Saturday, 04 April 2020 - Imphal Times
Saturday, 04 April 2020 19:45

Yes we can fight COVID-19 invasion

Among the 2 confirmed case of COVID -19 in Manipur, the  first patient, who was tested positive on March 24 has been reported recovered. The Nijamuddi Markus incident, which alerted and panics the entire state, has also been normalized after family members of the 2nd positive case which was confirmed at RIMS were tested negative. The government is somehow relieved as there are no findings of any community transmission happening in the state. The good news is that all the other persons who had attended the religion congregation have also been tested negative, which means that the fear of community transmission still is not happening. With these certain development, fear psychosis among the people has been somehow minimized. This containment to the spread of the deadly virus should not only be credited to the Chief Minister or his entire team but also to the people who have been co-operating to the measures being taken up by the government. While saying so are we people of the state secure from the pandemic COVID-19? Does the government of Manipur needs more stringent measures to make sure that Manipur remains safe un-infected from the invisible enemy of human kinds?   
To be précised we the people in particular and the government in general have a lot of tasks ahead. The government needs to take more stringent measures to prevent spreading the virus as Manipur has already 2 positive cases (no matter one have been reported recovered). Health advisory issued earlier during initial stage of the COVID-19 pandemic needs to be reviewed. For example, the state government under the directives of the Union government have advice to people to maintain a distance of  at least one metre while buying essential commodities and to use mask approved by the government . The strictures also appealed to stay indoor all persons at home but allowing only those in need to come out. Today, Scientist have started studying the characteristic of the Novel Coronavirus and find many more development day after tomorrow. Initial findings says people to distance only one metre when new findings says that the virus can travel two meters and can survive for three hours .
According to Manipur borne scientist serving at a decorated at US the virus can spread more parameters in rooms – where people enjoy party. The whole of the room may have been filled with the virus if someone affected cough or speak laud with sprinkling his saliva.
In view of the recent development Manipur Government needs to review the health advisory while continuing the total lockdown.  

Published in Editorial

IT News
Imphal, April 4

At a time when the whole world is in state of crisis, when government of each country affected by the pandemic COVID-19 are worrying, when people are advice to stay indoor by imposing total lockdown called as such measures is the only means to prevent the spread of the deadly virus and when government air lifts essential commodities using Cargo flight, a special SpiceZet Cargo plane today landed here in Bir Tikendrajit International Airport, Imphal with bundles of betel leaves.
According to source from the airport, the SpiceJet Cargo flight landed at Imphal airport at around 12.30 pm today. When unloaded the items the flight was packed with bundles of  betel leaves. The source said that the betel leaves ferried by the flight (SpiceJet boeing 370) weigh arounf 6,500 kilogram. The Flight reportedly boarded from Kolkata. At a time when any essential item could by transported without proper valid documents from the government authority, one wander how the SpiceJet Cargo flight is allowed to ferry Betel leaves which is not even essential items.
The source further said that two other Cargo Flight – one Air Asia and another Indigo Flight also landed carrying medicines and other essential items. Both the flight departed Imphal Airport after dropping the essential Items at around two pm. Reliable source said that another AirForce   IL 76 Cargo Flight will be landing with essential commodities.

Published in News

IT News
Imphal, April 4

After the disqualification of MLA Th. Shyamkumar, who was a cabinet Minister in the N. Biren Singh led government holding the portfolio of Forest and Environment and Climate Change , Science and Technololy Department , Horticulture and Soil Conservation and  MAHUD, all portfolios allocated have been re-allocated to Chief Minister N. Biren Singh and Deputy Chief Minister Y. Joykumar Singh.
A notification issued by the Governor of Manipur on the advice of the Chief Minister has re-allocated Forest and Environment and Climate Change , Science and Technololy Department , and  MAHUD to Deputy Chief Minister Y. Joykumar while Horticulture and Soil Conservation has been allocated to Chief Minister in addition to other portfolios.

