Sulabhâ€™s Magic in Sohna
Small Movement, Great Miracle
Bend It Like Alakhpura Girls
Full Of Beauty, Grit And Feathers
65 toilets were handed over to the families of Indri village, Sohna
The idea at CEHRO is not to reform education but to transform it
Football to them is not just a game, but a way to make their dreams come true
Madhubala, born on February 14, 1933; was gone on February 23, 1969 with her unfulfilled desires sulabhswachhbharat.com FIND US ONLINE
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RNI No. DELENG/2016/71561
A Good News Weekly
Vol - 2 | Issue - 10 | February 19 - 25, 2018 | Price ` 5/-
Anil khaitan industrialist and a good samaritan
Anil Khaitan is currently the president of PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry, but his heart lies in developing a healthy nation for a healthy economy
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018
Quick Glance With the New Year of 1956 began the life and journey of Anil Khaitan With many businesses to handle, he boldly took up the presidentship of PHDCCI He believes in combining enterprise with the all-round development of society
his is grassroots. This is where it all starts. The earlier approach to national development planning often alienated and isolated implementation for the rural masses. On the other hand, those formulated and executed for and at the grassroots, aka local communities, often thrive. One such grassroots ‘messiah’ silently working in two most basic, yet deprived, fields of necessity – healthcare and sanitation, which should ideally be equivalent to the entire humanity – is Anil Khaitan, the president of PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Born in the city which is headquarter to Mother
Teresa’s ‘Missionaries of Charity’ – Calcutta (now Kolkata) – this humane gentleman had decided to give back to the society. With the New Year of 1956 began the life and journey of philanthropist Anil Khaitan. He did his initial schooling in Calcutta, shifted to an American boarding school in Mussoorie in 1963, and then returned to his city of birth in 1970 to complete his schooling. He graduated from St. Xavier’s College, Calcutta, and then mastered the art of business from IMI Geneva. Much before he completed his MBA in 1981, Khaitan had stepped into his family business. It was not till 1984 that Khaitan left his birth place to look after the speciality paper mill in Chandigarh.
With many businesses to handle at once,
one more responsibility landed on his shoulders when he became the President of PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry
Thereafter he started building a copper smelter and refinery in Bharuch district of Gujarat and finally settled down in Delhi in 1992 to look after the growth of his multiple businesses. With many businesses to handle at once, one more responsibility landed on his able shoulders when he became the President of India’s apex commerce and industry body PHD Chamber. The strong leadership of PHD is making a huge difference in the development and the growth of the country, and leading from the front is the dynamic president Anil Khaitan. Prior to becoming the President of the PHD Chamber, Khaitan was its Senior Vice President. He also holds various offices, such as member of World Presidents’ Organisation, institutional member of All Indian Management Association, among others. Today, Anil Khaitan’s name is taken in the chart of country’s most talented entrepreneurs with great respect. This 60-year-old has a lot of experience in jute, paper, medicine, copper and steel industry. Khaitan is a big analyst of
the country’s economic situations and plans. He has been pitching for the country on economic and financial fronts, especially after becoming the president of the PHD Chamber board. He has always had a great zeal to learn and experience Nature and life around him. His favourite quote “The only thing perfect in the world is Nature” has been truly followed by him in his personal and professional life. Despite too much on his plate, Khaitan never overlooked his responsibility towards the society. His belief on giving back has stood strong, which is reflected in the projects undertaken by the various companies under his wings. His forte is healthcare and sanitation. As a part of the Sunil Healthcare family, he has put in all his efforts as managing director towards healthcare initiatives. Free medicines are a blessing that Sunil Healthcare-run NGOs are dispensing to the poor of Rajasthan. As sanitation is directly related to healthcare, Khaitan couldn’t overlook the major lag in such essential field. So, next up on agenda was sanitation, which took shape of a mission to uplift the downtrodden and sanitise the ‘dhanis’ (a type of hamlet, the smallest conglomeration of houses, which are smaller than villages) of Alwar district of Rajasthan. This sanitation drive has today resulted in freeing three villages from open-defecation. Khaitan believes in combining commerce and enterprise with the all-round development of the society. He is of the view that from cleanliness to education to employment, the business sector can play a big role in various fields. A constructive role played by a business can result in expected social upliftment at par with desired standards. A very bullish Khaitan believes, “We Indians have to bring 20 per cent of India into our mental psyche. We must know our duties towards India rather than only our rights. Both duties and rights are two sides of a coin.”
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Implementation At Micro-level Is Where It All Begins anil khaitan
nil Khaitan has been the CMD of Sunil Healthcare Ltd and serves as the head of the PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The MBA from IMD International is equally committed to both, his state Rajasthan and also to healthcare and sanitation, where he spends considerable money as not just business, but as a passion, with the view that a ‘healthy country is a healthy economy’. He spoke in detail to Swastika Tripathi: What is social-work – its obligation and the true sense of uplifting the downtrodden? Social work is basically an obligation of business because whatever we get, we get from the society, and whatever we give - we give to the society in terms of goods and services. But of course that’s for money, we get paid for it. So similarly when the society is assisting you in putting up or facilitating the whole infrastructure where you can do your business or whatever you want to do, I think it becomes a human being’s obligation to give back to the society. To me social work with expectations in return is not true social work. It is an investment. You are investing that money to get your name. But work done on very low key basis, without much fanfare and publicity, is actually social work. Social work is very essential and it goes a long way in building up a positive image about the haves in the mind of the have-nots, and plus to the extent that is possible the inequality tends to get reduced, provided most of the nation, including the Government, are focused on uplifting the downtrodden and the society. We don’t realise that by uplifting the society, we businessmen are creating future businesses for ourselves and creating much demand in the society by helping them buy goods and services. And in all of this, who gains? It is the business which gains. So social work is very important for the inclusive growth of any nation. How do you see the National Healthcare Insurance Scheme for the poor? Is it at par with the current
healthcare scenario of India? No, I don’t think so. We have to now see ‘Ayushman Bharat’ scheme of Rs 5 lakh a family which the finance minister has announced in the Budget. The scheme is very good but the question is implementation and the infrastructure. I am very sorry to say that in our country the health infrastructure isn’t worth its name. 80 per cent is controlled by the private sector and only 20 per cent by the government. Plus, the government’s spends on health is hardly one per cent of our GDP, whereas the WHO-minimum is a country should spend three per cent of its GDP. With such huge poor population and people living in unhygienic conditions, the spread of disease in our country is also quite wide. And those diseases are not being addressed efficiently, hygienically and in a lowcost manner, as they should be. Therefore, I would suggest to the government that it is best to go on a private-public partnership mode and let the private sector use the existing infrastructure of the entire Government of India for delivering health services right up to the last mile village. India has a long way to go for universal health coverage. It needs at least seven to eight lakh crore rupees spend every year to build up the health sector because we all know that a healthy nation is a healthy economy. Focus on health sector is needed and that focus for the first time has come in this year’s Budget. Hope the momentum in building the infrastructure now is focused and the next step of the government would be to focus on the infrastructure and healthcare delivery services. What is your contribution to the healthcare of poor as the CMD of Sunil Healthcare? We have a factory in Alwar where we’ve got three major NGOs. Every month we give a certain sum to each NGO to buy free medicines and they are dispensing those medicines free of cost to the poor people. So at the healthcare level, our company is doing that month-after-month and yearafter-year.
You have an interesting concept of sanitation in your Mission Dhani. Could you shed some light on the dhani idea? We are quite passionate about sanitation. In Rajasthan, there are two concepts - one is a village and other is a ‘dhani’. A village has approximately 200 to 250 houses and a dhani has 25 to 30 huts. Dhani is an area where I feel nobody looks at as if human beings don’t live there. So, we went to the dhanis, in a particular area of Alwar district, and there we made three villages ODF (open-defecation free). The average number of huts in each village was about 27 and we made one toilet per hut in every dhani. So, virtually, now every hut has a toilet attached to it within its own compound. We did a reference check after having done the above. It was quite heartening to know that 95 per cent of the toilets are being used day in and day out. People are very happy, especially the womenfolk. It has improved the health of their children. It has improved the attendance at the schools. Wherever we have a dhani, we also have a school. So we also make toilets there. That facilitates the children during the school-hours to have access to toilets. We are very satisfied with this mission of ours and plan to continue to do it year after year so that we can at least complete whatever we have on our hand in the district of Alwar, Rajasthan. You have a special love for Rajasthan and beautiful concept of sustainable sanitation…
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018
The journey in short
Born on January 1, 1956, in Calcutta Went to Vincent High School, an American boarding school in Mussoorie, in 1963 Returned to Calcutta in 1970 to complete his schooling and college Joined the family business in 1977 Graduated from IMI, Geneva, in 1981 as a Master of Business Arts
Moved to Chandigarh in 1984 to look after specialty paper mill business Moved to Delhi in 1992 whilst building a copper smelter and refinery business in Bharuch, Gujarat Became the Chairman cum Managing Director of Sunil Healthcare Limited on August 1, 2007 Spearheads the healthcare
and sanitation-centric CSR policy of Sunil Healthcare since 2015
Became the president of PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry on October 26, 2017
Rajasthan especially because – firstly, we hail from the state of Rajasthan; secondly, our factory was in Alwar; thirdly, we are in healthcare business. We thought sanitation is directly related to healthcare and thus decided that let’s take Alwar as it is one of the largest districts of Rajasthan. This way we can cover a lot of people if we keep on making toilets on a sustainable and consistent basis. How do you rate the current government’s progress of the Swachh Bharat Mission? I think it’s a great mission announced by the Prime Minister that no other Prime Minister (or leader) ever thought about, other than the Father of our Nation Mahatma Gandhi. I think it’s a human necessity. So why should the poor people be deprived of any such thing which is basic to the entire humanity? It’s one of the noblest missions which the Government of India has taken on social contribution to the society, by improving their hygiene, by improving their health, and by reducing the risk factors (especially to the women folk) by creating toilets. You speak of debatable funds – basic need the key to size… That’s debatable because the question is what kind of a toilet you need. If the basic needs of a human being are addressed and the toilets are well covered, can be locked, the water is coming and the other toilet accessories or whatever you have in a basic toilet - wash basin, etc. - if they’re proper then I think it’s a good and reasonable sized figure which the government is spending. It will pay rich dividends. And reaching out to the block-level, because small is BIG? I would suggest that at the block level - because India has 6,200 blocks - if a committee could be made under the district magistrate, where the involvement of the community, of some 10-12 people coming from various facets of life, is inducted, then I think this committee can work as the thinking agency and also the one overseeing the implementation at the micro level. If the implementation is seen at the micro level, I think that is where we will get things done much faster. And as people say we see nothing on the ground, we’ll start seeing everything on the ground. That is my concrete suggestion that we should take the noble policies of the government right up to the block level for implementation. Namami Gange is key to the cleanliness and health of a vast section of the country. How do you see it?
The other side
This man in suit isn’t all about corporate, business, leadership and social work. As any other common man, Anil Khaitan is a family guy who in spare time brings out his sport-enthusiast and book-worm side. “My hobbies are basically on the sport side. I love golf, I love to play tennis. As of indoor hobbies, I am generally fond of reading and being with the family. I find that very relaxing.” The Minister, Mr Arjun Ram Meghwal, had asked our members to adopt certain stretches of the Ganges. We’re now getting the details from the concerned Ministry as to what is their programme for private adoption and some of our members, especially in Varanasi area, have shown interest in Namami Gange programme as well as to spend money to the extent possible to reduce the pollutants from entering the Ganga. What are your views on the sanitation drive of Sulabh Foundation? All the toilets we are making under our company are through Sulabh and their twin pit design. One toilet cost is Rs 25,000/- and I think it’s a very reasonable figure where you make human being so comfortable. Sulabh can create a lot of value if companies, as well as state governments, collaborate with it. Sulabh has the bandwidth and it has been in the field of sanitation much much before the Swachh Bharat Mission was announced. It’s a tremendous opportunity to leverage on the strength of Sulabh, leverage on their huge experience, and above all leverage on the noble heart and the focus of the founder of Sulabh - Dr Bindeshwar Pathak. Sulabh + CSR = Sanitation drive better than ever… Sulabh should be much more aggressive in contacting corporates. Corporates are looking for proper agencies to implement their CSR activities. Multi-National Corporations don’t know much about proper agencies but they have the CSR funds. I feel that by aggressively concentrating on such corporations, especially if the multinationals which are in our country are contacted, Sulabh can build a huge number of toilets and that too at a much faster pace than what is being done at the moment. The quality of Sulabh toilets is definitely far better than what the government is making.
