Prime Minister Narendra Modi conferred 'Millennium Plaques Honour' to Podile Apparao, Vice-Chancellor of University of Hyderabad on the occasion of 104th Indian Science Congress meet which was inaugurated on January 3, 2017, at Tirupati. He has been awarded for his significant role in developing science and technology. The honour has been instituted by Indian Science Congress Association or ISCA.
However, some of the students of the University of Hyderabad criticised ISCA for conferring prestigious 'Millennium Plaques Honour' to Podile Apparao. These students have been demanding the removal of VC and his arrest. The students also wrote to the President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee seeking justice to Rohit Vemula, a Dalit scholar who committed suicide as Podile Apparao cancelled his fellowship. They requested the President to take action against the Vice-Chancellor. Students demanded that VC must step down from his post and claimed that the academic activities of varsity had been disrupted due to his presence.
On the other hand, ISCA appreciated the role played by Apparao in the field of science and technology. He instigated a way on how science and technology should be developed in future. He also made significant contributions in the areas of Biotechnology and Plant Sciences.
Apparao, along with his group of members, exploited the potential of bacteria that is associated with the plant for better plant health. He used Chitin, a polymer to protect plants from various kinds of diseases. He developed a new approach to plant protection, i.e., a non-chemical approach.