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UNESCO India Africa Hackathon: Prize distribution and valedictory ceremony


Vision Live/ Gautam Buddha University

UNESCO India Africa Hackathon held from 22- 25th November at Gautam Buddha University, Greater Noida, concluded on 25th November with the prize distribution and valedictory ceremony on held on 25th November 2022. 100 teams from 22 African nations and India worked on 20 problem statements and provided more than 20 solutions in the area of common concern for the general population of India and Africa.

The prize distribution and valedictory ceremony was graced by the presence of Hon’ble Vice President of India ShriJagdeepDhankhar, ‘Guest of Honour’ Hon’ble Education Minister ShriDharmendraPradhan, ‘Guest of Honour’ Hon’ble Governor Smt. Anandiben Patel, Mr FirminEdouardMatoko, Ast Director General (PAX), UNESCO.

Ministers from 13 African countries were also present during the valedictory function.

The event focussed on promoting engagement and collaboration of the student communities in India with the communities of African nations to develop innovative and out-of-the-box strategies to tackle the problems faced by mankind. It not only achieved its stated purpose but also proved to be a melting pot of diverse cultures. With the bonhomie seen at the time of event, it was evident that the students from 22 African countries and India have forged very strong bonds and will be fronds for life.

As the deadline ended at 8 PM on 24th November, the teams submitted their projects for evaluation. Immediately after submission of the projects by the competing teams, evaluators comprising of industry experts from all across the country got down to a difficult task of assessing the solutions provided by the contestants for their quality and viability. After the participants, it was now turn of these mentors to have a marathon round to assess and judge the outcome. They worked non-stop overnight and finalised the list of winners in each of the five categories namely, Education, Energy, Drinking water & Sanitation, Agriculture and Health & Hygiene. 

Dr.AbhayJere, Chief Innovation officer, Innovation cell, Ministry of Education welcomed the distinguished guests and through a detailed presentation talked about the hackathon culture. He said- “Hackathon culture started in 2017 with smart India hackathonand subsequently had 5 editions of smart India hackathon”. He added- “Our first source of inspiration is our Hon’ble Prime Minister Sh. NarendraModi and of course our respected education minister ShDharmendraPradhanji and Prof. Anil Sahastrabudhe”. He also shared some of the notable solutions that have been provided in the UNESCO India Africa Hackathon.

This was followed by screening of a film titled ‘Jai Anusandhan’ that focussed the on the journey of Hackathon and the spirit of research and innovation in the country.

When a few African students were asked to share their experience of being in India and being a part of Hackathon, they were all praise for Indian hospitality, culture and friendly fellow participants and categorically stated that given a choice, they would like to visit India again.

Speaking on the occasion ‘Guest of Honour’ Hon’ble Governor Smt. Anandiben Patel said- “Start-ups are a great tool for formalizing the various activities in a economy and they help humanity to achieve high standards of living which otherwise are not possible to achieve with traditional practice of businesses, in such a short period of time.Realizing the potential of startup culture and Innovation Uttar Pradesh Government has also taken big policy decisions to channelize the innovation of our youth.State Government has decided several focus sectors such as start-ups, IT, electronic manufacturing, agro-food processing, dairy, textile, renewable energy etc.”

She further added- “And I am hopeful that under the visionary leadership of Hon’ble Prime Minister of India and dynamic administration of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister, we will achieve great success in this sector too like other sectors.”

Chief guest, Hon’bleVice President of India Sh. JagdeepDhankhar gave a very encouraging speech for the participating students. He was so elated seeing the energy of the participants, he started his speech with the comment- “I feel sad. I was not a participant’. Helauded CIO, Innovation cell, Dr.AbhayJereand called UNESCO India Africa Hackathon an “outstanding exposition”.

He further added- “This event gives us a signal that the youth can come together to make a better world available to us” this event teaches us a new eco-system, a new philosophy of working together and that is synergic approach and collaboration. The goal of hackathon is the need of the times and that is to create functional software or hardware and that you have created. And you have created these with amazing skills and that is bound to help societal growth.” He was all praise for India and Africa coming together. He said-”The common demographic divided of African countries and India, the youth, the power that drives this planet and if they come in tandem as innovators to find solutions for social, environmental and technical programs, I am sure this augurs very well for all of us.”

He also highlighted the phenomenal development of India- “India is on the rise as never before. Rise of this great country is unstoppable. Only few months back we had the distinction of being 5th largest economy of the world and we shall be3rd largest economy by turn of the decade and therefore these kind of interactions and deliberations have come at a very right time because India is home to start ups. It is crucible of innovation. There is an excellent platform available here and the ecosystem is all pervasive in the country where we can explore new technologies for development”

Speaking on the occasion, Guest of Honor, Hon’ble Education Minister Sh. DharmendraPradhan said- “India is opening its doors for everyone across the world to share its rich culture and knowledge. Innovation in the field oftechnology is the need of the hour as was seen during the covid pandemic.”

He further added- “This hackathon is just an example to try to build a strong eco system and hand holding of start-ups of tomorrow from the education campus. It serves a foundation for creating potential start-ups for the potential innovative ideas to transform the world. It also allows the participating students to unleash their creativity and explore new technologies to solve real world problems. Hon’ble PM ShNarendraModiji gave the call for Jai Anusandhan as the Hon’ble Prime Minister says research & innovation must be transferred from the way of working to the way of life.”

The winners of 20 problem statements of UNESCO India Africa Hackathon2022 are as follows-

Category: Agriculture

Winning teams- Soil Health, Geeks_on_Fire, India Africa Together ,Techno

Category: Drinking Water and Sanitation

Winning teams- AquaSavvy, Doro Biryani, Cartography Coders

Category: Education

Winning teams- Code Lunatics, Team Unknown, CyKids, Rudram

Category: Energy

Winning teams- Hex Clan, Smart Devs, Unstoppables ,Caffeinated Coders

Category: Health and Hygiene

Winning teams- Antons, Mind Hackers, Hash Clashers, ALPHA-MEDICS, Team DiabeTechCare, ASTRA