Dr. A.P.J Abdul Kalam, former President of India launched the Rashtriya Avishkar Abhiyan (RAA) today in New Delhi. While launching the Abhiyan, Dr. Abdul Kalam focused on developing the spirit of innovation and experimentation among students. He further laid stress on four qualities of uniqueness: Great Aim, Quest of Knowledge, Hard Work, and Perseverance. Emphasising the value of learning he added “we learn to live, we learn to think and we learn to learn”. He concluded his speech by stressing upon attaching highest value to Science.
Rashtriya Avishkar Abhiyan is a unique concept developed by the Ministry of Human Resource Development that aims to inculcate a spirit of inquiry, creativity and love for Science and Mathematics in school children.
Smt. Smriti Irani, Union Minister for Human Resource Development addressed the gathering through video conferencing and highlighted the fact that RAA is an initiative by Ministry of HRD to encourage students to learn sciences beyond the classrooms. It is an effort to take forward the Prime Minister’s vision of Digital India, ‘Make in India’ and ‘Teach in India’. She also emphasised the fact that more and more women should be encouraged to participate in the field of science and technologies. She talked of efforts made by INTEL for nurturing scientific temper among girl students. She also mentioned Google India’s initiative of Code to Learn Contest which will enable students to learn in the Google campus and announced that Phase II of RAA will be launched in January, 2016 for higher education under which model science labs will be established in all districts of the North Eastern States.
Under Rashtriya Avishkar Abhiyan, government schools will be mentored by Institutes like IITs/ IIMs/ IISERs and other Central Universities and reputed organisations through innovative programmes, student exchanges, demonstrations, student visits, etc to develop a natural sense of passion towards learning of Science and Maths.
The launch event also saw some exhilarating moments with a laser show on science and maths which enthralled the audience.
Two students, Ms. Jaya and Mr. Arsh winners of Initiative for Research and Innovation (IRIS) Award, 2014 & 2015, shared their innovative projects and their journey through the wondrous world of science
A play presented by students of Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar University, Lucknow spread the message of how science is woven in every aspect of life and is not limited to classrooms. The audience also got to hear and interact with scientists like Dr. Tessy Thomas, Project Director AGNI IV and Smt. Nandani Harinath, Deputy Operations Director, Mars Orbiter Mission.
A Science exhibition showcasing some innovative models from school children which have been represented at various national and international forums was also organised at the venue.
The event was also attended by Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister for Science and Technology & Earth Sciences; Dr. Jitendra Singh, Minister of State (Independent Charge) Development of North-Eastern Region; Prof. Ram Shankar Katheria, Minister of State (Higher Education), Ministry of Human Resource Development; Shri Vinay Sheel Oberoi, Secretary, Higher Education and Dr. Subhash Chand Khuntia, Secretary, School Education and Literacy. Thousands of school children, senior policy makers and heads of higher education institutions and scientists were also present at event.