Skip navigation

Tag Archives: Build India

[Read the Article titled ‘This life is reserved for L&Ton page 5 of DNA Money of Thursday, November 15, 2007, before reading the post. I have tried to replicate the important paragraphs of the article to make the post comprehensive to readers. Moreover the statements made here are purely my point of view. Those who agree and even those who don’t are welcome to share their views. 🙂]






Dear Sir,


This is with reference to your interview in DNA Money, November 15th, 2007 Edition. I had few doubts and it is said that, in L&T, emphasis is given whoever wants to learn new things. So the letter, seeking some help from you!


Let’s start with what I have understood! You talked about China’s fixed exchange rate.

L&T’s five units are put up for sale because of the appreciating rupee and Chinese competition. Now, if China believes in competition and if they float their currency I am very confident that I can fight back. The moment their currency hava is over, there would be any number of people who’ll say India is a far better destination. They want to come here rather than China. Or, at least, have one leg here and one leg there. But India cannot fight Chinese competition.

Yes! I agree China is having advantage over us (read Indian Companies) due to its fixed currency rates!

The way China controls the exchange rate; they certainly have advantage over us.

But it applies to all the Indian Companies… even the IT companies, isn’t it?

…Can they do what L&T can? Can they build India’s defence, build ships, missile launchers, nuclear plants, satellites or radars? No…

You talked about Indian IT firms not contributing to India’s growth. Yes, they definitely don’t have the capacity to build defense systems; they can’t build bridges, power plants. But why should they? They are not into that business line. L&T sold its cement production unit. Does this mean L&T consider cement to be not so important for infrastructure growth? According to me, Money wasn’t the problem, as the business was earning them profit.


What does “building India” mean? Does in only include infrastructure growth and building defense systems? IT has no role in it? So why is there so much fuss about IT around? Can YOU function properly without IT help? Why governments are trying to go online? Or Government is misguided by IT industry?

…The government has already diluted it by including outsourcing. This is how they have taken Infosys, Wipro and TCS in the RuR (Raksha Udyog Ratna)….


Isn’t the IT industry bringing foreign money in the country? Doesn’t it help India to grow financially? Though Indian firms were doing business internationally, it was the IT industry which threw open the doors to international business in true sense!

But, I guess, you are against international business, Right? You are more interested into building India!

…Why should I put my talent in building America…

Then why L&T is expanding its operations in the Gulf countries, or does it have allergy with developed countries only? Or does it fear of the competition it will face there? When asked about listing abroad, you said

“you don’t get the price for the brand value of L&T. Very few know about us in the US. They’ll compare us with GE and Bechtel and say we are a small company. Companies like Infosys went there purely because of labour arbitrage.”


Yes, Infosys gets advantage of labour arbitrage, so do you! Indian labour is much cheaper than available in those countries. (Even you (read L&T HR) agree that L&T is not known for paying well to its employees. 😀 ). Infosys, despite the tremendous competition they faced their, survived. I agree they may not have the technology. So do you. Except few manufacturing process, L&T has to depend on process licensors and other design consultant for designs. Am I wrong here? Please correct me!

Moreover, even after giving low cost solutions, IT co’es earn 26% PAT, as compared to your 7-8%, they pay more than you do. Doesn’t it mean they want to share their profit? Hope even L&T think so. (Though I can’t see that happening)

Now comes the part which surprised me the most!

This is not the era where people stick to one job. Situation is far different now! This is an era where job switching is common. Youngsters now are smarter and more cautious about there career. How can you expect people to leave the opportunities where they find better growth?

…There are more than 75,000 engineers working on design in India for foreign companies. They are the brains, and there are 150,000 other engineers working in the IT industry who are non computer science engineers…

You are talking about so many people working in MNCs. But are there enough opportunities for them in Indian companies? How many Indian companies are in core design jobs? Even L&T is way behind when it comes to Design jobs.

It’s not only the company; it’s also the work profile that matters. The person (read IITians) should feel that his education is appreciated here, isn’t it? So how can you expect all the top talent to remain in your company when you are handing over a work to him, which a Diploma student can finish off effectively?

You have devoted your life to L&T. Why? Because you enjoyed working here; you enjoyed sweating out for this company. It applies to everyone, isn’t it? The person gives maximum efforts when he enjoys his work! And everyone has his area of interests. So how can you expect every mechanical/ civil engineer to be interested in this work? How can you expect him to work as efficiently as others when he is not at all enjoying his work?


… when I took over we lost 8,500 engineers to the IT industry. And by the time I was thinking whether to enter IT or not I lost another 800. So I decided to defend L&T, so that when my other engineers want to join other IT industries, they can seek a transfer as long as they work in core L&T for three years….

How do you keep them happy in LTIL when they know that there are limited growth opportunities as you yourself stated earlier that you don’t want to increase your IT business? What is the guarantee that they will stay in LTIL?

You once said you want to create true L&Tites. But with the current policies in place, I guess, you are only creating prisoners! Isn’t it obvious that the employee will remain here if he likes L&T and his work? Aren’t you creating a negative feeling in his mind at the start of his career with L&T? Did you ever enquire why so many of them are leaving L&T? Did you find out the reasons?

Yes! Money is one of the reasons. And why should not it be? I agree L&T builds India, so they can’t charge government much. But does government consider L&T employees different? NO! He has to give same amount of tax. He does not get any concessions! Life is same for everyone outside!

I just want to say one last thing here – Money isn’t the only reason why people change the jobs! Think about it! Because, with the current policies employed, the situation is not different from last few years!


A Young Indian

(Click here to view the TIME NOW video footage of IT industries reaction on AMNs Article!)



[At the end, I want to thank all my friends who inspired me to write this letter 😀 Gud Work Guys ]