Sunday, January 24, 2016

Startup India To Standup India

                                    Startups In Nation Building
          Startup word is in limelight nowadays.  It is on the tips of talented, risk taking, underemployed and unsatisfied Indian youth. Why it gained sudden attention of public. Why had not been taken seriously before. What are factors which forced Government of India (GoI) to launch a program on it.  These questions need answers to understand and evaluate if startups are to see the light of the day.
          First, we need to understand what it is all about. It is not defined exactly or accurately. It varies according to its use and situation. Some simple definitions to understand its basics are:
          Online business dictionary defines it as an early stage in the life cycle of an enterprise where the entrepreneurs move from the idea stage to securing financing, laying down the basic structures of the business and initiating operations or trading.
          The GoI has its own definition for startup to facilitate and promote it.  As per GoI, startup means an entity, incorporated or registered in India not prior to five years, with an annual turnover not exceeding INR 25 crore in any preceding financial year, working towards innovation, development, deployment or commercialization of new products, processes or services driven by technology or intellectual property.
          Conditions imposed on startup are: one, that such entity is not formed by splitting up, or reconstruction, of a business already in existence; two, an entity shall cease to be a startup if its turnover for the previous financial years has exceeded INR 25 crore or it has completed 5 years from the date of incorporation/registration; three, a startup shall be eligible for tax benefits only after it has obtained certification from the Inter- Ministerial Board, setup for such purpose.
          An entrepreneurial explosion is seen in India in startups in the technological space. This leaped from 501 to 4500 in the last five year. Nasscom estimates funding for startups jumped to $4.9 billion in 2015, compared to cumulative funding for the four preceding years being $ 3.2 billion. 72% of founders are below age of 35 years. This achievement has marked India as the youngest startup nation in the world.
          India ranks third after America and UK in establishing starup. It is situation when doing business in India is a difficult task for giant houses like Tata, Reliance etc. This proves that Indian youth have mustered courage to venture into the risk of a startup giving tough competition to developed countries.
          Talented, adventurous, and energetic Indian youths proved their might by establishing some successful startups in highly odd conditions. Zomato, Flipkart, InMobi, Paytm are a few examples to establish this point.
          New government came to power on promises of bringing " Achche Din" for all. Tech savvy unsatisfied youths are noise creator- in online media. Not getting proper opportunity, according to their calibre made them disappointed.  To check this growing glooming situation and matching demanding situation for startup, forced GoI to come up with a meticulous program to accelerate, facilitate and promote startups.
          PM Modi announced the startup India campaign in his independence day speech last year to accelerate the pace of creating jobs. He launched startup India program in a high profile event on January 16, 2016 in Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi. It was attended by hundred of investors, entrepreneurs, which include founder of Uber, Travis Kalanick, SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son and a  many others.
          Top policy makers from various ministries including nine secretaries graced the occasion.  Eleven babus charmed young businessmen and pledged action.  In general, babus are blamed for go-slow and corruption. But highly positive attitude of civil servants  present, in events made this event a historic one.
          Program is well designed and intended. It has three heads with well defined sub clauses: one, simplification and handholding; two, funding support and intensive; three, industry-academecia partnership and incubation. India will get first rank leaving behind America and UK sooner than later if stipulated action plans are implemented - as designed and intended. 
          Startup will provide cheap, affordable and accessible solutions to our public problems to the masses. Youth will become employment creator rather than seeker.  It will create employment for youth  of their liking. It will enhance entrepreneurship skills and competition among youth adventurers. One prediction says that in coming ten years one lakh new startups will come into life and they will generate about 35 lakhs employments. 
          This startup program will build a strong eco-system for nurturing innovation. Consequently, it will drive sustainable economic growth and generate large scale employment opportunities for youth of their choice. It will help in improving the ranking of India in ease of doing business.
          It is a long awaited program. GoI did it to harness and shapeup the atomic like energy of our youth in nation building. Moreover, it is a step to channelize and direct youth energy in nation making.  This will galvanise youthfulness of India worldwide.
          This program will assist our youth via different modes in many ways. As a result, their confidence would increase in our democratic system- particularly in our administrative setup. Facts, figures of event and detailed pinpointed action points indicate towards success. And finally, this program would succeed and become a reality sooner as it is a high demanded social product by our adventurous youths.
Heera Lal ( Research Scholar, views are personal and based on different referances)


Monday, January 4, 2016

Friday, December 25, 2015

CV of My Son Pratyush Prakhar

Pratyush Prakhar


2015-2019     B.Tech- Delhi Technological University, First Year –Elec. & Comm. Engineering.
2015               ISC(Class XII)-City Montessori School,Gomti Nagar-1, Lucknow
Achieved 97.75%Was in top 1 percentile at national level
2013               ICSE(Class X) - City Montessori School,Gomti Nagar-1, Lucknow
Achieved 94.8%
**Mayo College Ajmer-Class IV-VII-Junior School Topper

Achievements and Recognitions

·         Awarded a GOI scholarship for being in top 1 percentile in ISC Board.
·         NTSE first level scholar.
·         State Level Footballer-U-17
·         Scholastic Awards-School Topper, Subject Topper.

