Chandigarh can be a model startup hub, says VP Singh Badnore

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UT Administrator V P Singh Badnore at CII’s Northern Regional Startup Conclave. (Express Photo)

“Spurring startups in rural India will create huge employment opportunities,” said Punjab governor and UT administrator V P Singh Badnore, at CII’s Northern Regional Startup Conclave, Thursday. Badnore said Chandigarh can become a model startup hub, inspiring other cities by incorporating requisite policy changes and by leveraging its existing institutions of national importance and facilitating the industry and academic interface. He also opined that the startup culture, innovation and technology should percolate to the villages towards realising Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of making India a $5 trillion economy by 2024-25.

Kris Gopalakrishnan, Chairman, CII National Committee on entrepreneurship and co-founder of Infosys, also addressed the conclave and said that execution of an idea is key to its success, and not merely its conception. Sharing some of the best practices followed by various states, Gopalakrishnan advocated that running a startup should be included in the education curriculum as already done by Kerala and that all the line departments dealing with a startup eco-system in a state should be under a single ministry as practiced by Karnataka. During his welcome remarks, Sarvjeet Singh Virk, Chairman, CII Chandigarh, and Managing Director, Finvasia Group said, “We have to understand the opportunities and challenges in the startup ecosystem to vitalise its progress and leverage its full potential in boosting the nation’s GDP and facilitating growth for these enterprises who are significant job creators.”

Brigadier P P Singh, Vice Chairman, Make Indian Army, also threw light on the various opportunities available for startups to work with the Indian Defence sector. “Procurement of good quality product is mandatory for the Indian Army and we have small to big tickets projects to offer, ranging from inventory, weaponry, tanks, missiles and what not,” he added. Brigadier P P Singh also invited startups to team up with the Army and share their innovative solutions to a wide range of requirements as highlighted by them.

J M Balamurugan, Principal Secretary to Governor, Government of Punjab, shared that the Chandigarh Administration had taken a number of initiatives for creating a conducive environment for the growth of startups in the city. With more than 30 R&D centers in Chandigarh, the Administration will soon launch the Chandigarh Innovation Circle (CIC), a Not-for-Profit organisation which will connect academic institutions, industries, administration and the government on a platform to boost economic and technological growth in the region.

The event was attended by over 175 participants from Chandigarh, Punjab, Haryana, Delhi and Himachal Pradesh.