Says, for the first time since Independence, North East Region is organizing an International Conference on Biotechnology involving over 700 International and National delegates representing over 35 countries
Inaugurating the International Conference, Dr Jitendra Singh said, it’s heartening to note that this is happening in Manipur, as the Prime Minister Narendra Modi had over the last 9 years transformed Northeast from a terror tag to a peaceful development model
IBSD has taken this initiative for the development of bio-resources and traditional healer’s practices of this region for societal benefit and livelihood generation: Dr Jitendra Singh
The Minister says, in tune with Prime Minister Modi’s call for Integration, IBSD has organised Industry-Connect (I-Connect) Events in many states including Manipur, Mizoram, Sikkim, Meghalaya for developing collaboration between industries and institute
FEB 25, 2023
Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Science & Technology; Minister of State (Independent Charge) Earth Sciences; MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh today said, for the first time since Independence, North East Region is organizing an International Conference on Biotechnology involving over 700 International and National delegates representing over 35 countries.
The Minister informed that “International Bio-resource Conclave” along with the 22nd Congress of the International Society for Ethno-pharmacology and the 10th Congress of Society for Ethno-pharmacology (ISE SFEC-2023) will be held from February 24-26, 2023 at the City Convention Centre, Imphal, Manipur with the theme “Reimagine Ethnopharmacology : Globalisation of Traditional Medicine”.
Inaugurating the International Conference, Dr Jitendra Singh said, it’s heartening to note that this is happening in Manipur, as Prime Minister Narendra Modi had over the last 9 years transformed Northeast from a terror tag to a peaceful development model. He also emphasised that earlier funds allocated to the North-East did not reach the bottom level, but after Modi became the Prime Minister in May, 2014, funds are reaching to the real beneficiaries at the villages and being utilised for development.
Dr Jitendra Singh said, the Prime Minister has always given high priority to Northeast and other Hilly and Backward terrains since he assumed charge and added that Modi has visited the Northeast more than 50 times in the last 9 years, while the Union Ministers have also visited the North-Eastern Region more than 400 times.
Dwelling on the subject of the Conference, Dr Jitendra Singh said, the Institute of Bio-resources and Sustainable Development (IBSD) is organising the Conference in collaboration with Society for Ethno-pharmacology, India and International Society for Ethno-pharmacology, Switzerland. He praised IBSD for taking this initiative and said that this is happening for the development of bio-resources and traditional healer’s practices of this region for societal benefit and livelihood generation.
Dr Jitendra Singh said, in tune with Prime Minister Modi’s call for Integration, IBSD has organised Industry-Connect (I-Connect) Events in many states including Manipur, Mizoram, Sikkim, Meghalaya for developing collaboration between industries and institutes. Under this event, several entrepreneurs from NER have shared their knowledge for the development of products/ processes/ technologies with value addition of bio-resources and development bio-economy from bio-resources of NER.
The Minister added that this programme encouraged many entrepreneurs to promote unique bio-resources and traditional knowledge of this region and also informed that IBSD has setup Bio Incubators Nurturing Entrepreneurship for Scaling Technologies (BioNEST) incubator at IBSD, Node Meghalaya to develop women entrepreneurship in Meghalaya.
Dr Jitendra Singh said, IBSD is working on therapeutic areas like antiviral, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and insect repellents, anti-diabetic, anti-arthritis, bronchial asthma, gastro-protectives and immuno-modulation. He said, the institute has performed metabolomics studies of several medicinal plants with potential therapeutic effects for establishing their mechanism of action with network pharmacology and synergistic study and hoped that this research will lead to different transformational approaches from tradition for developing products, processes and technologies with local bio-resources. This will also help in development of traditional knowledge based therapeutic agents leading to socioeconomic development of the region as well as benefits to traditional health care practitioners, he added.
