Laying a strong foundation

Y N Rammurthy, executive director, engineering, LIC outlines some of LIC's property development plans to Venkatachari Jagannathan.

Y N RammurthyChennai: Laying down the foundations of the Life Insurance Corporation's (LIC) entry in to real estate comes naturally to Y N Rammurthy, executive director (engineering); he holds a master's degree in civil engineering from IIT Delhi, and specialised in foundation engineering after completing his civil engineering degree from IIT Madras.

"I have had a mixed career. Soon after my post graduation I joined the Fertiliser Corporation of India. From there I moved to Military Engineering Services (MES). LIC is my third employer." He joined LIC as deputy chief engineer in 1993.

His current responsibility involves spearheading the public sector insurance behemoth's real estate ventures — housing, commercial and consultancy assignments. LIC is building a 16 apartment block for Indian Overseas Bank (IOB) staff in Chennai. The corporation has also lined up around Rs200 crore worth of housing and commercial projects in the south zone. As a matter of fact, next to the Indian Railways, LIC is the largest landlord in the country. Rammurthy talks Excerpts

What made LIC get into real estate in a large way?
Construction of housing and commercial buildings is not new to LIC. Since the '70s the Corporation has been building housing complexes — not only for its staff but also for its policyholders. Further the branch / divisional / zonal offices have also been built by the corporation.