Union human resource development minister Ramesh Pokhriyal on Tuesday urged premier Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) and other educational institutions to seize the opportunities opened up by India’s ban on 59 Chinese mobile applications.
Pokhriyal asked the education sector at an academic event at IIT Madras to step up efforts to help make India ‘atma nirbhar’ (self-reliant).
“Don’t let the opportunity go. This will take us forward on the path of growth,” Pokhriyal said.
“We don’t need them (Chinese apps)…we have the vision to do it,” the minister said. When the challenges are great, all must rise to the occasion, he added.
India, with a sizeable pool of technology and engineering institutions, including IITs and the National Institutes of Technology (NITs), has the ability to develop technology capacity and applications for daily use. However, these institutes have traditionally been academically oriented rather than product and service creators for markets. However, in recent years, the focus seems to be shifting towards entrepreneurship and product development through dedicated government schemes, incubation centres and tie-ups with industries.
“We are very appreciative of the bold decision the government has made, taking us closer to a new atma nirbhar India. This is going to change the trajectory and create a whole new revolution for our swadeshi
apps. With this new move, startups such as ours will play a great role in boosting the Indian economy and help build an independent tech and startup ecosystem. We are all geared up and ready to be part of the Digital India revolution and enable our creators to earn a sustainable income while they focus their efforts to make in India,” said Pulkit Agrawal, an IIT-Bombay alumnus and co-founder of tech start up Trell.
India on Monday upped the ante against China, announcing a ban on 59 Chinese mobile apps, including Bytedance’s TikTok, Alibaba’s UC Browser, and Tencent’s WeChat, citing security concerns.