What Indian IT Has To Say About Donald Trump's Immigration Ban

In normal times, India accounts for the highest number of annual immigrants to the US. While thousands get their foothold as students and stay on to work, many go first to onsite projects from Indian IT giants.

What Indian IT Has To Say About Donald Trump's Immigration Ban

India accounts for the highest number of annual immigrants to the US. (Representational)

Bengaluru:

It was a characteristic tweet from the President of the United States.

"In light of the attack from the Invisible Enemy, as well as the need to protect the jobs of our GREAT American Citizens, I will be signing an Executive Order to temporarily suspend immigration into the United States!" Donald Trump posted.

Despite greater stress by America on jobs for Americans, the country remains the promised land for many, particularly in the IT industry. In normal times, India accounts for the highest number of annual immigrants to the US. While thousands get their foothold as students and stay on to work, many go first to onsite projects from Indian IT giants.

So how is the industry reacting to Mr Trump's move? Not so strongly - yet. India's Information Technology and Biotechnology industry was told it could open up its offices to 50 per cent of its workforce in a partial lockdown relief. But Karnataka changed that to one third and then changed it again to essential workers only.

Not that the industry itself was ready to get going on such a scale.

Industry body NASSCOM said it would take months to scale up to 50 per cent with the protocols that would have to be put in place to adapt to the new normal. The industry body is also not ready right now to respond to Donald Trump's declaration.

NASSCOM in a tweet said:

Industry giants Wipro and Infosys also have no comments to offer at this stage.

Chokko Valliappa, CEO of Vee Technologies told NDTV, "What made America great was that it has been a magnet to attract the best talent globally. Banning immigration will not make America great again."

Neha Misri, who works with an Indian digital services provider in Bengaluru told NDTV, "(Trump's) decision is completely panicky. The US has many times the number of coronavirus cases than other countries. The virus is not coming from the immigrants. When it comes to the IT domain it is going to have an impact. And with India being a major contributor in the world's IT services I think the decline will be there in the near future. Global IT spends are going to reduce. This will have a major impact in the next few years."

Exacerbated by poor preparation and planning, the US has been battered by the coronavirus crisis, reporting the highest number of deaths and infections in the world.

With businesses shut, 22 million Americans have filed for unemployment benefits over the past month. The jobless rate was forecast to soar to 13.7 per cent in the current quarter, coming down to 11 per cent in the third quarter and 8.5 per cent in the fourth.