C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


UT’s loss is Wright’s gain 
Furniture designed by Pierre Jeanneret to be auctioned on Dec 12 
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 11
The UT Administration has failed to preserve its heritage items, but Chicago-based Wright Auction House is again set to earn thousands of dollars from the auction of heritage furniture.

The auction will take place on December 12 wherein eight furniture items designed by Pierre Jeanneret, a cousin Le Corbusier, will be put under the hammer.

The furniture to be auctioned include a pair of committee armchairs from the Punjab and Haryana Vidhan Sabha, a desk from one of the administrative buildings in the city, a set of six chairs from the Central Library of Panjab University and a desk from the College of Architecture, Chandigarh.

Le Corbusier’s cousin Pierre Jeanneret had designed chairs, tables, stools and racks for government offices in the late 50s. However, the furniture was replaced in the late 80s and early 90s. After dumping the heritage items in the backyards or stores, most of the departments of the UT Administration had auctioned these as a part of junk, unaware of their international worth.

During his stay in Chandigarh, Jeanneret designed several pieces of furniture. Some of the prototypes are present at Government Museum and Art Gallery, Sector 10. Jeanneret used the furniture in the house he stayed in at Sector 5. He was so fond of the city that after his death, his ashes were immersed in Sukhna Lake as he had desired.

This is not for the first time that the heritage furniture, treated as junk by the Chandigarh Administration, is being auctioned. In 2007, a manhole cover designed by Le Corbusier fetched $21,600 at one of such auctions. 

Furniture to be auctioned 

*n A pair of committee armchairs from the Punjab and Haryana Vidhan Sabha (Estimate: $25,000-30,000)

* A desk from administrative buildings, Chandigarh (Estimate: $7,000-9,000)

* Executive desk from administrative buildings (Estimate: $10,000-15,000)

*n Set of six chairs from Central Library of Panjab University (Estimate: $8,000-10,000)

* Folding screen from administrative buildings (Estimate: $5,000-7,000)

* A file rack from administrative buildings (Estimate: $10,000-15,000)

* A desk from the College of Architecture, Chandigarh (Estimate: $7,000-9,000) 

Recent auctions

November 3, 2011: Paris-based auction house Marseilles sells 30 different pieces for Rs 1.92 crore

May 25, 2011: Artcurial sells four out of the seven lots of heritage furniture designed by Jeanneret for Rs 40.75 lakh

October 17, 2013: Seven lots of furniture items auctioned for around Rs 1 crore by the Chicago-based auction house 



Police use force on protesting students
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 11
The police today used mild force to disperse the protesting students pursuing BAMS from Shri Dhanwantry Ayurvedic College at Panjab University when they tried to enter the administrative block.

While entering the administrative block one of the students fainted and another suffered minor injuries. The protest was in response to the delay in declaration of the result of final year students.

Till the filing of the report, the students were sitting in front of the office of the controller of examination.

The protest turned violent when no PU official turned up to inform them as to why the result had not been declared even after the deadline of Tuesday given by the PU. Around 100 protesting students who were raising slogans in front of the administrative block tried to enter the building to protest against the delay. The protesters threatened the police personnel that if they arrested them, they will deflate the tyres of their vehicles.

The students alleged that despite assurance by Dean Student Welfare Navdeep Goyal and Chief Security Officer Anil Monga, their result had not been declared.

DSP (central) Ashish Kapoor intervened and held a meeting with Panjab University (PU) officials to resolve the issue, but the authorities expressed helplessness due to the Supreme Court orders on the affiliation of the college which was the reason for the delay in declaration of the result.

Police personnel from the police posts of Sectors 15, 24, Dhanas and PGI have been deployed outside the administrative block. 

High-powered committee

PU Vice-Chancellor Arun Kumar Grover said the decision to declare the result would be taken on Thursday. A six-member high-powered committee had been constituted by the VC under the chairmanship of Satya Pal Jain with two senators GK Charath, Ashok Goyal along with the Controller of Examination, Dean College Department Council, Dean Student Welfare and the Registrar as its members. The meeting of the committee was held on Wednesday evening, but no decision could be taken. The committee would meet again on Thursday. A few members also proposed to declare the provisional result. 

