The Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), an India’s research and development (R&D) organisation, has come out with a new scheme to fund innovative projects in the country.

CSIR director-general Dr Girish Sahni told media here on Saturday that Rs 400 crore has been set aside as an innovation fund. The money will also be utilised to take the benefits of research from CSIR laboratories to the market. Dr Sahni was in the city to deliver a scientific lecture at the Indian Institute of Chemical Technology (IICT) to mark the platinum jubilee celebrations of CSIR.

“CSIR created the innovation fund from its own revenue. More money will be pumped into the innovation corpus fund if needed,” he added. He said the fund will come handy to researchers to pass on the technologies developed in labs to the market for the overall benefit of man. Referring to various ongoing projects in CSIR laboratories across the co untry, he said it would take many years for drugs to make it to the market as they should pass through the mandatory procedures. He said the major challenge is to produce smart drugs.

Dr Sahni said the fourth generation clot buster drug will be available in the market in about eight years from now. He said the CSIR is en couraging farmers to take up inter-season crops to boost their income. Farmers can take up aromatic and herbal plantation between Khariff and Rabi seasons. They can also grow them as hedges. “We have identified crops to suit various states. In Telangana farmers can be asked to take up turmeric as an interseason crop. Essential oils obtained from aromatic plants can be routed through cooperatives. This will not only improve the income of farmers but also increase the production of aromatic oils,” he said.

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Notably, CSIR has achievements of developing India’s first synthetic drug, Methaqualone in 1950, first Indian tractor Swaraj in 1967 completely based on indigenous know-how, and many more.

CSIR along With TCS, has evem developed a versatile portable PC-based software ‘Bio-Suite’ for bioinformatics.

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