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    N. Santhiyakumari, Professor and head, Electronics and Communication Engineering, Knowledge Institute of Technology, Salem, receiving the Indian Society for Technical Education award at the 45th ISTE annual convention in Amravathi, Maharashtra.

    N. Santhiyakumari, Professor and head, Electronics and Communication Engineering, Knowledge Institute of Technology, Salem, receiving the Indian Society for Technical Education award at the 45th ISTE annual convention in Amravathi, Maharashtra.

    The India Society for Technical Education (ISTE) has announced 20 awards in various disciplines in connection with the 45th ISTE annual convention, 2015.

    The ISTE recognises research work from all over the country.

    N. Santhiyakumari, Professor and Head, Electronics and Communication Engineering, Knowledge Institute of Technology, Salem was selected for the Maharashtra State National Award – 2015 in recognition of her outstanding research work in the area of biomedical image processing. She received the award from Anandrao Adsul, MP, at a function organised by the ISTE, New Delhi, at the HVPM’s College of Engineering and Technology, Amravati, Maharashtra.

    Dr. Santhiyakumari won the award for her research work on implementation of medical decision making system for cardiovascular and cerebrovascular disease analysis, a press release from the college said

    ISTE recognises research works from all over the country

    source: http://www.thehindu.com / The Hindu / Home> National> Tamil Nadu / by Special Correspondent / Salem – January 31st, 2016

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    D.K. Srinivasan. Photo: M. Karunakaran

    D.K. Srinivasan. Photo: M. Karunakaran

    Recently, there was jubilation at a multi-specialty hospital in West Tambaram over a rare honour bestowed upon its founder. He had been chosen for the coveted Padma Shri Award and the joy of those who worked with him knew no bounds.

    The man, as we all know, is D.K. Srinivasan, who started the Hindu Mission Hospital in West Tambaram along with his friend Dr. C.S. Gangadhar Sharma, a leprologist, on December 5, 1982. What was just started as an outpatient ward in a small shed, over three decades ago, is now a majestic landmark on GST Road with 220 beds. The hospital serves 500 outpatients and 100 inpatients every day.

    D.K. Srinivasan, founder-secretary of the hospital, gave up his businesses to serve the poor by offering them medical care at subsidised rates. Apart from providing healthcare, he is instrumental in offering quality education to the underprivileged and first-generation students through Valluvar Gurukulam Higher Secondary School, Grand Southern Trunk Road, West Tambaram. “Initially, it was quite difficult; balancing the funds from donors and meeting out the demands of the public were major challenges,” says Srinivasan.

    Today, the multi-specialty hospital has grown by leaps and bounds and has a raft of facilities including 9 operation theatres and offers various specialties, including cardiology, spine surgery, neurology, orthopaedics and also an intensive care unit for children.

    It charges Rs.200 per sitting for dialysis, conducts 200 free Intraocular Cataract Lenses (IOL) eye surgeries, distributes free artificial limbs and callipers, free speech and hearing therapy for special students. The hospital also conducts free medical camps regularly in various areas in the region, including Mudichur, Kancheepuram and Tambaram. During the recent deluge, the hospital provided free medical treatment to over 6,000 flood-affected victims and free dialysis for 40 patients. On how he feels about the award, he says, “I dedicate the award to my family, doctors and staff of the Hospital.”

    source: http://www.thehindu.com / The Hindu / Home> Features> DownTown / by T.S. Atul Swaminathan / Chennai – January 30th, 2016

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    Muthu Mandapam, a memorial for Sri Vikrama Rajasingha

    A rusty signboard marks the lane leading to Muthu Mandapam near the banks of the Palar river, off the busy Katpadi Road. It is the resting place of the last ruler of the Sri Lankan kingdom of Kandy, Sri Vikrama Rajasingha, since 1832.

    Saturday (January 30) will mark the death anniversary of this “Tamil-speaking” ruler of Kandy. Though Muthu Mandapam, the memorial built around his tombstone, as a locality is popularly known among Velloreans, the place is not frequented by many.

    As a layer of dust on the floor is swept away by Muniyamma, an elderly woman, the tomb of this king stands tall inside this pearl-shaped structure that was raised in 1990. It also houses tombs of seven of his family members.

    Known as Prince Kannasamy, Sri Vikrama Rajasingha, a king of the Nayaka dynasty, was sworn in during 1798. He ruled Kandy till 1815, after which he was exiled by the British. He, along with a few of his family members, were taken as royal prisoners and imprisoned in Vellore Fort in 1816.

