Sunday, March 10, 2002, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S


Parents pay through the nose for kids’ admissions
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, March 9
There has been a mad rush for admission at the model schools and public schools in the city and elsewhere in the district with the new academic session getting nearer.

While these schools claim better facilities and standard of education, they charge an exorbitant fee at the time of admission and a disproportionate tuition fee thereafter. The amount collected at the time of admission is under various heads such as welfare fund, building fund (even if the school does not plan any construction work in the near future), parents contribution etc.

The largest chunk of money collected is under parents’ contribution or donation. It ranges between Rs 200 and Rs 1,000, depending on the status of the parents and the name of the school. Only a really “high connection” can get a parent exemption from giving such donations. While the students are provided with some facilities in these English medium schools, the teachers are not given a fair deal. In many of these schools, the teachers work four to six hours a day for just Rs 100 to Rs 150 a month.

Of late, the craze for English medium schools has led to the mushrooming of small institutions which are nothing but commercial establishments. Most of them are not recognised or affiliated to the Board of School Education Haryana. They send their students for the examination either at some recognised school or as private candidates. The thirst for Western style education has led to the emergence of a number of teaching shops in the city. These are privately run institutions and hold classes from nursery to the matriculation and higher secondary levels. Most of them are small enterprises run by the educated unemployed. These schools constitute arguably the most flourishing small-scale industry for which one needs no licence. Some of these institutions enjoy a good reputation and there is a scramble for admission there. Being unrecognised, they receive no government aid. Also the government has no control over them. The fees at these schools vary from Rs 100 to Rs 200 a month.



Die-hard Pooja Batra hitches her wagon to a star
Tribune News Service

Pooja Batra

Panipat, March 9
Cine star Pooja Batra, who has had a string of flops, is a die-hard optimist. After a rather lacklustre tryst with Bollywood films, she is now pinning her hopes on Akbar Khan’s blockbuster ‘Taj Mahal’ in which say plays Noorjehan to give her the right ‘lift’.

She says Noorjehan is not her best hope yet. The role of Noorjehan was fairly good but my best was yet to come, she told the ‘NCR Tribune’ in a brief chat. She had come here in connection with the inauguration of the Panipat centre of Curls and Curves (I) Limited (CCIL).

The long-legged 5’10” model-turned-actress, who had only a moderately successful ‘Virasat’ opposite Anil Kapoor to boast of, feels that her dream project is yet to come. And she is waiting for the right director, script and role.

Sporting a blood-red tight top, hip-hugging blue jeans and blue-red sports shoes, the petite Ludhiana-born Pooja today mesmerised her fans here on Friday.

To a specific query whether her height is a handicap in the Bollywood where tall heroes are rare these days, she replied in the negative arguing that tall heroines like Shilpa Shetty, Tabu and Sushmita Sen were not doing badly. Anyway, several tall guys were making a beeline for the Bollywood which should make the directors take note of the tall heroines, she quipped.

Marriage? “I am not averse to it and you will have the good news when I find the right guy,” she said with a twinkle in her eyes. She isn’t planning to play mother at home after marriage. Her film career would continue after marriage, she said.

Earlier, the private security guards had a tough time managing the motley crowd of her fans outside a house in the Model Town.

Scores of fans with flowers in their hands and screaming “Pooja Pooja” thronged the house to have a glimpse of their heartthrob. Fearing rowdyism, the security personnel bundled her into a waiting Toyota luxury.


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