Defacement: Even heritage buildings not spared
Vibhor Mohan
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, August 3
Despite the district administration claiming that it has implemented the election commissioner’s orders against the defacement of public property during campaigning for the municipal corporation elections, posters of political parties can be seen on various heritage buildings in the holy city.

The pillars of Hall Gate or Gandhi Gate, one of the 12 historic gates built by Maharaja Ranjit Singh, have been smeared with posters of both Congress and BJP candidates.

Portions of the posters have got torn in the heavy rain of Thursday, turning the bills into virtual eyesores.

Similarly, located in the Ram Bagh, the pristine “deori”, which is a part of the Maharaja’s summer palace, has also been messed up with posters of political parties and independent candidates with an aim to get the attention of hundreds of morning and evening walkers converging on Ram Bagh.

Various NGOs have already lodged their protest with the local authorities and have demanded strict action against the defaulters as per the model code of conduct for the elections.



Prof courses grip young minds
Shivani Mehra

Amritsar, August 3
As students everywhere get more an more conscious of professional viability of their course of study popularity of basic theory courses like history and economics is fast going down. The trend threatens the existence of these courses at college level.

Upcoming subjects like mass com are being offered to meet demand

More popular are courses like MBA, MCA, B.Tech and also in media and design. Offering students with a wide range of options, colleges are not only providing old courses but have also begun some new courses which promise to change their lives.

New course options include professional courses like physiotherapy, food science, B. Sc Computer science, fashion designing and garments construction (FDGC), commercial art, mass communication, video production (MCVP), still photography, audio production (SPAP), tourism and travel management (TTM), gemology and jewelry designing (GJD), computer application and dance are also being offered as vocational subjects. Other options like bachelors in business, bachelors in computer application and bachelors in design, bachelors in multimedia as four-year degree courses at the graduation level are favourite option of many students.

At the post-graduate level courses like masters in journalism and mass communication, post graduate diplomas in tailoring and dress designing, computer sciences, air travel services, journalism and mass communication are other popular choices. While the colleges are also providing subjects like mathematics, economics, geography, home science, sociology, history, physical education, hindi, psychology, political science, etc at the graduation level but these are inviting fewer admissions.

Dr Daljit Singh, principal Khalsa College says, “Students want to get admissions in the professional subjects but students doing bachelors and masters in basic subjects also have a bright future if they have dedication.”

“We get fewer students in traditional subjects but we are trying to attract students for subjects like fine arts and music also. The problem arises because of increase of private institutions which admit students with low marks also. Education needs to be standardised,” he added.

V.K. Sharma, principal, DAV college says computer oriented courses are preferred by students because these promise them a better career. Popularity of traditional courses in colleges is on the decline. We are adding more subjects like computer application, mass communication and video production, office management to be taken along with history, economics, sociology etc to increase admissions and meet the demand for such courses,” he adds.

V.P.Lumba, Principal, Hindu College is of the view that traditional subjects are not gone anywhere still they have very bright increase people’s interest in b.a we have added some new subjects likeTTM, computer application and many more but these subjects need to be taken with the basic ones,he said. We also provide placements to the students of the subjects like economics, mathematics and English also as these subjects atre evergreen and will never loose their importance,he added.

He said to promote these subjects government should implement also whatever it says and should achieve the set target by providing grants and employing the students doing these subjects.



Class VII boy gets stick for humming film tune 

Tarn Taran, August 3
A seventh standard student of a private school here was brutally beaten up by a teacher for singing a song in the classroom.

According to sources, Deepak (11) was thrashed by a female teacher, who was irked over his humming a film tune. The boy resident of local Gali Garment Wali was hit below the shoulder, on the thighs and other parts of the body, resulting in bad bruises. The teacher also allegedly threatened the boy not to disclose the matter to anyone. Deepak returned home and out of fear didn’t tell anything to his parents.

It was only in the morning when he took off his clothes for a bath his mother saw the bruises on his body. When asked, the sobbing boy narrated the entire incident to his mother. The parents of the boy along with some mediapersons went to the school to complain against the teacher.

The principal admitted that the boy was beaten up as the latter was singing a song at a girl student of the school. At this, Jatinder Singh, the boy’s father, decided not to file a complaint. Subsequently, a compromise was reached between both the parties. 



