Aatmanirbhar Bharat ARISE-Atal New India Challenge | 10 Sep 2020

Why in News

The Aatmanirbhar Bharat ARISE-Atal New India Challenge (ANIC) Program, launched by the government, is a national initiative to promote research & innovation and increase competitiveness of Indian startups and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).

Key Points

  • Objective: To proactively collaborate with Ministries and the associated industries to catalyse research, innovation and facilitate innovative solutions to sectoral problems.
    • The objective is also to provide a steady stream of innovative products & solutions where the Central Government Ministries/Departments will become the potential first buyers.
  • Administration:
    • The initiative will be carried under the Atal Innovation Mission (AIM - an initiative by the NITI Aayog).
    • The programme will be driven by Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) and four ministries:
      • Ministry of Defence;
      • Ministry of Food Processing Industries;
      • Ministry of Health and Family Welfare; and
      • Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.
  • Features:
    • The initiative will help promote techno-preneurs who deserve to be supported because of their immense potential of taking India forward.
    • A total of 15 sector-specific challenges will be selected where three challenges are kept for each ministry.
    • A grant-of-aid of up Rs. 50 lakh for a period of 9 to 12 months have been earmarked for startups to develop a minimum usable prototype.
    • Innovators would also be attracted by using the Mahatma Gandhi Challenge method.
      • On the 150th birth Anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, ‘the Gandhian Challenge’ was launched.
      • It provides a platform for every child across India to ideate innovative solutions for a sustainable India of their dreams, using Gandhi’s principles.
      • Broad categories in the challenge: Art & Innovation and Science, Technology & Innovation.
    • The Program is in line with the mandate of:
  • Role of the Indian Space Research Organisation :
    • ISRO is the leading organization to promote innovations and entrepreneurship across the length and breath of our country.
    • ISRO has extensively supported MSMEs and has also set up R&D labs across India to promote innovation and research in space science and technology.
    • ISRO is planning to adopt 100 Atal Tinkering Labs, 3 each in each state and UTs.
    • Three thrust areas identified by ISRO:
      • Propulsion: Green propellants, electric propulsion, and advanced air-breathing.
      • Geo-spatial Information: Using Artificial Intelligence (AI) for crop monitoring, weather forecasting and programme evaluation.
      • AI and Robotics: For supporting space exploration and outer space monitoring.

Importance of MSMEs for Indian Economy

  • They are considered as the engine of growth in an economy.
  • Employment: It is the second largest employment generating sector after agriculture. It provides employment to around 120 million persons in India.
  • Contribution to GDP: With around 36.1 million units throughout the geographical expanse of the country, MSMEs contribute around 6.11% of the manufacturing GDP and 24.63% of the GDP from service activities.
    • MSME ministry has set a target to up its contribution to GDP to 50% by 2025 as India becomes a $5 trillion economy.
  • Exports: It contributes around 45% of the overall exports from India.
  • Inclusive growth: MSMEs promote inclusive growth by providing employment opportunities in rural areas especially to people belonging to weaker sections of the society.
  • Financial inclusion: Small industries and retail businesses in tier-II and tier-III cities create opportunities for people to use banking services and products.
  • Promote innovation: It provides opportunity for budding entrepreneurs to build creative products boosting business competition and fuels growth.

Atal Innovation Mission

  • AIM is Government of India’s flagship initiative to promote a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship in the country.
  • It’s objective is to develop new programmes and policies for fostering innovation in different sectors of the economy, provide platform and collaboration opportunities for different stakeholders, create awareness and create an umbrella structure to oversee the innovation ecosystem of the country.
  • Major Initiatives:
    • Atal Tinkering Labs: These are creating problem solving mindset across schools in India.
    • Atal Incubation Centers: Fostering world class startups and adding a new dimension to the incubator model.
    • Atal New India Challenges: Fostering product innovations and aligning them to the needs of various sectors/ministries.
    • Mentor India Campaign: A national mentor network in collaboration with the public sector, corporates and institutions, to support all the initiatives of the mission.
    • Atal Community Innovation Center: To stimulate community centric innovation and ideas in the unserved/underserved regions of the country including Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities.
    • Atal Research and Innovation for Small Enterprises (ARISE): To stimulate innovation and research in the MSME industry.

Source: PIB