Annual Report 2001 - 2002
Opportunities for Young Scientists
With a view to motivate and encourage Young
Scientists to take R&D as career and retain them in science
the department has continued to play a catalytic role in attracting
young scientists towards science and technology by implementing
a number of programmes. The Young Scientists programme of
DST has the following specific objectives:
- To provide opportunities to Young Scientists (below 35
years) for pursuing exciting and innovative research ideas.
- To provide opportunities for interaction and exchange
of ideas with the scientific community both at the national
and international levels.
- To involve Young Scientists in national S&T development
- To encourage S&T institutions, professional bodies
and other agencies including State S&T Councils to develop
S&T programmes involving Young Scientists.
Some of the major activities and programmes
under this scheme involve supporting Fast Track Scheme for
Young Scientists ,international BOYSCAST Fellowships, Contact
programmes etc.. The progress and achievement under these
programmes during the current year are described below:
- Fast Track Scheme for Young Scientists
Based on the feedback received from various
forums including the SERC, the Department evolved a new mechanism
to provide support to Young Scientists on a faster mode during
the year 2000. The scheme was titled FAST Track Scheme for
Young Scientists and proposals were invited from Young Scientists
through advertisement, which was widely disseminated. The
earlier scheme was merged with this new scheme.
Under this new version, the upper limit for
duration of the project has been enhanced to 3 years with
total cost limited to Rs 10.00 lakhs. The Young Scientists
not drawing any fellowship/ salary, are eligible for a lumpsum
fellowship of Rs 15,000/- per month apart from grants under
"Travel, Contingency, Consumables and Minor Equipment".
The Institute that hosts the project on approval gets a grant
of 20% of project cost as "Overheads".
During the current year, sanctions have been
issued for 142 projects. Linkages have been built with the
earlier scheme (SYS). In addition on-going releases have been
made on 100 projects in various disciplines.
During the current year, 1438 proposals
were received against our advertisement. Based on the last
year's experience, the modus operandi was modified. The Department
has now set up 5 Expert Panels in the broad areas of Chemical
Sciences, Earth Atmospheric & Mathematical Sciences, Engineering
Sciences, Life Sciences and Physical Sciences. A summarized
tabulation of the Panels recommendations is given below:
|Broad Area and (Number of proposals
||Projects screened and considered
|Chemical Sciences (143)
|Life Sciences (725)
|Earth, Atmospheric & Mathematical
||31 (EarthAtmos) 11 (Maths)
|Physical Sciences (100)
|Engineering Sciences (304)
The list of the recommended projects was hosted
on the Website on January 1,, 2002.
- Swarnajayanti Fellowships
Swarnajayanti Fellowships programme was launched
with the objective to encourage young scientists to undertake
basic research in frontier areas of science and technology
and achieve standards of excellence, which are comparable
with the best in the world. The fellowships are open to Indian
young scientists, in the age group of 30-40 years, with a
proven track record. The selected candidates are given attractive
fellowship besides project grants. A research programme is
considered in the frontier areas of science, engineering or
medicine for a maximum period of five years. The support under
the project covers grants for equipment, manpower, contingencies,
consumables, travel including international travel and administrative
and infrastructure support.
During the current year, eight young scientists
were given only research projects under the Swaranajayanti
The National Core Committee of the Swarnajayanti
Fellowship Scheme reviewed the scheme as well as monitored
the progress made by the awardees of previous years (1997-98
and 1998-99) at a meeting held at IISc, Bangalore on January
16-17, 2002. On the recommendations of the committee, it was
decided that the fellowship amount of Rs. 25,000/- per month
for a period of five years should be given to only those scientists
who do not draw a salary from any other source. The fellowship
amount has however been restricted to Rs. 10,000/- per month
to the scientists who draw a salary from a source.
For the current year, advertisement for seeking
applications was released in November, 2001. The department
has received about 450 applications in various disciplines
under the scheme.
- Better Opportunities for Young Scientists in Chosen Areas
of Science & Technology (BOYSCAST)
The scheme provides opportunities of young scientists
for visiting international institutions in order to help them
participate and contribute in front line chosen areas of Science
and Technology. The duration of the Fellowship is 3-12 months.
