L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


PAU to give boost to banana cultivation
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 23
In a bid to boost fruit cultivation in the state, Punjab Agricultural University is making efforts to promote cultivation of bananas in the state.
Although banana is an important fruit crop of tropical regions and cannot be successfully grown in sub-tropical areas like Punjab, yet farmers have tried to grow this crop here. Now the university has developed technologies to successfully grow bananas in Punjab. Earlier too, another fruit crop of sub-tropical areas, Papaya, was successfully introduced in the state.

Earlier attempts to cultivate banana in Punjab, using conventional sucker method of propagation, whereby a plant is grown from root, have failed as this method leads to delay in shooting, flowering and fruit-bearing capacity of crop and the plants are damaged by frost in winter.

According to Dr Yog Raj Chanana, Head of the Department of Horticulture, a new technique to raise banana plants through tissue culture has been found to reduce shooting period, improve vigour and enhance flowering and fruiting. Under Punjab conditions, some innovative farmers have exploited this technique to successfully grow banana plants.

However, they were ignorant about the time of planting, the size of plants and other practices of banana cultivation. This made banana cultivation unprofitable.

A team of experts from PAU’s Department of Horticulture recently surveyed different areas in Punjab to gather information on the failure of banana cultivation. The department is working on standardizing banana planting time. The trials on the standardization of agronomic practices were taken up rigorously and encouraging results were obtained. It has been found that a 30 cm plant, planted on March 1 can yield 17 kg banana fruit per plant, thus giving crop worth Rs 1 lakh per acre.

Efforts are underway to standardize the time of planting so as to harvest the crop before the onset of winter.

PAU experts have suggested following help tips for banana cultivation :

1Grand Naine variety has been tested for two-years and has been found suitable for conditions in Punjab.

1The soil in all districts is suitable for banana cultivation. However, banana can be successfully planted in the bet area. Banana trees can withstand temporary flooding.

1Banana being a high value crop should first be cultivated by progressive farmers. The plant can grow in bet and low water table areas, as it has low water requirement, 120 cm-150 cm, per annum, compared to 220 cm required in water-wheat-rice rotation.

1Mass multiplication of banana plants is possible through tissue culture.

1Banana plants are highly susceptible to frost, so adequate measures must be taken to protect the crop from frost damage during winter.

1Initial cost of setting up a banana orchard is around Rs 47,000 and Rs 20,000 every year is required for fertilization and maintenance of the crop. Banana plants have life span of four to five years and yield three crops in this span. On an average, one acre of banana orchard produces 16 metric tonnes to 18 metric tonnes of fruit worth Rs 70,000 to Rs 80,000.



Unplanned B.Ed colleges compromise with standards
Shivani Bhakoo

Ludhiana, November 23
The state government seems to have compromised with the standard of higher education by providing a clean chit to several unplanned BEd. Sore over the apathetic attitude of the government towards the state of higher education, the educationists feel that private players would not only charge exorbitant fee from the students but will exploit the new teachers, too.

According to sources, about two-three years back there were just 20 BEd colleges in the state providing quality education to the students. In the current session, students took admission in more than 120 BEd colleges out of which several colleges are without full-time Principals and qualified teachers. Turning a blind eye towards the standard of higher education, government plans to give green signal to about 65 more such colleges in the state. About 10-15 colleges are expected to open in Ludhiana district alone.

Mr Tarsem Bahia, Convener Punjab Educationists Forum, said two-three private colleges had shown same person as Principal on paper. The managements were fooling National Council of Teacher Education (NCTE) - an Apex body, to maintain standard of higher education, by showing appointment of experienced persons as Principals and qualified faculty. ‘‘With this privatisation move, government is trying to withdraw its responsibility to ensure quality education to all’’, alleged Mr Bahia.

Mr Bahia further added that a B.Ed college near Doraha was being run without principal and the students were having a tough time while getting their NOCs and attestation of certificates. It had also become a matter of concern for the university. ‘‘In the absence of Principals, who will be held responsible about day to day affairs of the colleges? The private managements will be more concerned about making their own profits rather than providing quality education to students. New teachers will be recruited at much less salaries and exorbitant fee would be charged from students because of non-interfering attitude by the government’’, said Mr Bahia.



From Colleges
Blood donated for thalassaemic kids
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, November 23
A blood donation camp for thalassaemic children was organised by the NSS and NCC units of Guru Nanak Girls College here today. The camp was held in collaboration with the Department of Transfusion Medicine, Dayanand Medical College and Hospital, Ludhiana.

The Principal, Dr Chanranjit Mahal, inaugurated the camp. Col S.S. Saini, Officiating Group Commander, and Lt Col Avtar Singh, CO, 3 Punjab Girls Bn, Ludhiana, motivated the cadets to donate maximum units of blood. Dr Amarjit Kaur, in charge of Transfusion Medicine, imparted information about thalassaemia.

