SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI
JALANDHAR


THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE
TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS

Corbett among top 10 tiger trouble spots
Dehradun, February 23
In the run-up to the Global Tiger Summit to be held in Russia this September, Jim Corbett National Park has featured in the list of Top 10 Tiger Trouble Spots across the globe. 

People vent ire on ‘latecomer’ Nishank
Nainital, February 23
Arriving late or simply giving public functions of consequence a miss while hurting the sentiments of people seems to have become a routine with Chief Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank. 

Horses mainstay of Kumbh security
Haridwar, February 23
The mounted police has proved the mainstay of the Police Department in managing security affairs in the vast Kumbh mela area. And it’s not for nothing that horses have been utilised in the Indian police services since 1835.

The horse squad of mela police in Haridwar. Tribune photo:Rameshwar Gaur


EARLIER EDITIONS


Gurukul varsity banks on moral education
Haridwar, February 23
Gurukul Kangri University’s staff perform a yagna in Haridwar With the century-old world-renowned Gurukul Kangri University facing an identity crisis in the wake of the Human Resource Ministry’s move to withdraw deemed status from many universities, the Gurukul authorities and staff are banking on the unique combination of moral and modern education practised at the university to save it from status cancellation.

Gurukul Kangri University’s staff perform a yagna in Haridwar on Tuesday. Tribune photo: Rameshwar Gaur

College launches campaign against sex selection
Dehradun, February 23
Uttarakhand Governor Margaret Alva lights a lamp to inaugurate a workshop on the Project Shinkhala, 2010, was jointly organised by the women’s cell of Mahadevi Kanya Pathshalaya, MKP (PG) College and Department of Medical Health and Family Welfare, Government of Uttarakhand. Governor Margaret Alva inaugurated the function here today. The guest of honour for the occasion was Vijaya Barthwal, state minister, Nirupama Gaud, president, Samaj Kalyan, Keshav Desiraju, Principal Secretary, Uttarakhand, Dr Indu Singh, patron women’s cell of MKP College, and Dr Geeta Balodi, Governor, women’s cell, MKP College.

Uttarakhand Governor Margaret Alva lights a lamp to inaugurate a workshop on the 
PC-PNDT Act at MKP Women’s College in Dehradun on Tuesday. A Tribune photograph

Experts discuss conservation of bio-resources
Dehradun February 23
Dr Himmat Singh, Director of Advance Institute of Science and Technology, speaks at a seminar in Dehradun The Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (AIST), affiliated to HNB Garhwal Central University, Srinagar, Garhwal, held a seminar on “Recent Trends in Conservation, Technology and Utilisation of Bio-resources” here today. Dignitaries from all over India had gathered to deliver their research experiences and deliberate on various aspects of bio-resources.

Dr Himmat Singh, Director of Advance Institute of Science and Technology, speaks at a seminar in Dehradun on Tuesday. A Tribune photograph

Yash wins science quiz
Dehradun, February 23
On the occasion of the National Science Week celebration, Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology organised a science quiz here yesterday. More than 15 schools, including St Joseph Academy, Oak Groove, Welham Girls School, Grace Academy, Children’s Academy and SGRR participated a the competition.

Akhada Parishad terms it personal matter 
Akhada Parishad National General Secretary Hari Giri Maharaj addressses mediapersons in HaridwarHaridwar, February 23 
The fake Shankaracharya issue seems to be not resting down. With there being no statutory body dealing with a number of Shankaracharyas coming to the city for the Maha Kumbh, many akhadas and prominent saints have accused certain Shankaracharyas of assuming fake religious identity. 
Akhada Parishad National General Secretary Hari Giri Maharaj addressses mediapersons in Haridwar on Tuesday. Tribune photo: Rameshwar Gaur

Mercury dips with fresh showers in Mussoorie
Mussoorie, February 23
Tourists donning woollens take a rickshaw ride in Mussoorie The Queen of Hills, Mussoorie, witnessed a dip in the temperature with the advent of fresh rains today. But tourists were eluded of the chance of enjoying snow as the weather improved during afternoon. However, the peaks of Nag Tibba and Dhanolty were covered with snow and the tourists gathered at Bahuguna peak to witness the panoramic view of the Himalayas. The tourists enjoyed the cold weather in anticipation of fresh snow once again in the town.
Tourists donning woollens take a rickshaw ride in Mussoorie on Tuesday. A Tribune photograph

Royal bride workshop held
Dehradun, February 23
VLCC, slimming beauty fitness centre, organised a royal bride workshop here today. Keeping in mind the royal bride, the focus was on rich colours like gold and bronze, with a tinge of silver. The idea behind organising this event was to showcase the regal inheritance keeping in mind the culture, which is deep-rooted and a perfect blend of traditional and contemporary styles. 

Anti-polythene rally held
Dehradun, February 23
The volunteers of Nehru Yuva Kendra took out an anti-polythene rally from the Gandhi Park here today. They raised banners and slogans against the usage of polythene. The procession began from the Gandhi Park to the Clock Tower to the Darshan Lal Chowk and finally culminated at the Parade Ground. The participants also picked up garbage (polythene mainly) from the roads.

