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20-25 lakh jobs will be created in IT sector in 5 years: Ravi Shankar Prasad

IANS | New Delhi |

Denying the reports of a downturn in employment in the country's IT industry, Electronics and Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Tuesday said in the coming four to five years, almost 20-25 lakh additional jobs will be created in the sector.

"I completely deny and refute that there is any downturn in the employment in the IT sector. It is robust. Once the digital economy is here, you will see how much it will progress," the Minister said during an interaction with reporters at a press meet in the ministry.

"Indian IT companies are spread across 200 cities and 80 countries around the world, which provide direct employment to 40 lakh people and indirect employment to almost 1.3 crore people. As the industry is moving forward, it is Nasscom's assessment that in the coming four to five years, almost 20-25 lakh additional jobs will be created," he added.

The Minister said in the next five to seven years, India's digital economy will be of an estimated $1 trillion, which is almost Rs 600 lakh crore.

"In the last three years, almost six lakh people have been employed in our IT sector. In 2016-17, the number of people employed was around 1.7 lakh," he said.

"We have common service centres in about 2.5 lakh cities and almost 10 lakh people are employed there." 

The Indian IT companies currently serve two-thirds of the Fortune 500 companies and have created 40 lakh direct jobs in India, the ministry said in a statement.

The minister said the IT Ministry has taken note of projections by software industry organisation Nasscom to present an objective and realistic potential of the employment scenario.

"Nasscom has confirmed that the industry continues to be a net hirer and reports that 2.5-3 million new jobs will be created by 2025. In 2016-17, the industry added 170,000 new jobs," the release said.

Speaking on the recent cyber attack by ransomware virus 'WannaCrypt', the Minister said India has been least affected by ransomware.

"About 200 locations were there and they were all standalone computers, because we had taken proactive measures from March itself by having the Microsoft patch being installed, by sending advisories. We are constantly updating," the Minister said.