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world disability day special


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RNI No. DELENG/2016/71561

Good News Weekly for Rising India



The Bravehearts

These brave-heart disabled personify the saying that “disability is a state of mind”


Vol-1 | Issue - 51 | December 04 - 10, 2017 | Price ` 5/-

smart village

Lakhpathi Kisan

Tribal women are now achieving the impossible dream of Smart Village


mridula sinha

book launch

“I am like a bee, I pick pollen from place to place, and make honey...”

Defeating Disability:

Daring to Live! “Disability is just a state of mind” – is easier said than done. It is now imperative to introspect whether we as a society have evolved to respect and accept those with disabilities Quick Glance

mihir paul


n our society, sometimes, disabled persons are seen as ‘abnormal’. But if we all introspect and see our lives full of stresses of the modern age, we are all abnormal in some ways. ‘Equality’ and ‘Justice for All’ are big words but in reality, should form the basic pillars of any society. Disabled people amongst all should be allowed to live their lives with equal dignity and liberty. And this is the trend that we have observed in the growth of our collective civilization. From government initiatives to differently abled heroes, it is good to appreciate the trajectory of acceptance of the same in our country and around the world. International Day of Persons with Disabilities is a day dedicated towards creating awareness regarding challenges faced by disabled persons in their everyday lives. Every year, it is observed on 3rd December. This day aims to mobilise people to extend support to disabled people and thus create enabling environment around them. This year, the theme is “Sustainable Development: The Promise of Technology.” This theme emphasizes upon the technological advancements that can reduce the barriers for disabled people. Disability can be negated by the use of technology to a great extent. Technology can become the eyes and ears of disabled people and thus improve their

‘Justice for all’ are big words, but should be the basic of social justice This year’s theme for Diasbility Day is technological empowerment Disability is not a physical problem but is also mental

This year the theme of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities is ‘Sustainable Development: Promise of Technology’

lives significantly. The year 1981 was announced as the “International Year of Disabled Persons” by the United Nations General Assembly in the year 1976. It was planned to emphasise the rehabilitation, prevention, promotion and equalization of opportunities for the persons with disabilities at the international, regional and national levels. The vital purpose of this day’s celebration is to improve the understandings of the people worldwide towards the people with disability issues as well as get together to support them to improve their selfesteem, well-being and rights in the society. It also looks to involve all the persons with disabilities in the society in each facet of life such as the political, economic, social and cultural. That’s why it is celebrated by the title of “International Day of Disabled Persons”. Every year celebration of the international day of disabled persons focuses on the different issues of the disabled persons all across the world.

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December 04 - 10, 2017

What is a disability Disability in simpler terms can be defined as a physical or mental condition that impairs the movements, senses or activities of a person. It is not just a health problem. Rather, it is a complex phenomenon reflecting the interaction between the human body and its surrounding society. The term disability does not only include physical or mental disabilities, but also encompasses diseases such as Down’s syndrome, Multiple sclerosis, Cerebral Palsy, etc. As per World Health Organization (WHO), “There are over 1 billion people in this world with some form of disability.” In India alone, there are 26, 810, 557 disabled persons (2.21 percent of Indian population) with about 14.9 million men and 11.8 million women. About 70 percent of these disabled people live in rural areas. According to Census of India 2011, hearing, sight or mobility

Disability is not just a health problem, rather, it is a complex phenomenon reflecting interaction between the body and the surrounding society

Types of Disabilities • Vision Defects : Defects in seeing/sight leading to partial or total blindness • Hearing Defects : Difficulty in Hearing • Speech Defects : Difficulty in speaking • Locomotor Defects : Difficulty in moving • Mental Retardation & Mental Illness • Learning Disabilities : Difficulty in learning. For eg: Dyslexia (difficulty in reading or interpreting words or letters), • Dysgraphia (inability to write consistently), Dyscalculia (inability to make arithmetic calculations) • Multiple Disabilities : Disability affecting multiple organs of body

world disability day special

related disabilities are the commonest amongst the disabled people. It is true that adequate provisioning of infrastructural facilities is vital for the disabled people. But the biggest challenge faced by the disabled is the negative attitude of society towards the disabled people. Some people sympathize with them. Some disregard them. Some humour them. But they forget that disabled human beings also have feelings. They, who have been rejected by society in many ways; let us stop making fun of them and start acting responsibly. Let it be fashionable to help the disabled. Support them rather than humouring them. India’s Divyangjan initiatives India is the largest democratic country in the world and is on its way to becoming a key player in the global scenario. It is our responsibility to ensure that this developmental cycle touches all the citizens of this country – the able and, especially, the disabled, who are often referred to as the invisible minority. But before we

December 04 - 10, 2017

Cover Story


Themes throughout the years The courage and determination of the ‘so-called’ disabled people have been celebrated under different themes over the years

1998: The theme of the year 1998 was the “Arts, Culture and Independent Living”. 1999: The theme of the year 1999 was the “Accessibility for all for the new Millennium”. 2000: The theme of the year 2000 was the “Making information technologies work for all”. 2001: The theme of the year 2001 was the “Full participation and equality: The call for new approaches to assess progress and evaluate outcome”. 2002: The theme of the year 2002 was the “Independent Living and Sustainable Livelihoods”. 2003: The theme of the year 2003 was the “A Voice of our Own”. 2004: The theme of the year 2004 was the “Nothing about Us, Without Us”.

2005: The theme of the year 2005 was the “Rights of Persons with Disabilities: Action in Development”. 2006: The theme of the year 2006 was “E-Accessibility”. 2007: The theme of the year 2007 was the “Decent Work for Persons

with Disabilities”.

India implemented the Convention of Rights of

Persons with Disability Act in 2008, enhanced by the NCPEDP for employment stamp them as minority, let us consider the recent census reports. According to the 2001 census, the government figure for the physically handicapped was 2.1% of the entire population. A reserved guess would place that figure between seven to ten crores. The National Policy identifies the Persons With Disabilities (PWD) as necessary and valuable assets of this country and the basic goal is to create an atmosphere for them in conjunction with the basic constitutional rights i.e. equality, freedom, justice and dignity. This will also guarantee equal opportunities for the PWD thereby ensuring the protection of their rights and enabling their full participation in the society. Primary objectives of the National Policy: 1. Physical rehabilitation which includes medical treatment, counseling, providing aids and appliances. 2. Educational Rehabilitation which offers vocational and on-hand training. 3. Economic Rehabilitation ensuring

a better and dignified life in society. India implemented the CRPD (Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities) Act in 2008 which was enhanced by the National Center for Promotion of Employment of Disabled People (NCPEDP) and Disabled Rights Group (DRG). The Government has envisaged a number of schemes to promote the standard of life of the PWD in general. Some of these schemes are: 1. Assistance to Disabled Persons for Purchase/Fitting of Aids/ Appliances (ADIP) involving physical rehabilitation of the PWD by providing them with aids and appliances 2. Deendayal Disabled Rehabilitation Scheme (DDRS) a multi-faceted scheme that addressing all the possible aspects of rehabilitation. 3. Scheme for Implementation of Persons with Disabilities Act aimed at providing funds for projects involving construction of public buildings, support to regional institutions that provide service to the PWD, and creating awareness.

2008: The theme of the year 2008 was the “Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities: Dignity and justice for all of us”. 2009: The theme of the year 2009 was the “Making the MDGs Inclusive: Empowerment of persons with disabilities and their communities around the world”. 2010: The theme of the year 2010 was the “Keeping the promise: Mainstreaming disability in the Millennium Development Goals towards 2015 and beyond”. 2011: The theme of the year 2011 was the “Together for a better world for all: Including persons with disabilities in development”.

2012: The theme of the year 2012 was the “Removing barriers to create an inclusive and accessible society for all”. 2013: The theme of the year 2013 was “Break Barriers, Open Doors: for an inclusive society and development for all”. 2014: The theme of the year 2014 was “Sustainable Development: The Promise of Technology”. 2015: The theme of the year 2015 was “Inclusion matters: access and empowerment for people of all abilities” 2016: The theme of the year 2016 was “Achieving 17 Goals for the future we wan” 2017: The theme of the year 2017 is “Transformation towards sustainable and resilient society for all”

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world disability day special

Rights Of The Differently Abled Citizens Of India India has for long declared her intent to uphold the rights and dignity of the disabled 1. The Constitution secures to the citizens including the disabled, a right of justice, liberty of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship, equality of status and of opportunity and for the promotion of fraternity. 2. Article 15(1) enjoins on the Government not to discriminate against any citizen of India (including disabled) on the ground of religion, race, caste, sex or place of birth. 3. Article 15 (2) States that no citizen (including the disabled) shall be subjected to any disability, liability, restriction or condition on any of the above grounds in the matter of their access to shops, public restaurants, hotels and places of public entertainment, or in the use of wells, tanks, bathing ghats, roads and places of public resort maintained wholly or partly out of government funds or dedicated to the use of the general public. Women and children and those belonging to any socially and educationally backward classes or the Scheduled Castes & Tribes can be given the benefit of special laws or special provisions made by the State. 4. There shall be equality of opportunity for all citizens (including the disabled) in matters relating to employment or appointment to any office under the State. 5. No person including the disabled irrespective of his belonging can be treated as an untouchable. It would be an offence punishable in accordance with law as provided by Article 17 of the Constitution. 6. Every person including the disabled has his life and liberty guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution. 7. There can be no traffic in human beings (including the disabled), and beggar and other forms of forced labour is prohibited and the

How You Can Support Divyangjans • Give the disabled space to use public transport system. Allow them to sit on reserved seats. • Allow them to use their parking space. • When you see a blind person

crossing a road, help him/her if needed. • Do not create any hassles in schooling of disabled children. They have an equal right to study in • Regular schools amongst other kids their own age. • Stop discriminating based on their disability. • Do not avoid giving jobs to disabled people due to any social taboos. • Create an enabling working environment for the disabled. • Do not make fun or laugh at disabled. • Help them build up their self-esteem, become independent and lead normal lives.

same is made punishable in accordance with law (Article 23). 8. Article 24 prohibits employment of children (including the disabled) below the age of 14 years to work in any factory or mine or to be engaged in any other hazardous employment. Even a private contractor acting for the Government cannot engage children below 14 years of age in such employment. 9. Article 25 guarantees to every citizen (including the disabled) the right to freedom of religion. Every disabled person (like the nondisabled) has the freedom of conscience to practice and propagate his religion subject to proper order, morality and health. 10. No disabled person can be compelled to pay any taxes for the promotion and maintenance of any particular religion or religious group. 11. No Disabled person will be deprived of the right to the language, script or culture which he has or to which he belongs. 12. Every disabled person can move the Supreme Court of India to enforce his fundamental rights and the rights to move the Supreme Court is itself guaranteed by Article 32. 13. No disabled person owning property (like the non-disabled) can be deprived of his property except by authority of law, though right to property is not a fundamental right. Any unauthorized deprivation of property can be challenged by suit and for relief by way of damages. 14. Every disabled person (like the non-disabled) on attainment of 18 years of age becomes eligible for inclusion of his name in the general electoral roll for the territorial constituency to which he belongs.

The National Award For Divyangjan Every year, since the year 1992, on the occasion of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities i.e. 3rd December, the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment confers National Awards on Individual, Institutions, Organisation, State/ District etc for their outstanding achievements and work done towards empowerment of Persons with Disabilities. National Awards for the Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities are given under 14 categories 2017. On the International Day of Persons with Disabilities – December 3rd , the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (Divyangjan), Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, will be presenting National Awards to individuals, institutions,

organizations, state/district, etc for their outstanding achievements and work done towards empowerment of Persons with Disabilities. People with different ability will be awarded for their different roles and best performance even after having different disabilities. Shri Ram Nath Kovind, President of India, will confer the “National Award for Divyangjan, 2017” at a function to be organized by the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (Divyangjan) under the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment on the International Day of Persons with Disabilities on 3rd December, 2017 in Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi. Within the stipulated date, out of the above 14 categories, 984 applications were received from 13 categories.

December 04 - 10, 2017

The Bravehearts


winning disability

The Bravehearts These brave-heart Indians with disabilities personify the saying that “disability is a state of mind”. Here we feature those heroes who have not only inspired millions around the world but have also shown how their indomitable will and courage helped them overcome their disabilities. From performing in international arenas to bagging gold medals in sports events, there is nothing these champions cannot do! They have made us so proud. for Ramanand Sagar’s ‘Ramayan’ TV-series and various ‘super-hits’ for Bollywood, he launched several private albums which were praised by many. He died at the age of 71 from multiple organ failure.

Akbar Khan Music Maestro

Born visually impaired in a poor family in Rajasthan, Khan saw a tough childhood. But with immense support from his elder brother, who also happened to be visually impaired since birth, Khan managed to continue his studies with excellent results. Having a great interest in music, Khan was invited to various platforms as a performer as well as a judge. His biggest achievements include getting a National Award for The Welfare of Persons with Disabilities in 1989. Khan has always believed in himself and says that visual impairment is a blessing and not a curse for him.

Sudha Chandran Prolific Actress

Sai Prasad Vishwanathan India’s first disabled sky-diver

When he was a child, Vishwanathan lost sensation in the lower half of his body. He believes that his disability is an “asset” that gave him many skills. He is India’s first disabled skydiver and his name appears in the Limca Book of Records for being the first Indian with disability to skydive from 14,000 ft. He also co-founded Sahasra, an organization that provides scholarships to financially disadvantaged students to pursue higher studies. In 2013, he became the first Indian with a disability to travel to Antarctica, cementing his place in this compilation of inspiring individuals.

Ravindra Jain

The musical prodigy Born visually impaired, Jain started singing at a very young age, yet joined the Indian music industry becoming one of the most notable music directors of the 1970s. He was so dedicated towards his work that when, during one of the recording sessions, his father passed away, but he still did not leave the recording room until the very end. Apart from composing bhajans

This Indian actress and classical dancer needs no introduction. Born in Kerala, this 50-year-old artist met with an accident when she was just 16. Doctors missed a small wound in her ankle and plastered it, which later got infected and there was no alternative left but to amputate her leg. She overcame her disability by getting a prosthetic “Jaipur Foot” and became one of the most popular and acclaimed classical dancers of the country. Having performed Bharatnatyam internationally, Chandran has also been a known figure in the Indian television and film industry. Having received many awards for her amazing talent, Chandran is an inspiration to many! Chandran started her career with a Telugu film ‘Mayuri’, which was based on her own life. The film was later dubbed in Tamil and Malayalam. It was also remade in Hindi as Naache Mayuri, where Chandran again played herself and co-starred with Shekhar Suman, Aruna Irani and Dina Pathak. She was awarded the 1986 Special Jury Award at the National Film Awards for her performance in Mayuri.

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world disability day special

captain the team in 2010. Every team consists of 4 B1 players (co m pl etely blind), 3 B2 players (partially blind) and 4 B3 players (partially sighted). Naik is among the B2 players. He was the man of the tournament in the 2006 World Cup. He scored 134 runs in 58 balls against England in the finals, to help the team win the inaugural T20 world cup in 2012. He also led the team to victory in the 2014 Cricket World Cup held in South Africa. In 2017, he became the first Blind cricketer to be awarded the Padma Shri.

