Novartis to ramp up India development centre

Last Updated: Thu, Jan 31, 2008 04:20 hrs

Hyderabad: Global pharma major Novartis will ramp up operations at its India Development Centre located here and will hire 700 over the next 18 months.

“The total headcount in Hyderabad development centre will reach 1,000 in the next 18 months (from current 300) to support the increase in operations,” Ranjit Shahani, Managing Director, Novartis India Ltd, told newspersons here on Tuesday.

Shahani and top executives of Novartis Foundation are here in connection with the International Leprosy Congress 2008 to be held between January 30 and February 4.

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The development centre is handling the global data management needs of the Switzerland-based company. “This is not a high-end work and the nature of job is similar to business process outsourcing. We will think of doing high-end R&D work in India only when the patent laws are made totally compatible with WTO norms,” he said.

CSR initiative

As part of corporate social responsibility, Novartis was spending huge amounts on disease prevention and focussing on comprehensive leprosy care, tuberculosis and cancer with an annual budget of $927 million, he said.

Klaus M. Leisinger, President, Novartis Foundation for Sustainable Development, said every year over two lakh cases of leprosy were being detected globally.

The Multi Drug Therapy (MDT) has proved effective in bringing down the incidence of leprosy drastically, he added.

Dr S.K. Noordeen, Chairman, International Leprosy Congress 2008, said the objective of the conference was to give momentum for continued action in the fight against leprosy.

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