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018
Red Bananas And Bell Peppers Bring In Money And Joy
Ram Saran Varma of Barabanki in Uttar Pradesh has trebbled his farm income by going for commercial crops SSB BUREAU
ew progressive farmers in Bara Banki district of Uttar Pradesh are on a different trajectory of the financial boom by diversifying from traditional farm produce and in Uttar Pradesh’s Barabanki district. After facing huge losses, Ram Saran Varma of Daulatpur village in Barabanki district, about 50 kms from Lucknow, had shifted from traditional farming to commercial farming. He turned his 15 acres farm house into a banana orchard and within two years, Varma doubled his farm income from Rs 12 lakh to 25 lakh a year. Unlike other farmers, Varma did not stop here. He keeps on thinking of increasing his profits from the banana orchard by planting new varieties of the fruit. His income from the orchard has now touched Rs 30 lakhs a year. “But I was not satisfied. There was still scope for getting more money by increasing the yield and planting new varieties which were not available in Uttar Pradesh,” said he. Last year he had attended a fruit exhibition in Delhi where he saw Red Banana. Varma was thrilled to see the new variety. He sought all details about the Red Banana from the Tamil Nadu growers. He first made soil at his farm ready for the new variety and then bought 400 saplings of Red Banana from a Pune-based nursery. After 16 months, the Red Banana has started giving yields from this year. “I am amazed at the size, colour, taste and the nutritious value of Red Banana. They sell on almost double the prize of the usual green and yellow banana,” said he. Red Bananas are
grown in Australia, the USA, Mexico Bihar are making a beeline at the farm and West Indies where soil and of Varma to take valuable tips from climatic conditions suit the plants. him about planting Red Banana. In India, it is grown only in few parts “I had never heard or seen Red of Tamil Nadu. In Northern India, Banana. After seeing Varmaji growing Varma is the first banana planter who the same, I came all the way from has successfully grown Red Banana in Bhagalpur to learn the planting Barabanki district. techniques from him,” said Umesh “I am too happy to have the first Kumar, a banana planter. In Bihar, yield of Red Bananas in my orchard. Bhagalpur and Hajipur are two major Now I have decided to plant more banana growing centres. Red Banana trees to increase my Kumar said that he had heard of income,” said Varma. Red Banana but never tried to plant According to Indian Dietary any trees, not confident about the soil Association (IDA), Red Banana and climatic condition of Bhagalpur. contains more fibre, iron, potassium “But after seeing Varmaji growing it and vitamins than green-yellow successfully, I am also going to plant banana. Its peel is red while the Red Banana at my farm, since soil pulp is usually yellow. The pulp and climatic condition of Bhagalpur contains less sugar and is is similar to that of Bara Banki,” beta carotene-rich said Kumar, who owns a big good for diabetes, banana plantation farm. cancer and heart Banana lovers patients. Today in Lucknow were a large number surprised when “After seeing Varmaji of orchard Varma’s Red growing it successfully, owners and Banana hit the banana market. “I am I am also going to planters from diabetic and different suffer from heart plant red bananas at parts of Uttar ailments. I was my farm in Bhagalpur” Pradesh and surprised to find the Red Banana on - Pankaj Varma my fruit seller’s shelf. Even though it cost me more than the usual yellow banana but I bought a dozen after making inquiries from my dietician about its nutritious value,” said Sudhir Saxena, a buyer in Lucknow. With his new variety, Varma is expecting to take his income from Banana orchard to Rs 45 lakh this year with aim of taking it to Rs 60 lakh next year by planting 2,000 more Red Banana plants in his farm. Another farmer in the district, Pankaj Varma diversified from traditional farming to growing vegetables organically. Within two years, the 35-year-old Pankaj doubled his income from his
Barabanki is fast seeing a mushrooming of polyhouses First push was by a farmer who made his fortunes selling red bananas Bell peppers and other commercial crops are bringing in smiles too
two acres of land. Pankaj now grows green bell pepper (Shimla Mirch), tomatoes and other leafy green vegetables which are much in demand in the market. He claimed that he saves Rs 3 to 4 lakh from growing Green Bellpepper alone, since it sells at a high price. “I grow my vegetables traditionally using organic fertilisers to reduce the cost,” claimed Pankaj. “Success came my way and now I earn Rs 8 to 10 lakh a year from growing Shimla Mirch, tomatoes and leafy green vegetables,” said Pankaj. To cut the cost, Pankaj uses drip irrigation and latest mulching techniques to save on the irrigation and labour costs to increase his profits. “It has turned into a cash crop for me. I sow Shimla mirch in September and the yield is ready by January. I sell my produce in Lucknow to reduce my transportation cost,” claimed Pankaj. After tasting success, Pankaj is now planning to buy more land to grow yellow, red, white and purple bell pepper which are much in demand in the market and sell on much higher prices than the green ones. “I have already applied for the loan and sought financial technical assistance from the district horticulture department,” claimed Pankaj. Bara Bank is fast turning into a centre known for commercial farming of exotic vegetables, fruits and flowers. It has more poly-houses than any other districts of Uttar Pradesh. “They all have adopted new techniques and diversified from traditional farming to taste success. Lucknow is just 5 kms from here and that is the biggest advantage they have to sell their produce at a higher price with less cost,” said JK Singh, Bara Bank District Horticulture Officer.
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Sulabh’s Magic Wand Changes Villages 65 toilets were handed over to the families in the Indri village of Sohna Quick Glance 65 toilets were handed over to the families William Korstad was impressed with the Sulabh Twin-pit model Ved Nanda presented “Compassion in the 4 Dharmic Traditions” book to Dr Pathak
William Korstad, Coordinator Ved Nanda, Ex-President from Rotary Club of Denver, USA, along with. Sunil Kapoor, President, Prem Dhingra, Ankur Garg, G.S. Kochhar and Vivek Duggal from Rotary Club of Denver, Mid-West Delhi, inaugurating the individual household toilets for the families of Indri village at Sohna, Haryana
n Monika Jain
s many as 65 new Sulabh toilets were inaugurated for the residents of a village in a move to end the practice of open defecation. The new toilets are part of a joint initiative by Rotary club of mid-West Delhi,Rotary Club of Denver, US, and Sulabh International. The toilets were handed over to the families in the Indri village of Sohna. This event is graced by the presence of eminent personalities, Dr. Bindeshwar Pathak, founder of Sulabh International Social Service Organization, Bill Korstad Global
Coordinator for the Grant of Rotary club, Ved Nanda Former member of Rotary and Padma Bhushan awardee, Sunil Kapoor, President of Rotary Club of Delhi Midwest and Ashok Jain, Former President of Rotary Club of Delhi Midwest and other Rotary club members were also present at this event. “This initiative is under the effort of the Prime Minister for his flagship programme to ensure total sanitation
coverage by 2019,” said William Korstad, Coordinator, Rotary club of Denver, US. He further added “It’s such a pleasure to be here today and see all these wonderful smiling faces that have turned out for this event. I like to thank the Mayor of your village for making it possible. It is such an honour to meet the founder of this technology. He worked for 50 long years on this for the people of
Dr Bindeshwar Pathak talked about the benefits of using toilets and encouraged people of every community to use toilets
India and he is such a treasure to the country.” Dr Bindeshwar Pathak told about the benefit of using toilets and encouraged people of every community to use toilets. He gave the famous example of Hirmathla village where people are now using toilets and stopped going for defecation/urination in open. He introduced Shankuntala Devi, President of Hirmathala village who has three daughters and three daughters-in-law. She herself faced endless painful nights while taking care of women of her house when they had to go for open defecation in the night. Community members of Indri village were stumped when he told the real-life story of Vijaylaxmi, who was also present at the event. During her pregnancy once when she went for open defecation, a man saw her sitting in the field, seeing that she instantly stood up with an embarrassment which caused a deformity on the head of her infant child. He also emphasized how Sulabh magic toilet work. He called it magic because excreta remained in pits converted into manure after two to three years. The people were surprised to know that this manure didn’t stink at all. Water ATM which produced one litre of water at just Rs. 1 also subject to his eloquence. On this occasion, Ved Nanda
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018
Sulabh Activity and vocational training courses operated in school. They also saw students learning a different kind of courses such as Stenography, Computer, Beauty and Trade, Sewing and Tailoring courses. The most importantly they felt privileged to know about Sulabh Twin Pit Technology and Sulabh International Museum of Toilet where the different prototype of toilets arranged sequentially in three sections of “Ancient, Medieval and Modern”, according to the period of the sanitation artefacts collected from 3000 BC till the end of the 20th century. Then they all gathered at the Sulabh prayer hall. Dr Pathak presented them Sulabh Twin model
William Korstad, Coordinator, Rotary Club of Denver, USA and Ashok Jain, ExPresident, Rotary Club of Denver, Mid-West Delhi with erstwhile women scavengers from Alwar and Tonk, Rajasthan
presented a book “Compassion in the 4 Dharmic Traditions” to Dr Bindeshwar Pathak which is edited by him. The event was followed by a cultural program that made environment livelier with the dance and singing performance by the children.
A Visit To Sulabh Campus
A day later, William Korstad and Ashok Jain visited the Sulabh Campus. Dr Pathak welcomed their guests with Garland and Shawls. Vrindavan widows, Sulabh Vocational Training students and Sulabh staff were also present there to welcome the guests. They visited Sulabh Water ATM & Public Toilet which is situated beside the main entrance of Sulabh Campus.
doing from about last 50 years. He added that “ I want to repeat what William Korstad said yesterday in the village about the president John F. Kennedy said “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country,” Gandhiji said, “An ounce of practice is worth more than tones of preaching.” So as you have seen the campus how we sorted the problem India had and still has of open defecation in the open and manual cleaning of human faeces by the people called ‘untouchables’ before Independence of India.” It was an honoured moment for all when he said that Sulabh has been fulfilling dreams of Mahatma Gandhi, Dr Ambedkar and President Abraham
“Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country,” John F. Kennedy said
They got informed about sanitary napkin machine and incinerator which is in the Sulabh Complex. They were impressed to know that per piece Sanitary napkin cost just Rs 2, which is the cheapest amount for a napkin. And they were surprised to know how water treatment plant converted wastewater into the reusable water which could be used for cleaning, washing and planting and it didn’t stink at all. Further to their visit William Korstad cooked ‘papad’ on biogas. The biogas plant which converts excreta/human waste into methane gas. After watching this they preceded their visit to Sulabh Public School. The School’s principal introduced them to various school activities Dr Pathak presenting the book ‘MAHATMA Gandhi’s Life in Colour’ to William Korstad during his visit at Sulabh Gram
William Korstad keenly watching the ash of sanitary napkin taken out from the vending machine
and Madhubani painting along with the book “The making of a legend” to the guests which is written by him, based on the life of Narendra Modi. S.P. Singh, Chairman, Sulabh International addressing the people stated that “Rotary Club doesn’t need any introduction, it is a phenomenon. It’s like something which is happening all over the world, have more than billion people working over six continents for hundred years to make life better.” After the welcome speech by him, Dr Pathak honoured the guests with his words and said “We feel proud and privileged that William Korstad has come to our campus to see what we have been
Lincoln from past 50 years. Lastly, he thanked Rotarian to make it possible to deliver 65 toilets to the beneficiaries in Indri village, Sohna and requested to William Korstad to say few words of blessing.William said that he was touched with the heartily welcome and thanked Dr Pathak for inviting him to the campus; he felt honoured. The inauguration of toilets in 27 different sectors is so impactful that one of the attendees promised to build 5 toilets and another promised to build 50 more toilets in the village. He also said that this is the most important work in the world Sulabh has done so far.
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018
Small Movement, Great Miracle - CEHRO The idea here is not to reform education but to transform it
â€œAt CEHRO we firmly believe that giving is a way of life and are committed to giving back to the communityâ€? Surjeet Singh, Founder of CEHRO motivated me to work in education field. Further, I have found health as the major reason behind studentsâ€™ absenteeism at school along with their under-performance. Further, their health was not only the product of their awareness but also of the healthawareness of the household. Thereby, as an organisation we consider both; students and their parents, as our clientele for our health awareness schemes.
ducation is both the means as well as the end to a better life. It is a movement from darkness to light. Without education, people get caught in the inter-generational cycles of poverty and backwardness. Seven decades have passed after independence but still, India struggles to achieve a literacy rate over 90 per cent. In such a scenario, the role of the civil society becomes all the more important in order to ensure that the benefits of education reach the lowest strata of the society. One such NGO which has taken up the initiative to provide education to underprivileged children is CEHRO India (Centre for Education and Health Research Organisation). It is a Delhibased NGO started in July 2012 by Surjeet Singh. It aims at a society where the underprivileged can pursue quality of life through the aid of education, healthcare, employment opportunities and skill development. The initiative started with 50 students, and now there are 300 of them, who are not only getting educated but are also involved in co-curricular activities and areas of their interest like dancing, crafts, painting, singing, drama and what not
and the organisation conducts various kinds of workshops for the same. The area targeted is Munirka, New Delhi, and the nearby slums as many of the people residing here are labour migrants and engaged in menial jobs (sanitation workers/ washers/ cobblers/ security guards/ domestic helps etc.). The CEHRO Team conducted a series of sustained surveys in Munirka and nearby slums understanding the problems that are deeply rooted in slums posing as barriers to their growth and development. They not only focus on the betterment of children but of parents too. Twice a month they conduct a Parent Teacher meeting to give them the feedback and more importantly to know whether parents keep a check on their children progress or not. It has brought the change in the lives of close to 1500 students and youths till date through more than 10 welfare programmes. In 21st century, a lot of young children are still unable to get access to basic education as well as health services. This situation must no longer be attributed to inherited poverty. (Excerpts from the interview with Surjeet Singh, Founder of CEHRO who did his B.Tech from Delhi College of Engineering)
How has it grown or changed over time?
Initially, in 2012, we started with 50 kids and 1 program related to education. Thereafter, number of children and families kept growing and programmes evolved caters to them more efficiently. Presently, 300 kids are impacted directly and indirectly through 7 programmes. Also, now 63 % of them are girl students.
Why did you start this organisation? Growing as a kid, I have seen my parents happily engaged in social services which definitely impacted my young mind. Later, my experience as a student at different places (my village, Kanpur and Delhi) for different levels of education (school & college) had helped me to identify my area of work; education and health. Education because despite studying at good & renowned institutions I felt there was lack of educational facilities everywhere. It has ignited my mind about the sort of educational facilities that are being availed by students belonging to deprived communities. The unsatisfactory answer to this
Can you tell me about the work your organisation does and the programme or programmes you run? Saksham: Aim to support youth who have finished their class 12th or 10th to develop required skills to get a job opportunity through short term courses. We collaborate with various agencies who conduct short term courses and workshops related to skill development and placements like: TEACH INDIA, LED Safari etc.
Udaan (Early Childhood Programme):
Intended to enrol children below 6 years from the community and engage them in several activities appropriate to their age as per Early Childhood Education Curriculum Framework. We
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018 focus on cognitive skills, motor skills, language skills and social skills of kids.
Kati Patang (Alternate path for children out of school):
Aims to bring back dropouts after grade 5 to formal education system. For this purpose, we are targeting 7 govt. schools around Munirka through helping such kids in overcoming major identifiable factors behind their dropping out - child labour & early marriages, menstruation, sickness, poverty, gender discrimination, family issues and school-related issues.
Numeracy and Literacy Programme:
We provide after-school classes to facilitate learning mostly for the subject of Mathematics, English and Hindi to students of all classes as we have found through our own experiences that students drop-out due to their inability to understand these subjects.
Continuous Comprehensive Evaluation of Health and Hygiene:
Children in the Munirka locality rarely practice healthy habits which results in frequent sickness, weight loss and other harmful impacts. We collect their data on daily basis. Datasheet includes questions related to eating habits and sanitation- like did they brush or not, breakfast/lunch they had, did they take bath, washed hands. These data is presented to parents as evidence and are encouraged to make certain changes. Further, to add nutrition, we provide healthy refreshments like fruits, biscuits, bread and milk. Furthermore, regular medical check-ups are arranged in the community and in some cases we take them to the medical centres. It includes eye check-up, dental check-up and general health check-ups.
The Community Library Project:
About 2000 books are managed and administered by the kids themselves which is accessible to all the children of Munirka.
Community Innovation Centre (CIC):
Through CIC students are provided leadership opportunities. Students are engaged in several activities including but not limited to drawing, quilling, singing, dancing, sports and drama.
What do you think your beneficiaries would say is the best thing about your organisation?