Girish Sharma Badminton Champ

Subhreet Kaur Ghumman One-Legged Dancer

He lost a leg in a train accident when he was a kid. But, this setback in life did not stop him from becoming a badminton champion. He has just one leg which is so strong that he not only plays the game effortlessly but also easily covers the entire court. Ever since he was a kid, he would indulge in outdoor activities with other kids without letting his disability come in the way. Aren’t we super proud of this talented man?

After a road accident in 2009, Subhreet Kaur Ghumman lost her leg as a result of the hospital’s blunder. Music and dance having always been a great motivation for Ghumman, she was determined to pursue her dream of being a dancer. After months of exercise and pain, she was able to start dancing on just one leg. She began performing on various stages and dance shows ultimately participating in India’s Got Talent (Season 5) and emerged as the Runner Up. It is here that she earned the name “One-Legged Dancer.” She now hopes to start a dance school with a focus on amputees just like herself.

Major DP Singh India’s Blade Runner

The journey to earning the epithet ‘India’s Blade Runner’ wasn’t an easy one for Major DP Singh. On July 15, 1999, Major DP Singh was heavily injured in Kargil during Operation Vijay. The surgeons at the army hospital declared him dead. Luckily, they were able to revive him and amputating his right leg helped them save his life. He had to endure 10 painful years of recuperation but refused to give up so he shifted his love for rally sports and took up running instead. In 2009, he signed up for his first marathon and took up training with his prosthetic leg. Today, he has successfully run 12 marathons and even holds the Limca record for being the first Indian to run a half marathon with the blade – a feat that has earned him the epithet of blade runner.

Shekar Naik Ace Cricketer

Naik is a perfect example of someone who has converted a disability into an opportunity. With his strong will power and dedication, he became a T20 Blind Cricket World Champion and has 32 centuries to his name. After a lot of financial and social troubles, Naik has emerged as a winner and we salute his spirit. In 2000, he was drafted into the Karnataka team after scoring 136 runs in 46 balls. He was called up into the India national blind cricket team in 2002 and went on to

Preethi Srinivasan Cricket Prodigy

Preethi Srinivasan was the captain of the under-19 Tamil Nadu women’s cricket team. Even after the unfortunate swimming accident that left her paralysed below the neck, she continues to inspire other lives through her organisation Soulfree. She has started to provide hope to women with severe disabilities and assists them in fulfilling their highest human potential by providing a basic quality of life.

H. Boniface Prabhu Padmashri recipient

Prabhu’s life changed at the age of four when a botched lumbar puncture made him a quadriplegic for the rest of his life. But he never let this disability change his goals of life and continued his education in a regular school. His immense hard work and dedication have made him a notable figure and a leading quadriplegic wheelchair tennis

The Bravehearts

December 04 - 10, 2017 player. He was a medal winner at the 1998 World Championships and was also awarded the Padma Shri by Government of India in 2014. It seems like disability is not a word in his dictionary.


INDIA’S CHAMPION PARALYMPIANS These are the athletes that won medals for India at the Rio Paralympics 2016

Mariyappan Thangavelu Paralympian Champion

Rajinder Singh Rahelu India’s special powerlifter

Rajinder Singh Rahelu contracted polio when he was eight months old. Since then, he has not been able to walk. But he did not let his disability come in between him and his dreams. Rahelu decided to discontinue his studies after completing high school. In 1996, a little encouragement from his powerlifter friend motivated Rahelu to pursue a career in this sport. He started by lifting a weight of 75 kgs but rigorous training and motivation made him strong enough to lift a weight of 115 kgs within six months. He continued to practice, and today, he has created history after winning a silver medal in powerlifting at the Commonwealth Games 2014.

Nidhi Goyal

India’s first blind stand-up comedian Nidhi grew up wanting to be a portrait artist, but lost her eyesight after being diagnosed with a degenerative eye disease at the age of 15. The eye disease hurt her dreams but couldn’t touch her spirit. As she started accepting her disability, she got a different perspective on life, which came in handy when she decided to take up stand-up comedy a few years later.

Mariyappan Thangavelu is a Paralympics high jumper. He represented India in the 2016 Summer Paralympic games held in Rio de Janeiro in the men’s high jump T-42 category, winning the gold medal in the finals. He is India’s first Paralympian gold medallist since 2004. Tamil film director Aishwarya Dhanush is making a film about his life and achievements, titled ‘Mariyappan’. On January 25, 2017, Government of India announced “Padma Shri” award for his contribution towards sports and in the same year he was also awarded Arjuna Award.

Devendra Jhajharia Star Javelin Thrower

Devendra Jhajharia is a Paralympics javelin thrower competing in F46 events. The first Indian Paralympian to win two gold medals at the Paralympics, he won his first gold in the javelin throw at the 2004 Summer Paralympics in Athens, becoming only the second gold medalist at the Paralympics for his country. At the 2016 Summer Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro, he won a second gold medal in the same event, bettering his previous record. Devendra is currently being supported by the GoSports Foundation through the Para Champions Programme.

Deepa Malik

First Indian woman to win a Paralympics medal

Akshansh Gupta

Ph.D. with Cerebral Palsy Akshansh Gupta was born with cerebral palsy and he is 95 per cent disabled. His lower limbs are dysfunctional and he can neither feed himself, nor pull his wheelchair. His slurred speech may make every day communication difficult, but that hasn’t stopped him from pursuing his dreams, and he now has a Ph.D. from JNU.

She is the first Indian woman to win a medal in Paralympic Games and won a Silver medal at the 2016 Summer Paralympics in the shot put. She has won accolades for her participation in various adventure sports. She is associated with Himalayan Motorsports Association (H.M.A.) and Federation of Motor Sports Clubs of India(F.M.S.C.I.). She has undertaken an 8-day, 1700-km drive in sub-zero temperatures which included a climb to 18000 feet. It was – Raid De Himalaya. This journey covers many difficult paths including the remote Himalayas, Leh, Shimla and Jammu.

Varun Bhati High Jumper

Varun Singh Bhati is a Para high jumper. Having afflicted by Poliomyelitis at young age, he joined sports during school days. He had won several medals in international events including bronze at 2016 Summer Paralympic Games and 2017 World Para Athletics Championships.

08 Tribute

December 04 - 10, 2017

world disability day special

Stephen Hawking theoretical cosmologist

was there time?

The motor neuron disorder ALS has confined Hawking to a wheelchair, but it hasn’t stopped him from working on the nature of the universe

Urooj Fatima


id time ever exist in reality? That’s a stupid question to ask, you would say, and surreptitiously catch a glance of your watch, where “time” is etched in numbers... seconds, minutes, hours... and irritated why I am holding you back from walking out to catch the 10.15 am Yellow Line metro. Time is all on your wrist, and in the metro clocks, isn’t it? Stephen Hawking, considered the Einstein protegee of this generation, says time did not exist before the Big Bang, and thus, the study of the ‘beginning of the universe’ is meaningless. Hawking was born on January 8, 1942, in Oxford, England. He attended University College, Oxford, where he studied physics, despite his father’s urging to focus on medicine. Hawking went on to Cambridge to research cosmology, the study of the universe

as a whole. After gaining his Ph.D, he became first a Research Fellow and later on a Professorial Fellow at Gonville and Caius College. After leaving the Institute of Astronomy in 1973, Stephen came to the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics in 1979, and held the post of Lucasian Professor of Mathematics from 1979 until 2009. During his first year of Ph.D, Hawking started to show abnormal physical symptoms; he would suddenly trip and fall or his speech slurred. He suppressed these symptoms but when his father noticed them, he was sent for a series of tests. It was diagnosed that he was in the early stages of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, which meant that the part of his nervous system that was responsible for muscle control was shutting down — a life threatening condition. He was not expected to live more than two years. Completing his doctorate did

not appear likely. Yet, Hawking defied the odds, not only attaining his Ph.D. but also forging new roads into the understanding of the universe in the decades since. As the disease spread, Hawking became less mobile and began using a wheelchair. Talking grew more challenging and, in 1985, an emergency tracheotomy caused his total loss of speech. A speech-generating device constructed at Cambridge, combined with a software programme, serves as his electronic voice today, allowing Hawking to select his words by moving the muscles in his cheek. He met his first wife, Jane Wilde, a friend of his sister, shortly before the diagnosis of his illness. The couple got married in 1965. They had three children together: Robert, Lucy and Timothy. Hawking became a member of the Institute of Astronomy in Cambridge in 1968 and the discoveries of cosmologist,

Quick Glance Hawking has twelve honorary degrees in theoretical physics ‘A Brief History of Time’ sold more than 10 million copies in 20 years. He was 21 years old pursuing Ph.D. when he was nearly paralysed

Roger Penrose, on black hole really fascinated him as he himself was working on the phenomena that began the Universe. With James Bardeen and Brandon Carter, Stephen Hawking discovered the four laws of black hole mechanics. These laws are physical properties that black holes are believed to satisfy and are analogous to the laws of thermodynamics. In January 1971, his essay titled “Black Holes” won the prestigious Gravity Research Foundation Award.

December 04 - 10, 2017 Over the course of his career, Hawking studied the basic laws governing the universe. He proposed that since the universe boasts a beginning — the Big Bang — it likely will have an ending. Working with fellow cosmologist Roger Penrose, he demonstrated that Albert Einstein’s Theory of General Relativity suggests that space and time began at the birth of the universe and ends within black holes, which implies that Einstein’s theory and quantum theory must be united. Hawking’s first major work was published with Roger Penrose, a physicist very famous in his own right, and George Ellis, during the period 1968-1970. They demonstrated that every solution to the equations of general relativity guarantees the existence of a singular boundary for space and time in the past. This is now known as the “singularity theorem,” and is a tremendously important finding. Later, working by himself, in 1974, he begun to formulate ideas the quantum evaporation of exploding black holes, the now famous “Hawking radiation.” These are all tremendously important scientific works. In 1984 Stephen worked with James Hartle, a professor at the University of California at Santa Barbara. Using an elegant vacuum fluctuation model, they were able to provide a mathematical rationalise for the entire universe popping into existence at the beginning of time. This is also called the “universe as a wave function.” Hawking visited Moscow in 1973 and his discussions with Yakov Borisovich Zel’dovich and Alexei Starobinsky helped him to come up with ‘Hawking radiation’. In the following year, he became a Fellow of the Royal Society. In 2014, Hawking revised his theory, even writing that “there are no black holes” — at least, in the way that cosmologists traditionally understand them. His theory removed the existence of an “event horizon,” the point where nothing can escape. Instead, he proposed that there would be an “apparent horizon” that would alter according to quantum changes within the black hole. But the theory remains controversial Hawking also proposed that the universe itself has no boundary, much like the Earth. Although the planet is finite, one can travel around it (and through the universe) infinitely, never encountering a wall that would be described as the “end.” He started to get more recognition for his discoveries through his print and TV interviews and in 1975 he was awarded the Eddington Medal and the Pius XI Gold Medal, followed by the Dannie Heineman Prize, the Maxwell Prize, etc. He published a model, the ‘HartleHawking state’ with Jim Hartle, which stated that before the Big Bang, time did

not exist and the concept of the beginning of the universe is meaningless. In 1985, he lost his voice after a tracheotomy. As a result of this, he required 24-hour care. His condition caught the attention of a Californian computer programmer, who invented a speaking program that could be directed by head or eye movement. Hawking is a popular writer. His first book, “A Brief History of Time” (10th anniversary edition: Bantam, 1998) was first published in 1988 and became an international best seller. In it, Hawking aimed to communicate questions about the birth and death of the universe to the layperson. Since then, Hawking has gone on to write other nonfiction books aimed at nonscientists. These include “A Briefer History of Time,” “The Universe in a Nutshell,” “The Grand Design” and “On the Shoulders of Giants.” He and his daughter, Lucy Hawking, have also created a fictional series of books for middle school children on the creation of the universe, including “George and the Big Bang” (Simon & Schuster, 2012). Hawking has made several television appearances, including a playing hologram of himself on “Star Trek: The Next Generation” and a cameo on the television show “Big Bang Theory.” PBS presented an educational miniseries

titled “Stephen Hawking’s Universe”, which probes the theories of the cosmologist. In 2014, a movie based on Hawking’s life was released. Called “The Theory of Everything”, the film drew praise from Hawking, who said it made him reflect on his own life. “Although I’m severely disabled, I have been successful in my scientific work,” Hawking wrote on Facebook in November 2014. “I travel widely and have been to Antarctica and Easter Island, down in a submarine and up on a zero-gravity flight. One day, I hope to go into space.” Professor Hawking has twelve honorary degrees. In 1974, a few weeks after the announcement of the Hawking radiation, Stephen Hawking became one of the youngest persons to be elected to the Royal Society of London. In 1982 he was made Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) by the Queen. In 1985, he was given the Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society (RAS), the highest award given by the RAS. In 1987, he was awarded the Paul

Hawking’s work has shed light on the origins of the cosmos, nature of time and the ultimate fate of the universe. His books for a general audience have provided an appreciation of physics to millions



Dirac Medal by the Institute of Physics for his outstanding contributions to theoretical physics. In 1988, Hawking and Penrose were given the Wolf Prize, a prestigious international award granted in Israel. In a 2002 poll conducted by BBC in the United Kingdom to determine whom the public considered as the greatest British people in history, Stephen Hawking ranked 25. In 2006, he was awarded the Copley Medal from the Royal Society. In 2009, US President Barack Obama presented him the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian award of the United States. In 2013, Stephen Hawking was awarded the Russian Special Fundamental Physics Prize, which has been dubbed by the media as the ‘XXI Century Nobel’. Stephen W. Hawking Science Museum in San Salvador, El Salvador, the Stephen Hawking Building in Cambridge and the Stephen Hawking Centre at Perimeter Institute in Canada—are all named after him. He participated in zero-gravity flight in a ‘ Vomit Comet’, courtesy of Zero Gravity Corporation, during which he experienced weightlessness eight times in 2007. Hawking believes that human life is at risk and said that “a sudden nuclear war, a genetically engineered virus or other dangers we have not yet thought of” can wipe us off the earth. Hawking quotes Hawking’s quotes range from notable to poetic to controversial. “Even if there is only one possible unified theory, it is just a set of rules and equations. What is it that breathes fire into the equations and makes a universe for them to describe? The usual approach of science of constructing a mathematical model cannot answer the questions of why there should be a universe for the model to describe. Why does the universe go to all the bother of existing? “ “All of my life, I have been fascinated by the big questions that face us, and have tried to find scientific answers to them. If, like me, you have looked at the stars, and tried to make sense of what you see, you too have started to wonder what makes the universe exist.” “If aliens visit us, the outcome would be much as when Columbus landed in America, which didn’t turn out well for the Native Americans. We only have to look at ourselves to see how intelligent life might develop into something we wouldn’t want to meet.” And there are many more…

