Mangaluru: National conference held at St Aloysius College
Mangaluru, Sep 11: The inauguration of the two-day National Conference on ‘Current Trends in Entomology and Plant-Insect Interaction’ was held on September 11 and 12 at LF Rasquinha Hall of the college. This programme was organized jointly by the Departments of Botany and Zoology of St Aloysius College (Autonomous), Mangaluru and sponsored by the STAR College Scheme of the department of Biotechnology, government of India.
Fr Dr S Ignacimuthu, SJ, an emeritus scientist, former vice-chancellor of University of Madras and Bharathiar University and former principal, Loyola College, Chennai was the chief guest and delivered the keynote address. Fr Dionysius Vaz, SJ, rector of St Aloysius Institutions, presided over the programme. Fr Dr Praveen Martis, SJ, principal was the guest of honour. Dr Hemachandra, HOD of Zoology, Dr Jyothi Miranda, organising secretary, Dr Ronald Nazareth, coordinator, STAR College Scheme and the student convener Joel Correa were on the dais.
Eminent scientists Dr Giby Kuriakose, Dr Sinu P A, Dr Shamprasad Varija Raghu, Dr Vanitha K. and Dr Mahua Ghara were the resource persons for various sessions.
Chief guest Fr Dr S Ignacimuthu, SJ, in his address said “What we have received is the gift of God, but what we are today is our gift to God”. He further said, “Insects were all over the earth before humans came into the world. Insects play an important role in agriculture, but due to urbanization, the number of insects has been drastically reduced. To promote conservation, we must preserve these nature-friendly insects by keeping our environment green.”
Fr Dionysius Vaz, in his speech, applauded the staff of Botany and Zoology Departments for organizing such a wonderful conference. He said, “Human beings are occupying more space on earth than other species. Due to the greed of human beings, whole of the biodiversity is destroyed. The insects are nature-friendly and play a vital role in agriculture. Hence, it is our duty to show empathy towards these species to preserve ecology.”
Principal, Fr Dr Praveen Martis SJ, said “We are fascinated by the beautiful insects in our environment. 64% of the earth is filled with various species of flora and fauna. The role of insects on this earth is very important as the insects help to keep the environment clean, beautiful and they also contribute in agriculture.”
During the programme, a CD on Inventory on Insects (Fauna) of the College Campus was released by the chief guest, Fr Dr S Ignacimuthu, SJ. A book of Abstracts was released by Fr Dionysius Vaz, SJ. Dr A M Narahari, the registrar, Dr Alwyn D’Sa, the controller of examinations, Dr Richard Gonsalves, Dr John D’Silva, Dr Dennis Fernandes, the directors, Harsha Paul, the dean of Biological Sciences were present for the programme.
Caldrida, III BSc compered the programme. Dr Hemachandra, welcomed the gathering and introduced the chief guest. Dr Jyothi Miranda rendered the vote of thanks.