DST-NIDHI's PRomoting and Accelerating Young and ASpiring technology entrepreneurs (PRAYAS) is a pre-incubation initiative which supports young innovators to turn their ideas into Proof of Concept.

The program aims to provide a platform to young innovators to generate solutions for relevant local and social problem. PRAYAS will also promote vibrant innovation ecosystem, by establishing a network between innovators, academia, mentors, and incubators by catalyzing the process of commercialization for innovators.

It is implemented by Program Management Unit (PMU) at recognized PRAYAS centres. Kerala Startup Mission (KSUM) is one of the PRAYAS centres.
Applications Open
Kerala Startup Mission (KSUM) invites applications for prototype level projects under the NIDHI-PRAYAS scheme of the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India. This grant will primarily be utilized by aspiring innovators to convert their ideas into prototype. The period of prototyping support can be up to 18 months.
Rs.10 lakh (Max) as grant for converting his/ her innovative idea into prototype within 18 months.
Shared/Co-working spaces for developing idea into Prototype
Access to infrastructure and prototype building facility
Development of idea from early to commercial stage and mentorship from experienced industry experts
Who Can Apply?
  • An Indian individual innovator with minimum 18 years of age, without a startup or founder of a startup can apply for Prayas grant.
  • The ideas and innovations should be physical product based on technology and science.
  • Innovators should have technical skills or background and a roadmap towards commercialization.
  • Prototype must be capable of being completed within 18 months.
  • Outsourcing Charges for R&D / Design Engineering / Consultancy / Testing / Expert cost.
  • Raw material / Consumables / Spares.
  • Fabrication / Synthesis charges of working model or process.
  • Business Travel and Event Participation Fees (Ceiling 10% of approved project cost).
  • Patent filing Cost – (PCT- Celling 10% of approved project cost).
  • Contingency – (Ceiling 10% of approved project cost).
  • To pay the grantee / relatives.
  • To pay usage charges to the TBI.
  • To repay loans / commitments made earlier.
  • To pay rent of own accommodation, creation of infrastructure facility like shed etc. should not form the component of support / funds.
Application Process
STEP 1 : Call for proposals
STEP 2 : Submission of proposals
STEP 3 : Project Management Committee meeting to scrutinize the application
STEP 4 : Shortlisting of applications
STEP 5 : Approval on the funding announced
Last Date to Submit                 30 January 2024
Shortlist Announcement        15 February 2024
NIDHI PRAYS Pitch Week       March First Week
The priority areas for supporting innovations under NIDHI PRAYAS program are manufacturing, agriculture, healthcare, clean-tech, energy, water and Internet of Things (IOT). However, ideas under other technology areas may be considered on merit basis.
NIDHI-PRAYAS scheme is for converting an idea into prototype for physical product. Projects related to pure Software development, Ecommerce, Service, App based solutions will not be supported under NIDHI-Prayas. However, software as one of the components of hardware product (for ex. an IoT product) can be considered for project funding for an integrated hardware prototype development.
NIDHI-PRAYAS is a Proof-of-Concept grant. Products that have passed prototype level cannot be supported under NIDHI-PRAYAS.
Please click here to know about the eligibility criteria for innovators or start-up.
The maximum funding support provided is upto Rs.10 lakhs. However, the local PRAYAS centre Monitoring Committee decides the funding amount for their selected innovators.
The total duration of the proposed project by innovator under PRAYAS program should not exceed 18 months. If there is no progress made by the innovator, the PC reserves the right to terminate the support to the innovator and the project will be discontinued, and the Innovator should return the unused funds.
The selected applicant must pre-incubate or incubate with the Prayas centre upon receiving the PRAYAS grant.
They will get access to the space, access to the fab lab, technical guidance, mentorship, during their project duration.
No, the innovator/start-up can avail the PRAYAS support only one time.
No, the innovators cannot take any salary from the PRAYAS grant. The grant fund can be used only for below purposes:
 a. Outsourcing Charges for R & D, Design Engg., Consultancy, Testing, Expert cost
 b. Raw material, Consumables, Spares
 c. Fabrication , Synthesis charges of working model or process
 d. Business Travel and Event participation Fees (Ceiling 10% of approved project cost)
 e. Patent filing Cost – (PCT- Ceiling 10% of approved project cost)
 f. Contingency - (Ceiling 10% of approved project cost)

The PRAYAS grant CAN NOT be used for:
  • To pay the grantee or their relatives.
  • To repay pre-existing loans or commitments of the innovator.
  • To pay usage charges to the Incubator from the PRAYAS grant. Grantee can use other funds to pay any such charges, if any.
  • To pay rent of own accommodation, creation of infrastructure facility like shed etc.
  • As a stop gap arrangement to support any other professional pursuits.
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G3B, Thejaswini, Technopark Campus, Kariyavattom, Trivandrum, Kerala 695581
Contact: Basil Abraham