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Delhi Decoded: How to make Delhi more startup friendly?

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has held consultations with experts to get their ideas and suggestions on the government's startup policy initiative. (ANI)Premium
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has held consultations with experts to get their ideas and suggestions on the government's startup policy initiative. (ANI)

  • Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal met a panel of industry leaders and young entrepreneurs last week kickstarting the consultation process for Delhi's new policy for startups
  • After these consultations, the government will post its draft startup policy online for people to share their feedback

NEW DELHI: Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal held a meeting last week with a panel of industry leaders, young entrepreneurs to kickstart the consultation process for Delhi's new policy for startups. The idea was to discuss ways to develop Delhi as a leading choice for startups.

According to a report by TiE from September 2019 there are over 7,000 startups from Delhi, which makes it the highest number of active startups in the country. These companies combined have a valuation of about $50 billion. The report states that Delhi-NCR is set to become one of the top five global startup hubs with 12,000 start-ups, 30 unicorns, and a cumulative valuation of about $150 billion by 2025.

In this podcast, Tarun Bhalla, founder of Avishkaar, which is a startup in West Delhi’s 110015, was a part of the meeting with the Delhi chief minister last week. Avishkaar is an ed-tech startup which works on robotics and coding education.

“It was a thoughtful and diverse meeting. The audience was very diverse. My suggestions came from what the on-ground challenges that I faced. We need to be given access to capital. It becomes more true after covid-19. For a company to take it to the next level, they need capital and that is the underlying force behind everything. That is where we lack in Delhi and across the country," Bhalla said while talking about his suggestions.

Some of the suggestions from investors and industry experts suggested included that mission sectors be created for Delhi on the kind of industry that should be created. Other suggestions include creating industry-academic partnerships, entrepreneurship programs for young professionals in Delhi and making Delhi’s physical infrastructure more conducive for startups to work.

“Covid-19 has made a lot of companies lose their sources of incomes. Delhi’s labour laws have around 17 regulations for production units. Minimum wage is also higher when compared to Gurgaon or Noida. While enforcement of labour laws is necessary but any savings this year are important. Delhi should look at doing away with the minimum wages act for a year," he said.

According to the state government, the objective of such a policy is to support entrepreneurs, build a robust economic and policy infrastructure that will create new jobs and bring new competitive dynamics into the current economic system.

In the first round of consultations, the chief minister met experts to get their ideas and suggestions on the initiative. Following these consultations, the government will release a draft startup policy which will be available online for people to send in their suggestions.

Delhi Decoded is a weekly podcast. You can listen to all the episodes: https://www.livemint.com/podcasts/national/mint-delhi-decoded-5006404

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