The fifth session at the India Today Conclave South 2018 was titled ‘Southern Sunrise: Building New Growth‘, and had GV Prasad, Co-Chairman and CEO, Dr Reddy’s Laboratories, C Parthasarathy, Chairman and Managing Director, Karvy Group, Sarath Naru, Founder and Managing Partner, Ventureast and Rajat Kumar IAS, Principal Secretary in the government of Telangana.
The discussion moderated by Rahul Kanwal, Managing Editor, India Today Television, was about the ease of doing business in the comparatively newly-formed state of Telangana and, despite the scenario seeming quite fine and Telangana seeming to manage well, about the challenges that industries operating out of Telangana face.
Answering Kanwal’s question about the fear industries in Hyderabad faced during the birth of Telangana and why things didn’t go haphazardly as feared, Prasad said, “There was indeed loss of productivity and assets during the agitation but soon after Telangana was formed, all of it vanished and the rhetoric died down rapidly.” Prasad said that business has improved on both sides (in both the states).
Parthasarathy, answering the same question, said, “We did move some parts of our operations from the city (Hyderabad), but things were back to normal soon.” Parthasarathy is of the opinion that Hyderabad has all the advantages of a smaller city when compared to the major Metros, the advantage of the good climate and less traffic.”
Talking about the Hyderabad being a startup hub, Sarath Naru said, “Bengaluru has an unfair advantage — of being the ‘fun place’, of having the pub culture — and hence driving the large tech companies there, and in turn the startups.”
Rajat Kumar spoke about the strategies the Telangana government used to ensure there is no flight of capital. He said, “Business decisions are not made on rhetoric or emotions. The government, consciously, came up with progressive policies like the ‘Single window system’ under which clearances are given in 15 days, conscious decision to propagate the startup culture etc..”
Prasad said he is unsure if he’d want to live, settle in Andhra Pradesh’s Vishakapattanam (Vizag) and that, he said, is a natural advantage Hyderabad has, for most industrialists have lived in Hyderabad for long and would like to stay put.
Prasad also said, ‘Hyderabad is better than Bengaluru for sure. We have lesser traffic, better climate, people and food,” and other guests agreed.
Talking about increasing traffic in the city of Hyderabad, Kumar said that the challenges that arise while dealing with urbanisation are real but that there is a lot of work going on to maintain the city as a green space. “We have planted 110 crore plants in the last three years, overcoming all the challenges,” he said.
Is Telangana the state where it’s easiest to do business, asked Kanwal. Parthasarathy gave a rather diplomatic answer saying that he’s found all major cities are good when it comes to providing ease of business.
(Excerpts from indiatoday.in)