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Brahmagupta discovered gravity before Newton:  Rajasthan Education Minister

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Seventh-century mathematician Brahmagupta discovered the law of gravity a thousand years before English scientist Isaac Newton did. This is the beleief and statement of the Rajasthan Education Minister Vasudev Devnani. And he did not stop here and also wondered why the education curriculum in India ignored this.

WHAT MINISTER ASSERTED

“We studied that Newton came up with the law of gravitation,” Devnani said. “But if we delve deeper, we’ll find that it was Brahmagupta II who came up with the law of gravitation 1,000 years before that.”

“Why don’t we include it in our curriculum?” he asked. “The mechanism was, of course, developed later by modern scientists. We’ll teach that, too, but such topics have to be made suitable for India.”

Physicists worldwide unanimously credit Newton with the law of gravity, which he published in 1686.

WHO IS DEVNANI

Devnani is a Bharatiya Janata Party MLA from Ajmer North. He made the statement during the 72nd Foundation Day celebrations of the University of Rajasthan. Since he took over Rajasthan’s Education Ministry in October 2014, Devnani has regularly made the headlines for restructuring the state’s education along Hindutva principles.

DEVNANI’S PREVIOUS GAFEE

In 2015, he said Mughal emperor Akbar would lose the tag of “the great” in school textbooks to his contemporary Maharana Pratap. Devnani also wanted to give greater importance to Indian scientists Aryabhatta and Bhaskaracharya than to the theories of Newton and Pythagoras.

In January 2017, the minister had claimed that the cow was the only animal that exhales oxygen and claimed he had read this on research websites.

In his speech on Monday, he described some of the curriculum changes again and his wish that “no one like Kanhaiya Kumar is born” in Rajasthan.

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JNU’s second convocation for PhD students to be held after 46 years

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Forty-six years after its first and only convocation the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) is set to hold its second convocation this year. The date is yet to be finalised.

REMEMBERING THE FIRST CONVOCATION

The first convocation was held in 1972 when renowned actor Balraj Sahni delivered the convocation address. However, the then JNU Students’ Union (JNUSU) president V C Koshy from the Students’ Federation of India (SFI) changed his speech, which had been approved by the then Vice-Chancellor G Parthasarathy, the night before the convocation.

Professor Kamal Mitra Chenoy, who had joined JNU in 1972, recalled the first convocation. “The basic debate was with Parthasarathy. He wanted to have a convocation but the students felt that their viewpoint should also be addressed in the convocation. He had called Balraj Sahni as the guest, and at that point, he didn’t want to cancel the convocation so he agreed. But Koshy gave a speech on ‘bourgeoisie-landlord regime’, poverty of the peasant and oppression of the working class — a very Marxist interpretation of the situation in India,” he said.

THE SPEECH AT FIRST CONVOCATION

Chenoy said the media widely reported the convocation, drawing attention to it and the speech. In the 1972 convocation, Balraj Sahni had said, “No country can progress unless it becomes conscious of its being, mind and body. It has to learn to find out and solve its own problems in its own way. But whichever way I turn, I find that even after 25 years of Independence, we are like a bird which has been let out of its cage after a prolonged imprisonment, unable to know what to do with its freedom. It has wings, but is afraid to fly into open air. It longs to remain within defined limits, as in the cage.”

News Source: indianexpress

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FTII To Conduct Film Appreciation Course In Bhubaneswar

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The Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), Pune, will conduct a week-long film appreciation course in Bhbaneswar.

PURPOSE OF THE COURSE

This will be a part of the institute’s nationwide programme to popularise film learning. This was informed by the Director of FTII, Pune, Bhupendra Kainthola. The course will provide a unique opportunity to the cine lovers of Odisha, to understand cinema from one of the world’s leading film schools..

The film appreciation course, to begin from February 14 will be conducted for the first time in Odisha, an official release said.

“Odisha has a film industry that goes back over 75 years and is still a robust one. As part of the FTII’s ongoing nation-wide programme to popularise film learning, a week-long film appreciation course has been designed for Bhubaneswar,” Kainthola said.

For over five decades, film appreciation was just a once a year course, conducted only in Pune and this made little sense for a country with a rich cinematic history and millions of cinema lovers, he said.

In the last nine months, the FTII has conducted film appreciation courses in Pune, Mumbai, Nagpur, Delhi, Jaipur, Guwahati, Srinagar (J&K), Haridwar and Srinagar (Uttarakhand), he added.

OTHER HIGHLIGHTS

The programme will be conducted with inputs from National Film Archive of India (NFAI), Pune, in association with the Directorate of Technical Education and Training (DTET), Odisha government, the official release said.

Though the programme will be open to all, only 100 participants will be admitted on a first-come-first-served basis, and it will be held at the Museum of Tribal Arts & Crafts.

The Course will be conducted by renowned film academic Pankaj Saxena, an FTII alumnus, who is a filmmaker and TV programmer based in New Delhi, it said.

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Prince Charles Launches Education Impact Bond for India

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Britain’s Prince Charles has launched a new 10-million-dollar Development Impact Bond (DIB) to help improve education for over 200,000 children in India.

WHAT’S THE BOND FOR

The DIB, the largest bond of its type in South Asia, is the latest fundraising initiative by the British Asian Trust (BAT), set up by the royal 10 years ago to fight poverty in South Asia. The new bond has been launched by the trust with the support of the UK government’s Department for International Development (DfID), Comic Relief, the Mittal Foundation and the UBS Optimus Foundation.

“We are launching a 10-million-dollar Development Impact Bond that will improve education for more than 200,000 children in India,” Prince Charles said at a Buckingham Palace event yesterday evening to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the British Asian Trust.

“This will be the largest bond of its type in the region and will, I hope, offer a compelling model for a mere effective approach to philanthropy at scale,” he said.

“These bonds are an innovative and, I think, a tremendously effective way of raising the funds needed to address some of the greatest challenges in the region at the kind of scale necessary to make a significant difference,” he said.

THE TARGET

–The concept of DIB is intended as a result-oriented way to attract new capital into development projects, with a strong emphasis on data and evidence.

–Under the initiative, the DIB will provide funding to local not-for-profit delivery partners in India over four years, delivering a range of operational models including principal and teacher training, direct school management, and supplementary programmes.

–It is intended to improve literacy and numeracy learning levels for primary school students from marginalised communities in the country.

 

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