The National BPO scheme is a project spearheaded by the Indian government to give job opportunities especially to the rural areas of India. Led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the project aims to create 1.5 lahk (150,000) jobs.
The project started with 60 bids in the first round but has lost traction in the long run. Total bids only formed one-fourth of its total capacity. Most of the companies, except Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), stepped away from the project.
One of the government official told ET, “I won’t say that the response was bad, but we were expecting more participation.”
The ministry of electronics and IT (MEIT) received bids for only 11,500 seats from 60 companies out of the total 48,000 seats on offer in the first round.
The government also admits that there had been certain issues. With this another government official released a statement saying that the ministry is planning to reach out to the big companies and relook the policies if needed.
As per an industry executive, the project did not seem to promise enough promise for the companies since most of them already have operations in tier-II and III towns and the government disallowed expansion under the policy.
“In a way, the government is trying to reward us 10 years later for starting operations in the small towns which we began in 2005,” Bhupender Singh, CEO of Intelenet Global Services, told ET, adding “50 per cent of the company’s India business is already delivered from non-metro centres in places such as Puducherry, Guwahati and Agra.”
Representatives from Software Technology Parks of India (STPI), the implementing agency for the scheme, said as the companies are not allowed to expand, big companies are not very interested in the scheme.
The government is positive to receive better response from the big IT BPO companies in the second round of bidding.