Union IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad says he's proud of the fact that startups in India have become job creators and will enable India to become a great global power.
Union Minister of Electronics and Information Technology Ravi Shankar Prasad hailed the strides made by the startup ecosystem in the country and expressed confidence that this would be one of the key elements of making India a global power.
“I’m very proud about how Startup India has become a big movement,” the Minister said on Saturday evening while interacting with students and faculty of Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Patna at the “New India Manthan” event.
Extolling the progress made by startups in India, the Minister remarked that during his interactions with various entrepreneurs from the technology sector, he realised that this segment wanted to become a job creator instead of falling in with the regular trend of seeking jobs. He said,
“I thought the Indian startup ecosystem was the third largest but our Finance Minister Piyush Goyal in his budget speech said it has become the second biggest globally.”
The startup ecosystem in the country which was limited to a few metros in the country like Bengaluru, National Capital Region (NCR), Mumbai, Chennai, Hyderabad has now extended itself to tier 2 locations across the country.
Commenting on the development in Bihar, he said the state has made significant progress over the past four-and-half-years in terms of setting up new BPO centres, an incubation centre for startups and other technology-led initiatives. IIT Patna has also been bestowed with specialised centres in the areas of medical electronics and cybersecurity.
The Union IT Minister also spoke about the digital strides made by the country with the adoption of low-cost technology solution which help the masses.
For example, the cost of Aadhaar enrolment comes in at just 82 paisa per individual. Similarly, the establishment of common service centres (CSCs) across the country totaling around 3.1 lakh has provided jobs to around 12 lakh people, he said.
“Digital governance is good governance,” the Minister stated before going on to explain how the government has been leveraging technology in various areas such as citizen services, health, and agriculture, to name a few.
The country has already started to witness the benefit of technology, he said, and pointed out that 40 percent of financial transactions through BHIM are being done by people from rural areas. The boom in ecommerce, too, is being fueled by the non-metro population.
He said India has also become the second-largest manufacturer of mobile phones globally, next only to China. In 2014, the country had just two mobile manufacturing units, but now this number stands at 127.
Interacting with the students of IIT Patna, the Minister advised the young generation to absorb knowledge from anybody and spoke about the need for open communication to create and hope. And in keeping with a trend that the Prime Minister started, he asked the students, “How's the josh?”
“High, sir!” came the response in a chorus.
“I feel young coming here,” the Minister laughed before signing off.