C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


UT shows selected JBT candidates the door
Sumedha Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 20
The UT administration today dismissed 10 of its freshly appointed JBT candidates for being “ineligible”, putting a question mark on the recruitment process.

The administration, which has persistently claimed that the selection process was transparent and “error free”, has held a mistake committed by the DOEACC in data compilation responsible for these “unjustified selections”.

“Yes, we have asked the schools concerned to immediately dismiss nine teachers and the one who is yet to join has been asked not to do so as they were ineligible. The problem is that around seven of these candidates had, in their personal information forms, claimed that they belonged to the OBC category and were included in the list. However, at the time of the interview, they failed to produce any relevant certificate so we updated the list and informed the DOEACC. But when the final result came, the DOEACC authorities had taken the preliminary list into consideration. They have confessed about their mistake in writing,” Sunil Bhatia, DPI (S), stated.

Surprisingly, VK Jain, additional director of the DOEACC, differed on the issue and stated: “They claimed that they had communicated the changes to us, but we never got it. Probably there was some miscommunication on both sides so nobody can be singled out and blamed. We have accepted human error on the issue.”

This is not the first time that both the authorities are passing the buck as prior to this, several RTI applications have shuttled between them in the past few months, with each claiming that the other needed to be asked.

The administration corridors are abuzz with reports of the entire result being reviewed, but the DPI has denied any such thing.

“There is nothing of that sort. We have got many representations for the posts of TGT and PGT so we have forwarded them to the DOEACC to clarify things. There is no reason to panic,” Bhatia remarked.

However, even though the administration might claim that all is fine, this might lead to serious consequences with more and more candidates approaching the courts and demanding a stay over the selection.

“They need to look into all selections as they are utterly dubious. How can they look into every representation individually? They should review the entire result as there are many low-scoring candidates who have been selected,” an applicant alleged.

The department has so far received over 500 RTI applications and 200 representations. The recruitment process has been under the scanner ever since the unearthing of the cash-for-job scam, which even questioned the role of former DPI Samawartak Singh.

Following this, while the administration took multiple steps to ensure transparency, the result continued to be termed as dubious. Initially, objections were raised on the result not being made public on the website, which was followed by an uproar when the waiting list was not released. This also led to a series of complaints regarding discrepancy in allotment of marks to candidates and several selections were termed unjustified as the selected candidates had scored much below than those rejected.



Boston mess dilutes conference’s essence
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 20
Caught in a controversy because of the alleged involvement of a PU law student in a molestation case in Boston, the rationale behind the prestigious Harvard National Model United Nations (HNMUN) has lost its meaning.

More than 3,000 students from top universities of the US and other nations across the world interacted on international relations and global affairs at the 56th annual HNMUN this year.

The students of Panjab University, who attended the conference this year, termed it as a life time experience, although the experience turned bitter for them after the news of Nitin Jindal’s arrest came in just a day before the conference got over.

“It was great to know how students from various countries perceive global issues. It was amazing to debate on vital problems concerning humanity, going beyond geographical boundaries,” a student, who returned today, stated on the condition of anonymity.

At the conference, as part of the four crisis committee selection, the students also had a chance to enact the role of Indian freedom fighters during the 1857 era.

In the conference, which took place from February 11-14, students posed as UN ambassadors and other world leaders. Harvard University also invited members of the NGO Programs and Crisis Committees. Although they participate as representatives of the NGOs, they do not have a voting right, but enjoy the same rights as other delegates.

This time the registration for the event opened on May 1, 2009, and the deadline was November 12. The fee was $60.

VC clarifies

The PU Vice-Chancellor, Prof RC Sobti, on Saturday clarified that the syndicate members had cleared the admission of SOPU leader Brinder Dhillon, when he joined the institution, and it was not in the VC’s individual capacity to do so.

However, the authorities are yet to take action on the reported participation of Brinder in crucial events related to PU despite being an outsider. These events included representing PU on the central status issue with union minister for human resource and development Kapil Sibal and then claiming to take a team of students to Rahul Gandhi in Delhi after his visit to the PU.

Brinder was also involved in the case of breaching PU security in 2009 when he, along with the student council president, locked the departments of the PU after clerks refused to accept the fee of students.

