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Bengaluru: Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a seed fund for startups, as part of which the government will give 1,000 crore to new entrepreneurs. "We are launching a 1,000 crore startup India seed fund to help new startups grow in the country. We are trying to create a startup system which is based on the mantra 'of the youth, by the youth, for the youth," Modi said at Startup India’s international summit, Prarambh, 2021, hosted by the department for promotion of industry and internal trade (DPIIT), ministry of commerce and industry, government of India.

The Startup India initiative was launched five years back.

Modi said there are over 41,000 startups in the country today and 44% of these ventures are officially recognised. Over 5700 startups in information technology (IT), around 3600 startups in healthcare and over 1700 agriculture-related startups.

“…These startups are changing the demographic character of business. India today is one of the biggest nations in the start-up ecosystem," he said.

Despite the pandemic-led disruption, 11 startups turned unicorns in 2020, with over 30 startups in India today valued at over $1 billion, Modi said, comparing it to just four unicorns in 2014.

“When large companies struggled to survive globally, amid the pandemic, startups powered India’s drive for being self-reliant. Startups stood up to meet different demands during the pandemic. From e-grocery to e-health, education to e-commerce, startups took care of everything and they are not just restricted to metros anymore. Startups powered India’s drive for being self-reliant amid the pandemic when major companies were thinking about survival," Modi said.

Union minister for railways, consumer affairs, commerce and industry Piyush Goyal on Friday, the first day of the two-day event, said that skill development will play an important role to give confidence to young entrepreneurs to surge through failures.

Goyal added that the present young generation has an immense entrepreneurial streak, as they look to be job creators instead of job seekers.

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