Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has said that the Government proposes to create a formal umbrella like structure for research institutions across 9 cities in the country.

To promote innovation and research and development in the country, she said that a ‘Glue Grant’ will be set aside for this purpose which will create an umbrella like structure for R&D.

She said, “Many of our cities have various research institutions, universities, and colleges supported by the Government of India. Hyderabad for example, has about 40 such major institutions. In 9 such cities, we will create formal umbrella structures so that these institutions can have better synergy, while also retaining their internal autonomy.”

The effort to bring in various research organisations augurs well as there could be a more collaborative effort.

R&D institutions

Hyderabad is home for leading research and development organisation such as CSIR-Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Indian Institute of Chemical Technology, National Geophysical Research Institute, National Institute for Rural Development, National Institute of Nutrition, and a number of defence related establishments including Defence Research and Development Organisation, among others.

Referring to her July 2019 budget speech, She said, “I had announced the National Research Foundation. We have now worked out the modalities and the NRF outlay will be of ₹50,000 crore over 5 years. It will ensure that the overall research ecosystem of the country is strengthened with focus on identified national-priority thrust areas.”

Gaganyaan space mission

Touching upon the country’s space mission, the Finance Minister said, “The New Space India Ltd Ltd (NSIL), a PSU under the Department of Space will execute the PSLV-CS51 launch, carrying the Amazonia Satellite from Brazil, along with a few smaller Indian satellites.”

“As part of the Gaganyaan mission activities, four Indian astronauts are being trained on Generic Space Flight aspects, in Russia. The first unmanned launch is slated for December 2021,” she said.

“Our oceans are a storehouse of living and non-living resources. To better understand this realm, we will launch a Deep Ocean Mission with a budget outlay of more than ₹4,000 crore, over five years. This Mission will cover deep ocean survey exploration and projects for the conservation of deep sea bio-diversity,” she said.

Indian National Center for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS), an autonomous organization under the Ministry of Earth Sciences in Hyderabad has been providing ocean information and advisory services to society, industry, government agencies and the scientific community through sustained ocean observations and constant improvements through systematic and focussed research.