President of India Ram Nath Kovind presented the National Geoscience Awards on Wednesday in New Delhi.

Speaking on the occasion, President Kovind said that India is one of the fastest growing major economies in the world. Our GDP as well as our larger developmental process is set to accelerate over the coming decades.

India’s per capita consumption of many resources and commodities is still very low by global standards and there is room to grow. This will require high-quality research initiatives for sustainable, ecologically-friendly resource generation – and meaningful investment in technological innovation in the mining sector, said Kovind.

President Kovind said, reforms in the mining sector have been pushed by the government over the past four years. These reforms, including amendments to existing laws and establishing a more equitable system of royalties, are starting to show results.

Kovind said that social expectations from our geoscientific community have increased significantly in recent years. With their deep understanding of landform dynamics, geoscientists have an important role to play in enhancing agricultural productivity and farmer incomes; in providing a bedrock to the Smart Cities initiative; and in helping our fellow citizens fight the challenge of water scarcity, which has emerged as a pressing problem.

All this places a great responsibility on the shoulders of our talented and hardworking geoscientists. He expressed confidence that they would continue to deploy their knowledge and technical skills in the service of our country and our people, added Kovind.