Award for city lecturer: Dr Savita Uppal, Principal of S.G.G. Jain Girls College, was awarded Indira Gandhi Sadbhavna Award. The award was presented by Dr A.R. Kidwai, Governor of Haryana, in the presence of Mr Bhisham Narayan Singh, former Governor of Tamil Nadu and Assam, and former Election Commissioner Krishna Murti on November 21 at the Delhi Constitution Club. Dr Savita has been awarded for her outstanding individual achievement and distinguished service to nation.

Interactive session: Lieut Kulinder Kaur Sandhu, Administrative Officer, 3 Punjab Girls Bn, NCC, conducted an interactive session on “NCC: Grooming Tomorrow’s Leaders” and later on HIV/AIDS awareness campaign recently where in NCC cadets of Khalsa College for Women, Sacred Heart Convent School, SDP College for Women, Guru Nanak Girls College, Ludhiana, Kundan Vidya Mandir participated. The session was organised at Sacred Heart Convent School.



Seminar on stress management 
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, November 23
The Department of Business Management, LCET, Katani Kalan, organised a seminar on stress management in organisational development and managing assets in organisations. Mr D. Goswami, Vice-President HRD and Personnel, and Mr Rajiv Mehani, Chief Manager, Project and Planning Corporate office, Mahavir Spinning Mills of Vardhman Group, were the resource persons.

Mr Goswami delivered a lecture on stress management in organisational development. He said the present corporate scenario stress was a major factor to be coped with. He suggested various ways to tackle stress and make corporate environment more congenial.

Mr Rajiv Mehani delivered a lecture on managing assets in organisations in which he emphasised on the reduction of cost of upkeeping and maintenance of assets.

Mr Goswami distributed prizes for intra-departmental presentation competition in which Ms Gamanpreet Kaur, Mr Parveen Kumar and Mr Sirish Kumar stood first, second and third, respectively.



Scholarship programme
Our Correspondent

Samrala, November 23
The president, Mr Mehma Singh Kang, and general secretary, Dr Gulzar Mohammed Goria, of Adhyapik Chetna Manch today said that an educational programme would be held at Government Secondary School, Otalan, on November 26 at 11 am. Dr Jagtar Singh Khattra, DPI (E) Punjab, Chandigarh, would be the chief guest.

The District Education Officer, Mr Yashpal Mehra, will inaugurate it.

Three teachers will be felicitated for their good work and anti-copying campaign. Prof Naushehrvi will present books to outstanding students. 



PAU employees hold rally
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 23
Mr D.P. Maur, a candidate for the post of president of Punjab Agricultural University Employees’ Union today claimed that he would be winning with a comfortable margin. He claimed that during his last several terms he had made tremendous contribution to employees’ cause and he was hopeful that his services would be acknowledged.

Addressing a rally of the employees today, he elaborated the main achievements during past 10 years, including abolition of the computer test for clerks and senior assistants, and grant of allowances at the latest revised rates to clerks.

About the vanishing cadre posts, he said the demand to fill promotional posts at various places was pursued by his union only. Mr Maur said after winning the elections, all demands of stenographers, left out categories, and other demands of employees would be taken up with the university authorities on top priority.

Mr Amrit Pal contesting for the seat of general secretary stated that the team had always stood by the employees’ of the university.



Delegate session of health staff from Dec 18
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, November 23
The annual delegate session of the Coordination Committee of Paramedical and Health Employees, Punjab, will be held here on December 18 and 19. The pending demands of the employees, besides the election of office-bearers, would be taken up.

Stating this in a statement here today, Mr Amarjit Singh Pandher, Chairman of the Organising Committee, said more than 300 delegates from all over the state would attend the session and deliberate on the demands which included formation of a promotion policy for all categories, promotion channel for class IV and health assistants, linkage of enhanced uniform allowance with salaries and early payment of held up salaries of staff at the Primary Health Centre(PHCs), Maludh.

According to Mr Pandher, meetings were held at several PHCs at various places in the district to mobilise employees for the annual session.

The anti-larva staff of the health department also organised meetings to focus on the forthcoming session. 



Basketball tournament begins
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, November 23
The XIVth Ludhiana Sahodaya Schools Basketball Tournament began at BCM Senior Secondary School, Chandigarh Road branch, here today.
Mr R. S. Thukral, Divisional Manager, Indusind Bank, inaugurated the three-day meet in which 28 teams in the age groups of u-14 and u-19 years are taking part. Mr S. D. Kalia, Principal of the host school, welcomed the participants and highlighted the importance of sports.

Results: (Boys u-19)—Kirpal Singh Sewa Panth School, Neelon, b BVM School 25-22; Guru Nanak International Public School, Ludhiana, b KVM School; BCM School, Chandigarh road, b KVM School 30-18; USPC Jain School b Green Land Senior Secondary School 29-4; USPC Jain School b Shemrock School 33-18; DAV Public School b BVM School 29-4 and BCM School, Shastri Nagar, b Green Land Senior Secondary School.

Girls (u-19 )—Guru Nanak Public School got walkover against DAV Public School; Guru Nanak School, Mullanpur, got walkover against KVM School; and BCM School, Shastri Nagar, lost to Kirpal Singh Sewa Panth School, Neelon, 20-29.


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