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Besides ISRO and Niti Aayog, representatives from ministries of defence, health and family welfare, housing and urban affairs, and food processing industries also participated at the event. A grant-in-aid of upto Rs. 50 lakh for 9-12 months has been earmarked for start-ups to develop a minimum usable prototype. The AIM is a flagship initiative of the Niti Aayog to promote innovation and entrepreneurship in the country, based on detailed study and deliberations on innovation and entrepreneurial needs of India in the years ahead.
“This support for MSMEs (micro, small and medium enterprises) and start-ups in product development would make India innovative, resilient, tech-driven and R&D-oriented,” says Amitabh Kant, CEO, Niti Aayog, at the launch of the Aatmanirbhar Bharat ARISE-Atal New India Challenges programme. He added that the programme provides a great opportunity for the government to become the first buyer of indigenous Made in India
This support for micro, small and medium enterprises and start-ups in product development would make India innovative, resilient, tech-driven and R&D-oriented
technology solutions. Amitabh also expressed hope that the Atal Innovation Mission, through the ARISE-Atal New India Challenges, will help in breaking new ground and this will be a path-breaking approach for driving India in the field of innovation.
“This is a red-letter day for the country, as the Atal Innovation Mission’s ARISE-Atal New India Challenges brings together some of the brightest scientific minds of India to work together for the prosperity of the country’s MSME sector,” stated Rajiv Kumar, Vice-Chairman, Niti Aayog.
Speaking at the event, MSME Minister Nitin Gadkari urged the Niti Aayog to formulate a digitized system where the decision making process related to the programme can be completed in 15-20 days. “We need to remove speed breaker in government programmes. We have to stop corrupt people in the system and encourage good people in the system,” said Nitin Gadkari. He also noted that government officials are not willing to adopt new technologies because they fear if something goes wrong, they will be held accountable and punished. “If you do something new, you are bound to commit mistakes. Therefore, the Niti Aayog should formulate a system where those who commit bona fide mistakes are pardoned and only those making mala fide mistakes are held accountable,” the minister said. K Sivan, Chairman, ISRO said the flagship programme will promote innovations and entrepreneurship across the length and breadth of our country.