Celebrating India's Scientific Prowess

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India International Science Festival, the World's largest science festival in virtual mode, jointly organised by Ministry of Science and Technology, Ministry of Earth Sciences and Vijnana Bharati with 5 lakh participants from across the country, will be held from December 22 to 25. The aim: To popularise science and help provide solutions to improve lives
 -Arun Pandey
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Dr Harsh Vardhan being welcomed at an IISF event held in 2018
The development of a nation at any phase is always linked with technology and when it happens there is advancement in science and innovation. India's contribution to the development of science and technology is highly commendable, well recognised and significant. It is a paradise in many ways --from being a cultural hub to an abundance of scientific thoughts rich in natural sciences a thriving industry and a large pool of technical manpower supported by establishing research and academic institutions.
Science, technology, and innovation have emerged as the major drivers of global development and India is not an exception. India has achieved high strides in scientific and technological development by also becoming the first nation to reach Mars on its initial attempt.However, today, India is facing various challenges and opportunities. Some of these important challenges are in the key sectors of clean water and energy, food, environment, climate change, security, and healthcare. It is important to translate scientific knowledge into innovations through start-ups and industry so as to facilitate India to achieve inclusive and sustainable growth in the coming decades.
This goal can be achieved, through the inculcation of scientific temper among the masses and by strengthening India's science and technology institutions and their basic research further. By 2030 India is aiming to be the world's leading nation. As the fastest growing economy with a steady growth rate, with the advantages of a large demographic dividend and huge talent pool, India aspires for sustainable and inclusive growth. Emphasising the role of technologies and innovation, India has declared 2010-20 as the "Decade of Innovation".
Ministry of Science and Technology and Ministry of Earth Sciences in association with Vijnana Bharati (VIBHA) has created a unique platform of organising an annual event--India International Science Festival (IISF)--which intends to inspire curiosity and make learning more rewarding. IISF is a festival to celebrate the achievements of India’s scientific and technological advancements with students, innovators, craftsmen, farmers, scientists and technocrats from India and abroad.
The aim is to engage the public with science and celebrate the joy of science and show the ways how science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) provide us with the solutions to improve our lives. In 2015, IISF was initiated with the prime objective of exposing the fruits of science and technology to the masses building strategy to infuse scientific temple among the students and young scientist showcasing Indian contribution in the field of science and technology. Further, the science festival also intends to make innovation beneficial for the rural India and develop technology that is affordable to the masses.
IISF 2020 is the sixth edition since its inception in 2015. The first and second IISF were held in New Delhi, the third in Chennai, the fourthin Lucknow and the fifth was held in Kolkata, which witnessed a widespread participation from over 10 lakh people worldwide.ALL these IISFs had generated immense response from people within India and from abroad.
This year in spite of the pandemic situation of Covid 19 the IISF 2020 is being organized on a virtual platform which signifies The indomitable spirit of nurturing and celebrating scientific temperament amongst all its stakeholders off science technology and innovation the theme of this year IISF 2020 is science for self-reliant India and global welfare is expected to intensely deliberate on the role of science technology and innovation to build in atman Nirmal Bharat an at the same time provide solutions to global partners.IISF 2020 expects participation of large number of scientist and institutions from India and abroad as well as young people. Several events are expected to be lined up on various themes before and during IISF 2020

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Dr Harsh Vardhan interacting with students
drawn from different parts of the country
The central theme of this year’s IISF is “Science for Self-reliant India and Global Welfare”. This year, 41 events will be organised under 9 verticals. IISF 2020 will also endeavor to send the entries of Guinness World Records in five different categories
IISF 2020 is going to be organised during December 22-25,2020 on the virtual platform. This is the largest science festival on the virtual platform. The central theme of this year’s IISF is “Science for Self-reliant India and Global Welfare”. This year, 41 events will be organised under 9 verticals. IISF 2020 will also endeavor to send the entries of Guinness World Records in five different categories. The transformation of IISF from an 8-event festival in 2015 to a 41 event festival in 2020 is remarkable feat in itself.One can visit and participate in science festival by visiting its website www.scienceindiafest.org.
Various outreach and popularisation programmes for the IISF 2020 are going on across the country. Laboratories and institutes of the scientific ministries and departments are holding these programmes as outreach and publicity activities of the IISF. This event will also create a Guinness World record as the largest event being organised on a virtual platform with probable participation of over 5 lakh people.
IISF celebrates the joy of science and connects the enthusiasts and experts of all varieties of science disciplines to the public. Such interactions will be the seed to deepen and widen the reach of science within society and enrich our lives by bringing all forms of science on a common platform.