imagiLOGUES – Day 2

Note: I wrote this on my earlier blog hosted as https://pradx.wordpress.com. I recovered the text from the WayBack Machine. This post appeared on October 1, 2008 as per the permalink. I’m trying to collect here again all my old writings spread on various blogs.

It’s been a long day. I was walking around in the market place when I saw the amazing innovation that this country could produce. Small motorized water boats that run around in a bowl of water, many pocketed transparent purses, innovative ways of arranging fruits and vegetables. And still, people believe that we are not progressing.

I talked to a Rajesh Dora who runs a school for blind children. He told me about how people come there, look at the boys and girls studying there with pity, talk to them about their suffering and they go away happy that they have done their part. I tell him that I can’t promise more than that, myself. For some reason he remains quiet. The Government supports the venture generously and he gets enough donations to run the school properly. I get his email address and offer him the link to my blog.

He makes a request asking if I could guide the kids around the space museum. I oblige. I spend about 3 hours there looking through the books that they used to feel and talking to them about what they want to be.

Blind children in Helix are supported by the Government since three hundred years. It’s one of the rear gifts of the Dora dynasty who had a vast wealth which they invested in social causes through a series of foundations and committees. Even our national space programme is funded partly by one such foundation.

The Foundation does great work to publish books on space science for students interested in becoming a part of the space organisation. There is even a plan that the Sohrab Foundation has proposed to send a blind man in a space mission. Last I knew they were talking about it with the Human Space Complex.

After this, I go into the outskirts of Sohrab on a municipal bus. They’re using a positioning system on board to trace their route and enabling passengers to recognise their stops. There is even a voice system on board to tell the stop in the local language and English.

After a twenty minute ride, I get to the Horsborg Centre for Development Studies. I am scheduled to meet young Anjali Dora. She’s Rajesh’s wife and is heading the centre here which also comes under the Dora Foundation. The books that I saw in Rajesh’s office are from here. The centre is unique in that it has undertaken the project of voicing over and making visuals of the several historic documents. I’m here to review how our long distance education module is working. We take a hot cup of coffee and some buiscuits in her office.

She’s the one who gave me the idea of this road trip. We met before through this blog and I offered her the chance of setting up a distance education institute on campus through the Centre I work in to enable her to transmit her videos to schools which require special courses without local expertise being available. She jumped at the idea and after our first meeting talked about a road trip she had taken along with Rajesh through all the Dora foundation centres. I’m not doing the same. Although, these two stops have been Dora Foundation centres.

I reviewed the progress of the module, sent emails back to office with several requests and got back on the road. As I upload this via satellite link, I’m travelling north to Louisville, my second stop.

(IMAGILOGUES – these are imaginary travelogues. People, places, mentioned are all imaginary. IF you happen to be from the same place or have the same name, let me assure that I didn’t mean to use it and that it was purely co-incidental.) 

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