Chandigarh: With the motive to inculcate scientific temper amongst the youth of the state, the Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal today flagged off a bus depicting Mobile Science Exhibition highly decorated with equipment and state-of-the-art gadgetry to impart scientific knowledge about the celestial bodies and other universal operations.
Talking to the media persons after flagging off of the Exhibition Bus, the Chief Minister said that although a ‘Science Express Train’ has been initiated by GoI which halts only at major stations thus depriving large number of rural population from the benefits of science and Technology. Therefore the idea of Mobile Science Exhibition was conceived to reach the majority of rural youth, who had almost negligible accessibility to such exhibitions, adding Mr. Badal said that this initiative would certainly motivate the students with rural background to develop scientific bent of mind.
The Chief Minister lauded the efforts of Pushpa Gujral Science City, Kapurthala for initiating this Mobile Science Exhibition jointly with I.K Gujral Punjab Technical University and Department of Science & Technology Govt. of India.
Meanwhile, Mr. Badal was apprised by the senior officers of the Science, Technology & Environment department that Punjab Government sponsors the visit of Government school students every year and has thus facilitated the visit of more than two lac such students so far to Science City. They also informed that Mobile Science Exhibition would help in broadening their outlook and vision thereby infusing a scientific temperament besides encouraging them to take up science & technology as their career.
On this occasion, Dr. G Vajralingam, Principal Secretary to Govt. of Punjab, Department of Science, Technology & Environment said “Mobile Science Exhibition will take Science to the doorsteps of rural population and spread the message of science to work towards sustainable development and expose them to some of the emerging and challenging issues”. He further emphasized that Science City through this program would extend outreach of its activities to that section of society who may not be able to afford a visit to the Science City. This program will enable us to achieve our intended purpose of spreading scientific awareness to a larger section of the society.
He further mentioned that Mobile Science Exhibition would cover all the blocks in 22 districts of the state. To begin with, the program intends to cover at least one school in each block which would further cater to cluster of schools in its neighboring areas. The exhibition bus shall remain in the school for 2-3 days. The emphasis of the program is to develop an informed and knowledgeable society, added Dr. Vajralingam.
Furthermore, Secretary Science, Technology & Environment Mr. KAP Sinha highly appreciated the initiative to save the girl child by creating awareness about the adverse impact of female foeticide on the society. He also expressed satisfaction while revealing that Science City was made open to general public in 2005 and since then more than 32 lac visitors have visited Science City till date.
Divulging the details of the Mobile Science Exhibition, the Director of the Pushpa Gujral Science City Dr. Rajesh Grover said that an amount of Rs. 65 lac approximately has been spent on this project. The Ministry of Science & Technology, GoI New Delhi has sanctioned a grant of Rs. 52 lacs to develop exhibits as well as bear recurring expenditure for 2 years to Pushpa Gujral Science City for this Mobile Science Exhibition.
It may be recalled that the interactive exhibits and information panels in the bus will give the students/visitors an opportunity to learn through the process of interaction and discovery. The broad components of the exhibition are Health Education where the visitors will explore anatomical and physiological aspects of human body, functioning of human body and various systems, Health and hygiene, drug menace, alcoholism and lifestyle diseases, Genetic determination of sex of the offspring, Energy Education and awareness section will educate the public about the renewable energy sources with special focus on solar energy and energy conservation including demonstration of running of all the exhibits in the bus with the solar panels installed on the bus roof, Waste Management, Water Management section will include demonstrations using water testing kits, clean water properties and methods whereas Environment Education section will engage the individuals and develop a deeper understanding of environmental issues. The bus is also equipped with Mobile planetarium and high powered telescopes to hold night sky watching sessions where visitors under a starry night sky will enjoy telescopic views of beautiful objects, including planets, nebulae, star clusters and, of course, the Moon.
The Chief Minister was accompanied by his Special Principal Secretaries Dr. S Karuna Raju and Mr. Ajoy Sharma. Special Secretary, Science, Technology & Environment Mr. Tejinder Singh Dhaliwal was also present on the occasion.