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2017-01-07 22:54

Cork-Lid Trapdoor Spider Found In Chakdaha

Panic gripped the residents of Thakur Colony in Nadia’s Chakdaha as well as the weekend revelers following a giant black spider was found in the area on Saturday morning

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2016-12-29 22:11

ACJM Starts Case Against Police For Detaining Girl Illegally

ACJM Ranaghat Sanghamitra Poddar today started a case against officer in charge of Hanshkhali police station Anindya Bose, a sub inspector and two other police officers for the alleged ‘unlawful’ detention of a 22 year old girl 

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2016-12-29 21:47

Illegally Detained Girl Known To All, Has Valid Voter Card

The “suspicious” identity theory of the Hanshkhali police about the 22 year old girl, whom it allegedly detained at the police station for five days without any complaint, appeared to have no taker in the Mayurhat-Bilpara village where she stays

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2016-12-28 21:31

Judge Walked Into Nadia Police Station, Rescued Illegally Detained Girl

ACJM of Ranaghat Sanghamitra Poddar today paid a surprise visit to Hanskhali police station in Nadia and recovered a 22 year old unmarried woman who was allegedly illegally detained by police since December 23 night

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2016-12-28 21:15

Insufficient Cash At Money Transfer Counter Dampens Christmas

Disbursement of limited cash by the local agents of different money transferring companies has dampened the festive spirit among the members of the Christian community in Nadia’s Ranaghat

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BARC-BCKV AGREEMENT TO AUGMENT AGRI PRODUCTION USING NUCLEAR TOOLS

BARC-BCKV AGREEMENT TO AUGMENT AGRI PRODUCTION USING NUCLEAR TOOLS

NFN NETWORK

Mohonpur (Nadia): Gone are the days when fruits, vegetables and flowers would rotten in the cold store or on the way to market. Now a simple nuclear radiation using the gamma ray for few minutes could act enough to enhance the shelf life and to preserve the nutrient values. The nuclear scientists of Bhabha Nuclear Research Centre (BARC) would soon show the way to the agriculture scientists at the Bidhan Chandra Krishi Viswabidyalaya that how the use of nuclear strategies and tools could be helpful to preserve fruits and vegetables increasing the shelf life and to augment food production improving the quality of different food crops. 

The agriculture scientists and researchers in the state are hopeful that this would be possible soon as in what could be termed as a major turning point in the field of agricultural research and development in the state, the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre has come up to set up the country’s first Regional Nuclear Agricultural Research Centre at the Bidhan Chandra Krishi Viswabidyalaya campus in Mohonpur in Nadia. 

A memorandum of understanding in this regard was signed between Board of Research in Nuclear Science (BNRS), a wing of Bhabha Atomic Research Centre and Bidhan Chandra Krishi Viswabidyalaya, the premiere agriculture university in the state on February 8 this year.

Nuclear Scientist Dr. K.L.Ramakumar, Director of Radiochemistry and Isotope group wing of BNRS, signed the memorandum of understanding with the BCKV which was represented by vice chancellor Professor Dr. Chittaranjan Koley. 

As per the memorandum of the understanding, the Regional Nuclear Agriculture Research Centre (RNARC) will provide leadership in the Eastern India for addressing the emerging agricultural problems in the region and also explore the scope of second ‘Green Revolution’ in the country. According to an official of the BNRC, which would play a key role behind this research centre, provisions have been kept in the agreement for use of high cost equipments to execute research projects for the scientists.

Signing the MoU, BCKV Vice Chancellor Professor Chittaranjan Koley said: “This is a landmark day in the history for the state. People are largely prejudiced about the nuclear strategic tools. Misconceptions prevail in their mind as they generalize it as atomic power, which might cause health hazards if used in food and vegetables. The scientists at the RNARC would show how the nuclear tools could benefit the society. There was no cause for worry in the move to harness nuclear technology to boost agricultural production and expand the shelf life of vegetables and fruit: The agricultural products would pose no health hazard”. 

