Friday, March 22, 2002, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Computer science for undergraduates
Sanjeev Singh Bariana
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 21
Panjab University is introducing computer science as an ‘additional optional’ subject in its affiliated colleges from the coming session.

The course is being offered initially at degree level. The university is attempting introduction of computer education in all courses, including arts, because of the importance the gadget had acquired in the current global scenario, particularly while seeking jobs in majority of sectors.

The course module of the subject will be of 60 hours. The outlines of the tests, syllabi and courses for reading will be prepared by the university after the issue gets a formal nod in the forthcoming Senate meeting, sources said.

The annual examination will be conducted by the university. Students will pay Rs 200 each as special fee. The aspect of the practical examination linked with the paper will be handled by the respective colleges. The course will be offered only to colleges which have the required infrastructure. Colleges will be allowed to charge a fee of Rs 1,200 annually.

The additional optional subject will be ‘qualifying in nature’ and students will have the option of clearing the course anytime during their three years in the college. Incase of students who qualify the course, the marks obtained will be required to be mentioned in the detailed marks card, but these marks will not be added to the aggregate marks.

Colleges are required to develop sufficient infrastructure right from the date of the initial scheme of admissions to the course.

The university has clarified that students offering Bachelor of Computer Application at the undergraduate level need not enroll for ‘Introduction to Computer Science’ course.

The Syndicate has already decided to introduce the course in the colleges from this session.

Sandeep Singh, a law student, said: “The majority of students after their studies were spending their time and money in private computer institutes because computers had become an indispensible weapon in the job market. Acquainting students with computers in colleges was a very valuable service that institutes could render to their students.”

Jasmeet Singh, another student, said computers had been introduced in majority of private schools. The government was making all efforts to introduce the computers in government schools as well. So, it should be made a compulsory subject for all colleges.

A senior faculty member said the move to introduce computer science was a well-timed move. The university, however, should first ensure that besides fulfilling the conditions of physical infrastructure, colleges should also ensure recruiting suitable faculty members.



Entomologists dwell on vector control
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 21
The urban malaria vector is highly adaptable and lays eggs in water coolers, air conditioners, flower pots and the lilac and its management needed greater care.

This was pointed out on the concluding day of the three-day UGC workshop on “Entomological Research — Progress and Problems” organised by the Department of Zoology at Panjab University here today.

The speakers included Dr Sarala K Subarao, director, and Dr N.L. Kalra, a senior entomologist of the Malaria Research Centre, Delhi, and Dr H.C. Gera. A sizeable portion of the health budget is spent on vector control to contain malaria. Management of the vector needed to be implemented in a joint effort with the neighbouring countries as similar species of vectors go beyond the boundaries of the nations and spread the diseases.

Dr Kalra also spoke on dengue fever that is spread by a virus. Dengue was an epidemic in many countries and had jeopardised the lives of three million people.

Prof Avtar Singh, a veterinary entomologist, on the epidemiology of ticks infesting cattle and suggested some practical chemical control measures.

Others who spoke on the occasion included Mr B.S. Naveen, Prof P.R. Gupta, University of Horticulture and Forestry, Solan, Dr Devinder Singh, Punjabi University, Prof S.K. Taneja, chairman of the department, Prof R.J. Hans Gill and Prof Paramjit K. Tewari.



Seminar on instrumentation and IT
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 21
A national seminar on ‘Instrumentation and Information Technology (IT) for disabled’ is being organised at the Central Scientific Instruments Organisation (CSIO), here. The two-day seminar will be inaugurated by the Governor of Punjab, Lt Gen (retd) J.F.R. Jacob tomorrow.

The seminar, being organised by the Department of Social Welfare, UT Administration, in collaboration with IETE, CSIO and Computer Society of India, is a step towards realising the equal opportunity, protection of rights and the full participation Act 1995 for disabled. The seminar will deliberate on various ways to improve the quality of life of disabled through information technology and instrumentation.

As many as 200 delegates from all over India are expected to participate in the seminar.