Extra-Curricular Activities

·         Soccer- Avid player and part of School, College and State Level team.
·         Violin- Part of school music band.
·         Skating- Part of school team.
·         Elocutions- Part of school team.


·         Coding- Well versed with C, Java, and Python. Coder at CodeChef.
·         Blogging- Have a blog on Blogger (Google).


Room no.-23/1, AryabhattaHostel,Delhi Technological University, ShahbadDaulatpur, Main Bawana Road, New Delhi-110042

Mobile: +917042236696

Monday, October 26, 2015

Digital India Needs Correction

Stalled in mid stride: Digital India can transform the country, but not the way it is being implemented now

Among the flurry of initiatives announced in the wake of the new government taking over in May 2014, the Digital India initiative stood out – for its potential to transform governance, citizenship and entrepreneurship in our country. It’s an exciting vision because of its potential to leapfrog a nation and people into the technology age – creating unprecedented competitive advantages for India. It’s also exciting because of the promise to transform utterly decrepit institutions of government and democracy – fulfilling the “minimum government, maximum governance” goal of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
But a year and half on, the gap between vision and execution on the ground is wide and growing. Serious questions are popping up on the capacity of the ministry and regulator to both understand and implement Digital India.
From the get go, it was obvious that Digital India and connecting Indians to the internet – transformational as it was going to be – needed serious work. It has taken about $100 billion of investment over the last 21 years to get 900 million Indians behind a mobile phone. In recent years about 200 million Indians have also connected to the internet. An estimated $80 billion is required to get 600 million Indians connected to the internet. Early on in this government’s term, i had written to government and in articles about the key building block issues that need to be addressed.
At the heart of it is credible independent regulation. India’s Trai is an agency that has suffered from serious credibility problems both in terms of quality of its regulation and perceived capture by some telcos. Its handling of issues like call drops and net neutrality has been simply terrible, raising more questions than it answered.
Trai’s capacity needs to be strengthened to regulate a sector where disruptive technologies are the norm and where consumers expect unfettered access to these new innovations, without being limited by legacy licensing or business model issues.
Focus on rights of a billion Indians destined to become digital Indians is important because consumer rights in the technology and telecom space have been given short shrift over the last decade. An infamous example is poor network quality and call drops – an issue only being handled belatedly after public outcry.
On call drops, government has demonstrated the will to break the vicelike hold of a few telcos that have in recent years controlled policy making unchallenged. That this must be balanced with the need to attract $80 billion in capital into the sector is what makes Trai’s and government’s job a sophisticated and nuanced one.
There are other building blocks that are critical to creating the policy ecosystem for Digital India – net neutrality, privacy, data protection, encryption, access and infrastructure investments. Net neutrality is an issue that arrived at the table of policy makers almost 12 months ago and remains without policy clarity to date. A report by an expert committee of government showed how far away government is from where it should be. Public outcry caused an abrupt disavowal of the report.
Net neutrality is a very simple concept – it is about creating an internet that is open, accessible and free of any gatekeepers. It is an element of Digital India that should be simple to define, legislate and regulate. It’s critical in many ways to growth of Digital India, to investments, to supporting digital entrepreneurship and creating a smooth roadmap to future innovations around the Internet of Things and Industrial Internet. Net neutrality is a defining issue for the growth of internet in our country. Government’s much delayed policy making in this area is a big deal, hurting the future of Digital India.
Privacy is yet another issue where government is behind the curve. One of the implications of Digital India is that millions of Indians will have their data and personal information in various government and private databases scattered around the country and overseas. This raises serious issues relating to privacy rights of the consumer. But government’s position in the Aadhaar case is that privacy isn’t a necessary right. I am also a petitioner in this case, now being heard in the Supreme Court.
Absence of privacy legislation is also causing government missteps like the bizarre encryption policy it issued recently, which had to be taken back amidst public furore. The debate on privacy is gaining strength and momentum globally as well. As more and more Indians get online, the clamour for protection of their data and privacy will only grow. It would be unwise to ignore this.
Finally and most importantly Digital India requires significant investments from the private sector. While there is significant global interest amongst investors in Digital India, government responses in recent times to net neutrality, the porn ban saga and encryption policy highlight the large gap between the vision of Digital India and its execution.
To make real the Digital India vision and of taking government and services to a billion Indians via the internet, Trai, DoT and DeitY have to be transformed with the specialised capacity required to deal with technology policy making and regulation. Government needs to reverse its current struggling and muddling through trial and error; it must race ahead of the curve through smart policy and leadership.
The writer is a Rajya Sabha MP and technology entrepreneur
DISCLAIMER : Views expressed above are the author's own.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Modi And - Good Governance- And Modi