Meanwhile, PUSU today demanded that the UT administration took suo motu action against the university authorities. “We will meet the Governor and will not take the matter lightly. The university must not shield the guilty.”



GMSH out of haemoglobin kits for weeks
Anuja Jaiswal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 20
The GMSH-16 is trying to get the accreditation of the Quality Council of India which certifies “high quality of care and patient safety”, but when it comes to the basics, a lot is lacking.

The hospital has run out of haemoglobin A1C testing kits for checking blood sugar levels, a test that is required by almost every patient going under the knife in the operating theatre every day. It has been almost three weeks since the stock of test kits has run out, but no one knows when it would be replenished.

Besides OT patients, the test is required for diabetic patients. These patients not only return disappointed, but also spend over 22 times the price for getting the tests conducted at private laboratories.

While the test costs Rs 30 in the hospital, it’s around Rs 450 at city laboratories. Confirming this, Ravi Khanna, MD of the Chandigarh Clinical Laboratories, said the test which was essential for all patients undergoing surgery cost a minimum of Rs 400.

Sources in the hospital claimed that on an average 20 sugar tests were conducted daily. However, since February 1, not even a single test had been conducted in the hospital labs. The staff sitting at the counters has been directing patients to get the tests conducted from outside.

When contacted, the medical superintendent of the hospital, Dr NK Arora, admitted that the tests were not being conducted for the past few days. He said this was due to increased number of patients. He claimed that the kits would be procured “very soon”. 



Selfless service vital for world peace: Patil
Tribune News Service

HK Dua, Editor-in-Chief of The Tribune group of publications and a Rajya Sabha member being honoured with Shreyas Award by Dr Abid Hussain during a function at Panjab University in Chandigarh on Saturday.
HK Dua, Editor-in-Chief of The Tribune group of publications and a Rajya Sabha member being honoured with Shreyas Award by Dr Abid Hussain during a function at Panjab University in Chandigarh on Saturday. Tribune photo: S Chandan

Chandigarh, February 20
UT Administrator and Punjab Governor Shivraj V Patil has stressed on the need for promoting selfless service, the only virtue that could bring peace in the world, country, community, family and even within oneself.

Inaugurating a two-day Rotary conference, “Confluence 2010”, at Panjab University today, Patil said: “A spirit of positive attitude needs to be inculcated amongst Indians to take the country forward.”

The UT Administrator commended Rotary for undertaking humanitarian tasks with the spirit of service to help others, which they should now extend to the society, too, so that every other professional followed it.

Being hosted by Chandigarh Central Club at Law Auditorium, the event also saw Rotary District 3080 present Shreyas Awards to three ‘sons-of-the-soil’ to recognise their excellence in their respective professions.

Former world president of Rotary International Rajendra K. Saboo said the organisation had decided to confer these awards on Editor-in-Chief of The Tribune group of publications and Rajya Sabha member HK Dua, Hero Honda’s managing director Pawan Munjal and Bollywood actress Kirron Kher.

Dr Abid Hussain, a noted economist, was the chief guest and he also gave away the awards.

While accepting the award, Dua said nomination to Rajya Sabha was another extension of his present assignment as a journalist, which primarily involved being the voice of the people and protecting public interests.

“There is a need for more serious people to get into Parliament and I will endeavour to remain the voice of the people of this country,” he averred.

Munjal said Hero Honda owed its success to “strong values, ethical dealings and relationship with its customers, which led to the evolution of a culture of excellence in the company”.

Kirron Kher nostalgically remembered her days in the city, especially her return to the same stage of the Law Auditorium where once she performed.

Earlier, Congress spokesman and Lok Sabha MP Manish Tewari addressed the Rotarians who had come from various parts of the region. He spoke on “India’s National Security: The Road Ahead”. He lamented the vanishing concept of beat policing where a policeman knew the entire socio-ethnic structure of the people living in any locality on one-to-one basis. Absence of beat policing, said he, was leading to the rise in crime and insecurity among citizens.

Tewari called upon the Rotarians to promote neighbourhood policing in the society and engage people in ensuring security and safety for themselves.

Dr P Narayana Holla, vice chairman of the National Polio Plus Committee, asked the Rotarians to continue with the immunisation programme until the disease was rooted out.

Post-lunch break, the session resumed with the speech of Dr Kiran Bedi on the changing role of women in the society. She said the future could witness three prominent changes in women’s role.

