BEL sets up Solar-Power Classrooms in 122 Government Schools in Karnataka

State-run Bharat Electronics Ltd (BEL) has set up solar-powered smart classrooms in 122 government schools across the backward Yadgir district in north Karnataka, an official has confirmed.

“About 13,000 children studying in 122 government schools will benefit from smart classrooms, powered by solar power and equipped with hi-tech facilities,” the city-based defence behemoth’s official KS Ashok told IANS.

Costing a total of Rs 3.8 crore, the smart classrooms offer visually attractive content to help students assimilate the information effectively. It also enables teachers to explain difficult concepts, thereby improve teaching and enhancing the academic performance.

“The smart-class facilities include a 50-inch LED television, central processing unit (CPU) with accessories, green board and LED lights charged with solar batteries,” said Ashok. The electronic equipment are stored in a cabinet after the classes end.

“The digital content covers English, Mathematics, Science and Social Science subjects for students of 8-10 classes as per the state syllabus,” Ashok added.

The company is also installing hand-wash facilities costing Rs 1.02 crore in 100 state-run primary schools across the district to protect children and staff from coronavirus and maintain hygiene. The novel initiative has been taken up in the state’s backward region under the flagship programme to transform aspirational districts launched by the central government in 2018.

The Yadgir district is about 560 km north of Bengaluru in the southern state. And being located in the Deccan plateau across the tropical region, the schools have assured sunlight for nine months in a year to charge photovoltaic cells of the solar panels to power the electronic equipment. District incharge Minister Prabhu Chauhan lauded the BEL for its initiative to benefit thousands of school children in towns and villages across the district.

In September 2019, we had reported that the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), a New Delhi-based research and advocacy body, has launched a special initiative called Solar in Schools in Shimla in partnership with the Himachal Pradesh Council for Science, Technology and Environment (HIMCOSTE). The initiative was launched at a workshop to sensitise teachers about the use of renewable energy.

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