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దళిత జాతికే కళంకం సునీల్‌ కుమార్‌ పులివెందుల వేషాలు కుప్పంలో చెల్లవు అఫిడవిట్‌లో చెప్పినవన్నీ నిజాలే : వైఎస్‌ షర్మిల

In the late 1990s, Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu embarked on a transformative journey that would redefine Andhra Pradesh’s future. At the heart of this evolution was the inception of ‘Cyberabad,’ a visionary initiative mirroring the global trend of urban tech hubs. However, the pivotal moment came in March 1997 when Bill Gates, Microsoft’s iconic founder, visited India.

Recognising the strategic opportunity, N Chandrababu Naidu swiftly proposed inviting Gates to Hyderabad. A pivotal meeting took place in New Delhi, where N Chandrababu Naidu, accompanied by Microsoft India Chief Rajiv Kaul, presented a compelling PowerPoint vision. The proposal encompasses three crucial points: 

  1. Microsoft setting up a facility in India
  2. Microsoft supporting the Indian Institute of Information Technology (IIIT), Hyderabad, and 
  3. Microsoft offers technology services to the Andhra Pradesh government in exchange for purchasing Microsoft products.

The meeting, facilitated by US Ambassador Frank G. Wisner, proved pivotal. Gates, along with Microsoft executive Sanjay Parthasarathy, subsequently visited Hyderabad, despite the city lacking IT infrastructure. In a fortuitous conversation, N Chandrababu Naidu’s team, including Randeep Sudan, discussed the potential of naming the IT corridor ‘Cyberabad,’ a name that resonated with Gates and was promptly approved.

The challenge was immense – creating the necessary infrastructure. Drawing inspiration from the Dublin Dockyard model, the government secured land as equity, and Larsen & Toubro won the bid for rapid infrastructure development. The journey to ‘Cyberabad’ had begun.

Beyond infrastructure, N Chandrababu Naidu foresaw the need for a skilled workforce to sustain IT growth. This led to the conceptualization and establishment of IIIT in Gachibowli, a project that embodied N Chandrababu Naidu’s commitment to holistic development.

The success story of ‘Cyberabad’ reflects not only technological advancement but also the foresight of a leader who understood the symbiotic relationship between visionary tech giants and a region’s prosperity. N Chandrababu Naidu’s strategic alignment with Microsoft marked a watershed moment, propelling Andhra Pradesh into the global tech arena. As we reflect on this era, it serves as a testament to proactive governance shaping a promising future for the people of Andhra Pradesh and leaving an indelible mark on India’s tech landscape.

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