C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Experts dwell on role of NGOs
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 15
The Centre for Adult Continuing Education and Extension (CACEE) in association with EduCARE India organised a seminar on “Literacy and Sustainable Development” at the ICSSR Hall, Panjab University, today.

Dr R.C. Sobti, Chairman, Biotechnology, and Chairperson Academic Staff College, who was the chief guest, emphasised the need for separating white-collar jobs from literacy and focussing on training artisans and other skilled people to share their knowledge with others.

Dr Sween, Director, CACEE, in her keynote address said though NGOs were making endeavours in their own respective ways, there was a greater need for more coordination.

Mr B.S. Bhullar, project director, EduCARE India, said the seminar was organised in the wake of the launching of United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (2005-2014) on the International Literacy Day.

Speaking on the “Role of NGOs in Development of Society”, Ms Manjeet Paintal, Director, Regional Resource Centre, Panjab University, said adult education required maximum attention in which the government needed the support of voluntary agencies to effectively implement its various programmes.

Prof Jatinder Mohan, Head of the Department of Psychology, PU, said working in an NGO was a big challenge, as it was done voluntarily without expecting any reward.

He, however, pointed out that literacy should involve sensitisation of people to be more humane in their thinking, to learn skills for self-reliance, know about hygiene and cleanliness, adaptability to the changing environment, and more importantly, ability to rise above the gender bias.

Dr Prabha Vig, project director, CACEE, proposed that NGOs should focus their activities on providing opportunities for functional literacy, strengthening basic learning, creating awareness at the grassroots level, teaching women, and empowering communities, by involving skilled functionaries to deliver the knowledge.

The seminar was attended by representatives of various NGOs working in the city and the neighboring states of Punjab and Haryana.



Rajiv Gandhi Chair at PU
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 15
Panjab University is one of the 10 universities in the country to have been selected by the Ministry of HRD, Government of India, to set up a Rajiv Gandhi Chair in Contemporary Studies. It has been decided to set up a Centre for Contemporary Studies in the university. The funding for the Chair will come from consolidated grants made available to the UGC by the Central Government. A communication to this effect has been received from Education Secretary, Ministry of HRD, and Government of India.

The Centre for Contemporary Studies will work on themes ranging from Panchayati Raj Systems and local governance, women empowerment, impact of technology on society, eco-systems and sustainable development, livelihood and food security, nuclear disarmament and peace studies, tribal development, protection of child rights, social justice and secularism and nation building.

Disclosing this here today, Prof K.N. Pathak, Vice-Chancellor, Panjab University, said University professors/faculty with specialisation on above-mentioned themes would be associated with the centre.



GMSSS-46 gets top position in small savings
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 15
Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 46, won the overall best position in small savings under the special scheme of the Directorate of Small Savings for the city schools.

This was announced at the Annual Sanchayika Day celebrations of the Directorate of Small Savings celebrated at Government College of Education, Sector 20, here today, an official press release said.

Mr S.K. Sandhu, Finance Secretary, who was the chief guest of the function, appreciated the good work done by heads of schools, teachers in the field of Sanchayika Scheme (Children’s Own Bank-School Saving Bank) of Small Savings. He revealed that Chandigarh schools had won National Sanchayika Award thrice during the last decade and added that Rs 205 crore were collected against a target of Rs 125 crore under various small savings schemes during the year 2004-05.

Mr M.K. Malhotra, Regional Director, National Savings Institute, explained the significance of the Sanchayika Day and sanchayika scheme for growing school children. He said that Sanchayika scheme was introduced in 87 schools in the city in which more than 52,000 students saved from their own pocket a sizeable amount of Rs 2.75 crore during last year 2004-05.

Mr S.K. Setia, Joint Secretary Finance, greeted the students, teachers and heads of the schools on the occasion of the Sanchayika Day celebration while presiding over the function.

Prizes were awarded to those 37 schools in the city who had done good work in the field of sanchayika scheme during the year 2004-05. The overall best position award was given to Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 46, which was received by Mr R.S. Goraya, District Education Officer (D.E.O.), who had been Principal of the school. Government Girls Senior Secondary School, Mani Majra, was also awarded for special achievement. Students of Government Model High School, Sector 20-D presented an attractive cultural programme on the occasion.

The District Education Officer, UT, Mr R.S. Goraya, accepts for the overall best position in small saving collections secured by Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 46, Chandigarh, from Finance Secretary, S.K. Sandhu at a function held to mark the Annual Sanchayika Day.



Journalist’s vision for PU
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 15
Preparedness for change, restructuring of courses, provision of hi-tech classrooms, technical facilities extending to hostels, canteens and eateries, emphasis on sports and recreational activities, converting Student Centre into a multiplex functional centre, pro-active interface with industry, media houses and healthier contact with NRI alumni formed part of the vision spelt out by Resident Editor, Hindustan Times, Kanwar Sandhu, to the Panjab University fraternity here today.

He was delivering a lecture on “My vision for Panjab University” at the English Auditorium on the campus here today.

The lecture was organised under the Distinguished Lecture Series instituted by the university.

