C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


The tale of an ill-fated Ph.D thesis
Neelam Sharma
Tribune News Service

Guide equally responsible

Up for the Syndicate’s perusal again, the case raises questions on the responsibility of the thesis guide also: “Why alone blame the candidate in such a case? The thesis guide is equally responsible, as the guide knows the importance of a Ph.D thesis and has to make his student work accordingly,” remarked a Syndicate member, pleading anonymity. Commenting on the need of enhancing academic standards, he pointed towards the deteriorating level of research. 

Chandigarh, April 24
It’s a comedy of errors at Panjab University, where an ill-fated Ph.D thesis meanders from one expert to other, only to be dumped every time it comes up for experts’ review.

The 90-page thesis tilted “Kirtan Saidhantik Adhar Aur Aitihasik Pariprekshy” at the Department of Hindi was on the verge of getting accepted at the hands of two outside experts, when the Chairperson of department intervened and went ahead to lodge his complaint against the acceptance of the thesis. While the experts had no problem in awarding the Ph.D to the student concerned on the basis of the thesis, the department’s Chairperson wrote in his complaint how ill equipped the research work was.

Such a thin thesis report, that, too, typed in double space, and with no references were the complaint areas for the Chairperson, who pleaded that such a thesis should not be considered for Ph.D.

Deciding not to overlook the Chairperson’s strong remarks, the PU Syndicate, at its meeting in January, then sought the independent opinion of two more experts, both of whom disapproved the effort put in the thesis by the candidate and recommended that the thesis could not be accepted in the current form and should be rejected. “When the thesis came up for approval at the Syndicate meeting, the members refused to accept it and called for an independent review,” said a Syndicate member.

Caught in a peculiar situation with many contradictions, where the two experts had a go-ahead but later two more experts had rejected the thesis, the university then decided to consult a fifth outside expert again. This time the verdict was again the rejection of the thesis, calling it an immature attempt but the expert suggested that the candidate should be returned the thesis, which can be reworked and then accepted. “The Dean University Instructions and the Controller of Examinations had also accepted the decision. Now it is for the university’s Syndicate to put its stamp on the decision,’’ said a Syndicate member.



NET awareness camp at PU
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 24
More than 600 students from the city and neighbouring areas attended the UGC-NET awareness camp at the Students Centre in Panjab University yesterday. The camp was jointly organised by the PU Campus Students’ Council and the Aryans Educational and Charitable Trust. The UGC-NET examination will be held on June 26 and last date of submission of forms is April 29.

The Sector 14 branch of the State Bank of India had set up a special counter and issued demand drafts to the students on the spot. A university team was also present on the occasion and accepted the NET forms. President of the PU Students Council Rajwinder Singh Lucky said there was a need of creating more awareness among the students to qualify the NET examination.



IT moguls interact with students
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 24
Major IT companies were present in full force and the representation was truly global. The IBM, Microsoft, Oracle, Cisco, Intel, Motorola, Wipro and HCL swept students with their ideas and expectations of graduates entering the technical corporate field.

The seminar, “Northern gateway to software industry — expectations of industry from fresh technical graduates” was organised by the Punjab Information and Communication Technology Corporation Limited, Chandigarh, in collaboration with the Chitkara Institute of Engineering and Technology.

The seminar was aimed at bridging the gap between the core competencies of the engineering students’ vis-a-vis the IT companies’ expectations of the curriculum and faculty and their requirements and viewpoints.

Mr N.S. Kalsi, MD, Punjab Infotech, said: “According to a recent World Bank report, Punjab emerged as the most favoured state to start new businesses as the region offered tremendous competitive advantages and a new business could be started here in less than 57 days.”

Acknowledging the fact that competing with the IITs was indeed tough for students from other engineering colleges, Mr N. Rathi, Manager, campus relations at Oracle, said: “Being a good team member, being result and people oriented and ethics above all are what count when selecting a good candidate. The technical skills can be acquired from all good engineering colleges and faculties.” Dr Rajendra Kumar Gupta, Lead Solutions Architect for IBM in India, talked about setting oneself apart from one’s counterparts. He maintained that students should focus on specific areas of technology, participate in creative projects and most importantly concentrate on soft skills such as communication, assertiveness and emotional confidence.



Hamara School
Serving City Beautiful for 37 years

Manav Mangal was founded by Mr G.S. Sardana. Inaugurated by the then Home Secretary, Chandigarh, Mr Damodar Dass, the school has come a long way. Continuously working under the inspiration of its motto ‘Stop not till the goal is reached’, this English-medium co-educational institution has earned for itself a place of pride in the City Beautiful that it has been serving for the past more than three decades. During its silver jubilee year, the school management undertook expansion of its educational service to Panchkula and a school under the name and style of Manav Mangal School was started in a building constructed on around three acre site in Sector 11, Panchkula.

