UGC warning to Bhimrao Ambedkar University faculty on discrimination against SC, ST students

BBAU authorities have been asked to  develop a page on the university website for complaints of caste discrimination against SC/ST students and also make available a complaint register at the registrar’s office.

Lucknow: The University Grants Commission (UGC) has asked officials and faculty members of Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar University (BBAU) to desist from any act of discrimination against scheduled caste (SC) nd scheduled tribe (ST) students on grounds of their social origin.

BBAU authorities were also asked to develop a page on the university website for such complaints of caste discrimination against SC/ST students and also make available a complaint register at the registrar’s office.

BBAU has 50% seats reserved for scheduled caste and scheduled tribe students.

UGC under secretary Madhu Verma in her order said if any such incident came to the notice of the authorities, action should be taken against the erring officials/faculty members promptly.

The order said the university should ensure that no official, faculty members indulge in any kind of discrimination against any community or category of students.

The university may constitute a committee to look into the discriminating complaints received from SC/ST students, teachers and non teaching staff, the UGC order reads.

The university was asked to advise the official/faculty members that they should be more sensitive while dealing with such incidents of caste discrimination and send an action taken report to UGC within 30 days.

There have been a number of number occasions when students have made allegations of caste discrimination and lodged complaints.

Last year in September, a Dalit student studying forensic science, Sumit Kumar, who was suffering from liver cirrhosis, was allegedly forced to vacate his room by officials on charges of beating up a professor.

“The university officials threw out all my medicines, ultrasound reports and other belongings without showing any mercy. They were so heartless that they did not even bother to inform me. They simply uploaded the order of my rustication (with seven others) and threw away all my belongings from the room in my absence,” Kumar told Hindustan Times.

The university administration, however, has denied the charge.

BBAU was in the news on January 2016 when a few Dalit students raised slogans against PM Modi during its convocation ceremony over his silence on Hyderabad University PhD student Rohith Vemula’s suicide.

It was here at BBAU that Modi spoke about Vemula’s death for the first time saying his death “pained” him and that “Mother India has lost one of her sons”.




Got a Startup Tech Hardware Product to Sell? Try Grand St.

grand st.10

Grand St. aims to give independent hardware manufacturers a place to sell their products and to test prototypes.

If you’re looking to get any consumer electronic to the marketplace, there’s an arduous process involved. One of the biggest obstacles is getting funding for a venture that could miss the mark. Another is finding customers interested in your product.

Grand St. provides potential solutions for both problems.

Right now, the site is the place to get The Loop, a leather organizer that can charge your iPhone. There’s also a hackable alarm clock kit and an iOS enabled guitar for sale there, now.

Fortune says that the addition of independent manufacturers selling their gadgets on the site has turned it into the Etsy of the electronics world.

grand st.

On the official Grand St. blog, co-founder Amanda Peyton explains:

“Our goal has always been to create a better way for hardware creators to find an audience and get their products to market. For this new version of Grand St. we wanted to create a flexible solution that addressed indie hardware makers at different stages in the development cycle.”

The company says it now has about 200,000 users. And indie gadget makers have three ways to sell their new products through the site:

Consumer Ready

When you’re ready to sell the gadget you’ve created, you can list it through the Grand St. Shop. Grand St. says it previews and must approve any new listing. If a product doesn’t make the cut, Grand St. notifies the maker of its reasons for rejection.

If a product is approved and listed, the site takes an 8 percent commission on all sales. It takes the same commission on Beta sales. These are products that haven’t received any customer feedback and aren’t quite ready for a mass audience.


A Beta product maker can pick testers for the products and await their feedback. Based on the feedback, Grand St. says the maker of the product can then decide to seek more funding for changes or get the product ready for the marketplace or pre-order sales.


If a product is within six months of being ready for the marketplace, it can be sold through a pre-order feature on Grand St. The site doesn’t take a commission on those sales and there are no monthly fees linked to selling on Grand St.

Sellers need to handle all their customer service and shipping commitments, the company notes in its seller guidelines.


