Atma Nirbhar Bharat App Innovation Challenge: Days after the government banned 59 Chinese apps, the Ministry of Electronics & Information technology (MeitY) in partnership with Atal Innovation Mission – Niti Aayog has launched Digital India Atma Nirbhar Bharat App Innovation Challenge for Indian tech entrepreneurs and start-ups. Launched and promoted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Innovation Challenge has been made available on mygov website from July 4. The last date of submission of entries is July 18.

Modi announces app innovation challenge to promote Indian platforms

The objective is to support and build a strong ecosystem for Indian apps and help realize the vision of PM Modi for building a Digital India and using Digital Technologies for building an Aatma Nirbhar Bharat.

The challenge has been launched in eight categories, ranging from ‘office productivity and work from home’ and ‘health and wellness’ to ‘news’ and ‘games’. There might be several sub-categories within each category, surmised in some of the problem statements, one of which reads, “A robust indigenous anti-virus software for mobile devices.”

The challenge will have top performers winning cash prizes and rewards for their apps featuring on the leaderboards of their respective categories. The government has allocated ₹20 lakh, ₹15 lakh and ₹10 lakh for the first, second and third-placed apps in each category. There may also be sub-categories, where winners will get ₹5 lakh, ₹3 lakh and ₹2 lakh for first, second and third position, respectively. The mission statement for the challenge says that it will harness the talent in the country and foster an ecosystem, “where Indian entrepreneurs and Startups are incentivized to ideate, incubate, build, nurture and sustain Tech solutions that can serve not only citizens within India but also the world.”

As for the registration process, the challenge is available online at and participants need to submit their entries by 18 July. The competition will be conducted in two stages. The first stage will be the screening process, where eligible entries will be screened, while the second will be the jury round, where app-makers will be asked to present a demo of their working app. 

In another tweet, Prime Minister Modi urged the tech community to participate. “This challenge is for you if you have such a working product or if you feel you have the vision and expertise to create such products. I urge all my friends in the tech community to participate. Sharing my thoughts in my @LinkedIn post,” he tweeted attaching LinkedIn post.

In his LinkedIn post, PM Modi wrote, “Nowadays, we are seeing huge interest and enthusiasm among the start-up and tech ecosystem to innovate, develop and promote homegrown apps. Today, when the entire nation is working towards creating an Aatmanirbhar Bharat, it is a good opportunity to give direction to their efforts, momentum to their hard-work and mentorship to their talent to evolve Apps which can satisfy our market as well as compete with the world.”