Friday, June 9, 2000,
Chandigarh, India
C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


'Extra classes made the difference'
By Geetanjali Gayatri
Tribune News Service

PANCHKULA, June 8 In the Class X CBSE Board Examinations, out of the 56 students of Hansraj Public School, Sector 6, Panchkula, who took the test, 53 have secured the first division and the topper of the town is also of this school. Besides, four students have achieved 90 per cent marks and more.

Initially, excited after the declaration of the result, the Principal of the school, Dr Rajni Thareja, has now returned to her office work. She is making plans to improve the performance of the school to ensure that her students do well in the next year's examinations as well.

Reflecting on the last session, she says, "We made teachers monitor every activity of the below-average and above-average students. After procuring time tables of all these students, teachers were given the task to check whether they were following the schedule submitted to us or not. Further, in the beginning of the session, we sought the cooperation of parents to ensure that these students were not taken on any outings throughout the year. Now, the hard work has paid off.''

In addition to this, the school held extra classes for this group of students in the morning and the afternoon. The decision initially received a lot of resistance. "We spoke to each parent and student individually to convince them. Today, they appreciate our efforts and all of us are happy with the result,'' she added.

Dr Thareja also said the underlying reasons for their success were the hardwork of teachers, the dedication of students, the support of parents and the good management by the school authorities. "We told them that nothing short of 100 per cent effort would help,'' she said.

The parents of the toppers, too, appreciate the contribution of the school in helping their wards achieve the results without tuitions. They said extra classes sufficed for tuitions.

Komal topped in the town with 93.2 per cent marks. Her mother, Ms Alka Arora, said, "We did nothing for her studies and all information was sent to us by the school through circulars. It was all left to the Principal and teachers. However, she worked hard and so did her teachers. The investment paid off at the end of the term.''

Ms Bina Rungta, a parent said, "This being the first batch of Class X students, the authorities put in an extra effort. The rigorous schedule of extra classes introduced by the school as early as July stood my daughter in good stead. The contribution of the school in her success is immense.''

Ms Pooja Mittal, another parent, said she was surprised to find her daughter getting so many marks. "She continued all her co-curricular activities side by side, but, I was tense throughout the examination season. Everytime I told her to study, she had only one thing to say, "I will get you the marks you want." She hardly ever studied for two hours at a stretch, which means that the classwork came to her rescue in the examinations,'' she said.

Ms Jasbir Gill, a parent, said this being the first batch of the school, everybody made an effort to give a good result. "Earlier, I was critical of the way the students were being pushed to study all the time, but, I am grateful that the school did not give in to my demand of excusing my daughter from the extra classes. We have benefitted and so has my daughter, though it led to discomfort during the session,'' she said.



Rush for admissions
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, June 8 The local DAV College is abuzz with activity these days. The plus one students have made a beeline to seek admission in the most prestigious institution of the northern region.

The Principal of the college, Mr Ramesh Jeevan, informed that the admissions to the medical and non-medical streams of plus one class would start on June 18 and the admissions would strictly on the basis of merit. The meritwise list would be pasted on the notice board on June 17. There would be 480 seats in both medical and non-medical streams.

The Principal said that more number of students were applying for admissions this year as compared to the last couple of years. Keeping in view the rush of students last year the Principal had to arrange for extra classes last year. 


Colleges gear up for new session
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, June 8 Student inquiries and preparations have commenced as colleges gear up for the new academic session in Panjab University. The session is scheduled to begin with regular admissions from July 12 to July 18.

Admission forms will be available within a fortnight for government colleges while certain private institutions have already circulated the same.

Late admissions on payment of Rs 100 and with a special permission of the college principal will be held from July 19 to 24. The schedule also covers teaching departments of the university and the late fee cases are allowed by the chairpersons concerned.

Late admission cases are also allowed with permission of the Vice-Chancellor within about a month of the last date of the normal admissions.

Senior teachers and principals, however, express their difference of opinion of the academic session beginning from the first date mentioned in the calendar. "The staff is also engaged in admissions of the first year which seems not to be taken into account while counting the total teaching days," a principal said. This meant direct loss to the second and third year classes.

