C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Changing Skyline
Mohali set to go vertical
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Mohali, November 15
Mohali is going the Metro way. With Punjab’s Department of Housing and Urban Development allowing high-rise commercial and residential towers in Mohali’s periphery, the town’s skyline seems all set to change.

In fact, this town’s architecture will present a study in contrast in the years to come as the height restrictions of about 45 metres will continue to govern the traditional sectors while the new sectors will have 30-storeyed buildings up to as high as 100 metres or twice the earlier permissible limit.

The government’s decision is a result of recommendations in Mohali’s new master plan, prepared by Singapore-based consultancy firm Jurong Limited.

Although there are “height ons have been relaxed in areas located away from the landing and taking off path of the runway.

With special permission from the Air Force, up to 27-storeyed towers have been allowed in Sectors 74, 75 and 91.

Various others factors, including scarcity of land, construction of international airport, strategic location and entry of big realtors in the area have also influenced the government’s decision to let builders go vertical in the town, otherwise known for its low-rise buildings and tree-lined roads.

Until now, Mohali’s tallest upcoming building has been the 25-storeyed Quark City. Promoter of Janata Land Promoters Ltd Kulwant Singh says, “We are soon coming up with a 27-storeyed residential tower in Sector 91. This will be the est building in Mohali as I have got special permission from the Air Force authorities to construct up to 100 metres”.

Already three 13-storeyed residential towers, Regency Heights, Multi-Tech Towers and Savitri Towers, are in the final stages of completion in Sectors 90 and 91.

Construction on another project, which is set to change the landscape, is Punjab’s upcoming first 20-storeyed bus stand-cum-commercial centre in Sector 57 here.

Supporting construction of high-rise buildings, former Punjab Chief Town Planner Rajinder Sharma says high-rise buildings save a lot of space, allow different services at one place and have room for more open spaces.

Catalyst of growth

A Singapore-based company has highlighted strengths of the region, saying it is located next to Chandigarh and residents here have the highest per capita income. The area is cosmopolitan, where over 68 per cent of the population is literate. Factors like strong economy, availability of highly skilled workforce, growing number of regional tourists and spillover from Chandigarh and Delhi have also been highlighted. Stating that the total investment in the greater Mohali area in 2007-2011 is expected to be Rs 40,000 crore, Jurong has laid down a blueprint of economic development of the region.

Going high

n 25-storeyed Quark City coming up in Sector 74

n Three 13-storeyed residential towers coming up in Sec tors 90 and 91

n Punjab’s first 20-storeyed bus stand-cum-commercial complex coming up in Sector 57

n Punjab’s first 20-storeyed bus stand-cum-commercial com



Delay in info under RTI Act
CIC raps GMCH authorities
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 15
The Central Information Commission (CIC) has pulled up the Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) authorities for delay in providing information sought under the Right to Information (RTI) Act.

The information sought pertained to rules of the redesignation scheme, better known as the career assurance scheme, the genetic centre, faculty recruited for the centre and foreign jaunts by faculty on deputation.

The commission also directed the authorities to provide the information to the applicant within one month, failing which the authorities would be penalised heavily.

The order came after Deepak Sandhu, Information Commissioner, listened to the applicants, including Dr Alka Sehgal and her husband, Dr Rakesh Sehgal, at the UT Guest House.

The couple had sought information through six applications filed under the RTI Act last year.

Dr Rakesh Sehgal had filed an application, seeking information on rules and regulations of the redesignation scheme launched by the administration for GMCH faculty.

He had also sought information regarding the purchase of instruments for the genetic centre during the two preceding years.

On the other hand, the hospital authorities had provided orders about redesignation, he alleged in his complaint to the CIC.

Dr Alka Sehgal, seeking information about genetic centre, had asked for details of foreign jaunts by the faculty on deputation, the period while they were leave, and whether this period was counted for promotion.



Ekdum filmy hai!
Suicide threat to get leave
Akash Ghai/TNS

Chandigarh, November 15
Kailash, a constable with the Chandigarh Police, today showcased a scene from the Bollywood hit ‘Sholay’ when he threatened to commit suicide if his wish was not granted. He wanted leave for a week and interestingly, like Hema Malini’s ‘mausi’, the Chandigarh Police reportedly granted him five days’ leave. The constable, evidently under depression, was staging his threat on the balcony on the fourth floor of the UT Secretariat. He was high on booze. The drama was short as a team of cops rushed to the balcony and overpowered him.

Kailash called up his friend, Tribune lensman Vinay Malik, at 6:05 pm, saying he was under stress and was going to jump from the building.

Malik informed the Police Control Room immediately. An emergency team rushed to the balcony and overpowered the cop.