10 Presidency

December 04 - 10, 2017

presidency virtual access

200 Year-Old Presidency History Comes Alive Joining the illustrious league of universities across the world, Presidency University enabled a virtual access to the institution first started by the British in India Prasanta Paul


ix-year-old Presidency University which is celebrating its 200th anniversary as Asia’s first undergraduate college has joined the illustrious league of universities across the world to enable a virtual access to the institution, courtesy a tieup with Google Arts & Culture. The initiative which has been launched a couple of months back gives an e-traveller access to the rich cultural heritage of Presidency. If someone peeps into it, the traveller will surely be awed with such names as Swami Vivekananda, Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, scientist Satyendranath Bose, Bankim Chandra Chatterjee( who penned Bande Mataram), eminent statistician Prasanta Chandra Mahalanobis, film maestro Satyajit Ray et all. A galaxy of giants that strode various fields in the pre and postIndependent India, will be greeting the traveller once he or she logs into it. The stress of the e-museum is on the freedom movement though. Titled “Towards Swaraj –Presidency during the Indian Freedom Struggle”, the virtual exhibition has put on display a large number of rare documents that are certain to fascinate those researching into the country’s chequered past. “ The exhibition has been dedicated to Presidency and history associated with the institution during the freedom movement. The exhibition has been divided into segments and the role this illustrious college has played in shaping the freedom struggle and the magnificent contribution that it has made,” Presidency University vicechancellor Anuradha Lohia said. The exhibition features personalities, documents, manuscripts and photographs that have immense historical value. The rare documents which the Presidency authorities have taken pains to search and list for an exhibition have either been scanned or photographed for the virtual museum. To name just a few such rare items – Action Day letter sent by statistician and principal P C

Mahalanobis to director of public instructions(DPI) of the British government on the situation around Presidency College; the first Independence Day celebration notice; notices that announced the birthday of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose and Mahatma Gandhi. Citing another interesting document, she said a notice sent by DPI to the college principal directed the later about the dangerous chemicals that the laboratory had. DPI cautioned the principal against falling the same in the hands of the radical students as the chemicals might be used to prepare explosives and hence, they must always be kept under the lock. Another interesting holiday notice that is certain to grab the attention, is the one that was put up on the campus after the Allied Forces won the World War II. The leaflets of the Hindustan Socialist Republican Army demanding `Blood for Blood’ which were distributed among the students and confiscated by the cops from the campus, were also on display.The leaflets were distributed among the

students by the brother of Bhagat Singh. Incidentally, British Library in London and Centre for Social Sciences, Calcutta is in possession of some rare documents pertaining to the early history of Presidency. Authorities have approached the British Library and Social Science for obtaining access to the same and the due permission for their inclusion in the e-museum. This apart, some of the contemporary newspapers like Amrita Bazar Patrika, Yugantar and Ananda Bazar Patrika had carried some news on the goings-on of the Presidency Collge then. “ We’ve already obtained reports from Amrita Bazar Patrika on Direct Action Day that was published in a series of reports,” she said. The front page of the Amrita Bazar Patrika edition dated August 15, 1947, announcing India’s Independence, has already found a place in the virtual exhibition. In order to engage an itinerant viewer, the authorities have also mounted four exhibitions alongside on a variety of themes like women in politics, etchings of Sergei Eisenstein (to mark the 100 years of Russian

Giving e-travellers unrestricted access to the

Presidency, the university’s new online tour portal is set to receive many visitors soon

Quick Glance The University tied up with Google Arts and Culture The initiative gives an e-traveller complete access to the Presidency It even has an e-museum for the e-travellers to visit the campus

Revolution), drawings and artworks of Somnath Hore and drawings based on Isha Upanishad. “ We at Presidency intend to keep the flag flying so far as the leadership role is concerned, by sensitising the students about contextual issues of historical importance through such exhibitions,” an official added. A Black Box Theatre, the first in a state-funded university, has come up in the campus. The list may go on; it is only in the fitness of things that the university just added another feather to its cap when it got a very impressive 3.04 CGPA and Grade A from National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC). It is rare for a fledgeling new university to get a top rating in its first cycle because NAAC takes into account the number of Ph.D. students produced. But Presidency could start its doctoral course only in 2014, after a statute was put in place. But the university more than made up for this by securing the highest marks in governance and infrastructure. “We are very happy. In the first cycle, it is an achievement. The only area where we did not score is the number of Ph.D. awardees. We will take another 4-5 years to churn out Ph.Ds,” Lohia said. “The NAAC rating will allow us to go in for more foreign collaborations, become eligible for central funding and attract more foreign students. Besides, faculty from renowned institutes will be interested in joining us,” said a university official. “ It’s true, we are yet to churn out our own Ph.D. students. But the research output, infrastructure, governance, updated curriculum, an up-to-date teaching-learning process helped us achieve this,” he added.

December 04 - 10, 2017

innovation lighting

Innovative Ideas Of Yogesh



Quick Glance Yogesh uses optic fibre cables to collect sun rays The fibre optic cables carry sunlight down to rooms His innovation will help people have sunlight powered light bulbs

Lighting the dark rooms naturally Pradeep Modak


he creative mind has no limitation and this has been proved by innovators time and again. Yogesh Kumar (47), an employee of AG office, Bihar, has the passion to create something new applying his scientific acumen. Though he does not have the have the required degrees in science or technical field but his creativity is above the bookish knowledge. He has made several electronic gadgets useful for day to day life. Now, he is working on providing sunlight in dark rooms. It’s not like that the solution provided by Vastu experts who tell customers to break the wall and make a window or apply a mirror to reflect the sun rays into the dark room by using mirrors. Yogesh was a bit reluctant to tell every minute details of his latest innovation. “I have successfully experimented this. It works but I will tell the world after applying for patent”, he said. What this reporter comes to know after seeing the experiment that Yogesh uses optical fibre cables to collect the sun rays from outside and then throws the light to a dark room to keep it lit. “The theory is simple. It’s a bunch of optical fibre cables having a concave lens at the one end and convex lens at the other. Sun rays passing through the concave lens get intensified in the optical fibre cable and the other end having convex lens throws the entire light into the room giving a feeling of perfect sunlight into the dark room”, he said. “Further the flexibility of optical fibre cable makes it easy to carry into the room like electrical wire. No power is required in its operation and one can enjoy the natural light in his darkroom spending a few bucks. After installation, it’s free of cost for life”, he said. His innovation will certainly help the people residing in the houses constructed in the lanes and by-lanes of the urban areas where rooms hardly get the sunlight and they have to keep bulbs remain on 24x365 hours to get the room lighted and spend more money on electricity bills. Yogesh, needs no introduction, especially in Bihar. His was a national-

Yogesh, a veteran hockey player, has invented

special light bulbs that harness sunlight and utilise fibre optic cables to run them level hockey player represented Bihar in different junior and senior national championships. He was a goalkeeper and earned laurels while keeping the post. He was also awarded the best player award given by the governor of Bihar. Yogesh later took up the responsibility to coach youngsters in hockey. In the coaching field, he also made his mark as the coach of the Bihar women hockey teams from junior to senior levels. He also spent times to promote hockey in girls’ schools of Patna and on several occasions, his team-Government Girls School (Shastri Nagar, Patna) created a flutter in national tournaments. Ajitesh Roy, the former Indian hockey team captain, who inked his name as the first international player from Bihar after its bifurcation in 2000, is the pupil of Yogesh. He also got medals from Bihar government and other social organizations for his contribution to hockey. He got a job in the Accountant General office, Patna, for his brilliant performance on the field. Now, he is

working in the IT Audit section of the AG office. In his free time, Yogesh developed his passion for electronics, computer and photography. He started making electronic devices using waste products coming out of defunct electronic gadgets. He has made his house talismanic as if you come close to his door-hello welcome- sound will greet you and the doorbell will start ringing. The electrical arrangements in the rooms are automatic as the blubs will give as much light as required and all the electrical devices are working on solar panels. “I have turned my house as an energy conservation zone. Kitchen chimney goes on with the ignition of gas burners In washroom, light and exhaust fan start working automatically when you enter there”, he said. He has also made automatic drip irrigation system depending on climatic condition and an alarm for an earthquake. Watching a movie on his theatre sound system is a unique experience. Among the other useful

equipment, he has devised nano cooler and home security system. Now, Yogesh is trying to patent his devices so that others can not copy them. Yogesh has also love for birds. He has made a birdhouse in his balcony where sparrows, and other birds, reside and also give eggs. His workshop is his balcony where he works during free time to use the waste and scraps for his next innovation. In mushroom cultivation, he has also left his mark. He has cultivated mushrooms in cold drink bottles, 5 to 20 litres jars, old tyres and poly bags to give a new dimension to the cultivation of this mineral and protein-rich vegetable. He has invented a device to control the level of moisture keeping in mind the commercial production of mushroom. His home looks like a magician house where everything you want comes from electronic devices. Yogesh is also health freak, he has made a multi-gymnasium in his balcony using scraps. His gymnasium takes little space comparing to traditional one and also has less weight. His latest in the gym front is a cycle which charges the inverter battery as you paddle it. More you paddle the inverter gets charged faster. “I am looking forward to making the gymnasium commercially as it will solve the problems of health as well use of extra electricity for charging inverter batteries”. He said. While making the gymnasium, Yogesh uses shockers instead heavy metal plates for the muscles and power strength build-up process.”It’s a complete gymnasium that you find in the big commercial gym in the market. You have to spend a few thousands of rupees and lesser space to install it”, he said. “In my calculation, the gym can be made ready by the money which you spend for registration fees in the high-tech multi-gymnasium. The gym is portable, flexible and adjustable”, he said. The bench press section of the gym is unique as Yogesh has made a shoe box there to make the perfect use of the vacant space. On his future plans, he said he wanted to make devices and machines to be used in agriculture and less expensive smart home for the uses of common people.

12 Smart Village

DECember 04 - 10, 2017

Smart Village

‘Lakhpathi Kisan, Smart Village’ Tribal women are achieving the dream of Smart Village Anand Bharti


part from Kashmir if one tries to identify the disturbed areas in the rest of the country, then the terrain noted will be of the tribal areas. In tribal areas of Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Odisha, Jharkhand and other areas, fear and panic are being spread around with full confidence. Most of the victims of this are tribal. They are getting twice hit. Terrorist organizations have their own politics and the system has its own strategies. The poor Tribals who are ironically called the forest and landowners are still fighting for their own resources from man-exploiting systems. Thousands of years ago, they were struggling for their existence and are still doing it today. Since then they have been looking for a way out. One such way has been discovered by the people of Miharu Block in Jharkhand’s Khunti district and it has been attracting the rest of the tribal areas towards the idea. Sociologists have believed that thousands of years ago the tribals laid the foundations of ‘development’ while protecting their lives in the forests, mountains and mountain caves. They cleaned up the forests and started the process of cultivating

and living a social life.This is the reason why they cannot live too far apart from water sources, forests and land. Today, in 41 Panchayats of Morohu block, the people of 41 villages, especially women, are proving that they are fellow workers

The ‘Lakhapathi Kisan Smart Village’ project in the villages has changed the lives of the tribals for the better

and want to make the society happy by themselves without living in the illusion of anyone’s assistance. It is also a good news for the Narendra Modi government that tribal women are realizing the dreams and resolutions of their Smart Village. Khunti Munda is a tribal area. Munda people have always been attached to their land. They have always been struggling for it. Birsa Munda had fought a long struggle with it. The British government had to bow down before their movement. They had to make land laws, which were named ‘Chhotanagpur Tenancy Act’. But unfortunately, the Khunti land is not able to sustain anybody now. It is difficult to cultivate due to arid plateau zones. Due to this, people migrating to cities has become a routine. But three years ago, the women of Miharu division started doing the task of making the Smart Village which Prime Minister Narendra Modi has envisaged today. Two and a half thousand tribal families are engaged in trying to give a name to the state by making use of the facilities provided by Ratan Tata

Quick Glance PM Modi initiated the smart village plan in Miharu Agriculture was revolutionised in the village MNREGA is also being helpful in the upliftment of the villagers

Trust, the force behind it. Taking responsibility for its execution,was the organisation Renjagruti Kendra, an active organization in the area. Women were at the helm of this organization to which more women groups were linked. They were told about the latest techniques of agriculture. The process of growing the saplings from seeds without planting them in soil was started. This was so because many times the soil gets infected while preparing the sapling from the seeds. Saplings are grown by placing them in the dust of coconut peel instead of soil. Experience has shown that this also produces more quantity. Off-season cultivation of tomato, green chilli,

DECember 04 - 10, 2017

cabbage etc. is rising and so are the prices. Earlier there was no cultivation of watermelon but now a large quantity of watermelon, cucumber, pumpkin etc. is being grown. This is proving to be a boon in financial terms. Women are also getting interested in growing fruit which will increase profits. The irrigation system has been modernized. In Pandu village, irrigation is being done through a solar system. The well is made through collective effort. In this area, scientific methods were adopted to increase the production of traditional lacquer. The maximum use of lacquer is in painting. Buttons are also made from it. In the procurement of lacquer, the

whims of the middleman were the rules. But now the tribals have made their own arrangements by setting up Farmers Producers Organizations. This includes the representatives of various women committees. Now nobody has to go to the market to sell lacquer, instead, the Mahajan has started coming to the village. Due to their activity on the Internet, women are aware of the market rates of everything, hence they are not fooled and they get good value for their products. Satish Girija, the founder of Navajagruti Kendra, points out that “Adivasis have been attached to their land since the very beginning, but in the absence of technical know-how, agriculture has not been the basic

Smart Village


The project which is going on in these villages has been named ‘Lakhapathi Kisan, Smart Village’ and has ushered many changes

work of their life. Now it is changing. Efforts are being made to give better shape to agriculture. “One of the prominent women leaders, Jinit Minj, says that the government provided facilities to us but we put our labour in it. Now we are standing on our own feet. Our success is now motivating other sectors. ‘ Earlier, there was no intention or tradition of borrowing from banks for agriculture in this area. But after awareness came, it was understood that farming can be upgraded by taking loans. People are now using resources received from Panchayats too. MNREGA is also proving to be helpful. Pig rearing was done in the traditional way, now a good breed is being reared with better maintenance. A shelter is now built separately for them and they are not left out. Pigs are being fed straw and greens and vegetable peels. Two pigs, males and females are being provided to a family. Twice a year, they have 12 to 16 piglets. A pig is sold for two and a half thousand rupees. This is cash crop of the farmers. The most important thing about these villages is that women’s groups keep the account for their own income. These villages have been linked to the internet. For this, ‘Internet Friends’ was started. Not only is every woman using it, but she is also getting acquainted with the rest of the country and the world. There are also plenty of amusement facilities available. But this does not mean that

modern technology has cut them off from their tradition. But they have begun to look at their language, culture and social traditions from a modern perspective. The project which is going on in these villages has been named ‘Lakhapathi Kisan, Smart Village’. Changes in behaviour of people due to economic strength are happening. Most of Jharkhand is affected by the Naxalites but it is believed that as soon as the incomes of the people increase and their reliance on others ends, the effect of the Naxalites too will be reduced. Another big thing is that people are not migrating from here anymore. It is noteworthy that the number of female peasants leaving homes in the search of employment is the highest here. But now better facilities are being received in the villages. Pucca houses are being built due to more income. Toilets are being constructed with government assistance. Women are focusing on the responsibility of maintaining cleanliness. Arrangements have been made in the schools where the teachers were not available. What is most heartening is that there is a new interest seen in the villagers for the Rural Development Ministry. This is a wing of the National Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Institute of Jharkhand. Jharkhand is documenting it so that the entire country can see how the villages are changing.

