C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Senate decides not to pay printer
Tribune News Service

Following the CET faus pax and the PMET paper leak, the former PU VC Prof KN Pathak seemed to have lost all confidence in the Controller of Examination, Mr Sodhi Ram. During the discussion it was found that the university had got two sets of question papers printed for the BEd entrance test. While the question papers printed by the tainted printer was not used as an alternative set of papers got printed by the university was used. Senators pointed out that while the tainted printer claimed Rs 11 lakh for this question paper, the printer’s whose paper was used in the test had done the work for Rs 7 lakh. Mr Sodhi Ram who seemed to be under fire from all corners during the meeting, however, got up and made it clear to the members that the payment made to the new printer was not done out of the confidential fund.

Chandigarh, September 24
The Panjab University Senate today decided not to pay any money to the university’s question paper printer till his role in the CET faux pas and the PMET leakage was ascertained and a subsequent penalty imposed on him.

The printer (whose name is to be kept confidential but was repeatedly mentioned by Senate members at today’s meeting) had been mainly held responsible for the CET faux pas this year.

The issue rocked the House more than once today with members objecting to the decision taken by the PU Syndicate to release Rs 11 lakh as part of pending dues to the printer. The Syndicate’s had decided to do so even when a committee constituted by the VC on the issue had recommended that only Rs 5 lakh be given to the printer who had claimed Rs 22 lakh for various works he had undertaken.

The committee was headed by Justice SK Jain had Mr GK Chatrath, Mr Prabhjit Singh and Mr Sodhi Ram as members. The discussion took an interesting twist when Mr GK Chatrath alleged before the House that the list of pending dues given to the committee was different from the one which was attached with the Senate’s agenda.

A lengthy discussion ensued during which efforts were made to find out if former VC Dr KN Pathak was in favour of making the payment to the printer or not. The file was called for and read out. The VC finally expanded the committee and included Mr Dharinder Tayal and Mr PC Dogra as its members. The expanded committee would take a fresh look at the issue and recommend the further course of action.

The VC also formed a committee to review the system of internal assessment as was being followed in the university and its affiliated colleges. Senators had objected to the continuation of the system in the Department of Correspondence.

Another committee would be formed to look into the need of teaching compulsory environment education course in all affiliated colleges of the university. It was decided that the system not be introduced in the colleges from this year and continue to be an optional non-credit course till the committee made its recommendations.

The Senators deferred a final decision regarding charging of Rs 500 from candidates for issuing degrees which specified the medium of instruction.

Most of the over 150 items on the agenda were passed during the meeting and the various resolutions moved by the Senators were forwarded to committees for consideration. These included signing of an agreement with the University of Wisconsin for a student exchange programme with Panjab University and approval in principle for the establishment of a medical college at the Panjab University campus.



Sobti advocates ‘common’ schools
Chitleen K. Sethi
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 24
Panjab University Vice-Chancellor today mooted the idea of instituting common ‘schools’ as umbrellas for departments and centres of the university having common subjects of teaching and research.

Vice-Chancellor R.C. Sobti mooted the idea during a special discussion on the “Vision statement of PU for the academic session 2006-2007” at a meeting of the Senate held here.

Pointing out that the university had a lot of infrastructure facilities and expertise which were not optimally used, Dr Sobti suggested that in order to economies these programmes there was a need to consolidate them by bringing various centres/departments together and design inter-disciplinary teaching and research programmes accordingly. It was aimed at working collectively for a meaningful utilisation of public money for the sake of public itself.

“In order to reach this target it will be better if the departments/centres at Chandigarh are brought under the umbrella of schools like, schools of social sciences, physical sciences, basic biological sciences, business management, engineering sciences, legal studies, languages, environment sciences and engineering”, he said.

He also said there was a need to merge the RSIC/CIL, including Centre for Microelectronics and Computer Department with the UIET to make an institute of engineering and technologies. “The National Centre for Genomics, Department of Biotechnology of the UIET, Centre for Biomedical Excellence, Centre for Nanotechnology also needed to be merged and put under the aegis of the institute of emerging sciences, he said, adding that certain steps had already been taken towards this end.