“This year, I was allowed to take only one leave, on June 15. I have requested the authorities several times for leave. I want to visit the site of construction of a house at my ancestral village, Bano Luhana, Panipat, Haryana district. How can one work without even a single day’s leave,” said Kailash, talking to this correspondent at the Government Multi-Specialty Hospital in Sector 16, where he was taken for medical examination after the incident.

Living with his parents, wife and two sons at Naya Gaon, Kailash had been attached with the Police Control Room.

Kailash was marked absent today as he did not reach the particular spot on call from a senior police official. “I think he was too shocked by today’s incident, which provoked him to take unfortunate step,” said a colleague.

SSP Naunihal Singh said he would deal with the matter sympathetically, but this (suicide threat) was certainly not the way to behave. 



Capitation fee, screening banned
RTE Act: Schools found guilty to be fined
Sumedha Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 15
The UT administration today banned the charging of any capitation fee or subjecting children or their guardians to screening for admission by formally implementing the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009.

In a set of instructions issued to schools today regarding the implementation of the RTE Act, it was clearly stated that an institution found guilty of charging capitation fee would be fined 10 times the fee charged while those guilty of indulging in any kind of screening would have to cough up Rs 25,000 for first contravention and Rs 50, 000 for subsequent contraventions.

“These are provisions of the right to education Act and will be applicable henceforth. All schools have been informed through a circular,” said DPI(S) PK Sharma.

The circular elaborated upon relevant provisions of the Act, reserving 25 per cent regular seats for disadvantaged students. The instructions came as a breather to thousands of parents struggling with nursery admissions.

“It is an open secret that all good schools charge capitation fee, disguised as various funds. Non-uniform screening procedures are also a major problem with parents. With this Act coming into force, the admission process will be rationalised further,” said Sukhveer Singh, an IT professional.

Relevant RTE Sections Section 12

n A school shall reserve 25 per cent of regular seats for children belonging to weaker sections and disadvantaged groups in the neighbourhood from Class I or pre-school level and provide free and compulsory elementary education

n Schools shall be reimbursed according to the expenditure incurred per child by the state, or its own fee, in case it is less

n A school under obligation to provide free education to a specified number of children on account of it having received any land, building, equipment or other facilities, either free of cost or at a concessional rate, shall not be entitled to reimbursement to the extent of such obligation



Big fat weddings are here, delicacies leading the way
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 15
From expensive “herbal delicacies” to Arabian, Italian and Mexican refreshments, coupled with flavoured homemade chocolates as complimentary gifts, expenditure on “lavish food” has become a fad at city’s big fat weddings at the onset of this wedding season.

But it is not just about food. “People’s paying capacity in this city is enormous and designer weddings have become common here. People spend up to Rs 85 lakh on tents and décor alone. Even the most average wedding will have decorations worth Rs 2 to 3 lakh,” says Sudhir Kumar, director of a wedding planner company.

Besides flashy, expensive interiors, specialised floral decoration is yet another feature flaunted at city weddings. “Even at the most average wedding, people are spending Rs 30,000 to Rs 40,000 only on flowers,” says a flower shop owner in Sector 7.

Thematic and expensive décor ranging between Rs 3 lakh to Rs 70 lakh are now a customary practice. However, offering a “designer menu” is proving to be a tough job for wedding planners, who are baffled by the changed eating habits of city residents.

Although the average cost per plate at a middle-class wedding ranges between Rs 500 and Rs 700, a majority of residents are now spending up to Rs 1,000 to Rs 1,500 per plate, that includes a wide array of delicacies and a variety of cakes and brownies besides the routine desserts.

“There is a unique recipe called “guchi pulao”, a herbal delicacy which is naturally prepared and is in great demand this wedding season. There is an unprecedented craze among residents about range and variety of food in weddings. To add on variety, we get specific requests from clients to include more Arabian, Italian, Mexican, Rajasthani and Kashmiri snacks and dishes,” says Pushap Tyagi, a partner in a leading catering company.

Not only is the craze restricted to mouth-watering delicacies, even the price of designer boxes being prepared for distributing sweets with wedding invitations is soaring.

“On an average, people do not mind spending Rs 200 to Rs 500 for only the box. This does not include sweets. Dry-fruit based sweets and chocolates are in great demand and an 800-gram box costs between Rs 400 and Rs 500,” says Neeraj Bajaj, owner of a sweetmeat shop.

1,200 marriages over three days!

The tricity is set to witness over 1,200 weddings on November 27, 28 and 29 alone since these are considered the most auspicious dates. The other auspicious dates on which people can expect traffic jams around marriage palaces and other venues in and around the city are November 18 to 23.



