Kolkata, Jan 3 (ANI): President Pranab Mukherjee on Thursday called upon the scientific community to work for the promotion of a scientific culture for shaping India's future in which prosperity and peace, excellence and equity, oriental values and occidental methods of science converge and co-exist.
Addressing the 100th Session of Indian Science Congress here, Mukherjee said: "I would like to call upon the scientific community to work for the promotion of a scientific culture for shaping our future in which prosperity and peace, excellence and equity and oriental values and occidental methods of science converge and co-exist. India is expected to emerge as a major economic power by 2035.
" We should also emerge as a major knowledge power with high human and societal values. Let me mention in this regard that it has been 83 long years since CV Raman won the Nobel Prize for Physics. Another Nobel Prize in the sciences is long overdue for India. I call upon scientific fraternity gathered here to rise upto this challenge and work towards this goal in a time bound manner," he added.
Asserting that the prime concern of any government in a country is enhancing the well being of its people, Mukherjee said: "Technology has the power of changing the lives of the people by creating physical well being. Countries have undergone transformational changes, all in one generation, from a relatively weak to an emerging economy. In this transformational change, technology-led economic growth has played a key role."
"While technology can be considered a logical extension of knowledge gained from science, it is much more than mere application of science. Technology is contextual. There is a economic value to technology. We all are a witness to the transformational changes being brought about by mobile telephony and Internet. The number of mobile phone users in India was around 19 crore in October 2012 which is the second highest in the world after China," he said.
"The mobile phone density of 74.21 per cent of India compares favourably with the other top ranking countries. Another marvel of technology-the internet-has become a vital source of information and communication. India ranks third after China and USA in terms of number of internet users. However, the penetration of internet use as the percentage of the population is only 11.4 indicating the huge potential for future growth,' he added.
Mukherjee further said that another transformational application of technology is Aadhaar project, which focuses on electronic transfer of benefits directly to the beneficiaries of various social sector schemes.
" I understand the roll out of Aadhaar enabled service delivery has already started in twenty districts. In the Budget 2012-13, a target for covering fifty districts has been set which, I am sure, will be met," he added.
Emphasising that it is essential to innovate if we have to compete in a globalised economy, Mukherjee said: " India has declared 2010-20 as the decade of innovation.
"The announcement of science, technology and innovation policy today lays the roadmap for the development of an eco system for innovations and for encouraging, recognizing and rewarding the innovators in the society, especially the grass root innovators who through their genius are adding value to the processes which directly impact the local population,' he added. (ANI)