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7th -8th October, 2018: MARS Hall, IGP, Lucknow

Women Scientists & Entrepreneurs Conclave titled “Women Scientists & Entrepreneurs: Contributing towards transforming India” was organized during 4th India International Science Festival 2018 to promote and encourage science education and entrepreneurship among the young women.

The aim of the programme was to showcase the role / contribution of Women Scientists & Entrepreneurs in transforming India; to encourage and motivate the students to take Science as a career and make them WSE Special address by SBTaware of opportunities and encourage the participants towards Entrepreneurship to generate self-employment and job creations.

Dr. Renu Swarup, Secretary, Department of Biotechnology inaugurated the Women Scientists & Entrepreneurs Conclave at MARS Auditorium, Indira Gandhi Pratisthan, Lucknow on 7th October, 2018. In her inaugural address, Dr Swarup praised the role of women in the field of science & technology and expressed hope that this platform can boost one more step to encourage & motivate women to take science as a career.WSE Inauguration

The inaugural session was also attended by Dr. Veena Tandon, NASI Senior Scientist, Lucknow Biotech Park, Smt Bindu Suraj, National Governing Council, Member, VIBHA, Dr. Chandrima Saha, Former Director, National Institute of Immunology, New Delhi Dr. Suraksha S Diwan, Scientist É’, Department of Biotechnology and other dignitaries.

WSE Booklet releaseDr Veena Tandon in her key note address spoke about the contribution of women in science in India and how Women scientists can provide an opportunity to make an important contribution in bridging the gender gap, remove the barrier of negative attitudes; thus, paving the way for fruitful participation of women in science.

A booklet having profiles of all the speakers and abstracts of posters was also released.

Around 625 students, young scientists, scientists, experts from various stakeholders participated in the two day conclave. It was also providing a platform for connecting and networking among young women scientists and entrepreneurs to discuss opportunities in their field of activities.

Session 1: Women Leaders in Science & Technology
The session was chaired by Dr. Swati Basu, Former Scientific Secretary, Office of the Principal Scientific Adviser to Government of India. Presentations by Women Scientists in various fields like
Agriculture-Dr. Shelly Praveen, ICAR-IARI; Medical-Dr. Sujata Mohanty, AIIMS, Delhi;
Physics- Dr. Shobhana Narsimha, JNCASR,Bangalore; Chemistry- Dr.Jyotirmoyee Dash, Associate Prof. Dept of Organic Chemistry, IACS and Computational Biology-Dr. Indira Ghosh, JNU motivated the women scientists, researchers in shaping their scientific careers taking up the challenges.

Session 2: Panel Discussion: Role of Women in Transforming India
The Panelists were Dr. Suchitra Banerjee, CIMAP, Lucknow; Dr. G. Latha, Scientist ‘G’, NIOT, Chennai and Romita Ghosh,MedSamaan and Admirus. The session was moderated by Dr. Sudha Nair, Women Biotechnology Park, Chennai. In this panel, experts discussed opportunities for women in Science, Technology and Entrepreneurship and the challenges associated with these and options for young women to take up science as a career.

Session 3: Presentation by “Young Women Achievers
In this session, young scientists from various renowned Research Institutes, scientific organizations shared their experiences like taking science as a career, shaping and succeeding in their career. Their scientific journey inspired the young audience who were present in the event.

Session 4: Policies for empowering women in science-Initiatives of Govt. of India;
The panel members were Dr. Anita Gupta, Scientist ‘G’, Department of Science and Technology, Ministry of Science & Technology; Dr. Suraksha S. Diwan, Scientist ‘E’, Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science & Technology; Dr. Vishwajanani Sattigeri, Senior Principal Scientist, CSIR, Ministry of Science & Technology; Ms. Ratna Anjan Jena, Statistical Adviser, Ministry of Women and Child Development. The session was moderated by Dr. Purnima Sharma, Managing Director, Biotech Consortium India Limited (BCIL).

