Union Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw Launches 'StartUps For Railways' Policy
Aiming at bringing about innovative solutions to problems like rail fracture, reduction of time between two trains and other passenger related issues, Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw has launched “StartUps for Railways”, an important initiative in the field of innovation.
The innovation policy is expected to bring about scale and efficiency in the field of operation, maintenance and infrastructure creation through participation of very large and untapped startup ecosystem.
Speaking at the event, Vaishnaw said that the long going discussions over integration of technology into Indian Railways have taken today the firm shape in form of this initiative.
Expressing his happiness on the launch of the innovation policy, the Minister said that through this platform start ups will get a good opportunity to connect with Railways.
Out of over 100 problem statements received from different divisions, field offices/zones of Railways, 11 problem statements like rail fracture, headway reduction etc. have been taken up for phase-1 of this programme. These will be presented before the start ups to find innovative solutions.
The Railway Minister requested the startups to use this opportunity and assured them of support from Indian Railways in form of 50 per cent capital grant, assured market, scale and ecosystem.
The Railways would grant up to Rs 1.5 crore to innovators on equal sharing basis with provision of milestone-wise payment under the policy.
The new policy envisages a complete process from floating of problem statement to development of prototype is online with defined timeline to make it transparent and objective.
Trials of prototypes will be done in the Railways while enhanced funding will be provided to scale up deployment on successful performance of prototypes. Selection of Innovator/s will be done by a transparent and fair system which will be dealt through online portal.
While developed Intellectual property rights (IPR) will remain with innovators only, assured developmental order would be given to innovators. There will be de-centralisation of the complete product development process at divisional level to avoid delays.
In the month of May, field units were asked to provide Problem Areas. In response to it, around 160 problem statements have been received till date. To start with, 11 problem statements have been identified to deal via the new Innovation Policy and uploaded on the portal.
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