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Manipur earmarks Rs 155 lakh for one laptop per child
Correspondent IMPHAL, OCT 1:
Published on 2 Oct. 2009 12:15 AM IST
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One Laptop per Child (OLPC), a global project aimed at children’s education, will add Manipur on its map soon. The Manipur state government has earmarked Rs 155 lakhs to get these laptops designed for teaching and learning and students in state. The scheme of one laptop per child will be implemented in some government run schools from the next session as first phase. The amount has been earmarked out of Rs 5951 lakh allocated for the school education in the recently approved sectoral and sub-sectoral allocation of the plan size for the annual plan 2009-10. SPF government cabinet under the chair of the chief minister, O Ibobi approved the sectoral and sub-sectoral allocation in its sitting on September 9 last. The OLPC project was introduced in India in 2007, when students of Khairat village near Karjat received OLPC-designed XO laptops. Along with the hardware, the laptops have its own operating system Sugar developed on Python language. The scheme was implemented by OLPC Inc, a non-profit organisation funded by multinational companies. The initiative is basically for effective education, teaching and self-learning by students. The financer of the project has to bear the cost of laptops only. Other expenses like software designing, upgradation and maintenance will be handled by the OLPC free of cost. State education minister, L Jayentakumar has said that government taken up steps to procured 1000 laptops for the implementation of first phase of the project. The laptops cost the Indian government around Rs 11,000 a unit, which is equivalent to less than £140. With features designed specifically to meet the needs of Indian school children, it is hoped the laptops will be a huge success. These laptops draw just one watt of power, have screens that are fully visible in direct sunlight, are deemed virtually ‘unbreakable’ and are waterproof to ensure longevity. The OLPC laptops have been tailored in such a way that course content and certain text books can be made available in local languages, so they should prove invaluable to the Indian school children, official claimed. In the sectoral allocation, Rs 257 lakh for installation of fire extinguishers in government schools was also earmarked. The fire extinguishers are to be installed as per directive of the Supreme Court. Other earmarked amount include Rs 2059.35 lakh as current state matching share for the centrally sponsored scheme which includes Rs 698 lakhs for SSA, Rs 1317.80 lakhs for MDM (Mid-Day-Meal) and Rs 43.55 lakh for CIT.

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