The Ministry of Textiles has approved the Startup Guidelines for Technical Textiles – Grant for Research and Entrepreneurship across Aspiring Innovators in Technical Textiles (GREAT) providing grant-in-aid upto INR 50 Lakhs for up to a period of 18 months, informed Shri Rajeev Saxena, Joint Secretary Textiles during a press conference held on 29 August 2023 in New Delhi on the important developments in the National Technical Textiles Mission (NTTM).
With a strong emphasis on developing the Startup Ecosystem in Technical Textiles, the guidelines focus on supporting individuals and companies to translate prototype to technologies & products including commercialization. The GREAT Guidelines provides thrust in Technical Textiles’ application areas including Agro-textiles, Building-textiles, Geo-textiles, Home-textiles, Medical-textiles, Mobile-textiles, Packaging- textiles, Protective-textiles, Sports-textiles; Development of High-performance fibres and composites; Sustainable and Recyclable Textile materials; Smart Textiles using Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things, 3D/4D Printing, and Rapid Prototyping; and Development of indigenous Machinery/Equipment/Instruments, among others.
To incentivize the incubators, Ministry to additionally provide 10% of total grant-in-aid to incubators. To strengthen authenticity and commitment towards the project, a minimum investment of 10% of the funding from the incubatee in two equal installments is mandated. The Startup Guidelines (GREAT) to provide much needed impetus for the development of technical textiles startup ecosystem in India, especially in niche sub-segments such as Bio-degradable and Sustainable textiles, High-performance & Specialty fibres, Smart textiles, among others.
Ministry also gave the nod to 26 institutes for upgrading their laboratory infrastructure and training of trainers in the application areas of technical textiles. Ministry has approved the applications of 26 institutions for development and introduction of technical textile courses/ papers in the key departments/specializations as well as introducing new degree programme in technical textiles.
Total value of INR 151.02 Crores was approved wherein 15 applications valuing INR 105.55 Crores are from Public Institutes and 11 applications valuing INR 45.47 Crores are from Private Institutes.
Some of the premier institutes to be funded under the scheme include IIT Delhi, NIT Jalandhar, NIT Durgapur, NIT Karnataka, NIFT Mumbai, ICT Mumbai, Anna University, PSG College of Technology, Amity University, among others.
Notably, majority of the funding to be provided for upgradation of existing courses including Departments related to Textile Technology & Fibre Sciences to upgrade courses in all application areas of technical textiles including specialty fibres; Departments related to Design/Civil Engineering to upgrade courses in Geotextiles & Building textiles; Departments related to Fashion Technology/Design to upgrade courses in Smart Textiles, Protective Textiles, Sports Textiles, Home Textiles, Cloth Textiles; Department of Mechanical Engineering to upgrade courses in Mobile Textile, Industrial Textiles; and a New Degree Programme in Technical Textiles with predominant emphasis on all application areas of Technical Textiles.
In addition, Ministry to re-open the Guidelines for Enabling of Academic Institutes in Technical Textiles’ Education in India (Round II) under NTTM with relatively eased parameters and wider coverage including NBA score of 750 and above, NAAC rating of A+/3.26 or above or top 200 NIRF ranked institutes as eligible private institutes under the Education Guidelines 2.0. The guidelines have been in-principally approved and target the inclusion of new courses/papers in the curriculum of academic year 2025-26.
On the quality and regulation aspect of technical textiles, Ministry already notified 02 QCOs (Quality Control Orders) for 31 Technical Textiles products including 19 Geotextiles and 12 Protective Textiles, which will come in-effect from 7th October 2023 onwards. Besides, QCOs for 28 products including 22 Agrotextiles and 06 Medical Textiles are also in the final stages of issuance and likely to be issued in September 2023.
Furthermore, additional 28 items are also considered for QCOs including Building textiles, Industrial textiles, Ropes & Cordages, among other. To cover the comprehensive impact of the QCOs on the economy, industry and society at large, Ministry is proactively conducting multiple stakeholder consultations with Industries.