14 Sanitation

DECember 04 - 10, 2017

Trump Village

Toilet revolution

‘Toilet Revolution’ Begins in China’s Largest Lake Receiving 11.92 million yuan for infrastructure changes, China is ready to kick-off its Toilet Revolution IANS

Biggest Toilet Pot Model Sulabh International unveiled the model in Haryana’s Marora Village aka Trump Village


toilet revolution has begun at Qinghai Lake, a famous tourist destination in China’s Qinghai province aimed at installing and upgrading toilets in and around the area, authorities said. So far this year, the scenic area has received 11.92 million yuan ($1 million) as part of the project, reports Xinhua news agency. A portion of the investment, worth 1.28 million yuan, has been used to upgrade 32 toilets around the lake, and the rest is being used to install 13 environmentally friendly toilets and 11 unisex toilets, said Zhang Shengxiang, head of the business management department of the

Kumhari Village Tushar


PM Praises 8-Year Old Divyang Boy


ulabh International has launched the “world’s biggest” toilet pot model in Haryana’s Marora village -- popularly known as ‘Trump village’ -- on the occasion of World Toilet Day. As per a release by the non-profit, the mega Indian-style pot, made of iron, fibre, wood and plaster of Paris, measuring 20x10 feet, was unveiled to create awareness about the use of toilets in the village dedicated to the US President Donald Trump. Sanitation expert, social reformer and founder of Sulabh Sanitation and Social Reform Movement, Dr Bindeshwar Pathak, also dedicated 95 new household toilets to the residents of the village. “This large pot replica will be shifted to Delhi’s Sulabh Toilet Museum,” the release quoted Dr Pathak as saying. He said the idea behind naming a village after Trump was to highlight the issue of sanitation and cleanliness globally. Puneet Ahluwalia, a member of the ruling Republican Party in the US, said that such an initiative would go a long way to motivate masses towards cleanliness and safe sanitation.

Qinghai Lake tourism company, which is in charge of the area’s tourism investment and development. Qinghai Lake is China’s largest inland and biggest saltwater lake. As a national tourist attraction, it received 3.2 millions tourists from home and abroad as of mid-October, up 77 per cent year-on-year. But visitors have complained about the

Tushar helped make Kumhari Village free of open defecation



rime Minister Narendra Modi in his 38th Mann Ki Baat speech spoke of Tushar, an eight-year-old divyang boy who took the responsibility to make his village open-defecation free. Kumhari village in Madhya Pradesh can be described as the quintessential rural India. The major profession of

the people in the village is farming and occasional labour work. The farmers have seen open-defecation since their childhood and have passed on the ritual from generations. This eight-yearold boy who has lost the ability to speak took up the responsibility to educate his neighbours and began a campaign to end it. Despite his speech and hearing impairment since birth, Tushar started getting up 5 am in the morning every day and made whistle his weapon. He used to visit every household in the morning waking people up with his whistle and via hand gestures would try to convince

Quick Glance A toilet revolution has begun at Qinghai Lake So far this year, the scenic area has received 11.92 million yuan As a national tourist attraction, it received 3.2 million tourists

lack of toilets in the area. In May, the area was criticised by the government for its toilet problem. However, the situation is improving. The toilets are clean and tidy now, equipped with hand washing gel, tissue and hand dryers. Unisex toilets have extra baby seats, safety hand-rails and speakers. China plans to install or upgrade 64,000 toilets at tourist destinations from 2018 to 2020 in an effort to remove a major nuisance for travellers and develop domestic tourism. This comes as part of the three-year “toilet revolution” launched in 2015, which saw over 20 billion yuan invested in installing or renovating 68,000 toilets at tourist sites, exceeding the target of 57,000 toilets.

people against defecating in the open. Tushar would visit 30-40 houses on a daily basis and would not stop whistling if he spotted a person opendefecating till that person has stopped doing that. Prime Minister Narendra Modi hailed this boy’s courage and integrity to try to fulfil his resolve of making Kumhari village an opendefecation free village. The PM said Tushar’s actions made a positive impact on the villagers making it possible for the village to be an opendefecation free village. At times, Tushar would be accompanied by Swachh Preraks positioned in that village to various houses and they would also keep educating and updating Tushar on the objective of the mission. 86 per cent rural areas constitute Kumhari village, wherein most of the villagers are unaware of using toilets or covered areas for defecation. So, they started taking Tushar and Swacch Preraks into confidence and now the number of toilets in the village has increased exponentially since 2016. The district administration joined Tushar in the revolution to take forward the Swachh Bharat campaign that became a huge success. The village was announced open-defecation free on January 26, 2017.

DECember 04 - 10, 2017




NITI AAyog manual scavengers

NITI AAyog To Bring Schemes For Safai Karamcharis And Manual Scavengers NITI Aayog has been suggested to bring in welfare schemes for safai karamcharis and manual scavengers in the country

Bio-Toilets To Be Installed In All Trains

Bio-toilets will be installed in all railway coaches by December 2018



ational Commission for Safai Karamcharis has suggested to NITI Aayog that some of the welfare schemes for Safai Karamcharis and Manual Scavengers may be brought under its purview. Shri Manhar Valji Bhai Zala, Chairman, National Commission for Safai Karamcharis along with the members of the Commission Smt. Manju Diler, Shri Dilip K. Hathibed and Shri Swami Sadanand Maharaj held a meeting with Sh. Rattan P. Wattal, Principal Advisor,

World Toilet Day

NITI Aayog on 17th November, 2017, to share their views and concerns on various issues of Safai Karamcharis and Manual Scavengers. The Chairman raised the issue of empowering the Commission by making it a statutory or constitutional body and bestows it with the powers of a civil court so that it can discharge its mandate effectively. The Commission also expressed its dismay at the slow pace of implementation of “The Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation Act, 2013” particularly the survey of

Committed to improve sanitation facilities : Modi Reaffirming the government’s commitment, PM Modi said that the government will work more to improve sanitation IANS


n World Toilet Day, Prime Minister Narendra Modi reaffirmed his government’s

Manual Scavengers. The Commission suggested the NITI Aayog for getting the survey of Manual Scavengers done through an independent third party having adequate representation of volunteers/activists from communities traditionally engaged in manual scavenging. Presently, the role of the Commission is merely of monitoring the implementation of the Central Government’s schemes for the welfare of Safai Karamcharis and Manual Scavengers. It has no scheme of its own. In this background, the Commission suggested that some of the welfare schemes for Safai Karamcharis and Manual Scavengers may be brought under its purview. Shri Ratan P. Wattal-Principal Advisor, NITI Aayog took note of the suggestions given by the Commission and assured the Commission that it would shortly convene a meeting of all the stakeholders on the subject to discuss and finalise a roadmap to achieve the ultimate objective of ending the inhuman practice of manual scavenging in the country . commitment towards improving sanitation facilities across the nation. “On World Toilet Day, we reaffirm our commitment towards improving sanitation facilities across our nation,” the Prime Minister tweeted. “I compliment all those individuals and organisations working towards building more toilets in various parts of India. Their invaluable contribution adds solid momentum to Swachh Bharat Mission,” he added. World Toilet Day was established by the World Toilet Organisation in 2001. The UN passed a resolution in 2013 recognising World Toilet Day as an official UN international day.



he target of 100 per cent completion of installing biotoilets in the Indian Raiways coaches has been advanced to December 2018, said an official. “Under the dynamic guidance of Minister of Railway Piyush Goyal, the target for 100 per cent completion of installing bio-toilets in coaches has been advanced to December 2018,” said Ravindra Gupta, Member (Rolling Stock), Ministry of Railway. Gupta was speaking at a event organised here to highlight Railway Ministry’s efforts towards a lowcarbon pathway and overall sustainable mobility initiatives in the Indian transport sector. On the occasion, other senior officials also called for a need for increasing role of renewables in the railways to achieve net decarbonisation.

Swachh Ability Run The JK Cement Swachh Ability Run witnessed the participation of over 13,000 people in Goa IANS


he second edition of the JK Cement Swachh Ability Run witnessed the participation of over 13,000 people. The run was flagged off on November 5 in Goa. It moved on to Belagavi, Hubballi, Mangaluru and Bengaluru. After the run, the participants helped run a cleanliness drive in each city. “We are absolutely delighted with the response from the participants, given the importance of the run,” Kargil war hero and country’s first blade runner Major D.P. Singh said.


December 04 - 10, 2017

world disability day special

sujit chakraborty He is a senior journalist and works as an editor with Parliamentarian


the ability to fight disability disability

an ‘uncommon’ experience of life World disability day special is very crucial


hat’s in the word ‘disability’ if an eightyear-old ‘divyang’ (or disabled, going by the scientific term) can showcase the potential to be able to move an entire village towards an opendefecation-free environment; or a Paralympian can bring honour to his nation through his stellar performances? What’s in the word ‘disability’ that makes the disabled any lesser than the ‘able-bodied’? Being weak or disabled isn’t necessarily a negative thing. In fact, it is usually noted that the ‘broken bodies’ carry within them the traits of being firm in their resolve. They are competent, capable, courageous and determined, and are often performing well in all walks of life. Apt to mention here, “don’t judge a book by its cover”, because you never know what wonders one can perform and leave you awestruck. Disability may or may not be a difficult ticket in life (debatable, from situation to situation), but it sure offers the life lessons to be had that are definitely uncommon. And a little help whilst the course never hurts. Just like the notion “it takes a village,” help is an unavoidable part of the human experience. In the span of life, we all realise its relevance, and thus it is no biggie for a disabled to seek the same in course of activities. There’s no getting around it. Period.


Kumar Dilip Edited, Printed and Published by: Monika Jain on behalf of Sulabh Sanitation Mission Foundation, owned by Sulabh Sanitation Mission Foundation Printed at: The Indian Express Limited A - 8, Sector -7, NOIDA (UP) Published at: RZ - 83, Mahavir Enclave, Palam - Dabri Road, New Delhi - 110045 (India) Corporate Office: 819, Wave Silver Tower, Sector - 18, NOIDA (UP) Phone: +91-120-6500425 Email:,

Whimpering is not the best way out of physical restrictions of any kind, courage is...


T an age when boys go out to play cricket in the mornings of winter holidays, or football every day in the afternoon, I used to be suddenly bedridden for a couple of days each month, down with a knee pain. I did not find it pleasant, as the chirpy voices of my friends playing in the surroundings shouted, “Goaaaaal”, or “Ho’zaaaat!” But that was temporary. My parents found that most often the pain gained momentum during the fullmoon and new moon periods. so on other days, during such winter holidays, or everyday afternoon, I played cricket and football, and much else as well, especially badminton and table tennis. I was especially good at cricket, in which I usually played as the opener, and played well on all surfaces... streets, artificial practice surfaces of jute fibre mats and the true, green grass field. Do remember that I am not talking of the times when young players start from well manicured grass surfaces. Those were the 1970s, in Calcutta. Then, a year after I shifted to Delhi for studies and was in my First Year, in 1979, I would stay in a hostel in Delhi University. I would return home every weekend and on one such weekend, I found my left leg faultering. I reached home, had dinner with my parents, and went off to sleep. In the middle of the night, there was so terrible a pain that I started shouting. My parents and sister came trooping in to my room and tried to control me, but that pain

seemed to be in the brain, not just in the left hip. To cut a log story short, by the end of that night I had turned a semiparalytic and could not move my left leg at all. As any parents would do, my family took me to wherever someone suggested could be found a good doctor for my kind of ailment. Nothing worked. That winter, our neighbours, the Guptas, and my family, decided to have a weekend in Jaipur. Despite massive pain, I went with them. And I was more impressed with Jaipur than my ability to fight the pain and disability to move about with the group. And silently, even without realising, that was the end of my ‘disability’. By 1980, a major doctor, a family friend, came visiting us and he told my mother to be prepared: “Give him three years to die of bedsores, Bhavi. This disease will progress till it attacks all his joints and put him strictly to bed,” he said. I was still bedridden. I had some friends who would come home every evening to chat with me. And I would drag myself from the bed holding a chair to go out and meet them in the verandah of the government flat allocated to my father. Then one day, the dragging of the chair got to my nerves... technically, you see, I was ‘disabled’, but I did not want to remain so, not after that day. I had not walked free of a support for more than two years, but that day, I decided to try. I stood

Disability is a

mental condition, an affliction of self-pity. Life, you see, is made in the mind and not the body

December 04 - 10, 2017

Since 1991, I have had

two hip replacements and have still worked as a journalist for the past thirty years or more without problems between a bedstead and a wall, and gave up the chair. I did not know my mother was watching me from behind. I shoved the chair away, made sure that I fell neither on the bed, nor against the wall, and took a few, tentative steps. I managed, and suddenly, my mother came from behind, embraced me and started sobbing joyfully. In reality, what had afflicted me that winter night of 1979 was ankylosing spondilosis, a condition in which one loses the ‘grease’ that keeps the joint bones anywhere in the body from clashing with each other. When that happens, the bones clash, and there is massive pain. Thereafter, I went to several doctors, till an ayurvedic doctor treated me and stopped the same disease from spreading across all my joints. I was still limping severely, and as one doctor put it, I was not walking, as ‘walking’ means that one foot, always, has to be on the floor while the other was up. “You are not walking, you are ambulating,” he said. Since then I have had two major his-replacement surgeries, but I have worked as a journalist since I finished college in 1982, a year lost due to lack of ‘attendence’ in college, since I was ‘disabled’? Was I? Am I? I do not think so. I have covered communal riots in Uttar Pradesh. I have covered for 12 days the Maha Kumbh Mela in 1988-89. I have worked to do a government website on tourism in Sikkim, travelling extensively, right up to the Guru Drag-Mar Lake at 18,800 feet in the Himalayan cold desert, where nothing grows and where oxygen is at its minimum. Yes, I cannot jump across a drain more than three feet wide, like most of my friends can. But do I need to? So I have accepted certain limitations, but I have never felt I am ‘disabled’. I also do not call myself ‘speciallyabled’ a term I consider preposterous and insulting to people like me who are restricted in their functioning. Basically, ‘disability’ is a mental condition, an affliction of self-pity. Life, you see, is made in the mind!



