This makes it doubly responsive as well, but provides a healthy
iv. Larger Urban area than rural area: Chandigarh, spread in an area of approx 115 Sq Kms, is a cosmopolitan with a mix of rural and urban areas, but having majority of urban area makes life simpler for planners (79 Sq. km Urban area and 36 Sq. km Rural area.), as basic infrastructure is available as per the urban services. Therefore any e-initiative can be started off without much additional infrastructural investments.
v. Effective Power distribution network: Chandigarh has one of the best electricity distribution systems in India. Efforts are being made towards further rationalization of power tariff and energy reforms
vi. Progressive IT location: Some of the industries that have already placed their footprints on Chandigarh are; VLSI Design, Software Development, ITES, BPO etc. During the year 2003-04 software exports from Chandigarh amounted to more than US $ 2.3 billion, which indicates towards its potential as an IT destination. There are about 3000 IT professionals working in and around the main parks viz. Chandigarh Technology Park, Quark City, and the SPIC Incubation Centre
vii. Aware and Active Citizens: Literacy rate in Chandigarh is reasonably high. Furthermore, the Chandigarh Administration also targets that by the end of 2006; at least 30% of all school graduates would have the requisite soft-skills to be recruited into the ITES industry. Citizens have responded in good measure towards this end by offering requisite support by sending their wards for IT training.
viii. Right IT infrastructure: Infrastructure is the key to any development in the society. IT initiative is no exception. The city is home to national level institutes such as Central Scientific Instruments Organization (CSIO), Institute of Microbial Technology (IMTECH), and PG Institute of Medical Education & Research. The NASSCOM KPMG Study 2004 cites Chandigarh's strengths as high literacy base, presence of leading research institutions in IT/Biotech/Pharma, dedicated infrastructure for ITES-BPO requirements, high quality of life, and presence of offshore development support servicing companies, and government support for IT/ITES-BPO.
ix. Fastest growing states in last decade: As of now Chndigarh is home to approx 5000 skilled IT professionals, while this number was 3000 a year ago. An increase of more than 50% in just one year clearly indicates that Chandigarh is on the move.
x. Concentration of professional colleges: There are 7 Universities in the region, over sixty engineering colleges and over sixty management schools. There's a student population of about 0.3 million, which is more than a third of the population.
xi. Proactive Approach from Government: The proactive and responsive approach of the Chandigarh administration to develop it as a brand has enabled the city to become an IT destination. The e-government initiative is the output of such an approach.
xii. Pollution free environment: Though: An enabling environment is a bare necessity to inculcate the sense of confidence amongst investors as well as the professionals. Chandigarh administration has taken up the task of tree plantation and freeing the sky from carbon smoke on a priority basis, so that it becomes a healthy and hygienic place to live.
From the historical perspective, Chandigarh has the