Dr. K.L.Ramakumar, Director of BNRC’s Radiochemistry and Isotope group wing, said: “It is great pleasure to us for being able to open the first RNARC of the country here at BCKV campus in Mohonpur in Nadia. The infrastructure and resources for research works are available in abundance here and the environment of the campus is also very conducive for educational works”.

‘The RNARC would start function by the beginning of the March at a new building which has already been constructed inside the BCKV campus. The department of atomic energy has already granted Rupees Ten crore for this centre’, said Dr. K.L.Ramakumar. 

Speaking to the media persons after signing the MoU, Vice chancellor Professor Koley said: “At the initial stage the nuclear scientists of the BNRS would show and train our scientists and researchers how the nuclear strategies should be adopted and its various tools should be used. The selection of crops, vegetables and horticultural items are very important considering its importance and need to the people. Once our scientists are trained they would try their best for practical usage in the field of agriculture.

To begin with the scientists of the BNRS have decided to take up four projects to augment agricultural development. 

(a) Increasing the shelf life of perishable items like flowers, vegetables, horticulture items like potato, onion, mango, banana, litchi and also of fish and meat using radiation technology, so that the storage capability could be enhanced without spoiling the nutrient values.

(b) Increasing the fertility of the soil increasing the nitrogen level in the soil particularly in the drought prone areas reducing the use of chemical fertilizer 

(c)    Molecular characterization of the mutants

(d) Radiation technology for enhancing the level of bioactive compounds in medicinal plants. 

“Under these projects we have planned some experiments like developing new breeds of vegetables like ‘Karola’. We have taken up a plan in which aspecial hybrid species of karala will be developed with the support of a wild variety which has great medicinal value and can be very effective for clinical use on HIV positive patients as well as on the diabetics”, said the VC professor Koley.

“Moreover, with the support of the BNRC’s nuclear scientists we will show the farmers that how nuclear energy could help increase the shelf life of fruit like mango and litchi for at least 48 days. The technology could also aid in altering the nutrients in fruit like banana, thus making for a higher iron content that would be of great use to people with anemia”, said Pro-Vice chancellor of BCKV Professor Biswapati Mandal. 

“The most important aspect is that with the help of this research centre we will be able to produce high quality seeds in the state. So far the farmers used to remain dependent on seeds produced by other states. Infact, the BARC’s nuclear agriculture and bio technology wing with help of mutation breeding process has develo0ped 41 varieties of oil seeds and pulses. The nuclear technology could change farming by bringing about beneficial changes in seed development, tissue culture and preservation techniques We expect the same thing here in the Mohonpur too by the BARC”, added professor Mandal.

BNRC’s programme officer S.Dutta, who was present at the occasion said: “We have decided to work on groundnut in West Bengal, which has a great demand but the state lacks goods seed and has to depend on other state. We would try to develop the groundnut seed here in our new research centre.Nuclear energy could be used in plant breeding and for developing new varieties. Radiation could be used for mutation”.

qCard To Add Joy In Learning In Nadia School

NfN NETWORK

Nagarukhra (Nadia), March. 5:  A school in a remote village in Nadia has radically changed the way for students to respond with their answers in multiple-choice question (MCQ) based class test. They do no more tick the right answers on the answer sheets, rather they wave sheets of white papers covered with black symbols to record their answer in the laptop of the class teacher kept on his desk.

Thanks to Microsoft and its research team in India that has developed a pioneering technology, a students’ response system, called ‘qCard, in which ordinary webcam and symbol-coded sheets of paper can be used instantly to recognize, collect, process and analyze students’ responses to multiple choice questions very quickly in real time and in a very inexpensive way.

The Microsoft team in a major initiative to introduce a new approach in classroom learning has joined hands with Calcutta based Future Society, a non-profit organization working to improve standard of education in unprivileged areas, to implement this ‘qCard’ based students’ response system at Dighalgram Netaji Vidyapith High School in Nagarukhra near Nadia’s Haringhata block as a pilot project in the state.

