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Need technology innovation in rural areas: President

President Pranab Mukherjee Tuesday said technology innovation was needed in rural areas to cater to the majority of Indians who live in villages.

At the inauguration of the first "Engineers Conclave 2013" here, Mukherjee said rural India needed tools that were "simple, repairable by local technicians and usable without electricity".

"In our country, a large population lives in villages and there is need for specific technology innovation for rural areas. Our country needs innovations that are simple and sustainable in a rural context," said Mukherjee.

"The achievements of Indian engineers have not adequately percolated down to the grassroots and the potential to impact the common man's life is yet to be fully exploited," he added.

Mukherjee said emphasis must be laid on innovation and its various dimensions like process innovation, product innovation, business model innovation and new technology innovation.

"Innovation is a key managerial strategy for growth," Mukherjee said, and called upon the industry to develop close partnerships with universities and research institutions to take "this aspiration forward".

"The innovation capability of our scientists and engineers will play a critical role in enabling India achieve this goal. People should be at the heart of the engineering effort, reaching out to human resources, consumers and vendors," he said.

The conclave was jointly organised by the Indian National Academy Engineering (INAE) and the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).