R E G I O N A L   B R I E F S

Regional potpourri

  • Lakeside leisure
  • Empowering the other India

Train extension sought:
Senior office-bearers of various NGOs have urged the Railway Board to extend the Lal Qila Express from Delhi to Sriganganagar to benefit thousands of railway passengers. In a memorandum recently submitted to V.N. Mathur, member (Rail Traffic) of the Board, by Hanuman Dass Goyal, joint secretary of the North Zone Railway Passengers Association, it was pointed out that the 3111 Up Lal Qila Express arrives at New Delhi at 3:40 am and starts its return journey to Howrah after a halt of 17 hours halt. Similarly, the 3007 Udyan Abha Toofan Express arrives at Sriganganagar at 7:50 am and stays there for 17 hours.

Rakhra’s mother dies:
Jaswant Kaur (85), mother of the chairman of the NRI wing of the Shiromani Akali Dal and former MLA Surjit Singh Rakhra, died of cardiac arrest on board of a New Delhi-Chicago flight on Saturday night. The plane, family sources said, was nearing Chicago when Jaswant Kaur died. Jaswant Kaur was going to Chicago to attend to her granddaughter, who was to undergo some operation.



LAUNCHED: TVS Motors have launched a new TVS Flame, especially developed, patented and licensed to the company by Austria, the world leaders in internal combustion engine technology. Area manager of TVS Motors Narinder Bhatia said the styling of the new TVS Flame is inspired by the Delta Wing design, termed as delta edge styling.

WON: Reliance Mobile postpaid-user Rakesh won a Maruti Alto Car under the pay-and-win scheme on Sunday. Under the scheme, Reliance Mobile users paying their bills in time were eligible to win an Alto Car as the first prize in the draw, besides a microwave, DVD players and food-processors.

Awareness programme:
Jan Shikshan Sansthan organised an awareness programme on HIV/AIDS on its campus on Sunday. Around 200 students of various vocational courses participated in the programme. Dildar Khan, director of the sansthan, said the objective of the programme was to sensitise youths on the issues related to HIV/AIDS. Anand Mohan Sharma, deputy director of the sansthan, in his presentation explained the various ways through which HIV virus spreads. A.K. Gupta  discussed precautionary steps to be taken against spread of the infection.

A salute to mothers:
Mother’s Day was celebrated at Gurukul School on Saturday. The school’s multimedia theatre was ablaze with excitement as mothers of students from all three branches of the school gathered there. They were presented with handmade memo pads, specially made by the students, as a token of affection. The programme included exciting games based on movies and songs and a quiz on women personalities of India.



MBA institute for village: New Vision Global School of Business (NVGSB) will be set up in Nassrolli village, Naraingarh. The college will cater to the need of industry for supply of quality management professionals. The institute will offer MBA affiliated to Kurukshetra University. The institution is being set up by Dr Sanjeev Chaddha. According to him, the college would not only help in economic development of the area but would also help the corporate sector in getting quality manpower. The All-India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) has already issued letter of intent (LOI) to the said institution.

Silence observed: To commemorate the India’s movement for its freedom and the revolt of 1857, people across the district observed a silence for 150 seconds at 6:57 pm on Sunday. Local party workers of the national and other political parties, including the Shiv Sena, BJP, Congress and the Vikas Parishad, had given a clarion call to the people to recognise the role played by Ambala district. According to Anil Vij, ex MLA and president of the Vikas Parishad, the revolt first started from Ambala Cantt and not Meerut.

Election observer replaced:
The Election Commission of India has appointed Amrinder Pratap Singh, IAS, as an election observer in place of Sanjay Jaju for the Gohana assembly constituency, which will go to polls on May 22. Stating this here on Sunday, chief electoral officer of Haryana Sajjan Singh said in case of any complaint or grievance concerning the byelections, Amrinder Pratap Singh could be contacted on telephone no. 0130-2220500 or 2221728 or mobile phone of the deputy commissioner or district election officer, Sonepat.

Ready for debate: INLD: Accepting Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda’s invitation for a public debate on all important issues pertaining to the state, the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) said this would be a positive step and in the true
sprit of democracy. In a statement issued here on Sunday, INLD secretary-general and Rajya Sabha MP Ajay Singh Chautala said the INLD was ready to debate with Hooda on any public platform. He said the INLD was keen to have the debate as soon as possible to expose the false and fictitious developmental claims of the Hooda government.

Youth electrocuted: A youth was electrocuted at Juneda village on Saturday. Rakesh (25) was trying to set his farmland to facilitate passage of irrigation when he slipped and accidentally touched a high voltage live wire. The overhead wire had snapped about a year back. Villagers alleged that they had approached the village sarpanch and the authorities concerned several times in the past, but to no avail.

1 killed in mishap: A person, Sonu, was killed and four others were injured when the car they were travelling in collided head-on with an oil tanker near Uchana village on Saturday. The mishap took place on the National Highway 71. The injured have been admitted to a hospital. The victims were on their way to Khanouri in Punjab from Delhi.