    Plaques in Muthu Mandapam hail him Sri Lanka’s last Tamil King, and note that he was housed in a room inside the fort for 16 years. This room later went on to be used as the Registrar’s office of the Vellore district.

    He died on January 30, 1832. Among his family members, who were laid to rest here, are his queen Savithri Devi and other spouses.

    The Tamil Nadu government had constructed pearl-shaped structure over the tombs, which were earlier in the open amid huts in the area, at a cost of Rs. 7 lakh. Former Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi inaugurated Muthu Mandapam on July 1, 1990. The pearl-shaped structure was known to be designed by him.

    “The chess board and boomerang used by the king are on display at the museum. While the chess board is made of wood, the chess coins and boomerang are made of ivory,” said K. Saravanan, curator, Government Museum, Vellore.

    The Muthu Mandapam is under the maintenance of the Public Relations Office. Staff said that every year, the descendants of the king living in Madurai and Chennai visited the memorial on his death anniversary.

    source: http://www.thehindu.com / The Hindu / Home> National> Tamil Nadu / by Serena Josephince M / Vellore – January 30th, 2016

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    Coimbatore :

    For Arunachalam Muruganantham, the year 2016 couldn’t have started off any better. It was only a few days back that he got to know that he had been honoured by the Portugal government as Indian Business Leader of the Year.

    Even before congratulatory messages for the recognition were still pouring in, Muruganantham’s mobile phone has gone again into a non – stop ringing mode. The 52 year old native of Coimbatore, acclaimed for invention of low cost sanitary napkins, has been chosen by the union government for Padma Shri award 2016.”I am not usually excited by awards. But Padma Shri is an exception,” says Murugantham who had just landed in Coimbatore on Monday evening after a tour of various cities addressing a variety of audiences ranging from students to businessmen.

    “The award will be an inspiration for youth, especially engineering students. Rather than helping me, the award might inspire another Muruganantham to emerge,” he said.

    He hopes that youth would start realizing that social activism doesn’t always mean getting on to the streets and serving the poor. Youth, especially engineering graduates, should realise that social change and improving someone’s life could also be done through an invention, using engineering,” Muruganantham tells.

    There are lakhs of youth without jobs. They should identify a social cause and be a solution provider by coming up with more machines like the low cost sanitary napkin making machine,” he said.

    The Coimbatore based social entrepreneur, who was listed by TIME magazine as one among world’s 100 most influential persons in 2014 was born in a poor family of handloom weavers in Coimbatore.He lost his father at a young age and had to drop out of school at the age of 14 years.

    Soon after marriage, he realized troubles of women during menstruation after marriage, he started experimenting with sanitary pads to help his wife. When women members of his family grew tired of being test subjects, he started experimenting with sanitary pads on himself. SSubsequently, he came up with a machine to make those low cost sanitary pads and sold his first napkin making machine in 2004 in Madhubani in Bihar. tnnIn the decade since then, he has sold 2500 machines across India and abroad as NGOs and corporates saw the value in promoting the machine for better personal hygiene among women.

    I am not inclined to display the Award in my house or call myself Padma Shri,” says Muruganantham signing off with the note that he has a long way to go to ensure that every single woman in the country uses a sanitary napkin.

    source: http://www.timesofindia.indiatimes.com / The Times of India / News Home> City> Chennai / TNN / January 27th, 2016

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    Chennai :

    Ever wondered why railway coaches should have just the vertical footboard that is risky for passengers? This could soon change if the idea of a group of IIT Madras students, who have designed a semi-automatic one to be fitted to the coaches, becomes a reality.

    Designed at one of India’s premium technology institute’s tech festival Shaastra, the idea has already attracted the attention of top Railway officials.  Impressed by this project idea along with two other ones that won the ‘Indian Railways Design Challenge’, Railway officials have decided to try out these modifications in upcoming coaches.  The contestants were asked to design a suitable mechanism or device that could be fitted to the bogie or moved about on the platform without major alterations to the coaches.

    Taking up this task, team ‘Innovators’ comprising mechanical and civil engineering students from IIT, had created a foldable semi-automatic footboard. Explaining its working principle, Borde, a team member said, “On arrival at the station, the guard should press a centrally-connected switch so that the steps, with multiple pin joints and controlled by single pneumatic cylinder and micro-controllers, roll out. When the switch is pressed again, these would fold back.” Borde’s team had designed a standard four-bar mechanism, which will be attached to the bogie with the fixed pivots attached close to the door. This mechanism consists of a ladder, a stepped ramp and a pneumatic telescopic bar.

