India needs creativity, innovation to address poverty: PM

India needs creativity, innovation to address poverty: PM New Delhi: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Tuesday said the country needs creativity and innovation to address the problems of poverty, health and environment.

"We have made innovations in areas such as space technology, atomic energy and automobiles. But innovation in our country has focused mostly on the needs of the rich and not adequately on solving problems of the poor. We wish to change this state of affairs," Singh said while releasing a report of the Innovation Council of India.

Innovation, Singh said, can be "a game changer to move from incremental change to radical change. And therefore, it is our resolve to build an enabling environment for innovation to flourish."

The country, he added, needs models for innovation to address problems in areas such as poverty alleviation, health, rural communications, agriculture, animal husbandry, green energy and so on.

Noting that innovation has a critical role to play in India's growth and development, the Prime Minister said, "The set of challenges that we as a nation face is not only diverse, but also unique. It is only through creativity and innovation, by coming up with novel solutions appropriate to Indian context, that we can meet these challenges effectively."

The country, he added, was currently witnessing innovation in rights-based delivery through the Right to Work, Right to Information and Right to Education, while a Right to Food Security was on the anvil.

Speaking on the occasion, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee announced that the government would provide Rs 100 crore for the India Innovation Fund, which would fund low-cost innovation.

PTI