Monday, November 26, 2001, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S



Art students’ labour lost in rules
Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 25
Some rules are strange enough to be scrapped. Like this rule, which Panjab University has been following for years in case of examinations conducted at the Government College of Art (GCA), Sector 10. According to Panjab University examination rules, in force at GCA since its establishment, all works of art created for the purpose of examination by students of the college have to be destroyed. These works, like paintings, sculptures and graphic prints, are collected at the time of the final examination and are burnt or destroyed by the college authorities after these have been inspected.

While these rules make a clear mockery of the students’ labour, nothing much has been done to modify for the past many years. In accordance to the given Panjab University regulation, which treats art works on a par with written sheets of paper, the GCA authorities destroy close to 1500 art works created every year by college students. A random survey of the GCA has revealed that every year, about 60 students join the fresh batch. Every fresh batch goes through a four-year degree course, with the first year being considered basic. In this year, every student appears for six practical subjects, including drawing, painting, design and print-making. Six art works are collected from each student.

In the second year, a student appears for four practical subjects and submits six works each. In the third year, again six works are submitted by each student. In the final year, each student submits close to 10 works in various forms like life drawing, sculpture, painting, photograph and graphic prints. Until the third year, all 60 students have normally submitted 1300 works. They submit another about 700 in the final year. Given this, the final figure comes to about 2000 works of art every year.

The practice of destroying the works, has been going on for about three decades simply because no major objections have been raised to the university rules which stipulate destruction of works of art. While this issue has often caused heartburn among students of the college, nothing has been done to amend the rules in order to prevent destruction of paintings, sculptures and other pieces. The students have been pressing upon the authorities to auction the works back to them.

Strange it may sound, but for years Panjab University has been following similar examination rules for GCA as it has been for other courses and degrees. The change has not become possible because the debate on this issue has never been initiated. A former principal of GCA, Mr Prem Singh, when contacted, has explained that since all these works are examination works, these cannot be given back. “Some elements misuse the works and denounce the institution. If we return the works, unnecessary litigation may also begin,” he says.

The present Principal of the college, Mr Brahm Prakash, has a somewhat different viewpoint. Although he agrees that the students feel pained over this practice, he says auctioning of the works can also lead to problems. “Students can misuse the purchased works. They can project them as their own. These issues have to be kept in the mind,” he says. He adds that deliberations on this outstanding issue have been initiated recently. He says the college authorities have had talks with members of the University Inspection Committee. “They will get back to us on this issue. Maybe we can reach at an amicable solution,” he says. The university is silent on the issue.

Most students do not sound hopeful at all. They say the deliberations have often been heard of, but results have never surfaced. Says a final-year student, “Not much is being done by the authorities. Our work has always been compared with sheets of economics or sociology paper.” Some art institutions in the country give the works back to students. These includes the Baroda College of Art and the Santiniketan. It is yet to be seen if the GCA follows suit.



Nursing institute recognised, sans mandatory NOC
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, November 25
Close on the heels of ‘irregularities’ in the general nursing and midwifery examination conducted by the Punjab Nursing Registration Council, an SAS Nagar-based nursing institute has reportedly been granted recognition by the Punjab Government without the No-Objection Certificate (NOC), which is mandatory under the provisions of the Indian Nursing Council.

Mr Charanjit Singh, director of the Mata Sahib Kaur Institute of General Nursing and Midwifery, has taken legal recourse against the council. In a writ petition filed in the Punjab and Haryana High Court, the petitioner said the Charanjit Singh Memorial Institute of Nursing had applied for recognition to the Punjab Nursing Council in May, 1999, and at that time, Ms Amrit Kaur Ahluwalia, now Principal of the institute, was the Registrar of the council.

The inspection of the institute was conducted on June 3, 1999, at 632, Phase 6. No communication took place between the council and the institute till November 8, 2001. After Rs 1 lakh was deposited as recognition fee by the institute with the council, a letter of recognition was issued to the institute on November 9, 2001, at another address — 91, Phase 7.

Citing guidelines of the Indian Nursing Council, the petitioner said it specified that an organisation registered under the Society Act, wanting to open a nursing school or college, had to obtain an NOC from the state government, but in this case, recognition was given by the council without an NOC from the state government.

The petitioner further stated that in violation of guidelines on issuing an NOC, the Charanjit Singh Memorial Institute of Nursing had been given recognition, while the Mata Sahib Kaur Institute of General Nursing and Midwifery and the Rattan Professional Education College, Sohana, had been running similar institutes in the area. Taking up the case, a division bench comprising Mr Justice J.L. Gupta and Mr Justice Ashutosh Mohanta issued a notice of motion to the Principal Secretary, Department of Medical Education and Research, Punjab Nursing Council, Indian Nursing Council and the Charanjit Singh Memorial Institute of Nursing for February 11, 2002.



