DST calls startups to develop innovative products to tackle Covid 19 second wave

The eligible startups & companies will be funded under a new initiative – NIDHI4COVID 2.0.
DST calls startups to develop innovative products to tackle Covid 19 second wave

As a rapid response to support startup-driven solutions for tackling the current challenging, second wave of Covid 2.0 in the country, the Department of Science and Technology, has invited Indian startups and companies to apply for developing new technologies and innovative products that can enable our country to fight the crisis. This initiative can be a game changer as India is importing major machinery and technology tackling Covid 19 crisis. Meanwhile, the last date to file applications is May 31.

NIDHI4COVID 2.0, a new initiative under which the companies can apply, will fund eligible startups & companies registered in India offering promising solutions in the thrust areas of oxygen innovation, portable solution, relevant medical accessories, diagnostic, informatics, or any other solution that addresses/mitigate various challenges faced by country/society due to the severe impact of COVID-19.

The initiative is a special drive of the National Science & Technology Entrepreneurship Development Board (NSTEDB), Department of Science & Technology (DST), Government of India (GoI) for supporting indigenous solutions and innovative products to combat the crisis that the country is currently facing due to the pandemic.

Development and manufacturing (import substitution) of the products parts currently being imported for the devices like Oxygen Concentrators and so on would also be considered for Seed Support through DST supported network of TBIs. Promising startups will be provided with financial and mentoring support for scaling up their products/technologies to the next level and speeding up their processes, helping them reach the product deployment stage as fast as possible.

This initiative has been built based on NSTEDB's past experience of implementing Centre for Augmenting WAR with COVID-19 Health Crisis (CAWACH) and also through special calls through National Initiative for Developing and Harnessing Innovations - Seed Support System (NIDHI - SSS) from Technology business incubators (TBI) to support Startups in 2020.

Prof Ashutosh Sharma, Secretary, DST, said, “Supporting development of devices like Oxygen Concentrators also brings with it huge opportunities in the development and manufacturing of several critical components that are being imported such as specialized valves, zeolite materials, oil-less and noiseless miniaturized compressors, gas sensors, etc. which have wider applications in several sectors.”

In the current situation, startups can play a major role in bringing new technologies and products in the market, thus making our country stronger at various fronts against the ongoing war on COVID. Some of the startups already have promising technologies but need mentoring, financial, and marketing support to go to the next level. Thus, DST's attempt through this new initiative is to scout and support deserving startups with much-needed support to scale up their technologies, helping them reach the product deployment stage as fast as possible.

Interested applicants can log on to centralized portal: https://dstnidhi4covid.in till May 31, 2021. Details on eligibility conditions, applicants can visit https://dstnidhi4covid.in/

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