Thursday, December 13, 2018

Lt. Governor visits Car Nicobar: Inspects ongoing preparations for 75th Anniversary of Flag hoisting by Netaji; interacts with Tribal Council Members

Port Blair, Dec.12: The Lt. Governor, A&N Islands and Vice Chairman, Islands Development Agency, Admiral D.K. Joshi, PVSM, AVSM, YSM, NM, VSM (Retd.), along with the Chief Secretary, A&N Administration, Shri. Chetan Bhusan Sanghi visited Car Nicobar today to inspect the ongoing preparations for the 75th Anniversary of Flag hoisting by Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose in Andaman & Nicobar Islands as well as to interact with the Tribal Council. The Lt. Governor visited Mus Jetty where ALHW briefed about the entire project of shore protection, dredging and the proposed breakwater extension. The Lt. Governor also visited the Tsunami Memorial and paid homage to the lost souls.  He also inspected the preparations at BJR Stadium, Tamaloo. 
Thereafter, the Lt. Governor interacted with the Tribal leaders of Car Nicobar in the APWD Guest House. The Executive Member of Car Nicobar Tribal Council, Shri. Wilson Amos expressed gratitude to the Administration on behalf of the Tribal Council for ensuring that the Mus Sea Wall Project is approved.  Some of the issues raised by the Tribal leader included reservation for Schedule Tribes in Govt. job, construction of Kimius Bridge and provision of new passenger ships for Southern Islands.

High Quality Teaching Through Video–Class

 Asma Bibi**
We all know the heterogeneity   among the students in a class-room situation. Similarly the heterogeneity also exists among the teachers; due to which, the teaching process varies from teacher to teacher. It causes the change in quality of teaching-learning process in class rooms. If the same topic / subject are taught by different teachers, the quality (in methodology) ranges from ‘poor’ to ‘best’ teaching situation. The subjectivity in teaching cannot be removed easily. Through teaching aids, one can try to maintain same uniform standard in teaching process. For example, if we use power point presentation (PPT) slides, prepared by using MS-office package, the content coverage is maintained with consistence. The logically ordered sequential PPT slides enable us to provide almost uniform standard in teaching. At national level, with uniform high standard teaching is possible using same PPT slides, everywhere.

During mid-80s, in some part of Tamil Nadu, some of the tea stalls have upgraded to ‘Video Coffee Bar’. Those coffee bars were opened near college or school areas, to attract students. The tea or coffee was served in the hall during the video show itself. It was not exactly cinema theater model; but a dark hall with 20-25 seats capacity to watch short videos of 25-30 minutes only. They have used video cassettes players and normal TV of big size. The concept of ‘Video Coffee Bar’ could not continue for long period due to local administrative reasons; thus, they ended with short-life.

 The recorded audio-class or video-class is also one such educational technology to deliver uniform standards. We all know the valid reasons for such uniformity or consistency. At the same time, we notice the inconsistence or non-uniform in ‘chalk and talk’ teaching method. Even same teacher teaching the same topic at second time or third time may not have uniform standard in teaching. That is due to the limitation of human behaviors in repetition, as it changes time-to-time; whereas, the educational technology and its gadgets facilitate the teacher to maintain almost uniform high standards.

Among the five sense organs, our eye contributes significantly high share in human learning process. Being so, we learn easily and quickly by watching video lectures. The Open and Distance Education universities such as Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) develops lot of Video CDs for its students purpose. The academic benefit out of such Video-Classes are significant for distance learners.

