Startup India is one of the boldest initiatives of our country and its people. The question arises, why is it the boldest?
To understand this, we should briefly look at the economy and industry of independent India.
After independence, we started out as an what else, an hybrid model, propelled by Nehru ji, who thought Indian entrepreneurs are not worthy of startups. He wanted soviets to start mega plants in collaboration with Govt. of India (!) which he said would be the jewels of India and lay the foundation for Indian industry.
Nothing, as envisaged and anticipated happened. On the contrary, the true entrepreneurial spirit of the country was broken.
The next big change happened in 1991.
The country pinched (literally) to accept globalisation in the return for monetary help.
This was marketed as a master stroke by Manmohan ji. This event happened with the massive requirement of H1B visa holders in USA, outsourcing of data related work to low cost Indian service industry and in coming of Multinationals selling their products, in India.
Cut to the present, we have Modi ji, who thinks it is the Startups are the key to growth of Indian industry.
So, if we consider three distinct initiatives as mentioned, Nehru ji treated Indian entrepreneurs as novices and immature, Manmohan ji treated the set people as we do not know as what, as he never clearly spoke about nor had any definitive action which could define and reflect his thoughts, Modi ji has initiated a series of steps to reflect what he is thinking.
So, what are the initiatives?
- Create a national portal which clearly states the Govts. intentions and facilities
- Approve Startup certificates to startups which can demonstrate that they have a patent, can create jobs, or wealth.
- Approve Inter Ministerial Certification for tax exemptions for investors and employees
- Create a system to encourage catchment areas (educational institutions) to create startups
- Award Grants to start TBIs or Bio Nests and Starups
- Award Seed Funding to Incubates
- Conduct Hackathons and Startup India competitions
- Facilitate Centres of Excellence to work with nearby institutions
- Conduct a yearly program for startups
- Start departments to focus on thrust areas – Bio Technology, Aerospace, Artificial Intelligence
- Make all processes transparent
- Offer tax exemptions to Bio Nest and TBIs
All this shows the present dispensation trusts the Indian entrepreneurs.
Finally, we have started our journey. Or, shall we say restarted our journey.