SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI


THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
D E L H I   A N D   N E I G H B O U R H O O D

NSUI charter calls for hi-tech education hub
New Delhi, July 10
The NSUI charter is no longer limited to raising demands for more buses and passes. The charter put forth by the students unions is now getting ambitious. Take, for instance, the National Students Union of India (NSUI), which has, in its meeting with the Minister for Human Resource Development, Mr Arjun Singh, demanded “student-friendly policies and a state-of-the-art education hub”.

  • Special training for teachers

Fraudulent payment of land compensation to be checked
Noida, July 10
The district administration has decided to rein in the cheats who pocket land compensation of farmers with the connivance of the government officials.

MCF asked to clear encroachments in NIT park
Faridabad, July 10
The Municipal Corporation Faridabad (MCF) has been asked to immediately remove the encroachments in a park in the NIT area here.


EARLIER STORIES

 

THIRSTING FOR MONSOON!
THIRSTING FOR MONSOON! 

NGOs focus on child sex ratio
New Delhi, July 10
A significant chapter was added today to the national advocacy campaign against sex selection and pre-birth elimination of females.

CVC hails power sector
New Delhi, July 10
Mr P. Shankar, Central Vigilance Commissioner, has appreciated the work done by the Power Sector in accelerating the pace of mission to provide power to all.

School drop-outs to get treat from the Dutch
New Delhi, July 10
A group of Dutch people has embarked on a world tour to collect funds and draw attention to the plight of millions of children who had to drop out of school.

Truant monsoon worries farmers in Faridabad
Faridabad, July 10
The ‘hide and seek’ played by the monsoon in the region has led to a widespread concern among not only the common man, but the farming community at large.

Population Day: The more the sadder
New Delhi, July 10
On the eve of the World Population Day, an entertaining yet thought-provoking street play, “Badati abadi tauba tauba”, was enacted at Dilli Haat by the underprivileged children of Don Bosco Ashayalam, an NGO that runs a shelter for destitute children together with Uppal’s Orchild that takes up the issues related to environment.

Blood donation camp
Faridabad, July 10
As many as 36 volunteers donated blood at a camp organised by the District Red Cross Society here at Sector-12 today. The donors included the trainees of the ‘First Aid and Home Nursing’

Dalai Lama visits eye centre
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NSUI charter calls for hi-tech education hub
Smriti Kak Ramachandran
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 10
The NSUI charter is no longer limited to raising demands for more buses and passes. The charter put forth by the students unions is now getting ambitious.

Take, for instance, the National Students Union of India (NSUI), which has, in its meeting with the Minister for Human Resource Development, Mr Arjun Singh, demanded “student-friendly policies and a state-of-the-art education hub”.

The NSUI, which currently occupies the office of the Delhi University Students Union (DUSU), is determined to seek more than just a few sops. “We want the government to revert to the practice of exempting M.Phil students from taking the NET, a qualifying exam for lecturers,” national president, Ashok Tanwar, told The Tribune.

“Prior to Dr M. M. Joshi’s tenure, it was not mandatory for the M.Phil and Ph.D. students to take NET. We feel very strongly about this issue and have also taken up the matter with the minister,” he added. This apart, the NSUI also wants the government to invest in what they call a “dream education hub”. “The hub will have complete information on various subjects and courses, all under one roof. If a student from Bihar wants to seek information on growing a particular crop, the hub should allow him to seek information on which universities offer the know-how of it,” said the spokesperson of the NSUI, Kuntal Krishna.

While the party has announced its intentions to raise its decibel level on the need to withdraw the UGC’s controversial ‘Model Act’ for universities, it also plans to push for “more colleges”. “There is a need to start more colleges. If the government cannot build new ones, then provisions for an evening shift must be made in the existing colleges. We have already submitted a proposal for having evening colleges in Ambedkar College and Shradhanand College,” pointed out Tanwar.

While striving to focus on issues related to the students, the students’ faction has also ventured on “contentious issues” like the composition of the selection committees for appointment and promotions.

“The revised composition should be withdrawn. It allows for a lot of manipulation and gives the vice- chancellor a lot of power, which is not correct,” said Tanwar.

