Prime Minister Narendra Modi attended inaugural function of Grand Challenges Annual Meeting 2020 via video-conferencing on October 18. Microsoft founder Bill Gates also interacted with PM Modi during the meet. During the virtual meeting, PM Modi said, "This meeting was to be held physically in India but in changed circumstances, it is being held virtually. Such is the power of technology that a global pandemic did not keep us apart. The future will be shaped by societies that invest in science and innovation. But, this cannot be done in a short-sighted manner. One has to invest in science and innovation well in advance. That is when we can reap benefits at the right time." He further said, "In India, we have a strong and vibrant scientific community. We also have good scientific institutions. They have been India's greatest assets, especially during the last few months, while fighting COVID-19. From containment to capacity building, they have achieved wonders. Today, we are seeing a decline in the number of cases per day and the growth rate of cases. India has one of the highest recovery rates of 88%. This happened because India was one of the first countries to adopt a flexible lockdown. India is now at forefront of vaccine development for COVID-19."