The seventh edition of the India International Science Festival (IISF- 2021) at Panaji, Goa yesterday morning, where it emphasised "sustainable" Start-Ups and sustainability in Start-ups linked with livelihood opportunities is the key to the future economy of India.

The event was inaugurated by Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Science & Technology; Minister of State (Independent Charge) Earth Sciences; MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh.

Describing youth comprising more than 70% of India's present population as the country's greatest asset, the Minister said, just as we stress on sustainable goals, time has come to stress on sustainable Start-Ups.

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Addressing the gathering, Dr Jitendra Singh called upon the youth with the right kind of attitude to think of generating alternate sources of livelihood by exploring avenues in sectors like Agriculture, Dairy, Animal Husbandry, Healthcare, Education, Pharma, Logistics and Waste to Wealth through innovative Start-ups eco-system. He said, making the lives of people easy with technology the start-ups are not only thriving in tier 3 and 4 markets but also impacting the lives of rural people and customers, besides creating huge job opportunities. The Minister said connecting rural India with advanced solutions and services, these start-ups are emerging as innovative and accelerating programmes for the digital India campaign.

Union Minister of Ayush and Ports, Shipping and Waterways Shri Sarbananda Sonowal, Union Minister of State (MoS) for the Ministry of Tourism and Ports, Shipping and Waterways Shripad Naik, Chief Minister of Goa, Pramod Sawant, Minister of Science and Technology, Government of Madhya Pradesh Shri Omprakash Saklecha, Secretary Ministry of Earth Sciences, Dr M. Ravichandran, President VijnanaBharati, Dr Vijay Bhatkar and senior scientists and officials joined today’s Inaugural Function.

Dr Jitendra Singh said, the theme of 4-day IISF 2021 is ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’ – "Celebrating Creativity, Science, Technology and Innovation for a prosperous India". He said, India is celebrating the 75th year of its Independence and it is time to lay down the road map of scientific progress for the next 25 years, when India celebrates the Centenary of Independence. 

The Minister exhorted the youth to join the “Vigyan Utsav” and take the lead through Innovative Startups to make India a 5 Trillion Dollar Economy by 2024-25. He said, under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s, science is not only a subject of research but has assumed the dimensions of festivity and there is a need for celebrating Science Festival in every city and village of India to inspire the youth in critical thinking. He said the main aim of the Science Festival is to bring into use the innovations by the people and develop technology that is affordable to the masses.

Some of the main events at the inaugural function are Science Village, Traditional Crafts and Artisan Meet, Games and Toys, Global Indian Scientists and Technocrats Fest, ECO-FEST, New Age Technology and Mega Science and Technology Expo.

Dr Jitendra Singh said that the series of India International Science Festival (IISF) is an integral part of India’s long-term vision in developing and widening the spectrum of scientific temper for sustainable development and new technological innovations in India. He said, it also aims to build a strategy for rural India through the advancement of Science and Technology. 

The Minister informed that IISF will provide a platform to young students, scientists and technocrats from across India for exchange of knowledge and ideas and also supporting flagship programmes like ‘Swach Bharat Abhiyan’, Swasth Bharat Abhiyan ‘Make in India’, ‘Digital India’, ‘Smart Villages’, ‘Smart Cities’ ‘ Namami Gange’, ‘Unnath Bharat Abhiyan’ initiated by the Prime Minister in the last seven years. 

Dr Jitendra Singh said that this year India is celebrating 75th year of Independence as Aazadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav and the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has given the ideas of five pillars to celebrate it, which will be reflected through various programs in IISF 2021.

India International Science Festival (IISF) is a joint program of the Ministry of Science & Technology, Ministry of Earth Sciences and Vijnana Bharati (VIBHA) a swadeshi movement of Bharat. The first program of IISF was held in the year 2015 and the sixth edition of this annual event was organised in year 2020. The main purpose of IISF is to celebrate science along with people in India and across the globe.

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