Startup India van to spread awareness about start-up initiatives and provide opportunities for growth to entrepreneurs in Madhya Pradesh

According to a press statement released by the Ministry of Industry and Commerce, the Startup India Yatra (Journey) van, starting from the capital of Bhopal, will travel to 10 cities of Madhya Pradesh to spread awareness about the Startup India initiative and Madhya Pradesh Start-up Policy.

The Startup India Yatra van is a part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Startup India initiative that was launched in August 2015 with the objective to provide a platform to start-up enterprises to be recognised and funded; to make India a country of job creators. The Startup India Yatra van is designed to identify grass root level entrepreneurs in the smaller towns of India and create a platform for budding entrepreneurs to have the opportunity to live out their start-up dreams.

The experts on board the vehicle will listen to entrepreneurial talents pitch their ideas, select entrepreneurs for incubation and eventually transform their ideas into an enterprise.

To promote job creation in Tier II and Tier III towns and cities (cities with a population of 50,000 to 100,000 are classified as Tier II cities and those with a population of 20,000 to 50,000 are Tier III cities), the Startup India initiative organises the Startup India Yatra in one state every month. The Yatra conducts boot camps where students are given lessons in business planning followed by a pitch fest where they can present their ideas; business ideas that are shortlisted get incubated in state-run incubators.

The Yatra van is set to begin on 16 July 2018 and will cover 10 districts, 15 institutions and nearly 25 colleges over a span of 30 days.

The programme’s technology partner Shrofile, which is a video-based personality evaluation platform, records 30-second videos of participants introducing themselves and their ideas on the Startup India App screens; these videos are then sent to the Startup India team for evaluation and selection.

The press release noted that so far, the Yatra van has travelled to the states of Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Odisha and Uttarakhand.

In Gujarat, the vehicle travelled to the cities of Anand, Vasad, Mehsana, Jetalpur, and Ahmedabad in July and August 2017, where around 300 start-ups pitched their ideas and 22 incubation offers were made by the Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad and the Mudra Institute of Communications, Ahmedabad (MICA).

The Yatra van covered the seven cities in Uttar Pradesh-Agra, Bareilly, Kanpur, Lucknow, Sultanpur, Varanasi, and Noida-in November and December 2017. Over 5,000 people participated and around 350 start-ups pitched their ideas, out of which 44 start-ups were selected for incubation. The selected start-ups received incubation offers from the Indian Institute of Technology (BHU), the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur, iB Hubs, Birla Institute of Management Technology and Indian Institute of Management Lucknow.

In January and February 2018, boot camps were conducted in 16 districts in Odisha that impacted over 10,000 entrepreneurs. 3,600 start-ups pitched their ideas, of which 76 received incubation offers.

In April 2018, 3,500 students from 12 districts in Uttarakhand participated in the programme and were provided with training on how to build business models.

According to the press release, the Startup India initiative intends to build a secure and diverse start-up ecosystem in the country to encourage innovation and create opportunities for up-and-coming entrepreneurs.

The Startup India initiative works with several Ministries of the Government of India and corporates to promote incubation and accelerator programs that lead to the creation of more start-ups.

The program has been able to gather around 10,999 start-up registrations and has generated employment for about 109,869 people.

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