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Awareness about Digital Transactions and Financial Literacy must for Cashless Economy

In the on-going three-day tech festival at IIT Roorkee, the panel discussed the effects of demonetisation, use of mobile wallets and digital transactions in rural India

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Digital Transaction. Pixabay
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Roorkee, March 26, 2017: Financial literacy and awareness about digital transactions is paramount in rural India to make the cashless economy a reality, executives of mobile wallet-provider services said here at a panel discussion.

In the on-going three-day tech festival at IIT Roorkee, the panel discussed the effects of demonetisation, use of mobile wallets and digital transactions in rural India.

“Illiterate people do not know how to use digital transactions, though they know how to use a smartphone. But we are trying to spread financial literacy,” Head (Enterprise, Sales and Strategy) of Mobikwik Atul Mehta said.

Mehta added that people in large numbers were using mobile wallets following demonetisation.

Vice President of Reliance Jio Money Karthik Nandyal said financial awareness was an on-going process and it would take some time to reach every part of rural India.

He cited examples of other countries where cashless economy was functional and said that India can also make it possible.

The panelists said that even after demonetisation, there were parts of rural India where there was no concept of banking.

“Post-demonetisation, though there has been some awareness but more needs to be done. Banking system in rural areas will help aggregating the capital for productivity purposes,” Mehta said.

On how secure the digital transactions were, Professor Emeritus of Management Studies at IIT Roorkee Vinay Kumar Nangia said there were lapses in security aspects and there was a need to enhance the security architecture.

Though the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) assured earlier this week that there is “no vulnerability of loopholes” reported in Bharat Interface for Money (BHIM) or the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) applications, Nangia said that BHIM was not a forensically tested app.

“It cannot handle the load as it is expected. There is a danger,” Nangia said.

However, Mehta argued that the digital payments through mobile wallets was safe and they were working on making the transactions more secure.

IIT Roorke Director Ajit Kumar Chaturvedi told IANS that the campus was an example of cashless transactions as most of the vendors inside the institute used e-wallets. He said the campus also hopes to spread awareness among other people outside the campus so that cashless economy becomes a reality. (IANS)

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You May Soon Be Able to Prevent Chikungunya With Vaccines! IIT-Roorkee Researchers Discover Drug to Fight the Disease

At present, there are no immunizations or anti-viral medications available to cure Chikungunya, and the treatment is focused on mitigating the side effects related with the disease

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cases of dengue
Dengue and Chikungunya are viral diseases transmitted to humans via infected mosquitoes. Pixabay

Roorkee, October 9, 2017 : Dengue and Chikungunya are known to strike fear in the country every year, so much so that the health graph of the city registers a steep rise in these cases. Both of the water-borne diseases, characterized by high fever and pain in the joints, take a toll on our lives. So far, there is no vaccine to immunize people against the spread of the Dengue and Chikungunya virus. However, researchers at IIT-Roorkee have now discovered that a commonly-utilized de-worming drug can be efficiently used for treatments against Chikungunya.

According to a report by PTI, Shailly Tomar, lead researcher and a professor at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Roorkee in Uttarakhand was quoted as saying, “Our research has shown that piperazine, a drug existing in the market, is successful in curbing the spread and replication of the Chikungunya virus in a lab setting.”

The drug, Piperazine, is usually used in de-worming treatments against round-words and pinworms. Using their expertise in virology and structure biology, experts have now discovered the anti-viral capabilities of the drug that can potentially prompt new therapies against the fatal, mosquito borne disease.

The researchers are currently testing the molecule on animals, and will consequently take it to clinical trials.

ALSO READ What preventive steps have the city Government taken to control Dengue and Chikungunya, asks the Delhi High Court

The molecular details uncovered in the study, which has been published in the journal Antiviral Research, will be additionally used to plan piperazine-derivative medications that are more compelling to fight against the Chikungunya virus.

Using X-ray crystallographic technique, in combination with computational science and fluorescence strategies, the researchers discovered that piperazine binds itself with the hydrophobic (water-hating) pocket of capsid protein present in the Chikungunya virus, which can reduce the spread of the virus.

“This pocket is key to the replication of the virus and its spread inside a host. Inhibiting the pocket prevents budding and spread of the virus and can help in treating the virus effectively using existing drugs,” Tomar said.

Chikungunya has become a major public health concern, with an increasing number of people being plagued by the disease every year.

 At present, there are no immunizations or anti-viral medications available to cure Chikungunya, and the treatment is focused on mitigating the side effects related with the disease. 

Developing a new anti-viral drug molecule can take up to 10 years. To tend to the disease on an immediate basis, Professor Tomar added, “We are looking at repositioning existing, approved drugs and testing these to see if they might inhibit or kill pathogenic viruses.”