In the same breath, he spoke about how the negotiations are on for “organising an international youth festival”. More seats for girls in working women hotels, a separate hostel for the North-East students, more funds for scholarships and an insurance cover for all students enrolled in the university also find a place in the wish list.

“The Delhi Government promptly agreed to pay the premium for the students studying in colleges run by them, but we want the scheme extended to all students,” said Tanwar.

And while the perennial demand for more buses (U-specials) remains, the need for enhanced security on the campus has also been mentioned.

Special training for teachers

The Rehabilitation Council of India (RCI) will work with the National council of Teacher Education (NCTE) to train general schoolteachers on disability and rehabilitation to speed up the inclusion of special children into general schools.

Announcing this today, RCI said one of the important objectives of the collaboration between the two statutory bodies was to strengthen the education system by training general schoolteachers and creating an appropriate platform for the inclusion of special children in general schools. This is being done with the ultimate aim of creating one school system for all children.

The collaboration will also aim at developing a course curriculum on special education that can be incorporated as a component in general teacher preparation programmes. RCI feels that it is high time that the divide between the special educators’ training and the general teachers’ training is reduced and common areas are explored to improve the education of children with special needs.

“With this, the RCI aims to meet the demand for special educators in general schools across the country.
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Fraudulent payment of land compensation to be checked
Parmindar Singh

Noida, July 10
The district administration has decided to rein in the cheats who pocket land compensation of farmers with the connivance of the government officials.

The District Magistrate, Mr Santosh Kumar Yadav, has taken a strong note of such cases. In Greater Noida, land compensation was wrongly claimed on the basis of fake address and name. It has been recovered from the cheat and deposited in the government treasury.

A number of government officials of the department concerned are reportedly finding themselves in hot water.

The District Magistrate ordered a probe into all such cases where the administration had received complaints of fraudulent payment of land compensation to the cheats, depriving the bona fide farmers.

It may be recalled that the compensation of Ranjit Kaur and Prabhjot Singh pertaining to the five bigha land in Greater Noida had been taken by someone else with the connivance of some officials. While the real owner was living in Canada, a woman and a man had managed to take the compensation amount.

Prabhjot Singh had authorised his mother living in Ludhiana to take that compensation as he was living abroad. He was told that the compensation of his land had been disbursed on April 17. A complaint was made about it to the District administration. The District Magistrate said that the compensation amount, wrongly taken by someone else, has been confiscated.

Connivance of accountant, ‘patwari’ and many others has come to light in this case. Mr Yadav has warned all officers and employees to stop such illegal acts.
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MCF asked to clear encroachments in NIT park
Bijendra Ahlawat
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, July 10
The Municipal Corporation Faridabad (MCF) has been asked to immediately remove the encroachments in a park in the NIT area here.

About 600 shops have come up illegally in the park meant for the children and the residents of the nearby localities. The appeal was made by a social activist, who had filed a PIL in the Punjab and Haryana High Court, seeking the removal of all encroachments from here.

The petitioner in a reminder to the civic body authorities has claimed that despite an order passed by the High Court for a proper action against the ‘encroachments’ and about three months

had gone since the order, the authorities concerned had not taken any action to comply with the court directions.

In the letter to the authorities concerned, the complainant, Mr K.L. Gera, has expressed concern over the delay in action against the ‘encroachments’ and said that the shops, mostly dealing in automobile repairs and spare parts, had been functioning without fear.

He alleged that these shopkeepers had extended basements, verandahs, platforms and fixed grills in violations of all the norms.

He said that this automarket had been a source of heavy pollution for the residents and, particularly the students of a nearby government school.

Claiming that the park meant for morning and evening strolls had been reduced to a congested commercial spot, churning out poisonous fumes.

Suspecting the involvement of money and power, he said the delay in action was pointing towards the

alleged nexus between the land mafia and the corporation officials.

In a statement, he alleged that while the MCF does not spare the jhuggis and shelters of the poor, it has ignored the encroachments made by the rich.

Stating that the illegal auto market had been an example of the functioning of the civic body, he said land worth several crores of rupees was still under illegal occupation in the town and the civic authorities had failed to give even a notice to such encroachers.

He alleged that the park measuring over an acre had been encroached upon right under the nose of the MCF. It may be recalled that the MCF had issued a notice to the shopkeepers of the Tikona park about 15 days ago, which led to a demonstration by them.
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NGOs focus on child sex ratio
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 10
A significant chapter was added today to the national advocacy campaign against sex selection and pre-birth elimination of females. The Centre for Women’s Development Studies (CWDS), Campaign Against Pre-Birth Elimination of Females (CAPF) and Action India, leading non-government organizations of the country, organised a rally-cum-public meeting to sensitize the public and especially the youths about this evil practice prevalent in our society.

More than 1,000 adolescent girls and boys participated in the rally today with the messages: “Save the Girl Child” and “Stop Female foeticide”. Female foeticide refers to a practice where the female foetuses are selectively eliminated after prenatal sex determination, thus avoiding the birth of girls.

Addressing the public meeting, Ms Nandita Das, noted actress and social activist, said, “Discrimination against women exists in every sphere and strata of our society. This discrimination, however, takes the extreme and violent form when the female is eliminated either before or after she is born, merely on account of the fact that she is a female. Declining sex ratio is the reflection of some intrinsic flaw in our social system, which has to be taken into consideration and addressed. This practice must stop for the development of a healthy Indian society.”

Speaking on the occasion, Mr Narayan Banerjee, Director of CWDS, said, “All over the world, concern for the growing population is voiced on the 11th of July every year. This year, on the eve of World Population Day, we wish to address the declining child sex ratio in a growing population, particularly in the 0-6 years age group over the last decade. It is very important to take this issue to the forefront, so that the population policy is reviewed in the light of the declining child sex ratio.”

“The child sex ratio has been steeply falling over the last 30 years in Delhi. According to census 2001, the child sex ratio (0-6 years) in India is 927 (number of girls per 1,000 boys) as against 945 in 1990. The child sex ratio in Delhi is really alarming as it has fallen to as low as 865 and it is equally dismal in rural as well as urban areas of the capital. The child sex ratio has fallen below 800 in one district in Delhi. This reflects the impact of various forms of discrimination against the girl child,” Ms Gouri Choudhury, Director, Action India, added on the occasion.

While there has been no such decline in some parts of the country like Punjab, Haryana, Gujarat and Delhi, it has declined to less than 900 girls per 1,000 boys.

Seventy districts in 16 states and the Union territories have recorded more than 50 points decline in the child sex ratio during the decade 1991-2001. The ratio stands at a mere 770 in Kurukshetra district of Haryana, 814 in Ahmedabad and 845 in the southwest district of Delhi-even though these regions are amongst the most prosperous in the country. (Census of India-2001).

Representatives from various NGOs, such as Population Foundation of India, Plan India, Deepalaya, National Foundation for India, Christian Medical Association of India, Datamation Consultant Private Limited, Swaasthya, CASP Plan, Child Survival India, Prerana, MRYDO and Delhi Brotherhood Society participated in this campaign. 
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CVC hails power sector
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 10
Mr P. Shankar, Central Vigilance Commissioner, has appreciated the work done by the Power Sector in accelerating the pace of mission to provide power to all.

He expressed this view while delivering the inaugural address at the two-day workshop on “Estimation and Control of Project Cost” organized by the Power Grid Corporation of India Limited at Gurgaon.

He further added that the CVC was not trying to put roadblocks in development activities and was instead acting as a facilitator. PSUs are free to make their own rules and procedures and follow them, he said.

Mr R.V. Shahi, Secretary (Power), in his key note address cited the various factors that went into cost control globally. 
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School drop-outs to get treat from the Dutch
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 10
A group of Dutch people has embarked on a world tour to collect funds and draw attention to the plight of millions of children who had to drop out of school.

