Govt ready to accept any challenge and improve research environment in country: PM

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New Delhi, Dec 22 (PTI) Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday invited the global community to innovate in India, invest in the country and its talent and said the government is ready to accept any challenge and improve research environment in the country.

In his inaugural address at the India International Science Festival (IISF) 2020, the prime minister said the biggest long term challenge science faces is to attract high quality youngsters and retain them.

He said the government's efforts are aimed at making India the most trustworthy centre for scientific learning.

One of the steps taken to achieve this is hosting and participating in hackathons to provide exposure and opportunity to Indian scientists, he said.

Modi also gave a call to the global community to invest in Indian talent and innovate in India.

'I want to invite the global community to invest in India, Indian talent and innovate in India. India has the brightest minds. India celebrates a culture of openness and transparency.

'The government of India stands ready to address any challenge and improve the research environment here,' he said.

Modi pointed out that there are many challenges in the country like water scarcity, pollution, soil quality, food security, for which modern science has solutions.

Science also has a big role in rapidly exploring the water, energy and food resources in the sea, he noted.

He said India is running Deep Ocean Mission for this and has achieved success, adding the benefit of new inventions in science finds a way in commerce and business as well.

Modi said reforms have now been undertaken in the space sector to encourage youth and the private sector to not only touch the sky, but also the heights of the deep space.

He said the new production linked incentive scheme also focuses on sectors related to science and technology.

Such steps will give a boost to the scientific community, the ecosystem related to science and technology will get better and generate more resources for innovation and create a new culture of partnership between science and industry, he said.

The prime minister said science and technology are bridging the gap of scarcity and impact.

He emphasised the importance of making the benefits of science and technology available to all.

He said science and technology are bridging the gap of scarcity and impact.

'It is connecting the poorest of the poor with the government. With digital advances, India is becoming a centre of evolution and revolution of global high-tech power,' Modi said.

'To achieve this world class education, health, connectivity and rural solutions, today's India has data, demography and demand. Above all, India has democracy to balance and protect all this. That is why the world trusts India,' he stressed.

Modi said India has a rich legacy in science, technology and innovation and its scientists have done path breaking research.

India's tech industry, he said, is at the forefront of solving global problems.

'But, India wants to do more. We look at the past with pride but want an even better future,' Modi said.

He asserted that the new National Education Policy will help in fostering scientific temper from an early age.

He said now focus has shifted from outlays to outcome, from textbooks to research and application. The new NEP will encourage creation of a pool of top quality teachers. This approach will help the budding scientists. This is being supplemented by Atal Innovation Mission and Atal Tinkering labs, he said.

For quality research, the government is running Prime Minister Research Fellows Scheme to encourage the best talent of the country to undertake research as per the talent and interest, he said. PTI PR KR ZMN