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From Schools
Kids present water purifier to elders
Tribune News Service

Mohali, February 21
Teachers and children of Saupin’s Community Service Organisation (SCSO), Saupin’s School, Sector 70, here, visited the School for the Blind at Sector 26, Chandigarh, today as part of their ongoing community service programme to extend a helping hand. The students presented a water purifier system to the residents. The money for the purifier was collected by selling hand-made cards and other craft items.

Inter-school contests end

A fortnight of competitions organised at the Anees School, Sector 69, concluded here today. A host of inter-school contests were organised during this period. Starting with a fruitchat-making competition, a road-safety camp and contest was also organised. A declamation contest on pollution-free atmosphere was organised for the senior classes while the junior students participated in a fancy dress competition.

Farewell party

Students of Gian Jyoti Public School, Phase II, here organised a farewell party for the outgoing students of class XII on the school premises. The students of class XI presented a cultural extravaganza, while seniors attired in formals sashayed down the ramp confidently.

The programme began with lighting of the ceremonial lamp followed by Punjabi fusion dance deputing the importance of Punjabi culture over the Western culture. The Punjabi skit deputing the importance of elders in the family was appreciated. The cultural programme concluded with the beats of Bhangra.

The highlight of the day was a fashion show in which students modeled on the stage. Megha Kapoor and Vikram Singh bagged the title of Ms Gian Jyoti, and Mr Gian Jyoti, respectively.

Devinderjit Kaur was declared the all-round student and Rohit Gulati and Charanpreet Kaur were awarded with the title Science Brain and Commerce Brain, respectively. The Principal, Mrs Ranjeet Bedi, blessed the outgoing students.

Students bid adieu to seniors

Students of Golden Bells Public School Sector 77, here organised a farewell party for the outgoing students of Class X on the school premises. The students of Class IX presented a cultural extravaganza taking a break from examination preparations.

The school management and the faculty were present to see off the students of the outgoing class who were colourfully attired. Students of Class X were given titles and gifts.

Col C.S. Bawa, school director, addressed the students and blessed them. The school Principal, Mrs Gurjeet Bawa, extended best wishes to the outgoing students. 



Employees protest against non-implementation of pension scheme
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 21
Panjab University's Board of Finance (BoF) in its meeting held on the campus today has approved the pension scheme for the existing and retired university employees, with the members unanimous in their decision to start the pension. However the implementation of the much awaited pension scheme is subject to the final approval of the Ministry of Human Resource and Development and the Ministry of Finance.

Speaking to The Tribune, the President of the Panjab University Teachers Association (PUTA) Dr Ronki Ram, who is also a member of the BoF, said that the Vice-Chancellor Prof K. N Pathak has been authorised to implement the pension scheme provided the Ministry of Finance agrees to the proposal.

Under the new scheme, PU has asked for an amount of Rs 10 crore from the funds of higher education to be diverted towards creating corpus of the pension scheme. Further, the university has proposed that Rs 10 crore be contributed for the next 10 years to run the scheme. The new pension scheme had been drafted by the LIC for the university, which proposes to include both the serving and the retired employees of the university willing to be a part of the scheme

`The Deputy Secretary of the Ministry of Human Resource and Development was also present in the meeting today and informed us that the file for the implementation of pension scheme has already been forwarded to the Ministry of Finance,'' informed Dr Ronki Ram.

Along with the PU VC Prof Pathak and Finance and Development Officer Mr A R Bhandhari, the other members in BoF meeting included Finance Secretary, UT, Mr. S K Sandhu, additional Finance Secretary, Punjab Mr. Jasbir Singh Bir, Secretary Higher Education Mr M P Singh and Deputy Secretary from MHRD Mr Sunil Tated.

Along with the pension issue, the BoF also passed the revised estimated budgetary deficit Rs 53.83 87 crore for 2004-05 and estimated deficit for Rs 57. 2337 crore for year 2005-06. An amount of Rs 63.22 lakh have been approved for specific new demands.

