Annual Report 2007-2008
The Department of Science and Technology, Government of India
has enrolled into a role of strengthening the Foundation and the Research and
Development base of the country. It is the main public policy support body for
science and technology. The Department is also the major agency in the country
for promotion of basic sciences with a share of nearly 50% of Extra Mural funding
of research projects. The Department plays a critical role in the technology development
programmes relating to key sectors and in the development of International Cooperation
in Science and Technology. Popularization of science, relating science to society,
promotion of entrepreneurship, National Resources data management and generation
of data bases and initiatives targeting empowerment of women through applications
of science and technology form important areas of focus for planned interventions
by the Department. The Department has been collaborating with many other socio-economic
ministries in the Government and Science and Technology councils of various
Governments. The Department has been supporting an array of autonomous institutions
engaged in basic research, technology forecasting, laboratory accreditation and
science popularization. Output indicators of these institutions reveal a strong
correlation between inputs and outputs. There is now a case for models based on
evidence based budgeting as a part of research support systems. The department
oversees two sub departments namely Survey of India and National Atlas and Thematic
Mapping Organization (NATMO).
During the year 2007-08, the Department
has initiated some new programmes and new models for implementing ongoing schemes.
Consequently, the financial allocation for the Department received a substantial
increase. Various mechanisms and methods focused on increased efficiency of financial
deliveries to various schemes have been devised and adopted. There is now evidence
for an increase of 25-30% increase in the efficiency of deliveries of funds during
the year 2007-08 relative to 2006-07. The Department is propelling itself to make
a larger difference to the science and technology sector of the country during
the eleventh plan period. Some of the key new measures taken by the department
during 2007-08 for accomplishing higher tasks during the eleventh plan period
are highlighted in this overview.
Measures taken during 2007-08
Some of the important
measures have been taken for enhancing the value of the department to the research
and development sector during 2007-08. They are: a) proposal for the establishment
of National Science and Engineering Research Board through an act of Parliament,
b) mounting of Nano mission, c) designing and implementation of a special package
for strengthening of infrastructure for science education in the North East Region,
d) revising the guidelines for Fund for Infrastructure Strengthening of S&T
(FIST), e) revision of parameters for decision support under Science and Engineering
Research Council, f) development of new schemes for the attraction, attachment
and retention of talent in careers with science and research, g) rejuvenation
of research in universities, h) measures for the establishment of new autonomous
institutions in vital areas like Himalayan Glaciology, nano science and technology
etc, i) stepping up International Cooperation with strategic partner countries
based on principles of reciprocity and synergy, j) accelerating the pace of technology
development in Drug and Pharmaceutical sector under private public partnership
model, k) S&T measures for invigorating agriculture through various inputs,
l) reaching out to youth through various mechanisms including showcasing of excitements
in global science though Science Express and children science congress, m) new
proposals for developing an innovation landscape, n) new schemes for technologies
for safe drinking water, security, cognition science and innovation clusters,
o) support to development of research agenda on climate change including special
focus on Himalayan Glaciology and p) policy measures for ensuring rigor in implementation
of Flexible Complementing Scheme for career progression of scientists, enhancement
of fellowships for research students and a host of initiatives proposed by the
Science Advisory Council to the Prime Minister and Science Advisory Council to
the Cabinet and other policy bodies.
New Measures of SERC:
Science and Engineering Research Council is the single largest Extra Mural
support system of the country for promotion of basic research. The council has
adopted various measures to further enhance its value to the scientific community.
Some of the significant policy measures introduced during the year 2007-08 are:
a) a provision for mentoring support to researchers for spreading the R&D
base without loss of rigor and quality of projects supported under SERC, b) performance-linked
incentive grant system and c) enhancement of contingencies to cover publication
Some new approaches have been adopted for promotion of scientific
research in relevant areas. A nationally coordinated project on metal based drugs
including leads form traditional medicine has been mounted. Identification of
interface areas of organic chemistry, pharma and biology is one of the highlights
of the year. A Process Research Initiative for Zero Emission (PRIZE) for dyes
and pigments sector mounted to address the needs of copper pthalocyanine industry
is a new step forward under Green Chemistry programme.
