Thursday, January 24, 2002, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Learning in lap of nature
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 23
Boys of St John’s School had a new set of teachers from January 19 to 21. It was the tall pine oaks, the imposing Kasauli hills and the curvaceous mountain roads, which became their qualified instructors as boys of Class IV and V ran through an adventure camp planned out by the Durga Das Foundation. Rappelling, rock climbing, angling, and pitching of tents were some of the physical aspects that they experienced.

A team of experienced professionals took a group of 29 eager beavers to camp at Dharampur for three days and two nights. For most of them, it was the first time they were away from home without the protective umbrella of their parents. Initially hesitant they soon warned up to the host of activities planned for them. Via hectic brainstorming and quizzing the boys were sensitised to aspects of river knowledge, mountain manners, trekking etiquette and environmental responsibilities.

They were shown the right way of hiking and path-finding and the importance of conserving wildlife, flora and fauna. Presentations and informal lecture sessions gave them inputs on the Amazon Rain Forests and on Ornithology. They were made aware of the danger to human being in the event of extinction of rare species of plants and trees. All this learning came against the larger backdrop of social interaction, communication, sharing of information, coming to the rescue of their teammates, getting over their ‘solo playing tendencies’ and most importantly establishing a sincere respect for nature.

Camp life taught them to look after their things, to be cooperative and supportive of each other, to understand the role which a healthy mind and body plays in the overall wellbeing of an individual, the importance of hygienic and nutritious food and exercise, to cleanse the body and mind of its toxins by thinking positive and to showcase their individual talents.


200 participate in ‘Aao Bune contest’
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 23
Over 200 students from 19 schools of Panchkula, Kalka, SAS Nagar and Pinjore, participated in the zonal round of ‘Aao Bune knitting contest’ at DC Model Senior Secondary School here, organised by Vardhman Spinning and General Mills.

This being the country’s biggest hand knitting contest, has been introduced with an objective to generate awareness about the benefits of hand knitting. This nationwide contest has been organised in over 500 schools of Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh and other regions of the country. Over 1,00,000 students are participating in this contest.

During the contest, girl students from various schools knitted beautiful designs — floral, geometrical and even ones with messages knitted on them. The colour combinations in various hues of pinks, red, green , blue and yellow. The students were given three hours time to knit a pattern each.

Earlier, these students from Class V to Class XI had participated at a school-level contest under six different categories. A total of 60 student participants — 10 from each category, have been shortlisted for the final evaluation phase. 


School kids get a taste of cooking
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, January 23
It is not just “Temptation Island” and other serials on the television that interest students. Cooking and baking, too, is a passion with young children. The fact became apparent after around 86 students prepared samosas with noodles, baked noodles and other goodies during the Nestle “Cook ‘N’ Serve” contest held at St Stephens School, Sector 45, today. The winners were judged on the basis of recipe, innovation, taste and presentation of the items.

The organiser, Ms Anoop Michra, said: ‘’There is a lot of talent among children and they have a lot of enthusiasm for cooking. More such events will be organised in another 10 city schools. A mega finale will be held among the prize winners of different schools.’’ The prize winning recipes included Maggi samosa, Maggi vada, eggless truffle cake, Milkmade chocolate cake, cheesey Maggi, baked Maggi, Milkmaid chocolate fudge and Milkmaid chocolate soufle . All participants were given certificates, while the winners got gift hampers from Nestle. The winners of group A (Milkmaid category): First — Rubina of Class VII; second — Sheenam of class VII. The winners of group A (Maggi category): first — Raina of class VI, second — Malika of class VI . The winners of Group B (Milkmaid category): first — Sonali of class IX; second — Himani of Class IX. The winners of Group B (Maggi category): first — Manika of Class IX; second — Harman of class IX.


PU results today
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 23
The results of BE (Mett) first semester, BE (Mechanical) first semester, BE (Electrical) first semester, BE (Computer Science) first semester, BE (Civil) first semester and BE (Civil) third semester examinations held in Nov-Dec 2001 will be declared tomorrow, an official press note issued by Panjab University stated today.


Summons to IAS officer quashed
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 23
The Punjab and Haryana High Court today quashed the summoning orders issued against an IAS officer on the basis of a complaint filed by a Jalandhar resident. In his complaint, the resident had alleged that the officer had joined a health club being run by his wife but had refused to make payment. She had even threatened the owner and soon after the incident income tax raids were carried out.

