C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


EDUCATION

New Zealand study fair on Sept 12
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
New Zealand Education Fair 2006 will be held in the city on September 12 at Hotel Taj, Sector 17, from 11 am to 5 pm. Representatives from over 20 institutions across New Zealand will be present to counsel parents and students aspiring to study in New Zealand. A series of informative seminars on studying in New Zealand and student visas will be run simultaneously.

According to Mr. Paul Vaughan, New Zealand’s Trade Commissioner to India, “There is a huge demand for a skilled work force in New Zealand and a lot of Indians are currently contributing to the burgeoning New Zealand economy. We hope these fairs will act as a stepping stone for other Indian students who would want to take advantage of global education and work in an international environment”.

New Zealand Trade and Enterprise in association with Education New Zealand is organising the fair in six other cities across the country. Councillors would resolve queries of students regarding visa, accommodation, fees, food, climate, support services etc.

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Apeejay School tops space project contest
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
Apeejay School, Jalandhar, and Bhavan Vidyalaya, Sector 27, bagged the first and second prize, respectively, at the zonal competitions on the theme, “Aryabhatta to Chanderyaan: India’s Space Journey” at DAV School, Sector 15, today.

Each team comprising six members gave a 12-minute presentation on the project report submitted by them earlier. Three judges from the field of aviation and space then asked the students questions. Eight teams participated in the event. They had been shortlisted from among 23 schools.

The two teams selected as winners and runners up will qualify for the second phase of the competition, in which 14 teams from different parts of the country would also participate. The final event would be held from October 26-28 and the winning team would be invited to visit ISRO complex at Thiruvanthapuram.

All participating team were given certificates of participation, a memento and books. On the occasion prizes were also given to winners of competition held for government schools of Punjab, Haryana and Mohali. The prizes were given away by Air Cmde R.K. Srivastava, chairman of the Aeronautical Society of India.

Essay competition (Hindi): Silky Soni (KV no. 2), 3 BRD Air Force 1 and Apurva-Air Force School, 12 Wing, 2.

Intelligence/general awareness competition: Sunil Choudhry, GMSSS, Sector 19-C, (1), and Shiv Shakti, GMSSS, Sector 33-D, 2.

Painting competition (Sub-Juniors): Rajat Sharma, GMSSS, Sector 28-D, 1, and Nidhi Sobti, GMSSS, Sector 28-D, 2.

Juniors: Shivam Rai, Air Force School, 12 Wing, 1, and Mahesh Kumar, GMSSS, Sector 28-D, 2.

Seniors: Akash Gera, KV No.2, 3 BRD Air Force, 1, and Kanika Bansal, GMSSS, Sector 16, 2.

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GJIMT freshers welcomed

Chandigarh, September 9
The Gian Jyoti Institute of Management and Technology (GJIMT), recently welcomed its 10th batch of MBA students at a function titled "Vibrations 06". The programme, replete with song and dance numbers, saw participation by both new and old students.

An interactive tinge was given to the whole programme by Sumandeep and Ratika of MBA (final year).

The programme began with senior students welcoming the newcomers and the new students responding with one of them, Garima Jain, swaying the audience with melodious renderings. In a contest, Kriti Rana and Jagpreet Singh were chosen Ms and Mr Fresher. — TNS

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District Courts
Showdown over parking fee
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
Charging parking fee from the court staff by the contractor of the paid parking outside the district courts here today led to a showdown between the District Bar Association and the court staff.

The charging of fee by the Bar association was in retaliation to a move by the court staff to remove temporary kiosk by a cellular service provider from within the court premises. The Bar had allowed the telecom service provider to put up the kiosk.

Last evening, the Bar passed an order to the contractor to charge fee from the staff which used the parking. This was protested by the court staff which complained to the District and Sessions Judge (DSJ). Following this, a meeting of the members of the Bar and the employees was convened. The issue of the lift being exclusively used by lawyers and physically challenged persons was also raised.

