Mobile Science Exhibitions (MSE) are basically science exhibitions on buses based on various themes of science and technology. Mobile Science Exhibition is an attempt of NCSM to communicate science in rural areas. These buses target the population which is unable to visit any of the science centre of NCSM. First MSE was launched by Birla Industrial and Technological Museum (BITM), Kolkata which is a centre under NCSM in the year 1965. Since then MSE have been proved as an important tool in communicating science in rural areas. At present 23 MSE buses of different centres of NCSM spread across India, go around the nearby rural areas and communicate the messages of science.
Ministry of Culture, Govt of India, has taken a drive to launch 25 MSE buses 2019-20 in the Aspirational Districts. The Govt. of India aims to uplift the districts which have shown relatively lesser progress in achieving key social outcome through a mass movement to quickly and effectively transform some districts named as ‘Aspirational Districts’. To fulfil this objective, NCSM in collaboration with the Ministry of Culture and Dept. of Science & Technology (DST), Govt of India planned to launch 25 Mobile Science Exhibition Buses specifically for these aspirational districts with an aim to create scientific awareness among the rural children. The topics chosen for these exhibitions are:
On September 5, 2019, Shri Prahlad Singh Patel, Hon’ble Minister of State (I/C), Culture & Tourism, Govt. of India, flagged-off a Mobile Science Exhibition titled ‘Science Explorer’, in the Leh, Ladakh for the first time, in presence of Shri Arun Goel, Secretary, Culture, GOI and other dignitaries. Simultaneously, he also launched a nationwide programme of Mobile Science Exhibition buses for the aspirational districts all over India. Each specially designed bus contains 20 interactive exhibits and other demonstrations related to children and rural life. This includes Science Demonstration Lectures, Science Film Shows, Astronomy Awareness Programme through Telescope and Inflatable Dome Planetarium, AR/VR Shows on Science & Technology etc.
Till March 2020, 25 buses have covered 45 aspirational districts throughout the country conducting exhibitions in 1171 sites in which 16.62 lakhs students and general public attended the exhibitions. Among the special programmes, 8157 Science Demonstration Lectures were attended by 9.48 Lakh people, 8266 Science Film Shows were attended by 4.58 lakh people, 6462 Astronomy Awareness Programmes were attended by 4.45 lakh people and 1.34 lakh people participated in 2763 other programmes.