Visiting Nagpur

(Written on July 10)

There something very attractive about the place where you spend your early formative years. I am in Nagpur – I spent most of my first 21 years of life in this area. Combined that with the fact that my mother and sisters still lives here and Sudha’s family lives here, Nagpur is my home town and a special place for me. Visiting here is always emotional and nostalgic – even though I come here about twice a year.

Nagpur has become one of the cleanest and best organized cities. Good roads, nice gardens, very little encroachment on roads by local merchants, good signs, and usually smoothly flowing traffic is very impressive. This is a big change from my days.

On the other hand, in terms of rapid growth, like the one that made Bangalore what it is, this is still a sleepy little town. Very little IT and any other industrial growth has taken place here. One sees good signs of progress in terms of construction and some shopping centers but the real advances in terms of making it a modern place are not keeping up with some of the other cities in India. For example, there is still not Internet connectivity in some of the best hotels here – and Wi Fi is not indicated at most of the places on my lap top, During my travels, possibly Nagpur is the worst place in terms of Internet connectivity. I have to go either to a cybercafé or to Lambent’s office. Last time, on Monday July 10th, I had to go to the fourth Internet café because the first 3 were still closed at 10:30 AM.

Lambent is possibly the biggest IT business here that was built under the leadership of Shashi Chaudhary and I am proud to have been associated with it. Incidentally, Lambent is now acquired by Indus Logic. It is likely to grow under that umbrella. A spin-off from Lambent is mBlazon for developing mobile games related products. That company already has some products and will be lead by Shaheer Ahmad, who was with Lambent from its beginning. Shashi and I are on the board to help Shaheer in this new venture.

Rumors are that Nagpur is going to become an international airport and a cargo hub. Also that some IT companies – Satyam is the name I hear – have bought lots of land here to build a big campus for their activities. Obviously, I remain very interested in seeing things happen in Nagpur.

32 thoughts on “Visiting Nagpur

  1. Amit Mohod

    Hi,
    A very nice post. I am from nagpur and now at mumbai as S/W engg. It feels good to read about your own city. The changes in nagpur is really amazing. The person who last visited there say before 4-5 years even will not recognise the places and roads now.
    Also as said by ramesh the ppl of nagpur really have a good traffic sence.
    Also its true that Nagpur is too far from industrial growth. also in IT sector. The main reason behind it, what I think is the dirty politics and the politicians with no concern about developing the vidarbha region. Thr are many well known politics in Power, in state and in Central too….
    But none of them is even trying to lift the city in this aspect. Central Aviation ministor Mr. Prafull Patel is one of them.
    It is rediculus that a man from Nagpur region is Aviation ministor and he is not doing much for forth coming Cargo Hub. This Hub can attract many industries in the city and can generate vast employment.
    The citizons like me feel stuck on such issue as we cant do any thing.

  2. Rahul Bhanot

    First good wishes for this blog, Mr Ramesh. Well I am from a place which is close to Nagpur, Jabalpur. But my grand father came here just after the partition and settled here before moving to Jabalpur. So why I am interested in writting in this place? Nagpur has been core of my family business for about 25 years now and we are expanding. I cannot agree more with the posting of Mr Amit, dont see any reason why a city with all the infrastructure and educated mass be denied progress. But I am pretty optomist about this city – it is the FUTURE CITY. The only thing it is waiting is one spark of developement process, I am sure it has the potential to become one of the more known cities of India. I hope and pray for its well being, also promise to do whatever in my capacity to make what ever little I can do for this beautiful city.

  3. Jateen

    I just heard news that Microsoft is goign to invest 700 cr. in Pune.So where Nagpur stands now? What we are doign to bring companies here? Nothing!!!! The work of cargo Hub is delayed bcoz Civil Aviation Minister refused to handover Nagpur airport to MADC. Earlier i heard that G. E. and TNT shown interest in Nagpur cargo hub.What happened to those i do’nt know.This may be Nagpur’s last chance for developement.While cities like Mangalore,Mysore,Jaipur are getting all attention of companies. Nagpur is way behind.I am really fraustrated and disgusted to see that.God know when Vidarbha politicians and people will wake up from their sleep…..

