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Tata Institute of Fundamental Research take initiative to spread awareness on Covid-19

Newdelhi:1/4/20:Breakout of Covid-19 in Wuhan, China has now engulfed whole of the globe. Declared   a pandemic by World Health Organisation, the latest count is it has spread to 204 countries. With the pandemic comes the stigma, superstitions and fear about the disease among people. One important challenge is how to make sense of extreme measures such as isolation, quarantine and lock-down. Why must we practice physical distancing? To dispel the myths and provide a basic scientific understanding of the public health measure behind the pandemic Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) come out with a package of engaging and illuminating communication materials. Researchers have created a set of multi-lingual resources (youtube videos) in explaining why social distancing is helpful for tackling viral outbreaks like COVID-19. The resources are based on the original simulations published by Harry Stevens in the Washington Post.

“We have launched in nine languages English, Hindi, Bengali, Konkani, Marathi, Malayalam, Odia, Tamil and Telugu through volunteering efforts by faculties, families and students” Prof Arnab Bhattacharya, Scientist, TIFR. Soon the resource material would be released in Gujarati, Punjabi, Haryanvi and Assamese as well.

The idea is to help disseminate information and debunk various myths that are going around. The information has been provided in easy to understand format and in regional language so that it can reach to wider audiences. “The disease was emerged in abroad, but we have to explain about it to our population according to local needs, for which this vernacular content is important. We hope that the use of this material can prove effective in spreading awareness among the people,” said Dr Bhattacharya.

In the next step the team is trying to make masks by some home picked material. For this posters and videos would be released soon. The public outreach initiative by TIFR, titled ‘Chai and Why?’  a platform where scientists interact with the people through social media to debunk misinformation and explain the science behind the virus.

About Editor in chief

Ashok Palit has completed his graduation from Upendranath College Soro, Balasore and post graduation from Utkal University in Odia Language and literture.. He has also carved out a niche for himself as a scribe of eminence after joining the profession in 1988. He is also an independent media production professional. He brings loads of experience to Advanced Media, Ashok Palit as a cineaste has been active in film criticism for over three decades. As a film society activist, he soared to eminence for his profound commitment to the art film appreciation and aesthetics of cinema. His mode of discourse is often erudite but always lucid and comprehensible marked by a perfect acumen so rare in the field. A film aesthete with an immense fond of critical sensibilities, he wrote about growth and development of odia cinema in New Indian Express, The Times of India, The Hindustan Times, The Asian Age and Screen. He has been working as an Editor for Cine Samaya from 2002-2004.. He had made solid contribution on cinema in many odia Dailies and weekly such as Samaj, Prajatantra, Dharatri, Samaya, Satabadi, and weekly Samaya.

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