Indian Science Congress 2018: PM Modi calls for R&D that improves lives, benefits nation

In his inaugural address at the 105th edition of Indian Science Congress, the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi said that the time is ripe to facilitate 'Ease of Living' for 125 crore Indians, through the power as well as the potential of science and technology

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Imphal: The Prime Minister of India, Mr Narendra Modi inaugurated the one hundred and fifth session of the Indian Science Congress 2018 on 16th March at Imphal in Manipur.

While addressing the delegates, PM Modi expressed his happiness to be among scientists, and also said that he was pleased that Manipur University was hosting this important event.

The Prime Minister further said that the time is ripe to redefine ‘R&D’ as ‘Research’ for the ‘Development’ of the nation – that is ‘R&D’ in the real sense. Science is after all, but a means to a far greater end – of making a difference in the lives of others, of furthering human progress and welfare.The time is also ripe, to commit ourselves to facilitate ‘Ease of Living’ for 125 crore Indians, through the power as well as potential of science and technology.

Mr Modi while talking about the attention provided to the North Eastern part of India mentioned that region is full of biodiversity. He added, “The effective solutions to big problems of science and technology require close cooperation and coordination among scientists across diverse streams.The Union Government has initiated several new programs for the North-Eastern States, in the area of science. This is benefiting over five lakh farmers. We are now working to expand this network to all districts of the North-East. Several new centers are bringing relevant science and technology to the North-East. An “Ethno Medicinal Research Centre”has been set up in Manipur.This will undertake research on the wild herbs available in the North Eastern region, which have unique medicinal and aromatic properties.”

Prime Minister while referring to the Indian Science Congress mentioned that it has a rich legacy. He pointed out that it has been led by some of India’s tallest scientists, such as Acharya J.C. Bose, C.V. Raman, Meghnad Saha and S.N. Bose. New India, should seek inspiration from the high standards of excellence, set by these great scientists. “During our interactions on various occasions, I have exhorted our scientists to seek solutions to our socio-economic problems.I have urged them to take up new challenges to benefit the poor and deprived sections of society,” he said.

Mr Modi said the theme chosen for the Indian Science Congress this year is quite appropriate: “Reaching the Unreached through Science and Technology”, he said is a theme that is very close to his heart.

The Session’s theme, he said, also raises some questions. “Have we done enough to ensure that children in India are sufficiently exposed to science?Are we giving them a conducive environment to develop their inherent talent?,” asked PM Modi.

“Our scientific achievements need to be actively communicated to the society. This will help inculcate scientific temper among the youth. It will also excite and attract our young minds to careers in science. We have to throw open our national institutions and laboratories to our children,” exhorted the PM while adding, “I call upon scientists to develop an appropriate mechanism for interaction with school-going children.I also urge them, to spend 100 hours every year, with 100 students of Classes 10,11 and 12 discussing various aspects of science and technology. 100 hours and 100 students, imagine how many scientists we can nurture this way!”

Referring to the India’s efforts on TB, the PM said, “We are making concerted efforts to achieve complete elimination of TB from India. A few days ago, at the ‘End TB Summit’ in New Delhi, we demonstrated our commitment to eliminate TB from India by 2025, five years ahead of the WHO target of 2030.”