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In Pictures –Shimla Inter-School Declamation and Slogan Writing Contest and Winners

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Where-are-our-parks-and-playgrounds,-ask-children-of-Shimla-from-Govt.

SHIMLA- On Friday last week, children of Shimla town took first step to raise their voice for a very basic as well as essential amenity – public parks, recreational space or space to play. The lack of public parks and playgrounds in Shimla’s growing concrete jungle found expression in the inter-school declamation and slogan writing competition held at the Amphitheater, Shimla Ridge on Friday.

About 21 speakers from about 11 prestigious schools of Shimla made the event successful. The topic of the competition was “Parks/Playgrounds in Shimla for Children – Indifferent Attitude of the Administration”.

The participant schools included Chapslee School, Laureate Public School: Mohit, Apurva Jhagta, Himalyan Public School, JCB Khalini, St Edwards, Portmore Swaran Public School, St Thomas, Auckland House Girls, DAV New Shimla.

Please, scroll down to read about results and winners.

The event was organized by Vivek Mohan and Keekli, a weekly newspaper. The organizers also included Editor Vandana Bhagra and contributor Ritanjali Hastir. Himachal Watcher had the pleasure of collaborating with the organizers as the media partner.

Suman Rawat, an Arjuna Award winner athlete from Himachal Pradesh, and Vivek Mohan, a National Award winner filmmaker from Shimla, were judges for the contest. The Deputy Advocate General Vinay Sharma was present as the chief guest.

The topic was such that the children, along with their academic training, received an opportunity to know what basic rights mean and role of district administration, thus, government in ensuring protection of these rights. It was inspiring to see children pointing out lack of vision in political leaders and administrators due to which Shimla is now plagued by haphazard and unplanned construction. Sadly, speakers said, the government has entirely omitted incorporation of public parks and playgrounds and blindly encouraging construction of only multi-story complexes and commercial structures.

Part-I-Watch speakers at ‘Shimla Inter-School Declamation Competition’ Amphitheater –

Part-II-Watch speakers at ‘Shimla Inter-School Declamation Competition’ Amphitheater

The speakers mentioned how lack of outdoor spaces can affect over-all wellbeing and personality development in children, how gadgets are replacing culture of outdoor playing, how children feel inclined towards substance abuse as a mean of recreation, and how children are deprived of learning important lesson in team-work, leadership, competence, social engagement etc.

Similarly, in ‘Slogan Writing’ contest, the participant schools conveyed the same message through eye catching slogans over beautifully painted charts. The slogans were judged by Vivek Mohan.

Watch Winners of Shimla Inter-School Declamation and Slogan Writing Contest

Not only the students, but the Chief Guest and Judges spoke their heart and supported the children in their demand. J R Nanda, a senior citizen and a true Samaritan, recalled days from his childhood when almost every house built during British rule had a tennis court. He recited how the government allowed reconstruction over these courts as well as any space it could find to pile up bricks and sand. Everyone applauded organization of such a wonderful event and encouraged children except one of the judges, Suman Rawat.

Suman Rawat, in a very strange stance, labeled the topic as irrelevant and demands for parks and playground as impractical. She launched sarcastic attack on the participants. She said that the general knowledge of every participant was zero and claimed that the city has sufficient grounds. She blamed children for not coming ahead to play and left no stone unturned to discourage children from taking up this issue. She even went to question education provided in even most prestigious schools of Shimla and said that it’s easy to cram a speech than actually form solutions in response to this demand. She appeared agitated over the fact that in the topic related to sports and playground, she wasn’t recognized by anyone. However, later the chief guest answered her well and boosted up children, who were discouraged by Suman Rawat. Moreover,Vivek Mohan also expressed concern over lethargy of media that failed to highlight Rawat and her achievement.

The winners were awarded by the chief guest and all participants were given participation certificates. The vote of thanks was offered by Vandna Bhagra that was followed by honoring the organizers, judges, and the chief guest. With distribution of refreshments, it concluded on a very positive note.

 

Results of English Declamation Contest

First: Anmolika Sood, DAV New Shimla

Second: Riya Saran, Portmore

Third: Mrinal Joshi, Swaran Public School

 

Results of Hindi Declamation Contest

First: Aakrit Sharma, DAV New Shimla

Second: Sashantika, Portmore

Third: Chahat, JCB Public School

Consolation: Megha Jasmal, Swaran Public School

Winning Entry in Slogan Writing Contest

First in slogan writing: Aastha Dangi (DAV New Shimla)

Second Winning Entry in Slogan Writing Contest

Second in slogan writing: Sneha Thakur (St Thomas School)

Third Winning Entry in Slogan Writing Contest

Third in slogan writing : Prasidhi (kendriya vidyalaya Jakhoo)

Decla

All Photos: Tarun Sharma and Dheeman Gaud

Videos: Himachal Watcher

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 7 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 world around him in his DSLR lens.