Spreading a word
A rangoli gives a message to save the girl child at the Spring Festival-2010 held in Dehradun
A rangoli gives a message to save the girl child at the Spring Festival-2010 held in Dehradun recently. Tribune photo: Vinod Pundir

Shikshak bandhus hold protest
Mussoorie, February 23
Members of the Rajkiya Shikshak (Shikshak Bandhu) Tadarth Sangh demanded re-regularisation of their services and deliberated at the directions made by the government seeking return of the arrears since 2006, in a meeting at Thatyur village, about 40 km from here, yesterday.

Dehradun Bar Association goes to polls tomorrow 
Dehradun, February 23
The pre-election scenario in the District Court for the election of 11 seats of the Dehradun Bar Association, which is to be held on Thursday, is filled with excitement and nervousness. The election is being held for the post of president, vice-president, secretary, joint secretary, librarian, auditor and five members of executive working committee. 

Centre responsible for inflation, says SP 
Dehradun, February 23
Due to the wrong policies of the Central government, inflation has reached an all-time high in the country, alleged state unit Samajwadi Party (SP) president Vinod Barthwal while addressing members and workers in the party office here today.

Idea Cellular promotes green campaign 
Dehradun, February 23
Idea Cellular in its bid to promote the green campaign is now reaching out to an audience on a focussed level with their street plays. Today, the city witnessed talented performers from the theatre group, Core Medium, on the streets spreading awareness among people about Idea Cellular’s “Use Mobile, Save Paper” campaign.  The street play extended the green message to passersby and crowd gatherings at various locations such as the Rajpur Road, Mussoorie Road and New Cantt Road etc in the city.

3-0 victory for Gorkha Brigade over Nagar Nigam 
A match in progress at the Narayan Gurung Memorial Football Tournament in Dehradun Dehradun, February 23
Gorkha Brigade registered 3-0 win over Nagar Nigam at the Narayan Gurung Memorial Football Tournament underway at Mahendra Ground here today.




A match in progress at the Narayan Gurung Memorial Football Tournament in Dehradun on Tuesday. A Tribune photograph 

Class IV cadets demolish Class IV A in final
Players in action at the RIMC Premier League (Hockey) in DehradunDehradun, February 23
Hockey in Rashtriya Indian Military College (RIMC) here is not just a tradition it is a legacy in itself and is pursued relentlessly by the cadets.



Players in action at the RIMC Premier League (Hockey) in Dehradun on Tuesday. A Tribune photograph

Jodhpur defeats Gwalior 3-0
Haridwar, February 23
At the ongoing All-India Inter-University Squash Championship, Jaya Narayan Vyas University in Jodhpur defeated LNUPA Gwalior by a margin of 3-0.

Amrapali Institute score easy 8-wicket victory over GRD
Dehradun, February 23
Amrapali Institute won by 8 wickets against GRD to advance in to the semifinals of the Ist Inter College Cricket Tournament here today. Batting first, GRD team scored 95 runs off 12.1 overs. Vivek Saini was the lead scorer for the team with 48 runs, whereas Kshitiz scored 16 runs.
For Amrapali Institute, Cheetan Jain took four wickets, whereas Nadeem Khan took three wickets. In reply, Amrapali team reached the target with eight wickets in hand.

Doon Club honours former presidents 
Dehradun, February 23
The Dehradun Club felicitated 19 of its past presidents headed by the veteran senior citizen MM Tayal at a gala function last night.

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Corbett among top 10 tiger trouble spots
Jotirmay Thapliyal
Tribune News Service

Dehradun, February 23
In the run-up to the Global Tiger Summit to be held in Russia this September, Jim Corbett National Park has featured in the list of Top 10 Tiger Trouble Spots across the globe.

An international wildlife conservation non-government agency - Wildextra - has come up with the listing as precursor to the Global Tiger Summit to be held at Vladivostok, Russia.

Corbett finds a mention among tiger reserves of India that have been identified as most prone to human-tiger conflicts. These conflicts lead to losses on both sides with humans losing their lives and livestock in the process while tigers face retaliatory killing and poaching.

Dudhwa, Kaziranga, Kanha and Bandipur have also been described as vulnerable to these conflicts in India.

“The Top 10 Tiger Trouble Spots in the 2010 map is an effort to increase awareness of the many threats to wild tigers, both in their home ranges and in parts of the world that have an impact on them.

“It serves as a “big picture” overview of the major issues that need to be vigorously addressed before, during and after the Vladivostok summit,” argues Wildextra.

Neighbouring Nepal has been described as a major crossroads for illegal trade in tiger parts and thus another tiger trouble spot in the world. The listing terms Nepal as a transit point for ferrying illegal wildlife products taken from Indian tiger reserves to China.

China has been identified as another key tiger trouble spot with its demand for illegal tiger products being among the highest in the world.

Due to their high demand, some entrepreneurs are stockpiling and breeding tigers in the anticipation of an opening of the domestic market and that is a cause for worry.

