CODE19 Online Hackathon Begins!

New Delhi: The much-anticipated CODE19 online hackathon has begun with 6,000 of the best and brightest innovators and developers from India and abroad competing individually or in teams from the comfort of their homes to create open-source solutions against the Coronavirus crisis facing the nation.

The 72-hour event, hosted by the Silicon-Valley-based Motwani Jadeja Family Foundation, will conclude on April 13, 2020 at 9 pm. Total prize money of $34,000 is up for grabs for winners who will be announced on April 21, 2020.

The largest contingent of participants is from the city of Bangalore (533), followed by Hyderabad (374), Chennai (293), Delhi (283), Kolkata (208) and Mumbai (226).

Said well-known entrepreneur, investor, philanthropist and change agent Ms Asha Jadeja Motwani, who is the Founder of Motwani Jadeja Family Foundation: “CODE19 is an attempt to create a concerned community of hackers, mentors, domain experts, and socially-conscious citizens to enable India’s fight against Covid19. We have been completely overwhelmed by the response from thousands of people, especially the youth, from all corners of the country towards this hackathon. Their enthusiasm is palpable.”

She added: “The participants have a strong desire to collaborate on a war-footing to develop tech solutions to effectively mitigate the threat of Covid 19 for India. These open source ideas and innovations would be available for scaling and implementation across the country to help the society cope with the pandemic and its aftermath, especially the poor and vulnerable sections of society.”

Out of the total number of participants, one-fourth are females. The hackathon has an overwhelming presence of youth too. About 90% of the participants are below 25 years of age. Almost 70% percent of the participants fall in the 20-25 age group, while 20% are in the 15-19 age group.

As many as 82 participants from overseas are also presenting their solutions. These include 30 from the US; 16 from Bangladesh; 4 from Germany; 3 from UAE and Egypt each; 2 each from Ghana, Indonesia, Italy, New Zealand, and Poland. Participants from Canada, China, Colombia, France, Guatemala, Iran, Israel, Malaysia, Nigeria, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Turkey, UK, Vietnam and Zambia are also contesting.

An impressive 1,142 innovative ideas have been submitted by the participants across six themes related to meeting the Coronavirus crisis: Open innovation for Coronavirus (481); Social Life, Welfare and Awareness (246); Healthcare & Medication (172); Education and Awareness (92); Research & Development (104); and Travel / Tourism and Industry (47).

More than 100 mentors are helping participants sharpen their product ideas and convert them to successful real-world products that will aid the fight against Coronavirus. Registrations for mentors will remain open till April 12, 2020.

The outcome of CODE19 would be qualitative, open-source prototypes to help tackle various challenges facing India during or after the COVID19 crisis. A total prize money of $34,000 is on offer for the winning solutions, including $10,000 for the First Prize and $5,000 for the Second. The Third Prize is divided into three categories, each of which will be awarded $3,000. In addition, 10 best innovative solutions will be awarded $1,000 each.

The panel of judges to decide the winners includes names such as Gaurav Aggarwal, Co-Founder,; Manish Amin, Co-Founder,; Praveen Nahar, Director, National Institute of Design (Ahmedabad); Vishal Gondal, Founder, GOQii; Vaibhav Aggarwal, Founder,; Amit Ranjan, Co-Founder, SlideShare; and Jitender Minhas, CEO, IAMAI Startup Foundation,

CODE19 is being organized in collaboration with partners such as HackerEarth, TIE Mumbai, IAMAI Startup Foundation, Mumbai Angels Network, Association of Designers of India, Stumagz and GirlScript. The event has three leading academic institutions as partners – National Institute of Design (Ahmedabad), IIT Kharagpur and Centre for Entrepreneurship – Ashoka University.