IGNOU Port Blair Experience

The one year long experiments of conducting video-class on every Saturday at IGNOU Regional Centre, Port Blair shows us the positive results. Over 150 learners got benefit from 53-Saturday video class conducted using 65 CDs in a year. Although the response in terms of students attendance is thin; but a gradual increase in participation level is noticed week after week. Once a group of 10 students attended the video class and marked the peak attendance. The constant efforts of Regional Centre for communicating the details of Video-Class to students through SMS, Letter, E-mail, Phone Call etc. has shown good results. The regular support of print media in Port Blair, by publishing the press release of video class of IGNOU, is a big support to the student population of Andaman and Nicobar Islands.  The video class on inverter supply, to meet the challenges of (expecting the unexpected) frequent power supply failure, is inevitable.  The zero attendance on few occasions (especially in UG subjects) gives somewhat negative motivation to continue the video class. But, the regularity in organizing the video class has reached many learners. They have visited Regional Centre with confidence, to watch video CDs even during hot summer / heavy rainy seasons. The under-utilized CDs (by distance learners) has got effective role in video class and improved the situation to optimum utilization status. The academic benefits to students, who attended video class, is also reflected in improvement in passing percentage in semester / year end exams.

The Video Class is supplementary to Sunday face-to-face academic counseling sessions at learner support centers. The academic enrichment activity through video class is a new approach for distance learners of Port Blair region. Switching over to video class, from traditional face to face teaching-learning environment, is happening now in slow pace. In the days to come, all the computers at IGNOU Regional Centre will be showing videos for 10 to 12 different video classes running parallel (simultaneously) in every room of Regional Centre. Thus the magnitude of utility of video class will increase many fold. One day, all the available (in few thousands now)  Audio-Video CDs of IGNOU will be exhausted and students will start demanding more and more new VCDs for Video Classes.  Let us imagine such good transition period to come soon at Andaman & Nicobar Islands, where the educational opportunities are less.  

(The authors are *Regional Director and **Semi-Professional Assistant at IGNOU Regional Centre, Port Blair; can be reached at 8900936718 or

Transport Department issues its Zero Tolerance note after fatal road accident in city

Port Blair, Dec 12: A fatal accident took place on 11.12.2018 involving the Stage Carriage Bus bearing registration No. AN 01A 2112 which resulted in the death of an innocent road user Imam Abdul Rashid (54), resident of Phoenix Bay, while coming on his scooter from Dairy Farm with his wife pillion riding when a private bus 'Dinesh Transport' hit them from behind. Imam was crushed under the wheels and died on the spot at Junglighat.
The Deputy Director (Admn.), Transport in its press note, said, “such incidents not only result in the loss of life but inflict an unforgettable grief to the family of the deceased. It is high time that stringent actions are taken against the irresponsible Bus Operators and crew members. Transport Department is committed towards zero tolerance towards such accidents due to rash & negligent driving and violation of traffic rules & norms. In order to give a clear and firm message to the irresponsible Bus Operators/ crew members & the violators of traffic norms/ rules, the following immediate actions have been taken by the Transport Department:
1. The Drivers has been disqualified from holding a driving license and driving the motor vehicles of any class for a period of one year w.e.f 12.12.2018.
2. The Stage Carriage Permit of the Bus bearing registration No. AN 01 A 2112 has been suspended for a period of one year.
3.  Action has been initiated for cancellation of the permit of the Stage Carriage Bus bearing registration No. AN 01A 2112.
4. The Department is examining the possibility to cancel all the route permits of the concerned owner.
All the Owners/ Operators of the Motor Vehicles especially the Stage Carriage Buses are hereby advised to show a sense of responsibility towards the other road users. Strict actions shall be taken by the Administration for any such kind of violations”.

Diglipur police arrests one drug peddler

Port Blair, Dec 12: On 07/12/2018 acting upon a credible information regarding Illicit Ganja, the Police team of PS Diglipur rushed to Subash Gram, Krishnapuri Road and searched one person namely Ramkrishna Podder, S/o Late Kalidas Podder (42 yrs), R/o Madhupur-II and recovered 260 grams of illicit Ganja from his possession and accordingly he was arrested under NDPS Act 1985. The drug peddler used to sale illicit Ganja to teenagers and other habitual local person. He was also booked under NDPS Act 1985 in earlier instance, and an FIR was also registered vide No. 64/16 dtd 21/07/16 against him.
The whole operation was supervised by Shri Ingit Pratap Singh, IPS SP (N&M) District, Mayabunder. The police team comprises Insp. Mahesh Yadav SHO PS Diglipur, HC/19 Ramesh Kishen, PC/673 D Satya Narayan, PC/1316 Akash Ch. Bepari, & PC/2692 Rita Kumari and headed by Dy.SP, Diglipur Shri Sukant S. Ballab. The District Police is committed to completely eradicate drug trafficking from the district as it create ill effect over society.
The general public have been requested to pass on information related to any crime or illegal activities to phone numbers PS Diglipur (03192-272223), SDPO (D/P) (9434285670) or in any nearest Police Station or to the Police Control Room (100).

