Chandigarh scientist honoured at CSIR foundation day : The Tribune India

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Chandigarh scientist honoured at CSIR foundation day

Ashwani Kumar's work on potential reduction in TB treatment time lands him the prestigious Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Award 2022 for biological sciences

Chandigarh scientist honoured at CSIR foundation day

Ashwani Kumar (left) being honoured. Tribune photo: Aditi Tandon



Tribune News Service

Aditi Tandon

New Delhi, September 27

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday hailed the journey of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research which marked its 82nd Foundation Day at Bharat Mandapam, in a ceremony that also saw the presentation of the prestigious Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Awards for 2022.

Among recipients across seven segments of the award was Ashwami Kumar of the CSIR Institute of Microbial Technology, Chandigarh.

Kumar was awarded in the category of biological sciences for original contributions in biofilm-induced infections involving cellulose revealing a novel mechanism in TB pathophysiology. Kumar's work has the potential to reduce the treatment time for TB patients from the current six months to one month.

In a message on the occasion, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, president of the CSIR, hailed the council’s 81-year-old journey, especially its contributions to Chandrayaan 3.

Union Minister of Science and Technology Jitendra Singh read out the PM's message.

The Prime Minister said CSIR is playing a prominent role in serving society, industry and the nation, noting, "Even sky is not the limit for the Indian scientific community."

The message mentioned the Aroma Mission involving India's export of lemongrass oil, strides in floriculture, the Purple Revolution ushered in through lavender cultivation in Jammu and Kashmir, and laying of Steel Slag roads along border areas.

Jitendra Singh personally spoke of the government policy of unlocking scientific institutions and lifting the veil of secrecy shrouding them.

"Today, ISRO chairman S Somanath is asked for a selfie wherever he goes. But there was a time when ISRO was under a veil of secrecy. That has changed. As many as 10,000 spectators watched the launch of Aditya L 1 Mission and 1,000 journalists covered the launch of Chandrayaan 3. We have unlocked the gates of Sriharikota and we believe that effacement is a noble word but not always a virtue...Chandrayaan 3 became a national success because people felt involved."

Earlier, DG, CSIR, N Kalaiselvi, the first woman DG of the institution in 81 years, recounted milestones in the CSIR journey and said the institution was preparing a vision document -- CSIR at 2042 -- to mark the centenary of the council. She specifically mentioned the low chilling variety Anna apples that can be grown in the northeast.

"You do not have to wait for Himachal or J&K apples anymore," Kalaiselvi said.

She added that CSIR@2042 would blend perfectly with India@2047 goals.

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