C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S

CTU bus kills baby
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
A two-and-a-half-year-old girl was killed after a CTU bus hit scooter of her father near the Mani Majra bus stand here this afternoon.The Mani Majra police registered a case against the driver of the CTU bus no CH01G1 7121 under Sections 279, 337, 304A of the IPC.

The post mortem would be conducted tomorrow.According to police sources, Kiki, victim girl, was going to feed fish in the Sukhna Lake, along with his father Sanjay Goel, a resident of Modern Housing Complex, Mani Majra, on a scooter about 12.30 pm when the CTU bus hit their scooter while taking a turn to the Mani Majra bus stand.

The girl received head injuries. Gurbax Singh, sub-inspector, said the girl was immediately rushed to the PGI by a PCR van of the police where she was declared brought dead.

The father of the victim is employed with a private firm and his daughter was standing in front of him on the scooter when the bus hit them, he added.

Despite repeated requests of relatives of the victim not to initiate any action in the case, the police registered the case to avoid any controversy later.



Inaction In Molestation Case
SI sent to lines, probe ordered
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
After strong protests from residents of Indra Colony over the death of a resident, the Chandigarh Police today initiated a departmental inquiry against a sub-inspector.

The residents raised slogans against the police for its failure to register a case against some youths, who allegedly molested the daughter of deceased Gajraj. The residents alleged that Gajraj had died due to extra stress suffered by him for the past few days.

A police team led by DSP East Jasbir Singh immediately reached the spot. The DSP, after hearing the grievances of the residents, ordered a departmental inquiry against sub-inspector Gurbax Singh, besides sending him to the police lines.

According to sources, deceased Gajraj had been making the rounds of the police station in the area to register a case against the accused, who had allegedly molested his daughter a few days ago. But the sub-inspector did not heed to his request, which resulted in tension on the deceased resulting in his death in the wee hours this morning.

The police has also registered a case against the accused under Section 341, 354, 506, 34 of the IPC, besides arresting four accused, who have been identified as Paras Ram, Rakesh, Naresh alias Bunty and Happy, all residents of Indra Colony.

SI Gurbax Singh said Gajraj Singh, who was suffering from heart ailment and had some problem in his kidneys, had come to the police station a few days ago and after receiving his complaint, he had assured him that he would look into the matter. He said he had asked one of the accused to come to the police station with other accused on November 7 but as he got occupied in some other case and was not present in the police station he could not meet the accused to hear their point of view. In the meantime Gajraj died and the people were unnecessarily accusing him for delay in registering the case, he rued. 



Hike In Fee
UT ties hands of private schools
Sumedha Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
With nursery admissions just round the corner, the UT administration and private schools seem to have locked horns over the speculative fee hike with the latter all set to approach the Administrator for it.

Taking cognizance of the conditions mentioned in allotment letters of the city’s elite schools, the education department has warned these against levying any additional fund or increasing the fee this time without justifying it.

The move, however, has educed huge resentment among private players, who claim the decision to be the discretion of their management and are set to meet the Administrator in this regard. They can take the plea of the allotment letters only if the UT would have sold them the land on concessional rates.

With everything right from the printing costs of prospectus to teacher’s salary hike, schools contend on the fact that fees could not remain the same. “In private institutions, parents demand elitist facilities and are ready to pay for these, so the administration should not have any problems”, said principal of a leading school.

While the prospectus sale in most of the schools will start by November last week, but most of these have already decided to increase the earlier rate by at least 20 per cent. Even the admission fee for nursery classes is expected to be up by 25 per cent.

“Before pointing fingers at us, the UT should look at the expenditure on its own schools. Very often there are reports of school funds being misused”, commented one of the members of the Independent School Association.

The mandatory 15 per cent quota for the economically weaker sections is also proving a bone of contention as many schools think that the way the administration wants it to be implemented will by all means bring down the academic standard of schools.

“If we don’t increase fee and also don’t charge a single paisa for 15 per cent of our seats for the EWS, then how do we give facilities and better staff? The city has so many government schools, why can’t such programme be run there with our collaboration. We all plan to meet the Administrator in this regard”, added another member.

Meanwhile, the argument fails to convince the administration as one of the senior officials said, “In their limited land resources and infrastructure, government schools are teaching so many kids in two shifts just to provide right to education to every kid. These private schools with three times the campus are not ready to pay their due to the administration which is giving them so many concessions. They will not be let off easily this time.”