Hunger strike

Two protesting students — Kamal and Yashmeeta — went on hunger strike on Wednesday in protest, said Prabhpreet, president the Students Federation of India. 



11/12/13 blesses 25 couples beyond words 
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 11
For Atul Thakur and his wife Pooja, it was a day of pleasant surprises. While rushing his wife to Chaitanya Hospital, Sector 44, on Tuesday, he had no idea what fate had in store for him.
Nidhi with her newborn. Twenty-five babies were born in two hospitals in Chandigarh on Wednesday. Tribune photo: Manoj Mahajan
Nidhi with her newborn. Twenty-five babies were born in two hospitals in Chandigarh on Wednesday. Tribune photo: Manoj Mahajan

The delivery was extended by a day and he was blessed with a baby boy on the last date of this century with three consecutive numbers, 11/12/13.

Not only the date, but the time of delivery was also unique — 12.13 pm. “The joy cannot be expressed in words. It was a double delight,” said Atul, who is an IT professional.

Some couples had opted for the C-section on the day to make it memorable. Aditi Goyal, who chose the date for delivery, was blessed with a baby girl.

For DP Gupta, a retired government official, his grandson came on a remarkable day. “We had taken our daughter for a routine check-up and she was admitted. We had not expected that the angel would come on such a special date,” he said. Twenty-five babies were born today at two city government hospitals.

Seventeen babies were born at Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH), Sector 32, including 11 baby girls. Eight babies, including four baby boys, were born at the GMSH-16. 


2 labourers trapped in pit, rescued
Were laying sewage pipes near Power House Colony in Sector 52 when earth caved in 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 11
Two labourers digging a pit while laying sewage pipes near Power House Colony in Sector 52 were trapped after the earth caved in. The rescue operation carried out by the Fire Department and Civil Department lasted for 45 minutes. Both labourers were rescued safely with minor injuries.

The labourers were digging a pit alongside the road when the soil caved in at 4.30 pm, trapping one of them identified as Putan. In a bid to rescue him, another labourer identified as Papu, also got trapped in the ditch, which was around eight-feet deep.

The Fire Department got a call at 4.35 pm and it rushed two fire tenders to the spot from the Fire Station in Sector 32 and from Sector 38. The area police and UT’s civil defence team also reached the scene. An ambulance was also rushed to the spot.

After 45 minutes, both the labourers were rescued and rushed to the hospital for first-aid.

Sanjeev Kohli, In-charge, civil defence team, stated that there were lapses on the part of the contractor. “There should be a support around the pit which controls the earth from caving in”, he stated.

Bhupinder Singh, SHO, Sector 36 police station, stated that they had started an investigation into the case and action would be taken against the contractor if any negligence wa found on his part.

The police had tough time controlling the crowd that had gathered at the scene to witness the rescue operation.



MC’s shame: Recently carpeted roads give way
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 11
The quality of construction material used in the repairing of roads and parking lots in the city was exposed once again when shopkeepers of Sector 19 C market complained to the area councillor about the poor condition of recently re-carpeted parking area of the market.

Area councillor Mukesh Bassi said that the shopkeepers had complained to him about the poor quality material being used in the re-carpeting of roads. They also complained that the road was so poorly re-carpeted that the upper crust of the premix had almost gone. He will now file a complaint to the Vigilance Department and the MC Commissioner about the poor road repair work in his ward, he added.

Vinod Talwar, a shopkeeper, said that road was so badly damaged that the MC staff even failed to fill the damaged portion of the roads. A simple sweeping of the road exposed the tall claims of good quality material used by the MC in re-carpeting of roads in Sector 19, he added.

Another shopkeeper said that when the MC staff was carrying out the work, they had told them to use proper material but to no avail.

It is not only in Sector 19, but residents of Khuda Ali Sher also complained of poor quality material being used in the re-carpeting of roads in their area.

Rajinder Singh, a resident of the area, said the road was recparted hardly 15 days ago, but potholes could be seen on the road.



Demand for underpass in industrial area in city
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 11
Industrialists today demanded that an underpass be constructed between Industrial Area, Phase I and II for the smooth movement of traffic between the two phases.

