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Scientist in the making

Scientist in the making
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Sekhar Babu Geddam who hails from a remote village in AP has been selected for Indian Forest Service. He talks about how determination and hard work...

Sekhar Babu Geddam who hails from a remote village in AP has been selected for Indian Forest Service. He talks about how determination and hard work can bring success

L Sailaja Kumar

Hard work seems to be his mantra, awake or asleep. Made of steely resolve and sensitivity towards humanity, his dream is to give food to every hungry stomach. Sekhar Babu Geddam is our ‘son of soil’ who made us proud by winning the Young Scientist award from Cotton Research and Development Association for best research work in cotton. Product of APSWREIS (Andhra Pradesh Social Welfare Residential Educational Institutions Society) Shekar says he is grateful to the institution for providing him the opportunity to complete his schooling and Intermediate from one of its school/college. He says he is deeply indebted to all those Government departments which have provided him with financial support in the form of scholarships/fellowships during the course of studies.
Currently pursuing PhD at IARI (Indian Agricultural Research Institute), New Delhi in the field of Genetics, Shekar is all set to join IFS training camp at Dehradun, by early September. Shekar shares his dream and future plans excitedly with Young Hans.

Why does genetic engineering interest you?

Genetic engineering is a new technology to transfer the genes across species/genera/organisms. It has got tremendous applications in the field of agriculture especially in the development of pest / disease resistant, abiotic stress tolerant and nutritional quality transgenic varieties across the crops. With the use of this new technology ways have been broadened to search for novel genes and to utilise them for crop improvement vis-a-vis food and nutritional security.

Why were you interested particularly in plant breeding?

This field aims at the crop improvement, development of new crop varieties / hybrids/ transgenic varieties which leads to higher food production and ultimately the food security. This is very important for a country like ours where hunger of millions goes unattended.
The farmers can be best helped by providing them with high yielding, pest/disease/abiotic stress resistant/tolerant varieties/hybrids/ transgenic varieties. This field exactly deals with the same. As India’s population is slated to increase in future, we need more food grains. So the increasing demand for food grains can be met and food security can be achieved by developing new high yielding varieties / hybrids/ transgenic crops.

This was the field which had brought Green Revolution to India in 1960’s and now making efforts to bring second green revolution /evergreen revolution in the country.

How were your growing years?

was born in a small village called Malakapalli in West Godavari . I completed my education in Government schools, colleges and Universities with financial assistance from Govternment of A.P and Govternment of India in the form of scholarships and fellowships. Hostel life had a tremendous impact in shaping my life. From my school days I dreamt of becoming a government officer and serve the people of this country with great commitment. My dream came true with my selection for coveted service (IFS).

How did you prepare for examinations?

believe in learning by understanding than in just reading. I make comprehensive study of the subjects. I prepare my own notes. It helps in quick revision of the syllabus.

What would you like to advise students?

would advise them to aim for big and work hard to achieve it. One should be clear about their career.
What is the field of your interest? Be clear about that, and start gearing yourself towards it. Effective time management is another most important attribute of a successful student.

What was the title for your research work and what have you found out?

It was “Studies on genetic male sterility system in diploid cotton”
Significant findings out of research work:

  • Developed few diploid cotton hybrids based on GMS system
  • Developed the SCAR (Sequence Characterized Amplified Regions) marker for genetic male sterility gene in diploid cotton which is first of its kind in diploid cotton in India.

Tell us about the Young Scientist Award you received.

I was conferred with Young Scientist Award by Cotton Research Development Association for my best research work conducted in my Master’s degree and presentation of best paper on “Molecular characterisation of genetic male sterile genotypes in diploid cotton (Gossypium arboretum L.) and development of male sterility specific SCAR marker” in the International Silver Jubilee Symposium held at CCSHAU, Hisar, Haryana in October, 2012.

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