Government announces plans for a start-up district

12 Feb 2017 | By Shiladitya Ray
India's first start-up district

India is set to have its first start-up district in Dakshina Kannada.

Nirmala Sitharama, the minister for Commerce & Industry, is keen on having the cluster set up at Mangalore.

Although associated costs for setting up the enclave needs to be assessed, a government source said that the government "will put all its weight behind it in terms of making resources available".

In context: India's first start-up district

12 Feb 2017Government announces plans for a start-up district

Government pushing for more start-ups

"The idea is also to expand the startup drive in cities other than Bengaluru and Hyderabad," said a government source who did not want to be named.
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The start-up district's facilities

FacilitiesThe start-up district's facilities

The start-up district will have its own start-up incubation centres.

According to a person familiar with the development, the district will also have 20 Atal Tinkering Laboratories (ATLs) in schools with state-of-the-art technology like 3D printers and associated software.

These provisions fall under the Atal Innovation Mission which seeks to create scientific temper and cultivate the spirit of curiosity and innovation among young minds".

Inspiring innovation from school

"Innovation has to be encouraged right from the school level… It is a good budding ground for future entrepreneurs, hence there will be a significant thrust on schools," said a senior government official on introducing ATLs in schools.

Atal Innovation MissionThe Atal Innovation Mission

Under the Atal Innovation Mission, the government, in the long run, plans to set up 500 ATLs across the country to provide pre-incubation training, promote entrepreneurship, and provide a seed fund for high-growth start-ups.

It also involves setting up incubators which will not only provide space for start-ups to operate, but will also mentor them so they can scale up their business.