We have made ourselves accessible and available to the people in the community; it is like a large family in which we can freely talk about issues concerning us the most. I think this will be the major point which each of our beneficiaries will appreciate about CEHRO.
What results does your organisation achieve? How has your programme improved over time? • Helped 67 kids in School admissions or bringing them back to formal education (EWS- 7, Dropout-24, New Admission- 36) •20 Kids are benefitting from our early childhood program •80 Out of 90 students enrolled in Saksham programme got employment and 10 went to college. Rs 13000/month average salary they were getting at the time of joining •Increase in average nutrition intake by 300 Calories per day •On an average, every month a student sees a doctor •Provided opportunity to 27 members of the targeted community as teaching intern with the basic idea that someone who him/herself have gone through the same phase would understand problems better. •235 books are read per month on an average by the children.
What are your goals for the next three to five years? What priorities will help you achieve them? In the coming three years we want to focus on our pilot projects “Udaan” and “Kati Patang”. Through these
CEHRO is on a roadway of becoming a fullfledged social organisation which aims to work rigorously in the field of education and health research 2 programmes we want to identify and cater 2 major stakeholderschildren between 3 to 6 years and dropouts. Based on our observation, approximately 60 percent students are dropping out from the govt. school in 9th grade in Munirka Village. Our aim is to reduce this number by providing proper intervention at right time and enable the youths to lead self dependent and respectful lives. Along with them, we will be working towards improving the quality of teachers, organisational processes and health issues among children. Our aim is to reach more number of households in the area through one or more of our programmes in order to improve their lives.
What barriers are in your way?
Most students are First Generation Learners -Lack of exposure, guidance, and role models; -Lack of opportunities, information, space and resources; -Inconsistent source of income in the family; -Unfulfilled basic needs push education to the backseat; -Frequent absenteeism is persistent in govt. schools. High dropout rate; -Prevalence of low quality, unhealthy fast food among children; -Dire lack of sanitation and healthy practices. People from the community don’t have access to health services
How you manage the staff?
Our Admin team is responsible for staff management. Role of admin team is to hire teachers, helpers, interns and volunteers, to define their responsibilities and monitor performance.
What do you, personally, spend most of your time on in your NGO?
My work is majorly divided in 3 parts. Resource management, it includes arrangement and allocation of resources to ensure smooth functioning of programmes. Teaching & Classroom observation between 3pm to 6 pm. Children & parent counselling Do you teach the children over here about the Swachh Bharat Mission or the Cleanliness drive? The mission of making India a clean country starts with next generation to adopt habits which are based on health and hygiene and on moral high grounds. We certainly take care about building habits in the children by which they take care of their own health and hygiene also cleanliness of their surroundings. Our process doesn’t revolve around preaching them what to do but to make them realise how important it is and build the habits in their personality. We also give importance to environmental concerns and integrate in the teacher training, our classrooms and counselling sessions.
Are you happy with the way the organisation is doing or growing?
Mostly happiness is derived from the work, when I see a child appreciated and smiling, it is the satisfaction that cannot be compared with anything else. In terms of growth, community level grassroots organisations such as ours face many challenges in terms of arranging resources. So, the growth of our organisation in those terms is not as desired and it is the challenge not only specific to our organisation but to most of the organisations doing same work as ours.
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018 europe
Europeans worked at sanitation solutions from ancient to modern times Europe had an early start in sanitation, as early as 3,000 BC in Scotland, and the continent remains the largest flourishing sanitation and water treatment market
Waste water Treatment Market
hrougHOUT the modern history of man, we managed to advance our way of life in countless ways with newer technological and medical discoveries. One of those areas that received much attention was sanitation, the widespread tradition of
health promotion through prevention of human contact with wastewaters. Any history of sanitation is incomplete without mentioning Europe. As civilisations grew, sanitation practices and utilities also developed, particularly in Europe since it was the source of inventions and technology. Considering the fact that most of the kingdoms that had
History of modern sanitation started with the development of the protected water
he European Union legislation has brought about a high level of investment in wastewater treatment plants over the past 10 years and with an annual investment of over 8 Billion Euros. The Urban Waste Water Directive sets out clear guidelines relating to the need for treatment of residential wastewater and to treatment standards. Therefore, this also provides a stimulus to schemes for the construction of new plants as well as for upgrading plants. There are still gaps in the provision of wastewater treatment, especially in the countries of Southern Europe. Even in countries such as France and the United Kingdom where there are large markets, work is still going on to develop a process for the removal of nutrients for nitrogen and phosphorous. However, the demand backlog and the vigorous expansion that results from this demand, in the Eastern European EU member States are even more
colonies around the world belonged to Europe, sanitation practices evolved quicker in this part of the world. As the human civilisation exited Stone Age and started working with metals in Iron and Bronze Ages, they started developing new knowledge in the fields of medicine, chemistry and architecture and urban planning. All of these advances played a big role in the development of modern sanitation.
There are still gaps in the provision of wastewater treatment, especially in the countries of Southern Europe significant. The EU supports the Directive through a wide range of funds. The Directive will create the vital stimulus for investment for the next five years. Germany is still the largest national market. Its existing stock of high-quality treatment plants will ensure that there will continue to be a steady and high level of demand for maintenance and renovation work.
History of modern sanitation started with the development of the protected water wells in Neolithic times. European civilisations of that time started noticing the harmful impact of wastewater on human health, most notably Babylonians and ancient Greeks. The largest advance of early sanitation happened in ancient Rome, where latrines and sewage drains to divert the flow of sewage water from
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018
major cities with some degree of success. The oldest archaeological discovery of working toilets dates back to 3000 BC Scotland. In their Neolithic settlement, Skara Brae, scientists found remnants of the stone huts, fully equipped with drains that extended from the recesses in the walls. This extremely early and very sophisticated – for that age example of toilet technology was not seen in other more advanced cultures for thousands of years, managing even to remain superior to any design in the entire world. Lack of sanitation in European Dark Ages forced the medical and scientific community to truly start combating this dangerous health issue. During this time towns all across Europe were dirty, crowded, full of faeces, contaminated water, and with the virtually unknown tradition of keeping personal hygiene. Central and southern Europe was for the longest time home to very simple toilets, which were only outshined by the architects in 1700 BC Crete, who created the royal Palace of Knossos. Latrines located in the ruins of this ancient structure had large clay pans connected to the water supply that travelled through terra-cotta pipes. This advanced toilet design remained unmatched all the way through the life of Greek and Roman empires and through entire European Dark Ages. They were surpassed only in the middle of 16th century when the technical advances of the European renaissance finally enabled the creation of something better. Public or private bathrooms in Rome were an extension of the various designs found in their neighbouring civilisations – Greece and Egypt. After seeing the tradition of public bathhouses and saunas in Egypt, Romans established their own public bathhouses that were created in staggering size. Baths of Caracalla
were six times larger than St. Paul’s Cathedral and could serve over 1600 people at once! As for communal lavatories, Rome at one point housed over 144 of them, but they were used rarely, and a majority of the human waste regularly ended up on the city streets. In medieval Europe, lavatories took several forms, but they were very rare. Mostly they were created over the castle or village motes, suspended in air with simple wooden buildings or in castle galleries. Waste that fell in those motes served as an excellent repellent to enemy forces who wanted to enter into the city by force, but sadly such waste attracted many diseases. Peasants usually had their own latrines at the ends of the streets, and people who lived near rivers dumped their waste into them.
Well... not quite. While people in the European Dark Ages resorted to throwing excrement onto streets, the people in the Middle Ages were more conscious of sanitation. While they didn’t understand exactly how human waste could spread disease, but they knew it did—they just thought it was something to do with its odours. People were sensitive about smells in the Middle Ages. It was tied to their ideas of cleanliness. Bad odours-specifically rotting offal and sewage-were thought to be a vector of disease. The reality of logistics prevented cities from getting rid of this waste entirely, but people were at least aware of the problem and did at least try to remedy it. Therefore, medieval towns and cities actually had a lot of ordinances and laws to do with waste disposal, latrines, and toilets. In medieval London, for example, people were responsible for the upkeep and cleanliness of the street outside their houses. The fines that could be imposed on them if they didn’t do this could be extremely onerous. Larger houses had enclosed latrines attached to or behind the home, which emptied into deep cesspits. These were called a “jakes” or a “gong,” and the men who were employed to undertake the foul-smelling task of emptying these pits were called “gongfermours” or “gong farmers.” Not surprisingly, these men were well-paid, and the gongfermours of medieval London usually ended their day with a much-needed dip in the
Public or private bathrooms in Rome were an extension of the various designs
States of the European Union for example in Spain or Germany to insufficient or poor services, especially in Eastern European states. The history of WSS within the member states and different states in development can partly explain the heterogeneous state of the supply and treatment systems.
Water Supply and Sanitation Technology Platform (WssTP)
Water Supply And Sanitation Sanitation Access
Average connection rates to sanitation systems between 80%– 90% are reported for Northern, Southern and Central Europe. Eastern Europe still copes with much lower rates of 40%–65% of the population connected to primary wastewater treatment at least. Europe, in general, is improving: Over the last decade, more households accessed public treatment plants or even upgraded their treatment system.
Quality of Sanitation Service In Europe
As access is dependent on each member state so is service quality. It ranges from very good service quality in Northern and Southern River Thames. Smaller residences made do with a bucket or “close stool” over a basin, either of which was emptied daily. They were usually carried to one of the streams that emptied into the nearest river and emptied into it. This made some of these streams, like the Fleet, rather foul-smelling and gave one in the city of Exeter the lyrical name of “the Shitbrook.” There were also public latrines maintained by the city of London, like the large communal municipal latrines on London Bridge that emptied into the river.
With the arrival of Renaissance, toilets finally started looking like something more modern. France’s Louis XI used hidden toilets that were located behind curtains and were regularly scented by herbs. Other European rulers used similar tactics. In the very late 16th-century mass adoption of toilet sanitation swept across England, with water closets that used
One international non-profit association (under Belgian law) supporting the European Union in dealing with the challenges of water-related issues is the WssTP. This platform was built up in 2004 with the financial support of the European Commission and has been steadily growing ever since. The association is dealing with water supply and sanitation issues within Europe and all over the world. Nowadays, it is funded through fees paid by its 127 members from industry, research and education. The aim of the association is to support the development of the water-related sector within Europe, assist both the EU and developing countries in achieving the Millennium Development Goals, and provide Research and Development roadmaps and recommendations on water-related issues especially involving the European Commission. running water to transport waste away from human premises. Both ordinary people and royalty used this kind of system, especially after Alexander Cummings. The modern age of sanitation started in Europe between 16th and 19th century when Pail closets, outhouses, and cesspits became used to collect human waste all over the world. Development of plumbing, latrines and personal toilets by many inventors enabled organized collection of human faeces and their distribution to sewage networks. During the same period, the techniques of water purification, the creation of drinking water and its transport to the human population started the era where personal hygiene could be easily enforced by everyone. This culminated with 19th and 20thcentury “Sanitation Revolution” in which governments started enforcing strict hygiene rules, with organized garbage collection, development of public health departments, water
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018
treatment networks and more. Modern revolution of toilets arrived with the works of Thomas Crapper, prominent London plumber who constructed lavatories at several
The WaSH European Union Initiatives
asy access to adequate sanitation and sufficient amounts of safe water for drinking and hygiene at home, schools and healthcare facilities is essential to human health and well-being and should be a prerequisite for a decent life in the 21st century. Diseases related to inadequate water, sanitation and hygiene (WaSH) include diarrhoea, but also other disease outcomes, such as hepatitis A, legionellosis and soiltransmitted helminth infections. In the Region, 14 diarrhoea deaths a day can be attributed to inadequate WaSH. Infants and children under 5 years of age are particularly vulnerable to diarrhoea as a leading cause of malnutrition and death. To tackle the prevailing challenges and to close the gap in attaining equitable access to safely managed drinking-water and sanitation services for all people in the Region, the European Union • Supports the implementation of the Protocol on Water and Health – the primary policy instrument in the WHO European Region in the water, sanitation and health domain; • Provides evidence-based guidance
English royal palaces. His last name soon becomes slang for all latrines and toilets, and his public showings of toilets ensured they’re spreading all across the world.
and tools for strengthening the capacity of national health systems and water sectors to ensure water quality and to prevent, control and reduce water-related disease; • Promotes risk-based management and surveillance approaches in policy and practice, including water safety plans and sanitation safety plans; • Facilitates capacity building in accordance with WHO guidelines; The Commission increasingly supports projects which incorporate WASH components within other sectors, such as nutrition or shelter, in order to increase effectiveness. It also places special emphasis on enabling endangered populations to have quick access to water, sanitation and hygiene services, helping to build up their resilience against crises and taking preventive action against water-borne diseases. Water supply projects, wherever possible, are integrated with sanitation and hygiene promotion actions in order to reduce the risk of water contamination and disease and to ensure that projects are community-led and self-sufficient. The Commission’s Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection department (ECHO) draws its expertise in this sector of assistance from a network of seven regional and global WASH and shelter experts, its country experts as well as its NGO, UN and Red Cross partners. ECHO provides support to the Global WASH Cluster - the main international forum, led by UNICEF, for coordinating humanitarian operations in water, sanitation and hygiene assistance.
A bidet shower (also known as “bidet spray”, “bidet sprayer”, or “health faucet”) is a hand-held triggered nozzle, similar to that on a kitchen sink sprayer, that delivers a spray of water to assist in anal cleansing and cleaning the genitals after defecation and urination.
Squat Toilets :
One can still find squat toilets in some European countries like Turkey.
Coin-op Toilets on the Street :
Public Urinals :
Some cities like Amsterdam have free, low-tech public urinals that offer just enough privacy for men to find relief...sometimes with a view.
Flummoxing Flushers :
Modern European bathrooms have two buttons on top of the bathroom tanks. One performs a regular flush, the other conserves water.
Interestingly, the modern toilet and its associated plumbing was as much a response to urban industrialisation as it was a result of the manufacturing technology that industrialisation made possible. In a rural society, an indoor toilet may be a convenience, but it isn’t essential. In a crowded urban environment, however, the sanitary elimination of human waste becomes a real problem, and in the absence of
Some large cities, such as Paris, London, and Amsterdam, are dotted with coin-operated, telephonebooth-type WCs on street corners. Insert a coin, the door opens, and you have 15 minutes of toilet use. When you leave, the entire chamber disinfects itself.
Paid Toilets :
Sometimes the toilet is free, but the person in the corner sells sheets of toilet paper. Most common is the tip dish by the entry.
sufficient soil to contain and break down human waste, water became the only other medium available to carry it away. The development of municipal sewage systems in London and Paris in the 18th and 19th centuries was a direct response to the threat of disease that came from increasing population densities and inadequate waste disposal. The modern world needed the modern toilet not so much for convenience but for its own survival.