  4. Sunil Shinde

    Hi,

    Nice site.I am native of Nagpur, presently staying at Mumbai.
    Liked yr write up.
    As India as a country is going to be transformed from developing country to developed country in next 20 years,Nagpur as a city will have its own contribution in this story, as a one of the imp education centre,logistics centre and imp centre in Healthcare industry.

    After staying out of Nagpur for many years one thing I realised people from Nagpur are naturally brilliant.And due to growing oppotunities many successful people who migrated to other cities in India and abroad will give their contribution for development of the city.

    Therefore future of Nagpur will be very ‘interesting’ and promising.

    Sunil Shinde

  5. Ramesh Post author

    Happy to see so many people from Nagpur being optimists. I am too. And I’d be happy to help.

  6. Ajay

    I had visited Nagpur for a short time last year and was extremely impressed with the city. I am now looking for locations in India which are centrally located with a pool of highly educated people, good infrastructure, relatively cheap real estate and international flight connections to set up a data processing/programming company. Nagpur is certainly on the short list. However, I haven’t been able to figure out the internet connectivity, electricity and water situation in the city. Any comments would be appreciated.

  7. Ramesh Post author

    I have not done any research on electricity and water situation. Anecdotal accounts suggest that the situation is similar to most other cities in second tier in India.
    I encourage you to look into Nagpur — location, growth rate, educational level, crime situation, and overall living conditions make it the most desirable place in the heartland of India.
    My biased opinion, of course.

  8. Charmi

    Hi,

    I am also from Nagpur & currently staying in Uk .My husband is also a S/W engg.

    I am very glad to read all u people & looking forward for some good development in Nagpur.I wish Nagpur should also become an IT hub,so that we dont have to move from one place to other.

  9. Niranjan Ranka

    Thanks to Mr. Ramesh for starting this blog.

    I am from Nagpur. Did play Cricket at National level for Vidharbha.
    Used to stay at VCA ground at Civil Lines. Now from last 10 years, I am in US. Nagpur always used to fascinate me. It was/still is so Green and peaceful. Wide roads and cosmopolitan culture. Last year I went and visited Bombay and Delhi for some business opportunity. Then came back to Nagpur and concluded that Nagpur is The place to do business. The infrastructure is already there. Road/Energy/Connectivity and Location.

    Only thing it lacks is voice at National level. I guess once you have some private participation then you don’t need Govt.

    Of-course energy resources are diverted from Nagpur to Western Maharastra.

    Nagpur is reach in energy. So many power plants. Central location. I used to always think why Nagpur is so behind as compare to rest of the cities? Besides from ignorant politicians. Now finally corporate India has woken up and realized that what Nagpur has to offer. It is just the beginning. I firmly believe that Nagpur will be best location to do business in next 5 years, even without Govt. help. Once capitalism kicks in then there no looking back. That is what exactly happening with Nagpur. I am glad/sad.
    Nagpur will loose it charm of little laid back city. Life will be fast. But, I guess that is all part and parcel of growth.

    I can keep on going ..

    Thanks,
    Niranjan

  10. Ramesh Post author

    Thanks, Niranjan. Nice to know you.
    What was your strength in Cricket?

    I also used to play cricket — loooong ago — on VCA — was coached by Waugh. But got distracted by Engineering and went to VRCE.

    Nice to see your optimism about Nagpur. It does have some advantages, but as you pointed out due to political reasons things have not worked well. It will take some major event to change this direction. I am optimistic.

  11. Niranjan Ranka

    Thanks for your response.

    I am Left Arm Spinner. I used stay there only. When I was there,
    Mr, Bhagwat, Thul, Telang … I think ,Mr Manohar was President.

