Citing global problems of climate change, energy crisis and deadly diseases, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday asked the Indian students to take up the challenge of finding solutions to these through innovation and research instead of merely doing “cut-paste” work.
Addressing the convocation ceremony of the Benares Hindu University (BHU) in Varanasi, he asked students to “keep the mind receptive and eager to fresh knowledge” even after their formal education was complete.
“I want to throw this challenge before young men and women of this country. Come up with innovations that may help the world in bringing down temperatures a bit, help the humanity overcome the grave energy crisis it is likely to face if renewable and sustainable alternative sources are not found”, Mr. Modi told the gathering of BHU scholars and academics.
He said students should dream of finding solutions to the problems that are being faced by the country and the world.
“Innovation is most important for us… New research, not just to obtain PhDs through cut-paste…,” he said.
As his remarks drew an amused response from the audience, the Prime Minister quipped he had felt that those at BHU would not be aware of “cut-paste” aspect of research but even if they were, he hoped they did not use it.
He said he had in the past consulted Nobel laureates about the prevalence of “sickle-cell disease in tribal families” which is even worse than cancer. But, he felt “our own researchers can find a better solution”.
Talking about global warming with which the world is struggling to cope with, he said Indians believe exploitation of nature is a crime and see God in plants and mother in a river. “In such a country, can’t we find a concrete solution to global warming,” Mr. Modi asked.
In the context of energy crisis, he said a solution could emerge through research on how ethanol could be effectively used as a fuel, which would benefit sugarcane farmers as well.
He said research is also needed in making renewable energy increasingly viable.