(Written on July 10)
There something very attractive about the place where you spend your early formative years. I am in Nagpur â€“ 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 Sudhaâ€™s family lives here, Nagpur is my home town and a special place for me. Visiting here is always emotional and nostalgic â€“ 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 â€“ 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 cybercafÃ© or to Lambentâ€™s office. Last time, on Monday July 10th, I had to go to the fourth Internet cafÃ© 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 â€“ Satyam is the name I hear â€“ 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.