Rising sea levels pose another threat to tiger habitat in the Sundarbans in Bangladesh and thus make the Sunderbans feature on the list too.

A recent study by the WWF had predicted that sea-level rise might cause the remaining tiger habitat in Bangladesh’s Sundarbans mangrove forest to decline by 96 per cent this century and push the region’s tiger population to less than 20 breeding tigers from around 250 to 432 today.

Tiger poaching in Russia, usage of tiger body parts as ingredients for health tonics in Vietnam, usage of palm oil in Europe leading to felling of rain forests in Indonesia and Malaysia to make way for palm oil plantations, increasing development pressures in the Mekong region and captive tigers in the United States have been identified as other major threats to tiger habitat across the world.

Delegates from around the world will be participating at the conference with Tiger-range countries, including India, expected to lay out an ambitious agenda for the recovery of tiger populations in their respective countries.

Significantly, India’s Union Minister for Environment and Forests Jairam Ramesh in his recent visit to the Forest Research Institute, Dehradun, had expressed concern over frequent incidents of human-tiger conflicts in Corbett and its territorial forest divisions.

Uttarakhand Chief Minister Dr Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank too on January 18 had expressed concern over tiger deaths in quick succession in and around Corbett. Four tiger deaths had taken place in the region in January.

Threats to wild cats

l Conflicts with humans

l Illegal trade in body parts and their use in products

l Rising sea levels

l Poaching

l  Agricultural and developmental  pressures

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People vent ire on ‘latecomer’ Nishank
Rajeev Khanna
Tribune News Service

Nainital, February 23
Arriving late or simply giving public functions of consequence a miss while hurting the sentiments of people seems to have become a routine with Chief Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank. The function at the Swami Ram Cancer Hospital and Research Institute at Haldwani was just one instance where he turned up more than three hours late and just cut the ribbon and fled from there without bothering to come to the dais.

Nishank is also continuing to draw flak on the Internet where a lot of Uttarakhandis living in Mumbai are giving vent to their feelings for his failure to turn up at the inaugural function of the Kauthig fair where around 3,500 people had waited for him till 9 pm at the venue in Vashi, Mumbai. Despite having gone to Mumbai, Nishank gave the function a miss and the explanation given was that he could not turn up on account of the funeral of Bollywood actor Nirmal Pandey, who hailed from Nainital. The Uttarakhandis in Mumbai have contradicted his explanation by saying that the funeral was over by 5.15 pm and he could have made it to Vashi if he had been sincere towards the sentiments of Uttarakhandis residing there. The function was finally inaugurated by Meer Ranjan Negi and Nand Kishore Nautiyal.

The agitated people are circulating e-mails on the Internet blaming the Chief Minister for playing with their sentiments. One of the e-mails, while hitting out sarcastically at Nishank, says those who finally inaugurated the event are no less than the Chief Minister.

One of the journalists present at the venue added to the chain of mails: “On one hand intellectuals are dying for their roots in Uttarakhand, and on the other this is the attitude of the Chief Minister. Whatever happened was not good”.

Another e-mail says: “In the name of Kauthig 2010, he has played with our sentiments and made use of Uttarakhand Udankhatola. Nishank has used the chair and misused the money”.

Yet another person has pointed out: “But, I feel everything was good at Kauthig. As you know we pravashi (non-resident) Uttarakhandis are not the vote bank of the CM. So why will he give you preference. He came here to attend the marriage of a celebrity’s son. He was more interested to be a part of page 3”.

A large number of agitated persons have suggested that the Uttarakhandis living in Mumbai should not think of Uttarakhand and instead be united in Mumbai and set an example over there. The e-mails have been doing the rounds for the past four days and are not coming to a stop. Observers feel the image of Nishank is definitely taking a beating.

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Horses mainstay of Kumbh security
Sandeep Rawat
Tribune News Service

Haridwar, February 23
The mounted police has proved the mainstay of the Police Department in managing security affairs in the vast Kumbh mela area. And it’s not for nothing that horses have been utilised in the Indian police services since 1835.

From leading the Peshwayi processions to keeping a vigil in busy and congested markets, dispersing mobs during clashes and helping security personnel in maintaining law and order, the mounted police teams from different parts of the country have come handy during the Kumbh.

A special camp for these mounted police teams has been established at the Bairagi camp where more than 70-odd horses along with police personnel are staying, and more are to come. From neighbouring Uttar Pradesh, the contingent is the biggest with 39 horses while host Uttarakhand follows with 11 and Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan add 10 each to this Kumbh mounted police squad.

From Himachal Pradesh and Haryana, additional such teams are expected to join in the coming days. These horses are treated quite carefully and they have been assigned names too. Don, Tarzan, Pratap, Jamuna, Kaweri, Dev Raj, Kamini and Bollywood movie fame “Badal” are some names that one hear from their training personnel and finds these horses obeying them with diligence.