Known as the Dutch Round Table, the team will be in Delhi between July 12 and 15. The Dutch, who began their journey in China, will inspect the nine school projects that have been initiated in the Capital by the Delhi Chapter of Round Table India. The Round Table India is a non-political, non-sectarian organisation that raises funds for the underprivileged children in association with the government and the corporate sector. In conjunction with the blue chip companies, the RTI fulfils its commitments through the initiatives like building programmes for primary schools, providing infrastructure, provisions of educational accessories, health care and child-related programmes.

In Delhi, more than nine school projects at a cost of about Rs 90 lakh have been initiated by the Delhi Chapter of RTI. These schools are located near Sarita Vihar, Nangloi, Mandi Village, Madanpur Khadar and Mahipalpur.

Freedom through education is the mantra followed by the RTI to help the children who have had to drop out of school.

The RTI is being supported by the Round Table Netherlands in this programme. For every rupee raised by the RTI, its counterpart in the Netherlands matches the amount.

The World Tour, known as the Dutch Round Table Tour for Children 2004, will be in India between July 7 and August 12. Other counties covered under the programme are Nepal, West Asia and a few European countries.

The RTI, which aims at building 1,500 schools across the country at a cost of Rs 180 crore by 2008, claims to have invested over Rs 40 crore in building more than 500 schools and other social service activities in the last five years.

It has also facilitated education and employment for over 2,50,000 children across the country.
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Truant monsoon worries farmers in Faridabad
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, July 10
The ‘hide and seek’ played by the monsoon in the region has led to a widespread concern among not only the common man, but the farming community at large.

The delayed rainfall season has increased the worries of the farmers who are about to complete the sowing of kharif crops in the district.

It is feared that a delay of another two weeks could lead to an irreparable damage to these crops.

According to the agriculture department sources, about 71 per cent of the target of sowing of kharif crops had already been achieved and the rest of the sowing may be over within the next 10 days. However, the monsoon which normally breaks by the first week of the July, has failed in the majority of the areas, leading to a concern among the farming community.

Although the district received an average rainfall of about 50 mm in June this year, it is stated to be inadequate as the gap between the last rainfall had become wide and the fields have dried up.

Mr Karan Singh, a farmer of nearby Kherikalan village, said that the majority of the farmers who had completed sowing had been depending upon the tubewell irrigation.

He said this type of irrigation was perhaps not possible for every farmer, as it required a tubewell with proper supply of power or diesel.

He claimed that there was short supply of power these days and it was a costly affair to depend on the diesel-run tubewells.

According to Mohan Singh of Johar khera village, there was an acute shortage of both water and power in the villages and the villagers had been praying for a good rainfall, so that their concern about the crops was over.

Claiming that a delay of another 15 days could be risky for most of the farmers.
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Population Day: The more the sadder
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 10
On the eve of the World Population Day, an entertaining yet thought-provoking street play, “Badati abadi tauba tauba”, was enacted at Dilli Haat by the underprivileged children of Don Bosco Ashayalam, an NGO that runs a shelter for destitute children together with Uppal’s Orchild that takes up the issues related to environment.

Ms Bubbles Sabharwal, Director, Kids World, graced the event as the special guest of honour.

“Badati abadi tauba tauba” showcases a story that revolves around two friends Rahul and Anuj. Rahul wanted to get married early and Anuj wanted to build his career first.

After years of separation, their paths cross only to find out that Anuj is living a happy married life with two children, whereas Rahul has become a porter with a family of six children who are forced to pig it as they cannot afford proper housing.
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Blood donation camp
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, July 10
As many as 36 volunteers donated blood at a camp organised by the District Red Cross Society here at Sector-12 today. The donors included the trainees of the ‘First Aid and Home Nursing’

Course, being run by the society. The Additional Deputy Commissioner, who inaugurated the camp, said that the blood donation was an admirable social act and must be encouraged at all levels. While the donors were presented with certificates and gifts by the chief guest, the society officials claimed that about 30 
such camps had been organised during the past six months in which around 1,675-unit blood was collected. This is a great achievement.
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Dalai Lama visits eye centre

New Delhi, July 10
His Holiness The Dalai Lama visited Visual Aids Centre, Delhi’s premier eye care centre located at South Extension, to bless the new Lasik machine, VISX Star S4 lasik Laser System. — TNS
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