Are You Living In A Simulation?

mihir paul

Mihir Paul is a graduate of Philosophy and Psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, United States

Many mainstream scientists have started to question the “real-ness” of what we see as reality



hat if you were told that the world you sense and perceive on a daily basis is simply an elaborate simulation of the mind and consciousness? You probably wouldn’t take it seriously. But actually, scientists across the world are thinking along the same lines. That our reality could be a part of a simulation. What we perceive to be a three-dimensional manifest universe might actually be a two-dimensional one, projected across the cosmos through consciousness. From Indian schools of philosophy to modern day scientists like Robert Lanza, Computer scientists like Nick Bostrom and Innovators like Elon Musk, the simulation theory is gaining popularity in the scientific circles. This idea of the fundamental nature of our reality being a simulation or an illusion is an intriguing theory that Is worth looking at.Considering the fact that not only ancient scholars but also modern scientists are starting to look into it, the simulation theory is definitely a convincing argument. The simulation theory proposes that reality including the perceptible and imperceptible universe, is in fact,

an artificial simulation, most likely a virtual computer based simulation. Many versions of this argument propose that considering the rate of advancement of technology and the development of virtual reality systems, it is not inconceivable to think that at a certain point, humans will be able to develop virtual reality games/ simulations that are high definition enough to be indistinguishable from reality. Now if we consider this to be true, then it follow that we could already be in a simulation being ran by a future civilization that has reached the level of technological advancement.

While there are many versions to the simulation hypothesis, from virtual reality to mind-made constructs, the basic philosophy behind this is that what we see is entirely fluid and temporary. It is transient. Tracing the roots of this theory, with the underlying thesis that reality is inherently an illusion, it started first with the Indian philosophy of Maya and the “Butterfly Dream” concept of Zhuanzi. While there were many schools of philosophy in the Indian culture discussing the concept of “Maya” or illusion, the most prominent ones were -- The Nyaya School, the Vedanta School, and the Advaita Vedanta school. The word “Maya” has even been mentioned in the Hindu epic Mahabharata, the Upanishads, and even the Vedas. It is interesting to think that there might be more to the world that what meets the eye. While the simulation theory is just a theory, it is worth thinking about.

letters to the editor

motivating article The article ‘ The Prime Minister of a Swachh Bharat’ is a very motivating article for both the youth and the elderly in the nation. The point is especially

encouraging that PM Modi has made cleanliness a national movement leading to the reduction in the results of ODF. He has guided the nation to move towards improving lifestyle and livelihood. The article convinces people as to why progress is not possible without sanitation. This had first been articulated by Mahatma Gandhi, as I have read in previous editions of your esteemed newspaper. But while his struggle focussed on political freedom, we are now seeing his vision take shape. And that should be the main motive, that is, to inspire the readers of the newspaper. Manoram Kumar, Vainder the unsung heroes In any country, the most

important heroes are the unsung heroes. Or unsung heroines. Like Savita in Dewas, or Kalpana in Etah, or Neetu in Basavanpur, or Chandana in Kanpur. It is amazing that these women have broken the shackles of orthodox beliefs and contributed to the growth of our country. Basant Jha, Jhajjhar brilliant akshay I am a big fan of the actor Akshay Kumar ! I like his humor and his action films. But what makes him really great is his dedication to the development of the nation. I have watched his film on toilets and I think it is a very good attempt to combine entertainment with the sanitation mission. Kameshwari, Ghaziabad

Please mail your opinion to - or Whatsapp at 9868807712

18 Photo Feature

The fine art of handicrafts The Ministry of Women and Child Development had organised a festival of handicrafts at various centres across Delhi-National Capital Region, labelled as Shilp Haat, and we bring you a platter of some of the impeccable artefacts seen there. Our official photographer scooped up the pictures from there Photos: jairam

December 04 - 10, 2017

Buddha gave us the philosophy of Nirvana, and we celebrate that through sculpting his image, and alongside, there can be seen bangles made of cloth and paper, as well as wall art. The grass-hats are most inviting and so are the porcelain utensils that can be the pride of any table, whereas an artisan from the northeast displays a range of jute and porcelain items

Photo Feature


20 Health

DEcember 04 - 10, 2017

donor Organ


Indian Project Aims To Overcome Organ Shortage A big push for research in “tissue engineering” aimed at creating human organs for overcoming the problems of donor organ shortages Quick Glance


four Coffees A Day Is Good

A study found moderate coffee drinking safe and that upto four cups a day might be beneficial IANS


oderate coffee drinking is safe and three to four cups a day may have some health benefits, a study in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) showed. The University of Southampton researchers collected data on the impact of coffee on all aspects of the human body, taking into account more than 200 studies - most of which were observational, the BBC reported on Thursday. Compared with non-coffee drinkers, those who drank about three cups of coffee a day appeared to reduce their risk of getting heart problems or dying from them, according to the study. The strongest benefits of coffee consumption were seen in reduced risks of liver disease, including cancer. But Paul Roderick, co-author of the study, from the faculty of medicine at the University of Southampton, said the review could not say if coffee intake had made the difference. “Factors such as age, whether people smoked or not and how much exercise they took could all have had an effect,” the BBC quoted Roderick as saying. “There is a balance of risks in life, and the benefits of moderate consumption of coffee seem to outweigh the risks,” he said. However, the UK’S National Health Services recommends pregnant women have no more than 200mg of caffeine a day - two mugs of instant coffee - because too much can increase the risk of miscarriage. The researchers say coffee drinkers should stick to “healthy coffees” - which avoid extra sugar, milk or cream, or a fatty snack on the side.


ndia’s Department of Biotechnology has decided to give a big push for research in “tissue engineering” aimed at eventually creating human organs in a dish apparently for overcoming the problems of donor organ shortages. The Department has invited “concept proposals” from Indian scientists for regeneration of heart, liver, pancreas, skin, tooth, eye and bone – complete with muscle, tendon and marrow – in the laboratory. The Department announcement says the above were “candidate” organs for development but scientists may propose for funding any other organ for regeneration “provided there is a clear credible evidence for such a choice”. Tissue engineering is a multidisciplinary field which evolved from the field of biomaterial development. It refers to the practice of combining scaffolds, cells and biologically active molecules into functional tissues. It has become an established protocol for the


Tissue engineering is a multi-disciplinary field Scientists have been researching into organ regeneration India now is looking for cutting edge tissue engineering methods

bioengineering of living tissues using engineered “scaffolds” that cells can populate and allow for regeneration of tissues that can be fully functional. Elsewhere in the world, bladders, small arteries, skin grafts and cartilage have been implanted in patients, but the procedures are still experimental and tissue engineering plays only a small role in patient treatment. Tissues of complex organs like heart, lung and liver have been successfully recreated in the lab, but they are a long way from being ready for implant into a patient. Growing the whole organ like

a heart to replace the damaged one or regenerate a new kidney from a patient’s own cells would be a leap forward. According to the Department, the success of tissue engineering methods has now generated strong interest in the next level of whole organ development wherein the tools of tissue engineering are integrated with engineering and process technologies, molecular biology and developmental biology to generate working organs for transplant. The Department is now calling for a multi-institutional and multidisciplinary concept proposals from teams of scientists involving a minimum of three institutes, at least one of which must be a medical institution.


Physical Fitness May Boost Grades At School Athletic Children possibly have greater volumes of gray matter that helps enhance cognition and academic performance IANS


hildren who go in for physical fitness may possess a greater volume of gray matter that may help enhance their academic performance, reveals a new finding. Physical fitness, especially cardiorespiratory fitness, speed-agility and muscular fitness, leads to the presence of more gray matter in the brain.Increase in grey matter in various regions of the brain boosts learning, functioning and reading processes of the child, the researchers said, in the paper

published in the journal Neuroimage. “Our work aims at answering questions such as whether the brain of children with better physical fitness is different from that of children with worse physical fitness and if this affects their academic performance,” said Francisco B. Ortega, researcher at the University of Grenada in Spain. “The answer is short and forceful: yes, physical fitness in children is linked in a direct way to important brain structure differences, and such differences are reflected in the children’s academic performance,” Ortega added.

The researchers assessed academic performances of 101 obese children, aged between eight to 11 years, in accordance with the volume of gray matter present in the brain. The results showed that higher cardiorespiratory fitness was related to greater gray volumes, specifically in frontal regions, subcortical regions, temporal regions and the calcarine cortex region of the brain. However, muscular fitness was not independently associated with greater gray matter volume in any brain region.

DECember 04 - 10, 2017

Houseflies Bacteria

Houseflies Could Carry Harmful Bacteria Researchers have found that they could also carry hundreds of bacteria harmful to humans and play a role in spreading diseases IANS


lies may be more than pesky picnic crashers as researchers have found that they could also carry hundreds of bacteria harmful to humans and play a role in spreading diseases. Because flies often live close to humans, scientists have long suspected they played a role in carrying and spreading diseases, but this study, published in the journal Scientific Reports, adds further proof of that threat. “We believe that this may show a mechanism for pathogen transmission that has been overlooked by public health officials, and flies may contribute to the rapid transmission of pathogens in outbreak situations,” said Donald Bryant, Professor at Pennsylvania State University in the US.

The researchers examined microbiomes of 116 houseflies and blowflies from three different continents. They found that in some cases, these flies carried hundreds of different species of bacteria, many of which are harmful to humans. “The legs and wings show the highest microbial diversity in the fly body, suggesting that bacteria use the flies as airborne shuttles,” said Stephan Schuster from Nanyang Technological

University, Singapore. Blowflies and houseflies – both carrion fly species – are often exposed to unhygienic matter because they use feces and decaying organic matter to nurture their young, where they could pick up bacteria that could act as pathogens to humans, plants and animals. The study also indicates that blowflies and houseflies share over 50 percent of their microbiome, a mixture of host-related microorganisms and those acquired from the environments they inhabit. Surprisingly, flies collected from stables carried fewer pathogens than those collected from urban environments, the findings showed. The researchers found 15 instances of the Helicobacter pylori, a pathogen often causing ulcers in

This Protein Can Reduce Spreading Of Cancer A new protein called cadherin-22 could be a potential factor in cancer metastasis or the spread of cancer


esearchers have discovered a new protein that could reduce the spread of cancer by binding the cancer cells together and allowing them to invade tissues. The study conducted by the researchers from University of Guelph, Ontario, has identified a protein called cadherin-22, a potential factor in cancer metastasis or the spread of cancer. The protein also decreased the adhesion and invasion rate of breast and brain cancer cells by up to 90 per cent. “Cadherin-22 could be a powerful prognostic marker for

advanced cancer stages and patient outcomes,” said lead author Jim Uniacke, a professor at the varsity. “If you can find a treatment or a drug that can block cadherin-22, you could potentially prevent cancer cells


Quick Glance The researchers examined microbiomes of 116 houseflies Legs and wings show the highest microbial diversity in the fly body But flies collected from stables carried fewer pathogens than others

the human gut, largely in the blowfly samples collected in Brazil. The known route of transmission of Helicobacter has never considered flies as a possible vector for the disease, said Schuster. Flies may not be all bad, however. The researchers suggest they could turn into helpers for human society, perhaps even serving as living drones that can act as an early-warning system for diseases. “For one, the environmental sequencing of flies may use the insects as proxies that can inform on the microbial content of any given environment that otherwise would be hard or impossible to sample,” said Schuster. “In fact, the flies could be intentionally released as autonomous bionic drones into even the smallest spaces and crevices and, upon being recaptured, inform about any biotic material they have encountered,” Schuster added.

Quick Glance

spreading Cancer



from moving, invading and metastasising.” The study, published in the journal Oncogene, looks specifically at hypoxia, a condition in which the tissues receive less oxygen. The researchers found that it is precisely under conditions of low oxygen that cancer cells trigger the production of cadherin-22, putting in motion a kind of protein boost that helps bind cells together, enhancing cellular movement, invasion and likely metastasis. Studying breast and brain

The protein decreases the adhesion and invasion rate of breast cancer It is a potential factor in cancer metastasis, or spread of cancer Medical researchers are now looking for a drug that can block this protein

cancer cells in a hypoxia incubator, the researchers discovered that cadherin-22 is involved in this process to enable the spread of cancer cells. For both cancer types, the research team used molecular tools to reduce the amount of cadherin-22. They placed the human cancer cells into the incubator and lowered the oxygen to a level comparable to that in a tumour. The cells failed to spread. “One very powerful and common tool in cell and molecular biology labs is, you can remove a protein from a cell and see how that cell behaves without it. “We culture our cancer cells in this very low-oxygen environment, and they start behaving like they are inside a low-oxygen tumour,” Uniacke added.

22 Book Launch

December 04 - 10, 2017

Dr Mridula Sinha’s books launch

“I am like a bee, I pick pollen from place to place, and make honey...” ‘Ahilya Uwach’, ‘Sahajta ki Bhavyata’ and ‘Panchva Stambh’ was released by Prabhat Prakashan, around the ‘nectar’ of Goa Governor Dr Mridula Sinha’s life saurabh singh

hard work It’s really an extraordinary achievement.


am like a bee, I pick pollen from place to place and make honey”. Dr Mridula Sinha, the Governor of Goa and famous writer, had said these lines about herself. Recollecting these words with the nectar of her life, Prabhat Prakashan launched some books related to her life in the Constitution Club. The occasion was the release of the nectar-fall related to Mridula Sinha’s life. On this occasion, three books were launched : a novel ‘Ahilya Uwach’, a book on the grandeur of simplicity ‘Sahajta ki Bhavyata’, and the special issue of ‘Panchva Stambh’ a monthly journal by Prabhat Prakashan based on the self funding institutions, published on its eleventh anniversary. The inauguration was by the Governor of Uttar Pradesh, Shri Ram Naik. On this occasion, the founder of Sulabh Sanitation Movement, Dr Bindeshwar Pathak, National Book Trust Chairman Baldev Bhai Sharma, and senior journalist Awadhesh Kumar were present along with other dignitaries. I did not struggle, I only put in hard work Mridula Sinha, speaking on this occasion, said that she did not struggle in her life but only put in hard work. Throwing light on her book, Ahilya Uwaach, she said that man comes in many ways in the life of a woman; in Ahilya’s life too, men came in three forms. One tricked her, the other she took as a husband, and the third was a young man who gave her freedom. Describing the text ‘Sahajta ki Bhavyata’ written on her 75th birthday, Mridula Sinha said that a big responsibility has been placed on her by the people who wrote such praises about her. Also, what goals she has to achieve in the coming years, has also been given to her as a curriculum. She promised to take the resolution to work harder for this purpose.

