|Thursday, March 9, 2000,
reinvites tenders for computer education
CHANDIGARH, March 8 The Chandigarh Administration has decided to reinvite tenders for introduction of computer education in all schools and colleges after deciding to cancel a letter of intent (LOI) already issued to a Delhi-based company on the basis of tenders opened in January.
The cancellation of the LOI follows a complaint by one of the bidders that the company which was being awarded the contract, was not an ISO certified one as was specified as a prerequisite in a notice inviting the tenders.
According to highly-placed sources, the final decision in the matter was taken only yesterday when the Home-cum-Education Secretary, Mr N.K. Jain, sent a registered letter to the Delhi-based IEC company, saying that the LOI issued in January was being cancelled.
When the Administration issued a notice inviting tenders (NIT), it said, "Bids are invited from ISO certified, nationally reputed companies with an annual turnover of more than Rs 3 crore for the introduction of computer education in schools and colleges of the Union Territory." The last date for filing the tenders was December 27.
The problem began as the comprehensive tender document did not mention one of the requisite conditions mentioned in the NIT i.e. ISO certification. In all, 28 companies purchased the comprehensive tender document.
At the time of initial scrutiny and examination, the local unit of National Informatics Centre suggested that computers or hardware to be procured for the project should have at least Pentium III processors. It had also suggested that the trainers to be employed by the company for educating students should be at least graduates with one-year diploma in computer studies.
At no stage, anyone said the comprehensive tender document had omitted the ISO certification condition. The Tender Evaluation Committee, which was constituted on October 15, comprised the Education Secretary (Chairman), JSF-cum-DPI (Colleges), DPI (schools), Accounts Officer (F and A), Principal of the Sector 11 Government College for Men and Principal of the Sector 16 Government Model Senior Secondary School.
The constitution of the committee was approved by the Adviser to the Administrator on November 2. It was also decided that the draft of the comprehensive tender notice should be vetted and approved by the Legal Remembrancer. The Finance Department also gave its formal approval to the project on December 3.
There were some protests from local computer training institutes. Their protest was, however, dismissed on the ground that the scheme was beyond their purview and Chandigarh was following a similar exercise being undertaken by Punjab to introduce similar computer courses in all colleges. Most of the details of the comprehensive tender notice were copied from the one which had been issued by Punjab a little earlier.
The prequalification bids were opened on December 28. Two more members Director and Head of the Computer Centre of Panjab University and Coordinator of the Centre for Computation Engineering of Panjab Engineering College were included as experts. Nine firms which prequalified were given time to make clarifications or support their claims.
At that stage also, the issue whether the NIT or the CTD was to be followed over the ISO certification condition was referred to the LR which opined that for all practical purposes, the CTD should be considered "sacred" and the Administration could change the conditions.
When the technical and financial tenders were opened, IEC were awarded the contract on the basis of the lowest rates which worked out to be Rs 66 per month for all courses from standard VI to the college. In case of Tata Infotech, the rates were between Rs 79 and Rs 124 with an annual increase of 10 per cent for 60 hours of training only, though the CTD had put the duration at 70 hours.
The sources said at no
stage any bidder protested as only three of the five
bidders whose financial and technical tenders were opened
on January 3, were ISO certified. IEC is one of two firms
which had no ISO certification. Subsequently, it was
awarded the contract and a LOI was issued on January 13
after the Administrator cleared the file on January 12.
on construction stirs hornets nest
SAS NAGAR, March 8 The directive given by the Minister of State for Housing and Urban Development, Punjab, Mr Ranjit Singh Balian, yesterday to temporarily stall the construction of a school building being raised on a site allotted by the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) to a private educational institution in Sector 70 here has stirred a hornets nest.
Can the government after allotting school sites and approving the site plans ask the allottee to stop the construction and suggest an alternative site to them in view of protest by residents of the area concerned? A similar incident had happened in Phase 11 few months back.