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    A student event-organiser, Surya said, “One of the team members, whose father lost a limb while getting into a train, came up with this innovative automatic footboard design for Southern Railway coaches. This could end the woes of the elderly and differently abled persons.”

    Speaking to Express, Narendra Borde, one of the team members said, “Every year, hundreds of passengers get either maimed or even killed while entering or exiting trains through the steep footboard. This is because of the large gap between the platform and the coach.”

    While Borde’s team’s project was selected as one of the top three projects by Southern Railway officials who were the judges, another team from IIT-M secured the first place.

    Raj Dandekar, a student from the team said, “After taking the maximum and minimum gap into consideration (229-305 mm) across India, with no major modifications in the coach design, our mechanism can help 22-24 people comfortably entrain and detrain within 180 to 250 seconds.”

    The students claimed that the total cost of this device would be around Rs 8,300.

    R Kuppan, Chief Mechanical Engineer, Southern Railways, who attended the event said, “We are generally skeptical when it comes to student projects, but today their projects were outstanding. The winners will be given a chance to work on their ideas with Railway engineers to develop them and we will try it on our railway coaches.”

    source: http://www.newindianexpress.com / The New Indian Express / Home> Cities> Chennai / by Ram M Sundaram / January 25th, 2016

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    Gastroenterologist T.S. Chandrasekar, the founding chairman of MedIndia Hospital, said he felt honoured to be chosen for the award for his medico-social work in the field of gastroenterology.

    Dr. Chandrasekar, who has several firsts to his credit including the Braille chart on hygiene that he created last year, is also the founder of the MedIndia Charitable Trust. A graduate of Madurai Medical College, Dr. Chandrasekar also founded the department of medical gastroenterology at Coimbatore Medical College.

    His hospital is affiliated to the Tamil Nadu Dr. MGR Medical University to offer post-doctoral fellowship programme in advanced GI endoscopy.

    source: http://www.thehindu.com / The Hindu / Home> Tamil Nadu / by Special Correspondent / January 26th, 2016

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    Madurai :

    Two students from Kendriya Vidyalaya, Narimedu, in Madurai will be the participants from Chennai region (Tamil Nadu – Pondicherry) to attend the first ever “Seema Darshan” to be held on the Indo-Pakistan border at Wagah in Punjab on January 26.

    The Seema Darshan programme is being organised by the Ministry of Human Resource Development for school students. Students from Kendriya Vidyalayas and Navodaya Vidyalayas are eligible to participate in the programme which aims at encouraging students to witness soldiers in action on the borders.

    M Ponni and K Bala Ramadas, both 11th,  12th standard students, edged out students in other parts of the state. They left for Delhi on Saturday evening. The 50-year-old Kendriya Vidyalaya-Narimedu has been having NCC programmes for the last 12 years. The NCC cadets are given intensive training.

    Principal of the school C Muthiah said the two students had proved their prowess in firing, attended over 25 camps and had NCC-A certification. The programme aims at selecting 60 students from 32 Kendriya Vidyalayas and 28 Navodaya Vidyalaya Samiti schools throughout the country. They will participate in the flag hoisting ceremony to be held on the Wagah border during the 67 th Republic Day celebrations and will have the honour of spending some time with the Border Security Forces (BSF) in their camps.

    The two students said they were excited about this journey and that their school and parents had helped them achieve this. G S Murugan, NCC officer of the school, said the two students had brought laurels to the institution.

    source: http://www.timesofindia.indiatimes.com / The Times of India/ News Home> City> Madurai / TNN / January 18th, 2016

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    January 24th, 2016adminAmazing Feats, Education, Leaders, Records, All

    She hails from a family of educationists and is married to one. So, it was only natural that Shima Sendhil, who spent more than a decade in the US, came back to the country to help with the family run educational institution.

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    The director of Rathinam Educational Institutions tells us, “I hail from a remote village in Ernakulam, Kerala and my father was a headmaster of a school there. We moved to the US, when I was just 15 years old. After completing my studies in the University of Florida, I worked for a private concern as a programmer for five years. I moved to Coimbatore to take over the family business after the stint. When my husband heard the news about the award, he was quite excited. He asked me to consider this achievement as a motivation to take up many more programmes for the benefit of students.”

