Indian Students Excel At International Biology Olympiad 2021
Mumbai, July 26 (TNA) All four students from India secured medals at the 32nd International Biology Olympiad (IBO), held from 18th to 23rd July, bagging three silver medals and one bronze medal. Due to the pandemic the Olympiad, hosted by Portugal, was held as an online event this year, named “IBO Challenge II”, an official of the Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education (HBCSE), a national centre of the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research said on Monday.
304 students from 76 countries participated virtually in the competition. National Coordinator for Science Olympiads, HBCSE, Prof Anwesh Mazumdar said that “Due to the unprecedented pandemic situation the students took the exams from their respective homes under thorough continuous video monitoring by both IBO organisers and HBCSE."
He added that the selection of the team was based on a national examination held in February, 2021. The students were trained only via online sessions conducted by HBCSE. The selection and training processes had to be curtailed and modified heavily this year to avoid risk of infection to students. We are happy that the students did very well even under these trying circumstances to maintain India’s record of an excellent performance at the Olympiads.
Anshul Siwach, Dhiren Bharadwaj and Naman Singh won silver medals while Swaraj Nandi won the bronze. The IBO Challenge II consisted of two computer-based exams: one theoretical-practical and one theoretical exam, each for three hours.
The exam had 8 parts, each of which focused on one halt of Magellan in different parts of the world. It consisted of questions covering areas such as plant biology, zoology, ecology and biotechnology. The theory exam had challenging questions encompassing all areas of biology including contemporary issues such as global warming and the COVID-19 pandemic.
Four Jury Members from India who participated in the international jury discussions included Prof. Madan Mohan Chaturvedi (Delhi University), Prof. Rekha Vartak (HBCSE, Mumbai), Dr Ram Kumar Mishra (IISER Bhopal) and Dr Sasikumar Menon (TDM Laboratories, Mumbai).
Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education (HBCSE) is the nodal centre in the country for Olympiads in Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Astronomy and Astrophysics and Junior Science. The centre is responsible for the selection and training of the teams representing India at the International Olympiads.
The Olympiad programme is supported by the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE), Department of Science and Technology (DST), Department of Space (DoS), and the Ministry of Education (MoE) of the Government of India.