Rajasthan, the land known for its royal palaces, heritage and vibrant and colourful culture is now gearing up to dig deep in the field of biotechnology. One of the preferred tourist destinations of the country, Rajasthan is trying to make a mark in the biotechnology sector. The state has set up three biotech parks to facilitate industrial exploitation of its biological diversity. The state's apex industrial development organisation, Rajasthan State Industrial Development & Investment Corporation (RIICO), would develop the parks at Sitapura in Jaipur, Boranada in Jodhpur and Sotanala on National Highway-8 near Behror (Alwar), official sources informed.
Though these parks came into existence as promised by the government, it failed to attract biotech companies. Out of thethree parks, only the one at Sitapur was able to hit the competition target and the remaining two are still not functional. The Sitapur project managed to generate praises from officials but was an unsuccessful venture with only two biotechnology companies showing interest.
To strengthen the sector, Department of Science and Technology, Government of Rajasthan took matters in its own hand and revamped its biotech policies in 2015. "It is important to understand that such a biotech ecosystem has to be created from the scratch. A host of issues need to be addressed, like sub-optimal infrastructure, lack of high-end talent, inaccessibility of capital, inadequate regulatory and quality systems and above all, low public understanding of biotechnology. The policy, therefore, aims to provide an enabling and facilitating platform to address all the above," informed sources in Department of Science and Technology department.
The department will soon launch a website dedicated to the state's biotechnology sector. The website will come in handy in providing updated news, government policies and other necessary information to companies eager to install their units in the state. One of the officials of the department said that the website is in its testing stage.