Highlighting the importance of starting new courses and phasing out the irrelevant ones, the Vice-Chancellor suggested that courses like MBA in biotechnology, masters in biomedical engineering, masters in business economics, masters in medical physics, diploma in globalisation, diploma in intellectual property rights, diploma in bioethics needed to be started and could be brought under the umbrella of the new centre of emerging areas, which was being established.

Mr Ajay Pal Singh Gill, Prof J.C. Bansal, Mr Satya Pal Jain, former MP, Prof Deepak Manmohan Singh and Mr Dharinder Tayal also spoke on the occasion.



Plan for promoting Gandhian values
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 24
The Yuvsatta, the Dev Samaj College of Education and the Gandhi Smriti and Darshan Samiti, New Delhi, will organise events and activities to promote Gandhian values among the youth from October 1 to January 30 next as part of the ongoing ‘Campaign for peace-city Chandigarh’.

These include the celebration of birth of all girl children born this year in Chandigarh on the eve of the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi and the observance of the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi as Indo-Pak Peace Day.

An Indo-Pak student peace camp will be organised in the first week of October to promote peace, non-violence and people-to-people dialogue.

Plans are under way to invite leading Gandhians and peace activists to address gatherings at colleges and the Panjab University here.

A mobile book stall carrying Gandhian literature has been prepared, which will make a round of educational institutions, in which emphasis will be laid on the promotion of Mahatma Gandhi’s autobiography among students.

An inter-school quiz based on the book will be organised at the Dev Samaj College of Education on October 5.

The four-month programme will culminate with a peace film festival in January next and a pledge to uphold the virtues of non-violence by at least 1 lakh students on January 30 next.

Teachers of schools who actively associate themselves with these endeavours will be honoured with the Dr K.B.S. Dhillon Memorial Shantidoot Puruskar.

According to Dr Satinder Dhillon, convener of the programme, there is an ever-increasing need to expose the youth to the Gandhian ideals of truth, non-violence, service and sacrifice to develop children and the youth as socially responsible citizens.



From Schools
Contest on table etiquettes at Ryan school
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 24
A competition on table etiquette was held at Ryan International School, Sector 49, after a week’s demonstration followed by observation and practice. Students were introduced table layout. Tiny tots of the school showed their dexterity in using the cutlery in the right way.

Fancy dress contest

Students of pre-nursery, nursery and K.G. of Chamanlal D.A.V. Senior Public School, Sector 11, Panchkula, participated in a fancy dress competition on the school premises. Students dressed up as cartoons and T.V. characters like Spiderman, Shaktiman, Popey, Noddy, Tom and Jerry, etc. Mythological characters of Lord Ram, Sita, Lord Krishna and Arjun were presented by K.G. students. At the end of the competition, the best adjudged “little champs” were commended and awarded by Mrs Preeti Goyal, a member of the P.T.A, of the school.

BMD Public School

An inter house competition ‘best out of waste’ was held at B.M.D Public School, Sector 69. Students were given an opportunity to show their hidden talent. Students showed their creativity and imagination by making different items from the waste materials available at home. Principal, Ms Navneet, appreciated the effort of the students. Shiva Ji House took away the maximum prizes.

Hindi programmes

Hindi fortnight programmes were conducted at Sharda Sarvhitkari Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 40, from September 11. Different competitions like paper reading, writing, story telling, Hindi quiz and ‘hasya kavita’ were conducted in the morning assembly. Students from Class pre-primary to 12th participated in different competitions. The fortnightly programme concluded with ‘hasya kavita,’ which was presented by students of Class IX. Principal B.S.Kanwar gave away the prizes to the winners.



Bonhomie marks old students' reunion
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 24
The Old students of St Stephen's Society (TOSS) organised a get-together at the school premises in Sector 45, here yesterday.
As many as 400 old students of the school, attired in their very best, turned up at the venue from as far as Kolkata, Bangalore and Hyderabad.

The party, which started at 6.30 pm, went on till 10 pm. The old students danced to the beats of popular numbers.This was followed bydrinks and sumptuous dinner.

