R E G I O N A L   B R I E F S

Regional potpourri

Farmer looks for rose oil buyers
Education her mission


District Nehru Hockey Cup:
The team of the ASM Public School located near the CC headworks has clinched the title in the District Nehru Hockey Cup (under-15), coach Durgesh Shekhawat informed on Sunday. The tournaments were inaugurated by Naresh Parnami, president of the Beopar Mandal, at Navpal Singh Sidhu Stadium, Padampur. In the final match, the teams of ASM Public School and Nehru Modern Senior Secondary School scored one point each in the prescribed time. In the 15 minutes extra time too, none emerged as the winner. Finally, availing of the golden chance, Arshdeep, Geet Kumar and Mohinder Singh, scored a point each bringing the match to a 3-2 finish.

Students shine at tournaments: Jhamku Devi Senior Secondary School located on the deserts of village Dhora Mehrajpur bordering Rajasthan in this sub-division has won the overall trophy besides Rs 20,000 as first prize in the tournaments organised by the Sports Authority of India. Giving details on Sunday, principal Bhavna Mittal said the tournaments had started on Friday. In open matches held in village Balluana, Dhrangwala and Kundal covering different events, the boys and girls teams of the Jhamku Devi School in Kabaddi, were runners-up in football and won other positions in wrestling, volleyball, athletics and boxing becoming eligible for the  overall trophy.

Red Ribbon Club: The Red Ribbon Club that was founded as an infant entity of the DAV College here last month, held its first activity at village Mandha Dham of the sub-division today, commemorating death anniversary of veteran social activist Hanuman Singh Dhanaria. Colonel Dilbagh Singh, commanding officer of the II Punjab NCC independent company, delivered lecture on AIDS, its causes, symptoms and preventive measures. A large number of NCC cadets too participated. Blood donation camp besides community kitchen and health awareness programme was sponsored by Jagdev Dhanaria and his family. The event was managed by senior lecturer Dr Ravi Dutt. Local MLA Sunil Jakhar led the tree plantation drive.

Spiritual camp concludes: The three-day Atma Bal Vikas Shivir (spiritual strength development camp) organised under the auspices of Satya Dharam Bodh Mission concluded in Padampur on Sunday. Spokespersons Gurucharan Pahwa and Dr Babu Lal Aggarwal explained that the objective is to develop positive thinking to increase one's spiritual strength. The Mission had been organising 16 festivals every year.

PGDCA results:
Kaveri Sharma of Sri Guru Teg Bahadur College secured second position in PGDCA by securing 668 out of 800 marks in the university while her classmate Jaspreet Kaur closely followed her by scoring 664 marks. College principal Nanak Singh said the toppers with sheer hard work managed to beat students from the established colleges in the region. Mandeep Kaur of Khalsa College of Education stood first in PGDCA (Teacher Education) in Guru Nanak Dev University.

Jewel of India award: The Indian Solidarity Council, New Delhi, will honour Dr R.K. Uppal from DAV College, Malout, with the Jewel of India award 2009-10 for his achievement in the field of research and education. The award would be conferred on him on September 14 at New Delhi. Dr Uppal has written 27 books and has published 85 research papers in national and international journals.

Punsup emplOyees flay govt: During a meeting held here on Saturday, members of the Bathinda unit of the Punsup Employees Union Punjab flayed the government’s decision about not implementing the recommendations of the Sixth Pay Commission in the Punsup, said a press release issued here.

Snake bite emergency: The Naujwan Welfare Society, in a press release issued here on Saturday, has appealed to the general public that in case of a snake bite, the victim should be taken straightway to the nearest hospital. On finding a snake in their locality, residents may call up the society on 9872460007 or 9815687280.

Water cooler donated: In the memory of his grand- father, Tarunveer Singh, a cloth merchant, has donated a water cooler of 100 litre capacity to the Ram Bagh, the cremation ground located near the grain market. Former SAD minister Charanji Lal Garg has thanked the donor and made an appeal to contribute generously for the renovation of Ram Bagh cremation ground.

A.M. BhatnagarHoshiarpur
Prez medal for BSF DIG:
A.M. Bhatnagar, BSF DIG (Subsidiary Training Centre), Kharkan, has been decorated with President Police Medal for his distinguished service on the occasion of Independence Day.

Minor abducted: Asha Rani of Satnaur village has accused Surjit Kumar of same village of kidnapping her 14-year-old daughter on pretext of marriage. Garhshankar police has booked Surjit under section 366 A of the IPC. In another case, the Talwara police foiled an abduction bid and arrested Gurmail Singh of Ranipur, PS Phagwara, who tried to abduct daughter of Parkash Singh of Haler, in his Safari car. A case under sections 366 A, 354, 506 and 511 of the IPC has been registered.

