Mission Governing Board finalises implementation strategy and timelines of NQM
By PIB Delhi
The 1st meeting of the Mission Governing Board (MGB) of National Quantum Mission (NQM) under the chairmanship of Dr. Ajai Chowdhry discussed the implementation strategy and timelines of NQM as well as the formation of the Mission Coordination Cell (MCC). The MCC will be set up as a coordinating agency for the Mission and will work in coordination with the Mission Secretariat, DST.
The MCC will be set up in an institution identified by DST, based on merit and existing infrastructure, and will function under the overall supervision and guidance of the Mission Technology Research Council (MTRC).
Highlighting the genesis of quantum technology in India Dr. Ajai Chowdhry, Chairman of MGB and Founder of HCL Technologies said that NQM will leapfrog in this area and that manpower and startups are two major things that need to be focused on.
Principal Scientific Advisor to the Government of India Prof A K Sood, said that the creation of human resources is critical and suggested empowering the Hubs to build human capacity.
“The focus should be on developing its own system rather than importing systems not developed here. Industry has to play a key role in technology sharing as well as in fund sharing,” said Dr. V K Saraswat, Member Niti Aayog.
Prof Abhay Karandikar, Secretary DST, informed that NQM is expected to set four mission hubs in Quantum Computing, Quantum Communication, Quantum Sensing & Metrology, and Quantum Materials & Devices, which will essentially be consortia of academia, R&D labs, and industry.
A detailed plan of implementation was presented by Dr. Akhilesh Gupta, Senior Advisor DST, and Secretary SERB along with Dr. Ekta Kapoor, Head of FFT Division. The committee deliberated at length and finalised the implementation strategy and timelines. The MGB also approved a “Call for Pre-proposals” for going ahead with inviting proposals for setting up four technology hubs under NQM in consortia format.
Dr. Samir K Kamat, Secretary DD R&D, and Chairman DRDO, Dr. Rajat Moona, Director IIT Gandhinagar, Shri Vishvajit Sahay AS&FA, representatives from DOS, DRDo, DAE, Meity, DOT, Dept of Expenditure along with several DST officials participated in the meeting.
The Union Cabinet approved the National Quantum Mission (NQM) on 19th April 2023 being implemented by DST with a total outlay of Rs.6003.65 Crore for a period of eight years. The Mission aims to seed, nurture, and scale up scientific and industrial R&D and create a vibrant & innovative ecosystem in Quantum Technology (QT). This will accelerate QT-led economic growth, nurture the ecosystem in the country, and make India one of the leading nations in the development of Quantum Technologies & Applications (QTA).