Nihal Singh, Inspector from the Madhya Pradesh police, says the British regime had also used the mounted police for vigil purposes and in Independent India too horses are an integral part of the police as well as paramilitary and armed forces.

“The main usage of horses during duty comes where vehicles and man can’t reach easily. The horses are able to swiftly reach such places in no time and at several situations these give height advantage to the riders and that’s why in border areas during patrolling horses are utilised more,”said Nihal, who has won four international medals in various equestrian meets. Nihal has also to his credit more than 70 medals he won in the state and national-level meets apart from President’s medal for excellent work and service and the Madhya Pradesh government’s special medal honour.

He has more surprising revelations regarding the horses. Such as a horse can sleep even while he is moving and is only fully awake only two times, one when the rider pulls him to speed up and secondly when some pebble is entwined between his teeth. Also a horse never sits, barring when he is ill. A horse either stands straight or lies down straight. A healthy horse can tread 100 metres in just 7 seconds and so criminals don’t have enough time to escape if they are chased by a mounted policemen.

These horses are given specific drill training and in the police mostly two species of Marwari and Kathiawadi horses are inducted as their maintenance is easy and economical. Besides, they have better resistance to diseases.

Saish Jaypal from Uttar Pradesh, who has been working with horses in the state police for the past 22 years, says horses have to be trained regularly as these forget things as fast as these learn. “But, in case of high breed horses, this is other way round. These learn late but don’t forget soon,” said Jaypal.

Uttar Pradsh police officer Omwir Singh, who is on the Kumbh mela duty and has to his credit a All-India Horse Riding medal and 18 other state medals, says in India there are skilled horse trainers as well as quality horses, but these need right exposure, guidance and training to be in the world-class category.

Notably, the Uttarakhand police special horse squad batch came out in 2003 and since then has been an integral part of the state police. In charge Rajendra Singh Tomar of the state horse squad says we will prove in this mega fair the importance and utility of our squad.

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Gurukul varsity banks on moral education
Sandeep Rawat
Tribune News Service

Haridwar, February 23
With the century-old world-renowned Gurukul Kangri University facing an identity crisis in the wake of the Human Resource Ministry’s move to withdraw deemed status from many universities, the Gurukul authorities and staff are banking on the unique combination of moral and modern education practised at the university to save it from status cancellation.

Though the Supreme Court has given relief to the university along with 44 others that have been zeroed in on by the ministry, to save itself from the ignominy Gurukulites are doing every bit to make their case stronger.

Today, thousands of people associated with the Gurukul university management, teaching staff, non-teaching staff and students besides political organisations supported the Gurukul’s case by holding a massive silent march.

The silent rally-cum-march started from Dayanand Stadium and went on to the highway towards Har-ki-Pauri. Vice-Chancellor of the university Swatantra Kumar said despite the upheaval, the Arya Samaj culture of the university would be kept intact as the university had stood the test of time.

Perturbed over the clubbing of nation’s prestigious university, which had played a pivotal role in the freedom movement of India, with private institutes and universities whose only motive was to earn money, the Vice-Chancellor termed it as a blow to the Indian culture.

“We have been the torchbearer in producing morally educated students whose focus is to make nation a developed one and society an ideal one. But, it’s quite disappointing that on the whims of some individuals, the university, that was appreciated by Mahatma Gandhi and Madan Mohan Malviya, is being meted out such a treatment,” he added.

Coming out in full support of the university, former legislator and Rashtriya Krantikari Manch chief Ambrish Kumar said it was quite surprising that the university, which gave several freedom fighters to the nation apart from socialised and morally strong individuals, was now fighting a fight for its identity.

“Other universities, education institutes churn out engineers, doctors, managers, chartered accountants but the Gurukul university develops students into humans first”.

In 1948, the Radhakrishnan Commission had proposed to make our Gurukul as Chartered University but due to the then prevalent condition and Gurukul being a Vedic ideology-based institution, it was accorded a deemed university status.

Noted novelist Vishnu Dutt Rakesh pointed out during the British rule, the Gurukul university didn’t take any help from them and it was only after Independence that then President of India Rajendra Prasad offered donation to the university. “It’s unfortunate that now this university is being compared with money-oriented educational institutes and it doesn’t augur well for education in out country and people working for moral cause,” said Vishnu, who has seen Gurukul closely for decades.

Later, a yagna was held at Har-ki-Pauri.

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College launches campaign against sex selection
Tribune News Service

Dehradun, February 23
Project Shinkhala, 2010, was jointly organised by the women’s cell of Mahadevi Kanya Pathshalaya, MKP (PG) College and Department of Medical Health and Family Welfare, Government of Uttarakhand. Governor Margaret Alva inaugurated the function here today. The guest of honour for the occasion was Vijaya Barthwal, state minister, Nirupama Gaud, president, Samaj Kalyan, Keshav Desiraju, Principal Secretary, Uttarakhand, Dr Indu Singh, patron women’s cell of MKP College, and Dr Geeta Balodi, Governor, women’s cell, MKP College.

