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Govt To Invest In 52 Startups Providing Covid-19 Healthcare Solutions

Govt To Invest In 52 Startups Providing Covid-19 Healthcare Solutions

The startups have been shortlisted by the DST’s CAWACH initiative

The average ticket size of these investments would be between INR 50 Lakh to INR 2 Cr

The department is yet to disburse the funding amount

The government’s Centre for Augmenting WAR along with Covid-19 Health Crisis (CAWACH) has shortlisted 52 startups developing solutions to tackle the pandemic.

One such startup, Pune-based DINGG, which is an intelligent queue management platform helps customers utilise their time better instead of waiting in a queue. The startup was founded by Santosh Patidar and Akshay Poorey in 2018.

“With people slowly getting accustomed to social distancing, DINGG is committed to address the challenge through online/app-based appointments, queue management and token system options. During these testing times, we remain committed to serve our customers and provide them with wait-free and safe services,” Poorey added.

According to a report in Times of India, CAWACH aims to quickly scale up responses to detect, test, treat and reduce Covid-19 transmission in India. The government is also looking to extend support to potential startups and fund innovations which can be introduced in the next six months.

CAWACH had reportedly received around 826 applications, of which only 104 startup solutions were shortlisted. The department filtered out 54 startups for developing indigenous, low-cost and effective solutions to contain Covid-19. CAWACH will invest somewhere between INR 50 Lakh to INR 2 Cr.

“As of now, the focus is on completing the paperwork for disbursement. The select startups are being informed individually,” Anita Gupta, head of innovation and entrepreneurship at CAWACH said. She is leading the CAWACH from the Department of Science and Technology (DST), who is supporting innovations offering comprehensive solutions through the startup-ecosystem through the National Science & Technology Entrepreneurship Development Board (NSTEDB).

DST had also nominated the business incubator at IIT-Bombay, the Society for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (SINE), to implement Centre for Augmenting WAR with CAWACH to source and support startups having solutions. SINE is being supported by the Indian STEPs and Business Incubator Association (ISBA) in the implementation of the program.

Besides this, NITI Aayog has also set up a committee to boost the government’s partnership with private companies to produce health equipment and personal protection equipment (PPE). In April 2020, it also announced that eight startups are currently working on innovative healthcare solutions to help the government deal with the situation better.

This included Noida-based AgVa which has developed a toaster-size ventilator, Biodesign Innovation Lab which is working on low-cost indigenous respiratory support devices, and Qure.ai that has partnered with Italy’s San Raffaele hospital to deploy new solutions to automatically read and interpret chest x rays.

The list also included DronaMaps which is providing its solution to map affected patients, mFine which has developed an AI-powered tool that enables virtual medical consultation to assess patients, Chennai-based startup MicroGo that provides hygiene products, Staqu is offering its AI-based video analytics platform Jarvis to identify people neglecting social distancing norms or not wearing masks and Bengaluru-based Kaaenaat that is working on deeptech and IT-based solutions.