Extra security for smooth conduct
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, August 3
Nearly 7,25,457 voters would go to poll for the 65 wards in the city on August 8. Elaborate arrangements would be made to ensure peaceful and fair conduct of elections, which would begin at 8 am.

Deputy commissioner K.S.Pannu, who is also the election officer, said the police has been asked to rope in additional force from Batala and Tarn Taran districts in case of any eventuality.

As many as 680 polling booths would be set up where electronic voting machines would be installed. The results would be out on August 8. The entire election process is likely to be completed by August 10. As per information available with the district administration, there are 381,868 male and 343,589 female voters in the city.

The rehearsal of the polling staff would be carried out under the supervision of the returning officer concerned on August 5. The entire procedure of setting up electronic voting machines, their sealing and the counting of votes would be carried out in the presence of the  presiding officer and  polling agents.

The polling parties would be supplied polling material by the returning officers at 10 am on August 7, which would be followed by police parties escorting the polling parties to their polling stations.

No posters, please

Pannu said as per the code of conduct for the elections, putting up of posters on government buildings is not allowed. Even for sticking of posters on private structures, written permission of the owner is required. “I personally took a round of different wards and issued warning to the violators,” said Pannu.

The election commission has also given stringent instructions to the candidates on defacement of property and the returning officers have been asked to ensure that there is no violation in their areas.

Loud Speakers

For using loud speakers, the candidates will have to seek permits from sub-divisional magistrates.

There is a ban on use of loud speakers for election campaigning between 10 am to 7 pm.

Code of conduct

n No political party or its candidate would indulge in any activity, which hurts the sentiments of any caste, religion or community.

* No mud slinging would be allowed during the  campaigning and the  opponents would be criticised only on the basis of the policies, programmes and past performance.  Personal remarks should  be avoided.

* Votes would not be sought by making appeals to members of a particular caste or community.

* Political parties and candidates are not allowed to indulge in illegal activities like threatening voters, bribing them, campaigning within 100 meters of the polling station.

* The political parties and independent candidates would not allow their supporters to make use of private property without due permission of the owner.

Returning/ Officer Ward no/ Office no.

SDM Amritsar II/ 1-6/ 2228303

DDPO, Amritsar/ 7-12/ 2226980

AC (G), Amritsar/ 13-18/ 2225722

SDM Amritsar I/ 19-24/ 2226928

XEN (PR)/ 25-30/ 2225398

DTO, Amritsar/ 31-35/ 2565244

DR (Co-op)/ 36-40/ 2530515

Asst Labour Comm. 41-45 2564602

XEN Sewerage B./ 46-50/ 2500746

GM DIC/ 51-55/ 2584804

Fodder Dev. Off./ 56-60/ 2264478

DD, Factories/ 61-65/ 2564602



Stars to hit campaign trail
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, August 3
Campaigning in the city is all set to get a major boost with the star campaigners of the three political parties - Congress, BJP and SAD - expected to hold a series of programmes from tomorrow onwards.

According to various party leaders, many big names would be campaigning for their respective parties.

While BJP’s Navjot Singh Sidhu is expected to work wonders for the party candidates, Congress is pinning its hopes on former chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh, PPCC chief Shamsher Singh Dullo and CLP leader Rajinder Kaur Bhattal.

Jugal Kishore, former Congress MLA said Dullo would be in Amritsar tomorrow (August 4) to address a public meeting at Vijay Nagar. Capt Amarinder Singh would also join in and would boost the party morale at a rally in Tej Nagar. He would later attend a programme on Mata Kaula Marg. Bhattal would be coming to Amritsar on August 6. She will attend a function in Ward no 20 and visit areas in the south constituency.

“The top Congress leadership would address voters to expose the lack of development in the city, after its being taken over by the SAD-BJP government. The developmental projects started by the previous Congress government have been stopped,” he said.

Meanwhile, BJP leaders added that Sidhu had arrived in the city to brighten the poll prospects of his party candidates and his schedule is being chalked out.

“The MP is very popular with the masses and he can definitely do wonders in bringing the fence sitter’s vote for the party. The infighting in the party in certain wards would also be taken care of when a senior leader would himself go and campaign for the party’s candidate for the elections,” said a BJP candidate, against whom six other BJP workers from the same ward had applied for the party ticket.

