INDIA’s Science & Technology Department Will Be Moved To A State of The Art Imposing Building In 15 Months

UNION Minister for Science & Technology and Earth Sciences Dr. Harshavardhan, also In-Charge of the Environment Ministry, has expressed happiness saying the proposed new building for his ministry follows all green building norms and insisted that latest norms should be followed during construction. DST, one of the three departments of Ministry of Science & Technology, was established on 03rd May, 1971 with the express objective of exploring and developing new areas of S&T, to strengthen national Science & Technology capacity and capability, cutting across institutions and disciplines. They should also have a workplace befitting their work profile. Hence, keeping this in mind, Ministry has decided to construct a modern building complex for two of its wings – Department of Science and Technology (DST) and Department of Scientific and Industrial Research (DSIR) – as well as autonomous institutions under them. The new building complex will come up at Qutab Institutional Area in South Delhi at a cost of Rs. 192 Crore.The highlight of the new complex would be that it would be environment-friendly. It would have a 110 kilolitre per day sewerage treatment plant and treated water would be used for horticulture works. In addition, light fixtures would be LED-based for the external area and for building façade. There would be a 300 kWh capacity grid interactive solar power generation system and rainwater harvesting pits would be set up in different parts of the campus to help recharge groundwater.Dr Harshavardhan himself a prominent physician before plunging in politics, was speaking after laying the foundation stone for the new building in Delhi.  Giving brief introduction about new state of the art building, Secretary DST Prof. Ashutosh Sharma said that IRCON has promised to complete phase one of project within 15 months. Prof Sharma appealed to audience to share any ideas that can bring unique science & technology elements in news building. “Construction of new state of the art building should be completed by 3rd May, 2021 when DST will celebrate it’s Golden Jubilee”, said Dr Harsh Vardhan.. The existing DST Complex known as Technology Bhawan was constructed and used for storage of food-grains by US Aid Agency under   PL-480 “Public Law- 480”.    PL-480 is an “Agricultural Trade Development Act” signed into Law on 10th July 1954 by President Dwight D. Eisenhower. Prior to that, US extended food aid to countries experiencing natural disaster and provided aid in time of war, but not as a permanent program. In 1961, President John F. Kennedy renamed it as “Food for Peace”. In India, this programme was operative for the period from 1961 to 1969. After closure of the scheme in India, the assets created by US Aid Agency were agreed to be handed over to Govt. of India on 17th February 1970.  Department of Science and Technology moved into these buildings on 3rd May 1971. There was an unfortunate fire incident in 2013 causing a great loss of property to the building of DST.  This necessitated construction of a new building for DST within the campus of 8.87 Acres at Technology Bhawan.  Accordingly, DST has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with IRCON Infrastructure & Services LTD (A Government of India undertaking, under Ministry of Railways).   The new building will accommodate two departments of Ministry of Science and Technology, namely, DST & DSIR and also a few Autonomous Institutes such as SERB, TIFAC, TDB and VigyanPrasar located at Delhi.  These AIs are presently functioning from rented premises. Among other dignitaries present on the occasion were CSIR Secretary Dr Girish Sahni, Ministry of Earth Sciences Secretary Dr. M. Rajeevan, IRCON CMD  S. K. Chaudhary, DST joint Secretary & Financial Adviser  J. B. Mohapatra, DST joint secretary Ms Anju Bhalla, former DST secretaries Dr P. Ramarao& Prof. V. S. Ramamurthy. As a part of Swachh Bharat Mission, SwacchtaPakhwadais also observed in the Department of Science & Technology from 01st May 2018 to 15th May 2018.   DST every year celebrates its Foundation Day on 03rd May, which this year falls during the SwacchtaPakhwada.  Among other activities during the Pakhwada, DST also organized Round-Table Discussion on challenges for DST and expectations from stakeholders. Different stakeholders like distinguished Former-Secretaries of DST, eminent Scientists, senior Fellows and journalists participated in the discussion. Other activities planned during the Swachhta Pakhwada (fortnight )include expert talks and stakeholders’ consultations on clean water, clean air, clean energy and waste management.  DST has been funding research projects in these areas for many years, and during the Pakhwada, technologies developed with support from DST will be discussed by scientists and experts.  An Exhibition to showcase these technologies will also be held from 07th May to 10th May, 2018 on the Technology Bhawan Campus, and on 11th May, 2018 at Vigyan Bhawan, where the National Technology Day will be celebrated.  Child innovators will also showcase their innovations and prototype models for Swachhta on 14th May, 2018 at Technology Bhawan.

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