Thursday, November 18, 2010

Women and Science:Needs for new policy formulation

There is a need for crucial insight on the participation of women in the area of sciences.Scientific knowledge plays a central role in today's modernized society.To see things from gender viewpoint,we happen to see that there is a wide gap between men and women in educational institution,engineering,technology,research relating to sciences.This fact is surprisingly ignore by the nation's policymakers.If India's vision of developed country by 2020 is to be fulfilled,there must be end to the kind practices that are against women.In this globalized contemporary world,the country must be prepared for ''global competitive readiness'' in the field of sciences too.Conventional barriers like negative stereotyping of girls' such as their interests and abilities towards sciences,math and research are in dire needs that requires rethinking and reformulation at the policy levels of government and society at large as well.In a study done by one Bix in 1996,it shows that women activism reveals success not only in making public awareness but also in making use of statistics to gain research money and challenge research in breast cancer research,so women are a key component in the field that concerns them most.The liberal feminist approach says that there should be equal access to science by women and in the labor force.Here it speak of schooling and employment as an over riding agenda while the transformative perspective point out that it is not a question of adding women in sciences but demasculinize the arenas that are under male domains.In 1993,the science and technology office of the UK said that women are the country's most underutilzed resources.If science is conceived as an institutionalized means that is crucial for national economic development or ''science for progress'' is the mantra of national development,women's role in this field can hardly be ignored.Therefore,the question of gender equity in science is not just a question for feminist alone,the challenge is for all.Our country must look beyond conventional thinking and policies in regard to science and women.


References:

Drori,Gili.S;Science in the modern world polity: institutionalization and globalization,Stanford University Press,2003

Internationalisation and Globalisation in Mathematics and Science Education
 Angela Calabrese Barton, Bill Atweh, Marcelo C. Borba, Noel Gough, Christine Keitel, Catherine Vistro-Yu, Renuka Vithal,2008

Copyright:Bhaskar Pegu

Monday, October 4, 2010

Looking back!!Am I really a fundamentalist Mising???????????????

I feel that my friends were not wrong  to called me a "fundamentalist Mising" in my college days.All the earlier blog posts seemed to reflect who i was during my college life.I am opening this college diary (blog)after many days (months!)and looking back my past .But it was naive to judged i was doing only "fundamentalist"kind of things.So I put my thoughts into writing to judge my stance...before all my friends who dubbed me "fundamentalist" whom i think they were less informed on my writings.To begin with,I wrote in the national magazine like "Frontline" on different issues which were published in the letters columns from Fidel Castro to Indo-China relations ...Naxalites issues....tribal issues....Also in the The Assam Tribune on different issues from engineering college in Dhemaji to reopening of Library  in Guwahati....power cuts,rail coach...women trafficking...etc. on Letters columns..i made my writing appeared in "The Hindu" comparing on Irom Shamila's hunger strike and KCR's fasting for Telengana in India.I once highlighted the Matmara issue on Geotube Tech embankment in an Assamese daily Asomiya Pratidin which i saw later on that my idea was included as part of  a political party's manifestoes.Besides,I also signed up many online petitions through Survival International and Greenpeace on human rights and environmental issues.(Thank God,most writings are available on web till now!)
     One shouln't think that i wrote all things only on Mising issues...sorry I clarified one thing on our place in "The Hindu"quite different from many familiar issues.......i  highlighted in my college days.I feel now sorry if I'd ever hurt other's(Non-Mising) sentiments......but many things improved by doing all these sort of "sentimental things"....which has been helping me in broadening my mental calibre....What actually is that i was born and brought up in Mising society ....never intermingled with other cultures before coming to Guwahati....whatever i know was from Mising society and my rural educational background....so it was obvious that i "bark" more on Mising.My perceptions and interpretations of this world are based on my experiences with the society andthe knowledge i have acquired hitherto.If writings on small tribe like Mising society is construed as conservative one...or a fundamentalist kind of thing...i'm happy with friend's accorded "label"!Whether i'm a  "fundamentalist" or not everyone can  decide.....it's  up to you dear reader.....if someone  is called "fundamentalist" because of writing such things i think there should be a more definitional inclusiveness of the term.In SRK styled tone I want to shout :"My name is Bhaskar PEGU but i'm not a fundamentalist MISING".
(Dedicated to my college friends of Cotton College and my known and unknown critics)