Is the protest by the residents genuine? Should PUDA take all the factors into consideration while allotting land to school sites to avoid such situations in the future? The town planners say that various amenities like educational, health, commercial and community services were provided depending upon the population planned for each sector. The school sites were allotted as per the policy of PUDA, and after being approved in its Planning and Design Committee.
But residents whose houses are located adjacent to the schools already functioning in the town cite their own problems. Mr Prem Singh Gill, a resident of Phase 11 here, said problems like raised noise pollution, traffic congestion and shortage of space for holding community functions cropped up. He said PUDA should visualise all these factors before allotting the school sites.
Inders plea dismissed
CHANDIGARH, March 8 Mr Justice V.M. Jain of the Punjab and Haryana High Court dismissed the civil revision petition of Mr Ravi Inder Singh, a senior Akali Dal member, against the decision of the District Judge, Chandigarh, refusing to grant an injunction against his apprehended expulsion from the party.
The Judge observed that the courts below were perfectly justified in coming to the conclusion that plaintiff had no prima facie case in his favour nor he would suffer any irreparable loss or injury in case ad interim injunction is not granted.
This court would have no jurisdiction in the exercise of its revisional powers to interfere with the judicial discretion exercised by the courts below, especially when the courts below had not committed any illegality or irregularity, the Judge observed.
Mr Ravi Inder Singh had filed the revision petition against the January 21 judgement passed by the District Judge affirming the Sub Judges order dated December 15, 1999. Mr Ravi Inder Singh, MLA, had filed a civil suit on the allegation that according to clause 5 (c) of the constitution of the Shiromani Akali Dal the tenure of the Working Committee was two years and that the committee was constituted in August 1997 and its term expired in August 1999.
It was further submitted that there was no validly constituted Working Committee in existence at present. It became functions officio in August 1999. The plaintiff had further claimed that Mr Parkash Singh Badal wanted to remove him from the party. Earlier a show cause notice lated November 16, 1999 was issued and he apprehended that he would be expelled.
The Judge observed that
once it was found that there was no bar on office-bearers
to continue till the new elections had taken place and
even the Working Committee had the power to postpone the
election. It was not disputed before that the Central
Election Commission had already granted extension to the
defendants to undertake enrolment and conduct
organisational election up to December, 31, 1999 and thus
the period had already been extended upto February 28, as
per the recent communication. Therefore, it could not be
said that the SAD Working Committee had become
non-existant in August, 1999, or had ceased to hold
activity at festival
CHANDIGARH, March 8 Cultural events, lectures and creative competitions marked the second day of International Students festival at the Panjab University campus here today.
The Students Centre and various auditoriums of the university remained the hub of activity throughout the day with cultural events like the group singing, folk singing and light vocal attracting the students, including foreign students. The response to certain items plenary lectures, symposia on health and human values and yoga and meditation was, however, poor.
Speaking on the occasion of the holding of the group singing and folk singing contest, Mr Natha Singh Dalam, Punjab Minister for Information and Public Relations, stressed the need for more interactive programmes among the youth of the South Asian countries.
Carnatic song and Punjabi folk songs were the highlight of the this round. Besides this, Cinderella, a soft romantic number by Ugandan students, was well-received.
The response to the creative writing contest was good with over 30 students taking part. And in the painting and the clay-modelling competitions, 13 students participated.
Delivering the plenary lecture on public perception of science and technology, Dr RP Bajpai, Director of CSIO, urged the students, especially foreign delegates, to utilise science and technology for the promotion of world peace and betterment of the mankind.
Later, Dr Shobha Sehgal of the PGI, speaking on the Health and Human Values stressed on the psychological effects on our behaviour.
500-rupee notes, please
CHANDIGARH, March 8A legal tender with legal and illegal circulation but little legal check on latter has been putting the general public to great inconvenience. The Sector 21 Sainik Rest House here, for example, has stopped accepting the countrys Big Buck the 500 rupee note.
