Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday hailed India’s startups ecosystem, acknowledging that 42 startups turned unicorns in the year 2021. As the country inches close to the milestone of 100 unicorns, PM Modi announced that January 16 will be celebrated as National Startup Day. He asked startups to follow the mantra: “Let us innovate for India, innovate from India.”
During an interaction with youngsters from the startup ecosystem, PM Modi said, “Five years ago, there were less than 500 startups in India, today there are close to 60,000 startups in the country. Startups will be the backbone of new India."
“Our startups are changing the rules of the game. That’s why startups are going to be the backbone of new India. These billion-dollar startups are proof of India becoming Aatmanirbhar (self-dependent) and our country's Aatmavishwas (self-confidence)," PM Modi said
During his interaction with over 150 startups, PM Modi emphasised that it was important for startups to not limit themselves to a country, but have global aspirations with the experience of catering to a large and diverse market. “India's diversity is our strength. It is our global identity. Our unicorns and startups are the messengers of this diversity,” he said.
'Govt committed to innovation & start-ups'
The Prime Minister highlighted the government’s commitment to innovation and start-ups through programs such as the Atal Innovation Mission, new space technology and drone technology policies, easier compliance processes for start-ups, and ironing out the issues regarding angel tax.
He said that the new drone policy has already started showing results, with the Army, Navy, and Air Force having placed orders worth Rs 500 crore with drone companies.
The Prime Minister called upon start-ups to look towards solving challenges related to the rural economy and manufacturing sector. “Your hard work, businesses, job creation, and wealth creation are for the country’s benefit. I want to match shoulder to shoulder with you to transform the youth's enthusiasm into country's enthusiasm,” he said.
PM Modi stressed that India has progressed to a much better global innovation index ranking of top 50 in the world, even as the number of patents granted to startups increased from around 4,000 in 2013-14 to more than 28,000 last year and the number of registered trademarks rose from 70,000 to more than 250,000 in the same period.