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EDUCATION

This Cyanide tasted great
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 25
It was a time to rock to the thumping beats of music for so many Panjab University students.

With video jockey Rashmi and disc jockey Bhanu spinning tracks on the concluding day of all-India inter-college fest — Cyanide, the audience simply went into a trance.

As the rhythmic beats echoed against the walls of the Chemical Engineering Department with the duo mixing music, the students slammed their books shut to join the cavalcade of excitement.

The greatest crowd puller was, however, Besure. Tearing excitement broke loose as students shrieked in their worst voice while displaying their flair under the floodlights.

In fact, the lush green lawn in the front of the department was converted into an impressive open air auditorium as they sang in complete discord with the rhythm of the music played live by the band.

The students could also be seen hunting for excitement during the treasure hunt.

Besides this, the students displayed their creativity in designing the newspaper contest.

They struggled hard to place the cutting on a dummy in collage style. Clay modeling contest too were held during the fest.

Even as the participants competed with each other on the stage and in the halls, Niti and Rahul were declared "made for each other".

In the Mr and Ms Cyanide, Rohit and Himani of the department were declared the winners.

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DAV College annual function
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 25
DAV College organised the 48th annual function here today to honour the achievers in different fields. More than 700 students received gold medals, silver medals, bronze medals, roll of honour and other prizes from the Union Minister of State for Finance, Mr Pawan Kumar Bansal. Mr Bansal congratulated the winners for their distinguished achievements.

Purnima Sehgal was declared the best commerce student and was awarded a running trophy besides a cash prize of Rs 8,000. She was also honoured with a gold medal and roll of honour for standing first in M.Com exams in all four semesters of the Panjab University.

Deepika Prashar was awarded a gold medal, cash prize of Rs 8000 and roll of honour for topping in the PGDMM exam of Panjab University, Anil Kumar and Rakesh Verma received silver medals, roll of honour and cash award of Rs 5,000 each for obtaining 2nd place in the university's PGDMC and BCA II, respectively.

Irina Brar was awarded as the most outstanding sportsperson of the college for the year 2005-06. She was awarded a running trophy, a gold medal, college colour and cash award of Rs 2,100 instituted by Principal S. Marriya in the memory of his mother, Gian Devi Marriya.

The most outstanding student award went to Manu Sharma. Vasu Kumar won the 'best speaker' and the 'best creative writer' award. Himshikha Bhutani was declared the best science student of the college. Most outstanding girl of the year' award went to Aarti Puri for her contribution in co-curricular activities.

While Sr. Cdt. Capt Sumesh Pothiya was awarded the college colour as well as roll of honour, Cdt Sgt Deepal Chandok and Malvinder Singh were decorated with the roll of honour for their contribution in NCC. In all 59 gold medals, 14 silver medals, 3 bronze medals and 10 roll of honour awards were given away.

Earlier, Mr Marriya presented the college report and won applause of the audience several times as he recounted the achievements of the college in every field. The college has won Sir Shadi Lal Shield for general excellence in sports in Panjab University for the 35th year in a row. The college has scored 611 points which is the highest ever scored by an institution.

Although the college does not have music as a subject in the college won 2nd place in classical music vocal at the All-India Inter-Varsity Youth Festival. In all college won 161 prizes at the national and regional level in the co-curricular activities.

The function ended with a vote of thanks from Mr Justice A.L. Bahri (retd.) vice-president, DAV College Managing Committee, New Delhi.

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Principal in reckoning for award
Tribune News Service

Mohali, March 25
"The fall of a Rose Petal", a short story Dr Harish Dhillon, Principal YPS Mohali, has been shortlisted for the Little Magazine's New Writing Award. The award has been instituted this year.

The winner will be honoured in a ceremony conducted by Girish Karnad at the Habitat Centre in New Delhi on March 27.

The award has been designed by sculptor K.S. Radhakrishnan. 

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Retired teachers discuss problems
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 25
At an annual function held here today, retired college teachers from various parts of Punjab discussed their problems as well as those faced by students. The function was organised by the Punjab Government College Retired Teachers Welfare Association at Government College in Sector 11. Mr Pawan Kumar Bansal, Union Minister of State for Finance, presided over it. As many as 200 teachers from various parts of the state attended it.

