This year, the Grand Finale of the Smart India Hackathon (SIH) organized by the Ministry of Education, MoE’s Innovation cell and AICTE was held from 19th to 23rd December and marked the culmination of more than 50,000 ideas that were received from 44,000 teams in SIH 2023. Over 12,000 participants and more than 2500 mentors participated in the grand finale scheduled at 48 nodal centers across the country. A total of 1282 teams were shortlisted this year for the grand finale to provide solutions on various themes including Space Technology, Smart Education, Disaster Management, Robotics and Drones, Heritage and Culture etc.
The participating teams had to provide solutions for 231 problem statements (176 software and 55 hardware) posted by 51 departments of 25 Union Ministers and State governments. The total prize for Smart India Hackathon 2023 was more than Rs 2 crore, where each winning team will be awarded a cash prize of Rs 1 lakh per problem statement.
In this backdrop, Manipal Institute of Technology (MIT) of the Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE, a deemed Univ) was one of the nodal centres and here is a brief report of the grand finale events from this centre.
The grand finale of Smart India Hackathon 2023 has been an incredible journey, bringing together participants from all walks of life to showcase their skills and passion in the hardware field. Over the course of 5 days, contestants have demonstrated exceptional talent, showcasing their ingenuity and proficiency in the hardware field, pushing the boundaries of excellence, and impressing our esteemed panel of judges. A distinguished panel of judges, consisting of industry experts and leaders, have evaluated the finalists and determined the ultimate winners.
Dr. Cyril Joseph, SPOC, SIH 2023 announced the winners for each problem statement given by the State government and Central Ministry.
- SIH 1503 (Ministry of Ayush) – won by Team NIET Hacktastic six from Nehru Institute of Engineering & Technology, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu.
- SIH 1327 (Government of Kerala) – won by Team Hexa Titans from Vivekanandha College of Engineering for Women (Autonomous), Tiruchengod, Tamil Nadu.
- SIH 1361 (Government of Gujarat) – won by Team Stimutech from KCG College of Technology, Chennai, Tamil Nadu.
- SIH 1323 (Government of Kerala) – won by Team STERI-SQUAD from Adamas University, Kolkata.
Participants, Jury, and mentors expressed their heartfelt gratitude towards the conduction of SIH event and all the facilities provided by MIT, Manipal such as accommodation, food, medicine, laboratories and equipment. Cdr.( Dr.) Anil Rana, Director, MIT, Manipal, congratulated all participants for their determination and hard work, coming out of their comfort zones to participate in this big national-level event. He encouraged participants to continue with their spirit of innovation and creativity irrespective of the result while giving the example of TechShilla – a hub of major students project at MIT, Manipal, who besides failing several challenges continue working on their dreams.
Dr. Sucheta Kolekar, Assistant Director (Innovation & Incubation) & Nodal Center head, MIT, Manipal, offered a vote of thanks to the Director, Joint Director, MIT, Manipal, undergraduate and research scholars who volunteered themselves for this big occasion. She also expressed gratitude towards all Organizing teams, Innovation Centre, Security staff, Food court staff, and wished all the participating teams good luck.
The PM interaction with Finalists
Earlier on Dec 19, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had interacted with several of the teams participating in the SIH in New Delhi. The Prime Minister told them that the Hackathon is a learning opportunity for him too. Looking at the beaming faces of the participants, the Prime Minister said that their enthusiasm, willpower and desire for nation-building has become the identity of India’s youth power.
Addressing the gathering, the Prime Minister expressed happiness about the dedication of the young generation to provide solutions for the problems of the country. He reiterated the success of previous hackathons. Startups and solutions that came out of the previous hackathons are helping both the government and society.
Recalling the mantra of 21st century India i.e. Jai Jawan, Jai Kisan, Jai Vigyan and Jai Anusandhan, PM Modi said that every Indian is forsaking the inertia of status quo. Mentioning India’s rise as the third largest economy the Prime Minister talked about India’s UPI success, vaccine success during the pandemic.
Addressing the young innovators and domain experts, PM Modi reiterated the importance of the current time period that will decide the direction of the next one thousand years. The Prime Minister asked them to understand the uniqueness of the current time as many factors have come together, such as India being one of the youngest countries in the world, its talent pool, stable and strong government, booming economy and unprecedented emphasis on science and technology.
“Technology has become a big part of our lives today”, the Prime Minister stressed. Emphasizing the role of young innovators, he pointed out that an upgraded version of technology comes up just when one starts getting used to it.
The Prime Minister reiterated that the next 25 years of India’s Amrit Kaal will be a defining period for the young innovators. He underlined the common goal of a self-reliant India and stated the objective of not importing any new and being dependent on other nations. Giving the example of defence sector which is working towards self-reliance, he pointed out that India is forced to import some defence technologies. He also stressed the need for self-reliance in semiconductor and chip technology. PM Modi also highlighted India’s high aspirations in the quantum technology and hydrogen energy sectors. He said that the government is giving special emphasis to all such sectors by creating a modern ecosystem of the 21st century, but its success depends on the success of the youth.
PM Modi told the young innovators that “the world is confident that in India it will find low-cost, quality, sustainable and scalable solutions to global challenges. Our Chandrayaan mission has increased the expectations of the world manifold” and asked them to innovate accordingly. Explaining the goal of Hackathong the Prime Minister stated “The aim of Smart India Hackathon is to solve the country’s problems and create employment through solutions. Through Smart India Hackathon, the youth power of the country is extracting the Amrit of solutions for developed India.” Expressing trust in the youth power of the nation, the Prime Minister asked them to keep the resolution of Viksit Bharat in mind while finding a solution to any problem. “Whatever you do, may it be the best. You have to do such work that the world follows you” PM Modi concluded.
Union Minister for Education, Shri Dharmendra Pradhan made his presence virtually. Speaking on the occasion, he expressed his gratitude to the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi for providing a dynamic leadership and guidance to the youth of the country.
He highlighted that the number of teams in 2017 stood at 7531, and this figure has witnessed a remarkable six fold increase, reaching 44617 teams in the current year. He also mentioned that this year 267,000 participants are poised to channel their creative energies towards the development of 51,000 new ideas. Furthermore he also added that initiatives like SIH are going to connect the new generation to the development of the country and such efforts will fulfill the aim of building Viksit Bharat by 2047.