‘’Paper 3-GS-II, Topic: Development of services relating to Health – Making brain surgeries more cost-effective

Bengaluru doctor designs device that can be used to operate both sides of brain

   What you need to know:

  • In brain surgeries, precision is everything — a shift of a few millimetres can make the difference between a successful surgery and a coma.
  • One device that improves the accuracy of neurosurgery is the stereotactic head frame, which provides a 3- dimensional coordinate system to help surgeons get the precise location of a nerve or tumour in the brain.

   One-third the price:

  • However, the device currently used is prohibitively expensive, costing between ₹75 lakh to ₹1 crore. A citybased doctor has designed a low-cost stereotactic frame which can be used to operate on both sides of the brain at the same time, unlike conventional frames currently used in hospitals.
  • The frame designed by Murali Mohan, senior neurosurgeon with BRAINS Sparsh Hospitals, is made of medical grade titanium and costs one-third the current price.
  • Engineers Sharath Bhat and Sadashiv Bhat of the Mahalasa Medical Technology, Bengaluru, developed the device. Dr. Mohan’s inspiration was the late Balasubramaniam Ramamurthi, known as the father of Indian neurosurgery.
  • During his last days, he said he had begun stereotaxy in India but had always wanted to design an Indian frame,” said Dr. Mohan. “When I told him I would try, he smiled; I was only in my second year of training then.

   Awaiting patent:

  • The second impetus was to reduce cost so that a patient in a small town in Karnataka could get a brain biopsy done without having to travel to Bengaluru.
  • The frame which is CE marked (it conforms to European standards) and is pending patent, is being used by doctors in six to seven hospitals in Bengaluru and Hyderabad for biopsies and deep brain simulations.
  • Balaji Pai, HOD, Department of Neurosurgery, Bangalore Medical College and Research Institute, who used the device, said it was superior to the existing ones in the market. “However, like all surgical tools, its success depends on the skill of the surgeon.

   Source: Hopkins Medicine

‘’Paper 4-GS-III, Topic: Development of Science & Technology – India has moved from brain drain to brain gain

1,000 NRI scientists returned in 2-3 years: Harsh Vardhan


  • Over 1,000 Indian scientists working abroad have returned to India in the last two-three years, said Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Minister for Science & Technology and Earth Sciences on Tuesday.
  • They feel that India is changing and they can fulfil their ambitions here. They are finding that opportunities in India are better. From brain drain, we now have a scenario of brain gain,” he said at a media interaction on the NDA government’s three years in power.
  • Responding to questions that these fellowship schemes had been introduced long back, he said, “That may be so, but the number of scientists returning to India is significant only now.”
  • However, he clarified that not everyone who wishes to come back is accepted. Those interested are put through an evaluation process, he said.
  • Meanwhile, the Department of Science and Technology (DST) is all set to roll out a scheme to attract scientists from abroad on a longer term basis.
  • The programme, called Visiting Advanced Joint Research (VAJRA) Faculty Scheme, will offer accomplished NRI scientists the opportunity to undertake research in India for a maximum period of three months every year, while granting them the status of adjunct faculty in an Indian institution round the year.
  • Contribution to Tejas On the subject of developing advanced technologies locally, Dr. Harsh Vardhan said that the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) had played an important role in the development of India’s Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas, which was recently inducted into the Air Force, important role in the development of India’s Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas, which was recently inducted into the Air Force.

   Source: Press Information Bureau

‘’Paper 3-GS-II, Topic:  Development processes & the role of NGOs – NGO evolves blueprint to end female genital mutilation

Dawoodi Bohra women and rights group compile report

   What is important to know:

  • A report on the practice of female genital mutilation (FGM) released on Tuesday looks at the psychological trauma and physical scars faced by victims, and the legal aspects that could be brought about to stop the practice.
  • Compiled by Speak Out on FGM, a group of Dawoodi Bohra women who are victims of khatna, as the practice is known in the community, along with human rights NGO, Lawyers Collective, the report looks at the Indian gender laws as well as international anti-FGM laws that could help as a framework when India drafts its own law.

   Banned in many nations:

  • Khatna, as practised among Dawoodi Bohras, involves cutting the part of the clitoral hood or the prepuce, of girls as young as seven years. While a large number of countries have banned the practice, India does not have a law on FGM.
  • Our report is like a blueprint on the legal aspects of khatna. When we have to make a law, this report will help in drafting the same,” said Masooma Ranalvi, convener of Speak Out On FGM, adding that the 57-page report drafted over six months takes a detailed look at the existing laws in India pertaining to gender and minors, and international laws against FGM in the U.S., U.K., Australia, France and Africa.

   Source: World News