PM Modi’s Start-Up India programme takes off

RSTV Bureau
File photo of Finance Minister Arun Jaitley. Photo-PTI

Photo of Finance Minister Arun Jaitley at the Start-Up India conference in Delhi
Photo-PTI

At a day-long event, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the government’s flagship Start-Up India programme on Saturday evening.

While addressing the closing session of the conference, PM Modi announced a series of measures to encourage start-ups in India.

He announced a start-up fund of Rs. 10,000 crore and a waiver of capital gains tax for startups and made significant announcement:

“There will be no income tax on start-ups’ profits for three years,” PM Modi said while lauding entrepreneurs.

“We need to bring in a psychological change in mindset of youths from that of a job-seeker to that of a job-creator,” PM Modi said at the mega event at Vigyan Bhawan.

App-based registration for companies, minimal government interference and a break away from the license raj regime were some of the other key announcements made by the Prime Minister.

“Those who begin startups, money is a byproduct for them. They want to make difference to people’s lives…If it gives jobs to 5 people, a startup is taking my country forward,” said PM Modi at the event where hundreds of startup entrepreneurs were present.

Earlier in the day, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced that the government was set to initiate a number of measures to provide a start-up friendly tax regime. And the measures would be announced in the forthcoming budget, which is just a month away. The government also said that it was working on easing the process of doing business in India.

“We have already worked upon an entrepreneur-friendly taxation regime. There are some steps, which can be taken up by notifications, which would be taken forthwith. Others require legislative provisions, which can only come as part of the Finance Bill when Budget is presented in order to create a friendly taxation regime for startups,” Jaitley said at the Start Up India conference in Delhi.

The Finance Minister also assured startup entrepreneurs that both the banking system and the government will make the necessary resources available to them.

“What is then going to be the key difference once this start-up movement picks up? If I put it in a very simple sentence, it’s going to be the eventual freedom from the state that Indian entrepreneurship will now enjoy. It will only be a limited support of the state in terms of its programmes so that there is an easier availability of capital, there is a friendly tax regime which is available and there is an unleashing of the energies of an Indian entrepreneur,” Jaitley explained.

“Another very significant difference of what makes it a landmark event is a final break or the ultimate break that you have with the conventional licence raj of India,” he added while explaining how the break off from the license raj in 1991 was only partial.

On the economic front, Jaitley observed that India has its own challenges despite being the fastest growing large economy in the world.

“Unquestionably, the world economy has slowed down. Now we can take a limited satisfaction that even in a crisis like situation in the world, we are growing much faster. The world recognises us as probably the fastest growing among the major economies, but then we are not without our own challenges,” he said.

Several entrepreneurs and investors, both from India and abroad, converged at the mega conference in Delhi. They exchanged views with government officials on various aspects of start-up culture and policies related to it.

The Start-Up India vision was first announced by PM Modi five months ago during his speech at the Red Fort on Independence Day.

(With inputs from PTI)