The Technology Development Board must discover and nurture the startup ecosystem for successful product development in India.
The Technology Development Board (TDB) must pro-actively reach out to young startups, said Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Science & Technology; Minister of State (Independent Charge) Earth Sciences; MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr. Jitendra Singh during his address at the 25th Foundation Day of the TDB.
Dr. Singh emphasized that the board must discover and nurture the startup ecosystem for successful product development. “Though there is no dearth of talented HR pool in the Country, the main challenge is to channelize it for evolving new paradigms. The confidence of self-reliance will percolate down to the next generation and will help in attracting the best brains in the field of Science and Technology,” he said.
Referring to Prime Minister’s 75th Independence Day Speech, where he said, “We should not limit the occasion of 75 years of Indian independence to just one ceremony. We must lay the groundwork for new resolutions and move forward with new resolutions. Starting from here, the entire journey of the next 25 years, when we celebrate the centenary of Indian independence, marks the Amrit period of creation of a new India,” Dr. Singh said. The roadmap for the next 25 years will be determined by scientific and technological innovations in all walks of life.
Dr. V.K. Saraswat, Member, NITI Aayog; Dr. Shekhar C. Mande, Secretary, DSIR and Director General, CSIR, and Board Member, TDB; Dr. Renu Swarup, Secretary, Department of Biotechnology (DBT) and Department of Science & Technology (DST); Rajesh Kumar Pathak, Secretary, TDB; Rajesh Jain, Director, TDB; Prof. Ashutosh Sharma, former Secretary, DST; and Prof. K. VijayRaghavan, Principal Scientific Adviser, Government of India, participated in the event through the virtual medium. Dr. Krishna Ella, Chairman and Managing Director of Bharat Biotech, and young entrepreneur Akshata Kari, Co-founder and COO of Coco lab, also addressed the event in person.
Lauding the role of TDB for its successful journey of 25 years, Dr. Singh said, the roadmap for next 25 years should be to make India a World Leader in emerging fields like artificial intelligence (AI), astronomy, data science, solar energy, green hydrogen, semiconductor, quantum computing, climate change mitigation technologies, and cyber physical systems as desired by Prime Minister for his New India Vision. The Union Minister of State also released the TDB journal on the occasion.
Referring to Prime Minister’s exhortation for use of Science and Technology for societal benefits, Dr. Singh said, our founding fathers have envisaged this when Dr. Bhabha announced to the world that India’s Nuclear Energy Program will be for peaceful purposes. Irradiation is very effective in treating agricultural produce to enhance its shelf life. Moreover, during peak COVID crisis Department of Atomic Energy developed the reusable PPE kits, he added.
“India is emerging fast in every sphere of Science and Technology and remarked that Technology has entered every household in India. He said, the true success will be judged by helping majority of Indian citizens to enjoy ease of living,” said Dr. Singh in his concluding remarks.
In his address, Dr V.K. Saraswat said, R&D ecosystem has changed in India under Prime Minister Narendra Modi and now there is more focus on translational research and commercialization. He said there are more than 5,000 Start-ups working in India with nearly 50 of them headed by Women entrepreneurs. “Even multinational companies have started pitching up with funds for Indian innovations and setting up R&D facilities in India, which he said is a welcome change,” added Dr. Saraswat.
“TDB continues to play a key role and has shown that new kind of innovation can be scaled in our ecosystem,” said Prof. K VijayRaghavan, Principal Scientific Adviser, The Government of India.
Dr. Renu Swarup, Secretary, DST and DBT, emphasized on the efforts of TDB for its crucial role in innovation ecosystem; while Shekhar C. Mande, Secretary, DSIR and DG, CSIR, and Board Member, TDB, underlined the efforts and initiatives undertaken by the TDB and their importance for India’s future. Prof. Ashutosh Sharma, former Secretary, DST, highlighted the role of TDB in harnessing the new and emerging areas of science, technology and innovation for the benefit of society.