In the recent years, the Narendra Modi led Government of India has been focusing more and more on a wide universe of emerging startups, and for this, the government has been bringing in new programmes and opportunities for bringing out the best in these companies and help them in innovation and nurturing. Several initiatives have been undertaken by the government of our country to support the new entrepreneurship and to foster a culture of innovation among the youngsters which are considered by our Prime Minister as the future of India. With a huge and exceptional statistic advantage, India, in any case, can possibly improve, raise business people and make occupations for the advantage of the country and the world.
Recognising the importance of innovative startups and women entrepreneurship in enabling the country’s growth and prosperity, Government of India has ensured that all policy initiatives are geared towards enabling equal opportunity for women and also help the startups to raise funds easily for growth and expansion. Some of the few efforts of the government at promoting entrepreneurship and startups can be listed as follows.
1) STARTUP INDIA –
With the help of Startup India initiative, the government of India promotes and assists entrepreneurship by mentoring, nurturing and facilitating startups throughout their life cycle. Launched in 2016, the scheme has successfully provided a great start to a number of potential startups in the country. The initiative has provisions for various methods to learn and know more about startup growth including research parks, incubators and startup centers among others. Apart from this, the scheme has also created a ‘Fund of Funds’ which helps startups in gaining access to funding. The primary motive of this is to build an environment in which startups can innovate and evolve without any obstacles. The mechanisms used under the initiative comprise of online recognition of startups, Startup India Learning Programme, Facilitated Patent filing, Easy Compliance Norms, Relaxed Procurement Norms, incubator support, innovation-focused programmes for students, funding support, tax benefits and addressing of regulatory issues.
2) ATAL INNOVATION MISSION (AIM) –
AIM is a scheme of Government of India which has an objective of promoting the culture of innovation and entrepreneurship, and it serves as a platform for the promotion of world-class Innovation Hubs, Grand Challenges, start-up businesses and other self-employment activities, particularly in technology driven areas. To inculcate innovation and creativity in the children at the school level, the government has also launched Atal Tinkering Labs (ATL) across India. Here at these workplaces, the students can take part in various activities and work with tools and equipment to acquire hands-on knowledge of the concepts of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math). Another programme set up by AIM is Atal Incubation Centres (AICs) with an aim to build innovative start-up businesses as scalable and sustainable enterprises. They provide various facilities with the right amount of physical infrastructure on the basis of capital equipment and operating facilities.
3) MAKE IN INDIA –
Launched in September 2014, the initiative has been created with an aim to transform India into a global design and manufacturing center. The Make in India initiative has made sure to replace the outdated and obsolete frameworks with latest and user-friendly methods. This has prompted recharged trust in India’s abilities among potential accomplices abroad, a business group inside the nation and residents on the loose. The arrangement behind Make in India was one of the biggest embraced in late history. And in turn, this has helped in procuring investments, fostering innovation, developing skills, protecting intellectual property and building the best manufacturing infrastructure.
4) DIGITAL INDIA –
To modernize the economy of our country and to make all the government services to be accessible electronically, the government launched the Digital India initiative. The primary purpose of this is to build India as a digitally-empowered society and knowledge economy with universal access to goods and services. In most of the parts of our country, the technological penetration is so low that the people are not aware of the latest initiatives and opportunities. And, through this scheme, it wants to improve people’s participation in the digital and financial space, make India’s cyberspace safer and securer and increase the ease of doing business. It helps the digital resources and services to reach every part of the country.
5) SUPPORT TO TRAINING AND EMPLOYMENT PROGRAMME FOR WOMEN (STEP) –
As the name clearly suggests, this scheme is basically women-oriented. STEP was introduced by the Government of India’s Ministry of Women and Child Development. The primary purpose of the scheme is to educate and train women who don’t have access to formal skill education, particularly targeting the rural sector. The initiative was started 30 years ago and recently the Guidelines of the scheme have been redrafted according to the present day scenario. The programme provides knowledge and training in various segments including agriculture, horticulture, food processing, handlooms, traditional crafts like embroidery, travel and tourism, hospitality, computer and IT services.
6) BIOTECHNOLOGY INDUSTRY RESEARCH ASSISTANCE COUNCIL (BIRAC) –
BIRAC was set up by the Department of Biotechnology with an aim to strengthen and evolve emerging biotechnology undertakings. It carries out programmes to encourage strategic research and innovation in the biotech enterprises, and reduce the current gaps between industry and academics. The initiative has facilitated several rapid developments in medical technology and helped various biotech startups to expand and build a good base for themselves. BIRAC has partnered with a few national and worldwide firms for building limits of the Indian biotech industry, especially for new companies and SME’s, and has taken forward a few fast improvements in therapeutic innovation.
7) TRADE-RELATED ENTREPRENEURSHIP ASSISTANCE AND DEVELOPMENT (TREAD) –
The government had launched the TREAD programme to acknowledge the problems related to the access of credits that the unprivileged women face in India. The programme provides credit to the interested women with the help of non-governmental organizations (NGOs). The women can receive the support of registered NGOs in both accessing loan facilities, and receive counselling and training opportunities to initiate the proposed undertakings.
8) PRADHAN MANTRI KAUSHAL VIKAS YOJANA (PMKVY) –
The Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship (MSDE) has started the programme PMKVY which aims to train the youngsters in order to inculcate industrial skills in them to enhance opportunities for livelihood creation and employability. Training and Assessment fees are completely financed by the Government under this scheme.
Hence, here we have some of the important initiatives taken by the Government of India for the proper growth and expansion of the Indian Startups. In the last few years, the Government has introduced over 50+ startup programmes, each of which is directed towards boosting the Indian startup ecosystem. Around4,400 technology startups exist in India and the number is expected to reach over 12,000 by 2020. India is at third position after US and Britain in terms of the number of startups, that have been grown extensively since the Government has started taking considerable steps for them. It remains to be seen what benefits startup schemes and startup-centric initiatives will provide in order to realize the vision of ‘Startup India Stand Up India’.