The Indian National Agricultural Research System (NARS) has to find solutions to the immediate problems of farming as well as keep its competence in technology development in the forefront to meet all continuously emerging anticipated and unanticipated problems. For this continuous strengthening of basic and strategic research and, applied research in the frontier areas of agricultural sciences is required.
Fully realising this need, the government of India decided to establish a national fund for supporting basic and strategic research under the Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR) with the objective to build capacity for basic and strategic research of national and long-term importance to break yield and quality barriers and make India a global leader in research for development, through the partnership of all research organizations who can contribute towards this objective.
The fund was initiated during the tenth five year plan (for the year 2006-2007 only) with an outlay of Rs 50 crore. Twenty one projects were approved during the 10th Plan. In view of its strategic importance, the fund continued during the eleventh five year plan (2007-2012) with an outlay of Rs 100 crore. During eleventh plan, twenty two new projects were approved. It is highly likely to continue in the twelth Five Year Plan (2012-2017). The proposed budget for the plan is Rs 500 crore.
The fund strongly encourages collaborative and multi-institutional research based on innovative ideas of scientists for solving advanced scientific and technological problems in agriculture. Scientists from all research institutions universities and private sector with proven research capacity and located in India are eligible to participate.