Scooterist dead: Jit Ram of ward no 13 of Mukerian died on the spot after a speeding motorcycle hit his scooter last night. The police has booked motorcyclist Manish Verma of Galira under sections 279, 304 A and 427 of the IPC.

Seminar on RTI:
A seminar on the Right to Information (RTI) Act for common man was organised at Trinity College under the aegis of Navjeevan Sanstha here on Saturday. Apart from Bishop Dr Anil Couto, Chandigarh-based journalist Hamir Singh, Assistant Labour Commissioner Inderjeet Singh, senior programme executive at Doordarshan Jalandhar Manohar Bharaj, sanstha director Father Anthony and Sarpanch Suraj Pholriwal shared views on the importance of RTI Act.

Harsimrat gives grants: Bathinda MP Harsimrat Kaur Badal toured Lambi Assembly segment of her constituency to thank people for voting for her. After laying the foundation stones of three link roads, she slammed Union government’s policies towards Punjab, particularly farmers of the state. She was accompanied by district-level Akali leaders. She said the panchayats fighting social evils would get grants from the Punjab government for development of their villages. Admitting that 70 per of the state's youth was under the influence of drugs, she said drug smugglers were "peddlers of death" and would not be spared. She distributed Rs 15,000 each among 25 persons under the Shagun scheme and Rs 35,000 each among 17 families living BPL to build houses.

Ad for recruiting subject experts questioned:
An advertisement released by the Punjab School Education Board in various sections of the print media on Sunday to recruit subject experts in home science, journalism, public relations and biology has come under question. The qualification criteria fixed for the first two is understandable, but the same is vague for an expert in biology. There is nothing wrong in the first qualification- post graduation with first division in the subject concerned, but in the second step they have demanded at least 55 per cent marks in BA and MA in the subject concerned along with BEd in the second division. Surprisingly, in the fourth step, the qualification is again written as senior project officer working in the board having eight years of regular service/experience with 55 per cent marks in BA and MA. However, it is not understandable that if a person, who has done BA and MA, can be a subject expert in biology, which is a subject of the science strea. Applicants are of the view that the board has intentionally set such qualifications to adjust some “recommended” persons.

5 held for trafficking:
The police has arrested five persons, including three women, under the Immoral Trafficking Act. DSP Satpal Singh Bhangu said on a tip-off a police party, led by SHO (City) Raj Kumar, conducted a raid on a rented house on the Musapur Road here and nabbed Sham Lal of Balachaur, Jujhar Singh of Gahun village, Parveen of Kukkar Mazara village, Rajni of the Focal Point and Kamaljit Kaur.

Peddler nabbed: The CIA staff nabbed inter-state narcotics smuggler Paramjit Singh of Daroli village in Jalandhar (presently residing at Rasulpur village, JP Nagar district UP) at Pharala village. The police seized 3 kg of opium from his possession. SP (D) Kuldip Singh said the accused was coming from Mahilpur side in his Indica car (DL-7CC-2730). The accused has been bringing opium from UP at cheap rates and supply it to customers in Hoshiarpur and Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar districts for the past five years, said the SP(D).

Plantation drive: The District Youth Congress launched a tree plantation drive to commemorate the birth anniversary of late Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. Saplings were planted on the premises of Dilbagh Singh Memorial here. District Youth Congress President Rajwinder Singh Lucky said the workers would plant saplings at different villages in the district.

Drug seized:
The police arrested Amit Kumar of Purblian of Muzaffarnagar (UP) and seized 145 gm of narcotic powder from him. The police said a vehicle was intercepted at a naka and during search, the police found narcotic powder kept in a bag. A case under sections 22/61/85 of the NDPS Act has been registered.

Vanamahatosava: As part of Vanamahatosava celebrations, the local Rotary Club planted saplings of more than 50 decorative and medicinal plants in the Shaheed Udham Singh Olympic Stadium here on Saturday. The club organised a seminar on “Importance of trees” in the Rotary complex here. Sangrur ADC Arshdeep Singh Thind was the chief guest. Addressing a gathering, the ADC emphasised on the proper care of the newly planted saplings of trees. Rakesh Aggarwal president, club, said they gave proper attention towards the saplings. Sunam SDM Baldev Singh said he had seen the working of the club and had felt that the club was even working at the grassroot level. Former president of Sunam Municipal Council Raj Kumar Vashisht said due to global warming saplings of various trees should be planted at a war-footing.



Girls’ common room: Rajya Sabha MP Ishwar Singh inaugurated the girls’ common room at Markanda National College, Shahabad (M), on college premises here on Saturday. College principal Vinay Malhotra said Singh announced a grant of Rs 5,00,000 to the college from his discretionary fund for the completion of its projects such as construction of green room and departmental rooms. A cultural programme was also organised.