The school’s staff consists of competent teachers who understand what education is and have the ability and patience to impart it. Here the students are made to feel that the school is a second home for them where the teachers act like second parents. The teachers at Manav Mangal know that gone are the days when students used to give unconditional respect and love to their teachers. The teaching has become very demanding and they have to prove their worth in order to get the respect and love of their students. That makes their job challenging and draws the best out of them.

At Manav Mangal, the teachers and the parents have a goal of directing the children in a way that enables them to be something and to do something. The parents of the students studying in the school have been extending all their love and cooperation to the school which is helping it to achieve the common goal of putting the students on to the path of progress.

In March 2003 Middle Standard Examination, conducted by Education Department, Chandigarh, the students brought laurels to the school by claiming the first, third and fourth positions in Chandigarh. In March 2004, as many as five students were placed in the merit list in Middle Standard Examination. In CBSE Science Seminar 2004 and represented Chandigarh at the National Seminar held in Kolkata. In the playful also, the achievement of the students are equally commendable especially in terms of their having played at state and national level. This year for the second consecutive year, two school students, Rishab Jain and Pragyan Sharma, have been selected to represent Chandigarh in ESPN Star Sports Quiz.

The school is determined to contribute in the man-making exercise with undivided attention so that the school not only maintains whatever it has achieved but also keeps going ahead ‘TILL THE GOAL IS REACHED.’




A school is a promise of willing participation in the man-making process. It is a commitment to community service. It is a creative attempt of men with a mission. The mission is to develop the child’s personality and bring it into full play. The development of a child’s personality mainly lies in rising above ‘self’ which is possible only through a great teacher’s noble efforts. It is only a teacher who can inspire the child to rise above his narrow outlook, develop in him a sense of oneness with society and mould himself into its valuable asset. It is in taking the child away from the shadow of ‘obsession with self’ to the light of ‘service before self’ that the teacher’s role in developing his personality becomes really meaningful.

The most challenging task which the teacher of today is faced with is that in this highly competitive society that worships money, power, position and success, children are motivated to give tangible results at examinations/competitions at any cost. During this process, the students start lacking the commitment and as a result, the willingness to put in honest labour becomes weak. The children start aiming for a life of status and comfort even at the cost of remaining incomplete and uncomfortable inwardly. They decide to ‘gain the whole world’ and in the process do not mind ‘losing their own soul’.

The teacher of today needs to take up this challenge and should not succumb to these ‘market needs’. He needs to provide a healthy and congenial atmosphere in which a child observes, inquires, experiments, experiences, acquires knowledge and grows into a complete man. The teacher of today has to lead by example by becoming a role model of values to insulate his students from many negative influences and ultimately to make him a holistic human being, emotionally stable, intellectually vibrant, spiritually enlightened and socially committed.

In terms of accomplishing the task of developing a child’s personality, and that too with its full richness, there is no better person than a teacher. We are the ‘privileged lot’ chosen by the Almighty for this noble assignment. Let us justify this by being a group of committed and caring teachers and by moulding these young human minds. Let us the men on mission — a mission which is self-satisfying and self-rewarding.



Tiny tots welcome juniors with zest
Tribune News Service

Mohali, April 24
Students of Gian Jyoti Public School, Phase II, Mohali, witnessed fun-filled and enthusiastic moments today, as the tiny tots of KG class gave a freshers’ party to their juniors.

The function started with a prayer “Stuti”, which was followed by a western dance on the foot tapping number Brazil. The students also presented a colourful cultural programme which included actions songs, solo dance performances and the recitation of rhymes. The grand finale of the function was the splendid dance party in which the tiny tots danced to the tunes of the latest numbers.

The Principal, Ms Ranjeet Bedi, presided over the function and welcomed the freshers to the school.



Art students form alumni association
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 24
Former students of Government College of Art, Sector 10 today formed an alumni association, with the objective of promoting art in the region. The organisation aims at bringing together artists and art lovers, besides serving as a platform for interaction between students and other interested sections.

Called “Kala Maitri”, the association has been registered. Following are the office-bearers of the association: D.S. Kapoor, founder president; Suraj Mukhi Sharma, Vice-president; Ram Partap Verma, general secretary; Ashwini Narang, joint secretary; and Ishwar Dayal, treasurer. The only woman member of the association is Bhavna Mannan. She holds the post of executive secretary. 



