Published On : Sat, Feb 29th, 2020

‘Getting science out of labs and into daily lives is a big challenge for researchers’

CSIR-National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (CSIR-NEERI) celebrated National Science Day on 28th February 2020 in the NEERI Auditorium. Prof. Anushree Malik, Institute Chair Professor and Head, Centre for Rural Development and Technology, Indian Institute of Technology (IIT)-Delhi was the Chief Guest on this occasion. Dr. Hemant Purohit, Chief Scientist and Head, Environmental Biotechnology and Genomics Division, CSIR-NEERI, Dr. J S Pandey, Chief Scientist and Head, Climate Change and Skilling Division, CSIR-NEERI and Dr. Zareena Qureshi, Principal, Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya, Nagpur were also present on this occasion.

While delivering the National Science Day Lecture on ‘Science: Beyond the Labs…’, Prof. Malik briefed about the key technologies developed by the Centre for Rural Development and Technology, IIT Delhi including biogas enrichment and bottling technology for vehicular application, waterless and odourless sanitation technologies, algal wastewater treatment and biofuel technologies. She stated that the profiling of medicinal plants is vital to obtain novel phytomolecules to cure human, plant and animal diseases. She highlighted the importance of social science in connecting rural society with laboratory-activities. She emphasized on the need to do such research in a laboratory which has real application outside the laboratory so that ordinary people can harness science in all sorts of ways. Getting science out of labs and into daily lives is a big challenge for researchers, she added.

Prof. Malik informed that she has successfully treated textile industry effluent through myco-remediation using fungi. This myco-tablet technology has been demonstrated at an industry, she added. She was eager to collaborate with CSIR-NEERI in the area of ‘algae mediated wastewater treatment and bioenergy generation’.

Earlier in his welcome address, Dr. Hemant Purohit, Chief Scientist and Head, Environmental Biotechnology and Genomics Division, CSIR-NEERI briefed about the importance of National Science Day. Aligning with this year’s theme of the National Science Day 2020-‘Women in Science’, he said that women scientists have played a key role in development of the nation. Women occupy key positions at the household, local and community levels and made significant contributions to science from the earliest times, he added.

While introducing the Chief Guest, Dr. Pandey narrated the story of famous Swedish girl Greta Thunberg who has gained international recognition in mitigating climate change. The ‘Vigyan Jyoti’ project was inaugurated on this occasion to promote science among rural girls. While briefing about the ‘Vigyan Jyoti’ project, Dr. Qureshi said that the Vigyan Jyoti project initiated by Department of Science and Technology is a joint venture between Navodaya Vidyalayas, Kendriya Vidyalayas, CSIR-NEERI and other Research Institutes. Prakash Kumbhare proposed the vote of thanks and Dr. Suvha Lama conducted the proceedings.

The students of Late Pushpadevi Patil Arts and Science College, Washim; Shri Dnyanesh Mahavidyalaya, Nawargaon, Chandrapur and Karmaveer Dadasaheb Deotale College, Gadchiroli visited various laboratories of the Institute and interacted with the scientists.