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Public Safety for All (PSA): For People with Disabilities and Elderly

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tbculture 04 May 2022

On 4th September, Society of Nepalese Architects organized a webinar on “Public Safty For All (PSFA) For People with Disabilities and Elderly”, under the SONA sub-committee on architecture education. Er. Anantha R. Baidya was the speaker for the session. Er. Ananta Ram Baidya is based in California and is a licensed Civil Engineer. He earned his bachelor’s degree from IIT Kharagpur, India and master’s degree from University of Hawaii, and Grantee of the East-West centre, Honolulu, USA. He has private and public sector experiences in design, construction, engineering and regulations in Hawaii, Las Vegas (Nevada) and San Deigo. He has spearheaded many effective and impactful programs to share knowledge and experiences. He served as a Fullbright specialist in Kathmandu in 2019 and conducted a training focused on “Public Safety for All, Earthquake Safety Engineering.

The session started with a welcome note by Ar. Sunita Subedi, Vice President of 14th executive committee of SONA. During the presentation Er. Baidya highlighted how public safety remains misunderstood, misconceived, misinterpreted and ignored in Nepal’s Planning, education and project implementation efforts. The presentation was an overview of what is public safety and its status in Nepal. He also proposed a continuing education program if there is enough interest amongst the safety stakeholders in the areas of administration and ethical issues, code based non-structural (architectural) issues, earthquake engineering in modern and traditional infrastructure and disable friendly infrastructure. He also stressed that a more comprehensive understanding of PFSA based on Nepal’s unique issues generated by its circumstances will impact the development and improvement of codes, educational systems and practices of design and construction of infrastructures and ensure structural safety.

The presentation was followed by a brief question and answer session after which Ar. Pradeep Adhikari, chairperson of SONA sub-committee on architecture education gave his view regarding the presentation. The session ended with the comment and conclusory remarks by Ar. Rajesh Thapa, President of SONA. The webinar was moderated by Nischal Parajuli, an architecture student from Kathmandu Engineering College.

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