February 19 - 25, 2018
excerpts from the book: “NARENDRA DAMODAR MODI: the making of a legend”
Narendra Modi, addressing on last day of National Council meeting on March 3, 2013 in New Delhi.
National Council Meeting Excerpts from PM Narendra Modi’s address to the BJP National Council meet on March 2-3, 2013 at New Delhi
An election rally being addressed by Narendra Modi.
Today, I want to assure all the countrymen that when you will give the Bharatiya Janata Party a chance to serve India in May 2014, then our party’s first priority will be to uplift this lagging part of the country, which is still quite left behind in the journey of development. We, first of all, want to develop it. …How would our Bharat Maa be like if its one arm is strong, while the other is weak, this can’t be our motherland! Our vision is that whether it is Bihar, Bengal, Jharkhand, Assam, North East, Odisha, entire eastern part, eastern UP… we want to move ahead with a dream of balanced development in all the parts. … Good governance is for the poor, is for the common man, it is for the exploited, suffering and the oppressed. …Today, from this solemn stage of the Bharatiya Janata Party, I request all my fellow countrymen that you have given 60 years to rulers, give 60 months to a servant! The country does not need ‘Shasak’ (ruler), it needs ‘Sevak’ (servant). … Let us go with a resolution to win!
Health n IANS
n a first for medical science, scientists have successfully produced human kidney tissue within a living organism that is able to produce urine, a significant milestone in the development of treatment for kidney disease. Using stem cells, scientists from the University of Manchester, created mini-kidneys that were implanted into mice. Tests revealed they were able to filter and excrete waste. In the study, published in the journal Stem Cell Reports, kidney glomeruli – a constituent microscopic parts of the organ – were generated from human embryonic stem cells grown in plastic laboratory culture dishes. These were combined with a gel like substance, which acted as natural connective tissue – and then injected as a tiny clump under the skin of mice. After three months, an examination of the tissue revealed that nephrons – the microscopic structural and functional units of the kidney – had formed. The new structures contained most of the constituent parts present in human nephrons – including proximal tubules, distal tubules, Bowman’s capsule and Loop of Henle. Tiny human blood vessels – known as capillaries –had developed inside the mice which nourished the
Scientists Using UV-Light To Kill Flu
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018 kidneys from stem cells
First Urine Producing Kidney Tissue Developed Using stem cells, scientists from the University of Manchester, created mini-kidneys that were implanted into mice
new kidney structures. “We have proved beyond any doubt these structures function as kidney cells by filtering blood and producing urine – though we can’t yet say what percentage of function exists,” said Sue Kimber, Professor at the varsity.
“What is particularly exciting is that the structures are made of human cells which developed an excellent capillary blood supply, becoming linked to the vasculature of the mouse,” “Though this structure was formed from several hundred
DNA Test Screens Babies For 193 Diseases
A special type of ultraviolet light has been discovered that can be used to kill airborne flu viruses without harming living tissue
The ‘Sema4Natalis’ – a supplemental newborn screening test has been developed to screen for 193 genetic diseases in newborns
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cientists have discovered a special type of ultraviolet (UV) light that can kill airborne flu viruses without harming human tissues, according to a new study. Broad-spectrum ultraviolet C (UVC) light, which has a wavelength of between 200 to 400 nanometres, has been routinely used to kill bacteria and viruses by destroying the molecular bonds that hold their DNA together, reports Xinhua news agency. “Unfortunately, conventional germicidal UV light is also a human health hazard and can lead to skin
cancer and cataracts, which prevents its use in public spaces,” said David J. Brenner, lead author and director of the Centre for Radiological Research at Columbia University Irving Medical Centre, in a statement on Saturday. By contrast, the study found that continuous low doses of far-UVC light, which is around 207 to 222 nanometers in wavelength, is capable to inactivate more than 95 per cent of aerosolized H1N1 flu virus in a lab setting. Moreover, earlier studies have proved that far-UVC light is not harmful to the human body..
cientists have developed a simple new DNA test that can detect 193 genetic diseases including anaemia, epilepsy and metabolic disorders in a newborn’s genes. The test called as “Sema4 Natalis” -- a supplemental newborn screening test -can be performed at home using a swab of saliva of the newborn that can help parents gain early insight into their baby’s health. It uses advanced DNA sequencing to analyse a baby’s genes with the accuracy of next generation technology and can be used for children up to 10 years of age. “Until now, families have been likely to
Quick Glance The human kidney tissue is built from kidney glomeruli The kidney glomeruli are constituent microscopic parts of the kidneys Structures are made of human cells which developed an excellent capillary blood supply
glomeruli, and humans have about a million in their kidneys – this is clearly a major advance,” Kimber said. However, the mini-kidneys lack a large artery, and without that, the organ’s function will only be a fraction of normal. Thus, researchers are working with surgeons to put in an artery that will bring more blood the new kidney. The results may help create working human kidneys for transplant in people with kidney disease. Annually, 2.6 million people worldwide receive dialysis or kidney transplantation for end-stage kidney disease (ESKD), while around 2.2 million people with kidney disease die prematurely, unable to access treatment. Kidney transplants are in short supply and an adult on long-term dialysis has an average life expectancy of barely a decade.
be caught off-guard by these early-onset diseases, and prognosis is often poor by the time symptoms have manifested,” Eric Schadt, Founder and CEO of Sema4, the US-based company behind the test, said in a statement. “We can now identify babies at risk for these broader set of diseases and deliver interventions -- sometimes as simple as vitamin supplements -- in time to make a real difference,” Schadt added. Sema4 Natalis, which can be bought online, also includes a pharmacogenetic analysis of how a baby is likely to respond to 38 medications commonly prescribed at an early age.
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018 Recyclable e-Skin
Malleable, Self-Healable, Recyclable e-Skin
Virtual Cancer Tissue Biobank Developed
A new type of electronic skin has been developed that can be used in biomedical devices like prosthetics
Researchers from Australia have developed the first virtual platform for storing 3D copies of human cancer tissues
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cientists have developed a new type of malleable, selfhealing and fully recyclable “electronic skin” that can be used in biomedical devices like artificial limbs and prosthetics. The new e-skin has sensors embedded to measure pressure, temperature, humidity and air flow. It also has several distinctive properties, including a novel type of covalently bonded dynamic network polymer, known as polyimine. The polyimine has been laced with silver nanoparticles to provide better mechanical strength, chemical stability and electrical conductivity. “What is unique here is that the chemical bonding of polyimine we use allows the e-skin to be both self-
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cientists have developed a new optical imaging system that uses red- and near-infrared light to predict response to chemotherapy by as early as two weeks. “There is currently no method that can predict treatment outcome of chemotherapy early on in treatment, so this is a major advance,” said Andreas Hielscher, professor at Columbia University. The novel dynamic “optical tomographic breast imaging system” generates three-dimensional (3-D) images of both breasts simultaneously. The images also enable the researchers to look at blood flow in the breasts, see how the vasculature
The study can let researchers and doctors know whether a patient would respond positively to chemotherapy even before starting treatment
healing and fully recyclable at room temperature,” said said Jianliang Xiao, Assistant Professor at the University of Colorado - Boulder. “Given the millions of tons of electronic waste generated worldwide every year, the recyclability of our e-skin makes good economic and environmental sense,” Xiao added. The e-skin, detailed in the journal Science Advances, can be easily conformed to curved surfaces like human arms and robotic hands by applying moderate heat and pressure to it without introducing excessive stresses. “Let’s say you wanted a robot to take care of a baby. In that case you would integrate e-skin on the robot fingers that can feel the pressure of the baby,” explained Wei Zhang, Associate Professor from the varsity. “The idea is to try and mimic biological skin with e-skin that has desired functions,” he said. The silver nanoparticles sink to the bottom of the solution.
ustralian researchers said that they have developed the first virtual platform of its kind for storing 3D copies of human cancer tissues, providing what they say is a novel way for accessing information to help treat the disease. “The Virtual Biobank will digitise and help speed up the process of accessing vital tissue samples donated by patients, which up until now could only be requested through physical biobanks,” the University of Newcastle, whose researchers worked on the platform together with academics from the Hunter Medical Research Institute, said. “It currently takes many months before researchers are able to obtain tissue samples from a physical
New Way To Predict Chemo Outcomes
A new optical imaging system has been developed that utilises infrared light to predict response to chemotherapy in cancer patients
changes, and how the blood interacts with a tumour. “This helps us distinguish malignant from healthy tissue and tells us how the tumour is responding to chemotherapy earlier than other
imaging techniques can,” Hielscher said, in a paper published in the journal Radiology. Neoadjuvant chemotherapy is the standard treatment for some women with newly diagnosed invasive breast cancer. But fewer than half of women treated with the chemotherapy achieve a complete response. “If we know early that a patient is not going to respond to the treatment they are getting, it may be possible to change treatment and avoid sideeffects,” said Dawn Hershman, also a professor at the varsity. The researchers analysed imaging data from patients with invasive breast cancer and captured a series
biobank and carry out investigations with it. Once a researcher has performed their study, that sample typically cannot be reused,” said Dr Jamie Flynn, one of the chief investigators for the project. According to Xinhua, the researchers obtained small samples of donor patients’ tumour biopsies stored in a cancer biobank and converted them into digital copies. “Each digital cancer sample in The Virtual Biobank is made up of highresolution microscopy images in both 2D and 3D, plus important clinical and molecular information that provides the foundation for virtual research into cancer,” said Flynn. “This process ensures the physical sample remains intact, but a 3D, digital copy with clinical and experimental information is kept online for future use. This is particularly critical for rare cancers, which are hard to study due to a limited number of samples.”
Quick Glance The test is called the ‘dynamic optical tomographic breast imaging system’ The test generates 3-D images of scanned organs instantly The novel system allows researchers to study blood flow to the affected organs
of images during a breath hold of at least 15 seconds, which inhibited the backflow of blood through the veins. The researchers found that various aspects of the blood inflow and outflow could be used to distinguish between patients who respond and those who do not respond to therapy. Moreover, while other imaging technologies, such X-ray imaging, use damaging radiation, MRIs are expensive and take a long time, from 30-90 minutes, to perform. But the new system takes images in less than 10 minutes and uses harmless light and can be performed more frequently than MRI, the researchers said.
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018
Kasturba : Gandhi’s Wife And Anchor
“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever ”
Even in 1860s, she was not just a simple housewife but actively participated in Gandhi’s movements and was arrested several times
To have another language is to possess a second soul “If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart” Nelson Mandela
here is a popular saying in Hindi — ‘kos kos par paani badle, chaar kos par baani’. The saying points out how the language in which people communicate in India changes every few miles. The International Mother Language Day is celebrating all over the world on February 21, 2017. It aims at people learning languages other than just their mother tongues to promote cultural exchange. First announced by UNESCO on 17 November 1999, it was formally recognized by the United Nations General Assembly in its resolution establishing 2008 as the International Year of Languages. The objective of this day is to promote linguistic and cultural goodwill among the diverse population. It aims to foster unity among various nations as it promotes the preservation and protection of all languages used by people all over the world. Languages are the most powerful instruments of preserving and developing our tangible and intangible heritage. All moves to promote the dissemination of mother tongues will serve not only to encourage linguistic diversity and multilingual education but also to develop fuller awareness of linguistic and cultural traditions throughout the world and to inspire solidarity based on understanding, tolerance and dialogue.
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: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
n parsa venkateshwar rao jr
t is interesting that all we know about Kasturba Gandhi, wife of Mahatma Gandhi, are just the bare facts. She was born Kasturi Kapadia in Porbandar on April 11, 1869, five and more months before Gandhi himself. They were married in 1883 when she was 14, their first son was born in 1885 but he died. Harilal was born in 1888. Gandhi soon left for London to become a barrister and returned in 1891. Their second son, Manilal, was born in 1892. Gandhi left for South Africa in 1893, and took Kastruba and their two sons with him in 1896. The other two sons, Ramdas in 1897 and Devdas in 1900 were born in South Africa. As Gandhi describes in his autobiography, Kasturba was illiterate at the time of their marriage. Gandhi taught her to write and read. But she was not a passive wife of an activist husband. She took part in the political struggle for the rights of Indians in South Africa that Gandhi had started. She was sentenced to three months in prison in 1913 when she participated in the political protest. She helped him set up the Phoenix Farm, his first among others, and she helped him run it. The young couple at that time had a row as Gandhi in his idealism insisted that she clean the toilets and she would not. But they learned to deal with each other, and it became clear that she was the quiet, strong woman behind the successful and famous political activist Gandhi. When Gandhi returned to India in 1915, she was the quiet centre of the Sabarmati Ashram in Ahmedabad which Gandhi had set up, and later at Sevagram at Wardha. She took part in freedom struggle, beginning with Gandhi’s non-violent resistance in Champaran in Bihar in 1917. Even as Gandhi collected petitions from the afflicted indigo farmers there, she helped the women of Champaran by teaching them to read and write. She was sent to prison in 1938 when she participated in the protest of women from Rajkot at their request, and she was kept in solitary confinement for a month.
This prison spell had affected her frail health adversely. She was in prison following the 1942 Quit India Movement at the Aga Khan Palace in Pune, when she passed away on February 22, 1944 after a series of heart attacks. Gandhi was a broken man when he lost his lifepartner of 62 years. Political work absorbed Gandhi’s life and it was Kasturba who brought up the children, and it was not an easy task because Gandhi was sometimes adamant in imposing his views on the education of the children. She bore the stress and strain of bringing up the children of a man who would not compromise on his ideas and ideals. Gandhi soon recognised the strength of and virtue of his wife. Late in life, the Mahatma acknowledged what he owed Kastruba. He wrote in Harijan in December, 1938: “Her determined resistance to my will, on the one hand, and her quiet submission to the suffering my stupidity involved, on the other, ultimately made me ashamed of myself and cured me of my stupidity in thinking that I was born to rule over her and, in the end, she became my
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018
The greatness of Kasturba was that she did not compete with Gandhi to gain attention by trying to take lead in his political and social initiatives teacher in non-violence.” Gandhi’s granddaughter Tara Gandhi Bhattacharjee summed up the significance of Kasturba in a telling manner when she said, “But, I must say it was an ordinary Kasturba that made him (Gandhi) an extraordinary person. She was great because she was a normal person. And, made him a super human.” The greatness of Kasturba was that she did not compete with Gandhi to gain attention by trying to take lead in his political and social initiatives. She never sought the limelight. Neither did she carve out an independent space for herself where would be the star. She chose to remain the wife of Gandhi and contribute to what he was doing in her own way. She did not make any kind of demand on Gandhi knowing that he was involved in work that concerned India. She could have sulked and become a disgruntled wife. She did not do so. By remaining a quiet and steadfast life-partner, she contributed to Gandhi’s mission in life – the independence of India and the uplift of the Dalits. Kasturba did not vie with Gandhi to be a saintly person. When Gandhi decided to become a celibate in 1906, a quarter century after their marriage, she did not object and oppose. And she did not declare any religious vows of her own. She remained the quiet housewife who did what required to bring up the children and to run Gandhi’s ashrams. She did not lay any kind of claim to either religiosity or to sainthood. She remained the simple woman and that became her strength. It is not easy to be the wife of a man like Gandhi, who was charismatic, willful and morally tyrannical. She could have been a psychological wreck living in the shadow of a person with such tremendous willpower. But she maintained her sense of balance by doing the simple things that were so necessary to keep the Gandhi household going. Tara Gandhi Bhattacharjee’s observation that it was the ordinariness of Kasturba that made possible the greatness of Gandhi. Even more important, it was her ordinariness that helped Kasturba to survive and bring up the children and provide the emotional anchor to Gandhi himself.