1 killed in accident: Gajraj Yadav (42), an employee of the Rewari branch of Indian Overseas Bank and a resident of Bagthala village, succumbed to his injuries at a hospital in Gurgaon on Friday. Gajraj was critically injured when the motorcycle he was riding on was reportedly hit by an unknown vehicle on the Rewari-Bolni road, near Bakhapur village, on Thursday night. He was admitted to a hospital in Gurgaon, where he died on Friday. The police has registered a case of causing death by negligence in this regard.

Office-bearers appointed: District president of the INLD Padam Jain on Saturday appointed Pardeep Mehta as the senior vice-president of the district unit of the party. Suresh Bansal, Narender Mehta, Subhash Nain, Charanjit Mehta, Vinod Kamboj and Gajanand Soni have been nominated vice-presidents of the unit. Ranbir Rana will be the secretary general while Leela Dhar Saini, Munshi Ram, Dharam Pal, Girdhari Bissu, Gobind Gujjar, Sohan Lal, Balwinder Sran and Atam Rohilla have been nominated as general secretaries of the party. Ramesh Mehta will head the legal cell of the party in the district.

HJC leader lashes out at govt: Senior Haryana Janhit Congress leader Dharampal Singh Malik on Sunday questioned the logic of dissolving the state Assembly seven months earlier than the scheduled date and remarked that the state government did not have the courage to face the electorates because of growing resentments against the government. Talking to mediapersons here, Malik alleged that residents of other areas in the state except Rohtak had been discriminated while inducting the youth in government services. A number of political activists, including Mahila district president of the Congress Bimla Bansal, Municipal Councillor Satbir Vats, former MC Joginder and BKU leader Braham Singh Dahiya joined the HJC.

Student’s body found: The body of an ITI student, Jagminder of Bhawar village in Gohana subdivision here, was found lying in a park near the Gymkhana Club in Sector 7 adjoining the GT road on Sunday. The body bore deep head injury marks. The body was handed over to his family members after a postmortem. On the complaint of the victim’s brother, Jagdish, the police has registered a case against unidentified persons. Jagdish said his brother had gone to Gohana on Saturday, but did not return home. He suspected that Jagminder had been murdered.



IDP threatens to intensify stir:
Activists of the Internationalist Democratic Party (IDP) have threatened to intensify their stir if the state government does not order a probe immediately into the killing of peace activist Hoshiar Singh and his wife Shashi Bala in a ‘terrorist attack’ last year. The party men have been demanding a thorough probe into the killing, as they believe there was a deep-rooted conspiracy behind the killing of the couple. The couple had been fighting against the drugs menace in the area.

2 held from railway station: The police on Saturday arrested two men moving suspiciously from the Samba railway station. Sources said the Samba police arrested the duo, identified as Moulvi Mohammed Ilyas and Yaqoob, residents of Thannamandi in Rajouri district, from the railway station. The sources said both of them were later shifted to the Joint Interrogation Centre (JIC) in Jammu, but nothing incriminating was recovered from their possession.

Man found dead: Mystery shrouds the death of a man, who was found dead at Baba Sidh Goria Mandir in Swankha on Sunday. Official reports said Sachidanand, disciple of Shiv Anand, who was native of Kanyakumari, died under suspicious circumstances at the religious place in Swankha. Meanwhile, the police said Neena Padha of Gangyal and Yashpaul of RS Pura were admitted to the GMC after they allegedly consumed poison.

AIDS awareness workshop: An AIDS awareness week observed by the Tiger Division began here on Friday. The workshop is being conducted by AIDS counsellor and a three-time award winner from the UN AIDS Society Narinder Basi. The workshop aims at educating troops and their families about the dreaded disease. Basi is interacting with troops and their families in different locations of the Tiger Division to spread awareness about the disease. He is distributing AIDS literature.

Plantation drive organised: Government College for Women, Gandhi Nagar, in collaboration with the Directorate of Environment and Remote Sensing on Saturday organised a plantation drive. The drive was followed by a symposium on ‘environment and conservation’. Various medicinal plants were planted by the principal and staff of the college on the campus. Prof. Nalini Kohli, principal of the college stressed on the value and importance of medicinal plants to keep up environment healthy. Students also participated in the symposium. Zeba Bhatti, Neha Sharma stood first and second, respectively, and Sumneet Kour and Lakshmi Bilouria shared the third place.

Students donate Rs 87,000: Students of KC International School collected and handed over an amount Rs 87,843 to the HelpAge India. Around 20 students of the school had mobilised their resources and collected the amount to help elderly people. Appreciating the students, Sunita Santoshi, Jammu unit manager, HelpAge India, and senior executive Neeru Sharma said students bit would help the elderly persons.