Retired teachers who attended the function included Dr Bhagat Singh, a former Vice-Chancellor of Punjabi University, Mrs K. Atma Ram, Prof Sarwan Singh, Prof B.K. Bhalla and Prof S.P. Dhawan. The association honoured Prof R.L. Singhal, Mrs G.R. Satija, Prof Nirmal Singh, Prof L.S. Malhotra, Prof Harbux Singh, Prof P.S.Gill and Prof D.R. Balli for being its seniormost members. Mr Bansal assured the association that he would help get the problems faced by retired teachers resolved. 

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COURTS

District Courts
“No order to arrest counsel”
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 25
In connection with the defence counsel of the accused in the Beant Singh assassination trial boycotting the proceedings in jail in apprehension of their arrest, the jail authorities today denied that they had any orders to arrest the counsel.

Information was given during the proceedings of the trial being heard by the Additional Sessions Judge-cum-Special CBI Judge, Mr M.M. Sharma, in Burail Jail. The trial, which is being heard on a daily basis, took place in the absence of the defence counsels.

In the application moved before the judge, the defence counsels had stated that they had apprehension that on the pretext of frisking them, they would be arrested.

At present the special court has started recording statements of the accused under section 313 of the CrPC. The statement of Balwant Singh is being recorded by the court.

Judicial remand for BKI men

The four members of the Babbar Khalsa International(BKI), who were arrested by the Chandigarh Police a few days ago, were today sent to judicial custody by a local court.

The police had claimed that 1kg of RDX, an AK 47 rifle with 15 cartridges, a .38 bore revolver with five cartridges and a 12 bore barrel gun had been seized from them. The police said all four were working for Jagtar Singh Tara, the prime suspect in the assassination of Beant Singh.

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Reflecting nuances of Agra tradition
Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 25
Subhra Guha may be the nightingale of Bengal, but the epithet doesn't quite impress her. In true tradition of a classical vocalist, she lies low, deflecting all talk that carries the undertones of eulogy.

But there comes a point in the conversation where she basks in the glory of her achievement. That's when the mention of legendary filmmaker Gautam Ghosh comes in and with it comes the reference to "Yatra", his latest film that features Guha's renditions in plenty.

Ghosh had a vast pallete of classical singers to choose from but he settled for Guha, known as she is for tonal malleability and a strong command over the nuances of Agra tradition. The Agra gharana, as connoisseurs of music know, is rich with the prowess and masculinity of Ustad Faiyaz Khan. And Guha has imbibed the elements of the tradition well, besides having mastered the art of blending feminine and masculine aspects of music.

She is particularly world renowned for her treatment of monsoon melodies in diverse genres, from classical to light classical. Her personal favourites are thumri, hori and dadra - all light forms which enchant the listener with sheer grace and simplicity of lyrics and form.

No wonder Ghosh hand picked Guha for rendering the songs of "Yatra" which explores the aspirations of a writer, played by Nana Patekar. Guha's light classical scores have been picturised on Patekar's female lead, played by Rekha. Says Subhra Guha, who was in Chandigarh to perform at Pracheen Kala Kendra's Bhaskar Rao Sammellan,

The film is due for release in May, but Guha has viewed its prints as she will be away to New York for four months. From her New York visit, emerges yet another aspect of her personality - her great ability as a teacher. With solid background in musical research from Sangeet Research Academy, Kolkata, Guha has been guiding many a student. She rushes to tell us, "I was the only woman guru in the academy for 10 years. I enjoyed my teaching and honed my skills in the process. I also acquired finer sensibilities as I interacted with talented students."

Aware of the politics that has marred the spirit of classicism in India, Guha says it is best to concentrate on one's vocation and leave the rest to God. "You may take longer to reach your goal but you will reach there if you have the patience," says the vocalist, who is busy recording 18 ragas on CDs for educational purposes. CDs are being made with a mind to instruct students who feel at loss due to dearth of educational material.

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Preserving traditional melodies
Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 25
Pt Brij Narayan was born lucky. Instructed in the finest sarangi tradition by none other than his legendary father Pt Ram Narayan, he has grown into a fine musician, keen on deviations within traditional boundaries. Why else would he prefer to play the sarod when his lineage is famous for the superb quality of sarangi recital?

