IITs, NITs should guide MSMEs to manufacture anti-Covid gear: IIT Kharagpur Director
IIT Kharagpur Director V K Tewari has said central institutes like the IITs and NITs have a major role to help the micro, medium and small enterprises (MSME) by guiding them to manufacture personal protective equipment, parts of diagnostic kits and other products required in the Covid-19 era.
Tewari advocated creating mobile apps for the MSMEs, hit hard by the novel coronavirus triggered lockdown, to provide them with training by the institutes.
“For instance, if we provide them (MSME units) with designs of gloves, masks meeting certain guidelines, they can come up with products in 3-4 months. Similarly, these enterprises can be roped in for making parts of diagnostic kits and PCR machines... after required training,” he said.
Delivering an address on Facebook Live on the page of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishads (ABVP) West Bengal unit on Friday, the IIT-KGP director suggested that such units may also be asked to produce PPE.
“We have to know what the MSMEs want, what they require and guide them accordingly in the light of the situation arising out of the COVID-19,” Tewari said adding that guidance of premier institutes having the required expertise will help the units meet the market demand.
“We should work towards making substitutes of certain imported products so that we don’t have to import (them),” said the academician.
The government has taken steps to contain the spread of novel coronavirus, Tewari said adding that an estimated 1-2 crore people had died in the Spanish flu outbreak of 1918 in the country.
“We are (now) having lockdown 3.0 after the lockdown 1.0 started countrywide on March 25. Let’s all hope, if the condition improves, lockdown 4.0 will not take place,” he said.
ABVP national secretary Saptarshi Sarkar said Tewari being a renowned academician and head of a premier institute was invited to a Facebook lecture session.
“We are not associated with any political outfit. And his lecture was meant to guide the student community. There should not be any controversy in it,” he said when asked about the reason to invite Tewari.
The ABVP is the students’ wing of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).