C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


PU convocation tomorrow
Vice-president Ansari to confer degrees on students
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
Panjab University will confer honorary degree of doctor of laws (honoris causa) upon renowned Bollywood director and producer Yash Chopra, environmental scientist Dr Rajendra Pachauri, former vice-chancellor of Jawaharlal Nehru University Dr G.K. Chadha and Punjabi writer Dr Pritam Singh during the convocation to be held on January 16. Vice-president of India and PU chancellor Mohammad Hamid Ansari will be the chief guest.

Isher Judge Ahluwalia, vice-chairperson, Punjab Planning Board, and wife of deputy chairman of the Planning Commission Dr Montek Singh Ahluwalia will address the convocation. Dr Montek Singh Ahluwalia will also deliver Prof Brij Narayan Memorial Lecture organised by the department of economics on January 17.

Confirming the names, vice-chancellor Prof R.C. Sobti said the university would be conferring Ph.d degrees upon around 150 students.

As many as 170 students would be awarded gold medals and around seven would be awarded silver medals.

Ahead of the vice president’s visit, the Chandigarh police has beefed up the security arrangements. A mock drill with the car cavalcade will be conducted tomorrow. 



PU Notes
Experts dwell on ways to improve in-service training
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
A workshop of coordinators of in-service training programmes for college and university lecturers was held on the PU campus here today. Core faculty from Academic Staff Colleges of Jamia Millia Islamia, Nainital, Ajmer, Srinagar, Shimla, Amritsar, Kurukshetra and coordinators of refresher courses from the university attended the workshop.

The objective of the workshop was to improve novel strategies for enhancing effectiveness of these programmes, which could play a great role in improving quality of higher education teachers. The PU vice-chancellor, Prof R.C. Sobti, highlighted the importance of the training institutions of Academic Staff College and challenge of changing the mindset of teachers. Prof S.K. Sharma, director, Academic Staff College, PU presented the vote of thanks.


Purnima Parashar, research scholar in the department of anthropology, received the Young Scientist Award in the section of anthropological and behavioural sciences during the 95th Indian Science Congress held at Visakahapatnam from January 3-7. The award was presented to her by noted agriculture scientist Dr M.S. Swaminathan. Earlier, she had won the Best Poster Award in the 93rd Indian Science Congress held at Hyderabad in 2006. Purnima Parashar presented her research findings on biosocial factors influencing menopause and the effect of menopausal symptoms on health of Indian women. Purnima Parashar is the first recipient of the award from the university, according to Dr Indu Talwar, chairperson, dept of anthropology.


The Panjab University Library Staff Association (PULSA), in its general body meeting held on January 12, elected Neelam Sharma as president, S.S. Bedi as vice-president, V.K. Grover as secretary, Mritunjay Kumar as joint secretary and Navjet Kaur as treasurer for 2008, according to V.K. Grover, secretary, PULSA.



From Colleges
Alumni, students celebrate Lohri
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
In tune with its tradition, Chitkara College of Education for Women-25 invited its alumni of the past four years on the occasion of Lohri yesterday.

The event started with the registration of students of the current batch to the Alumni Association - Reflections.

The alumni were welcomed with a tilak ceremony. As many as 20 former students joined the festivities. A number of games like tambola, balloon dance, musical chairs and antakshri were organised. The institute's students enthralled everyone with their scintillating bhangra and gidda performances.

Dr Ashok Chitkara, president, Chitkara Educational Trust, relived experiences of his student life and acquainted all present with his experience of being a teacher. The alumni also shared their experiences at the college.

SD College-32: The management, principal, staff and students of the college celebrated Lohri on the college campus with gaiety. Bonfire was lit and traditional Lohri songs were sung. Everyone danced to the beats of ‘dhol’. Sweets and peanuts were distributed. Bonfires were also lit at both boys' and girls' hostels in the evening. This was followed by a cultural programme and dinner. Principal of the college Dr A.C. Vaid spoke on the importance of such festivals and informed the students about the significance of 'Makar Sankranti’. He advised the students to have a feeling of camaraderie and goodwill for their fellow beings. 



Students display culinary talent
Tribune News Service

Mohali, January 14
Students of Saupin’s School participated in a sandwich making competition. The students came with the ingredients and worked on breads to create gastronomical delights. Parents of students had been invited as judges.

MEDICAL CAMP: A general medical check up camp was organised at Anees School, Sector 69. A team of doctors, led by Neeru Sethi, examined the students. School director Annet Goel added that the entire last month was celebrated as “health teachers’ month” as part of which the team of doctors had checked the general health of all the teachers in the school.

YOUTH DAY: Swami Vivekanand College of Education (SVCE) organised National Youth Day. The programme served to reinforce traditional culture apart from generating goodwill and understanding among the students, teachers and others. The programme was inaugurated by Rajpura SDM Gurtez Singh. He viewed the picture gallery and book exhibition organised by College of Education based on the life of Swami Vivekanand. As many as 151 titles of books were displayed apart from large display of quotations from the works of Swamiji. Dr Raman Rani Gupta, principal, SVCE, welcomed the chief guest, other invitees, students and faculty members.

CELEBRATED: The festival of Lohri was celebrated with great pomp and enthusiasm by staff and students of Aryans Business School (ABS), Nepra village yesterday. The celebration started with lighting of a traditional bonfire. Students and staff sang Lohri and folk songs. Chairman Anshu Kataria said Lohri marked the end of winter.

