Ocean microplastic significant risk to whales: Study
A new study released on February 5, 2018 warned about the dangers microplastics pose to marine animals like manta rays and whales. The research was led by Murdoch University, in collaboration with the Marine Megafauna Foundation in Indonesia.
The research examined how toxic chemicals found in plastics can accumulate in the species over decades to pose a risk that can lead to stunted growth, altered development and reproductive problems.
The research team also found that species tend to assemble in areas that fall under microplastic pollution hotspots which include the Gulf of Mexico, the Mediterranean Sea, the Bay of Bengal and the Coral Triangle in Southeast Asia.
New National Education Policy panel to submit report by March 31
The HRD Ministry-appointed panel tasked with drafting a new National Education Policy will submit its report by March 31, 2018.
Headed by former Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) chief K Kasturirangan, the panel was set up in June 2017.
Following the submission of the report, Union Ministry of Human Resource Development will deliberate on the report and thereafter suggestions of the committee will be presented to the Union Cabinet for its approval.
The detailed discussions on the policy have already been carried out and it is in the final stage of deliberations. The existing National Education Policy was framed in 1986 and was later revised in 1992.
Veteran theatre artist Sudha Karmarkar passes away
Veteran theatre artist, director, and pioneer of Children’s Theatre in Maharashtra, Sudha Karmarkar passed away in Mumbai on February 5, 2018 due to old age problems. She was 83.
Karmarkar was the founder of ‘Bal Rangbhumi- Little Theatre’, a Children’s theatre in Mumbai and directed various plays for children.
She not only directed the plays but also acted in the plays. She initiated the movement of Little Theatre in 1959 with 'Madhu Manjiri' the first ever children’s drama.
Many stars in Marathi film and stage industry emerged through this Little Theatre movement.
Australian cricketer Doug Bollinger retires
Australian cricketer Doug Bollinger on February 5, 2018 announced his retirement from all forms of cricket with immediate effect.
Bollinger made his Test debut for Australia in 2009 against South Africa and went on to play 12 Tests. He played a total of 39 One-Day Internationals and nine Twenty20 Internationals.
He played for New South Wales (NSW) and Australia under the captaincy of some great players including Steve Waugh, Michael Clarke and Ricky Ponting. He played his final Test in the 2010 Ashes campaign against England, while his final One-Day International was against South Africa in 2011 in Durban.
National Assessment Survey for Class 10 students launched
The Union Ministry Human Resource Development (HRD) on February 5, 2018 launched the second phase of National Assessment Survey (NAS) for examining the learning capabilities of 20 lakh Class 10 students from 45000 schools around the country.
This will be the largest assessment in the field of education done anywhere in the world.
Under the first phase, over 20 lakh students of Class 3, 5 and 8 were assessed on several learning outcomes. The assessment was conducted in 2017 and represented that quality of educational outcomes is far from equal across the country.
This time, the Ministry will be preparing a time-bound action plan for improving the quality of education, based on the NAS results.