Sunday, September 14, 2003, Chandigarh, India


L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Implement MSPs, Preneet asks Centre
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 13
Thousands of farmers converged on the premises of Krishi Vigyan Kendra, Rauni in Patiala district on the occasion of Kisan Mela organised here yesterday. While addressing a large gathering of farmers after inaugurating the mela, Mrs Preneet Kaur, MP, called upon the Centre to announce and effectively implement the minimum support price for pulses, oilseed, maize, etc. to save Punjab agriculture. She said in the absence of assured marketing and remunerative prices, it will not be possible to divert 10 lakh hectares from paddy-wheat rotation to these crops. In his presidential address, Dr Kirpal Singh Aulakh, Vice-Chancellor, Punjab Agricultural University, said that World Trade Organisation (WTO) has drawn a comparison between rich and poor countries. India should study the system of subsidiaries given to the farmers in the developed countries and change policies to provide financial incentives to the farmers at par with these countries. He gave a call to the Punjabi farmers to adopt farming in order to minimise cost of production, maximise profits and also to improve the quality of the farm produced according to the quality parameters required in the international markets.

Dr Jaspinder Singh Kolar, Director of Extension Education, PAU advised the farmers to adopt cost-effective technologies like zero tillage bed planting for wheat cultivation so as to reduce the cost of production. Stressing upon the need for diversification Dr Kolar also advocated the cultivation of berseem, raya, gobhi sarson, winter maize, sarson and gram etc. He also informed that PAU will organize a Kisan Mela at Bathinda on September 19 and at Gurdaspur on September 25.

Dr Govinder Singh Nanda, Director of Research, expressed concern over the proliferation of un-recommended varieties of some crops, thus resulting not only in economic loss to the farmers but also posing the danger of the spread of many insect-pests and diseases. He advised the farmers to sow only PAU-recommended varieties which have been released for cultivation after thorough testing for their adaptability and resistance to insect-pests and diseases.

Dr Sadhu Singh Malhi, Associate Director (Training), Krishi Vigyan Kendra, Rauni (Patiala) said this kendra organised 87 training courses benefitting more than 2,500 farmers, farm-women, rural youth and functionaries of different state governments departments and other organisations in the field of agriculture and allied enterprises like bee keeping, mushroom cultivation, poultry, dairy, pig farming, home science, etc. He said the farmers of Birawal village had been able to get remunerative prices of chillies through cooperative marketing.



PAU to develop garden at Rashtrapati Bhavan

Ludhiana, September 13
Punjab Agricultural University has been given the task of developing a model garden for the Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi. This honour comes on the heels of the visit of President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam to the campus on September 4.

The President was impressed with the performance of the PAU on the agricultural front during his visit and interaction with farmers during Kisan Mela.

The Vice-Chancellor, Dr K.S. Aulakh, received a telephonic message from the Military Secretary of the President, Major- Gen M.S. Dogra, saying that Dr Kalam desired that the PAU should develop a model garden at the Rashtrapati Bhavan, for which one-acre land would be available.

Accepting the assignment, the Vice-Chancellor has despatched a two-member team to Delhi to examine the quality of the soil and determine which type of fruit plants can be planted.

The team comprises Dr Amrik Singh Sandhu, Additional Director, Extension Education, and former Head of the Department of Horticulture, and Dr Satish Narula, a senior horticulturist at Chandigarh.

Dr Aulakh said, “This is a great honour for the PAU. The team would study the soil and the environment. We will set up a complete garden.”

The university team will explore the possibility of planting kinnow, lime, lemon, sweet orange, peach, soft pear, grapes and other such fruit plants which are suitable to Delhi’s climate.

The Vice-Chancellor said during the visit of the President, he had reminded Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh about the Rs 20 lakh sum announced by the latter at a Kisan Mela in March for the institution of three prizes for farmers of Punjab. He said the Chief Minister had promised to send the money and interest accruing on it would be used for instituting three prizes for best farmers of Punjab. These prizes will be for general agriculture, dairying and horticulture.



Journey to South Pole
Deepkamal Kaur

Ludhiana, September 13
A book penned by the first Indian to have ever visited the bottom of the world aims at unfolding the mystery of the South Pole and Antarctica.
Dr Parmjit Singh Sehra, Professor of Agrometeorology, Punjab Agricultural University, had gone down South in December 1971 as a part of a Russian expedition for his PhD research on the topic ‘Structure of upper atmosphere in the South Pole’. At that time, he was a student of Physical Research Laboratory, Ahmedabad.

Dr Sehra has recalled incidents of his 18-month-long expedition, in a book titled ‘A visit to the South Pole and explore the Antarctic continent’. The book, which is to be released soon, has been written in a popular style.

Dr Sehra said he wanted to get his book released from Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, President during his visit to the PAU campus last week. But owing to his busy schedule, he did not press for it. He said that he had met Dr Kalam during his sojourn at Thumba Equatorial Rocket Launching Station (TERLS) near the South Pole where he was the test director for Russian rockets. It was at the same station from where Dr Sehra conducted his experiments to know the upper atmospheric structure.

Dr Sehra sought a visa, but was told didn’t need one for a no-man’s land. In Russia he failed to give a certificate of his adaptability to southern climatic conditions. After undergoing the required tests, he was made to give an affidavit that he was joining the expedition at his own responsibility.

Thus began his odyssey to 90 degree South when the expedition reached South America. From there they started trekking. The weather was so bad at times that they had to bend and crawl. The members were carrying along with them food reserves for 18 months which included canned meat, juices, condensed milk powder, sugar and tea bags. Many unsavoury incidents occurred during their sojourn. One of those was their food reserves got exhausted. They were left with no sugar, no milk, just tea bags. For the last few weeks they dipped tea bags in melted snow.

Dr Sehra was unable to adjust to the six-month day and six-month night schedule. At the time when he had gone it was summer and there was no night at all.



Extension lectures at college
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 13
A series of extension lectures were organised at Guru Nanak Girls College by different departments yesterday. The first lecture was organised by the Department of Physics under the guidance of Ms Rashmi Arora (Head the Department of Physics), Resource person Dr S.S. Bedi, Senior Physicist (Department of Physics, PAU, Ludhiana), delivered a lecture on ‘Environment Pollution’. The lecture was well received, informative, interesting and generated queries among students. A vote of thanks was extended by Mr Surinder Pal Singh.

Biochemistry Department had also organised an extension lecture. Dr B.S. Sohal (Professor, Department of Biochemistry/Chemistry, PAU) imparted knowledge about the latest developments apart form classroom teaching. Dr Harkirat (Head of the Department of Biochemistry) introduced Dr Sohal with the students. Dr Sohal enlightened the students on ‘Protein Synthesis’. Students put queries which were answered by Dr Sohal.

Computer Science Department organised an extension lecture on the topic of ‘Importance of System Analysis for a Programme’ by Dr Jagmohan Singh (Head of the Department of Computer Science and Applications, PAU). Mrs Kamlesh Gupta (Head of the Department of Computer Science) introduced Dr Jagmohan to the audience.

Another extension lecture was organised by the Department of Sociology. Dr Sukhdev Singh (senior lecturer of PAU) delivered a lecture on ‘Rural Development’. He also presented his views on ‘Programme of Rural Development’. Mrs Daisy Aujla (Head of the Department of Sociology) thanked the guest speakers.



Cultural contests from Sept 23
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 13
Owing to several complaints made by schools regarding the delayed release of schedule or participation forms by the block education officers last year, no tehsil-level cultural contest will be organised by Punjab School Education Board (PSEB) this year. But the cultural events will begin for the students of government, recognised and affiliated schools at the district level from September 23 to 25.

All the contests have been divided into three categories. For the students from classes I to IV there will be six competitions to be held on September 23. These will include shabad singing, declamation, calligraphy, painting, fancy dress and folk song singing.

The students of classes V to VIII will form the second category and participate in 10 competitions scheduled for September 24. These will include shabad and vaar singing, kavishri, declamation, calligraphy, painting, folk song singing, poetry recitation and Punjabi folk dance (for boys and girls). While the topics for painting will be given on the spot, those for declamation have already been announced.

The third category will include students from senior secondary section and they will vie for various contests on September 25. There will be 12 different contests for the category which will include one-act play and creative writing in addition to the 10 listed for the middle group. The students of this category will also compete for gatka which will be held only at the state-level contest.

The three top winners in individual categories and two top teams in group contests at the district-level competitions will go for the zonal competitions. For this four zones have been defined, one for the districts of Jalandhar, Amritsar, Gurdaspur and Kapurthala, second for schools from Nawanshahr, Hoshiarpur, Ropar and Fatehgarh Sahib districts, third for Ludhiana, Sangrur, Mansa, and Patiala districts and fourth will include students from Faridkot, Fatehgarh Sahib, Moga, Muktsar and Bathinda. The three top winners in individual and team contests from the four zones will then compete for the state-level competitions. 



Old students’ reunion
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 13
An old students’ meet was organised at Guru Nanak Girls College here today. About 800 students comprising old and present were present at the function. It was a day filled with fun and nostalgia as the old students remembered the days spent in the college.

The students were welcomed by the Principal, Ms Charanjit Kaur Mahal, while president of the college Gurbir Singh blessed the students. She apprised the students of the activities of the college. Ms Bindu Bala, secretary, Alumni Association, formally welcomed all former students. Ms Jiandeep, present head girl, welcomed the old students on behalf of the students.

A two-hour cultural programme comprising choreography, skit and dances were presented. 70 old students were honoured. 



ASI convicted
Legal Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 13
The Special Judge, Mr Inderjit Kaushik, has convicted Assistant Sub-Inspector, Shamsher Singh in a corruption case and sentenced him to imprisonment for two years and imposed a fine of Rs 2000 on the accused.

According to prosecution, the accused demanded money for arresting a person named in a dowry case.


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