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Students, teachers pledge to follow Gandhian principles
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 29
Thousands of students and their teachers pledged to uphold the values of peace and non-violence in their lives today on the on the eve of Martyrdom Day of Mahatma Gandhi.

Mr. AJ Philip, Senior Associate Editor of The Tribune, administered this pledge to young students in a function organised by Peace Club of Dev Samaj College for Women, Sector 45, in collaboration with YUVSATTA. Participants not only vowed to shun violence but also promised to resolve all disputes through dialogue and encourage tolerance of dissenting views and differing faiths.

Sharing his first-hand experience of visit to South Africa and riding in the same train, from which Mohan Das Karam Chand Gandhi was once thrown out, Mr Philip remarked that values that guided Gandhi were universal and they were relevant yesterday, today and will remain relevant tomorrow.

Quoting Gandhi he said: “An eye for an eye will make the whole world blind. Parents and teachers should imbibe and inculcate the values of tolerance and forgiveness in children.’’ He said Gandhi lived in the hearts of the people and wanted to take the fruits of development to every nook and corner of the nation.

He advised the students to read the autobiography of Mahatma Gandhi, which costs less than a Baskin-Robin ice-cream and ‘is a joy for life’. He narrated many instances from Gandhiji’s life and introduced to students his multifaceted personality.

Speaking on the occasion, Mr Parmod Sharma, coordinator of the programme, said that “in a way Martyrdom Day of Mahatma Gandhi not only reminds us of the immortal yearning of man for peace and brotherhood, but also to further strengthen our resolve to fight the evil forces dividing humanity in the name of language, race, religion, nationality or way of life”.

He advocated the students to emulate Gandhian ideals in practice and daily lives.

Dr Shashi Jain, Principal of Dev Samaj College for Women, remarked that “in the environment of general decline of values and all its accompanying ills, Mahatma Gandhi is suddenly emerging as a possible answer to the global crisis of human values and that’s why the world remembers Gandhi as ‘Man of the Millennium.’ Various other functions were also organised by YUVSATTA all over the city by Peace Clubs in schools. Special programmes were held at Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 33-D, 44-B and Government Senior Secondary School, Manimajra, where Dr Satinder Dhillon, convener of ‘Campaign for Peace---city Chandigarh’, Mr RS Rawat, Director, Gandhi Smarak Bhawan, and Mr Brahmjit Kalia, ex-DEO, administered the pledge to young students.

On the occasion students also shared their views on the relevance of Gandhian ideals in the 21st century. Students of Government Model Sr. Sec. School, Sector 33 also staged a play ‘Gandhi Ki Vapsi’ in order to spread the message of harmony. A Shanti Sena (Peace Brigade) of students was also formed on the occasion.



From Colleges
UGC-sponsored seminar conducted

Chandigarh, January 29
Department of Commerce and Business Administration of Government College, Sector 11, organised a UGC sponsored seminar on the Topic, “Economic Impact of Indo-Pak Trade Relations” yesterday. Dr P.K. Vasudeva, Prof. ICFAI Business School, Chandigarh delivered the keynote address at the seminar. “The speaker felt strongly that it was illogical for Pakistan to apply discriminatory policies towards India, now that 60 Years have elapsed since Pakistan was born. Moreover India has already granted the Most Favoured Nation status to Pakistan.

Prof. H.S. Mehta mainly dwelt on the importance of education in improving bilateral ties. Dr S.K. Chadha emphasised on the trade relations between India and Pakistan before and after the Independence. Dr Manoj Kumar Sharma did a Transaction Cost Analysis in which he underlined the importance of having direct trade. Dr Sudesh maintained that great potential lies in areas like textiles, agriculture and related products, engineering, chemical and pharmaceuticals, health, leather, entertainment, information technology and tourism. Dr Hawa Singh from Kurukshetra University suggested that the problem between the Indo-Pak trade could be solved through community security approach. Prof. R.C Goyal, Head, Department of Commerce and Business Administration proposed vote of thanks.

A book exhibition “Explore to exist” was also organised in the college. The exhibition was inaugurated by Principal Dr A.N. Garg who also opened a special corner for blind students in the library. Two braillers with a computer with Braille software had been purchased for the blind students. He said such exhibitions make students aware of the career opportunities. Mrs.Renu Oberoi, Head, Library department said that this facility will also be extended for the blind students of other colleges of the city. — TNS



Moti Ram students get awards
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 29
Sportsmen and meritorious students of Moti Ram Arya Senior Secondary School, Sector 27, here were awarded at the annual function held in the school today.

Chief guest Harjinder Kaur, UT Mayor, gave away the prizes. The students presented colourful cultural items, including plays and western and Haryanvi dance.

Mr Anil Mahajan, president of the school, gave a vote of thanks.



Plant nursery inaugurated in school
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 29
Jyoti of Government Model High School, Sector 20-D, emerged winner in the slogan-writing contest during the inter-school competitions in various event held at GMHS-20 premises, here, today.