Water supply scheme:
The Army has come to the rescue of nearly 5,000 villagers in Rajouri district who have been waiting for regular water supply for decades. A defence spokesperson said the Army had laid a water supply system in Chowki Handan village. Inaugurating the water supply scheme, Maj-Gen RS Pradhan, GOC, Rajouri division, assured people of continued assistance by the Army in developmental projects. It has brought to an end the practice of women and children carrying pitchers on their heads and buckets in their hands, scouring for water from streams and springs far away. This summer was particularly harsh for the villagers with many springs drying up. There was little rain and no water in ponds.

Horticulture plan: An amount of Rs 31.78 crore has been earmarked for the first three years of the five-year horticulture plan under the Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY) aimed at achieving a four per cent growth rate in fruit production in Rajouri district. This was disclosed at a joint meeting of agriculture and allied sectoral officers held here. The department will work on 12 projects, including area expansion programme, creation of irrigation facilities, awareness camps, HRD popularisation of agriculture equipment, kitchen gardening, organised farming and vermin-compost and establishment of training centres at the district level.

Training programme: The District Health Society (DHS), Udhampur, organised an ‘integrated management of neonatal and childhood illness’ training programme under the National Rural Health Mission on the premises of district hospital, Udhampur, on Saturday. As many as 25 women health workers of of five health blocks of the district are being imparted training from August 17. These workers would be specifically trained to handle specific problems from the time of birth to two months and their treatment.


Regional potpourri
Farmer looks for rose oil buyers

Jagdev Singh tends his rose farm.
Jagdev Singh tends his rose farm.

Jagdev Singh of Kalalwala village, who chose growing other than traditional crops, has been facing the problem of marketing his produce.

Jagdev went for organic farming in six acres and planted rare variety of rose — Damask. Being highly perishable, the flower can be used for extracting ark (distilled water) or rose oil only. He had planted 21 quintals of rose buds in 2001.

He was getting good yield of flowers, 15 quintals from an acre, but could extract only a litre of oil from entire produce. The state government’s apathy in respect of marketing the produce has distressed him.

Claiming the oil to be very expensive, he said, “There is no fixed international price for it. But customers abroad, tell THAT its price ranges between Rs 15 lakh and Rs 18 lakh a litre.”

Jagdev said, “The soil and climate here are suitable for this crop and it does not need intensive care. But in the absence of marketing, it is good for nothing.”

He said, “We have set up oil extracting unit but marketing is the main problem. Till now, we could sell only four bottles to an NRI from Canada at the rate of Rs 5 lakh a litre a couple of years back. We still have five bottles and are looking for buyers.”

“We have been trying to sell it via the Internet but people hardly show interest. Even if someone is ready to buy the oil, he offers very low price,” he added.

There are only few farmers having this variety of rose in the state. Aligarh in Uttar Pradesh is the hub of this trade.

“Except motivating us for taking up crop diversification, no department of the state government has come forward to lend a helping hand,” he said, adding if the situation did not change he would be forced to uproot the whole crop.

Education her mission

Suman Nijhawan
Suman Nijhawan

Suman Nijhawan founder principal, OSDAV senior secondary public school, Kaithal and regional director DAV schools Kaithal zone has been in the field of education for over 25 years and was honoured by the district administration and social organisations.

The DAV managing committee, acknowledging her service to education made her member of the DAV Public schools governing body and the DAV college managing committee, New Delhi from 2005 to 2008.

She said, “When I joined DAV public school, Kaithal, as principal on April 2, 1984, there was no building and the school started functioning from the Hall of Kaithal Club. Using the corridor of the Club as office I admitted 77 students.”

Hardships could not deter her. Besides trying to overcome the problem of building, necessary infrastructure and paucity of funds she did not let teaching work suffer.

With donation from philanthropist OP Gupta in 1987 four acres was bought in Patti Afgan and the school renamed OSDAV Public School, Kaithal. Since then, 118 rooms and nursery block have been built.

The management has undertaken construction of three- storey building for primary classes in Sector-20 HUDA Kaithal.

Nijhawan said apart from infrastructure and latest methodology of teaching school had spread education in this semi-rural area said to be backward till few years ago.

The school has produced nearly 20 IITians, more than 1,000 Engineers, 100 Doctors, Army and judicial officers. Students and staff have been contributing to help people affected by floods and earthquakes.

Four years ago the school started “Project Uddan” to provide education free of cost to poor children, especially those not going to school.

They were brought up to the level of class VI and admitted to government school. The school is going to start a new group this session.

Nijhawan said that now a total of 4,000 students and 175 teaching and non- teaching staff work here.

Contributed by Rajay Deep and Satish Seth



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