The demand was raised during the meeting chaired by UT Home Secretary Anil Kumar with the officials of the Industry Department and industrialists to solve the problems faced by traders of the city.

Industrialists today submitted that a large number of vehicles entered Industrial Area Phase I and II and there was just one dividing road between both the phases. To ease out traffic congestion and better movement of vehicles, an underpass was required to be constructed between both the phases.



A first in district: Mohali launches computerised test centre
Tribune News Service

Mohali, December 11
With the launch of computerised test centre for making learner’s license, Mohali has become the first district of the state to have this facility.

Inaugurating the project at the District Administrative Complex at Phase 1, the Principal Secretary (transport), Punjab, SS Channi, said that the facility would help in dealing with the growing number of applicants of licenses more efficiently.

“Now only those applicants will be able to get the learning licenses, who will pass the test”, said Channi.

Every applicant has to answer 10 questions, the paper will contain 10 traffic signs. “Those who will give correct answers of at least six questions, will be issued the license”, he added.

On being asked about starting of the public transport service in Mohali district, Channi said that plans were there for the purpose. “I will discuss the matter with the higher authorities. We have already started the inter-city bus service in Ludhiana, Amritsar and Jalandhar, which is running successfully, and may be that Mohali is the next to start such a facilty”, said Channi. He added that 500 new buses (300 buses in the Punjab Roadways and 200 buses in PRTC) would be added in the fleet of the state public transport. 



Outgoing SSP holds orderly room
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 11
In an interesting move, the outgoing SSP, Naunihal Singh, today organised orderly room at the Police Lines in Sector 26. Around 85 police personnel from the rank of Constable to Inspector who had departmental inquiries pending against them were called to represent their cases.

Among those who were asked to appear before the SSP also included Station House Officers (SHO) including Anokh Singh of Sector 26 police station, Gurmukh Singh of Sector 39, Harjit Kaur of Sector 3, Kirpal Singh of Sector 31, Yashpal of the Industrial Area police station.

The other Inspector rank police personnel who were present at the orderly room included Neeraj Sarna, Jaspal Singh, Narinder Patial.

All the officers were informed a day in advance to report to the Police Lines to discuss the department inquiries pending against them.

Sources stated that the police personnel were asked to represent their case related to departmental inquiries against them. “Various departmental inquiries pending against police personnel were filed (settled) during the day”, the sources stated.

The orderly room organised few hours before new SSP Sukhchain Singh Gill was supposed to take over the charge has raised many eyebrows.

Interestingly, the journalists who visited the Police Line were asked to leave by the police officials stating that it was a routine work going on to clear the pending mails. 

New SSP takes charge

The new SSP Sukchain Singh Gill took over the charge on Wednesday evening. The 36 year-old 2003 batch IPS officer has served on the post of the SSP in Hoshiarpur, Ludhiana and Bathinda districts.



Cattle sent to gaushalas in Punjab
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 11
City Mayor Subhash Chawla today flagged off trucks carrying 88 head of cattle. The animals are being shifted to Chandpur Rurki village and Bhaddi village in Garhshankar and Nawanshahr.

The Mayor stated: "The number of animals in cattle pounds is on the rise and which is why we want to shift the animals to the other gaushalas at the earliest," he stated.

The MC has signed an MoU regarding the shifting of 1,000 head of cattle to two gaushalas. Around 300 animals will be shifted this month. Presently, there are around 2,000 head of cattle in gaushalas in the city.



MC introduces first draft of pet bylaws
Our Correspondent

Mohali, December 11
The Municipal Corporation, for the very first time, has framed a draft of the bylaws for the owners of pet dogs in the tricity.

The MC will be publicising the bylaws at the earliest in order to invite suggestions and objections from the public for the same.

A registration fee of Rs 250, per year, has been proposed by the civic authority, for getting each dog registered with the corporation. After the registration, the owner will be given a token.

Owners who fail to get their pets registered will have to pay a penalty of Rs 50 each day.

The dog lovers have expressed support for the proposal by the civic body, which will prove beneficial in the long run.

Appreciating the decision of the corporation, GK Rai, a resident of Phase II, said, “Registration is very helpful incase a dog gets lost. This way, the finder will easily be able to trace the owner and return the pet.”

