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    New Delhi: Union S&T Minister releases science magazine in Dogri

    New Delhi: 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, on Sunday formally released "Vigyan Jattara", a popular science magazine being brought out in Dogri language by the Ministry of Science & Technology, Government of India. He also announced that the Kashmiri language version of the same magazine will be launched soon.

    Speaking on occasion, he noted that Prime Minister Narendra Modi strongly favoured the use of vernacular languages for promoting science communication and also providing a level playing field to every aspiring youth to compete in science without facing any disadvantage on account of ignorance of English or Hindi languages. 

    Of late, many toppers of all India competitive exams have been vernacular medium students up to degree level. One of the five toppers in IAS/Civil Service Exam a few years ago, had done his entire education up to BA in Telugu medium’ said Dr Singh. Vice Chancellor of the University of Jammu, Prof Umesh Rai, Vice Chancellor of the Central University, Jammu, Prof Sanjeev Jain, and Prof Lalit Mangotra, former HoD, Physics, University of Jammu and famous Dogri writer also spoke on occasion and appreciated Dr Jitendra Singh’s efforts for overall development of Jammu as education hub of North India. They also lauded the initiative to promote science education in the Dogri language, apart from other vernaculars.

    The Minister said in a technology-driven world of knowledge and progress, the country owed to its youth to provide them with an appropriate curriculum, literature and options to study science in the language of their choice and be able to compete with the students of English or Hindi medium.

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s strong conviction in this regard is borne out by the fact, that after the historic decision of 5th August, 2019, Jammu and Kashmir became the only UT/State in the country to have five official languages i.e. English, Hindi, Urdu, Dogri and Kashmiri, he addded.

    Dr Jitendra Singh noted that while it is a fact that language does not correlate with excellence in science and countries like Russia, Japan and China have risen to be the first line leaders in scientific progress without the knowledge of English language. The contradiction in India is that for nearly two centuries it followed Lord Macaulay's policy of education as a result of which all the crucial textbooks and literature in science is available and read mainly in English language. He sought the help of science-knowing Dogri scholars to help translate the English language science textbooks into Dogri language without compromising the essence and meaning of the expression.

    Dr Jitendra Singh said, that in the next 25 years of Amrit Kaal when India rises to the world pedestal, it will be primarily on the strength of scientific prowess and capacity of startups who are essentially technology driven. It is, therefore, equally important to focus on the scientific capacity building of startups and youth in the age group of 30s who have another 25 active years to contribute till the year 2047 and whose scientific potential can be utilised to the maximum extent, regardless of which language they speak or read. 

    Dr Jitendra Singh also mentioned that Prime Minister Modi's special thrust on promotion of science and technology is evident in revolutionary decisions like unlocking the space sector for private players, joint ventures in atomic energy initiatives and ably amplified in 75,000 startups with 100 unicorns in a concise period.

    The Minister said efforts are underway to make science textbooks in vernacular languages available to the students. A group of resource persons has been tasked with this mission. He thanked the Post Graduate Department of Dogri language at the Central University of Kashmir and sought continuous support for effective translation of the science magazine into the Dogri language.

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