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    Artist Shridhara S poses with his elephants carved out of single pieces of chalk | Suresh Nampoothiri

    Artist Shridhara S poses with his elephants carved out of single pieces of chalk | Suresh Nampoothiri

    How creative can you get with a piece of chalk besides scribbling on a board? Moreover, it is reduced to dust after use. But here is an artist, Shridhara S for whom a chalk piece is not just another material but a source of inspiration and a beacon of hope. This artist has carved 1,050 elephants that are just one centimetre long in different colours on chalks. His feat got him an entry into the Limca Book of Records earlier this year. Shridhara who is currently working as an art teacher in Bishop Cotton Boys’ School is also looking for support from individuals and organisations to add more feathers to his cap.

    When asked him what inspired him to take up the project of carving elephants on pieces of chalk, he said, “As I work in a school, I have to constantly monitor children especially during exams. In order to keep myself occupied, I would take a piece of chalk and carve it to pass time.” Mesmerised by the beauty of giant elephants in Mysore Zoo, he decided to carve elephants on chalks.

    It was not an easy task for him to carve animals initially as he had to give it a perfect look not losing out on any of its features including ears, trunk, tail, tusk and other parts of its body. According to him, patience, creativity, concentration and perseverance helped him to achieve wonders in his life. His patience was tested when he carved 1,050 elephants as nearly 2,000 chalks were damaged while carving. “Over a period of time, carving had a negative impact on my eyes as it involves a lot of intricate and detailed work. I took over six minutes to carve each elephant and spent over three hours everyday on this project,” he added. He has carved elephants with pink, white, purple, green, blue, orange and yellow chalks by using just a ball pin and blade.

    When asked about the nature of the theme, he said, “The intention behind choosing elephants was to spread awareness on how important it is to protect them as they are a part of our environment. Human beings have encroached their habitat. Hence, it is our duty to protect them as they are a gift of nature.” Through these carvings, he often tries to convey the message ‘Save Elephants and Save Jungle.’

    Apart from his art works, his hand made replica of currency notes also earned him a place in Limca Book of Records in the year 2008. He drew over 40 different currencies and stamps from countries like India, Malaysia, Nepal, England, America, Saudi Arabia and others without using any mechanical instruments or lenses. “On April 1, I played a prank with my friends by painting two different currencies on one note. Spotting my talent, one of my friends encouraged me to paint notes with just water colours, brush and a pencil.”

    Encouragement from school authorities and family helped him to achieve what he is today. This artist who spends two or three hours on his art works every day said that he would carve Ganesha on soap. He also expressed his discontent over the fact that though the current generation is enthusiastic about art and craft, many parents refuse to encourage students to take up art as a subject.

    “Parents appreciate art work but they are hesitant to let their children explore their potential in the field of art and craft,” said Sridhara.

    source: http://www.newindianexpress.com / The New Indian Express / Home> Cities> Bangalore / by Nivedita K G / Express News Service – Bangalore / June 19th, 2013

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    June 28th, 2013adminBusiness & Economy, World Opinion

    CP India Foods Pvt Ltd launched their first ever café called the ‘Five Star Cafe’ in Bangalore, which is spread across 1000sq ft on St Marks Road. Five Star Café is a vibrant, youthful and enthusiastic place where you can have a streaming cup of brew and some delicious chew.

    Five Star Café dishes out delicious fresh food and beverages of high quality. The café has a great menu with the right balance of flavour and spice to create the perfect mouth-watering taste. The product range includes various fried and grilled chicken recipes, snacks, burgers, fries, rolls, sandwiches, biryani and rice, different value combos, coffee, tea, soft drinks, ice cream and desserts. It suits lunch and dinner as well as throughout the daylight eating options.

    FivestarBF28jun2013

    Five Star Cafe insists on a combined mix of Indian and Thai flavours. Unlike other fast food joints where you will get taste only international flavours, at Five Star Cafe you have the oriental tastes waiting for you.

    Speaking on the launch Mr Sanjeev Pant, Sr Vice President CP Foods said, “Five Star Cafe’ is more than just a café – it is a a fun place where people can come have a good time and spread happiness as it is a happy place. That’s why we say “Happy Thing Happen in Happy Places”. The café has great food and beverages that has been developed by a renowned chef using his secret recipes. It also offers free wi-fi. Mouth watering must haves includes fried chicken, burgers, fries, rolls, sandwiches, biryani, coffee, frappuccino, and desserts.

    When we aksed Mr Sanjeev Pant why he chose Bangalore to launch the first Five Star Cafe in india he replied, “Bangalore is an exciting city. People from different parts of India are coming here to work. And we also have our headquaters in Bangalore. A majority of our investers are also here.”

