• THT 10 years ago: Digital books for blind people being prepared

Kathmandu, January 24, 2006

DAISY- the Digital Accessible Information System for the people with print disablities (those who are blind or have difficulty in reading) will not come up with desired output unless the actual population and status of blinds in Nepal is known. Birendra Raj Pokharel, coordinator for DAISY for Nepal Program said, “Information regarding blind persons is important to implement DAISY technology. Moreover, the government support to make the system accessible through subsidy in production, and distribution process and should prioritise the mainstream education, so that the software can be utilised.” In the DAISY system the books are recorded or stored on to CDROM and played in MP3 system or DAISY system. “We are working to open reading centres, DAISY software will be made available in the computers of school and college libraries. We are now focused on the production side of the DAISY books to meet the demand of reading centres,” he said. He said that eight people have been trained in the DAISY production. The Nepal Association of the Blind and the Nepal Association for the Welfare of the Blind have undertaken the responsibility of producing school and college level text books. “Several books can be recorded on one compact disc at the cost of Rs 100. It has high storage capacity, is low priced and easy to navigate between pages, paragraphs, chapters while listening,” said Pokharel, adding that as this would bring big change for the blinds, the concerned should give due importance to it.

 

Bandh cripples public life in Birgunj

Birgunj, January 24, 2006

Public life in Birgunj was crippled today due to a bandh called by the agitating student unions to protest against the police highhandedness during a student demonstration in Thakur Ram Campus yesterday. The agitating students also vandalised a vehicle of the Royal Nepalese Army (RNA). According to the District Police Office, students vandalised the jeep with the registration number Na 1 Ka 8098 which was parked in front of the Nepal Telecom office at Ghantaghar. The jeep belonging to the District Education Office was being used by the RNA from the past one year. The students also destroyed a temporary police post at Maisthan. No vehicles except some bicycles and rickshaws were seen on the roads of the city. Earlier in the morning, the students took out a rally from the Campus calling on all to make the bandh a success. The students also took out rallies from different places this afternoon. The locals were terrified due to the possible clash between the police and students. A large number of security forces had been deployed in the city in the morning.