Young Scientists and Technologists up to the age of 35 years
are eligible for the fellowships and once trained in the chosen
areas are able to generate and spread expertise at the national
S&T laboratories. During the current year 47 brilliant
young scientists have been identified for the award of the
BOYSCAST fellowships in in various disciplines of science
and technology such as, Modelling in Earth System Sciences,
Geotectonic Models and Experiment, Evolution and Dynamics
of the Indian Lithosphere, Global Change, Atmosphere Chemistry
and Air Pollution, Near Earth Space Environment, Regional
and Global Climate Studies and Predictions, Atmospheric Effects
on Radio Communications, Evolution and Dynamics of the Indian
Lithosphere, Paleoclimatology and Paleoenvironment, Isotope
Hydrology and Glaciology, Polymer and Surface Chemistry, Bioinorganic
Chemistry, Heterogeneous Catalysis, Bioinorganic and Biomimitic
Chemistry, Machine Intelligence, Micro-machining, Laser Diagnostic
techjniques, Manufacturing Process Simulator, E-commerce,
Molecular Biology of Biotic and Abiotic Stresses in Plants,
Medical Imaging, In Vivo Analysis of Blood Flow Visulization
and Cellular Distribution, Molecular Biology of Biotic and
Abiotic Stresses in Plants, In Vivo Spectroscopy, Crop Biotechnology,
Biodiversity and Conservation Biology, Transgenic Plants,
Molecular Epidemiology, Plant Microbe Interaction, Molecular
Mapping/Molecular Maker Assisted Plant Breeding, Biotechnology
- Development of Bioinsecticides, Reproduction Technology,
Molecular Taxonomy, Computational Aspects of Algebra, Spectral
& Inverse Spectral Theory, Numerical Methods for Solving
Differential Equation, Electronic Material and Processing,
Non-linear optics and Optical Materials etc. They are being
provided financial support.
The scheme is aimed at attracting and motivating
brilliant young scientists to take up R&D as a career
by bringing them in contact with eminent scientists and institutions.
The programme also involves training in modern techniques
in various disciplines of S&T. During the period under
report seven programmes in the area of Cytogenetics and Clinical
Genetics in Human Health and Diseases and Contemporary Trends
in Taxonomy of Angiosperms, Plant Biotechnology, Methods of
Surface Science & Catalysis, Biochemical Prospecting of
Plant Resources, Protoplast Fusion Technology for Strain Improvement
in Filamentous Fungi etc. were organised. Over 170 chosen
young scientists have participated/are likely to participate
and benefit from these programmes.
Protsahan Yojana (KVPY)
The Kishore Vaigyanik Protsahan Yojana
(KVPY), being coordinated by IISc, Bangalore on behalf of
DST, consolidated its position as the most attractive scholarship
and training scheme for young students in the country.
An additional entry point was opened in the
"Science Stream" at the B.Sc.I year stage. The entry
points in the "Engineering" and "Medical"
Streams were also lowered. A total of about 100 students received
the KVPY fellowships this year.
For the students continuing in the Scheme, summer
training programmes were organized. Based on their scholastic
performance in their respective courses of study and their
performance in the summer training programme, the fellowship
DST's collaboration with DAE and MHRD
continued to consolidate the science olympiad movement in
For the first time, India hosted an international
science olympiad. The International Chemistry Olympiad-2001
was hosted by the Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education,
Mumbai with support from the three agencies.
Our young students continued to being laurels
for the country. The performance this year was particularly
spectacular : in Mathematics : 2 gold, 2 silver and 2 bronze;
in Physics : 3 gold, 2 silver; in Chemistry : 1 gold, 3 silver;
and, in Biology :1 gold, 3 silver medals.
of the Scientific Expertise of Retired Scientists (USERS)
The Department during the seventh five-year
plan introduced the scheme Utilisation of the Scientific Expertise
of Retired Scientists (USERS). The main objective of the scheme
is to utilise expertise and potential of large number of eminent
scientists in the country who remain active and deeply motivated
to participate in S&T development activities even after
their retirement. The scheme has continued to play a significant
role in involving a large number of retired scientists in
S&T developmental activities. The main activity under
the programme is preparation of books/monographs/state-of-the-art
reports. During the year 01 meetings of the USERS Expert Committee
was held and 11 new projects sanctioned. Final reports on
a few projects were also received. DST's support resulted
in following publications.
- "Introduction to Mushroom Science" by Dr. TN
Kaul - the monograph deals with information on important
biological features necessary for basic understanding of
the subject such as sexuality and mycorrhiza, medicinal
poisonous and hallucinogenic species, nutritional value
of mushrooms and conservation of biological diversity. This
monograph is a sequel to the one published earlier by the
author 'Introduction to Mushroom Science - Systematics'
under the USERS scheme.