    In a nutshell it is fun place to meet, eat, share and hangout; add some laughter and fun; where you socialize eat, drink, be happy, happier and spread happiness.

    source: http://www.boldsky.com / Bold Sky / Home> Insync> Pulse / Thursday – June 20th, 2013

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    Two Alabama State University students are traveling abroad fro two months of research at the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Platforms and the National Centre for Biological Sciences in Bangalore, India.

    Brandi Barlow, a junior biology major at Alabama State University

    Brandi Barlow, a junior biology major at Alabama State University

    Brandi Barlow, a junior biology major, and Christian Rogers, a senior mathematics major, are the first two ASU students to intern at the institution that is one of the world’s premier research facilities.

    Christian Rogers, a senior mathematics major at ASU.

    Christian Rogers, a senior mathematics major at ASU.

    The two are working in the field of microfluidics, using miniature devices to study microorganisms like round worms under a microscope without killing them.

    The technology allows scientists to study organisms as they grow, enabling them develop diagnostic tools and the progression of human diseases, said Shree Singh, director of ASU’s Center for NanoBiotechnology Research and Life Science Research.

    The two left for Bangalore, India late last month and will return in July.

    The National Science Foundation is covering their travel expenses through its Historically Black Colleges and Universities Undergraduate Program.

    The Centre for Cellular and Molecular Platforms is covering their research and living expenses during their stay.

    ASU has existing agreements for student exchange in several countries, including Argentina, China, the United Kingdom, Ethiopia, India, Armenia and South Korea.

    source: http://www.blog.al.com / AL.com – All Alabama / by Evan Belanger – ebelanger@al.com / June 12th, 2013

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    June 27th, 2013adminBusiness & Economy, Leaders

    Bangalore,  (IANS) :

    Fed up with Bangalore being in the news for all the wrong reasons – strewn garbage, chaotic traffic, air pollution, water scarcity, et al – a citizen’s group is to launch a “leadership incubator” for aspiring corporators aimed at raising the governance quotient in the city known as India’s tech capital. Civic elections are due in less than two years.

    “Currently this is meant for aspiring corporators. We will examine if we need to extend this to existing ones as well,” said Revathy Ashok of the Bangalore Political Action Committee (B.PAC), which is backed by the city’s top movers and shakers.

    While details of the course are being worked out, Ashok said “the programme is planned to be of 18 months’ duration.”

    The first three months would centre on induction of selected participants with “sessions from experts on leadership, campaign management, branding , outreach and communications, public policy, ethics, BBMP (Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike or the Greater Bangalore City Corporations) and governance structure, legal and financial issues related to BBMP, development and diversity issues in the city, PPP (public-private partnership) models and the like,” Ashok told IANS in an interview.

    The next 15 months would be “on the field work at the ward level consisting of documentation of issues, identification of problems and suggesting solutions and working with citizens’ groups to solve at least two key issues,” she said.

    “This is to ensure that theoretical knowledge is supported by strong grassroots experience in public service”, Ashok pointed out.

    B.PAC president Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, head of biotechnology major Biocon, last week unveiled plans to start the training course.

    B.PAC was formed in February by leading entrepreneurs, former bureaucrats, sportspersons and artists to work for a better Bangalore. It has the backing of IT icon and Infosys co-founder N.R. Narayana Murthy.

    While Mazumdar-Shaw heads B.PAC, former Infosys director and now head of Manipal Global Education Services T.V. Mohandas Pai is the vice president and former Karnataka additional chief secretary K. Jairaj is the secretary. Former athlete Ashwini Nachappa, swimmer Nisha Millet and Bharatanatyam dancer Vani Ganapathy are among the trustees.

    The plan appears timely as elections to the 198-member BBMP are due in less than two years. The city is divided into 198 wards.

    The last election was held in April 2010 when the Bharatiya Janata Party captured the civic body for the first time.

    On whether B.PAC would provide the training free or charge a fee, Ashok said “a fee will be charged so that the candidates take this more seriously. However, we will try to subsidise this to the extent possible”.

    Details about the quantum of the fee are being worked out.

    Asked if political parties were willing to support the programme, Ashok said: “These are early days. We have not been approached by any political party. Whatever we do, we will be party agnostic, non-partisan and apolitical. We want to develop at least 100 young leaders from the grassroots to become good corporators.”

    Bangalore is now home to nearly 10 million people and over four million vehicles but infrastructure development has not kept pace with its rapid growth, particularly after it became the country’s IT hub in late 1990s.