In a ruling, Mr Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel of the High Court observed: “In the absence of any material on record either in the complaint or in the preliminary evidence, the summoning of the petitioner is not justified. The summoning orders qua the petitioner is quashed”.

The Judge added: “Needless to say as and when any evidence warranting the summoning of the petitioner is available, the trial magistrate will be free to pass appropriate orders in accordance with the law”.

Seeking the quashing of the complaint and the summoning order, the petitioner had claimed that she had no connection with the newspaper that had carried new item about the income tax raids and was not liable for the publication of defamatory information.

No action on plot till plea disposal

Taking up a petition filed by a Ludhiana-based industry alleging the allotment of a plot due to political pressure being exerted by senior functionaries of the Punjab Government, a Division Bench of the High Court today ruled that the allotment shall be subject to the decision of the writ petition.

In their petition taken up by the Bench, comprising Mr Justice R.L. Anand and Mr Justice Amar Dutt, Munish Manufacturing Corporation had alleged that the plot had been allotted to Punjab Electro-Chemical Engineers Private Limited in blatant disregard of the allotment policy. 


Capturing romance of journey to queen of hills
Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 23
Images of the full flooded glory of Shivalik Hills whose charms can put the best sights to shame; the long nostalgic rail track which bears the grand steam-driven railway along the Kalka-Shimla route; the Kalka-Shimla mail in full view.... And other such images form a part of the photo project put together by lensman Sumeet Inder Singh and the Tourism Promotion Society of Chandigarh (TPSC). To label the ensemble as a plain exhibit of pictures in black and white would tantamount to underrating its significance. The show in fact is an endeavour to further the cause of languishing railways and give them their due status — that of a living heritage.

No wonder then that the entire collection is information based. Not only has Sumeet mounted moments which he captured along the 95 km track during his month’s labour, he also took care to inject the ambience of the gallery with the romance of the hills and the railway stations therein. The space has been filled up with nostalgic motifs so that the audience can actually feel the breath of ice. The elements which convert the exhibition into a thematic effort include a Victorian lamp post, a fruit cart, lamp shades found typically in waiting rooms of stations along the hills.... an antique wall clock used by the railway manager and so on.

The paraphernalia further includes notes on the history of railways in India which Sumeet collected during his two-week research on the subject. He said, “My sources were well-placed people in Shimla and books in Panjab University’s collection. I spent a lot of time finding out how the concept of steam-driven railways was first proposed in 1834, also information about the first surveys of the Kalka-Shimla route which were conducted in 1887.”

The show tells us of the stupendous engineering feat that this track is:

The line rises from Kalka, a small town at the base of the Shivalik Hills 640 metres above the mean sea level (MSL) to the Shimla station at 2,060 msl. The track covers 95 km on its 30 inch gauge. Between the two stations lie 103 tunnels, 800 bridges and 900 curves; statistics that earn for line a place in the Guiness Book of World Records. The mention of the over 1 km long tunnel at Barog (the longest along the track) cannot be missed out. The longest and tallest bridge along the track is at Kanoh.

The black and white images exude the aura of hills as they capture the dim and sometimes sunny dawn in the densely wooded span, the faint smile on the faces of young boys who are charmed by the magnificent track and foreigners dining in the plush deluxe first class chair car of the mail. Each frame is well-placed in the scheme of things. The show begins with the picture of the spot where the track begins at Kalka.

The effort involved is reflected in every element of the ensemble. Sumeet spent many nights at the railway stations of Barog, Kandaghat, Koti, Shimla and others. He talked of how the Kalka-Shimla Mail (which takes five hours) offers the joy of ride through the mountains in just Rs 17. Sad, however, is the fact that very less people take the train, mostly on account of their unawareness. “This is our effort to extend a helping hand,” he said. In fact before viewing this show one did not know that Shimla Railway Station is one among the very few in India which shuts-down completely after the last train departs around 6 pm.

An almost equal credit for the show is shared by the TPSC, which has funded and resourced it. Mr Manhoman Singh of the society extracted motifs from his private collection to add meaning to the show, which will later be taken to Shimla also.

Inaugurated by Adviser to UT Administrator, Ms Neeru Nanda today, the show will be open till January 26 between 10 am and 8 .30 pm.

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