"It is an annual affair and this time I, along with two of my friends, Sahil Shandlya and Tanveer, took the initiative to organise the party," said Salil.



Xavier’s students celebrate founder’s day
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 24
Staff and students of St Xavier’s Senior Secondary School celebrated their founders day here yesterday. The programme began with a cake cutting ceremony by the Chairman, Mr Andrew J Gosain. The school choir sang a birthday choir and senior students of the school presented a dance number followed by a skit 'sanyogita ki shaadi'. The Principal of the school, Mr Mervin West, announced a new award —the golden boy and girl of St Xavier’s. The award was bagged by Himal Gusain of Class VII and Sirjana Dhaliwal of Class III, respectively. —TNS 



SC upholds 105-year law exempting armed forces from toll
Vijay Mohan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 24
Upholding provisions of the 105-year old Indian Tolls Act, the Supreme Court on Friday dismissed a special leave petition (SLP) seeking withdrawal of concessions provided to Armed Forces personnel under the Act.

A Division Bench comprising Mr Justice Ashok Bhan and Mr Justice Markandey Kadju declined to interfere in the directions issued by the Punjab and Haryana High Court, which had dismissed a petition filed by a Chandigarh resident, Sanjeev, in May.

Sanjeev had challenged the provisions of the Act on the ground that it was discriminatory, unconstitutional and against the spirit of Article 14 of the Constitution of India which provided for equality before law. He had also contended that other central government employees and members of the para military forces are not entitled to such concessions.

The HC Division Bench, comprising Mr Justice H S Bedi and Mr Justice Ranjit Singh, however, ruled to the contrary and had dismissed the petitioner’s contentions. Thereafter, he had filed a SLP in the apex court against the HC order.

Section 3(a) of the Indian Tolls (Army & Air Force) Act, 1901, provides for toll tax exemption on all public or private roads and bridges in India to officers and men of the regular forces whether they are on duty or not. Further civil vehicles and animals moving under military orders, are also exempted from payment of toll tax. The Act also has an overriding clause, which causes it to override all other Acts or directions by any legislature or central or state government in India.

The controversy regarding applicability of the Act began a few years ago, when private toll operators under the Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) system on various roads and bridges had started refusing toll exemption to defence personnel and in certain cases even to defence vehicles.

The issue had then been settled after Chandigarh-based lawyer, Capt Navdeep Singh, took up the matter with the Central Government in 2004 and instructions were issued by government thereafter that the Act was very much applicable to toll roads and bridges being operated under the BOT schemes or otherwise. The instructions also clarified that the Act was applicable even to private vehicles belonging to personnel of the regular forces.

While the problem of illegal charging of toll tax has more or less been settled with the instructions being circulated all over, sporadic incidents of harassment of defence personnel continue to be reported mainly from the Delhi-Noida-Delhi Flyway and from some areas of Himachal Pradesh.



Giving violin a new meaning
Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

Dr N. Rajam
Dr N. Rajam

Chandigarh, September 24
“A bottomless ocean” — that is how celebrated solo violinist Dr N. Rajam describes music. Born into a family of musicians who treated violin as a way of life, she has grown up to perfect the instrument’s nuances, bringing to it what no other contemporary practitioner could.

For long now, she has been regarded as the master of vocal Hindustani representations on a strictly western instrument.

Here in the city on the invitation of SPIC MACAY, the Padma Bhushan musician spoke with Chandigarh Tribune today about how westerners loved to partake of Indian music presented on the violin.

“They love our fingering and bowing techniques. I have many foreign disciples who go back to their countries to aid the promotion of Hindustani music through the violin,” said Dr Rajam, who represents the seventh generation of violinists in the family. She was initiated into the art by her father Narayan Iyenger, who added the “gayaki” dimension to an instrument that had long been known only for technical prowess.

She took over from her father and perfected the “gayaki” tradition on the violin, besides bringing her own skill to it by concentrating on the “khayal gayaki” dimension.

Such was her skill that she inspired a whole new wave of “vocal representations” on the violin.

For her dexterity and passion, she has received several awards, including the Padma Shri. To date, she credits her achievements to her mentor Pt Omkar Nath.