Bill Thies, a senior researcher of Microsoft’s research team for ‘Technology for emerging market’ (TEM) that has developed the qCard, said: “This is first pilot of the qCard system in West Bengal. We are delighted to take up this pilot project. The Future Society has extended their cooperation in implementing our qCard system in the school which would increase students’ engagement in classroom.  This is a landmark success to our research. We would further refine this exciting technology based on the experience of the students and their feedback”.

The PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) India Foundation has also come forward to contribute its involvement to this exciting endeavor by donating five laptops for the students of Dighalgram Netaji Vidyapith High School.

Niraj Agarwal, Programme Coordination of PwC Foundation told The NfN: "We are happy to be associated with the qCard initiative which would enables technology to be a key driver in the learning process. The objective of the program is simple yet innovative and we are happy that we could help by donating 5 laptops for the implementation’.

What is qCard system? In simple term this is a students’ response system based on ‘quick reference’.

“This is a new approach to classroom test or like polling – asking the students or the audience for feedback on how well they understood a question or could answer a problem. This is similar to what we often see in different reality television shows like ‘Kaun Banega Crorepati’. But, in those shows, the device they use is very costly. In contrary to this, the qCard system developed by the Microsoft research team, is a very low cost alternative, which is well within the reach of the schools in the rural areas”, said Nilalanjan Nath of Future Society.

“For implementation of the qCard system the basic requirements are a Windows based PC or laptop, a webcam and the coded paper sheets”, said Bill of Microsoft.

“After connecting the webcam to the PC when a teacher will ask multiple choice questions, the students in the classroom will respond by holding up a sheet of paper previously given to him. The paper contains a printed code – the quick reference (QR) code. By holding the paper in different rotation and orientations, the students can answer in at least four distinct ways to the multiple-choice questions (i.e. a, b, c or d). When the students would wave or flash his paper sheet targeting the webcam, the software would help the camera to scan the code, recognize it and then aggregate the students’ responses and then record to the computer in real-time as well would display the answer simultaneously. Each student’s card pattern and rotation mapping is different, which would enable them to answer different choices of answers. This would also help to save anonymity among students even thought the teacher could easily identify how each student responded the question”, said Brojen Konar, a techie with Future society, who has been training the teachers at the Nadia school for implementation of the project.

“The Microsoft has developed QR codes of different types which can be printed on plain papers and can be Xerox copied in required number to give them to students for their response”, Brojen added.

“Students poll is a common practice in the classrooms. Generally the students raise hands to respond question. However, it could lead the timid and hesitant students to go with whatever the other think to be right answer. But, in the qCard system the tests done on students is complete, accurate and reflect their immediate understanding. As the answer of each students are recorded in the database, it becomes easy for the teachers of the concerned subject to assess the progress of the student”, said Brojen.

Head master Santanu Mandal said: “The new education guidelines of the government given special emphasis on MCQ. Now for all subjects our teachers have been developing MCQ. They ask this question in the classrooms and the students respond them through the qCard system. Their answer is instantly recorded in the computer for each class for each individual question. So for the teachers it has become very easy to assess the progress of each student. After checking their progress, the teachers now decide if any remedial classes required for any student”.

Spokesperson of Future Society Swarup Dutta, a techie by profession said: “The Teachers are dream weavers. They inspire the students to learn and grow beyond their limits and fulfill their dreams. Feedback is a very important aspect for Teachers for their self-evaluation. The initiatives like qCard system can provide feedback in real time”.

Head Master of the school Santanu Mandal said: “We are really grateful to Future society to recommend us to Microsoft to implement their qCard technology in our school. It is a landmark success to our initiative to upgrade the school located in remote rural area of a poor economic zone to bring it at par with any modern school of urban areas. All our students and teachers of our school are computer literate and as such they face no problem to understand the utility of the technology. Earlier we introduce learning through CCTV system and also started recording classes in audio visual mode to create digital library of class lecture. Now the qCard will on daily basis record the progress and achievement of the students. For this we have started using qCard technology for assessing students progress in all the subjects in the school and as such asked the teachers to prepare question banks”.

