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Dr Shashi Tharoor felicitates winners of Tata Chemicals Best Chemistry Teachers Awards 2012

Delhi: Winners of the second edition of Best Chemistry Teachers Awards (BCTA), organised by Tata Chemicals in association with the Association of Chemistry Teachers (ACT) and Confederation of Indian Industries (CII), were felicitated today by Dr Shashi Tharoor, union minister of state for higher education, and Bharat Wakhlu, resident director, Tata Sons.

With the glorious success of the awards instituted last year to commemorate the United Nations' International Year of Chemistry, BCTA's second year has been even grander. The awards received an overwhelming response from chemistry teachers from all over India. The awards were judged by an eminent jury which comprised of renowned Indian scientists, professionals, technologists and academia from across the country. The winners felicitated today in the four distinct award categories were:

1. Best Chemistry Teacher (class XI/XII and equivalent) - Dr Umesh Chandra Jain, Simpkins School (affiliated to CBSE, New Delhi)
2. Best Chemistry Teacher (bachelor's degree and equivalent) – Professor Anshu Dandia, University of Rajasthan, Jaipur, chemistry department
3. Best Chemistry Teacher (for master's degree and above) – Professor Chitta Ranjan Sinha, Jadavpur University
4. Best Chemistry Teacher for promotion of chemistry as a subject - Dr Keshav Annappa Bulbule, KLE Society's S Nijalingappa College, Rajajinagar, Bangalore

Speaking about the awards, R Mukundan, managing director, Tata Chemicals, said, "We are delighted with the overwhelming response to the BCTA this year. As you are aware, this initiative appreciates the efforts of exemplary individuals involved in teaching chemistry and its allied components at various educational levels by taking into account the experience and expertise of the teachers. These teachers are responsible for moulding young minds and shaping their future in the field of chemistry. We're very pleased that these awards have been well received amongst the education fraternity."

Professor Sinha said, "It is an honour to be a part of BCTA instituted by Tata Chemicals. As we know Chemistry is a complex science and is related to overall growth of the society, an initiative like this would encourage chemistry among the young minds."

Dr Bulbule said, "It is an honour to be awarded the BCTA for the promotion of chemistry as a subject by Tata Chemicals, which itself is a leader in its business and very much understands the value its brings to our lives. An initiative like BCTA recognises our contribution towards the development of the nation through science in general and chemistry in particular. I pledge to motivate other teachers and students in the field of chemistry."

Professor Dandia said, "I am excited and thrilled to receive this award and want to take a moment to praise Tata Chemicals, CII and ACT, not only for recognising teaching excellence of chemistry teachers, but also for their contribution in popularising chemistry. I wish to express my gratitude to both these associations for giving me the best chemistry teacher award in India."

She added, "As I look at my award, I am reminded of the many challenges I experienced during my first teaching year. For me, teaching can be defined as a passion for children, a desire for a better future, a yearning for knowledge and a commitment to community. Institution of such awards not only encourages younger chemistry teachers to do well, but also popularises chemistry education."

Dr Jain said, "I can foresee a bright future for budding chemistry teachers as well as students who would like to pursue a career in chemistry. I am pleased to receive this award from Tata Chemicals, ACT and CII, and they are indeed doing something very noble in this direction. This award is not the culmination of my efforts but it is the beginning of a fresh inning."