India defers 100-year-old annual science meet

The Indian Science Congress has run into trouble – again.

First, in 2015, presentation of controversial pseudoscientific claims made headlines, and now it is the last-minute change in venue for the conference. The venue was moved from the southern city of Hyderabad to the north-east city of Imphal, which are miles apart. The reason given was protesting students.

For the piece, I interviewed 2009 chemistry Nobel laureate, Prof. Venki Ramakrishnan, who has been vocal about the state of affairs in the Congress before. The other scientist I interviewed for the piece is Prof. P. Balaram, former director of the Indian Institute of Science.

Prof. Balaram had written an editorial in the journal Current Science in 2012, in which he had cited several reasons for the downfall of the Congress. One was the importance showered upon its opening session, which is traditionally presided over by the prime minister of India. Another was the quality of its sessions.

You can read what the sources said in my piece for Chemistry World here.

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