“She would be choosing her husband and would not be forced into marriage, would be emerging as a leader in the corporate sector and her productive role at the work place would get more recognition. There could also be possibility of change in the reproductive role, which could mean more dependence on adoption and surrogate motherhood, etc,” Dr Bedi said. 


Development of tourism infrastructure
Home secy reviews progress
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 20
Officials of the UT administration, including the home secretary, the MD, CITCO, the director, tourism, the chief engineer, UT, the chief architect, UT, and other officials reviewed the work in progress at various tourists’ sites for which central financial assistance of Rs 27 crore had been released by the ministry of tourism, Government of India, for up-gradation and development of tourism infrastructure in city.

Garden of Silence is being developed at the regulator end of the Sukhna Lake. The adjoining area shall be beautifully landscaped to have fragrant and colourful shrubs as a visual treat for the visitors.

A tourist information centre would also be set up containing the information about the flora and fauna, including the migratory birds that make Sukhna Lake their abode during winters.

In addition to this Sukhna island, Open Hand shall be illuminated with the adjoining area to be beautifully decorated with flowers to provide a look of flower basket in the water body enhancing the tourism dimensions of Sukhna Lake.

The work in progress at the Rose Garden was going on in full swing. Around 400 new varieties of roses had already been planted. About Rs 1 crore would be spent on illumination of Rose Garden and new illuminated fountains shall be ready for inauguration during the Rose Festival starting on February 26. In addition to this, children corner with new play way equipments shall be open to public during the Rose Festival-2010.

The Chandigarh Tourism is spending Rs 3 crore on the Botanical Garden, Sarangpur, to upgrade it. Tree top houses blended with green environs were coming up there along with Meditation Hut.

The work at a Garden of Palms was also going on at Sector 42 lake. Undulating adventurous cycle track with pathways and tunnels with bridges were being constructed to provide a delightful cycling experience to both youngsters and visitors.

New Garden as Valley of Animals in Sector 49 shall be developed having different topiary animals displayed in different eco systems like Jurassic Park, African Safari, Tundra region, Asian region etc.

There shall be four sections within the garden to be developed as grassland biome, tundra biome, forest biome and dessert biome as theme-based sectional gardens. The concept for Garden of Conifers at Sector 52 was being prepared.



‘Medicare common goal for pvt, public sectors’ 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 20
At CII’s conference on “Healthcare 2010: Excellence in Patient Care”, Punjab Health and Family Welfare Minister Prof Laxmi Kanta Chawla stressed healthcare as a ‘shared goal’ for both public and private sector. She said both the sectors should get together and synergise their strength to reach out to the common man.

Prof Chawla said the common man had not been able to take full advantage of this progress. She said the private sector was beyond the reach of poor patients and the public sector being over burdened, the poor patients remained deprived of the best healthcare.

Discussing about the reduction in the IMR and Maternal Mortality Rate in Punjab, she said the initiatives undertaken were showing results but there was still a long way to go. Raji P Srivastava, managing director Punjab Healthcare System, said: “With 175 healthcare institutions across Punjab, including PHCs, CHCs and large institutions, the challenges are also equally huge to maintain, upgrade and modernise such a vast system.”

Srivastava spoke about optimum utilisation of healthcare equipment, strengthening the Monitoring Information System, placement and training of the human resource aligned to the needs of patient care and making things simpler without ‘redtape’. Daljit Singh, chairman Healthcare Sub Committee, CII North, said: “The mindset and expectations of patients are undergoing a paradigm shift. From expecting sound ‘medical treatment’, they now look forward to service delivery and hospitality that is comparable to other service industries.”

To ensure the patient’s hospital stay a good experience, the myriad of issues that need to be taken care include ensuring staff aligned to the patient care, processes in place to meet the expectations and upgraded. A satisfied patient is the best form of marketing. Pervez Ahmed, CEO and managing director, Max Healthcare, stressed on collective responsibility towards patient centric care. 



Echo evaluation of children discussed
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 20
On the second day of the 4th Annual Preoperative and Critical Care TEE workshop, over 100 national and international delegates and faculty participated in a highly informative academic discussion about the importance of trans-esophageal echocardiography.

The morning meeting saw a “hands-on” session followed by presentations about ventricular assessments by TEE. Echo evaluation of children with congenital heart disease was discussed.

