India to Fund AI Computing Infrastructure with 10,000 GPUs

Posted by Written by Archana Rao Reading Time: 3 minutes

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has accelerated progress in various key sectors in India and has become increasingly vital for the country’s overall economic development.

At the Global INDIAai Summit 2024, it was announced that the country will invest in an AI computing infrastructure equipped with at least 10,000 Graphics Processing Units (GPUs).

At the INDIAai Summit 2024, Union Minister of Electronics and IT, Ashwini Vaishnaw, announced India’s strategy for harnessing the potential of artificial intelligence (AI), emphasizing the democratization of technology. The minister highlighted the importance of making advanced technology affordable and accessible to all, to prevent it from being concentrated in the hands of a few.

The two-day summit, organized by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY), saw participation from global leaders and AI researchers from over 50 countries.

Investments into AI in India

According to Stanford University’s annual AI Index report, India ranked fifth in terms of investments received by startups offering AI-based products and services in 2022, behind only the US, China, the UK, and Israel. The report, released in April 2023, stated that AI startups in India attracted US$3.24 billion in total investments in 2022, surpassing countries like South Korea, Germany, Canada, and Australia.

The report also revealed that AI startups in India secured US$7.73 billion in total funding from 2013 to 2022, making India the sixth-leading country for AI investments during this period, with nearly 40 percent of the total investment occurring in a single year.

Key announcements on AI infrastructure at the INDIAai Summit 2024

India intends to fund a public platform offering standardized protocols, high-quality datasets, and processing capacity. Additionally, as part of a public-private partnership, the central government will invest in an AI computing infrastructure with at least 10,000 Graphics Processing Units (GPUs).

India is in discussions with the 29 countries of the Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence (GPAI) to agree on a declaration for responsible AI usage, setting boundaries for the technology and its management.

Further, an AI Innovation Center is being established in the country to acquire high-quality datasets to support researchers and companies. The central government is also expected to roll out an application development project focused on addressing current social and economic issues and prioritizing skill development.

The minister stated that the center would prioritize funding for AI and deep tech, particularly in the early stages of projects, as venture capital often becomes available only when returns are evident. Supporting deep-tech businesses in these initial stages will be a key government objective.

India-Japan collaboration on responsible AI deployment

Japanese Vice-Minister for Policy Coordination (Internal Affairs) Hiroshi Yoshida commended India’s commitment to responsible AI and affirmed Japan’s support for India as the GPAI Chair.

Yoshida emphasized that collaboration between Japan and India could significantly advance the responsible development, deployment, and use of AI globally, enhancing overall global AI efforts. He expressed Japan’s belief that India’s AI initiatives would align well with GPAI’s goals and stressed Japan’s advocacy for safety codes and guidelines to mitigate risks such as misinformation and intellectual property protection.

Exploring AI deployment countrywide

Industry leaders recognize India’s leadership in global AI innovation. While significant investments are being made to nurture AI startups and increase AI skill penetration, there is a growing consensus on the need for collaborative solutions across critical sectors, such as healthcare, agriculture, and education.

In 2023, OpenAI CEO Sam Altman made his inaugural visit to India, followed by Global Affairs VP Anna Mankaju’s participation at the GPAI Summit.

Also last year, India’s startup Digital Green, in collaboration with OpenAI, launched Farmer.Chat. This digital platform integrates with VISTAAR (Virtually Integrated Systems to Access Agricultural Resources), part of India’s digital public infrastructure led by the government. Farmer.Chat was initially deployed in mid-2023 to 5,000 field-level agriculture extension workers across Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, and Jharkhand.

During the GPAI summit, industry experts emphasized the necessity of a multi-stakeholder approach for widespread AI adoption. OpenAI Vice President Srinivas Narayanan announced the company’s commitment to partnering with INDIAai, underscoring India’s pivotal role in its strategic AI initiatives.

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