A veterinarian, Dr HS Grover, said, “Initially, residents were not in favour of the proposal as they were not open to change. But, the tags which will be provided by the civic body for the dogs will help differentiate between a stray dog and a pet. Such a move will make a lot more sense in the long run.”

Dog owners, however, are also expecting the corporation to provide proper services to them in exchange of the license fee collected.

Services such as anti-rabies vaccination for the pets, issuance of a certificate stating that the animal is not suffering from any diseases and pet burial facility were demanded by the pet owners.

The corporation is likely to collect at least Rs 2 lakh annually, as license fee, if the majority of the dog owners go in for the registration process.

The only hurdle the civic authorities are likely to face is identifying the number of pet dogs, which will remain to be registered by the owners.

The Commissioner of the corporation, Uma Shankar Gupta, said the registration of dogs would help to ascertain if the pets have been properly vaccinated or not.

“A certificate from the owner will be demanded at the time of registration, which will help identifying if the dog has been vaccinated or not,” said the Commissioner of the corporation.

Although no survey has been carried out to identify the number of dogs in the region, but there should be around 8,000 to 10,000 pet dogs, within the jurisdiction of the civic body, said Gupta.

“The aim of introducing licenses is not generation of funds, but the proper upkeep of the animals,” said the Commissioner of the corporation.

A time period of 30 days would be given to the residents to submit their suggestions and objections after the draft bylaws are publicised. Changes would be carried out in the draft, later, according to the suggestions and objections pointed out by the public. It will be only after that that the bylaws would be sent to the state government for notification.

Get your pooch registered

The civic body has proposed ~250 as the annual registration fee. Residents will be given a token on getting their pets registered. Those failing to do so will be penalised ~50 per day.



7 AFPI cadets honoured for making it big
Our Correspondent

Mohali, December 11
Maharaja Ranjit Singh Armed Forces Preparatory Institute (AFPI) honoured seven of its former students for paving their way into the National Defence Academy (NDA) and the Naval Academy, here today.

Danish Chadha, Ajaypal Singh Waraich, Rajat Sarangal, Mohit Sharma, Abhay Singh Rana, Vishavdeep Singh and Sahil Manhas, from the first batch of the institute, were honoured for their achievement. The seven cadets joined the NDA and the Naval Academy in July and hail from places such as Samana, Samrala, Kapurthala, Mukerian, Sultanpur Lodhi and Pathankot. The students undertook training for two years at the preparatory institute while staying in the hostel and attending Shemrock School here.

Cadet Ajaypal Singh Waraich, son of a farmer of Samana, said his undying urge to get into the Armed forces led him to choose this as his profession.

Maj Gen BS Grewal (retd), director of the Armed Forces Institute, said the seven young men had brought laurels to the institute.

In addition cadets were also awarded for excellence in various disciplines. Cadet Abhay Singh Rana was adjudged the best all-round cadet. The best in academics award went to Cadet Sahil Manhas, the best in officer-like qualities award was given to Cadet Danish Chadha and the best sportsman award was given to Cadet Ajaypal Singh Waraich.

Lt Gen TK Sapru (retd), a former Army Commander, Western Command, was the chief guest on the occasion.

A farewell was also given to the second-course cadets and scholarships were awarded to four cadets under the late Maj Gen Atma Singh Scholarship Scheme.



Panchayat secy suspended
Tribune News Service

Mohali, December 11
The panchayat secretary of the Majri block, Onkar Singh, has been put under suspension by the Department of Rural Development and Panchayats, Punjab, here.

Onkar allegedly did not submit the Proforma, in which details of the shamlat land of villages in the block had to be filled in detail.

According to Onkar Singh, the patwari of certain villages did not provide him with the required records to carry out the required work, which resulted in delay.

“Due to their (patwaris) non-cooperation, I could not complete the Proforma,” alleged the secretary, Onkar Singh.

According to the sources, details of the shamlat land were being sent to Justice Kuldip Singh Commission.



Year 2013 ender
An action-packed year with real drama
Rajinder Nagarkoti & Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 11
General House meetings remained action packed throughout the year. Infighting and blame game topped the agenda of councillors. The authorities failed to live up to the expectations of residents, with only a little done in the name of development.