For students like Sujoy Mandal, Prahelika Gyne, Taniya Mandal, Sikha Mandal of class ten have found have been enjoying study in a new way. “Now we can reply more question in smaller duration. This system has also made us confident and the study and answering questions have become a matter of joy”, they told.

Fulia Boy Won Best Science Model Award

By NfN NETWORK

Rudrarup with TrophyFulia, Sept. 1518 years old Rurdrarup Das of Fulia Township in Nadia has dreams unlimited! The class-twelve boy with a creative mind has a dream do a scientific research on the Mermaids of the fairy tales and find out their existence in the real world. In his endeavor scientific research works, which he began at the age of 14, Rudrarup, son of a poor night-guard of a local market in Fulia, has already earned accolades by making the models in support of his research findings.

The State Youth Services department on last week added another feather to his crown, when it had chosen Rudrarup as winner of the state level Science model competition (higher secondary level) that was held at the Kshudiram Anusilan Kendra on the occasion of State Science Fair.

Rurdrarup, who is a student of Fulia Sikshaniketan won a cash award of Rs 35,000 being the winner for his model on agriculture development titled – “Ti Plasmid : A Blessing Tool”.

In this model Rudrarup, who wants to be a bio-technologist, has shows that how the ‘Ti Plasmid’ – a transferable DNA available in soil, can be used to produce nitrogenous enzyme, increase yield, develop natural resistance in plants and crops and at the same time reduce the negative impacts of the nitrogen based fertilizers in the soil.

The judges’ panel in the competition picked up Rudrarup’s model as the best one for its feasibility in implementation as well as for its cost effectiveness among the 38 other models those submitted by competitors from 19 districts.

Rudrarup said: “In my model I have tried to show, if the Ti Plasmid, a transferable bacterial DNA, is properly used in the soil, it can work as a blessing tool for agricultural production as it is self sufficient enzyme which produce nitrogenous enzyme. It selects its hosts automatically and gets multiplied naturally to spread over the field through Trans-genesis, a bio technological process and develop crop into a disease resistant high yield variety”.

In his endeavor, the zoology teacher of the school, Tanmoy Sannyal has helped him a lot.

Rudrarup with the Biology Teacher in his school Tanmoy Sannyal“Tanmoy Sir encouraged me a lot in my endeavor. I have a creative mind and used to show my works to Sir, who advised me to think something big which can benefit the common man and particularly the agriculture. Zoology is my favorite subject, so while studying bacterial enzyme I did some research works and studies and found the positive characteristics in the Ti Plasmid. I then told it to Sir who advised me to develop a model. After some rectifications I first submitted it to the Nadia district youth science festival held on August 29, 2013 in Krishnanagar, organized by State Youth Service Department”, Rudrarup said.

“In that competition in Krishnanagar, my model won the best award for which I was selected to participate in the state level competition that was held in Calcutta on September 9 – 11, 2013.”, Rudrarup added.

Zoology teacher Tanmoy Sannyal said: “Rudrarup has great creative mind and great understanding of science. I was stunned when he developed a model on production of water using the humidity in the air.”

Science Model created by Rudrarup“For this award winning model I have done very little for him. All the credit of his success is own. If properly guided, he can make big achievement in the field of scientific research. However, the poverty is the main obstacle in his path. It would be great if the state government come by providing some monthly scholarship to such student instead of one time prize money”, he added further.

Out of prize money of Rs.35,000, as per the norm of the competition the School, which he represented will get Rupees 25,000 while the  winning student will personally get Rs.10,000.

Rudrarup who would appear in HS examination in the next year, passed Madhyamik examination in 2012 with 84% marks. His sister Shreema, reads in class seven. His father Robin Das, earns around Rupees 4000 per month as a night-guard of a local market.

His teacher Tanmoy Sannyal said: “Due to poverty many of such talents are dying an untimely death for which the state government should be careful enough, otherwise there is no justification in organizing such science fair. The government should take full care of their education and use their talents in scientific research works for benefit of the country”.

