The IYL 2015 National Node in India reports on several events that have been organized in India during summer 2015 to celebrate the International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies 2015 (IYL 2015) and the golden age of Islamic civilization.
Science Fiesta “The Myriad Manifestations of Light,” organized by Cambridge School, Greater Noida, India
On invitation of Bina Varma, Principal, Cambridge School, Greater Noida, U.P., India, Dr Zahid H. Khan, National Focal Point for India for IYL 2015 and member of Ibn al Haytham International Working Group, inaugurated the Science Fiesta “The Myriad Manifestations of Light,” organized by the children of the school on 27 July 2015 as part of the IYL 2015 Celebrations. Nandini Bansal, a child of the school delivered, a talk on IYL 2015, mentioning various milestones in the history of light. Addressing the students, teachers and members of the school management, Dr Khan talked about the significance of the International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies 2015 as a great source of inspiration for promoting science among the young people, especially the school children. He also highlighted the pioneering contributions of Ibn al-Haytham to optics, which formed the basis for further advancements in the field, benefitting the mankind the world over. Dr Khan appreciated the initiative taken by the school to organizing such an important event, in which the school children of the Grades VI to VIII and IX to XII developed and exhibited interesting models on the theme “Playing with Light.” The event also included the Inter-School Quiz Competition and Article Writing by the children.
National seminar on “Solid-State Lighting,” organized by Al-Falah University, Faridabad, India
To create awareness among students on the importance of light and light-based technologies, The Al-Falah University, Faridabad, India, organized a national seminar on “Solid-State Lighting” on 6 August 2015 as part of the IYL 2015 celebrations. In the Inaugural Program, Dr Anil Kumar, Vice-Chancellor, delivered the welcome address, followed by Introductory Remarks by Professor Z.H. Zaidi, Advisor, AFU. Dr Krishan Lal, president, Association of Academics and Societies of Sciences, Asia, delivered the Inaugural address. He discussed about the initiatives and objectives of the United Nations and the action of the UNESCO in organizing IYL 2015. Dr Mitrasen Bhikajee, head of the Natural Sciences Sector, UNESCO Cluster Office for India, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal and Sri Lanka, spoke about the significance of the IYL 2015 and keen interest taken by various institutions in India who are organizing more than 100 events. Dr Zahid H. Khan, National Focal Point for India for IYL 2015 and IWG member, discussed about the initiatives taken by him in encouraging universities, schools and other organizations in India to actively participate in IYL 2015 celebrations and congratulated the Al-Falah University to take the lead in responding to his call and to Dr Shagufta Husain, convener, for her tireless efforts in organizing the seminar. Dr Khan also highlighted the pioneering work done by the Arab scientist Ibn al-Haytham on optics that laid the foundation for further scientific work in the field, which later inspired the scientists of the European renaissance to making great strides in science and technological advancements in optics.
In the Technical Session of the Seminar, there were four invited talks; Prof R.M. Mehra talked about “Solid State White Lighting,” Prof Kehar Singh on “Laser Speckles: Fundamental Properties and Some Applications,” Prof Mohammad Zulfequar on “Effect of Lasers on Amorphous Semiconductors” and Dr Zahid H. Khan on “Optics in The Islamic Golden Age of Science,” in which he particularly discussed the research works of Ibn al-Haytham on properties of light, optical phenomen and the theory of vision, which gave a new direction to the understanding as to how we see objects.
Poster launch of shOObh photography contest 2015, Theme:LiGHT
LiGHT is the shOObh theme of the year 2015. The shOObh Photography Contest and shOObh Arts Competition-2015 : Theme:LiGHT, are in the official calendar of events of UNESCO IYL 2015.
The poster launch of shOObh Photography Contest-2015: Theme-LiGHT was organized by shOObh Group Welfare Society, which is a non-profit community based organization working on different social issues. Prof Zahid H. Khan lectured on the past, present and future of light. Rashida Hussain (IAAS) and educationist and Ashok Pandey lightened the audience with light, aura and spiritual awakening. Renowned dancer Jyoti Srivastava, artists Udayshankar and Amrit, and photographer Rohit Dhingra shared light as a medium in art. Sandeep Marwah shared the use of light in cinema, his experience and life events.
Launch of “iQuiz 2015” — a national-level quiz contest on science during the Golden Age (7th to 16th Century CE)
A press conference was organized jointly by MESCO, ILM Foundation and MS Education Academy at Hyderabad, India on 26 August 2015, in which the national level quiz contest “iQuiz 2015” was launched. Over 15 media representatives, print and electronic, were present to cover the event. The conference was opened by Lateef Atear, founder of ILM foundation and organizing secretary for iQuiz 2015. Lateef gave a brief highlight of the quiz competition in which school children of VIII to X standard from over 500+ schools across India, are expected to participate. The iQuiz will give awards and cash prizes of Indian rupees one million to winners. This was followed by an address by Dr Zahid H. Khan, national focal point for India for IYL 2015 and member of the International Working Group on Ibn al-Haytham, who flew in from Delhi to Hyderabad to specially take part in the inaugural event. Dr Khan shared the purpose behind the 2015 International Year of Light celebrations and also the pioneering contributions of Ibn al-Haytham to the field of optics. Dr Fakhruddin Mohammed from MESCO, who is also the organizing committee chairman for iQuiz 2015, shared that the quiz contest is an effort to encourage the scientific temperament among the youth and requested the media to spread the news about this event so as to garner maximum participation from school children. Moazzam Husain and Misbah Syed from the MS Education Academy, which is a co-organizer of iQuiz 2015, also participated in the event.