Bharat Ratna, Professor C.N.R. Rao has said that the future of the country depended on science and technology and the future of science lay on the children who with their hard work and sincerity can work wonders in science. He was addressing the inaugural session of the Rashtriya Kishore Vaigyanik Sammelan (Children’s Science Congress), a part of the ongoing 107th Indian Science Congress being held at the University of Agricultural Sciences, Bengaluru today. Eminent Scientists from India and abroad called on the numerous children gathered at the event to be determined, believe in themselves and be prepared for unexpected results in their pursuit of science.
Professor, Ada Yonath from Israel, who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2009 advised the young children that in science everything would not go the way they want and that they should be prepared for the unexpected. “Even if things do not go your way, believe in yourselves and do not look for advice from others” she added.
She recalled that as a child she wanted to pursue science as a hobby and had set up her experiment to measure the height of the ceiling of her balcony.
She referred to the inspiration which she received from Professor G.N. Ramachandran, FRS who was known for the formulation of the Ramachandran plot for understanding peptide structure and for proposing the triple-helical model for the structure of collagen. “I had thought that I had lost the first experiment as a scientist, but that experiment was later presented by my guide at a conference in India and appreciated by Professor Ramachandran.
He stressed that science does not require degrees but dedication, doggedness and tenacity and mentioned that many of the great scientists like Michael Faraday, had made phenomenal contributions without degrees.
He also mentioned the timeless work of great Indian scientists like Sir C.V. Raman, Srinivasa Ramanujan and Professor J.C. Bose who went out of their way and carried out scientific research despite constraints of time, finance and facilities.
The Rashtriya Kishore Vaigyanik Sammelan (Children’s Science Congress) prominent event of the Indian Science Congress, was inaugurated by the Nobel Laureate Prof. Ada Yonath, Bharat Ratna Prof C.N.R. Rao in the presence of Dr. Akhilesh Gupta, Head, NCSTS, Department of Science and Technology (DST) and other dignitaries.
Children Science Congress is financially supported by NCSTC, DST. The main objective is to provide a unique opportunity to children of the age group of 10-17 years to use their scientific temperament and knowledge and to quench their thirst for creativity by conducting scientific experiments to solve problems identified by them. The students also get an opportunity to interact with scientists and subject experts.
Every year about 7-8 lakhs school children in the age group of 10-17 years participate at various levels from the districts, states & union territories. Around 2 to 3 best projects from each state are exhibited in the Indian Science Congress. Several projects made by students are being showcased in the University of Agricultural Science campus and students had the opportunity to listen and interact with the Young Scientists and Nobel Laureates.
During the event, Infosys ISCA Travel Award 2020 was also given to top 10 students for their best write ups for innovations in the field of Science & Technology.