Thursday, January 31, 2013

Twin feat for noble Fazilka

Gaurav Sagar Bhaskar FEROZEPUR:
Hindustan Times, 31 January 2013
Fazilka has eye for both noble work and record.
The youngest district has not only created maximum jobs in the state but also motivated most people for eye donation in the country.During a nationwide survey of eye banks, it came out that Fazilka had the most number of eye donors in the country. This achievement is thanks to Ravi Juneja, who came out with his eye-donation awareness programme three years ago. Because of his effort, 575 people have donated eyes, so far, in the district, bringing the gift of sight to 1,150 people.

"Organisations such as Social Welfare Society and Ram Sharnam have supported the mission," said Juneja. "The youngest eye donor is Ishita, 8." Juneja's team goes around motivating people to pledge eyes for donation after death. Of the eye donations, so far, 307 are from Fazilka, 176 from Jalalabad, and 92 from Abohar.
The motivators, Amrit Lal Kareer, Raj Kishor Kalra, Sandeep Aneja, and Surain Lal Kataria, work 24x7. "The border district of Fazilka, first to guard the country during wars, is proud to have worked on a new, noble frontier during peace time," said Juneja.

"Cheers to the spirit of Fazilka's people, because now they know the art of living even after death," said social worker Navdeep Asija. "The 22nd district of Punjab, carved out only last year, has done something remarkable of its age," said local legislator and state minister Surjit Kumar Jyani.
"The eyes of Fazilka people will never close even after their death," said businessman Vikram Ahuja. "More than 1,100 people are able to see this beautiful world, thanks to highest organ donation from Fazilka," said Asija.

The district gave employment to maximum people under the Mahatma Gandhi Nationa Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MNREGS) of the union government. "The benefit went to 22,297 families and 1.46-lakh women," Basant Garg, deputy commissioner of Fazilka, said on Wednesday.
The new district spent Rs 15 crore under the MNREGS which contributed a lot to the development of villages. The administration built four Rajiv Gandhi Centres at the block level for Rs 25 lakh and began creating another 46 centres in the district, of which 35 are almost complete.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Historic school may soon become history

Praful Chander Nagpal
Fazilka, January 21
The over a century old Arya Putri Pathshala, a pioneering educational institution that has been at the forefront in promoting female literacy in the area, is now on the brink of closure, thanks to the indifference of the successive governments towards the aided schools.The 137 students studying in the school also face an uncertain future.
A historic school of the town, established in 1904, it offered education to thousands of girls in the days when even primary education was considered to be an achievement and a symbol of literacy.
The school catered to the needs of girl students, particularly from the poor families. It is an institution being run by just a teacher who also acts as its principal. This teacher is scheduled to retire in October this year.
The posts of seven teachers, a helper and a peon were sanctioned in 1967 under the grant-in-aid system. But as the teachers started retiring one by one, the posts fell vacant.
Notably, 95 per cent of the grant is offered by the state government and five per cent by the school management. But now, it has become difficult for both to run the school.
The lone teacher, Urmil Grover, has to run the show alone. "It is proving to be difficult to prepare the school report, documents, accounts and other official work in the absence of any other employee. Even a peon has not been deployed to assist in menial jobs," said Grover.
"The government should have taken over Arya Putri Pathshala as a heritage institution. Such an old historic school should have been granted the status of a university by now. But unfortunately, it is on the verge of closure," said Bhupinder Singh, patron, Graduate Welfare Association, Fazilka.

"The government should come forward to save a pioneer institution like Arya Putri Pathshala in the larger interest of the students. If the government contributes its share, the managing committee can run the school efficiently," said Umesh Chander Kukkar, president, Arya Putri Pathshala Managing Committee.

The condition of the aided schools is worsening in the absence of staff and infrastructure in Fazilka town. There are six primary and two high schools in the town that are aided by the government. Only 25 teachers have been imparting education to nearly 4000 students in these eight schools.

"Only the intervention of the government can help the students studying there. Otherwise, after the retirement of the teachers, the schools will be closed and the future of the students will hang in balance. The government should revive the infrastructure of these schools to fulfill its promise of right to education," said the general secretary of the Punjab Government Aided School Teachers and other Employees Union, Ajay Thakral.