Published in News
Saturday, 04 April 2020 17:21

NSF condemns assault to doctor

NSF condemns assault to doctor
IT News
Kohima, April 4

The Naga Students’ Federation condemns the unfortunate incident of  April 3 at Dimapur wherein Dr. Nesozol, Quarantine Team Member, Dimapur was physically assaulted and his vehicle vandalised by the few police personnel on duty.
While appreciating the yoemen service being rendered by the state police force towards ensuring the proper enforcement of the nationwide lockdown in our collective bid to contain the spread of Corona virus (Covid-19), it is one off incident like this that takes away the shine from their selfless sacrifices.
The Federation appreciates the gesture of DGP Nagaland, T. John Longkumar, IPS who publicly apologized for the incident and assured not only the medical brethren but also the general public that strict ‘action will be taken against those found guilty’ after an impartial enquiry. Such prompt acceptance of his men’s mistakes and the subsequent apology on their behalf is a vindication of our belief that the state police force is in safe hands.
The Federation, further, would like to place on record, our sincere appreciation towards the medical fraternity, who are putting their own life and the lives of their near and dear ones at risk, in their sincere attempt to keep the people of the state safe from the deadly Covid-19, this, despite the utter lack of protective gears and other medical equipments required to combat the virus. The NSF hereby appeals to the medical fraternity who are at the forefront of the fight against the pandemic not be disheartened by the April 3rd incident. Instead, take heart in the fact that the Naga Students’ and youths in particular and the entire populace of the state in general are banking on you all to keep the state free from Covid-19.
Furthermore, the NSF appeals to all the essential service providers for more co-ordinated efforts between themselves so as to ensure that another 3rd April like incident is averted in the near future.

Published in News

IT News
Imphal, April 4

Due to the outbreak of the Corona Virus Pandemic and the subsequent “Lockdown” The Realize Rehabilitation Centre (RRC) located at Mongjam Chingjin under Heingang constituency is facing acute hardship in terms of procurement of daily necessities like food and medicines.
The RRC is at the moment catering to the requirement of many drug users and supporting staff and is a Centre dedicated to the cause of Rehabilitation for People Who Use Drugs (PUDs).
The RCC appealed to the general populace to provide whatever help is possible from your end either in cash or kind for which kind act we shall ever be grateful and remain in our prayers.
The RCC also appealed to people all across the state and beyond to help us to cope with the immediate crisis at hand by donating at Bank Account no: 29970110094525, IFSC Code no: UCBA0002997, UCCO porompat Branch.

Published in News

IT News
Imphal, April 4

North-East Forum for International Solidarity (NEFIS) today launched helpline numbers to help the students and common people from North-East who have been stranded in various cities across India during the lockdown.
A statement by the student Forum said that the lockdown has led to many instances of discrimination and racism across the country. Following the lockdown, NEFIS had written to the Union Ministry for Home Affairs regarding the problems being faced by the people of North-East in various cities and had demanded that strict action be ensured against people engaging in racist acts. It had also demanded that district administrations across the country be directed to ensure the well-being of the people from the North-East.
“Since the Covid-19 pandemic, it should be noted, people of the northeastern states of India, have been called with slurs such as ‘Coronavirus’, etc. While the phenomenon of racist slurs had been prevalent, with the pandemic the racist slurs and attacks have had a drastic increase. There are many people from North-East who have been stranded in various cities across the country and thus are prone such racist attacks in the times of panic due to Covid-19 pandemic”, the statement said.
Taking cognizance of the prevailing atmosphere in the country, NEFIS, has launched helpline numbers so as to provide much needed help to the people facing such incidents. The helpline numbers would ensure that those in need of help and assistance are provided the same, while under compulsory lockdown. NEFIS also demands that the Central government should compulsorily ensure that the North-East people do not become victims of racial abuse and discrimination under the pretext of implementation of lockdown measures.