A live demonstration of transthoracic echocardiography on a child was performed by Dr Krishna Kumar from Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences, Kochi. TEE evaluation of the aortic valve, aortic dissection and aneurysm was presented by Dr Kathirvel (Pittsburgh, USA).



India travel mart exhibition begins
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, February 20
Nazir Aslam Wani, tourism minister, Jammu & Kashmir, inaugurated the India Travel Mart Exhibition at Hotel Mountview, here today. A number of state tourism departments have also put up their stalls.

“There are a number of spots in Jharkhand that are of religious importance. There is a month long Shrawani mela at Deogarh temple in July and August. We have dense forest regions like Betta, Netarhat, Saranda and Dalma. Here safaris are the main attraction,” said Birendra Kumar Sinha, representative of Jharkhand tourism.

Another attractive option for those on a lookout for a perfect holiday was Goa. “It is a perfect combination of sun, sea and sand. We are the leaders in hospitality. We are in competition with Malaysian tourism and the best time to enjoy Goa is from October till April,” said AT Fernandes, general manager, Goa Tourism Development Corporation Ltd.

One is aware of a number of tourist spots in Himachal Pradesh. But here at the exhibition one could explore a number of places that the HP tourism has started promoting recently. “There are places like Rajgarh valley and Karsog valley that people do not know about. These places have the perfect scenic beauty any tourist can ask for,” said Nanda, representative of the Himachal Pradesh tourism department.

JP Pathak, general manager of Rajasthan tourism said, “We have two luxury trains, Palace on Wheels and Royal Rajasthan on Wheels. A couple can enjoy five-star treatment for seven days for Rs 3.5 lakh.” Travel House, Chandigarh, is working in association with the Rajasthan tourism department to cater to the bookings here.



Sector-17 police station on top 3 list

Chandigarh, February 20
The Sector 17 police station has been adjudged one of the top three police stations among four countries of Asia.

The survey was conducted by an NGO, Altus Global Alliance, on the basis of a jury’s rating of different police stations that participated in the Police Station Visitors’ Weeks, 2009. The police jurisdiction included Bangladesh, Nepal, Malaysia and seven states and Union Territories of India, including Assam, Chandigarh, Kerala, Meghalaya, Punjab, Rajasthan and Uttrakhand.

Pakistan, though participated in the contest, failed to qualify, as the number of participation from the country was only four, the NGO said.

The best three police stations that were studied by the jury included police station, Sector 17, police station, Vadakkencehry, Kerala, and police station, Vidhayakpuri, Rajashtan. — TNS



Magical spell by Bhatt, Sonal
SD Sharma

Chandigarh, February 20
The 6th annual "Guru Madan Lal Koser - Guru Shobha Koser Award", instituted by the Pracheen Kala Kendra for excellence in performing arts was presented at Tagore Theatre here yeterday.

Chief guest Shri Jagannath Pahadia, Governor of Haryana conferred the awards to India’s dancing legend Padma Vibhushan Dr Sonal Man Singh and Mohan Veena maestro Grammy Award winner Pandit Vishwa Mohan Bhatt.

Each recipient was presented a shawl, a memento, a citation besides a cash award of Rupees 51,000 after the Kathak Guru Shobha Koser, SK Monga IAS (retd), Sajal Koser from Kendra welcomed the chief guest and introduced the awardees. Jagannath Pahadia lauded the efforts of management for imparting education in performing arts at the national and International level.

Odissi classical dance exponent Padma Vibhushan Sonal Man Singh augmented the charm of the special ceremony as she mesmerised the audience in an Odissi dance recital.

She presented an invocatory Ganesh vandna before enrapturing the elite audience with a well-knit choreography “Shiv Leela” set to raga Mallika- a fine combination of intensive abhinaya and technical virtuosity.

She defined and delineated the nav rasas embellishing the performance with nimble footwork, body postures and eloquent dance movements virtually dancing straight to the hearts of audience.

Star performer Pandit Vishwa Mohan Bhatt took the centrestage to excel in an electrifying spell of Mohan Veena recital. He made the strings to sing in an exposition of raga champakali with an elaborate alap followed by Jod and Jhala. Touching the three octaves, he brought out all the subtle nuances of the raga. He then moved on to play two compositions set to vilambit and drut showcasing his technical virtuosity with excessive use of meend, gamak and thrilling tihayees. Kendra secretary Sajal Koser and Kathak guru Shobha Koser expressed gratitude to the chief guest, awardees and audience. 



