Indian High Commission donates 200 solar lamps

Over 200 students of the College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology participated in the Global Solar Yatra in commemoration of Mahatma Gandhi’s birthday on October 2.

As part of India’s strategy to project itself as a green energy champion, around 10,000 students yesterday assembled their own solar lamps and lit them in unison for Guinness World Records.

This event was used to celebrate the Gandhian principles of self-sufficiency. This day will also be celebrated as the International Day of Non-Violence towards Environment

This one-day event was conducted on the same day in nearly 180 countries especially in the countries of South Asia, Africa, and Latin America which lack access to energy!

The aim of the event was Sensitization of over 1 million Students towards adverse effects of climate change and making them future propagators of renewable energy. Creating Global Student Solar Ambassadors!

India is now the biggest emitter of greenhouse gases after the US and China, and is among countries most vulnerable to climate change. India plans to reduce its carbon footprint by 33-35% from its 2005 levels by 2030, as part of its commitments to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change adopted by 195 countries in Paris in 2015.

Students assembling the lamp

To commemorate 150th Birth Anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi and to promote the Gandhian idea of sustainable living, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy in association with IIT Bombay, is organizing the Global Student Solar Assembly on 2nd October 2019,” a statement from the Ministry said.

The Indian High Commissioner, Shri Ravi Shankar, called on Uganda to adopt the use of solar in an effort to reduce green gas emissions. “Because Uganda has the sun all year round, adopting solar use should be easy and this makes it the ideal choice,” he said.

He said India had embarked on having building powered by solar which will reduce green gas emissions.

He thanked the college management especially the Deputy Principal Dr Venny Nakazibwe who has been at the fore front of organizing the event.

Earlier on, the Indian High Commission, conducted an online training for 20 students who would be the solar ambassadors. It is these students that helped the 200 in assembling the lamps.

Indian High Commissioner, Shri Ravi Shankar addresses the students and staff at the event

In His remarks, The Principal, Prof. Henry Alinaitwe said; “Today, we are celebrating a remarkable man, whose achievements should continue to inspire us as scientists, academicians and individuals.”

He said, Mahatma Gandhi is recognized as the Father of his great nation, India, the biggest democracy and I am honoured to address this gathering on the occasion of his 150th birth anniversary.

Mahatma Gandhi’s struggle was first and foremost for the freedom and independence of the people of India. But his message was also one of universal relevance. His voice for humanity, equality, justice and non-violence gained global recognition.

Prof. Alinaitwe noted that Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 7 calls for ensuring the access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all. However, still, more than 1 billion people lack access to electricity. While atmospheric CO2 concentration has increased substantially due to the increased use of fossil fuels owing to energy demand pressures, which has made the world already hotter by nearly 1°C.

Students light their newly assembled solar lamps

The Deputy Principal, Dr Venny Nakazibwe thanked and congratulated the 20 students (Solar Ambassadors) who underwent training on assembling the lamps. She also thanked the Indian High Commission for donating the lamps and championing the use of clean energy.

The 20 Solar Ambassadors received certificates while all the students who assembled the lamps went home with the lamp.

The Indian High Commissioner was accompanied by his second Deputy, Mr Durga Dass, who supervised the assembly of the lamps.