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Ajay Kumar Sood

Ajay Kumar Sood has been appointed Principal Scientific Adviser (PSA) to the Union government, a Personnel Ministry order issued on Wednesday said.

He succeeds K. VijayRaghavan. Dr. Sood has been appointed for a period of three years. He is a member of the Science, Technology and Innovation Advisory Council (PM-STIAC) and is a physicist known for his work on graphene.

He is a Distinguished Professor of Physics at the Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru.

Mr. VijayRaghavan was appointed the PSA in 2018 and played a crucial role in leading task forces on vaccine and drug development as well as pandemic management. His term ended in 2021 but was awarded an extension.

The PSA’s office coordinates with several Ministries and advises the government on science and technology policies and interventions that are of strategic socio-economic importance. It also advises institutions, academia and industry.

The PM-STIAC is one of the catalysts for such tasks and also oversees the implementation of the tasks. The body has nine major missions: Natural Language Translation, Quantum Frontier, Artificial Intelligence, National Biodiversity Mission, Electric Vehicles, Bio–science for Human Health, Waste to Wealth, Deep Ocean Exploration, and Accelerating Growth of New India’s Innovations (AGNIi).

Prior to Mr. VijayRaghavan, nuclear scientist R. Chidambaram was the Principal Scientific Adviser for close to a decade and a half and before that A.P.J. Abdul Kalam.

( With inputs from PTI )

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