Over 50 research papers will be presented on the role of IT in reducing disability in terms of physical and mental capability, professional and financial freedom; on the role of IT in addressing individual problems of tomorrow, speech and hearing, visual and mental disabilities; on the role of telemedicine distance education; on the role of IT networking in bringing disabled together; on the role of IT in reducing gap between disabled, social organisations, government agencies, policy planners and research and development institutions; on the role of IT in Indian context and the role of hardware and electronic instrumentation.



350 students donate blood
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 21
More than 350 students donated blood, while two students Sushima Samra and Sumit Behl, both youth ambassadors of the college, were issued certificates for meritorious services by the Home Secretary, Mr R.S. Gujral, at Punjab Engineering College, Sector 12, here today.

Earlier, Mr Gujral inaugurated a blood donation camp on the college premises. He encouraged the students to donate blood liberally in order to save precious lives.

The Principal PEC, Dr Baljeet S. Kapoor, stated that the NSS unit of the college has been organising blood donation camps regularly for more than 15 years and is the largest donor of blood among educational institutions in Chandigarh.

The students have, through their own initiatives, created infrastructure for organising such camps. The students and staff members of the college have actively been participating on the camps. The number of volunteers donating blood has significantly increased over the years, he added.

Giving details, he said two NSS volunteers, Smisha Samra and Sumit Behl, have been selected youth ambassadors for spreading awareness amongst peer groups regarding AIDS and other communicable diseases in India and the other Commonwealth countries.

Two first-year girls of the unit, Seema Dhankar and Kavita, attended the National Integration Camp in December, 2001. The NSS unit also contributed a sum of Rs 17,880 to the Gujarat Chief Minister Relief Fund for providing aid to the victims of the Gujarat earthquake.

Mr Kapoor advocated that the NSS unit in association with Commonwealth Youth Asia Centre Chandigarh is working for the development of self help groups and the micro-financing scheme. The students from the NSS would be going to Ahemdabad to gain first hand experience on working of self help group and micro-financing schemes.

The NSS has also been spreading general awareness about social evils, cleanliness and various diseases in a slum, adjacent to Punjab Engineering College, Chandigarh.



100 attend workshop on architecture
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 21
A click of a button was all it took to construct a house and the world opened to a virtual walk-through in the rooms at a workshop conducted at the College of Architecture, Sector 12, here today.

Organised by Maya Academy of Advanced Cinematics (MAAC), the workshop was attended by over 100 architects from Punjab Urban Development Authority (PUDA) and working professionals from the Centre for Conceptual Engineering as well as students of architecture and interior design.

Conducted by Mr Deepak Dhawan, the workshop began with a presentation of a walk-through which enabled the participants not only to move from room to room within a building based on the prepared blueprint but also decorate it according to taste before finally giving it the go-ahead. He was assisted by Mr Jayakumar, a professional from Maya Academy, Mumbai.

After the presentation, the participants were taught to construct the buildings, rooms and furnish them according to their taste using the six softwares required for the purpose. These included Photoshop, Premium, Sound Fore, After Effects, Auto Cad and 3-D Studio Max.



Students pledge to keep environment clean
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 21
The students of Government High School, Sector 26, pledged to make the environment clean and green by planting and conserving trees and shunning the use of polythene on the occasion of World Forestry Day, here today.

A number of activities were organised by the eco-club named “Taruvatika” in association with the UT Environment Department. The Additional Director, Department of Environment, Mr P.J.S. Dadhwal, was the chief guest. He told the students about the various activities which can be undertaken by them in school.

The councillor of the area, Mr Sohan Lal, and the president of the PTA, Mr Shrawan, were the guests of honour. Among the various activities organised were tree plantation, paper-reading competition and inter-school poster-making contest. As many as 50 saplings were planted on the occasion.

Earlier, the Principal, Ms S. Lamba, welcomed the chief guest and informed the gathering about activities of the eco-club.



Recover costs from officer’s pocket
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 21
The Punjab and Haryana High Court, in a significant judgement, today ordered that costs or interest to be paid by the state to employees compelled to move court should be recovered from the erring officer.

