RTE act needs close scrutiny in Nagaland: Minister
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Last Updated: Tuesday, August 10, 2010, 18:21
Kohima: Terming the right to education (RTE) act as the most revolutionary legislation in independent India, the state higher and technical education minister Shurhozelie today urged all stakeholders to examine closely how various provisions of the act fit into Nagaland's conditions where over 50 per cent of the task of imparting education lies with the private sector.

Speaking as the chief guest at a state-level seminar on RTE act here, he said since the historic legislation brought the private sectors under the purview of the statute with a provision to compensate them, both the government officials as well as the private education providers should examine closely how best such provisions could be implemented in the local context.

Pointing out that since the education is in the concurrent list of the constitution and the RTE act itself has given freedom to the states to implement it as per local conditions, the minister specifically made references to the punitive sections of the act, and called for detailed discussions on the matter by all the stake holders so that the legislation could be implemented meaningfully in Nagaland.

The minister also recognised the worry of the private sectors whether they have to compromise the 'standards of education' while accommodating 25 per cent of seats for students from weaker sections who can not afford, otherwise, education in such private schools. "But now the challenge is as how to deal with such questions?" Shurhozelie said.

The minister, who himself is a teacher and writer, emphasised on appointments of quality teachers and scaling up teachers training infrastructure in the state, adding the officials must dare to defy political pressures on this count.

School Education Minister Nyeiwang Konyak said RTE act posed a new challenge to the state where education sector was already grappled with the problem of bogus teachers, high rate of drop outs and poor results in government schools despite all efforts put by the government to impart quality education.

Maintaining that the public-private partnership would better suit Nagaland situation since over 50 per cent schools lie in with private organisations, the minister called for a concerted effort by all stake holders for effective implementation of RTE act in the state.


London: For the first time, scientists have regenerated spinal cord nerves by removing a 'biological brake' on their growth -- a breakthrough that raises hope for thousands of patients left paralysed by back and neck injuries.

Researchers at the Reeve-Irvine Research Centre in the US, focused on a protein that turns off the growth of nerve fibres in adults, using mice as test subjects.

By genetically deleting the enzyme, they were able to switch the ability of the nerves to regenerate back on.

The scientists are now investigating whether the technique can restore movement to mice crippled by spinal cord injuries, the Daily Mail reported.

Study leader Professor Oswald Steward, from the University of California at Irvine, said: "Until now, such robust nerve regeneration has been impossible in the spinal cord.

"Paralysis and loss of function from spinal cord injury has been considered untreatable, but our discovery points the way towards a potential therapy to induce regeneration of nerve connections following spinal cord injury in people."

Professor Steward is director of the Reeve-Irvine Research Centre, named after Christopher Reeve, the former 'Superman' star, who was paralysed from the neck down in a riding accident. It is dedicated to investigating treatments for spinal injury.

According to scientists, an injury the size of a grape can lead to complete loss of function beneath the breakage point.

Severed nerves, which control the voluntary movement, in the neck may cause paralysis of the arms and legs, and an inability to control the bladder and bowel.

"All these functions could be restored if we could find a way to regenerate the connections that were damaged," said Professor Steward.

The findings were reported in the journal Nature Neuroscience.

Bureau Report

First Published: Tuesday, August 10, 2010, 18:21

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