Union Women & Child Development, Textiles and Education Minister jointly launch the Toycathon-2021

New Delhi: Union Minister for Women & Child Development and Textiles Smriti Irani and Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ jointly launched the Toycathon 2021 on Tuesday.

This Toycathon is aimed to conceptualize innovative toys based on the Indian value system which will inculcate positive behavior and good value among the children.

Addressing a press conference on the occasion, Smriti Irani said, “India imports 80 percent of toys and the government is working towards promoting the indigenous toy industry for making the country self-reliant in this sector.”

She said that the collaboration with the Ministry of Education paves the way for the participation of students, faculties from all schools, colleges, and universities of the country with regards to the needs of the MSME industry in our country.

She added, “This is the first time when school children will innovate, design and conceptualize toys also for specially-abled ‘divyang children’. She informed that students and faculty members participating in Toycathon can get prizes upto 50 lakhs. The minister further stated that the Commerce Ministry and MSME Ministry have taken various steps to protect the toy manufacturing industry and to make it competitive.”

“To create awareness about safe toys which are not harmful chemically, the Ministry of Education and Ministry of WCD will adopt special measures,” she said.

Speaking on the occasion, Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal said, “Toycathon is being organized to develop India as the global Toy manufacturing hub. He said the size of the toy market in India is about one billion USD but unfortunately 80% of the toys are imported. The launch of Toycathon today is an endeavor by the government to create an ecosystem for the domestic Toy industry and the local manufacturers, tapping the untapped resources and utilizing their potential. Recalling the vision of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi of a 5 trillion-dollar economy and considering the huge potential of our toy market, he exhorted all to make India ‘Atmanirbhar’ in the Toy industry.”

He further stated, “National Education Policy-2020 also emphasizes innovation and research in learning, starting from primary education. Aligned with the goals of National Education Policy, the Toycathon aims to capture the innovative prowess of 33 crores students across the country.”

Toycathon-2021 is a special kind of platform where students and teachers from schools and colleges, design experts, toy experts, and startups will get together to crowdsource ideas for developing toys and games that are based on Indian culture and ethos, local folklore and heroes, and Indian value systems. While this will greatly help India develop into a global hub for toys and games, it will also help our children to understand the ethos and values of Indian culture as envisaged in the National Education Policy 2020.

Toycathon is based on nine themes which are Indian Culture, History, Knowledge of India and Ethos; Learning, Education, and Schooling; Social and human values; Occupations & specific fields; Environment; Divyang; Fitness and sport; Out of the box, creative and logical thinking and Rediscovering/redesigning traditional Indian toys

The Toycathon will have 3 variants of tracks of Junior Level, Senior Level, and Startup Levelland will allow the participation of students and teachers from schools, colleges, and universities apart from startups and toy experts. Participants will have two options for idea submission; they can either submit ideas for the published problem statements or undercover toy concepts category. This is the high time we utilize the brightest creative minds and carve out games based on our Indian culture, tradition, and heritage, and stories of ancient India showcasing the beliefs and traditions of people.

Praveen Kumar, Secretary, Prof. Anil Sahasrabudhe, Chairman, AICTE and Dr. Abhay Jere, Chief Innovation Officer, MoE were present during the launch event of Toycathon-2021. The Union Ministers also jointly launched the Toycathon Portal on the occasion.

(With PIB inputs)