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“No school bags till class II,” says Minister of State for HRD Upendra Kushwaha

Both NCERT and CBSE have taken several measures to reduce curriculum load and the weight of school bags

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New Delhi, November 22, 2016: The CBSE has directed schools affiliated to it to ensure that students do not carry school bags till class II and also to restrict the number of books to be prescribed in classes I-VIII, Minister of State for Human Resource Development Upendra Kushwaha told the Lok Sabha on Monday.

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In a written reply to a question, he said both the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) and the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) have taken several measures to reduce curriculum load and the weight of school bags.

“In its latest circular dated September 12, 2016, it has advised schools to take all possible measures to keep the weight of school bag under control,” said the Minister.

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He said that the NCERT has not recommended any textbook for early childhood education, while only two books for classes I & II and three books for classes III to V have been recommended.

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“The Government has also launched a platform for showcasing and dissemination of all digital and digitisable resources for its stakeholders in collaboration with the NCERT,” said the Minister, adding that the NCERT has made available all their textbooks and other teaching-learning material for free access on its website. (IANS)

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Raja Chari: Indian American Astronaut chosen by NASA

Raja Chari, an American of Indian descent, has been chosen by NASA as one of the 12 astronauts for a new space mission.

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Raja Chari. Twitter.
  • Raja Chari is an American of Indian descent chosen by NASA for the new batch of astronauts
  • Currently, he is a Lieutenant Colonel in the US Air Force
  • Chari will have to go through two years of astronaut training which begins in August

June 06, 2017: NASA has chosen 12 astronauts out of a record-breaking 18,300 applications for upcoming space missions. An American of Indian descent, Raja Chari, has successfully earned his spot in the top 12.

The astronauts were selected on the basis of expertise, education, and physical tests. This batch of 12 astronauts is the largest group selected by NASA since two decades. The group consisting of 7 men and 5 women surpassed the minimum requirements of NASA.

Born in Waterloo, Iowa, Chari graduated from Air Force Academy in 1999 with a bachelor’s degree in Astronautical Engineering and Engineering Science. He went on to complete his master’s in Aeronautics and Astronautics from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The astronaut is also a graduate of US Naval Test Pilot School.

Currently, Raja Chari is a Lieutenant Colonel in the US Air Force. He is the commander of 461st Flight Test Squadron and director of the F-35 Integrated Test Force at Edwards Air Force Base in California.

After Late Kalpana Chawla, Lt. Col. Raja Chari is the second Indian American astronaut chosen by NASA.

The 12 astronauts will have to go through two years of training. Upon completion, they will be assigned their missions ranging from research at the International Space Station, launching from American soil on spacecraft by private companies, to flying on deep space missions on NASA’s Orion Spacecraft.

The US Vice-President Mike Pence visited the Johnson Space Centre in Houston to announce and congratulate the new batch. Pence also said that President Trump is “fully committed” to NASA’s missions in space.

by Saksham Narula of NewsGram. Twitter: @Saksham2393