Two get police remand, 15 in judicial custody
Tribune News Service

Chan1igarh, November 15
The district courts today sent two impersonators, Pradip Kumar from Bihar and Shamsher from Bhiwani, on two-day police remand and 15 others, including a woman, to 14-day judicial custody.

Four others accused of impersonation in the written examination for the posts of constable in the Chandigarh police yesterday were granted bail. Sandeep Kumar, Rakesh Kumar, Sandeep and Sonu, who got bail, were found using mobile phones at the centre.

Among those arrested on charges of impersonation at various venues, Satinder from Bihar said he was offered Rs 4,000 for appearing in the examination by Ranjan, a Patna-based agent.

He was to receive Rs 60,000 after clearing the examination. “I am a BSc graduate, but unemployed,” Satinder said in court.

Satinder held that he was asked by Ranjan to contact Bhupinder, a Haryana-based agent, in Chandigarh, who had provided him a fake admit card with a distorted photograph.

“All arrangements, including board and lodging, for me were made by Bhupinder,” said Satinder.

On the other hand, the police had sent several teams to different places in Haryana and Bihar to nab the absconding involved in the fraud.


Kajauli Water Works
MC to acquire 66 acres for phase VII, VIII 
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 15
To increase the quantum of water supply in the city, the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation is making a proposal to acquire 66 acre of land in Punjab for setting up phase VII and VIII of the Kajauli water works.

As per the proposal, the Public Health Department of the corporation is preparing a draft to acquire land in Punjab to set up the two Kajauli phases near Bhakra dam. The proposal will be tabled at the general house meeting of the CMC for its approval by the department concerned.

As per the augmentation of the water supply scheme, a total of 40 MGD (million gallons per day) will be provided. Out of which Chandigarh will get a share of 29 MGD and Punjab and Haryana will get the remaining 11 MGD.

The MC Chief Engineer SS Bidda said that in a communiqué to the UT administration, officials of the Punjab government had stated that the corporation could send them a proposal about the requirement of land for phases VII VIII and they would facilitate it as soon as possible. But they have denied to providing any land to MC for phase V and VI of the Kajauli water works.

The report of the corporation states that the requirement of the city is around 100 MGD water out of which 78 MGD is supplied from the existing water supply system, 67 MGD from the four Kajauli phases and 20 MGD from tube wells installed in the city. Sources stated that Haryana was actively considering laying down of pipeline to claim its 6 MGD share from the four phases after which Chandigarh would get only 58 MGD water supply.

Records of the corporation show that 80 MGD of water is supplied from four phases of Kajauli, out of which Chandigarh is getting 67 MGD, Punjab 10 MGD and Haryana is getting 3 MGD for Chandi Mandir.

A senior official revealed here today that if timely execution of Kajuali phase VII and VIII was not taken up than the city would face water shortage as Punjab had already refused to provide land for augmentation of water supply scheme of Phase V and VI. In fact, the proposal was sent to the Union Ministry of Urban Development for approval as they had sanctioned the finances for undertaking the Phase V and VI scheme, under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM). The ministry had sanctioned Rs 171 crore out of which 80 per cent in form of grant and was to be given under the JNNURM from the Government of India and 10 per cent each was to be shared by the Chandigarh administration and the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation.



MC makes Rs 3.16 crore
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 15
The Chandigarh Municipal Corporation made ` 3.16 crore from the auction of parking lots of the city today. The MC allotted 13 parking lots out of 16 to contractors for one year.

The auction of three parking lots, including the one in Sector 34, Fun Republic and Mani Majra was cancelled as only a single bid was received. No bid was received for the tourist-bus parking, Mani Majra, by the authorities so it was also held at abeyance.

The highest bid was Rs 61.75 lakh for the Sector 35-C parking lot, along with Himalaya Marg and the lowest bid was of Rs 1.25 lakh for the District Court Complex, Sector 17, Chandigarh.

MC Additional Commissioner TPS Phoolka said that all three parking lots for which the corporation did not get good responses would be re-auctioned. 



MC in no hurry
Was asked by GMADA to take over maintenance of parks in developed sectors more than six months ago
Kulwinder Sangha

Mohali, November 15
Taking over the maintenance of parks from the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA) does not figure anywhere on the priority list of the engineering wing of municipal council, which has even gone to the extent of ignoring a resolution passed by the general house of the civic body in this regard.

GMADA had asked the council more than six months ago to take over the maintenance of parks in developed sectors of the town.

Later, the general house of the council cleared the proposal at a meeting and asked officials of the engineering wing to prepare estimates within 10 days for the remaining work so that funds could be availed from GMADA.

