In order to support the initiatives of Niti Aayog's ACIC, the minister said he will direct oil and steel public sector undertakings (PSUs) to contribute their corporate social responsibility (CSR) money to the programme.
Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Wednesday stressed the importance of innovation, saying it is a key factor which will boost growth and help India become a USD 5 trillion economy by 2024-25. Speaking at the launch of Niti Aayog’s Atal Community Innovation Centre (ACIC) programme, Pradhan said that India will become the largest consumer of fossil fuel in the next 15 years, so there is need to reduce India’s crude oil import bill.
“India’s crude oil import bill is pegged at Rs 6 lakh crore per annum and the country will become the largest consumer of oil in the next 15 years. “Can Atal Community Innovation Centres come up with innovative methods which will help India in reducing its fossil fuel import bill? … India will not become USD 5 trillion economy without innovation,” he said.
In order to support the initiatives of Niti Aayog’s ACIC, the minister said he will direct oil and steel public sector undertakings (PSUs) to contribute their corporate social responsibility (CSR) money to the programme. He said India produces approximately 600MT of non-fossilised biomass through farm waste, which if converted to energy can help usher prosperity in rural economy, and promote a sustainable energy future.
Pradhan said ACIC will encourage students, researchers and other individuals/group of individuals to ideate and design novel solutions. The scheme will also connect innovative thinkers to our market and mainstream economy. Speaking at the same event, Niti Aayog vice chairman Rajiv Kumar said the ACIC programme will be launched in 484 districts which are unserved region of India.
Kumar said that the purpose of Atal Community Innovation Centre programme is to encourage innovation through solution-driven design thinking with a view to serve the society. He also said reducing the lab to land distance is one of the key objective of Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) of Niti Aayog and ACIC will help in further strengthening the mission to strengthen the entrepreneurial ecosystem of India.
Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant said: “We want to make India most innovative nation in the world”. According to an official statement, the programme will focus on unserved regions of the country which at present lack a vibrant startup and innovation ecosystem.
The proposed focus areas of the programme are tier 2 and tier 3 cities, smart cities, aspirational districts, North-East, Jammu and Kashmir, rural and tribal areas of India, as well as unserved region of tier 1/metro cities. The Niti Aayog will take Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode to ensure financial sustainability and participation of central agencies, PSU etc to mobilise resources for running the programme. ACIC will be established either in PPP mode or with the support of PSUs and other agencies, it said.