The two-day state-level advocacy campaign against sex selection and pre-birth elimination of females (workshop on PC-PNDT Act) was held in three different technical sessions and also attended by NGOs and CMOs from all over the state.

JC Pandey, IEC officer, Department of Health and Family Welfare, was the compere for the occasion. Pandey informed the gathering about the PC-PNDT Act, 1994.

The programme commenced with the National Anthem, after which Alva lighted the lamp and students of the Music Department sang, “Adi Shakti Navi...” highlighting 
the issue of women empowerment.

Dr Indu Singh, Principal, MKP (PG) College, threw light on the need for empowerment of women, who are bearers of future citizens and, hence, asserted the need to start an awareness campaign amongst girl students. Dr Pratima Mittal, obstetrician and gynaecologist, Safdarjang Hospital, New Delhi, gave the keynote address. She focussed on the need to change the social attitude in general and increase awareness and empowerment of women in particular, because the heinous acts are going on behind closed doors.

Keshav Desiraju, Principal Secretary, argued that when laws were overlooked, then women should act as a forceful weapon.

The main attraction was a thought-provoking speech by the Governor where she captivated the attention of people by her sensitive narration of incidents regarding the enforcement of the Bill, which came into effect under her leadership in Parliament. She also appealed the youngsters to carry the movement to the grassroots and spread awareness. The workshop concluded with the National Anthem. 

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Experts discuss conservation of bio-resources
Tribune News Service

Dehradun February 23
The Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (AIST), affiliated to HNB Garhwal Central University, Srinagar, Garhwal, held a seminar on “Recent Trends in Conservation, Technology and Utilisation of Bio-resources” here today. Dignitaries from all over India had gathered to deliver their research experiences and deliberate on various aspects of bio-resources.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr Himmat Singh said the main objective of the seminar was to bring together scientists from Uttarakhand and neighbouring states to discuss and exchange ideas on how biology, chemistry, biotechnology and other related fields might further enhance the possibility of conservation and utilisation of bio-resources, which formed the bases of a large proportion of modern products.

The seminar saw presentations by 11 distinguished speakers drawn from research institutes to share their experiences on conservation technologies and utilisation. The speakers also shared their researches along with young researchers, delegates and PG students.

Eminent speakers at the seminar were Dr SK Mukherjee, former Director, WII, Dehradun, Dr Vishwanath Shrada, Director, Central Soil and Water Conservation Research and Training Institute, Dehradun, Dr Arvind Shukla, GB Pant University, Pantnagar, Uttarakhand, Prof Avtar Suri, Head of the Department of Forestry, Dr AK Suri, Scientist, Indian Institute of Integration Medicine, Jammu, Dr P Soni, Head, Ecology and Environment Division, FRI, Dehradun, Dr HR Dhingra, Head of the Botany Department, CCS, Haryana Agricultural University, Hissar, Dr Rakesh Maurya, Scientist, Central Drug Research Institute, Lucknow, Dr PS Negi, Senior Scientist, Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology, Dehradun, and Meenakshi Joshi, DFO, Dehradun.

Dr RBS Rawat, Principal Chief Conservator of Forests, Uttarakhand, was the chief guest, who also inaugurated the seminar and delivered a speech. Dr S Farooq, President, Himalaya Drug House, was the guest speaker. He delivered the key-note address.

Moreover, 20 research papers from high academic institutes were also presented. At least 20 young researchers and faculty members displayed their research findings through posters that were exhibited during the seminar. A valedictory function and prize distribution session was also held.

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Yash wins science quiz
Tribune News Service

Dehradun, February 23
On the occasion of the National Science Week celebration, Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology organised a science quiz here yesterday. More than 15 schools, including St Joseph Academy, Oak Groove, Welham Girls School, Grace Academy, Children’s Academy and SGRR participated a the competition.

Yash Kulshrestra of Class XI-A of Children’s Academy scored the first position. The second price was bagged by Akshat Kush of St Joseph’s Academy, Oak Grove School’s Abhay Shankar came at the third position, while the consolation prize was given to Abhishrey Raj of Wiemberg Allen School.

The Principal, staff and students congratulated the budding scientists.

Meanwhile, today an essay competition was organised by the Wadia Institute titled as “Vistaar Ke Prati Ghatati Ruchi, Karun aur Nivaran. Twentytwo schools participated. Detailed results will be declared on February 26.

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Akhada Parishad terms it personal matter 
Tribune News Service

Haridwar, February 23 
The fake Shankaracharya issue seems to be not resting down. With there being no statutory body dealing with a number of Shankaracharyas coming to the city for the Maha Kumbh, many akhadas and prominent saints have accused certain Shankaracharyas of assuming fake religious identity. 

Such is the gravity of the issue that Shankaracharya Swaroopanand Saraswati has warned that he would not enter the mela area and remove his camp if fake Shankaracharyas were not ousted from the mela area. 

Today, the Akhada Parishad distanced itself away from this controversial issue saying that it’s a personal matter and the Sanyasi Akhada has taken the stance without consulting it. Akhada Parishad general secretary Hari Giri Ji Maharaj said the Sanyasi saints’ stance was a personal matter. Though he added that if someone tried to disrupt the Kumbh mela, then the Akhada Parishad would not keep silent. 