Published in News
Saturday, 04 April 2020 16:25

Edible items distributed

IT News
Khongjom, April 4

Fatherland Patriots’ Memorial Club, Khongjom today distributed 5 kg of rice, potatoes and dal etc. to around 300 families of Khongjom area in Thoubal district to make sure that those families find relief during their stay at home during the 21 days lockdown underway since March 24 midnight. For Manipur, the lockdown started 2 days ahead before Prime Minister’s announced 21 more days total lockdown after successful observance of Janata Curfew on March 22.
Essential commodities particularly edible items are main challenges and many Samaritans persons, clubs and CSOs are distributing at their capacity to make sure that no person in the state remain hungry.

Published in News

By Raju Vernekar

In view of “Covid-19” , Naval Dockyard, Mumbai has designed and developed its own handheld infrared (IR) based temperature sensor, through in-house resources, for undertaking screening of large number of personnel at the entry gates of the yard, to reduce the load on the security sentries at the gate.
The instrument has been manufactured under Rs. 1000/ -, which is fraction of the cost of the temperature guns in the market. The dockyard has the capability to scale up production of these if required towards which sourcing of the components is in progress.
Since the outbreak of coronavirus, the non-contact thermometers or temperature guns have become scarce in the market and are being sold at a very high cost. To overcome the scarcity the Naval Dockyard, has developed, this sensor with accuracy of 0.02 deg celsius. The non-contact thermometer has a, IR sensor and an LED display integrated with a microcontroller which runs on a 9 volts battery. This initiative has provided a tool for undertaking screening of large number of personnel at the entry gates, Commander Mehul Karnik said and added the temperature can be checked without touching a person.
Naval ships continue to remain mission deployed during COVID-19 crisis and the deployments are being planned without any port visit to the extent possible or with at least a gap of 14 days at sea from the last port visit prior return.
The 285 year old Naval Dockyard of Western Naval Command (WNC) has an average influx of around 20,000 personnel entering its premises every day. In view of Covid-19, initial screening of the personnel entering the dockyard was essential to prevent the spread of the virus within the yard and the Western Fleet. The most preliminary method to screen a probable patient is to check for body temperature by a non-contact means. Although there is a lock down across the country, the work of shipping building and research is going on and there is constant in and outflow of officers, sailors and civilians at Naval Dockyard.
In another development, the Naval Dockyard, Visakhapatnam has designed an innovative ‘Portable Multi-feed Oxygen Manifold (MOM)’ using a 6-way radial header fitted to a single cylinder. This would enable one oxygen bottle to supply six patients concurrently thus enabling critical care management to a larger number of Covid 19 patients with the existing limited resources. The entire set up was made operational by manufacturing a fine adjustment reducer and specific adapters of requisite dimensions for connecting the Oxygen cylinder and the portable MOM.
 A typical oxygen providing facility at hospitals comprises a cylinder feeding only one patient through a Venti-mask arrangement. During the ongoing pandemic, ventilator support is  required for about 5-8% of patients with symptoms and a large number of patients require oxygen support.

