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Himachal to implement Student Police Cadets scheme in 60 schools

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The HP Government will launch ‘Guddia Helpline’ and ‘Shakti Button Mobile App’  on January 27. Hoshiyar Singh helpline will also be launched soon

Shimla: The schools of Himachal Pradesh Government will soon implement the Student Police Cadet Scheme (SPC), which was first developed and launched in Kerala in 2010.

The scheme is an excellent idea to deal with multi-facet issued that the young generation is facing like the massive rise in drug and substance abuse, inclination towards anti-social tendencies or behaviours that encourages law-defying behaviour instead of law-abiding.

The original aim of the scheme is very noble provided it is not misused as an ideological or communal propaganda to target the adolescence.

Scroll Down to Read More About SPC Scheme

Aided by the Government of India, 60 schools will be covered in a phased manner. Five schools will be selected from each district. Himachal will be the sixth state implement the scheme after Kerala, Gujarat, Haryana, Karnataka, and Rajasthan. 

The directions were issued by the Chief Minister Jairam Thakur in a review meeting of the State Home department over increasing influence of drug mafia and substance abuse by the young generation.

HP Govt review meeting 2018

Why Conviction Rate Under NDPS Act is Low in Himachal?

He sought reasons for less conviction rate under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985. He also ordered a heavy crack-down on the mining mafia and drugs mafia indulged in the peddling of conventional and psychotropic.

Further, the Chief Minister emphasized that the traffic rules and a check on drunken driving and driving while listening to mobiles are dealt with strictness.  

Further, the government, the review meeting, said it will launch ‘Guddia Helpline’ and ‘Shakti Button Mobile App’  on January 27. The app will include a shake-up mechanism that will ensure the mobile doesn’t get disconnected. The government is also working on the  ‘Hoshiar Singh Helpline’.  

Himachal is expected to be the first state to launch 112 as a toll-free number for emergency, ambulance, fire, and police. There is also a goal of start conducting polygraph test in the state within next 100 days.  

Himachal Pradesh has already become the first state to provide mobile tablets in all police stations under Road Accident Data Management System (RADMS) and second in passport verification system.

About SPC

Kerala had launched the project on August 2, 2010, in 127 high schools/higher secondary schools across the State. About 11176 students including both boys and girls were enrolled as Cadets.

Over 250 teachers were trained as school-level Community Police Officers (CPOs). In 2012, the State covered 249 high schools across Kerala with a combined strength of nearly 16,000 SPCs and 500 CPOs.

After witnessing positive feedback, a recommendation was made in the National Police Congress held in Dehradun in 2011 to implement the project in all states. Following it the Home Ministry of India had in July 2017 had directed all states of India to consider implementation in schools in phases.

In its unbiased and non-tempered form, the major objectives of the program are to inculcate a sense of Patriotism, Open-mindedness, Large-heartedness, Inclusiveness, Capability, and Effectiveness (POLICE).

The students could explore and develop their innate capabilities, thereby empower them to resist the growth of negative tendencies such as social intolerance, substance abuse, deviant behavior, and anti-establishment violence. At the same time,  it strengthens within them commitment towards their family, the community, and the environment.

As per the Kerala model of SPC following are the main objectives of this project:

  • To mold a generation of youth who willingly respect and abide by Law, and who practice civic sense, democratic behavior and selfless service to society as the natural way of life.
  • To facilitate development of good health, physical and mental fitness, self-control and discipline in youth, thereby enhancing their capacity for hard work and personal achievement.
  • To enable youth to work with police and other enforcement authorities including Forest, Transport, and Excise in preventing crime, maintaining law and order, promoting road safety, and improving internal security and disaster management.
  • To develop social commitment in youth and empower them against deviant behavior in themselves and others, thereby preventing the growth of social evils such as drug and alcohol abuse, intolerance, vandalism, separatism, and terrorism in society.
  • To enable youth to explore and develop their inner potential in achieving success, by inculcating in them leadership, teamwork skills, innovative thinking and problem-solving ability.
  • To increase knowledge and understanding of effective use of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) among youth, preventing its negative influence and enabling them to benefit from the vast potential of ICT.
  • To motivate youth to develop secular outlook, respect for other’s fundamental rights and willingness to carry out their fundamental duties as enshrined in the Constitution of India by developing in them qualities of Patriotism, Open-mindedness, Large-heartedness, Inclusiveness, Capability, and Effectiveness (POLICE).

Unique Features of SPC Project

  • An association between the educational and security frameworks of a state, that trains and encourages youth to develop respect for law and abiding by law as a way of life.
  • Uses existing network, infrastructure and leadership qualities of Police to supplement the physical, mental and educational development of youth.
  • Empowers school communities to create safe school environments and confident youth willing to react against social evils.
  • Stimulates parents and community leaders to work with police in creating safer communities.