But that does not take away from Dr Rajam any of her credits, as she silently carries in her being the best of four traditions — her own technique of violin, the emotional “gayaki” style of Pt Omkar Nath, the “thumri” tradition imbibed from Pt Mahadev Prasad of Banaras gharana and the Carnatic tradition of the purist Lt Musiri Subramania Iyer.

It is another matter that Dr Rajam never chose to practice the Carnatic tradition and instead devoted herself to Hindustani music, which she re-energized with her classicism. Now she is busy promoting music among children by providing them a space to showcase their talent every year.

“Last year, we started a competition for children in the age group of six to 20 years. The idea is to attract the finest talent in dance and music and promote it. At another level, we have started Kala Rasik Sangam to promote the music of lesser known artistes. We have recorded 50 CDs under this programme,” she says.

Not so much of a fusion musician, Dr Rajam believes Indian music is best presented in its pure form. An idealistic academic and Emeritus Professor at Banaras Hindu University (BHU), she even makes solid argument in the favour of the “gurukul” tradition.



Poetic humour casts spell
S.D. Sharma

Chandigarh, September 24
Poetry is the distilled essence of life in all its manifestations and acclaimed poets have articulated and expressed their feelings on the social and political life viewed from a superior moral angle.

Humour weaved a magical spell at the lawns of the St. Xavier’s Senior Secondary School as poets of eminence regaled the crowd with their striking couplets at the ‘Hasya Kavi Sammelan’ here today.

The majestic start given by the very vibrant satirical hilarity through striking verses by the poets, having built up a crested climax, suddenly melted into a thought-provoking ponderous exercise.

In the opening spell, Ved Parkash Ved wondered at the wisdom of Mr Lalu Prasad Yadav in his satirical verse ‘Hamare netaon ke taste ko kya ho rha hai, ghar mein Rabri rakhi thi aur malik chara kha rha hai’.

His poem on foreign tour without passport and poem depicting the dilemma of US President George W. Bush over Osama bin Laden were well received.

The versatile doyen of humour, Surender Sharma, enraptured the audience, but sent it into a gloomy feel with the next couplet, ‘Chappa chappa hua vishaila kisne aisa vish baanta, margat margat chehal pehal hai panghat panghat sannatta’, with an oblique reference to communal riots.

On the Babri issue, his anguish at crass communalism was eloquent in his glinting lines ‘Lahoo tha Hindu ka Allah sharminda rha, mara Musalman to Ram kahan zinda rha’.

He established individual merit and intrinsic ability with brilliant literary satire, serenity and humanitarian vision.

Sick of injustice and inhumanity, the poet of democratic ethos, Surender Sharma, who was also the compere, observed that artistes of the ‘Laughter Challenge’ imitated original content of poetry with aberrations and polished it to their suit their presentation styles.

An academician-scholar from Lucknow shared her anguish at the unethical political manoeuvring going on, especially in Bihar.

She was repeatedly complimented for her classic ‘Holi’ with Mr Atal Bihari Vajpayee and the pre-election scenario in crisp satire on the Lalu-Rabri Devi empire.

Condemnation of religious and moral hypocrisy in the sheafs of verse by veteran poet Om Parkash Aditya and Prof Vinay Kumar Vishwas were scathing enough to annoy patriarchs of society and governance.


7 crore Indians have heart disease: doctor
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 24
The local chapter of the Indian Medical Association and Fortis Hospital Mohali held a continuous medical education (CME) programme on “Preventing heart diseases” at IMA Bhavan, Sector 35, here today.

As many as 120 doctors attended the CME in which Dr Jagmohan S. Varma, Head of Department, Interventional Cardiology, Fortis Hospital, Mohali, spoke on “Preventing heart diseases” while Dr Ambuj Choudhary, Senior Consultant, Cardio Thoracic and Vascular Surgery, spoke on the topic of “CABG in elderly”. The purpose of the CME was also to discuss life style modifications, which could help in decreasing the incidence of coronary artery disease.

