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Google Honours Raja Ram Mohan Roy With a Doodle

Roy took a keen interest in European politics and followed the course of the French Revolution

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Google's new Search feature gives single result to certain queries. Pixabay

Google on Tuesday celebrated the 246th birth anniversary of renowned social reformer Raja Ram Mohan Roy recognised as the “Father of the Indian Renaissance”, who paved the way for a modern India.

Roy was a non-conformist to many a tradition he was born into on this day in 1772, in Radhanagar village in Murshidabad district of West Bengal.

Although born into a Hindu Brahmin family, where his father Ramkanto Roy, was a Vaishnavite, Roy at a young age left home, shunned orthodox rituals and idol worship and became a staunch supporter of monotheism.

Following his differences with his father, Roy went on a journey that took him far from his roots. He travelled extensively including in Tibet and the Himalayas.

He studied Persian and Arabic along with Sanskrit, which influenced his thinking about God. He read Upanishads, Vedas and the Quran and translated a lot of the scriptures into English.

When he returned home, his parents married him off in a bid to change his outlook. But Roy continued to explore the depths of Hinduism only to highlight its hypocrisy.

After his father’s death in 1803 he moved to Murshidabad, where he published his first book Tuhfat-ul-Muwahhidin (A Gift to Monotheism).

Representational image.
Representational image. IANS

Roy took a keen interest in European politics and followed the course of the French Revolution.

In 1814, he settled in Calcutta, and the following year he founded the Atmiya Sabha. In 1828, he established the Brahmo Samaj, which is considered to be one of India’s first socio-religious reform movements.

However, his most significant contribution as a social engineer was towards women’s rights. Nearly 200 years ago, when evils like — Sati — plagued the society, Roy played a critical role to bring about a change.

He opposed the regressive practice that forced a widow to immolate herself on husband’s pyre.

The doodle on Roy, created by Beena Mistry, a designer based out of Toronto, shows Roy speaking at a public meeting with his detractors in the background. There is also the presence of a woman among the audience, this is at a time when the purdah system was rigidly followed.

He campaigned for equal rights for women, including the right to remarry and the right to hold property.

In 1830, he travelled to the UK as the Mughal Empire’s envoy to ensure that Lord William Bentinck’s law banning the practice of Sati was not overturned.

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Roy was also one of the pioneers of Indian journalism. He published several journals in Bengali, Persian, Hindi and English to propagate social reforms.

Bengali weekly Samvad Kaumudi was the most important journal that he published. The Atmiya Sabha published an English weekly called the Bengal Gazette and a Persian newspaper called Miratul-Akbar.

Roy died in a village near Bristol in England on September 26, 1833 of meningitis, and was buried there. (IANS)

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Google Announces an Investment of $600 mn to Expand US Data Centre

To boost computer science education in the US, Google also announced on Thursday a $6 million grant to support 4-H, the largest youth development organisation in the US

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FILE - A woman walks past the logo for Google at the China International Import Expo in Shanghai, Nov. 5, 2018. VOA

As part of its plan to invest $13 billion in building new data centres and offices in over a dozen states in the US this year, Google has announced a fresh investment of $600 million to expand its data centre in Pryor, a city in Oklahoma.

The Pryor site is an important part of the company’s global network of data centers, Google CEO Sundar Pichai said on Thursday.

This network is what powers Google searches, email, all of the photos they store and treasure, and the maps that help people find their way home.

This new investment takes Google’s total investment in Oklahoma to over $3 billion.

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A man walks past a Google sign outside with a span of the Bay Bridge at rear in San Francisco, May 1, 2019. VOA

“Pryor is already home to one of Google’s largest data centers in the country. I am pleased to announce that we will be investing another $600 million to expand the data center here and create an additional 100 jobs for the Pryor community,” Pichai said.

“It’s part of our $13 billion investment in expanding our data centers across the US This week we also announced new investments in Michigan, and we’re breaking ground on a new data center in Texas,” he wrote in a blog post.

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To boost computer science education in the US, Google also announced on Thursday a $6 million grant to support 4-H, the largest youth development organisation in the US.

“This is our largest ever computer science education grant from Google.org. It will help ensure that young people in Oklahoma and 25 other states have access to the curriculum, training, and devices to learn and grow their coding skills,” Pichai said. (IANS)