LOHRI: Jan Shikshan Sansthan, an institution for vocational education sponsored by the ministry of HRD, Government of India, celebrated Lohri festival on its campus. As many as 200 students participated in it. Dildar Khan, director of the sansthan, said originally Lohri was celebrated to mark the birth of a child in the family. However, with the passage of time, it was bordered to celebrate birth or marriage of a male member. But now there was a change in the practice as in certain households, Lohri was also celebrated as a happy occasion to mark the birth of a girl child. Khan said it was time to promote the education of the girl child so that she could contribute significantly to the progress of the nation. Anand Mohan Sharma, deputy director of the sansthan, emphasised on the need for vocational education for girls to make them self-dependent. Further, he said such celebrations helped in generating awareness about education on one hand and building public opinion against female foeticide on the other.



Teachers’ degrees under scrutiny
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
The Chandigarh education department has decided to check degrees of teachers working in various schools.

DPI (S) S.K. Setia said, “This step has been initiated as it has come to our notice that there still exist some teachers in various schools of Chandigarh who have been appointed on the basis of degrees not recognised by the administration.”

The orders have been issued to the principals and heads of all schools for submission of the attested photocopies of degrees and other certificates of their school staff to the DPI office. The verification of the certificates of the new appointees will also be done within a month. A special team has been formed to carry out this job. 



Assurance firm told to pay Rs 2 lakh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
The Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum-I has directed New India Assurance to pay Rs 2 lakh, that is half the amount of the claim, to consumer.

The forum headed by Jagroop Singh Mahal observed: “Since the complainant was late by seven days in informing the insurance firm about the accident and started the repair work even before giving the firm an opportunity to inspect the vehicle to assess the loss, we are of the opinion that the complainant is not entitled to the full amount of compensation.”

The petitioner J.S. Rana of Alchemist Limited, Sector 9, stated that a Mercedes Benz car was purchased for the use of managing director (MD) and got insured from the insurance firm in 2002. He stated that on September, 2002, on way from Fazilka to Ferozepur, the car went off the road, while saving a cow. Furthermore, the car entered into the paddy field. He added that the water accumulated in the fields entered the engine of the car.

The police registered a DDR in this case. A claim was lodged with the insurance firm after a delay of seven days. It was mentioned that there was delay for lodging the claim as the MD was preoccupied with some new projects. Thereafter, the vehicle was given for repair for which a bill of Rs 5 lakh was raised by the car repair workshop. The claim was repudiated by the insurance firm.

Meanwhile, the insurance firm stated that the loss was reported to them after seven days without giving any reason for the delay caused. Therefore, the surveyor was not given an opportunity for inspection and assessment of the damages before the engine was dismantled.



SBI staffer gets 3-year RI for embezzlement
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
After a trial of 16 years in embezzlement case of Rs 32,000, the accused has been sentenced rigorous imprisonment (RI) of three years today. A fine of Rs 2,000 was imposed on him by judicial magistrate first class (JMIC) Balwinder Kumar.

The court stated: “No doubt accused is first offender and has also got family to support. But the sole ground is not sufficient to take lenient view. Accused has committed the heinous crime of criminal breach of trust in his own institution.”

A resident of Sector 8, the accused was alleged of misappropriation of funds in State Bank of India, Industrial Area, Phase I. The 50-year-old accused was working as record keeper in the bank. While checking postage books of the branch it came to the notice of the complainant, A.S. Bajwa, that accused had taken more advance for meeting postage expenses than the expenditure in March, 1991. The record keeper was accused of misappropriation of assets worth Rs 1,10,700 from May, 1989, to May, 1991.

After completion of investigation, two other accused, Akshay Mehra and Ashok Mehta, were found innocent. The accused was found guilty under Section 409 of the IPC for which two challans were presented in the court.

The chief manager of the bank, A.S. Bajwa, stated that he with the assistance of S.C. Chawla, field officer assessed the amount of embezzlement of Rs 1,10,700. He said to have found that the accused had committed two frauds, firstly by carrying over less amount from one page to the next page. Secondly, the accused withdraw the money from cashier and did not enter the same in his account book. He gave a written report in this regard. However, the court stated that there was nothing in cross examination to disbelieve his version. So, Bajwa was not cross-examined.



Showcasing nature’s beauty
Exhibition on till tomorrow
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
As this group of avid photographers captured moments of their adventure trail in lens, varied hues of a variety of flowers was one thing they could not have ignored. Experience profound serenity and beauty of nature at the photography exhibition - Valley of Flowers - inaugurated today at Government Museum and Art Gallery, Sector 10. Organised by the National Adventure Club, the exhibition speaks volumes of the splendour of the far-flung locales near Badrinath in Uttarakhand, where the group traversed.

The group of photographers whose pictures have been displayed include Ram S.Verma, S.C. Choudhary, Ram Niwas, Dr Satbir Singh and Rakesh Panwar. Taken in August last year, the photographs include picturesque sights of the hills and stony paths which they encountered on their trip.

Encompassing a variety of coloured flowers, including lotus, the photos have interesting captions like forbidden fruit, dressed in violet, clouds kissing the valley, diamond drops, golden tresses on the rocks, pink fantasy to name a few. A picture of Ganga river as it emerges at Rudra Prayag at the gateway to the valley of flowers is appealing to the eyes. The exhibition was inaugurated by home secretary Krishan Mohan and is on till January 16.



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