Vice-President M Hamid Ansari today paid tributes to Prof Ashok Parthasarathi, describing him as ''one of India's best known Science and Technology planners,'' who was consulted by the Government during the 1971 war with Pakistan and had a role to play in India's 1974 peaceful nuclear implosion. The foundations laid by people like Prof Parthasarathi enabled India to enhance its Science and Technology capacity, Dr Ansari said, adding that he has been closely associated with several of India's defence projects. He was addressing a gathering after releasing the Festschrift, a collection of the scholar's writings, titled 'A lifetime of Moulding Technology and Science Policy in India' dedicated to Prof Parthasarathi here. Emeritus Chairman of M S Swaminathan Research Foundation, Chennai, Prof M S Swaminathan and other dignitaries were present. The Vice-President said Prof Parthasarathi built on the legacy of the importance that science was accorded in independent India by Pandit Nehru.
As a science policy planner, Prof Parthasarathi advocated a major restructuring of our policies and demanded higher budgetary allocations to reflect the government's prioritisation of science and technology, he said. However, one crucial area that remained neglected when formulating the country's science and technological policies, was the development of universities, particularly Science and Technology research in the universities.
He said he hoped ''subsequent S&T policy formulations will keep the central role the Universities can play as the seats of innovation and ideas factories for the nation'', an official statement said.UNI SD AE RJ 1548
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