The Union Minister for Science & Technology & Earth Sciences Dr. Harsh Vardhan has said the Biotechnology should revisit some problems that could not be resolved so far and find solutions for them . Inaugurating a two day Global Biotechnology Summit on “Destination India” in New Delhi today he said though there is universal immunization Programme in the country it is said that 30% of children still do not get proper vaccination. There is malnutrition and the problem of stunted growth among children in the country. The Minister pointed out that the young population of India should take forward ideas to achieve target of 100 billion US dollars for the biotechnology sector by 2020 instead of 2025 for which the target has been set now. The Union Minister for Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Shri Radha Mohan Singh said though there were drought conditions in some recent years crop yields have not reduced much because of interventions adopting biotechnology measures. Genetic engineering is a technical means but safety aspects of genetic engineering should also be kept in mind. The State Minister for Science & Technology and Earth Sciences Shri Y.S.Chowdary said that the next decade is expected to be that of Biotechnology (BT) and India as it progressed in Information Technology(IT) it is expected to take lead in this year.
The Union Minister for Commerce & Industry Smt.Nirmala Sitaraman has said that India has the second largest USFDA approved institutions in the biotechnology sector after USA it is definitely possible for India to achieve target of 100 billion US dollars by 2020. She said the government expect start ups in areas of biotechnology and other basic sciences and the department of Pharma is expected to start a 1000 cr rupee venture capital for research in related fields. The Summit is being held as a run up to the Department of Biotechnology (DBT) celebrating its 30th Foundation Day on 26th February, 2016. The last 30th years, after the Department can into existence in 1986, have been crucial for the growth of Life Sciences and Biotechnology in the Country and DBT’s impact has been both national and global. To mark this event, a series of scientific activities including town-hall lectures, debates and other interactions with eminent scientists as well as overseas experts are being organized in association with various autonomous institutes and star colleges. Contributions of key stakeholders – Individuals, Institutions (including Universities), Industry and Society are being show cased to mark the occasion. The Department is also making efforts to spread the message across the country and internationally on the impact which Life Sciences and Biotechnology have made on society.
The Summit is also expected to help attract investors and other key partners to invest in the biotech sector in India, in response to the call given by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi for Make in India and for encouragement of the start-up ecosystem with a potential for scale-up. It would broadly focus on the priority themes - Make in India, Nurturing Bio entrepreneurship, Skill India, Biotech opportunities and action for Swachh Bharat and Swasth Bharat. Biotechnology cooperation, Biotechnology Innovation for inclusive development, Biotechnology and Society or other topics scheduled for panel discussions at Plenary talks during this Summit. These discussions are expected to help to align the goals of the biotech strategy with policies of State Governments and to prepare joint action plans. It will also help to create exciting opportunities for students and researchers by giving them an exposure to the best experts in the field. About 1200-1500 participants are attending the two day event including eminent scientists from national and international public and private sector organizations and universities. Delegations from State Governments, representatives and delegations from other countries with which DBT partners, students, research fellows, Biotech Start-up Entrepreneurs, policy-makers, Civil society and other stakeholders are among the participants. All DBT ex-secretaries were also present during the deliberations.