“We do not want business purely on basis of being a local company; we would like to have business opportunities because we are capable of doing good work,” says Sheikh Imtiaz Ahmad, CEO , Comtech Info Solutions Pvt Ltd & Comtech Institute of Technology
Sheikh Imtiaz Ahmad, CEO, Comtech Info Solutions Pvt Ltd & Comtech Institute of Technology
Tell us about Comtech. What kind of work is the company doing in J&K and rest of India?
Comtech, founded in 1997, is basically a team of IT professionals, educationalists, who are very experienced in executing digitisation and e-Governance related projects. Initially we began as a training institution because at that time we did not have proper training institutions which could provide low and high end training. The first project that we successfully executed was of digitisation of electoral rolls. This was the first time that the electoral rolls in the state were digitised in J&K. Comtech was one of the main agencies behind the project. When the Election Commission started its EPIC card projects, we were awarded the work of 15 assembly segments. We have generated about nine lakh EPIC cards.
Comtech is also making efforts to expand its operations to other parts of the country. Please tell us about it.
We have expanded our operations to Uttar Pradesh and Bihar; now we are trying to expand to Haryana and Rajasthan. In UP we have two districts Bareilly and Pilbhit; here we are engaged in generating Aadhaar numbers. In Bihar we have been awarded three districts. We have completed the Socio Economic Caste Census (SECC) in 2011. Here we deployed thousands of operators.
You did the work of computerisation of the birth and death records in Srinagar. What was the experience like?
The experience of doing this work was good for our company. We are glad that we were able to execute this project with complete perfection. Basically this project involved the digitisation of birth and death records in Srinagar municipality. Lakhs of data had to be digitised.
What percentage of your revenues is coming from e-Governance?
Almost 70 percent of our revenues is coming from e-Governance related work. Around 30 percent of our revenues come from trainings. We have been accredited to the National Council for promotion of Urdu language; here a student can type in Urdu and also in English.
J&K is a border state with a hilly terrain. What kind of challenges do you face in doing your work here?
My organisation was established in 1997 in J&K. During the initial stages of our existence, we were totally dependent on revenues coming from training. But now that the government has started focussing on e-Governance, we have found new avenues for growth. Now things are much better for small companies like ours, we have been waiting for such a situation to develop for many years. Government is the main purchaser of our solutions, and we are having lot of positive response from various government departments.
Do you think that the Government in J&K should come up with special policies for helping the local companies like Comtech?
Government has already come up with the industrial policy although that has not been implemented fully. We are hopeful that the government will continue to take initiatives for providing new growth opportunities to local players. However, we do not want business purely on basis of being a local company; we would like to have business opportunities because we are capable of doing good work.