Atal Innovation Mission, which is also known as AIM, is a mission started by the NITI Aayog. This mission promotes and encourages innovation and entrepreneurship throughout the country.
It is a platform that promotes academics, entrepreneurship, and researchers utilizing national and international experience, which will, in turn, promote the culture of innovation and research and development in India, especially in the field of technology. Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi gave its approval for AIM and Self Employment and Talent Utilisation (SETU) with appropriate manpower.
Atal Innovation Mission has signed a Statement of Intent with SAP Global, which will promote a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship.
SAP is a part of the Statement of Intent; therefore, it will adopt 100 Atal Tinkering Laboratories in the year 2018 and will continue to nurture the growth and development in the field of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics also known as STEM for the next five years.
This will promote learning for the students of secondary school all over India. It also makes a student learn advanced topics that are related to digital transformation like design thinking methodology, learning programming languages, and much more.
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Key Features of the Atal Innovation Mission
- All the decisions of the mission relating to approval of the required guidelines which include grand challenge area, cash prize and implementation of various constituents of AIM and SETU will be guided by Mission High Level Committee (MHLC).
- Mission Directors and other members will be hired by NITI Aayog.
- The Atal Innovation Mission will be started by an initial sum of Rs. 1000 Crore.
- Self Employment and Talent Utilisation program will be stated with an initial sum of Rs. 500 Crore.
- The headquarters of the mission will be situated at New Delhi.
Compositions and Constitution of the Mission
- The mission is to be coordinated by NITI Aayog and Prime Minister Office.
- It will be chaired the vice chairman of NITI Aayog
- The directors of the Mission will include Secretaries of Skill Development, Information and Technology, Finance, Agriculture, Industry and Commerce and Science and Technology Ministries. There shall also be an independent director which will be outside the government.
- One Chief of Innovation of a Managing Director.
Functions of Atal Innovation Mission and SETU
Two primary functions of AIM are given below:
- Promoting Entrepreneurship: AIM promotes entrepreneurship by self employment and it also utilises talent. It is a platform where innovators will get support and mentor to become successful entrepreneurs in future. (Self Employment and Talent Utilisation or SETU)
- Promoting Innovations: In changing world, innovations are the need of the society to stand abreast with developments taking place in various corners of world. Therefore, India also needs to promote innovative techniques and methods to do conventional work. Atal Innovation Mission provides a platform through which innovative ideas take birth.
Components of Atal Innovation Mission and SETU
There are four major components of AIM which help to realise these primary objectives of the scheme. The components are:
- Atal Incubation Centers,
- Atal Tinkering Laboratories,
- Atal Grand Challenge Awards, and
- Scale up support to Established Incubation Centers.
1. Atal Incubation Centers
These centers help in creating and promoting incubation centers around the country. These centers will promote startups in different sectors, like manufacturing health, energy, education, agriculture, water sanitation etc. and will also provide all the infrastructural facilities and other value added services required for innovation. These centers shall be legal entities which shall be registered in India as public, private or public-private partnership. They must be operating in India for minimum three years.
2. Atal Tinkering Laboratories
These laboratories are a step towards the new India. These laboratories are established by the Central Government of India. It aims to create an environment which shall promote scientific temperament, innovation, and creativity among students. These are innovating play work space for students between class 6th and 12th.
Objectives of Atal Tinkering Laboratories:
- To espouse creativity, curiosity and imagination in the minds of young generation,
- To develop skills, this will design mind, computational thinking, adaptive learning and much more.
Financial Support by Atal Innovation Mission
- The scheme also provide grand in aid that include a onetime establishment cost of Rs. 10 lakh and also include operational expenses of Rs. 10 lakh for a maximum period of 5 years to each Atal Tinkling Laboratory.
3. Atal Grand Challenge Awards
The main objective of AGC awards is to develop novel disruptive technologies that are of very low cost, requires low maintenance, and are durable and customised according to the needs of the country. There are many challenges faced by the country, and the one who provides a solution to these challenges will be awarded.
