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January 16 to be celebrated as National Startup Day: Modi

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 15

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday announced that January 16 would now be celebrated as National Start-Up Day in order to spread the culture of start-ups in every corner of the country.

“While in the pre-2014 era, only big businesses in the metros were prospering, today there is at least one start-up in 625 districts of the country. Of them, half are in tier 2 and tier 3 cities where youth from poor and ordinary families are engaged in developing start-ups. As a result lakhs are getting employment which is demonstrated by the speed and scale at which start-ups grew in India even during the global pandemic,” said the Prime Minister while virtually interacting with start-ups.

The golden era of start-ups is starting, declared the PM at the Start-Up India Innovation Week, while asking innovators and entrepreneurs not to keep their dreams local. Hundreds of hackathons organised by the government in record time gave many solutions. “You would also be feeling that different government departments and ministries are in touch with the youth and start-ups, encouraging their new ideas such as new drone rules or the new space policy. The government’s priority is to give as many youth as possible the opportunity for innovation.”

“We are seeing the results,” said the PM while pointing out that as against 4,000 patents registered in 2013-14, last year (2020-21), the comparative figure was 28,000. As against 70,000 trademarks registered in 2013-14, over 2.5 lakh were registered last year. The movement for innovation has resulted in improvement of India’s ranking on the Global Innovation Index from 81 to 46.

In order to aid this process, the government extricated entrepreneurship and innovation from the web of bureaucratic silos. At the same time, the government set up institutional mechanisms to ensure hand-holding of young innovators. ‘Start-Up India, Stand-India’ type of programmes are part of such attempts, he said, while stating that “start-ups are changing the rule of the game and will be the backbone of new India”.

The government was helping them convert ideas into business. After the new drone policy, the army, air force and navy have placed orders worth Rs 500 crore on many innovators in this segment. The government would also deploy drones on a large scale for mapping village properties. The rapid urbanisation can also be a big focus area though the PM did not mention ‘smart cities’.

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