Thursday, July 20, 2000,
Chandigarh, India

C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


They, too, have the right to be happy

CHANDIGARH, July 19 — Countdown to the new millennium is already mid-way. The nation is all set to commence forth with a new, modern and westernised outlook towards different aspects of life. But all this does not seem to make much difference to the lives of children who are ‘abandoned’ somewhere on a roadside, a railway platform, even worse in a dustbin or just anywhere for that matter. The feeling of being unwanted and neglected haunts them throughout their lifetime.

Life for the kids in the orphan houses is very different from their peers living with parents. With simply no idea about their ‘roots’ and unfortunately no way to trace them out, all of them live like a big family in the orphanage. It is here that they get their share of love and tender care. Although organisations like Mother Teresa Charity Home and Bal Niketan contribute fairly to the purpose by looking after these deprived souls, but despite all this, these children miss out on something significant in their lives.

Dr B.S. Chavan, Professor and Head, Psychiatry Department, GMCH, states, “These individuals face a number of psychological problems as they are divested of motherly affection and normal family life. As they grow up, they become conscious of their standing in society which leaves negative impressions on their minds and in a few cases it results in serious mental disorders’’. According to other sources, “it is at one’s home that one learns to build bonds of affection and trust. Presence of family members generates a feeling of security for the child. But here in the orphanage since things are not just the same, the kids develop a feeling of insecurity’’.

Mrs Rashmi, a psychology lecturer, says it is difficult for the youngsters brought up here to trust someone easily and to reach out to people to ventilate their inner feelings. Things like socialising and making friends are not easy for them. Mostly these children turn out to be introverts, confining their feelings to themselves’’. Absence of a proper family life is again cited as the cause for such mental bend.

In a few cases a strong sense of resentment and anger prevails over their predicament. It finds an outlet in the form of a rebellions and aggressive child. According to Dr Chavan, “the suppressed fury at times accounts for turning the child anti-social. He may have the feeling that he has been ignored because he was very bad and so might try to harm himself by ways as wrist-slicing etc’’.

A visit to the orphan houses shows that the number of girls being disowned certainly exceeds that of boys. Although Dr Chavan feels that Indian society looks upon these children with a lot of concern, and issueless couples openly come forward to adopt these children, some steps ought to be initiated so as to stop this ‘disowning of the child’ and also regarding the female child as a burden.

People should be better educated with the family planning methods to avoid unwanted pregnancies. A strong sense of responsibility ought to be initiated if the young and innocent souls are to be given a normal, healthy and happy life.

— Ritika Mehta


‘Dr Chhuttani was far ahead of his times’
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 19 — “Dr P.N. Chhuttani’s life was a ceaseless quest for excellence. He imbibed professional and personal virtues which are worthy of admiration and emulation,” said Dr I.C. Pathak, Managing Trustee of the Tilok Tirath Chhuttani Charitable Trust, while speaking at the fourth death anniversary of Dr Chhuttani at the Chandigarh Medical Center here today.

Dr Pathak said that Dr Chhuttani lived his life like an artist." Order, coherence and proportion, three very important attributes of an artist, came to him most instinctively and naturally. His entire thought process concentrated on others as he cared very little for his own needs.”

While speaking on the occasion, Dr B.K. Sharma, a trustee and a student of Dr Chhuttani, said that the late doctor was far ahead of his times. “His uncanny clinical acumen and bedside manner has inspired two generations of doctors.”

He said that Dr Chhuttani was a firm believer of the opinion that investigations must follow clinical examinations and not vice versa.

Recalling his student days, Brigadier (Dr) A.S. Sohi said that Dr Chhuttani trained and matured his students in clinical medicine with authority. “Dr Chhuttani was a born teacher and was also a natural leader of those under his charge.”

Dr A.S. Arora, praising Dr Chhuttani’s immaculate social manners, said that he was courtesy incarnate. 


Drink less for longevity
By Poonam Batth
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 19 — Patients with serious liver disease who come to any referral hospital suffer mostly from cirrhosis. Nearly 15 per cent of the patients, who come to the liver clinic of the PGI, report with complications of portal hypertension.

Dr Y. Chawla, Professor and Head, Department of Hepatology, disclosed today that at least 10 patients report with these complications every week in the clinic. Of these, almost an equal number present themselves with symptoms of blood vomitting, fluid in the abdomen, swelling over the feet, mental confusion and coma.

Dr Chawla explained that portal hypertension is the build-up pressure in the portal vein (the vein connecting the intestines and liver). The most common cause of portal hypertension and its clinical consequences is cirrhosis of the liver. In cirrhosis, the cells of the liver are damaged and later scar tissue form. When the liver is scarred , blood cannot flow freely through it. As a result the vessels joining the portal vein from the stomach get distended and lead to complications. This is mainly in the form of vomitting of blood. The other complications associated with cirrhosis include symptoms of mental confusion, agitation, tremors and even coma. In most of these cases blood is not being filtered by the liver and toxins build up in the body, he added.

Dr Chawla further pointed out that yet another common presentation is abdominal distention due to fluid collection and swelling over feet. This occurs because the power to synthesise proteins is lost by the damaged liver. These proteins are necessary for preventing fluid collection at different sites in the body.

