Innovation and enterprise, the prime minister stressed are the foundation of making India a developed nation.
"If you don't innovate, you will stagnate. It is not just the government efforts. New ideas come from young minds at campuses and not government buildings and fancy offices," the prime minister said.
Dwelling on the history of IITs, Modi said they were conceptualised to contribute to nation-building post Independence through use of technology.
Modi said all the IITs have built brand India globally and their students are at the forefront of some of the best startups in India.
"They were inspired by the IITs and this led to India becoming one of the world's largest pools of technical manpower," he said.