Special Correspondent

Thiruvananthapuram: The NATPAC Staff Welfare Association has expressed concern over the delay in appointing a scientist to head the Kerala State Council for Science, Technology and Environment (KSCSTE).

In a release here on Thursday, association president Palode Ravi said the absence of a person to lead the council had badly affected its functioning.

“The executive vice-president of the council is a scientist of repute. But that post is now temporarily held by the Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister, an official overburdened with other responsibilities.”

Mr. Ravi said that the council and its member institutions, namely National Transportation Planning and Research Centre (NATPAC), Centre for Earth Science Studies, Tropical Botanic Garden and Research Institute, Centre for Water Resources Development and Management and Kerala Forest Research Institute, were facing a crisis.

“Once led by eminent scientists like M.S. Valiathan and Muthunayagam, they are now floundering,'' he said.

The release said the projects taken up by the institutions were bogged down.

The association urged the Chief Minister to take immediate action to identify and appoint an eminent scientist to head the council.