Jasmine Kaur and Komal won first places in the declamation contest in group 1 and II, respectively. A cultural programme was also organised on the occasion.

Mr Ashwani Kumar, DPI (Schools), who was the chief guest on the occasion, inaugurated an exhibition on drug abuses and a plant nursery.

“This newly set up nursery at our school is an endeavour of the Chandigarh Education Department for creating healthy environs in the school. From here, the plants will be shifted to other government-run schools also”, said Mr Anil Sharma, Headmaster of the school.

Meanwhile, the DPI (S) also inaugurated a small birds sanctuary maintained on the school campus. “This bird sanctuary is the creativity of our lab attendant ably supported by school students. All bird aviaries have been made out of waste materials”, said Mr Sharma.

The results: rangoli competition: 1 Ravneet Kaur and Pinki, 2 Nisha and Sarika, 3 Anita

Painting contest: group I: 1 Srishty Chandhari, 2 Subham, 3 Depankar Dhar

Group II: 1 Sudesh Thakur, 2 Poonam, 3 Brij Bhushan

Group III: Satinderpal Singh

Slogan writing: Group 1: 1 Jyoti, 2 Amandeep Singh

Group II: 1 Reena, 2 Aman



‘Kidnapped’ man accuses cops of abducting his ‘kidnappers’
Maneesh Chhibber
Our High Court Correspondent

Chandigarh, January 29
In what may raise serious questions over the functioning of the Punjab police, a man whose kidnapping case is being investigated by the Mohali police, appeared before a Judge of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, seeking release from alleged illegal police custody of two men, who had been accused of having a hand in his kidnapping.

An FIR registered by the Mohali police on January 25 on the complaint by Mr Chaman Lal, who is related to Mr Dharamveer by marriage, names four persons of having kidnapped Mr Dharamveer.

The complainant has also accused these persons of cheating. But Dharamveer claims that he was never kidnapped.

“Had I been kidnapped by these persons, would I have filed a habeas corpus writ in the high court to seek the release from custody of two accused. I have stated it on oath that I was not kidnapped”, he told The Tribune.

Incidentally, among those named in the FIR are Mr Gurvinder Singh, Ms Nirmaljit Kaur, Mr Mohinder Singh and Mr Gurjeet Singh.

In his petition, Mr Dharamveer has alleged that the Mohali police had kept in illegal custody two persons, Mr Gurjeet Singh and Mr Kulwinder Singh.

Both the persons had been allegedly kept at the police station at Phase I, Mohali.

Not only this, he has even accused the police of having allegedly abducted the duo.

After hearing his counsel, Mr Justice M.M.S. Bedi appointed a warrant officer to raid the police station and produce them in court.

However, the warrant officer did not find the two persons in police custody.

But, surprisingly, the cops did not question Mr Dharamveer, who was accompanying the warrant officer, to know the truth. He even introduced himself.

The FIR still stands, though the police had ample chance to get to the root of things, thereby raising questions about the true intentions of the police.

The fact that the police acted with unusual speed to lodge the FIR is surprising.

When contacted, the Senior Superintendent of Police, Mohali, Mr Dhillon, while acknowledging that Dharamveer had visited the police station and told the officers that he had not been kidnapped, asserted that the police investigation was still not complete.



170 officers move HC over pay panel arrears
Vijay Mohan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 29
About 170 serving and retired armed forces officers have moved the Punjab and Haryana High Court seeking arrears arising out of anomalies in revising pay scales consequent to the implementation of the Fourth Pay Commission (FPC).

Two petitions, one filed collectively by 145 officers and another filed by 10 officers, came up for hearing today. A Division Bench comprising Mr Justice Ashutosh Mohanta and Mr Justice R.S. Madan has issued notice of motion for March 23. Similar petitions on the issue have also been filed by another 20 or so affected officers. There are thousands of officers all over India affected by this issue.

The first petition, filed by the Haryana unit of the All-India Defence Brotherhood, has contended that the revised pay was fixed lower than what should have been fixed according to the recommendations of the FPC accepted by the government.

The “illegality” committed while revising the pay did not come to light until a writ was filed by Major A.K. Dhanpalan in the Kerala High Court. The writ was allowed in 2005 and directions were issued to the Central Government to re-fix the pay of the petitioner. An appeal filed against the judgment by the government and a subsequent special leave petition in the Supreme Court were dismissed.

The government, however, decided not to extend benefits arising out of the Kerala High Court ruling to other similarly placed armed forces officers. On receiving representations from officers affected by the pay fixation, Army Headquarters issued a letter saying that instead of extending benefits, it will contest all such claims and petitions in court.

Terming the government’s action forcing individuals to approach a court of law as illegal, arbitrary and contrary to the spirit of the Constitution, the petition has contended that it is the government that is duty-bound to implement the judgment which has been upheld by the apex court and to ensure that citizens are not discriminated against.

