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Please explain how much a software enginner earns in India?
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Thankyou Rams, you really have written very good information which saves much of my time searching internet. you are an intelligent guy, keep it up, Good Luck.

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It all depends. 
Software engineering entered in India in mid 90's. But at that time students from engineering colleges used to do their bachelors and flock to US for Masters. US universities provided good scholarships at the time and even non-computer engineering grads joined and even started a lot of software companies.Apart from few good IITs/RECs North India did not had many engineering colleges. It was south indian states which produced the bulk. The money made by the engineers of the time are huge most of these settled in US or are Directors/ VPs in India. 
The major event that turned the tide was 9/11 attacks in US and recession after it. This generated a new concept of off-shoring and the Indian IT firms( rather the body shop firms) like TCS, Infosys, Wipro became the hot career option for most engineers. In those times a PSU bank employee retire time salary was 20k-30k. TCS payed the 20-22k as initial salary, too high for India of the time. Also due to the shortage of manpower in US these techies saved huge money in onsite trips and were most sought after in India's indigenous Arrange marriage market :). 

By the second big recession of 2008-2009 a lot had changed. US giants had started opening their dev centres in India. MSoft, Adobe, Google, Amazon, Netapp, Cisco, Yahoo! being few. A plethora of private colleges also mushroomed. As India runs on a "ram-bharose" policy, most middle class saw Engineering as only good option to live life. Students started preparing for IIT/NIT as early as class 10th. Coaching towns like Kota emerged. Every jack and tom wanted to be an IT engineer. Also Due to inflow of money from IT sector banking/finance sector, retail and especially Real estate started flourishing as a software engineers need to put his money somewhere.

When recession struck US universities cut all the scholarship making them virtually 0. This made going to US and studying a very costly affair. 

Present condition: Government brought sixth pay comission. This increased the salaried of government jobs. Today engineers having good college name tags get salaried as high as 14-16 lakhs per annum(Amazon) 16-17 ( Msoft) or even more(@Wallmart Labs ~ 20-21) Even Companies from US do direct recruitment in IIT's/NIT's offering Crore packages(due to conversion of USD to INR :D ).

The private colleges students face a terrible life. They work for pay as low as Rs 5000/- per month and sometime even pay money to companies(mostly small fraudulent ones) to give them initial job training. Most of these guys sell their parents assets or take up loans to do a very costly engineering.(6-7 lakhs in UPTU)

Hence to sum it up a software engineer in India gets anything from Rs 5,000 per month to Rs. 1,20,000 per month depending on educational background, skills and knowledge. The increase is also proportional to the start. 

The Big Joke: TCS/ INFOSYS still pays a starting salary of 22k.( the same it used to pay in 2001-2002) :)

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Very nice observation man....too short saying too many things :)
really good answer, everything summed up perfectly. This is what is the state of software engineers right now.
Awesome reply .....
Superb reply...
You have over generalized private colleges and iities. The difference is diminishing by the day. Have seen both good and bad engineers coming out of both iities as well as private colleges. College is no ticket to a successful career.
very impressive work man
I see that Amazon is paying around 30 Lakhs for an employee who has 10 years of experience, specifically, Software Development Engineer II  (aka SDE 2). However, the yearly hikes in Amazon is surprisingly less, it is around 5% on an average.
A real true story of Software Enggneers in India.
Yes, the gap beween IITs, Universities and top 30 private colleges in India is reducing.
+1 vote
An entry level (1 year exp) Software Engineer makes around Rs 1,50,000 to Rs. 5,00,000.  Companies like google are extremes, they pay 8L (eight lakhs) to freshers.

3-5 years experienced s/w engineer should get something around 6 lakhs to 5 lakhs.

The general rule is, the salary = 2 x (years of experience), where experience is greater than 3.  That means a 10 years experienced guy should get around 20 Lakhs.

Above figures are per-annum, before taxation.

The text for software engineers is deducted at source (TDS) through payroll. There is little chance (ie., almost no chance) of a s/w enginner not paying tax.
answered by (36 points)
For Amazon, Google and Microsoft, it is number of years of experience x 3lakhs, but, be aware that this number holds good for experienced candidate. The joining salary for these companies would be around 10L to 15L per annum.