Karnataka asks IT firms along Bengaluru’s Outer Ring Road to extend WFH till Dec 2022. Here’s why

To alleviate traffic congestion resulting from ongoing Metro construction along Bengaluru’s Outer Ring Road (ORR), the Karnataka government has recommended that IT companies and parks in the area extend the work-from-home (WFH) option for employees until the end of December 2022. The advisory, issued by E V Ramana Reddy, Additional Chief Secretary of the Department of Electronics, IT & Biotechnology, emphasized that it is a suggestion rather than a mandatory directive.

Construction work by the Bengaluru Metro Rail Corporation Limited (BMRCL) is already underway on segments from Silk Board to KR Puram and from KR Puram to Kempegowda International Airport (KIA).

In a letter to the National Association of Software and Service Companies (NASSCOM) regional director, Reddy highlighted the potential 1.5 to 2 years of Metro construction and the significant traffic on ORR due to numerous Tech Parks and IT company campuses. The advisory encourages companies to promote the use of public transport to mitigate congestion.

The Outer Ring Road Companies Association (ORRCA) has requested a revision of the advisory, stating that many companies on ORR wish their employees to return to the office, and Metro work is expected to conclude only in December 2025 as per BMRCL’s detailed project report (DPR).

ORRCA consultant Krishna Kumar Gowda mentioned that there are nine to ten technology parks along the ORR, housing 700 to 800 companies with nearly 1.5 lakh employees before the pandemic.

Reddy clarified that the advisory is based on suggestions from the Directorate of Urban Land Transport (DULT) and is meant to reduce traffic congestion during Metro construction. He emphasized that it is not mandatory, and companies are free to resume office work if deemed necessary.

The ORR stretch hosts prominent offices and business parks, including Manyata Embassy Tech Park, Cessna Business Park, Embassy Tech Village, RMZ Ecoworld, and Prestige Tech Park, with companies like JP Morgan, ANZ, Accenture, Flipkart, Cisco, Intel, IBM, Goldman Sachs, Microsoft, Dell EMC, among others.