    After 12th, I went to purse Engineering at Govt. College Nanded.
    Played for Aurnagabad univ.
    Went to Bombay played for Unilever. Came to US and everything stopped.

    Now, just busy wtih Family , Job and Business.

    I am cautiously optimistic about India. Last hope for india is Capitalism. Which has pro and cons. But as of now it suits India.
    Same I hope for Nagpur. Since Govt. did not do anything. I hope corprate India will do. As it happens in US.

    I read your bio. It is very impressive. All the best for your continued research.

    Thanks
    Niranjan

    Btw: Most of the time this blog is closed for posting. Is it system maintained.

  12. Jateen

    Hi

    Its good to see sow many people being optimistic for Nagpur.But i think we must think for whole of Vidarbha as such.Though HCL and Satyam have confirmed their presence in Nagpur ,have’nt heard about other firms yet.May be when infrastructre will be up with more malls ,multiplexes and IT parks then we can see more companies landing in Nagpur. But that should take atleast 1 more year. Already INOX opened in Nagpur , CINEMAX will open soon. and 4 more multiplexes have been constructed.The rate of growth depends on these infrastructure things and with more private companies already announced their plans for Nagpur we could see some more investment to land in Nagpur in next 1-2 years.
    But i think Amravati should also be developed along with Nagpur. Do’nt want Nagpur to get crowded just like Pune further it will help in spreadign the development throughout Vidarbha region which is vert very essential………

  13. sandeep

    Interestng blog, Thanks to Mr. Ramesh Jain. am a nagpurian and played tennis for the univ. Spent the last 9 tears at Citigroup in Boston. Am highly active in the indian and the US stockmarkets for the last 16 years……but am back in nagpur because the returns in US are pathetic (and this year in the indian stock market can be challenging) compared to the returns in real estate in Nagpur which for me has become a full time money spinner. you would first be shocked then amazed at what you are missing out in real estate especially near the MIHAN project on Wardha Road. My reaction to what is happening there 2 1/2 years was shock=you have to be mad to buy real estate and why would you touch anything that is too good to be true. so a year and half ago i dipped my toes by buying 2 small properties that too with some big daddy partners ( so i could recover some at least) which by the way have tripled= amazing. this town is going nuts near the airport and am now convinced that the likes of Satyam, HCL tech, Shapoorji Pallonji who have invested have brought on critical mass in that area for it to continue, perhaps not at the same pace, so wake up and smell the coffee, but do it in the orange city
    and btw for all you cricketeers the Manohars are as active as ever with Shashank VP of BCCI and he has raised a huge chunk for the new stadium and amazingly already 1/3rd of it is built by guess who Shapoorji Pallonji and SP has also bought a 100 acres in the SEZ area along with likes of the other IT chaps. all u VRCEans probably know who got Boeing at 163 mm into ngp.
    So wake up and have some OJ, it may boost your risk appetite…….cheers

  14. Kapil Taran

    Hi, Great to read articles from Nagpur. I am a Nagpurian. And would like to contribute max for Nagpur. But curretly I am in UK and would soon be returning to Nagpur for good. I am in favour of devlopement but also worried about environment. Devlopement around Wardha Road/MIHAN will definitely increase pollution level and affect the temperature in this already HOT city (in summer)..
    I have already started growing Trees specially Neem around my house with the help of my friend who is interested in this. I would like you guys to contribute for this great City… growing trees is one step towards this.. I would like information on Solar power for homes if anyone has… I would like to install the same in my house..

    Also the civic sense should increase. NMC should come up with mass transport system. I know Star bus is started but how many of middle class and higher middle class uses bus in Nagpur. One strange thing in Nagpur.. none of the buses have number … I mean the route numbers. This is quite surprising..how do you expect to identify the route by just reading something in Marathi.. I mean it should have proper numbering scheme.. standardisation is must…NMC should look into this..