An analysis of PGI cases reveals that almost 30 per cent of the patients with cirrhosis have alcohol as a cause . In another 30 per cent, Hepatitis B and C virus are responsible for the disease. And in the remaining 40 per cent cases, doctors find it difficult to diagnose the cause of cirrhosis. According to Dr Chawla, alcohol cirrhosis occurs in males, who consume 80 gm of alcohol per day for 5-10 years, while in females 20 gm of alcohol consumption per day during the same period is said to cause cirrhosis. However, in case a person takes countrymade liquor, then much lesser amount of alcohol and duration can cause cirrhosis. Women who drink too much alcohol may be at a greater risk of developing alcoholic cirrhosis. But very few cases of women with this disease come to PGI. In the last 15 years, only three cases have been reported.

Talking about the modality of treatment, Dr Chawla said that once the damage has occurred nothing can be done to repair the liver or cure cirrhosis. The treatment is only aimed at avoiding further damage to the liver and preventing and treating the above mentioned complications. For controlling the upper gastrointestinal bleeding, these days drugs like Somatostatin or Terlipressin are available, but they are very expensive. Endoscopy is another modality to control the bleeding in those cases where medicine is ineffective. With endoscopy, an attempt is made to interrupt the flow of blood in swollen blood vessels in the food pipe with the help of injecting chemicals that clot the blood or use rubber bands to litigate them. If these measures fail then surgery is the last resort.

Hence, it would be pertinent to prevent this dreaded disease with its complications. The best would be to stop drinking alcohol, and if one does take drinks, these should be taken in much smaller quantities. Non-steroidal and inflammatory drugs such as pain killers should be avoided in these patients as they may precipitate bleeding. Patients of Hepatitis B and C virus related cirrhosis liver disease should be diagnosed early and treated so that the stage of cirrhosis is avoided. Since vaccination is available for Hepatitis-B, high risk groups of individuals should be vaccinated. But since no vaccine is yet available for Hepatitis C, screening of Hepatitis C virus should be made mandatory in blood banks before donating blood.

Prof Y.K. Chawla has recently been awarded the Dr B.C. Roy award for his contribution in studying liver disease related to cirrhosis liver, portal vein thrombosis, Budd-chiari syndrome and their associated complications and management strategies.


Training for medical officers
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 19 — The Chandigarh Administration under the aegis of the National Institute of Health and family Welfare, New Delhi, has organised integrated skill-based training for the medical officers at the Sector 16 General Hospital.

The training is being imparted to general duty medical officers who are working in dispensaries. Four batches of 10 doctors each are being given both clinical as well as managerial training. The first batch of doctors has already been given awareness generation training on reproductive and child health.

Presently, training is being imparted to put intra-uterine contraceptive service (IUCD) for ANMs and LHVs. About 10 doctors have already been given training in medical termination of pregnancy leading to safe abortion, if required, by the community.

The main focus of the training programme is that it should be client (patient)-oriented and based on community needs. Lectures are being given by faculty from the PGI, the Sector 16 hospital and the Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32.



Train players at right age: coach
By Arvind Katyal

CHANDIGARH, July 19 — "Players should be trained in such a way that they remain serious even after getting a job," said Syed Mustafa, a senior coach participating in the national juniors' handball camp in the Sector 8 DAV Senior Secondary School here. He belongs to Hyderabad and coaches at National Handball Academy in Bhilai which is sponsored by the Steel Authority of India Limited. Mustafa has also attended an advanced course at the DHFIKA Sports University in Leipzik (Germany).

He said, in Germany, children began playing at the age of 5 and by the time they entered big tournaments, they were already experienced enough. He said it was unfortunate that the same principle was not adopted in India and we began training players much later than this.

Mustafa also said foreign players applied gum on their fingertips to control the ball as they played indoors. However, as Indians usually played outdoors, they could not do so because the gum attracted dust outdoors. "Even in SAIL Academy, boys play on mud courts," he said.

Mustafa said when Ms Mamta Banerjee was the Union Sports Minister, she had made the PSUs adopt a discipline each, as a result of which, SAIL had adopted handball. Mustafa belongs to the first batch of the NIS at Patiala. He was also an Asiad probable in 1982. He said in business institutions sponsoring handball, qualified coaches should be placed to properly monitor the performance of players. He said between 16 to 22 was the right age for a handball player to show his or her peak performance.

Mustafa said the junior players he was training, would play in the seventh Junior Men's Handball Meet in Iran from August 30 to September 10. "Players of 20 countries will take part in the meet and it will be their maiden international appearance for these boys," he said.

The Indian women's handball camp is also in progress on the school premises and will end on August 7, while the boys' camp will continue till August 27.



Shooting tourney begins today
By Our Sports Reporter

CHANDIGARH, July 19 — The three-day Chandigarh State Shooting Championship will begin here tomorrow at the Sector 25 Patiali Rao ranges.

More than 75 shooters of different schools, colleges and the other institutions will take part in the meet.

This was said by Mr Vijay Pal Singh, General Secretary of the Chandigarh Rifle Association. The events will include the air rifle and pistol for juniors and seniors.

Carrom tourney: The Chandigarh Carrom Association will hold the 10th Chandigarh State Championship in St Stephen's School, Sector 45, from July 29 to August 3.

In this six-day championship, the events will include the men's and women's singles and doubles, veterans' (men) singles, junior boys' and girls' singles and doubles and sub-junior boys' and girls' singles and doubles.

Entries close on July 23 with Suraj Kohli at 2047/1, Sector 45-C (telephone: 663434).


1,000-line exchange at Manauli
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 19 — A new 1,000-line remote line unit (RLU) was commissioned at Manauli, near SAS Nagar, last evening.

Subscribers connected onto this exchange will now have the facilities like call waiting, call transfer, morning alarm and dynamic code for the STD facility. 


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