Techies welcome Kerala Government’s move to open pubs at IT parks

Step expected to create improvement in IT business, with more companies getting attracted to Kerala

For long, quite a few young professionals in the IT sector have been reluctant to move to Kerala’s IT parks owing to the lack of social life after work. So, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s reply in the Assembly on Wednesday, hinting at opening of pubs and wine parlours responding to demands from the sector, has brought in a lot of cheer among the workforce.

Vineeth Chandran, Secretary of Prathidhwani, welfare organisation of IT employees in Kerala, welcomed the decision as it could also lead to an improvement in IT business, with more companies getting attracted here.

"When multi-national companies consider a new place to set up their campus, they also consider avenues for entertainment and places for the employees to unwind. Cities such as Bengaluru or Chennai have a lot of such options, while our cities have been lacking in these. This has been highlighted by several companies in the past. Though there was a plan to set up a beer parlour of the KTDC at the Technopark Club, it did not take off. This is certainly a welcome move and the reactions from employees have been generally positive," said Mr. Chandran.

Social ecosystem

Binu Jacob, Secretary of Group of Technology Companies (G-Tech), said that tech collectives like theirs have been raising this demand for some time.

"For a sector like IT, which has a high number of youngsters, we need a social ecosystem, including entertainment avenues, malls, health clubs and pubs. They need a certain vibrancy and avenues for people to network with each other. In no other place are pubs considered a taboo. Though the first IT park in the country was set up here, we have not grown as much as IT parks in other major cities, partly due to these reasons. This move would definitely bring in some interest from IT employees as well as companies planning to set shop here," said Mr. Jacob.

Though the setting up of pubs and microbreweries have been in the active consideration of the State Government before too, it has not gone ahead with the plan due to opposition from some quarters. But framing it as a move to boost IT investments could make it harder for those opposing the idea.

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