    Lot has been written about Nagpur in different news papers across the world that Nagpur is the first Indian city to be developed for infrastructurre before the arrival of actual growth same as Chinese line of developement. Hope this is true and Nagpur emerges the best city to live not like Pune, Bangalore and other so called “HiTech” cities but no infrastructure to sustain the growth.
    Enough of my thougths…. thanks for reading..
    Cheers,
    Kapil

  15. Pankaj

    Its Good to read about Nagpur and so many message that are posted here…..I am from Akola but have stayed in Nagpur too and therefore would like to see Vidharbha growing, as the trcikle down effect someday may happen to other cities as well.

    I am looking after investments in real estate (for a company) and Nagpur is also one of our focus cities. If I am not mistaken, thanks to Mr. Chandrashekhar who was the collector, who also was the Colector to Thane who has changed the face of Nagpur and Thane.

    Sometime back our research had shown that Nagpur has a huge potential to grow, but due to certain reasons, it has not grown the way Pune has or Nasik is showing now. However the investor sentiment is bullish on Nagpur but till the time some firm developments happen, it would be difficult.

    My Personal perception was, that if Nagpur also developes into a IT / ITES hub then so many people who migrated out of Vidharbha region would like to come back and settle in Nagpur. This would lead into a significant growth for the city. Hence we need to see some firm commitement coming from some major corporates first into Nagpur and then everyone will see a bullish trend, else as we always heard the stories about Butibori..etc etc..the same theme will continue.

    Thanks

    Pankaj Rathi

  16. sandep thamankar

    Hi folks!!
    I just happened to come across this blog. I am basically from Nagpur, now currently staying in Bangalore working in the Medical Transcription industry.
    First of thanks to Mr. Ramesh Jain, who started this blog.
    I have gone through all of ur comments and i m very glad to know that all of you are keeping yourrselves updated about the happennings of this city and its surroundings…but have any one of you thought why we are only ones in maharashtra who are getting ill-treated by any Govt. that comes in state…and there is something else that i would like to bring light on:
    1. Vidharbha region has not one, not two, but three power plants viz. Koradi, Khaparkheda, and Chandrapur; but we are the only ones among the bigger cities in maharashtra to have major power cuts almost every day!
    2. The much awaited MIHAN and the prestigious GAJRAJ projects were planned for the city way back in the early 90;s by the central government, but nothing is being done for the early implementation of these projects; leave alone implementation a day will come that these projects will either be grabbed by Hyderabad or Bangalore(remember both cities are having their new airports ready by next year). Even the IAF had stated to shift their GAJRAJ project to some other city if land acquisition with other amenties was not made in time.
    3. Remember some years ago there was a huge demand for separate state of VIDARBHA? Why cant this be one of the the reason for the ill-treatment meted to by state govt? Probably that’s why they are diverting all other industrial projects away from vidarbha.
    4. The debt-ridden farmers of Vidarbha are commiting suicides almost every day. Our hon’ble CM has announced a special package for these farmers…just think cooly… if this would have implemented on a war-footing basis, a lot lives could have been saved.
    5. Ummm…and now last but not the least…We Nagpurians are having a very bad habit of blaming others not something not done, and we lack unity among ourselves when it comes to improving infrastructure, employment and other basic amenties. i don’t want to communalise this point by adding anything further…hope u are getting my point. i feel it’s high time that we shed this bad habit of ours and do something…at least i have started doing something…by bringing my couple of childhood friends ( both are civil engineers) to bangalore and getting them a job in a company which is from Pune!!! ( remember there is an equal unity among maharashtrians in Karnataka or any other state u name!!) Now both of my friends are planning to take their transfers back to Nagpur and work on their own..
    If i have done any mistakes ( or blunders) please feel free to reply me..
    Thanks for reading …
    regards

  17. Sunil Mane

    Hi,
    This is very nice blog to discuss abt Vidharbha. I am a journalist in Pune.
    We are planning to contact the sucessful personalities from Vidharbha who have migrated in and outside India for a function. I wish if anybody can help us in that kindly send the info at mane.sunil@gmail.com
    Regards