- "Noise Pollution and Control" by Dr. SP Singal.
The book reviews the overall national and international
noise situation, the various techniques available for noise
measurements and assessment, health effects of noise, the
standards adopted by the various countries of the world
vis-a-vis Indian standards, methods of impact assessment,
control measures and status of noise measurements and abatement
practices in the country. It also outlines the action taken
at the national level to date and a framework for action
covering improvement of information and future options for
the reduction of noise from different sources.
- "X-Ray Crystallography of Some Plant Extracted Medicinal
Compounds And Possible Structure Function Relation"
by Dr. KN Goswami. The book is an attempt to organise the
dormant wealth of structural information regarding biologically
important molecules extracted from a variety of medicinal
plants covering important classes such as Coumarins, Alkaloids,
Pyrolizidine Alkaloides, Steroids, Terpenes, Antibiotics,
Flavonoids and Ligands.
- "Advances in Pest Management in Gram Legume Crops
- Vigna Spp. and Chickpea" by Dr. KS Chhabbra. The
book describes Insect pests of crops of Vigna spp viz. Mungbean
and Chickpea Cicer arietinum L. so that Advance Technology
of Pest Management are initiated to counteract the disastrous
effects of non-judicious use of pesticides.
- "Dimensional metrology coordinate measurement"
by Dr. PC Jain and Dr. RP Singhal. The book deals with various
aspects of Coordinate Measurement Technology. The book is
of use to the Coordinate Measurement Machines (CMMs) users
in India and in other developing countries for their day
to day work. Those metrologists who want to study the subject
in greater detail will find it as a quick reference to the
information presently available on the subject.
of Research in High Priority Areas (IRHPA)
IRHPA is a complementary programme to the SERC
programme with activities consisting of setting up of units/
core groups around an eminent scientist and major National
Research facilities to nucleate research activities in these
areas. The scheme has contributed to augment general R&D
capabilities at academic institutions and national laboratories
in the areas of Crystal Structure, Robotics, Laser Spectroscopy,
Structural Biology, Surface Science & Technology, Computational
Fluid Dynamics, Technical Acoustics, Geocentrifuge for Engineering
applications etc. These programmes approved by the Council
are multi-disciplinary and multi-institutional in nature.
Some new programme sanctioned during the
- NMR facility (IIT-Chennai)
- Establishment of National facility for Electron Beam
PVD System (ARC-I, Hyderabad
- National facility for geo-chemical research (JNU, New
- Low temperature - High Magnetic Field project (IIT-Chennai)
- Variable Energy Cyclotron at Panjab University, Chandigarh
as a Regional Facility for X-ray Spectrometry
- Phase II of Non-linear Dynamics Unit at Bharathidasan
- Nuclear Dynamics and structure studies involving rare
reaction channels (NSC, New Delhi)
- Large Gamma Detector Array Facility (NSC, New Delhi)
- Facility for Structural Chemistry Studies (IISc, Bangalore)
During the current year, the Council considered
few selected programmes in high priority areas of Science
and Engineering like Establishment of Low Temperature - High
Magnetic field facilities, Centre for Display Devices, Infrastructure
Asset Management, Facility for Aspheric Lenses studies, etc.
Some of the new initiatives are as follows:
- The Nonlinear Dynamics Unit at Bharathidasan University,
Tiruchirapalli was extended major support for continuing
the second phase of its activities.
- Support was also extended to rejuvenate the Variable Energy
Cyclotron at Panjab University, Chandigarh as a Regional
Facility for X-ray Spectrometry.
- On way to the possible establishment of an Indian National
Gamma Array, DST extended seed support to the Nuclear Science
Centre, New Delhi to work on the development and testing
of relevant electronics.
A major project on Electron Beam Physical Vapour
Deposition Technology for thick film and thin film coatings
on sophisticated and complex components has been supported
with partial funding from DRDO.
Three new projects having close linkages with
other National Plasma Physics Programmes, were added to the
III Phase of the Satellite Research Programme in Plasma Physics
(SRPP). These were viz. Three dimensional magnetohydrodynamic
turbulence simulations; Studies on laser induced colliding
plasma using various diagnostic tools; Investigation on the
toroidal discharge development in an axial magnetic field.
The progress of all the ongoing programmes
were reviewed through the respective Management Advisory Committees.
