Avishkar, a state-level inter university research competition, is hailed as one of the most prestigious event, where under graduate to PhD students participate.In its 12th consecutive year, Avishkar has launched an online portal, to accommodate the ideas of all participants and to ensure that none of the ideas are lost.This year, the portal has received 2,600 ideas in the first round, out of which 1,000 projects have been shortlisted. The second round will be held on multiple dates - December 9, 14, 15 and 17 - in Pune, Nashik and Ahmednagar.A total of 48 projects will make it to the final state round which will be held in January 2019. The best idea will be selected and applauded in the final stage of the competition.“The Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU) has undergone lot of innovative changes . Vice chancellor Nitin Karmalkar is bringing in a lot of changes in the working of such research conventions,” said M V Rasve, assistant registrar, internal quality assurance cell (IQAC) who is in charge of the event.Back to the roots Avishkar was initiated by the then governor of Maharashtra, S M Krishna,in 2006 and since then it is being implemented through the board of college and university development. SPPU has taken special efforts to increase the participation of talented students from both urban and rural areas in the competition. Dr Manish Varma, IQAC coordinator and also part of the Avishkar planning committee said that all that the student needs to take part in the event is an idea.The purpose of organising the Avishkar competition every year is to provide a platform for the youth from various universities to understand the research attitude and acquire the scientific knowledge thus transforming the cause of development. Avishkar also aims to educate students and teachers about their responsibility towards societal development.SPPU will provide the students with ample support from drafting a proposal for funding to interaction with experts, said M V Rasve, assistant registrar, internal quality assurance cell (IQAC).The participants will demonstrate their innovative research skills and projects in fields as varied as engineering, science and technology, commerce, arts and humanities, agriculture and animal husbandry among others.The best Idea will be selected and be applauded in the final stage of the competition.Participants benefit Avishkar is a great platform for students across the state to showcase their innovative ideas across streams.2. Students from various parts of Maharashtra will present their projects which are of utmost relevance to the current situations and problems faced by the country.3. The students have to compete at many levels like college, universities, districts and state. The raw ideas are being mentored and polished by experts at every level.4. Researchers get an opportunity to meet and interact with eminent personalities from their field. This increases their understanding and exposure levels.5. The shortlisted students for this year’s competition are working on their research projects.Project success “The project - Postal bank, banking the unbanked - which won the first award in Avishkar 2014-15, was implemented at the national level in August 2018, though the name of the university or competition was not acknowledged. I won the first price in Nagpur on January 23, 2015. Under the project, I suggested the collaboration of post office and banks to support financial inclusion in India,” said Dr Rati Chandra, now working as a professor in Pune.Gearing up for contest Shamali Balakshe, third year, BBA(computer application) Ness Wadia college of commerce, Pune finds Avishkar to be a great platform for her project Scholarship Management System which is being done exclusively for students from the economically weaker sections of the society. The project aims to enlist the criteria for the various scholarship schemes to which eligible students can apply. “My teammate Ragini Adagale and I are looking forward for the next round,” said Shamali.The students of Garware college are busy with last minute preparations for their project.“We are working on a research project on environmental remediation under biodegradable polymers under Dr Preeti Kulkarni from the department of chemistry, Abasaheb Garware college. We are delighted that we are shortlisted. We will use this opportunity and surely try to give our best in the coming rounds,” said Varuna Watane, second year, M Sc, analytical chemistry.Also in the running for the teachers category is Sourabh Ubale, assistant professor, DES Shri Navalmal Firodia Law College, Pune & PhD Scholar, University of Mumbai. His project has been titled transforming employment sector into green jobs: a legal approach in combating climate change. “The project discusses two innovative principles with legal perspective Green Jobs- of the green, by the green and for the green and creating-converting- promoting green jobs,” he said.