According to Dr Varma , “coronary artery diseases in India has reached epidemic proportions figures over the past decade. The incidence and prevalence of coronary artery disease (CAD) is highest in India as compared to any other country in the world. Approximately, 7 crore Indians suffer from heart disease out of which more than 28 per cent of these are below the age of 65.”

Dr Varma gave several tips to maintaining a healthy heart. They included walking for 45 minutes a day, a disciplined diet, keeping weight under check, early detection and treatment of silent killers like diabetes, hypertension and dyslipidemia and stress Management.

Talking about coronary artery beating graft Dr Ambuj Choudhary said, “Till a few years ago, it was not advisable to go in for a bypass surgery in case of elderly patients. But now, with the advancement of technology age is no longer a limitation. Bypass surgery not only increases the quantity of life but also improves the quality of life.”

He informed the audience that CABG was less strenuous on the lungs as well as heart. 



World Heart Day celebrated
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 24
The World Heart Day was celebrated with great enthusiasm in City Beautiful today. A series of activities were organised by the Post-Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER) in association with Healthy Heart Action Project (CHAAP) and various other organisations, including the Directorate of Tourism, UT, Chandigarh.

Inaugurating the activities, the Adviser to the Administrator, Mr Lalit Sharma, flagged off a cycle rally. The Home secretary-cum-Secretary Health, UT, Mr Krishna Mohan, Mr. T.R. Sarangal, Special Secretary, Health-cum-Managing Director, Punjab Health System Corporation, Mr Vivek Atray, Director, Tourism, UT, and Dr. K.K. Talwar, Director, PGI, were also present.

The rally with over 200 cyclists started from the PGI and passed through Sectors 14, 15, 16, 17, 9, 8 and 7 and culminated at the Sukhna Lake.



Birthing suite at nursing home inaugurated
Tribune News Service

Mrs Frainy Ahuja, Mrs India-2006 runner-up, at the inauguration of the birthing suite at Chaitanya Hospital, Sector 44, Chandigarh, on Sunday
Mrs Frainy Ahuja, Mrs India-2006 runner-up, at the inauguration of the birthing suite at Chaitanya Hospital, Sector 44, Chandigarh, on Sunday. — A Tribune photograph

Chandigarh, September 24
Childbirth is not an illness and being in hospital, surrounded by patients, is nobody’s idea of celebrating it.
This philosophy has created the concept of luxury birthing suites, says Dr Neeraj Kumar of the Chaitanya Nursing Home, Sector 44 here.

A birthing suite was inaugurated by Mrs India 2006 runners-up Frainy Ahuja at the nursing home today.

It consisted of a room with a special bed and equipment required for childbirth, besides an in-built delivery room. It included a monitoring system, ultrasound equipment and anaesthesia facility.

“The suite has a refrigerator, a colour television, a DVD player and Internet facility”, Dr Kumar said.

The charges were Rs 10,000 for the facilities, charges for the suite being more than twice the delivery charges.

There was a provision for a second suite, depending on the response from patients.

Ms Ahuja said the concept of a birthing suite was exciting, adding that she was tempted to have a second child.



Health programme for girl child launched
Tribune News Service

Mohali, September 24
Fortis hospital celebrated the International Girl Child Day with the launch of ‘Chetna’ today.
‘Chetna’ is an initiative to reach out to underprivileged girl children under the age of 18 years and ensure that no girl is deprived of her basic rights to health, hygiene and nutrition. It is an attempt to ensure that female children in villages get equal food, healthcare and nutrition as the male child.

‘Chetna’ endeavours to provide underprivileged girl children proactive support through health services and information, and other types of education and training programmes.

Rural health camps would be held in adopted villages on a monthly basis. A medical health card would also be issued to girls and they will be offered free basic healthcare services and consultation on fixed days of the month.

Regular public lectures on various hygiene and health related subjects would be conducted by senior doctors.



Satluj Public School enter quarter-final
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 24
Host Satluj Public School, Sector 4, Panchkula, outclassed Alpine Public School, Bhawana, Pinjore, 4-0 to book a berth in the quarter-finals of the CBSE Football Tournament (Cluster-XIII) here today.

