India to be made a great destination for science, says Modi
Gandhinagar, January 10, 2017
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has stated that the Government's vision in science and technology was to make India a great destination for science where the youth could be well trained and prepared for the future to make them employable in the best places.
Inaugurating the Nobel Exhibition at Science City here yesterday, Mr Modi said, “My Government has a clear vision of where we want India to be in the next 15 years. Science and Technology is the pivot on which that vision will translate into strategy and action."
“Our vision in Science and Technology is to make sure that opportunity is available to all our youth. That training and future preparedness should make our youth employable in the best places. That India should be a great science destination. That we should take major inspirational challenges such as deep sea exploration and cyber systems,” he added.
The five-week exhibition is organised by the Department of Biotechnology, Government of Gujarat and Nobel Media.
“We have a plan that will take this vision through action. Our scientists have been asked to develop programmes on science teaching in our schools across the country. This will also involve training teachers,” Mr. Modi said.
“At the next level they have been asked to create new programmes both in skilling and high-tech training," he said.
“These programmes will make you employable in the new knowledge economy and make you effective entrepreneurs and thinking scientists. You will be able to compete for positions and jobs here and anywhere in the world,” he added.
“Next, our scientists will link our laboratories in cities. You can share ideas, seminars and resources and equipment. This will allow us to do more and better collaborative science,” the Prime Minister said.
“Our science agencies will expand science-driven entrepreneurship and commercialisation in a big way in each state according to local needs. Your start-ups and industry can then compete globally,” he added.
He urged the youth to take advantage of the opportunity India offers by way of “an enabling and unique opportunity of a large demographic dividend and the best teachers.”
Referring to the challenge of overcoming poverty, Mr Modi said scientists had a role to play in this regard, along with the task of environment protection.
“The maturity of our science will also be judged by a responsible treatment of our planet by the wise use of science and technology,” he said.
“Globally, science and technology has emerged as one of the major drivers of socio-economic development. In the fast growing Indian economy, there are increasing expectations for scientific interventions,” he added.
The Prime Minister said there were three outcomes he wanted to see from the Nobel Prize series.
First, follow up with students and their teachers. The students and teachers here have come through a national ‘Ideathon’ competition and hail from all over the country. Do not lose track of them, he said.
During the exhibition period, sessions could be held for school teachers from all over Gujarat.
Secondly, entrepreneurship could be stimulated locally as there is a great entrepreneurial zeal among the youth. “Our science ministries have incubators here in Gujarat. In the next five weeks, you should have a workshop on how cutting edge science and technology-driven start-ups can be boosted,” he said.
“Prize winning Physics can both save electricity bills and the planet. The 2014 Nobel Prize in Physics was for the blue LED. This came from basic research by three Japanese scientists Akasaki, Amano and Nakamura. When combined with the previously known red and green LED, white light devices can be made that last a hundred thousand hours. There are many such exciting discoveries being made that we can apply through enterprise,” he said.
Thirdly, many Nobel Prize winning discoveries have had a huge impact on the society through health and agriculture. “For example, precision medicine using the tools of gene-technologies is now a reality. We must use this tool to study cancer, diabetes and infectious diseases,” Mr Modi said.
“India is already a generics and bio-similar leader, with a major hub in Gujarat, but we must now strive to become a leader in new bio-tech discoveries as well,” he added.
Expressing happiness that the exhibition has been planned at the Science City which connects community to science, Mr Modi said,” It is an ideal platform to engage citizens to learn about solutions to global challenges we face.
“We will strive to make this Science City a truly attractive, world-class place for young students and science teachers from all over the country and the world to come and be inspired by the exhibits. Centre and State should collaborate and take up this challenge this year,” he added.