Dialogue and Development Commission (DDC) vice-chairperson Jasmine Shah said a new startup policy would be in place soon to promote such businesses, which would help Delhi transform into one of the best destinations for startups, globally. “Businesses suffer because governments don’t let them function freely. Our mantra is to make their life simpler by removing or minimising the role of government and government interface,” he added.
According to Economic Survey 2021-22, over 5,000 recognised startups were added in Delhi between April 2019 and December 2021, while 4,514 startups were added in Bengaluru. Interestingly, this was the time when Covid spread its wings across the country and Delhi faced the brunt.
“Going by the mandate of chief minister Arvind Kejriwal, the industries department of Delhi government worked relentlessly over the past few years to ensure ease of doing business. It coordinated with 30 departments and the civic bodies to eliminate redundant compliance that any company was required to fulfil to set up its business. Till date, 460 compliances have either been eliminated, amended or simplified,” Shah said.
He added, “The compliances included doing away with the necessity to submit notarised affidavits and replacing it with self-declaration and increasing the validity of various certificates or approvals from one year to three years.
“Delhi is the leader in giving out electricity connections without hassles not only in India, but also Asia. It is doing much better than countries such as Japan and China. It doesn’t take more than 31 days to provide a new electricity connection to an establishment. If the necessary infrastructure and distribution network exists, the maximum period is seven days. India’s rank in Ease of Doing Business has improved significantly and it is derived from a favourable business environment in Delhi and Mumbai,” Shah said.
The DDC vice-chairperson said Delhi provided an honest and accessible government, which was a big attraction for businesspersons. “One of the first things that the Kejriwal government did was to remove the ‘raid raaj’. We ensured that the system of a tax inspector visiting a business and extorting money was completely eliminated. The tax department is largely seen as clean and traders can come to the government and discuss issues, which are solved immediately,” he added.
Shah stated, “About 150 services are delivered on the doorstep. Good, high-quality infrastructure, such as a huge network of Delhi Metro and buses, free ride for women and round-the-clock availability of electricity make Delhi an attractive destination for startups.”
“The focus on clean energy has invited a large number of startups related to green technology, automobiles and delivery services mushrooming in and around Delhi-NCR. We have created a conversation on entrepreneurship as a desired goal in itself. We introduced the entrepreneurship mindset curriculum three years ago, launched Delhi Skill and Entrepreneurship University in 2020 and last year we came up with Business Blasters, which made setting up a business a conversation among students of classes XI and XII,” Shah said.