Unacceptability of suspicious looking legal tenders when one goes to deposit them in a nationalised bank or elsewhere puts a common man in a quandary as has been the case with a large number of ex-servicemen who queue up outside the CSD canteen at Sainik Rest House to buy their monthly grocery or even liquor. The reason is that a large number of fake 500-rupee notes are in circulation these days.
And in the absence of adequate machinery and ability to make out the genuine from the fake, some of the public dealing offices have been playing safe by refusing to accept these legal tenders. They have put up small notices outside their cash counters to say that these negotiable instruments will not be accepted.
The Sainik Rest House in Sector 21 has put up the notice saying that old 500 rupee notes will not be accepted. A few banks, including the state banks , do not accept this note. The fake notes, the bankers say , is no ones money as a norm it has to be accepted by the banks but gets the credit to no-one neither the owner nor the bank.
The banks have a volume of transaction worth a crore of rupees everyday and the frequency of getting a fake note is negligible and if at all the bank receives a fake note, what is to be done with it: The Solution- The banks are supposed to report the case to the police, accept it and cancel it so that it is prevented from circulating and deposit it with the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). It is scrutinised to know the difference that exists between the original and the fake note, which indeed is a thin line and only an experienced eye can judge it easily and quickly.
The risk of fake 500 rupee notes is more with old Gandhi series notes the features of difference between a fake note and original note is that the fake note is more thick and is rough. The texture and the printing does not glow under ultra-violet rays, the silver line is more thick than the actual size when seen under ultra violet rays.
Is the new 500 rupee
note foolproof. Indeed it is. It has carbon fibres and
the embossed number red in colour glows brightly under
the ultra violet rays. The silver line is a broken one
and has RBI (in English) and Bharat ( in Hindi) written
on it. The design near Gandhis ear is actually RBI
500 written on it and the design towards the right hand
corner is actually a 3 D 500 written. Well these features
are indeed minor but not easy to copy.
not in best of health
PANCHKULA, March 8 Even as the Town Park in Sector 5 gears up to play host to the two-day 14th annual Spring Festival, which begins on March 11, some roundabouts have not been prepared while others are in a state of neglect.
The Horticulture Department maintains that six reminders have been sent to the department for the beautification of the roundabout allotted to them but to no avail. Bank of Punjab maintained this roundabout initially and had begun sprucing it up but had to relinquish charge. Remnants of the landscaping undertaken then are still there.
The roundabout at the crossing of sectors 1,2,5 and 6 has left officials of the Horticulture Department unhappy. Further, officials of the department contend that they cannot adopt a harsh attitude in the absence of any takers. If we take back the allotment, we need to have a back up, which is missing since this is an upcoming township.
Most allottees are aware of this and take things easy, which is a major bottleneck in the beautification drive, they add.
Other roundabouts are
neither eye-catching nor boast of any special work. The
preliminaries of landscaping have been completed and
plants are coexisting with weeds, though deweeding has
been undertaken in view of the festival.
The woman must be
the law-maker herself
CHANDIGARH, March 8 Ask not why men have not given women their due.... ask why they have failed to recover the rights they lost to men. On International Womens Day, while so many residents believe women are still not free, intellectuals and philosophers insist they have to don the law-maker role after removing the garb of a victim.
Due is not given, you have to get it, asserts Dr N.K. Oberoi, Professor in Panjab Universitys Department of English. Equality, human rights are matter of recovery. To be at the receiving end, waiting for things to happen, is wrong.
Accusing the women of being an accomplice in the loss, Dr Oberoi says, Agreed, men assumed the exploiters position. They were strong, brutal also. But women were a party. Now, she has to look up to herself. Has to take law into her hands. Be the law-maker herself the role appropriated by men so far. The day she decides against being a slave, she will be a captive no more. Regarding reservation for women in Parliament, Dr Oberoi emphasises, It is a punitive measure for making amends for the wrongs done by men.
