'Be ready to combat new and emerging diseases: VP Naidu's message to scientists
Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu on Wednesday called upon scientists and researchers to be always ready to combat new and emerging diseases as the COVID-19 pandemic has reinforced the need to be ever vigilant to tackle an outbreak of sudden and unforeseen epidemics and pandemics.
Virtually addressing the Valedictory and Award Session of Global Bio India-2021 from Chennai, he said biotechnology has emerged as the backbone of various industrial sectors in recent times.
Built on four core beliefs of entrepreneurship, innovation, development of local talent, and demonstrating high value-based care, India is in a unique position to transition from the biotech industry to a bio-economy, he said according to an official statement.
Lauding the Department of Biotechnology for working relentlessly to mitigate the COVID-19-induced health crisis through the development of diagnostics, vaccines and novel protection equipment, apart from scaling up diagnostic capacity and rapid regulatory response, he expressed happiness that India is at the forefront of fighting the pandemic.
Referring to India's supply of COVID-19 vaccine to several countries in tune with the spirit of 'Vausudhaiva Kutumbakam' (world is one family) and the age-old philosophy of 'share and care', he pointed that India's action drew praise from the World Health Organisation with its director general thanking Prime Minister Narendra Modi for supporting vaccine equity.
Recognising the immense potential of the biotech sector, the vice president said the government has eased regulatory approvals for entrepreneurs.
Referring to the biotech sector's ambitious target of becoming a USD 150 billion industry by 2025 and contribute to knowledge and innovation-driven economy, Naidu urged the academia and the industry to join hands and engage pro-actively in imparting training and skills to the youth.
He also stressed on the need to leverage the huge potential of biotechnology sector to come up with new interventions to address the challenges faced by agriculture and allied sectors.