The school authority has meanwhile, decided to approach the Bidhan Chandra Krishi Viswabidyala authority to examine the model of Rudrarup and to make a model project on it.

Professor Arabinda Mitra, Director of Comprehensive Scheme of Cost Cultivation, a Central Government Project under care of the BCKV, said: “I have heard about the Rudrarup’s model. His teacher made contact with me. I have advised to demonstrate the model before our scientists and if they give the nod we may consider implementing it practically”.

BCKV Makes Adoption Of Tree Mandatory For 1st Year Students

BCKV Tree AdoptionMohonpur, Sept. 22: The Bidhan Chandra Krishi Viswabidyalaya (BCKV) in a bid to develop an emotional bonding and an understanding about trees and plants among the students, have come up with a unique programme to have all its first years B Sc and B Tech students to adopt a plant each mandatorily since the beginning of their four years’ course period.

The programme, which began from September this year, was conceived after teachers of different faculties had experienced a sheer lack of understanding and knowledge about common trees and plants among a large section students, who did not opt for agriculture as their natural choice.

BCKV Tree AdoptionUnder this programme, which is a part of ‘Herbarium’ project, the BCKV authorities have decided to encourage the students to take care of the plants as real life guardians, so that they could develop emotional attachment beyond their study materials.

To begin with, the University authority early this month has planted 146 mango plants of 44 different varieties, like Mallika, Rani Pasand, Alphonso, Kisan Bhog and many others along the 300-meter stretch in the ‘green-clean’ campus between the students’ hostel and faculty buildings. As the programme has been envisaged, 146 1st year students’ of agriculture, horticulture and agree-engineering faculties, whose session began from August, have been handed over the responsibilities of these plants.

BCKV Pro Vice Chancellor Professor Biswapati Mandal, who is the brain behind this project, said: “Our prime objective is to get the students accustomed with trees and plants and develop their understandings. Many of the students come from urban background and chose agriculture often being failed to get a chance in medical or in engineering. They have little understanding and love for trees and plants which are very necessary for agricultural study”.

BCKV Tree Adoption“So under this project we would gradually develop a herbarium of different plants to make them accustomed with the trees and plants. Every year the 155 first years’ students who take admission to BCKV will be assigned responsibility of a tree. We have started this programme this year with Mango tree. We have already registered 146 students as the adoptee. During these four years of stay at the University these boys and girls will act as the father or as the mother and rear the mango trees as their children”.

“As a mother or a father takes care of their children, these students will monitor the growth of the plants, check the nutritional needs, give them water, protect the plants from paste attacks and if found necessary would call a doctor for her check up and medical treatment. They would also prepare monthly report as per protocol and submit to me. Professor Bhagawat Banik, Head of the department of Fruits and Orchard Management would act here as the ‘Plants doctor, who would on call visit and prescribe the remedies. We have chosen high yield varieties which would start fruiting within four years and give the students pleasure of their success in rearing the tree”, said the Pro VC.

BCKV Tree AdoptionHowever, the performance of the students will not be evaluated for academic purpose. “The students are being encouraged from a social perspective. The programme will not upset students about their main course study. The trees have been planted along their way to faculty buildings so that they could keep daily watch on their ‘child’ regularly”.

“Plants Doctor” Professor Bhagawat Banik said: “The objective of the programme is very fascinating and I hope students would develop an emotional attachment. I would try my best to make them understand as the real doctor and also advise them how to take care of their children”.

BCKV Tree AdoptionMeanwhile, the programme has developed huge response among the students like Naznin Khatun, Purabi Banerjee, Sumit Majumder, Subhadip Mandal and others. Naznin, a student of agriculture faculty, who hails from Haldia, said: “The responsibility of a tree has developed a unique feeling of parenthood within me. I am enjoying it very much”.

The students now have decided to name their ‘child’. Purabi, who hails from Jalpaiguri and a boarder at ladies hostel-I, said: “It is an emotional bonding between mother and child, so a name is needed to make it strong”.

Pro VC Mandal said: “The names of the plant, if given any, and its guardian will be tagged permanently as an identity and recognition”.