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RESURGENT INDIA: Energy – Developing A Knowledge-Based Society

  • Categories
    Yojana/Kurukshetra
  • Published
    7th Nov, 2019
  • On July 22, 2019 ISRO commenced its historic journey to the moon by lofting its most complex satellite Chandrayaan-2 along with a lander and a rover for lunar exploration.
  • The GSLV MKIII, nicknamed as Bahubali, placed the Chandrayaan-2 in a highly elliptical orbit around the earth. This lander named as Vikram is going to soft land in a totally unknown territory with uncertainties about its trajectory and performance.
  • Hence, this mission is marked as India’s maiden effort to land on the unchartered surface cluttered with meteors and rocks. Through this India will reaffirm its well-established fourth position in the elite space club of development nations.

India’s Journey in field of Science and Technology

  • India was flourishing in the scientific thoughts and inventions starting from 5000 BC. There were ample examples of excellent town planning, agricultural practices, Ayurveda, astrology and use of metals as seen in the relics from Harappa and Mohenjodaro on the banks of Sindhu and Saraswati rivers.
  • After independence, initiatives taken by the government for setting up national, education institutes like IITs and research establishments for atomic energy, space research defence, agriculture etc, are paying rich dividends today.
  • The R&D activities in atomic energy have enabled us to achieve self-reliance and use the energy for peaceful and military applications.
  • The most important achievement is in the field of agriculture. In the mid-sixties a green revolution was brought in by Dr. S Swaminathan and his team.

Recent Steps to push development in Science and Technology

  • Government is taking a number of initiatives in creating a knowledge society by spreading digital connectivity and services in rural areas. The current year's budget has identified thrust areas like bio-technology, science education and industrial application of R&D results.
  • However, the budget allocation for the S&T sector is less than 8% compared to about 3-5% by developed countries, including China. 
  • The decision taken by the government to have a science council to focus and guide scientific activities in an integrated manner in the country is welcome. To cite the example, atomic energy and space are having total autonomy with the respective empowered commissions to set guidelines and overseeing their activities.

Future Course of Action in this field

  • A similar model in other key sectors integrating related activities enabling them with empowered commissions is the need of hour.
  • A few examples of aggregating can be in the following areas: Agricultural land use; Medicine including Ayurveda; and Science Education.
  • About half a dozen empowered commissions will definitely bring in required focus on the research activities to be taken-up for solving the day-to-day problems of the people.
  • The investment in human resource development aiming at enabling the youth power with the scientific temper has to be given top most priority.
  • The STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) method could be implemented so that the children are enabled to think independently and analyze and take decisions in a logical manner.
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