Microbial Fuel Cell generating electricity from wastewater

27 Sep 2014, Amritapuri
Amritavarsham – Amma’s 61st Birthday Celebrations

The Amrita Center of Biotechnology introduced a Microbial Fuel Cell, which utilizes energy from bacterial growth in wastewater to generate electricity while simultaneously bringing about purification of the wastewater–an important step in addressing the sanitation and energy problems that are very relevant in our country.

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VS Sivakumar, Kerala Minister of Health unveiled the cell during Amma’s 61st Birthday celebrations.

Big Data Framework and Inter Operable Platform devices launched

27 Sep 2014, Amritapuri
Amritavarsham – Amma’s 61st Birthday Celebrations

Amrita Big Data Framework (ABDF) is an all-integrated framework for effortless Big Data analytics that can help one analyze large sets of data and eek out intelligence for improved decision-making allowing optimization and enhanced efficiency. ABDF has applications to diverse fields from medicine, engineering, social media and much more making it an extremely powerful tool.

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Amrita Internet of Things Platform (AIoTm) provides a scalable inter operable platform for devices to connect and communicate amongst themselves without human-to-human or human-to-computer interaction.

CN Balakrishnan, Kerala Minister of Co-Operation unveiled both the above devices during Amritavarsham 61 celebrations.

GetVu’s augmented reality glasses

27 Sep 2014, Amritapuri
Amritavarsham – Amma’s 61st Birthday Celebrations

Imagine a fully interactive augmented reality–an extra layer on top of our world that we can see, grab and control. With GetVu’s platform, instead of using voice controls to indirectly interact with a virtual object, you could reach out and move it around with your hands. You could change the colors of a proposed building project on your city’s skyline or play foosball on your kitchen table or even explore architectural ruins. With augmented reality taken beyond the limits of the smartphone or tablet, you could look around, see the world for what it could be, and change it with a wave of your hand.

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Sri. Shekhar Kapur, award-winning filmmaker unveiled the glasses during the Amritavarsham celebrations

Amrita Santhulam: low cost balance trainer for rehabilitating neuro patients

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27 Sep 2014, Amritapuri
Amritavarsham61, Amma’s birthday celebrations

The Amrita Santhulam (Balance trainer), is a low cost rehabilitation system for the elderly patients suffering from stroke, Parkinson’s, peripheral neuropathy, diabetes, post ankle sprain and similar morbidities which cause impaired static and dynamic balance in the human body. This was launched on the occasion of Amma’s 61st birthday celebrations, developed by Ammachi Labs of Amrita University and the Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Dept at Amrita Hospital. Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan, Minister of Forest, Transport & Environment unveiled this equipment.

The balance training system will motivate the patients to perform repetitive rehabilitation exercises through games offering the functionality to simulate real world scenarios. The system provides audio and visual feedback to the patients balance while performing an activity like brushing their teeth or fastening a button. This is an innovative approach in addressing the patient’s ailment. Doctors can analysis their patient’s therapy progress with immediate feedback.

An advanced balance analyzer software program running in the background provides the doctor/therapist with information on the patient’s progress of therapy in a qualitative fashion.

Unveiling of Amrita’s A-One Fuel-Maker and Solar Dryer

27 Sep 2014, Amritpauri — Amritavarsham61, Amma’s Birthday celebrations

The Amrita A-One Fuel-maker is an electricity-free machine for producing fuel briquettes from bio mass, like husk, sawdust, pine needles, dry leaves, etc. This patent-pending technology produces briquettes with bicycle power and is a great way to generate income as well as reduce fuel cost for rural Indian villagers.

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The Amrita All-Purpose Solar Dryer is for drying vegetables, fruits and herbal leaves using indirect passive heating technology, thereby preserving mineral and vitamin compositions.

Both were unveiled by KC Venugopal, MP on the occasion occasion of Amritavarsham61.

Amrita Vidyalayam bags prizes in Sanskrit week celebrations

In connection with the Sanskrit Week Celebration of CBSE schools, Amrita G Nair of Amrita Vidyalayam, Delhi, got the first prize for Delhi region. Amritavarshini S of Amrita Vidyalayam, Vadakara, got the third prize for Thriuvananthapuram region in the Laghubhashanam (short speech) category.

The prize consists of a certificate, a medal and a cash prize of Rs. 5000/- and Rs. 2000/ respectively for first and third positions.

Union Minister, Smt. Smriti Irani gave away the prize in a function held at Delhi on 13/08/2014.

Amma is making women’s empowerment a reality, Governor Dikshit

03 May 2014 — Amritapuri Ashram

The keynote speaker of the Women Empowerment Celebration conducted by AMMACHI Labs was the Governor of Kerala, Her Excellency Smt. Sheila Dikshit. Standing alongside Amma and the other dignitaries, Governor Dikshit helped distribute awards to a couple dozen of the 1,500 women who had come to Amritapuri Ashram to participate in the celebration. She then delivered a speech praising the efforts of the women, of AMMACHI Labs, of Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham and of Amma.