Ruckus in house

Ruckus remained the order of every meeting, with Mayor Subhash Chawla at the receiving end. Not only the opposition but also the Congress councillors targeted him. In one of the meetings, the Mayor had even tendered his resignation when an anonymous letter levelling allegations against him had surfaced.

Water crisis

The city remained 'waterless' for 15 days following the leakage in the Phases III and IV pipeline of the Kajauli Water Works. The MC had started providing water to residents through water tankers, but that too failed to tide over the problem. Residents were forced to hire private water tankers.

House tax

After becoming the Mayor, Subhash Chawla had assured that no new tax would be imposed during his tenure. But on February 28, the Mayor announced that an agenda related to house tax had been passed. Thereafter, the MC imposed house tax at Re 1 per sq yard per year on residential houses, except LIG, EWS and houses less than 5 marlas. The MC has proposed a 20-time hike for next financial year.

Railgate and booth scam rock house

The opposition targeted MP Pawan Kumar Bansal following the railgate and booth scam. Whenever Bansal attended the meetings, councillors welcomed him with black badges.

Three deaths involving stray cattle

Three families lost their sole breadwinners this year. The accidents took place at night in the southern sectors of the city and the victims were on two-wheelers. The families even lodged a DDR against Mayor Subhash Chawla and the others.

Bansal and Jannat's comments

On October 31, while responding to the allegations levelled by the BJP, MP Pawan Kumar Bansal made a statement that 'pichle 15 saalon se maine kisi aur ki aurat ki taraf nahi dekha' (I have not looked at someone else's wife in the past 15 years) caused an uproar in the house. On August 8, BSP councillor Jannat Jahan Ul Haq had used an expletive in the house meeting.

Bansal vs Patil

In every function organised by the MC, dramatic events were witnessed. A number of the Congress councillors did not turn up at the foundation stone laying ceremony of the multilevel parking as they wanted MP Pawan Kumar Bansal to be the chief guest in place of UT Administrator Shivraj V Patil. Later, Bansal inaugurated the overbridge in Sector 17 and graced the Children's Day function in Dadu Majra.

Multilevel parking and overbridge

The MC laid the foundation stone of the multilevel parking in Sector 17. The parking is expected to be completed within two years. Besides, the Sector 17 overbridge was also thrown open to the public. The 50 MLD Sewage Treatment Plant near 3BRD, Chandigarh, was also inaugurated this year. 

War of words between Bassi and Chawla

The war of words between Mayor Subhash Chawla and Congress councillor Mukesh Bassi remained in news throughout the year. Upset over the alleged interference by the Mayor in his ward, Bassi had shot off two letters to Chawla. Bassi had also referred to the teachings of Bhagavad Gita in his letters. MP Pawan Kumar Bansal and city Congress president BB Behl intervened and called for a meeting of both the leaders and settled the matter.

Looking ahead

* New Mayor, Senior Deputy Mayor and Deputy Mayor as the elections are scheduled for January 1, 2014

* Consensus of Punjab and Haryana on getting required water share from the Kajauli Water Works

* Development of a software to keep a tab on the lifting of garbage

* Construction of four underpasses

* Construction of four dispensaries in southern sectors

* Construction of Mahila Bhawan in Sector 38. The project has been hanging fire.

Trucks torched

On August 30, angry villagers set 17 trucks of the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation on fire near Gurgaon. The trucks, carrying 195 head of cattle, were going from Chandigarh to Barsana Gaushala in Mathura. The locals mistook for smugglers and went on a rampage. After the incident the civic body stopped the cattle-catching drive. 


* The honorarium of Mayor, Senior Deputy Mayor, Deputy Mayor, councillors (elected and nominated) was increased.

* Mayor Subhash Chawla had walked out of his office and handed over his room and car to MC officials, alleging that the officials did not act on his recommendations on the stray cattle problem.

* Like former mayor Raj Bala Malik, Mayor Subhash Chawla received 102 parking stickers, including 100 complementary parking stickers this year. Senior Deputy Mayor and Deputy Mayor also got 27 stickers, including 25 complimentary stickers, each.

* Nominated councillor Surinder Bahga in a news channel debate levelled allegations against the nominated councillors stating that the 'Congress had bought them'. Later, he had tendered an apology in the house.