Over four months have passed since the proposal

was cleared, but the council officials have not prepared estimates for the remaining work in various parks so far. It is learnt that after seeing the indifferent attitude of the officials concerned regarding preparation of estimates, executive officer Vijay Kumar Gupta wrote a letter on October 27 to all assistant engineers of the civic body giving them seven days time to prepare the required estimates so that further action for taking over the work from GMADA could be initiated, but to no avail. Even the president of the civic body Rajinder Singh Rana said today that no such estimates had been brought to him so far.

The Chief Administrator (CA) of GMADA had held a meeting with the president and the executive officer of the council on May 11, asking the civic body to take over the maintenance of parks in the town. The CA had suggested that the parks could be handed over to the council and a maintenance allowance of Rs 1.30 per sq yd be given as was being done in the case of welfare associations, which had taken over the maintenance of certain parks. Both the former council president and executive officer had agreed to the proposal. A sum of Rs 1.5 crore was also demanded by the council for completing certain works in these parks. The CA had, however, suggested that council officials could prepare park-wise estimates for the remaining works on the basis of which funds could be given to the civic body. The total area of the parks to be taken over by the council was 180 acres. The proposal was later cleared by the general house of the council at a meeting held on July 6.



MC goes in for e-tendering
Tribune News Service

Zirakpur, November 15
To bring in transparency, the municipal council (MC) has decided to call tenders through e-tendering.

Tenders above Rs 2 lakh can be filed online after getting approval from the local body.

This was stated by MC president NK Sharma at a meeting today. Other agenda items were passed and forwarded for approval.

He said the period of the earlier contract for sanitation work would expire this month.

The council planned to spend about Rs 80 lakh on sanitation work, which had been divided into two phases.

Sharma said the work would be allotted to the new contractors on official rates and the wards were divided into six zones.

In the first phase, the sanitation workers would collect garbage from the 15 wards and dump it at collection points.

In the second phase, they would collect the garbage from those points and dispose it of at the dumping ground selected.

A JCB, four tractor trolleys and 20 workers would dispose of the garbage at the place assigned by the sanitary inspector.



Mount View students donate Rs 1 lakh
Tribune News Service

Zirakpur, November 15
Students and principal of Mount View Public School, Baltana, today contributed 
` 1 lakh to rehabilitate Leh-Ladakh victims.

The amount was released under the Prime Minister’s Relief Fund and the cheque was handed over to The Tribune Trust.

School director Paramjit Kaur said a seminar was organised on smart teaching. The seminar was inaugurated by Col BS Sandhu. The school director said smart teaching would provide quality education to students. Later, school principal Rekha Nagpal, along with other teachers and students, gave the amount to The Tribune Trust.



No clue in missing cash case
Tribune News Service

Mohali, November 15
The disappearance of Rs 5 lakh cash from the drawer of a cashier at the Punjab Cricket Stadium (PCA) continues to remain a mystery, as there is no clue about the person behind the alleged theft.

The money that had been kept to fund the tour of the Punjab Ranji team went missing from the PCA stadium on November 11.

A senior official in the police said an insider seemed to be behind the disappearance of the money. The drawer containing the money has been found to be intact and there are no signs of anyone breaking the locks. The drawer has been opened with a duplicate key.

PCA secretary GS Walia said a complaint had been registered with the Mohali Police and it was for the police to trace down the suspects. The police was discretely probing the matter. The DSP (City-II) is believed to have visited the spot too and questioned the security in charge and some other suspects.

Sources said the PCA authorities have also given the police the CCTV footage of the spot from where the money went missing. In the CCTV footage, the images of the suspects are not clear due to the darkness.

Mohali SSP GPS Bhullar said they had not received any complaint so far. “Once the complaint was received, we would probe the matter”, he said.

Incidentally, the money went missing from the well-guarded PCA stadium, as two security guards always remain posted at the gate. Anyone is allowed in only after verification of the credentials.



Notices issued to 17 successful applicants
Tribune News Service

Mohali, November 15
During the scrutiny of successful applicants falling under the reserved categories in Aerocity, officials of the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA) have sent notices to over 17 successful applicants, who have so far failed to furnish documents pertaining to reservation sought by them.

More such notices would be issued in coming days as scrutiny of different sizes of plots was underway. Balwinder Singh, Additional Chief Administrator, GMADA, said since anomaly in the case of Olympian Abhinav Bindra case had already been noticed and he had already explained his position last month, the notice was a procedural thing that had to be issued as per conditions mentioned in the Aerocity brochure.



Fire breaks out at restaurant
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, November 15
Fire broke out at a restaurant in the Sector 8 market here today. A loss of more than Rs 4 lakh was reported due to the accident, suspected to be because of a short circuit, said Surinder Khurana, owner of the restaurant.