SAD acting president Sukhbir Badal would be in Amritsar tomorrow. He will hold a press conference to release the manifesto of the party for the elections. Former Punjab minister Balramji Das Tandon is expected to be in the city tomorrow.



Reserved Seats
It’s left on mothers, wives to save day for leaders
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, August 3
In most of the 22 seats reserved for women candidates, the aspirants from the Congress, BJP or SAD, who were eyeing the seat of councillor from that area, have now fielded their family members. On many seats, the mothers and wives of political leaders or even sitting councillors are contesting the elections.

For instance, Surjit Kaur, Congress candidate from ward number 25, is the mother of Iqbal Singh Sheery, secretary, Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee.

“I have been involved in the service of people of this area for a long time and would have contested the election had it not been reserved for women. But now my mother is contesting and she is enjoying widespread support in the area,” he says.

Similarly, from ward number 10, Kashmir Kaur is the Congress candidate. She is the mother of Rajkanwalpreet Singh Lucky, who is former secretary of the Youth Congress. Lucky, too, makes no qualms about his aspirations of making it to the corporation house had the ward not been reserved for women candidates.

“My mother has herself done a lot for the people of the area and the crowds at her public meetings are an indication of her popularity,” he said.

The BJP’s district vice-president Subhash Bhatia’s wife, Sunita Bhatia, is the party’s candidate from ward number 25.

Asked if he would have himself contested had the ward not been reserved, Subhash Bhatia says, “Giving ticket for the election is a prerogative of the party leadership. Had the ward not been reserved and the high command had asked me to contest, I would have followed the directions,” he says.

Ward number 1, 4, 7, 10, 13, 16, 19, 22, 25, 28, 31, 34, 37, 40, 43, 46, 49, 52, 55, 58 and 61 have been reserved for women.

A total of 376 candidates are contesting the municipal corporation elections from the 65 wards in the city.



Poll Campaign
Candidates go into overdrive
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, August 3
With candidates for the forthcoming municipal corporation elections getting only five days to campaign, they are working overtime to woo voters in their wards. The campaigning, which formally kicked off on August 2, would comes to a close at 4 pm on August 6.

There are some candidates who prefer to ride a cycle or move in their constituency on foot to strike a direct cord with the voters. Kulbushan Duggal of the Congress, who is contesting from ward no 21, said he was popular among his voters for travelling the nearly 3 km area of the ward on cycle or on foot. “My supporters often say that their candidates is so down-to-earth that he takes the 11 no bus (walks on foot),” says Duggal, who is pitted against Satpal Singh Satti of the BJP.

Supporters of the Congress, SAD, BJP, CPI and independents can be seen moving around the city on bikes, cars and jeeps, displaying their election symbols. At some places motorists take out rallies in the evening, holding party flags.

However, unlike assembly elections, the campaigning is more by word of mouth and the candidates set out in the morning to go door to door to seek votes from residents of their wards, promising to provide them better civic amenities. Women supporters usually schedule the campaigning for the evening when the streets of the city echo with slogans like “Na atta na daal, chalo Congress de naal”, “Desh ki neta kaisi ho, kunwari Mayawati jaisi ho” and “Akali aur bhajpa sarkar, swach prasashan aur vikas.”

Shwet Malik, BJP candidate from ward no 51, says his campaigning schedule includes going door to door two hours every morning and evening and the afternoons are for holding meetings with supporters. “We will be holding a massive rally on Sunday, which would start from Green Avenue,” he said. Giving a clarion call to Congress workers to unite in campaigning for the party candidates, O.P.Sareen, district president, Congress (Urban) said the public opinion WAs in favour of the party.

He said the SAD-BJP government had ditched voters by not honouring its promise of the atta-dal scheme and people have lost faith that the alliance would be able to carry out developmental works in the city.



Book on Nihangs released
P.K. Jaiswar

Amritsar, August 3
An exclusive book on the role of Nihang Singhs in the Sikh history, their contribution to the promotion of Sikh religion, their life-style, etc, was released recently.

