The Karnataka IT and BT department has launched 'Grand Challenge-Karnataka' to encourage startups to come out with innovative solutions to reduce traffic congestion and solve water problem faced in the IT hub of Bengaluru. The cherry-picked ideas will get access to funding and go through prototyping, testing and scaling up in Bengaluru. Anyone from any discipline in India including individuals, researchers and faculty in colleges, universities, government laboratories, institutions to start-ups and Not-for-profit organisations can apply for the Grand Challenge by logging onto www.call5.impact-karnataka.org.
'Grand Challenge Call 5' will focus primarily on technology innovations involving last-mile connectivity, real-time info on public transport, ease of transition from one mode of transport to the other and innovative parking solutions. Minister for IT, BT & Tourism Priyank Kharge said "When we think of the future of transport, we have a tendency to picture a world in which people fly around on personal jetpacks and cars levitating down streets. In reality, the way we get around, in the short and medium term at least, will be a little less sci-fi than that. But it will still involve some truly revolutionary changes." He said that while 'Grand Challenge Call 5’ is an attempt to create a big picture from small solutions,‘Grand Challenge Call 6’ is a rallying cry to unearth innovative solutions to aide water conservation in Karnataka, the ‘Call 6’ to generate and utilise real-time data on quality and quantity of water being utilised at individual level including water use in agriculture for predicting a potential water crisis." "This creates opportunity for startups, which can contribute to creating a sustainable water supply and participate in investments likely to experience long-term growth," the Minister added.