The Shri Shakti Innovation Challenge 2021: Amrit Mahotsav Edition, was organized by the Indian government (MyGov), the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) and UN Women, on 17th August, with the objective to promote women leaders and entrepreneurs who are working towards innovative technological solutions to empower women and make their lives safer.

The Challenge was divided into two stages, Ideation Stage and Proof of Concept (PoC) Stage, and Final Round and received over 2,700 entries. BeWitness participated as an individual category, and after an exhaustive screening process, it was shortlisted among the 129 presentations in the First Stage. In the Second Stage, following a stringent round of shortlisting and judging, BeWitness made it to the Ideation Stage being one among the top 23 participants, where its ideas were presented to a panel, comprising experts from the area of technology, entrepreneurship, women’s safety and women empowerment. It’s an honour that BeWitness has been selected as one of the Top Ten Finalists, who were selected and awarded a prize money of INR 1,00,000 (around $1,388) each to further develop ideas. Mentorship sessions were conducted to guide participants to finalize presentations for the Proof of Concepts stage. Ideas were then sent to a jury comprising senior members and officials, Mr. Shobhendra Bahadur (CEO & Director, MyGov, MeitY), Ms. Susan Jane Ferguson (Country Representative, UNWomen), Ms. Subhalakshmi Nandi (Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation), Ms. Kritika Murugesan (Director Startup), Ms. Deepti Ravula (CEO, Wehub) to be judged on the basis of their replicability, scalability, ease of deployment/roll-out, and potential risks involved in the implementation. 

BeWitness congratulates Priyal Agrawal, Founder of StandWeSpeak; Sheetal Bapat, Co-Founder of; and Elsa Marie DSilva, CEO of Safe City, for having won the Top Three Prizes of INR 5,00,000 (around $6,944) each. BeWitness has been recognized for its Promising Concept, and rewarded with INR 5, 00, 000/-. We highly appreciate Dr. Divya Rajput and the esteemed Jury Panel, UN Women and the Indian Government, for their support and generosity. Our deepest gratitude goes out to the Challenge and its efforts in promoting women entrepreneurship, and empowering tech products built by women entrepreneurs in the field of women empowerment and women safety.