* The MC passed an agenda to allow rickshaw-pullers to operate in the city without any permission. It also proposed to restore the policy of granting permit to rehri pullers which had been discontinued in 1991.



Rs 1.68-crore heist: Police zero in on kin of tainted policemen
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, December 11
To get leads in the Rs 1.68 crore heist, the Panchkula police are zeroing in on the kin of the policemen involved in criminal activities in the past.

Commissioner of Police Rajbir Deswal said the kin of the police personnel having a criminal background were under scanner.

He said the role of four victims, Neem Pal, Jaspal Singh, Suraj Sangam and Gulshan Sharma, was being investigated.

The Commissioner, along with a team of police officers, visited the office of CMS Company at Sector 47. He said the box containing cash was too heavy to be lifted by one person.

"The victims told us that one of the robbers had lifted the box alone but when we reconstructed the scene, we found that it was not possible," said Deswal. The police are scanning CCTV grabs at various petrol stations.

"A footage showed a policeman riding pillion on a red Discover motorcycle bearing Chandigarh registration number. Bike owner Jasbir Singh, a milkman, claimed that the policeman had taken a lift from him," said Deswal.

The police are working on several theories. Police teams searched farmhouses in the area today.

The police are also gathering information about the gangs active in the area.



Notice to Home Secretaries, UT Adviser
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 11
A local district court today served statutory notices to Union Home Secretary, Adviser to UT Administrator and UT Home Secretary regarding the appointment of Pradeep Mehra as chairman of Police Complaint Authority, Chandigarh.

The notice came after Arvind Thakur, chairperson, Global Human Rights Council, challenged his appointment in the court arguing that the appointment of the Pradeep Mehra was done not according to the guidelines of the Supreme Court.

He stated in his petition that in the Parkash Singh Badal and others Vs Union of India case, SC ordered that the chairman of the PCA should be a retired judge of a high court. But the name of Pradeep Mehra, a former bureaucrat who also served as Advisor to UT administrator, had been appointed as PCA chairman.

The matter will come for hearing on February 14 next year.



MC’s effort proves futile as councillors refrain from using Internet facility
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 11
While earlier it was babus of the Municipal Corporation (MC) who had not been updating records on the website of the civic body, now the elected representatives too seem to be towing their line.

Even as a week has been passed since an e-mail was sent to all the councillors on their official e-mail accounts mentioned on the MC website seeking time to discuss the issue of civic amenities in their respective wards, not even a single councillor has replied to the e-mail. The e-mail was sent to 26 elected councillors by this correspondent on December 1. The e-mail also carried a mobile number so that the recipient of the e-mail could contact the sender in case he wished to.

Interestingly, the MC had splurged on around Rs 17 lakh on making all the councillors tech-savvy by giving them new laptops after they got elected to the House.

However, not many of them seem to be utilising the facility to address the problems of the city residents received by them through e-mails.

When contacted, Mayor Subhash Chawla, who is a councillor from Ward No 5, stated that he might have missed the e-mail. “I try to check all the emails sent by the residents, however, I was a little busy in functions last weekend due to which I could not check my e-mail account,” he stated.

The BJP councillor Arun Sood, who is also the leader of Opposition in the House, stated that he had been regularly responding to the e-mails sent to him by residents of his ward. However, he didn’t check his e-mail account for the past several days. “During the last two years of my tenure, I have responded to around 100 e-mails. Unfortunately, I didn’t get time to check the e-mail in question due to various reasons,” he stated.

Some of the councillors were of the view that they prefer to use their personal e-mail accounts to reach out to the residents of their respective wards. The Congress councillor, Mukesh Bassi, and BJP councillor Davesh Moudgil stated that the residents had their personal emails-id, which were circulated to them during the MC elections.

Not checking official e-mail accounts

Interestingly, various councillors have been e-mailing press notes regarding political visits of senior leaders to various functions, across the city. However, they seem to be too busy to check their official e-mail accounts to redress the problems faced by the residents of their wards. In 2012, the MC had spent Rs 17 lakh to purchase laptops for all the councillors. 



