Science is the cornerstone for progress of mankind

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  • Crux from the PIB-Address by the Vice President on India International Science Festival – 2017

Fodder Points for Mains/Essay:

  • Science is the cornerstone for the progress of mankind. Scientific inventions have revolutionized the world and shaped every aspect of the modern life. Indians have made significant contribution to the field of science from ancient times and are now in the forefront in state-of-the-art space technologies and the IT revolution sweeping the world.
  • Science & Technology has been part of India’s culture and tradition.
  • The scientific bent of mind in ancient India was reflected right from the use of zero, place values, algebra, concept of atom, calculation eclipses, among others. ‘Sushruta Samhita’ talks of surgery while Charak describes hundreds of diseases, their causes and treatment methods.
  • The urban settlements of Mohenjo Daro and Harappa, production of highest quality steel and extraction of sugar are other examples when India was more advanced than the rest of the world.
  • After demonstrating our knowledge to the world in the ancient times in the fields of astronomy, mathematics, yoga and ayurveda, India somehow lost its way following Mughal invasions and colonization. The time has now come for every Indian to work towards recapturing our past glory and make India one of the leading nations in scientific and technological innovations in the coming decades.
  • For this to happen, there has to be concerted efforts from the governments as well as different sections of the society – right from teachers, who mould young minds, to universities and industries, who need to hugely step up R & D activities in different domains. Unless research is taken up on a large scale, India will not be able to reach new pinnacles in Science & Technology.
  • In spite of the remarkable scientific achievements the world has witnessed from invention of telescope to discovery of Higgs boson, mankind continues to face numerous challenges such as those relating to climate change, global warming, sustainable development, clean energy and water and diseases.
  • Only science can throw up solutions for the present and emerging problems in the years to come.
  • Artificial Intelligence, robotics, Internet of Things, big data analytics and digital manufacturing are going to change the way we are going to live.
  • These areas need to be fully exploited with innovative and disruptive technologies. 
  • Investments in S & T need to be stepped up to address various problems the country is facing today such as poverty, unemployment, pollution, diseases, urban-rural divide, lack of clean drinking water as also the issues relating to crime and security, among others.
  • CSIR and ICMR are among the leading research bodies and have earned global recognition for their cutting edge work.
  • Department of Science & Technology is involved in a number of global projects like the 30-meter Telescope Project and Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory project.
  • India today is among the 12 biotech destinations and ranks third in the Asia-Pacific region.
  • India also has the second highest number of US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) approved plants after the USA and is the largest producer of recombinant Hepatitis B vaccine.

Source:PIB