4. Scale up Support to Established Incubation Centers
There centers are established to provide financial scale up support to those incubation center which are already in existence. This will transform the nature of startup in India and will also upgrade the Established Incubation Centers to world class standards.
Collaborations under this mission
Atal Innovation Mission has collaborated with Government, Academia, Industry, Individuals and Societal focused NGOs for creating an ecosystem which will promote innovation.
- Mentor India: Mentor India is one of the largest Mentoring networks in India from the professional and industry community. This is setup by AIM to mentor students at Atal Tinkering Labs and AIC Incubators or startups.
- Collaboration with other countries: The mission is trying to establish collaboration with innovation system and entities in other countries like Europe, United Kingdom, United States of America, Africa, and Latin American countries.
Atal new India Challenge and Atal Grand Challenges
These new challenges where launched to promote technological innovations and creating products for the purpose of creating social and commercial impact.
These challenges will be launched in specific areas and sectors which are of national importance like renewable energies, energy storage, climate smart precision agriculture, universal drinking water, Swaach Bharat, transportation, education, artificial intelligence, healthcare using robotics, IOT technologies, block chain, augmented and virtual reality etc.
Those applicants who get successful in this challenge will get a grant of up to Rs. 1 crore for Atal New India Challenge and large grants will be provided which may extent to Rs. 30 Crore for Atal Grant Challenges.
AIM is also cooperating with other institutions to launch these challenges to push the growth of development of new products and services in different sectors.
Importance of Atal Innovation Mission
The mission has been successful in bringing major transformation in educational system of India. The government has also started to promote this mission in rural India, backward and inspirational district which will make India into one of the most important innovative nations.
Groups to facilitate the desired outcome
- IDEA and Network Working Group: This group is responsible for establishing communication with national and international intelligentsia.
- Angel Funds Working Group: This group is responsible for raising funds. It will provide for a fund of funds and will also ensure effective venture, capital and will also provide angel funds for Innovations and Ideas.
- Governance Innovation Working Group:This group will bring in best international practices of good governance and also encourage innovation of good governance.
- Special Initiatives Working Groups: This group will take ideas from a concept and will help in developing the raw ideas and implementing the same with an outcome while availing support from all levels of government.
Benefits of Atal Innovation and SETU
- Interaction Between Various Bodies: Under Atal Innovation Mission and SETU there is a definite interaction between the academia, civil society, government, students and industries which in turn brings innovations.
- Innovative Ideas to Benefit Society: The innovation that dies in labs will finally get an opportunity to breathe air and take shape in society. The locked up ideas will get a place in society and they will benefit the society as whole.
- Commercial Application of Ideas: The innovation will not only help the society but will be used for commercial application also. These new ideas can quickly be transformed into commercial application.
- Good Governance: If good governance is practised and if those who are worthy get the funds in right amount and at right time, we will definitely encounter next Apple, Google like companies to be established in India soon.
Self Employment and Talent Utilisation (SETU)
The program was launched under NITI Aayog in the year 2015. The program was started with initial sum of Rs. 1,000 Crore. It is a techno-financial, incubation and facilitation program which provide support and encouragement to young start ups and other self employment which are having technology-intensive ideas. The prominent aim of the program is to create around 100000 jobs across the country through start ups.
The program is has proved to be beneficial for young entrepreneurial minds for whom financial resources or more specifically lack of money is the problem. SETU will push the young startups and will bring the innovative ideas into the real time business. It will promote self employment and will also make self employment easy and acceptable by many.
When innovative ideas convert into business, this will in turn push the growth of the nation. The program was established with an aim to make the Indian business environment more liberal. It also provides ease of operations like raising capital, seed-capital funding basically for new start ups.
Today, India stands at number four after the United States of America, United Kingdom and Israel in providing of start-up ecosystem.
The government has also reduced the taxes and royalties from 25 per cent to 10 per cent to promote new start ups in the country.