It was during the evening hours that employees working in the kitchen noticed fire in the electric wires. They shifted gas cylinders at a safe place and informed the fire brigade immediately. Three fire tenders controlled the fire within half-an-hour. In another incident, two labourers were injured seriously when their kerosene stove exploded at Budhanpur village. Both victims, identified as Sanjeev and Ramjug, were rushed to the General Hospital, Sector 6, where their condition is stated to be stable.



Mountaineer honoured
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 15
In yet another feather to his cap during his illustrious sojourn in the Himalayan glaciers, Chander Prakash Vohra, a former Director of the Geological Survey of India, has been conferred the “Nain Singh-Kishen Singh Lifetime Achievement Award 2010” by the Indian Mountaineering Federation in New Delhi last week.

The Indian Mountaineering Foundation (IMF) is the apex national body, which is responsible for promoting, schemes related to adventure and protection of environment in the Himalayas.

Seventy six-year-old Vohra, currently residing in Sector 34, has a special name among achievers engaged in exploration of Indian glaciers. He has also explored Antarctica. To name a few achievements, Vohra has already been honoured with Padam Shri, Arjuna award, the National Mineral Award and a special award by the Centre.

During his countless journeys in unexplored summits of the Himalayas, the geologist stepped atop Mt Everest, in 1965 and also camped at freezing Southern tip in Antarctica in 1973.

“My subject is not directly related to mountaineering. My journey started as a part of my study on glaciers in 1958 when I discovered the importance of inter-disciplinary teams on studying glaciers. Sadly, our country does not have an effective forum for inputs from multi-disciplinary sources.”

“Our country faced a big embarrassment, recently, when the Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) headed by Nobel prize recipient Rajendra K Pachauri had accepted on its website ‘The clear and well-established standards of evidence, required by the IPCC procedures, were not applied properly.’ They had relied only on partial data, which showcased absence of an effective data pool. They had infact said that the entire snow cover would melt by 2035, which did not any scientific backing. An effective data bank would save our country from embarrassment in similar situations. Different aspects of mountain study would include mountaineering, glaciology and mineral mapping of Himalayas, besides related aspects”, Vohra said.

Giving details of the award, he said “Nain Kishen- Kishen Singh were two 19th century explorers who had given data on Himalayas. The last glacial build up ended in 1850 after which we are facing the current recession. The snow will continue to melt, however, there is nothing very alarming. At the same time, we cannot afford to overlook the depleting green cover, increasing concrete jungles. These factors too have an effect on the climate.”



Patil assures govt docs of change in promotion rules
Hears 30 complaints during public hearing
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 15
Punjab Governor and UT Administrator Shivraj Patil today assured government doctors that promotional rules governing them would be modified. He spoke to the doctors led by

Dr B.S. Chavan at a public hearing session here.

Meanwhile, the administrator gave sympathetic hearing to 30 complainants during the public hearing session and issued necessary directions to the officers concerned to sort out the issues in a time-bound manner.

Responding to the request of Anita Chandel for appointment as a government teacher as she was earlier working with the Education Department on a contract basis, Patil asked the Education Secretary to look into the matter.

In case of Savitri, whose husband lost his life while on duty with the Municipal Corporation, Chandigarh (MCC), Patil asked the Commissioner of the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh to look into the matter immediately and see if appointment on compassionate ground could be considered.

Patil also thanked Arun Mahajan and other members of the Industries Association for contributing Rs 2.16 lakh to the Prime Minister’s National Relief fund for Leh victims.

Out of the total 30 complaints received today most of them were disposed off on the spot and remaining were sent to the departments concerned for appropriate action.

Those who were present on the occasion included Adviser to Administrator Pradip Mehra, Secretary to the Governor M.P. Singh, Home Secretary Ram Niwas, Finance Secretary Sanjay Kumar, IGP PK Srivastava, Deputy Commissioner Brijendra Singh, MCC Commissioner Roshan Sankaria, Chairman of the Chandigarh Housing Board Mohanjeet Singh and Director Public Relations and Information Technology Yogesh Kumar.



DC seeks report from UT police
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 15
Acting on a complaint filed by a local leader regarding carrying out of religious ceremonies at Sukhna Lake despite prohibition orders, the Deputy Commissioner, Brijendra Singh, has sought a report from the UT Police.

In a complained filed earlier on October 27, a local leader stated that the UT Administration had banned carrying out any religious ceremonies at the lake. Despite the orders, many women performed puja on Karva Chauth and due to this there was chaos at the lake.

In this regard, the DC forwarded the copy to the SSP, UT Police, seeking a report on the complaint. 



