Staff Reporter GUWAHATI, Feb 28 - Eminent scientist and the ‘Moon Man of India’ Dr Jitendra Nath Goswami was today conferred the prestigious Asom Ratna Award 2015 by the Government of Assam in recognition of his contributions in the field of science.
Eminent space scientist Dr Jitendra Nath Goswami receiving the Asom Ratna Award 2015 from Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi at Rabindra Bhawan in Guwahati on Sunday. – UB Photos
One of the brains behind the country’s first Moon mission – the Chandrayaan – and a worthy son of the soil from Jorhat, Dr Goswami is counted among India’s top 25 scientists. The principal scientist of the Chandrayaan mission and chairman of the advisory board of Chandrayaan-II, he is actively involved in the planning of future Indian planetary missions as well.
The Asom Ratna Award that was started in the year 2008 is given to exceptional creative talents from the State, associated with greater developmental and creative pursuits. The award carries a memento, an ethnic wear, citation and a cheque of Rs 3,00,000. Cultural icon Dr Bhupen Hazarika and eminent author Dr Mamoni Raisom Goswami were conferred the award in 2008 and 2012 respectively.
In his acceptance speech, Dr Goswami expressed his gratitude towards his teachers from elementary school to the guides in his higher educational and research ventures. “Though I have received some awards in the fields of science and research, including some international ones, recognition on the land where I grew up, has a greater significance,” he stated.
Elaborating about his association with the country’s Moon mission and several other research projects, he asked the younger generations to try to explore new opportunities.
“Today, our younger generation is smarter and capable of taking informed decisions. However, I would suggest some form of guidance up to the graduation level so that they find a right path. If we are flexible enough to take the challenges coming our way while taking our strides, nothing can stop us from achieving the set goals,” he said.
Speaking on the occasion, Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi said that the State government gives special emphasis on promoting research activities, as Assam has its own unique climatic, ecological and social challenges.
“We need development, but have to maintain the ecological balance. We have resources but require special research to make them useful for our own needs. Slowly, but steadily, our State is on the path of development and I hope more of our sons and daughters would excel in their respective fields, doing the State proud,” he stated.
Cotton College State University Vice Chancellor Dr Dhrubajyoti Saikia and State Cultural Affairs Minister Bismita Gogoi also spoke on the occasion, among others.