The representatives of various Ministries and Departments like Department of Science & Technology, Department of Biotechnology and CSIR presented various schemes for promoting women scientists and entrepreneurs. Officials from Ministry of Women and Child Development also talked about promoting science for women.

Session 5: Journey of the Women Innovators and communicators
This session of the conclave focused on the talks by the successful Women Entrepreneurs and communicators where they talked about their journeys. The women entrepreneurs discussed about the various opportunities available and encouraged the young minds to take up the emerging uncertain path of innovation & entrepreneurship. The issue of mentoring and handholding which are of utmost importance for sustaining the journey of women scientists and women entrepreneurs emerged in the discussions.

In the panel Women Innovators like Dr. Tripti Bhatnagar, Codon Biotech (Industrial Biotechnology); Dr. Vanita Anand Prasad, Revy Environmental (Environmental Biotechnology); and Dr. Subhashini C R, Aristogene (Aquaculture) and Science Communicators like Ms. Sonia Sharma , Nature; Dr. Kinkini Dasgupta Misra,VP; Dr. Suparna Datta, Professor, Dept of Communication, BITS MESRA; and Dr. Vibha Vershney, Science Editor, Down to Earth.

Poster Exhibition
A poster and exhibition session was also part of the conclave where 40 researchers/scientists and entrepreneurs showcased their work through posters and stalls. The posters presented were judged by a team of Evaluators and adjudged prizes on top six posters.

Science & Technology Mission: A key Stakeholders and Partners Summit held during IISF aimed at active participation of the States in S&T development in achieving the objectives of various National Missions

A two days event, “Science & Technology Mission: A key Stakeholders and Partners Summit” was organised on 7th-8th October 2018 as part of India International Science Festival 2018 (IISF 2018). The overall goal of this event is to understand the impact of Science and Technology (S&T) on National Missions, primarily on National Mission ‘Transforming India through Scientific & Technological Interventions’, including focus of individual states on this aspect. The event activities included invited talks by eminent scientists and policy makers and deliberations of S&T activities of State Councils for showcasing their contributions through application of Science & Technology. Presentations was made by resource persons to deliberate on looking for S&T policy to be better connected to broader economic policy at the institutional and operational levels as well as linking S&T policy to institutional infrastructure, research funding, S&T investment, international research collaboration etc. at public-private-academia-industry sectors.

Dr Harsh Vardhan the Hon’ble Minister for Science & Technology, MoES, MoEF& CC inaugurated the summit on October 7, 2018. He emphasized the need to catalyze a dynamic dialogue among stakeholders in the science and technology community – research organizations, industry, user groups to ensure the cost-effective and result-oriented interaction for the purpose of converting scientific discoveries into innovative, commercially viable products and processes. He also emphasized the need to align the scientific and technological priorities according to the policies of State Governments, augmenting support and active participation of the States in S&T development and to evolve joint action plans of mutual interest. The state level machinery (State S&T councils) has to take the role of a major ‘Prime Mover’ while the centre could play a very catalytic and effective role in encouraging the initiative of state Governments.” He appealed to the State S&T council members to organize a Science Festival in their respective states so that the purpose of the festival, that is, to reach as many people as possible is fulfilled.

The some of the key recommendations are as follows-

  • It was recommended to accomplish specific intervention (s) which needs attention of Centre- State S&T collaborations and interventions of Science and Technology in achieving the objectives of various National Missions.
  • Active participation of the States in S&T development and to evolve joint action plans of mutual interest.
  • The deliberations/Presentation by State S&T Councils has provided an opportunity to see how S&T can impact the National Missions and to also analyse the focus of individual States on these.
  • Fostering National S&T capacity and knowledge sharing through region specific approach for inter-regional collaboration and cooperation.
  • Looking for S&T policy to be better connected to broader economic policy at the institutional and operational levels as well as linking S&T policy to institutional infrastructure, research funding, S&T investment, international research collaboration etc. at public-private-academia-industry sectors.