Tributes paid: The executive committee meeting of the Block Congress Committee, Thanesar-Shahbad (urban), was held under the chairmanship of its president, Dina Nath Arora, on the premises of the Congress Bhawan here on Sunday. Rich tributes were paid to the martyrs of the 1857 revolution and silence for two minutes was observed. Almost all speakers opined that the martyrs of the 1857 revolution had sacrificed their lives, which led to freedom of the country.

Vehicle theft cases on rise: Cases of theft of vehicles are on the rise in the district. A Bolero, which was parked by its owner Anil Kumar of Manesar town of Gurgaon district, in Sector 3 here, was reportedly stolen by unknown persons on Friday night. In two other incidents, a motorcycle, which belonged to Manoj Yadav of Jaunawas village, was stolen from the premises of a showroom on the Delhi road here on Saturday while an unknown person took away another motorcycle, which was parked near a private hospital in Model Town here on Thursday.

Dumper looted: About half a dozen miscreants, who were travelling in a Scorpio, reportedly intercepted a dumper and looted it from its driver, Rajesh Yadav, and cleaner-cum-conductor, Shakir, on the Rewari-Rohtak road on Friday. While the dumper was driven away by one of the miscreants, Rajesh and Shakir were reportedly dropped at Asia Ki Gorawas village. A case has been registered. Rajesh said they were transporting gravel from Tiba Basai (Rajasthan) to Palhawas in the dumper owned by Sandeep Yadav of Nasibpur village.

7 sent to police custody: A local court sent seven of 10 persons of an inter-state gang of truck thieves to a one-day police custody on Sunday. The remaining were sent to judicial custody. The police had arrested Deepak, Javed, Imran, Asraf, Nanu, Yusuf, Isub, all residents of Meerut, UP, and Nizamudin, Sabudin and Naseem, all residents of Ghaziabad, in connection with a dacoity, which had taken place in April. During interrogation, they had admitted that they had stolen trucks in Yamunanagar, Panipat, UP and several other places. Javed, Nizamudin and Isub were sent to judicial custody.



Ghuppu dance workshop:
A three-day workshop for reviving traditional "Ghuppu" folk dance and providing training in folk songs and local dances ended here on Saturday. District language officer Anita Sharma said veteran folk dancer Gambhari Devi and Phulan Chandel trained girls in this traditional dance form which is performed by girls seven days before Diwali. This dance is also called "Pahiya" in the local dialect.

Youth rapes sister-in-law: A youth of Baddi Billor village in the Jhandutta panchayat area in the Geharwin constituency of this district is alleged to
have raped his widowed sister-in-law (bhabhi) in the fields on Saturday. Reports said the youth absconded after the victim lodged an FIR against him at Bilaspur Sadar police station.

5 Cong leaders join BJP: Five Congress leaders of the Naina Devi area have joined the BJP along with their supporters. BJP spokesman Randhir Sharma, MLA, said here on Sunday that Dabhat gram panchayat president Pal Singh, Naina Devi Nagar Parishad member Suman Kumar, Sukhdev Sharma of Bhakra, Colonel Pavinder Singh (retd) and Alam Chand of Dabhat made this declaration at an election meeting in the presence of Chief Minister Prem Kumar dhumal at Naina Devi on Saturday.

One crushed to death: A man was crushed under the tractor when he was trying to alight from it near Nalagarh on Sunday. The incident took place on the Nalagara-Panjera road at Souban Mazra few kilometres away from here at 11.30 am. The deceased, who appeared to be a migrant labourer, was in the mid to get down from tractor when its driver started the vehicle suddenly. He lost control and fell on the road and his head got crushed under the tyres of the tractor. His face was beyond identification. He died on the spot. The police arrested tractor driver Joginder. A case has been registered.

Freedom fighters remembered:
The RSS, VHP and other organisations on Saturday organised “Naman-1857”, remembering the sacrifices of freedom fighters. Schoolchildren sang patriotic songs. Homage was paid to the freedom fighters of the first war of independence at Seri Munch around 7.15 p.m.

Mushaira organised: The Indian People’s Theatre Association and Progress Writers Association held a “mushaira” on the death anniversary of famous poet
Kaifi Azmi here on Saturday. The participants remembered the great lyricist of
“Ghar chale hum… Jano tum sathiyo.. Tumahare hawale ye watan sathiyo”
fame and paid their homage to Azmi for his contribution to Indian literature and arts. Ravi Rana, Satish Dhar, Dinu Kashayap, among others, recited poems of Kaifi Azmi on the occasion.

