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NAGPUR NEWS : International Travelling Exhibition “Vaccines Injecting Hope” inaugurated at Raman Science Centre & Planetarium, Nagpur written by TLN Team

NAGPUR NEWS : Today, an international travelling exhibition “Vaccines Injecting Hope” was inaugurated by Dr. Raj Gajbhiye, Dean, Government Medical College and Hospital, Nagpur, in the august presence of Dr. Atul Vaidya, Director, CSIR–National Environmental Engineering Research Institute, Nagpur, Shri. A. D. Choudhury, Director General, National Council of Science Museums (NCSM) and Shri Samarendra Kumar, Deputy Director General, NCSM.

The Covid-19 pandemic struck the unsuspecting World with terrible ferocity and swiftness in 2020 and claimed huge casualties. But unlike such earlier outbreaks, the World was prepared to quickly devise a defence to this new virulent disease. Where vaccines took decades to be formulated, in this case, scientists of the World could, using modern techniques hitherto unknown and unused, devised several versions of an effective vaccine in less than a year of its appearance. The virus stood overpowered if not defeated. This exhibition curated by NCSM and the Science Museum Group of UK, tells us the story of the creation of a modern-day vaccine and its many facets, with its human side.  

The exhibition has sections on ‘The Arrival of New Virus’, ‘Designing a New Vaccine’, ‘Trials, Results and Approvals’, ‘Scaling Up and Mass Production’, ‘Vaccine Rollout’, ‘Living with COVID’ and tellsthe story of the global effort to find new ways to develop vaccines at pandemic speed and look at vaccinations more broadly with a historical and contemporary view. The exhibition set out the scientific principles underlying a vaccine’s creation and efficacy while capturing the behind-the-scenes work that accompanies their rapid development, production, transport, and delivery. The exhibition showcases ‘Through The Lens’, an artwork commissioned by British Council and created through collaboration between Indian sculptor based in Delhi, Sushank Kumar, and a playwright in London, Nigel Townsend. The artwork seeks to explore our relationship with Vaccination historically and in the light of the recent Covid-19 pandemic.

The exhibition has been developed by the National Council of Science Museums (NCSM) in collaboration with Science Museum, London and with support from Wellcome, UK, ICMR, India, NIV, Pune, Serum Institute of India, CSIR, AIIMS, NIBMG, Kalyani and various otherresearch and scientific organisation. 

Shri Arijit Dutta Choudhury, Director General of the National Council of Science Museums (NCSM), India said, “After the grand success of the exhibition ‘Superbugs: The End of Antibiotics?’ this is another project where we have collaborated with the SMG group, London for raising awareness among masses about the importance of vaccines in our lives. Due to Corona pandemic, it will be very much relevant in India. This time we have added one Mobile Science Exhibition (MSE)Bus to travel to the nearby areas of each location. The MSE Bus will mainly communicate the messages of the exhibition in rural areas. At the same time, I hope, the project will further strengthen the bond between the two leading Science Museums network in India & UK.”  

Helen Jones, Director of Global Engagement and Strategy, Science Museum Group, London said- “The UK version of the exhibition has a lot of the elements from India because this project was a true collaboration co-created from the start with partners in India, China and the UK and, of course, India is a vital part of that story, with the Serum Institute of India rising to the enormous challenge of developing and producing at pace and at scale vaccines for the world, that features strongly in our version of the show. It’s been a privilege and a pleasure to work once again with the National Council of Science Museums. Thanks to everyone there for all that we’ve learned from you and all the fun that we’ve had in creating this fascinating and valuable exhibition. Many congratulations on the opening of the exhibition at Raman Science Centre in Nagpur.” 

“The new exhibition with some local-specific content showcases the efforts made by India during the COVID-19 pandemic period. It also highlights the global issues through a series of programme & events, digital and learning resources etc. for enhanced public engagement and understanding of the importance of the vaccines in saving human lives” – said Shri S. Kumar, Deputy Director General, NCSM and Head & Coordinator of the project in India. 

Shri Arnab Chatterjee, Project Co-ordinator, Raman Science Centre & Planetarium, Nagpur said- “The exhibition will be on display at RamanScience Centre, Nagpur from August 5, 2023 till December 31, 2023 and will be open to the public from 9.30 am to 6.00 pm daily. We have planned various educational programs and interactive activities during the period to educate and engage the masses and I invite the people of Nagpur and Vidarbha to visit the exhibition and participate in these activities. I hope the exhibition will definitely increase their understanding of the importance of vaccines in saving lives.”

Later on, the exhibition will be on display at Nehru Science Centre, Mumbai (February 10, 2024-July 28, 2024), Visvesvaraya Industrial and Technological Museum, Bengaluru (September 7, 2024-February 28, 2025) and Science City, Kolkata (April 12, 2025-September 30, 2025).

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