Days after India banned 59 China-linked mobile phone apps on grounds of threats to the country’s sovereignty, security, defence and public order, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday urged India’s IT workforce to take part in an innovation challenge to “code for an Aatmanirbhar Bharat”.
“This challenge is for you if you have such a working product or if you feel you have the vision and expertise to create such products. I urge all my friends in the tech community to participate,” Modi wrote in a LinkedIn post on Saturday titled Let us Code for an Aatmanirbhar Bharat!
The Prime Minister laid out his vision for products to tap the huge potential of India’s markets.
“We all know the huge potential of our market and the scale products can achieve if they can satisfy the demands of the market. Nowadays, we are seeing huge interest and enthusiasm among the start-up and tech ecosystem to innovate, develop and promote homegrown apps.”
“Today, when the entire nation is working towards creating an Aatmanirbhar Bharat, it is a good opportunity to give direction to their efforts, momentum to their hard-work and mentorship to their talent to evolve Apps which can satisfy our market as well as compete with the world.”
He said that in order to help India’s start-up and tech community achieve this objective, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology along with Atal Innovation Mission are coming up with the Aatmanirbhar Bharat Innovation challenge which will run in two tracks – Promotion of Existing Apps and Development of New Apps.
“For promotion of existing Apps and Platforms across the categories of E-learning, Work-from-Home, Gaming, Business, Entertainment, Office Utilities, and Social Networking, Government will provide mentoring, hand-holding and support. Track-01 will work in mission mode for identifying good quality Apps for the leader-board and shall be completed in around a month,” he wrote.
“For incubating new Apps and Platforms, Track-02 initiative will work to help create new champions in India by providing support in ideation, incubation, prototyping and roll out along with market access.”
He sid the outcome of the Aatmanirbhar Bharat Innovation challenge will be to give better visibility and clarity to existing apps to achieve their goals, and to create tech products to find solutions to tech conundrums with the help of mentorship, tech support and guidance during the entire life-cycle.
“There is tremendous scope among these sectors for new Apps which solve specific issues for India and the world. Can we think of making traditional Indian games more popular via Apps? Can we develop Apps with targeted and smart access to the right age group for learning, gaming, etc? Can we develop gaming apps for people in rehabilitation or getting counselling to help them in their journey? There are many such questions and technology alone can give answers in a creative manner,” Modi wrote.