Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala Biotechnology Commission (KBC) is to launch a series of new initiatives to strengthen the biotechnology sector in the state.
"Biotechnology is gaining importance worldwide in all fields of science, ranging from medicine to agriculture. As a state with highly educated and skilled young people, Kerala is well placed to take the lead in innovation and research in it," said P.M. Sudhakaran, the new director of KBC.
KBC, which functions under the Kerala Science Council for Science Technology and Environment (KSCSTE) is the nodal agency for all biotechnology-related activities in the state and takes the lead in frontline research and development.
As part of a revamp of its activities, the KBC will accord the highest priority to fostering young scientists, capacity-building and promoting industry-linked biotechnology research.
"Biotechnology has immense potential to transform lives. Its possibilities for rural development are only being explored. We will encourage every biotech innovation that can bring positive changes to the lives of people in rural areas," said Sudhakaran.
A winner of the prestigious J.C. Bose Award and a Fellow of the National Academy of Medical Sciences, Sudhakaran is a former dean of Science at Kerala University and professor of Biological Sciences at Central University, Kerala.
KBC will function as the think tank of the Biotechnology Board which is tasked with taking top level administrative and financial decisions to drive the growth of biotechnology in the state.
It will identify the focus area of investment and prioritise projects for implementation and will be responsible for the biotechnology development fund, he said.
The KBC will also address all ethical, environmental, economic and social issues related to biotechnology practices, Sudhakaran added.