Govt’s Jaw-Dropping Move: Half of ₹10,372 Cr AI Fund Spent on GPUs

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The Indian government is set to allocate approximately ₹5,000 crore from a ₹10,372 crore fund dedicated to the India AI Mission. This initiative aims to procure Graphics Processing Units (GPUs) and provide subsidized computing capacity to Indian startups, as highlighted by Abhishek Singh, Additional Secretary at the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY), during the Global IndiaAI Summit in New Delhi.

GPUs play a critical role in accelerating artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning tasks due to their specialized processing capabilities. Leading global producers of GPUs such as Nvidia, Intel, and AMD are pivotal in meeting the demand for these advanced computing components.

Singh emphasized that the procurement strategy will not involve direct purchase of chipsets by the government but will instead invite tenders to encourage private sector investments. This approach aims to empower startups and enterprises to choose suitable GPUs, like the H100 or Gaudi 2, or even opt for CPUs depending on their specific needs. The subsidized access to computing power aims to reduce costs significantly for entities engaged in model development, training, inferencing, research, and algorithmic work.

MeitY Secretary S Krishnan had previously mentioned exploring a viability gap funding approach or a voucher-based mechanism to enhance the availability and utilization of GPU resources across the AI sector in India. This initiative seeks to foster broader accessibility and accelerate technological advancements in the country’s AI landscape.

In ensuring responsible usage, the government plans to implement checks and balances to prevent misuse of subsidized compute resources, thereby safeguarding the intended benefits for startups and other users.

The overall goal of the India AI Mission is to strengthen the nation’s capabilities in AI and machine learning technologies, promoting innovation and competitiveness in the global digital economy.

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