Bangalore March 19, 2012: Google has joined hands with the Karnataka State Innovation Council (KSInC) to honor four agencies in the state under an “Innovation Karnataka” initiative.
The four innovators are:
Kanaja, an encyclopedic knowledge portal in Kannada, inspired by the Karnataka Knowledge Commission. Encouraging Kannada-speakers to increase their usage of online resources, it was created to compile all the data available in the Kannada language and disseminate knowledge, empowering Karnataka to be a vibrant knowledge society.
RedBus: People in India used to spend a lot of time queuing up for bus and train tickets. Today, Redbus allows people to buy tickets and check bus timetables online, even selecting their seats beforehand. The service, started in Bangalore, covers 4,500 routes across India. RedBus has also built an interface for bus operators to check timetables and number of sales.
mDhil: Timely access to healthcare information can save lives. With this in mind, mDhil set out to create an interactive and fun online portal providing basic health information via mobile phones and the web. The site also maintains a YouTube channel, which has attracted over 5.6 million views to date. It provides valuable information on sexual health, emotional wellness, cardiac health, fitness, and more. mDhil now regularly reaches more than 30,000 users a day, and the number is only set to grow radically as more users access the Internet.
Sakala: Improved delivery of government services and procurement process are essential to Karnataka’s growth. In Kannada, Sakala means ‘in-time’ or ‘good-time’. The Sakala slogan, ‘No more delays, we deliver on time’ highlights the Karnataka Government’s commitment to deliver services on time. With a comprehensive government services portal, Sakala aims to ensure that technology becomes a leveller for all citizens across Karnataka – be it a rural village in Bidar or the IT capital of India
Says Professor H.P.Khincha, Chairman, KSInC: "Karnataka has long been a pioneer in innovation and has driven India’s incredible emergence as a world leader in technology and software. However, in these challenging economic times and a shaky global future, it is imperative that we stay ahead of the curve and consolidate our place as innovators. With this initiative and support from Google, we want to amplify the impact of Internet-driven innovation as more and more Indians come online.”
Adds Lalitesh Katragadda, Country Head- India Product, Google India:“The recent McKinsey study states that internet could potentially contribute up to USD 100 billion by 2015. Given the extraordinary employment potential of the internet, it is vital to create an environment where local innovators are inspired and empowered to create products with a global impact. At Google, we believe in the power of the web to help the next billion in India connect, learn and reach their true potential. This initiative is another step towards the same direction.”
The Karnataka State Innovation Council was constituted by Government of Karnataka on June 1, 2011 on the recommendations of National Innovation Council and Karnataka Knowledge Commission with Prof.H.P.Khincha as chairman and 19 members drawn from different walks of life. It supports promotion of Innovation, maps opportunities, rewards talents, creates ecosystem, facilitates networking formulating schemes, and initiates policies with an overarching objective of evolving Karnataka state model of Innovation with focus on inclusive growth. Some of the innovation projects of the council include promoting patent filing culture (Amulya 2012) and developing curiosity and creative thinking among children (Tod Fod Jod).