Classical singer casts spell
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 11
Delhi-based Kirana Gharana’s vocalist Sanhita Nandi mesmerised the city audience with her melodious vocal recital at Bhaskar Rao Indoor Auditorium, Sector 35.

Sanhita Nandi is a renowned exponent of Hindustani Classical Vocal, Kirana Gharana in the Khayal genres. After initial training, Sanhita was later groomed by Late Pandit A Kanan, the senior most guru of the ITC Sangeet Research Academy, Kolkata.

Endowed with a resonating and soulful voice, Sanhita began her recital with Raga Puriya Dhanashree. The opening Bada khayal composition ‘Aab to ruthman’ was developed with soothingly inserted alap badhat besides scores of well-knit sargams and boldly executed taan.

It was followed by a Chhota Khayal Drut Teen Taal bandish ‘Payaliya Jhankar mori’ and a sahana raag in jhap taal bandish ‘Gundlari malan phul ki harwa’.

She chose Raag bageshri as her next rendering and doled out two compositions, which was laced with liltingly deployed variations.

Sanhita provided a befitting finale to her recital with a Tarana amid thunderous applause displaying her musical capabilities.

City-based percussionist Avirbhav Verma added to the success of the concert. Murlidhar Soni provided support on harmonium. Pracheen Kala Kendra registrar Shobha Koser honoured the artistes in the end.



Importance of right to vote in constitution discussed 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 11
A democratic order will flourish only if citizens exercise their right to vote. This way not only constitutionalism will be maintained but it will also give a boost to citizen empowerment. This was stated by Prof Virendra Kumar at the 9th lecture of the Panjab University (PU) Colloquium held today.

Amidst the gathering of faculty members, students, research scholars and distinguished members from different organisations such as Punjab and Haryana Police Department, PGI, Judicial Academy of Chandigarh, DRDO, local colleges and Panjab and Haryana High court, Prof Kumar demystified the right to vote and led the audience through the entire gamut of issues related to the right.

Prof Kumar provided answers to the basic questions of why and how should the citizen explore the constitutional dimensions within the ambit of the right to vote and also suggested a three-pronged strategy. The strategy suggested by him led to the Legislative codification of the un-codified judge-made law, preceded by sustained juridical analysis and followed by periodic comprehensive re-statement of the law, which is our imperative need.

The lecture was followed by an interactive session. Dr Archana R Singh, colloquium coordinator, presented a vote of thanks on behalf of the colloquium committee.



No takers for government schools 
Even the top-most government school gets 60 forms against 90 seats 
Vivek Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 11
With the onset of the sale of admission forms, majority of the local parents are shying away from admitting their wards to the government schools in Chandigarh.

Despite sprawling school infrastructure, none of the 107 government schools in Chandigarh got enough registration forms for entry-level classes.

The last date of submission of registration forms was till yesterday but even the top government schools could not manage to get a good response, indicating a major shift in choice of parents towards private schools.

For instance, Government Model Senior Secondary School (GMSSS), Sector 16, one of the best schools in the city, received just 60 forms against 90 seats for pre-nursery class. GMSSS, Sector 8, received just 24 forms against its 45 seats. Response at another popular school, GMSSS-37B was even worse as it received only 15 forms against 45 seats in the school.

These figures stand no where with respect of the overwhelming response to the private schools.

Also, many of the top government schools having better infrastructure blame on the stereotypical view of people.

A government principal, seeking anonymity, said the concept of retention policy, that is not to detain any student till Class VIII, has deteriorated the quality education atmosphere as well as has created discipline issues in government schools. “Private schools have managed to escape its affect because they are under no obligation to retain a child if he does not perform well and is undisciplined. But we are not allowed to do so in government schools. Even if a child comes to school after three months of long vacation, we are under pressure to re-enroll him,” she said.

Over the years, it has been felt that the city residents who used to send their children to government schools gradually shifted to private schools. The Education Department is responsible for not matching up to the aspiration of parents by delay in building timely infrastructure, lapping technology in schools as well as religiously adhering to the concept of holistic development, the concepts that private schools timely managed to bring in and branded it well.

As many as 42 government schools in Chandigarh are running on double shift arrangement with primary class coming in afternoon shift. A head of a government school said quality education was not possible in such a scenario.