Agreeing with him, political scientist, Dr Raunki Ram, says, Gandhijis assertion about swaraj is true for women too you are free soon after you are self conscious about your rights. All you have to do is to put the realisation into practice.
Claiming that the women are not seeking favours, nor asking to be patronised, Dr Raunki Ram says: They have to realise their position in socio, political and economic context and then step out.
Meanwhile, Captain Rajnish Talwar, running a card and gift shop in Panjab University campus, says: Flying aeroplanes, managing traffic after donning the tough uniform of cops and marketing medicines is no indication of the women being free. Monitored freedom is what they enjoy, if any.
Elaborating, Captain Talwar asserts: Urban women have the freedom to choose their profession, even life partners. But unlike males, they have to give details of each and every moment. Wife or a daughter, she has to call up and explain why she is late from the office or college. Guys can stay out all night long.
Commenting upon gender bias, he says, The guys can enter into physical relationships, smoke cigarettes, go out to the discotheques and late night dance parties. Girls have to seek permission.
Emphasising upon the importance of women in society, income tax consultant Chaman Sharma says: No country can progress if the women are not respected. Till we do not give them their due we can not move ahead in any field. And be sure, they can govern. Top officials in the UT Administration are women.
Claiming women had not advanced as much as they should have, student of Masters of Commerce, Mr Yadwinder Singh, says, In cities, yes, but in rural areas, even in villages in and around the city, the women still are the victims of domestic violence. They still are married off as soon as they finish of with their plus two examinations. Even in so-called advanced families, job by the woman is considered a taboo.
School lecturer Ashwani Sharma is also of the same opinion. Education is the answer. It can play a major role in developing the personality of women and in changing the outlook of society. The girls should not be looked down upon as a mere responsibility but as responsible citizens. They should be provided with opportunities.
Women have a long
way to go, asserts businessman Sarabjit Singh.
Dowry deaths, incidents of women committing sati,
domestic violence its all a reality. The problem,
however, is not without a solution. The parents should
ensure financial independence of their daughters in
todays materialistic world.
students donate blood
SAS NAGAR, March 8 As many as 139 students of the local Institute of Engineering and Technology donated blood at a camp organised by the NSS unit of the institute in coordination with the local branch of the State Bank of India to observe the International Womens Day here today. Among the donors 111 were boys and 28 were girls.
A paper reading contest on Women of 21 st century: Changing Role in Society and Engineering a Profession for Women was also organised on the occasion, Girl students of the institute and from other engineering institutes from Dera Bassi, Fatehgarh Sahib, Tangori and Chandigarh participated in the paper reading contest.
PANCHKULA, March 7 Over 2,000 women talked on the topic A Healthy Family A Reflection of a Health Women and Self-indulgence in a function held at Yavanika open air theatre in Sector 5 here on the occasion of International Women's Day today.
The programme was organised by the Crime against Women and Weaker Section Cell of Panchkula, in collaboration with the local Upkar Society. Most of the participants included rural women of Barwala, Raipur Rani, Pinjore, Morni, along with local NGOs.
Ms Amrit Singal, President of the cell, in the inaugural speech, highlighted aspects of unwanted pregnancy and family planning. She was followed by Ms Shashi Aggarwal, who talked about legal rights of women in property and financial matters.
''The need of the hour is to shun behavioural patterns of self pity and collectively make sincere endeavours for uplifting the status of Indian women,'' said Ms Vidya Mani, General Secretary of the cell. Similar programmes would be held till the UN Poverty Day on October 17, she added.
Ms Varsha Malhotra, Secretary of the Upkar Society, speaking on the occasion, stressed the dire need to do away with age-old tussles between women. Discrimination at birth, sexual harassment at work place, identity crisis for women, equal pay for equal work, poverty and education were some of the topics discussed at the session.
