Thursday, June 21, 2007

They are demolishing schools for malls

Statesman News Service BHOPAL, Jun 20:

Schools are being demolished in Madhya Pradesh to make way for shopping malls and commercial complexes. For the people of Bhopal, Sardar Patel School in Tin Shed locality here has been a temple of learning for the last 40 years. Now the school is being demolished so that a shopping mall can be constructed in its place. “I can only say that the decision to demolish the school has been taken by the state government. I am not sure which department gave the order or who will construct the mall,” a senior official of the education department of Madhya Pradesh told The Statesman on the condition of anonymity. “We received the order from the collector’s office,” he said. “The land over which the school was constructed belongs to the state government and it has the right to use the land in any way it likes,” said the official.

The reason why only Sardar Patel School was chosen is very clear to Mr Avnish Mishra who was once a student of the school. “Tin Shed is the heart of this city. Slowly it is becoming the commercial centre of Bhopal. But there is no place for shopping malls or commercial complexes. Builders and realtors had their eyes on the land of the school for many years. Now they have been able to grab the land worth crores of rupees,” he said. “The school occupies an area of six thousand square feet and that is a quite big area for constructing a shopping mall,” he said. According to him, the school catered to the needs of several poor families. “Students from poor families will have to suffer now, especially those who cannot afford to travel by bus up to schools,” he said. The present strength of the school is around 1000.

They will be accommodated in Nutan Subhash School in the new session beginning shortly. Mr LS Baghel, commissioner of the education department of the state said that classrooms were being constructed in Nutan Subhash School. “When construction of the commercial complex is complete, we will see that if there is any space left for the school. If space is left we will get a new school building constructed to see that students don’t suffer,” said Mr Baghel. But he was not able to say why an existing school was at all being demolished.

“The state government is hand in glove with the builders and realtors. So such things are likely to happen. Who bothers if a shopping mall comes up at the cost of education,” said an official of Sardar Patel School. “On one hand the government is talking of educating children on the other hand a functional school is being demolished,” he said. He said the act of the state government was vicious considering the fact that Madhya Pradesh fared poorly as far as education was concerned according to a survey conducted by the National University Educational Planning and Administration. “Take Guna district as an example –there, around 15 per cent of the schools do not have blackboards, 14.3 per cent are single room schools and 12.5 do not even have a separate building. In Indore, the biggest city of MP, 43 per cent of the schools do not have blackboards,” he said. “All claims of the state government that it is serious about education are farce,” he said. But Sardar Patel School is not the only school that has been levelled to the ground. Kamla Nehru School, another popular school in Tin Shed locality will soon be bulldozed to pave way for another shopping mall.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Man failed 39 times in high school

A 73-year-old man who failed his 10th grade high school exams for the 39th time vowed Friday to try again next year in the hopes that an education will improve his job and marriage prospects. Shivcharan Jatav, a farmer from the desert state of Rajasthan in western India, had no formal education as a child. He has been trying to pass the exams since 1969, when an army recruiter told him it would improve his chances of being accepted into the military.

“Since then I have been trying to pass this examination, but without any success," Jatav said, days after receiving the bitter news that he had failed again. Jatav passed only one subject — the ancient language of Sanskrit — and he said he scored just 103 out of a total of 600 in the examinations.

Even though he is too old to join the army he has kept at it, hoping to become a more eligible bachelor. “I could not get married as the girls told my family members that I was not properly educated. It’s my fate that deprived me of education and a married life," he said. Still, he has no regrets. “I am a happy and contented person," said Jatav.

source from yahoo /

Friday, June 15, 2007

India's first tribal university in Madhya Pradesh

The rich tribal art, culture, language, customs and even medicine systems are set to get a major fillip as the central government Friday gave its consent to establishing a tribal university in Madhya Pradesh. The Indira Gandhi National Tribal University in Amarkantak district of the state will come up with funding from the department of higher education through the University Grants Commission (UGC), like other Central Universities.

