In pursuit of genetic engineering

Akash Giri
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It's all hi-tech: A geneticist working on stem cells. — Photo: AFP
It's all hi-tech: A geneticist working on stem cells. — Photo: AFP

I am studying in II PUC, Commerce stream. I am interested in pursuing CA after completing PUC. Please guide me.

Akash Giri

via e-mail

You have started at the right time. On completion of PUC, join a B.Com programme and start off on the CA as well. You will have to enrol with the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) ( for the Common Proficiency Test (CPT) conducted by the examining body. On clearance, you can register for the Integrated Professional Competence Course (IPCC). For more details, you should contact the Bangalore branch of SIRC (South India Regional Council) ( of ICAI, 16, Millers Tank Bed area, Bangalore-560052. Ph: 22205891. E-mail:

I am appearing for the final year of Diploma in Computer Engineering (after II PUC examination) this year and I want to join the Merchant Navy and become a deck captain. Please provide me relevant details.

Shamsher K.

via e-mail, Bangalore

A career in the Merchant Navy (non-combatant commercial fleet transporting cargo) has always attracted the youth. It can be pursued either as an Officer or as a Rating in specialised fields, viz., Marine Engineering, Saloon Rating and Nautical (Deck Services). There are many government and private training institutes that offer courses across India. All programmes are recognised by the Director General of Shipping. The following are some of the Institutes that one can attend:

Indian Maritime University (Central University), Chennai (

Training Ship Chanakya, Navi Mumbai

Marine Engineering and Research Institute, Mumbai

Lal Bahadur Shastri College of Advanced Maritime Studies and Research, (


Marine Engineering and Research Institute, Kolkata (

Sea Horse Academy of Merchant Navy, Kakinada (www.seahorseacademy.


Tamil Nadu Maritime Academy, Thoothukudi (

The following are the courses on offer at various institutes:


3 year degree course in Nautical Science for (10+2) students.

4 year degree course in Marine Engineering for (10+2) students.

2 year course for Diploma Holders.

1 year course for Graduate Mechanical Engineers.

3 month course for Deck Cadets for (10+2) students.

4 month Pre-Sea Course for General Purpose (GP) rating.

3 month Pre-Sea Course for Deck rating.

3 month Pre-Sea Course for Engine rating.

4 month Pre-Sea Course for Saloon rating.

Identify the programme that you would like to pursue and make a career for yourself.

I am a Class X student and confused about choosing the right stream in PUC and after. I am aware that this is very crucial for the life of a student and to build up on a career. I am in interested in the fields of Biology, Social Science and Biotechnology, but not in Medicine. What is the scope of IT/ITES/BPO?

Shwetha Darshan

via e-mail, Bangalore

The decision that one takes after Class X is one of the most crucial. You have articulated your views about not being interested in Medicine. Your interest in Biology, Social Science and Biotechnology suggests that you are still probing and then move into an academic career that will help you with the choice of vocation.

If you select Information Technology, you will have pursue the PUC examination in the subjects of Physics, Mathematics and Chemistry which will help you make you eligible for the entrances tests and the graduation programmes. At present, the field of IT has many takers; and opportunities abound.

Considering that you have interest in Biology and Biotechnology, you can pursue programmes in Pure Sciences like Botany and Zoology or even get to specialised courses like Microbiology, Biotechnology and even Environmental Science. Social Science delves into the pertinent aspects of human society; hence you will find opportunity to study, understand and dabble with subjects like Sociology, Archaeology, Anthropology, Communication and Media, Culture, Demography (Population Studies), International Development and Relations, Social Work, to mention a few.

Whatever choice you make, ensure that you get to the nuances well. Selecting a course of study by choice is always advisable as those areas of study selected by force or for someone else's liking may not augur well for the learner.

Please provide me the contact addresses/e-mail of Delhi Economics School and the National Institute of Nutrition.


via e-mail, Mysore

The contact coordinates are as follows: Department of Economics, Delhi School of Economics (DSE), New Delhi-110 007. Ph: 011-27666533-35, 27666703-05, Fax: 011-27667159. E-mail:,

National Institute of Nutrition, Hyderabad-500007. Ph: 040-27197200. Fax: 040-27019074. E-mail:

I am a BDS graduate, presently working in a dental clinic and also preparing for the MDS programme. Recently I came to know of dental programmes that have been launched by IGNOU. Please help with the understanding of the course and also its validity. Is there any other University offering similar programmes?

Nitin Kumar

via e-mail

IGNOU (, which has been considered as the ‘People's University,' in collaboration with the Dental Council of India (DCI) ( has launched the Post-Graduate Certificate in Oral Implantology (PGCOI) and Post-Graduate Certificate in Endodontics (PGCE). The programme is conducted by the School of Health Sciences (SOHS) of IGNOU.

Eligibility is Bachelor in Dental Surgery (BDS). The programme is delivered through the various study centres located across the country. For more details, contact The Programme Coordinator, SOHS, IGNOU, Maidan Garhi, New Delhi-110068.

The programme is valid as a qualification, considering that the certification is provided by a Central University.

I want to pursue studies in Genetic Engineering. Is their any university offering a programme at the graduation level in India? If feasible provide a list of institutes which I can contact. I am looking at a pan-India selection of institutes.


via e-mail, Bangalore

At the outset, since you have not mentioned your present qualification, we will not be in a position to suggest the programme to pursue as a specific query. Hence, we will provide you a general understanding. Genetic Engineering, Genetic Modification and Gene Splicing are terms that indicate the process of manipulation of genes, usually outside the organism's normal reproductive process.

It basically involves the isolation, manipulation and reintroduction of DNA into cells or model organisms, usually to express a protein. The primary objective is to introduce new characteristics or attributes physiologically or physically, such as making a crop resistant to herbicide.

A qualified genetic engineer must have a graduate / postgraduate degree in genetics or related fields such as biotechnology, molecular biology, microbiology or biochemistry or a Ph.D. from a recognised university, based on 2-3 years of his own research under the guidance of a faculty member. 

The basic eligibility criteria for a graduate degree (B.E. / B.Tech) is 10+2 or equivalent examination, with Biology, Chemistry and Mathematics as well as genetics as part of the biology or a bachelor's degree in science or molecular biology.  

Besides the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), you should also probe the idea of pursuing the programme in Genetic Engineering in the following Institutes and Universities of repute:

1. Benaras Hindu University, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh.

2. Biochemical Engineering Research and Process Development Centre at IMTECH, Chandigarh.

3. Centre for DNA Finger Printing and Diagnostics (CDFD), Hyderabad.

4. Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi.

5. Madurai Kamaraj University, Madurai, Tamil Nadu.

6. National Facility for Animal Cell and Tissue Culture, Pune.

7. National Institute of Immunology (NII), New Delhi.

The Indian Institute of Science has created a niche for itself over the past century. You can contact the Chairman, Department of Molecular Reproduction, Development and Genetics (MRDG), ( Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore-560 012. Ph: 2932659. E-mail:

Shaheed Khan



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