Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan has objected to the decision of the union govt to rename the second campus of Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology (RGCB) in Kerala after Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) ideologue Madhav Sadashiv Golwalkar. The Chief Minister wrote to Dr. Harsh Vardhan expressing displeasure over the naming of the RGCB after the RSS ideologue. He said that it was a premier institution above political divides. Vijayan pointed out that the institution was being run by the state government and was handed over to the central government for its development to achieve international standards in research and development.
Union Govt decision to name #RGCB‘s second campus after #RSS ideologue #Golwalkar kicks up a political debate. @CMOKerala @vijayanpinarayi writes to @drharshvardhan. Name it after an eminent Indian scientist of international repute, says Pinarayi @NewIndianXpress @xpresskerala pic.twitter.com/9VU4QmRa3z— anil s anilan (@anilsanilan) December 5, 2020
Although Vijayan objected to naming the institution after Golwalkar, he didn’t object to change of the name. The Kerala Chief Minister requested the Union Minister to consider his proposal favourably and name the institution after an eminent scientist. He said that this could keep up the reputation of the institution and avoid controversies in public domain.
Union Minister for Science and Technology Dr. Harsh Vardhan had informed yesterday that the campus that will be a major knowledge centre and a hub for mid and high-level innovation will be renamed as ‘Shri Guruji Madhav Sadashiv Golwalkar National Centre for Complex Disease in Cancer and Viral Infection’. Dr. Harsh Vardhan was addressing a curtain-raiser session of the sixth edition of Indian International Science Festival (IISF) scheduled for December 22-25 which was held online.
He said that the campus, planned to be developed in three phases, will strive to begin a state-of-the-art “Advanced Centre for Molecular and Cellular Therapeutics” and will offer cutting-edge technologies, therapies, clinical trials for cancer vaccines and immunotherapeutics. The campus will have facilities for therapies such as stem cell replacement, Gene therapy, molecular tumour, targeting and imaging. The Union Minister said that the second campus will also offer to investors, entrepreneurs, biotech and biopharma companies a state-of-the-art research facility incorporating a unique “test and prove” platform. Besides offering incubation facilities for startups, the campus will provide all pre-clinical, analytical, toxicological and biological assays to validate biotech or biological products.