    With the growth came traffic congestion compounded by poorly maintained roads and vehicular pollution. In the last one year, the city’s biggest problem has become garbage disposal with BBMP officials and the elected representatives seemingly clueless on finding a lasting solution.

    source: http://www.firstpost.com / FirstPost. / Home> Firstpost> Fwire / by IANS  (V.S. Karnic can be contacted at vs.karnic@ians.in) / Bangalore – June 12th, 2013

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    WiproBF27jun2013

    Bangalore : 

    Germany’s relatively stable economy in the troubled Euro Zone has prompted Wipro to increase its headcount.

    India’s fourth largest software exporter has decided to triple its headcount in the next three years.

    According to a company statement, the company plans to add 1,000 employees in Germany by 2016, from 500 employees at present.

    Wipro counts a global automotive company, a European utilities’ major and a large telecom company in Germany as some of its 30 clients in the region.

    FOCUS ON SMALL FIRMS

    To drive stronger incremental growth in the future, Wipro is looking to address the requirements of medium-size enterprises in Germany in addition to large global enterprises, said Rajat Mathur, Chief Sales and Operations Officer (Growth Markets), Wipro.

    Similar to Wipro, other Indian IT companies are also looking to increase their European presence – either by acquiring companies or recruiting in Germany.

    In September last year, Infosys made its largest ever acquisition by buying Swiss consulting firm Lodestone Holding AG for $350 million. At the time of the acquisition, CEO S.D Shibulal said the acquisition would help Infosys in getting access to 850 IT consulting employees and also give it a scale in SAP software implementing business. SAP makes software for companies to manage their accounting, supply chain and other inventory management functions.

    Cognizant in December last year acquired six companies for an undisclosed amount in Germany. All these companies have development centres in Germany. ccording to sources inside HCL Tech, the company plans to increase headcount in the region. When contacted an HCL spokesperson said that the company does not comment on workforce in a particular geography and does not make any forward looking comments.

    Apart from the large companies, even mid-size Indian IT companies are also increasing their Germany play.

    In January, Pune-based Geometric bought 3Cap Technologies, a German firm specialising in automotive electronics engineering with 110 employees, for an undisclosed amount.

    REVENUES FROM EUROPE

    Despite slowdown, revenues from Europe for all the top 5 IT companies have crossed the billion-dollar mark.

    “We are seeing an increased viability for offshoring,” said Shashi Bhusan, Senior Research Analyst, Prabhudas Lilladher. Industry estimates peg the Germany IT market at around $80 billion in 2012.

    source: http://www.thehindubusinessline.com / Business Line / Home> Industry> Info-Tech / by The Hindu Bureau – venkatesh.ganesh@thehindu.co.in / Bangalore – June 12th, 2013  

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    June 27th, 2013adminEducation, Records, All
    Abhijeet Shenoi (Rank 1)

    Abhijeet Shenoi (Rank 1)

    Candidates from Karnataka have performed well in the under-graduate entrance test conducted by the Consortium of Medical, Engineering and Dental Colleges of Karnataka (COMED-K), the results of which were announced Tuesday.

    The first 10 ranks for engineering have been secured by candidates from the state. Abhijeet Shenoi, a science student of National Public School, Indiranagar, stood first in the UGET for engineering with a score of 161 out of 200.

    “The secret to success is no secret at all, it’s just hard work and enjoying yourself while doing what you do,” said Abhijeet, a resident of Domlur. “I prepared for IIT and that helped me prepare for COMED-K. I am awaiting the IIT results to make my choice,” he said.

    Sucheth S Kuncham stood second with 158 marks, followed by Pratheek M Sadare with 155 marks.

    Neeli Devee Krishna Shashidhar from Andhra Pradesh stood first in the UGET medical, followed by Hemanth Amardeep Santhoor, an aspiring neurosurgeon. “My previous experience in entrance exams of Manipal, AIIMS, CMC, Vellore, and the CET helped me in COMED-K,” said Hemanth, who stood first in the CET.

    Harini Seshadri and Ashish K from Karnataka secured third and fourth ranks, respectively.

    The UGET rank list will determine the admissions in 12 medical, 25 dental and 157 engineering colleges in the state. For more details, visit www.comedk.org

    source: http://www.newindianexpress.com / The New Indian Express / Home> Cities> Bangalore / by Express News Service – Bangalore / June 12th, 2013

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    Milan Bidare, P. Rajas

    Milan Bidare, P. Rajas

    Mysore :

    Two students from Mysore have done the city proud by bagging top ranks in International English Olympiad (IEO) and National Cyber Olympiad (NCO) conducted by Science Olympiad Foundation (SOF) in association with the British Council and BBC Knowledge.