Harkirat scored two goals in the seventh and 28th minute, while the other two came off Mehtab and Ashish in fifth and 41st minute, respectively.

The Tribune Model School, Sector 29, Chandigarh, won their match against Bhawan Vidyalaya, Sector 15, Panchkula, 1-0 in the first round but lost their tie in the second round to Shishu Niketan School, Sector 22, Chandigarh, 0-3.

In another match, New Public School, Sector 18-B, toppled DAV Senior Secondary School, Sector 8, 5-0.

In another match, K.C. Public School, Akhnoor Road, Jammu, beat Stepping Stones Secondary School, Sector 37-D, 4-1.

Sagar Bhatt scored three goals in the 24th, 40th and 48th minute, while Ranvijay scored a goal in 10th minute for the winning team.

Their opponents scored the lone goal in the seventh minute.

Other results: Sanjay Public School, Sector 44, Chandigarh, b Guru Nanak Mission Public School, Paunta Sahib, Mirnour, 1-0; DAV Model School, Sector 15, Chandigarh, b Springfield Public School, Ambala City, 5-3; St Soldier International School, Sector 28-B, Chandigarh, b Shivalik Public School, Sector 41, Chandigarh, 3-1; Army Public School, Chandi Mandir, b Guru Nanak Public School, Sector 36, Chandigarh, 4-3 (on penalties).



Tushar wins u-16 badminton title
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 24
Tushar retained his u-16 boys singles title beating Rohit Lakhanpal in a well-contested match 17-21, 21-17, 21-18 on the final day of the Yonex 18th Chandigarh State Badminton Championships-2006 which concluded at the Badminton Hall, Sector 42, here, today.

Vivek Sharma and Isha beat Pankaj and Purnica in the mixed doubles final 21-12, 19-21 and 21-8.

Meanwhile, the top seed in the women singles category, H. Sarda Devi was beaten by a newcomer Manju in straight sets 21-19, 21-10 in the final.

The results (final):

U-13 boys singles: Mayank b Ketan Suri 23-21, 23-21

U-16 boys singles: Tushar b Rohit Lakhanpal 17-21, 21-17, 21-18

U-19 boys singles: Oscar Bansal b Vipul 21-7, 21-15

Men’s singles: Ashish Sharma b Oscar Bansal 21-18, 21-19

Women’s singles: Manju Chahal b H.Sarda 21-19, 21-10

U-13 girls doubles: Diksha and Shreya b Japneet and Daaman 21-10, 21-9

U-13 boys doubles: Reshabh and Mayank b Ketan and Karan Suri 21-15, 21-12

U-16 girls doubles: Tanu and Akriti b Chetna and Payal 21-12, 21-13

U-16 boys doubles: Rohit and Harinder b Aman Sethi and Tushar 21-16, 21-18

U-19 girls doubles: Purnica and Monika b Seema and Akriti 21-15, 21-16

U-19 boys doubles: Oscar and Vipul b Sunil and Hardeep 21-16, 21-18

Women’s doubles: H. Sarda and Manju b Isha and Prunica 21-17, 21-11

Men’s doubles: Ashish and Pankaj b Amit and Robin 21-16, 21-13

Mixed doubles: Vivek and Isha b Pankaj and Purnica 21-12, 19-21, 21-8

+ 35 masters singles: Jerry b R.S. Bedi 21-12, 21-11

+ 35 masters doubles: Vijay and Gurpreet b Mahal Chand and Munish 15-21, 22-20, 21-9.



Khalsa Club-26 win kho-kho title
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 24
Welfare Club (A) won the title in the men senior category beating Welfare Club (B) by three points in the final of the fifth Challenger Kho-Kho Tournament held at Government Model High School, Sector 43, here today. In the women senior group, Khalsa Club-26 beat Guru Nanak Khalsa-30 by 10 points.

The chief guest, Principal Gurbachan Singh, President Nationalist Congress Party, Chandigarh, gave away the prizes.

Other results:

Under-14 Boys: GMHS-43 first, JNV-25 second, Khalsa Club (A)-35 third

Under-14 Girls: Khalsa Club-35 first, Khalsa Club-30 second, GHS-40 third.



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