Interestingly, many private schools have decided to hold back the commencement of nursery admissions till November 13. Most of these wish to analyse the situation after the UT Administrator’s exit before making any final decision.



Apni Mandi loses purpose
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
Ajay Jagga, president of the local unit of the Janata Party, has demanded an immediate inquiry into the working of Apni Mandi, (farmers market) which are being held in various sectors on rotational basis, as vendors other than farmers are selling fruits and vegetables and even the prices are being charged more than fixed prices for vegetables.

In a press note here today, it was said Jagga visited Apni Mandi in Sector 33 (held on every Sunday) on the complaint of overcharging in presence of officials and found the scenario shocking. The officials on duty are not paying any heed to complaints. The prices are displayed on a board which is kept at a corner and the fonts used are too small to be read properly.

The vendors are openly flouting the norms by selling veggies at a price more than the fixed. Shockingly, the officials keep on sitting there on the chair and under their nose, the vendors are overcharging and people other than farmers are selling thus cheating buyers openly.

Another interesting factor is the rates of expensive vegetables like peas are missing and the vendors are selling it Rs 80 per kg. Since rates of these expensive vegetables are missing, the buyers cannot even argue with the vendors. It is almost sure that some nexus works there that is why these things are happening openly and in front of the officials, who are posted on duty to check all this.

He demanded that there should be a huge board displaying the prices of vegetables and fruits so that the people should not be cheated and, moreover, the sellers should display their identity cards so that the outsiders can be spotted immediately and are removed from that place. It is also shocking that the MC which is looking after the functioning of these mandis is sitting silent. The inquiry is must because the purpose of Apni Mandi was to make a contact between growers and customers so that the margin of middleman could be removed and people should get vegetables and fruits at reasonable prices.

Their should also be an announcement that people should check the price board before buying so that they can get the things at right prices.



Report cards on PU hostels out
Sumedha Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
In a bid to improve the condition of hostels, the Panjab University Student Council has finally prepared report cards of boys hostels. Report cards of girls hostels too will soon be ready. The endeavour, which was announced a month back, aims at getting the varsity authorities acquainted with hostellers’ feedback and making them answerable for the subsequent lapses.

The council, based on the analysis of recently launched feedback forms, has evaluated each hostel on the parameters of hygiene, food, academic environment, infrastructure, sports facilities and the behavior of staff, including the warden.

The report card will be placed before the Vice-Chancellor next week and each warden will individually give his or her view to him in the presence of the Dean, Students Welfare.

“The report cards have been made by analysing the feedback forms of over 200 students from each hostel. While we are ready with those of boys hostels, that of girls hostels will be finalised in the next few days. It’s not that these issues are being raised for the first time, but now these will be more concise and powerful rather than an individual or a student party’s complaints,” said Amit Bhatia, president, PUSC.

The hostels have been rated on a scale of 10 and special observations, if any, have been mentioned. While in terms of cleanliness, it’s the hostel number two that tops the chart with a rating of 7, the corporative mess of hostel number three scores 7 for providing the best food. Similarly, while hostel number 1 and 2 have come out as the most preferred one for their studious environment, hostel number 2 ranks first in sports facilities.

On the other side of the scale, according to students, three blocks of hostel number 7 need serious improvement in general amenities with their ranking being two and hostel number 7 need to get quieter to catalyze studies as it has just score 2 on that parameter.The first of its kind initiative has the entire council hopeful of a change as their adviser Brinder Dhillon claims it to be a way of uniting students for common demands and making varsity more answerable to them.


Preserve potatoes the hi-tech way
CSIO develops eco-controlled storage facility
Vijay Mohan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
To prevent potatoes, a staple cash crop in this part of the world from spoiling due to improper storage environment, a modern storage house having sensors and electronic controls has been developed by the Central Scientific Instruments Organisation (CSIO) here.

The facility would help maintain the quality of potatoes under optimum environmental storage conditions. In conventional cold storages, potatoes are not stored at suitably low temperatures, resulting in the vegetable’s starch content converting into sugar. At high temperature, sprouting also occurs, leading to weight loss and thereby resulting in spoilage and loss.

Under the project, four storage chambers along with an air-handling system have been installed and tested. Each chamber is fitted with temperature, relative humidity and carbon dioxide sensors, electronic controls and data-acquisition system. Potato baskets of different varieties are stored in the chambers at preset environmental conditions.