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Foundation Stone of HP Central University in Kangra laid, Will Be Ready in 3 Years, Says Govt

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HP Central University In Dehra, Kangra district

Kangra-The foundation stone of the Central University of Himachal Pradesh at Dehra in Kangra district was laid today by the Union Human Resource Minister Prakash Javadekar and Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur.

Prakash Javadekar said that the forest clearance for construction of this University was also accorded when he was the Union Forest and Environment Minister. The State Government deposited Rs 6 crore under CAMP Act for forest clearance.

As per the official information released, the Central University will have two campuses at two different locations. The first Campus would be at Jadrangal near Dharamshala, which would be spread in an area of 750 hectares. The second campus would be established at Dehra in an area of 287 hectares.

The Government said about Rs.1300 crore would be spent on construction of both these campuses and the same would be completed in the next three year, the government said. These campuses would be spread in an area of about 1000 hectare, making it one of the biggest University of the region.

The Government said that an amount of Rs.7044 crore was being spent on the education sector during the current financial year and a provision of Rs.7600 crore had been made for the next financial year.

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Watch: IIT Mandi Researchers Use ‘Pollutant Diesel Emissions’ For Water Treatment

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IIT mandi uses diesel soot sponge for water treatment

Mandi- Researchers at Indian Institute of Technology Mandi have used the soot emitted by diesel engines to mop up oil and other organic pollutants from water. Their work has been recently published in the journal – Environmental Science and Pollution Research.

Although diesel engines are known to be superior to other internal combustion engines in terms of lower fuel consumption and better energy release efficiencies, they are associated with significant amounts of particulate emissions.

 The particulates largely comprise soot, which is formed in the fuel rich regions of the burning diesel jets. Increasing environmental concerns and stringent emission standards require the development of both conventional and unconventional means for reducing soot.

 Studies in this area have focused on improving the engine design and incorporating special filters and treatment units at the exhaust end of the vehicle.

Dr. Rahul Vaish, Associate Professor, School of Engineering at IIT Mandi and his research students Vishvendra Pratap Singh and Moolchand Sharma have looked at this problem from a different perspective.

They rationalized that while it is impossible to bring down soot emissions to zero, it is possible to find a use for the soot produced.

 Carbon species such as carbon nanotubes, graphene, and candle soot have shown their potential in many fields,

says Dr. Vaish,

so why not automobile soot?

It is known that carbon species can absorb various organic pollutants in water. Carbon nanotubes, filter paper, mesh films, and graphene have been used for removing oil from water. Given that the typical carbon content of soot is between 90 and 98%, the team explored the possibility of using this pollutant as an adsorbent of oil and organic contaminants in water.

 There is a rapid increase in oil and chemical leakages from oil tankers or ships and industrial accidents with expansion in oil production and transportation in the last few decades,

the authors write in their recently published paper, justifying the need for new materials to mop up oil and prevent catastrophic environmental outcomes.

 In an earlier study, Dr. Vaish used candle soot to successfully remove two cationic dyes, rhodamine B and methylene blue from water, thereby showing the possibility of organic from water thereby showing the possibility of organic chemical removal by soot. Extending this earlier work, the research team incorporated diesel exhaust soot into polymer sponges to study their capability to adsorb oil and other organic materials from water. This hydrophobic sponge showed high absorption capacity for various oils, without the need for complex pretreatments.

The researchers found that the highest oil absorption capacity was 39 g/g for engine oil. An interesting observation was that the sponges were recyclable and retained 95% efficiency even after 10 cycles.

The diesel soot impregnated sponge could also absorb pollutants like methylene blue, ciprofloxacin, and detergent from the water. This has practical implications.

Apart from oil spills, organic pollutants such as traces of dyes and detergent coming from industries and households are a major contributor to water pollution,

says Dr. Vaish.

The soot impregnated sponge can help in developing cost-effective remediation processes for common domestic and industrial pollutants. Such a development would additionally serve to repurpose automobile waste.

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Campus Watch

Last date for Admissions to UHF Diploma extended

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Nauni University Admissions Date for Diploma

Solan: The Dr YS Parmar University of Horticulture and Forestry, Nauni has extended the last date to apply for its one-year Diploma in Fruit and Vegetable Processing and BakeryDiploma in Fruit and Vegetable Processing and Bakery products, informed the Public Relation Officer, Suchet Attri.

The last date to apply for the diploma run by the Department of Food Science and Technology of the university has now been extended to January 29. Earlier the last date for application was January 17. The counselling for the diploma programme will now be held on January 31.

The PRO also informed that this year, the university has also reduced the fee charged for the diploma to Rs 5000. Earlier, the fee for this diploma was Rs 20,000. The decision was taken to ensure that more and more people can apply for the programme, he said.

The minimum educational qualification for this diploma programme is Class 10+2 with at least 40 per cent with no age cap for admission. A total of 35 seats are available in the programme. Prospectus and application form can be downloaded from the university website (www.yspuniversity.ac.in)

The PRO further informed that the programme has also been linked to the Skill Development Allowance scheme of the Government of Himachal Pradesh. Any person enrolled in the programme can also apply for this allowance.

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