Shimla– It is not less than an embarrassment for the Himachal Pradesh Government and the HP University that even disabled students are compelled to fight for their rights. The apathy of the system is such that these students are not getting any relief despite orders of the State High Court to reserve no less than five percent seats for disabled at higher educational institutes.
This indifference toward such students is apparent from the fact that the accessible library for the disabled students of Himachal Pradesh University, which was inaugurated by Chief Minister Jairam Thakur on July 22, 2019, doesn’t even have a washroom and students, especially visually impaired girls, are facing difficulties. It was revealed by the disabled students of HPU in a memorandum submitted to the Governor and Chancellor, Bandaru Dattatreya, on December 13, 2019.
It is not shocking then that the Chief Minister inaugurated a library facility for the disabled students without basic facilities because it was merely a formality performed in response to an order of the State High Court passed in a PIL filed by a disabled student, Banita Rana, in 2014.
Victims of this apathy on part of HPU’s administrative officials, the Disabled Students and Youth Association (DSYA), Himachal Pradesh, approached the Governor. The Association alleged that the HPU Administration is blatantly violating not only the educational rights of the disabled students but also not following the orders of the State High Court issued in November 2018.
Research Scholars, Mukesh Kumar and Saveena Jahan, Convener and Co-Convener of DSYA respectively, alleged that the Registrar, HPU, Ghanshyam Chand, disregarded orders of the court to reserve five percent seats for the disabled students during admissions. He went on with admissions for the session 2019-20 without implementing the order in any of the courses, they alleged. The disabled students were also not given this reservation while allotting hostel facility.
A visually impaired student, Indu Kumari, native of Chamba, had filed a PIL, while hearing this petition on November 5, 2018, the court had directed all institutions of higher education to reserve five percent seats for the disabled students.
“Therefore, we dispose of this petition by directing that all institutions of higher education and other higher educational institutions receiving aid from the government in the State of Himachal Pradesh, shall not only reserve not less than 5% seats for persons with benchmark disabilities but said reservation to the extent of 5% shall be provided each time when the institution initiates the process of admission to academic courses,”
the court had directed in its judgement.
The Registrar was also a party in the said PIL, despite that, the Association said, the Registrar is not afraid of attracting contempt of court by not implementing the order.
Further, the Association also complained that the said accessible library lacks several basic and necessary facilities.
“This accessible library in its new shape was inaugurated by the Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur on July 22, 2019. The disabled students who come to this section of the library are still deprived of the necessary equipment including talking software, Internet (LAN) connection, sufficient compute-chairs, tables, newspapers, e-journals of different subjects, periodicals, good quality heater and curtains on the windows,”
The Association also alleged that a budget to the tune of Rs 5 lakh, which was sanctioned and mandated to purchase talking software for visually impaired students, is about to laps since the Registrar did not make any purchase.
The Association also alleged that out of a total of 17 computers installed in the accessible library, only four computers are in working condition and have the necessary software installed.
The Association also complained that a Junior Office Assistant (JOA), who was appointed in the library to assist the blind and other visually impaired students, was transferred on September 24, 2019. Since the transfer, no replacement was provided and the library is without a JOA for the last three months.
The students alleged that the Registrar is not paying heed to the directions of the Vice-Chancellor as well.
The Association urged the Governor to look into the matter and protect the legal rights of the disabled students.
The Association also requested to provide a recourse room for the visually impaired students in the varsity where they can access reading devices, make recordings and books in Braille.
Nauni Varsity Scholar Naincy Bags Scholarship to Pursue PhD in France
Solan: Naincy Sagar, an alumna of Dr. YS Parmar University of Horticulture and Forestry, Nauni has bagged a fellowship for pursuing PhD from France. Nancy has reached France and will be pursuing PhD in Forest Genetics from the University of Orléans under INRAE fellowship. INRAE is France’s National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food and Environment.
Naincy has completed her BSc Forestry from College of Horticulture and Forestry (COH&F), Neri in 2018 and MSc Forest Biology and Tree Improvement and Genetic Resources from UAS, Dharwad, under ICAR’s National Talent Scheme. Before leaving for France last week, Naincy was working as a Junior Research Fellow in a research project at COH&F, Neri.
She had applied for a PhD with a scholarship in Forest Genetics which was advertised by INRAE. Naincy was successful in the interview and was awarded a fellowship for three years for pursuing PhD at the University of Orléans. During the course of the PhD, she will receive a total scholarship of around Rs 70 lakh along with medical reimbursement. Naincy will be working on forest tree larch species in the Project titled ‘Vigour at what cost? ‘Trade-off’ of hybrid vigour in Larch-Phenological, morphological and physiological determinants of hybrid superiority in Larix X eurolepis’ with a team of 20 scientists of Joint Integrated Biology Research Unit having expertise in genetics, genomics and physiology for the enhancement of tree and forest diversity
Dr. Parvinder Kaushal, Vice-Chancellor of the university spoke to Naincy via web conferencing and congratulated her. Dr. Kaushal, who has also done his doctorate from France, shared some tips and suggestions. He asked Naincy to explore this opportunity to learn about new cultures along with doing research that could help to enhance and conserve forest wealth in the future.
Naincy expressed gratitude towards her father Satya Prakash Sagar (Retd. SDO BSNL) and mother Monika Sagar, who is working as SDO in BSNL for their continuous support for higher studies. She also thanked Vice-Chancellor Dr. Parvinder Kaushal, Dean Dr. Kamal Sharma and Dr. Dushyant Sharma, Project Investigator and all the university staff for their support and guidance. The university administration, Dean of COH&F Neri congratulated Naincy and wished her success.
HP University Extends College Admission Date for 2021-22 Session Till Oct 25
Shimla-Dates for admissions to undergraduate courses for the session 2021-22 in colleges affiliated to Himachal Pradesh University has been extended, which has come as a relief to not only those students who were seeking fresh enrollments in the first year but also to the students of the second and third year.
The varsity informed that the decision was taken after considering requests received from various students regarding the same.
Now, willing students can apply for enrollment in both government and private colleges till 5 PM, October 25, 2021.
This extension of date would benefit students who recently passed supplementary exams or those students of the second and third-year who had missed admission due to delay in declaration of their previous results.
UHF Nauni Extends Admission Dates for UG, PG, PhD Till Oct 18
Solan– Dr. YS Parmar University of Horticulture and Forestry (UHF), Nauni, has extended the last date for applying to various Undergraduate, Postgraduate and Doctoral programmes in Horticulture, Forestry, Biotechnology, Agribusiness and Business Management. Applicants can submit their complete online application on the university’s admission portal till 18th October.
The normal seats of BSc (Hons) Horticulture, BSc (Hons) Forestry and B Tech Biotechnology will be filled on the basis of scorecard of ICAR-AIEEA (UG) 2021.
Admissions to MSc, MBA (Agribusiness) and PhD (for normal and self-financing seats) will also be conducted on the scorecard of ICAR AIEEA (PG) and AICE-JRF/SRF respectively. Students who have appeared in the ICAR-AIEEA 2021 for UG and PG, or AICE-JRF/SRF examination and are interested in seeking admission, such students must fill the university online application form before 18th October. Undergraduate aspirants who have not appeared in the ICAR test can however apply for the self-financing seats for B Sc and B Tech Biotechnology programmes run by the university by filling the online application on the university website.
The university has also advised the registered candidates to submit complete online application forms along with online payment acknowledgement slip before the due date. The schedule for online counselling will be announced by the University on the website after the declaration of the ICAR examination result. Application forms other than online mode will not be accepted.