27 July :Ministry of Earth Sciences today celebrated its foundation day by awarding several senior and young scientists for their distinguished contribution in the field of Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences in a function at Vigyan Bhavan in New Delhi.
Speaking on the occasion, the chief guest Smt. Sheila Dikshit, the Chief Minister of Delhi appreciated the fact that the Ministry is now gearing up with the necessary state of the art scientific equipments for location specific weather forecast. She said that the district agro meteorological and agro climatological information is directly applied to improve or protect livelihood of farmers.
Dr. Anil Kakodkar, Secretary, Department of Atomic Energy delivered the Foundation Day lecture.Earlier, Secretary, Ministry of Science and Technology and Ministry of Earth Sciences Dr. T. Ramasami welcomed the gathering that comprised several scientists, officials from the Ministry and young students.
National Awards in Ocean Science and Technology & Atmospheric Sciences were presented to Dr. Harsh K Gupta and Professor Sulochana Gadgil. Certificate of Merit and mementos were presented to young scientists and engineers. The awardees included B V Satyanarayana of INCOIS, M Arul Muthiah of NIOT, Dr. Shiv Mohan Singh of NCAOR, Dr. Gufran-ullah Beig of IITM, Pune, Anand Kumar Sharma, Director, Met Centre, Dehradun, and Manish Ranalkar, member of IMD Modernization Programme Team.
To create awareness in the young minds about the importance of science in general and atmosphere and ocean science in particular, the Ministry initiated efforts to reach out to students through Quiz and Painting Competition. The winners of these competitions were also awarded by Smt. Sheila Dikshit on the occasion.
The Best Employee’s awards for 2007 were also given in order to motivate and encourage employees of the Ministry.
Taking into account India’s vast coastline of about 7500 km. length and the fact that approximately 37 % of India’s population lives in the coastal areas, deriving benefits from the seas, the then Prime Minister Late Mrs. Indira Gandhi, created Department of Ocean Development as an independent scientific Department on July 27, 1981. The Department was notified as Ministry of Ocean Development (MoOD) in February 2006. Keeping in view the close interaction between Ocean, Atmosphere and Earth and the need to have an integrated scientific approach, Government of India approved formation of the Earth Commission and re-organisation of the Ministry of Ocean Development as Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES), which came into being on 12th of July 2007 having the Department of Ocean Development, India Meteorological Department, Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology & National Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting, under it.
The Ministry of Earth Sciences aims to create a framework for understanding the complex interaction among key elements of the Earth System, namely ocean atmosphere and solid earth by encompassing the existing national programmes in meteorology, Climate, environment and seismology. The mandate of Ministry of Earth Sciences is to provide the nation with best possible services in forecasting the monsoons and other weather/climate parameters, ocean state, earthquakes, tsunamis and other phenomena related to earth systems through well integrated programmes and utilising world class science and technology resources. In addition, the Ministry also works on science and technology for exploration and exploitation of ocean resources (living and non-living), and plays nodal role for Antarctic/Arctic and Southern Ocean Research. The Ministry plays key role in disaster warning from Tsunami, oil spills, cyclones and storm surges.
During the course of last two decades, the Ministry has achieved several successes in the tasks assigned to it and is poised for making further impressive strides in the near future. Successful demonstration of 10 lakh litre per day desalination plant, Establishment of Tsunami Early Warning Centre at INCOIS, Hyderabad, 27 successful scientific trips to Antarctica, Development of deep ocean drilling technology, etc. are few success stories.
With the intention of creating awareness about this important sector and also to highlight activities of national importance being undertaken by the Ministry, a need was felt to celebrated the Foundation Day of the Ministry on 27th July every year.