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HomeNewsDefenceStartup Odisha chief calls for greater collaboration in tech sector to bolster defence technology development

Startup Odisha chief calls for greater collaboration in tech sector to bolster defence technology development

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Dr. Omkar Rai, Executive Chairman, Startup Odisha, has called for a more collaborative approach in leveraging India's IT industry to foster the development of defence technologies.

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Dr. Omkar Rai, Executive Chairman, , has called for a more collaborative approach in leveraging India's IT industry to foster the development of defence technologies. Speaking at the National Summit 2023, Rai stressed the growing significance of the IT industry in India, an industry that now employs close to six million people and offers cutting-edge services to customers globally.

“The IT industry of India has moved up in the value chain, transforming India into a hub for delivering cutting-edge technology development services,” Dr. Rai said, referring to the Aadhaar programme, the world's largest biometric-based identity system, as an example of the immense potential of collaboration between the IT industry and government.

“It was the IT industry of India that came into action and [this] world's largest biometric-based identity system was created,” he said.

The Aadhaar initiative has significantly streamlined the Know Your Customer (KYC) processes and revolutionised the way bank accounts are set up. Dr. Rai called for greater collaboration among the central government, state governments, armed forces, startups, and academia to harness this potential further.

Dr. Rai, who was formerly the Director General of Software Technology Parks of India, also urged stakeholders to “focus on collaboration.” Such collaboration, he stated, could not only “indigenise the defence requirement” but also foresee upcoming needs. The aim is to capitalise on the talent, enthusiasm, and knowledge the IT industry and the startup ecosystem offer, using these to bolster the nation's defence capabilities.

“Collaboration, with the goal to indigenise, is what will empower India to become an exporter of defence technology,” he said, highlighting the potential of the Indian IT sector.

Before his tenure at Startup , as DG STPI Rai had contributed to the development of 25 centres of excellence across the country. These centres, founded on the principles of collaborative innovation, were born from a mix of industry professionals, academia, and young innovators.

Lauding the positive changes brought about by this collaborative method and highlighting the government's ambitious IDEX programme, Rai underscored the need to democratise such initiatives, extending them to every ecosystem across the country.

Dr. Rai also announced that Startup Odisha is planning to launch its own Corporate Innovation Platform. This platform will be digitally driven and and ML empowered. It aims to open up opportunities for stakeholders and ecosystem players nationwide.

“Startup Odisha is coming up with its own Corporate Innovation Platform. We are going to open this platform for all the stakeholders and the ecosystem players from all over the country,” Dr. Rai said.

He stressed that the Odisha government, which currently hosts close to 2000 startups and provides four lakh square feet of incubation space, is keen on driving policy and embracing new innovation.

Dr. Rai reiterated the need for a unified approach in visualising and realising India's technological requirements for today and tomorrow. With the immense talent, technical infrastructure, and the core knowledge system that India possesses, Rai said he believes in the nation's potential to become a leading exporter of defence technology.

“We are delivering R&D services to our customers and partners from Silicon Valley, Europe, and across the world. Let's understand this capacity and talent we have and work together to build a secure future for our country,” he said.

He emphasised the potential of the Indian IT sector to make this vision a reality and the role that collaborative innovation can play in ensuring India's secure future.

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Tech Observer Desk
Tech Observer Desk at TechObserver.in is a team of technology reporters led by a senior editor who brings latest updates and developments from the world of technology.
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