India's scientific development important in the march towards fourth industrial revolution, says Modi
New Delhi, September 10, 2022
India’s scientific development and the people involved have an important role to play in the march towards the fourth industrial revolution, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said today.
inaugurating the Centre-State Science Conclave in Ahmedabad via video conferencing, Modi said, “Science is like that energy in the development of 21st century India, which has the power to accelerate the development of every region and the development of every state."
"Today, when India is moving towards leading the fourth industrial revolution, the role of India's science and people related to this field is very important. In such a situation, the responsibility of people in administration and policy making increases significantly," he said.
He emphasized that science was the basis of solutions, evolution and innovation. It is with this inspiration that today's new India is moving forward with ‘Jai Jawan, Jai Kisan, Jai Vigyan and Jai Anusandhan’.
On the lessons to be learnt from history that will help both the Centre and the States, he said, “If we remember the early decades of the last century, we find how the world was going through a period of devastation and tragedy. But even in that era, whether it was about the East or the West, scientists everywhere were engaged in great discoveries. In the West, scientists like Einstein, Fermi, Max Planck, Niels Bohr and Tesla dazzled the world with their experiments. In the same period, many scientists including CV Raman, Jagdish Chandra Bose, Satyendranath Bose, Meghnad Saha and S Chandrashekhar were bringing new discoveries to the fore."
The Prime Minister underlined the difference between the East and West as India was not giving due recognition to the work of her scientists. “When we celebrate the achievements of our scientists, science becomes part of our society, it becomes part of the culture. Scientists are giving ample reasons to the country to celebrate them,” he said and lauded the role of Indian scientists in developing the COVID-19 vaccine and contributing to the world's biggest vaccine drive.
He reiterated that the government was working with the thinking of science-based development.
“Since 2014, there has been a substantial increase in investment in the field of science and technology. Due to the efforts of the government, today India is ranked 46th in the Global Innovation Index, whereas in 2015, India was at number 81.”
A record number of patents were being registered in the country. He also noted the climate of innovation and a vibrant start-up ecosystem.
“Inclination for science, technology and innovation is in the DNA of our young generation. We need to support this young generation with full strength," he said.
The Prime Minister listed new sectors and missions in the field of research and innovation to support the innovative spirit of the youth. He gave examples of Space Mission, National Supercomputing Mission, semiconductor mission, Mission Hydrogen and drone technology. The National Education Policy (NEP) was promoting Science and technology education in the mother tongue.
“To make India a global centre of research and innovation in this Amrit Kaal, we have to work on many fronts simultaneously,” Modi said. He stressed the need to take science and technology-related research to the local level. He asked states to promote research and innovation as per their local needs.
Innovation can be encouraged by laying emphasis on the creation of more and more scientific institutions and the simplification of processes by the state governments. The number of innovation labs should also be increased in the institutions of higher education in the states. Every state should lay down modern policy regarding science, innovation and technology. “As governments, we have to more and more cooperate and collaborate with our scientists, this will create an atmosphere of scientific modernity,” he added.
The states should take full advantage of the ability and expertise of many national-level scientific institutes and national laboratories. “We also must take our science-related institutions out of silos for optimum utilisation of scientific institutions and expertise.” He called for science promotion events at the grassroots level. He also advised the state Science Ministers to share good practices and aspects of their science curriculum.
He expressed the hope that the conclave would add a new dimension and resolve the progress of science in the country. “The coming 25 years are the most important years for India as it will determine the new identity and strength of India to come,” he said. The Prime Minister also urged the participants to take the learnings from this conclave to their states and contribute toward nation-building.
The first-of-its-kind conclave was expected to strengthen Centre-State coordination and collaboration mechanisms in the spirit of cooperative federalism to build a robust science, technology & innovation (STI) ecosystem across the country.
The two-day conclave is being organised at Science City, Ahmedabad. It will include sessions on different thematic areas including STI Vision 2047; Future Growth Pathways and Vision for STI in States; Health - Digital Health Care for All; Doubling Private Sector investment in R&D by 2030; Agriculture - Technological interventions for improving farmers’ income; Water - Innovation for producing potable drinking water; Energy- Clean Energy for All including S&T role in Hydrogen mission; Deep Ocean Mission and its relevance for Coastal States/UTs as well as country’s future economy.
The conclave witnessed the participation of Gujarat Chief Minister, Union MoS Science & Technology (S&T), S&T Ministers and Secretaries of States & Union Territories, industry leaders, entrepreneurs, NGOs, young scientists and students.