For recognized incubators or startups keen to buy or rent spaceproperty, the state has proposed a 100% waiver on stamp duty and registration fees on their first transaction and 50% on the second. The provision is part of a draft policy now in the public domain.
In a bid to encourage small businesses and budding entrepreneurs, the state has planned a range of funding and fiscal concessions and infrastructure support in the draft of its Innovation and Startup Policy which has been put online for suggestion and objections till May 8.
A process of self-certification under various Acts (see graphic), thus doing away with the need to seek approvals, is among the highlights.The policy envisages at least six incubators with support staff and high-speed internet lines across the state, some of them dedicated to specific sectors, based on the economic activity of various regions. For instance, in a cotton-growing belt in Vidarbha, it is likely that the state will encourage innovation and enterprise in allied areas such as textiles.
To enable ease in doing business, a single window system is proposed for permissions and licenses; timeframe for clearances are sought to be brought down to 12 days. However, the most significant component is the effort to establish a linkage with campuses. The policy proposes to enable students to use their start-up plans as project studies or to seek grace marks or offset their work on a startup against required attendance in college.
“Generally startups require monetary resources and human resources to function. In this policy we have looked at providing several fiscal benefits as well given emphasis on encouraging innovation in the school and college years by proposing to revamp the education system,” said Deepak Kapoor, Principal Secretary, HRD.
Academicians welcomed the move. Indu Shahani, founder, ISME, said, “Relaxation of 20% attendance of students and grace marks of 5% is a welcome move…to foster an entrepreneurial mindset.” Sandip Jha, chairman, Sandip University, said, “It is a very encouraging move that will motivate students…but institutes should also provide similar opportunities for students.” Gaurang Shetty, chief innovation catalyst RiiDL, Somaiya Vidyavihar, said, “This initiative to support startups is a must…we motivate students to start early and try things when they are in college…we have over 17 startups and 40+ students working in Fablab riidl (Research Innovation Design Laboratory) which is backed by Somaiya Vidyavihar and Department of Science and Technology, Government of India.”
Maharashtra is not the first state to draw up a Start-up Policy. Telangana and Gujarat have already released their respective Innovation and Start up Policies and allocated funding as well. “What makes the Start-up and Innovation policy of Maharashtra unique is that it has a balance of funding, skill development and setting up of incubation centers in 12 selected sectors which are inherently job creators like Manufacturing & Production, Chemical, Construction, Textiles and Information Technology . It will set Maharashtra on the right path to become a Trillion Dollar State by 2025,” said Prof Dr Uday Salunkhe, group director, WeSchool.
Read More : TOI