Sunday, December 9, 2001, Chandigarh, India

 

C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


 
EDUCATION

Teachers annoyed at minister’s statements
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 8
The “misleading statements” over the pension-cum-gratuity issue for college teachers by the Punjab Finance Minister came under strong criticism at the rally of the Punjab and Chandigarh College Teachers’ Union held at Matka Chowk, here yesterday.

Alleging that the minister was not “interested in addressing” the main issue of distribution of retirement benefits to teachers through the government treasury, the speakers demanded the intervention of the Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, to resolve the crisis.

Speaking at the rally, Principal A.C. Vaid, Finance Secretary of the Principals Federation of Panjab University area, said that Mr Badal should settle the matter once and for all to ensure smooth functioning of 172 colleges of Punjab and Chandigarh.

Condemning the repressive attitude of the Punjab Government at Ludhiana adopted to discourage the protesting teachers, the PCCTU general secretary, Prof J.S. Randhawa, said the Finance Minister was “making statements against the decision of the Cabinet with regards to the payment of retirement benefits through state treasury”.

He added that the union would be forced to “take drastic action” in case no solution was found, while claiming that the “ceasework” strike would continue till the demands were not met.

The senator of Panjab University, Prof Charanjit Chawla, demanded action against officials of the Punjab Government for not implementing the Act passed by the Punjab Assembly and signed by the Punjab Governor.

The president of the Chandigarh district of the PCCTU, Prof N.P. Manocha, announced that a rally by the teachers’ union, principals and management unions would jointly be organised on December 10 in protest against the stand taken by the government.

Earlier, the secretary, Prof Karamjit Singh, claimed that the “ceasework” call by the PCCTU had been complete in all seven colleges of the city. He deplored the stand taken by the Finance Minister with regards to the benefits for teachers.

Assuring a deputation of privately-managed aided colleges at a meeting, the Higher Education Minister, Master Mohan Lal, said a concrete proposal would be sent to the Finance Department for concurrence.

Also, a detailed memorandum in this regard would soon be sent to the council ministers for its final approval. He said the teachers would get pensionery benefits as per the Pensionery Benefits Act of 1999.

Meanwhile, members of the deputation said they were asked to shift the burden of the benefits to the managements of the private colleges. However, it was turned down by the deputation on the grounds that the managements were not able to pay salaries and were dependent on the government.

“If they can pay for such benefits to school teachers in aided schools of Punjab, they should not have any problem in applying the same principle to the teachers of aided colleges in the state,” a member said. 

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BCS ex-students hold get-together
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, December 8
It was Old Cottonians (northern chapter) 13th meet where about 60 old students of Bishop Cotton School, Shimla, got together in Sector 3 here today.

The Old Cottonians’ meet is an annual feature every December. The meet is held every year in the UK and Delhi also.

The oldest student of the school was Kanwar Mahinder Singh, who was from the 1931 batch and the recent pass-out was Sujjan Singh of the 1999 batch. Ex-students had come from far-off places, including Uttar Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Dehradun and Punjab .

The general secretary of the Old Cottonians Association, Mr Manvir Singh, said “We old students even raise funds for different school projects and contribute for the development of the school.”

Among the old Cottonions were Punjab and Haryana High Court judge, Mr Justice H.S. Bedi, Lok Sabha Member, Mr Simranjit Singh Mann, and Income Tax Commissioner, Mr B.M. Singh. The headmaster of the school was also present.

The school was founded in 1859 by Bishop Cotton in Shimla .
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Custodians of timeless melodies
Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 8
Some people do not make music, they are literally born into it. So when their melodies fill the air, anyone consuming them becomes a part of the music maker. It is this joy of music which makes music director Anandji so revered even till date. The romance of songs he created with his elder brother Kalyanji never seems to end. In fact, it only becomes fresher with every passing day. That because it is “naad” and not noise.

The list of their timeless scores is never ending. Be it the love dripping from the honeyed voice of Mukesh in Chandan sa badan...or the pain portrayed by Rafi in the evergreen Pardesiyon se na akhiyaan milana, the music of these legendary brothers moves the soul. After Kalyanji, Anandji may never have been the same but his heart continues to draw inspiration from the countless sources of inspiration.