The book, titled “The Beloved Forces of the Guru,” has been written by Surinderjeet Singh Pall, retired chief commissioner of income tax, and published by Chatar Singh Jiwan Singh, Amritsar.

The book was released by M.S. Roy, chief comissioner of income tax, Ludhiana, at a small gathering of distinguished Sikh scholars and heads and members of various Nihang units, particularly Baba Udai Singh and Baba Balbir Singh of the Budha Dal Nihang organisation.

The author said the book also dealt with the future of the Nihangs, who needed to be brought into the mainstream for playing their role in the promotion and propagation of Sikh religion.



City doc attends world congress

Amritsar, August 3
Dr Navneet Grewal, head of the department of pedodontics and orthodontics, Government Dental College, was invited as a guest speaker by the scientific committee of the 21st congress of the International Association of Paediatric Dentistry held at Hong Kong recently.

Only two speakers from India were invited and she was the only one from the northern India. Her lecture on “Emerging dental materials and techniques” highlighted the treatment modalities for early childhood caries where children are seen suffering from totally decayed teeth at ages as young as two to three years, which affects their overall physical and psychological development. — OC



Eco issues: Spring Dale sets up ‘go green’ club 
Sanjay Bumbroo
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, August 3
Taking up environmental issues and projects initiated by the rotary club, Spring Dale Educational Society has set up Interact Club to support the ‘Go Green’ campaign in the holy city.

The school has also taken up the task of tree plantation in the nearby areas and is looking forward to be associated with the ‘Anti-dust’ campaign

The environmental club involves students of grade IX and X of the school who are working with Dr Sushil Gupta on a project that deals with the removal of plastic wires from the sign boards and the same will be shortly enlisted in the Limca Book of Records.

The school has also taken up the task of plantation of trees in the nearby areas and is looking forward to be associated with the ‘Anti-dust’ campaign being organised by the local authorities and NGOs of the city.

The society, in the process, has staged a play ‘Khuli Hawa Ki Talash Mein’ to sensitise the common masses for cleaner environment.

The school invited Dr Aneesh Dua, a PhD holder and reader of the Zoology Department, Guru Nanak Dev University, to present a workshop on ‘Knowledge Management’ to sensitise and motivate students on effects of global warming and be torch bearers for a better future.

Dr Aneesh is an activist and state coordinator of Art of Living and an instrumental force behind the ‘Beti Sneh Sanjivini Yatra’ all across Punjab against female feticide. He is also a keen environmentalist and peace activist working presently on solutions on pollution of the ‘Hudiara Drain’.

Dr Aneesh said ‘Knowledge Management’ was gathering your resources, experiencing it and then sharing it with others. He said in the last 40 years the intensity of urban growth has increased many folds leading to environmental degradation and decrease in the quality of life.

He said the students have to understand that now environment is not only a specific issue but the domain touches each aspect of one’s life. He also educated the students of the better way of disposing waste in three bins one for biodegradable, second for plastic and the third for metal and glass.



GNDU authors talk about concept of ‘Kapaal’

Amritsar, August 3
A book titled ‘Prem Prakash Dian Kahanian Vich Kapaal’ by Dr J.S. Rahi and Dr Raminder Kaur was released here. The idea of Kapaal is intricately linked with the philosophy of Ardhanarishwar, the androgynous god, rooted in myths depicting male-female relationship of Lord Shiva and Parvati. It has been exhaustively discussed in the first chapter of the book. Then the authors, both from Guru Nanak Dev varsity, dilate upon the theme through practical textural and structural study of Prem Praksh’s 19 significant stories and then sum up their insights in the last chapter titled ‘Ati Kathan’. Interestingly, after Sekhon’s ‘Sahityarth’ published in mid-fifties, the book is the only other work which gives an exhaustive treatment to one single subject. Most of the books of literary criticism falling in between happen to be the collections of essays on heterogeneous themes which talk about casual approach towards literary studies. It took Rahi and Kaur two years to complete the work. The title of the book is embellished by a philosophically appropriate painting by Surjit Kaur.

The thrust of the book is to bring home to the readers that tradition and modernity have a dialogic rather than an antagonistic relationship in the evolution of ideas. The antagonistic approach, they believe, tends to assert the superiority of the West over the East which is an untenable proposition. — TNS



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