VIPNET, acronym for VIgyan Prasar NETwork, was added as
a new project to Vigyan Prasar in 1998 with the objective of providing
a fillip to the science clubs movement in India. This is a network to
weave all science clubs, societies, organisations which are already established,
or are going to be established, and are willing to work with Vigyan Prasar
to strengthen the popular science movement in the country with far reaching
implications for the development of society.
All State Councils and DSTs (state level), besides the
prominent NGOs, have accepted VIPNET as their official network and are
propagating it on their own with our prior approval. Organisations like
SOS Children’s Village, WWF India, NIE of Times of India, UNESCO clubs,
to name a few are actively discussing with us to start collaborative programmes.
The first issue of the monthly newsletter "VIPNET News"
appeared in December 1998. Today, VIPNET has become a very popular network,
well-known in nooks & corners of India with an extremely long list
of activities and remarkable achievements of its members.
is a VIPNET Science Club?
An active and fully functional science club working in
any part of the country without any discrimination based on caste, creed,
ideology, religion or language, can be a part of VIPNET by simply registering
with VIPNET for affiliation. In addition, there are many more science
clubs to be formed afresh with local initiatives and Vigyan Prasar's guidance,
which after meeting some basic requirements would be able to register
with VIPNET for affiliation. The new and existing clubs will maintain
their own identity and carry out programmes as per their convenience.
Only the statement saying "Affiliated to VIPNET" must be mentioned in
the club brochure or signboard or other literature they produce. No registration
or affiliation fee will be charged for enrolling with VIPNET.
Science clubs have been playing a key role in many places
due to their exemplary work and commitment of their members towards their
chosen causers. Several national and international organisations have
their science clubs across the country. Add to this the science clubs
run by state-level agencies. Even so, the total number may not cross even
five thousand-not large enough for this vast country of ours with a population
of almost one billion. VIPNET aims to establish a vast countrywide network
of science clubs.
Broadly the objectives
of VIPNET are:
1. Dissemination of information on science & technology
(S&T), which is an essential tool for development. VP has the right
technological back-up and mandate to reach out to the masses. The VIPNET
clubs are planned to be Vigyan Prasar's agents for change at the remotest
of places in India.
2. Evolution of a holistic approach towards problems through
awarness, concern, involvement, and application of the scientific methodology
for their resolution. Various short and long-term activities and programmes
are envisaged for the science clubs which are doable and relevant
3. Stimulation of the spirit of curiosity, enquiry, innovation
and creativity through activities which would supplement conventional
education and make science a very enjoyable and interesting pursuit. Participation
in the National Children's Science Congress would be a very good example.
What is the age limit for membership in VIPNET Science
As such, Vigyan Prasar would not like to discourage anyone
from joining this noble venture. But experience shows that if a science
club is comprised of children and youth only, the operational problems
are minimal. We would definitely solicit help, guidance and monitoring
from the parents, teachers, guardians, science communicators and social
workers of the locality to be involved as 'non-member associates' of the
proposed club, but leave the membership and executive functions of the
club to children and youth only. When we say children and youth, we mean
anyone in the agegroup of seven to twenty two years. The members may select
a few prominent persons as their advisers and patrons. ....
should a newly formed or existing Science Club seek affiliation to VIPNET?
One very simple, yet solid reason is the opportunity of
becoming part of a national network. Breaking all physical and mental
barriers of a small unit, a VIPNET club would become partner in an exciting
national movement. More explicitly it would:
Get a free subscription to Vigyan Prasar's monthly
newsletter "Dream 2047", and access to vast information on S&T
through Vigyan Prasar Information System (VIPRIS) and all other communication
mateirlas of Vigyan Prasar
Be able to exchange view and ideas, express opinions
and gain insight (s) nito a vast array of activities taking place
in other VIPNET clubs through their own VIPNET newsletter to be launched
simultaneously with the formation of the network.
Be able to participate in programmes including
trainings and campaigns launched by Vigyan Prasar and/or National
Council for Science Technology Communication (NCSTC), DST, or their
Be able to take on an active role in the National
Children's Science Congress (NCSC) as participant, motivator, or in
any other capacity which would lead to wider participation and deeper
penetration of this unique activity. Past child scientists of NCSC
would also be able to give expression to their talent through these
Become eligible to receive some kit, or posters,
or books or some other software items free of cost (on first-come-first-served
basis, depending on availability), and rest of the VP publications
and other materials at very attractive discount rates. The club could
also become an agency for selling VP materials (books, cassettes,
CD ROMs etc.) and make handsome profits to fund their activities.
Such a self-sustaining venture could really create strong and independent
clubs in the country.
Be able to get together with other science clubs
in a particular region to form cluster and organise programmes like
trainings, workshops, jathas, lecture-cum-demonstrations, etc. for
which VP could provide assistance in the form of resource persons,
course materials and kits, and other necessary inputs- in response
to a proposal for a specific activity.
Becoome eligible to be considered for awards and
prizes based on yearly performance and activities. Each club would
send their activity reports to VP and based on these and field visits
by experts; the clubs could earn for themselves national recognition
besides attractive prizes in cash or kind.
Be able to get international exposure and recognition
through the VP Web page on the Internet.
Get opportunities to become proud participants
in many pioneering projects in the country to be carried out on a
very large scale. For example Root & Shoot Project (tree plantation
and monitoring), Nature Camps, Ham Radio Training, Reading Club Project,
etc. that are planned to excite, enlighten and enrich the members
at the same time.
Become an active partner in the development of
that locality by reaching out to the needy in many ways: VIPNET clubs
would organise literacy projects, free coaching for the economically
and academicaly weaker students, toning up of public utilities and
services, making people aware of health and sanitation, and similar
issues where scientific methods would have to be amalgamated with
societal needs and developmental processes.
Be entitled to receive enough background material
to celebrate certain important national and international events (or
days) that would generate widespread awareness in the society. These
may be National Science Day (28 February), National Safety Day (4
March), National Immunisation Day (16 March), World Disabled Day (19
March), World Forestry Day (21 March), World Health Day (7 April),
World Earth Day (22 April), International Energy Day (3 May), World
Telecom Day (17 May), World No Tobacco Day (31 May), World Environment
Day (5 June), World Population Day (11 July), International Literacy
Day (8 September), World Habitat Day (7 Oct.), World Food Day (16
Oct.), World Aids Day (1 Dec.), National Energy Conservation Day (14
Dec.) , and the like.
A Club may observe some of these through lectures, popular
talks, children's competitions, shows, etc. at their convenience to internalise
the underlying concepts behind these celebrations.
How does one form a new science club and have it join VIPNET?.....
The initiative could come from any quarter. Some individuals
are spreading the message, while most State Councils of S&T and NCSC
coordinating agencies would be made aware of this. So when an adult, a
child or a youth feels it worthwhile, he/she can discuss the formation
of a science club with friends and people in that area. Atleast 11 members
should join together to form a club. At a later stage, if number exceeds
100, one can think of a second club in the same area.
VIPNET does not place any restrictions on the number of
clubs in a particular area. After the office bearers are elected/selected,
they are expected to draw up a list of activities they would like to undertake
with suggestions and, if necessary, help of the elders. Finally, after
being in active existence for at least 3 months, by completing the Application
Form (obtainable from the address given below), the club would seek affiliation
with VIPNET from Vigyan Prasar. It may be noted that the affiliation would
be given promptly if all particulars sought for are provided in the proper
format along with the application. It is also desirable to receive your
quarterly reports in appropriate time which will enable your club to derive
all the benefits of VIPNET.
Address for communication:......