“The United Nations, as we all know, is a worldwide organization, and when it choses projects, it choses them very carefully,” Governor Dikshit said. “The fact that this project of Women Empowerment done by the Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham [was chosen] is in itself a great honor for all of you, for all of us and for the nation.”

Governor Dikshit then stressed Amma’s role as an empowerer or women. “It’s Ma who is making this dream come true,” she said, “[making sure] that it is not just spoken about but that, actually, we do attain the emancipation which comes about after we have become powerful both economically, in the community, in the family and, ultimately, also politically.”

Directly addressing the Women Empowerment Program graduates, Governor Dikshit said, “Your participation in nation-building, in family values and in bringing about a society which has love, compassion and respect for all is extremely critical. And this training program—which will give you emancipation, which will give you the courage, which will give you the confidence, to be able to stand on your own legs and feet—will contribute towards the making of an ideal nation and an ideal society.”

Governor Dikshit then spoke at length about the Mata Amritanandamayi Math’s Amrita Kuteeram homes-for-the-homeless project, through which Amma’s ashram has constructed more than 45,000 homes throughout India to date. “If dignity really has to come to civilization, and to societies, and to homes, and to families and to people,” said Governor Dikshit, “then having a good roof over their heads is as important as anything else. Health is important, education is important, developing a skill to be able to earn your livelihood with dignity and with grace is important. But equally and even more important, to make all this really come to its full flowering is a home, is a roof over one’s head.”

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Governor Dikshit then again focused on Amma, saying, “Amma—in the spirit with which she works with love and compassion, with an ever-smiling face—gives us all the courage to stand up and live by the ideals that she has taught us… That in itself is something. As was said by a speaker just before me, ‘She is the greatest saint we have today.’ And this country, and Kerala particularly, is very happy and very lucky to have her presence here. … I have had the honor of meeting [Amma] every time she has come to Delhi. Every time … she leaves behind a spirit which is inexplicable in words, but which brings calm and peace.”

Governor Dikshit then expressed pride in the Mata Amritanandamayi Math’s consultative status with the Economic & Social Council of the United Nations. “Apart from the fact that [the Mata Amritanandamayi Math] is supported by [the United Nations], it also has a consultative status with them, which is rare because not many NGOs, not many organizations, the United Nations needs to consult, but it does consult Ma’s NGO. So, that is a great honor for the NGO and all of us, for the recognition that the United Nations has given them. It’s a very unique record and a very inspiring record for all others to follow.”

Governor Dikshit concluded by offering her salutations to Amma: “Let us bow our head before Mata for having guided all towards this moment of glory and also set a standard of humanitarian service to all of those of us who aspire to serve. So, my very sincere and humble namaskar to Ma on behalf of myself and all of you. And thank you very much for the United Nations for having recognized and supported this great initiative. And, last but not least, my heartiest congratulations to all of you who have participated in this program and are going back to wherever you have come from—Tamil Nadu or Kerala—with greater sense of confidence and greater sense of dignity. Thank you very much. Jai Hind.”

– Kannadi

Amma’s Women Empowerment Project is Role Model for Entire World says U.N.

3 May 2014 – Amritapuri Ashram

More than 1,500 women from various parts of India poured into Amritapuri for the two-day event “A Celebration of Empowerment.” This was the capstone event of AMMACHI Labs’ Women Empowerment project, co-funded by the United Nations Democracy Fund (UNDEF) and Amrita University. The participants all shared one thing in common: they were graduates of AMMACHI Labs’ unique computerized vocational education and life-enrichment education courses.

Video: Amma talks about the plight of women and relates a heartrending true story that illustrates why programs like AMMACHI Labs’ Women Empowerment project are so important. This project successfully trained more than 3,000 women with vocational and life skills in less than 18 months.

The chief guests of the celebration, who graced the dias along with Amma, were Her Excellency the Governor of Kerala Smt. Sheila Dikshit; the Head of the United Nations in India, Ms. Lise Grande; and renowned film actor Kunchacko Boban.
 

 
Ms. Grande praised the AMMACHI Labs’ Women Empowerment project, saying, “[The United Nations] scours the world looking for the best projects, the most innovative projects, the projects which will have the highest impact. The one we’ve chosen for India is this project, and we chose it because AMMACHI Labs is the most creative way of empowering women. Of all of the projects which the UN funds around the world, this is the one dearest to our heart. It’s the one were most proud of. And it’s the one that we intend to take to the rest of the world so that they can learn from what you have achieved.”

Over a span of 18 months, 3,136 women were trained via 28 of Ammachi Labs’ Women Empowerment Centers across Kerala and Tamil Nadu, both permanent and mobile. In the process, they set up 30 Self Help Groups, seven small businesses, and earned a collective income of more than one million rupees [Rs. 10 lakhs] within 3 months of completing the course. Courses included plumbing, fabric-painting and jewelry-making. Furthermore, the graduates also led more than 70 community awareness and action campaigns, ranging from alcohol abuse to environmental protection.

