TAMIL NADU GOVERNMENT (JAYALALITHA) DECIDED TO DISTRIBUTE FREE LAPTOPS TO THE ALL STUDENTS OF TN
Chennai: Tamilnadu government (jaya lalitha) had decided to start the distribution of FREE laptops to the students from september 15 this year . Governor Surjit Singh Barnala, announcing this in his address to the House, said school and college students in government and government aided institutions would be covered under the scheme.
All the plus one and plus two students in government and government aided schools and students in Government and government aided colleges would be given free laptops in a phased manner, he said.
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J.Jayalalitha creates Rs 350 crore opportunity for laptop makers. The free laptops to students of class XI and XII.
Considering that there are about 1.4 million students in the state eligible for this freebie, laptop-makers are looking at an order valued at between Rs 140 crore and Rs 350 crore from the state government.
“This is obviously a sizeable order, whenever it comes through,” says S Rajendran, chief marketing officer of Acer India , a subsidiary of Taiwan’s biggest computer maker. As if seeking to challenge competitors, Rajendran says his company has old ties with Tamil Nadu where it supplied laptops at subsidised rates to students in partnership with the government-promoted Electronics Corporation of Tamil Nadu.
Experts say an order of the size of 1.4 million units is unheard of in the computer hardware business. To put the figure in perspective, India sold a total of 2.5 million laptops and notebooks in 2009-10.
“Laptop is a sensitive electronic gadget,” says Rothin Bhattacharyya, executive vice-president (marketing) at HCL Infosystems , which offers hardware as well as service support. “We hope the state government will consider factors like service support and energy efficiency before putting out a tender.” “The market today is flooded with cheap Chinese laptops, which have poor a shelf-life,” he says.
They point to DMK’s handout of free colour TVs to voters in 2006. Although the move cost the state exchequer about Rs 4,000 crore, television ownership in the state shot up from 60% in 2006 to 86% in 2010, according to Chennai-based Hansa Research. Satellite TV penetration rose from 53% to 90% over the period.
“The laptop scheme, if implemented, will surely improve IT penetration and literacy in the state,” says Sandeep Nair, president, Manufacturers’ Association for Information Technology. “It will also go a long way in creating IT-literate talent.”
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