With the DIPP’s state startup ranking framework in place, most Indian states are busy planning, executing, and improving their startup policies. Meanwhile, Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi recently spoke to startuppers via video conferencing to get an understanding the policy’s efficacy on the ground and highlighted that about 44% of startup founders today are women.
However, this data is debatable. The News Minute, a web daily, reported that of the 6,300 startups currently recognised by the Startup India plan, only 2,488 have a woman as founder, director, or partner. There is no data available on exactly how many women are employed in these startups.
Most startups don’t even have the mandatory sexual harassment policy in place and the government must take a notice of this, added the report.
While interacting with entrepreneurs through the NaMo App and other media, PM Modi stated:
“The government has taken a host of initiatives under the Startup India policy to address startup issues at every level. For instance, for funding, we have already disbursed over INR 1200 Cr to the AIFs under fund of funds. The $1.5 Bn (INR 10,000 Cr) fund of funds will pave the way for $15 Bn (INR 100K Cr) funding to the startups.”
Modi, while listening to startups founders’ innovation stories, also said that a number of processes have been eased and hurdles have been removed to smoothen the journey for startups. For instance, the number of trademark filing forms have been reduced from 75 to just eight. A subsidy of 10% is also extended to startups filing for trademarks. Similarly, over 50% of the patent cost is borne by the government. “We have registered a three-fold increment in the number of patent registrations recently,” said Modi.
In a separate conversation, Telangana IT minister K T Rama Rao was questioned by Hyderabad startuppers about the problems surrounding healthcare startups. There’s no clear rule book listing the stand of the government on legalities concerning emerging technologies. The minister was thus questioned, “What is being done about it?”