Mapping Mount St. Helens Magma Progresses, 35 Years After Eruption

Mapping Mount St. Helens Magma Progresses, 35 Years After Eruption

Mount St. Helens emits a plume of steam and ash in this October 1, 2004 file photo, from an area of new crevass in the crater glacier south of the 1980-86 lava dome. (Reuters Photo)

PORTLAND:  Early data collected in a pioneering effort to map the inner workings of Mount St. Helens have provided promising initial insights, 35 years after a massive eruption by the Washington state volcano killed at least 57 people, scientists said on Monday.

Further progress is expected soon after readings are collected from more than 70 monitoring devices that ring the mountain, many at high altitudes, which have been inaccessible throughout the winter, they said.

“It doesn’t look the way we expected it to,” Rice University geologist Alan Levander, who is involved in the research, said of the initial data, adding that with limited two-dimensional images collected so far it take several years for scientists to more fully understand what they are viewing.

Mount St. Helens, which sits between Seattle and Portland, Oregon, erupted in an explosion of hot ash on May 18, 1980, spewing debris over a wide area, killing 57 people and causing more than $1 billion in damage.

Now, through small quakes created via dynamite-triggered blasts that fire seismic waves through the volcano’s interior, researchers are working to develop ultrasound-like images of molten rock within the volcano in a project that could improve warning systems.

The team, which includes researchers from universities and federal scientific agencies, aims to apply what it learns about the below-surface flow of molten magma to volcanoes in more populous areas, such as Mount Rainier, which overlooks Seattle.

Seismic activity and gas emissions already help geologists predict the timing of eruptions, but there are no good tools for predicting their size, said Kenneth Creager, a University of Washington seismologist involved in the study.

Mapping the flow and volume of magma from the earth’s crust up through Mount St. Helens’ peak could change that, and ultimately help researchers anticipate large eruptions elsewhere, Creager said.

“It’s difficult to tell how big an eruption might be. Knowing how much eruptible magma is down there may tell us,” he said.

At the time of the 1980 blast, scientists had been monitoring a bulge and tracking mini-eruptions for several months, but had little understanding of the forces at work beneath the surface, said Carolyn Driedger, a US Geological Survey glacier hydrologist who was driving towards the volcano on the morning of the eruption.

A year ago, the US Geological Survey said magma levels were slowly rebuilding inside Mount St. Helens, but there was no sign of an impending eruption.

© Thomson Reuters 2015

John Varghese to be St. Stephen’s College’s new principal

A file photo of St.Stephen’s College, Delhi. Photo: Hindustan Times

A file photo of St.Stephen’s College, Delhi. Photo: Hindustan Times

New Delhi: John Varghese, professor at Hyderabad’s English and Foreign Languages University will be the new principal of St. Stephen’s College in Delhi after Valson Thampu retires from the post later this month.

The Supreme Council of the college which includes members of Church of North India (CNI) and Thampu himself, on Wednesday selected Varghese for the top post.

“In total, three applications were received for the position which was advertised months back. We interviewed the candidates today (Wednesday) and the council unanimously decided to appoint Varghese to the post,” Alwan Masih, CNI general secretary told PTI.

Varghese, who was a professor at St. Stephen’s English department before joining EFLU, will take charge as 13th principal of the college on 1 March.

Outgoing principal Thampu, who had a rocking tenure full of controversies with repeated demands for his removal, said he was looking forward to enjoy the “festival of retirement” and extended his wishes to his successor.

The college had to advertise twice for the post as limited applications were received.

“First time, we received only two applications. We advertised again but only three people came forward. I asked some of the outstanding alumni too but everybody was reluctant to apply considering the “controversial” nature of the post,” Thampu said.

Thampu who studied at St. Stephen’s and later served the college as a lecturer and officiating principal, took over as the college principal in 2008 and will retire from the post on 29 February.

Controversies like allegations of forced conversion of an administrative officer to Christianity, fake degree used for his appointment, banning of e-zine for not seeking permission on content and shielding a professor accused of sexual harassment of a research scholar, rocked the college from time to time during his tenure.