Arya Putri Pathshala, established in 1904, offered education to thousands of girls in the days when even primary education was considered to be an achievement and a symbol of literacy.A century down the line, the school is now on the brink of closure, thanks to the indifference of the successive governments towards the aided schools. The 137 students studying in the school also face an uncertain future.The lone teacher running the institution is scheduled to retire in October this year.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

पांच वर्ष की हुई फाजिल्का ईको कैब

हमारे सूत्र, फाजिल्का : दी फाजिल्का ईको कैब्स वेलफेयर सोसायटी के प्रतापबाग में आयोजित वार्षिकोत्सव मेंईको कैब प्रोजेक्ट से जुड़े रिक्शा चालकों मे गर्म वस्त्र वितरित किए गए। कार्यक्रम के मुख्यातिथि डीआइजी अमर सिंह चहल, विशिष्ट अतिथि जिला ट्रांसपोर्ट अधिकारी बलवीर राणा, ट्रक यूनियन अध्यक्ष परमजीत सिंह वैरड़, अकाली नेता नरेश सेतिया व प्रेस कौंसिल के अध्यक्ष प्रफुल्ल नागपाल थे। यह लोइयां इंजीनियर नितिन सेतिया, सनम सेतिया व मास्टर ईशान भास्कर की ओर से दी गई।

ईको कैब के संस्थापक सचिव इजीनियर नवदीप असीजा ने बताया कि फाजिल्का से ईको कैब की शुरुआत पांच साल पहले की गई थी और करीब एक साल पहले दी फाजिल्का ईको कैब्स वेलफेयर सोसायटी का गठन किया गया। फाजिल्का के करीब चार सौ में से दो सौ रिक्शा चालक सोसायटी से जुड़े हुए हैं। ग्रेजुएट्स वेलफेयर एसोसिशन की ओर से रिक्शा चालकों के लिए मेडिकल सुविधा, उनके बच्चों के लिए निशुल्क शिक्षा व कम दरों पर मोबाइल फोन, कपड़ों, जूतों आदि का प्रबंध किया गया है।

मुख्यातिथि डीआइजी चहल ने कहा कि जो रिक्शा चालक सोसायटी से नहीं जुड़े वे भी एकजुट होकर सोसायटी से जुड़कर लाभ उठाएं। वहीं डीटीओ राणा ने कहा कि रिक्शा चालक अपने बच्चों को पूर्ण रूप से साक्षर बनाएं। सचिव नवदीप असीजा ने उपस्थिति का आभार प्रकट किया। इस मौके पर कामरेड शक्ति, राजकुमार सेतिया, लीलाधर शर्मा, एडवोकेट राजेश कसरीजा, गीता साफ्टेक कंप्यूटर्स के निदेशक डा. विनोद जांगिड़, सनम सेतिया, नितिन सेतिया, डा. रजनीश कामरा, लक्ष्मण दोस्त आदि मौजूद थे।

Monday, January 14, 2013

Bansal promises moon for Punjab

Union Railway Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal displayed his benevolent side as he made a slew of promises and announced several big projects for Punjab, a state which he said "never got its due in the past 50 years so far as improving rail network is concerned.

"A Jan-shatbadi from Ferozepur to Delhi will start soon. Even Fazilka will be linked to Delhi. The Bathinda to Delhi train will be routed through Fazilka and I will speak to the defence ministry to seek permission to run night trains on a few routes in the border area of Fazilka."

Speaking at the Maghi Mela conference of Congress, Bansal did not rule out giving some preference to Punjab in the coming rail budget.

He said the rail link between Muktsar and Hazur Sahib will be connected and Muktsar, Fazilka, Gur-har-Sahai and Gidderbaha railway stations will be upgraded.

On the demand of Congress working committee member Jagmeet Brar, the minister announced adding AC coaches in three trains from Malwa area. He added that Ganganagar to Hardwar train will be extended till Rishikesh Bansal said that Punjab can get another rail factory if the government provides the land for it. He said that more foot over bridges can be constructed if the state shares 50 per cent of the cost.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Fazilka ready to tank its water woes

Fazilka's people got a reason to cheer on Sunday when the foundation stones of three water-tank projects were laid in the city. 
The projects worth Rs. 5.70 crore are expected to arrange potable water all year for the city, which now receives it only for seven months. Earlier, a 17-kilometre-long pipeline was laid from Bodhiwala village to Fazilka for Rs. 12 crore to bring drinking water to the city. There is no canal with perennial water in Fazilka, so special permission came from the Rajasthan government to take 7-cusec water a day from the Bikaner Canal (Gang Canal) at Bodhiawala village in Fazilka district.
Irrigation authorities were to release more due water to Rajasthan in lieu of that. As the groundwater in Fazilka contains excess fluoride and is unfit for drinking, in 1998, Surjit Kumar Jiyani, then forest minister, was instrumental in arranging approval for the mega project to fetch water from the Jandwala minor.

The water in it remained for only six months, and the rest of the year, there was no water for Fazilka. Anil Sethi, president of the municipal committee of Fazilka, said of the 7-cusec water arranged, 2 cusecs would go to the army. The municipal committee had contributed 10% money in the project and the rest came from the state government.

Cabinet minister Surjit Kumar Jiyani and deputy commissioner Basant Garg together laid the foundation stones of the water-tank projects.