BPO set up for Sri Lankan refugees in Madurai

February 22, 2012: A group of 10 Sri Lankan Tamil refugees from the refugee camp in Madurai, who had no idea of their future, are now operating a Business Process Outsourcing unit in Madurai, Tamil Nadu. This was made possible with the support of the district administration. The group consists of both girls and boys and now they believe that they have a better future ahead.

A few months back the district collector of Madurai visited the refugee camp, where he happened to meet these graduates. He had an interaction with them and soon learned that they were unemployed graduates in the refugee camp. These youngsters dreamt of a job based on their educational qualification and so decided to stay away from other jobs such as working in construction sites. Since they were refugees, the private firms were reluctant to hire them.

The idea to start a BPO was suggested by the Chief Executive Officer of a Business Process Outsourcing company based in Chennai to the district collector of Madurai. Later the aspirants who were interested were provided with training on different activities related to BPO. The computers in the BPO unit were provided in association with the Sarva Siksha Abhiyan scheme. The team carried out different works in the unit such as networking, plumbing and various other activities.  

In the new BPO which was started by these refugees, N Satheeswaran is the team leader in the unit and the team members are graduates in different streams such as BCA, BCom, etc. The work is being offered by K Rameshkumar, who owns BPO units in Chennai and Thailand. The unit is now operating from premises of Bibikulam School. Now they plan to shift the unit to corporation building, near the refugee camp. The employees received an amount of Rs. 6000 towards their salary and they are engaged in data entry jobs. The officials also plan to provide BPO jobs to 30 more of them.

According to NASSCOM, Madurai is emerging as a favorite location for service providers due to the availability of skilled graduates in the area of Information Technology and Business Process Outsourcing. A appointed by the government of India has permitted some of the organizations to avail benefits under the national information technology development program. But there is need for more investment in Madurai to accommodate the growth of the industry in the area. There are many leading Information Technology companies in Madurai such as HCL, Honeywell etc. There are many small and medium firms operating in the city as well which is a part of this industry. In addition to the local population, the effort by the local administration will also help in hiring refugees who are talented for BPO related jobs.

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