YOUR ARE WHAT YOU BELIEVE IN
Mihir Paul is a graduate of Philosophy and Psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, United States
Our beliefs tell us who we are. They are the filter through which we understand the world around us
ur beliefs create our reality and experiences. More importantly, our beliefs tell us who we are. They mark our place in the social world and provide a personal, autobiographical history that anchors us to various places and situations and events across our lifetimes. While we generally trust our beliefs and they usually serve us well, they can be very vulnerable to error and distortion. To understand why this is so, it is important to examine how they form in the first place and how they can shift over time. One of the most basic ways that beliefs can shape reality is through their influence on behavior—no quantum physics needed. For example, if you believe that you’re capable, competent, and deserving of your dream job, you’re probably more likely to notice and seek out opportunities that could help you get there. You’re also more likely to perform well in an interview. Contrary to the common assumption that overconfidence can backfire, research suggests that it may actually
be beneficial: Overconfident people tend to appear more socially skilled and higher in social status, even when those evaluating them have access to objective information about their actual ability. Beliefs about your basic character—who you are as a person on a fundamental level—can be especially powerful. Research suggests that while guilt (feeling that you did a bad thing) can motivate self-improvement, shame (feeling like you are a bad person), tends to create a self-fulfilling prophecy, reducing hope and undermining efforts to change. Your attitudes, feelings, and life experiences mirror your beliefs. How often have you said, “This is so because I experienced it,” – never
realizing that how you experienced a situation coincided with what you believed to be true. Change your beliefs and you will change your experience, including your feelings and attitudes. How we express ourselves follows our beliefs. A person whose belief system is rigid and will not allow new ideas to enter into his/her thinking, or even examine the possibility of their lives being lived any other way, will experience, express and live as though their beliefs are real. And their beliefs are real because they believe they are a real. As you look back on your life, you will notice times when you changed your environment, your friends, your job, etc. – and you begin to see that these changes also brought about a change in your personal attitudes and actions. Beliefs can be a self-fulfilling prophecy unless checked and altered in the direction you want your life to take. For many individuals, beliefs run their lives, rather than the other way around – using and altering their beliefs in such a way as to create the lives they wish to have.
letters to the editor If there’s one thing that Japan is passionate about, it is their toilets
Sanitation In Japan
Book Launch: Exam Warriors
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Exam Warriors’ advises students to stay calm and focus
Swachh Bharat Campaign ‘Swachh Gurugram, Swachh Haryana’ : Seminar for a cleaner India
The Indian epic is still central to the culture of not just this country but to cultures in other ASEAN countries
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Vol - 2 | Issue - 09 /2016/71561
RNI No. DELENG
The Eternal Ramayana
A GOO D NEW S
| February 12 - 18,
2018 | Price ` 5/-
“GREAT SAINT, GREAT YOGI, GREAT SOCIAL WORKER” There are very few who people in this world who do not do selfless work, may the benefits they about think and who acquire from others to social service. dedicate their lives magnanimous One among such persons is yoga ev, a well-known guru Baba Ramd and saint, master yogi experienced social worker
ramayana The photo feature on the ‘Ramayana In Other Lands ‘displays an exceptional representation of the Hindu mythology in the Ramayana.
It is an inspiration in itself, letting the viewers feels the power of the mythical story within their hearts. The way other Asian countries represent the story, how they express that in their unique way and the style in which the photographer captures the glimpses is to be honored and appreciated. It creates a deep excitement for the viewers. We should try to see that that the future generations do not forget these stories and should from time to time refresh their memories with photo features and events like these. Neha Mehta, Patna
sanitation Many of the readers will like the way the article ‘From Angels To Demons Of Sanitation In Japan’ is written. How the mythological aspect is linked to the subject of sanitation definitely attracted attention. We would love to read more on this topic keeping India in mind. From the Harappa civilization till the present, the myths regarding the sanitation might take this topic to another level. Hope to read more on this matter in future and get entertained and educated through your newspaper. Anmol Sharma, Delhi
Please mail your opinion to - firstname.lastname@example.org or Whatsapp at 9868807712
February 19 - 25, 2018
DRIVE INTO GREEN E-FUTURE
The Auto Expo each year brings with it vehicles which give a glimpse of future mobility to the world with its electrical vehicles and hybrid systems Photo : saurabh singh
The Motor Show 2018, with its â€˜Go-greenâ€™ theme, witnessed over 500 product displays from 119 exhibitors. This included 53 Original Vehicle Manufacturers showcasing over 100 products, included 22 launches, 81 product unveilings and 18 concept showcases.
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018
Greening of India up
Between 2015 and 2017, India’s forest cover increased by 0.96 per cent due to afforestation efforts in northeastern states n SSB BUREAU
International plastics exhibition in Gandhinagar The 10th edition of an international plastics exhibition, PlastIndia, began in Gujarat’s capital n IANS
he six-day expo-cum-conference hopes to garner a business of around Rs 5,500 crore as buyers and sellers from around 28 countries meet at the event. Chief Minister Vijay Rupani inaugurated the event at the exhibition ground here. “While plastic consumption per person is 9.7 kg in India, the figure stands at 109 kg per person in the US. Over 10,000 Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) are engaged in plastic industry in the state. An institution dedicated to research and study in plastics is on the way. Gujarat is one of the largest producers of plastics in the country with an investment of Rs 1,400 crore. MSMEs have received a policy push in the Budget 2018-19,” he said. Nearly 33 lakh persons have been employed in the state plastics industry. An additional 30 lakh jobs are expected to be created. Considering the immense potential, the Gujarat government has formulated a dedicated policy for this sector, the Chief Minister said. Energy Minister Saurabh Dalal said: “A Plastindia International University will be set up in Vapi on 50 acres of land and offer undergraduate and postgraduate courses.” India is the 7th largest plastics manufacturing base in the world. With an investment of $2 trillion in infrastructure in the industry, 90 million jobs are expected to be created in the next decade. Over 150 countries import plastics from India. By 2020, India is expected to become the third largest plastic consumer in the world, with doubling of consumption of plastic packaging in five years.
ndia has recorded 0.96 per cent increase in forest cover between 2015 and 2017, with northeastern states continuing to be the most densely forested. Mizoram is having the maximum land under green cover, says a government report. However, the state, with 86.27 per cent of its geographical area under forest cover, has also lost the maximum forest cover among all states (531 sq km) to developmental activities and shifting cultivation. According to the India State Forest Report-2017, released by the Environment Ministry, India has added 6,778 sq km of forest area -- an increase of 0.96 per cent -- between 2015 and 2017 despite population and livestock pressures. However, the forest cover in five of the seven northeastern states of Mizoram (531 sq km), Nagaland (459 sq km), Arunachal Pradesh (190 sq km), Tripura (164 sq km) and Meghalaya (116 sq km) have dropped. With 66,964 sq km, or 79.96 per cent of its area, Arunachal Pradesh comes second in terms of overall forest cover in India, even as it is over three times smaller than Madhya Pradesh that has the maximum forest cover of 77,414 sq km. Manipur has 76.45 per cent of its total area under
Quick Glance Northeastern states have the highest forest cover in India India has added 6,778 sq km of forests between 2015 and 2017 The forest cover was analyzed in the India State Forest Report 2017 forest cover; Meghalaya has 76.45 per cent despite losing 116 sq km to deforestation; Nagaland has 75.33 per cent forest cover despite losing 450 sq km since 2015; and Sikkim has 47.13 per cent forest cover. Assam, with 35 per cent forest cover, has added 567
sq km since 2015 through plantation drive. According to the report, shifting cultivation, biotic pressure, rotational felling, diversion of forest land for developmental activities, agricultural expansion and natural disasters were the reasons for shrinking forest land. The total forest cover in the northeastern region is 1,71,306 sq km, which is 65.34 per cent of its total geographical area in comparison with a national forest cover of 21.54 per cent. This when the region has lost 630 sq km forest area since 2015. The pan-India biennial report unveiled by Union Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan says the country stands 10th in the world in terms of forest area and eighth in terms of annual forest gain. “The total forest cover of the county is 708,273 sq km, which is 21.54 per cent of India’s geographical area. The tree cover of the country is estimated to be 93,815 sq km, which is 2.85 per cent,” the report added. The Minister said the news was “good” because it reverses the trend of decreasing forest cover the world over. “The global trend is decreasing while in India the forest land is increasing. The good thing is that even if we talk of global ranking, the population density of top nine countries ahead of India in terms of forest cover is about 150 while for India it is 350.
Being vegan good for environment : Study
Large-scale livestock farming and demand for animal products inevitably lead to more emissions of greenhouse gases n SSB BUREAU
re you planning to go vegan very soon? That’s good news for our planet as a new study claims that a diet high in fruit and vegetables is better for the environment than one rich in animal products. This is mainly due to the high energy requirements of livestock farming as well as the very large contribution of livestock to greenhouse gas emissions, said the
study. In addition, intensive livestock production is also responsible for significant biodiversity loss due to conversion of natural habitats to grass and feed crops, the researchers noted. The study, published in the journal Frontiers in Nutrition, also found that organic food provides significant, additional climate benefits for plant-based diets. “We wanted to provide a more comprehensive picture of how different diets impact the environment,” said Louise Seconda, researcher at the Agence De
L’Environnement Et De La Maitrise De L’Energie, a French environmental protection organisation. “In particular, it is of considerable interest to consider the impacts of both plantbased foods and organic foods,” Seconda added. For the study, the researchers obtained information on food intake and organic food consumption from more than 34,000 adults. They used what is called a ‘provegetarian’ score to determine preferences for plant or animal-based food products.
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018
Drones map flow of water
Aerial imagery can be used to measure hydrological data in river systems n SSB BUREAU
erial imagery gathered from helicopters and drones can be used to measure changes in the water flow of rivers, suggests new research. The study, published in the journal Water Resources Research, found that aerial imaging can be just as accurate as older, more expensive field methods in some cases. “Remote sensing methods like these can significantly improve our ability to understand hydrologic responses to a changing climate in small, ungauged watersheds around the world,” said study co-author Bethany Neilson, Associate Professor at Utah State University in the US. With an ever-growing human population and its inherent demand for water, there is a critical need to monitor water resources. “We are headed into uncharted territory as climate change alters water supply and population growth increases demand,” said co-author of the study Tyler King from Utah State University.
“In the face of these challenges, scientists, engineers and managers around the world are asked to
Quick Glance Drones can help measure changes in water flow of rivers It allows grasping hydrologic responses to climate changes There is a critical need to monitor water resources
perform the increasingly difficult task of managing water resources with less and less information,” King said. There are limited locations where river discharge is measured directly at gauging stations. Establishing and maintaining these stations is expensive and time consuming. As a result, preference is often given to large rivers of significant economic and social importance. Additionally, other remote sensing methods have been developed, but rely on relatively coarse data collected by satellites and, as such, also focus on the larger rivers of the world. As a result, scientists often lack a complete view of what is happening in smaller river basins, leaving limited understanding of the processes controlling river water quantity and quality. The new approach, which uses a unique combination of image processing techniques and hydraulic modelling, aims to fill this data gap by using high resolution aerial imagery to estimate flows at many locations along smaller rivers and streams.
Bike Sharing System Launched For Hyderabad Metro Smartbike Mobility and Hyderabad Bicycling Club launched a new public bike sharing system for connectivity to metro stations in the city n IANS
yderabad Bicycling Club and Smartbike Mobility Pvt Ltd announced the launch of public bike sharing system, for first and last mile connectivity at Metro Stations in Hyderabad. Smartbike Mobility Pvt Ltd (Smartbike), through a joint venture with Nextbike GmbH, Germany, will operate Public Bike Sharing (PBS) system on both sides of the new Hyderabad Metro Rail Stations. It has set up bike stations at Miyapur,
JNTU, KPHB and Kukatpally metro stations and feeder bike stations at Miyapur Junction, JNTU Main Gate and Cyber Towers. The company said in a statement that it currently has 75 smartbikes in the city and plans to add another 225 bikes in a few weeks. It commenced operations with seven bike stations in the city and plans to add 23 more stations in the next few weeks and eventually plan to have around 300 bike stations in the next three years. The first set of bikes were imported. However, to cut down on the customs duty, an assembling unit for smartbikes is being
set up in Hyderabad. The company also plans to set up an assembling plant in Delhi to cater to the needs of Delhi, Chandigarh and Jaipur. He said they will be investing around Rs 100 crore for these plans in the next financial year. People can register online to become members by paying Rs 500 deposit. For members, the ride for up to 30 minutes is free while for non-members this will cost Rs 10. The charges for 30 minutes to one hour will be Rs 10 for members and Rs 25 for non-members. Members can also opt for weekly or monthly passes.
Climate Change: Rising Sea Levels New satellite data revealed that climate change has accelerated the rate of rising sea levels n SSB BUREAU
limate change has accelerated sea level rise and the rate at which it is rising is increasing every year, a study citing satellite data has revealed. Researchers, led by the University of Colorado-Boulder professor of aerospace engineering sciences Steve Nerem, used the data dating back to 1993 to observe the levels of the world’s oceans, reports CNN. Using satellite data rather than tide-gauge data that is normally used to measure sea levels allows for more precise estimates of global sea level, since it provides measurements of the open ocean. The team observed a total rise in the ocean of 7 cm in 25 years of data, which aligns with the generally accepted current rate of sea level rise of about 3 mm per year, according to a study released on Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. But that rate was not constant. Continuous emissions of greenhouse gases are warming the Earth’s atmosphere and oceans and melting its ice, causing the rate of sea level rise to increase, CNN reported. “This acceleration, driven mainly by accelerated melting in Greenland and Antarctica, has the potential to double the total sea level rise by 2100 as compared to projections that assume a constant rate, to more than 60 cm instead of about 30,” said Nerem. Sea level rise of 65 cm would cause significant problems for coastal cities around the world. Extreme water levels, such as high tides and surges from strong storms, would be made exponentially worse.