Dr Jitendra Singh also informed that for the development of bio-resources, IBSD is synergizing all the research areas including Plant resources; Microbial resources including traditional foods; Phyto-pharmaceutical Mission, Ethno-pharmacology & Drug Development; Animal resources; Eco-Restoration, Water Quality Management and Surveillance to catalyse the bio-economy of this region. All the research perspectives of IBSD are focussed on the development of bio-economy from bio-resources with special reference to NER, the Minister added.
Dr Jitendra Singh congratulated all the SFE Annual Awardees for their excellent contribution in their research areas. I am happy to know that many researchers have received awards for travel and accommodation to attend this congress and explore opportunities for the development of bioresources of this region.
The Minister complimented Prof. Pulok K. Mukherjee, Director, IBSD and all scientists, researchers and staff for organising this congress for first time in Imphal, Manipur and North-eastern Region of India.
Dr Rajesh Gokhale, Secretary DBT said that the healthcare in India is at crossroads as several innovative and disruptive technologies are emerging at a very fast pace. He said, life expectancy in India is coming down and that is matter of concern for scientific and medical community.
Dwelling on the massive leap taken by India in the field of Biotechnology, Dr Gokhale said, India has developed four indigenous Vaccines in just two years and they are – ZyCoV-D World’s 1st and India’s indigenously developed DNA Vaccine, CORBEVAXTM- India’s first protein subunit vaccine, GEMCOVAC™-19 – World’s 1st and India’s indigenously developed mRNA vaccine and iNCOVACC-World’s 1st and India’s indigenously developed intranasal COVID-19 Vaccine.
Dr Gokhale said, the microbial culture collection centre of IBSD is unique with a huge collection of microbes from NER, which can play as a potential lead for not only new drug development but also very effective for the antimicrobial resistance (AMR) study. He said, IBSD has been working in this area of AMR which has local relevance and global importance. IBSD is working on quality evaluation, validation of fermented foods of NER for developing products, processes and technologies.
Shri Shekhar Dutta, former Governor of Chhattisgarh said in his address that India is home to many traditional medicine systems like Ayurveda, Siddha, and Part of Unani and Indian Civilisation was taking very keen interest in identifying and making use of bio-resources for medicinal use. He said, the need of the hour is to develop good collection, storage and finally good manufacturing practices with standardisation of Traditional Pharmacology.
In his address, Prof. Marco Leonti, Secretary, ISE & Professor, Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Cagliari, Italy said that India is taking huge interest in Ethno-Pharmacology and this is a very good sign that more and more research projects are being undertaken.
Prof Marco said that IBSD can become a model for other regions of India for growth of economy and for the benefit of rural population. He said that the joint initiative between the Institute of Bio-resources and Sustainable Development (IBSD) and International Society for Ethno-pharmacology, Switzerland will continue in future.
Prof. Pulok K. Mukherjee, Director, IBSD underlined that to fulfil the vision of the Prime Minister for Atmanirbahar Bharat., IBSD has established linkages between traditional healers and the scientific communities for benefit sharing and promotion of start-ups with Ethno Entrepreneurships based on development of herbal medicinal based products, fermented foods, edible mushrooms and insects.
Mr. Indraneel Das, Vice President, Society for Ethnopharmacology, Kolkata, India presented the Vote of thanks.
IBSD has established a “Science Museum” at Maha Union Govt. Higher Secondary School, Chandel, an Aspirational district of Manipur. IBSD is organising many activities like webinars, seminars, lab visits for students from different schools, colleges of Manipur to promote scientific thinking about local bioresources of the region.
IBSD was established in the year 2001 in Imphal under the Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science and Technology, Govt. of India. This Institute is not only serving the people of Manipur in Northeast but also has three different other entities including its Regional Centre at Gangtok in Sikkim and Research Nodes at Shillong in Meghalaya and at Aizawl in Mizoram. IBSD has established a Bioresource Park at Hararaou, Imphal for germplasm collection of bioresources of NER. Since inception, IBSD has been engaged in research activities and numerous outreach programmes to fulfil the mission for “Bioresources development and their sustainable use through biotechnological interventions for the socio-economic growth of the North Eastern Region”.