Samples are regularly drawn from the chambers and analysed for sugar content, dry matter content, weight loss if any and sprouting. During the next season, the storage parameters would be altered and the results studied to derive the optimum environmental parameters for specific varieties. This is being done in consultation with the Central Potato Research Institute (CPRI), Shimla.

Information derived from the data would be embedded into the monitoring and control software in accordance with the desired agro-climatic conditions. The system analyses computes the desired environmental conditions and accordingly activates appropriate controls, thereby maintaining the quality of the potatoes with minimal possible waste.

Further, the techniques developed for the estimation of specific gravity, dry matter content, sugar level and colour are being standardised by CSIO jointly with CPRI.



Rajput Regiment get together
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
Members of the Rajput Regiment Officers Association held their 16th annual dinner and get together here on Friday. A large number of serving as well as retired officers associated with the regiment attended the event along with their wives.

The event is held on the first Friday of November every year and gives the old and the young, the serving and the retired an opportunity to revive camaraderie, share their experiences and bring each other up-to-date of regimental and personal matters.



Vigilance Awareness Week at PGI ends
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
The Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research concluded the Vigilance Awareness Week here yesterday. It began on November 3. The week was celebrated to spread awareness on the fight against corruption and to bring about fair play, objectivity and timely disposal in matters pertaining to public administration.

A message was given to officials to prevent corruption in day-to-day dealing. Officials of the institute took a pledge. Essay-writing, slogan-writing, written quiz and declamation contest were organised during the week. Winners were given prizes.

On the closing ceremony, chief vigilance officer Prof Amod Gupta gave the message to come forward and not hesitate in bringing out corrupt practices to the notice of the vigilance office. The book “Gyan Ke Moti”, written by Dr RK Sharma, assistant professor, hospital administration, was released by PGI director Prof KK Talwar.



‘Say no to bribe’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
As part of the ongoing vigilance awareness week, the city unit of the Central Bureau of Investigation organised a seminar on “Prevention is cure of corruption: Do not bribe” at the CSIO yesterday.

Justice Surya Kant of the Punjab and Haryana High Court was the chief guest. The seminar was attended by Mahesh Aggarwal, zonal director, CBI, RK Arora, GM, IOCL, and UT Home Secretary Ram Niwas.

While Mahesh Aggarwal apprised the participants of the aim and style of working of the CBI, Justice Surya Kant urged them to say no to bribe.

“The best way to combat corruption is that we all at our individual levels abstain from giving bribes and even when it’s demanded, dare to say no. Once this wave of non-acceptance is initiated against bribe, the corruption will easily be uprooted,” he said. 



Open House
Traffic woes? This is just the beginning
Sanjeev Singh Bariana
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
It is a common sight in the city on a working day to see all major roads bursting at their seams with myriad vehicles.

A casual survey reveals overloaded parking spots and vehicles parked on road berms, poking their faces on to main roads all over the city.

Statistics reveal an expected horror for the future. Planned for a population of five lakh, the city already has at least 12 lakh inhabitants.

The projected figure is 19.5 lakh by 2021. The number of registered vehicles, 940 in 1966, has now crossed seven lakh.

Officials concede that the average number of new vehicles registered on a working day varies between 120 and 140.

Without much argument, one can say that the city is in dire need of an effective mass rapid transport system (MRTS).

Irregularity in service and lopsided routing are the biggest reasons for the bus transport system having failed to become a daily part of the common man’s life, unlike in metros.

It is unfair to blame the Chandigarh administration for not working, at all, on the front of developing a mass rapid transport system.The progress has been too slow and a considerable amount of energy will be spent in striking a coordination chord with governments of partner states.

The official wrangling is often disheartening. To top it all, the common man cannot see any relief on this account in the near future even if work on the project starts.

The administration has dabbled in different projects over the past more than a decade, including monorail and metro.

For now, the administration has decided on a metro project. The Rail India Technical and Economic Services Limited expects the system to be functional within the coming four years at a cost of approximately Rs 15,000 crore.

The comprehensive mobility plan includes a metro and a bus rapid transport system (BRTS). The plan will be sent to the Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh governments to share costs with the UT.

It also includes BRTS corridors, grade separators, pathways, integrated freight complex, parking facilities and cost revenue models for the entire project. In reality, MRTS without synchronised developments in partner states, particularly for Mohali and Panchkula, will be of no consequence to the system.

