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Obedient HPU administration on ‘National Unity Day’

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HPU Pledge

SHIMLA- Today, for the first time, 31 October was celebrated as the birth anniversary of less known accomplice of Mahatma Gandhi – Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel- the ‘Iron Man of India’. Earlier, for 29 years, it was Indira Gandhi who was remembered on this day. Also, the date goes back to anti-sikh riots of 1984 in which over 3,000 people were killed (mostly sikhs). The families of the victims are still wandering for justice.

As directed by the PM, like every institute or office, Himachal Pradesh University employees and students, who appeared to have been dragged to the VC office, read a text on a paper written under the title, “Rashtriya Ekta diwas Pledge’ (National Unity Oath). Not more than 100 people gathered including teaching, non-teaching staff and students.

HPU 31 October

It’s almost two months that HPU students are suffocating due to the strict police vigilance under section 144. The democratic values and principles were torn apart by the Govt. by misusing the state police. Even the dignity of female students was literally abused by Shimla Police under the command of Shimla Police SP DW Negi. What kind of unity pledge going to change the things when the Govt. is turning our own police against us?

However, as BJP leaders claimed, the purpose was to remind of the need to revive, reaffirm the strength and resilience of India. Although, Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel was a less known INC leader, but still the congress leaders aren’t happy with the ignorance towards the day when the first and only female PM of India was assassinated.

Pledge HPU

Media, as always, lingered to the one in power and obeyed the directions. They pushed Indira Gandhi to back- pages. With plane faces, devoid of any intrinsic desire to do so, almost everywhere the day was projected to have been dedicated to the Iron Man of India. Narendra Modi is desperate to replace the predators feeding on Gandhian name with his own. He had announced a budget of 2 billion rupees to build a colossal statute of Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel. We would consider it a waste in a nation where one-third of children and their mothers are victims of malnutrition. Statues always tempted politicians more than the suffering of the people.

Hypocrisy is the irony of our nation. It’s a political legacy. For example, the new Govt. is claiming to cut down the wastage of money on Govt. officials, political leaders, and their lavishness using public money, and on the same time, today, 100-crore were spent on the oath ceremony of Maharashtra’s new CM, Devendra Fadnavis, at Wankhede Stadium. The PM himself attended the ceremony with other 30,000 present at the stadium. When the opposition criticized this step, BJP justified it by mocking at how Congress looted the state of decades, like it’s their turn now.

Remembrance of the dead with a holiday is commonplace in India. One is reverence of ancestors long after they are dead, but there are some names which are highlighted for their contribution to the struggle against British colonial rule. Some of them are being exploited, squeezed to extreme to juice up political carriers.

However, this year, the trend is set in motion for a change. More than respect and honoring the idols, it’s more a psychological game of association of these idols with specific group of people.

No doubt, the freedom fighters must be remembered for what they gave us – freedom from slavery to the British, but we must not let politicians exploit them for their party or personal interests.

The comprehension of the concept behind celebrating the days after great names has always and is still missing among Indian folks. We are quite sure that no political party, especially the one in power, would actually ever mean to inspire people to unite, because if it happens, then it’ll be a great trouble for corrupt politicians. So, the ‘Nation Unity Day’ or National Unity Run, or the pledge isn’t going to change anything unless and until we wake up from the illusionary world of political dramas.

More than following ceremonies, we need to peep deep into the abyss and try to figure out how to best use the life -experiences of these great leaders.

Photo Credits: Tarun Sharma

Madan has studied English Literature and Journalism from HP University and lives in Shimla. He is an amateur photographer and has been writing on topics ranging from environmental, socio-economic, development programs, education, eco-tourism, eco-friendly lifestyle and to green technologies for over 9 years now. He has an inclination for all things green, wonderful and loves to live in solitude. When not writing, he can be seen wandering, trying to capture the world around him in his DSLR lens.

Campus Watch

Himachal Shuts Down All Educational Institutes A Week After Re-Opening 

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Himachal Pradesh Educational Institutes closed again

Shimla-A week after re-opening for regular classes, the Himachal Pradesh Government had to shut down all government and private schools, colleges, ITIs, polytechnics, engineering colleges and coaching institutes from 11th to 25th November 2020, for students, teaching and non-teaching staff amid alarming surge in COVID-19 cases and fatalities.

The decision was taken in a Cabinet meeting held on November 10, 2020. It’s pertinent to mention that the state government had re-opened the school for the students of 9th to 12th from November 2. However, during the past few days, hundreds of teachers and several students tested positive in various schools, especially in Mandi district.

Meanwhile, the unpreparedness of the state government came to light as the largest medical facility – IGMC Shimla- ran out of space in isolation wards for COVID-19 patients. It’s packed to full capacity. Reportedly, another dedicated COVID-19 hospital – DDU Shimla- was also running out of space. The government has also failed to establish make-shift hospitals, which it had been promising for the past couple of months. However, Chief Minister Jairam Thakur had been maintaining in media statements that the government was prepared for all eventualities.

Questions have also been raised over the quality of protective gear provided to health staff as several officials tested positive at a COVID-19 hospital in Mandi district.

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Nauni Varsity Session 2020-21: List of Selected Candidates for UG Courses Released

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UHF Nauni UG Course Selection list 2020-21

Solan: Dr. YS Parmar University of Horticulture and Forestry, Nauni has released the college and discipline wise list of selected candidates, both for normal and self-financing seats for admission to BSc Horticulture, BSc Forestry and B Tech Biotechnology for academic session 2020-21. The list of selected candidates, college and discipline wise has been prepared on the basis of counselling proformas and the relevant reservation documents submitted by the candidates through email. 

The selected candidates have been advised to deposit the admission fee in the respective bank accounts of the colleges on any day between 9-12 November. Presently due to COVID, the concessional fee is being charged from the candidates. The candidates will have to send a copy of the bank receipt no/ screenshot of the fee deposited online on the email of the colleges mentioned in the notification. Non-deposit of the fee within the due date will result in the cancellation of the claim for admission.

The candidates are advised to go through the detailed notification uploaded on the university website. The concessional fee details, bank account numbers of respective colleges along with email address has been given in the list. In view of COVID, the classes of the students will be conducted through online mode till further orders.  

The selected candidates shall have to report to the dean of the concerned college along with original documents(list mentioned in the notification) as and when directed by the way of a notice on the university website.

 

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Himachal’s Schools/Colleges to Re-Open for Regular Classes from Today  

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Himachal's schools re-open for regular classes

Shimla-Schools in Himachal Pradesh are today re-opening for regular classes after remaining closed for over seven months due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The decision was taken to allow regular classes for the students of Class 9th to 12th  in the last meeting of the Cabinet. However, online classes would also continue. Regular classes would also be resumed in the colleges from today onwards.

The SOPs have also been issued in this regard. According to the SOPs, a written consent of parents to send their children to schools would be mandatory, and the students can opt to study online if they do not wish to attend the school physically.

Also, schools can’t enforce attendance on students. In case the number of students is more than that of the capacity of classrooms, then principals/headmasters have been given liberty to conduct classes on alternate days to maintain social distancing.

Meanwhile, COVID-19 continues to tighten grip on the state as eight deaths were reported on November 1, 2020. Over two dozen staff including Dr Janak Raj, MS, also tested positive at the IGMC Shimla. Earlier, 22 school teachers in Mandi district and Education Minister had also tested positive.

Till November 1, 2020 (9 PM), the official statistics of the state Health Department showed the total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases to be 22264, of which 2973. A total of 320 persons had lost their lives due to COVID-19. 

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