Govt prioritizes agri and nanotechnologies

The president of India's address to the 16th Lok Sabha joint session reflected the vision of the new government, and also outlined its policies for technology, agriculture and healthcare


The President, Pranab Mukherjee being welcomed by the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi on his arrival at parliament house to attend the joint session of the parliament, in New Delhi on June 09, 2014.

The inaugral speech by the President, Mr Pranab Mukherjee was no ordinary one as it has created a lot of buzz cutting across all sectors. Every industry wants to know the vision the new government has towards policies and promotion of their respective segments. In the case of bioscience industry, this time the government has clearly outlined a few key areas where it wants to fast track things.

The address of the president mentioned that the government recognizes the central role of science and technology in raising the quality of life. It will encourage and incentivize private sector investments, both domestic and foreign, in science and technology, and in high-end research aimed at nurturing innovation. In a first, it also expressed its will to build world class research centers in the fields of nanotechnology, material sciences, thorium technology, brain research, stem cells, etc. The government will also establish Institutes of Technology for Rural Development and a Central University of Himalayan Studies.

Mr Mukherjee's speech rolled out a detailed plan of the Narendra Modi-led government for the next one year. The address found the mention of agriculture, which it cited as the source of livelihood for majority of our people. Boost to technologies too is a top priority for the new government."In the recent past, our farmers have been under severe stress with hopelessness driving some of them to suicides. My government is committed to reversing this unfortunate trend. It will increase investment in agriculture, both public and private, especially in Agri-infrastructure. Steps will be taken to convert farming into a profitable venture through scientific practices and agro-technology.
My government will incentivize the setting up of food processing industries. Existing cooperative sector laws will be reviewed to remove anomalies and lacunae. My government will adopt a National Land Use Policy which will facilitate scientific identification of non-cultivable land and its strategic development," said the president while reading out the government's vision for the sector.

The address stressed on the need for a holistic healthcare system that is universally accessible, affordable and effective. To achieve this objective, the government will formulate a New Health Policy and roll out a National Health Assurance Mission. It will promote Yoga and AYUSH. To address the shortfall of health care professionals, health education and training will be transformed. More institutions on the pattern of All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) will be established in every state in a phased manner.

Calling the election, held this time, an election of hope, the president mentioned, "It marks a turning point in the evolution of our democratic polity. The surge in aspirations and the belief that these could be realized through democratic processes, has been amply reflected in the record 66.4 percent participation by voters, and a clear verdict in favour of a single political party after a gap of nearly 30 years."

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