Mumbai, Oct 12 (IANS) Keeping up with its promise to be part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Make in India’ and ‘Digital India’ initiatives, networking giant Cisco on Wednesday launched its manufacturing operations in Pune and announced it would build Nagpur as Smart City with its Next-Gen solutions.
The company will use the manufacturing unit to produce and ship orders for customers in the country as well as for testing, development, logistics and in-house repair capabilities. The product portfolio will include routers, switches and various circuit boards, etc.
Cisco along with the Maharashtra government also announced it would roll out “Smart City” solutions in Nagpur, digital learning for students and skills development for local entrepreneurs in Dharavi, in Mumbai, to create an eCommerce hub.
“My vision for digital Maharashtra is to digitally empower every citizen and increase the state’s global competitiveness by creating a highly skilled workforce,” Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis told the gathering.
“We are happy to partner with Cisco in the Digital Maharashtra initiative and believe that Cisco’s global experience and expertise will accelerate the digitisation of the state,” Fadnavis added.
As part of its drive to digitise Nagpur, Maharashtra’s second capital city, Cisco will enable city-wide network connectivity, smart and secure Wi-Fi hotspots and smart safety and surveillance solutions.
“India offers a huge talent pool of highly-qualified scientists, engineers and designers along with ease of doing business, geographic location, and proximity to suppliers and customers,” noted Chuck Robbins, CEO, Cisco.
“Today’s announcement reaffirms Cisco’s long-term commitment to India, a strategic centre of country digitisation and innovation,” Robbins told reporters here.
The various citizen services enabled by smart cities architecture, like smart transport, solid waste management, smart lighting, environmental sensors, and smart parking, will be integrated on Cisco’s “City Digital Platform”.
“I congratulate Cisco on the inauguration of its manufacturing facility and believe this is yet another milestone in strengthening India’s position as a manufacturing hub and accelerating the economic prosperity of the country,” said Amitabh Kant, CEO of NITI Aayog.
According to Dinesh Malkani, President, Cisco India & SAARC, the move underscores India’s strategic importance to Cisco’s global operations.
“We have made significant investments in India since we established operations in the country in 1995, and today’s announcement is another milestone in deepening our commitment to India,” Malkani told reporters here.
Cisco also announced plans to establish up to 25 Cisco Networking Academies to train approximately 10,000 students in Maharashtra by 2020.
The company also announced the expansion of the Cisco Networking Academy programme and digital education and healthcare initiatives in Fetri village in Nagpur.
(The writer’s visit to Mumbai was at the invitation of Cisco. Nishant Arora can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)