The event was successful to interact with stakeholders and discuss the possible interventions of Science and Technology in achieving the objectives of various National Missions.


Connecting science with the masses is essential for the transformative growth and development of the country, and science communication, especially in Indian languages, has an important role to play for fostering the connection. This was the general view that emerged at the inaugural function of the International Science Literature and Film Festival. The festival was organized as a part of the ongoing Indian International Film Festival at Lucknow.

Scientists, researchers, film makers, science enthusiasts and the general public converged at the Atal Bihari Vajpayee Scientific Convention Centre for the International Science Literature and Film Festival that is being held during 6-8 October 2018.

The first ever International Science Literature and Film Festival of IISF brought together not only scientists and science communicators, but also the literary experts, artists, cartoonists, folklore practitioners and others on the same platform for the cause of furthering science communication.

Shri. Jayant Sahasrabuddhe, Organising Secretary, Vijnana Bharathi was the Chair of the inaugural session Chief Guest of the function and Prof. Baldeo Bhai Sharma, Chairman, National Book Trust emphasized that science is an important part of human life and it is essential to connect science to the masses. He said that events such as the IISF play an important role in spreading awareness about science to the general public. Other dignitaries present were Dr. M. Rajeevan, Secretary to the Ministry of Earth Science, the Kalinga prize winner and noted science communicator Dr. Narender K Sehgal, officials from NISCAIR, Vigyan Prasar and DBT.

Two short films, CSIR Stands with the People in Distress and Ganga Haritima Abhiyaan: Ek Vyakti-Ek Vriksh were screened as part of the inaugural function. The audience also witnessed an enthralling Mohiniyattam performance on India’s Space Odyssey Chandrayannam.

Following the inaugural function, the International Science Book Fair that has national institutes, publishers, societies and others were inaugurated. More than 400 delegates, participants and invitees attended the function.

On Monday 8th October 2018 Dr Harsh Vardhan Union Cabinet Minister at the Ministry of Science and Technology, Earth Sciences and Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Changes concluded the festival by his precious words and giving away the awards to the winners of the Film competition held in different categories.

Union Cabinet Minister at the Ministry of Science and Technology, Earth Sciences and Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Changes Dr Harsh Vardhan had said at the closing ceremony of the Science Literature and Film Festival organized under the Indian International Science Festival (IISF 2018) that “poetry based on science films, animation and science is a better medium for connecting people with science. Through movies and social media, we can bring the movies to the common people at a lower cost. We must make more efforts to reach science to all people.”
Screening of more than 53 films at the event took place.

Dr. Harshvardhan said that most of the information currently available in science is in English. It needs to be done in regional language. Former Vice Chancellor of Patna University Prof. Shambhunath Singh said that the event had movies in every language. During the concluding ceremony Dr SS Bhadauria, Scientist Hasan Javed Khan, Dr. Sandeep Sarin, Dr. Jyoti Malik etc. also spoke about their own experience. Fifty-three National and International films were shown during the film festival. About 19 films from countries like Sweden, Denmark, Netherlands, the United Kingdom etc. were also performed at the festival.

Awards for best films were also given on the 8th October 2018 by Honáble Dr Harsh Vardhan.
In the Inspire India category, the first award was given to the film directed by Anila and Priya of Aurangabad. They were rewarded of 50 thousand rupees for the first time in the film. The award for second position was given to Ruchi, and the third to V doont star The Fire.

In the college student category, the movie ‘Premchandra 2’ received the first prize. The second award was received by “Fostering Sustainable Green” and third by “Green Soul”. Stepwell Elixir of Water Restoration Heritage Assets received the first award in the innovative category, the second award was bagged by “In Memory of the Master” and the third film was “Pratikriya”. Jury Award was received by Grandmas Home Remazzadies and Film Anandar.

Union Cabinet Minister at the Ministry of Science and Technology, Earth Sciences and Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Changes Dr Harsh Vardhan finally said that “to make science reach general masses and public to be interested in it; we need to communicate science to them in regional languages and through regional language films.”

