India must be militarily strong so that it does not have to use strength but concentrate on development issues as development without security is vulnerable, Rajagopala Chidambaram, who was Atomic Energy Commission chief during the 1998 Pokhran tests, said on Thursday.
The senior scientist said India does not want doles from other countries, but equal partnership to collaborate at international level in the field of science and technology.
“National development and national security are two sides of the same coin. The greatest advantage of recognised strength is that you don’t have to use it. The greatest disadvantage of perceived weakness is that your enemy may get adventurist.
“So, we must be militarily strong so that we don’t have to use our strength and concentrate on development initiatives. Development without security is vulnerable,” the Principal Scientific Advisor to the government of India said delivering a lecture at the 104th Indian Science Congress here.
The 80-year-old Chidambaram was the Chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) when India conducted nuclear tests in Pokhran during Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s regime in 1998. He was also the chairman of International Atomic Energy Agency(IAEA).
He is also the chairman of National Knowledge Network, aimed at establishing a strong and robust Indian network which will be capable of providing secure and reliable connectivity.
He also emphasised on mobility of scientists and international collaborations, considering the complex nature of work.
Citing the 2010 report of the National Science Foundation a US government agency that supports fundamental research and education in science and engineering—he said nearly 25 per cent of co-authored papers are written by scientists from two countries, which was just about 10 per cent a decade ago.
Listing out India’s international collaborations, he said Indian scientists have been involved in major projects like in the discovery of gravitational waves (the LIGO project), in the International Thermo Nuclear Fusion (ITER) project, and the CERN, the world’s largest nuclear physical project.
Chidambaram further added that the UNESCO has designated Indian Tsunami Early Warning System to provide warning to neighbouring countries.
“India’s case is different today as it was decades ago. It has progressed technologically. India wants international partnerships as an equal partner basis. We don’t want doles from other countries,” he said.
Chidambaram also emphasised on doing fundamental research as it is key to innovations and developments in several rigid projects.