    Milan Bidare of Manasarowar Pushkarini Vidyashrama in city, who was ranked first both in State and International-level under the International English Olympiad category, received a cash prize of Rs. 50,000 while P. Rajas of JSS Public School, Jss Technical Institutions Campus (SJCE), ranked first in State and 17th in International-level under the National Cyber Olympiad category.

    SOF had organised its 16th International Awards ceremony at Delhi recently to felicitate international winning students, teachers and Principals of Olympiad exams for the academic year 2012-13.

    Justice R.C. Lahoti, former Chief Justice of India, was the chief guest. Prof. Y.S. Rajan, Distinguished Professor at ISRO and Chairman of NIT, Manipur and Charlie Walker, Director-Programmes, British Council India, were the guests of honour.

    Awards were given to top 3 international rank holders from classes 1 to 12 for the four Olympiad exams conducted by SOF.

    Winners from classes 7 to 12 were given a cash prize of Rs. 50,000 each, the rank 2 holders won Rs. 25,000 each and rank 3 holders got Rs. 10,000. Winners from classes 1 to 6 were awarded i-Pads. In addition, attractive gifts were given to all the winners. The top 10 Principals and top 40 teachers whose students put up an excellent performance were felicitated with cash awards, mementos and citations.

    Mahabir Singh, Founder and Executive Director, SOF, said 24,000 students from 1,050 cities across India and 14 countries have been awarded for achieving top State-level ranks. In addition, close to 3,50,000 students have been awarded “Medals of Excellence” for achieving top rank in their respective schools.

    SOF spends about Rs. 8 crore towards awards, scholarships and training programmes. For the academic year 2012-13, around 25,000 schools had registered for the 4 Olympiads.

    source: http://www.starofmysore.com / Star of Mysore / Home> General News / June 21st, 2013

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    Mangalore : 

    Students from Puttur taluk in Dakshina Kannada district have won international awards for their essays.

    Rashmiparvathi K. of Vivekananda College in Puttur was awarded gold medal for her essay on the use of coconut palm petiole.

    Addressing the media here on Friday, Badanaje Shankar Bhat, her guide for the essay, said Rashmiparvathi’s essay on ‘Coconut palm petiole – its uses for enriching the soil nutrients and its antimicrobial properties,’ has been awarded the gold medal at the International Sustainable World (Energy, Engineering, and Environment) Project Olympiad 2013 at Houston. The Olympiad was conducted from May 8-13.

    Sindhura Shankar, another student from Ramakrishna High School in Puttur, was awarded the gold medal for her essay on ‘A herbal substitute for hazardous chemical pesticides’ at the International Environment and Sustainability Olympiad at Middelburg in the Netherlands. The Olympiad was conducted from June 2-7. Bhat guided both the students to prepare the essays.

    source: http://www.thehindubusinessline.com / Business Line / By The Hindu Bureau  ..vinayak.ajk@thehindu.co.in /  Mangalore – June 14th, 2013

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    Bangalore :

    If you thought there would be no takers for Sanskrit at the graduate and post-graduate level, sample this – 166 students have enrolled in the master’s degree programme at Karnataka Samskrit University and 249 are pursuing the degree programme. Of the 166 students, nine bagged gold  medals on Friday, during the convocation ceremony of the 2011-13 batch.

    Gowri Hegde is the only girl to bag the gold medal and the only one to achieve the feat in Alankar Shashtra, her specialization. When asked why she chose to study Alankar Shastra, she says, “Sanskrit is the mother of all Indian languages. Both my parents are familiar with it. I had to pick from Kannada, English and Sanskrit but I chose to learn the root of all languages, which was an exciting thing to do.”

    Hedge belongs to Honnavar in Udupi district and her father is an agriculturist. Her dream is to be a Sanskrit teacher. “Though there are fewer job opportunities in our field as compared to other languages, the best option for a Sanskrit student is to teach the language,” she added.

    Contrary to Hedge’s opinion, Nagendra Pawan RN sees a huge opportunity in research work in the field of linguistics. “I have grown up amid Sanskrit culture, although I knew nothing about the language and its roots in my childhood. When my father asked me to study Sanskrit in college, I took it up. Now I realize that it was the right thing to do. Job opportunities may be few, but research in linguistics is a great field to work in,” he told TOI. He is a gold medallist in Vyakaran Shastra.