Over 50 students of the Government Degree College in Sector 1, participated in various competitions held today to celebrate the International Women's Day. The competitions included rangoli designing, dotting of bindi, mehndi and essay writing. The programme was organised by the women's cell of the college. Dr Kapila Pankaj, Chief Organiser of the function, said girls should be made aware of women's rights from the school days itself.
In the mehndi contest, Deepanjali Bharti stood first, followed by Veena Jain and Usha Aggarwal. The third position was earned by Sushma. In the dotting the bindi contest, Sushma stood first, followed by Deepanjali. In the rangoli event, Priyanka was adjudged first.
The Centre for
Entrepreneurs Development (CED) Cell for Women of the
Chandigarh office of Canara Bank celebrated Women's Day
at Majri village here today. On the occasion, a five-day
workshop on sketching-embossed designs with chalk powder
on ceramic tiles was inagaurated by Ms Vatsalya
Raghunath, wife of the General Manager of the bank.
course on pollution control
CHANDIGARH, March 8 A three-day orientation training course on Environment Pollution and Control was inaugurated by the UT Chief Engineer, Mr R.K. Jain, here on Monday to deliberate on various pollution strategies relevant in today's context. The course is being organised jointly by the Technical Teachers Training Institute and the Environment Society of India for the benefit of engineers and scientists.
In his inaugural address, Mr Jain said the need of the hour was to bring awareness among the people for protecting and preserving natural environment and preventing pollution at the source of sustainable development. In the context of Chandigarh, Mr Jain said the vast green cover helped check pollution. He also talked about various projects undertaken to improve the quality of environment and public health. He said the city had a sewerage treatment plant and its extension was on the cards. The garbage disposal-cum-composting-chit will be set up soon. He further said introduction of the Mass Rapid Transport System would reduce the noise pollution and traffic problem on Madhya Marg.
Nearly 25 participants of various institutions and engineering departments of Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh are participating in the course. Prof R. Subramanian, Head of the Department of Civil Engineering, in his welcome address, said the main objective of the seminar was to teach scientists and engineers economic development, environmentally sound and innovative technologies, besides abatement of various types of pollution.
The President of the Environment Society of India, Mr S.K. Sharma gave a talk on environmental public health model where he talked about chemical pesticides and drugs. Dr K.K. Garg, Joint Director of the Ministry of Environment and Forest, gave a lecture on Environmental Pollution: Causes and Effects. Dr S.C. Jain, in his lecture, talked about the innovative technologies for air and water pollution.
Prof Sanjay Sharma,
Course Coordinator, presented case studies on water
pollution and remedial measures. He said such courses
provided the much-needed exposure to latest developments
in relevant fields.
mark Womens Day
CHANDIGARH, March 8 The Global March 2000 against Poverty and violence against women: was organised here today at the Sector 17 Plaza. The march was organised in connection with the International Womens Day. It highlighted the problems being faced by women today.
Addressing the gathering, Mrs Vineeta Rai, Advisor, UT Administration, asked the men to take a pledge to fight for the womens rights and welfare. She emphasised the importance of the womens rights for the success of any nation.
A demand was made for the passage of the womens reservation bill in this session of Parliament and roll-back in the price of items given under the public distribution system.
Issues raised by speakers included maltreatment of women in society, parcentage of women in government service, sexual harassment and low rate of punishment to those involved in atrocities against women.
The Indian Council for Women Entrepreneurs, Punjab, celebrated International Womens Day 2000 in Bal Bhavan, Sector 23.
On the eve of the International Womens day, an essay writing competition and free anaemia and general medical camp was organised by the Surya Foundation (Survival of Young and Adolescent Foundation) at Raipur Khurd. Salinder Kaur, Manjeet Kaur and Shashi stood Ist, IInd and IIIrd in the competition, respectively.
Shahid Bhagat Colony,
Sector 49, near Chandigarh, also celebrated
InternationalWomens day. The Girls Welfare
Organisation of Government College, Sector 46, celebrated
the Womens Day by organising a cultural programme.
