Hyderabad: An order passed by the ministry of human resources directing fellows to conduct research only on subjects of national priority and to not indulge in researching irrelevant subjects has irked the scientific community, who argue that science cannot be categorised as relevant and irrelevant.
Scientists who met at Osmania University insisted that the pursuit of knowledge and free thinking cannot be curtailed by the government, which is spending only 0.8 per cent of the country’s GDP on science.
Scientist and state convener of Breakthrough Science Society R. Gangadhar explained, “The order passed by the ministry to disallow PhD courses in subjects irrelevant to the nation has upset academicians across the nation. There has been a lot of debate this year, and academicians are now trying to understand what the government considers relevant and irrelevant. This is not healthy for the academic autonomy of our institutions.”
There is a strong need to pay attention to the scientific evidence and data which is available in the country and to use the same as guidelines in framing policies. The present trend in our country and even across the globe to ridicule science is not acceptable, stated scientists.
Scientists exhorted that the government must refrain from propagating unverified claims as science and give evidence-based science its due place in the society so as to inculcate the temper of scientific thinking.
“The correlations that have been drawn between ancient Indian myths and unverified claims and are being propagated as science are a threat to our society.”
Further, the Children’s Science Congress has become a matter of concern as speakers have been using the platform to propagate unscientific views....