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April 26, 2009

New Science Interest

It is a welcome augury that the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has recieved more than 1.3 lakh applications for the 300 posts announced this year, which is beyond the ISRO’s expectation given that today’s youth is more into management and private sector jobs. One may argue that the youth is still far more interested in the corporate world with prospects of higher salaries and better work environment but he is venturing into the public domain only because of the uncertainties brought about by the global economic meltdown. While this may be true to a large extent, the ISRO’s case is special. To quote ISRO Chairman G Madhavan Nair, ‘‘the success of Chandrayan’’ has helped generate a new interest among science and engineering graduates ‘‘in space’’ and the space mission ‘‘had an entire young lot completely charged up’’. One hopes the ISRO would inspire more and more meritorious science and engineering graduates to join a career of science research so that the paucity of science researchers in the country could be adequately met. But there is no gainsaying that unless careers in pure science are made lucrative and rewarding by way of special incentives for the best and the most innovative mind, the crisis in science research in the country can in no way be solved. There is still time for change. THE SENTINEL

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