The success story of IT Panchayat

CIOL Bureau
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NEW DELHI, INDIA: It all started in Nagpur on Oct 14, 2006 when the first IT Panchayat (ITP) was held.


Little did one know the impact this initiative by The DQ Week and DQ Channels, would have on the channel landscape of the country.

ITP has now traveled to 50 cities across India, going to the nook and corner across the country, addressing the issues of the channel community and in turn becoming their voice, which is booming across to vendors.

Region-wise, in the last 15 months ITP has traveled to 19 cities across north India, 11 cities in west, 11 cities in south and nine cities in the eastern part of the country.


In the same period it has not only been responsible for bringing the voice of the association to the fore but also in generating enough interest in the community to bond together to form associations.

Instrumental in association formation

In December ‘06, an ITP session in Siliguri resulted in the formation of IT Dealers Association of Siliguri (ITDAS).


Talking about the same, Gitesh Tibrewal, president, ITDAS said, “For the last several years the local IT trading community was aspiring for an association, but somehow it never materialized. The DQ Week IT Panchayat held in December ‘06 provided us with the much-required neutral platform where the idea was strongly floated and influenced the dealers present there. From there we successfully took it further and thus the IT Dealers Association of Siliguri was formed.”

Then it was Bhopal, where though there was already an association in place, it was not making any significant impact.

So when the ITP made a halt in the heart of India in September ‘07, it did enough to rankle the partners out of their self-imposed stupor. That is how Bhoj Information Technology and Office Automation Association (BITOAA) came into existence.


The association has active participation of 180 members. And then ITP ended the year with another high; this time the event in Agartala saw the birth of another association.

Biswanath Das, president, IT Association of Tripura (ITAT) said: “We were planning to form an association in Agartala since long. But due to some reasons it never happened. I must thank The DQ Week for holding the IT Panchayat in Agartala and inspiring us to come together to form an association.”

Inspiring feedback


That is not all. Wherever ITP went it got backing from the channel partners. In fact, in some places after reading about the event the partner associations themselves came forward and invited the Panchayat to their cities.

Shiv Shankar Singh, president, Allahabad Computer Dealer Welfare Association, after reading about the Panchayat, invited The DQ Week team to bring the event to the city, to a rousing reception.

Close to 80 partners turned up to debate and discuss the issues that were plaguing the community. Similarly, though Aligarh is a small town, the association there also saw an opportunity in ITP to let their voice be heard.


Putting forth his views Vijay DN Bhargava, secretary, Aligarh IT Association (AITA) said, “Our association has always been reading about IT Panchayat being organized in various towns so we thought why not invite the team to conduct such a forum in Aligarh, which also has a good IT market but not a highlighted one. The association members are very enthusiastic about it and I am sure it will help the dealers in raising their concerns with the vendors and distributors.”

Unprecedented support for ITP has been pouring in from all quarters. It has managed to touch a cord with partners across the country.

“It is very rare that the Bhubaneswar channel community has come out and discussed these persistent problems in such an open forum. I must thank The DQ Week for conducting such a show and giving us an opportunity to discuss these problems openly and trying to resolve them,” said Rajesh Dora, ex-president, IT Association of Orissa (ITAO).


Why ITP matters

Talking about the importance of the event, Bhupender Singh Verma of Himtron who attended the event in Simla said: “IT Panchayat is a wonderful platform but I would like to suggest that more vendors should come to this event and share the panel with distributors and the local IT channel community.”

Speaking in the same vein, Pankaj Kapoor of Lucknow-based CSPL said, “I have seen a lot of events, but this is the only one event where I could get to know the channel community as well as the distributor community on a single platform. This is really a good experience for all the resellers.”

Enumerating the advantages of ITP, K Balachandran, proprietor, Southern Associates, Thrissur, said, “While we have enough partners and many associations, the problem is about getting proactive. It is time we move as a single entity and work for our common interest. There can be no better platform than the IT Panchayat to begin that endeavor.”

But it was KS Venkatesh, VP, Deal-IT Association, Mysore, who summed up the sentiments of perhaps the entire channel community, when he aptly remarked, “The DQ Week has been endeavoring for the cause of the partners and providing us with platforms like the IT Panchayat to voice our concerns and be rest assured that we would get proper solutions.”

Similarly there are many who have benefited from the presence of ITP in their cities. Vendors like Seagate, Hitachi, ICICI, Hughes, have tied up with ITP to reach across the channel partner spectrum in the country.

New entrants into the field like Amconics, Realtime and Tutis have used the ITP platform to educate the channel about their products.

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