Nav Bharat Nirman (Creation) competition was held during India International Science Festival 2018 (IISF 2018). Nav Bharat Nirman (Creation) of new India was a conceptual competition focused on the innovative methods and solutions to overcome India’s historical and social disadvantages along with problems created in the 21st century. The goal of competition program ‘Nav Bharat Nirman’ (NBN) was itself to answer the aforesaid issues. The program had opened the platform to people across the spectrum to come up with the innovative and creative solutions through exploring the emerging fields of science and technology. Innovators got the opportunity to expose their ideas and share the knowledge among them through the platform of NBN. Different departments of Government of India also got benefited from these fertile minds in their journey to transform India. Ultimately all lead to the idea of participative governance – the very fundamental of Indian democracy.

The Problem statements set before the innovators were:

  • Innovate ideas for replacing plastic products.
  • Safety of Children in Cyber space
  • Ground water sustainability in water stressed areas
  • Instantaneous determination of bacteriological contamination in drinking water
  • Ergonomically designed affordable wearable air pollution mitigation system
  • Smart domestic electric energy management system
  • Sustainable Cooling-low GWP and non-Ozone Depleting Substance (ODS) cost effective alternate cooling technologies.

On October 5th 2018, the “New India construction” program, that is, ‘Nav Nirman Bharat’ was inaugurated. The Country’s 147 teams applied for the event. Out of which 50 teams were selected for science festival. The amount of first prize was Rs 25,000, for second prize it was Rs 20,000 and for third prize was Rs 15,000, respectively. All together two teams for each prize were selected, that is, two for first, four for second and seven third prizes.

On this occasion, Hon’ble Union Cabinet Minister for Science and Technology, Earth Sciences, Environment, Forest and Climate Changes Dr Harsh Vardhan said that the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India, Mr. Narendra Modi, come forward to realize the dream of making India a science leader by 2022. He further added that Shri Narendra Modi ji had launched several programs for youth. He stressed that if a youth of the nation has any idea, the government is firmly standing behind him/her. He even agreed that the children and youth of the nation have the ability to solve all the problems of society. Today, India has the capability to make petrol and diesel with the aid of garbage. On this occasion, he appealed to all the students to adopt cleanliness in daily life to clean and remain clean. Bharati Vidyapeeth’s engineering students secured the first and third position in the fourth India International Science Festival (IISF)-2018 which was held in Lucknow.

Siddhant Mishra and Ram Mishra, students of final year B Tech (Electronics) bagged the first prize for their project ‘Wireless patient health monitoring and accidental crisis management system’ in the students engineering model competition of IISF-2018 under ‘Swasth Bharat’ domain. While in the ‘Nav-Bharat Nirman’ domain, Kapil Agrawal and Aditiya Manethia, students of the second year of B Tech (Mechanical) won for developing a concept of a ‘teen cyberspace’, a diverse cyberspace or Internet mainly designed for children and teenagers to surf the Internet without any fear of spamming and threat.

The fest was jointly organized by Department of Biotechnology of Government of India, Ministry of Science and Technology, Ministry of Earth Sciences at Indira Gandhi Prathisthan, Lucknow, in collaboration with Vijnana Bharti. Dr Renu Swarup, Secretary of Department of Biotechnology, Dr Vijay Bhatkar, President of Vijnana Bharati, Programme Coordinator from Department of Biotechnology Dr Alka Sharma, Ministry of Science and Technology, Ministry of Earth Sciences awarded the certificate of appreciation.

“Nav Bharat Nirman”/Creation of new India a concept focused on the innovative methods and solutions to overcome India’s historical and social disadvantages along with problems created in the 21st century, saw innovators getting an opportunity to expose their ideas and share the knowledge among them and coming up with the innovative and creative solutions through exploring the emerging fields of science and technology. Distributing prizes at the event Dr. Harsh Vardhan said that today is the age of idea economy and the most important coefficient today is innovation coefficient and the government is fully committed towards supporting innovation.