NIPER gets first prize for Rajbhasha
Tribune News Service

Mohali, February 20
The Town Official Language Committee (TOLIC), Chandigarh, has recognised the Rajbhashsa implementation work of National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research (NIPER), Mohali, by giving first prize.

NIPER emerged winner through evaluation process conducted between 97 Central government offices of Chandigarh, Mohali and Panchkula. Bhupinder Singh, officiating registrar of NIPER, received the award from PK Chopra, chairman, TOLIC, and chief Income Tax commissioner, Chandigarh, during annual Rajbhasha function of TOLIC, Chandigarh, organised at Tagore Theatre, Chandigarh, here yesterday.

Santosh Sohgaura, officiating Rajbhasha officer of NIPER, was also given first prize in appreciation of Rajbhasha work.


More than 100 management practitioners, research professionals and academicians from England, Bahrain, Canada, Sri Lanka, etc took part in the two-day International conference on “Management next: Paradigms and Innovations” which began at local campus of Gian Jyoti Institute of Management and Technology.

The inaugural session was presided over by Satish Bagrodia, chairman and managing director, Winsome Group. Bagrodia discussed the Innovative management techniques and said: “Innovative management is applicable not only to profit making corporations, but is also applicable for non-profit and government organisations, such as public administration, public management and educational institutes.”

JS Bedi, chairman, GJ-IMT, highlighted on some of the major shifts in the thinking of management practitioners with respect to globalisation and growing culture of MNCs. He said a variety of driving forces provoke this change. Dr Vimal K Aggarwal, director of the Institute, deliberated about paradigms and innovations in management which would help the industry as well as academicians to understand how to manage change for the survival and success in globalised business environment.



Workshop on echocardiography
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 20
The first day of the three-day 4th Annual Peri-operative and Critical Care Trans-Esophageal Echocardiography (TEE) workshop was conducted at the advanced cardiac centre in Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research here yesterday. The workshop was inaugurated by Director of PGI Prof KK Talwar. The workshop is a basic course designed to provide understanding of echocardiography procedure during open-heart surgery and in critical care.

Anesthesiologists and intensivists from all over the country attended the workshop. The programme started with a hands-on demonstration of trans-esophageal echocardiography (TEE) in the operating suite.

This was followed by a series of lectures and live demonstrations on the basics of ultrasound imaging by eminent national and international faculty.

The highlight of the day was dissection of pig heart by a team of cardiac anaesthesiologists led by Dr Balachunder Subramaniam from Harvard and Dr Hector Villaraga from Mayo Clinic, USA, to aid the understanding of the procedure for the delegates.



Mohali rly station sans basic facilities
Anil Jerath
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 20
The newly built Mohali Railway Station here lacks basic facilities. The railway station that handles most of the Army supplies and passenger traffic of the area has no power backup system.

Sources said there was just one small generator at the station that was used for lighting reservation counter in case of a power cut. For rest of the station, there was just one small inverter that could sustain just four tube-lights for a small time.

The sorry state of affairs recently came to light after Mohali was included in the route of Jan Shatabdi to Nangal.

With the station located on outskirts of the township in Kambala village, most passengers are left with no other option, but to pay exorbitant fares for hiring cab and auto-rickshaw services. “With no bus service available from the station, I normally end up paying hefty fares to auto-rickshaws,” said Ashok Pahwa, a passenger.

A stretch of the main leading road has potholes. The toilets in the station were found to be stinking. There are just two coolies for about 2,000 passengers. There is just one functioning reservation counter (from 8 am to 4 pm). However, at the time of inauguration of the station, a provision for three reservation counters was made. There is no enquiry counter to announce the arrival or departure of trains.

Moreover, there is non-availability of a canteen or any other food joint at the station. Brij Rani, a passenger, said: “After long and exhausting train journeys, it is disappointing not to have anything to eat at the station.” On this, a railways official said the request to earmark a site for the canteen has been lying pending with the Planning Department for months.