Certain bottlenecks often crop up when states are collaborating on a project. Even technical experts feel that the actual period for completion of such a project will be much longer than the expected period of just four years.

It is also felt that the administration will have to take special care of earmarking parking lots and coordinating traffic flow at metro stations and also of having parking lots of the supporting bus service.

Effective openings for entry and exit of passengers and vehicles will have to be worked out well in advance.

Involving the general public, the administration will have to work out feasible solutions under the existing system.

The CTU has purchased more vehicles, including air-conditioned ones, in the recent past. It has also got a special award in recognition of its service at the national level.

Sitting relaxed or self-eulogising at the moment can be nothing more than a deterrent for speeding up related works.

There is a greater need for winning public confidence to attract more regular traffic because one of the common reasons for not using the bus service is poor service.

The administration may consider levying a sizeable extra tax on each additional vehicle purchase by a single owner or a family.

It is common all over the city, particularly in the northern sectors, to see parking lots dotted with three or four vehicles. In southern sectors, a large number of cars can be seen parked on road berms.



Musical confluence a treat to the ears
SD Sharma

Chandigarh, November 8
An immaculate confluence of Western, Hindustani and Carnatic classical music marked the special music concert ‘Hungarian cultural days in Chandigarh’, staged to a scant audience at the Bal Bhavan open air theatre here yesterday.

The event was organised by the Chandigarh Film Society in association with the Chandigarh Tourism, STEPS and the ICCR.

It featured acclaimed violinist Zoltan Lantos, a disciple of Pt Debu Choudhri. He was accompanied by percussionist Peter Szalai and guitarist Balint Gyenant.

Lantos opened the concert with a composition based on a Carnatic ‘raaga’ and was named ‘Raggie Cyclone’, delineating the brief ‘alaap’, ‘jod’ and ‘jhala’ in his cultivated style on his improvised violin, now christened tarangini. He then presented the popular Indian ‘raaga’ Sarang and inspired by the response from the audience, the trio went on to bare the melodies of other ‘raagas’.

They doled out compositions like ‘Passacaglia’ to give a colour of fusion and another ‘bandish’ Daksha, before concluding with the masterpiece Diwali.

A crisp, subtle and spontaneous ‘jugalbandi’ between Lantos and tabla maestro Sazalai enthralled the audience. Home Secretary Ram Niwas inaugurated the concert.



86 examined at camp
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
One in every two women above 45 years of age in the country suffers from osteoporosis and the total number will cross the 25-million mark by 2015 if the trend continues.

This was stated by Dr Gurpreet Josan from the Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32, here today. He said this during a camp at the Sood Bhavan in Sector 44. A total of 86 patients were examined at the camp, organised by the Sood Sabha.



Nehru Park given facelift
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
The historic Nehru Park at Sector 22 here has been given a facelift to attract tourists and residents of the area. Spruced up, it has been turned into a recreation park with landscapes, latest swings, huts and benches.Union minister Pawan Kumar Bansal will formally inaugurate the park on November 14, Nehru’s birth anniversary.

The park had, so far, escaped the attention of the authorities and had remained in a state of neglect, virtually turning into a place for organising rallies or playing cricket.

Nehru had delivered his first speech here after the constitution of Chandigarh at this very park.

Area councillor Pradeep Chhabra said after Nehru’s death, his ashes had been taken to this park by the authorities.

He said around Rs 35 lakh had been spent on the renovation of the park, including a grant from the MPLAD fund for railing and benches.

He said it was not easy to get it renovated as a number of organisations had objected to it, taking the plea that this park was being used for several purposes, including organising rallies and celebrating Dusshera.



Conference on endoscopic spine surgery on Nov 13, 14
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
Arthroscopy and Spinal Endoscopy Centre, Chandigarh, will be organising the second international advance training course of Prof. Destandau's Technique for Endoscopic Cervical and Lumbar Discectomy on November 13-14 in Chandigarh. It will be inaugurated by Prof SS Gill, Vice-Chancellor, Baba Farid Medical University, Faridkot.

While addressing mediapersons here today, organising chairman of the event Dr Mohinder Kaushal said this two-day event would introduce orthopaedic and neurosurgeons to the philosophy of minimal access spinal technologies and endoscopic spine surgery principles as applicable to surgical treatment of lumbar and cervical disc prolapse or slip disc.

