Washington: An Indian American has won the prestigious 'Champion of Digital Literacy Inspiration Award' for his contributions to the spread of IT education and bridging the digital divide across the world over the past two decades.
Dr Appu Kuttan, founder and chairman of a Washington DC-based non-profit organisation that deals with digital education, was chosen from among 13 champions of digital literacy award recipients from several countries, including the US, Japan, China and Greece.
Kuttan's CyberLearning is said to have trained over a million disadvantaged students and adults in digital literacy and IT skills since its founding in 1994.
Nominations were received from around the world and recipients were selected based on the measurable scope and social impact of their efforts, he said. Kuttan's contribution to digital and IT education spans 20 years from advising the late prime minister Rajiv Gandhi on making India an IT power to currently helping Mauritius's transformation into an IT-focused nation by providing digital education to 400,000 Mauritians.
Sound wave saviours
Ahmedabad: Flood-ravaged Surat city saw an unlikely saviour in radio ham operators. They relayed almost 170 distress messages from marooned people to the district officials. As power was cut off to the city to prevent short-circuits, the Gujarat Institute of Amateur Radio — a group of nearly 150 effective HAM operators in the state — plunged into action. They quickly shifted their mobile van to Udhna, near Surat. Most of the messages were of people stranded precariously on roof-tops or on elevated structures facing a quick rise in the water level.