Mridula ji is an inspiration for everyone Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik said on this occasion that Mridula is the inspiration for all. He said that whatever responsibility Mridula Ji gets, she performs it very well. Ram Naik said that Mridula ji has started a new trend in Goa that whosoever meets her should give her the gift of fruits instead of flowers. And the fruits thus gifted to her are distributed among the poor who do not get enough food. Talking about Mridula’s gracious affection, he said that a prestigious daily newspaper in Maharashtra told him to write his memoirs. He gave these memoirs a book form titled ‘Charaivati-Charaivati’ and the preface to this book was written by Mridula ji in Hindi. He added that the Hindi edition sold the most. He expressed his gratitude to her for this. Remembering those days when Mridula Sinha used to work with him as the Chairperson of ‘Mahila Morcha’ in Maharashtra, Ram Naik said that where Mridula has reached today is only through her diligence and

Dr Mridula Sinha says she did not struggle in her

life, but only put in hard work to it. She considers her goals-to-achieve as a curriculum

Reading a book will make your life happier Dr Bindeshwar Pathak, Founder of Sulabh Sanitation Movement, said that Mridula ji is the the Governor, but she is also his ‘gurumata’. He holds her in deep respect. He talked of Mridula ji’s compassion and simple personality. He said that the characteristics of a great person in our society is that she laughs little, talks less, and gives up ordinary life. But Mridula ji sings the folk songs of Chhath and talks about the most common subjects with all the people. Dr Pathak said, “Not many people who have reached such a position as the Governor of a state, will possess such courage.” He announced at the ceremony that he was buying 1000 books today and will give them to the youth working in Sulabh to read, so that their married life becomes happier. He promised to buy more books at a later time. thoughts about women are about co-operation Professor Kumud Sharma of Delhi University, while highlighting the literature of Mridula Sinha, said that the story of women as mythical characters is

Quick Glance Prabhat Prakashan launched 3 books related to Dr Mridula Sinha’s life UP Governor praised the life and work of Dr Sinha as ‘inspiration for all’ Dr Bindeshwar Pathak announced to buy a 1,000 books for Sulabh youth

present in her works. Mythological focus is her area of attention and the main subject of Mridula ji. That is why she has been narrating the story of women’s life by embracing the festivity and eternal concern of Indian culture in her published work. She said that the women’s theme in Mridula’s work is not on the side of fragmentation, but towards coordination. She said that ‘Ahilya Uwach’ is a reflection of women’s crisis today. The center point of this book is the complex relationships between man and woman. Mridula ji has communicated with today’s generation. At the same time, she has discussed with them the qualities of motherhood and marriage. She said that representation of myth is the most difficult task, but Mridula ji has done this job well. She requested that all young men and women should be given this book so that our society can improve. A reader expects a moral position of and human content in a writer. The compositions of Mridula Sinha ji come true on all these aspects.

December 04 - 10, 2017

Science & Technology


telescope astrosat

Indian Telescope Measures Taurus India’s AstroSat telescope measured the X-ray polarisation of the Crab Pulsar in the Taurus constellation IANS

Dr Bindeshwar Pathak,

Founder of Sulabh Sanitation Movement, said that Mridulaji is the Governor, but she is also his ‘gurumata’ Happiness comes only with simplicity Baldev Bhai Sharma, Chairman of the National Book Trust, and Principal Editor of ‘Sahajta ki Bhavyata’, said that one text cannot encapsulate the overall personality of Mridula ji. He spoke on the grandeur of simplicity and said that happiness comes with simplicity and simplicity is available only to the saints. The life of Mridula ji is a living example of the Rishi tradition of India, that is why it was given the name. “Panchva Stambh” is an revolution Commenting on the journey of the magazine, Sangeeta Sinha, Editor of “Panchva Stambh”, said that on November 27, 2006, the magazine was inaugurated. It is completing its 11 years now. This magazine is not merely a movement but a movement of thought. Since its inception, Mridula ji has been associated with it. The objective of the paper is to report the excellent works of self-help organizations (NGOs), to solve social problems and publish positive works of government and society. She said that the demand for the magazine in rural areas is high. This journal has been very useful for research students. Awadhesh Kumar, a longtime journalist associated with the magazine, said that this was a time when there was a demand that journalism should be such that the people should develop the consciousness of doing positive work in the country and society and encourage hard work. This magazine has done this work well.


ndia’s multi-wavelength space telescope AstroSat had measured the X-ray polarisation of the Crab pulsar (star) in the Taurus constellation, said space agency ISRO. “AstroSat accomplished the difficult task of measuring X-ray polarisation of Crab pulsar in the Taurus constellation during 18-months of its study for the first time,” said the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) in a statement here on Monday. ISRO launched its first dedicated space observatory AstroSat on a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (rocket) on September 28, 2015, from its spaceport at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh. “The telescope measured the variations of polarisation as the magnetised object (pulsar) spins 30 times per second,” said the statement quoting from a paper published in “Nature Astronomy” journal. A pulsar is a rotating neutron star or white dwarf, which emits electromagnetic radiation. Neutron stars and black holes are examples of such objects. Taurus is the second astrological sign in the present zodiac. It spans the 3060th degree of the zodiac. The landmark measurement by the satellite’s CZT (Cadmium-ZincTelluride) imaging instrument challenges theories of high energy X-ray emission from pulsars.“Indian scientists using data from the CZT Imager have performed the most sensitive measurement of X-ray polarisation of the Crab pulsar,

Quick Glance AstroSat is ISRO’s first dedicated space observatory satellite It was launched on September 28, 2015 from Sriharikota A pulsar is a rotating neutron star which emits EM radiation

the rotating neutron star which is the main energy source of the nebula,” the scientific paper pointed out. The 1,513 kg space observatory built at a cost of Rs 180 crore has five scientific instruments to study celestial objects in the universe for the first time at optical, ultraviolet and x-ray wavebands simultaneously. The instruments are a soft x-ray telescope, an ultraviolet imaging telescope, an imager and a sky monitor. “The universe is home to many such exotic objects with conditions quite different from the Earth. It is essential

Indian scientists, using

data from the CZT Imager, have performed the most sensitive measurement of X-ray polarisation of the Crab Pulsar

to study them to ensure our predictions describe what goes on in and around them. They are less than a few tens of km but have masses more than that of the Sun and are known as compact objects,” noted the statement. X-ray polarisation measurement is so difficult that so far the measurement obtained worldwide is for the pulsar in the Crab Nebula - the ghostly remains of a massive stellar explosion known as supernova, observed in 1054 AD. With mass condensed in a small volume, the pulsars possess strong gravitational and magnetic fields, both trillion times that on the Earth. They are also sources of intense X-ray radiation, electromagnetic waves similar to light but have ten to hundred thousand times higher energy, which carries vital clues to understand them as well as the physical processes responsible for the radiation. Astronomers have studied properties of this radiation to make a picture of compact objects and their surroundings. “The idea of using CZT Imager for X-ray polarisation measurement has been around for a while, but this is the first time the idea was tested on ground before launch and then employed in space. This makes our measurements credible,” said ISRO’s Ahmedabad-Physical Research Laboratory (PRL) Professor Santosh Vadawale in the paper. Another feature of the measurements is the study of polarisation properties at different rotation phases of the pulsar, which has not been done so far, reiterated Vadawale, lead author of the paper and part of the CZT Imager team. According to Mumbai-based Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) Professor and Imager’s principal investigator A.R. Rao, the team had to observe the Crab pulsar many times and combine data of months given its small rotation period. “To get the micro-second accuracy for combining the data, the AstroSat team sought help from one of the world’s best radio telescopes - the Indian Giant Meter-wave Radio Telescope (GMRT), at Khodad near Pune. Professor Bhal Chandra Joshi and a team from NCRA, Pune, monitored the radio pulsations from Crab with GMRT and Ooty radio telescope, corrected anomalies and provided accurate ephemeris to the imager.

24 North East

DECember 04 - 10, 2017


Itanagar in a click of a button SSB BUREAU


he Capital Administration of Itanagar has launched a website having exclusive features with regard to the Itanagar Municipal Council (IMC). Special features of the www. portal include the contact details of every department under the establishment of the Capital Complex deputy commissioner, link for online application of Inner Line Permit, ST, PRC, income certificate, dependent certificates, death and birth certificates. Citizens can also download the ‘My Itanagar’ application through the website, which has exclusive features with regard to the Itanagar Municipal Council. The website has been created with an aim to disseminate maximum information through a single portal for the convenience of the public, said Itanagar-Capital Complex Deputy Commissioner Prince Dhawan.

“Any complaints, suggestions, feedback regarding IMC may also be registered through the My Itanagar Application”, he added. Route plan for door-to-door garbage collection of each ward, including the names of the lifting points, timing of vehicles, along with the phone numbers of the drivers have also been provided on the website. The DC stressed that citizens should call the numbers of the drivers of their concerned wards in case they fail to turn up for garbage collection. The website has been designed and developed by Capital Complex District Informatics Officer, Tarani Kumar.

Assam on lifestyle

Scoping Mission On Brahmaputra, Tributaries Experts from the Indian Army, Inland Waterways Authority of India, and Assam Government have flagged off a joint scoping mission in the Brahmaputra

Raj Kashyap


joint scoping mission (preliminary survey) comprising experts from the Indian army, Inland Waterways Authority of India and Assam government has been flagged off on the Brahmaputra. The mission was flagged off from Bogibeel Ghat in Upper Assam’s Dibrugarh district. The mission was flagged off by Maj General Balraj Mehta, General Officer Commanding of the Jorhat based Sub Area of Indian Army and Shashi Bhushan Shukla, Secretary, Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI). The aim of this survey is to identify requirement of additional infrastructure to facilitate largescale movement of commercial and military cargo through the Brahmaputra River on the SadiyaDhubri stretch of approximately 891 km, which was declared as National Waterway No 2 (NW-2) in the year 1988. Since then, although IWAI has developed significant infrastructure

on NW-2, however, it has remained underexploited for a long time. This mission will visit the various places along Brahmaputra River and submit its report focusing on transportation through NW-2 in a Multi-Modal Transport concept. It will also give a recommendation on upgrading the infrastructure for the movement of commercial goods, passengers, military cargo and identification of new locations for setting up permanent terminals with road and rail connectivity which can be used both for commercial and defence purposes. Along the way, the team has been interacting with area residents, small transporters, boatmen and other stakeholders to grasp the local transport infrastructure needs, based on which interventions could be made. The Mission is tasked with identifying locations where construction of permanent or temporary terminals could be feasible. The mission will complete this preliminary survey and will submit its report by end December 2017. Meanwhile, a team of officials

The authorities are not only surveying for possible infrastructure changes in the region, but are also building multi-mode terminals

Quick Glance The scoping mission started from Bogibeel Ghat in Assam It will identify requirements of infrastructure for the project The survey will focus on transportation through the NW-2

from Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) is also conducting a hydrological study to assess the feasibility of four rivers of Arunachal Pradesh. Official sources said that Arunachal Chief Minister Pema Khandu has written a letter to the Union Inland Water Transport minister Nitin Gadkari last year requesting him to include the state in the national inland waterways map. “Our expert team has been conducting an in-depth survey of the rivers of Arunachal. Lohit has already been declared as an ideal navigation spot while the authorities will declare Subansiri, Siang and Dibang after data-based analysis,” an IWAI official said. The official said that one of the criterions of navigability is the depth of water. The team has already reached the Dibang and Upper reaches of Siang river. They found two rivers suitable for navigation. The official said the Centre will give all necessary help for the introduction of water transport in Arunachal River after a thorough survey of riverbeds. IWAI has also been working on developing multi-mode terminals where the waterway, road and rail connectivity converge and through which commercial and defence cargo movement is facilitated. In April last, IWAI carried out a pilot run of defence cargo transportation from Pandu to Bogibeel, (Dibrugarh) on NW-2. IWAI’s Ro-Ro vessel, MV Gopinath Bordoloi sailed from Pandu terminal with eight Army trucks and 20 personnel and transported them to Bogibeel (Dibrugarh). During the past two years, some major projects have been implemented on NW-2. The construction of a permanent Ro-Ro terminal at Dhubri is complete and a similar terminal will be developed at Hatsingimari on the opposite bank of the Brahmaputra once the river bank stabilises at Hatsingimari. To facilitate dry docking repair in the Northeastern region, a project for construction of slipway at Pandu has been sanctioned and work is underway. It is scheduled to be completed by December 2018.

DECember 04 - 10, 2017

Assam Bhupen Hazarika Setu

World’s Tallest Rail Girder Bridge PM Narendra Modi recently inaugurated Bhupen Hazarika Setu, the country’s longest river bridge in Assam Raj Kashyap


rime Minister Narendra Modi had recently inaugurated the country’s longest river bridge in Assam Bhupen Hazarika Setu over Lohit river linking Dhola with Sadiya in Tinsukia district of Assam. About three years from now, India’s Northeast will also host the world’s highest rail girder bridge. The Indian Railways has set a target of 2020 for completion of the JiribamImphal broad gauge (BG) line in Manipur, which includes a 141-metre bridge at Noney. Once completed, the bridge will eclipse the current world record holder Mala-Rijeka viaduct in Montenegro in Europe (139 metres). The height of the bridge, being constructed over the Irang river in Tamenglong district is equivalent to two Qutub Minars, To measure 602 metres in length, the bridge is being constructed at an estimated cost of Rs 290 crore. Already 80 per cent of pile foundation work is complete. And

two firms – Simplex Infrastructures Ltd and Braithwaite Burn & Jessop Construction Company Limited – have been engaged by NFR to execute the project, a railway spokesman said. The proposed bridge in Manipur is part of the 111-km-long JiribamTupul-Imphal railway line to connect the capital of Manipur with the broad gauge network of the country. The alignment of the railway line passes through steep rolling hills of the Patkai region, an eastern trail of the Himalayas. While Jiribam, a small town of Manipur near the Assam-Manipur border is situated at 37m above mean sea level, the capital city Imphal is

Quick Glance The bridge is over Lohit river linking Dhola with Sadiya The Indian Railways has set 2020 as the target completion date The bridge will be the world’s highest rail girder bridge

situated at 780m above mean sea level. The Railways also plans to develop the bridge site, which will give a panoramic view of the Manipur hills, as a tourist spot with support from the Manipur government due to its scenic location and tall piers. After meandering its way through a mountain, the line will pass over the tallest bridge before entering an 11.5-km tunnel immediately at the other end and then reach Tupul railway station. The safety tunnel No 12 which is 11.55 km long is the longest in the country, surpassing the famous Pir Panjal tunnel on the Banihal-Qazigund line which is 11.2 km long. The alignment has to traverse through a number of deep gorges and over several rivers flowing at low ground levels. As a result, it has been necessary to construct 37 tunnels measuring a total of 54.5 Km in length and tall bridges to maintain a suitable gradient for efficient operation of railway services. Not just the bridge (codenamed bridge no. 164), the entire 111-km Jiribam-Imphal BG rail line will test the limit the technical prowess of NFR.

North East


Arunachal Pradesh

Pema Khandu’s dashboard Raj Kashyap


runachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu will soon have a Dashboard, an automated centralized web-based application for the state government to aid the process of monitoring and execution of all centrally sponsored schemes as well as state government flagship programmes. A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed by the state government with Ernst & Young (EY) for implementation of Chief Minister’s Dashboard to monitor Key Performance Indicators (KPI) of various departments online through a single-fit window. Performance status of each department in their concerned schemes and projects will be updated constantly from every district that will enable the highest offices of the state government to monitor and facilitate timely execution. To begin with, the Chief Minister Pema Khandu suggested taking in few select departments that are

NE’s First Exclusive Organic Shop

An organic outlet under Mission Organic Chain Development for North East Region scheme was inaugurated at Sanjenthong SSB Bureau


anipur’s Horticulture and Soil Conservation Minister Thounaojam Shyamkumar inaugurated an organic outlet under Mission Organic Chain Development for North East Region (MOVCDNER) scheme at the Directorate of Horticulture and Soil Conservation at Sanjenthong. It is the first exclusive organic shop in the North East India and is fully air conditioned and will remain open from 7 am to 8 pm daily.

