Microsoft cofounder and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation co-chair Bill Gates, in his blog, ‘My message in India: To fight climate change, improve global health’ on Gates Notes, said, “India as a whole gives me hope for the future.” He also added that India can tackle big challenges.
In his blog, Gates said that he believed that with the right innovations and delivery channels the world is capable of making progress on lots of big problems at once, even at a time when the world is facing multiple crises and usually he received the response like, "There isn't enough time or money to solve both at the same time." But India proved all the responses wrong. "There is no better proof than the remarkable progress that India has accomplished," Gates said in his blog.
India and its progress
Speaking about India and its progress, Gates said that despite being the most populous country and having to solve problems on a vast scale, the country has been unsuccessful in tackling big challenges. To give a better picture of the country’s progress, he gave examples of polio eradication, increased access to sanitation and financial services, low transmission of HIV, efforts to reduce poverty, and reducing infant mortality.
Innovation in India
Talking about India’s approach to innovation to ensure that the solutions reach those who need them, Microsoft's co-founder gave the example of the rotavirus vaccine, which prevents the virus that causes many fatal cases of diarrhea. As the vaccination was too expensive to reach every child, India decided to make the vaccine itself.
India worked with experts and funders (including the Gates Foundation) to build factories and create large-scale delivery channels to distribute the vaccines. By 2021, 83 per cent of 1-year-olds would have been inoculated against rotavirus, and these low-cost vaccines are now being used in other countries around the world, Gates said.
Indian Agricultural Research Institution
While talking about its funding at India's Indian Agricultural Research Institute, or IARI, in Pusa, Gates said, "The Gates Foundation joined hands with India's public sector and CGIAR institutions to support the work of researchers at IARI. They found a new solution: chickpea varieties that have more than 10 per cent higher yields and are more drought-resistant. One variety is already available to farmers, and others are currently being developed at the institute. As a result, India is better prepared to keep feeding its people and supporting its farmers even in a warming world. It's no exaggeration to say that India's agricultural future is growing right now in a field in Pusa."
"One of the reasons why challenges like climate, hunger, and health seem insurmountable is that we don't yet have all the tools to solve them. But I'm optimistic that one day soon we will, thanks in part to innovators like researchers at IARI," he added.
Bill Gates to come to India
In his blog, Gates also informed readers that he is coming to India next week to see the work being done by innovators and entrepreneurs. Some are working on breakthroughs that will help the world to mitigate the effects of climate change, like the work being done by Breakthrough Energy Fellow Vidyut Mohan and his team to turn waste into biofuels and fertilizers in remote agricultural communities and Gates is looking forward to seeing the progress being made by the team.
Gates also mentioned that India has limited resources, but by collaborating and trying novel approaches, the public, private, and philanthropic sectors can turn this into big pools of funding and knowledge that lead to progress.
Even Prime Minister Narendra Modi shared Gates' blog which was published in one of the media publications.
With inputs from ANI
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