Gujarat University representatives demand funding to frame better start-up policy

A day long round table conference was conducted at the Gujarat University in which various speakers took part including vice-chancellors and representatives of around 40 universities across the State. During the round table meeting, the emphasis was laid on the need for framing a concrete start-up policy with provision for funding to be taken care of by the State government.

The round table conference was organized on Friday (21 August) by Gujarat University Vice-Chancellor Dr. M. N. Patel keeping mind the speech delivered by Prime Minister¬†Narendra Modi on 69th Independence Day during which he introduced the citizens of India about ‘start-up India, stand up India’. (Read here : IIT Kharagpur providing course on Make in India campaign)

Narendra Modi said, “We are looking at systems for enabling start-ups. We must be Number 1 in start-ups…’Start-up India’ & ‘Stand up India’. He said so to encourage the upcoming young generation of India to enter in the field of innovation and entrepreneurship to convert India into a manufacturing hub so that the message of ‘Make in India’ reaches every corner of the World.

Also read : India Education Entrepreneurship Day 2015

The idea of start-ups for the very first time came into existence three years back by Gujarat Technological University Vice Chancellor Akshai Agarwal when he made four groups of the existing engineering colleges of Gujarat and asked them to motivate their respective students to innovate something and also tie up with the local industries to solve the day-to-day problems they come across.

To a large extent the initiative taken by Akshai succeeded as many engineering and pharmacy colleges kick started the work of innovation and patents were also filed. Much before PM delivered the speech on August 15 from the Red Fort, many students while pursuing their studies in third or four semester of engineering have turned into entrepreneurs.

PM’s speech focusing on ‘start-ups’ has encouraged the government as also VCs of all universities so much so that the State Education Minister Bhupendrasinh Chudasma was also present at the conference in the Gujarat University premises.

Chudasma in his speech suggested that international start-up hostels should be set up in Ahmedabad and other places of Gujarat so that more and more international students come to Gujarat to pursue their studies and further they are provided with the facilities for innovation and development.

Gujarat University VC M N Patel said, “it did not take much to support start-ups because universities and technical colleges already had enough infrastructure to do that. What was needed was to make institute’s infrastructure accessible to start-ups so that they got a place to work and a lab to experiment at low or no cost.”

Ahmedabad University’s provost Shailesh Mehta was of the view that the non-technical colleges can also be included in the start-ups programs as entrepreneurship is not only restricted to professional courses or to professionals. Further laying emphasis on his point, he said “Karsanbhai Patel of Nirma group of Shreni Lalbhai were not engineers or holding any degree in managements yet they set up ventures with annual turnout of hundreds of crores of rupees.”

Related : Microsoft will offer free cloud services to Indian start-ups

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