Dr Jitendra calls for change of mindset to avail StartUp opportunities

Union Minister Dr Jitendra Singh speaking at the Conclave in Kathua on Saturday.
Union Minister Dr Jitendra Singh speaking at the Conclave in Kathua on Saturday.

‘Pak creating unnecessary controversies on IWT’

Excelsior Correspondent
KATHUA, Jan 28 : Accusing Pakistan of creating unnecessary controversies over Indus Water Treaty (IWT), Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Science & Technology, Dr Jitendra Singh today made it clear that the Treaty does not debar India to make water for non consumption use.
Talking to reporters here today on the sidelines of inauguration of two-day young Start-Up Conclave, Dr Jitendra Singh alleged that the neighboring country has from time to time created controversies on Indus Water Treaty which has never been violated by India since it was signed by two riparian countries in 1960.
Dr Jitendra Singh said under this treaty the water of Sindh, Jhelum and Chenab is utilized by Pakistan while that of Ravi, Beas and Sutlej is utilized by India. But the treaty does not debar India for making non consumption use of water of three rivers including Jhelum, Sindh and Chenab.
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He accused Pakistan of creating hurdles in construction of power projects in J&K.
Dr Jitendra Singh said instead the unutilized water of Ravi river was flowing to Pakistan due to failure of previous Governments in constructing Shahpur Kandi Project which was delayed for over four decades.
He said credit goes to Prime Minister, Narendra Modi who took an initiative in getting the MoU signed between J&K and Punjab Government over the much talked about Shahpur Kandi project and work on it was started.
He said the first phase of the project will start functioning soon. He said the Pakistan has unnecessarily raked up the issue of Rattle and Kishan Ganga Projects despite the fact that India has not blocked the water from flowing to neighboring country.
He regretted that work on Rattle Project was stopped by previous Governments for eight long years and now it has been resumed under joint venture of Centre and UT Government and work is going on it in accordance with Indus Water Treaty.
Earlier addressing the conclave of Young StartUP Conclave, organised by CSIR, Dr Jitendra Singh called for change of mindset to avail StartUp opportunities knocking at their door.
He said the Government job mind-set is proving an impediment to StartUp culture, mainly in this part of the country.
Referring to the success stories of some of the young StartUps participating in the Kathua Conclave today, including two B-Techs IT and one Mechanical Engineer, who quit their Corporate jobs to launch StartUp ventures, Dr Jitendra Singh pointed out that “Purple Revolution” spearheaded through CSIR became a part of the Republic Day Parade Tableaux in the national capital and thus earned countrywide recognition and popularity.
Dr Jitendra Singh pointed out that the ‘Purple Revolution’ originating from Jammu & Kashmir offers attractive StartUp avenues and those who have entered the lavender sector are making a fortune out of it. He said, it is important to take note of some of the exemplary instances of many young entrepreneurs who are seen quitting their lucrative jobs in the MNCs to establish their own Start-Ups, as they are now beginning to realise the possibility of greater fortunes in this.
The Minister also underlined that J&K has huge unexplored potential of Agri-Tech StartUps as the geographical and climatic conditions here favour the cultivation of medicinal and aromatic plants.
Dr Jitendra Singh informed that the Biotech Kisan Hub has rejuvenated over 40 orchards till date in Jammu and Kashmir under rejuvenation of apple orchards, where a very innovative methodology has been used to transform the old orchards. The Minister promised full help by DBT and CSIR for setting up of Agritech Start-ups.
Dr Jitendra Singh said that the Start-Up ecosystem in India has gathered momentum since Prime Minister Narendra Modi gave the slogan of Start-Up India and Stand-Up India from the ramparts of the Red Fort on August 15 in 2015. He said from 350 odd Start-Ups in 2014, the number swelled to 75,000 in August, 2022 and now stands at over 88,000 spread across 653 districts and generated more than nine lakh job opportunities in the country. The Minister said India is also home to 107 Unicorns and 23 of them emerged in 2022 itself, a sign of India’s rapid upward ride on STI (Science, Technology & Innovation) ladder.
The Minister pointed out that a new wave of Agri-tech Start-Ups has emerged in the country in the last few years and these Start-Ups are solving problems related to supply of chain management, cooling and refrigeration, seed management and distribution, besides helping farmers to access a wider range of markets.
In the next 25 years of Amrti-Kal, said Dr Jitendra Singh, Jammu & Kashmir and several hill territories as well as the Himalayan States are going to make a significant value edition to build India’s future economy because these are the territories whose resources have remained under-utilised in the past. With Prime Minister, Narendra Modi giving a focused attention to these areas, they are going to play a pivotal role in placing India on the world pedestal by 2047, he said.
Earlier, Dr. Singh also took round of the StartUp kiosks set up by the entrepreneurs of J&K, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab and other parts of the country besides the models setup by the students from different educational institutions of Kathua.
DDC Vice Chairman Raghunandan Singh Babloo, Director CSIR-IIIM, Jammu Dr D. Srinivasa Reddy, DC Kathua, . Rahul Pandey, SSP Kathua, . Shivdeep Singh Jamwal and Principal GDC Kathua, Prof Somnesh Jasrotia were present in the conclave.
The conclave witnessed the presence of renowned entrepreneurs, industry leaders, academicians, representatives of leading venture capital firms, incubators and accelerators.
During the conclave, the local progressive farmers also shared their success stories and experience and expressed gratitude to CSIR for making it possible through proper hand holding and considerable support in their endeavours.