    Nagendra’s friend, Vijayananda Adiga B wants to be an astrologer. His father and father are astrologers by profession. “I was destined to become an astrologer. My father and Dr Kottemane Ramkrishna inspired me to learn Sanskrit. I will pursue a PhD in Jyotish Shastra.”

    Other gold medallists, Srikrishna Bhat (Poorvaneemamsa Shastra), Bhimsena Gopalachar Guttal (Nyaya Shastra), Mahesh G Bhatt (Krishna Yejur Veda Shastra) and Naveen Bhatt S (Advaitha Vedanta Shastra) are already working in PUC schools or Gurukulams as Sanskrit teachers. Their fathers are either priests or astrologers but they want to preach the language among city students.

    History of the varsity

    Karnataka Samskrit University was set up in 2010 by the state government under the Directorate of Samskrit Education. The varsity has two constitutional colleges – Chamarajendra Samskrit College in Chamarajpet, Bangalore and Mysore Samskrit College. It has 28 other affiliated colleges across Karnataka.

    The government has identified 100 acres of land for the varsity in Kuduru hobli, Magadi taluk. The directorate includes 354 recognized Sanskrit pathashalas in the state. The undergraduate programme comprises 17 Shastras and the PG course has 16 Shastras. The vice-chancellor announced during the convocation that PhD programmes will be started from this academic year.

    source: http://www.articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com /The Times of India / Home> City> Bangalore / TNN / June 15th, 2013

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    June 23rd, 2013adminEducation, Records, All

    Bangalore : 

    Three engineering colleges from Karnataka feature in the Union Ministry of Human Resources Development’s (MHRD) Centres of Excellence list. Also, about 19 engineering colleges have qualified for the ministry’s technical education quality improvement programme.

    MHRD’s Centres of Excellence are to get Rs 5 crore each for strengthening institutions to improve learning outcomes and employability of graduates as well as scaling up post-graduate education and demand-driven research and development.

    The ministry invited applications for the establishment of the 30 Centres of Excellence in the country. In the first cycle of selections, the ministry approved 16 institutions – six National Institutes of Technology and 10 engineering colleges of the total 133 which applied.

    “Out of the 10 engineering colleges, three are from Karnataka namely – RV College of Engineering, Bangalore for setting up “Centre for Macro electronics”, PES Institute of Technology, Bangalore for “Knowledge Analytics and Ontological Engineering (KaAOE) and Siddaganga Institute of Technology, Tumkur for “Centre of Applied Research and Nano Technology”,” R. V. Deshpande, Karnataka’s Minister for higher education and tourism, told reporters.

    “It is proud moment for the Karnataka Government today. It has released its share of Rs 2 crore to each of these engineering colleges. In the first cycle, we bagged three Centres of Excellence and in the second cycle we hope MHRD would select some more colleges from the State,” he added.

    PROJECT STRATEGY

    As for the technical education quality improvement programme, about 19 engineering colleges are participating in phase II. Here, according to Deshpande, “each Government, Government-aided, private and unaided college participating is to get between Rs 4 crore to Rs 12.5 crore.”

    The total cost of the project for Karnataka is Rs 177 crore and till today, Rs 33.91 crore has been released. (Rs 26.50 crore from the Central Government and Rs 7.41 crore from the State).

    COLLEGES FROM KARNATAKA

    The colleges that have been selected from Karnataka for this programme are: UVCE, Bangalore (Government); SJCE, Mysore (Government-aided); Poojya Doddappa Appa College of Engineering, Gulbarga (Government-aided); Malnad Engineering College, Hassan (Government-aided); BMS College of Engineering, Bangalore (Government-aided); Basaveshwara Engineering College, Bagalkot (Government-aided); Dr Ambedkar Institute of Technology, Bangalore (Government-aided); NIE, Mysore (private aided); Sri Siddhartha Institute of Technology, Tumkur (private aided); Siddanganga Institute of Technology, Tumkur (private aided); NMAM Institute of Technology, Nitte (private aided); MS Ramaiah Institute of Technology, Bangalore (private aided); SDM College of Engineering and Technology, Dharwad (private aided); RV College of Engineering, Bangalore (private aided); PES Institute of Technology, Bangalore (private aided); Government Sri Krishna Rajendra Silver Jubilee Institute of Technology, Bangalore (Government); PES College of Engineering, Mandya (Government-aided); BVB college of engineering and technology, Hubli (Gvernment-aided); and Nitte Meenakshi Institute of technology, Bangalore (private unaided).

    source: http://www.thehindubusinessline.com / Business Line / Home> Industry> Education / by The Hindu Bureau  …anil.u@thehindu.co.in / Bangalore – June 11th, 2013

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