CITIZENS’ CORNER : 13/12/2018

➤Shocking election results in states. Due to lack of understanding Modi vision or lack of patience among public or may be other reasons, the Congress leads BJP in maximum states. But, in our Islands in a view, instead of genuine islanders', recent foreign immigrants' are seen more blessed with various schemes and islanders' pleas left pending. So, it becomes a necessity to changeover in parliamentarian chair of A&N Islands this time, whatever!

➤We observe, here are two never changing things in these Islands, one mobile networks and other is Electricity Power. Despite of many launchings and mechanism installations in both sectors, don't know whether it is seasonal effect or engineering defect, but people still far from the satisfactory amenity.

30 Chowkidar posts created in District Admin.

Port Blair, Dec 12: The matter of providing benefits of regularization of service of the Chowkidars working under various Tehsils under the District Administration was a long pending demand of the incumbents.
In the combined order of Hon'ble High Court in writ petition bearing WPCT No.523 of 2012 (Shri Dinesh Sarkar & Other -VS- UOI & Ors.) WPCT No.524 of 2012 (Shri Chellaiah & Other -VS- UOI & Ors.) WPCT No.525 of 2012 (Shri Robin Paul & Other -VS- UOI & Ors.) WPCT No.537 of 2012 (Shri Manindra Mirdha & Other -VS- UOI & Ors.) filed by the Chowkidars of the Revenue Department claiming the benefits of regularization was granted to the Chaudharies of the Revenue Department, the Hon'ble High Court vide Order dated 21/12/2012 directed that the Administration to constitute a Committee within one month and to submit its report within six months.
In compliance to the said order a Committee to examine the claims of benefit of regularization to the Chowkidars, as granted to the Chaudharies under the Revenue Department was constituted by the Administration. Based on the recommendations of the Committee for creation of permanent posts of Choudharies in the revenue department a proposal was submitted to Ministry of Home Affairs. The Ministry of Home Affairs after several clarifications and quarries with the UT Administration for the past 07 years in consultation with the Ministry of Finance has conveyed the approval for creation of 30 supernumerary posts of Chowkidars (Matriculate/ Xth pass in the PB-1+1800 and Non-Matriculate in the PB-1+1300) on personal basis in compliance with the Hon'ble High Court's Order in the District Administration. This has been possible only because of the continuous, pursuant and tireless efforts of the Andaman & Nicobar District Administration for the benefit of the incumbents who have been serving the District Administration for a long period, a press note says.

Port Meadows Declared as the Third Customs Port of Andaman & Nicobar

Port Blair, Dec 12: Vide Notification No.97/2018-Customs (NT) dated 07th December 2018 Port Meadows has been declared as the third Customs Port in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Port Blair and Nancowrie being the other two. This has cleared the way for full fledged trans-shipment operations at Port Meadows to both Indian and International ports.  This is likely to greatly enhance trade between India and other South East Asian countries in the coming years.

Invited applications for participation in 'SATTE-2019'

Port Blair, Dec 12: The Directorate of Tourism, A&N Administration intends to participate in 'SATTE-2019' scheduled to be held from Jan 16 to 18, 2019 at the India Expo Centre, Greater Noida. The Tourism Department has now extended the time for submission of willingness and requested the Island based Tour Operators/ Travel Agencies, who are enlisted with this Directorate to submit their willingness in their letter head in writing along with copy of the enlistment letter and rent of Rs.20,000/- through demand draft in favour of Sr. Accounts Officer (IP&T) to the Directorate of Tourism by Dec 13, 2018.
The participants will be provided free space against the rent paid within the departmental counter. The expenditure towards journey, lodging, boarding etc. will have to be borne by the participants. The Manager (Tourism) 234493 may be contacted for further query if any, a communication from the Dy. Director (Tourism) said.