                            Modi And Good Governance 
                               Good Governance And Modi

       Good intentions bring desired results. New government under PM Modi voted to power for giving good governance. Public posed their faith in Modi and gave him mandate. PM Modi has proved his well intends. Public belief in Modi is still intact. They are hopeful that promises made in elections for ‘Achhe Din’ (AD) will be a reality sooner than later.
        PM Modi believes in minimum government and maximum governance. It shows his inclination, intention and commitment for providing good governance in letter and spirit. His orientation towards and practice for good governance as Gujrat CM is foundation for public to put their  faith in him for providing it at national level. As a result, Indian voters mandated him and gave  chance to repeat his practice at national forum. 
       The first stage of AD is completed now. The required environment for bringing AD is prepared by now. But, PM Modi needs a path correction and change in focus to convert his ideas and plans into ground reality. Otherwise public is in no mood to wait for long as already one and half year has been given to him to show his performance. 
       The start of anything decides its end. The outset of Modi government is upto the mark. He planned well. His team launched many programs, schemes, and projects meticulously. Make in India, Digital India and skill India are some acts to prove the point. 
      JAM( Jan-Dhan, Adhar, Mobile) is an effort to reach the masses with the help of technology. It helps to reach the right person to provide them social benefits meant for them without leakage.  DBT (Direct-Benefit-Transfer) is tried successfully to transfer gas subsidy directly into the account of beneficiaries. Still a lot has to be done. Lack of adequate banking facilities in rural areas are big hurdles.
      PM Modi’s planning part is ok except some exceptions. India being an agrarian country, Agriculture sector and farmers need more attention. Our farmers are backbone for our country. But, by now, they are not given any such thing to make them happy and to make them feel a change due to change in power at Delhi. This is a big lack on governance part.
       Modi has changed the gloomy environment into a positive one. He made India more visible worldwide by well organised frequent foreign tours. He marketed the might and strength of India to attract the countries' attentions towards it. Developed countries are looking at us as future power center on world map. The United Nations is considering seriously our claim for permanent seat in Security Council. All such positive changes are due to hectic and tireless efforts of PM Modi.
       Now there is a question and we need to find its answer. Is public satisfied with acts and outcomes of new government? Its answer is 75% yes while 25% no. But no answer will increase if course of correction in not taken immediately.
      Modi has to shift his focus. Plan-Prepare-Perform is a three step formula to achieve the desired results. His Plan and Prepare part is over now. He must change and fix up his efforts on third part to Perform. The share of Plan and Prepare is 20% each. Rest 60% is for Perform of three-steps result-oriented process.
       Perform is the most difficult part. It is hard and tense part of three stages. This third stage is like appearing in exam in a tight time bound framework. Public has full faith in Modi’s ability and capabilities to perform.
       Government performs through its ministries by producing different public goods and social products. To get desired results, ministries’ progress and performance be evaluated on monthly basis on different outcomes to achieve timely and quality results on ground otherwise it would be on paper.
       If ministries are forced to appear in monthly test, they are bound to perform. A tight and scientific monthly monitoring mechanism -test-will compel the minister and bubus to give desired outcomes otherwise they have to go as consequences.
       Therefore, it is imperative for PM Modi to stare his focus on third step that is how to Perform by rigorous monitoring. If it is done, it will lead him to fulfil the promises  made during elections for bringing AD by converting ideas on paper into a ground reality.
      Pubic waited patiently for one and half year while he was busy in planning, preparing and making conducive envirnoment. Now any delay in performance will make them impatient and their faith will come down sharply. So, PM has to walk the talk via rigorous monthly monitoring system to live up to the expectations of the public as he promised.
       No doubt, performance is not  an easy task. But,  a well planned frequent monitoring of works will fetch desired results. It will force non-performing bubus to act upon as needed. Experiences teach us, it is the monitoring part where we lack grossly. As a result, our plan and preparation are not converted into desired results.
       A system and mechanism must be placed for result oriented monitoring. This is need of hour. The system should have IIM graduates and world class institutions’ pass outs bright managers in key positions with clearly defined roles and responsibilities.             
        Now, Babus  are monitoring babus. Examnees and examiners are same. Such system will survise at the cost of efficiency and effectiveness. But, it will not procudce required social products to fullfil poll promises. Hence, this needs a change. Our professional managers monitor our babus in order to get the desired results on ground.


