During the last two years, 10 proposals from Coimbatore have got funding under the programme that assists development of an innovative idea into a prototype or a workable model.
Pratap Singh, Scientist, Department of Scientific and Industrial Research, told The Hindu here recently that over 7,000 ideas had come to the department since the launch of the programme almost a decade ago. The actual proposals received from potential innovators were 2,000 and 500 of these were funded. Nearly 200 of these projects were completed and 26 of the successfully developed prototypes were now start-ups.
More than 50 projects from Tamil Nadu were funded and several of these were for agro-based products. The department had established 29 outreach centres in the country, including four in Tamil Nadu, to create awareness about the programme, receive proposals, and recommend these to the department.
In 2008-2009, Rs. 6.5 crore was provided under the programme. Mr. Singh said the identified innovators also participated in training and capacity-building sessions. “The hand-holding is almost for two years,” he said. From instant-rasam to space technology, the programme supported innovation in any segment.