“Steps and reforms have been taken by the government in all the sectors, like agriculture, modern medicine, traditional medicine, New Education Policy, small and medium enterprises, labour sector and so on to target being among the world’s top three economies,” a statement quoting Kumar said.
He was speaking at a webinar on DST Golden Jubilee Discourse Series – On the other side of the Pandemic – organised recently by the National Council for Science and Technology Communication and Vigyan Prasar.
Talking about the structural reforms by the government to help the Indian economy compete with the best of the world, Kumar said, “The government is committed to improving the ease of doing business, innovation ecosystem where every school student has access to the innovative tools and trends.”
He said the pandemic has changed many things and shown new ways of doing things and many of these are going to stay in the post-COVID world. He stressed the need to have an innovative economic system in the post-COVID world to remain floating.
Kumar added that the economy post-COVID has been in the recovery mode after the first quarter and hoped that it will bounce back in the next few quarters from the effects of COVID-19 disruptions and grow by an average 7-8 per cent in the next 20-30 years and become the third-largest economy by 2047.
Speaking at the webinar, DST secretary Ashutosh Sharma highlighted the various steps DST has taken to help the Indian economy grow at the desired rate by using science, technology, and innovation in all the fields like clean energy, health, education, transport, agriculture, communication, electric mobility, electric storage, quantum technologies and so on.
He also talked about the steps the DST has taken to give flexibility to scientists to deliver the desired results for technology missions and steps taken to help increase the number of start-ups using innovation, science, and technology.
Meanwhile, three Centre of Excellence (CoE) set up under the National Mission for Sustaining the Himalayan Ecosystem (NMSHE) at Central Universities from two northeastern states, and Kashmir were inaugurated by Sharma recently through video conferencing, the DST said.
Sharma urged these centres to lead the climate change research in the Himalayan region while inaugurating the centres at the University of Kashmir, and Sikkim University and Tezpur University that have been established by the Department of Science and Technology (DST).
He highlighted the importance of focusing on relevant interventions in this region, which is the third pole and is both a contributor to climate change and a regulator of it.
He stressed that the centres should be the primary movers of producing knowledge, use that knowledge with the help of appropriate stakeholders and also be a source of motivation for Himalayan universities to come forward to take up research challenges.
“Out of the eight national missions which are part of the National Action Plan on Climate Change, NMSHE is the only site-specific mission that aims to take suitable measures for safeguarding the Indian Himalayan Region.
“With capacity building the major focus of NMSHE, we have set up Climate Change (CC) cells in 12 out of the 13 states and union territories of the Himalayan region and will soon have a 13th state CC cell in Ladakh,” Kumar added.