Thursday, March 29, 2012

KU celebrates Platinum Jubilee

KU celebrates Platinum Jubilee


Thiruvananthapuram: It’s high time for the Kerala University to worked hard to regain the respect as one of the best universities in India, pointed said Chief Minister Oommen Chandy. “Kerala University once had great reputation in and outside the country. By improving the quality  of education offered, it should get back to the list of topmost universities added the CM . He was   inaugurating the year long Platinum jubilee celebrations of the University of Kerala .

 The function held at the recently renovated University Senate hall was honored by the presence of theHead of the Travancore Royal Family Uthradom Thirunal Marthandavarma. Education Minister P.K. Abdu Rabb, Transport and Devaswom minister V. S. Sivakumar and Vice-Chancellor A Jayakrishnan also participated.  As a sign of gratitude Uthradom Thirunal Marthanda Varma felicitated former vice chancellors of the university--  Dr. J V Vilanilam, Dr. G Balamohan Thampi, Dr. B Iqbal and Dr.M K Ramachandran. Vice-Chancellor A Jayakrishnan presented a memento to Uthradom Tirunal.
 It was on 1st November 1937, that the University of Travancore was established, through a Royal proclamation of His Highness Sree Chithira Thirunal Balarama Varma, the last Maharaja of the erstwhile princely State of Travancore. The University, which was renamed as the University of Kerala in 1957, after the formation of the State of Kerala, has moulded millions of students into professionals in various fields. Many alumni of the University have adorned significant positions in different parts of the world.The University was fortunate enough to have in its rolls, eminent Statesmen like former President  of IndiaShri.K.R.Narayanan. 

    Earlier, the Syndicate of the   University of Kerala had decided to celebrate the Platinum Jubilee of the University in a befitting manner. P S Sreekala, Syndicate member presented the plan report of the University for the year. Academic initiatives, developmental activities, student welfare schemes, foreign collaborations, arts and sports festivals, seminars, lectures and host of other programmes would be organized as part of the celebration.
 After the inaugural ceremony, the winners of various competitions at the Kerala University Youth Festival presented a cultural show. This was followed by a magic show lead by magician Gopinath Muthukad.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Conserve Biodiversity: P.J.Joseph

Conserve Biodiversity: P.J. Joseph


Kochi: Minister for water resources P.J. Joseph has urged the farmers of the state to take initiative to conserve the biodiversity of  the state.

 Inaugurating a seminar  on biodiversity at Ashirbhavan he said that the onslaught of rubber had adversely affected the biodiversity in the state and that the farmers should take care to grow diverse crops in their plantations.

Diversified Nature
 Along with rubber, farmers could try coconut, coco, rumbuttan and  banana which are also very profitable, the minister said. “Kerala, being a state with different climate zones, we should select our crops accordingly. In certain parts of Kerala even strawbery could be profitably grown here”, he said.

 With the monsoon round the corner, the minister underlined the importance of water conservation. ”Every drop of rain water should be allowed to seep into the soil”, he said.

 The minister also urged the families to set up biogas plants at home and to grow vegetables in their backyard. The whole state should adopt organic farming.

 The seminar, along with a 3-day fair exhibiting various organic products at the town hall was organised by Organic Kerala Charitable Trust, Rajagiri Outreach and Sacred Heart College, Thevara. Minister of State for Public Distribution, K.V Thomas inaugurated the trade fair.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Suveeran predicts the dooms-day for dramas

Suveeran predicts
the dooms-day for dramas

The space for drama and dramatists is gradually diminishing in Kerala, observed K P Suveeran, the director of ‘Byari’ the winner of National award for the best film. “In the past plays used to be a major source of inspiration for the common man.Nowadays it is the foreigners who are more interested in our theatres”,said Suveeran while inaugurating the Departments Union Arts Club at Golden Jubilee Hall, Karyavattom campus.

 “Some prominent dramatists of yester years identified themselves with ordinary people and used to wander through the streets and sleep in the muddy streets. But their creations were unique and they considered theatre their vocation.Although they were treated as failures were  in real life they were the ones who created good plays  which defined the art of life. Their traumatic life paved way for their success in the world of drama pointed out the acclaimed film  director who entered  the world of art through theatres. “Critics also are more interested in films than in plays. this neglect of drama by the critics is also hastening the death of theatre in Kerala added Suveeran.

K. P. Suveeran
 Suveeran’s  debut feature film ‘Byari,' pulled off a surprise when it bagged the National Award for the Best Film of 2011. “Byari” is about an ethnic society trapped in its traditions and distinct cultural identity. This is the first film made in 'Byari' language, spoken a community in the coastal areas  of  Kasargod in Northern Kerala and Dakshina Kannada district in Karnataka. Because of financial constraints, Suveeran shot the film in 16mm format.

 Talking about his transition from a drama artiste to a  filmdirector, Suveeran said cinema was a natural progression from theatre. “I still love to do theatre; a drama is good only as long as it is performed, while a good film would live forever.” He was happy that though he used some dramatic elements in ‘Byari’, they were accepted as part of the narrative style. “I decided to make films as filmswould remain long after you are gone”, said Suveeran.

 "I have been planning to work on a Malayalam film project for quite some time, but Byari happened all of a sudden. Now that the film has won a national award, it would be easy for me to complete the two Malayalam film projects I have,'' Suveeran said.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Holistic approach to mental illness

Holistic approach to mental illness

Mental illness affects persons irrespective of age, race or religion. It disrupts one’s thinking, feeling, mood and even the daily activities of life. The approach to mentally disorded people has changed over a period of time. People now realize that it’s just a disease which is curable. Conventional psychiatric practices causing serious side effects have prompted people to look for an alternative in, ayurveda.

 “Most patients reach here after suffering side effects from prolonged use of  modern medicine. Some patients have-with mental illness prevailing for over 5 to 40 years. Only 25 percent of themhave had  ayurvedic treatment,” says Dr S Sreelatha, Physician, Govt Ayurveda mental hospital, Kottakal. Some patients who are on modern medicine accept ayurvedic treatment as an adjunct therapy for prevention of recurrence and promotion of health, she added.

 An average of 2500 patients from Kerala and neighbouring states reach  the hospital every year for treatment. This one and only  Ayurvedic mental hospital in the state was  established in 1974 under the ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Govt of Kerala. The institute has been awarded the title of Centre for Excellence by the Central Council of Research in Ayurveda and Siddha.

 Along with medicines, the concept of fear was applied in Ayurvedic psychiatry at its primitive stage. But nowadays, the treatment follows the traditional medicines and basic principles laid out in the classical texts of ayurveda like Ashtangahridaya. It includes internal medicines of plant, mineral and animal origin, procedural therapies like asthapana, anuvasana, nasya, concept based psychotherapies and yoga. It favours the use of combination of herbs that meet the specific needs of each patient.

 Even though the concept of treatment and medicines are traditional, modern techniques are incorporated wherever necessary. For instance, usage of syringes in traditional therapies, like vasti, removes naturally accumulated body waste from the colon. The hospital is also well equipped with a laboratory having facilities for all basic screening tests necessary for medical evaluation.

 Ayurveda that treats the root cause of mental illness is getting acceptance all over the world nowadays. It is  strange that only one ayurvedic mental illness  centre prevails in the state even though foreigners approach Kerala for ayurvedic treatment.