Admn. to implement RCS-Udan in isles; bidding in progress

Port Blair, Dec 12: In a major initiative to provide affordable air- connectivity in the Inter-Island Sector, the A&N Administration has decided to provide additional incentives to the airline operators, under Regional Connectivity Scheme (RCS) - UDAN to encourage them to introduce flights on the Inter-Island Sector. The additional incentives include 30% extra Viability Gap Funding for the flights under RCS Scheme. Further, the Administration has also agreed to take responsibility for all the seats in fixed wing aircraft (including Sea Plane) upto 20 seats, while the original scheme provide only for 50% seats.
Presently the bidding process for the selection of airline operator under the RCS- UDAN scheme is going on and it is expected that the additional incentives offered by the A&N Administration will attract the Airlines to provide air-connectivity between various Islands very soon. After finalisation of the bidding process, the proposed fare under the RCS-UDAN Scheme will be less than the existing fare of the helicopter services and will be equal for both Islanders and non-Islanders.  The comparison of the fares is as under:-

Administration to reimburse the VAT component on Aviation Turbine Fuel

Port Blair, Dec.12: In an another initiative to increase frequency of flights and have more competitive/ lower air-fare on the Island-Mainland Sector, the A&N Administration has decided to reimburse the VAT component on Aviation Turbine Fuel (ATF) paid on those incremental flights (over and above existing number of flights), which are introduced on Port Blair Sector during the period upto 31st March 2019. This will be applicable from prospective effect. The re-imbursement of VAT component on the incremental flights will encourage the Airlines to introduce additional flights on the Island-Mainland Sector which will facilitate more competitive/ low air-fare on the sector.
A suitable mechanism for reimbursement of the VAT component to the airline operator is being devised by the Commissioner, VAT, A&N Administration.

Delegates may register participation in International Conference on "RAE towards GFS"

Port Blair, Dec 12: Karnataka State Centre of The Institution of Engineers (India) (IEI) is organizing International Conference on "Role of Agricultural Engineering towards Global Food Security" (RAE towards GFS) at Bengaluru, under the aegis of Agricultural Engineering Division of IEI, during 11 to13 April, 2019 as a part of the Centenary celebrations of IEI. Eminent personalities and delegates from Various Industries, Professional Colleges, Universities and Research Organizations from overseas and across the country are participating in the conference.
Food & Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations predicts that the global population will reach 8 billion people by 2025 and 9.6 billion by 2050. In order to keep pace global food production must increase to 70% by 2050. Many of the resources required for sustainable food security is already stretched, climate change negatively impacting on agricultural production globally and locally are some of the constraints. FAO of the UN estimated that over 815 million (10.7%) people of 7.6 billion in the world living in low and middle income countries are suffering from chronic undernourishment.
Agricultural Engineering is an important discipline for innovation and delivery of solutions to a wide range of food security challenges.
The participants / delegates may register on or before March 15, 2019. For any  further details or clarifications  you may contact Dr. M. Chowde Gowda FIE, Conference Coordinator & Council Member, M-09448447117 or Honorary Secretary, The Institution of Engineers (India), A&N State Centre, Ground Floor, ALHW Office Complex, Mohanpura. Chairman 9434281945 & 9679511397 / Honorary Secretary 9434288234.  TeleFax- 233561 / 233562; Email: / Website:

CITIZENS' CORNER : 06/12/2018

➤PM's visit to Islands alters the specific routes and spots with shine. Islanders wish him to visit different spots in the A&N Islands ones in a month for 4 hours, in an average, within 2 years the A&N Islands will be developed fully infrastructurally in automatic mode.

➤Shady spots in city turning ‘Addas’ for drug addicts and anti-social elements. Police PCR vehicles found deployed at some spots in broad day light but disappears in the dark nights. Is it hints 'Let them enjoy'?

➤There are still potholed roads in city, waiting for repair or maintenance. But, departments are busy in over-shining the shiny roads in VVIP’s route.