The foundation stone of the state government’s flagship project ~ Silicon Valley ~ would be laid on 13 August by chief minister Mamata Banerjee, informed Mr Bratya Basu, Minister of Information Technology and Electronics, on Friday Talking to the media at a workshop on ‘Internet of Things’ organised by the West Bengal Department of Information Technology (IT) and Electronics, at Biswa Bangla Convention Centre, Mr Basu said, “The IT department’s work schedule and the plan of action related to Silicon Valley will also announced in details by the chief minister on that day.

The project will be such that the IT sector from across the country will be bound to come here. Already Infosys and a few other IT players are here in our state.” The minister also added that the CM is laying special emphasis on the project to attract other IT players from the country.

The IT and Electronics minister also inaugurated on Friday the second edition of a hackathon which has been dubbed ‘Bengalathon.’ Elucidating on the topic Mr Basu said, “The hackathon that we inaugurated on Friday, is for the students who can new design and develop new application. We will reward the meritorious students. During the two editions of the contest we have received huge response from the participants not only from the state but across the country.

This hackathon can be otherwise called “Bengal’s Commonwealth.” Speaking about other initiatives, Mr Debashis Sen, additional chief secretary to the state government, said, “Three hardware parks are being set up at Sonarpur, Naihati and Falta. The hardware park at Sonarpur has reached completion and is ready for allotment.” Mr Sen also pointed out that 15 IT parks are already functional in the state.

Talking about the hackathon contest, Mr Sen said that applications for the contest have been invited and six topics have been chosen for the competition. The developer of the best app in each category will be awarded.

The topics included are prevention of online financial fraud, financial awareness by gimmification to prevent the hacking through games and other applications in mobile. Apps based on the theme of personal financial advisor, which would act as wealth and risk manager for the elderly advising them to invest their savings and other incomes in the right manner will also be one of the subjects.

Integrated self assistant system, on government tax systems, uniform reconciliation for information on linkage of adhar with bank accounts, app for insurance agents and students are also included as topics of app development by the participants of the contest.

But the highlight of the contest is an app-based toto services based on the lines of cabs facilities running successfully in the city and districts.