The Organic Outlet will have two categories of products fresh and process/ value added vegetables, fruits, and spices among others produced by identified/registered farmers of the State. At present 5,000 organic farmers are registered under Manipur Organic Mission Agency. Th. Shyamkumar said the Organic Outlet will help in promoting a healthy lifestyle among the citizens. Stating the need for promoting organic farmers, he advised the department to conduct awareness and training programmes for the farmers. Th. Shyamkumar promising

all help advised the department to plan for home delivery service and reach out to buyers online. He urged the department officials to welcome and cooperate with the farmers with their queries and called upon citizens of the State to encourage the organic farmers of the State by buying organic produces/ products. Expressing concern over the increase in the number of private hospitals in the State, he said it shows the worsening health condition of the people. He said we need to concentrate on the food produces and adopt organic cultivation.

implementing important flagship programs of the central and state governments. Later, each and every department will be incorporated into the dashboard and also be opened to the public. “It will bring in transparency and better accountability which will enable effective decision making in a quicker time period. It will account for true reflections – what is shown and what is actually happening. This will fast-track development and help us immensely define ourselves as one of the fast-developing states in the country. The Chief Minister termed the milestone as another giant step towards Digital Arunachal Mission.

26 Assam

DECember 04 - 10, 2017

Assam Festival

Namami Barak Three new bridges over Barak River, a heliport at Karimganj, revival of Sutarkandi Trade Centre

ssb bureau

Quick Glance


naugurating the Namami Barak Festival at Karimgnj in southern Assam, Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal announced a slew of projects for the development of this part of the State. Announcing construction of three new bridges over Barak River to improve road communication in the valley, he said a bridge in each of the three districts would be built and the Public Works Department has already been directed for preparing Detailed Project Report (DPR) for the same. He also made an announcement of constructing a helipad in Karimganj and reviving the Sutarkandi International Trade Centre for the growth of trade and business. The chief minister said that a skill development centre would be opened at Karimganj and the government is also actively considering setting up a medical college in the district. To improve the sports infrastructure in the district the state government would set up a state-of-the-art stadium at Karimganj, Sonowal announced. The chief minister said the Panchgram Paper Mill, which has a key role in developing the economy of the region, would be revived with Central Government’s support within next six months. A modern stadium for sports would be built in Hailakandi

Three new bridges will be constructed over Barak River The PWD has been asked to prepare a Detailed Project Report Steel shallow draft boats were also inaugurated

and a skill development centre would also be set up in the district for skilling the youth to enable them to find employment opportunities, he said. The chief minister also inaugurated today four steel shallow draft boats on River Barak and participated in the flagging off ceremony of SilcharGuwahati-Trivandrum Express train along with Union MoS Home Kiren Rijiju and Union MoS Railways Rajen Gohain. Speaking at the central programme of Namami Barak festival at Silchar, Sonowal said that Barak and Brahmaputra Rivers have the same

language and that language is of brotherhood, unity and harmony. He also said that Namami Barak is not only a festival but it is a new journey to explore these parts of Assam. Saying that this festival is organised to revive humanistic values, to discover resources and possibilities of the land, Sonowal stated that Namami Barak would boost the government’s commitment to develop the economy of the state and motivate everyone to engage with renewed vigour to take Assam into high growth trajectory. During his speech, the chief minister also said that Barak valley has been neglected for long and people of this valley have lots of anguish and disappointments. Saying that Namami Barak is an effort to ensure that the people of this valley can move forward in equal footing with the rest of the state, Sonowal stated that just like Namami Brahmaputra was inaugurated by

The Assam

government has fulfilled its promise of dredging the Barak River and is carrying on with other activities as well

then President Pranab Mukherjee, Namami Barak is also fortunate to have President Kovind’s participation. He also said that those forces inimical to state’s peace and development must be defeated by the people living across the plains and hills, Barak and Brahmaputra valleys of the state by staying united. The Chief Minister also said that the Central Government, under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, is giving a lot of importance to developing Barak valley along with the whole of the northeast. Railway ministry has introduced many new trains from Barak Valley and today also a new train connecting Silchar –DibrugarhTrivandrum has been flagged off, he stated. He also informed that Dibrugarh and Silchar direct air connectivity has also started. The chief minister also requested Union MoS Railways Rajen Gohain to start a new train from Saurashtra to Dibrugarh and Silchar. Construction of the mini secretariat at Silchar would start soon and Vivekananda Cultural and Research Institute is also going to be set up here, he said. A national level library would also be built at Silchar and a skill development centre would also be set up at Silchar along with two other districts of Barak Valley, he informed. He also said that though people had doubts earlier about government announcements now that situation is not there as the government has fulfilled its promise of dredging the Barak River by starting works today. Although two dredgers are engaged now, three more would be added in the future, he said. River navigation from Silchar to the Bay of Bengal via Bangladesh would be started and this would boost the trade and business activities in the region, he said.

DECember 04 - 10, 2017



Bihar govt Toilets

Bihar Govt Gives Loans For Toilets

With an aim to construct 1.21 crore toilets by 2019, Bihar govt has decided to give out loans to help people construct toilets Satyam


r Bindeshwar Pathak, founder of Sulabh Sanitation & Social Reform Movement, has long said that if people get a loan from the banks for making toilets, it will be a helpful step in furthering the cleanliness drive. He not only wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi about this, but also talked to him one-on-one when he met him. It is heartening to note that Dr Pathak’s opinion is now getting recognition at the government level. Furthering the efforts of Dr Pathak, and in a bid to implement the ambitious ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’ of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Government of Bihar has taken a lot of important decisions. Earlier, the Nitish Kumar government had decided to give 12 thousand rupees per family as a loan. This loan was to be given under the government’s “seven decision-making schemes”. The Bihar Government has decided to construct 1.21 crore toilets by 2019. The instructions for lending loans by the banks were taken at a meeting of the committee headed by Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi in the second week of November. The Bihar government is already serious about the construction of toilets and many decisions and instructions have been issued for this. In the second week of November, it was decided in a meeting of top banks, headed by the Deputy Chief Minister and Finance Minister Sushil Modi, that Rural Banks will now give loans for the construction of toilets. In the departmental office at Patna’s old Secretariat, Bank officials were

Quick Glance Rural banks will give out loans for construction of toilets Banks will lend Rs 12,000 to each family for the purpose 1100 toilets have already been constructed in the state

instructed to lend loan to the people for the construction of toilets. He told the officials that employed teachers should also get loans according to their needs. There are 698 branch offices in 11 districts of Central Vihar Gramin Bank, from which 86,000 groups of livelihood are connected. There are 15 members in a group, thus linking this to about 13 lakh living members. The banks will lend 12 thousand rupees per family to make the toilets and after receiving the beneficial family incentives, it will repay the loan to the bank. So far, 11 hundred toilets have been constructed by the bank from loans. He also said that the employed teachers would be able to serve till 60 years of their age. In such a way, by linking their salary accounts, the bank should provide them loans according to their needs. In the meeting, all the top officials of the department were present, including Nasim Ahmad, President of Central Vihar Gramin Bank, Regional Manager Ratnesh Ranjan and others.

Earlier, in the year 2014, the Bihar government had decided to construct 1.21 crore toilets by 2019 to pay tribute to Mahatma Gandhi. On Gandhi’s 150th anniversary, the government had described this kind of determination as a tribute. Earlier, the government had decided to built 40 lakh toilets from various schemes of the central and state government. Then, Divisional Minister Maha Chandra Prasad Singh had given this information in the Bihar Legislative Assembly that the Bihar Government is determined to get rid of the open defecation problem and it is being very focused in every way. In the year 2016, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar had said on the occasion of the launch of the seven decision-making schemes that the Bihar government has decided to give 12 thousand rupees per household toilets for construction. This seven determination plan carried

Bihar has ramped up its efforts to build

toilets with rural banks giving out loans of Rs 12,000 to each family

the slogan ‘Water in every house tap’ and ‘Respect for the toilet constructing house’. The schemes will be applicable in every city and village of the state. The Government’s schemes to get rid of open defecation in the state is finding support not only in nongovernmental organizations is but also women’s Self Help Groups. Ujjwal Gram organization, Jahannabad has also been campaigning to get rid of open defecation under the social change program. Two women named Poonam Devi and Nagina Devi, have made hundreds of homes free from open defecation, setting the new example in this matter. These two women were involved in the construction of toilets campaign and several non-governmental organizations too were involved in it, thus getting many congratulations in the area. Now after the latest directive by the Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Modi, it is expected that people will begin the construction of toilets in their homes by taking loans from the rural banks and realize the dreams of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the resolution of Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.

28 Environment carbon emmission

Plant Respiration is a Source Of Carbon Emissions Plants release around 30 per cent higher carbon during respiration



arbon released by plant respiration may be around 30 per cent higher than previously predicted, a new study claims. The study, published in the journal Nature Communications, suggests that as the mean global temperature increases, respiration will increase significantly. Such increases may lower the future ability of global vegetation to offset carbon dioxide emissions caused by burning fossil fuels. “Plants both capture carbon dioxide and then release it by respiration. Changes to either of these processes in response to climate change have profound implications for how much ecosystems soak up carbon dioxide emissions from burning fossil fuels,” said lead author Chris Huntingford of Britain’s Centre for Ecology & Hydrology. “In fact, this study provides the most up-to-date accounting of respiratory carbon releases from plants in terrestrial systems,” Peter Reich, Professor at University of Minnesota College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences in the US, said. The findings are based on the comprehensive GlobResp database, which is comprised of more than 10,000 measurements of carbon dioxide plant respiration from plant species around the globe.

December 04 - 10, 2017

evolution bird species

New Species Develop In Just Two Generations Scientists now have genetic evidence that evolution, or mutation, could be faster IANS


study of birds, which live on the Galapagos Islands in the Pacific Ocean, has shown direct genetic evidence that new species can arise in just two generations. The findings, published in the journal Science, are based on a study of a “strange” bird that arrived on a remote island in the Galapagos archipelago 36 years ago. “The novelty of this study is that we can follow the emergence of new species in the wild,” said B. Rosemary Grant from Princeton University in the US. The researchers said that the newcomer belonging to one species mated with a member of another species resident on the island, giving rise to a new species that today consists of roughly 30 individuals. The study comes from work conducted on Darwin’s finches, which live on the Galapagos Islands. The remote location enabled researchers to study the evolution of biodiversity due to natural selection.

The direct observation of the origin of this new species occurred during fieldwork carried out over the last four decades by Rosemary and Peter Grant, two scientists from Princeton, on the small island of Daphne Major. “Through our work on Daphne Major, we were able to observe the pairing up of two birds from different species and then follow what happened to see how speciation occurred,” Rosemary Grant said. In 1981, a graduate student working with the Grants on Daphne Major noticed the newcomer, a male that sang an unusual song and was much larger in body and beak size than the three resident species of birds on the island. The researchers took a blood

It happened in just two generations, according to observations made by the grants in the field in combination with the genetic studies

Quick Glance The findings were published in the journal Science The study follows on the work conducted on Darwin’s finches The scientists were able to study how speciation occurs

sample and released the bird, which later bred with a resident medium ground finch of the species Geospiz fortis, initiating a new lineage. The research team followed the new “Big Bird lineage” for six generations, taking blood samples for use in genetic analysis. In the current study, researchers from Uppsala University in Sweden analysed DNA collected from the parent birds and their offspring over the years. The offspring were also reproductively isolated because of their song, which is used to attract mates, was unusual and failed to attract females from the resident species. The offspring also differed from the resident species in beak size and shape, which is a major cue for mate choice. As a result, the offspring mated with members of their own lineage, strengthening the development of the new species, the researchers said. Researchers previously assumed that the formation of a new species takes a very long time, but in the Big Bird lineage, it happened in just two generations, according to observations made by the Grants in the field in combination with the genetic studies. One of the most striking aspects of this study is that hybridization between two distinct species led to the development of a new lineage that after only two generations behaved as any other species of Darwin’s finches, explained Leif Andersson, Professor at Uppsala University.

December 04 - 10, 2017

Quick Glance

ngt river linking

NGT To Centre On River Linking

The NDA government has been pushing for river linking projects It says this will send surplus water from rivers to dry areas One of the projects is Ken-Betwa, which NGOs have objected to

NGT issued a notice to the Centre on clearances granted to the Rs 1,800-crore Ken Betwa River linking project



solar power

Delhi To Generate 1,000 MW Solar Power By 2019 Delhi’s solar power capacity will be 1,000 Megawatts by 2019 paving the way for lower electricity rates in the capital



he National Green Tribunal (NGT) has issued a notice to the Centre on clearances granted to the Rs 1,800-crore KenBetwa river linking project. A bench headed by Justice Swatanter Kumar issued the notice to the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Water Resources Ministry and the governments of Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh, where the project is located, and sought replies within two weeks. The NGT was hearing a plea by environmentalist Himanshu Thakkar, who sought a stay on the project on the ground of lack of environmental and human impact

The NGT has put a

spanner in the KenBetwa river linking project, saying the government must await its final clearance assessment. “The project’s completion will be subject to a final order from the tribunal,” NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar said. The National Democratic Alliance government’s ambitious project seeks to interlink Ken River in Madhya Pradesh and

solar power agriculture

Fadnavis To Bring Solar Power To Farms The Maharashtra CM launched a pilot project under which farmlands in the state can get upto 12 hours of uninterrupted solar power IANS


aharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has laid foundation stone for a pilot project under which farmlands

in the state could get upto 12 hours uninterrupted power tapping solar energy, officials said here. The pilot project will come up at Ralegan-Siddhi, the famed model village created by social crusader Anna Hazare,

Betwa in Uttar Pradesh to re-route surplus water. In December 2016, the then Water Resources Minister Uma Bharti said that the Wildlife Board of India had given its green signal to the project, clearing the last hurdle. However, as per the Environment Ministry, the project would harm forests and wildlife habitat in the area, including loss of 58.03 square km of Panna tiger habitat in Madhya Pradesh in the first phase. On the other hand, the project is expected to provide drinking water to over one million people and irrigate about six lakh hectares of land in drought-prone regions in both states, especially the Bundelkhand region. under the state g o v e r n m e n t ’s ‘Mukhyamantri Agricultural Solar Feeder Scheme’. “With this Agricultural Solar Feeder Scheme, we will be able to provide electricity to our farmers during daytime. This is a clean and green energy, is environment friendly, and I am confident that in three years it will change the entire scenario of the agricultural sector,” Fadnavis said. He added that the scheme has earned laurels from the NITI Aayog.



elhi will generate 1,000 megawatt (MW) of solar power by 2019 which will also help bring down electricity rates, state Health Minister Satyendra Jain said. “During the peak hours, there is a demand of about 6,500 MW and during the non-peak hours, it comes down to 3,500 MW. By 2019, Delhi will start producing 1,000 MW of clean energy,” Jain told media here. “All the three discoms of Delhi have been finally been convinced about this after the government spoke to them for about five to six months,” he said. About five lakh people will benefit from this, he said. Jain said that fossil fuel power plants that burn carbon fuels such coal, oil or gas to generate electricity produce huge amounts of pollution and thus there is a need to use clean energy. He also said the solar power project would help in lowering electricity rates in the city, where Rs 5.95 per unit is charged for consumption between 210 and 400 units. “We are expecting these rates to go down to Rs 3 per unit,” Jain said, adding that solar pumps will be available at subsidised for the farmers here. “Domestic electricity meter installation for small businesses open in homes in residential areas, with connections from 0 to 5 KW, will be considered,” he added. Delhi was the second-most polluted major city in the world, as per a WHO study last year.

