Kerala: Make education free to all, say experts

Top Malayali scientists who are in the state capital for the Loka Kerala Sabha summit underscored, among other things, the need to make education free to all and to encourage scientific reasoning amon

Published: 14th January 2018 01:29 AM  |   Last Updated: 14th January 2018 08:26 AM   |  A+A-

Mathematician George Gheverghese Joseph at the University College, Thiruvananthapuram where he interacted with students on Saturday | B P Deepu

By Express News Service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Top Malayali scientists who are in the state capital for the Loka Kerala Sabha summit underscored, among other things, the need to make education free to all and to encourage scientific reasoning among students.

‘’The true term is not ‘democratisation of education.’ The important thing is to make education free to all, provide the facilities to those who are truly interested,’’ Centre for Mathematical and Statistical Sciences director A M Mathai said, interacting with students at ‘With the Scientists’ open forum organised by the Kerala State Youth Commission in connection with the Loka Kerala Sabha summit.

Mathematician Gheverghese George Joseph said that with the growth of social media there is a tendency to disseminate fake news and fake information as part of reality. ‘’Check the facts. All students should be taught to use scientific reasoning, how to carry out critical reasoning,’’ he said. He also underlined the need to encourage study on the Kerala School of Astronomy and Mathematics that flourished in the 15th and 16th centuries in Kerala.

The big challenge before conservationists is how to protect all the discovered flora and fauna on the planet, leading amphibian expert Sathyabhama Das Biju who heads the Systematics Lab at the Delhi University said. ‘’There are two questions. How much do we know about life on earth, Two, all the discovered flora and fauna. How can we protect them?’’ he said.

Pradeep Thalappil, an expert in molecular chemistry and nanoscale materials outlined the work he has carried out in the area of water purification, especially methods to tackle contaminants like arsenic in water.

Robotics expert Prahlad Vadakeppat, who is an associate professor at the National University of Singapore, pointed out that the residential system of learning and student life is neglected in India. He also underscored the importance of nature, even in a seemingly futuristic science like artificial intelligence. ‘’We learn everything from nature,’’ he said. Youth Commission chairperson Chintha Jerome presided over the function.

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