New Delhi: On Monday, 14th December, the Ministry of Science & Technology announced in a press release that the Vigyan Yatra has been flagged off. The Vigyan Yatra is a promotional activity of the India International Science Festival. In this activity, the mobile science exhibition vans flag off from many cities of the country and the vision behind this science journey is to promote scientific temper and inculcate the culture of science among the masses, stated the Sci-Tech Ministry, adding that this program also ignites the minds of youngsters because science exhibition mobile vans are viewed by all local school & university students that create interest in science and generate awareness about the India International Science Festival (IISF). The 6th edition of IISF is organised on a virtual platform due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Around 30 locations have been identified across the country where this science journey will be organised, stated the Ministry, revealing that eminent science communicators, innovators, teachers, students, and research scholars of the locality will be felicitated.
The Science Ministry said that the Indian Association of the Cultivation of Science (IACS), Kolkata organised this Vigyan Yatra virtually recently. Santanu Bhattacharya, Director, IACS, inaugurated the program. Chief Guest M.M. Sharma, FRS and Padma Vibhushan, shed light on the importance of the International Science Festival and the need and outcomes of the Vigyan Yatra activity. The lecture was delivered by Praveen Ramdas, National Secretary, Vijnana Bharati. Amitava Patra, Director, INST (Mohali); Y. Sudhakar, Saha Institute of Nuclear Physics; and Partha Pratim Chakrabarti, IIT Kharagpur, also delivered lectures.
The Council of scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR)-Central Institute of Mining and Fuel Research (CIMFR), Dhanbad, also organised a Vigyan Yatra on YouTube, under the East segment of four segments (East, West, North, and South) covering the country.
According to the Science Ministry, in a similar program by CSIR-National Institute of Oceanography (NIO), Goa, Sunil Kumar Singh, Director, CSIR-NIO gave the welcome address. Director-General, CSIR, and Secretary, DSIR, Shekhar C. Mande, in his presidential address said that this science festival is going to impact and benefit every segment of society.
Guest of Honour Jayant Sahasrabudhe, National Organising Secretary, Vijnana Bharati (VIBHA), discussed the significance and major highlights of IISF 2020. He delivered his lecture on the theme ‘VIBHA and IISF’. S.P. Gautam, former Chairman, Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), New Delhi, also joined this program and shared his views on the theme of ‘Origin and Evolution of Life’. Suhas Godse, President, Vidnyan Parishad, Goa, gave the vote of thanks.
India International Science Festival 2020 organised a Curtain Raiser, Vigyan Yatra, and an outreach program as pre-event activities. Institute of Bioresources and Sustainable Development (IBSD), Imphal, an autonomous institute under the Department of Biotechnology (DST), also held a Curtain Raiser event cum Vigyan Yatra for IISF 2020.
In this virtual program, Pulok K. Mukherjee, Director, IBSD, welcomed all guests and dignitaries and gave a brief account of the India International Science Festival 2020. The inaugural address was given by Renu Swarup, Secretary, DBT. The S&T Ministry said that this mega science event on the virtual environment is going to be organised during 22-25 December 2020 and CSIR is the Coordinating Organisation. CSIR-NISTADS, New Delhi, is the Nodal Institution for this event.
Jayant Sahasrabudhe, National Organising Secretary, Vijnana Bharati, discussed the vision and objectives of this science festival and elaborated on the events which are to be conducted during IISF 2020.
Other speakers who delivered lectures were Anamika Gambhir, Scientist, Coordinator IBSD, DBT, New Delhi; Goutam Sutradhar, Director, National Institute of Technology (NIT), Imphal (Manipur); Arun Bandyopadhyay, Director, CSIR-Indian Institute of Chemical Biology (IICB), Kolkata; Arun Kumar Sarma, Director General, North East Centre For Technology Application & Reach (NECTAR), Shillong (Meghalaya); and Sheeprasad M. Kuttan, Vijnana Bharati.
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