City-based CBSE counsellor and principal of DAV College, Sector 15, Dr Rakesh Sachdeva said government schools had best of the teachers but the class size was usually too big. “Till the time the government schools does not restrict their student-teacher ratio and adopt technology besides more focus on language, sports, and other modern concept of education, the parents will further gradually shy away from the government schools,” she said.

The student-classroom ratio and the teacher-student ratio in government schools are getting worse which as per the education department’s official figures for 2012-13, should ideally be in the range of 1:30 or 35 for primary classes. 

Enrolment in schools in 2012-13

The UT Education Department’s Annual Work Plan for 2013-14 obtained under the RTI Act, reveals:

*n Primary class enrolment dips to -3.28 per cent in government schools

* Private schools in the city registered a growth of 3.23 per cent.

Main attractions

Modern technology and English medium learning is attracting parents towards the private schools. There are private schools, which are focusing on aspects like table mannerism right from the nursery classes. Besides, classrooms have become tech-savvy with equal impetus given to manual as well as computer learning.



From schools

Annual function

Chandigarh: The annual function of Moti Ram School, Sector 27, Chandigarh, was organised in the school auditorium with great enthusiasm and fervour. It gave an opportunity to a large number of students to showcase their talent on stage. The action songs, group songs and dances enthralled the audience. Principal S Savant read the annual report highlighting the achievements of the school.

Winter Fiesta 2013

Saint Soldier International School, Sector 28, celebrated ‘Winter Fiesta 2013’, the annual function for the pre-primary students on the school premises. As many as 345 pre-primary students participated in the annual mega event. The students performed on various dance numbers and showcased their talent. The students of KG Class put forth a special performance representing the four seasons i.e. spring, summer, monsoon and winter depicting different moods and myriad colours.

Awareness rally

Students of the GMSSS-26 flagged off a rally for the awareness of criminal law relating to the protection of women. Around 50 students of the school marched through the streets of Police line, Sector-26, Chandigarh, with banners and posters in their hands. They also shouted slogans to create awareness. A speech was delivered on crime against women activities and how they can protect themselves legally.

Fancy dress contest

DC Montessori School organised a fancy dress competition on the school premises for the kindergarten students. It was an exhilarating moment for the students. The little ones were dressed in vibrant colours befitting the themes that touched the hearts of one and all. The students conveyed important messages like ‘Save Girl Child’ through their acts.

Students bring laurels

St Xavier’s Senior Secondary School, Chandigarh, brought laurels to their school by winning the ‘ICSE Inter-School Girls Basketball Trophy 2013’. The event was organised by Strawberry Fields World School, Chandigarh, wherein ICSE schools of the tricity took part.

Spell bee competition

Mohali: Spell bee competition was held at Shishu Niketan, Sector 66, Mohali, for the students of Class II. The main motive of the competition was to inculcate the interest of the students in English and to test their knowledge as well. There were four teams and each team had five students.

Story-writing contest

Oakridge International School will organise a short story writing contest on its campus for the children of tricity on December 15. Principal Pranjala Dutta said the contest is for children aged less than 6 years, 7 to 10 years and 11 to 16 years. The last date for registration is December 12.


The celebrations of 20 glorious years of St Soldier commenced with the inauguration of language lab, auditorium and an excellent exhibition by chief guest RJ Khanderao, regional officer, CBSE. Students of Classes II, III and IV gave a mesmerising performance of Alibaba and the forty thieves-a musical adaptation of the famous tale. The show transported the audience into the land of camels, oasis, sand dunes, palm and date trees. Dressed in alluring Arabian attires, the tiny tots captivated the attention of the audience .

Punjabi quiz

Panchkula: ‘Punjkrit’, a Punjabi and Sanskrit quiz, was organised for Classes VI to IX of St Xavier’s High School. The quiz had thought provoking and gripping rounds. Four teams named Amrita Pritam, Waris Shah, Kalidas and Jayadeva took part in the quiz.

Slogan-writing contest

To aware the growing children about the ill effects of drug abuse, New India School, Sector-15, Panchkula, conducted a quiz, slogan and poster making competition. Students of Classes IX and XI participated in the competition. During the assembly, the students delivered a speech to highlight the danger of drug abuse. — TNS



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 |