The university again mentions over 180 teaching days in the session. This has been a controversial issue over the past several sessions. One point is that since the university has five working days in a week while the colleges have six, how can both institutions manage both number of working days in the same calendar?

The minimum number of 180 teaching days is mentioned in the UGC calendar which the authorities accept in principle but also accept that usually it was rare to ensure 180 teaching days in an academic session.

Admissions for the Bachelor in Business Administration and Bachelor in Computer Application courses also coincide with the normal admissions. In a change, there will be no entrance examination for the courses.

Candidates however seems to be caught in a dilemma of the university in upgrading the BCA course to a Bachelor in Information Technology course as Delhi University. Parents and students have staged demonstrations in the varsity campus but a final decision is awaited. A senior academic body of the campus is also considering the case.

It was also pointed out that the fee structure for all government colleges of the city would be similar. It is also being felt that the craze for seats in science had seen a little downward trend. A senior professor pointed out that commerce seemed to be the latest area of interest among students. "Talk about market stories seem to have made a strong mark on young minds and goaded them in a different direction," a senior professor said.

Sanjay Raghav, a student of PU, said that job opportunities in technical fields looked limited. Commerce gave a ray of hope. There was feeling that even if made to run more than required, money for food could be assured. This was better in comparison to many technical fields where one had the necessary qualifications, but no job.

Maj D.P.Singh, Principal of Government College, Sector 46, said commerce was definitely in demand which was evident from the rising merit during admissions. Mrs Vijayalakshmi, Principal of GCG, Sector 11, also made a mention about a shift in students liking towards commerce.


The man in pursuit of rural uplift
By Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, June 8 The undertones of Marxist philosophy can be heard in his works, and he is perhaps one among the very few playwrights in the world of Punjabi theatre who are rooted in realism. Another feature which furthers his distinction in the field is his strong inclination towards Punjabi rural theatre, an area which, unlike in Maharashtra and Bengal, remains largely neglected in the North.

His persistence to do realistic theatre, irrespective of the initial impediments that he faced, has brought him to a stature which very few of his clan have achieved. And today after serving the world of theatre for about 40 years, he more than got his due in the form of the prestigious Balraj Sahni Memorial Award conferred upon him by the Punjab Arts Council.

The playwright was in town today to receive the award which may not be the first award for his creditable works, but is still very close to his heart. "I am overwhelmed that my work was recognised and respected so much," he told Chandigarh Tribune. On the occasion we stole moments for an interface with the artiste who is proud to be wedded to Punjabi in general and rural theatre in particular.

He talked of how he covered a long distance to gratify his literary pursuit from a small village in Sangrur district to the full-fledged Lok Kala Manch which he founded in 1974 in Mansa, the place where he is now based.

Said a jubilant Mr Aulakh: "You will be surprised to note that every member of my family, my three daughters, my wife Manjit Aulakh and even my sons-in-law, are also associated with theatre."

In fact, we had an opportunity to witness the performance of Mr Aulakh's daughter, Sohajdeep, today in his play Jhanna de pani which was staged in the council. The play highlighted the condition of a Bihari woman who is sold and sold again for money. It talks of how a poor farmer Bhanti (played by Darshan Gharu) buys a Bihari woman, Gangiya (Sohajdeep), to feign before society that he is married. Poverty, however, drives Bhanti into selling Gangiya who is bought and married to a man who is mentally deranged.

The interesting feature of Aulakh's plays is universal appeal, especially in the context of the rural conditions. He says: "My first play Arbad Narbad Thundiukara for which I received the Sahit Akademy Award, focused on the problems faced by the peasant community. In fact, themes of all my plays centre around farmers and their struggle against the feudal system."

Mr Aulakh is also known for staging plays more in the rural ambience than before the urban audience. "The urban class can watch my plays, it can't sympathise with my theme. I have staged many plays in villages where I get tremendous response. I focus on villages because I write for villagers."

Currently working as a lecturer of Punjabi in Government College, Mansa, Mr Aulakh shows no signs of retirement. "I am due to retire from my service shortly, but I will never bid farewell to my first love, that is theatre," he says.

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