Thiruvananthapuram: A quarter of a century ago, a bunch of eleven came together to create a dream. All they had in front of them was a government go ahead and a dense forest to set their feet on.
Vaidyankunnu, the spot where they landed, was nothing less than a mini forest on rocky terrain. But then, the eleven people, visionaries in their own right, sat together to do what seemed impossible.
Twenty five years later, it is mission accomplished. What they had created 25 years ago has gone down in history as the largest information technology park in India.
With over 340 companies and close to 47,000 employees who work out of these companies, the Thiruvananthapuram Technopark is today one of the most sought after IT destinations in this part of the world.
The founding team got together at the Park Centre after 25 years on the occasion of the Technopark’s 25th anniversary celebrations. Standing amidst the cheering crowd gathered to celebrate the silver jubilee of Technopark, its founding CEO G Vijaya Raghavan went down memory lane to recollect the initial days of the Park.
“Technopark had experts from all relevant fields in its governing body and project implementation team, the most luminous personalities of that time. Without their support and guidance this could never have been a reality,” he said.
The concept of the Technopark originated in a 1989 meeting held at the Government Guest House in Thycaud under the guidance of industrialist-technocrat KPP Nambiar, who passed away recently. The then Chief Minister EK Nayanar and KR Gowri Amma, who was the Minister for industries, supported the idea of a Technology Park that that could create as many as 5000 job opportunities.
The UDF Government that assumed power later on also supported the project in a big way. “The entire affair has always been out of party politics,” said Vijaya Raghavan.
The list of doyens behind Technopark was not limited to technocrats, bureaucrats and the politicians. Architects, Contractors, construction labourers and head-load workers associated with the Park were remembered on the occasion.
Technopark’s founding team has lost one of its brilliant players midway when the documentation expert P Satheesh was killed in a road accident. Despite that loss, they had to move forward until the Park developed into a leading IT hub. Slowly and steadily they won the race.
After completing the task trusted upon him, the founder CEO stepped down 15 years ago. KG Satheesh Kumar, who was a member of the founding team, served a short period as CEO of the Park. Other members including KC Chandrasekharan Nair, CFO; K Ramachandran Head Administration; M Vasudevan, Senior Marketing Manager; Ajith Mohan and R Veeramani have also left office on completing their tenure.
R Chithra, who was the head of the engineering department, is serving another company within the Park now. Geetha Gopalakrishnan and Jaisamma Joseph are still with Technopark as member of the marketing team, and head of the purchasing team, respectively.
Even though the number of companies in the Park has increased exponentially during the last 25 years, the team behind Technopark has only gone up to 51.
“Technopark has a long road to go,” said its current CEO KG Girish Babu. “But we are out of the hard times. We receive enough financial support and guidance from the Government, which will definitely take Technopark to further heights.”