Observing that West Bengal was a “slow starter” in IT, President Ram Nath Kovind on Wednesday urged it to grab the opportunities presented by the digital explosion and replicate the past successes of its famous scientific entrepreneurs.
“Bengal was a slow starter in Information Technology and IT-Enabled Services. Now it has another chance,” Kovind told the closing ceremony celebrations of the Bose Institute here.
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“We are in the midst of an explosion of digital technologies. Precision manufacture and bioinformatics are changing how we work and robotics as to how we live. All this throws up opportunities for Bengal.”
Referring to Bengal’s pioneering scientists and technocrats who were among the country’s earliest scientific entrepreneurs, the President said the magic of the synthesis achieved by them needed to be recreated.
In this context, Kovind mentioned Acharya P.C. Ray, who established the first Indian-owned pharmaceutical company, Bengal Chemicals and Pharmaceuticals Ltd.
He also referred to the engineer father-son pair Rajendra Nath Mookerjee and Biren Mookerjee who established the Indian Iron and Steel Co in Burnpur as well as technologist and academic of Bengali descent Amar Bose, founder of Bose Corp in the US.
“Clearly, when Bengali scientists and technologists turn entrepreneurs, they can be very, very successful. We need to bring back the magic of that synthesis.”
Lauding the Bose Institute, Kovind said it had been inspired by a sense of nation-building through its hundred years.
“It has served the cause of science and the cause of India. Bose Institute occupies a unique and exalted position in the landscape of Indian science. This was one of the earliest scientific institutes to be established in the country,” Kovind said.
He paid glowing tributes to the institute’s founder Acharya Jagadish Chandra Bose.
Calling Bose a “true pioneer of Indian science” and an innovator and world-class scientist, Kovind said he had laid the foundation for revolutionary technologies like the modern wireless communication and demonstrated wireless transmission of microwaves as far back as 1895.
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