30 GSI Study

December 04 - 10, 2017


toxic lead In Kolkata’s Street Foods? The lead concentration in the city’s food has shot through the roof: GSI Study

Prasanta Paul


nacks in Gariahat are mouthwatering; variety of fish in Ballygunj is indeed, awesome; the red lentil (mosur dal) in Tollygunj is too inviting to be ignored; chopped chicken in Garden Reach is jaw-dropping; eateries around the Sealdah station are dirt cheap....the food fest for the Bongs and wanderers in Kolkata is simply irresistible. So is the level of poison in them. Believe it or not, the lead concentration in the city’s food has pierced through the roof. And, with each passing day, the situation is turning murkier; at least, that’s what the scientists at the Geological Survey of India(GSI) have found. A new survey recently conducted by the GSI has found that the raw foods and vegetables sold in most of the markets that have sprung up on places and sidewalks in close proximity to the streets have lead concentrations way above the permissible limits. This might sound contrary to the popular belief that consumption of raw food, especially vegetables is good for one’s health. But the scientists at GSI feel otherwise; according to these group of scientists, raw foods and vegetables are actually harmful to health and can permanently damage key human organs. The GSI scientists who had collected samples of raw food items like polished rice, red lentil (masoor dal), red spinach, chicken, fish (without scales), biscuits, spice ( (cumin seeds) and a common medicinal herb (Holy Basil or Tulsi) from 12 markets in the city found a mean Lead (Pb) concentration between 3.78 and 43.35 mg/kg against a normal average of 23.56 mg/kg. “The mean Lead concentration found in the raw food materials is very high compared to the threshold value of 2.5mg/kg specified by Food Safety &


The results of the new GSI survey are nothing

short of worrying but the scientists at GSI hope that this would also inspire change

Standards Regulation (2011), India,” senior scientist of the GSI, Avijit Das, who headed the group conducting the two-year study, said. As per the American and European standards, the current reference range for acceptable blood Lead-concentration in a healthy human being, without excessive exposure to environmental sources of Lead, is less than 0.05 mg/L for children while it is less than 0.25 mg/L for adults. Since lead is a highly toxic element, prolonged exposure to lead, to humans can cause permanent damage to the kidneys, liver and hematologic systems. And what is most important for parents to take note of is that children are more at risk because lead exposure can reverse their brain growth and cause irreversible damage to their overall well being. The crucial point that the GSI study has highlighted (keeping in mind POISONING the Kolkatans’ reputed penchant for street foods) is that about 75 per cent of the Lead contamination in the food items sold in Kolkata markets has been contributed by atmospheric Lead, mainly produced by the combustion

of diesel. Apart from collecting soil and vegetable samples from Dhapa ground, alongside the EM Bypass, for the study of Lead contamination, the scientists had also collected street dust samples from major streets and roads of the northern and southern parts of the city. “Coal samples were collected from Jharia and Ranigunj to assess the presence of atmospheric lead from the use of coal while Galena (ore of Lead) samples from Alwar (Rajasthan) were brought to calculate the Lead Isotopic Ratio (LIR) of Indian lead,” Das said. This apart, rainwater and diesel samples have been collected from city markets for the study. “All these samples have been collected to compare their LIR and lead concentration with that of the raw food items sold in Kolkata markets,” he added. To compare the level of contamination in sediments and vegetables found in Dhapa, soil and vegetable samples have been collected from a relatively less polluted Ichapur (Control Site) in North 24 Parganas district. Elaborating on the findings, Mr Das said that the maximum Lead concentration in rice was 14.39mg/kg found in the samples collected from a market in Kidderpore in the western part of the city. “The Lead concentration in red lentil samples collected from markets in Tollygunge in south Kolkata was found to be between 1.82 and 7.44 mg/kg,

Quick Glance GSI conducted a survey on street foods in the city GSI scientists had collected samples of raw food items The mean lead concentration was found to be 3.78 and 43.35 mg/kg

which is quite alarming.” As for vegetables sold in different markets, the study revealed a Lead concentration ranging from a low of 3.28 mg/kg to a very high value of 145.47 mg/ kg while fish had a range of 1.33 to 17.80 mg/kg. Interestingly, there’s a shocking news for chicken lovers; samples of chicken collected from a market at Garden Reach in the city’s port area showed a Lead concentration of 9.58 mg/kg. “ This is simply unbelievable,” the GSI scientist stated. The entire cumin seeds samples collected from a market in Tollygunge area had a Lead-concentration value of 31.25 mg/kg. Among the herb (tulsi) samples, the range of lead concentration was from 8.92 to 33.27 mg/kg”. Samples of vegetables from the three different sites in Dhapa showed an average Lead concentration of 16.83 mg/kg with the Bainchtola sample bearing the minimum with 13.24 mg/kg.The less contaminated soil and vegetable samples collected from Ichapur had a total Lead concentration value of 137.75 mg/kg for soil sample and 5.17 mg/kg respectively. The average Lead concentration in soil samples collected from the three sites at Dhapa was 475.85 mg/kg with the minimum value of 197.09 mg/kg at Bainchtola and a maximum of 800.39 mg/kg at Arupota. The GSI scientists who had already shared their findings with the senior health officials of the Kolkata Municipal Corporation and the West Bengal government felt that there is an urgent need for launching a sustained campaign to drive home the message how lead poisoning has reached an alarming level in the city and neighbouring areas. People’s fascination to have a go at the snacks on the street requires to be contained if they know that the Lead concentration in locally made snacks have been found to be high.

Classified Ad

December 04 - 10, 2017

Net Habit


kids web exposure

Now, Parents Can Keep An Eye On Kids’ Net Habits Netgear India’s routers now come with parental monitoring technologies Quick Glance

G Ulaganathan

The new routers help parents monitor log in activity


f late violence against children in schools has been increasing, especially in big cities. While in advanced countries like the US school kids bring even guns to school and shoot down teachers, India is also slowly edging towards such violent culture. It has been a cause of worry not only to the parents but also the school management which have had to face the wrath of law enforcing agencies and sometimes even have to forfeit the licences to run their institutions. While it is only a rare incident here and there, such incidents are blown out of proportions by the electronic media, and many reputed school managements have had to lose their reputations and even close down. While this is a major threat and danger which the law enforcing agencies are facing, there is another more intricate threat to the children who get trapped into it whether they are inside the school or outside. And due to peer pressure, it spreads like wildfire and affects all age groups. Though the big cities are worst affected, it is now percolating down to tier 2, tier 3 and even tier 4 towns. Even as school managements are pulling up their socks to ensure a safe and secure environment for children, parents are getting paranoid about the dangers caused by the big, bad web also. Many want to curb the content their children are browsing the Internet. The recent examples are an addiction to dangerous games such as the Blue Whale Challenge. With the boom in Android phones in the market, and internet easily available on the palm of one’s hand, parents are finding it tough to monitor what their child keeps browsing. Here is some welcome news. Some tech firms in the city are now coming up with innovative routers, apps, and devices that can help the parents and teachers keep an eye on the content being browsed. One such innovation has been

The routers offer high-level WPA/ WPA2 security Parents are given a key to login and check their child’s web activity

In an effort to safeguard children, NETGEAR India has released new routers that allow parents to track their kid’s web activity

introduced for the first time by NETGEAR — a kind of router with parental controls for homes. How does the simple router control the content? Says Mr Marthesh Nagendra, Country Manager – NETGEAR India & SAARC, “Routers play a role in the content control and it puts a lot of emphasis on security at home. Through this technology, parents can also monitor the content that is being browsed by their child outside of their homes too. We have used multiple things where security has become the key aspect. “Kids, right from KG to high school, are addicted to their phones 24X7 and it has led to their almost t o t a l confinement to home and neglect of any o u t d o o r activity. In times like this, how can we tell

them; don’t do this and do this? We have a solution on how parents can now systematically control their child’s usage of internet. It is not curtailing of the freedom, it is for the safety and security of their child,” Marthesh adds. While parents are given a key to log in and see what sites are being browsed, even the Blue Whale Challenge can be tackled with this. Technologies like this can now help the parents battle this issue too. Marthesh says, “After Blue Whale became popular, there has been a great demand from parents who come to us and ask if something can be done through the Internet. We have installed the security features and parents can themselves control what their child is not supposed to see.” How does it work?

“Both routers offer high-level WPA/ WPA2 security and secure connections. Upon detection, guest devices are automatically directed to access a separate Wi-Fi network so they do not have access to the home network or to the shared USB hard drive containing the host’s personal data. There are other techies who agree and say there are also a lot of free and commercial Apps that can control the content. Avinash Bharwani, Vice President – New Business, JETKING, says, “There are plenty of Apps both free and commercial versions available to control the content and ensure safe browsing for kids/ students. `Cyber Patrol’ is one of the better parental control apps. It is designed to block access to objectionable Web sites, and it provides activity logging and realtime activity monitoring. “K9 Web Protection” from Blue Coat Company, is a free utility that is designed to regulate the way your Internet connection can be used. It monitors and prevents the internet browsing activity and takes the screenshot of the browsing done by the user. So, enough tools and safeguards are there and a lot of work is being done by many startups keeping the safety and future of children in mind, but there is not much awareness about these tools. “We want the media and the state government to take it up and educate the parents, “ says Ms Vatsala, a parent of two small children. “There is also need for including the subject of cyber threats in the curriculum so that the children also understand that is good and what is bad”, she adds.


DECember 04 - 10, 2017


purnima devi barman: Adjutant Storks’ Saviour


The young biologist worked to remove the prejudice from among villagers to save the nesting places for this very important scavenger bird

Purnima is a very strong woman who is breaking many a stereotype in rural Assam. She won many accolades for her single-minded focus on saving Storks. For saving the lives of Storks Purnima started working with Aaranyak, a topbracket nature conservation organization. She set all women hargilla army of around 250-foot soldiers. Along with Purnima, her women soldiers started sensitising villagers, explaining them the importance of the winged species for the mankind. Now, the villagers fondly call Purnima ‘hargilla baideu’. Point to

purnima devi barman

ers ak New New s smma kers

Reyhan Camalova

15-Year-Old Harvests Energy From Rainwater Reyhan Camalova is the youngest female entrepreneur attending the 8th Global Entrepreneurship Summit


hen you can make energy from wind, why not from rainwater? This question from her father inspired their 15-yearold girl from Azerbaijan to set up a company to do exactly that. Reyhan Camalova is the youngest female entrepreneur attending the 8th Global Entrepreneurship Summit

(GES) here with the theme “Women first, Prosperity for all”. The Class 9 student was one of the three entrepreneurs referred to by US President Donald Trump’s daughter and advisor Ivanka Trump in her speech at the inaugural session. “Reyhan is 15 years old. But that hasn’t stopped her from founding a company that harvests energy from rainwater,” Ivanka said. “Reyhan has a powerful motto Light up one house at a time. Reyhan, each home you light up is illuminating the world. We are all inspired by your brilliance and hard work,” she added. Reyhan is attending the GES for the first time and is trying to find investors for her start-up Rainergy. “I am looking for investment for making energy device,” the teenaged CEO and Founder of Rainergy told IANS on the sidelines of the summit. The girl, who hails from a middle class family, needs $20,000 to set up a manufacturing unit and to reach the global market. Keen to have a partner in her start-up and enter the Indian

market, she got an opportunity to participate in the pitch competition. Coming from Quba region of Azerbaijan, she likes chemistry, physics and mathematics among other subjects at school. Some of her school mates and physicists have joined hands to work on the project. “Rainwater has huge potential if utilized properly,” said the girl, who has designed a smart generator to harvest energy from the rain. “The initial prototype of Rainergy produces 22W of power and lightens up to 22 LED lamps. While piezoelectric rain generators produce only 25 microwatt of power, our model is much more efficient in comparison with similar systems,” she added It also stores energy in the accumulator so that it can be used even there is no rain at all. Reyhan claims that rain energy reduces the amount of CO2 emissions to 10 g per KW/hour during the production of the electricity. “This amount is very low compared to the other current alternative energy solutions,” she added.

be noted that hardly 1,200 of these storks have survived in India and Cambodia. Assam accounts for 75% of the birds’ population — Kamrup d i str ict alone accounting for 600 of them. In recognition of her decade-long conservation efforts with the involvement of the community, Purnima was chosen for this year’s Whitley Award, popularly called the Green Oscar, along with five other globally acclaimed conservation workers.

Chanu Saikhom Mirabai


HE Kamrup district of Assam, Dadara Pacharia is now a very special place for conservationists. The sound of flutterings of more than 600 Greater Adjutant Storks or ‘hargilla’ is an amazing moment for them. Scavenger bird - Greater Adjutant Stork is listed in the red list of endangered species. Scavenger storks feed on carcasses, the prime reason why villagers consider them dirty and cut the trees where these birds nest. This change came only by the untiring efforts of a young woman biologist, Purnima Devi Barman.



32 Unsung Hero


India’s Mirabai wins two golds in weightlifting


ndian athlete Chanu Saikhom Mirabai showed grit in winning the women’s 48kg total and clean and jerk titles at the 2017 world weightlifting championships last week. Mirabai, the 2017 Commonwealth Games champion, lifted her personal best in career totaling 194kg to beat Sukcharoen Thunya of Thailand to the second place by a slim margin of 1kg. She was also the winner in clean and jerk of the event, reports Xinhua news agency. Two-time junior world champion Sukcharoen finished first in snatch with 86kg but came up short in the clean and jerk. The Pan-American champion Ana Iris Segura Segura from Columbia was third in total.

RNI No. DELENG/2016/71561, Joint Commissioner of Police (Licensing) Delhi No. F. 2 (S-45) Press/ 2016 Volume - 1, Issue - 51 Printed by Monika Jain, Published by Monika Jain on behalf of SULABH SANITATION MISSION FOUNDATION and Printed at The Indian Express Ltd., A-8, Sector-7, NOIDA (U.P.) and Published from RZ 83, Mahavir Enclave, Palam-Dabri Road, New Delhi – 110 045. Editor Monika Jain

Sulabh Swachh Bharat - (Issue - 51)  
Sulabh Swachh Bharat - (Issue - 51)