Indicators: Total number of projects sanctioned during 2007-08 as of
31 December 2007 is 495 which represents an annual increase of ~ 49% over those
for the corresponding period for the previous year. The level of funds sanctioned
during 2007-08 as of 31 December 2007 is Rs 13188.7 lakhs, which represents an
increase of over 92% compared to the previous year for the same period. There
has been increase of about 30% in the per project support during the year 2007-08
compared to the previous year.
Nano Science and Technology Initiative (NSTI) has been a successful programme
of DST. NSTI has led to the development of critical mass of strength in the area
of nano science and technology. More than 450 students with support from DST are
engaged in doctoral research in the area. As many as 4 groups have attained global
competitiveness in the area of basic research. Based on the success of NSTI, the
Government of India has mounted a Nano mission in May 2007. A large number of
projects and initiatives for establishing educational programmes have been supported
under the nano mission during 2007-08. Proposals for establishing Institutes of
Nano Science and Technology (INST) as centers in Bangalore, Kolkata and Mohali
have been approved under Nano mission.
Fund for Improvement
of S&T Infrastructure (FIST): Fund for Improvement of S&T Infrastructure
(FIST) has emerged as a popular programme among the university and academic sector
since its launch in 2000. Total of 1100 departments from 204 academic institutions
have been supported with a fund of about Rs 740 crores during last 7 years. Some
structural modifications in the guidelines have been made to expand the horizon
of FIST and Rs 220 crores for 147 departments were sanctioned during 2007-08.
North East Package of FIST: A special
package for North East Region for strengthening Science and Technology Education
with an outlay of Rs 70 crores has been developed and implementation initiated.
Sophisticated Analytical Instrument Facilities
(SAIF): The scheme has been operational for the last three decades.
It was subjected to a critical review by the department during the year 2007-08.
The scheme has benefited a large number of institutions and served to provide
access to sophisticated research facilities to the academic sector. More than
90% of the users of SAIF centers have been drawn from the university and academic
The Department has taken measures to proactively promote development of technologies
in the areas of waste disposal, surface engineering applications, bio-fuels, bio-molecular
devices and water purification. The participation of Department in Drug and Pharmaceutical
Research and development under Private-Public Partnership has led to significant
and new results during the year 2007-08.
Disposal: Plasma based Incineration Technology for disposal of hospital
and plastic waste has been developed and scaled-up from 15 Kg per hour to 50 Kg
per hour capacity.
Application of Surface
Engineering Techniques: Rejuvenation of Traditional Crafts using surface
deposition techniques for products made from cane, wood, brassware, textiles through
applications of technology has been targeted. The Angora wool treatment system
has been successfully developed and is being installed at Kullu.
of Alternate Fuels: Application of Straight Vegetable Oils (SVOs)
for stationary and transport use is being developed. A retrofit has also been
developed to enable use of SVO in single cylinder engine.
for Water Purification: Successful development of Arsenic Removal systems
through microbial as well as innovative chemical processes has reached field trial
testing. The sea water desalination units have been successfully installed at
Ramnathpuram District of Tamil Nadu. This technology is being upscaled using heat
Development of Microwave
based Systems for Tea drying: The development of a microwave
based tea dryer has been made and is being commissioned at Tejpur.
Development Programme (IDP): The programme aims to strengthen
indigenous capability for research design and development of instruments in the
country The projects have been supported under the thrust areas a) Analytical/Optical
Instrumentation, b) Sensors and Allied Instrumentation c) Medical and Health Care
Instrumentation and d) Industrial Instrumentation
and Pharmaceutical Research Programme: During the year 2007-08, total
of 14 MoUs and agreements have been signed. Creation of the first BSL 45 facility
for infectious diseases has been facilitated at CCMB Hyderabad. The programme
has gained momentum for developing new Public Private Partnerships.
Science and Technology Management Information Systems
Resources Studies: The national survey for collection of data on resources
devoted to research and development activities for the year 2005-06 has just been
completed. In order to reduce the time lag in collection of data for the survey,
e-questionnaires have been designed and employed for the first time. Each R&D
organisation / establishment / industry was provided with a unique user ID and
password for on-line filling of e-questionnaire. For the generation of reliable
data base on level of public support for research, information is being compiled
on extramural R&D projects.