They serve insects, too
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 15
Two youths were left with bad taste in their mouths when they found insects floating in their cold drinks bought from a well-known restaurant in the city.

Gary and Sahil, residents of Mohali went to KFC, Sector 8, around 5 in the evening and ordered a meal, including chicken for them along with three cold drinks. After consuming two of the three cold drinks, the duo happened to open the lid of the glass and spotted insects floating on the surface.

They brought this to the notice of the managers at the restaurant, who refunded them the money.

The restaurant general manager, KFC, Sector 8, Srinivas, when contacted said, “ I was not on duty at the time of the incident. Nevertheless, the matter has been sorted out and we have already informed our top authorities about the matter and they will look into the whole issue”.



Amarinder brings laurels to city
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 15
Local bodybuilder Amarinder Singh Aulakh won the fourth position in the recently held Mr World Bodybuilding Championship at Varanasi.

Representing the Chandigarh Amateur Bodybuilding Association, Amarinder managed the fourth place, fighting out against the toughest bodybuilders of Afghanistan, Iran, Ukraine and several other countries.

Amarinder was a winner of Mr University and Mr Chandigarh titles too. He also won the second place at the 11th Federation Cup held at Jaipur on September 27.

In a felicitation function held recently, Harmohan Dhawan, a former MP, presented him a shawl and an amount of Rs 51,000. Chandigarh Amateur Bodybuilding Association president Sunil Walia and coach-cum-general secretary Anil Kumar were also honoured.



‘Arthdosh’ staged to perfection
SD Sharma

Chandigarh, November 15
The Theatre Lab ensemble staged a Hindi tragedy play “Arthdosh”, an adaptation of French Noble Prize winning author Albaru Camu’s classic “Misunderstanding” in the ongoing CSNA Theatre Fest-2010 at the Bal Bhawan auditorium here today.

A pin drop silence in the fully packed hall for 70 minutes with curious audience watching action on the stage in rapt attention is a testimony to the audience involvement in the play and a compliment to director Umesh Kant and all actors.

The play operating on the psychological and intellectual plan offered a radical exploration of the psyche of over ambitious, greedy and selfish but frustrated girl, Martha, who in connivance with her mother adopted all unethical means to secure money, even killing their clients staying at their guest house. So much so that they poisoned to kill the only son, John, who had run away from home when a child but returned after earning wealth after a hiatus of two decades. Though it happened due to sheer misunderstanding, as John did not disclose his identity to his sister and mother with a view to give them a surprise next day, which, however, never came.

On realising the fatal blunder, the mother poisoned her daughter and self.

All elements of the play were well conceived and executed and actors essayed their roles to perfection by bringing alive the emotional response to their inner turmoil, tensions and external pressures in a convincing and natural manner.

Alumni of the department of Indian theatre, Neeru Bala (Martha), Savinder Vicky (John) and Rajni Guzral (mother), were simply superb, while Navneet (Mary) had a cameo role only.

Acclaimed director Umesh Kant had directed the play with an excellent comprehension of the complex play and characters, but the casual reaction of actors immediately after learning that mother had killed her own son expected a burst of emotions if the play was really structured in the Indian milieu.



Conference on applied psychology at Panjab varsity 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 15
Emphasising that science must be studied and used with spirituality, UT administrator Shivraj V Patil today inaugurated the first international conference of the Asian Association of Applied Psychology on the theme “Enhancing Human Potential Bio-Psychosocial Perspectives” at Panjab University.

Around 700 delegates attended the inaugural session of this three-day conference from India and abroad, which also included international scholars like Lars Eric Unestahl from Sweden and Alex P Linley of the UK. Patil referred to Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution to elaborate his views on developing human potential.

He emphasised that human potential could be considered mechanical as it encompasses humanistic and spiritual elements. In consonance with the ideas of the great Indian philosopher Aurobindo Ghosh, the Governor pointed out that a combination of thinking capacity and spirituality play an important role in developing possibilities for human potential.

Patil further said, “Vedas and Upanishads don’t tell us how the prayers have to offered but the talk about Super Science and the entire nature emphasising that individual is the almighty force.”

Earlier RC Sobti, Vice-Chancellor, Panjab University presented the welcome address and impressed upon that to be human is to think feel aspire, strive and to achieve social goals.

He deliberated that India being the youngest country in terms of average age of its populace had enormous human potential to develop with thrust on certain special issues. RC Sobti underlined the need of psychological development saying human talent was the most valuable resource without, which developments in other fields were meaningless.

He said it was important to discover the tremendous hidden talent within us and make use of it. He added biological factors were closely related to human behaviour, which made up our mental frame. We must do introspection and develop positive attitude. 