  18. Rahul Bhanot

    An interesting news article, published by The Hindu newspaper on 26th Aug 2007:

    It’s destination Nagpur for realtors from State
    by S. Harpal Singh

    The city has enormous scope for growth because of vast extent of open land available 15 large consortiums in realty from Hyderabad have invested heavily in and around Nagpur

    ADILABAD: Nagpur is the preferred destination of realtors from Andhra Pradesh, thanks to the brilliant prospect it offers them.
    Attracted by upcoming projects like the country’s first-ever multimodal international hub airport at Nagpur (MIHAN), a unit of the Boeing and IT parks aplenty, investors from Hyderabad and other cities in the State have made a beeline towards this city.

    “Another major reason for investors from Hyderabad to seek greener pastures is the uncertainty in the field induced by region-centric politics,” said an investor from Hyderabad, on conditions of anonymity.

    He said due to the uncertainty there is lull in trading in realty since the past one year. The MIHAN project will be established on 10,000 acres on the outskirts of Nagpur. The zero mile city or geographic centre of the country will include a captive power plant and special economic zones in about 3,500 acres. IT parks are to be established by DLF, Satyam, Wipro, and Dell.

    The American computer manufacturer will have one of its units here besides that of the Boeing. Nagpur was found to have enormous scope for growth because of vast extent of open land available near the city. More attractive is the cheaper price of land.

    “About two years back, the open market price of land near the MIHAN site was just Rs. 10 lakh per acre. It increased to Rs. 30 lakh per acre in one year. Since big investors from Andhra Pradesh entered the market, the prices have shot up to Rs. 1 crore per acre,” said an architect from Nagpur. An estimated 15 large consortiums in realty from Hyderabad have invested heavily in and around Nagpur.

  19. Manoj Chauhan

    Hi ,

    Thanks for starting a blog concerning Nagpur .I am also from Nagpur.I am in a dilemma because of all these future prospects of Nagpur .
    I am in IT & in consulting for last six years in India .Since Nagpur has not much to offer in It jobs in past & present I have been working on projects out of nagpur but within India .My family is still in Nagpur .My son studies in class seven in Bhavans school.My wife is a ENT surgean practicing in Nagpur .

    Now the call is there for the family to stay together after six years .With this I have switched job to Pune where there are good opportunities .At one hand I am planning to shift my settled family to Pune .On the other hand I am rethinking because of Nagpur future prospects .I have specialised in SAP Erp .I am not sure whether even the new companies come to Nagpur , they will have sap practice within them .In Pune there are atleast 10 compnaies with SAP practice & will grow in future .

    I am totally in a fix whether to wait for 3 years & then decide or forget Nagpur & shift to Pune next year .Shifting to Pune means my wife has to start her profession all over again in pune .

    I am in dilemma , at this point of time your valuable advice / comments are weclome.

  20. Ramesh Post author

    Manoj,
    This is a difficult personal situation. Nagpur is definitely progressing but it will take several years for it to become as attractive as Pune is today. So the decision will finally be based on how much you value living in Nagpur against the professional oppoetunities. I am sure you will be able to get some good position in Nagpur today or you can start some business and grow it. But there is always some risk with any such decisions.

    So you need to evaluate your situation and decide.

    Best wishes,

  21. Jagdish

    Hi Manoj

    I am in absolutely same situation. Am also an SAP consultant presently settled in Mumbai but am roaming around. I hope future is bright in Nagpur and may be we pioneer..
    Do contact me – jcharde@rediffmail.com

    cheers
    jagdish

  22. anjali

    Things are finally moving at the MIHAN. Investments have started already. We are helping Nagpurians settled across the world to invest wisely in the booming REAL ESTATE market here. More genuine details are available.
    anjali.groworth@gmail.com

  23. Alok

    Just discovered this blog ! Feel so homely hearing so many folks from Nagpur. Thanks Ramesh bhai for initiating it. I (my parents still live there) live in Sadar near VCA and still hear the roaring crowds on a sixer during a cricket match. I am in US since last 10 years and keep visiting Nagpur regularly. Last time i saw the new VCA stadium under construction near Airport. Yaah i too was impressed with the development and taken back with the soaring property prices. It is loosing its charm of a laid back city but with the bulging economy it will find its place as a leading tier 2 city?. Our family hold a decent property (3+ Acres) within 6 kms from zero miles and i am looking into selling it to a major real estate company or enter into a business venture. If anyone is interested please contact me.