Sunday, August 9, 2015

Land Bill and Land Acquisition: A Model Making All Happy

The Modi government has abandoned its move to drastically dilute the clauses of the 2013 land acquisition law that has stalled projects across India. Economic analyses suggest that 43% of all stalled projects face land acquisition problems. This may not be the only constraint: such projects are also constrained by lack of profitability and difficulties in getting finance. Nevertheless, land remains a major hurdle.
The Modi government’s failure to push through a new law to hasten acquisitions means that future projects may get delayed by three-five years because of time-consuming procedures mandated by the 2013 law. These include a social impact assessment (SIA), scrutiny by an expert committee, obtaining the consent of 70-80% of affected people, and a detailed relief and rehabilitation programme.
But even as arguments rage in New Delhi on the pros and cons of the 2013 act, Andhra Pradesh chief minister Chandrababu Naidu has found a way round the problem to build a new capital city on 34,000 acres of farmland. His strategy has been to make all farmers stakeholders in the new capital, so that they voluntarily “pool” their land with the city development agency. Once the city is developed in a decade, they will get back almost 30% of their pooled land as ultra-expensive city land. This enables them to see the new city as a road to prosperity, not deprivation (as happened in Singur or POSCO’s mining area in Odisha).

Naidu also offers farmers a monthly payment per acre as high or higher than the going leasing rate for farmland. Farm loans up to Rs 1.5 lakh will be waived. Landless labourers will get a monthly pension of Rs 2,500. Low-cost canteens and skill-development centres have been opened to train farmers in new occupations. The employment guarantee scheme is supposed to provide work every day of the year. All these benefits put together will cost a tiny fraction of the cost of acquisition, so the government also gains hugely.
The new capital is being built in the fertile Krishna-Godavari area where land today costs one to two crore per acre. Naidu has persuaded farmers that, when the city develops, land will be worth Rs 8-9 crore per acre. Prices are far higher in Hyderabad. So, farmers have surrendered their land voluntarily, expecting a windfall when they get back developed land. Till then, they have a reliable cash flow from monthly government payments, plus opportunities for skilling and taking up other work.
This drives home the point that farming is not very attractive. Many farmers want to quit provided they get favourable terms. Pastoral romantics claim that farmers are wedded to agriculture, especially in fertile multi-cropped areas. That romantic view has been punctured spectacularly in the Krishna-Godavari belt, among the most fertile areas in India.
Naidu will give owners of double-cropped land 1,000 sq yards of residential and 200 sq yards of commercial land for every acre of pooled farmland. In addition they will get an annuity (paid in monthly instalments) starting at Rs 30,000 per year and rising by Rs 3,000 annually for 10 years.
Owners of triple-cropped land will get a better deal: 1,000 sq yards of residential land and 450 sq yards of commercial land for every acre pooled. They will also get an annuity starting at Rs 50,000 per year, rising by Rs 5,000 annually for a decade. After 10 years the city will be fully developed, and all farmers will have become city landlords, workers or businessmen.
Around 400 farmers with 700 acres of land have opposed pooling and gone to the courts, claiming they will get a better deal under the 2013 acquisition law. Naidu has offered them free choice between pooling and acquisition, confident that most will ultimately prefer pooling. Against all odds, he has converted a problem into a solution.
He now proposes pooling for a new airport near Vishakhapatnam. Pooling can be used wherever land prices shoot up after development. It may not work for railway lines, that don’t increase local land values much. But it will work for most other projects.
Other states must study Naidu’s example, and adapt pooling for their own use. The key to success is that the scheme is voluntary, and makes farmers stakeholders in development.
This is not just good politics, or a clever way to facilitate economic development. It is also ethical development. When governments deprive people forcibly of property, that is an act of aggrandisement that should be prohibited save in exceptional, unavoidable circumstances. The first priority must be to make all transactions voluntary.
Politicians cannot be expected to put ethics first. But Naidu has proved it possible to combine ethics, good politics and rapid development. Rarely does that happen.