L E T T E R S    T O    T H E    E D I T O R

Defence varsity in Mohali

There is a need to have scholar soldiers to handle issues pertaining to modern warfare i.e. planning, preparation and actual conduct of war. The western and other modern military powers have ensured good academic exposure to their soldiers, specially, the officers. They give study leave liberally and encourage them to join universities. Since India is an emerging power, it has rightly planned to establish a defence university at Mohali.

The Punjab government has earmarked the land for the purpose. It will obviate the existing ad hoc arrangements to upgrade academic and intellectual levels of our officers through various other universities. A defence university will help standardise the syllabi to cover various aspects of military philosophy and thought.

Mohali’s proximity to Chandimandir’s Western Command, Shimla’s Army Training Command, Air Force Stations at Chandigarh and Ambala, universities in Chandigarh, Patiala and Jallandhar are added advantages for intellectual interaction. It is also not very far from New Delhi.


According to reports, some persons have proposed that the defence university be named after Banda Bahadur. No doubt, he was a great warrior and he fought a decisive battle at Chhapar Chiri. However, he had a limited influence, his victories were short-lived and he suffered a humiliating defeat. It would be nice if the university is named after Field Marshal S.H.F.J. Manekshaw, under whose leadership India won the Indo-Pak war in 1971. We will be bestowing due honour on him for his contribution to national pride.

Brig HARWANT SINGH (retd), Mohali

Save the tiger

Owing to indiscriminate destruction of forests, a number of species are extinct and many others are on the verge of extinction. Despite various Acts against exploitation of wildlife, things have not improved. Reports of fast depleting number of tigers are cause for serious concern.

In fact, various protected forests, wildlife reserves and even sanctuaries have become a ground for illegal hunting and killing of animals. There is need to spread awareness about forests and wildlife — a part and parcel of our precious and fragile environment. The forest and wildlife conservation laws should be made more stringent and enforced in letter and spirit. Further, all the wildlife reserves urgently require adequate and well-equipped staff and a trained protection framework with a culture of accountability.


Focus on maths

The Punjab School Education Board’s decision making passing of mathematics compulsory in the matriculation examination from this academic session is welcome. This will bear fruitful results only if passing of mathematics is made compulsory in other Board examinations as well, i.e. Classes V and VIII.

The Education Department should instruct all heads of primary, middle, secondary and senior secondary schools to give considerable weightage to mathematics while preparing results for all non-Board classes. In addition, mathematical laboratories should be set up in all government schools.

Practical exams should be introduced in all Board and non-Board classes.

The mass pass policy in mathematics adopted at the primary level should pave the way for effective teaching of fundamentals of mathematics at the primary level.


Body donation

The decision of Ajmer Singh, Amrik Singh, Brig. H. S. Cheema and their wives to donate their bodies is welcome. This will enthuse the people to volunteer their organs and bodies for the wellbeing of the human kind, which is a pressing need of the hour.

There is an acute shortage of human organs and bodies for medical education and research. Body donation was first witnessed in Punjab on January 2, 2001 when thousands of people paid their last tributes to the late Krishan Bargari, state president, Tarksheel Society, Punjab. He donated his body to CMC, Ludhiana. Since then, the Tarksheel Society has been spearheading this campaign.

While 42 bodies have since been donated to various medical institutions, hundreds of people have pledged to donate their bodies. A mass movement together with media support will work wonders. More and more people, NGOs and the media should come forward to popularise this move in societal interest.

BUDH SINGH, Faridkot (Bathinda)

ACP scheme

For the benefit of its employees, the Punjab government introduced an Assured Career Progression (ACP) scheme on the completion of four, nine and 14 years of service in various cadres. This scheme was to be implemented from Nov 1, 2006.

Many departments have implemented this scheme, giving benefits to those who have opted for it. The employees got their revised pay fixed after availing themselves of the benefits of four, nine and 14 years of service.

It is, however, not clear why the Education Department has not included teachers working in high secondary schools so far. Is this scheme not applicable to them? If so, necessary instructions be issued to the CEO and DEOs promptly.

P. C. JAIN, Sangrur



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