Meanwhile, around 3000 teaching and non-teaching employees of PU agitated and sat in the dharna outside the VC office today, while the meeting of the BoF was taking place.

The employees had proceeded on the mass half-day casual leave and the working of the university was paralysed for the most part of the day. The employee leaders have, however, reiterated that their agitation for the implementation of the pension scheme would continue in the coming days and a delegation would go to Delhi to pursue the matter.



Seminar on post-Deng China organised at PU
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, February 21
A seminar on “Post-Deng China” was organised by the Department of Chinese and Tibetan Studies, Panjab University, Chandigarh today. Dr Damodar Panda, Chairman, introduced the theme to audience and welcomed guests and delegates. He talked about changes made by the post-Deng leadership in China to make it an economic powerhouse and rising super power.

He also discussed the problems China was facing today. He raised issues relating to China’s economy, polity, foreign and military policies.

Professor Kashi Ram Sharma, former Dean, Social Sciences, Delhi University, and an expert on China analysed the developments that had taken place in China under Mao Zedong, Deng Xiaoping, Jiang Zemin and the present leadership. He highlighted on four areas — economy, polity, society and foreign policy. He described Mao as a great revolutionary but a poor builder.

Professor P.L. Mehra, former Head, Department of History and Central Asian Studies, Panjab University, Chandigarh, and historian presided over the inaugural session. The inaugural session was concluded with a vote of thanks by the seminar Director and Chairman of the department, Dr Damodar Panda.

There were three technical sessions. First technical session was presided by former Ambassador P.S. Sahai. Air Marshal R.S. Bedi (retd) talked about China’s strategic doctrine.

The second technical session was chaired by V.M. Bedi. Third technical session was chaired by Prof B.M. Jain.



PU hostels illuminated
Our Correspondent

Moon finds solace in twinkiling lights as stars seem to have failed to keep date with the pearly orb. Sarojani hostel of Panjab University illuminated on the eve of Jhankar-2005 on Monday.
Moon finds solace in twinkiling lights as stars seem to have failed to keep date with the pearly orb. Sarojani hostel of Panjab University illuminated on the eve of Jhankar-2005 on Monday. — A Tribune photograph

Chandigarh, February 21
Hostels and the entry of Panjab University were illuminated to announce that inter-University national fest Jhankar-2005, is here.
Festival was inaugurated today. Dressed up in traditional attire, ceremonial of jaago was taken out by students. Nearly 500 to 600 students took part in the procession. They sang Punjabi songs and boliyan and moved from Student Centre to all girls hostels.

Shainee Singh, Seceratry of cultural activities of Jhankar, said, “This festival will be inaugurated formally tomorrow by SDM, Panchkula, Varinder Dhahiya. A Dhahit a cultural activity will be held in this four day fest. Various competitions including Folk dance, western dance, debate and declamation, an act play, mimicry mono acting competition will be there.

On February 25 Gurdas Mann night would be main attraction. Registration for the competition is open from 10 am onwards at Law Department, Panjab University from tomorrow.



Approval for PU pension at Syndicate meet
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 21
The recommendation of the Board of Finance (BoF) will come up for approval in the forthcoming meeting of the Panjab University Syndicate, which is scheduled to take place on the campus on February 28.

A meeting of the BoF took place in the university today where the members approved of the much-awaited pension scheme in the university.

Also the budget of the university and the estimated deficit will come for the perusal of the members in the forthcoming meeting.

Also the members will deliberate upon the academic calendar proposed for the session 2005-06, which has 236 teaching days. In the calendar, the teachings days have been enhanced and the university has fixed 51 holidays.

The recommendations of the academic council, which had earlier given its nod to the new add-on courses and the starting of the undergraduate and postgraduate colleges in the university, also figure on the agenda of the Syndicate meeting.

Among other issues, the promotion, appointment and compartment cases of two students of Ryat Law College also figure on the agenda.

The affiliation of the Master of Fine Arts (MFA) course in the Government College of Art, Sector 10, and the discontinuation of the course on Tibetan language will also come up for discussion.