Brij Narayan has the answer—"It is wrong to place the instrument above the musical form. In the classical Indian realm, music is superior to the medium that transmits it. I purposely chose the sarod because I knew I would have an edge over others who play this instrument. I am adept at the sarangi and at the art of playing ragas typical to the sarangi on the sarod. This ability is wondrous. It adds to both the family and my own repertoire."

In Chandigarh for a recital during the Bhaskar Rao Sangeet Sammelan, Brij Narayan talked about the philosophy of music and the need to dissociate it from all that signifies corruption. Having played the sarod in films like "Mai Tulsi tere Angak Ki," he can't but lament the levels to which film music has deteriorated today.

He says, "Indian music is not being played in our films any longer. These are some songs which hurt more than they please. We, as keepers of tradition, are traumatised because such songs are being played at every corner of cities. It is upon the listeners to sift the chaff from the essential lest Indian music gets a bad name."

A regular visitor abroad, Brij has been playing at the best locations in the world. And each of his presentations has been hailed by connoisseurs of music. Rubbishing the myth that foreigners know little about Indian classical music, he says, "They know more than Indians do. They have learnt to respect music, notwithstanding its roots. But they never settle for anything less than the best. Whenever I have played abroad, I have been astounded to see halls bursting with music lovers. In India we sometimes have to play to empty walls."

A firm believer in the nuances of guru-shishya tradition, he says he has been actively participating in the functioning of Pt Ram Narayan Foundation, Mumbai, which offers scholarships to deserving students. "At the foundation we only teach sarangi," he says, admitting that it is not always easy to live upto the expectations of people who come to listen to a legend's son," he says.

"One has to fight for one's space," he says, adding, "I have worked hard to prove myself as a musician worthy of my salt. I am happy India now knows there is more to sarod than Ustad Amjad Ali Khan and his sons. 

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Brij Narayan, Shubra cast a spell
S.D. Sharma

Chandigarh, March 25
The melody of mesmerising classical vocalism and dexterity of hypnotising instrumental music were at their zenith at the Tagore Theatre on the second day of the 36th All-India Bhaskar Rao Nritya and Sangeet Sammelan organised by the Pracheen Kala Kendra.

The concert began featuring scintillating sarod recital by the young and exuberant Brij Narayan, the foremost disciple of Ustad Ali Akbar Khan and illustrious son of renowned sarangi maestro Pandit Ram Narayan. Through an elaborate and melodious alaap, Brij delved deep into the lower and medium octaves to establish the melodic form of raag Yaman Kalyan before a brilliant exposition of its finer nuances in jod and jhalla. Accompanied by Subhash Nirwan on the tabla, he presented two compositions — vilambit and drut set to ek tala and teen tala, respectively, exhibiting the nimble dexterity and indepth knowledge of the musical art. He was at his best while delineating a ‘gat’ in raag Puriya Kalyan before concluding the captivating sarod recital with the romance filled gat in raga Mishar Pilu amid a lofty applause.

After the chief guest, Mr H.K. Dua, Editor-in-Chief of the Tribune Group of Newspapers, accompanied by his wife, honoured artists, Kolkata-based renowned vocalist Shubra Guha took centrestage only to spell magic with the rendition of raag ‘Chhaya Nat.

Gifted with a resonant, mellifluous and richly cultivated voice, Shubra Guha mesmerised the audience.

She displayed a complete index of her versatility and expertise, a forte of her Agra Gharana. Her rendering was notable for the deft manner in which she harnessed the wide range of her voice to create incredible patterns. Shubra had blended the classical conservatism and the dynamic spirit of innovations in her gayaki style as evinced in the next offering “Holi” — “Ji na maaro pichkari” in raag Mishra Kafi, and “Payian laagon tihari sanwaria re” in raag Mishra Pilu. On persistent demand she rendered a Thumri in raag Bhairavi amid an ovation from the audience. Kankana’s “taans” and “sargams” flowed smoothly and the decisive influence of her guru, the legendary Pandit Sunil Bose, was perceptible during her recital.

Mehmood Dhaulpuri and Anup Ghosh provided admirable support on the harmonium and tabla, respectively.

A vocal recital by Haricharan Verma and ballet dance by Mamata Shanker Ballet troupe will provide the grand finale to the festival.

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