Spinal endoscopic techniques, also known as key hole surgical techniques, cause small incisions, less tissue trauma, least or no hospitalization, low chances of infection.

“Patients recover faster and resume their duties early. Patients today are aware of these operations and they prefer these operations over conventional open operations. Surgeons also have great interest in endoscopic spine surgery and want to learn these procedures. That is the reason that we have received foreign registrations from countries such as Iraq, Nigeria, Nepal and Bangla Desh,” said Dr Kaushal.

Speaking over the conference schedule, he said the first day would begin with discussions and live surgical demonstration of endoscopic cervical and lumbar disc surgery, endoscopic decompression of Lumbar Canal Stenosis by Dr Kaushal and his team. There will be two-way communication-ensuring interaction of course participants with operating team.

The second-day conference will be organised in Anatomy hall of Gian Sagar Medical College where course delegates will actually perform these procedures on cadavers and spine models under the supervision and guidance of course faculty Prof. Jean Destandau from Bordeaux, France, who is the pioneer of this technique. It is hoped that training during this course will enable course delegates to perform these procedures independently in their institutes. 



Girl locked in tuition centre
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
A student of a Sector 35-based tuition centre had a harrowing time today when she got locked up in the tuition centre for two hours after her class.

Ankita, who is a student of EDUCOP centre, was virtually forgotten inside her class when the centre staff locked the place after the classes were over.

The police eventually rescued Ankita. “After the classes the staff locked the centre leaving behind the girl. The moment we were informed about the incident, we reached the place and rescued her,” said a police official.



Anti-Sikh Riots
SAD to take legal battle to logical end: Cheema
Tribune News Service

Mohali, November 8
The Congress government at the Centre deliberately ignored the recommendations of the Nanavati Commission on action against those Congress leaders who were directly involved in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots, said Daljit Singh Cheema, adviser to the Punjab Chief Minister.

Addressing a religious gathering here at Gurdwara Amb Sahib, held to pray for seeking justice for the families of the victims of the Sikh carnage and for peace of the souls of the victims, Cheema said the Nanavati Commission had indicted several Congress leaders for their direct involvement in the Sikh carnage, which was the most heinous crime of the world directed towards the Sikh community.

He alleged that the Centre government, led by the Congress, not only ignored the report of the commission, but the party also tried to reward these leaders by fielding them in elections.

Dr Cheema said the SAD had now committed itself to take this long legal battle of past 25 years to its logical conclusion and would ensure punishment for the culprits of this Sikh genocide.

He said the party would provide all help to the members of the victims of the anti-Sikh riots to ensure that justice was done to these families. Other prominent persons of the area also participated in the prayers.



Zirakpur MC building a shambles
Rajiv Bhatia

A room of Zirakpur municipal council office building.
A room of Zirakpur municipal council office building. Tribune photo: Nitin Mittal

Zirakpur, November 8
Though Zirakpur is developing at a fast pace, the district administration seems to have forgotten to upgrade its own municipal council building that is crying for a makeover.

The building of Zirakpur municipal council is in a shambles. A Grade I category municipal council building, which had been repaired a number of times during the past years, is presently in a very bad shape.

The residents complained that there were no proper sitting arrangements for visitors and the parking problem also prevailed. They also demanded the MC office should be at some open place with proper parking facility.

However, MC officials claimed that the civic body was planning to construct their new building for which the plans were in the pipeline.

According to information, the MC office is running in a community centre, which was inaugurated in 1995. The foundation stone at the MC office shows that the building was constructed when Zirakpur was a gram panchayat. Though Zirakpur nagar panchayat was upgraded to municipal council in 2007, nobody bothered to upgrade the MC office.

There are 19 rooms divided in cabins at the MC office where around 28 employees are working. There are no fire extinguishers, sand bucket or water hydrant system available in the office to control any untoward incident.

Some employees working in the office, on the condition of anonymity, said the roofs of some rooms leaked during rains and cracks had developed in the walls. The roof of their room could collapse any time, they added.

Sources in the civic body said as the population in Zirakpur was increasing by the day, public dealing had also increased. They revealed that the authorities had identified a barren land for the MC building and the site would be finalised after approval from the local administration.

After that, the matter would be put up at the coming MC meeting. Sources also said the processes to prepare the map for the new MC building had been started for which a private architect had been hired.