Recruitment camp at MCM DAV College today
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 21
A special recruitment camp would be held tomorrow for Chandigarh Training of Soft Skills (C-TOSS) trainees at MCM DAV college. Candidates, undergoing C-TOSS training at various colleges of Chandigarh or candidates who have appeared in the C-TOSS test, are eligible. Companies like Wipro spectramind, Excel call net, IDS Infotech and Universal Cyber Infoway are participating in this recruitment drive.



Commandant asked to inquire into gangrape of sisters
Our High Court Correspondent

Chandigarh, February 21
Ms Shashi Prabha, presently posted as Commandant, 75th Battalion, Punjab, has been asked to inquire into a case of alleged gang-rape of two minor sisters from Nabha.

The Punjab Police had suggested two names, including Ms Shashi Prabha, and it was decided to entrust her with the job.

During the last hearing in a petition seeking handing over of the investigation in the case relating to alleged gang-rape of the two minor sisters, the High Court had asked the Punjab Government to either hand over the inquiry to an SP-rank officer or it would refer the case to the Central Bureau of Investigation.

The Bench comprising Mr Justice Amar Dutt and Mr Justice Rajive Bhalla today asked the police to hand over all record relating to the case to the inquiry officer who has been asked to submit her report by March 10.

In order to allegedly favour the accused, the police had intentionally messed up the case and was allegedly pressuring the victims to withdraw the complaint.

Despite the passage of over eight months after the two sisters were allegedly abducted and raped in July last year, not a single arrest has been made. They had alleged that their tenant couple, Amanpreet and Devinder Kaur, had lured them away.

The police registered a case of abduction on July 19 and recovered the girls on July 21

It was alleged that the girls were taken to Phillaur where 28 persons raped them for four-five days. While the victims failed to clearly identify the accused, the two alleged that they were influential persons.



Dr Suri's appointment set aside
Our High Court Correspondent

Chandigarh, February 21
The Punjab and Haryana High Court today set aside the appointment of Dr Sudha Suri as Dean of the PGI, Chandigarh. The Division Bench of Mr Justice G.S. Singhvi and Mr Justice Amar Dutt gave five-week's time to the PGI Governing Body to appoint a new Dean in Dr Suri's place.

Dr Suri had challenged the decision of the PGI Governing Body declaring Dr Sarla Gopalan senior to her. Earlier, Dr Gopalan had challenged the selection and appointment of Dr Suri as Dean on the plea that she should have been appointed to the post as she was senior to Dr Suri.

However, during hearing in the matter, the court had made it clear that it was not going to proceed in the matter any further till the PGI Governing Body decided the issue of seniority of the two ladies at its level.

Later, in its meeting held on October 2 in Chandigarh, the Governing Body (GB) decided that Dr Gopalan was senior to Dr Suri. 



Nursery kid sues toy maker
Yoginder Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February, 21
A nursery class student has filed a complaint against a leading toy manufacturer, Funskool(India) Limited, in the Chandigarh Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum-I for allegedly selling a defective board game, Tom and Jerry chase.

The forum headed by Mr N.S. Ahlawat today issued notice to the company and its local retailer, Toy Zone, Sector 22, for March 22 next.

Filed through his father, Mr Pankaj Chandgothia, Shreyas, a student of nursery class of St Kabir Public School here, alleged that the board of the game was wrongly printed.

The concept of the game is based on popular cartoon series, "Tom and Jerry", in which Tom, a cat, wants to catch Jerry, a mouse. Spike, a dog, is a friend of Jerry and saves it from Tom.

The board game is divided into four circles containing illustrations of Tom, Jerry and Spike at various stages to act as incentives and impediments. The player is "Jerry", who moves forward with the roll of the dice. The instructions on the board game says that upon reaching "Spike", the player advances six paces ahead, while on reaching "Tom", he has to return to the beginning.