Role of media underlined at education meet
Tribune News Service

Ambala, November 15
Dr KK Khandelwal, Additional Principal Secretary to the Haryana Chief Minister, stressed on the importance of objective approach and deeper study of media.

Delivering his keynote address at the MEDUCON -- media and education conference -- organised by the International Association for Human Values, in collaboration with UNESCO here on Saturday, Dr Khandelwal underlined the importance and power of media. The conference was held at SD College, Ambala Cantonment.

In his thought provoking and inspiring address, he elucidated how media moulds the character of an individual, positively or otherwise. He pointed out that it was difficult to generalise the influence of media in the absence of any concrete evidence, any survey or scientific study. He, therefore, stressed on the importance of objective approach and deeper study of7 media.

He said it was important to remember that the printed word or electronic presentation is not absolute truth. It is most powerful entity, it can make innocent guilty and guilty innocent. It has the power to shape society, to brutalise society or lift society to a higher level and it should be closely supervised by a strong and organised public opinion.

Rajbir Choudhary, President of the Industrial Association, Saha, observed that more than 90 per cent of the world media was controlled by only five business companies, which exploit it for its profit. So, a strong public opinion must effectively supervise it, enhance its positive effect and reduce its negative influence.



New PU computer centre to ramp up networking
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 15
A newly set up computer centre on the Panjab University campus will provide technical services, develop software and train teachers in improving their computer skills. The centre is proposed to be an independent unit with a separate budget (other than that sanctioned to the computer science & applications department), in accordance with the UGC guidelines.

At their recent meeting members of the PU Syndicate cleared a proposal to bifurcate the present computer centre, which was attached to the computer science department. The separation has resulted in formation of a new centre that is specially aimed at providing specialised software services on the campus.

Anticipating better networking services on the campus, PU officials claimed the new centre would not only ensure faster speed in providing technical services but would eliminate delays in conducting training workshops for teachers as the department labs were occupied by students.

“The computer centre can contribute a lot and can now freely provide its services, conduct training workshops for teachers and nonteaching staff and develop vital software. Right now we’ve to wait for the students to clear the computer laboratories and only then we can conduct a workshop for teachers,” said K Tankeshwar, the computer centre’s director.

The centre will conduct a special 15-day training workshop for teachers in December with 2 to 3 hour sessions each day. Yet another workshop is planned to be held next January.

Initially the computer centre was set up in 1963 and, after the computer science & applications department was established in 1995, it was made part of the department. The centre eventually lost its autonomy and was dependent on the department for financial reasons.



PU professor is law varsity V-C
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 15
Panjab University’s Department of Law chairman Professor Paramjit S Jaswal has been appointed Vice-Chancellor of Hidayatullah National University of Law.

Professor Jaswal has more than 28 years of teaching experience. In LLM, he broke the all-time record before doing his post doctorate from University of London and course in human rights from International Institute of Human Rights, Geneva.

He also got Nehru Centenary British Fellowship Award by the British Council and Young Talented Teacher Award by the University Grants Commission.

Professor Jaswal has authored five books and more than 60 articles, which have been published in national and international research journals. His book on environmental law has been cited by the Supreme Court of India in the noise pollution case in 2005.

His areas of specialisations are Constitutional law, administrative law, human rights and environmental law. He has also guided a large number of LLM and PhD students. Professor Jaswal was also university counsel for more than 10 years.



Clash of dates over science events
PU gives instructions to departments
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 15
Foreseeing a clash of dates over two major science events on the campus next week, the Panjab University authorities yesterday instructed the departments to organise their activities on days that have no other event on the campus.

Last year, a majority of seminars and conferences got clogged from January till March due to the delay in receiving grants for these seminars. This year, however, the university is now facing a problem of multiple events on the same day.

“It was discussed at the press conference yesterday that more coordination must be put into place. The departments would also be informed about the same. We would ensure that the students are able to take part in all seminars and do not have to face any dilemma,” said Anil Kapoor, public relation officer, PU.



Expert dwells on trend in mental training models
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 15
As a part of the international conference on “Enhancing human potential: Bio-psychosocial perspectives”, a mental training workshop was held yesterday on the Panjab University campus.

Briefing about the workshop, Vice-Chancellor RC Sobti said mental training was linked with learning and modification of behaviour right from the conception to death, and it was a biological behaviour, which was controlled by genetics 
and accelerated by the environment.

Sobti appreciated the contribution of psychology in involving methods to enhance capacities for change and optimisation of human performance.
The main recourse person for the workshop was Prof Lars-Eric Unestahl from Sweden, who covered the trend in mental training models in sports, music and health care.

Prof Unestahl gave examples of players like Borg (tennis) and also gave practical demonstration about how mind can work beyond its limitations.

