Union minister Harsh Vardhan has urged the scientific community to put their “heart, soul and mind” into work, while cautioning that ego or “interpersonal allergy” if any, was impeding the great things they can achieve together. “I have been to the labs where some of the great scientists, like J C Bose and C V Raman, worked. They worked all alone and what passion they had, they really worked like ‘mad men’ and so achieved those heights.
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“But, when I go to several scientific and medical institutions, do we still find that focused dedication? India has a great DNA in the scientific field, and what the country needs today is a pro-active attitude to come out of that routine slumber, the casual work attitude, and a bit of the out-of-the-box thinking,” Vardhan said.
The minister of Science and Technology was addressing a gathering last evening on the inauguration of golden jubilee conference of the Indian College of Allergy, Asthma and Applied Immunology (ICAAI) organised by the Vallabhbhai Patel Chest Institute (VPCI) here.
“The most common allergic ailment, in my career as a doctor, I have diagnosed is allergic rhinitis… But, more than the physical allergy, I am worried about the allergy some people have of each other.
“Is it intrinsic allergy or extrinsic allergy, I don’t know. But, one finds at work, that sometimes people have a relationship, but there is really no relationship. Either it is ego or self-importance or seniority issues.
“So, my only message to all is to operate at heart, mind and soul level and without any ego or interpersonal allergy,” he said.
The minister said that forums like this conference are the ideal places where new energy can fuse together to form vision for the future. He also pitched for more collaboration among institutions in India and abroad.
“You must dream a crazy dream, dreams that for others may appear something difficult to realise. When we were working on pulse polio movement, my own political colleagues thoughts I was pursuing a crazy thing,” he said.
According to experts, it is estimated that over 20 per cent of the world’s population suffers from allergic diseases such as allergic asthma, allergic rhinitis and allergic conjunctivitis, atopic eczema and anaphylaxis.
Asthma is a worldwide problem, with estimated 300 million affected individuals and global prevalence which ranges from 1-18 per cent in different geographical regions