C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


New timings of PU offices
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, May 10
The working hours of the University Administrative Offices, including the Construction Office, the Directorate of Sports and the Teaching Departments in Panjab University will be observed as under:-

1. From May 16, 2005 (Monday) : 8.00 a.m. to 2.00 p.m. (Monday) to June 30, (without lunch break: 2005 (Thursday) working for six days a week)

2. w.e.f. July 1, 2005, the University Administrative Offices, including the Construction Office, the Directorate of Sports and Teaching Departments, will revert to 5 days a week as usual.

The Chairpersons of the Teaching Departments and Heads of the Library/XEN’s Office can, however, make some adjustments in the above mentioned office timings with the prior approval of the competent authority. 



Competitions held to mark 16 yrs of C-DAC
Our Correspondent

Mohali, May 10
An on-the-spot painting competition and quiz were organised for school children by the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) as part of celebrations organised on the completion of 16 years of its establishment here today.

As many as 150 students from a number of schools took part in the events. The winners were later given prizes by Mr J.S. Bhatia, director in charge of C-DAC. An award giving ceremony was also organised on the occasion and employees, who had completed 10 years with the organisation, were honoured.

The following are the names of the winners of both the competitions. Painting (Group A): Akanksha, Shemrock Senior Secondary School, 1; Guntaj Deep, St Soldier School, II. Group B: Jasleen Kaur, St Kabir Public School, I; Harnoor Kaur, Shivalik Public School, II. Group C: Mandeep, Shivalik Public School, I; Salil Kaushik, Gian Jyoti Public School, II.

Quiz (Group A): Aanchal Singh, St Kabir Public School, I; Vanya, Shemrock Senior Secondary School, II. Group B: Arijit, Shemrock Senior Secondary School, I, Apanjit Kaur, St Soldier School, II. Group C: Anshu Singla, Gian Jyoti Public School, I; Ankita Pal, Gian Jyoti Public School, II.



Salad-making contest
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, May 10
An inter-house salad-making competition was held at Government Girls Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 8, today. In the category of vegetable salads, Priya stood first, Komal of class VI second and Mamta of class VIII won the third prize.

In fruit salad decoration, first prize was won by Jasmeet of class X, second prize went to Ramanpreet of class IX and third prize was won by Mona of class X.

In the nutritious salad category, Archana won the first prize, Ila Joshi secured second prize and Simran and Jagdeep stood third.



Students get tips on environment

Lalru, May 10
To make the students aware about safety and environment protection, the local unit of Gates India Pvt Ltd, conducted a “General Safety and Environmental Protection Awareness Programme” at Government High School, Sarsini, and Springfield Public School, near here, yesterday.

Mr Ashish Sharma of the unit gave the students tips about safety and environmental protection.

Mrs Saroj Rani, principal of Government High School, Sarsini, Dr T.C. Williams, Principal, Springfield Public School, and other staff members of the schools were also present on the occasion. OC



Charges framed against two former Judges
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 10
Almost two years after two judicial officers were arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on corruption charges, a local court today framed charges against them.

The Additional Sessions Judge, Mr R.S. Baswana, framed charges against S.S. Bhardwaj, former Judicial Magistrate First Class(JMIC) here and R.M. Gupta, former District and Sessions Judge, Jalandhar, under Section 120-B of IPC and various sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act (PCA).

While both Gupta and Bhardwaj were charged under Section 13(B) of the PCA, the latter was also charged under Section 7 of the Act.

The case had hit the headlines in May 2003, when S.S. Bhardwaj was allegedly caught red-handed by the CBI at his Sector 22 residence while accepting a bribe of Rs 7 lakh from Dr G.S. Samra of Kartarpur in Jalandhar district on behalf of Gupta. The money was allegedly part of a Rs 11 lakh deal Dr Samra had struck with Gupta for granting him bail in a case.

However, the CBI had to face a lot of embarrassment when Bhardwaj gave the premier investigating agency a slip and made a sensational escape after scaling the rear boundary wall of his house.

In the meantime, Bhardwaj in an interview to a news channel, reportedly claimed that he was innocent and had been framed by the CBI. After remaining underground for about a month, Bhardwaj surrendered. His bail applications were later rejected by the Punjab and Haryana High Court and the Supreme Court.



Plea to check falling female population
Our High Court Correspondent

Chandigarh, May 10
The Punjab and Haryana High Court today asked the Punjab Government to a submit status report about implementation of the Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (Prohibition of Sex Selection) Act, 1994 in the state.

This happened during hearing of a Public Interest Petition (PIL) filed by a third-year student of LLB, Gaurav Goyal of Chandigarh, seeking directions to the State of Punjab to make all possible efforts in stopping depletion of female population in the state due to alleged killing of female feotus by misuse of ultrasound machines and other modern techniques. The petitioner has also sought strict enforcement of the PNDT Act and the rules framed thereafter.

Stating that while the natural sex ratio is 1005 women to 1000 men, the petitioner has pointed out that as per the last Census figures, the sex ratio in Punjab has fallen drastically.

