Prime Minister Narendra Modi today virtually inaugurated the Bengaluru Tech Summit 2020. The three-day event is the 23rd annual edition of the summit held in India's IT capital. With the coronavirus pandemic, it is also the first one being held virtually.
"At the peak of the lockdown, it was technology that ensured that India's poor received proper and quick assistance. The scale of this relief has few parallels," the Prime Minister said.
He said it is time for tech solution designed in India, to be deployed for the world.
"Global lockdowns and travel restrictions have constrained people inside their homes, away from their places of work. At such a time, the resilience of our tech sector was seen. Our tech sector came into action and used tech solutions to keep work going on from home or anywhere," he said.
At the time of a pandemic, technology plays a greater role than ever, and the Bengaluru Tech Summit is an attempt to gain an edge for Karnataka and India. In keeping with the current global situation, the inauguration combined elements of the actual presence of state leaders in addition to the virtual address by the Prime Minister.
Karnataka has been a leader in the information technology and biotechnology field. Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa highlighted what the state has done to make itself attractive to those in the industry.
"We are keen on making Karnataka the most attractive destination for investment, particularly for high-end technologies," he said.
"Amendments to labour laws and land laws, establishment of Karnataka Digital Economy Mission, setting up of Karnataka Innovation Authority, are some major stepped. The newly released IT policy of Karnataka shows the aim to generate over 60 lakh direct and indirect jobs in the next 5 years."
Industry representatives recognised that the Covid crisis is a major opportunity for new approaches.
Biocon chief Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, who was part of the inauguration, said, "Whether it is diagnostics, vaccines, therapy or telehealth, I think technology has been the saviour for us in this pandemic. For Karnataka, this has also unleashed a huge potential for start-up companies to imagine what the future looks like. It has also opened up a number of exciting cutting edge opportunities for various technology sectors from AI (Artificial intelligence), data analytics to crisper gene editing technologies that are helping us address growing disease challenges."
25 countries are participating in this year's events and 12 memoranda of understanding will be signed.