Saikapians go down memory lane
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 24
To reminiscence old times and strengthen old associations, members of the Sainik School Kapurthala Old Boys Association organised a social get-together at Chandi Mandir yesterday.

A large number of the school’s alumni, including serving Army officers, doctors, lawyers, businessmen, artists and civil servants attended the meet along with their family members. Faculty members were also invited.



8 students shortlisted for placement
Our Correspondent

Dera Bassi, April 24
Eight students of the final year Electronics & Communication Engineering were shortlisted by Radius Power Inc, a Mohali based, at a placement camp organized at Sri Sukhmani Institute of Engineering and Technology, Dera Bassi, on Saturday.

Lt. Col. N. S. Julka (Retd.), the training and placement officer of the institute claimed that students scoring more than 65 per cent and above marks in aggregate and all clear so far were interviewed at the camp.



Nature frozen in stone
Aditi Tandon

The fourth sculptors’ camp at Kalagram is all about the celebration of nature. Absorbing and imaginative, the works are not very many. In fact, the campus looks huge in contrast with the four works of sculpture that are now adorning it.

But for many other reasons, the balance is nearly perfect especially on account of a massive piece of art which Basudeb Biswas from Jalandhar has created. His sculpture rushes to embrace the sky, nearly. The work is strong with its well-chalked out curves and slants. It reaches as high as eight feet, and is a huge work by standards of sculpture. It is rare to see an artist indulging himself so much while on a routine camp.

But Basudeb Biswas loves to discover new destinations even while he treads familiar paths. That’s exactly why his art has evolved — because it has never been cast in a mould. A lecturer in sculpture at Apeejay College, Jalandhar, Biswas has breathed life into black stone. He has sculpted male and female forms and emphasised “surrender”. “Together these forms spell creation. Individually they mean nothing at all,” avers the artist who sure knows where his edge lies. Although he has relished black stone at the camp, he prefers to work in metal and terracotta back home. “Just for diversity,” he tells.

Moving further down, one comes across P. Nagappa’s “Heads”. There are two, meant to signify nature and nature alone. The artist, a lecturer at Bangalore College of Art, stresses, “These forms are about daily lives of people, about their daily reactions to nature and its changing moods.” The forms are abstract, much like the title which does not go much with the averred theme of work.

Arun Pandit from Delhi is more direct and makes a strong artistic statement with his work “Our expressions”. Simple yet intriguing, the work bares Pandit’s ingenious streaks. He never dumps his moulds. In fact, he uses and reuses them to create new forms. Better known as the creator of puppets that feature in NDTV’s much-loved programme “Gustakhi Maaf”, Pandit loves to work in stone and other traditional mediums that enable preservation.

The youngest of the lot at Kalagram is an unassuming Bindu Joshi from Takman in Udaipur. All of 25, she shies away as she talks about her work. We decide to dwell on the work leaving the artist with her muse. Here again, nature surfaces in a softer, subtler mould. You just can’t miss the tender touch, which only a woman’s hand can offer. The works will be on display at Kalagram.



A versatile allergy specialist
S.D. Sharma

Very few among us are gifted with the art of maintaining a balance between our professional commitments and leisure pursuits. Meet the Panchkula-based allergy specialist, Dr Pardeep Bhardwaj, who derives pleasure from his varied hobbies, winning admiration of music aficionados at musical soirees whenever he performs as a lead vocalist.

Equally adept at paining and sketching, a look at a pencil portrait of his wife Urmil, adorning a wall, will convince you of the versatile artist in him.

In 1975 he represented Arya Secondary School, Ludhiana, in the All-India Music Competition organised by the Pracheen Kala Kendra. Pradeep won the prestigious competition and got Rs 11,000 as prize money. He later remained the captain of badminton and cricket teams for full five years while studying medicine at Dayanand Medical College. He was also crowned as ‘Mister Medifest’ in 1983, topping in sports and the fine arts annual youth festival of 30 medical colleges. Pardeep never concentrated on one hobby.

Referring to a two-hour encounter with a celebrity patient, Pradeep recalls the morning of March 2004 when he got an emergency call from Hotel North Park to attend a patient. “As I drove to the hotel, I was elated to see my idol, Amitabh Bachchan, who was here for the shooting of “Ab Tumhare havaale...” Amazingly affectionate and a hardworking man, Bachchan toiled hard for two hours. “Doctor saheb, fit rehna padta hai mujhe, varna industry unfit kar degi”. 


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