Kanwar Sandhu advised the fraternity to be open and adaptive to the ever-changing requirements, overcome the mindset and help students in opening the windows to the world at large. “There is a need for quantum jump and in helping the students to acquire more confidence.”

He emphasised the need for physical fitness, participation in creative clubs and outdoor activities.

“Students should be dissuaded from driving around on the campus and encouraged to use bicycles or walking. The university could think of providing cycle allowance as an incentive,” he averred.

He said courses needed to be more relevant to the needs of the society and suggested the setting up of university-industry liaison offices, tie-ups for counselling, exchange of ideas and generation of resources.

He opined that students and Student Council could work out provisions for providing part-time manpower, organise debates for better governance and ensure that their smartness resulted in more responsive governance.

He wondered why students were not coming forward to participate in fight against drug abuse, discuss consequences of pre-marital sex and deliberate on student-teacher relationship.

Earlier, Dr K.N. Pathak, Vice-Chancellor, complimented the chief guest for his forthrightness and concern for his alma mater.



Students visit post office
Tribune News Service

Mohali, September 15
Students of Shemrock Senior Secondary School here visited the post office, in Sector 62. They went there to study how the post office works and how to post invitation cards to their grandparents to invite them on the Grand parents Day, which they are going to celebrate on September 19 on the school premises.

The purpose of celebrating this day is to give importance to the grandparents. Employees of the post office welcomed the children and they explained to them the full process of post office.



New Releases
‘James’ — action-packed thriller

A consummate craftsman, Ram Gopal Varma and his production company ‘Factory’ have been front-runners in launching newcomers. After ‘D’ and ‘Sarkar’, Varma is ready to take centrestage with ‘James’ launching another Haryanvi Mohit Ahlawat.

Mohit teams up with sultry Delhite Nisha Kothari. This one is a small-budget entertainer and is considered a ‘safe’ bet going by its buzz with the youth. ‘James’ has been made under the banner of K.Sera Sera Productions. It will be released today at Batra, Chandigarh, Fun Republic, Mani Majra and Harbans, Patiala.

Nisha who made her first screen appearance in Amitabh and Abhishek Bachchan-starrer ‘Sarkar’ gets a big break in action-thriller ‘James’. This one is touted as a hero-oriented film in which debutant Mohit plays the protagonist in ‘James’. The film will be the acid test for another debutant director Rohti Jugraj. The buzz is that he has come up with a technically crafted action film. Varma has managed to rope in Riya Sen to do an item number along with the credit titles.

Nitin Raikwar, Prasanna Shekhar and Bappi-Tutul have composed the music of “James”.


‘Chocolate’ is directed by debutante Vivek Agnihotri who has dabbled in small screen extensively. An English movie has inspired this film which opens on Friday at Nirman Chandigarh, Fun Republic, Mani Majra, and Rakhra, Patiala.

‘Chocolate’ produced by Vibha-Ragini of Spice Team Entertainment and jointly written by Rohit Malhotra and Vivek Agnihotri, has cinematography by Attar Singh Saini. The story of this film centres around some Indians who fall a pray to the UK police. Starring an ensemble cast that includes Anil Kapoor, Sunil Shetty, Emraan Hashmi, Arshad Warsi, Irfan Khan, Miss India 2004 Tanushree Dutta and Sushma Reddy.

‘Chocolate’ has a very complicated plot. The film belongs to thriller genre. It is a different. So watch ‘Chocolate’ that unfolds a web of sinister plots.

The music by Pritam (“Dhoom” fame) is peppy and youthful.


‘Kal-yesterday and Tomorrow’ also opens today at Fun Republic Mani Majra. It is written and directed by Ruchi Narain. The filmmaker has raised the budget from investors outside Bollywood. This one is about friendships, relationships, change, the city and memories. The film traces the lives of five college friends.

Shiney Ahuja, Chitrangda Singh, Smriti Mishra, Boman Irani, Ram Kapoor, Malaika Shenoy and Murad Ali play important characters. — D.P.



‘Kumara Swami’ — grand finale to National Drama Festival 
S.D. Sharma

The fifth National Drama Festival-2005 concluded with the immaculate staging of a Hindi play, “Kumara Swami”, at the Tagore Theatre here by the Nishtha Sanskritik Manch, Gurgaon. In all seven plays, diverse themes and theatrical forms were presented during the grand annual event organised by the Department of Public Relations and Cultural Affairs in association with the NZCC, Allahabad. Acclaimed thespian composer Kamal Tiwari, who pioneered the festival, honoured the artistes.

Structured in the mythological backdrop the play, “Kumara Swami”, brings into sharp focus the hypocrisy, perfidy and double standards underlying the façade of purity and spirituality in various religious establishments.

The most popular classic from playwright Navnindra Bahl is aimed to chastise the fraudulent ‘gurus’ and spurious sanyasis, who indulge in unethical activities, and are a positive menace to religion and society.

The naïve and innocent Kumar, in his quest to seek inner harmony and truthful living, first falls a prey to superstitions and later to the pious pretence of Acharya Vikal Swami, head of a sect and enemy of Acharya Karmadhish of the rival camp.