With the mela administration has allotted a piece of land to Peethadheeshwar Shankaracharya Swaroopanand Saraswati, his followers have been demanding for the cancellation of the land allotted to a “fake” religious head. Notably, the Sanyasi saints have given a week-long ultimatum to the administration of getting removed the alleged fake Shankaracharya’s camp or they would be forced to take the agitation route. 

Citing the seriousness of the matter, the mela administration held a meeting late yesterday with the saints but no conclusion was arrived at as the administration cited its inability to directly remove the alleged fake Shankaracharya from the mela land. 

Additional mela officer BS Dhanik put the onus on the Akhada Parishad to sort out the issue as according to the mela administration, it is the only authorised organisation of saints for the Kumbh.

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Mercury dips with fresh showers in Mussoorie
Our Correspondent

Mussoorie, February 23
The Queen of Hills, Mussoorie, witnessed a dip in the temperature with the advent of fresh rains today. But tourists were eluded of the chance of enjoying snow as the weather improved during afternoon. However, the peaks of Nag Tibba and Dhanolty were covered with snow and the tourists gathered at Bahuguna peak to witness the panoramic view of the Himalayas. The tourists enjoyed the cold weather in anticipation of fresh snow once again in the town.

Tourists could be seen strolling at the Mall Road wrapped in woollens. Schoolchildren had a difficult morning as they attended the school amidst the chilly wind and rain. 

Simran and Ranjit Singh, a honeymooning couple from Chandigarh, said this was their first visit to Mussoorie and chances were ripe to witness snowfall at night with temperature dipping further. 

According to the Meteorology Department a mix of cloudy and clear sky with chances of showers were there till night. The average temperature of the day was around 10 degrees Celsius.

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Royal bride workshop held
Tribune News Service

Dehradun, February 23
VLCC, slimming beauty fitness centre, organised a royal bride workshop here today. Keeping in mind the royal bride, the focus was on rich colours like gold and bronze, with a tinge of silver. 

The idea behind organising this event was to showcase the regal inheritance keeping in mind the culture, which is deep-rooted and a perfect blend of traditional and contemporary styles. 

The emphasis was laid on the eyes with the lips being neutral. The look was embellished with antique and traditional jewellery like the jhoomar worn on one side of the hair, or a large maang tika to complete the royal look. The hair was tied up in a traditional style, sandalwood bindis and alta complemented the tradional look. 

VLCC’s, senior makeup artist Geeta Rawat expertly carried the royal bridal workshop giving detail information about the latest techniques and styles in bridal look.

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Anti-polythene rally held
Tribune News Service

Dehradun, February 23
The volunteers of Nehru Yuva Kendra took out an anti-polythene rally from the Gandhi Park here today. They raised banners and slogans against the usage of polythene. The procession began from the Gandhi Park to the Clock Tower to the Darshan Lal Chowk and finally culminated at the Parade Ground. The participants also picked up garbage (polythene mainly) from the roads.

However, the entire National Integration Camp has been planned and organised by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports and was attended by more than 150 youngsters from Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttarakhand and others.

However, these volunteers have gathered from different states to participate in the six-day camp organised by the Nehru Yuva Kendra.

Youngsters have come from six different states at the Masiha Meditation Training Centre at Rajpur in Dehradun. The camp aims at communal harmony among youth where the participants themselves are conducting cultural programmes, quiz and competitions.

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Shikshak bandhus hold protest
Our Correspondent

Mussoorie, February 23
Members of the Rajkiya Shikshak (Shikshak Bandhu) Tadarth Sangh demanded re-regularisation of their services and deliberated at the directions made by the government seeking return of the arrears since 2006, in a meeting at Thatyur village, about 40 km from here, yesterday.

According to member of the sangh Bhola Dutt Semwal, more than 1,100 teachers have been given their services to the state since 2006 and were regularised at the post of ALT, but have not yet been re-regularised, due to which the teachers are facing financial problems.

Apart from that, the state government is also planning to take back the arrears prior to the implementation of the Sixth Pay Commission from the teachers that are regularised in 2006, which is unjustified.

He further said if the government ignores their demands, an option of agitation was wide open.

Dayal Singh Bisht, Sanjay Nautiyal, Papendru Chauhan, Manglesh Uniyal, Gammi Aswal and others were present in the meeting.

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Dehradun Bar Association goes to polls tomorrow 
Seema Sharma
Tribune News Service

Dehradun, February 23
The pre-election scenario in the District Court for the election of 11 seats of the Dehradun Bar Association, which is to be held on Thursday, is filled with excitement and nervousness. The election is being held for the post of president, vice-president, secretary, joint secretary, librarian, auditor and five members of executive working committee. 

The candidates can be seen dropping their cards in various chambers and requesting their seniors as well as juniors to cast vote in their favour. The unmistakable humility is quite palpable on their faces and tones.

