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DST to launch programme to scale up start-ups

DST to launch programme to scale up start-ups

New Delhi, August 18

The Department of Science and Technology (DST) is working to launch a programme that will help scale up start-ups in the country, a senior official said on Tuesday.

Speaking at a webinar — 'Millennium Alliance Round 6 & COVID-19 Innovation Challenge Awards' organised by the FICCI, DST Secretary Ashutosh Sharma said past six years have been exceptional for the innovation ecosystem.

The DST established more incubators in the past six years than in the previous 60 years, he said. “Today, we support 150 technology business incubators across the country — many of them in universities, IITs. There are around 4,000 start-ups in these incubators. We want to scale them up,” he said.

Sharma added that in the coming months, the DST would be launching a new programme and it will be a highly distributed innovation system.

“We are working to start a Programme on Entrepreneurship and Start-up,” Sharma said.

The Millennium Alliance is a consortium of partners (public-private partnership) including the Department of Science and Technology, United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), UK Government's Department for International Development (DFID), Facebook and Marico Innovation Foundation.

The programme is currently running in its sixth year and has played a catalytic role in providing funding, capacity building and business development support to Indian social enterprises. The Millennium Alliance Initiative also announced the award of $3.6 million (Rs 26.25 crore) to 49 aspiring Indian social entrepreneurs for their innovative solutions to address Indian and global development challenges.

Among them, 33 innovative solutions will focus on health, agriculture, clean energy, education, water and sanitation and disability. PTI

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