While the placement of illustrations of character is correct in the first circle, the second, third and fourth circles have an apparent defect in their placement of various incentives and impediments. In these circles, when the player reaches "Spike", he moves six paces ahead and reaches "Tom", which requires him to return to the beginning. Thus what should have been an advantage, turns out to be a disadvantage. It defeats the very concept of the board game and the cartoon series upon which it is based.

Shreyas noticed this defect while playing the game with his family members. He forced his parents to again visit the shop and buy another set of the game. But that also contained the same defect. The shopkeeper said he could not be blamed for the defect. He said he had sold the game as he had received it from the company.

Mr Chandgotia contended that the company was indulging in an unfair trade practice by marketing a defective game by alluring children in the name of a popular cartoon series. He prayed that the company should be directed to withdraw the board game from the market and issue a public advertisement acknowledging the defect in the game and offering its replacement. He also pleaded that punitive damages of Rs 75,000 be imposed upon the company, to be used for any social purpose or for the welfare of children.



Bail plea of Cong leader, son withdrawn
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 21
Bail application of organising secretary of the Punjab Pradesh Congress Seva Dal, Harbans Kaur, and her son, Sandeep Singh, accused in an immigration fraud, was withdrawn by her counsel before a court here today.

Application was moved before District Sessions Judge R.S. Baswana. With bail application withdrawn, the accused would remain in judicial custody till February 28.

At least 40 complaints of cheating involving several lakhs of rupees had been filed against the accused. The complaints were filed by residents from places, including New Delhi, Ludhiana, Patiala and Hoshiarpur.

The Congress leader and her son, residents of Kendriya Vihar in Sector 48, were arrested by the Sector 31 Police on February 11 on the complaint of two residents, who had alleged that they were duped to the tune of Rs 4.20 lakh.



Physician who paints and sings too
Geetu vaid

“Every person has an artist hidden within and it is this latent artistic urge that makes one appreciate and seek beauty in nature and in things all around us. There is a need to keep this artistic self in tact and this is what my love for colours has made me do”. This is the philosophy of Dr Biman Saikia, Assistant Professor, Department of Immunopathology, PGI.

He is a medicine man with a difference as, apart from his profession, he is also on a quest to discover the artist within him. And he does it with aplomb as he loves to paint and sing, and also plays the guitar and mandolin.

Originally from Assam, Dr Saikia has been in the city for almost 10 years and has won a number of prizes in different competitions held in the PGI from time to time.

“Painting, however, is my first love”, says this multi-faceted doctor. As we sample some of his works, colours of nature come out as the main influence. “As I am from Assam, a state abundant in natural beauty, that is why I think landscapes have been my favourite subject right from the time I first picked up the brush”, he says. As an artist he likes to experiment with different mediums like oil and water colours, too, with some of his paintings having a major influence of impressionism. Depicting minute details is his forte which probably comes from his job as an immunopathologist.

Telling about his love for painting he says that he has been painting since his school days. “I got interested in this after seeing a friend’s father paint but I have not had any formal training in the art.”

Assam Medical College in Dibrugarh was where his love with the brush bloomed. “While pursuing my medical degree I met some friends who were also interested in painting and together we used to organise exhibitions in the college. I always won the first prize in different competitions held at college level, and as a junior resident in the PGI also I won a number of prizes.” He loves to gift his paintings to friends and also takes out time from his busy schedule to paint for them. Now he is planning to hold an exhibition of his paintings and to devote more time to his hobby.

Stealing time for his love from his hectic routine is a big challenge, and this way each of his works usually takes up to four months to complete. “But my hobbies keep me full of energy, and this way I can give more to my profession”, he adds. Music is his other love as he is blessed with a mellisonant voice. Bhupen Hazarika is his inspiration. His love for singing grew as he got appreciation from the audience in a college-level contest and won the first prize for three years in a row. Hindi film numbers, especially those sung by Kishore Kumar, Yesudas and slow and soulful numbers are his favourites. He also loves to play the guitar and mandolin. “I bought a mandolin from scholarship money in class VII and since then it has been helping me recharge my energy.

