Science funding dismal: Rao

Convocation: scientist's straight talk and students' disappointment

By Our Special Correspondent
  • Published 12.09.18
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CNR Rao at the convocation on Tuesday. (Bishwarup Dutta)

Nandan: The investment in science in India is "marginal", scientist C.N.R. Rao said while delivering his speech at the convocation of Presidency University at Nandan III on Tuesday.

"The investment in science has always been marginal. It had reached almost one percent (of the GDP) during the tenure of the Manmohan Singh government. Now it has again come down. Our universities are unable to contribute because they are funded so badly," said Rao, who was awarded honorary DSc at the convocation.

He stressed the need for scaling up investment in science to achieve progress.

This was not the first time Rao had flagged the concern. At an event in Calcutta to mark the conclusion of the centenary of Bose Institute on March 28, Rao had said science funding in India was in "bad shape" and research had become a challenge in an "atmosphere of fear".

In his speech on Tuesday, the scientist urged the teachers to teach beyond the syllabus. "We have to reach outside the book. That is how we can grow interest among the students," said Rao.

He was critical of the semester-based education system. "This only provides a capsule of knowledge," he said.