Delivering the verdict, a Division Bench, comprising Mr Justice Swatanter Kumar and Mr Justice Mehtab Singh Gill, also directed that the state governments should react or respond as expeditiously as possible, in any case not later than four months, to legal notices and representations served on them by employees for redressal of grievances or relief granted to similarly situated colleagues in furtherance of court orders.

The Judges also ordered that the obligation on part of the states to grant same relief to identically situated persons was implicit and it must ensure that all its employees were not compelled to approach the court for redressal of grievances. The state must also accept the judgments and implement these in the true spirit wherever the law has been settled and all remedies available under the provisions of law have been exhausted, the Judges asserted.

The Judges also ordered that the copies of the directions should be sent to Chief Secretaries of Punjab and Haryana, along with the Adviser to the Chandigarh Administrator for giving definite instructions to all departments for strict compliance.

Ensure signing of petitions

The High Court today directed the Registry to take due care to ensure the compliance of statutory provisions regarding the signing of petitions by all the petitioners. In a ruling, Mr Justice Swatanter Kumar and Mr Justice Mehtab Singh Gill observed that in view of the High Court rules and orders, “every petition must be signed by all the petitioners although verified by any one of them.”

The Judges added: “It is imperative for the petitioners to verify the allegations made in the petition and if the petition is not signed by the petitioners or their authorised agents who have been empowered to sign the same on their behalf, the seriousness of the consequences flowing from such allegations would stand frustrated in law as the petitioners may disown the petition at a subsequent stage. On the other hand, if one petitioner has signed the petition and has perused the same on behalf of others, he may withdraw it thereby causing prejudice to the interest of other petitioners”.

Rape suspects’ bail cancelled

Allowing a petition, Mr Justice M.L. Singhal of the High Court has cancelled bail allowed to four Fatehgarh Sahib residents accused of raping an 18-year-old class X student.

In her complaint before the police, the victim had alleged that Shamsher Singh and other accused had kidnapped her before taking her to a room in a car. On the basis of her statement, a case under Sections 376, 363, 366, 342, 323, 506 and 34, IPC, was registered at a police station in Bassi Pathanan.



Encroachments: PUDA asked to furnish status report
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 21
Requesting two advocates to submit a status report after undertaking another survey of SAS Nagar preferably in the first week of April, a Division Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court today observed that the report submitted by them in the court today prima facie strengthened their apprehension that Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority had adopted a pick-and-choose policy.

Delivering the verdict, the Bench, comprising Mr Justice G.S. Singhvi and Mr Justice M.M. Kumar, also directed that counsel for the parties may jointly or individually give suggestions for the maintenance of public land from which encroachments were, or were to be, removed. The case will now come up for further hearing on April 11.

Coming down heavily on PUDA after receiving complaints regarding pick-and-choose policy, besides resurfacing of encroachments in SAS Nagar, the Bench, on the last date of hearing, had directed the advocates to visit the areas where unauthorised structures had been removed and indicate if these had cropped up again.

The Bench had also asked PUDA to furnish the latest status report and also file an affidavit indicating whether the encroachments had been removed, along with the details of the encroachments that had resurfaced, besides policy on corner plots, and steps taken to protect the greenery in the area.

In their petition, S.A.S. Nagar’s Anti-encroachment Committee through its president N.S. Minhas had earlier sought directions for the removal of encroachments and obstructions.

Describing the encroachments as “illegal and unlawful”, Mr Minhas had also sought directions to the government agencies for “enforcing the provisions of law to remove the encroachments”. He had added that the VIPs had initially started encroaching upon the land due to leniency on part of PUDA authorities. Their example was soon followed by the other residents.

Claiming that the committee had been set up with the objective of watching the interest of the general public and for awakening the government agencies into removing the encroachments, counsel for the petitioner had contended on the committee’s behalf that the residents, in the name of beautification, had grabbed land by encroaching upon the open spaces outside their houses.

The land, the counsel had added, was “meant for providing essential services like the laying sewerage, water pipes, electricity cables and telephone lines”.

