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ISM turns 88 with safety vow

Felicitation of employees who have completed 25 years in service and a campus visit by over 500 students from 20 schools were the highlights of the 88th foundation day of ISM-Dhanbad on Monday.

The function began at the cradle’s Penman Auditorium with the lighting of the symbolic knowledge lamp and was followed by cake-cutting in the presence of a large number of teachers and students of the premier institute.

Director-general of Directorate General of Mines Safety (DGMS) Rahul Guha was the chief guest on the occasion. Also present were state disaster management minister Mannan Mallick, ISM director D.C. Panigrahi and registrar M.K. Singh.

Guha, a student of the 1977 batch, became nostalgic while addressing the gathering. He recalled his first day at ISM in 1974, the scene at Dhanbad station in those days and how they would venture out at night for a glass of milk at Ganeshji’s stall on campus.

“It was a tradition among seniors to formally acknowledge freshers as true ISMites only after Dussehra,” Guha said to a thunderous applause.

The chief guest later dwelt at length on the man-environment conflict because of the mineral industry in India.

“Though it is impossible to renew the non-renewable, it’s perfectly possible to make rationally executed mining compatible with the restoration of environment,” Guha said.

Stressing on the need for this “compatible mining” in India, Guha said: “A stage has arrived when everyone concerned has to stand together and stimulate compatibility between mining and conservation of environment.”

The DGMS director general further claimed that mining safety in the country had increased. He said the mortality rate per 1,000 persons employed in mines had shown a steady decline in recent years.

“Mining safety in India has improved since independence and the toll has plunged over the years. Accidents still happen and they are unacceptable,” Guha said, adding that strong measures needed to be taken by the industry.

He recommended including modern safety subjects in the engineering curriculum.

During the programme, 17 employees of the institute, who have completed 25 years in service, were felicitated.

The 500-odd students from Classes VI to XII got an opportunity to visit different ISM departments, laboratories and the geological museum.

Rama Mandal, an eleventh grader from Dhanbad Public School, said: “It was a lifetime experience to visit an engineering institute like ISM.”

Echoing her sentiments, classmate Pragya Priya said: “We witnessed the global positioning system in the mines surveying section. It was thrilling.”