No traffic diversions during Test match
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, November 25
Test match between England and India at the PCA stadium here will witness a heavy police bandobast. At least 450 policemen drawn from the Ludhiana Police range would be on duty during the match, beginning December 3.

However, there would be no traffic diversions during the five-day match and vehicular traffic would be allowed on the main roads in front of the stadium. The Senior Superintendent of Police, Mr G.P.S. Bhullar, who was in the town to discuss security arrangements, said there would be 13 entry gates, including the one for the VIPs. There could be some minor diversions during the opening and closing hours of the match, he said.

The police officials have been asked to keep a watch on hideouts of antisocial elements. A watch on migrant labourers was also being kept. A suitable number of cops would be posted in seating area of the stadium. Mr Bhullar said verification of people living in houses, adjoining the stadium in Phase IX and X would also be done. Cops would be stationed on high-rise buildings around the stadium.

He said, “at least six parkings lots have been identified which include, parking lot in front of Town Pride hotel in Phase IX, parking at the back and in front of the stadium, Phase X market parking area, the parking lot of PUDA sports stadia in

Phase IX and the VIP parking lot in the stadium”. Mr Bhullar said parking signboards would be put up for the convenience of visitors. The PCA authorities would be requested to specify the earmarked parking lots in the tickets.

“The cops have also been asked to keep a eye on persons indulging in black marketing of tickets,” he said.



MC poll: star campaigners put in their bit
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 25
Star campaigners of the BJP, former MP Satyapal Jain, and the Congress MP Pawan Bansal, today launched election campaign for the December 8 Municipal Corporation election.

Mr Jain sought the vote to strengthen Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee’s fight against terrorism and on the argument that the corporation will be able to get more grants with BJP in control because of a BJP-led government at the Centre.

Mr Bansal kick-started the campaign focussing on internal squabbles of the BJP during the past five years despite having a brute majority of 13 plus two Akali Dal candidates, resulting in, what he called, ignoring development.

Opening an election office of Ward Number 8 candidate of the party, Mr Kuldeep Singh, Mr Bansal, lambasted the BJP for all round failure.

Addressing a public meeting in the same ward in support of the BJP official nominee, Mr Amrit Lal Mahajan, Mr Jain said the BJP had been able to undertake lot of development works during the past five years despite the shortage of funds.

Mr Jain also clarified the position of the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD)-BJP alliance.

The BJP Ad-hoc Committee convener, Mr Yashpal Mahajan, held a workers’ meeting in ward number 11 in favour of Mr Gian Chand Gupta. SAD President, Mr Gurparatap Singh Riar, also campaigned in favour of Mr Gupta.

Mr Mahajan and Mr Riar appealed to workers to work unitedly for the victory of Mr Gupta.

The Congress councillor, Ms Kamlesh, today took out a rally in her ward and has launched a door-to-door campaign.

The Panthic Morcha, which has fielded seven candidates, sought votes in the name of increasing powers of the MC, which, they said, is being used by bureaucracy.

The morcha convener, Mr Joginder Singh Sawhney, said most of its candidates had either got car or bus as their election symbol.

The Samajwadi Party of Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav, today held a state executive meeting to decide the poll strategy and said the full force of the campaign has to be focussed on three wards from where its candidates are contesting. The party decided to open election offices in three wards tomorrow.

The BSP candidate from ward number 4 Mr Deepak Sidhu attacked the BJP, Congress and Chandigarh Vikas Manch for ignoring a certain section of the people living in colonies by saying that 95 per cent of funds are being spent on sectors.

The ward number 5 Congress candidate, Ms Shyama Negi, promised to improve living conditions in Colony Number 5, removing dumping ground in Daddu Majra, provide mobile toilets in colonies.

Ms Negi promised that she would get the ward medical facilities, banks, postal services apart from giving licences to rehri and phariwalas.



Panchkula may have solid waste treatment plant
Ruchika M. Khanna
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, November 25
The Panchkula Municipal Council proposes to set up a solid waste management treatment plant for garbage disposal.

The authorities are presently on the look-out for 12 to 13 acres on the outskirts of the township for setting up this plant. Till date, there is no systematic disposal or treatment of solid waste in the township. This is simply dumped in vacant plots on the periphery or reportedly in the Singh Nullah, passing through various sectors in the township.

According to a survey conducted by the Municipal Council, 400 grams of solid waste is generated by a single person in a day. With a population of around 2.5 lakh, 100 tonnes of solid waste is generated in the township per day.

Sources inform that land for the waste treatment plant is proposed to be acquired near Sector 20. Even the water treatment plant proposed for the township will be set up here.