Razia Beig, president, Uttarakhand Bar Council, appreciated the healthy sense of competition among candidates. They avoid indulging in mud-slinging on each other. On issues, she said, “In this year election, the issue of providing decent sitting arrangement to juniors in this court where a maximum number of 2,400 lawyers work in the entire state is an imminent requirement. Then creating a respectable rapport between bar and judiciary is another important issue, where scuffles between both is becoming common day by day”.

Prem Chand Sharma, who has been elected president of the association seven times in the past, is vying for the same position this year also. He said his top priority would be to bring Circuit Bench of the High Court, Naintal, to Dehradun. “I have been fighting for the establishment of a high court since 1980 which we did get in Uttarakhand, but it should have rather been in Dehradun. If the Circuit Bench of the Board of Revenue can be started in Pauri Garhwal along with Nainital, the same can be applied for Dehradun as well. I am sure that I will be able to end the long surviving strike of no work on Saturdays by bringing a Circuit Bench in Dehradun,” he said. 

If on the one hand, Prem Chand is cashing in on his past innings, then on the other hand the other strong contender Manmohan Kandwal is making the most of his age of 42 years portraying himself as the youngest-ever candidate to fight for the post of President of association. 

He has won twice for the post of vice-president in 2007 and 2008. Elucidating more about his choice of issues, he said, “Since I am representing the youth cadre of lawyers, so I will facilitate a system where junior lawyers can discuss their concerns and legal cases with seniors in monthly meetings. This will not only enhance the mutual understanding between both sides, but will also add on to the growth of young aspirants”.

Kandwal also talked about increasing the library time by two hours so that the new breed could devote more time in evening to probe about their cases.

When it comes to providing sitting space to junior lawyers, then Prithviraj Chauhan, candidate for the post of secretary, contends for it more vehemently. He argued in his favour saying that in his tenure as secretary to the association a year ago, he managed to get Rs 10 lakh from MP Vijay Bahugua to get new chambers built in the abandoned land at the CJM Court, a move which was thwarted by the present association as they deposited the same amount in the Trust account, but now he would see to it that in three months’ period, the same chambers would be set up for junior lawyers. 

This time around, his old rival, Rajiv Sharma with whom he contested the same election is also giving him a strong competition, but Chauhan bets for his victory. The same level of confidence runs through amongst all candidates. On Thursday, the real picture will get clear by late night.

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Centre responsible for inflation, says SP 
Tribune News Service

Dehradun, February 23
Due to the wrong policies of the Central government, inflation has reached an all-time high in the country, alleged state unit Samajwadi Party (SP) president Vinod Barthwal while addressing members and workers in the party office here today.

He added that the Prime Minister was sitting helpless and the Central government was contemplating to hike the prices of fuel products. 

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Idea Cellular promotes green campaign 
Tribune News Service 

Dehradun, February 23
Idea Cellular in its bid to promote the green campaign is now reaching out to an audience on a focussed level with their street plays. Today, the city witnessed talented performers from the theatre group, Core Medium, on the streets spreading awareness among people about Idea Cellular’s “Use Mobile, Save Paper” campaign. 
The street play extended the green message to passersby and crowd gatherings at various locations such as the Rajpur Road, Mussoorie Road and New Cantt Road etc in the city.

A team of theatre artistes from Mumbai performed the plays.

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3-0 victory for Gorkha Brigade over Nagar Nigam 
Tribune News Service

Dehradun, February 23
Gorkha Brigade registered 3-0 win over Nagar Nigam at the Narayan Gurung Memorial Football Tournament underway at Mahendra Ground here today.

Gorkha Brigade displayed outstanding football in the first half and scored its first goal in the 5th minute of the match through Bhaktaman. Barely 10 minutes later Gorkha Brigade team came up again to score its second goal through Trilok Dura in the 16th minute. At the end of the first half, Gorkha Brigade lead by 2-0. The third goal for the team came in the 67th minute through Rajesh.

Meanwhile in the second match, 5 Garhwal Rifle team scored a 3-2 victory over Shivalik Club. 5 Garhwal Rifle attacked the Shivalik defence throughout the match. Balwant scored the first goal in the 5th minute, thereafter Girish scored in the 37th and 67th minute. For Shivalik team Gurung scored 50th minute, whereas Shushil scored in the 62nd minute making to make the score 3-2. 

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Class IV cadets demolish Class IV A in final
Tribune News service

Dehradun, February 23
Hockey in Rashtriya Indian Military College (RIMC) here is not just a tradition it is a legacy in itself and is pursued relentlessly by the cadets.

Fleet-footedness and a quick mind are the qualities essential for excelling in the game and the cadets of RIMC possess these qualities in its entirety which has indeed crafted the cadets into skilled players in this particular field.

The RIMC Premier League (Hockey) was conducted from the February 13 to 23.

In this competition each class nominated a team of 11 players who made up the course’s team. A total of eight teams took part in this competition.

After a gruelling fight the cadets of Class IV booked themselves the winners’ berth with a complete demolition of Class IV A in the final with the score sheets reading 4-0.

