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Virtual classrooms for Mumbai children
The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority and CISCO will launch 'virtual classrooms’ for children in rural areas where access to good schools may be a concern. Healthcare services will also be provided via virtual channels.

 

Mumbai: Eight hundred students in 10 different classrooms spread across the entire Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR), being taught by a single teacher at the same time. Sounds ridiculous? This could very well be reality if the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) and international IT major Cisco finally decide to work together. MMRDA officials have asked the company to come up with more such ideas.

MMRDA chief Ratnakar Gaikwad and a team of state government officials recently visited a World Expo on Infrastructure in Shanghai. Speaking about his achievements at the expo on Tuesday, Gaikwad said that top officials from Cisco gave a demonstration about creating smart cities.

“The company has created an entire ‘smart city’ connected by the Internet some hours from Seoul in South Korea. The MMR also has many villages which fall under tribal areas and are often cut off from the buzz and development of the rest of the region. Cisco will primarily be offering their services for the development of such villages,” said Gaikwad.

The services will include two sectors prominently - health and education. “Virtual classrooms will provide connectivity to schools that do not have teachers and where students are therefore deprived of good quality education. Healthcare services for specialised diseases will be provided to faraway areas so that doctors can guide the primary health workers,” added Gaikwad.

He also said that such virtual connectivity will be very effective for the safety and security of different MMRDA projects. “The soon to be commenced monorail and metro projects will be facing a lot of safety and security issues. The Mumbai police will be under immense pressure for securing these projects. Cisco has hinted at providing virtual connectivity that will play a pivotal role in securing the projects,” informed Gaikwad.

The company will have a series of discussions with MMRDA officials in the near future, and then a pilot project will be conceived in one of the far-off villages of the metropolitan region. “The initiative can be considered a part of the company’s corporate social responsibility. The expenses for the project will be borne by Pune-based Science and Technology Park,” concluded Gaikwad.

 

Source: Daily News and Analysis