The petition has sought that directions be issued to the government to uniformly implement the said judgment of the Kerala High Court in respect of all officers affected without forcing them to approach court, re-fix pay of the petitioners after taking into consideration the element of rank pay, revise pensionary benefits accordingly and pay all consequential benefits and arrears.

The other petition, filed by 10 officers, has also sought all-service benefits relating to field concession allowances, transfer allowances, qualification allowances pension, TA/DA, gratuity, interim relief, commuted values of pension along with an interest of 18 per cent on the dues with effect from January 1, 1986, till the final payment. Due to the wrong fixation of scales, all entitled allowances and benefits were affected.



Plea against acquittal admitted
Our High Court Correspondent

Chandigarh, January 29
The Punjab and Haryana High Court has admitted for further hearing an appeal filed against the December 20, 2005 order of the Additional Sessions Judge, Ferozepore, who had acquitted the accused allegedly involved in the day-light murder of two persons in 2001.

Seeking maximum punishment for the accused, the appellant, Mr Ajit Singh, has termed the order of the lower court a “textbook case of miscarriage of justice”, “illegal” and “unsustainable in the eyes of law”.

On June 23, 2001, two persons, Pritam Singh and Sunil Kumar, had been shot dead in a busy market.

However, the appeal says, the lower court outrightly rejected the testimony of the main witness, who had also been injured in the attack, as also medical evidence, before acquitting the accused. Even the FIR as well as initial statements of two of the accused, Sukhwinder Singh, alias Chhinda, as being responsible for the crime. But, the lower court did not take this into consideration while deciding the matter, the appeal says.

The petitioner, whose brother was one of the two persons killed, has asserted that the trial court committed material illegality in accepting the second forensic report, which was result of some foul play. He has also accused the police of having adopted a partisan attitude and blatantly favouring the accused to help them get off the hook.

The Division Bench comprising Mr Justice A.K. Goel and Mr Justice H.S. Bhalla admitted the appeal for further hearing.



Noted artiste Shekhar Sen performs at Tagore today
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, January 29
Shekhar Sen is in the city to present his solo performance of two hour long play ‘Kabir’ at the Tagore Theatre on Tuesday. Credited with over 1000 performances the world over, Shekhar had sung , composed and released 193 cassettes and CDs so far including some films and TV serials.

Talking to Chandigarh Tribune Shekhar Sen talked about his venture of enacting and producing plays on saints like Tulsi, Kabir, Vivekananda, Raskhan and others. “I could only lament over the pathetic plight of the way our rich cultural heritage had been twisted and presented in over 200 films which I used to see every year as a member of the Film Censor Board of India”, disclosed Shekhar. Though a trained classical vocalist under his parent gurus Aneeta Sen and Arun K. Sen, the ambitious music composer failed to follow the dictates of the film directors for doctoring the tunes of western numbers.

Disgusted but not disheartened Shekhar studied and analysed the philosophical aspects of the great omniscient saint poets and presented them as per his own perception. He carefully articulated the wisdom and teachings of saints in his productions like Kabir Tulsi by employing his individual traits of a musicologist, singer and actor. In an amazing profusion of poetry, dialogues songs and acting prowess, Shekhar Sen alone will portray 38 different characters on stage in the musical mono act.

The entry to the show at 6.30 pm at Tagore Theatre is strictly by invitation.



Patriotic songs mark society's function
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 29
The Tribune Uttarakhand Welfare Society has organised its annual function here.

A cultural programme, featuring patriotic songs and items, was presented by members of the society and their children. Harpreet Deol, a "Sa Re Ga Ma" contestant, enthralled the audience. Winners of various competitions organised by the society were given prizes.

Meanwhile, in the biennial elections of the society, the following have been elected office-bearers: president — Arun Nathani; finance secretary — Bhagwati; cultural secretary — Tirath Singh Rawat; and auditor — Rajinder Rautela.



The Party is over
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 29
Filmmaker Sunil Babbar has finished shooting his new film “The Party”. The film, shot primarily in a restaurant in Sector 26 and the Rock Garden, is slated for release in March. Babbar had earlier made an India-English feature film “Ants” which was awarded "Best Foreign Film" in 'Yellowstone International Film Festival 2002' held in Montana, USA.

As for “The Party”, its shooting started in Mumbai on November 16 last. The schedules were shifted to Chandigarh on January 2 and were completed a while ago. Post production job will again start in Mumbai, Babbar said today. “The Party' is based on a late night party organized in a discotheque. Organized to commemorate the golden jubilee celebrations of a school by the school's old students association, the party suddenly goes awry as a crime of passion is committed in the heat of moment.

The duration of the film is 2 hours 25 minutes. It includes five songs sung by Sunidhi Chauhan and Kunal Ganjawala. Of the five songs, four are the dance numbers. Around 50 young actors of Chandigarh have featured in the production which has Ishaan Kakria as the male lead and Akshitaa Agnihotri as the female lead. Other cast includes Khyali Saharan and Pratap Singh Fouzdar. Music has been composed by Atul Sharma.



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