 

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Ruling Govt taking cover of Congress misdeeds to justify Karnataka episode

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https://himachalwatcher.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/Karnatak-governor-decision.jpg

Shimla: Congress party in Himachal Pradesh today staged a protest against the capricious decision of the Governor of Karnataka, Vajubhai Vala, to invite Bhartiya Janata Party to form Government despite the written statement of Congress and Janata Dal (Secular) alliance claiming a clear majority. It has created a constitutional controversy.

If that was not enough, Yeddyurappa swore as the Chief Minister without proving a majority and had even announced waiver of all farm loans of up to Rs 100,000. Governor even appointed the BJP’s K G Bopaiah as pro-tem speaker.

This action of Governor has shattered the belief of those who honoured the constitution and political ethics.

A valid point that the Congress has raised here is that the ruling government did not play by the same rule in Manipur elections. In the 2017 elections, Congress won 28 seats in the 60 member House, BJP had managed to win 21 seats. However, governor Najma Heptulla invited the BJP leaders to form the government and denied Congress a chance to form the ministry.

What’s the biggest security a common man has in a democracy like India? It’s the constitution. This single weapon can set the entire country back on track if the people knew how to use it.

Anyway, politicians are taking care of it for you now. The ruling government has just over-rode the constitution, which is going unnoticed because the majority of the public has no idea about the business going on at the top level of governance.

In the present case, the Supreme Court of India intervened and overruled Governor Vajubhai and asked B S Yeddyurappa to prove his majority in the assembly at 4 pm on Saturday. Otherwise, the Governor had given BJP 15 days for horse trading. The Supreme Court only followed the constitution. The court has also proved the decision was unconstitutional.

It is not that opposition parties have always played fair, but the ruling party is taking unfairness to the next level.

There are only three ways in which BJP can form a government in Karnataka: by convincing elected lawmakers of Congress or JD (S) to resign or make them disappear today before floor test or create defection through horse-trading. Sadly, the Governor listened to the high-command and opted to be part of this game.

Another ironical fact is that BJP is trying to counter the resistance to its game plan by referring to Congress’s decades-old controversial decisions like the emergency imposed in 1975 and taking down BJP governments in four states including Himachal using tactics of defection. This is what the Spokesperson of BJP in Himachal, Shashi Datt Sharma said in a press statement on Friday.

The BJP followers are saying that the party is taking revenge from Congress.

Sharma alleged that Congress has always used politics of repression and at the same time the party is adopting the same tactic.

Why is the ruling government criticising as well adopting the same tactics at the same time? Why take the shield of bad deeds of past governments to justify own misdoings? What would be the difference between two parties then? Why is the public ok with it?

This trend of over-riding the constitution will take a toll on the public. No one is supposed to be above the constitution in India. However, this seems no more a rule of the political game.

One should wonder who will protect honest RTI activists, journalists, judges, or anyone resisting against government’s dictatorship when the constitution mo more has their back.

But, for now, no one is even close to understanding why they should be scared about it.

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Findings of magisterial probe into Nurpur Tragedy exposes HPPWD’s blunder

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Probe report of Nurpur school bus accident

Kangra: The Additional District Magistrate (ADM) has completed the magisterial probe ordered into the school bus accident in Nurpur on April 9, 2018, and submitted the report to the Deputy Commissioner.   

The Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur-led State Government had ordered the inquiry after unrest broke out among the people following the tragedy, which caused loss of 28 people including 24 children.  While 23 had died on the spot, one succumbed to injuries a few days later at a hospital. 

While Hindi and English Dailies told an altogether different story related to the report of the magisterial probe, a Government spokesperson today made some of the original findings public.   

Findings of the magisterial probe into Nurpur School Bus Mishap

1.   The driver was never challaned/charged even once for the offence of over speeding, drunken driving and rash driving. 
2.   The accident did not seem to happen due to any mechanical failure.
3.   The site of the accident was a black spot with loose soil and damaged edges abutting a landslide zone with cliff and did not have any crash barriers and the road formed sort of craters.
4.   The bus should have been on the left-hand side but due to the absence of eyewitnesses, it couldn’t be ascertained how and why the bus went to the right side of the road.
5.   As per a survivor, a 10-year-old, who was sitting on the right side window seat, divulged that a motorcyclist came from opposite direction after which the bus rolled down
6.   Since there was no eyewitness of the accident,  it is believed that just to save the motorcyclist, the driver, in a reflex action,  had negotiated the bus to the right-hand side, misjudging the space on the right-hand side road. He could not have been able to control the bus which had reluctantly rolled down. 
7.   The accident has occurred under unverifiable circumstances. The road was straight, not sloping up or down 
8.   The driver was never seen driving bus in a rash manner and reported to be a mature person
9.   The road on this point is in very poor condition, uneven and forming fatal craters. The edges of the road on this spot are badly broken supported/reinforced with no crash barriers/parapet.