Studies: The National Science and Technology Management Information
System (NSTMIS) division is engaged in the collection, collation, analysis and
dissemination of vital S&T information at a national level. A brain storming
session was organised during this year. Integration of economics and social science
in the NSTMIS efforts, measuring S&T input and output, study linkages between
Industry, Technology and S&T policies and study on out-turn of scientists
and engineers were some action points which emerged from this brain storming session.
Science and Technology Cooperation
of International S&T Cooperation during 2007-08: International
Science and Technology Cooperation of India reached new heights during the year
2007-08. Technology diplomacy and technology synergy with several partnering nations
has gained momentum during the year. Total of five new agreements were signed.
Some important highlights of stepped up International cooperation during the year
2007-08 have been with Germany, UK, Israel, Japan, Australia, Canada, EU, Hungary,
Russia, China, USA, Brazil and other partnering nations. Establishment of Indo
German joint center in Delhi and Global Innovation and Technology Alliance (GITA),
creation and operation of Strategic joint fund with Canada, Hungary and EU, steps
to commission Indian beam line in KEK, Japan and enrollment as a partner in the
establishment of Facility for Anti-proton Ion Research (FAIR) are land mark events
of 2007-08 in the International S&T cooperation of India. Indo UK science
and Innovation Council has supported total of 13 projects. The coordinated call
for support under EU-India joint initiative has been finalized. Indo Australia
strategic fund has become operational. Celebration of twenty years of fruitful
collaboration under Integrated Long Term
Programme with Russia was held in
Russia during 2007-08. A joint Indo Russian center for biomedical technology has
been inaugurated in Thiruvananthapuram.
Science Express under the International
Cooperation of India with Germany is a high light event of the year 2007-08. More
than one million youth have visited the science express so far.
leaps in International S&T Cooperation: More than 250 projects
are ongoing with several partners of India in the area of science and technology
and about 2500 exchange visits have been promoted during the year 2007-08. It
has been a year vibrant S&T cooperation with strategic partners with funds
equivalent to about 250 million dollars being committed for investments by India
for International cooperation related activities for the period of seven years.
Activities under Indo US S&T Forum (IUSSTF):
During the year, IUSSTF launched eight new bilateral programs in partnership
with government agencies, industries and professional societies. These include
a) Centers of Research Excellence, b) Research Fellowships, c) Technology Entrepreneurship
Program, d) Stanford-India Biodesign (SIB), fellowship e) Visiting Professorship
& Student Visitation, f) Student Internships, g) HP Innovate 2008, h) Agilent
Technologies Clean Air Challenge for Schools.
Centre for the Promotion of Advanced Research (CEFIPRA): Indo-French
Centre for the Promotion of Advanced Research established in 1987 is a major arm
of S&T cooperation between the two countries. During the period under report,
five workshops were held and some more have been planned for 2008. With a view
to relating science to the service of the society by linking research institutions
and industry, industrial research committee was constituted. The Centre provided
travel support, arranged visa, foreign exchange, etc. to about 150 Indian and
French scientists for project related activities during 2007-08. On an average
about 100 research papers published jointly in international scientific journals
with impressive average impact factors per publication result from the collaborative
effort. The joint research papers published so far since inception of the Centre
have been compiled in 14 volumes comprising 45 issues. The 14th Volume of Compilation
of Research Papers was released on 1st November 2007.
Science and Technology
Programmes for Socio-economic Development
Programme of the Department is an important component of activities. These programmes
are being implemented through S&T institutions, universities and NGOs under
Science and Technology Application
for Rural Development (STARD): Core support was extended to
eleven NGOs working in different parts of the rural India. New projects were initiated
for integration of local bio-resources and other eco-friendly methods for the
management of post harvest diseases of apple in Himachal Pradesh and evaluation
of efficiency water-use for maximization of pea and tomato productivity in North-west
Himalayan region. In addition, 35 new time-bound projects targeting rural artisans
have been supported during 2007-08. A Rural Energy programme at 10 non-grid locations
in identified villages based on energy survey needs has been launched.
Tribal Sub plan: Under Tribal Sub
Plan, thirteen projects have been implemented in some inaccessible areas
of North East. Training was imparted to the rural women in the use of sound and
effective home remedies as well as a package of 20 ecosystem specific medicinal
plants. The outcome of this project has been the training of 13 NGOs, raising
of 5,06,441 seedlings and 20,915 home herbal gardens.