  24. Atlanta MLS Agent

    Having visited many under developed places in the world, and some even in Atlanta, the access to information and the resources the internet offers is something all these places will need in order to reach their full potential. Construction and development is not everything if you are detached from the rest of the world.

  25. Dilip

    Dear All,

    Just stumbled upon this blog. It is nice to read the opinions about Nagpur. A few have mentioned their desire to return to India. I am in the same boat. I am in the US for 20 years and have thought of returning to India. Nagpur has its positives and negatives. I love the city, but raising kids is a different issue. The electricity water situation is scary. The heat is another factor. As somebody mentioned, did they find out more about solar power for domestic usein Nagpur (cost, etc). I am not in IT and obviosuly, do not have much prospect from a jo perspective in Nagpur. But I am interested in setting up a venture of my own. Thanks to Prof. Jain for the blog. I will post more.

  26. Sagar

    Dear All,
    Please highlight this issue to save prosperity of Nagpur

    As from 17-May Qatar airways planning to stop operations from Nagpur to Doha that means people from vidharbha have no other option to fly Mumbai to catch flight for USA or UK or rest of the world.
    Who is responsible for this? our (Vidharbhian) politician were just busy in fighting between themselves while enjoying ministers protocol in Last central Govt. and cities like Hyderabad and other benefits from that.
    This is bad news for the prosperity of Nagpur, if Qatar airways stop Nagpur operations from 17-May that means it will go very bad and wrong signal in international market for Nagpur and no other international flight will start operations to Nagpur.
    From
    Sagar Gulhane &
    Friend circle belongs to Central India
    London, UK

  27. Hema Shah

    I spent about 6 years of my childhood in Nagpur. I studied in Bishop Cotton High School and lived on Civil lines. I cannot forget the Berry
    Forests, the weaver birds and the little stream that run by my home.
    Thanks for giving me a chance to write in this blog.

  28. Ramesh Post author

    Similar to you, many of us have very fond memories of Nagpur. It would be great if we could do something to feel that we have given something back to Nagpur.

  29. SAMEER DAS

    Hi Everyone,
    I am a nagpurian too. Currently working and staying in Hyderabad. I was born in the city and spend about 24 years before leaving Nagpur for job. I still visit every now and then since my parents are there. Nagpur is probably one of the best cities in India in terms of Infrastructure and even ready for big IT companies. But due to some reasons it never looked like happening.
    I really feel nostalgic whenever I come here. I am hoping some day this city will provide me job and I will get chance to come back to this wonderful city. I hope its not too late.
    Hope things will turn around in near future.
    And who know we will back to this beautiful orange city.

    Thanks & Regards.
    SAMEER
    Its sad to see even in the city like Nagpur which has its own power plant, have load sheeding for nearly 6 hrs everyday.

  30. Jeetendra Gan

    Nagpur WILL DEFINITELY GROW .THE ONLY THING WHICH IS NOT IN NAGPUR IS IT . MIHAN IS A PROJECT WHICH WILL BRIGN IT COMPANIES IN NAGPUR.SOME 300 COMPANIES R GOING TO COME TO NAGPUR [MIHAN]. NAGPUR WILL BE A SUCCESS DEW TO ITS LOCATION.

    BUT MY DREAM IS TO LIVE IN A FULLY DEVELOPED INDIA . ONE WHICH IS THE CENTER OF EVERYTHING..

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