According to the station superintendent Ashok Kapur, the station is new and is still being developed. However, he failed to explain why the facilities that already existed there were not being put to proper use. Divisional Railways Manager YP Singh said: “The civic amenities at the station are not of the standards as it should be. But I feel the things will improve in the coming years.” 



Health check-up camp for pets
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, February 20
A free health-check up camp for pets will be organised by the Pet Animals Health Society, Haryana, here tomorrow.

According to sources, the camp will be conducted by a team of veterinarians headed by Dr MR Singla and will be inaugurated by Hardip Kumar, financial commissioner, animal husbandry and dairying at Pet Animal Medical Centre-cum-Teaching Hospital at Devi Nagar.

Dr KS Dangi, director general of animal husbandry and dairying, Haryana, will supervise the camp.

Pets would be given free vaccination against rabies, clinical lab tests, shampoo bath, tick bath, grooming, pedicure, eye and ear cleaning during the camp.



Company adopts 2 villages
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, February 20
In an era when commercialisation rules the roost in the real estate sector, the Mumbai-based Bhoomi Infrastructure Company lived up to its social responsibility by working for the development of two villages in Panchkula’s vicinity.

The company, which is coming up with integrated mega housing project in Sector 30, along the National Highway 73, has decided to adopt Moginand and Naggal villages in a bid to develop them on a par with urban areas.

Besides upgradation of water supply and education, the company would renovate the temple situated in the vicinity of the village as part of it corporate social responsibility scheme (CSR) initiative, Col RS Perhar(retd), president, strategic marketing, stated here today.

The company claims to have been rated “gold” by the union environment ministry for environment-friendly features.

Col SS Deswal (retd), a partner in the company, said the project included sewerage water treatment plant, rain water harvesting, and water harvesting from sewerage for arboriculture.



UK delegation visits evening school
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, February 20
A ten-member delegation of teachers from Wiltshire, the UK, led by David Clarke, senior school improvement adviser, visited Smile, an evening school for the slum children at Colony No 4, Industrial Area, Phase I, here yesterday.

The evening school is being run voluntarily by students of Panjab University and other colleges.

The delegation is on a visit to Punjab and Chandigarh under the educational and culture exchange programme.

They interacted with about 50 children and offered them gifts. Children performed various dances and sang rhymes for them. Heritage director Rajpal Singh said the group had stayed at Jiwanwala village in Faridkot district for a day and met students and their parents.

The visiting teachers are David Clarke, Susanna Worsley, Lucie O’Leary (dancer), Mary Roberts, Pamela Brelsforth, Marian Newman, Alison Warren (Thespian), Malaine James and Pauline Deacon. They visited the Rock Garden.



Job fest at GC-46 on Feb 24
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 20
Government College, Sector 46, will host a mega job fest in collaboration with all government colleges of Chandigarh at the college auditorium on February 24.

Final year students, graduates and postgraduates from all government as well as private colleges are invited to participate in the fest.

Students will get an opportunity to meet officials from various MNCs, who will hire them for their respective programmes. Various prominent national and international companies offering jobs in accounting, finance, banking, insurance, BPO, KPO, IT and computers will be available under one roof.

Some of the major recruiters at the fest will be Wipro, HCL Infosystems, Convergys, Genpact, WNS, ICICI Group, HDFC Group, Kotak Mahindra, Deutsche Bank and Max New York.

The fest is an initiative of Ajoy Sharma, director, Higher Education.

Various colleges are imparting training to students ahead of the job fest.

Registration facility is available at all government colleges.

Students can register themselves on the spot.

Interested candidates are directed to bring their resumes as well as copies of their testimonials, along with their recent passport size photographs.

RTI Act discussed

A one-day seminar on “The Right to Information” was organised by Panjab University at the Moot Court Hall of the department of laws.

The seminar was sponsored by the State Information Commission, Punjab.

Doctors, engineers, advocates, teachers, students, besides the PIOs, APIOs of the university, gathered in large numbers to make the seminar vibrant and exciting. Prof Vijay K Chopra from the department of evening studies of the university was the coordinator of the seminar.

In his inaugural address, RC Sobti, Vice-Chancellor, Panjab University, Chandigarh, advocated extensive use of the RTI Act so that the transitional phase of hide and seek made way for transparency. He said the voice of information seekers would not be muted and all applications under the RTI Act should be promptly dealt with.