Dances, songs and fashion parade were the highlights of
Booked for collecting
SAS NAGAR, March 8 The local police has booked a resident of Phase XI for allegedly collecting money from the public on the name of a gurdwara. According to information available, the suspect, Jaspal Singh had got a receipt book printed in the name of Singh Sabha Gurdwara, Phase XI, here and had collected money.
Ambala Railway Division
revenue rises by 26 pc
CHANDIGARH, March 8 Revenue of the Ambala Railway Division has jumped by 26 per cent for the first 10 months of the ongoing financial year ending January 31, 2000.
In the corresponding period April 1, 1999 to January 31, 2000 of the previous financial year, the earnings of the division stood at Rs 412 crore. Now, for the same period the revenue stands at Rs 518 crore. The target for this year is Rs 572 crore. During the entire previous year the division that is spread out in parts of Haryana, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh and Chandigarh had achieved a revenue of Rs 512 crore.
The Divisional Railway Manager (DRM), Ambala Division , Mr Vijay Kumar, said he was aiming at achieving Rs 625 crore by way of revenue by March 31. Revenue for the division has gone up by 13 per cent in the passenger segment and 32 per cent in the goods section, the DRM said, while adding that passenger earnings had gone up from Rs 130 crore to Rs 148 crore and the goods earning had jumped from Rs 271 crore to Rs 358 crore.
The earnings are calculated on the basis of passenger tickets or freight booked from any of the stations under the Ambala Division. At present there are six class A stations in the division that individually earn more than Rs 6 crore annually. Besides, small earnings are from bookings of parcels and other recovery from auctions of contractorship. However, the exact profit cannot be worked out as money is collected at the end where booking is done. The procedure is very cumbersome and will not match the efforts of the staff and the machines put to use enroute, railway authorities said.
Meanwhile the Sirhind Ropar section has been electrified, thus facilitating the movement of rakes of coal at a much faster pace to the Ropar thermal plant that receives 4 rakes of coal daily. Before the electrification project, the rakes used to be hauled by electric locomotives till Sirhind before the engine used to be changed to haul the trains from Sirhind to Ropar.
rate in farm, industry disturbing
CHANDIGARH, March 8 Though in the post-liberalisation phase the GDP growth had been quite high, the low growth rate in agriculture and the industrial sectors was disturbing, Prof GS Bhalla, Professor, Emeritus of JNU, New Delhi, said here today.
In his inaugural address on three-week refresher course for in-service teachers on the topic of Indian economy in the year 2000 and Beyond: Problems and Prospects, he said this had led to a situation of growth without creating employment.
The small-scale sector, the major creator of the employment opportunies, faced the real threat from the onslaught of the globalisation and unless adequate measures were taken, the employment growth may further suffer.
Seminar: The University Business School organised a two-day seminar on Research methods in management.
In his presidential remarks, Dr MJ Zarabi, CMD of the SCL, SAS Nagar, highlighted the importance of research methods in management and said the growth of science and technology required the fundamental of management to be strenghthened.
Prof Satyadeva, a former chairman of the Department of Public Administration of the PU, was of the view that sophistication in management was required to achieve big changes in the technology, personnel, and techniques.
Prof JB Deshpande from the University of Pune highlighted the need for the theoretical base for the portfolio selection for mutual funds, option trading and insurance business.
employees threaten stir
SAS NAGAR, March 8 The Punwire Marts Employees Union has threatened to start an agitation if their salaries were not paid within a week. The General Secretary of the union, Mr H.R.Verma, in a press release said that the financial condition of the employees of the company was deteriorating day by day.
He said that inspite of
decision taken by the Punjab Government to finance the
company, the decision to issue bonds of the PSIDC had not
been cleared so far. The employees have threatened to
gherao the premises of PSIDC and the Director,
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