Science & Technology
New initiatives to boost technology incubators
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018 E-Astronomers
Indian Scientist Builds Army Of E-Astronomers Inspired by Facebook, Dr Ananda Hota, a radio astronomer has trained over 100 e-Astronomers online via social media
15 new bio-tech incubators and 15 new technology business incubators will be set up during the coming financial year n Sunderarajan Padmanabhan
he government has decided to set up 15 new biotechnology incubators and another 15 new technology business incubators during the coming financial year. The new initiatives spelt out in the budget is designed to help translate new technologies developed by biotech and other companies into products of use to society. Addressing a press conference, Minister for Science and Technology and Earth Sciences, Dr. Harsh Vardhan, noted that apart from the incubators, the Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC) will support setting up of 3,000 additional start-ups in different parts of the country. He said the budget allocation for science and technology has been increasing since 2014, when the present government took office. “The allocation for Department of Science and Technology (DST) for the last five years has witnessed a whopping 90 per cent increase over preceding five years (2009-10 to 2013-14), followed by a 65 percent increase for Department of Biotechnology (DBT), 43 per cent for Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and 26 percent for the Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES)”. Asked about reports of fund shortage faced by CSIR last year, he agreed that there was an issue because the Council had to implement the Seventh Pay Commission recommendations for its employees. But, this year, that problem will not be there. He noted that CSIR as well as DST, DBT and MoES have been allocated more funds this year. The increase is eight percent for DST, 3.56 percent for CSIR, 6.7 percent for DBT, and 12.7 percent for MoES.
n Dinesh C Sharma
f anybody can become a dancer as depicted in 2013 Bollywood dance drama, Anybody Can Dance (ABCD), directed by choreographer Remo D’Souza, why can’t anybody become an astronomer and make new discoveries? Yes, says Dr Ananda Hota, radio astronomer at the Centre for Excellence in Basic Sciences (University of Mumbai-Department of Atomic Energy) in Mumbai, and he has shown how. He is the founder of a unique citizen science project, RAD@home Astronomy Collaboratory, which trains lay citizens to analyse radio astronomy data from professional telescopes so that they can make discoveries. Members of this project have made discoveries using data from radio telescopes in India and abroad. These discoveries have been announced at scientific meetings of astronomers and even published in peer-reviewed scientific journals. Any undergraduate science or engineering student or lay person can join the group to get basic training which is provided over Facebook. Face-to-face training camps are
also held in different cities. The group’s activities go under hashtag #ABCDresearch – anybody can do research – and are widely followed. Since 2013, Hota has trained over 100 e-astronomers. This week, members of this group presented their findings at the 36th meeting of the Astronomical Society of India in Hyderabad on “three intriguing cases of jet-galaxy interaction as laboratory for AGN (Active Galactic Nuclei) feedback in galaxy merger”. Past discoveries from this group include new Specalike galaxies, episodic radio galaxies, relic-lobe radio galaxies, a few Z- and X-shaped radio galaxies, intriguing cases of jet-galaxy interaction, bentlobe radio galaxies tracing cosmic accretion onto clusters through filaments. Radio telescopes gather enormous amount of data and it could take professional astronomers decades to analyse every bit collected. At the same time, this data may contain clues to important objects and events on the cosmos. Therefore, observatories make this data available for use to anyone interested. The primary data for the citizen-science project comes from sky surveys done by the
This model possibly can convert the Big Data problem in astronomy into a prospect and citizen science can contribute to knowledge creation
Quick Glance The group’s activities go under hashtag #ABCDresearch ABCDresearch means Anybody Can Do Research based on the TV Show Members of this project have made discoveries using data from radio telescopes
Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope (GMRT) of the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research. “Ours is a unique, zero-infrastructure, zerofunded collaboratory of trained e-astronomers, which has made several new discoveries by analyzing GMRT data using open access tools such as NASA Skyview,” Hota explained while speaking to India Science Wire. “This model possibly can convert the Big Data problem in astronomy into a prospect. Citizen science can contribute to knowledge creation in never-seen-before speed and in approach. Since it is based on internet, it can provide an equal opportunity of academic growth to people in underdeveloped regions where our optical and radio telescopes are located ,” he pointed out. Unlike conventional education programmes, those who get involved with RAD@home not only learn but also directly contribute to astronomy research from initial one-week face-to-face interaction. “Citizen science can be particularly useful in discovering certain events where features are fuzzy which can be detected more efficiently by human eye than a machine. Radio interferometry images are more complicated than optical and need citizen-scientists to be trained to read them,” pointed out Hota. The citizen scientist team which presented its findings in Hyderabad included Akanksha Manojkumar Tiwary, Megha Rajoria, Viswajith Govinda Rajan, Avinash Kumar, Sumanta Kumar Sahoo, Lavanya Nemani, Sagar Sethi, Arpita Misra, Mitali Damle, Shilpa Dubal, Karuna Gamre, Pradeepta Mohanty, Anjali Amesh, Gitika Mall, Alakananda Patra, Charitarth Vyas, Aikya Shah, Ankit Vaghasiya, Ankita Das, Ashutosh Sharma, Bhargav Reddy, Debaiudh Das, Devanshu Shrivastava, Dwiti Krushna Das, Joydeep Naskar, Kavil Mehta, Raveena Dandona, Rohith Sai Shashank, Ronaldo Laishram, Sushrut Mane, Sayali Kulkarni, Pratik Dabhade, Sravani Vaddi, Chiranjib Konar.
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018
Science & Technology nanobots
Indian Scientists Uncover Joint Cartilage Mechanism Indian researchers have made headway towards finding a molecule that can stop degeneration as well as promote regeneration of articular cartilage
n Ratneshwar Thakur
oint pain due to osteoarthritis is an emerging health problem. Researchers are engaged in developing new strategies for osteoarthritis treatment based on regenerative medicine, tissue engineering and gene therapy. Now Indian researchers have made headway towards finding a molecule that can stop degeneration as well as promote regeneration of articular cartilage. Researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur have reported role of two novel molecules - NFIA and GATA3 - in development of joint cartilage during embryo growth. They have observed in chicken and mouse studies that both these molecules prevent cartilage degeneration. In addition, GATA3 can also promote formation of articular cartilage, which covers ends of joints. Deterioration of articular cartilage in joints causes osteoarthritis. The results of the study have been published in journal Development. “We have identified
Osteoarthiritis is an emerging health problem Molecules NFIA and GATA3 have been discovered The molecules are present during joint cartilage growth in embryo
and characterized roles of two novel articular cartilage factors - NFIA that prevents degeneration of cartilage and maintains it permanently throughout life; and GATA3 that is not only necessary to prevent cartilage degeneration but also can induce articular cartilage, in collaboration with other factors,” explained Dr.Amitabha Bandyopadhyay, who led the research team. Previous studies suggesst that genes involved in tissue repair and regeneration are largely similar to the ones associated with tissue building during embryo development. In an earlier study, this group had reported a collection of genes that are turned on exclusively during embryonic articular cartilage development.
The new discovery provides important pieces in the puzzle of how joints are initially formed in the body
In this study, the authors also observed an interesting phenomena where molecular manipulation leading to perturbance of articular cartilage also led to a defect in transient cartilage formation. Pratik Singh, co-author in this study says “this study provides novel insight into the cross-talk between articular cartilage and transient cartilage formation which is essential for successful development of limb skeleton. By studying these molecules further we hope to learn to make stable articular cartilage in vitro, currently a major challenge in the field.” “The work provides important pieces in the puzzle of how joints are initially formed in the body,” commented Dr.Terence D. Capellini of Human Evolutionary Biology department of Harvard University, who was not connected with the study. “We know that joint cartilage is different from other cartilage. It has a different tensile strength and unlike skeletal cartilage, it is resistant to ossification. This new work is going to be the first step in identifying how these differences are established at molecular level ,” said Dr. Raj Ladher from National Centre for Biological Sciences, Bangalore. He is not a part of this study. “Despite the importance of joint/articular cartilage in normal physiology and disease conditions, very little is known about how it develops and is maintained permanently as cartilage throughout life. This limited understanding is perhaps why there is nos effective strategy to treat osteoarthritis,” said Dr Bandyopadhyay. The research team included Pratik Singh, U. S. Yadav, K. Azad and Amitabha Bandyopadhyay (IITKanpur) Pooja Goswami(KIIT University, Bhubaneswar), VeenaKinare (Sophia College for Women, Mumbai). The work was supported by grants from the Department of Biotechnology (DBT) and Science and Engineering Research Board (SERB) of Department Science and Technology (DST).
Cancer-Fighting Nanorobots Can Shrink Tumours Scientists have successfully programmed nanobots that can potentially shrink tumours by cutting off their blood supply n SSB BUREAU
n a major advancement in nanomedicine, an international team of scientists has successfully programmed nanorobots for the first time in mammals, that potentially shrinks tumours by cutting off their blood supply. Each nanorobot is made from a flat, rectangular DNA origami sheet that is 90 nanometres by 60 nanometres in size. Once bound to the tumour blood vessel surface, the nanorobot was programmed to deliver its unsuspecting drug cargo in the very heart of the tumour, exposing an enzyme called thrombin that is key to blood clotting. The nanorobots worked fast, congregating in large numbers to quickly surround the tumour just hours after injection. “We have developed the first fully autonomous, DNA robotic system for a very precise drug design and targeted cancer therapy,” said Hao Yan, Professor and Director at Arizona State University. The treatment blocked blood supply to the tumour and generated tumour tissue damage within 24 hours while having no effect on healthy tissues. After attacking tumours, most of the nanorobots were cleared and degraded from the body after 24 hours. The median survival time is more than doubled, extending from 20.5 to 45 days. “Moreover, this technology is a strategy that can be used for many types of cancer, since all solid tumour-feeding blood vessels are essentially the same,” Yan added, in a paper published in the journal Nature Biotechnology. Until now, the challenge to advancing nanomedicine has been difficult because scientists wanted to design, build and carefully control nanorobots to actively seek and destroy cancerous tumours, while not harming any healthy cells.
Storyteller n IANS
s winter nights become longer, darker and colder, Kashmiris miss their traditional stories of the abominable snowman, the child-lifting witches, princes fighting demons and tales of Firdowsi’s 10th century Iranian wrestlers, Rostum and his son Sohrab. Modern entertainment provided by the television and theatre might never fully replace the art of bedside storytelling that was so popular in Kashmir for centuries. “Children would hardly muster up the courage to venture into the dark after grandmother told them how witches in winter months prowl during dark nights to lift children and lock them up in mountain caves,” said Habibullah, 78, who is instantaneously transported to his childhood when reminded of the good old times when people had lesser amenities, but more contentment than he witnesses nowadays. “There was no electricity in any village of the Valley when I was a little boy. We would sit with our mother around the warmth of the hearth that was lit with firewood. “An earthen, oil-filled lamp or a kerosene lantern was the only source of light during the night those days. “Mother’s face would glow in the light emitted by the burning firewood inside the hearth. In most local homes, grandmothers or mothers would tell fabulous stories of the bygone days when kings ruled countries and princes had to fight demons to impress princesses,” Habibullah recalled his childhood while speaking to IANS. This patriarch lives in a north Kashmir village with his wife, three sons and grand children. “I sometimes tell my grand children one of those enchanting stories and believe it or not, they are lured away from the television to listen to my stories”, he said. Habibullah said that, once in a while, a traditional storyteller would visit his ancestral village. “The storyteller would come to our village during the ‘Chillai Kalan’ (40-
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018
Grandmother’s Tales Of Princes and Witches
Come winter and Kashmiris miss their storyteller of bygone days
day long period of harsh winter cold beginning December 21). “His arrival was an event. The most well-to-do family in the village would host the storyteller. “After the day’s last meal, almost the entire village would go to the house of the storyteller’s host where everyone would be served a cup of ‘Kehwa’ during the course of the storyteller’s unending narrative. “He would start with a short story like how a prince mounted a wooden horse that would fly to the demon’s cave in a far off land to retrieve a princess the demon had locked in his magic castle. “And finally he would start with Firdowsi’s Persian epic, the ‘Shahnameh’, that told the tragic story of Rostum and his son Sohrab,” Habibullah said. It is almost 70 years since this 78year old villager heard those stories and yet he remembers every small
Quick Glance The storyteller’s narrative would keep the audience spellbound The most well-to-do family in the village would host the storyteller Life was more relaxed without diseases like depression detail of that epic. “Story telling was not just about amusing the audience. It was a lesson in moral education that gave one the essential sense of right and wrong. “However mighty and powerful the villains of those stories might have been, it was always the good that triumphed over evil. Villainy ultimately never pays. That was the moral of all those stories,” he asserted.
Modern entertainment provided by television and theatre might never fully replace the art of bedside storytelling that was so popular in Kashmir for centuries
The power of the storyteller’s narrative would keep the audience spellbound, he said. “Never for even a moment did one lose attention as giant mythical birds lifted the princes in their mighty claws to fly over mountains and oceans. “In his half-worn-out cloth bag, the storyteller carried books containing those fantastic stories. He would remember every story by heart and hardly needed to consult the book. “However, if anyone in the audience questioned the authenticity of his narrative, the master had his book handy to counter the criticism,” Habibullah pointed out. Memories of the bygone days always evoke strong nostalgia among the older people in Kashmir who believe that despite its ease and comfort, modern life can never fully rival the simplicity and thrill of the past. “It doesn’t even snow like the past now. Kashmir would get heavy snowfall in the past. Roads would remain closed for months. The village would become your World. Every home had a cow, a small flock of sheep, a little poultry and enough stocked grain to last the winter months. “Nobody would cry about lack of essential supplies those days. We had a self-reliant living. Today, even for milk, mutton and vegetables one needs to visit the market. “Life has become so much dependent on supplies from outside. A week’s closure of the JammuSrinagar Highway, which is the lifeline of modern day supplies, is enough to throw Kashmiris into a tailspin these days. “Life was more relaxed, we did not know diseases like depression and sleeplessness those days. “One slept like a log on grass mats and today even the softest mattresses and quilts cannot put you to sleep,” Habibullah rued, blaming greed and the modern competitive attitude to life for most of our ills. Habibullah is just one among many old Kashmiris who believe that losing connect with the past is no way to lead a fuller, happier and contented life.
