NEHU to host grand finale of toy hackathon

Shillong, June 20: The North-Eastern Hill University will be hosting the grand finale of the Toy Hackathon from June 22 to 24.
A statement issued today informed that NEHU has been selected by MIC/AICTE for hosting Toycathon 2021 Grand Finale, an event conducted by Government of India to promote indigenous toy industry. Around 10 teams from different parts of India have confirmed their participation.
Stressing upon Prime Minister, Narendra Modi’s ‘Vocal for Local’ in Toy Industry, Ministry of Education mooted the idea of multi-track nation-wide inter-ministerial toycathon.
The Toycathon 2021 is being organised jointly by Ministry of Education in coordination with five other Ministries namely the Ministry of Women and Child Development (MWCD), Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Ministry of Small and Medium Enterprises, and Ministry of Textiles. Ministry of Education’s Innovation Cell at All India Council for Technical Education is acting as nodal agency for organizing Toycathon 2021.
Amit Khare, Secretary, Ministry of Education said that “India needs to emerge as the global Toy manufacturing hub in the future. We need to stress upon creating an ecosystem for the domestic Toy industry and the local manufacturers, tapping the untapped resources and utilizing the potential. Working on the vision of Hon’ble Prime Minister and considering the huge potential of our toy market, we can easily become “Atmanirbhar” in toy industry”
Prof. Anil D. Sahasrabudhe, Chairman, AICTE said, “The National Education Policy (NEP)-2020 has placed huge emphasis on innovation and experiential learning. Drawing inspiration from NEP, AICTE has been working closely with Innovation Cell of Ministry of Education to conduct various hackathons to provide platforms for the young minds of the country to innovate, experience and materialise their ideas. On the same line we are conducting this Toycathon to provide a national level platform for our Innovators to boost Innovation in domestic toy market. I am happy to share that we have received huge participation in Toycathon 2021 from our engineering Institutions”.
The proposed Toy Hackathon has 3 tracks, where Track 1 is for junior level participants, primarily school students. They mainly focused on designing toys for kids of age group 0-3 years and 4-10 years. Track 2 is for senior level participants namely students and faculty from institutions of higher education. This group focused on developing concepts for 0-3 years, 4-10 and 11 years and above. This segment primarily focused on Electronics, Sensors, Mechatronics, and toys based on AI and ML approaches, AR-VR-XR and Robotics. Track 3 is for the Startup-Professional Level that incudes overall innovation and development of prototypes. These prototypes are expected to enable the toy industry in boosting up the production along with improving the quality of toys in Indian market.
During the grand finale the selected teams will virtually present their toys in front of Jury panel comprises of Experts from premier institutes. The teams will receive mentoring from experts during the hackathon and teams will have to improve their toys/games as per expert suggestions.
Dr. Abhay Jere, Chief Innovation Officer, Ministry of Education Innovation Cell outlined the importance of Toycathon in pedagogy he said that “Toy based pedagogy is one of the most effective ways of teaching and learning. For Toycathon 2021we have received large number of entries which are focusing on the toys to teach very difficult science and maths concepts to school students in a fun and easy way.”