In the semifinal the cadets of Class II and Class II A battled against the might of Class IV and Class IV A of which the latter two qualified. The highest scorer of the tournament was cadet Suhas Wagh. The overall winners of the tournament were the cadets of Class IV.

Col H Dharmarajan, SM, Commandant, RIMC encouraged the cadets for their notable achievements in the competition and requested them continue the same way both at RIMC and in other schools. 

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Jodhpur defeats Gwalior 3-0
Tribune News Service

Haridwar, February 23
At the ongoing All-India Inter-University Squash Championship, Jaya Narayan Vyas University in Jodhpur defeated LNUPA Gwalior by a margin of 3-0.

Prateek Baweja and Nakul won their matches ensuring a clean sweep for the Jodhpur team.

In the second match of the day, Panjabi University, Patiala, with the skillful performance of Riki Dharmani won 3-2 against the MDU Rohtak University.

While in the individual events, Prateek Baweja of Jodhpur in straight sets won against Chennai’s Prashant Kumar while Pune’s Dheerav won in straight sets against Chandigarh’s Rikhi Dhirmani clinching the sets with a score line of 2-0.

While for locals Gurukul Kangri University there was not much to rejoice as Tanurag Tyagi lost to Mumbi’s Laxman Joshi in straight sets.

The fourth match saw Punjab’s Abhav Sood getting a walk over and similarly the fifth match also could not be held as Girish Arora also got walk over as their respective opponents failed to turn up.

Today All-India University observer Professor MI Kureshi inspected the squash court and lauded the squash court complex infrastructure.

For today’s matches organising committee members were Dr Shiv Kumar Chauhan, Dr Ajay Malk, Kapil Mishra, Anuj Kumar, Sunil Kumar, Jitendra Tyagi, Dushyant Singh, Rajkumar, Sanjay Verma while match officials were Sandeep Sharma, KS Bathel and Dr Alok Pandey.

Tomorrow there will be five matches each for the team and individual category. 

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Amrapali Institute score easy 8-wicket victory over GRD
Tribune News Service

Dehradun, February 23
Amrapali Institute won by 8 wickets against GRD to advance in to the semifinals of the Ist Inter College Cricket Tournament here today.

Batting first, GRD team scored 95 runs off 12.1 overs. Vivek Saini was the lead scorer for the team with 48 runs, whereas Kshitiz scored 16 runs.

For Amrapali Institute, Cheetan Jain took four wickets, whereas Nadeem Khan took three wickets.

In reply, Amrapali team reached the target with eight wickets in hand.

A Rohit was the lead run scorer for the team with 20 runs, where Tanuj Rawat scored 21 runs and Cheetan Jain made 24 runs. Nadeem scored 25 runs. For GRD team Manoj took one wickets. 

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Doon Club honours former presidents 
Tribune News Service

Dehradun, February 23
The Dehradun Club felicitated 19 of its past presidents headed by the veteran senior citizen MM Tayal at a gala function last night.

The felicitation was held on the club lawns outside the Squash Court.

Two of the former presidents Gopi Chand Nagalia and Vishwa Nath Anand could not attend due to unavoidable reasons.

It was for the first time that the Doon Club had sought to honour its past presidents. Veteran journalist Raj Kanwar, Iqbal Wasu (Doon Darpan) and Ashok Pandhi (Himachal Times) were the only three presidents from journalists’ fraternity.

Kanwar also occupies the unique distinction of having been the president of both DAV College Students Union (1952-53) and the Doon Club. Incidentally, Gopi Nagalia and his son Neeraj Nagalia are the only father-son duo to have been elected presidents.

Ashok Kashyap, a leading chartered accountant, and Deepak Nagalia of Prabhat Talkies were also among those honoured.

Krishan Kumar of Kumar Sweets was the only member to have been elected president twice. Other past presidents honoured were Dr Arun Kumar, Rajeev Nangia, Baldev Bhatia, HS Sadana (Pixie), Rohit Jain, Ajay Garg, Ajay Shangari and Sudhir Arora, who was the immediate past president.

Also honoured at the function were 25 senior club members (batch of 1981).

They also included Dr MS Rathi, the current club president, RK Bakhshi, a veteran Rotarian, senior physician Dr OP Chandna, businessman Dharampal Agarwal, Capt Navin Badhwar and sibling Capt Lalit Badhwar (both of merchant shipping) and Col BS Khatri, besides others.

The function, it soon became apparent, had been well planned by Vimal Deep Singh, vice-president and convener of the Entertainment Committee, with emphasis on detail and presentation.

His teacher-wife Annie Singh was self-assured as the compęre, and conducted the programme with much aplomb. However, it was her partner-on-the-stage, lawyer Rahul Sharma, who was at his hilarious best while introducing each of the former president. A special feature was a commentary in the background by Vineet Pachi.

Devotional Sai Baba bhajans rendered by Hemant Kochar were much appreciated. Later foot-tapping songs by surgeon Manoj Gupta brought several couples dancing to the floor. 

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