National Centre for Space Sciences suggested

Staff Reporter

BANGALORE: The Indian Academy of Sciences released a Vision Document for Astronomy and Astrophysics, a decadal document here on Friday.

"This is the first of its kind, and it is a critical survey and an assessment of contributions made by Indian astronomers and astrophysicists," said S.K. Srivastava of Manipur University, one of the members of the academy. One of the recommendations of the document is to set up a National Centre for Space Sciences under the Indian Space Research Organisation.

G. Srinivasan, President, Astronomical Society of India, said this is an attempt to cut across institutional borders and to allow all the young and brilliant minds to contribute their best to this field.

K.V. Ramakrishnan, Department of Atomic Energy, said, "We are also trying to participate in international projects. We have plans to link up with planetariums and science museums and also conduct refresher courses for teachers. There could also be a cluster of science centres across the country," he explained.

Biotech document

The national strategy document on biotechnology is in its final stage of drafting and should be ready for implementation early next year, said Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, Chairperson and Managing Director, Biocon India Ltd.

Speaking at the 16th mid-year meeting of the Indian Academy of Sciences, she said the strategy document has plans to set up research laboratories for specific domains throughout the country and upgrade the quality of biotechnology courses in some educational institutes.

"We are looking to develop some institutes on similar lines of the Indian Institute of Technology... " she said.

During her talk, Ms. Mazumdar-Shaw stressed the importance of academic-industry linkages.

If India is to make its presence felt in the global arena in the sphere of biotechnology, long-lasting relationships between scientists in academic and research laboratories are essential.

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