Smart India Hackathon 2020

After a wonderful experience of participating as a judge and mentor at Smart India Hackathon 2019, I am delighted to share that I again got a chance to meet and judge India's young winners and innovators at Grand Finale of Smart India Hackathon 2020, world’s biggest open innovation modal, organized by AICTE and MHRD, Govt of India. It is not more a hackathon but a hackathon of hackathons — 4 Lacks students, 1500 small hackathons, 39 Nodal centers, around 2000 mentors and 1000 evaluators … and more…

I am sharing here my this year's experience and learnings of participating and contributing to the journey of India’s transformation.

I am assigned to Nodal center — Oriental College Of Technology, Bhopal, here is how it rest of it goes.

Virtual Inauguration Ceremony

Day 1 started at sharp 8 AM with an institute level inauguration ceremony at Oriental College Of Technology, Bhopal. Prestigious guests from the institute, AICTE, I4C, and CAPT have addressed the event online. The chief guest Shri Pawan Srivastava, IPS has talked about the importance of Predictive Policing and building a sustainable environment. Here is a video link.

National Level Inauguration event started at 9 AM by Dr. Abhay Jere, Chief Innovation Officer, MHRD, Government Of India. He explained how the hackathon concept is democratized by SIH, and it now becomes the Largest Open Innovation Modal. We come to know that there were around 1500+ college-level hackathons that happened before this grand finale, and we will be judging the already winners in this event.

Rahul Sharma — President, AWS India Amazon explained how cloud is democratizing innovations at an economical level. Shri VK Kaumudi, IPS, Director General, BPRD explained the importance of empowering digital forensic and what are the big challenges being faced such as misuse of social media. Anil Sahasrabudhe, Chairman AICTE, explained that around 72 organizations from Govt departments, ministries, private corporates, institutions have contributed. SIH2020 a good example of a partnership of govt, private, and people.

Anand Deshpande — President Persistent, shared that world is all about networking, how well are we connected defines us. I second the idea of competing with ownself, shared by the Guest of Honour, Hon’ble Minister of State HRD, Shri Sanjay Dhotre. and A really motivating speech by the Chief Guest, Hon’ble Minister of HRD, Shri Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’. See the video above.

Mentoring Sessions

Mentoring sessions are planned at 11 AM every day. Problem statements for my teams were in the category of “Security and Surveillance”. Thanks to Dr. Sandeep Garg and his team for seamlessly executing the event for our team. Dr. Amit Kanskar and Mr. Amit Dubey have also mentored and judged the teams with me.

Day 1's primary suggestions were around alignment towards problem statements, product thinking, and analysis. On Day2, some of the team have shown tremendous progress and revived completely. Day3 more discussion was about user experience and an end to end scenarios.

Leisure Activity Break

Everyday 3:30 to 4 PM is a leisure break, live sessions by students, and artists.

PM Modi interacts with Students

PM Modi addresses and interacts with students on Day 1.

PM Modi and students interacted on their solutions and technology covering face detection while there is a mask, virtual policing, use tech to reduce the gap between people and police, data-based health solutions, prediction, human touch in AI, ML, corporate inefficiency detection and what not!
Here is video

Evaluation Round

The day ends with online evaluations of the participants on the following parameters

  • User Experience
  • Solution appearance
  • Impact
  • Technology
  • Execution

This time SIH platform was fully online and streamlined, evaluations result are also submitted online.

Interesting Ideas

1000s of ideas were there for 100s of problem statements given to the students, this is just a glimpse of some.

  • Automatic Invoicing, settlement, reconciliation using AI
  • Virtual Police Station (AR VR)
  • Use of AI, ML, NLP, Chatbot to reduce gap of Police and People
  • Predictive Policing
  • CCTV based criminal activity detection using face, expression, and gestures.
  • Remote education solutions to working offline and at low internet speed.
  • Face detection using part of the face not covered with a mask.
  • Use of AI to detect corporate inefficiencies, and overcome them to boose growth
  • Predictive analytics on network traffic to detect malicious attacks
  • NLP and sentimental analytics on chatbot/social media to predict violence, hate, harmful content.
  • AI to detect chatbot/human conversations
  • Reusable sanitary products, hygiene services, economical and environmentally-safe products.
  • Predict violations/damages on water-body, rainfall predictions, prevent loss of life and property
  • A virtual assistant to build a strong health system. Data based health services
  • Analyze corporate health of organizations based on actions and steps taken in the past and planned in the future.

Further updates at




Principal Consultant, Engineering and Head of ARVR Practice @ ThoughtWorks India.

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Kuldeep Singh

Kuldeep Singh

Principal Consultant, Engineering and Head of ARVR Practice @ ThoughtWorks India.

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