There has been, it will be noticed, a shift since independence from the individual to the organic science.
Nevertheless, there is no room for complacency. We could have done better, given the pool of talent and intelligence we started with at independence the first prime minister who understood and appreciated the role of science and was willing to support it wholeheartedly given the respect the science enjoyed amongst the bright young students of the time. But we didn’t why? It is easy to pretend to be wise after the event. But we realise that a wrong turning has been taken only after we go down the road some distance. So here are the answers to the ‘Why’?
The significant step takes around the time of independence to increase the ambience of science in the century was to set up autonomous research institutes (ARIS) in various research areas. The Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) set up in 1996 set the tone. The TIFR initially sent scientist for training abroad. It also (TIFR) provided the intellectual material for the country’s atomic energy programme. The CSIR society also worked in the direction of self reliance by creating advance laboratories in different fields all over country. Today, we have a large network of ARIS created by the various scientific departments of the Government of India.
It all looks good… but here are the questions: none of these ARIS has any integrated link with any university even if the university is in the same town.
The purpose of all government effort for developing new science should be to provide a hassle free environment for dedicated research far from the madding crowds of a university dons and rowdy student masses.
By and large, student do not find a scientific career attractive because they know that if they opt for a bachelor of science stream, there is no
excitement, no motivating teachers any more. Simultaneously, with the creation of ARIS the downgrading of our once excellent university...