Srinagar: Startup Kashmir in its bid to build a start up ecosystem in the state of J&K has launched e-Campus program here at NIT Srinagar and at Islamic University of Science & Technology (IUST). Startup Kashmir is launching various programs designed and fine-tuned for the state of J&K in universities and colleges across the state. These programs will help in capacity building and make universities and colleges a hub of innovation and job creation, said Shahid Ansari – Founder Startup Kashmir. He also spoke on the importance of economical independence that can be achieved by self-driven ventures and entrepreneurship.
“The Better you Program” was launched at both IUST and NIT Srinagar in association with Entrepreneur Café (One of the largest entrepreneur community in the world). The program focuses on bringing back the inner uniqueness in students which due to the current education system is getting unnoticed and on removing the fear of failure from the budding entrepreneurs and students. The program helps students to build on their uniqueness and become a brand by themselves.
Mission of the program is to Bridge the Gap between what they really are, what is taught in colleges and What is required in the world out there said, Anjali Gupta- Global Director, Entrepreneur Cafe Campus, who joined the program from Bangalore through Skype. Sarath Nair, Head Pan India Mentor and Trainer also spoke on the occasion.
Mr. SaadParvez who heads the Innovation, Incubation and Entrepreneur Development Center (IIEDC) at NIT Srinagar, spoke about the need of these programs for the students. He spoke about various aspects of the entrepreneurship and how IIEDC center can play a vital role in nurturing and promoting innovative ideas. At the occasion a student cell was formed that will drive the innovation and entrepreneurship at the prestigious institution.
Also at the occasion Mr. Ozzy Aleem, Executive Director WhipSmart Services spoke on why students should focus more on entrepreneurship and startups rather than looking for jobs.
(This article was published in Kashmir Observer. Date: Feb 9 2017)
Union Budget 2017: A push and a shove for Start-ups, Technology and Innovation could have done wondersRead Now
Overall I would give a thumbs up for the budget, however, due consideration towards the few ‘missing’ links could have made me happier.
One page tax form, bringing down personal income tax by 5 per cent for a section of salaried class, trimming the corporate tax slab to 25 per cent for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) has caught the imagination of a segment of the population in the Union Budget 2017-18 but for the startup and Tech Innovation world it has next to nothing.
Science & Technology, Innovation and Startups are the one who build the ‘future’ of the society. The investment in the mighty three is high and yield slow results, but once the results starts coming the impact is huge. Take an example of investment in space technology program few decades back, now India is among leaders in the world.
If there was a time ever for the startups to be given a push it is now, for one has witnessed a drop in startups, money drying up in venture capital and a few going back to taking up jobs. A clear policy on issues besieging the startup world would have given a spring it its feet as the verve that one witnessed in the startup sphere a few years ago has weaned a bit.
Clarity on three fronts namely; innovation, Science & Technology and startups is lacking in the budget. The trio can create a platform and leapfrog in the future. There is nothing much for the entrepreneurial eco-system in the budget.
What was expected in the budget was a fillip to the start-ups by way of clarity in rules and most importantly how to handle losses. Few start-ups are making profit and the tax holiday is valid to only those start-ups who are recognised by Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion (DIPP).
That there is a world of talent out there waiting in the wings to fly with ideas is a foregone conclusion. Youngsters in their teens to 25-somethings are raring to go. If only the budget had something on the Angel tax, it could have done a world of good for the start-ups.
The innovation and startup ecosystem needs a push, handholding and direction. The small businesses will become competitive in the global market ie the MSME sector. Similarly, if there was a rethinking on issues plaguing the startup community such as taxes on early stage investment, ease of doing business and a more comprehensive long term plan for the community to grow, the 2017 budget would have boosted the morale.
The entrepreneurial ecosystem badly needs a push and that should precede with a robust long-term policy on innovation, Science & Technology and Startups. It is never too late; a meeting with all the stake holders on envisaging a plan is all that is needed. Anyone ready? I am.
(The article has been written by Nikhil Agarwal, Chief Executive Officer, AP Innovation Society, Government of Andhra Pradesh. All the views expressed are personal. This article has been published on Financial Express on February 3rd 2017)