For people looking to become entrepreneurs, the time is right to start a business venture in India, say experts.

“India’s market is huge, with a number of opportunities for entrepreneurs, whether they want to work in the field of water, electricity, sanitation, food, or information technology,” said Kris Gopalakrishnan, co-founder and executive vice-president of Infosys.

He was speaking at a panel discussion on ‘Start-up culture in India versus abroad’ at Shaastra 2015, the technical festival of Indian Institute of Technology, Madras.

In addition to IT-based solutions, there is a real need for entrepreneurs working on core engineering and brick-and-mortar solutions, said Srikanth Sundararajan, venture partner, Helion Advisors.

The four-member panel included Anand Rajaraman, co-founder of Junglee Corp, and Vijay Karunakaran, CEO of InGage Technologies. The panellists emphasised that the best time to start working on a start-up was either in the final year of college, or immediately after college.

A second panel discussion on ‘Entrepreneurship vs. climbing the corporate ladder’ featured Rajiv C. Lochan, MD and CEO, The Hindu, Laks Krishnamoorthy, director of Reporting Centre of Excellence at Paypal India, and Sunil Handa, IIM-Ahmedabad professor.

In order to encourage more students to think innovatively and explore the option of start-ups, colleges should offer flexible curriculums, and infrastructure that allows them to explore ideas, Bhaskar Ramamurthi, director of IIT-M, said.

The four-day festival will feature a series of workshops and lectures focussing on start-ups. There will also be a tech and innovation fair at the Kendriya Vidyalaya Grounds, a techno-cultural show, ‘Envisage’, on Saturday, and an air show featuring remote-controlled devices on Sunday. Further details are available at http://www.shaastra.org.