Naresh Sharma, a resident of Zirakpur, said the MC building was in bad condition and despite of repeated reminders the authorities concerned were not paying heed. 



Former Tribune dy manager dead
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
Former deputy press manager of The Tribune BM Kalia died at PGI after a brief illness here on Saturday. He was 69. He is survived by two sons and two daughters.

Kalia joined The Tribune at Ambala in 1960 and shifted to Chandigarh when the Tribune started its operation from here. He played a major role in the launch of Bathinda edition of The Tribune Group of Publications, being the project officer after his retirement in 1999. He was also associated with The Tribune’s flagship education initiative- Tribune-in-Education (TIE).

Associated with various art and culture and sports organisations, Kalia was one of the founder member of the Yaadgar-e-Rafi Society in early 1980s. The society provides platform to the budding singers from the region. He was also one of the founders of the Chandigarh women Football Association and Cycle Polo Federation of India.

Two years back on January 17, 2007, he along with a few like-minded people founded the Shri Shanti Sarup Sharma Memorial Educational and Charitable Trust for the promotion of performing arts and uplifting of girl child. His elder son Munish Kalia is working as senior computer engineer with The Tribune Trust, while one of his sons-in-law Pradeep Sharma works as senior staff correspondent of The Tribune at Chandigarh. His elder daughter, Rinku Kalia, is a well known playback singer and winner of Zee TV’s reality music show Saa Re Ga Ma.

The funeral of Kalia was largely attended. Prominent among those included, Sanjay Hazari, general manager of Tribune Group of Publications. His kirya ceremony would be observed on November 18, at Bhagwan Shri Lakshmi Narayan temple in Sector 20 between 2 and 3 pm.



Air not worth breathing here
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
Unpleasant odour emanating from the dumping ground at Dadu Majra has been causing great resentment among the people living in this area and surrounding sectors.

The residents complain that they are adversely affected by the air and water pollution and the foul odour emitted from the dumping ground.

They have expressed anger against the authorities, which have virtually been sleeping over the issue despite several representations having been submitted by residents’ welfare associations over the past four years.

Residents allege that the authorities have been passing the buck by constituting committees and bringing experts to study the cause of the foul smell emanating from the dumping ground and the garbage plant located at Dadu Majra.

They remark that no conscious effort has ever been made to reduce their misery till date.

They have just been receiving false assurances that action will be taken soon to redress their grievances.

Visibility over a stretch of about 1 km at Dadu Majra is so dim during evenings that those driving vehicles have to switch on the lights. A majority of the people passing on the road have to keep their faces covered due to foul smell. Residents have also 
started complaining of breathing problems.

The general secretary of the Dadu Majra Residents Welfare Association, Narender Chaudhary, says it seems that the authorities will only wake up when a mishap occurs.

He has expressed anguish over the callous attitude of the authorities and says a number of representations have resulted in a naught.

Despite the pitiable condition, MC officials carry out no supervision or check whether the garbage is thrown properly or not.

Most of the MC vehicles throw garbage at the doorstep of houses near the dumping ground.

The practice of spraying a chemical at the dumping ground to counter the foul smell has also been stopped.



A day of mysticism, folk fervour
SD Sharma

An artiste performs during the SAARC Folklore Festival at the Tagore Theatre in Chandigarh on Sunday.
An artiste performs during the SAARC Folklore Festival at the Tagore Theatre in Chandigarh on Sunday. A Tribune photo: Pradeep Tewari

Chandigarh, November 8
The serenity of mysticism and grandeur of folk fervour pervaded all through the presentations made by foreign and Indian troupes on the third day of the SAARC Folklore Festival at the Tagore Theatre here today.

Folk dancers from Mumbai, led by Sunita Bhonsle, gave a grandiose start to the programme with graceful, romance-filled and vibrant folk dances.

Commencing with Ganesh stuti, they filled the stage with eloquent dance movements, delineating Krishan leela and colourful Laavani folk, dominated with filmy fervour. The elated audience was later submerged in devotion as the four faqirs from the dargah of Saint Shah Latif in Pakistan rendered two soulful holy utterances in calm contemplation with tamburas.

Music had an universal language, which folk and Sufi singers from Afghanistan proved beyond doubt as the audience joined lead singer Meeramaftoon with rhythmic claps without grasping the lyrics, which were in Persian and Pushto.

The opening song (shayer) was devoted to the love for the beauty of India and its cultural heritage.

The second number depicted the same sentiment for Afghanistan. He concluded with a popular folk number of Afghanistan.

Meera Sahu, a disciple of Teejan Bai, presented the episode of “cheer haran” in the Pandavani folk form, a rarity in the region.

Kashmiri artistes presented Hafiz naghma in two songs, “Roni daman piyo” and “Dillawaro” under the direction of Gulzar, who hailed the festival as an opportunity for interaction with artistes from diverse cultural backgrounds. Nepalese artistes presented the romantic Jhavere dance, which was reminiscent of the ‘jeeja-saali’ dialogue. After a Jhakri dance, the programme concluded with the popular Nepalese peacock dance, performed by Vijay Mandhana.

Jainendra Singh of the AIR anchored the event with brilliance. Film actress and folk artiste Ila Arun was the chief guest.



Malls on the upswing
Arun Sharma
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, November 8
Shopping malls in Panchkula as well as Zirakpur finally seem to be coming out of recession blues.The management of Bella Vista in Sector 5 is all set to launch the first hotel-cum-shopping centre in the region. The six-storeyed building has three underground levels for parking to accommodate around 200 cars.

Jaskirat Singh, vice-president of the mall, says they plan to launch the mall this year. Local residents will, in all probability, be able to enjoy New Year’s Eve party at the hotel on the top two storeys.

While the mall will have 52 shops, the hotel will consist of 50 rooms. There will be a swimming pool and a health club on the roof.

Activity has also started picking up at the Shalimar multiplex after remaining subdued since its inauguration in March.

While only five shops have taken off during the past eight months, at least six vendors have currently been busy furnishing their shops.

Relaince Trenz and Meena Bazar have expressed the desire to start business from the mall soon, after deferring earlier plans to open their outlets, according to Vikram Goswami, general manager of the mall.

In Zirakpur, Paras Downtown, despite having a crowded Big Bazar, has not been able to get vendors for a majority of shops.

The authorities claim that at least six shops will be opened in a couple of weeks at the mall, where 23 shops have been doing brisk business.



South Indian food fest at St Mary’s school
Tribune News Service

A young girl tries to touch a pineapple at the South Indian Food Carnival at St. Mary’s School on Sunday.
A young girl tries to touch a pineapple at the South Indian Food Carnival at St. Mary’s School on Sunday. A Tribune photo: Pradeep Tewari

Chandigarh, November 8
The St. Mary’s Orthodox Syrian Church Society organised a South Indian Food Carnival at St. Mary’s School today.

Various South Indian delicacies like dosa, vada pradhaman, vellayappam, puttu and palappam were prepared at 20 different stalls.

But it was the combination of Tapioca (Casava root) and fish curry which came out as the favourite.

But more than the food, it was the cause behind the carnival that was truly appreciable as according to Father Ninan Philip, the carnival was an effort to fund various ongoing charity endeavours of church like scholarships, tailoring class, medical camps and donation for artificial limbs, sewing machine, etc.



PEC fest concludes on a high
Tribune News Service

Chandigaarh, November 8
The PEC fest concluded here today on a high note of high spirits and great crowd enthusiasm.Beating all odds of recession and examinations, PEC students pulled off a fest which had it all, drama, dance, fusion, rap, rock and footfall, to top it.A press note said the final day proved to be the icing on the cake. The fest provided thrill and excitement.

It started off with literary events. Lakshay from CCET and Nupur from PEC won the debate finals.They were followed by JAM, which was won by Vinay Satija from PEC. The group discussion saw huge participation.

Performances by students of other universities was specially appreciated by all visitors and rival participants.

Crochet, the musical event which had Western, Hindi and Punjabi categories, turned out to be a hot favourite among visitors.

Events, including ‘design-o-victor’ and ‘speed dating’, proved to be popular among the crowd.

The dramatics club of the college was second in ‘nukkad natak’. The same group stood first in the stage play, winning accolades all around.

As the sun set, the mood was set for the star night, which had various performances by big names in the music industry.

The night started off with rap tunes of Slick and his troupe, which was a warm-up to what was coming up next. Fusion band ‘Chakravyuh’ had the crowds chanting.

‘Honey Singh and Baadshah’ lived up to their reputations. Ram Niwas, home secretary, was the chief guest at the concluding function.



PU to carry photos on DMC 
Sumedha Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
In an effort to do away with the ever-increasing instances of forgery, the Panjab University has decided to carry the photograph of the student concerned on all degrees and certificates.

The practice, which will begin from graduation courses, will proceed to post graduation ones from the next session.

Interestingly, given a couple of Detailed Mark Certificates’ forgery cases, the authorities plan to include them as well.

“The degree certificates will carry the photograph of the student concerned. The act will minimise the risk of forgery,” said Vice-Chancellor Panjab University RC Sobti.

“This way, we shall also be able to easily combat with the problem of some marksheets being duplicated and eventually forged through computer,” added another official, referring to a recent case in which a Ludhiana girl, who had failed in her 1st year, had forged her Detailed Mark Certificate to gain admission in 2nd year.



Supplementary exam result

Mohali, November 8
In the supplementary exam result of the Punjab School Education Board (PSEB) open school, the pass percentage is 43.6. Of the total 11,704 students who appeared in the exams, 5,104 could clear the test.

Similarly, the pass percentage of the private students was 53.65 per cent. The Controller of Examination of the PSEB said the result gazette for the general public would be available at all textbooks depots situated at the district headquarters on November 9 from 4 pm onwards. However, the booksellers could collect their gazettes from the concerned textbooks sales depot. — TNS



Workshop on cardiac life support from today
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
A three-day workshop on basics and advanced cardiac life support programme will be organised by the department of anaesthesia at the GMCH-32 from November 9.

The workshop will be conducted by accredited instructors of American Heart Association, led by Prof Rakesh Kumar and his team from New Delhi, and will dwell upon basic and advanced life support techniques including hands on training.

Doctors and paramedics of various medical streams of the tricity and from the nearby areas will attend the workshop.

Director-principal, GMCH, Prof Raj Bahadur said the GMCH was in the process of starting a skill lab for imparting training to various categories of staff on airway management and resuscitation skills. Soon, the GMCH will start a course on pre-trauma care approved by the Ministry of Health with the department of anaesthesia being the nodal centre for the same.

Prof Satinder Gombar, head of the anaesthesia department at the GMCH, who is also the president of the Chandigarh branch of the ISA, said such workshops would be routine in the future and would be beneficial in saving precious lives. 



Schools & Colleges
Medley of songs marks annual day celebrations
Our Correspondent

Mohali, November 8
Two-day annual day celebrations at Shemrock Senior Secondary School, Mohali, concluded here today.Air Cmd SK Sharma (retd) and headmistress, Prineet Sohal, informed participants about the initiatives taken by Central Board of Secondary Education to de-stress students.

Culture programme began with a peace dance praying for harmony in the world. While the students of Class VI presented a medley of patriotic songs, students of Class VIII addressed the need to save earth through their dance heal the world.

Folk dances and classical dances brought alive the varied culture of India.

Western dances fusion had audience tapping their feet to the lively beats.

During the annual day celebrations, 34 students were awarded for full attendance and 76 were awarded for academic excellence.

Parivartan fest

The much-awaited vibrant Chandigarh Group of Colleges (CGC) state-level fiesta “Parivartan- 2009” is all set to start here from November 9.

The two-day fest will be inaugurated by Rajeev Bhadauria, president HR of Reliance ADAG.

Prominent personalities from the field of business and multi-national companies will also be part of the fest.


A workshop was conducted by Punjab Infotech at Sri Sukhmani Group of Institutes, Dera Bassi, to discuss various HRD initiatives and skill development initiatives.

A number of scholars from various colleges of the region were invited to introduce their Institution as well as contribution to improve and enhance employability among students.

A number of suggestions for tie-ups with Industries top companies were also discussed.

Senior professors and faculty members from various institutes assisted the experts and contributed their viewpoints on the latest career trends for students.

Career counselling

A career counselling programme was organised on the premises of Swami Ram Tirtha Public High School by Lovely Professional University (LPU), Jalandhar.

Instructors told the students about the aims and objectives of the university. They told them how to explore their inner talent and recognise the inner strength they had within. They also introduced their programme for guidance. Students actively participated in the programme and gained a lot of knowledge regarding various fields they could opt for pursuing higher courses.

Kindness day

Tiny tots of Gian Jyoti Global School, Phase II, celebrated kindness day in their own style.

They visited Old Age Home, Sector 15, Chandigarh, along with their teachers. They presented hand-made cards to the inmates of the home.

They entertained them by sharing jokes and stories. The kids sang songs for the inmates.



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