India celebrates IYL 2015 and the golden age of Islamic civilization

The IYL 2015 National Node in India reports on several events that have been organized in India during summer 2015 to celebrate the International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies 2015 (IYL 2015) and the golden age of Islamic civilization.

Science Fiesta “The Myriad Manifestations of Light” organized by Cambridge School, Greater Noida, India


On invitation of Ms Bina Varma, Principal, Cambridge School, Greater Noida, U.P., India, Dr. Zahid H. Khan, National Focal Point for India for IYL 2015 and member of Ibn al Haytham International Working Group, inaugurated the Science Fiesta “The Myriad Manifestations of Light” organized by the children of the school on 27 July 2015 as part of the IYL 2015 Celebrations. Nandini Bansal – a child of school delivered a talk on IYL 2015, mentioning about various milestones in the history of light. Addressing the students, teachers and members of the school management, Dr. Khan talked about the significance of the International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies 2015, which is a great source of inspiration for promoting science among the young people, especially the school children. He also highlighted the pioneering contributions of Ibn al-Haytham to optics, which formed the basis for further advancements in the field, benefitting the mankind the world over. Dr. Khan appreciated the initiative taken by the school to organizing such an important event, in which the school children of the Grades VI to VIII and IX to XII developed and exhibited interesting models on the theme “Playing with Light”. The event also included Inter-School Quiz Competition and Article Writing by the children.

For more information contact Prof. Zahid H. Khan (

National Seminar on “Solid State Lighting”, organized by Al-Falah University, Faridabad, India


To create awareness among students on the importance of light and light-based technologies, The Al-Falah University, Faridabad, India, organized a National Seminar on “Solid State Lighting” on 6 August 2015 as part of the IYL 2015 Celebrations. In the Inaugural Programme, Dr. Anil Kumar, Vice-Chancellor, delivered the welcome address, followed by Introductory Remarks by Professor Z.H. Zaidi, Advisor, AFU. Dr. Krishan Lal, President, Association of Academics and Societies of Sciences, Asia delivered the Inaugural address. He discussed about the initiatives and objectives of the United Nations and the action of the UNESCO in organizing IYL 2015. Dr. Mitrasen Bhikajee, Head of Natural Sciences Sector, UNESCO Cluster Office for India, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal and Sri Lanka, spoke about the significance of the IYL 2015 and keen interest taken by various institutions in India who are organizing more than 100 events. Dr. Zahid H. Khan, National Focal Point for India for IYL 2015 and IWG member discussed about the initiatives taken by him in encouraging universities, schools and other organizations in India to actively participate in IYL 2015 celebrations and congratulated the Al-Falah University to take the lead in responding to his call and to Dr. Shagufta Husain, Convener, for her tireless efforts in organizing the seminar. Dr. Khan also highlighted the pioneering work done by the Arab scientist, Ibn al-Haytham on optics, that laid the foundation for further scientific work in the field, which later inspired the scientists of the European renaissance to making great strides in science and technological advancements in optics.

In the Technical Session of the Seminar, there were four invited talks; Prof. R.M. Mehra talked about “Solid State White Lighting”, Prof. Kehar Singh on “Laser Speckles: Fundamental Properties and Some Applications”, Prof. Mohammad Zulfequar on “Effect of Lasers on Amorphous Semiconductors”, and Dr. Zahid H. Khan on “Optics in The Islamic Golden Age of Science”, in which he particularly discussed about the research works of Ibn al-Haytham on properties of light, optical phenomena, and the theory of vision, which gave a new direction to the understanding as to how we see objects.

For more information contact Prof. Zahid H. Khan/ Dr. Shagufta (

Poster Launch of shOObh Photography Contest-2015, Theme-LiGHT


LiGHT is the shOObh theme of the year 2015. The shOObh Photography Contest and shOObh Arts Competition-2015 {Season-6}: Theme-LiGHT, are in the official calendar of events of UNESCO IYL 2015.