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018
‘There is continuity between home and school for Muslim girls’
Latika Gupta’s book, “Education, Poverty and Gender: Schooling Muslim Girls in India”, focuses on how the academic life of its students is affected by their religion and culture
n SSB Bureau
bout a decade ago, when Latika Gupta began her teaching career at a reputed Delhi University college, she became curious about “the interplay of religion and gender in the lives of girls” and thus set out on a journey to explore this rather untouched facet. The result? Her just-released book, “Education, Poverty and Gender: Schooling Muslim Girls in India”, focuses on how the academic life of its students is affected by their religion and culture by examining the interplay between “home” and “school”. Gupta, now an Assistant Professor at the University’s Central Institute of Education, was then teaching a course which offered opportunities to young girls to reflect on their own socialization. Barring one or two of her students, she noticed among the rest an attitude of indifference towards their individual development and determination to adhere to the cultural norms.
“I often wondered why my students did not feel embarrassed when they missed classes on account of their participation in religious rituals at home or for household chores. What stopped them from developing a sense of stake in them and investing more energy in their education? It became my personal agenda to locate the forces which shape girls’ life and self-identity,” Gupta told IANS in an interview. Her book attempts to explore the intertwining between the religiocultural framework of a community and life at school. The study also serves as a means of grasping the complex phenomenology of the educational experience of Muslim girls growing up in a lower socioeconomic setting. It identifies the milieux which are formed when religion and gender combine to make a social force in a specific socio-economic context. Gupta studied the identity of girls enrolled at a minority school, which is governed by the provisions of Articles 29 and 30 of the Constitution
Quick Glance It is based on a study carried out in a school in Daryaganj For Muslim girls, there is continuity between home and school The girls thought that motherhood is the aim of a woman’s life
Her book attempts to explore the intertwining between the religio-cultural framework of a community and life at school
that allow religious minorities to run their own educational institutions to preserve and promote their culture, language and faith. She said that she gathered the life experiences of girls studying at the school with the help of free-hand narratives they wrote about their life and aspirations and their responses to items about different dimensions of identity. She then hermeneutically situated their narratives and responses in their everyday ethos which she accessed by experiencing it consistently over a period of one year and by interviewing their parents. “The school does not interfere in their gendering and thus does not break the sharp binary of homeoutside in the life of girls. It does not enable its learners to develop their potential to avail opportunities for economic and intellectual growth in later life. In fact, it certifies the community’s model by not serving as an intellectual space and encouragement for rational inquiry on what one sees around and for critical reflection on one’s own life experiences,” she maintained. Gupta’s book is based on a study carried out in a school in Daryaganj. However, throughout the book, the school is referred to simply as MGS (Muslim Girls School) in order to maintain its privacy. “For Muslim girls, there is continuity between home and school in appreciable values and behaviour. There is no alternative frame of conduct available to Muslim girls of Daryaganj. What they learn at home is consistent with what they learn at school as far as personal conduct is concerned. In a matter of immediate and intimate significance, the teacher and the mother provide similar values even though the former is educated and professionally qualified. “In the life of MGS girls, the school figures in the middle of well-established traits of gender socialization and a pre-destined as
well as explicitly articulated purpose of female life. The cushioning from both sides leaves a very narrow space for the school to allow and encourage any critical engagement with the various fields of knowledge and their own life experiences. Nevertheless, most of the girls have an informed and tolerant outlook towards Hindus, and a few of them have the potential of evolving into a tolerant individual. By asserting their aspiration to study beyond school and thereby becoming teachers, some of them have stretched the discourse of the community slightly which otherwise maintains a predetermined purpose for the life of girls. However, the number of such girls is very limited,” she contended. Gupta also mentioned that the girls of the given school consider it “important for a wife” to serve her inlaws, husband and children; and from the husband they expect a smooth financial provision and fulfillment of needs. No girl, she said, considers it viable for a woman to be a good wife to contribute financially to the family’s maintenance. “Apparently, they have internalized the gendered male-female division in all spheres of activities. My respondents have accepted and internalized the model of dependence on the man for fulfilling all kinds of needs. The girls thought that motherhood is the aim of a woman’s life,” she recalled.
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018
Heritage Textbooks Replace English The project to come up with the heritage textbooks was started in 2015 and required over 50 seminars
First Electric Train In NFR Till now, NF Railway was the only railway zone to be electrified though electrification was completed up to Katihar in 2017
he much anticipated electric train service in North East Frontier Railway became a reality with running of 55704 Katihar – Malda Court Passenger train with electric engines. The electrification work of Katihar – Kumedpur – Malda Court had been completed in December last year and Commissioner of Railway Safety had permitted running of passenger and goods train in the section. Following the clearance, the first passenger train in the electrified section was run on 24th January, 2018. Till now, NF Railway was the only railway zone to be electrified though electrification was completed up to Katihar in 2017. The Katihar Yard was electrified in March 2017 and long-distance trains started changing engines and traction at Katihar station from 2017. The work for electrification from Katihar to Kumedpur via New Jalpaiguri and Raninagar Jalpaiguri was sanctioned at a cost of Rs. 166 crore and the work for electrification of Kumedpur to Singbad via Old Malda was sanctioned for a cost of Rs. 43 crore. NF Railway has taken up electrification of New Jalpaiguri – Bongaigaon – Guwahati section and the work is progressing well.
n SSB Bureau
n a unique move, the State Council of Educational Research and Training (SCERT) Nagaland has developed a Nagaland Heritage Studies Textbook series to replace Alternative English as a subject up to Class 5 throughout the state. The move has been initiated to preserve local culture and traditions of the state. SCERT director T. Sekhose said Nagaland has been blessed with different cultures and the attempt to tap its potential took years. The project to come up with the heritage textbooks was started in 2015 and required over 50 seminars and other necessary groundwork. He said the 90 individual titles in 18 sub dialects were being introduced in all government and private schools of Nagaland in place of Alternative English. The first series of text books will be introduced up to class five and he was hopeful that the introduction
of the entire series for class six to eight would complete by 2018. He said, being the first edition, the text books needed suggestions and feedback from the teachers and parents. School Education and SCERT principal secretary FP Solo said the textbook would preserve, protect and promote the state’s culture. He said Nagaland was moving ahead in the English subject, compared to other states, but was neglecting the local dialects. He said that the introduction of the text books would preserve local languages. He said the same textbook has been translated into all the tribal languages of the state and also into English for others. Launching the heritage textbook series, Nagaland Governor PB Acharya said it was “a historic day” and lauded the SCERT for its commendable task of developing the textbook which will help the Nagas preserve their identity. He said almost all the states of the country were slowly losing their heritage
School Education and SCERT principal secretary FP Solo said the textbook would preserve, protect and promote the state’s culture
and culture, including Nagaland, and unless this is checked, we will lose our identities. According to Acharya, research has shown that education at the primary levels is better taught in the children’s mother tongue which, he said, was also their identity. Encouraging its use, the Governor said that one should not hesitate to use their mother tongues even if they belonged to a small community. The Governor asserted that even if one speaks English fluently and well the person would not die an Englishman. He pointed out that many universities in the country were offering foreign languages but there was not a single university offering tribal dialects and so he had taken the initiative to introduce it in some of them. He called upon the people of the state to make a concerted effort to preserve their identity and culture for which, he said, political and social will was needed. Nagaland State Commission for Women chairperson Dr. Temsula said that any discourse on Naga identity, history and culture had to rely on oral traditions as we do not have any contemporary and indigenous written accounts of our history. She said transforming an oral story into a written one should mean transferring the cultural ethos in the original onto a script and for this the first recipient should be the mother-tongue and not another language. In doing this, she said the culture of a community is remembered afresh by the people and it is re-vitalized through the written medium which in turn acts as a re-affirmation of the culture. She cautioned that translating a text to another language was littered with hazards because of the risk of displacement of meaning from the original. Also, she stated that there is often the temptation of embellishment, exaggeration and romanticizing of native lores, which had to be guarded against.
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018 flora
Rhododendron Park In Tawang Over 30 species of rhododendron will be planted and conserved in the park. It will also have a modern nursery
land acquisition projects,” said the chief minister. He said Tawang was once home to around 100 species of rhododendron. The number has now been reduced to only a little over 50 as a result of construction activities in the border areas. Pema said the security personnel could play a key role in conservation of the tree species, since the high altitude border areas are beyond the reach of forest officials. Later, he planted different varieties of the trees in the park.
The security personnel could play a key role in conservation of the tree species
The park will be partly funded under the Border Area Development Project. The chief minister also inaugurated the Nature Interpretation Centre (NIC) at Tawang, established and managed by the forest department. NIC has three sections on wildlife including Red Panda, Rhododendrons, Medicinal plants and high altitude lakes while a section is on people & culture of Tawang and awareness activities along with issues and challenges which very often dept faces such as forest fire, pests and
segregate waste at the source itself. According to a survey by the Itanagar Municipal Corporation (IMC), the twin city of Itanagar & Naharlagun has a little over 22,000 households. Thirty NGOs were roped in under the Itanagar Municipal Council by the district administration to take over the cleanliness drive for Swachh Survekshan in Itanagar. The district administration has outsourced the cleanliness mission to NGOs under the IMC in order to carry out effective cleanliness drives around the city. The NGOs would look after the
cleaning of each ward and engage sanitation workers to keep the city clean. To monitor the effectiveness of NGOs working in cleanliness drive, Dhawan said that a circle officer and assistant engineer would be deputed to monitor the work in each ward. “The district administration seeks to bring Itanagar to the list of top 50 cleanest cities of India in 2018,″ said Dhawan while seeking cooperation from the residents of the twin capital to turn this idea into a reality. Addressing a sanitation event, the DC highlighted the role of NGOs/ SHGs who have been outsourced for door to door collection of municipal solid waste. The DC stressed that apart from cleaning and collection of garbage, they should ensure timely collection of garbage collection charge. They should also issue challan (penalty) to every individual who is caught littering or against households that do not hand over garbage to the garbage collectors.
Striving To Be The Cleanest 40, 000 dustbins have been procured and each household in the city would be provided with two dustbins to segregate waste at the source itself
PS fitted vehicles, 600 workers sporting GPS fitted wrist bands, 40,000 dustbins and 30 NGOs – the district administration of Itanagar is going all out to make Arunachal Pradesh’s capital city one among the fifty cleanest cities in the country. Led by Capital Complex Deputy Commissioner Prince Dhawan, the district administration has come up with some innovative initiatives to achieve the goal. One is installation of GPS tracking device on sanitation
The park will not only add to the scenic beauty of the town
diseases and deforestation. Nature Trail in a forested area of 2.3 ha was also inaugurated where there were 42 species of Timber and Nontimber species including orchids and primulas. A bamboo hut has also been constructed for the tourists. The CM advised the Forest Dept to setup such nature Trails and NIC in other districts as well. Such centres will sensitize people about the importance of conserving nature, and help them admire its beauty and benefits, Pema said. He asked the forest department to identify more areas for developing similar forest parks in the town. He advised the department’s officials to keep in mind that development of the area must not cause ecological imbalance. To meet the manpower shortage at the NIC here, the chief minister directed the forest department to send a proposal in this regard. He gave assurance that the state cabinet would clear the proposal quickly..
n SSB Bureau
The CM advised the Forest Dept to setup such nature Trails
runachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu laid the foundation stone for a rhododendron park at Tawang in a bid to conserve the dwindling species. The park is in two patches of area – 0.28 ha and 0.83 ha. Patch one was planted with 16 different species of rhododendrons in first phase including Arboreum, Nerifolium, Hodgsonii, Keysii species of Rhododendrons. The project was conceptualised and designed by Dr. Abdul Qayum, DFO of social forestry Division Tawang. It is expected to be a recreational center for not just the residents of Tawang but also for Tourists. Over 30 species of rhododendron will be planted and conserved in the park. It will also have a modern nursery, an information centre, resting sheds, and a parking facility, among other things. “The park will not only add to the scenic beauty of the town but also help conserve the rhododendron species, which are seriously threatened by the ongoing road construction and
vehicles to track the real time movement of vehicles. If a vehicle does not come to pick up garbage, it would immediately come to the knowledge of the concerned authorities through SMS and e-mail, the DC said. There are 600 labourers working under sanitation in the 30 wards of the city. Each of them would be given sanitation equipment, including GPS wrist bands for attendance and tracking the workers during work hours, the DC said. Dhawan said that 40, 000 dustbins have been procured and each household in the city would be provided with two dustbins to
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018 football
Bend It Like Alakhpura Girls Football to them is not just a game, but a way to make their dreams come true
n a cold and wet winter afternoon, some 30 km from the district headquarters of Bhiwani, tired boys buckled up to return home after seven hours of school. But for the girls, the ringing of the closing bell was a signal to don their kits and get ready to reach the sports ground for their daily football practice. Girls playing football? And that too in a socially conservative state that has drawn negative attention for its skewed sex ratio and where girls are known to have been victims of gender discrimination, from womb to adulthood? In about 30 minutes, around 200 girls gathered in the two big village grounds for the second session of their daily six-hour practice. Despite the drizzle and the chill, they played with skill and vigour – as well as determination. For, football to them is not just a game, but a way to make their dreams come true. The game has won them trophies, scholarships and jobs and has helped the Haryana village stand out for gender equality and women’s empowerment in a state not known for either. The story goes back nearly a decade. The then school coach, Gordhan Dass, was busy training boys for kabaddi, a traditional rural sport, when girls in the school began pestering him every now and then. “Indulge us in sports! We also want to play!” they pleaded. “They wanted to play. So, I gave them a football lying in our sports room,” Dass told IANS. Around 40-50 young girls thus began kicking the ball around for fun – and the physical activity it
Quick Glance Football empowers in a Haryana village Government is ready to install synthetic turf on one of our grounds Girls who have played at the state-level have got scholarships
provided – knowing little about the skills or techniques of the sport. “For around two years, the girls kept playing – and got better. They started learning the techniques by themselves and I could see them doing well in future if given the correct guidance,” Dass said. That’s how the powerful and inspirational sports journey of a small village in Haryana began – a journey that has sent around a dozen women to the international level where they represented India with girls from other parts of the country. Founded in 2012, the Alakhpura Football Club participated in the Indian Women’s League last year where Sanju Yadav from the village was the top scorer with 11 goals. It has two consecutive Subroto Cup (national championship for schools) titles to its name in the under-17 age category. “There is a footballer in every house,” say villagers, taking pride in their girls. The same people had
“I wish to see them pull off this game like players in Argentina and Brazil. That is my dream,” Says Coach Dass
once criticised Dass for encouraging girls to play. “They felt I was doing an objectionable job. Thankfully, my own daughter used to be one of the players. That was a very legitimate reason for many of them to show trust and support,” Dass recalled. Sonika Bijarnia, who took over as
coach after Dass was transferred to nearby Barsi, said: “We started with limited resources -- very few balls, one ground full of pits and prickles. Now, the government is ready to install synthetic turf on one of our grounds.” “Girls who have played at the state-level have got scholarships that helped in their advancement, consequently compelling their parents to believe in their game. Many of them have got government jobs through the sports quota,” she said. “This life of an independent working woman was unimaginable for girls who knew their fate was confined to a bit of education followed by an early marriage. Problems for girls generally are many. There still is a long way to go
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018 for our girls,” she added. “I wish to see them pull off this game like players in Argentina and Brazil. That is my dream.” Bijarnia said that the village soon plans to hold a children’s football league under which there will be under-eight, under-10 and under-12 matches for children “so that they don’t remain mere spectators but develop interest early”. Girls and boys will play together in these matches, she said. Poonam Sharma, who has played for India twice in Asian Football Confederation (AFC) events – once in the under-19 AFC Championship qualifiers in Vietnam (2016) and then in AFC Women’s Asian Club qualifiers in North Korea (2017) – said everything has changed in the past 10 years. “There was no aim in the beginning. Now we enjoy the game and there is a dream to do something for the village and the country.” “I am pursuing my graduation but I won’t need to work. I am a footballer. My game is my priority. I don’t wish to take up any other job,” she told IANS. Sharma, who has three sisters and a brother, said: “My father used to complain that he had four daughters. Now, when we are bringing glory through the game, he is happy thinking his girls are doing a great job.” Balancing studies and sports can be burdensome. How do these girls manage that? “Boys might feel some pressure. These girls don’t. The best of our players are the best of our students too,” said Bhupender Singh, one of the two physical training teachers at the school. Ritu Bagaria, who played in an international friendly match where India beat Malaysia 2-0, said: “Apart from studying and practice, my daily schedule includes helping my mother with the household work and also working in the farms with my father.” “There is no pressure or anything. I am able to spare time for all these errands,” said the 19-yearold Bagaria, who is pursuing her BA third year from the Mahila Mahavidyalaya in Bhiwani. Bagaria, who has been playing football for the last nine years, said that while her parents were supportive, people in her neighbourhood used to make acerbic comments about her initially. “But with time, they calmed down.”