He had added that several complaints regarding encroachments had been addressed to the authorities concerned, including the Chief Minister and Minister of Housing and Urban Development, but so far no action had been taken.

Stay on notification

Admitting a public interest litigation, a Division Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court today stayed the operation of a notification issued by the Chandigarh Administration vide which private operators were to be given permit for operating mini buses within the sectors on the V-5 roads.

In their petition taken up by the Bench, comprising Mr Justice G.S. Singhvi and Mr Justice M.M. Kumar, a city resident had earlier contended that the scheme was not in public interest. He had added that the roads were not wide enough and no route plan had been specified.


HC directive on Puri’s duplex house
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 21
Mr Justice H.S. Bedi and Mr Justice Ashutosh Mohunta of the Punjab and Haryana High Court today stayed the dispossession of Panjab University’s former Vice- Chancellor M.M. Puri from the duplex house allotted to him in Mani Majra. Challenging the orders passed by the Chandigarh Housing Board cancelling the allotment in his favour, the former VC had submitted that his appeal against the orders had been rejected by the Chairman.

In an earlier petition, the High Court had asked the former VC to file an appeal before the chairperson against the cancellation of allotment. Claiming the action to be in violation of the principles of natural justice, his counsel had added that a personal hearing was not given after the show cause notice was issued.

The Housing Board, it may be recalled, had stated that the registration as well as allotment of a dwelling unit had been cancelled and the entire amount deposited by the VC had been forfeited for “having concealed material facts and for making false statement.”



Delight for birdwatchers, art lovers
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 21
Sanjay Kaushal’s photographic show, which opened for the public at Punjab Kala Bhavan today, makes a conversation of sorts. The frames speak up on the behalf of the artist, who is genuinely driven by a sensitive motive. That explains why for the past one year, Sanjay has been pursuing a fresh concept for structuring a show that came to life at the hands of Punjab Governor and UT Administrator Lt Gen J.F.R. Jacob this morning.

Bringing alive the magic of flight, the exhibition underlines freedom through birds, which happen to be the solo subject for the entire ensemble. The works are delightful not just on account that they satisfy the aesthetic urge of the viewer but also in that they are high on information value. The photo artist has laboured through seasons to pick up a vast variety of migratory birds that have ever hit the soil of Sukhna Lake. His camera has closely followed their harmonious movements, the nuances of their long and sometimes short flights. The result is before the eyes for lovers of birds and art to savour.

The show abounds in species of migratory birds, with a due explanation with regards to their place of origin and breeding.

So those who have not had the chance of romancing the birds at the Lake can make a try this time. Almost all the species of migratory birds have been captured in the best of moments, to the best of techniques....

Although there are slight repetitions of compositions at times, the show is largely pleasurable.

The inaugural function was attended, among others, by the Adviser to UT Administrator, Ms Neeru Nanda, and CITCO Managing Director, Mr S.P. Singh. Interestingly, CITCO has offered support to the artist for putting up this informative show that highlights the abundance of nature in city.

The exhibition will go on till March 24 and can be visited between 10 am and 6 pm.

Vibrant hues greet you right at the entrance of IndusInd bank Art Gallery, which played host to 16 beautiful frames by Chaman Sharma today. The artist, who hails from Shimla and is working presently at Solan, is putting up a solo show for the first time in the city. Earlier, he has participated in many group shows here.

The works reflect maturity of thought and execution. The influences of the artist are varied — right from a beautifully carved out stone lying outside the door of a village house to the swinging branches of trees that adorn the landscape of hills. The water colours flow forcefully all over the canvas and bring each composition to life. Interestingly, the artist, who has normally worked on oil, chose water colours this time. The idea was to take on the challenge this medium offers.

The works, mostly on the spot, portray the majesty of hills. The backdrop is Solan and Shimla. In Shimla, the artist has tried to recreate the magic of his native village Dhami. All the works of art make a definite statement and do not sound replicas of each other. Where on the one hand the great Himalayas have been painted in all their glory, on the other is a small temple perched on a quiet corner of a small hillock in Solan.

Finally, each canvas speaks in the language of harmony.... The works will be on display till March 30.


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