Based on their recommendations X-Ray Diffractometer Facility
at University of Mysore has been upgraded with an Image Plate
System. Similar upgradation is being done for the University
of Hyderabad facility.
The Management Advisory Committees for individual
facilities reviewed the progress of the utilization of these
facilities and their programmes. Some of the highlights of
their observations are given below:
- Human Resource generation is crucial for effective implementation
of research programmes. To fulfil this mandate, Intensification
of Research in High Priority Areas (IRHPA) Unit on 'Sociobiology
of Insects' at Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore sanctioned
under Animal Science, organised a workshop on 'Methods in
Behavioural Ecology' wherein 34 young prospective researchers
were exposed to the basic principles and modern methodology
of measuring behaviour.
- A National Facility for Stable Isotope Studies in Biological
Sciences has been established at the Department of Crop
Physiology, University of Agricultural Sciences, Bangalore
with the financial support from the Deptt. of Science &
Technology and Deptt. of Biotechnology. A state of the art
Stable Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometer (IRMS) installed
under the above facility enables the quantification of stable
isotope ratio of carbon (13C/12C), oxygen (18O/16O) and
Nitrogen (15N/14N). Determination of stable isotopes ratio
is emerging as a potential tool to assess various plant
physiological processes such as Water Use Efficiency (WUE),
transpiration, nitrogen fixation etc. and hence opens up
possibilities of exploiting the genetic variability in these
traits for crop improvement. The facility is currently being
used for determining the genetic variability in WUE and
transpiration rate in agricultural, horticultural and perennial
- Geotechnical Centrifuge Project at IIT-Bombay has been
commissioned and experiments are in progress. This will
serve as a national facility for conducting studies on scaled
models for various geotechnical-engineering applications.
- Facility for Research in Technical Acoustics has been
set up at IISc., Bangalore. Collaboration with Industry
partners for research and development work is being solicited.
- Center for CFD set up at IIT, Chennai started developing
numerical codes for various applications for study of fluid
flow in IC Engine and turbines for effective design configurations
with the aim of fuels savings.
- Under the project on Fabrication of large area multi-junction
a-Si solar modules jointly funded by DST & MNES, a prototype
production line for the fabrication of multi-junction a-Si
solar cells has been indigenously designed and fabricated.
The equipment is fully operational and is state-of-the-art.
This is the first plant for advanced solar Photovoltaic
technology built in India and is much cheaper than the imported
equipment. 3 patents are in the final stages of filing with
& Technology Management Information System (NSTMIS)
The National Science & Technology Management
Information System (NSTMIS) continued its efforts of generating
and making available information on resources both manpower
as well as financial devoted to scientific and technological
(S&T) activities by conducting national surveys both through
in-house as well as sponsored studies.
Based on the national survey on resources devoted
to research and development activities for the year 1998-99,
two national level reports entitled "Research and Development
Statistics 1998-99" and a sectoral report entitled "Research
and Development in Industry 1998-99" were brought out
during the year under report.
The salient features of the latest survey for
the year 1998-99 are that the national investment on research
and development (R&D) activities attained a level of Rs.13083.28
crore which was 0.82% of Gross National Product (GNP). The
major share of R&D expenditure was met from Government
sources (78.6%), and 21.4% being met from the private industry.
More than 3.08 lakhs personnel were employed in R&D establishments.
The report provides detailed data and analyses both at macro
and micro levels besides containing other relevant secondary
sources data related to S&T on patents, enrolment, out-turn,
stock of S&T personnel, Plan/Non-plan allocation for S&T,
Inter-national comparison of stock of scientists, engineers,
technicians, R&D expenditure per capita and as percentage
of GNP etc.
The sectoral report on Research & Development
in Industry 1998-99 provides detailed information on the financial
and human resources devoted to industrial R&D activities.
The industry comprising public and private sector together
spent Rs.3446.70 crores during 1998-99 and was 0.52% of sales
turnover on R&D activities. The report also gives detailed
analysis of data in respect of R&D expenditure by industry
groups, by fields of science, by objectives, by location of
R&D centres and by R&D manpower etc.
This is for the first time that the scope and coverage of
R&D activities has been revised and enlarged by including
R&D expenditure incurred in the higher education sector,
small scale industry sector (pilot study) and private sector
firms not recognised by Department of Scientific and Industrial
Research (DSIR), Government of India with the National figures
for 1998-99. R&D expenditure from Higher Education Sector
quantified from 106 universities and 27 Post Graduate Colleges
having R&D in Science & Technology to the tune of
Rs.555.02 crores has been included in the national expenditure
on R&D. This amount does not include the expenditure incurred
by the State Agricultural Universities and also the Extramural
projects funded by Central Departments/agencies. Such an expenditure
has been included under state sector and central sector respectively.
