Goan prodigy helps senior citizens to know their rights

At just 10 years old, Atharv has made waves in the tech world with his creation Teko' and other innovative apps, alongside excelling in academics and winning numerous accolades

Goan prodigy helps senior citizens to know their rights

A whizz-kid, Atharv Nadkarni,is just10. A student of Vidya Vikas Academy, Margao Atharv has been into codingsince age four, and now has entirely coded, designed and conceptualised amobile App for senior citizens and named it ‘Teko’ (meaning ‘support’ inKonkani). The App would help senior citizens in understanding the laws meantfor them, their legal rights and where they can approach for help. The App hasmultiple other features too.

“Atharv had plans to develop amobile app for a long time but did not know what kind of App he should work on.A family visit to Sanjivan Aarogya Dham at Bandoda, a home away from home forsenior citizens, inspired him to make an App for senior citizens as mostelderly people are not aware of their legal rights and laws that benefit them,”stated Atharv’s mother Dr Shruti Nadkarni, HoD of Law at VVM's G R Kare Collegeof Law in Margao, who provided all the necessary legal information for the App.

“Atharv began working on theApp in March this year and completed it in a month, in April. We are launchingit at ‘Sanjivan’ on April 24 in the presence of Dr Ashatai Sawardekar, thefounder of Sanjivan, and a senior citizen,” stated Mayur Nadkarni, Atharv’sfather, an engineer who owns M.graphix Design Studio. Mayur, an artist, musicianand painter along with wife Shruti, a BSc, LLM, MPhil (Law), PhD (Law) and asinger – are the winds beneath their super-kid’s wings. ‘Teko’ is Atharv’s giftto the society, especially the elderly, believes the Nadkarni couple.

This is not the first App thatAtharv designed. Two years ago, when he was eight, he made a Currency ConverterApp and uploaded it to the Amazon Appstore. During the pandemic, Atharv alsocreated the MIT Scratch programming tutorial video series on his YouTubechannel to teach children how to get started with the basics of coding.

“I want to do somethinginnovative for humans, like bio-printing – a method in which you can printhuman organs to be used to transplant,” expresses humble, yet confident Atharv.To know of bio-printing technology (a tool for building tissue and organsstructures in the field of tissue engineering) at his age, should take us inawe.

Born bright, Atharv’s journeyin the numerical world began at the age of 18 months, when he began identifyingnumbers and started reading. By three, he not only knew all the countries andtheir respective capitals but could spell the longest 45-letter word in anEnglish dictionary.

“We realised that our son isextraordinarily brilliant and too curious. A polymath, he had too manyquestions and even we had to do our own research to answer his queries becausewe didn’t want to give him ‘fake’ answers as that would lead to feeding wronginfo into his brain,” said Shruti.

Atharv started coding with HTMLand CSS, and solved mathematical calculations mentally when he was just four.He knew the Periodic Table with all the elements, Newton’s laws, Pythagorastheorem. At the same time he developed interest in singing and playing piano.At five, when kids of his age played with Barbie dolls, Atharv built his ownwebsite, www.atharvnadkarni.com. He could explain the Trigonometric Unit circleand solve problems or give the value of Pi to 100 decimal places from memory.

“I began learning Pythonprogramming in 2019,” recalls playful Atharv who became a content creator,started his own YouTube channel, @Athroid and made his first temperatureconverter App with voice output (Celsius-Fahrenheit-Kelvin) when he was six.“Currently I have 170+ subscribers,” boasts the class-5 student who would turn 11on April 29.

At seven, Atharv secured Rank 2at the National Wiz Spelling Bee Competition Mega Finals. Writing blogs onMaths and Science topics, on his website became his favourite past-time. Thiswonder-boy expresses deep interest in Space and Apollo Moon missions andlearning foreign languages. He learnt Portuguese as he already knew Marathi,Hindi, English and Konkani. A glimpse of his meritorious journey is seen in thenumerous medals and certificates he won from SOF Olympiads, Australian MathsCompetition, GK quizzes, elocution competitions, etc.

“This eight-year-student joinedC programming in November 2021, and completed C ++ programming language in July2022 in record time. C and C++ are taught at the second-year engineering level.With right mentoring Atharv can revolutionise the IT sector. He is an asset toour nation,” predicts Atharv’s computer trainer Mitendra Alve. In the sameyear, Atharv completed the Portuguese language course, won medals of Excellencein SOF Olympiads in all subjects and was featured in Gems of Goa program onPrime TV Goa news channel. “I love Rubik’s cube. It takes me just 20 seconds toarrange it,” smiles Atharv. A favourite of all in school, teachers fall shortof the words in praise – he never does any mischief and is ever truthful.

Mayur recalls that in 2022,nine-year Atharv made his own version of the popular New York Times Wordle gameusing Python language. He was invited as a guest newsreader on Prime TV Goachannel on Children’s Day. Part of the school choir at the Asian Saga musicalprogram at Margao, multi-talented Atharv has no stage-fright while playingkeyboard. “Atharv won the SOF Olympiads Outstanding Achievement Award forbagging medals of Excellence and Distinction in all the SOF Olympiads, viz, GK,Maths, Cyber, Science and English. He also won Certificates of Merit in Maths,Mathlathon, Achiever’s test, Grammar Quest, etc. Now he has developed a deepinterest in football, and his current favourite teams are Manchester City andFC Barcelona. And Atharv has recently expressed his desire to learn Sanskrit,”adds Mayur who is in search of a good Sanskrit teacher. “We leave no stoneunturned to quench his thirst for knowledge and learning,” endorses Shruti.

At 10, Atharv participated inthe All India School contest for environmental awareness and won third placehaving made a video to create awareness in plastic recycling. “We were invitedto Mumbai to receive the prize at Campion School. Atharv was the only kid fromGoa to have won a prize,” says the proud mother, an assistant professor of Law.

Blessed to have anintellectually rich family, which is equally active in creativity, Atharv’spaternal grandmother, Anuradha Nadkarni is a classical singer and his maternalgrandfather, Ramesh Sapre is an educationist and motivational speaker whoimparts spiritual discourses across India, and who has a YouTube channel. “Wedon’t know what the future has in store for our kid, all we can do is to tryand satisfy his curiosity and direct him towards being a good human being,”says Atharv’s grandmother, Anuradha who won the All Goa Senior Citizens Singingcompetition at 75.


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