In a meeting in April, India's minister of state for science and technology declared that the government wanted to put the country among the top five in the world "in terms of quality of research outcome”.
While such lofty ambitions may be laudable, in labs, scientists face a problem that is as mundane as it is devastating: delays in the disbursement of funds. Across the country, research grants and fellowships from agencies such as the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research are regularly delayed by many months. This leaves researchers struggling to keep their work going, and even just to make ends meet.
Some scientists shift their goals, or adapt their methods to survive. Some are lucky and find posts abroad, where processes run smoother. Either way, India's scientific progress suffers.
This week, for Common Ground, Nandita Jayaraj talks to scientists, administrators and government officials to understand the problem, and how it can crush scientists' hopes and dreams. You can read the story here.
All our previous stories are archived here. And if you would like to support more such in-depth and investigative journalism, do consider making a contribution to the Scroll Ground Reporting Fund here.