Breakthrough Science Society expresses grave concern about the cancellation of the Indian Science
Congress this year. Started in 1914, the Indian Science Congress has a long history of aiding the
development of science in India by providing a forum for exchanging scientific ideas, particularly for
young researchers. This is the first time the event has been cancelled, except for the two years (2021 and
2022) when the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted it.
According to newspaper reports, the reason behind this discontinuation was some difference between the
Indian Science Congress Association (ISCA) and its primary funder, the Department of Science &
Technology (DST). Whatever the differences, these could have been sorted out through mutual
discussions and the Indian Science Congress might have been held as usual.
We have noticed that an alternative “India International Science Festival” (IISF) organized by Vijnana
Bharati has been held for several years, and the Prime Minister has been present in the meetings. Is there
a design to discontinue the ISC and promote the IISF as the preeminent conference in India covering all
areas of science? Breakthrough Science Society would protest against such a move, if contemplated.
It is true that over time, the ISC has lost some of its sheen, and in some years, unscientific ideas have
been presented on this platform. Breakthrough Science Society protested repeatedly against it, and as far
as we know, the leadership of the ISCA has initiated a corrective action. This may also have displeased
those wanting to spread unscientific ideas through scientific forums.
The Breakthrough Science Society demands that the Indian Science Congress should be continued with
full government support. We also appeal to the leadership of the ISCA to make an earnest effort to
ensure that only papers with substantial contributions to science are presented so that important
scientists of India find value in attending the Indian Science Congress.