Food festival: A two-day food festival was organised at Sangla in Kinnaur by the Sangla Valley Sustainable Development Society in association with the Himalayan Research Group, Palampur Agriculture University and the FIBL Institute of Switzerland. DC P.S. Draik said “home stay tourism” provided an opportunity to tourists to acquaint themselves with the rich culture and traditions of the state. He said it would also help people generate additional income. Tej Pratap Singh, vice-chancellor of Palampur Agriculture University, said 28 families were being trained in Sangla village for promoting “home stay tourism”.



Tourist dies: A group of tourists from Mumbai had to cut short their visit to the Kashmir valley as one of the them died on Sunday, official sources said. Pardeep Mangi Lal Bajran (34), a resident of Owais hichward, was found dead by his roommates in a house boat on the Dal Lake this morning. Bajran was part of a 28-member group which had arrived here a few days back on a pleasure trip, the sources said, adding, they were staying in several house-boats in the lake. His body was handed over to the group which left for Mumbai.

19 Infantry Division: One of the oldest and most decorated Signals regiments of the Indian Army, the 19 Infantry Divisional Signal Regiment (Dagger-Signals) celebrated its Diamond Jubilee on Sunday. The regiment which has a motto “every post to every dost” was raised on May 9, 1948, a defence ministry spokesman said. Information Warriors of the regiment have faced combat in every military operation undertaken till date and acquitted themselves with honour and glory, in all of them.

Annual plan approved: The government on Sunday approved an annual plan of Rs 3931.55 lakh for 2008-09 for Pulwama district in south Kashmir. The district development board meeting held under the chairmanship of finance minister Tariq Hameed Karra approved that Rs 526.30 lakh would be used as revenue and Rs 3402.25 lakh as capital component, an official spokesman said. He said Rs 407.83 lakh had been kept for agriculture and allied services, Rs 178.62 lakh for rural development and Rs 2844.63 lakh for social and general services.

Notices to Centre, state: The Jammu and Kashmir High Court issued notices to the Central and state governments on Saturday, asking them to respond to a PIL seeking directions to them to take effective steps to preserve heritage in the valley. Issuing the notices to the Central and state governments, a division Bench of the HC comprising Chief Justice K.S. Radhakrishnan and Justice Mansoor Ahmed Mir directed them to file their replies within two weeks. The notices were issued after the HC took cognisance of a PIL filed by a valley-based NGO in this regard.

Jawan shoots himself: Sepoy Ashok Kumar commited suicide in the Kashmir valley on Sunday, official sources said. Ashok shot himself with his service weapon in the 24 Rashtriya Rifles (RR) camp at Kangan. It was not, however, immediately known why Ashok took the extreme step. The police said investigations were on.




Regional potpourri
Lakeside leisure

A view of the Tilyar tourist complex near Rohtak.
A view of the Tilyar tourist complex near Rohtak.

Tilyar, a tourist complex located along the Delhi road on the outskirts of Rohtak town, has been attracting people from the district as well as neighbouring areas.

In fact, families from Delhi frequent this site on Sundays and other holidays, given its proximity to the Capital, its natural surroundings and affordable facilities.

The major tourist attractions at the state-run complex include a lake, mini zoo, bar, restaurant and motel.

A fast-food complex, which has recently come up there, has emerged as a preferred stopover for travellers commuting on the Delhi-Hisar national highway. 

While the youngsters — especially couples in search of solitude — prefer to visit Tilyar during daytime, families usually throng it in the evenings.

Children playing, taking joyrides or simply running about in the sprawling lawns of the complex and grown-ups having a good time boating on the lake present a cheerful and pleasant atmosphere.

Nonetheless, the toursit complex can be even more popular if some more attention is paid to its maintenance.

The general sentiment of the people visiting the complex is that with improved cleanliness and better upkeep, Tilyar can become a tourist hotspot in the region.

Empowering the other India

Priti Kansal
Priti Kansal

Empowering women and children in the rural areas is a mission Ludhiana girl Priti Kansal undertook right in her college days and is pursuing successfully till now.

This winner of the 2007 Universal Human Rights Promotional Award by the Indian Institute of Human Rights has adopted a village, provides training to women to help them get gainful employment, trains kids for a better future and has been a crusader for many children who were unable to even get proper education.

She has also worked towards bettering the lives of women in jails, building awareness on human rights and getting justice to the underprivileged.

Kansal, who plunged into social work way back in 2001, had her first major success when she campaigned against shatoosh shawls. Later, she founded an NGO Aagaz and has been working relentlessly to realise her dream of ‘empowered rural India.’

She has adopted a village named Atiyana near Mullanpur, where the NGO helps women earn by selling their hand embroidered and stitched works.

Apart from approaching individuals and companies who can buy these products, 
the NGO has its website www.aagaz.org through which 
it sells these.

The work does not end here. From arranging for the education of children, to helping school-goers get training in vocations they show special interest in, Kansal gives equal importance to making people aware of issues like their own healthcare.

Five years down the line, she sees this village as empowered. After that she plans to adopt more villages.

Contributed by Sunit Dhawan and Shveta Pathak

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