Uttarakhand  Chapters of the Academy

 

Uttarakhand Chapter of the Academy has organized following activities during November 2010 to October 2011 –

Following the election of fresh office bearers for the Uttarakhand Chapter of NASI during March 2010, Dr. B.R. Arora and Dr. G.S. Rawat took over the charge of Chairman and Secretary of the Chapter respectively. The Academy has nominated Prof. A.N. Purohit and Prof. Y.P.S. Pangtey as advisors for the Chapter. The Chapter of the Academy is affiliated to the Uttarakhand State Council for Science & Technology (UCOST) for execution of various activities. Following is the summary of various activities undertaken by the Chapter during April 2010 to March 2011.

Celebration of Earth Day, 22 April 2010

This event was celebrated at the Conference hall of UCOST, Dehradun. Over 30 participants representing civil society, academicians and environmentalists discussed the major environmental issues in the mountain state of Uttarakhand and gave valuable suggestions to the organizers (NASI office bearers and UCOST) for promoting research on environmental issues in the state. While chairing the opening session, Prof. A.N. Purohit highlighted the importance of simplifying the life style and avoiding wastage of energy. He further expressed concern over degradation of Himalayan Environment and role of younger generation in reversing the process. The brief proceedings of the conference (principles of reduce, reuse and recycle) was widely published in local media with a view to increase public awareness towards environmental conservation.

World Biodiversity Day, 22 May 2010

World Biodiversity Day was celebrated on 22nd May, 2010, at the Government Inter College Munsiary, one of the remote colleges in the state. Two scientists and three research scholars from the Wildlife Institute of India conducted two sessions for the teachers and science students at this college. Two popular talks were delivered (i) Biodiversity of Uttarakhand, (ii) Floral Diversity of Himalaya by the resource persons. This was followed by 3 hours of nature orientation programme. In this session students were taken for a walk to the nearby forests and importance of common trees, butterflies and animals were explained. The programme was a grand success.

NASI Best Science Teacher Award -2010

Like previous years, nominations for the Academy’s Best Science Teacher award were invited from prospective candidates serving in the state of Uttarakhand. The award was advertised in the Hindi Dailies which have wider circulation in the state i.e., Amar Ujala, Dainik Jagararan and Hindustan in the month of August 2010. In addition, circulars were sent to the Director, Secondary Education, Government of Uttarakhand and District Inspector of Secondary Education.  Last date for the receipt of application was October 15th 2010. Based on a critical review of all the nominations received (>25), Shri Umesh Chandra Pandey was selected for NASI Best Science Teacher for the state of Uttarakhand during 2010. 

Born on 01.07.1965, Shri. Umesh Chandra Pandey is a highly qualified teacher/ lecturer of Mathematics. He has offered 23 golden years of his life to teaching students at KIC Kapkot; GIC Almora; GIC Manan, Almora and GIC Dinapani, Almora. He has undertaken various training at multiple institutions in India on computers, journalism and mathematics. The best representation of his capabilities is the fact that 100% of his students cleared the XIIth board exams in four consecutive years from 2005 – 2008. Shri Pandey was given a cash award of Rs. 10,000/- and a certificate on the occasion of inaugural session of Vth  Uttarakhand Science and Technology Congress on 10th November 2010 by Prof. Anupam Varma, a noted scholar and Fellow of NASI. The Hon’ble Chief Minister of Uttarakhand, Dr. Ramesh Chandra Pokhariyal ‘Nishank’ graced the occasion at the award giving ceremony.

NASI Special Lecture during Vth Science & Technology Congress, 2010

The Chapter organized a special lecture during the inaugural session of the State Science & Technology Congress (November 9 -10,  2010), held at Doon University, Kedarpuram.  The lecture, entitled “Indian Mountain Initiative: Role of Science & Technology” was delivered by Dr. R.S. Tolia, former Chief Secretary and former Chief Commissioner, Govt. of Uttarakhand. Referring to the Agenda 21 of the Rio Convention and dearth of scientific studies on many facets of mountain biodiversity, Dr. Tolia called upon scientific community to take up multi-disciplinary studies in the Himalayan region and strive for excellence. Dr. Tolia also underlined the need for harnessing the available technology to mitigate the environmental disaster in the hill region,  poverty alleviation and sustaining development efforts in the region. Likewise, stressed the need for filling the missing link and reducing scientific uncertainties due to lack of consistent scientific data on climatic parameters, impacts of global warming on mountain ecosystems, valuation of mountain ecosystem services for enhancing the livelihoods of the poor mountain communities.

Prof Anupam Varma, FNA, FNASc, FNAASc, Chair, National Committee of International Union of Microbiolgical Societies and Former National Professor and Dean, Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi was the Guest of Honour during the NASI lecture and represented the Academy.  The session was attended by more than 200 delegates and was well received by the participants and media.

NASI Popular Lectures at HNB Garhwal University and Doon University

The Chapter organized popular lectures on Green Chemistry and applications of Nanotechnology at HNB Garhwal University and Doon University during November 28 – 30, 2010. The lectures were delivered by Prof. Rajender S. Varma, formerly Professor of Chemistry, Sam Houston State University, Texas, USA–Project Manager, Texas Research Institute for Environmental Studies (TRIES) and Senior Scientist, Houston Advanced Research Center. Prof Varma explained the process of synthesizing the heterocyclic compounds, coupling reactions, and a variety of name reactions are the main beneficiaries as exemplified by the synthetic reactions catalyzed by basic water or polystyrene sulfonic acid (PSSA) in aqueous media in conjunction with microwave (MW) irradiation. Prof. Varma, in his lecture  emphasized that natural product chemistry have been a major source of inspiration not only for present activities in organic chemistry, but also for activities in related field of biological sciences and other sciences. The development of methods for synthesis, separation techniques and structural studies using lesser and lesser toxic materials and using nanotechnology can provide tools for a deeper understanding of the chemistry of life processes and of complex biological and ecological interactions in nature in a more simple way.  The lecture provided an outlook on several research frontiers from green synthesis and nano technology to mode of action.

Celebration of National Science Day, February 28th, 2011

On the occasion of National Science Day (28th February 2011), the Chapter, in collaboration with UCOST organized lectures on recent advancements in various fields of science at various places in the state, viz., Govt. P.G. College Uttarkashi, Pithoragarh, Almora, Bageshwar, Udhamsingh Nagar, Gopeshwar, Pauri and Champawat.  At each college, either a Fellow or member of the Science Academy made a presentation in respective field. This programme was coordinated by the District Coordinators of UCOST and reported to be a grand success.