As the play progresses in a flash back, the protagonist Kumara Swami, who had been condemned to forcible death by his perperator, realises existential truths concerning human nature. He sees how the custodians of religion and culture reduce religion to rank religiosity and crass communalism plunging the masses in endless miseries.

The theme has a contemporary relevance and the play with the skilful directorial elegance of Sanjay Bhasin emerged as a much better production than the one staged yesterday.

Arpit Bhasin excelled as Kumara Swami along P.K. Sinha who played the dumb sadhu. Manjit Sondhi, Rajnish Bhanot, Harjit Saini Anuj and Sanjay Vashisht played the main roles. Music by Rupesh Rishi, too loud at times, and lights by Navin Kapur contributed to the success of the production.



Punjabi singer sues Super Cassettes

A Punjabi folk singer and lyric writer has filed a case against Super Cassettes Industries Ltd. (T-Series) for allegedly using a song written by him, as part of an album, “Husn” released by T-Series and sung by Surjit Khan, without his permission.

In a suit filed on September 13, Gurtej Tej alleged, that the song, “Haunsale Buland’, was to be released by him in an album but it had already been released by T-Series without his consent and was now playing on various music channels.

Taking up the suit against Super Cassette Industries and singer Surjit Khan, a Kharar court has fixed October 26 as the next date of hearing in the matter.

The album, ‘Husn’ credits the lyrics to Gurtej Tej although he has no idea how the song could have reached either T-Series or Surjit Khan.

“Four of the eight or nine songs for our new album, ‘Haunsale Buland Rakhiye’ have already been recorded. We were in the middle of talks with a music company for the release of our album,” said Gurtej.

According to the suit, Gurtej declared that he had the copyright for the lyrics of the song, which had been registered with the Copy Right Office, Government of India at New Delhi dated February 11, 2005.

Gurtej claimed that he was the original lyricist and composer for the song. “This has happened to me before but I have ignored these things. However, this was my main song in my album. How can I let this go? Even T-Series has used it as their first song on the album. The first song is the one that is usually the most popular and it is playing on music channels in the region.”

He maintained that that Surjit Khan was a friend of his but he never got to know about this song being sung by him for the album ‘Husn’.

For this musician, music was life. “I write and compose all my own songs for all my albums. I have never sold my lyrics nor will I ever do so. These are my own.”

Gurtej has several Punjabi folk albums to his name. ‘Dengar Dengar’ released in 1992, ‘Lal Lal Churiyan’ released in 1995 and ‘Zipsy’ released in January 2005. TNS



Sahara’s film blitzkrieg soon

Sahara One Television has reiterated its mission to bring to its viewers only the biggest and the best. It has decided to dazzle viewers with world TV premieres of several Bollywood movies, including some of the biggest and most popular hit films of the year.

Shantonu Aditya, CEO, Sahara One, said, “It gives me great pleasure to announce that Sahara One Television is poised to bring its viewers the world TV premieres of some of this year’s best and most popular Hindi movies. The films in this lineup include the triple-National Award winning Page 3, the Amitabh and Abhishek Bachchan-starrer “Sarkar,” “Bewafa”, “Jo Bole So Nihaal”, “Mumbai Express”, and Shyam Benegal’s epic National Award-winning tribute, “Bose-the Forgotten Hero.”

The first film to have its TV premiere on Sahara One Television is, incidentally, also the first hit movie of this year — Page 3, whose date of telecast is yet to be announced. It will be recalled that Madhur Bhandarkar’s critically acclaimed Page 3 bagged the National Award for Best Film this year, plus two more National Awards for the Best Screenplay and Best Editing.

Another film that will have its world TV Premiere on Sahara One is the incomparable thespian Shyam Benegal’s tribute, “Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose — The Forgotten Hero”, which also won two National Awards this year: the National Award for Best Film on National Integration, and for Best Art Direction. OC 



Entries pour in for Mrs India

The countdown to the Gladrags Mrs India Contest 2005 has begun. Entries have begun pouring in, as the closing date is just 15 days away, September 30 after which Mrs. Maureen Wadia, Managing Editor, Gladrags Magazine, will conduct the selections in Kolkata, Delhi, Bangalore and Mumbai. The selection schedules are: October 2-Mumbai-Gladrags Office, C/o BD (NBW) at 1:00 pm October 5-Delhi-56, Jorbagh at 1:00 pm October 7-Kolkata-Tantra at 1:00 pm October 9-Bangalore-Britannia Gardens at 1:00 pm

The Bombay Dyeing Gladrags Mrs India is a beauty contest for married women and is open to any married Indian woman under the age of 50. Even divorcees can enter.

The All-India Finals of the Mrs. India Contest will be held in Mumbai in early December 2005.

Bombay Dyeing is sponsoring the contest in association with Kohinoor, the largest producers of Basmati Rice.

So what is Mrs Wadia looking for? A woman, who has extra charisma and attractiveness in more ways than one; a woman who has maintained herself well and is confident; a woman who is a wife, mother and a multi-talented achiever, who strikes the perfect balance between home, family and career. TNS 


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