Monday, March 22, 2010

TMPK mulls ‘armed struggle’ over MAC issue


 
By our Staff Reporter
GUWAHATI, March 19: The TMPK has hinted at an armed struggle against the State Government if the authorities continue to dilly-dally on the organization’s demands for election to the Mising Autonomous Council (MAC) and inclusion of the Council in the Sixth Schedule of the Indian Constitution.
“We have been agitating for election to the MAC and inclusion of the Council in the Sixth Schedule for long. The government has given us false promises ever since. It seems the government will pay heed to our demands only if we explode bombs or take up arms”, said TMPK president Johan Dole at a news conference here today.
Dole insisted that the CBI should probe the financial anomalies that had taken place in the MAC since 1995. The State Government had recently announced a CBI investigation into the corruption in the MAC following public outcry over the issue.
All Rabha Students’ Union (ARSU) president Tankeswar Rabha demanded submission of the report of the Dr Bhumidhar Barman-led ministerial level committee which was constituted by the State Government on December 18 2003 to examine the demand of various organizations for inclusion of the MAC, Tiwa Autonomous Council (TAC) and Rabha Hasong Autonomous Council (RHAC) in the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution.
“The report of the ministerial-level committee has not been submitted till date. It shows that there is a conspiracy to stop the process of elections to the MAC, TAC and RBAC. The report should be submitted immediately”, said Rabha.
Referring to the cases pending in the Gauhati High Court against the MAC, TAC and RHAC, the ARSU leader said the government was legally bound to conduct elections to the autonomous councils, adding, “Cases have been filed in the HC by people of the government and so the government should settle the cases to facilitate early elections to the councils”.
Rabha claimed that the ARSU had seized at least 150 illegal seals from the office of the RHAC which, he said, revealed corruption in the Council. “The government needs to carry out a proper inquiry into the corruption in the RHAC”, he added.

Source:The Sentinel,March 20,2010
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Saturday, January 23, 2010

Experts’ bid to unravel causes behind erosion

Ajit Patowary

GUWAHATI, Jan 21 – Experts are trying to determine the factors mainly responsible for river bank erosion in Assam, particularly in its Brahmaputra Valley for several decades, as, erosion has been causing more havoc for the State’s people compared to flood. Five experts have, in a joint paper, pointed out to some vital factors, which have been triggering erosion in the State.



It is estimated that around 7.4 per cent of land areas of the Brahmaputra Valley has been lost due to bank erosion ‘in the recent history of observation.’



The five experts in a joint paper have maintained that in general, the losses due to erosion show an increasing trend. They have said that the reports available with the Assam Water Resources Department indicate loss of 3,860 square kilo meters (sq kms) of State’s land since 1954 due to this factor. The rate of loss is estimated to be about 80 sq kms per year.



The erosion of the Brahmaputra wiped out more than 2,500 villages and 18 towns, including sites of cultural heritage and tea gardens, affecting the lives of nearly half a million people.



About 130 river reaches are presently classified as being under moderate to severe erosion and 25 reaches as very severe. A comparison between the value of land lost to riverbank erosion and flood damage, between 1954 and 1969, indicates that the costs of riverbank erosion were 35 per cent to 85 per cent of the losses caused by the ravages of flood, said these experts.



In their paper – River Bank Erosion and Restoration in the Brahmaputra River in India – Dr Arvind Phukan, a former Professor in the University of Alaska, Rajib Goswami of the State Water Resources Department, Dr Deva Borah of the Woolpert Inc, Portsmouth, Ananta Nath of the Big Cypress Basin, South Florida Water Management District, and Dr Chandan Mahanta of the Guwahati IIT, made the above observation.



These experts, in their above paper, have tried to throw light on the factors responsible for riverbank erosion. To them, the rate of rise and fall in river water level, number and position of the major channels which remain active during flood and the angle at which the thalweg approaches the bank line, are the factors responsible for bank erosion.



Besides, they found the amount of scour and deposition that occurs during the flood, variability of the cohesive soil in bank material composition, formation and movement of large bed forms, intensity of bank slumping and progression of abandoned river courses to present-day channel also to be responsible for river bank erosion in the State.



They further maintained that due to the braided characteristics, the main stem river consists of variable number of different sized channels and sand bars which change their locations and sizes each year.



The most significant bank line modifications take place during the falling stages when excess sediment is deposited as bars within channel, causing a change in local flow direction and migration of thalweg.



During floods, because of change of river hydraulics (mainly depth, velocity and shear stress), inducing variable sediment transport characteristics and erosive forces, the channel starts shifting at some vulnerable reaches, they observed.



The key factors that cause extreme instability in the Brahmaputra river at many vulnerable reaches, such as – Nagaghuli, Maijan, Majuli, Bhairabpur, Balikuchi, Kaziranga, Howlighat and Palasbari – are aggradation of the riverbed, intense braiding, large water discharge and heavy sediment load since the 1950 flood, said these experts.



Moreover, there is a tendency of the river to shift southward within the valley reach. The tendency has become more prominent after the Great Earthquake of 1950, which raised the whole landmass of the northeastern part of the valley, particularly the north of the river including the Himalayan foothill region by 3 to 4 metres.



This southward thrust has initiated widespread erosion in the south bank near the Dibrugarh town and is still continuing at different reaches in spite of the implementation of aggressive bank protection measures. The Assam Water Resources Department has identified 25 such vulnerable and severe river bank erosion sites.



Moreover, they said, the records of the last century show a general trend of widening of the Brahmaputra in Assam. The widening trend of the river is clearly visible when compared with the erosion and accretion rates over different periods. Long-term observations on width changes of the river are available, although data from different authors are not directly comparable, they said.

Citizenship questions and inter-ethnic relations in Assam in context of Silapathar incident

Source: Tani Agom Ésar, Guwahati, Mising-Assamese Bilingual fortnightly, June 1, 2017. Language: Mising/ Tani To read the pdf version ...