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Education drive gets new friends

- Digital Literacy Mission all set for rural innings, thanks to social outfits

Digital Literacy Mission, launched by scientists of National Metallurgical Laboratory to provide quality holistic education to poor children, has started spreading its wings beyond the perimeters of urban areas in Jharkhand.

The mission, which had started with a centre at the NML campus in Agrico and now has nine units in Jamshedpur and Bengal, is finding support from social outfits and NGOs.

P.P. Verma, trustee of Jharkhand Alternative Development Forum, has shown interest in implementing the NML model in other parts of the state. During his recent visits to the DLM centres in and around the city, Verma was delighted with the manner in which the system worked.

ďI am quite impressed with this system of grooming poor children. We would like to implement these ways to spread education in remote villages Jharkhand Alternative Development Forum works in. I am keen to learn more about this model,Ē said Verma.

Verma is not the only one convinced with the effective ways of the mission. Telco-based NGO Samaj Vikas Kendra has recently joined hands with the project and launched a centre in the locality from February 1.

As many as 40 tribal children from Ho and Oraon communities are part of the project, under which they take study lessons for six days a week. Sundays are reserved for singing, dancing and yoga.

ďThe parents of most of these children work as contract labourers and cannot attend them. Most of them are enrolled in schools, but they hardly go. Through the digital literacy mission, we are trying to groom them at the centre and teaching them yoga, dance besides regular academics,Ē said Chandana Sarkar, general secretary of Samaj Vikas Kendra who herself visits panchayat areas to promote rural education.

City-based NGO Cause for Change already teamed up with the mission in 2013.

Launched in 2012, the digital literacy mission is going from strength to strength. Besides the newly opened at Telco, Jamshedpur houses four centres at Baridih, Bhalubasa, NML campus and Gadra village. This apart, the mission has units at New Barrackpore, Salkia, Brahmapur and Kalighat in Bengal.