The maker of “Phool tumhe bheja hai khat main” was in Chandigarh for the first time today. Meeting the guru was like sipping from the divine ocean of melody. Right from the influences of childhood in his home village of Kutch to the painful cultural transition we are undergoing today, Anandji spoke his heart out in an exclusive interview with the Tribune. As the maestro talked about the changing cultural preferences, lost moorings and the need for preserving the precious musical heritage of India, he looked imposing. But more importantly, he looked grounded despite the fact that he teamed up with brother Kalyanji to create film directors and playback singers.

“As boys of 18 and 19 years we began as strugglers in the industry. For our father who was a businessman, it was not an easy decision to let us have our way, but he had faith in us and in our inclination. I, as a musician, will offer my bit in preserving heritage by teaching music which has the power to cement societies,” said Anandji. With feet firm on the ground the two brothers began creating music. Their first movie was ‘Samrat Chandragupt’ which had the evergreen song “Chahe paas ho chahe door ho....”

With divinity resting on their fingers, they went on to make historic music, covering a host of moods from patriotism to romance to pain and also religion. Their scores for “Saraswati Chandra” (released in 1968) won them their first national award. The award was repeated in “Himalaya ki god mein”. Recalling the making of “Saraswati Chandra”, Anandji said “The film was challenging as it was being made in black and white at a time when colour was a rage. The music had to be fine enough to match expectations.”

Among the other golden jubilee films by Kalyanji-Anandji were “Jab jab phool khile”, Johar Mehmood in Goa, “Upkaar”, “Suhaag Raat”, “Haseena maan jayegi”, “Tridev”, “Lawaris”, “Qurbani” Jaanbaaz...to mention a few. They could handle any kind of lyrics with an amazing amount of versatility.

Ask Anandji about what inspires him and he says: “The childhood influences count. We have grown up with people like Shanta Apte...and many others who were devoted to music. Born in Kutch, (Gujarat), the folk influences in their songs are natural. So is the philosophical tinge. As Anandji himself said: “I lived in a region which was constantly under threat. So our people were naturally patient, more mature and more enduring. Our songs reflect this mysticism.”

As of today, Anandji is busy strengthening “Little Stars”, the group which is dedicated to refining talent. After Alka Yagnik and Sadhna Sargam, it is now Sneha Pant (who sung in “Yaadein”), who is riding high with Anandji’s training. Anandji today talked of Alka, whose first score was “Mere angne mein in” “Lawaris”. He added: “Currently I am working on a cassette which will teach the elements of Indian music. I have lent a western touch to the project so as to make it attractive for kids. Titled “Saat suron ki sargam”, the cassette will shortly hit the market.” Paying due respect to all music directors today, Anandji said that he personally liked the work of Jatin Lalit.

Anandji could not help praising SD Burman who, he said, could create visuals with his music. Anandji will give away the prizes on the occasion of Rafi Nite at Tagore Theatre tomorrow.
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Dancing sensation to enthral audience in city
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, December 8
Payal Ramchandani was called a child prodigy when she was just nine years old in 1998. She, by then, had included Ganapathi Vandana in Raga Gaula with the rendition of Shri Rama Pattabhishekam and then the entire Ramayana in her repertoire. She was said to be on the right foot by discerning critics, who spared no one, not even an artist in the making. She grew up dancing her way through applause and was described as a Kuchipudi wonder.

When she performed solo in Natya Tarangini's Natya Vaibhavam Festival at Kamani Auditorium, New Delhi, the audience hailed her as an accomplished artist who made the flame of divine art burn in the true Kuchipudi tradition.

Payal is a disciple of the legendary Gurus, Raja, Radha and Kaushalaya Reddy. Her talent has been chiselled by the trio with parental indulgence and the faith that she would carry their parampara forward. She addressed a press conference organised by the Air Hostess Academy (AHA), New Delhi, in the city this evening.

