Minister of electronics and information technology Ravishankar Prasad on Saturday inaugurated the half-finished Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) Innovation Park but refrained from giving any definite answer on when the funds for completing the new building would be released.
Both Prasad and Aruna Sundararajan, secretary, ministry of electronics and IT, said in their inaugural speech that the funds would be released, but did not specify when.
Prasad, on the other hand, spoke at length about encouraging Digital India and innovation, but did not mention funds in his speech. When asked about when funds for C-DAC can be expected, he saying, “It will be taken care of soon.”
While a total of Rs 120 crore has been approved for the new C-DAC building, the government has only provided Rs 32 crore of the whole amount so far. C-DAC used the Rs 36 core of their corpus funds meant for furthering their research, for building activities. This has also led to delays in activities and even postponing of many of their other projects.
Rajat Moona, director general, C-DAC expressed that a lot of projects could not be taken up, a lot of work had to be prioritized for a variety of reasons. He further mentioned that it is difficult to tell which projects were postponed. For example, the last super computer update was in the year 2013. In the last three years, supercomputers worldwide have changed a lot but they haven’t been able to do anything as they didn’t have that kind of money.
Prasad touched upon the issue of promotion of scientists in his inaugral speech. He stated that the promotion of scientists have been halted since 2010 will be expedited. He also added that while the scientists’ achievements will be appreciated publicly, they will be pulled up privately for their underachievement.
He also urged scientists to think out of the box. “Come out with more pro-people products. Who stops you from innovating? All innovations will be suitably awarded. E-Hastakshar and E-Basta are Ok but remember that it is just a beginning. Imagine, innovate, apply and give results. Once results start coming in, C-DAC will soon become the key word for digitally driven India.”
By EB Bureau