Need to improve the quality of teaching

The falling standard of teaching is a matter of major concern. Recently, students of a college in Haryana demonstrated at the annual day celebrations, wearing a badge with the message, “Teach us well”.

The causes for the deteriorating teaching standards are many – absenteeism, inadequate preparation for class work, failure to update one’s knowledge, insufficient concern for students’ welfare and their careers and the absence of a code of professional conduct.

Factionalism has also affected the legitimate work in our educational institutions and disproportionate attention is given to clamour over salaries and perquisites.

Several sincere and honest teachers often complain that they are teaching the unreachable. Lacking the courage to be different and determined not to excel, most students deliberately develop the cult of mediocrity.

The ideals of academic freedom and the autonomy of universities are an acknowledgement of the fact that in matters of scholarship, scholars know best, and in maters of learning, the learned know best. More than any other profession in a civilised society, the teacher’s profession is one that can be developed and improved only through a process of self-regulation.

There are three ways that could lead to a fairly reliable appraisal of teachers – self-assessment, judgement by one’s own peers, and by alumni who have just left the college or university. Professional organisations should face up to the need for such assessment, and suggest ways of ensuring a high degree of accountability among teachers, instead of shielding the incompetent and the indolent, as is being done in most institutions in the country.

CHHAVI, Journalism Dept., Panjab University, Chandigarh

Reopen post office

Since the shifting of the Post Office from a house of the Chandigarh Housing Board in Chandigarh three years ago, the residents of Sector 40, 39 and 38 (West) are forced to traverse a long distance to the Main Post Office in Sector 36, Chandigarh for paying telephone bills and postal work. If three sectors in Chandigarh are denied smooth postal facilities, one can well imagine the situation in the remote areas.

The Chandigarh Administration has a duty towards the people. When a Post Office is able to run from 9-type government house in Sector 23, Chandigarh, and a Cooperative Store Shop in a similar house in Sector 22 for decades, why object to a post office in a CHB house in Sector 40? Urgent steps should be taken for restoring the closed post office in Sector 40. Meanwhile, the sale of postal stationary may be assigned to Sampark centres.

S.S. BENIWAL, Chandigarh

Speed Post or Slow Post?

A few years back, the Centre introduced Speed Post with a lot of zeal. The deliveryman would come in a well-marked vehicle of the Department of Posts and deliver letters with a smile. This terminated the express delivery service.

With the passage of time, Speed Post has lost its significance; Speed Post letters sometimes reach later than registered letters. Why call it Speed Post when it is actually Slow Post?

On December 22, 2007, I sent a letter by Speed Post from the post office of Sector 35, Chandigarh (Receipt no spee770999044in) to Kolkata. The addressee got it at 4 p.m. on December 28 — after a full six days!

The Department of Posts may now introduce Super Speed Post so that letters reach within 72 hours anywhere in the country (this was indeed the goal of Speed Post when it was introduced). If things don’t improve, private couriers will cripple our age-old postal services.

Wg-Cdr J.S. BHALLA (retd), Chandigarh


Hefty fee

I applied for the renewal of my driving licence to the Licensing Authority, Chandigarh. I paid Rs 135 as application fee and Rs 115 as card fee. Three days after, I got the registration of my vehicle renewed. For this I had to pay Rs 300 towards application fee and Rs 200 as card fee.

Higher charge for the application fee may be justified. But then, why was I charged Rs 85 more for the card when it is made exactly of the same material as of the driving licence?


Bengal on decline

What happened to the West Bengal of yore? Earlier, it was a state of intellectuals, men of letters, musicians, painters, sculptors and others. There were many ICS officers and professors. Nearly half the doctors in the Army were Bengalis. There is also the widely acclaimed Bengali form of art. People were thrilled to listen to the songs by Kanan Bala and others. West Bengal was once a premier state and I hope it will rise again.


Postal scheme

The Punjab government announced the 34th post office small savings scheme on December 3, 2007, benefiting only those who invest between December 1, 2007, and March 31, 2008. As a result, those who had already invested during October and November do not get this benefit.

Normally two schemes are launched which cover the entire financial year —one from April 1 to September 30 and the other from October 1 to March 31. To meet the ends of justice, the 34th scheme should be made effective from October 1, 2007.

D. K. AGGARWAL, Phagwara



HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Mailbag | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |