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BJP allowed 15 private universities in HP, only 6 inspected by UGC

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corrupt himachal politicians

corrupt himachal politicians

50 bighas sufficient for a campus, then why universities allowed to purchase 600 bighas, 15 private universities were allowed during the BJP regime, only six universities inspected by the UGC, said CM Virbhadra Singh

Shimla-The issue of permission granted to large number of private universities to set up campuses in Himachal Pradesh and land purchased by them, rocked Himachal Assembly today with members questioning the credentials of these universities and the degrees being awarded by them.

Raising the question during Question Hour, former education minister Asha Kumari (Congress) asked whether the degrees being offered by these universities were recognised or they were only “pieces of paper”.

“Are we playing with the future of the students by giving the degrees, which don’t have any value?” she asked.

She wanted to know the parameters for giving permission to private universities to purchase large chunks of land for developing campuses, in relaxation of section 118 of the HP Tenancy and Land Reforms Act, which barred non-agriculturists to purchase any land in the state without government’s permission.

Replying to the question, Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh said, 15 private universities were allowed to open campuses during the BJP regime from Jan 1, 2008 to Dec 31, 2012 and only six universities out of these have been inspected by the University Grants Commission (UGC).

“We have not received any inspection report from the UGC regarding these universities,” he added.

Referring to permissions given for purchase of land to the universities, Asha Kumari alleged that certain universities were permitted to buy huge chunks of land, while most of them were allowed to buy excess land.

“When 50 bighas (one bigha is 0.4 hectare) is sufficient for developing the campus, why some universities were allowed to purchase 600 bighas of land?” she wondered adding that how can these universities retain the excess land and not utilising it for the purpose for which it was ostensibly bought. PTI

Art & Culture

Video: Mega Natti at Kullu Dussehra 2019 Performed by 4,000 Dancers to Send Out Message of Cleanliness & Nutrition

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Kullu Dussehra 2019 Manha Natti

Kullu- International Kullu Dussehra Festival on October 12, 2019, witnessed a traditional dance “Natti” performed by four thousand women at the Dhalpur’s Rath Maidan. It event was named as “Mega Natti or Manha Natti”. Women from various parts of the district including Manali, Sainj, Anni, Banjar etc participated in the dance.  Not only a large number of locals swarmed the Rath Maidan to witness this majestic scene, but visitors from foreign countries also witnessed and captured it in their cameras.

This year’s theme was Swachhta (Cleanliness) and Poshan (Nutrition). These thousands of women, dressed in the traditional attire of Kullu district, danced on the beats of traditional folk songs and instruments for one hour. During the first 25 minutes, ‘Natti’ was performed by Anganwari workers to send out a message on cleanliness.

The tradition of performing “Natti” by a group of thousands of women had begun in 2014. While about six thousand women had participated in ‘Natti’ in 2014, in 2015, 9,892
women had performed during Kullu Dussehra, which was recorded in the Guianese Book of World Records.  

Since 2014, this tradition continues, and every year Mega Natti is organized on different themes. In 2015, the theme was “Save Girl Child.”

Cabinet Minister Govind Singh Thakur also attended the event as the Chief Guest. The Deputy Commissioner, Dr Richa Verma, was also present on the occasion. Both participated in the dance too.

The District Administration has been receiving appreciation for its efforts to highlight the traditional culture of Kullu and the messages of awareness it is delivering through this event.

While Dussehra in other parts of India is celebrated for only one day, in Kullu, the celebrations continue for a week. During this period, approximately five lakh visitors, including domestic and international, attend the weeklong festivity.

 

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Crop Diversification in Himachal Enhanced Crop Production and Farmers’ Income, 2nd Phase of JICA Project to Launch Soon: Govt

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crop diversification project in Himachal Pradesh

Shimla-Crop Diversification Project in Himachal Pradesh under Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has helped in enhancing the crop production and the income of the farmers through vegetable cultivation, said Chief Secretary Dr Shrikant Baldi while interacting with the Mission team of the JICA. The team was headed by Deputy Director, South Asia Takumi Kunitake, which met Baldi on October 11, 2019, to discuss the launching of the second phase of this project in the state.

Baldi told the team that the farmers had been actively involved under this project and they were managing the irrigation schemes at their own. The agriculture department had been successfully implementing this project and all the works were being completed as per the estimated cost.

The efforts would be made to launch the second phase of the crop diversification promotion project soon in all districts of the state for which all the formalities would be completed before the completion of the first phase, Baldi said.

This Mission team was on the tour of various districts of the state to study the positive results of the JICA funded crop diversification promotion project after launching of its first phase in five districts. It also held a discussion regarding launching of the second phase for which the state agriculture department had submitted Rs. 1104 crore project to the government of Japan through the government of India in June 2019.

Baldi stressed that there was a need to provide more irrigational facilities to the farmers and bring more area under vegetable cultivation. He urged the JICA to approve the second phase of this project before completion of the first stage so that the expertise of the available trained staff could be utilised in the next phase as well.

The Mission team apprised that after submission of its report, the government of Japan would take a decision on launching of the second phase. Following it, another Mission would visit Himachal Pradesh to study the detailed project report. Thereafter, the letter of consent would be signed with the India and Japan governments. The team assured that efforts would be made to start the second phase of this project in all districts of the state, for which all the formalities would be finalised before the completion of the first phase.

The Mission team also held detailed discussions with Principal Secretary Onkar Chand Sharma on Thursday. The team visited four out of total five districts included under the first phase of the project (Bilaspur, Hamirpur, Kangra and Mandi districts).

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Video: Leopard in Shimla City Hunts Pet Dog, Caught on CCTV  

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Leopard attack dog in shimla city

Shimla-A CCTV footage of leopard pouncing on a pet dog in Shimla City’s Shanan locality and taking it away appeared on social media on Friday and went viral instantly.

The footage shows a leopard entering a building through the stairs and slowly moving toward the dog that was sleeping right outside a door. About four-minute-long footage shows the leopard making its move rather quietly, taking its own time to get as close as possible to its prey before making that one final move.

The dog sadly couldn’t catch the scent of the leopard and was unaware of the leopard’s presence even as the latter held itself steady only whiskers away from the dog’s neck.

In the next instant, the leopard finally pounces on the dog in a jiffy and grips it by the neck. The dog made some worthless effort to loosen the grip but the leopard had it in his favour.

In all the commotion, by the time occupants of the house woke up and came outside, the leopard was away its prey.

As per the report, the Labrador belonged to the neighbours of the occupants of the house.

DFO, Shimla, said he did not receive a complaint yet, however, a cage would be placed in the locality to catch the leopard. He said the CCTV footage was being assessed.

It’s not the first time that a leopard made a dog its prey. It is pretty common for leopards to hunt stray dogs in the areas adjoining jungles. However, in rare cases, leopards enter buildings and take away pets, just as in this footage. 

 

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