He said the university was bound to streamline and revamp the RTI system by effective computerisation.

RI Singh, Chief Information Commissioner, State Information Commission, Punjab, said the RTI Act ignited the spirits. It synthesised the right to live and right to be informed to ensure the right to development in totality. But it did not allow the luxury of leisure, he added. The speakers interacted with delegates and answered a volley of questions.

During the second technical session, PPS Gill, State Information Commissioner, State Information Commission, Punjab, called upon the delegates to familiarise themselves with the RTI Act and its provisions. He further implored them to give information available with them promptly, rather than looking for excuses so that the confidence of the public in general and the information seekers in particular grew by leaps and bounds.

The third and final technical sessions were educative and witnessed fire-brand minds questioning the motives of delaying and with-holding information. A panel comprising Prof SS Bari, Registrar, Prof RK Gupta, Dharam Pal Sharma, Deputy Registrar (RTI), and Nitin Goel cautioned delegates about the lackadaisical approach of officials in disseminating information.


The national seminar on “Experiments and innovations in distance education in globalised era” concluded here today. Prof PK Biswas from STRIDE, Indira Gandhi National Open University, emphasised upon pursuing research in distance education, as many issues could be solved by research and training. Nine papers were presented on perspective of distance education. The second session was chaired by Prof Meera Malik from the USOL and 14 papers were presented. A panel discussion was organised on flexibility system in the USOL.



Poetry book released
SD Sharma

Chandigarh, February 20
Language and literature of a region reflect social traditions, cultural ethos and living style of people and beyond doubt a large segment of Punjabis settled in all states from Delhi to Pakistan and abroad are influenced with the rich literary creations in Punjabi and share common bond.

This was opined by MP Tarlochan Singh while releasing a Punjabi poetry book “Mein iss yug da sisyphus” held under aegis of the Punjabi Kala Kendra at the Chandigarh Press Club here today.

“Their love for Punjabi constitute a feeling of mutual harmony and brotherhood that accounts for the International presence of our literature and literatures,” he added. “I take pleasure in commending the book as another milestone by its most prolific author Dr Jasbir Singh Ahluwalia IAS (retd), former VC Punjabi University and presently VC of Guru Granth Sahib World University at Fatehgarh Sahib. 



Educators get lessons on AIDS
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 20
Reaching youngsters at an impressionable age before they become sexually active can lay the foundation for a responsible lifestyle, including healthy relationships and safe sex habits. It was stated by Chanchal Singh, district education officer, Chandigarh, during the concluding function of three-day training for nodal teachers.

This training was being conducted by the Chandigarh State AIDS Control Society in association with the education department, Chandigarh. The DEO gave away the certificates to the participants.

This training was inaugurated by Dr Vanita Gupta, project director, Chandigarh State AIDS Control Society, on February 17. About 46 teachers of Classes IX and XI from various schools attended the training.

Dr Gupta, PD, CSACS, explained the objectives of the training by saying that this adolescence education programme had been developed by NACO in collaboration with the ministry of HRD and whetted by the NCERT. She added that under this programme, teachers and peer educators were trained, who in turn conducted the programme amongst the student community.

She added that the objective of this training would also be to make teachers familiar with the modules of the AEP for effective implementation of programme in schools.

During the first day of the training Dr Daizy Zaraby, state resource person, spoke on the topics of progress of growing up during adolescence — physiological, mental & emotional changes — whereas Sandeep Mittal, deputy director, (TI), CSACS, represented the scenario on adolescence and issues of importance relating to the AEP.

Trained nodal teachers would impart at least 16 hours of teaching in an academic session. The teaching would focus on four modules — a passage from childhood to adolescence, adolescence reproductive and sexual health, mental health and substance, abuse, life skill and HIV/AIDS prevention.

On the second day of the training, Jasmine Josh, SIE, Chandigarh and Gurjeet Kaur of Government College of Arts, Chandigarh, were the main speakers and they covered the topics like: exploring life skills, co-curricular activities for life skills activities and sex abuse: awareness building and sensitisation.

On the concluding day of the training, resource person Pramod Kumar, coordinator, Yuvsatta & Anupreet Kaur of GMSH-28, Chandigarh, threw light on the topics of HIV/AIDS: modes of transmission, role of youth and use of condom.



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