Science congress to focus on Modi Govt’s Make in India programme

Science congress to focus on Modi Govt’s Make in India programme

Eminent scientists and technologists from across the country will brainstorm Mysore in Karnataka from Sunday on how best to implement the Modi government’s ambitious Make in India programme for the global market.

“Keeping in view the prime minister’s flagship programme to get global investments, create jobs and boost exports, the theme of the 103rd Indian Science Congress is on aScience & Technology for indigenous development,” Mysore University vice chancellor K.S. Rangappa told IANS in Mysore.

To be flagged off by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the sprawling Mansagangotri campus of University of Mysore in presence of top scientists, Nobel laureates and hundreds of students, the five-day annual fair is holding a mega expo on the theme of Pride of India – Frontier Science & Technologies.

Though the science congress is being held for the 10th time in Karnataka, Mysore is hosting it for second time 33 years after Indira Gandhi opened it in 1982, and as part of its centenary celebrations since it was founded in 1916.

On eight occasions, the event was held in Bangalore (now Bengaluru), 140 km from here, with the last in 2003 when Atal Behari Vajpayee was the prime minister and A.P.J. Abdul Kalam the president.

Interestingly, the first science congress in the erstwhile Mysore state was held in 1917 at Bangalore when the Mysore maharaja, Nalwadi Krishnaraja Wodiyar inaugurated it in the premier Indian Institute of Science (IISc) for which he gifted 371 acres of land free in 1911 for promoting research in science.

Eminent scientist C.N.R Rao, a receipient of the Bharat Ratna, will deliver a lecture on “Doing Science in India” on Sunday after the inaugural session, which will be webcast for live streaming though about 400 scientists from overseas and across the country and about 100 noted speakers will be present to listen him directly.

Five Nobel Laureates – John B Gurdon (medicine, 2012) from Britain, Dass Shechtman (chemistry, 2011) from Israel, David J Gross (physics, 2004) and Arthur B. McDonald (physics, 2015) from the US and Serge Haroche (physics, 2012) from France will speak at the panel discussion on “Science & Technology: Present & Future”.

Indian-born Fields medallist Manjul Bhargava from Princeton University in the US will also participate in the discussion on January 3.

Modi will also honour about 30 distinguished scientists who had made singular contribution to the cause of science with awards and rewards, including gold medals to Nobel laureates, best presenter at the congress, best poster, young scientists and C.V. Raman birth centenary award.

About 8,500 delegates have registered for the event from other states and overseas. Another 2,500 delegates, including faculty and students from the host university are participating.

“With about 2,000 spot registrations, we expect about 15,000 people to visit the campus for the five-day fair to witness its various events, including women’s science congress, children’s science congress and communicators meet,” Rangappa said ahead of the meet.

Plenary talks will be on nano science, space science, technology and applications , diabetes, evolution, the frontiers, atomic energy, safe water and sanitation, diseases, drug development and public-private partnerships in the Clean India mission.

Union Human Resource Development (HRD) Minister Smriti Irani will open the fifth women’s science congress on January 4, while Gurdon will flag off the children congress on the second day of the fair.

As Karnataka’s cultural capital and city of palaces, this historic city will treat the visiting delegates to its rich cultural programmes, including classical dances, fusion music and folklore.

The science expo will have four pavilions – Hall of Pride, Vigyan Jyot, Genesis and Edu Vision – in which about 180 organsiations will showcase eminent personalities, inventions, discoveries and scientific solutions for common problems.

“As the expo’s revered segment, the Hall of Pride pavilion is dedicated to eminent personalities who contributed immensely to the growth of science and technology, which in turn helped in the country’s development,” Rangappa added.

Among the noted personalities are Jawaharlal Nehru, Vikram Sarabhai, Dhirubhai Ambani, G.D. Birla, Satish Dhawan, Acharya Prafulla Chandra Ray and Sir M. Visvesvaraya from the host state.

