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 My speech at the Valedictory of Bengaluru Tech Summit 2020


Bengaluru Tech Summit Valedictory Address

Namaskara and good evening! 

Ladies and Gentlemen;

 I am happy to have seen your eagerness to enhance your engagement with us. As the three days of celebration of our wonderful city; state and our vibrant ecosystem called the Bengaluru Tech Summit comes to an end –  I hope that our better understanding of each other’s perspectives, will result in a better alignment of YOUR plans and OUR vision.


Through this year, as India and Karnataka bravely fought the global pandemic, the world was to our true strengths. It successfully brought out traits that we Indians and Kannadigas are known for: A strong sense of responsibility. A spirit of compassion. The spark of innovation.

We all have shown remarkable resilience in this pandemic, be it fighting the virus or ensuring economic stability. This resilience is driven by the strength of our systems, support of our people and stability of our policies. It is because of the strength of our systems, that we have continued to remain as one of the World’s preferred investment destinations.

Bengaluru has always taken charge to lead the transformation of India with innovation, science and technology. The theme of this year’s summit was “Next is Now”, building on the success of our event last year. Innovation, especially in leveraging disruptive technologies, is the need of the hour. Through the sessions, panels, presentations, knowledge café, etc., we have created a larger platform for exchange of knowledge and ideas – and we encourage you all to collaborate further to come up with products and services of the future that can truly impact the lives of all geographies and all strata of society.

It was indeed a matter of great privilege to have the presence of Hon’ble Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi ji inaugurate the Summit this year. The Hon’ble Prime Minister’s presence and inspiring words gave us all the energy over the last three days. We were honored by the virtual presence from H.E. Mr. Scott Morrison, Hon’ble Prime Minister of Australia and H.E. Mr. Gee Parmelin, Vice President of Swiss Confederation.

 The Summit was conducted under the able guidance of the Chairmen and Members of the three Vision Groups on IT, Biotech and Start-ups. For the first time, an International Advisory Group was also formed to ensure a global perspective while designing the conference. BTS is the only event in India which has brought together India’s leading cross sectoral industry organizations like Nasscom, TiE, ELCIA, IESA, ABAI, ABLE, CLIK and IACC on a common platform.

 Over the last few months, our Department and all the stakeholders have been working hard to design this Summit. I would like to thank and congratulate each and every one of them for the successful conduct of this show – I would like to place on record my deep appreciation for our Department’s Additional Chief Secretary, Dr. EV Ramana Reddy, who led from the front like the true leader that he is; Smt. Meena Nagaraj; Director of the Department whose untiring and relentless efforts are reflected in this meticulously organised summit for these past three days!   and all the other individuals who have contributed in every little form to make this event a grand success – I thank you personally !

 This 23rd edition of the Bengaluru Tech  summit witnessed:

a.     25 + countries,

b.     59 sessions across Information Technology, Biotechnology, Startups and Global Innovation Alliances

c.      16 GIA sessions by international partners – Australia, Bahrain, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Israel, Japan, Lithuania, The Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland, UK and Taiwan

d.     10 Minister led delegations including the Ministers from Australia, Germany, Finland, the United Kingdom, France and Lithuania participated in such a grand manner.
The numbers say it all.

In its 23rd edition and in fact the FIRST virtual edition of “Bengaluru Tech Summit” has been a new learning for all of us . The virtual format has been a blessing in disguise –

a.     The virtual format enabled us to break the barrier of time zones. We had leading innovators, scientists and tech evangelists participating from all across the globe – despite the varying time zones.

For instance, in the One Health track, we had speakers from leading North American institutions such as MIT and Harvard. This was a first for us at the BTS.

b.     We were also able to organize the event in a more cost-effective manner, while having a larger coverage, global and local impact – something that we all can be very proud of in these unprecedented times

c.      Social media, Youtube and the BTS platform ensured that message from BTS has reached every household through people’s mobiles, laptops and personal devices

d.     Also, Through the B2B platform, we were able to provide virtual spaces for startups, MSMEs, individuals and scientists to interact with each other and global leaders. Barriers of access were also removed.

 There were some special events this year which added to the richness of the entire exchange:

a.     The first Karnataka BioEconomy Report (KBER) 2020 was launched on Day 2 of the Bengaluru Tech Summit 2020. The Report valued Karnataka’s BioEconomy right now at US$22.6 bn. It lays down Six Strategic Recommendations to take Karnataka’s share in the National BioEconomy from the current one-third to half in the next five years. 

b.     For the first time, India Bio segment featured BioPartnering in collaboration with Inova Partnering tool, the global leaders in facilitating pre-scheduled business meetings. We look forward to furthering the interactions and identifying collaborations.

c.      The BioQuiz competition, India’s largest State Level Quiz on Biotechnology was organized this year virtually using QUIZITAL, the world’s first integrated digital quizzing platform. This time we had students from various disciplines participate and it is a matter of great pride that 70% of the total 800+ students who participated were in fact  bright girl students. 

 There were some very interesting advances made in the field of Information Technology as well –

a.     We announced the inception of the path-breaking ART Park at the IISc

b.     The Karnataka Digital Economy Mission – KDM has taken full form and we are ready to reach to the world through it

c.      and for the first time at the BTS – we had a specific track for the growing and the very vital field of Agri-Tech.

Some of the biggest names in industry and innovation engaged with the Karnataka ecosystem during BTS such as:

a.     Mr. Amit Agarwal, Head of Amazon India

b.     Mr. Anand Mahindra

c.      Mr. Sonam Wangchuk, the renowned innovator

d.     Dr. Steve Jolly, Co-Founder of Lockheed Martin

e.      Dr. Meyya Meyappan, Chief Scientist, Space Exploration, NASA Ames

f.       Mr. Rajan Anandan, Managing Director, Sequoia Capital and Surge

g.     Shri Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev

 During the Summit, the State of Karnataka has finalized Eight (8) MoUs and Intentions for Collaboration with GIA partner institutions. It is great to see so many institutional level collaborations shaping up and we look forward to further strengthening our relationship with the GIA partner countries. These MoUs are time bound, deliverable focused, activity oriented and we will make sure that the implementation of the MoUs will achieve the desired objectives.

 These highlights of the BTS do not even begin to give a glimpse of the invigorating three days we’ve had. And what adds to the entire experience this year is that all these sessions will be available on-demand for everyone to see very soon.

 The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the need for rapid innovation, synergies between biotechnology and information technology and global cooperation. BTS 2020 is the ideal platform for achieving these aims.

 Our Government is committed to ensure that these technologies and innovations are made in Karnataka for the world, in collaboration with leading minds and to alleviate the life of the common man.

 On this occasion,  I would also like to invite you all to the next – 24th Edition of the Bengaluru Tech Summit – from 18th to 20th  November 2021, which I promise will be bigger, more engaging and disruptive than ever.

I thank you once again for having made this event a grand success! I look forward to seeing you once again, for the next 24th Edition of the Bengaluru Tech Summit.


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