1,000+ Students Attend Biodiversity Events at Arul Anandar College

01 December 2010 | News story

CEC member Michael Anjello Jothi Rajan reports on a two-day science mela to raise awareness among rural school children and their communities about biodiversity and the protection of species.

Arul Anandar College is located in a nearly pollution-free zone. We are situated 22kms away from the Madurai City, Tamil Nadu, India. Senior citizens of this region complained about the extinction of many bird species from their localities. There may be extinction of plant species also. Having this as the background, our college organized a two-day exhibition cum awareness programme to save the existing biodiversity species of our region. This programme was conducted during 10 and 11 March 2010. The programme was a successful one in the eyes of the village people because they are avoiding plastic bags, do not throw rubbish on the streets, and have controlled the firing of crackers.

NATIONAL SCIENCE MELA: SCIENCE AND PHILOSOPHY OF BIODIVERSITY

10 March 2010

The main objective of the Science Mela is to create an awareness among the rural masses and the rural school children about the extinct of the Biodiversity species and to save them from further deterioration. The Two-day Science Mela started with the inaugural function with the following dignitaries playing their important roles.

Rev.Dr.G.Pushparaj, S.J., Principal, Arul Anandar College, Karumathur.
Rev.Dr.Arockiasamy Xavier, S.J., Secretary Arul Anandar College, Karumathur
Mr.M.A.Jothi Rajan, Convenor, Science Exhibition 2010, Arul Anandar College
Dr. G.Rajasekaran, Adjunct Professor, IMSC, Chennai
Dr.Chinnaraj Joseph, Principal, The American College, Madurai
Dr.Daniel Chellappa, Senior Scientist, IGCAR, Kalpakkam
Prof.B.S.Acharya, Senior Scientist, TIFR, Mumbai
Mr.N.S. Sreenivasan, Engineer, TNEB, Chennai
Dr.Vivek Datar, Senior Scientist, TIFR, Mumbai
Dr.Deepak Samuel, Scientist, BARC, Mumbai
Er.Stephen, Project Engineer of INO, TNEB, Chennai
Dr.C.E.Sooriyamoorthy, Emeritus Professor, Madurai Kamaraj University, Madurai

The dignitaries spoke about the prestigious INDIAN BASED NEUTRINO OBSERVATORY, which will be commissioned in Pottipuram Panchayat of Theni District, Tamil Nadu. Dr.Vivek Datar declared the exhibition open exactly around 10.30am.

The participants of this function were professors from Arul Anandar College, Karumathur, Professors from neighboring colleges, Research scholars from Madurai Kamaraj University and Gandhigram Rural University, PG students from neighboring colleges and PG students from neighboring engineering colleges. There were 255 participants for this programme.

The exhibition started around 11.00am. For the first day of the exhibition 21 schools participated and the students’ strength was 1012 in number.

The students from Arul Anandar College also participated in the exhibition and the strength was 1030 in number.
The exhibition was closed for the first day at 6.00pm.

At 7.00 pm NIGHT SKY WATCHING was arranged and as many as 500 students watched the celestial objects. Three families from the nearby villages participated in this programme. This event was sponsored by Tamil Nadu Science and Technology Centre, Chennai, Tamil Nadu.

10 March 2010

The Exhibition started at 8.30 am. The crowd was unexpected as it was a holiday for the schools. But to our surprise nearly 1320 school students from 35 rural schools participated. The students of Arul Anandar College, Karumathur were 850 in number. The exhibition closed at 6.00pm.

At 10.00am Special talks were given by:
Professor Anuj Sinha, Advisor and Head, NCSTC, DST, GOI, New Delhi.
In his address he spoke about the importance of Science and Technology Communications as a tool for the livelihood of farmers in this village based college. He touched upon the subject for creating a VILLAGE KNOWLEDGE CENTRE in the college which will be useful for the school students to from science clubs and for farmers for receiving relevant information about weather and crops and irrigation.

Prof. C.E.Sooriyamoorthy, Emeritus Professor, Madurai Kamaraj University, Madurai.
In his address he spoke on the advantages of creating solar villages in Karumathur.

Dr.Ebenezer, Scientist, IIAP, Bangalore. In his address he spoke on the climatic changes due to global warming and how it can be mitigated with modern technological devices.

At 11.45 am there was a panel discussion involving the three scientists and many questions were put and they were clarified by the experts.

In this session Panchayat presidents, Ward councilors, poor Agriculturists, NGOs, Women self-help group officials, Bullock cart drivers, professors and students of Arul Anandar College participated.
There were nearly 272 participants in total for the above programme.

Around 10.00am a science awareness rally consisting of 300 cyclists of Arul Anandar College started from Jain Caves, Puliyangulam and ended in Arul anandar College. The distance covered was 12 kms. The rally was inaugurated by Mr.D.Kanagaraj, Deputy Superintendent of Police, Usilampatti.

Around 10.15am another science awareness rally consisting of elephant, horses and bullock carts, and tableaus, and students of Arul Anandar College 320 in number started from Karumathur Village and ended in Arul Anandar College. The distance covered was 2kms. Mr.Jayaraman, Panchayat President, Karumathur Panchayat and Dr.Daniel Chellappa, Senior Scientist, IGCAR, Kalpakkam flagged off the rally.

The two science awareness rally was received by Professor ANUJ SINHA and the BIODIVERSITY Pledge was taken by the staff and students of Arul Anandar College.

ARUL ANANDAR COLLEGE, (AUTONOMOUS),
KARUMATHUR-625514

BIODIVERSITY DECLARATION

11 March 2010

We the staff and students of Arul Anandar College, Karumathur on11th March 2010 declare that:

  1. WE WILL TAKE EVERY PRACTICAL OPPORTUNITY TO HALT OR SIGNIFICANTLY REDUCE THE CURRENT RATE OF BIODIVERSITY LOSS BY 2010.
  2. WE WILL UNDERTAKE SERIOUS EFFORTS TO ADAPT HUMAN ACTIVITIES TO THE NEEDS OF NATURAL SYSTEMS.
  3. WE WILL SIGNIFICANTLY REDUCE OUR IMPACT ON BIODIVERSITY.
  4. WE WILL SAVE BIODIVERSITY.

The Valedictory function was advanced to the afternoon around 1.oo pm as the delegates had to catch their flights around 4.00 pm.

The two-day science mela ended with the valedictory function with the following dignitaries playing their important roles:

Rev.Dr.G.Pushparaj, S.J., Principal, Arul Anandar College, Karumathur
Dr.I.Devanan, Deputy Principal, Arul Anandar College, Karumathur
Dr.S.Vanathu Antony, Vice Principal, Arul Anandar College, Karumathur
Professor Anuj Sinha, Advisor and Head, NCSTC, DST, GOI, New Delhi.
Prof. C.E.Sooriyamoorthy, Emeritus Professor, Madurai Kamaraj University, Madurai
Dr.Ebenezer, Scientist, IIAP, Bangalore.

The science exhibition closed around 6.00pm and we were satisfied with what has been done involving people at various levels of the society and with various activities that has Popularized Science and Technology Communications in this rural part of India.

The impact of this wonderful historic event will be seen in the future as we hope many children will take up science as their subjects in the university level and hence become scientist and technologists to pave way for a decent and dignified life for all in our country. JAI HIND.

For more information, contact Michael Anjello Jothi Rajan, Associate Professor, Dept. Physics and Head Dept. of Religion and Value Education at Arul Anandar College in Karumathur, Tamil Nadu, India. E-mail: anjellojothi@rediffmail.com