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New Delhi: Providing a leg-up to the rapidly growing developer community in India, Microsoft-owned GitHub has announced a grant of 1 crore to support and fund India-based open source maintainers and contributors working on building world-class software using open source tools.

“Running and maintaining a software project requires a lot of time and money investment. We have actually taken support from the community itself, to help us identify these open source projects that we can support," Maneesh Sharma, country manager, GitHub told Mint.

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Kannan Moudgalya, professor at IIT Bombay, Neeta Verma, director general of National Informatics Centre (NIC) and Amit Ranjan, former founder of SlideShare and architect of national DigiLocker Project will help GitHub identify the open source projects that deserve the grant.

The grant would also drive up company’s growing engagement with India’s developer community. According to Erica Brescia, chief operating officer, GitHub, over 1.8 million developers in India have joined GitHub in 2020, bringing the total number of developers on the platform to 5.8 million. Brescia expects that by February 2023 the number in India is likely to grow to 10 million developers.

“When we look at public open source repositories specifically, the number of contributions increased by 80% over the previous year, and that makes India the fastest growing country in the world in terms of new developers contributing to open source," Brescia added.

The company has also seen a three times increase in enterprise adoption of GitHub platform in India.

In addition to the grant, GitHub has also announced an externship program, which will provide students the opportunity to engage with corporations in India through fellowship programs and build the right skills. GitHub has also tied up with NASSCOM FutureSkills program, which aims at reskilling and upskilling two million professionals from the current IT workforce. Under the partnership, GitHub will extend their Campus Program and Student Developer Pack to students, educators and institutes that are a part of NASSCOM’s university initiatives.

“The bedrock of GitHub is open source, and we want to help build that culture a lot more with not only the current software developers but also with the next generation of software developers," said Sharma.

In the last year, more than 100 higher education institutions have joined GitHub's educational program, while number of students participating in the campus program has grown by 142%. So far, more than 100,000 students in India have redeemed the GitHub Student Developer Pack.

Further, the company is extending its GitHub Accelerate Program to more startup accelerators, incubators and venture partners in India. The program will now be open for more than 1,000 startups in India in the coming year.

Sharma points out, startups are going to be the next generation of enterprise. While every other company is becoming a software company, tech startups are actually starting off as a software company from day zero. The purpose of launching these programs is to engage with the community a lot more.

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