Most of the residents welfare associations in the township complain that the sanitation system here is anything but good. In almost all sectors, associations have given private contracts for collecting garbage from each household, at rates varying from Rs 10 to Rs 20 per household. Garbage collected from a particular area is then disposed of in the garbage bins put up by HUDA.

More than 150 garbage bins have been put up by the authorities at various places here. The garbage, after being collected from these bins, is finally disposed of on the outskirts, especially near the partially developed Sectors 20, 23 and 25. Residents of these areas have given numerous representations to the authorities against dumping of garbage here. With a number of people now residing here, the foul smell emanating from these unauthorised garbage dumps has become a major problem for them.

Mr Rakesh Aggarwal, secretary of the Sector 12 Residents Welfare Association, says, “The garbage bins are placed in an unplanned manner and are lying open. Stray animals litter garbage around the bins and this keeps on lying here for days till the bins are cleared by HUDA authorities.”

The authorities have now decided to buy new garbage bins with lids. In a public — Municipal Council — HUDA interface organised by the Municipal Council recently, the Estate Officer, HUDA, Ms Geeta Bharti, had said they had placed orders for 100 more garbage bins with lids.



Talent complimented by good looks
Parbina Rashid

Chandigarh, November 25
It was solely her love for acting and dedication to her profession that made Tanja (pronounced as Tania) Becker to leave behind the bright lights of New York and come own to City Beautiful to work for the remaining episodes of the Punjabi serial “Apni Mitti” already on air on Zee Alpha Punjabi.

It was a chance meeting with the director of the serial Kishan Lamba that motivated Tanja to take up the role of “Kerman” the paramour of an NRI named Harry (played by Gurbinder Gindda). “It was the beauty of the role that made me sign up for the serial,” says Tanja as she makes herself comfortable in her private room in a local hotel in Mohali.

“The role gave me an opportunity to experiment with an array of mature emotions like love, deception and finally tragedy,” she adds referring to the part in which her beloved comes back to his wife in India.

Tanja , a German now settled in New York is just out of her acting course but has already acted in a number of documentary films there.”I have acted in short movies like “Love Story”, “Eric’s Secret” and a few others and one of them is likely to be shown in the Independent Film Festival in New York soon, says Tanja . And as her deep blue eyes sparkle with the hopes and dreams of tomorrow you somehow know she has the steel beneath her stunning looks to support her all the way to the top.

Tanja, already an established brand and ramp model, has got her perspective right. “I want to be known for my personality rather than my looks,” she says. This is the reason she prefers to stick to New York than Los Angeles as according to her Hollywood lays more emphasis on an actor or actress’s looks rather then their personality. So, for now New York - the place of Broadways and serious films — holds her interest.

But Tanja is all game about acting in Hindi movies as well. “Why not ? she asks in return. “India is a country where maximum number of films are being made and also have the highest viewership,” says Tanja. “Besides acting in a Hindi film would look good in my resume,” she adds with twinkle in her eyes.

Does she have any preference for any particular type of roles? “ I like dramatic roles as well as biographies which show development of a human being,” says Tanja. “But right now since this is my initial stage in my acting career I am not being fussy about the characters I play, instead I am trying to absorb everything and improve myself as an actress,” she adds.

However it is not only the lure of an acting career that made her fly all the way to India. “I have always found Indian culture and the particular style of architecture here quite fascinating,” says Tanja who has seen a number of temples as well as Mughal architectural buildings in an around Delhi. “My dream is to see the Taj Mahal before I go back because coming to India and not seeing the Taj would be like going to Cairo and not seeing the Pyramids,” she said.



Noisiest Divali since 1998
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 25
This year's Divali celebrations have been found to be one of the clean celebrations in recent years. But as far as noise pollution goes, this Divali was the most noisy since 1998.

The figures provided by the Chandigarh Pollution Control Committee have measured far less amounts of pollutants in the air this year. This includes the amount of suspended particulate matter (SPM) which though went up to 617 micrograms per cubic metre on Divali night which is 417 micrograms per cubic metre more than the permissible limits, still it was less by the figure of 935 micrograms per cubic metre of last year. The figures of sulphur dioxide and nitrogen oxide also remain lower than last year and well within permissible limits.

Noise pollution was the maximum during 7 p.m. to 9 pm on Divali night with the decibel level shooting up to 93 at 9 pm when the permissible limit during the night is 45 decibels. The levels went down to 79 by 10 p.m. and 69 by 11pm.



NCERT director defends changes in syllabus
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 25
While the storm over changes in curriculum by the NCERT continues unabated amongst historians and Parliamentarians alike, the Director, NCERT, Prof Jagmohan Singh Rajput, was at his defensive best at a seminar held to debate this matter, here today.

Speaking at a seminar on improving the education system in the country, he said the changes, some of which included deletion of certain portions of syllabus, was aimed at ensuring the students remained rooted to Indian reality, gender bias was eliminated from books and it reduced the burden of the students.