Efforts are being made to bring out a national report by integrating
the data of 4 zonal studies sponsored for this purpose. Similarly,
small scale industry sector (pilot study) conducted in Madhya
Pradesh and Karnataka, quantified the R&D expenditure
to the tune of Rs.37.58 crore. Contribution of private sector
firms not recognised by DSIR in National R&D expenditure
was estimated as Rs.412.5 crore during 1998-99. Reports of
the above studies have generated valuable information and
data which was hitherto not collated.
The division has launched the National
Survey on Resources Devoted to R&D Activities for the
year 2000-2001 to bring out the information in a more cohesive
manner taking note of experiences gained in the earlier surveys.
Questionnaires have been mailed to nearly 2800 R&D establishments
from central, state and industrial sectors.
- Information System/Database Activities
With a view to disseminate information
on research and development (R&D) projects for the benefit
of different interest groups, the National Science and Technology
Management Information System (NSTMIS) division of the Department
of Science and Technology (DST) continued its effort to compile
information on extramural R&D projects funded by different
central agencies. Besides maintaining a computerised database
on extramural R&D projects from 1985-86 onwards, the department
publishes annually a directory of extramural research and
development projects funded during the year.
The efforts for compiling information
for the projects funded during 1999-2000 have been made. The
preparation of the directory for the year 1999-2000 is in
progress and is expected to be published during the year.
The directory for the year 1998-99, ninth
in the series, contains information on 2050 new R&D projects
approved by 17 central government departments/agencies. The
total approved cost of these projects was Rs.349.84 crores.
54% of the support was in the area of Engineering & Technology
followed by Biological Sciences (12%). 47% of the total support
was given to the academic sector. During this year of the
report, the National Laboratories under Central Government
received 45% of the total financial support. Among the funding
agencies, the extramural R&D support by Ministry of Information
Technology (MIT) was the highest (Rs.81.14 crores) followed
by Department of Science & Technology (DST)(Rs.68.28 crores).
The scientific and technological activities
play a vital role in the economic, social and physical development
of a country. Scientific and technological research needs
huge investments and calls for a judicious utilization of
scarce resources like finance, trained manpower, raw materials
etc. The growth of science and technology, its performance
and impact on society and economy are indicators to assess
the effectiveness of planning and policy formulation. For
this purpose it is necessary to build science and technology
information on a continuous basis. The National Science and
Technology Management Information System (NSTMIS) under the
Department of Science and Technology is entrusted with the
task of collection, collation, analysis and dissemination
of vital S&T information at a national level.
With a view to build reasonable database/analyses
on S&T investment, S&T manpower availability/deployment/gap
and S&T indicators, a number of studies were sponsored
and the reports of these studies were widely disseminated
to planners, policy makers and S&T community.
The following new projects were approved /commissioned
during the year:
- Large Scale Sample Survey on Estimation of R&D Activities
at National Level in Small Scale Industries Sector (SSIs).
- Priority Setting in Medical Research in India-A Bibliometric
- Commercialisation of Patents in India.
- In-House S&T in the Power and the Chemicals &
Petrochemicals sectors and Utilisation of their Results.
- Mapping of Biotechnology Skills and Research Infrastructure.
The following projects were completed during
- R&D in Small Scale Sector Industries in Karnataka
- R&D Activities in Small Scale Industries of Madhya
Pradesh (pilot study).
- A study on content analysis of Science & Technology
coverage in India.
- Pilot Study on R&D Output at Post Graduate/Research
Level in Engineering & Technology Disciplines of Northern
- Zonal Studies on Quantification of Manpower and Financial
Resources Devoted to R&D in the Higher Education Sector.
- Study on Medicinal Plants of Sikkim.
As a New Initiative, the division has launched
a large scale sample survey at National Level to quantify
the R&D activities in Small Scale Industries. Also, to
reach the scientific community at large, the division will
shortly launch the NSTMIS Web page with an in-built feedback
mechanism which will facilitate to analyse the utilization
of the information generated by the division.
- International Collaboration
The Department has been maintaining liaison
with UNESCO and other concerned international/national agencies
for the S&T and related statistics.