Thiruvananthapuram, April 21: Karnataka’s Information Technology Department has launched a challenge among startups to come up with innovative solutions to tackle malnutrition and calorie-protein micronutrient deficiencies in children and adults. The last date for Grand Challenge Four applications is May 31, and details can be viewed at www.impact-karnataka.org.
This move has been taken with a vision of solving malnutrition and deficiencies through the testing of technology and scaling up of delivery systems. Information Technology BiotechnologyMinister ITBT Priyank Kharge said this was the fourth grand challenge launched by the state under its startup policy to channelize innovations for social impact among startups.
Minister Priyank Kharge said that we hope that at the end of two years we will have the required system, which will fill the vacuum in the Indian market for affordable and nutrient-rich food that will appeal to all age groups and genders at the bottom of the pyramid. The state government aims to use the vibrant startup ecosystem that exists in the state to drive innovation with the help of technology to find workable and scalable solutions to society’s challenges, while at the same time supporting the growth of startups, Kharge added.
IT Principal Secretary Gaurav Gupta said that “This fourth challenge has been formulated with the help of the Karnataka Comprehensive Nutrition Mission. The challenge aims to propel innovations in the area of effective delivery of low-cost, energy-dense, and nutrition-rich dietary supplements.”
This model of Grand Challenge is aimed at highlighting five new challenges every year, and invites ideas to solve them. The winning ideas will be awarded an initial grant, and will also be provided with funds for a pilot project. The IT cell has set aside Rs 50 crore in all to reward startups for their innovative ideas.