Norgay, son of Tenzing Norgay, on Climbing your own Everest, delivering next generation citizen services in the Northeast and promoting entrepreneurship in India.

Asked how much the exposition has achieved so far, the NICT chairman said, “When we started, our dream was much bigger. But we are happy to have gone along well. More companies have set up shop here, IIIT (International Institute of Information Technology) is there and e-governance has taken big strides. So, we have come a long way.”

As part of the event, an exhibition will also be held which will focus on IT products and services, banking and financial solutions and e-governance services, among others.

Speakers and participants will include industry, government and knowledge leaders from the government of Assam, the government of India, Exide Industries, Pollution Control Board, Assam, IIIT Guwahati, Synopsys India, the State Bank of India, Nabard, Lenovo India, RailTel Corporation of India, Infosys Technologies, Dell India, Hewlett Packard India and BMG Informatics, among others.

“NICT has become an ideal platform for exchange of ideas, so much so that it is poised to become a business and commercial platform. We have had the best of speakers and the quality of discussions has been very good. The Assam government has played an important role and chief minister Tarun Gogoi has supported the event from the outset,” Purkayastha said.

On the growth of the IT sector in the Northeast vis-a-vis Bengal, he said, “Infocom has played a major role in bringing investment to Bengal. So we believe the NICT can follow suit in Assam and the Northeast. The support from the Assam government is there but it needs to me more proactive to attract investment.”

NICT is supported by the department of IT, government of Assam and Amtron.

On what still needs to be done, the NICT chairman said, “Infrastructure has to be created for growth. Other than Assam, or for that matter, Meghalaya, Mizoram and to an extent Tripura, the other states still have some catching up to do.”