July 14, 2024

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Atal Innovation Mission Celebrates Community Innovator Fellows Graduation Alongside Launch Of ‘Stories Of Change Edition 2’.

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New Delhi, Delhi, 5th of July, 2024 : Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) at NITI Aayog marked a momentous occasion on July 5th 2024, celebrating the graduation of its second batch of Community Innovator Fellows (CIFs). The event also marked the launch of ‘Stories of Change Edition 2 – focused on people who dare to live their passion to make the change that is needed for the world to be a better place’. Underscoring AIM’s unwavering commitment to nurturing grassroots innovation and fostering entrepreneurial spirit across India, the participants witnessed the culmination of a transformative journey. AIM, through its Atal Community Innovation Centers (ACIC) program has envisaged to serve the unserved/underserved areas of the country and provide support to every grassroots innovator and work towards accelerating the pathway to reach SDGs 2030.

The event witnessed profound insights from distinguished speaker. Anurag Pratap Singh, Vice President & CSR Leader at Capgemini India, who eloquently emphasized the catalytic role of collaborative partnerships in driving local innovation and societal progress.

These innovators serve as role models not only for their communities but also for society at large. I’m delighted to witness each business prosper—it’s like shaping raw gold into a precious jewel. Their journey has been commendable, highlighting their potential to drive impactful change with continued support and facilitation. Mr. Singh said.

Dr. Suresh Reddy, Lead CSR & Director at SRF Foundation, reflected on the impact of social entrepreneurship in addressing community challenges. He commended the CIFs for their innovative solutions and dedication to creating sustainable change.

The core value is to “be your own master.” NITI Aayog has provided ample opportunities for startups from the grassroots level through initiatives like ATL, Incubation Centers, and ACIC Centers, fostering community building. By coming together, and not in isolation, we can promote sustainability, drive innovation, and build a strong, resilient nation.” Dr. Reddy said.

Dr. Chintan Vaishnav, Mission Director, AIM, delivered a keynote address, celebrating the CIF program for empowering innovators in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities. He underscored the program’s pivotal role in advancing solutions across healthcare, education, agriculture, and financial services, resonating deeply with the ethos of sustainable development.

“We have now established robust institutions that seamlessly integrate business incubation with academia. This well-designed project aspires to be a model of excellence. What sets the Community Innovator apart is their deep connection to, and understanding of, community issues. This initiative captures the aspirations of youth eager to go beyond traditional boundaries in innovation and startups. It embodies both rigor and relevance, truly inspiring in its mission and impact.” Dr. Vaishnav said

The event culminated with the highly anticipated launch of ‘Stories of Change Edition 2’ This anthology showcases the captivating narratives of grassroots innovators within the AIM ecosystem, each story a testament to resilience, creativity, and transformative impact.

Some of the unique stories in the compendium include:

  • Stanzin Jorden’s Ladakh Basket initiative celebrates Ladakh’s rich cultural heritage by promoting local craftsmanship and sustainable livelihoods. Through collaborations with farmers and artisans, Ladakh Basket showcases indigenous products that resonate with authenticity and quality.
  • MeMeraki, founded by Yosha Gupta in Mumbai, blends technology with traditional craftsmanship to revive India’s heritage arts. This ‘culture-tech’ platform empowers artisans by digitizing their skills, offering global exposure, and creating sustainable economic opportunities.
  • Atul Kumar’s Shilpkaari initiative in Ranchi and Bankura supports tribal artisans by providing a platform for their handmade crafts. From Dhokra art to bamboo crafts, Shilpkaari preserves cultural traditions while promoting artistic expression and generating livelihoods.
  • Biren Singh’s Power Handloom innovation in Manipur modernizes traditional fabric production. This revolutionary machine enhances productivity while honoring centuries- old weaving techniques, empowering local weavers and boosting the regional textile industry.
  • Ram Milan’s ingenious Cycle Driven Rice DE Husking Machine from Gorakhpur addresses rural India’s need for efficient rice husking without electricity. This pedal- powered innovation not only saves time and labor for farmers but also promotes sustainable agricultural practices.

The event concluded with heartfelt reflections from the CIFs and innovators, who shared personal anecdotes and insights into their entrepreneurial journeys. Their stories echo a resounding message of hope, resilience, and the transformative power of grassroots innovations.

  About Atal Innovation Mission:

Atal Innovation Mission, a flagship initiative by NITI Aayog, catalyzes innovation-driven entrepreneurship across India. By empowering innovators and fostering collaborative ecosystems, AIM accelerates societal progress and cultivates a future defined by innovation excellence.

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