Record room nobody’s baby

Hundreds of important case files in the record room of the district courts seem to be nobody’s baby with the authorities’ paying scant attention to their upkeep. No provision for fire-fighting equipment also leaves the record room prove to fire accident.

Expressing their concern over the poor maintenance of the record room, a number of lawyers have sought a proper record room. Mr Arvind Thakur, a lawyer, said: “ How can the authorities be so lax. There is no proper entrance and exit to the record room in the basement”. There was no exhaust fan and waste furniture had been dumped in a corner.

“I feel that the record room should be located on the ground floor and should be well lit. Wooden rakes should be replaced with iron ones to reduce the danger of fire”, said Mr K.S. Lamba, secretary of the District Bar Association.

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Judicial complex in Mohali sought
Our Correspondent

Mohali, September 9
The local District Bar Association has demanded that a permanent judicial complex be set up and space provided for lawyers chamber in the complex.

Mr N.S. Minhas, president of the association, said the demands were brought to the notice of the Punjab Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, through a memorandum. He said the appointment of more judges, including a district and session judges, was required as Mohali had become a district.

He requested that land should be allotted to the Advocate House Building Society exclusively for lawyers.

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Nurturing tradition with care
Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
Even at 69 Guru Kalamandalam Gopi is grace personified. A celebrated exponent of kathakali, he is credited not only with enriching the tradition with newer dimensions but also with spawning a new generation of talent - one that reinforces hope in the future of the dance form.

In Chandigarh today on the invitation from SPIC MACAY, the illustrious dancer recalled his journey through the alleyways of tradition and spoke of how he enjoyed the roadblocks. For a while before he fell under the tutelage of celebrated kathakali gurus in Kerala, he had learnt a semi-styled solo dance form called “Ottanthullal”. But it was not in semi-styled forms that his future lay. Soon he was sweating it out at the Kalamandalam, pursuing perfection with utmost perseverance.

“I was groomed under two very able masters — Guru Ramankutty Nair and Guru Padmanabhan Nair. There were no shortcuts to grace. I had to go through the grind which started with learning to balance the body and never quite ended. The striving lay in learning to speak without words,” said the guru, just before he spilled magic on the stage of Punjab Engineering College auditorium, which saw him act out the nuances of kathakali.

From the act, it was evident that he loved his dance. No wonder he never compromised on the issues around purity of the tradition. “Kathakali is a discipline unto itself. It is a complete whole. There is no question of merging or fusing it with any other dance form, as is the practice these days. It can communicate only as itself,” the guru said, indicating how the Kalamandalam had facilitated innovation within the parameters of tradition.

The recent example is Kalamandalam Gopi’s much-acclaimed classical production around a very western theme. Inspired by Shakespeare’s “King Lear”, he created a kathakali show around it and staged his creation 70 times across Europe: He recalls: “I played the King of Persia in the production. Notwithstanding language barriers, the message went across, so much so that we were flooded with applications from westerners eager to learn the dance. I still have foreign disciples. They are mesmerized by kathakali’s vibrancy and vigour - elements their traditions can never equal.”

But “King Lear” was an exception to the norm which requires kathakali practitioners to narrate and enact stories from mythology, Mahabharata being the hot favourite, followed by the Ramayana. The guru said: “Originally, each piece (story) was written to last five hours on the stage. But we have to abridge the versions depending on the mood of the audience. In Kerala, however, audiences still relish full episodes.”

Having taught for years at the Kalamandalam, now a deemed university for instruction in classical arts, Guru Kalamandalam Gopi has much to share. But his immediate concern is the preservation of kathakali’s purity, for which he is raising a nursery of talent.

As regards the strength of his style, he says: “We strive for perfection in foot and body exercises, for effectiveness in the portrayal of “navarasas” and for power in the craft of communication. We can’t rely on words. The only tools available to us are music and body. The rest is all perseverance.”

It is this perseverance which he inspired among his students at Kalamandalam. He retired from the institution in 1992, as principal.

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