Can MP make biotech park a reality?

Biotech park is a visionary project launched by the Government of Madhya Pradesh. It will be a place where educators, researchers and business class come together as collaborative partners for the upliftment of science and technology entrepreneurship

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Governments worldwide have recognised biotech as a new age technology that is anticipated to play a significant role in improving the quality of life, at large. One of the key drivers that have fostered the development of this sector worldwide is the creation of life sciences parks, steered by the strong interest evinced by stakeholders including government, industry, and educational institutions.

Biotech park is a visionary project launched by the Government of Madhya Pradesh. It will be a place where educators, researchers and business class come together as collaborative partners for the upliftment of science and technology entrepreneurship in central India. To apply a pragmatic approach to this lavish project, an in-house team of Biotech Consortium India Limited (BCIL), New Delhi prepared the detailed project report (DPR) for setting up the park.

The state is endowed with rich biological resources and biodiversity making it an exclusive destination for developing a biotech park. The proposed biotech park at village ‘Cheerakhan', Tehsil Pithampur in Indore will be the first-of-its-kind in central India with a cluster of life sciences industry, research institutions, sci-tech academia and other scientific amenities.

MADHYA PRADESH BIOTECHNOLOGY COUNCIL
To harness the potential of biotechnology, Madhya Pradesh Biotechnology Council (MPBTC) was established in 2003. The council is registered under Society Registration Act, 1973 and is functional since 2007 with Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan heading the board. It also includes the chief secretary, secretaries of various departments and four specialist members known for their contributions in the fields of biotechnology, industry, human resource and social/infrastructure development.

BIO-TECH PARK STATUS
Giving details of the park, Shahbaz Ahmad, CEO, Madhya Pradesh Biotechnology Council said, "Park will be spread over approximately 181 acres and will provide a world-class infrastructure for life sciences research and manufacturing, commercialisation of new technologies thereby mentoring the challenges in biotechnology investments. The park is conceptualised under public private partnership (PPP) model where M/s Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu India Pvt Ltd., Mumbai has been appointed as the transactional advisor for feasibility study, structuring and marketing and preparation of bid documents including request for qualifications (RFQ) and request for proposal (RFP) for selection of private entrepreneur for the project."

The recent developments suggest that the state has to travel a long distance to get the biotech park installed and the road is looking a way bumpier than expected by the government. As per the revelations by one of the officials of Madhya Pradesh Biotechnology Council, 181 acres allotted to the state's biotech park has now been assigned to the IT Park. Since the biotech park project failed to allure the interest of the biotech companies, in 2013, the government allotted its land to develop the IT Park. Now, the council has proposed a new biotech project which will be spread across 50 acres near Indore. The council has already approached the Indore collector for allotment of the land for the new project.

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