The former President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam has asked the State to build all-season smart waterways grid to store excess water during rainy season and supply the same during drought.

After inaugurating the golden jubilee celebrations of the Siddaganga Institute of Technology here on Wednesday, Dr. Kalam stressed the need to build smart waterways grid and manage water more efficiently.

He said the State could also generate power using the water thus stored and thereby address power shortage to an extent. He said it was economical to build the grid and a lot of people, including farmers, would benefit from it.

The former President told the government to make it a mission to build smart waterways grid so as to help bring prosperity in the State.

Convergence of technology was the need of the hour to address problems in healthcare, agriculture, industry, education and other sectors, Dr. Kalam said, and added that nanotechnology would help provide advanced healthcare to people in the coming days.

The former Chief Justice of India M.N. Venkatachaliah stressed the need for better post-harvest technology. He said 90 million tonnes of foodgrains was wasted every year in India due to inefficient storage techniques. If such a huge quantity of foodgrains was stored properly, it would help feed 500 million people, he added.

Seer of the Siddaganga Math Shivakumar Swami, junior seer of the math Siddalinga Swami, director of the Siddaganga Institute of Technology M.N. Channabasappa, and principal of the institute Shivakumaraiah were among those present.