Kerala govt honours Kalam with challenge programme for youth


Kerala govt honours Kalam with challenge programme for youth

Trivandrum - State Chief Minister Oommen Chandy announced the programme called 'APJ Abdul Kalam Youth Challenge' on Independence Day.

By T K Devasia

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Published: Sun 16 Aug 2015, 12:00 AM

Last updated: Sun 16 Aug 2015, 2:02 PM

Taking its unique student entrepreneurship initiative to the next level, the Kerala government on Saturday announced a new youth programme in memory of former president, late APJ Abdul Kalam, to translate ideas of youth into viable industrial projects.
State Chief Minister Oommen Chandy announced the programme called 'APJ Abdul Kalam Youth Challenge' on Independence Day after inspecting the parade at the Central Stadium in the state capital in the morning.
Under the programme to be implemented by the Kerala State Council for Science, Technology and Environment students studying in any university in the state can individually or collectively participate in the challenge.
Ten groups that present the best industrial idea would get Rs500,000 each as cash prize. After one year, the group with the best idea would be given Rs5 million to take their idea to the implementation stage. The programme aims at creating at least one enterprise from state universities every year.
As part of the scheme, the government has decided to set up entrepreneurship development clubs in all higher educational institutions across the state. The government is also working on a master plan to create a billion-dollar campus for startups in the near future.
The student entrepreneurship scheme launched by the government two years ago with the basic objective of turning job seekers into job providers already offers a host of incentives like grace marks and break for one year to pursue their entrepreneurial dreams.
Chandy also declared Kerala as a 'complete digital state' and announced a slew of projects, including construction of houses for 100,000 shelterless, to mark the 69th Independence Day. The state was declared complete digital state based on 100 per cent mobile density, 75 per cent e-literacy, highest digital banking rate and broadband connection up to village level achieved by the government.
"Implementation of e-district programmes in all districts and linking of Aadhaar and bank accounts have laid a strong foundation for Digital Kerala. We will carry forward the initiative by setting up Wi-Fi hotspots in all local self government bodies and implementing complete mobile governance in the next phase", the chief minister said.
Detailing various programmes to be implemented in the state in the coming months, the chief minister said that the government would launch 21 toll-free mega roads and bridges projects costing Rs38 billion across the 14 districts of the state. Detailed project reports for 14 of these works would be ready next month.
Chandy also announced a Sustainable Development Council to ensure that the development did not hurt the environment. The council is intended to institutionalise conservation of natural resources even as the state strived for greater development.
The chief minister gave away the president's police medals, CM's police medals, fire and rescue medals, prison medals, forest medals, excise medals and transport medals besides medals for other meritorious service on the occasion.

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