ALMORA: The Indian government’s investments in science and technology are not nearly enough to facilitate the highest quality of research in the country, Bharat Ratna professor C N R Rao said on Monday.
An eminient chemist, Professor Rao has served as the head of the scientific advisory council of India to Prime Minister for 10 years during Manmohan Singh’s term in office. He was the third scientist after C V Raman and A P J Abdul Kalam to be decorated with the country’s highest civilian honor in 2013.
He made the statement while delivering the sixth B D Pande Memorial Lecture at Uttarakhand Seva Nidhi in Almora.
Asked whether the current NDA government at the Centre is doing its bit to promote science, especially in rural areas, he said, “It is too early to form an opinion. We’re waiting to see if the government is on the side of scientists. We’d like to have high quality institutes that facilitate the best research in science and technology. However, it is disheartening that already there has been a budget cut in higher education this year.”
“India’s percentage of spending on research and development is almost insignificant. So naturally we have been suffering from mediocrity. We have a lot of schools and institutes, but most of them are of inferior standards. Even the IITs are not producing the best of students now,” he lamented.