    Shima has been voted as one of the #100Women Achievers of India in the category of education by the Ministry of Women and Child Development. “I wasn’t even aware of the fact that my name was nominated in the list. It was only when the Ministry asked for my profile that I believed the news was true. A lot of credit goes to my husband for being a pillar of support.”

    When it comes to education, Shima ensures that she doesn’t leave any stone unturned as far as benefiting her students are concerned. “We have associated with many corporate companies to provide skill-based training to our students, through their CSR activities. The activities include training in electrical work, plumbing, IT and even costume designing. The idea is to make our students more employable.”

    Shima says that her five-year-stint in the US has helped her pick many tricks of the trade and implement them back home in Coimbatore. “For instance, we have upgraded many technical aspects in the college and have also begun providing smart classes for students.” This apart, Shima has also taken steps to provide scholarships to underprivileged students. “We have also been undertaking tree plantation drives, helmet awareness campaigns and providing support to the needy in the times of crises, like the Nepal earthquake and Chennai deluge. We are now envisioning a waste-free campus in 2016 by which we intend to reuse plastics and covert food waste into gas & thus, use negligible resources from outside. This apart, we have a plethora of new activities in the pipeline, focusing on women.”

    source: http://www.timesofindia.indiatimes.com / The Times of India / News Home> City> Coimbatore / P . Sangeetha, TNN / January 17th, 2016

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    January 23rd, 2016adminBusiness & Economy

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    Production capacity of the unit increased from 10 tonnes to 20 tonnes

    Gandhigram Khadi and VIPC Trust, an ISRO-certified manufacturing company functioning under Gandhigram Trust, had modernised its shampoo production to improve quality and expand its market base, said K. Shiva Kumar, secretary, Gandhigram Trust.

    Talking to media persons here on Thursday, he said that the unit had invested Rs. 10 lakh for modernising its plant to improve production and quality of the product.

    Erection of modern mixing plant enhanced quality, helped maintain uniform colour and increase production also.

    Similarly, production capacity too had been increased from 10 tonnes to 20 tonnes, he added.

    Automating entire process

    The unit had also planned to automate the entire production process from preparation to mixing and filling to labelling and packing.

    Such modernisation was necessary to tap highly potential shampoo market and expand market base.

    The total sale of aloe vera shampoo and herbal shampoo was Rs. 3.05 crore in 2014-15 and it rose to Rs. 3.23 crore in 2015-16.

    About 51.7 per cent of the total sale revenue came through sale of 170 ml containers and share of 500 ml bottle was 45.58 per cent.

    Sale of 110 ml container was 3.25 per cent.

    Sachet sale picking up

    Sachet sale was picking up well in rural market.

    At present, the unit had successfully tapped shampoo and soap market in Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.

    “We want to modernise the plant on the basis of demand and supply. Rapid modernisation will speed up production but scale down work force. The main aim of the unit is to create more jobs to rural women. We want to ensure that modernisation does not affect job creation,” he also added.

    Own lab

    The unit had its own lab to test the quality of products.

    To ensure high quality, the unit utilised services of external labs in cities, he added.

    source: http://www.thehindu.com / The Hindu / Home> National> Tamil Nadu / by Staff Reporter / Dindigul – January 23rd, 2016

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    A dialysis unit inaugurated in 2013  Express

    A dialysis unit inaugurated in 2013  Express

    Tamilnad Kidney Research (TANKER) Foundation presents its 23rd annual charity and awards night on January 25. The evening is dedicated to Malathi Venkatesan, a trustee of the foundation, who passed away last year. The chief guest for the function will be Vikram Kapur, IAS.

    The keynote address, titled ‘Living a normal life despite being on dialysis’, will be delivered by Kamal D Shah, director, patient services, Nephro Plus Dialysis Centres.

    The foundation has completed 22 years of service for the underprivileged with kidney ailments. From June 1993, the foundation has provided 1.74 lakh free and subsidised dialysis for 883 patients. N The foundation has four subsidised dialysis units across the State. These units have 42 dialysis stations. It conducts 1,933 dialyses per month, of which 1,749 are free of cost with help from the Chief Minister’s health insurance scheme and other donors.

    source: http://www.newindianexpress.com / The New Indian Express / Home> Cities> Chennai / by Express News Service / January 23rd, 2016

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