India poised to lead the world’s startup ecosystem, J&K lagging behind: Jitendra Singh

Asserting that Jammu and Kashmir is lagging behind in the startup initiatives, Union Minister Jitendra Singh on Saturday said the country is poised to lead the world’s startup ecosystem.

The Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office said greater integration and synergy among industry, government departments, academia and independent institutions was crucial to create an enabling environment for growth of startups.

Singh was addressing the first of its kind program on ‘Industry Participation in Startups’ organized by various industry organizations of Jammu to promote local startups here.

The minister said under Prime Minister Narendra Modi, India is poised to lead the world’s startup ecosystem but regretted that Jammu and Kashmir is lagging behind.

“Ever since Modi had announced ‘StartUp India, StandUp India’ from the ramparts of the Red Fort in his Independence Day address of 2015, it picked up in a big way across the country, but for certain reasons did not receive the same impetus in J&K even though things had begun to change after the new arrangement was introduced over here from August 2019,” he said.

He said the number of startups in India has increased from 1,100 in 2014 to 40,000 in 2022, showing a huge jump but the numbers are negligible in J&K.

“The startup movement in Jammu and Kashmir has been slower compared to the rest of India due to various reasons but now its impact can be seen through various agri-based startups, Purple Revolution and through startups in other fields like pharma,” he said.

The minister claimed that the youth from various parts of the Union Territory were voluntarily giving up government and corporate jobs to start their own ventures thereby increasing their income manifold.

“India with its vast unexplored potential and immense innovation, is destined for a frontline role in the world and emphasized sustainable startups for sustainable future growth,” he said, stressing the need for a wider integration and for industry and government to work as equal partners .

“The demarcation between the public sector and private sector is fast becoming extinct and it has to be a partnership based on equal respect, equal stakes, equal participation and equal investment,” he said.

The minister said greater integration and synergy among industry, government departments, academia and independent institutions was crucial to create an enabling environment for growth of startups.

“Sustainable startups would sustain the future economy of India and give it global visibility in the years to come,” he said.

While laying special emphasis on science-based startups, the minister said these kind of startups are the future of national and global economy.

While elaborating the need for industry in the sustainable growth of startups, he said the industry needs to be partners with equal stakes and equal investment in the movement.

Talking about the challenge of creating sustainable startups, he said startups need to be linked to livelihood.

“Science based sectors, non-science sectors and academic institutions need to work together to link startups with livelihood. This could be done by exploring the unexplored local industry.”

He said promoting startup culture in India required a change of mindset and “this change is possible through rigorous awareness initiatives for boosting entrepreneurial spirit in a society that is obsessed with jobs especially government jobs to enable youth to become job creators rather than job seekers.”

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