Business Incubators (TBIs) and Science and Technology Entrepreneurs Parks (STEPs):
STEPs and TBIs were established to provide a re-orientation in the approach
to innovation and entrepreneurship involving education, training, research, finance
and management. About 45 STEPs/TBIs are in operation in different institutions
of national repute. Total of nine TBIs were accorded approval during the year
Tax Incentives to Incubators and
Incubatees: In the Union Budget 2007 announcement, Minister of Finance
has exempted technology business incubators recognized by NSTEDB, DST from service
Entrepreneurship Development Cells (EDCs):
The Entrepreneurship Development Cells (EDCs) were initiated to develop institutional
mechanism to create entrepreneurial culture in S&T academic institutions.The
EDCs are now operational in 35 institutions across the country.
& Technology Entrepreneurship Development (STED) Project: During
the year 2007-08 through STED projects about 2600 micro enterprises were promoted
resulting in creation of employment to approximately 7000 persons. Thirteen new
projects are being established in different parts of the country.
Development Programme (FDP) and Entrepreneurship Awareness Camps (EAC):
About 50 FDPs covering the entire country were conducted during 2007-08. These
programmes enrolled about 1000 faculty and resource persons into training on Techno-entrepreneurship
Development. More than 350 EACs have been organized exposing about 26,000 students
to the concept of entrepreneurship.
Based Entrepreneurship Development Programme (TEDP): During 2007-08,
about 70 TEDPs were organised. Some of the technology areas chosen for transfer
to the potential entrepreneurs include solar energy, computer hardware and networking
technology, PCB design and manufacturing, fashion technology, plastics products,
food processing, footwear design and development.
Resources for Indian S&T Advancement
Innovative human resource
development programmes like Advanced Training Courses/ programme were organized
to serve about 240 research professionals in different areas of Earth System Sciences
during 2007-08. The JC Bose National Fellowships were awarded to 28 scientists
and 7 scientists were selected for the prestigious Ramanujan Fellowships this
year. Seventeen Ramanna fellowships have been awarded during 2007-08. The SERC
revisited the fabric of Ramanna Fellowship and set new selection criteria for
the fellowship and also approved the institution of a finite number of Ramanna
fellowships (Sr) for exceptionally
meritorious and active senior scientists.
Under the Kishore Vaigyanik Protsahan Yojana (KVPY), about 200 students were selected
this year. Fellowships have been awarded to 71 scientists/technologists for conducting
research/undergoing specialized training in overseas research institutes under
BOYSCAST programme. 232 new projects costing a total of about Rs. 3030.90 lakhs
and 307 ongoing projects for young scientists under fast track mode were approved
The Indian teams again performed well in the International Mathematics, Physics,
Chemistry and Biology Olympiads and won 15 medals and 4 Honourable Mention.
Science and Technology based services
Geospatial Technology Product Services: Survey of India under Department of Science
and Technology, Govt. of India, the national mapping organization generates Geo-spatial
Information on different scales. Survey of India has completed the mapping of
new site Larsemann on a scale of 1:2,500 which will facilitate Indias
claim for establishment of permanent station at this site in Antarctica. SOI has
generated digital data of 4800 topographical maps of DSM and 4600 OSM on 1:50,000
scale. These are ready for dissemination to the user community. Field updation
of map data has been completed for 4403 sheets. Updation of data base of 4,548
sheets of OSM and 1954 sheets of DSM has been completed. Digital Data generation
on 1:25,000 scale is under progress. Of the 19,393 total sheets, 10,105 have already
been surveyed and 6525 published and 3942 digitized.
SOI in collaboration
with Ministry of Urban Development has undertaken the task of mapping of 150 towns
on 1:2000 scale for core area and 1:10,000 scale for the peripheral areas for
establishment of National Urban Information System (NUIS). Mapping of 99 towns
has commenced. Digital Base Map (3DGIS) for 3 cities, Ahmedabad, Chennai
and Mumbai on scale 1:1000 along with attribute data collection for integration
with graphical data is under progress.
The NATMO is subordinate office
under the administrative control of the Department of Science & Technology.
A large percentage of the targets set for 2007-08 have been achieved.
Laboratory Accreditation Services: The National
Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL) provides formal
recognition for technical competence of testing, calibration and medical laboratories.
