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Modi promises ease of doing business to graduating students at IIT Delhi convocation

In a virtual address at IIT Delhi’s convocation, Modi looks to encourage students to work on start-ups and focus on improving Indian citizens’ ease of living.

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New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi Saturday encouraged students graduating from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Delhi to work on start-ups and focus on innovation to solve the country’s problems.

In a virtual address to students and faculty at IIT Delhi’s 51st convocation, Modi told the students that the country will give them “ease of doing business” and they must focus on improving Indian citizens’ “ease of living”.

Linking the need for innovation to the pandemic, Modi said the post-Covid world is going to be very different and innovation and technology will play a big role in that world.

“Post Covid world is going to be very different and technology will have a very big role to play in that. A year ago, who would have thought that meetings, convocations, viva and exams would happen online…” said Modi.

“Globalisation is important but with that, self-reliance is equally important,” he added.

Encouraging students to innovate, the PM said, “India is bound to give ease of doing business to its youth, so that they can innovate and improve the lives of crores of Indians. We will give you ease of doing business, you focus on improving the ease of living of citizens.”

Referring to his government’s reforms in several sectors in the last few months, Modi added, “For the first time, there are possibilities for innovation and start-ups in the agriculture sector… for the first time, there is opportunity for investment in the space sector.”

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On government support

During the convocation, Modi also spoke about the central government’s ‘Startup India’, saying that over 50,000 start-ups have come into existence since the launch of the scheme in 2015.

He said start-ups are growing in the field of finance technology, agriculture, medicine and defence.

The PM highlighted that at least 20 ‘unicorns’ have been created in India by Indians as he sought to encourage the graduating batch to achieve the same. ‘Unicorn’ indicates a privately held start-up valued at over $1 billion.

“In the last few years, at least 20 unicorns have been created in India by Indians and I hope that more will come in the future… And who knows maybe one of you progress towards doing that,” he said.

Modi also noted the kind of incentives and support that the government has been providing to start-ups. “From incubation to funding, start-ups are being helped in many ways.”

He spoke about the three-year tax exemption to start-ups and the facility of self-certification under which these entrepreneurs are allowed to self-certify online with nine labour and environment laws. He also mentioned the easy exit option given to start-ups in case it fails to commence operation and incubation.

The PM also mentioned the Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan, saying that this is the best, most feasible environment to start something new and come up with new innovations. The Modi government introduced the Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan or self-reliant India campaign in May this year, worth around Rs 20 lakh crore, to fight the Covid pandemic in India.

Modi concluded his address by saying that students at IIT have “exceptional abilities” as they have “passed one of the toughest exams, the Joint Entrance Exam (JEE) and then come to IIT”.

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