Menstruation Taboos Exist Among Both Genders
Pad Man, based on the story of a real-life hero, addresses the issue of menstrual hygiene and is aimed at creating awareness about it
n SSB Bureau
ctor Radhika Apte, who plays a key role in the Akshay Kumar-starrer Pad Man, says the menstruation taboo has not only existed among men but also among women who are conditioned for years not to talk about the natural process openly. Pad Man, based on the story of a
real-life hero, addresses the issue of menstrual hygiene and is aimed at creating awareness about it. Asked if the film can bring any change in the society, Radhika tells “I think the taboo attached to menstruation is not only among men but women as well. It is happening for years. Even women feel uncomfortable to talk about it openly.
“Mothers taught their daughters how not to talk about it openly, not to go to the kitchen or not to enter the temple. So it does not just exist among men but women as well. “Though I think one film cannot bring all the changes to a practice that is happening for ages, if people start talking about menstruation comfortably, be aware of the importance of menstruation hygiene, it would be more than enough for us. And it is also about the journey of an individual who struggled through his life for a cause. It is an incredible story.” Pad Man, releasing on Friday, is based on the story of Arunachalam Muruganantham, who brought about a near revolution by introducing a machine capable of producing low-cost sanitary pads. As an artist, Radhika says she is proud to be a part of a poignant story like this.
Over 26k workers trained under ‘Women in Factories’ programme The training programme in India, which was launched by Swasti with funding from the Walmart Foundation
n SSB Bureau
he training programme in India, which was launched by Swasti with funding from the Walmart Foundation. Over 26,000 workers have been
trained in 34 factories across four states and one union territory since the launch of the Women in Factories (WiF) programme in 2011 in India, Walmart Foundation and Swasti Health Catalyst jointly said on Friday 19th Jan. According to the philanthropic arm of Wal-Mart Stores Inc, around 21,885 women and 4,137 men have been trained in the states of Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat and Punjab, and the union territory
of Daman. “The training programme in India, which was launched by Swasti with funding from the Walmart Foundation, imparted critical life skills related to communication, balancing work and life, selfawareness, hygiene, reproductive health, occupational health and safety, identifying personal strengths, gender sensitivity and leadership skills,” the statement said.
FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018
Madhubala: Beauty, Grit and Feathers
Goddess of beauty, born on February 14, 1933; was gone on February 23, 1969 with her unfulfilled desires Urooj Fatima
ften perceived as ‘Marilyn Monroe of Bollywood’, Madhubala is, by far, the most iconic silver screen goddess India has produced. Known for her legendary beauty and her coquettish charm, Madhubala was much more than that. Madhubala’s real name was Mumtaz Jahan Begum Dehalvi, nicknamed as Majhlee Aapa. A distinguished astrologer (Njumi) who was also known as Kashmirwaale Baba predicted in Mumtaz’s childhood that her life would be filled with money and fame, but her life will be tough and she will die at a young age. Madhubala’s fate seemed to have been written in haste. Born on February 14, the very date that signifies love, Madhubala had everything in her life, and yet she had nothing at all. In the eyes of the world, she had nothing but happiness, but the truth was that there was no one as sad and troubled as her. Mumtaz never got a childhood that could be called childhood. After her father lost his job, the responsibility of her parents and seven siblings came on her little shoulders. At nine, as Baby Mumtaz, she lipsynced the song Mere chote se man mein choti si duniya re in Basant (1942) and became the earning member of a family of 12. In the ’50s, as Madhubala, she was declared The Biggest Star in the World by an American magazine comparing her mystique to Marilyn Monroe. Madhubala became so popular in Greece in the late 1950s and early 1960s that the European country made the “Venus of Indian cinema” immortal by dedicating a song to her in its own language. Sung by popular Greek singer Stelios Kazantidis, the song is a tribute to Madhubala’s ethereal beauty, her poise and grace. The Madhubala song is a lover’s cry for his beloved whom he has lost. It was a huge hit and it has remained popular to this date. The song is also lovingly hummed in Cyprus, which speaks Greek. Loosely translated, part of the lyrics will mean something like this: “I wish I could see you and then die, my dear. My soul wants only this.
Since I lost you, I’m melting, I cry out your name with pain, Mahdubala, Mahdubala.” In 1954, when she was shooting for the film Bahut Din Huwe, she vomited blood, reportedly, for the first time. She resumed shooting once was alright. Her life compels me to recall a stanza from an Emily Dickinson poem: “Hope” is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul, sings the tune without the words And never stops at all.” I believe, Madhubala’s feathers, regardless of her terminal ailment, still had some flight left in them. She was perfectly fine until she fainted while shooting with Raj Kapoor in 1952 for the film Chalack. Sadly, the film didn’t release. Isn’t it ironical that the charming actress who had grown vibrant in Hindi films, was simultaneously growing fragile by the day? However,
the young actress didn’t give up and resumed work after a month’s rest. She completed every project she signed during the last 10 years of her life and her last film was Mughal-E-Azam. Madhubala has fallen in love many times, but the love that she had for Dilip Kumar was true and pure, as it was not a one-sided. This relationship was the bonding of the hearts of the two stars. But fate had other plans; it did not want this laughing beauty to live a life of peace and comfort. When her relationship with Dilip was broken, she was broken too, completely. The girls who do not get the love and affection of their father in their childhood, they linger for a lifetime for love. Their life is often clouded with trouble when they are in search of a lover who will fill the emptiness in them. She knew that life has given her a lot less time. On the one hand
During her lifetime, Madhubala used to keep a diary where she used to write an accurate account of daily events of her life
Madhubala was fighting her body’s illness; on the other hand, her fame had skyrocketed. People say that she was longing for love; she did not want to leave any chance of finding love. When Madhubala was alone she used to miss the Njumi Baba, and would say, “Your first prediction has come true, now is the time for the second one. I want to die. I can no longer bear this pain.” “She was emotional by nature. She’d be in tears in seconds. We’d keep wondering what had happened. And she’d laugh easily too. The moment she began laughing, she couldn’t stop. So that day’s shooting had to be cancelled! She wasn’t religious but was God-fearing. She didn’t fast but prayed once a day,” sister Madhur Bhushan told in an interview. It is tragic that Madhubala spent her last days in depression and loneliness. What was once the most beautiful face to ever grace the silver screen, full of freshness, vibrancy and youth, was left alone to perish. With a vivid palate of emotions, she could make us laugh with her work in Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi and move us to tears with her performance in Mughal-E-Azam. By the time her death came, she had forgotten everything, even her own name. The only thing she did remember was Dilip Kumar. Madhubala wanted to see Dilip Kumar before she died, but her desire remained unfulfilled. The young lady succumbed to her illness on February 23, 1969, and passed away, leaving back timeless memories. During her lifetime, Madhubala used to keep a diary where she used to write an accurate account of daily events of her life. This diary could have unfolded many of Madhubala’s secrets. But unfortunately her father decided to bury her diary along with her in her grave. Any wonder then that through her last years Rulake gaya sapna mera (Jewel Thief) was the song she heard over and over. The meteoric rise and fadeout of Hindi cinema’s Venus, who lived only for 36 years to become a star forever... Ending with my favourite song, I can almost hear her sing, ‘Kisi din ye tamaashaa muskuraakar hum bhi dekhenge,’ even today.
February 19 - 25, 2018
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ACROSS 2. The 2017 Konark Dance Festival has started in which state? 5. World’s largest underwater cave found in. 8. Which of the following is the correct number violin string? 9. Which country to host ministerial meeting of UN Security Council (UNSC) on North Korea’ nuclear efforts? 12. This company signs a $690 million deal from M&G Prudential 13. Bihar CM Nitish Kumar lays foundation stones for more than projects in Nalanda district. 14. What is the rank of India in FIFA rankings of 2018? 17. Which of the following was the 1st network that initiated the Internet services? 19. Champa was the capital of which Mahajanpadas? 20. Which country builds World’s Biggest Air Purifier recently? DOWN 1. Which of the following Mahajanpadas covered present day Bundelkhand region? 3. Which of the following part of the Sun is visible during eclipse? 4. What was the symbol of first Jain Tirthankara i.e. Rishabhanatha? 6. Which of the following planet’s atmosphere contains hydrogen, helium, methane and ammonia? 7. With which bank Capital First agree to merge in Share Swap Deal? 10. When was the Goa Shipyard Limited (GSL) established? 11. How many times does the kidney filter blood in a day? 15. Which country lifted the restrictions on the use of Internet, including the messaging app Telegram across the country? 16. What sport is played at Wimbledon? 18. Which comapany is named as the world’s most admired company for 2018?
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FEBRUARY 19 - 25, 2018
r e i r r a b o n y Povert ’ a t a h h c a w ‘s r fo
Indian teen sets swimming record Rohan More becomes first Asian, and youngest ever, to complete ‘Ocean’s Seven’ marathon
ndia’s Rohan More has become the first Asian swimmer and the youngest ever to swim across the Cook Strait between North and South Islands of New Zealand. The teenager from Pune completed the feat in eight hours and 37 minutes. Starting from the North Island in temperatures of around 19 degrees Celsius, More battled inclement weather and sudden
drop in temperature to complete the task. With this feat, More became the ninth person in the world to complete the Ocean’s Seven marathon. The Ocean’s Seven consists of seven long-distance open-water swims, which includes the North Channel, the Cook Strait, the Molokai Channel, the English Channel, the Catalina Channel, the Tsugaru Strait and the Strait of Gibraltar.
Amina Khatoon of Bihar constructs toilet by begging
f the will is strong, then no task is too big to handle. Amina Khatoon, an elderly resident of Pathra Uttar village under Pipra block of Supaul district in the flood-prone Koshi region of Bihar, has proved it by contributing to the Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM). Setting a rare example of ‘swachhata’, this poverty-stricken woman collected money through begging in neighbourhood for constructing a toilet at her house. Amina is a widow in her late 40s and mother of a minor boy. Her husband died years ago. She works as a labourer to earn her livelihood. Considering her poverty-stricken condition, the villagers allotted Amina a small piece of land by roadside where she made a hut to put a roof over her little son. Motivated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s constant appeals to construct toilets, and following the November 2017 visit of DDC Dr. Naval Kishore Chaudhary to their Panchayat for making people aware about toilets, the people
Skydiving in nine-yards sari
Shital Rane-Mahajan becomes first Indian to sport a Maharashtrian ‘Nav-wari’
5-year-old Pune adventurist Shital RaneMahajan has set a new record by becoming the first Indian to skydive sporting a colourful “Nav-wari sari”. This Padma Shri laureate, and mother of two sons, was able to skydive twice from an aircraft at a staggering height of around 13,000 ft above the world-famous tourist resort of Pattaya on February 12, with strong winds from the Gulf of Thailand lashing all through her descent. With the International Women’s Day coming up next month, Shital said she wanted
to prove that Indian women can not only carry the sari graciously in their routine lives, but can also use it for high adventure like skydiving. Recounting her experiences, she said that wearing the “Nav-wari sari” itself is a challenge since the attire is nine-yards (8.25 metres) long -- compared to six yards of the regular Indian sari. First, to drape the ‘Nav-wari sari’ properly, plus to wear the parachutes on it, the safety gear and communication equipments, helmet, goggles, shoes, etc, add on to and make it all quite a challenge.
Amina Khatoon around Amina started to build toilets in their homes. This moved Amina, too, to build a toilet for her home. But lack of money was a hurdle Amina had to go to the farm for defecation, as is the common practice for most villagers, because of which she could really sense the need for a toilet. She decided to seek the help of the government, but disappointment met her there. So Amina decided to beg her way to get the required fund. After collecting a small amount of money, she bought the required materials and began the construction process. Moved by her commitment, the mason and labourer, who worked for her, refused to take their wages. Today, Amina’s contribution to SBM has drawn applause. She was felicitated by the district administration on February 11.
RNI No. DELENG/2016/71561, Joint Commissioner of Police (Licensing) Delhi No. F. 2 (S-45) Press/ 2016 Volume - 2, Issue - 10 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
Published on Feb 19, 2018