Using his art to serve society, he has been working with a group of doctors to record songs to create awareness about AIDS and the menace of drug addiction. The group will be bringing out a cassette of these numbers very soon.



‘Large-scale patronage needed for classical music’
S.D. Sharma

“The Indian classical music needs patronage on a large scale and needs to be prescribed as a compulsory subject in the schools so that its assimilation and propagation may be initiated at the grassroots level..” opined Raka Mukherjee a Kolkata-based classical vocalist.

In Chandigarh for a concert at Pracheen Kala Kendra a disciple of Padma Bhushan Pandit Jnan Parkash Ghosh and also Pandit Kala Chand Lehiri she took to classical music at the age of six. Having performed at all top sangeet sammelans in India and European countries an A grade artist of AIR and Doordarshan, Raka specialises in Khayal, thumri and dadra.

About her concerts in Germany she appreciated the intrusive audience who listened in rapt attention and analysed if the composition matched the moods and tempo of its declared contents prior to the performance.

On her second visit to the City Beautiful she recalled her memorable concert here on the celebration of 50th year of Independence. She maintained there had been a rise in the aficionados of classical stream in Chandigarh if the spurt of concerts was to go by and that too in view of the region being the home of the Punjabi pop, a revolution in the right perspective for the promotion of rich folklore of Punjab.

On ‘Fusion’ music she said it was encouraging as long as the Indian classical or folk dominated the music created by fusion of another tradition of music. This would invariably help the popularity of our music and cultural heritage, said Raka.



Two is company even in art
Nirupama Dutt

Two can be company even in art and a joyous one at that. This is proved by two famous visual artists Gogi Saroj Pal and Ved Nayar, who were in the city today for the opening of debut exhibition by a young city artist, Gunita Chadda. The couple, with some three decades of togetherness behind them, has journeyed side by side in harmony while pursuing their respective art with a rare passion.

How is it for two artists to live under the same roof? Replying to this question, Gogi, who is niece of the famous Hindi writer late Yashpal, says: “It would vary from persons to persons. It was art that brought us together and we always have an ongoing dialogue and we share the intimate thought processes of our art. Yet we never try to influence the other. We also give each other a lot of space.”

The two had a recent windfall when an Indian art collector bought their lifetime’s work. Ved, a fine sculptor and painter, says, “Now we are ready to begin afresh with a lot of space in our flat for new works.” The two work constantly trying out new ideas and experiments. In fact Ved had experimented with stone installations in the river-bed by Paonta Sahib and he now plans to replicate that experience for a gallery. When asked what makes a great work of art, Ved replies: “One does not set about making a great work. One just keeps working and sometimes the greatness of creativity is achieved and sometimes it is not. A great work makes itself.” In true admiration for his companion, Ved says: “Gogi is more creative than me.” Take Gogi aside and she will say: “Ved is more knowledgeable than me.”

The experience of being a woman and probing its dimensions has been a recurring theme in Gogi’s works although the metaphor is fresh with each series. Ved contemplates contemporary social concerns in his paintings and sculptures. While Gogi’s family belonged to Kangra, Ved has his roots in Lyallpur in West Punjab. However, it is in Delhi that they realised themselves as artists. TNS



Street play performed in Plaza

Artistes of Chandigarh School of Drama presented a play ‘ Bol Jamoore’at the Plaza in Chandigarh on Monday. Scripted and directed by Mohinder Dogra the play presented in a ‘nukkad’ form juxtaposed the unethical and illegal production of ‘shatoosh’ shawls despite the ban orders promulgated by the Government of India.

The ‘shatoosh’ shawls are made from the fleece of the Tibetian antelope , ‘Chiru’ and atleast three to five animals are killed to make one shawl. The shawls are sold at a fabulous price of atleast Rs 50,000 to Rs 1 lakh. The flow of satirical dialogues by Mohinder Dogra playing Madari and the vibrant Gaurav Sharma kept the standing audience of 300 persons spell bound. OC


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