“Gradually, our culture, scripts and languages are being wiped out and a revolution against these seems to be gaining ground. In such a situation, education has to play the role of giving direction as well as countering such threats,’’ he said.

About 14-hour debate in Parliament, Prof Rajput claimed that most of the Parliamentarians had not even bothered to read the portions under question.

“These people have no answers to questions such as, why Pandit Nehru favoured Sanskrit or why Dr Ambedkar wanted it as the national language? They are only dwelling on the so-called “saffronisation of education’’ and adoption of Sanskrit seems an indication enough for them to prove their point’’, he added.

Stating that a complete working paper had been prepared on the recommended changes in the syllabus, Prof Rajput said this had been done in consultation with intelligentsia of the country, state education ministers, commissioners and directors of state education departments.

About “Talibanisation’’ of education, he said, “History is not wedded to any ideology or political party. We have asked all states to amend books according to their needs and situations. We have offered our services to them in case they require it for amendment of syllabus.’’

He said the curriculum-change had generated a debate in the country and it would have a positive outcome after the political reactions settled down.



Bureaucracy should be people-friendly
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 25
Ms Kamlesh represents ward number 18 of the Municipal Corporation House. She expresses confidence that her performance will stand her in good stead despite the ward being put under the general category, She had won the last election from a reserved ward for women. The ward constitutes Shahid Bhagat Singh (SBS) Colony, Sector-52, Vikas Nagar, Mauli Jagran, Indira Avas Colony and Ram Darbar, Phase-1 and 2. Chandigarh Tribune interviewed her as part of its ‘’Question Your Councillor’’ series. Interview with her is produced here:

Question: What have been your achievements during the term?

Answer: Rehabilitation of SBS Colony Karsan, sector-31 Labour Colony, construction of five parking lots in markets and installation of sodium lamps there, getting community centre restored to people from the CRPF, getting Harijan dharmshala, which was being used by the police, opened, facelifting of 90 parks, getting cactus park built, starting of a fire station and post office in Ram Darbar, shelter for bus commuters and laying of road separating Phase-I and 2 of Ramdarbar.

Ram Darbar Senior Secondary School was converted into a model school, main and internal roads were built, streetlights were provided on V-3 roads, four tubewells were installed, storm water nullah was made, Rs 40 lakh were spent on laying pipelines and renovation of schools in Phase-I and Phase-2 was done.

What do you think you could not do for the electorate? Why? Laying of tiles along main roads, a ring road for Ram Darbar, proper flow of water supply, rehabilitation of Indira Avas Colony, and only 50 per cent of internal roads could be layed. Most of these objectives could not be achieved because the BJP majority did not allow these works to be undertaken in the House.

How did you use the corporation forum to redress the grievances of the people?

Through request and protest both. I had to sit on protests mostly due to being a councillor of the opposition.

What did you promise the voter during election campaign?

Better civic amenities.

How supportive has been your party towards grievances of the electorate?

The local Congress MP, Mr Pawan Bansal, has supported me by taking up my matters with officials.

How supportive has been the bureaucracy?

The bureaucracy needs to be sensitised to the problems of common man.

What have you gained personally by being a councillor?

Satisfaction of trying to solve the problems of those who are neglected.

Promises  Performance
Roads  Lot done, but half of the roads still need attention.
Water Installed
Toilets in markets  Contract given
Post office, school, fire station Set up



Earth robbed around Makhan Majra
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, November 25
Top soil in four UT villages is being removed allegedly by the owners of the four brickkilns situated in the area. Five to 10 feet deep pits have been dug by them over 80 kilas of land spread across Makhan Majra, Raipur Khurd, Raipur Kalan and Mauli Jagran villages, say residents of the area.

They feel hurt to find that the Administration has never bothered to check the activities of the brickkiln owners. Today the situation has deteriorated beyond remedy. A resident of the area, on condition of anonymity, said that he had tried to attract attention of the administration towards their activities but to no avail.

Mr P.P. Singh Matharu, a regular visitor to the area, said that the kilns were causing environmental degradation. According to him quarrying by the kiln people had also caused immediate pollution problems as the green belt was being affected by the illegal activities.

Mr Karnail Singh, Sarpanch of Makhan Majra, however, was of the view that the kiln people were picking soil from the land which they had taken on contract from the landowners”. But he added that he would support any move by the Administration to stop the digging activities. The authorities of the Chandigarh Administration could not be contacted for their comments.

But there is no answer to the question; who, according to what authority, is giving the brick-makers permission to dig up the productive soil?

A resident of Makhan Majra observed: who cares for the soil when what matter are the spoils? The earth here is for plundering. The rich are for getting richer.