As on 31st October 2007 NABL has granted accreditation to 515 testing, 275 calibration
and 102 medical testing laboratories. NABL has been granted signatory member status
by APLAC and International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC) under their
Mutual Recognition Arrangements (MRAs). To compliment its laboratory accreditation
services, NABL has initiated accreditation programme for Proficiency
Good Laboratory Practice Systems:
Good Laboratory Practice (GLP) is a quality system of the member countries
of Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). India enjoys
observer status. OECD has consented to carry out the evaluation of the Indian
GLP Programme through their Mutual Joint Visit (MJV). The MJV team consisting
of experts from the GLP authorities of Australia, UK and Israel completed their
joint visit during 2007-08.
Gender Empowerment through S&T:
The Department has pioneered, S&T based empowerment of women in the country
for the past two decades. During the year, about thirty five projects were sponsored
in diverse technology areas such as natural resource management; bio attractants
for honey bee; production and fabrication techniques of optical components for
scientific/optical instruments; paper recycling technology; root mat production
and other modern agricultural practices; nursery techniques for aromatic and medicinal
plants cultivation; rural dairy; watershed based soil and water conservation,
preservation, processing; and post harvest technology of off seasonal vegetables;
tissue culture technology. Rural Women Technology Parks (WTP) were established
in different geographical locations. A women technology park had been facilitated
in Orissa during 2007-08.
Programs for Re-entry
of Women Scientists into Research: The Department provides fellowships
and project funds for women researchers seeking re-entry after break for family
reasons. Total of 86 projects were sanctioned for women scientists during this
year. Last year women scientists have contributed 284 research papers. Approximately
25% of the awardees have earned employment in universities and national laboratories.
Fellowship Programs for Women: The Fellowship Scheme for Women Scientists
Programmes attracted over 350 applications during 2007. Under
the fellowship Scheme for Creating Self-Employment Opportunities in IPR, the third
batch of 37 women scientists was selected by the process of all India level examination.
The scheme has been extended to other locations such as Chennai and Pune in the
first instance. The Department has developed plans to expand the annual intake
to at least women professionals per year.
Institutions and Professional Bodies
institutions under the Department of Science & Technology continued research
activities in the diverse areas of science and technology from basic sciences
(physical & chemical sciences and life Sciences) to advanced science and technology
including material science, health care systems, nanotechnology, liquid crystals,
geomagnetism, technology forecasting, science poularisation etc. The Professional
Academies continued excellent work in capacity building in science & technology
through various progammes.
S&T Output Indicators
of Aided Institutions : A total of 14 institutions are engaged directly
in research and development with areas of focus ranging from global history and
health, distant observations, molecules to materials and science and technology
for well being. Per capita publications among all the fourteen DST aided institutions
generally averaged in the range of 2.5 per year. S&T outputs indicators of
some of the institutions supported by DST meet global bench mark norms per scientist.
The average impact factor of publications from various DST aided institutions
was in 1 and 4.5 during the year 2007-08. More than 20 patents were granted and
about 20 patents have been filed based on the work of the aided institutions.
Total of 90 students obtained their doctoral and post graduate degrees through
their work in DST aided institutions.
Creation in DST Institutions: New research facilities with more than
Rs 100 crores have been created in the institutions of DST during the year 2007-08.
International center for materials sciences, Indo Russian center for biomedical
technologies, the Aneesur Rahman Centre for High Performance Computing for high-end
computation and the Centre for Atomic, Molecular and Optical Sciences and Dr.
K. S. Krishnan Geomagnetic Research Laboratory at Allahabad are some examples
of the new centers of excellence created. High Altitude Gamma Ray (HAGAR) telescope
array was installed at the Indian Astronomical Observatory (IAO). The 3.6-meter
new technology Devasthal optical telescope project was started after ARIES entered
into an agreement with Advanced Mechanical and Optical Systems (AMOS), Belgium
for the design, manufacturing, integration, testing, supply and installation of
the telescope at Devasthal. RRI is involved in an international project Murchison
Wide-field Array (MWA)
The year 2007-08 has been productive. Several new initiatives have been proposed
as a part of the eleventh plan. The Department has been striving to connect resources
with the cause of Indian Science and Technology sector. There is much hope with
in the Department. The Department is conscious of expectations of the S&T
community and its stake and share holders. The first year of the eleventh plan
has begun well for the Department. The best is yet to come. The Department hopes
to deliver its best during the eleventh plan.