Referring to news reports, including the one published in these columns which talked of how men were forced to buy wives due to falling sex ratio, Gaurav has stated that the PNDT Act can be better enforced in Punjab if some basic suggestions are considered. Today, the Bench of Chief Justice Mr Justice D.K. Jain and Mr Justice Hemant Gupta adjourned the matter to July 7.



Impressive debut in fiction writing
Geetanjali Gayatri

IT was their maiden attempt at writing fiction and they came out with flying colours. Jatin Dhingra, Vishwajeet Chaudhary and Rahul Patnaik, winners of the best fiction writer award, let their imagination take over, run wild as the pen scripted a story on paper.

The outcome was not comical and not fairytale-like as one would expect children’s writings to be. Instead, away from child-like concerns, the stories were sad, steeped in agony, and like one judge put it, they were “brooding”. However, they were unanimous that great talent and serious writers lay hidden in city schools. They only needed a platform, an opportunity to display a new genre of writing that would provide a peek into the psyche of the children.

The winner of the first prize from among 30 entries for “A Dead boy at your window”, Class VIII student of Delhi Public School, Jatin Dhingra says,”My mother gave me an idea and I just built upon it to come up with my story. It’s about a mother who gives birth to a stillborn but lives in the belief that her son is alive and helps her and the others to communicate with the dead.” He says writing the story was easy though he was a reluctant entrant.

Yadvindra Public School student, Vishwajeet, whose father is an advocate, states,”I just thought and thought of my storyline before getting down to actually writing. It took me two days to write ‘The village lady’ to my satisfaction and the outcome is joyous especially since it has now become an award-winning story. My Vice-Principal and parents

prompted me to try my hand at writing and I am thankful to them.” The story revolves around a village woman branded as “ill-fated”, her travails and her friendship with a little girl who ultimately saves from drowning. She dies in the attempt but her action washes away the years of stigma which followed her everywhere since the time her husband died, the day she got married.

With both parents away to work, Rahul Patnaik of St Kabir’s school, spent many afternoons reading books. His interest in reading inspired him to pen a story for the contest. The outcome was a war story between two evil forces trying to establish rule over the world.

Interestingly, “Warfare vampires and were wolves” was written in just four hours. Excited at receiving the prize, Rahul admits,”I wasn’t expecting to win. When I got down to writing, I was only aiming at making a story different from the rest. The idea of vampires came from a movie I saw long back. The rest is original and based on my own thinking.”

Organised by the Network Institute of Media Studies, the first-of-its-kind story-writing opportunity won appreciation from the judges who included writers Namita Gokhle, Lalita J Singh and Arnab Banerjee. They all maintained that the writings had clear impressions of movies and television in plots and presentations at the prize distribution function held today.

The others who were awarded certificates included Anupam Thakur, K Kidar, Palak Bansal, Harshamir Singh, Pritish Chakravarty, Akshita Mohanty and Dhriti Tewari. TNS



‘Romeo-Juliet’ to be staged at PU today
Aditi Tandon

Director Anuradha Kapur
Director Anuradha Kapur

THE stage is set for the play of love. And if all goes well, Shakespeare’s classic “Romeo -Juliet” will find a contemporary expression — the one that defies labels and transcends all that is the predictable.

The exercise has been strenuous to the core but the PU Theatre Department students, who have lived the strain for many weeks now, look anything but tired. They are refreshed and ready to go with the production that evolved under the guidance of this year’s Sangeet Natak Akademi award winner Anuradha Kapur from the National School of Drama.

On the eve of the show, Kapur, along with Theatre Department chairperson Neelam Mansingh, spoke about the thrill of doing ‘Romeo-Juliet’ after ages. “The first time I did the show, I did it strictly as a Shakespeare slot. This time too, my reason for doing the play is the same — the play is young; it has a definite relationship with the lives of young people but there is some difference. In the first production I was more interested in exploring the various languages of Shakespeare — from high poetry to real strong street language, but this time the gangs are doing it all. The students have adapted well to my manner of teaching. They have come to the body of the play first and to the text later.”

The play has evolved in a strange fashion. The students took up the text only six days ago when they were thoroughly familiar with situations. Also, the play has double casts for almost all characters. Said Neelam Mansingh, “The play has been an eye opener in terms of pre-production. The students have brought their own life experiences to the production. Their relation with the text is real because they have put their own life into it.”

For Anuradha Kapur, the experience of directing a spirited pack of actors has been enriching and elevating. She said, “A great part of the production has come from the students. They have been emotionally attached with the production. Also, they have taken many physical risks. It’s refreshing to see drama students drop their inhibitions on the stage. In this production you will see how free the actors feel.”

As for actors, the play has been a great learning experience. It has inspired them to think and react, question and demand. And the result is for all to see. As Neelam Mansigh puts it, “The studio theatre has been used so well that the production seems specific to this space. But I would like to take this play to festivals. It has many highs and lows, and it truly, represents theatrical class. The actors have managed to unlock and I don't think they will ever be the same again after this workshop.”

The one-hour play will open tomorrow at Studio Theatre, PU Theatre Department at 7 pm. The play is open to all. TNS


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