Indian Government Plans Rs.10,000 Crore Innovation Fund for Tech Start-ups
In the Information Age, the winner of the game is the one who takes the lead in innovation. Countries and corporate investors are proactively looking to push talented individuals and companies to create the next revolutionary product. Never has been the pace of innovation this fast. In just the last decade, we have seen radical changes in technology especially in the consumer electronics field. Internet has not just connected the world together it has also allowed for the proliferation of knowledge and made the world a globally accessible marketplace. Luckily for India, it is already a part of the ground-level innovation game called start-ups. Now the Indian government is planning to give an adrenaline shot to the innovation process in the country.
The Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DeitY) is planning to set up a Rs. 10,000 crore fund for innovation and development purposes in the fields of electronics and IT. The announcement was made by DeitY secretary R. S. Sharma at InfoComm 2014.
The government will partner with the existing venture capitalists to select the start-up where it would invest the fund. The government is also looking towards strengthening Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) to promote the development of the sector.
The present government is actively engaging with the industry to grow India’s technical might. The Digital India program is an audacious plan by the government to boost information interconnectivity across the nation. By investing in innovation, the government strengthens the nation’s ability to create its own technology as well as reduce dependency on technological import from other nations. India currently imports electronics worth $100 billion, which is expected to go up to $400 billion by 2020 which will be more than the bill for importing oil. If India forms an encouraging technological ecosystem that supports research and production of the products, it will lead to a considerable reduction in the import bill.
If the government is serious about innovation then, it should also invest heavily in green energy technology as that will lead to severe cuts in the bill for fuel import. By aggressively pushing for a green energy, India can become a frontrunner in changing the future of the world. The government should heavily subsidise green car production and off-grid electricity solutions instead of giving billionaires like Adani a loan of $1 billion for a coal project. The government should rather invest in citizens of the country who pay for that money in taxes. The foundation of an innovation fund by the government is an encouraging and appreciable step, but it needs to do a lot more to make this country into a technology frontrunner.