New Delhi: Duolingo, the online language education system launched its mobile app in Hindi on Monday in India. The aim behind this is that the natives can learn English and other languages with much more ease.
“In developing markets like India, learning English is crucial to people’s professional development and can double or triple their income potential. Our goal is to give everyone in India the best possible language education money can buy, but for free,” Duolingo’s cofounder and CEO, said in a statement.
The new app has been completely customised for Hindi speakers.
Customizations include reducing the size of the app to reduce the amount of memory required to install it, removing the need to type in Hindi, improving the placement test experience to help people quickly determine their proficiency level and customizing the content to make it more appealing to Hindi speakers.
Indian speakers can learn English with Duolingo, while Indian natives who already speak English can choose from 16 other languages.
“Hindi is the most widely spoken language in the country, hence we are focused on Hindi speakers first, but we plan on launching the app in other languages as well,a¿ Awaneesh Verma, product head at Duolingo, said.
According to the Duolingo, it is the most downloaded education app worldwide for Android, iOS and Windows Phone devices.
The app has organically attracted over 110 million users worldwide learning languages for free, as well as earned prestigious awards from Google and Apple.(IANS)
The Internal Complaints Committee of Star India on Sexual Harassment (Star ICC) has written to the anonymous accuser — who had alleged “sexual exploitation” of women employees — asking her to reach out to the committee or its external member on allegations made by her in tweets.
In a Twitter post on Friday, Star ICC, formed under the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 said it had reached out to the accuser through two emails on the ID provided by her through her tweets. The committee’s external member is Veena Gowda, a Mumbai-based woman rights lawyer.
The accuser, who tweeted through handle @ApurvaS17 — saying she would remain anonymous — had made sexual harassment allegations against the company’s officials in an open letter.
Asked to comment on the allegations, a Star India spokesperson said in a statement that despite no response by the anonymous accuser to the messages sent, the Star ICC had “suo moto conducted a preliminary inquiry and found no basis or factual accuracy” in respect of the allegations.
“We strongly urge any genuine complainant to approach the Star ICC. At Star, we stand with women in drawing the line on any behaviour that violates human dignity or the ability for women to pursue their dreams with respect and freedom. We have a zero-tolerance policy towards sexual harassment,” read the statement in response to an email query by IANS.
It also said that the anonymous tweet shared on October 13 raised an allegation that “runs completely counter to everything we believe in and the norms and values that we deeply embrace.”
The statement further said: “Star believes that the allegations made in the tweet without the complainant coming forward and giving any further detail, is a malicious attempt to malign and defame the reputation of the company and the CEO.” It said that Star reserves its right to initiate appropriate legal proceedings in this regard.
The accuser in her tweets had said that the #MeToo movement had encouraged her to come forward and that she had quit her job at Star India in the Airtime Sales section after 26 months and nine days and was now a homemaker, “taking care of my baby and hubby in a beautiful country, far away from Mumbai.”
The accuser said that while she was at the company, there were “clear instructions” given to make the sales team fulfil the targets in case they want to continue with their employment contract, “for which even if you have to take the clients to a hotel room and sleep with them for days.”
She said there were many instances when she and three of her female colleagues (interns) had clear instructions to reach a hotel after office hours for a private party hosted for influential friends.
She says the influential friends were “mostly bureaucrats and sometimes politicians and foreign nationals” who were “all ready to violate you, force you to dance against your wishes, drink with them, make drink(s) for them, exchange your numbers and even quietly accompany them to their respective rooms if they want you to”.
Veteran writer-director Vinta Nanda, who earlier this month accused actor Alok Nath of sexually violating her 19 years ago, wrote on Twitter: “I’m neither shocked nor surprised. I salute your courage to have come out and spoken out. The rot runs deep.” (IANS)