A Report

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National Information Centre of Earthquake Engineering (NICEE) at IIT Kanpur has conducted an inter school quiz competition on Earthquake Tips, the final round of which was conducted on 26 Jan 2010 at Outreach Auditorium, Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur, Kanpur. This date also happens to be the ninth anniversary of the fateful Bhuj Earthquake which caused a major damage in 2001.

A need has been felt for long to include school children, who are the future builders of the country, in the activity of furthering the cause seismic safety towards ensuring an earthquake resistant built environment in the country, which is also the mandate of NICEE. There has been overwhelming response from the schools for registering for the quiz. The registering schools were given 50 copies of “Earthquake Tips” by Dr. CVR Murty, to be used for selecting a team of four participants from each school from Class VIII to Class XI.

The quiz had four rounds viz. Round Robin, Picture Round, Rapid Fire Round and Lucky number Round. The questions were mostly from the publication “Earthquake Tips” by Dr. CVR Murty and some questions were based on earthquakes which have occurred in India and in other countries.

In the preliminary round 10 schools from Kanpur, 7 schools each from Lucknow and Allahabad, and 6 6schools from Gorakhpur participated. The winners of the preliminary rounds viz. Karam Devi Memorial Academy, Kanpur; Sir Padampat Singhania Education Centre, Kanpur; Army School, Gorakhpur; Jagat Taran Golden Jubilee School, Allahabad and City Montessori School, Station Road, Lucknow participated in the final round held on January 26, 2010 at Outreach Auditorium, IIT Kanpur.

The winning team of the final round, viz. Jagat Taran Golden Jubilee School, Allahabad, was represented by Ms. Hemangi Das, Ms. Arunima Singh, Mr. Pradyot Srivastava and Mr. Tanoy Banerjee. The winning team scored 81 points. The team of Karam Devi Memorial Academy, Kanpur represented by Ms. Stuti Verma, Mr. Ayush Sitholay, Mr. Saurabh Singh and Mr. Gaurav Uttam came second scoring 70 points while the team of Sir Padampat Singhania Education Centre, Kanpur represented by Ms. Lovee Mehra, Mr. Vaibhav Bhasin, Mr. Siddharth Dubey and Mr. Anmol Srivastava scored 64 points to bag the third position. Gorakhpur team scored 59 points while the Lucknow team scored 58 points.

A cash prize of Rs. 1000/- was given to each of the participants of the winning team, while Rs. 750/- was given to each participant of team which came second and Rs. 500/- cash prize was given to each participant of team which came third, along with the merit certificates. Participation certificates were given to teams from Gorakhpur and Lucknow. The certificate and prizes were distributed by Dr. Durgesh C. Rai, Coordinator of NICEE who was also the Chief Guest of the function.

Dr. Rai welcomed the participants and thanked the principals and management of the schools who participated in the quiz during the preliminary rounds and the final round. He said that a small candle which has been kindled in these young minds will surely grow into a major fire and will make the community at large aware about the damages due to an earthquake and the methods which can be used to mitigate the damages. The participants were given a brief insight into the working methodology of NICEE prior to the commencement of the quiz.

Mr. SB Bajpai of KDMA appreciated the efforts of NICEE to bring up an appropriate subject the word for which needs to be spread to the community. He said that although science and technology has seen quite a bit advancement in the last fifty years, we have reached the moon, we can replace the heart, eyes and other body parts, still there is no effective means by which the time, place and intensity of an earthquake. It is therefore possible to mitigate the earthquake damages through careful construction and following the methods which are being aggressively professed by NICEE.

Dr. KK Bajpai of IIT Kanpur while expressing the vote of thanks to participants and their schools management advised the participants that they can continue to interact with NICEE in future also for any clarifications that they might need. NICEE will be very happy to interact with them and clarify any queries they might have in future. Dr. Bajpai also thanked the NICEE team consisting of Cdr Suresh Ailawadi, Retd., Ms. Anamika Dikshit, Ms. Megha Singh, Ms. Tanusri Mondal, Ms. Sandhya Sharma, Ms. Seema Kushwaha and Mr. Malikhan Singh for making the event a success and an excellent organisation of the event. The publications of NICEE were also displayed for the benefit of participants.

Mr. Ayush Sitholay of KDMA Kanpur showed a model which he had prepared to test the efficacy of buildings during an earthquake. This goes to show that the young minds are aware of the existing problem of the earthquake disaster and they will surely work towards its mitigation. The efforts of Mr. Sitholay were commended by all present.


Further, it is proposed to make this an annual event with the final round of quiz being held on 26 January every year to memorialize the devastating Bhuj Earthquake of 2001. It will be our endeavour to include more and more cities of Uttar Pradesh during the forthcoming years.