She explained the key to her success: it is Guru kripa and Saraswati's blessings. “Whether I was performing at Sharjah or Dubai or at Ayyappa Temple, New Delhi, my Gurus kept me under their grace.” What made her a dancer at an early age? Her reply was: “My parents' encouragement and their delight in the fine arts”.

She would like to be an architect even if life tended to make her a dancer like Sherley Temple. She has been acknowledged as possessing surprising maturity in technique as well as bhava. Her abhinaya and correctness in rhythm and posture are immaculate. She will show her fine qualities at a performance on December 22 at Tagore Theatre at a function organised by Pracheen Kala Kendra. A.H.A. deserves praise for introducing her to Chandigarh.
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READERS WRITE
Works of art have never been dumped

The Government College of Arts is one of the oldest and most reputed colleges in Chandigarh. Of late the college has been the subject of a number of negative comments and articles, the latest being an article in The Tribune dated December 6 titled ‘Works of art or heaps of garbage’. Anyone who reads this article will be convinced that the college authorities do not respect young people and their ideas. This is not true. As students of this college, and especially those of the Department of Sculpture, we would like to reject the idea put across.

The article, which states that the backyard of the college, serves as a dumping ground, featuring many sculptures, which suggest a bright history, has offended students. It is true that the college backyard does serve as a dumping ground but this is cleaned up periodically. However, the dump does not consist of sculptures that were meant to be preserved. It consists of the experimental works undertaken by students during their training period which have been voluntarily discarded by the students themselves.

The moulds dumped there are also discarded pieces as they are temporary moulds, made of plaster, which cannot be used again. The actual works of art, which students wanted to keep, are neatly displayed in the college corridors, lawns and individual departments, and in all our four years here we have never seen any college authority ignoring works of the students.

The article further states that a sculpture by a former student of the college, Manjit Singh, which was once seen in the college corridor, is now lying discarded in an odd corner of the building. Au contraire, the sculpture by Manjit Singh, rests proudly at the entrance of the corridor leading to the Department of Sculpture, and has been there ever since Manjit Singh himself placed it there.

The quote mentioned by the third year student of sculpture made us wonder because after questioning all the third year sculpture students present in the college, we learnt that none of them had spoken to any reporter on any matter concerned with the college.

We should also like to add that a student’s work is his own responsibility, and it is up to him to take care of it. It is wrong to blame the college authorities.

Ashtha Chauhan (4th year); Natasha Jeyasingh (4th year); Vinima Gulati (3rd year); Bhumika Sharma (2nd year); Amanpreet Kaur (2nd year); Avneet Vasudeva (2nd year); Mamta Bisht (2nd year); Prerna Goyal (2nd year); Prainy (2nd year); Priya Kapoor (4th year); Anitoj (4th year); Mukesh Guru (3rd year ); Deepika Agarwal (4th year); Suriti Sharma (4th year ); Gaurav Arora ( 3rd year); Parneet Dhiman (3rd year); and Shreya Goyal (3rd year).
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New party album
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, December 8
Bhangra lovers of the city had an footstomping session with Punjabi pop singer Jinder Jinda who released a party album, “The Kiss ‘N’ Tell Bhangra”, at a music house in Sector 17 here yesterday. The music of this party album, which comprises eight bhangra numbers by singers like S.S. Gill, Jinder Jinda, Meenakshi, Roop Samrai, Dippa and Janjua has been directed by The Kiss ‘N’ Tell team of music directors.

Jinda who entered the world of pop music with his first album, “Rabba Hun Ki Kariye”, has come a long way establishing himself in bhangra pop scene. An ardent fan of Punjabi folk, Jinda polished his talents under the guidance of Jaswant Billa.

Accompanied by a well-trained bhangra team, the singer started today’s function with his popular number Rabba hun ki karyie later moving onto numbers from his second album “Karti Ghuggi Khein” as well his latest that included “Jat pindu”, “Kardi kugi”, “Mein mar gaya soniya” and “Ishq di bukhar”.

His latest numbers “Akh nal akh” and “Sharabian de nal” filled with western beat pulled the enthusiasts onto the dance floor.
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