Social concerns of 15 result in Aagaaz
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, November 25
Fifteen local youngsters have joined hands to form Aagaaz, a social awareness and welfare association, to create greater awareness among city residents about their duties and responsibilities. Aagaaz was formally launched at Ramleel a ground, Sector 30, here today.

“We will soon make documentaries about the problems being faced by the city residents’’, said Nidhi Pandey, Public Relations Officer of the association and student of MCM DAV College, Sector 36. She informed that they would urge city residents to observe traffic rules, to keep their surrounding clean and not to litter garbage. The association also planned a fund-raising function in January next.

All 15 members of Aagaaz are either students or college pass-outs. Asked how they came together, Vijender Singh, pursuing his studies through correspondence, the president of the association, said, ‘‘We all were learning computers at an institute and it was there that we decided to form Aagaaz’’.

Aagaaz would organise public functions to make aware the local people about their duties and responsibilities. ‘‘We selected sector 30 for our first programme because this is one of the most dirtiest sectors of the city’’, said Pradeep Shirvastva, a student of SD College, Sector 32, and member of the association.

A cultural function was also organised today, in which students from different schools took part. The young members of the association also managed a sponsorship for their programme from the IDBI Bank. ‘‘This programme is just the beginning. We will tell people what they are doing wrong’’, said Anita Malik, doing her masters’ degree through correspondence, founder member.

Asked how they were different from other social organisations active in the city, Bhuvan Dogra, a member, said, ‘‘Aagaaz is a body of young boys and girls who want to change themselves and surroundings’’.

Other members Ms Shelly, Neeraj Kochhar, Yadvinder Chail, Inderjit Singh, Rajeev Rajan, Adish Jain, Hema and Vineet Garg. Dr D.K Pandey, lecturer at the Government College for Girls, Sector 42, is the chief adviser.

Over 100 residents of Sector 30 had gathered the programme staged by the Aagaaz team. ‘‘The idea is good and people should come forward to help them in their cause’’, said a Sector 30 resident.



Mirpur refugees seek better deal
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, November 25
Members of the Mirpur (J and K) Welfare Association, paid homage to residents of Mirpur now in Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK), who laid down their lives on this day in 1947 when Pakistan attacked the city. The association is also demanding compensation for the Mirpur refugees on the pattern of one that was awarded to those uprooted from West Pakistan during the partition.

A function was organised at Sector 35 to mark the day. Dr Sansar Chandra, Mr Onkar Singh and Mr Raj Kumar, spoke on the occasion. ‘‘Thousands of people of Mirpur lost their lives and there was no family which did not lose one or more or all of its members’’, said Mr Bal Krishan Gupta, general secretary of the association.

Association members alleged that the Government of India was not taking care of the Mirpur refugees who had settled in various parts of the country and were deprived of the benefits which the refugees from West Pakistan got under the Displaced Persons (Compensation and Rehabilitation) Act.



Hundreds take part in Rath yatra
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, November 25
The Jagannath Rath Yatra was organised in Panchkula here this evening, in which hundreds of devotees from all walks of life participated.

The rathyatra began from Mani Majra near Dhillon Theatre and headed towards Sector 7, the Market Welfare Association, Sector 7, received the yatra and provided fruits and milk to devotees.

The yatra proceeded towards Sector 8 and taking the road leading from the Housing Board light point, the yatra headed towards Sector 9 and 10 and concluded at the Pracheen Shiv Mandir in Sector 9.

A bhandara was organised at the temple for the devotees.



Residents’ bodies discuss hike in cable charges
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, November 25
A meeting of the resident welfare associations of Chandigarh and SAS Nagar, and Municipal Councillors of the local civic body was held to discuss the hike in subscription charges by the cable operators in Phase 7 here today. It was unanimously decided not to pay more than Rs 100 as the cable charges per month.

Air Marshal Randhir Singh ( retd), President of the Federation of Sector Welfare Associations of Chandigarh ( FOSWAC) also attended the meeting. Mr Amrik Singh Tehsildar, a councillor from Phase XI, said, the residents of Phase XI had refused to pay the hiked monthly cable charges. The issue was raised after the cable operators of Chandigarh, Panchkula and SAS Nagar got on one platform to increase the subscription charges in order to meet their expenses.

He said in Phase XI residents had removed the cables passing over their houses. The cable operators have been asked to revise their cable charges by December 11, failing which the residents would surrender their connections.



Award for Samaritan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 25
Mr Alamjit Singh Mann, a good Samaritan who has saved many a life by simply listening to his conscience and doing what was needed to be done was awarded a national award by the Global Economic Council at a function organised in New Delhi on the 83rd birth anniversary of Indira Gandhi.

Mr Mann has been helping to save lives of people injured in road accidents and has been doing so since 1994.



Search operation conducted
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 25
As a part of its ongoing effort to curb any untoward incident during the forthcoming MC poll, the local police conducted a search operation in the Janata and Kumhar colonies in Sector 25 today.

According to the police, as many as 35 persons were taken into custody, but were later let off after their antecedents were verified. As many as 80 police personnel took part in the operation, which continued for over three hours.



THE city still has a long way to go before it matures as an audience. Although theatre activity has started growing in Chandigarh, the viewers have not grown in consonance. In fact, many people who sit among the audiences of play presentations do not even deserve to be let inside the venue.

The day which saw noted city-based director Umesh Kant stage his bold production titled Sakharam Binder at Tagore Theatre, brought a lot of embarrassment in its fold. The play by Vijay Tendulkar has crisp dialogues which serve to enrich the story line. But someone in the gathering did not seem mature enough to handle the dialogues and even the presentation at times. It was particularly embarrassing for Neetu Sharma, a second year student of the Department of Indian Theatre, PU, who was playing the bold role of Champa, a rash and rustic girl. Whenever her chance to deliver dialogues arrived, a man seated in the last row started murmuring something or the other. Not just this, he made some unsavoury remarks towards the end when credits were being announced.

It is time Tagore Theatre people started disallowing drunkards into the sacred space of performance!

Cricket at Leisure

The Administration officials do not seem to be paying as many visits to the Leisure Valley in Sector 10 as they should be. Had they been actually inspecting the area, the children of neighbouring sectors would not have taken the liberty of playing cricket in the Leisure Valley grounds. (See photo on top of the page) The children have often been spotted using the ground for playing. Given the state of affairs, the grass is sure to get spoilt. The problem is more serious in view of the fact that Leisure Valley is the venue for the prestigious three-day Chandigarh carnival to be organised towards this month’s end.

May be the Administration wants to let kids have a field day and later spend some money to get the ground ready for the show.

Asian of the year

Mr Gurdip Singh Gujral, President of the International Punjabi Society (European Division), has been selected as Asian of the Year, 2001.

The award was presented by Mr Duncan Smith, opposition leader of the House of Commons, in London on October 25.

The previous recipients of this award are Mr Keith VaZ, Lord Swaraj Paul, Lord Dholkia and Imran Khan.

Mr Gujral,CBE, comes from an agricultural, religious family background in Punjab.

He did his graduation in India and went to England in 1965 with his wife and eight-month-old son. His first job was in a factory, earning £ 8.50 per week.

He started as a market trader, selling brass ornaments and ethnic garments.

After many years of market trading, he slowly and steadily built up a readymade garment business importing from India and wholesaling around the country.

Hard luck

Sanjay Dutt really made some people go crazy. There was a great rush of fans lined up to meet him on the day he went to inaugurate a new men’s outlet in a showroom in Manimajra. But there was an equal amount of caution being exercised on the part of organisers of the star’s visit to the showroom. So while many fans made it through the swelling crowd, a few odd were left outside.

One of them was particularly depressed about not being able to make it close to the actor. He was so dejected by his failure to be seated next to Sanjay Dutt, who was raising “say no to drugs” slogans, that he told his friend: “Now you see, I am going to be a drug addict. What the hell does he think of himself!”

As if this would do him any good.

Studying in museum

The City Museum, housed in the Government Museum complex, may not be frequented much by tourists to the city, but these days it is being heavily frequented by some serious readers. With the December examination in various colleges of the city just round the corner, students are regularly visiting the museum, which provides a peaceful ambience, just right for studies. One of them is particularly religious about his visit. Attendants in the museum tell of how he reaches the museum just after it opens and goes back just before it is about to close.

Thanks to Corbusier’s works which send out soothing vibrations.

Physics examination

For students doing B.Sc. and having brain for physics, here is an offer to prove their prowess at the National Graduate Physics Examination.

The test, which is similar to the National Standard Examination in Physics, offers students a chance to assess their performance in a tension-free environment. The problems come from various areas of physics, which requires exceptional knowledge.

Every year the Indian Association of Physics Teachers holds the test. The objective of the test is to evaluate experimental skills of students, says Prof U.S. Kushwaha, its general secretary.

The country is divided into 12 regions. Punjab, Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Chandigarh comprise one region. The aspirants are required to enrol themselves through their respective colleges. Any college with 10 candidates can become a centre. The test will be held on January 27, 2002. The last date is November 27.

After the test, certificates are awarded to top 10 per cent students at the centre-level, 1 per cent at the state-level and 1 per cent at the national-level. The national-level toppers will appear in a practical examination, out of which five students will be awarded gold medal.

The S.N. Bose Centre for Theoretical Physics, Kolkata, has decided to give direct entry to five gold medallists into the integrated Ph.D programme.

State award

Dr Naresh, an eminent Urdu poet and professor of Modern Literature at Panjab University, had been selected by the Haryana government for its Bal Mukund state award for his contribution to Hindi “ghazal”.

Dr Naresh, a recipient of nearly two dozen state and national awards, had defined, codified and classified for writing “ghazal” in Hindi through a blend of Arabic-Persian “behrs” and Hindi-Sanskrit “chhands”.

His widely acclaimed book “Ghazal: Shilpa aur Sanrachna” was published by the Haryana Sahitya Academy which also bagged him the Punjab government’s Indra Nath Madan award. Dr Naresh acknowledges that “ghazal” was originally a Persian form but also held a good scope in Hindi.

Seamless banking

With the introduction of “seamless branch banking” by the State Bank of Patiala henceforth customers need not have to worry about a contingency. Now by becoming a customer of the bank — rather than a specific branch — they carry out their transactions from any of the 17 branches located in the city of Chandigarh and its satellite towns, Panchkula, Mohali, and Chandimandir, according to Mr J.R. Devgun, General Manager (Operations).

One can become a customer of 17 branches with a single account at any of the 17 branches.

The bank has also set up a hub centre in Sector 8, where ATM cards are issued to its customers on the same day. The hub centre has been set up for controlling all the transaction of banking anywhere banking across the country. This facility is likely to be extended to Patiala, Delhi, Ludhiana and Derabassi and Kharar branches as well First operation of the anywhere banking was done from the personal banking specialised branch Sector 8-C.




Liquor seized, 1 held
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 25
The police has arrested a resident of Kumhar Colony in Sector 25 from the Janata Colony in the same sector and recovered 12 bottles of country-made liquor from his possession. The accused, identified as Komal, has been booked under provision of the Excise Act.

Vikas, a resident of Sector 47, has reported that he was beaten up by four unknown boys in the same sector when he had gone to collect payment for cable connection services. He sustained injuries and was admitted to the Sector 32 Government Hospital. The police has registered a case.

Onkar Singh Rana, a resident of Sector 22, has reported that two gold rings, two gold karas, a gold chain and 12 silver coins have been stolen from his residence. The Police has registered a case.

Vehicle theft
A resident of Indira colony has reported that his scooter (PB-10-F-7236) has been stolen from the Sukhna Lake parking. The police has registered a case.

In another case Bhupinder Singh, a resident of SAS Nagar, has reported that his scooter (PB-46-5876) has been stolen from Sector 47. The police has registered a case in this regard.

Satwinder Singh, a resident of Sector 34, has reported that his servant, Rajesh, has decamped with some articles after breaking the locks of his cupboard.

The exact loss is still to be ascertained. The police has registered a case.



Case of fraud
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, November 25
Sukhwinder Singh, a resident of Dhaboli village in Ropar has lodged a complaint with the police that Gursewak Singh and Sarabjeet Kaur, both residents of Phase 7, and Kamal, a resident of Sector 35 in Chandigarh, had cheated his brother. A case under Sections 406 and 420 of the IPC has been registered by the police.



Hoteliers’ body to set up office in city
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 25
The Hotel and Restaurant Association of Northern India (HRANI) plans to set up its office in Chandigarh shortly.

This was disclosed here today by Mr Deepak Sharma, secretary-general of the HRANI. Shimla and Jammu are among the other places where the offices would be opened. He disclosed that HRANI had recently set up a Travel Reservation and Information Centre (TRIC) which would provide reliable and authentic information on tourist destinations and instant reservation services for hotels in Northern India to cater to the domestic and international traveller.

TRIC, he said, had been activated with a manifold agenda, viz., to provide information, marketing and reservation facilities to all HRANI hotel and restaurant members, to facilitate tourists; to give a boost to domestic tourism among all segments of society. Tourists generally had to undergo a lot of inconvenience with travel plans, owing to lack of reliable information and reservation facilities. The philosophy of TRIC was to bring the destination closer to the leisure traveller.

He added that while most people were aware of popular destinations but had no idea about the “Hidden Treasures” that India had to offer. TRIC would fill this gap by working very closely with HRANI members, Ministry of Tourism, state tourism departments, Railways, air and surface transport suppliers and other service providers and offer comprehensive service at one single point. Domestic and international travellers would now have an easy access to destination information and instant reservation facility for more than 600 hotels (ranging from family run small hotels to 5-Star deluxe ones) and 500 restaurants in 82 cities spread in North India.

He pointed out that the tourism industry, today, was the second largest net earner of foreign exchange for the country. It had the highest capital / labour ratio in generation of employment. Currently the industry provided accommodation to about 2.3 million foreign tourists and about 120 million domestic travellers.



‘Textile industry to be more competitive’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 25
The textile ministry is working towards simplifying the duty structure for textile industry and remove the anomalies to provide this industry with competitive advantage, said Mr Atul Chaturvedi, joint secretary, Ministry of Textiles, while presiding over the concluding session of the 57th All India Textile Conference at Panjab University here today.

The conference, which was organised by the Punjab, Himachal and Chandigarh (PHC) unit of the Textile Association of India was attended by more than 500 delegates from across the country.

Mr Chaturvedi said the next budget would be crucial for the textile industry in this regard. “It’s rather late that professionals of the industry are discussing the road map to global supremacy in the field of textiles whereas this should have been done six years back when the phasing out of quota under the WTO was launched”, said he.

He said “the Indian domestic textile market is very large and the industry should endeavour to meet the domestic requirement of quality and prices and also produce surplus for exports.”

While referring to phasing out of textile and garment quota in the year 2005, he said, under severe global competition, only efficient investments would survive. Mr R.C. Kesar who formally took over as the national president of the textile association today, assured that the association would co-operate in all respects with the Textile Ministry to help formulate the strategy for the industry for the coming years.



Amendments to Companies Act discussed
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 25
The Chandigarh-Panchkula chapter of the Institute of Cost and Works Accountants of India today held a meeting of its members to discuss amendments to the Companies Act.

The main speakers were Ms Sangeeta Bhalla, a teacher with the Department of Laws, Panjab University, and Mr Anil Aggarwal, a practising company secretary. The discussion was aimed at apprising members of the changes in the statute through the 2000 and 2001 amendments.

The speakers emphasised that the amendments were made to protect the interests of smaller investors. The main provisions relate to postal ballot, audit committee, secretarial compliance, dividends and deposits.

Mr J.S. Ahluwalia summed up important provisions of the Act. The purpose of today’s meeting was to update the members about the recent changes in the statute.

Section 192-A provides for passing of resolution by postal ballot. According to this provision, a listed public limited company shall pass any resolution by means of postal ballot . In such a case, notice is to be sent to all shareholders along with a draft resolution explaining the reasons thereof and requesting them to send their assent or dissent in writing on a postal ballot within 30 days from the date of posting of the notice. If a resolution is assented to by a requisite majority of the shareholders by means of postal ballot, it will be deemed to have been duly passed at a general meeting.

Section 292-A provides that a public company having paid-up capital of not less than Rs 5 crore shall constitute an audit committee. The committee shall consist of not less three directors of which two-thirds shall be directors other than managing and whole-time directors. The committee shall elect a chairman from among themselves. The auditors, if any, and the director-in-charge of finance shall attend and participate in the meetings of the audit committee, but will have no right to vote.

As per amended provisions of Section 383-A, companies with a paid-up capital less than Rs 50 lakh and more than Rs 10 lakh who are not required to engage a whole time company secretary shall file with the Registrar of Companies a secretarial compliance certificate from the secretary in whole-time practice as to whether the company has complied with all the provisions of the Act. Dividend is to be paid within 30 days from the date of declaration instead of 42 days, as earlier. Section 275 has been amended to provide for the reduction in the number of companies from 20 to 15, in which a person can be a director at a time.



Bulk and weight win prizes
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 25
Mr Gurdeep Singh, weighing 140.80 kg was adjudged as the heaviest man by VLCC at a function held to mark the Anti-Obesity Day which falls on November 26.

Ms Parveen Grover weighing 100.40 kg was adjudged the heaviest woman and Ms Surinder Kaur weighing 104.20 kg and Mr Hajoor Singh weighing 109.90 kg were chosen as the heaviest couple.

A health quiz was also conducted on the occasion and in “the guess your weight” contest Mr Rakesh Mehta got the first prize. Subsidised blood tests for cholesterol, sugar and thyroid were also done by Speciality Ranbaxy Labs Ltd.



Smallest alarm system developed
Our Correspondent

Amarjit Singh explains working of an alarm system developed by him.
Amarjit Singh explains working of an alarm system developed by him.

SAS Nagar, November 25
A local industrial unit owner has developed what he claims to be the smallest alarm system in India. Mr Amarjit Singh of Me-Tech says the new system gets activated as soon as an attempt is made to open or break any door, window or window-pane connected to it. It can also be connected to a telephone to warn the owner, besides having the facility to give signals to more than one telephone.

The inventor claims it is the only alarm system in the country that has concealed sensors for doors and windows. Its other features, he says, include zone control options with detachable installation, nominal power consumption, automatic functioning on batteries during power failures, secret key controls panic buttons and automatic searchlight switch-on.



Osia Italia range unveiled
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 25
Osia Italia, a 30-year-old leading Italian fashion label, has unveiled its range of “Pure Fashion” in India. Shoe-cut trousers from the company are the latest innovation aimed at giving perfect fit with maximum comfort feel to the wearer. The company will display its innovative winter line with over 100 colours and designs and vivid warm feel fabric combination.


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