The initial financial requirement of the proposed varsity is estimated at Rs.600 million and a recurring expenditure of Rs.120 million annually.'The objects of the university include inter-alia, promoting studies and research in tribal art, culture, tradition, language, custom, medicinal systems, forest based economic activities, including special studies in the flora and fauna, and advancements in technologies relating to natural resources of the tribal areas,' Information and Broadcasting Minister P.R. Dashmunsi said after a cabinet meeting.

It would ensure establishment of a teaching and affiliating University for facilitating and promoting avenues of higher education and research facilities for the tribal population of the country. According to the human resource development ministry, the management of the varsity shall, as far as possible, be consistent with the special nature of the institution with adequate number of members of the executive council, academic council and the college development council and other bodies earmarked for persons from amongst the Scheduled Tribes.

The ministry officials said the university would cater to the specific educational needs of the tribal population in the predominantly tribal areas comprising parts of Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Orissa, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra and Gujarat. Similarly, an adequate number of seats in the matter of admission, of posts in the matter of employment, and other benefits shall be earmarked for the community.Apart from affiliating colleges, the varsity will have the power to establish its own regional centres in tribal areas. There will be at least one school in every regional centre to serve as a model school for the region, from where the tribal students would be expected to join the local colleges or the university.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Is there Crisis in space ? Pray for Sunita & crew

Is there a crisis in space. Space Shuttle Atlantis' return has been delayed again. This time the problem is a failure of Russian computers which control the international space station's positioning. Crippling computer flaw presents new threat to Sunita William and crew. Computer flaw aboard space station could force Sunita to vacate station. Leaving space station for Atlantis not seen as a viable option now. Tear in Atlantis thermal shield has deemed it unfit to return to earth. Atlantis's return to earth delayed to allow crew to repair tear in thermal shield. Meanwhile, Atlantis astronauts have completed a second space walk, to retract a solar array on the International Space Station. Atlantis' mission, originally scheduled for 11 days, was extended by two days already so that astronauts can go on a spacewalk to repair a thermal blanket covering an engine pod that peeled up during launch. The third space walk is now set for Friday.

It is some days now, Indian-American astronaut Sunita Williams and her colleagues have been battling the elements to repair a thermal blanket which peeled off an engine pod of the space shuttle Atlantis on its journey to bring her back to earth. Sunita, who has already spent a record six months on board the ISS, and others have now extended their space sojourn by a few more days to attend to this problem.

The world is watching the courageous salvage operation underway in space. The world is also sending its wishes to the brave crew out there as they push back the frontiers, and prays for their safe return. Now send your prayers for the safe return of Sunita Williams and the other astronauts

Monday, June 04, 2007

Provide railway concession to HIV patients: HC tells Centre

In a recent case Delhi High Court directed the Centre to take an early decision for granting railway concession to the patients suffering from HIV AIDS as many of them travel to various places for availing treatment. A division bench of Chief Justice M K Sharma and Justice Sanjeev Khanna asked the Central Government to consider on priority basis the proposition for 75 percent railway concession to AIDS patients in the country. "Centre should give concession to HIV affected people as AIDS fall under the category of "chronic deseases" like TB," The court observed while hearing a PIL seeking direction to the Ministry of Railways to provide concession to the patients. The court in its last hearing had directed centre`s counsel to seek instruction from the government over the issue and inform it by today. A PIL was filed by the Delhi network of positive people, an NGO, stating that people suffering from HIV AIDS deserved to travel different HIV centres, set up by National Aides Control Organisation (NACO), to avail Antiretroviral Treatment (ATR) at subsidized rates. Thousands of people in the country are suffering from AIDS and there are seven ATR centres in different states inclduing UP, Bihar, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan, the petitioner said. The patients should get railway concession as they have to travel long distance for the treatment, the petitioner added. The court fixed August 29 as the next date of hearing of the case.