As a part of the same workshop, Dr Dhirendra Acharya, a yoga specialist, demonstrated exercises for enhancing concentration and self control through breathing body postures and thought processes.



Govt school education goes online
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 15
The government school education goes online with the UT education department initiating the first phase of long-awaited information technology renaissance.

The department has not only started putting its general circular, instructions and notifications on the website but has also asked government school heads to get more active with e-mails.

In a set of instructions issued, the school principals have been asked to regularly visit the online portals of the Central Board of Secondary Education and access and respond to official e-mails.

Parents will be encouraged to put their grievances online, which would be addressed and redressed online.

“The government school heads have not been Internet savvy and most of them hardly access or utilise e-mails. But from now onwards, a lot of school work will be shifted on e-mails and even parents can sent in their queries or feedback, which will be addressed immediately,” said an official of the education department.

However, the revolutionary aspect of much awaited IT renaissance continues to be the school information management system (SIMS), which is going to bring all schools’ operations online.

A few of the major changes will come in the form of biometric attendance of teachers, online availability of students’ performance track record and an online grievance mechanism system for parents.

SIMS is going to help the parents and students alike. While parents need not come to the school for their wards performance, as the information will be available online and they will get regular alerts on this, the students can access their certificates online and transfer them.

Information on disbursement of scholarships, school bags and uniforms would also be available online. Even the daily records of the midday meal scheme giving information about how many students had what amount of food will be made available online.

The decision to implement the project was taken at a recently concluded meeting of UT education secretary Ram Niwas with DPI (S) PK Sharma, technical education director Sandeep Hans and representatives of SPIC.



From Schools & Colleges


Chandigarh: Competitions and informative computer displays marked the “Technology Carnival”, an annual feature of the Koshish Educators’ Forum, at Stepping Stones Senior Secondary School, Sector 37-D. Various inter-school computer related competitions , PowerPoint presentations and quiz were organised, which drew tremendous response . Over 30 schools and about 150 students from the tricity participated in the day -long event.

Annual function

PANCHKULA: The 35th annual function “Satluj Pride 2010” was held at Satluj Public School, senior wing, Sector 4, Panchkula. RJ Khanderao, regional officer, Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), was the chief guest on the occasion. The programme commenced with lighting of the lamp and Saraswati Vandana. Principal Krit Serai highlighted various achievements of the school.

Documentary screened

MOHALI: AKSPIS, Mohali, celebrated its annual function at Tagore Theatre today. Mohali district education officer Harbans Singh was the chief guest on the occasion. Jasdeep Kalra, executive director, AKSIPS, welcomed the gathering. A documentary “Saat Kureetiyan” showing seven different stories highlighted seven social evils prevalent in society and questioned their existence. The evil practices were compared and contrasted with ‘then & now ‘in the form of black and white and coloured era.

Sports day

Gian Jyoti Public School celebrated its sports day. The principal, along with students and staff, welcomed chief guest S Mohinder Singh Kainth, Additional Deputy Commissioner, Mohali. The lighting of the sacred ‘Mashaal’ with the flag-hoisting ceremony was followed by the commencement of the sports day. The day witnessed a number of sports events like drill, couple race, fruit race, butterfly race, obstacle race, pithu race, one-legged race, three-legged race, lemon and spoon race, professional race, hop-step race and balloon race, frog step race.

Millennium School

PINJORE: Various sports events were held at St Vivekanand the Millennium School, HMT Township, Pinjore, as a part of its annual sports day and the event commenced with a marchpast of the contingents of four houses. The participants of the state and national-level sports events were awarded cheques.

Cultural programme

The French department of MCM DAV College for Women organised a cultural programme today. The event aimed at building self-confidence among students as far as French as a foreign language is concerned. Chief guest Dr Cecilia Antony, chairperson of the department of French and francophone studies, Panjab University, and guest of honour Dr Surinder Jathaul, professor (retd), Panjab University, enlightened students about the contemporary literary issue and emphasised on the need to adopt a broader perspective towards issues surrounding mankind. The programme unfolded with the screening of short movie clippings of French films “Amelie Poulain” and “Asterix”, followed by a presentation of skits and a dance performance. — TNS



PU don is VC of Raipur varsity
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 15
Professor Paramjit S Jaswal, chairman, department of laws, and former director of the University Institute of Legal Studies, Panjab University, has been appointed as Vice-Chancellor of the Hidayatullah National University of Law, Raipur, in Chhatisgarh for a term of five years.

Jaswal did his post doctorate from the University of London, UK, and his book “Environmental Law” has been cited by the Supreme Court of India in the noise pollution case in 2005.



HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |