In a significant development, the government is planning to make it mandatory for educational institutions like All India Institutes of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) and Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) to let private firms use their research equipment and facilities for a fee, reports Livemint.
Secretary at the Union Ministry of Science and Technology, Ashutosh Sharma said that the government is chalking out the finer details of the fee to be levied under the plan, which will provide the private sector, including the startups and micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs)access to research equipment, information facilities, infrastructure and resources for a charge.
Sharma also said that the fee will apply to all departments, including biology, chemistry and physics as per the level of research grant provided for the equipment bought under the government's fund for Improvement of Science and Technology Infrastructure (FIST) scheme.
The move is likely to generate funds for the maintenance of the equipment bought under FIST, also help address the paucity of trained manpower to operate them.
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