Visually challenged students across the country will soon be able to access Braille maps which are designed and developed using digital embossing technology, thereby enabling them for ease of use, user-friendly, better feeling and durability in terms of quality.
The digital embossing technique removes the need for printing plates, moulds, chemicals, and solvents, while also generating no emissions or waste and lowering total energy consumption. National Atlas and Thematic Mapping Organisation was the first in India to introduce, create, and implement this technology (NATMO).
The maps produced using this technology are not only useful for high-speed production of the maps but can also produce Braille maps that can be used by more people for years together. Maps which were produced with previous technologies have been observed to lose their readability and feeling experience over a short span of time.
A Kerala school in Palakkad district has directed students to not call teachers by ‘sir’ or ‘ma’am’ and instead use the address ‘teacher’ which is gender neutral. Senior Basic School at Olassery village which has 300 students, nine female teachers and eight male teachers, is the first in the state to bring such a directive. The decision was taken after several schools in Kerala adopted gender-neutral uniforms for students. As per reports, the idea for addressing teachers using gender-neutral terms was first suggested by a male teacher who was inspired by the work of a social activist based in Palakkad — Boban Mattumantha who is campaigning to do away with the practice of addressing government officials as ‘sir’.
Also, last year, the Mathoor panchayat, located 14 km from the Kerala school, had done away with the practice of calling panchayat staff ‘sir’ and ‘ma’am’, in the favour of calling them by their designation. These two cases inspired the school to take their decision to introduce gender-neutral addresses for teachers. The move was welcomed by parents and after initial inhibition, students also changed the way they were addressing teachers.
Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Palakkad Technology IHub Foundation (IOTIF) has launched the ‘Oorga Grand Challenge’, a pre-incubation activity for students and entrepreneurs with an aim to pave the way for innovation in the national and global energy sector.
The prize money could be up to Rs 1.5 lakh for designing after shortlisting, up to Rs 10 lakh for prototyping after design review and up to Rs 25 lakh for incubation after prototype review, the institute said. It also said “Oorja Grand Challenge aims to enable innovators to design and develop intelligent collaborative systems in the energy domain. Students, Researchers and Entrepreneurs can form teams with the ability to lead fundamental research, product development, industry development, and job creation for Indian and global energy sectors”. The last date to Apply is March 1, 2022.
The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has asked the affiliated schools to celebrate “National Youth Day” and the “Birth Anniversary of Swami Vivekananda” today, i.e. January 12 in online or offline mode. The board has asked schools to organize special assembly, debate or speeches and cultural programmes dedicated to Swami Vivekananda on the occasion.
“Wearing of masks, following physical distancing and maintaining of hand hygiene may be strictly ensured while organising the program in physical mode,” the board said in a notification. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will inaugurate and address the 25th National Youth Festival today.
Students of IIT Madras are developing virtual re-creation of the IIT Madras campus and also showcasing the landmarks of the Institute through 3D navigation. This showcase is a part of the 22nd edition of Shaastra 2022.
The event will be held virtually from January 13 to January 16, 2022. The theme of Shaastra this year is ‘Code of Chaos’ which aims to shine a light on the new reality shaped by rapid digitisation. According to the press release issued by IIT Madras, a total of around 50 events will be organized, featuring a total of 30,000 participants this year, a sharp rise compared to a total of 20,000 participants last year.
Congratulating students on coming up with such innovative ideas despite the extraordinary challenges of last year, Prof. Bhaskar Ramamurthi, Director, IIT Madras, while addressing a virtual press conference said, “I must give all credit to students for managing the change in scenario and moving to the virtual platform smoothly. Conducting Shaastra virtually would not have the same impact as it would have if the event was held on campus. But, the team is trying to achieve good traction by imagining different ways in which they can reach out virtually to provide students from IIT Madras as well other institutions a good exposure on what is happening in the field of technology.”
BC Nagesh, minister for primary and secondary education, on Tuesday announced that schools in the districts will remain open and that they will be ordered closed only if the Covid-19 test positivity rate breaches the 5%-mark. He said closures will be taluk specific and not a blanket decision across the district or state as was done during the first and second waves of the pandemic.
The issue was discussed during a virtual meeting convened by chief minister Basavaraj Bommai to review the pandemic situation. A decision was taken to empower DCs to decide on school closures based on reports of active cases by block education officers and taluk health officers. It was also decided to reserve beds in hospital wards and ICUs to treat Covid-positive children and conduct general health check-ups in schools once a fortnight.
Nagesh said that the prevailing situation does not warrant closure of schools as the government has been managing the situation with utmost seriousness and on an hourly basis. But if cases rise, he said instructions have been given to deputy commissioners to take a call depending on the situation in their respective districts.
He said infections among school children are “negligible”. As on Sunday, as many as 163 PU students and 640 students from schools had tested positive. Of them, 360 have recovered. Similarly, around 80 teachers have tested positive and 12 have recovered. “So, there is no need for parents to worry,” minister Nagesh said.
The Rajasthan High Court on Tuesday asked the National Testing Agency to allot a seat in an appropriate medical college to a Pakistani immigrant who has cleared NEET but was denied admission for the want of a Long Term Visa from the country of his origin. Justice Dinesh Mehta of the Jodhpur bench of the high court asked NTA, the country’s premier body mandated to hold competitive examinations for admissions to various higher educational institutions including those of engineering and medical, on a plea by Pakistani immigrant Sandeep Kumar.
Kumar had moved the high court saying that he was denied a seat in a medical college despite securing 80 per cent marks in the National Eligibilities-cum-Entrance Test (Undergraduate) (NEET) because his LTV has expired and was awaiting renewal by Pakistan for long. While asking the NTA to admit Kumar to a medical college, the bench ruled that the validity of his admission will depend on the outcome of his petition. Providing relief to the petitioner, Justice Mehta said, “The petitioner appeared in the NEET (UG) examination and has secured 80 per cent marks.” “It is hereby ordered that the competent authority of the NEET shall allot an appropriate college to the petitioner, of course, in accordance with his merit, ignoring that he is not having Long Term Visa, the bench said.
Madhya Pradesh schools will remain open as of now, informed CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Monday. He said that they will continue physical classes at 50% capacity. Even as Covid-19 cases continue to rise in the third wave across the country prompting schools to close again in several states, the CM said that the decision to close schools will be taken after the review meeting which would be held in a few days. CM Chouhan said that though Covid-19 cases are rising fast in the state, the situation was being carefully monitored.
He said that further decision on what restrictions would be implemented would be taken in the coming days. The CM also expressed concern over the Covid spike in the regions of Bhopal, Indore and other districts. However, he said that overall, the Covid situation in MP was under control and that schools would be allowed to work at 50% capacity for now.