“Empowerment to us is more than mere economic success. The goal is to equip women with an enhanced ability to participate in the democratic process and increased capacity to make decisions at the individual, family and community levels,” said Director of AMMACHI Labs, Professor Bhavani. “Economic and socio-economic empowerment of women were achieved simultaneously through the delivery of AMMACHI Labs’ cVET and LEE program, both tailored to the participant’s specific needs.”

Governor Dikshit praised Amma as both a humanitarian and a spiritual leader. “Amma, in the spirit with which she works—with love and compassion and an ever-smiling face—gives us all the courage to stand up and live by the ideals that she has taught us. … My congratulations and grateful thanks to her for having given confidence and equality to our women.”

Both UN Representative Grande and Governor Dikshit, together with Amma, then awarded prizes to 23 women who’s AMMACHI Labs’ Self-Help Groups have excelled since their training.

Award-winning actor Kunchacko Boban offered his support of the project and said, “Women Empowerment … is something the Mata Amritanandamayi Math understands, not just in words, but in deeds.”

The program concluded with a short talk by Amma. “Today is a day of joy and satisfaction,” Amma said. “Women face many difficulties and challenges in daily life. It is good if we can help inspire them. The difficulties that the common woman faces in her family and social life are not small. There are economic problems, family problems, safety problems… For women in such circumstances to be able to find a profession and thereby stand on their own two feet comes as a great source of relief for them. That said, even then, problems persist—problems at home, problems with their children, problems at work… When these combine, it can be a tremendous weight to bear. When such women are provided with self-confidence, training and wise-counseling, their lives develop new meaning. In reality, the key to woman’s liberty lies in her own hands. In order to realize this, women need determination, forbearance and constant effort. On our part, we need to provide them with a little encouragement and guidance. If provided with the right opportunities, any woman can become a role-model for society.”

Amma then gave darshan to all the women and to their families. These ladies had put up stalls in the ashram to showcase their achievements. The stalls contained artwork, jewelry, painted fabrics, bags, pillows and other products they had produced. But when visiting the stalls, nothing shined brighter than the confident smiles on the faces of the Women Empowerment graduates.

– Kannadi

Amrita SeRVe centre launched in Wayanad

Amrita SeRVe was inaugurated on January 13th, 2014, at Valaramkunnu Tribal colony in Wayanad district of Kerala. Amrita SeRVe, will implement a comprehensive series of welfare projects intended to improve the infrastructure, education and basic facilities in communities enabling them to become self-reliant role-model villages.

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Under the auspices of the project, the General Secretary of MAM Swami Poornamritananda Puri, launched Amrita RITE, a tablet enhanced literacy program and free tuition center. The project co-ordinator from CREATE introduced the tablet aided literacy applications to the tribal community. Children and adults wholeheartedly participated and were excited to have a hands-on opportunity with the interactive user interface.

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Swami Poornamritananda launching the program in a tribal colony

Amrita Live-in-Labs would help awaken compassion in the youth

Amrita University launched a pioneering experiential learning programme  – ‘Amrita Live-in-Labs’ – that encourages the youth to live and experience the problems in the country’s villages.

The scheme envisages students of Amrita as well as international students from some of the best universities of the world to live in Indian villages for six months to understand the rural population’s problems in areas that include health, hygiene, energy, water, waste and environment. It also aims to define projects that seek to address the problems, devise solutions, implement, test and eventually demonstrate innovative solutions.

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The idea behind the Amrita Live-in-Labs came from the address Amma gave at the 150th birthday celebrations of Swami Vivekananda at Delhi in Jan 2013. In her inaugural address Amma had suggested a way to ensure that at least one child from every family served in rural areas for one year after their graduation. She also recommended government funds for such a programme, saying the initiative would help awaken compassion in the youth besides uplift the poor and ensure a holistic growth of the nation.

As part of the Amrita Live-in-Labs programme, Amrita University signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with University of California (UC), San Diego, to enhance research and student exchanges. The signatories included UC Executive Vice Chancellor Dr Suresh Subramani and Amrita University Vice Chancellor Dr P Venkat Rangan.

Others present at the function included Michelle L. Hermas, Director, International Affairs UC; Dr. Maneesha V. Ramesh, Director, Amrita Center for International Programs, its Co-Director Dr. Krishnashree Achuthan, Mr. P. Manoj, Program Manager, Amrita Center for International Programs.

The MoU will also facilitate exchanges of faculty, undergraduate students, graduate students and postdoctoral scholars, joint research projects and publications, virtual labs, exchanges of publications, materials, and information; and special short-term programs.

Amrita Live-in-Labs was inaugurated during Amritavarsham60, Amma’s 60th birthday celebrations.