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By: T S Haokip

The honourable PM in his address to the nation on the 19th of March 2020 has said, ‘’On March 22, at 5 pm stand on your doors and windows for 5 minutes and clap, ring a bell to salute people who are serving the nation tirelessly.’’ Oh! How they’d wished to oblige the request and stand at their doors and ring those bells. The only problem was that all their doors and windows were no more.
When on the 24th of March the PM declared National lockdown and issued #SocialDistancing and #isolation norms and advised people to stay home, Chassad villagers could not oblige the same because their homes were no more. The possibility of maintaining #SocialDistancing by villagers whose 150 houses were burnt down and who are now housed in temporary camps is near to zero. But what is more dreadful than Coronavirus to them is this virus of homelessness. When people missed going to malls, restaurants, and workplaces,  the villagers of Chassad missed sleeping on their own beds at home, eating home-cooked foods and using their Toilets.
But when the PM, yet again, urged people to switch off lights of their homes at 9 pm for nine minutes on April 5 and light up lamps, candles and mobile flashlights to display the nation’s collective spirit to defeat #Coronavirus, Chassad villagers must have hung their heads in shame because for the 3rd time after their village was gutted to flames on 16th March by the neighbouring villagers of Kamjong and Sampui, they will not be able to oblige the PM’s request again. More than the cries of the women and children who long for the comfort of their homes, the thought of them not being able to follow those advisories must have upset them more.
Believe me; they have full faith in the Party and the present Government. In fact, they have unanimously voted for BJP during the last Lok-sabha elections. Unfortunately, their candidate could not secure a win in the outer Manipur seat but the party’s performance overall filled them with a sense of optimism and hope; a hope for peace and development. Thence they have every reason to enthusiastically follow what the PM says, but for their present plight. The State Government has initiated the process of rebuilding Chassad. The villagers have no doubt in the capacity of the Govt. to rebuild Chassad and ensure that the people are resettled and secured.
On 5th April 2020 at 9 PM, Chassad villagers will not be switching their lights off as all their light bulbs, together with all their belongings in their houses have been reduced to just ashes. While the Nation is in the process of observing ‘staying at home’ for 21 days, they have completed more than 21 days of staying outside their homes. It must be their sincere prayer that while the nation fights this highly contagious disease and are self-isolating at home, any next initiative of the PM if it does not involve staying in tents in groups and walking over burnt remains of houses while children and women wail inconsolably, should excuse them from observing it at least until they got homes to observe the #lockdown.  Until then, messages off #StayHome and #StaySafe could only remind them more of their homelessness!

Published in Guest Column

By - Parthajit Borah

The entire world during lockdown period is now struggling with the infectious Covid19. Our country is not different from it. The entire country encounters with the life threatening Covid19. The whole country has been locked down due to its rapid transmission among people in various parts of our country. India has to face innumerable problems and specially its economic sector.  It also interrupts heavily on students’ studies and their forthcoming examinations. Therefore the significance of online learning over the internet can play a pivotal role in imparting quality education during lockdown period.
Online learning came into force in 1982, when the Western Behavioral Science Institute  in La Jolla, California opened its school of Management and strategic studies. The school employed computer conferencing to deliver a distance education programme  to business executives. In 1989, the University of Phoenix began offering education programmes through internet. In 1993 with the debut of the first internet web browser created by the University of Illinois,  online education began to flourish. In 1998, the first fully online programmes were founded. New York University online, Western Governor’s University, the California  Virtud University and Trident University International.
But the term ‘ Online Education’ is not older in India’s educational ambiance. It emerges with the rapid development of technology. With the population of more than 1.3 billion, the availability of high speed of internet and smartphones,  India has the most number of technologically driven persons. The rise of Internet transforms India into a digital country as people tend to shop online, learn online. 
At the bounteous courtyard of science and technology, we can adequately utilize our electronic devices as the educational technology. Due to sudden growth of Covid19, our common life is abruptly changing.As a result the demand of using electronic devices is raising.
Covid19 has undoubtedly changed our common life style and working habits. It adversely affected students and on their academic growth.At the global standstill moment ,e learning and virtual classes are the most affordable means to educate our students as like Western countries. Online education can prepare students for competitive examinations like  IIT, JEE, CEE, NDA, UPSC, NET, SLET and other important examinations.  Through e-learning and you- tube our students can drive benefits. Here is the list of some of the top online education websites in India - - India, Khan Academy, Coursera, Edx;, WZ School, Academic earth,  Meritnation, Code Academy, Open Yale Courses. Through proper use of our smartphones and computers, we can flourish our lives during lockdown period. Apart from these our students through WhatsApp and messenger can communicate with their class teachers and subject teachers for course related problems.
****The author, Parthajit Borah, is working in a teacher education institute as a teacher educator.

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