 

What caused misreporting?

Surprisingly, the Dailies reported that the inquiry found a human error on the part of the driver Madan Lal (67).  These reports further said the driver was looking back as children were making noise or suggested that the driver might have dosed-off on a duty, which is not hectic in nature and includes boarding-off children after every 10 minutes.

The road was tip-top and was not in poor condition, these reports said.  It is not clear who fed the media this story.

However, the findings of the report have made it clear that the Public Works Department shares the responsibility for the massacre.

That’s why the government has haphazardly tarred the patch of over one kilometre and constructed new parapets on the spot from where the bus had skid-off the road.

Now, the PWD is also installing crash barriers too.

magisterial probe report in Nurpur Bus accident

Photos: Amar Ujala

Take a look at the two pictures. One of them was taken on the day of the accident and the second one clicked recently and published in the Hindi Daily Amar Ujala in its May 9, 2018, edition. The picture speaks itself. 

At the same time, the parents, based on the said media reports, questioned the findings and demanded a separate, most preferably a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation.

The shattered parents of the 24 children including some who had joined the school a day ago killed in the perhaps one of the most tragic and heart-breaking road accident in Himachal Pradesh.

Most of the kids aged between five years to 10 years and some families lost more than one child, which was the worst part of it. It is too early for children of this age to die a horrible death, which cannot be called an accident in a literal sense.

The mass cremation of small pyres weighed heavy on everyone who keeps a heart.

However, it is to be seen whether the State Government would take a action this time or will opt to save the skin of responsible bureaucrats and just move on like the governments have been doing in previous cases. 

If the Government would not deliver justice to the victims of this massacre by taking action this time, there would be more such tragedies.

In fact, the reason the people keep dying in road accidents or due to jaundice outbreaks is that no action is ever taken against the responsible government officials, especially the bureaucrats.

In case the Government chose to patronize the sinful officials, the public must not remain silent this time.  

We believe the mass cremation of small pyres is too heavy to be overlooked for anyone who keeps a heart.   

Top Photos: Amar Ujala

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Amid Shimla city’s water-crisis, MC alleged of putting people on hold for Hotels, VIP areas under central zone

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Shimla city's water crisis

Shimla: Amid Shimla Municipal Corporation’s poor response to acute water crises in the city, the allegations have appeared that the VIP areas and hotels under the central zone are being given priority in the distribution of water. The tanks in VIP areas and hotels were full while the commoners were put on hold for them.

Opposed to equal distribution of the available supply, on Tuesday, as per the May 09, 2018, edition of a Hindi Daily and other media reports, the SMC supplied water to localities under central zone like the Mall Road, Ridge, Lower Bazaar, Ram Bazaar, Middle Bazaar, and some areas of Sanjauli. The reports alleged that these areas house majority of hotels, VIP residents, and officials.

Even BJP’s own Ward Councilors are now feeling agitated over the poor management of the SMC under the command of new Mayor. The people are questioning whether the Mayor and Deputy Mayor possess enough knowledge about managing a city with 1.70 lakh population?  

However, these Councilors are not able to muster enough courage to criticize their own party.  

The manifesto of the Bhartiya Janata Party for the SMC elections in 2017 had promised betterment in the water supply. It was one of the most important agenda before the elections.  

However, the situation has become so ugly that public toilets in the city were locked as there was no water for cleaning.  The government, as well as private offices, are also bearing the brunt of SMC’s miss-management.

For last two weeks, the people have no option but to buy water even for drinking. The SMC is receiving over 50 calls per day seeking supply through water-tankers.

The peak tourist season has begun on a bad note for Shimla. The hospitality industry is also surviving on either SMC’s alleged favouritism or through private tankers.

Betterment of Water-Supply in BJP’s Manifesto for SMC Elections  

The party had promised in the manifesto that the leakage in the main pipelines of the water supply schemes would be fixed to improve water supply. Natural resources would be cleaned and used to supplement the main water supply. The BJP has promised to cut water-bills and that the water would be lifted from Kol Dam to fulfil the demand of water in the city.

Unfortunately, a large amount of water is either wasted due to leakage in pipelines that awaits repair and water-tanks in the city including those of residential, commercial and government buildings. The water-tanks of the SMC can still be seen overflowing.

The State High Court has also noted that either water is waste in leakage in supply pipelines or being stolen through illegal connections. 

The supply to the city has dropped down to 23 – 27 MLD per day against the demand of about 45 MLD per day.  About 10 MLD is wasted due to the leakage.  In times of water-crisis, there is no effort to encourage people to not overlook leakages in their tanks or pipelines.

Rainwater harvesting is not even in the SMC books. 

The SMC has faced water crises earlier too, however,  but nothing was learnt to deal with water-shortage in future. Moreover, the formation of Shimla Jal Prabandhan Nigam Limited (SJPNL) will take its time.     

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