As a tribute to Kalam, the Hall of Pride pavilion will be dedicated to him.

Odd-Even Rule: Commuting Won’t Be A Hassle If You Have These Apps On Your Phone

Odd-Even Rule: Commuting Won’t Be A Hassle If You Have These Apps On Your Phone

The New Year has begun but the celebrations are not over yet. The extended weekend has just added more to the fun. However, the only thing that is bothering Delhiites is the odd-even rule, which has come in force only today. The thought of not having the freedom to drive their car every day has left them perplexed but they shouldn’t be. You can easily sort out your every day commute problems if you have these apps installed on your smartphone. Take a look!

Facebook And WhatsApp Retain Top Spot In App Category In India This Year

Facebook And WhatsApp Retain Top Spot In App Category In India This Year

Social networking apps in India have always gained maximum traction from the young brigade of the country. And now a latest study conducted by WhichApp has revealed that social networking giant Facebook and mobile messaging service WhatsApp have gained top spot by becoming the ‘most popular applications’ in the country in 2015.

According to WhichApp, a mobile app, apart from Whatsapp and Facebook, Truecaller and UC Browser have also managed to make their way in the top-five most popular mobile applications.

In India, above 20 thousand apps have been found and downloaded through WhichApp’s platform, revealed the study.

Kapil Chawla, WhichApp co-Founder and CEO, said, “Our future plans are to localize for vernacular languages for the non-English speaking audience and rollout in other countries as the app is only available in India right now. The aim is to have 10 million users by December 2016.”


With pollution at an-all time high, use plants at home as effective indoor air purifiers
Plants “breathe” in carbon dioxide and release oxygen. This is of utmost importance to maintain the delicate balance of the earth’s atmosphere. While this is a commonly known fact that takes us back to our elementary school science, a lesser-known fact is that plants can also be used to extricate harmful chemicals from the air we breathe inside our homes.

Studies conducted by NASA have unearthed that certain plants used as houseplants can act as “filters” to effectively remove toxins from indoor air and replace it with breathable oxygen.
Keeping in mind the fact that pollution levels are at an all time high and Diwali is round the corner, which along with its festivities has adverse environmental repercussions, pure breathable air in our own homes has never been more important.
The upside to this rather serious situation is that most of the plants are not only visually appealing, these are also easily available and require minimum care and maintenance. A few simple tips to beautify a corner in your house will simultaneously eliminate significant amounts of benzene, formaldehyde and other harmful substances.
For instance, Sansevieria, also known as mother-in-law’s tongue, is one of the best for filtering out formaldehyde, which is common in cleaning products, toilet paper, tissues and personal care products. Put one in your bathroom — it’ll thrive with low light and steamy humid conditions while helping filter out air pollutants.
Likewise, Dracaena Marginata (or red-edged Dracaena) is optimum for removing xylene, trichloroethylene and formaldehyde, which can be introduced to indoor air through lacquers, varnishes and gasoline. Additionally, the red edges of this plant add a pop of colour to any dull corner of the house.
Ficus Benjamina requires slightly more attention, but once you get the light and water conditions right, this plant can act as a powerful filter in your living room for pollutants released by carpeting and furniture.
Other easily available, aesthetically appealing plants that have great air purifying qualities are Areca Palm, Lady Palm, Dracaena Janet Craig, Bamboo Palm, Ficus Robusta, Philodendron and Ficus Alii. Plants can be worked into gardens and landscapes in a creative manner. Another helpful technique is to use coco-peat as a planting/potting medicine. It is a myth that gardens consume “too” much water – logical watering patterns not only safeguard the natural resource but add to the ecological growth of a garden- no plant likes excessive water anyway.
Use eco-friendly potting techniques for indoor and outdoor purposes – the air has so many pollutants each one of us must try and do our bit. The author is a luxury exteriors designer with over a decade- anda-half experience in landscaping, garden design and beautification projects