Applications are continuously open and evaluation happens in periodic batches.


For any queries related to the program, write to us at

Due to the overwhelming response for the Nidhi Prayas program at iCreate, we will not be accepting further applications till April 2019. Feel free to get in touch with us if you have any queries.

Call for application for prototyping projects at iCreate:

iCreate (International Centre for Entrepreneurship and Technology) has up to 15 openings for prototype level projects under the NIDHI-PRAYAS scheme (ROUND IV) of the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India. This grant will primarily be utilised by young, not so young, and aspiring innovators to convert their ideas into prototype. The period of prototyping support can be up to 18 months.


National Initiative for Developing and Harnessing Innovations (NIDHI) is an umbrella programme conceived and developed by the Innovation and Entrepreneurship division, Department of Science & Technology, Government of India, for nurturing ideas and innovations (knowledge-based and technology-driven) into successful start ups.

The NIDHI-Promotion and Acceleration of Young and Aspiring technology entrepreneurs (NIDHI-PRAYAS) program, is one of the programs introduced under NIDHI, focuses on addressing the idea to prototype funding gap. This is a program designed to attract a large number of youngsters to come forward to try out their ideas and try to see if they will work in real life business situations. If selected, such selected applicants are referred to as PRAYASEE's.

Objectives of NIDHI-PRAYAS Program:

  • To enable translation of an innovative idea to a prototype
  • To provide a platform for faster experimentation and modify approaches in the idea to market journey
  • To generate innovative solutions relevant to the local and global problems
  • To attract a large number of youth who demonstrates problem solving zeal and abilities to work on their new technology / knowledge / innovation based start ups
  • To enhance the pipeline in terms of quality and quantity of innovative start-ups to the incubators
  • To build a vibrant innovation ecosystem, by establishing a network between innovators, academia, mentors and incubators

PRAYAS Centre:

The NIDHI-PRAYAS grant would be handled by iCreate in its capacity of a PRAYAS CENTRE (PC). The PC would be a place where innovative ideas are supported through physical infrastructure, technical guidance, business mentorship and a prototype grant for converting the idea into a prototype. A furnished and well-equipped space has been set up at iCreate as the host TBI. The innovators would approach one iCreate for seeking support under the programme. The selected innovators would get access to the infrastructure, prototype grant and mentorship.

We, at iCreate are a Government authorized PRAYAS Centre and are hence inviting applications from innovators to apply for the NIDHI PRAYAS grant.

This grant, therefore, will primarily be utilised by the innovators to convert their ideas into prototype.

It cannot, however, be used for supporting:

  • Any institute / organization to develop an IP into prototype
  • Any innovators working / pertaining to an institute / organization for converting their IP into prototype
  • Any idea which is part of academic research work carried out at the institute / personal level
  • Any idea that is developed into prototype where the IP could vest with any institute / organization

Who should apply?

  1. Individual innovator : He / She is required to be Indian Citizen at least 18 years of age on 1st of August, 2016. An Indian citizen is defined as one who is in possession of a government approved proof of nationality such as a valid passport, voter's id etc
  2. Existing incubatee of iCreate:

a) If the company is less than 2 years and wants to develop the prototype for a new product, for which they may have not received similar kind of support
b) The company should have no significant revenue at the time of application
3. Team of individual innovators: If a team wants to pursue the project, then there has to be an agreement among the team about the lead applicant and the lead applicant has to apply for NIDHI-PRAYAS. The financial support (after the selection process) will be given to the lead applicant on behalf of the team
4. The current focus areas of design, construction and development of Electric Vehicles.

Eligibility & Conditions:

  1. The maximum support that can be provided per innovator / incubatee is upto Rs. 10 lakhs
  2. The priority areas for supporting innovations under NIDHI-PRAYAS program - ROUND IV are Electric Vehicles, with the focus being on the sub-components that go into creation of an Electric Vehicles. Suggested areas of focus for applying to iCreate are:
  • Motor power management systems
  • Battery Management Systems
  • Charge Controllers
  • Smart features for electric vehicles
  • Cooling systems for Battery Packs
  • Charging stations - regular as well as fast charging
  • Regenerative braking
  • Super capacitor-based energy storage
  • Design of complete prototype EV's (2, 3 or 4 wheelers)
    3. Other areas of interest under NIDHI-PRAYAS program - ROUND IV are IoT, Embedded systems, Big data, Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence etc.
    4. Preference may be given to those innovators
  • Who have bootstrapped or have got co-investment commitment
  • Who have clear road map for commercialization or start up creation
  • Women innovators
  • Young innovators

5. The project should involve physical product development. The projects relating to software development and those involving pure academic research are not eligible
6. Student applicants pursuing long term research projects like doctoral research projects or similar projects will not be supported. Professors or Academicians engaged in teaching with any academic or R&D institute
7. If the innovator is pursuing building a prototype from their institute / organization IP, then in that case innovator will take NOC from the appropriate authority of their institute / organisation for use / IP transfer / ownership in favour of the innovator / start up
8. If the applicant is studying / working in an institute / organization, they should get a no objection certificate from that respective institute/organization for applying to NIDHI- PRAYAS
9. The NIDHI-PRAYAS grantee should be registered for the pre-incubation or incubation program at iCreate for the entire duration of the program, after going through the iCreate's selection process
10. NIDHI-PRAYAS grantee should be fully committed to work towards the prototype development for which the support is being sought and should not treat this as a stop gap arrangement to support any other pursuits
11. The innovator can avail the NIDHI-PRAYAS support only once and they should not have sought the similar support previously, from other Government of India organisation / Institution for the same innovative concept as proposed in the application form


  • Work space with internet connectivity, will be provided for. On request, hostel accommodation can also be provided
  • Access to labs and libraries will also be provided
  • Mentorship, Networking, participation in various start-up / entrepreneurship-based events
  • Access to start up ecosystem and residence in a vibrant campus dedicated to start ups / entrepreneurs
  • Free access to IoT, embedded and other labs housed within campus
  • Food is available at campus at nominal charges
  • All the office facilities like internet, meeting rooms, tea, coffee, etc, will be made available

Terms of Association & Desired outcomes:

  • The total amount disbursed will be up to a maximum of Rs 10 lakhs
  • The project term for the PRAYASEE will be for up to 18 months, at the end of 18 months the progress review shall be done by local PRAYAS monitoring committee at iCreate and based on the decision of the PRAYAS monitoring committee the project term of PRAYASEE may be extended by 6 months

Guidelines for Use of funds by the PRAYASEE:

  1. Outsourcing Charges for R&D / Design Engineering / Consultancy / Testing / Expert cost
  2. Raw material / Consumables / Spares
  3. Fabrication / Synthesis charges of working model or process
  4. Business Travel and Event Participation Fees (Ceiling 10% of approved project cost)
  5. Patent filing Cost - (PCT- Ceiling 10% of approved project cost)
  6. Contingency - (Ceiling 10% of approved project cost)

It will not be used:

  1. To pay the grantee / relatives
  2. To pay usage charges to the TBI
  3. To repay loans / commitments made earlier
  4. To pay rent of own accommodation, creation of infrastructure facility like shed etc should not form the component of support / funds

The support/funds should be mainly for prototype development work/proof of concept.

Due to the overwhelming response for the Nidhi Prayas program at iCreate, we will not be accepting further applications till April 2019. Feel free to get in touch with us if you have any queries.