The poster launch of shOObh Photography Contest-2015:Theme-LiGHT was organized by shOObh Group Welfare Society, which is a non-profit community based organization working on different social issues. The lecture on past, present and future of Light by Prof. Zahid H. Khan was well taken by young photographers, learners and media. Rashida Hussain (IAAS) & Educationist and Ashok Pandey lightened the audience with Light, aura and spiritual awakening. Renowned Dancer, Jyoti Srivastava, Artists Udayshankar and Amrit, and Photographer Rohit Dhingra shared light as a medium in art. Sandeep Marwah shared use of light in cinema, his experience and life events. The event ended with group discussion and Q & A session by renowned people from the field of art and education.

Guests: Prof. Zahid Husain Khan, National Focal Point (India) UNESCO-IYL2015, Mrs. Rashida Husain (IRS), Former Director General, NACEN, Padmashree, Dr. S S Sashi, A K Pandey, Principal, Ahlcon International School, Delhi, Rohit Dhingra (Photographer), Dr. Amrit Kapoor(Artist), UdayShankar (Cartoonist), Jyoti Srivastava (Odissi classical dance), Dr. K D Gupta, Prof. Arun Anand
Sandeep Marwah,  CMD-AAFT & Bharat Gauba (shOObh Group).

 For more information contact Bharat Gauba (

Launch of “iQuiz 2015” – a national level quiz contest on Science during the Golden Age (7th to 16th Century C.E.)


A press conference was organized jointly by MESCO, ILM Foundation and MS Education Academy at Hyderabad, India on 26 August 2015 in which the national level quiz contest “iQuiz 2015” was launched. Over 15 media representatives, print & electronic, were present to cover the event. The conference was opened by Lateef Atear, Founder of ILM foundation & organizing secretary for iQuiz 2015. Mr. Lateef gave a brief highlight of the quiz competition in which school children of VIII to X standard from over 500+ schools across India, are expected to participate. The iQuiz will give awards and cash prizes of Indian Rupees one million to winners. This was followed by an address by Dr. Zahid H. Khan, National Focal Point for India for IYL 2015 and member of the International Working Group on Ibn al-Haytham, who flew from Delhi to Hyderabad to specially take part in the inaugural event. Dr. Khan shared the purpose behind the 2015 International Year of Light celebrations and also the pioneering contributions of Ibn al-Haytham to the field of optics. Dr. Fakhruddin Mohammed from MESCO, who is also the organizing committee chairman for iQuiz 2015, shared that the quiz contest is an effort to encourage the scientific temperament among the youth and requested the media to spread the news about this event so as to garner maximum participation from school children. Mr. Moazzam Husain and Mr. Misbah Syed from MS Education Academy, which is a co-organizer of iQuiz 2015, also participated in the event.

For more information contact Lateef Ateer (

About IYL 2015

The International Year of Light and Light-Based Technologies (IYL 2015) is a global initiative adopted by the United Nations (A/RES/68/221) to raise awareness of how optical technologies promote sustainable development and provide solutions to worldwide challenges in energy, education, agriculture, communications and health.  With UNESCO as lead agency, IYL 2015 programs will promote improved public and political understanding of the central role of light in the modern world while also celebrating noteworthy anniversaries in 2015—from the first studies of optics 1,000 years ago to discoveries in optical communications that power the Internet today.  The IYL Global Secretariat is located at the Abdus Salam International Centre of Theoretical Physics (ICTP).

The Founding Partners of IYL 2015 are the American Institute of Physics (AIP), the American Physical Society (APS), the Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft (DPG), the European Physical Society (EPS), the Abdus Salam International Centre of Theoretical Physics (ICTP), the IEEE Photonics Society (IPS), the Institute of Physics (IOP), Light: Science and Applications, the International Network, 1001 Inventions, The Optical Society (OSA) and the International Society for Optics and Photonics (SPIE). 

Patron Sponsors include Bosca, the International Association of Lighting Designers (IALD), Royal Philips Lighting, Thorlabs and UL.


Zahid H. Khan
IYL 2015 National Contact for India

Azzedine Boudrioua
Steering Committee Chair
Coordinator of the WG Ibn Al Haytham

John Dudley
Steering Committee Chair
International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies 2015

Joe Niemela
Global Coordinator (IYL Secretariat)
International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies 2015