31HP01A.qxd 7/30/2013 7:03 PM Page 1 c Shimla 25.2° 19.1° m b y VIGNETTES 3 Akhara Bazaar in Kullu to form a group of 'dharma sainiks' HIMACHAL DIARY Heavy rain makes Shimla go without water for days 4 The Tribune Himachal Plus Shimla Wednesday July 31 2013 Employing guest faculty exploitative practice in govt institutes A breathtaking view LALIT MOHAN TRIBUNE NEWS SERVICE DHARAMSALA, JULY 30 Though the state government and its regulatory bodies have been pulling up private institutes in the state for not employing proper faculty, many institutes being run by the government are doing the same, but going scot-free. Many government institutes in the state are being run by guest faculty. The regional centre of Himachal Pradesh University at Dharamsala is one such government institute. The institute was set up at Dharamsala to cater to the lower areas of the state about 15 years ago. The institute here is providing professional as well as postgraduate courses in many subjects. The regional centre of Himachal Pradesh University is providing degrees in law (LLB), master’s degree in mass communications and many other postgraduate courses. About 800 to 900 students are enrolled in the regional centre every year. However, there are just one or two permanent lecturers in the entire institute. All remain- A view of a colourful sunset in Shimla. Photo: Amit Kanwar Hamirpur NIT gets best engineering college award DHARAM PRAKASH GUPTA TRIBUNE NEWS SERVICE HAMIRPUR, JULY 30 The National Institute of Technology, Hamirpur, has been awarded the “BEST Government Engineering College Award — 2013” by ABP News channel. The award has been conferred on NIT for its achievements during the past several years in the field of education and excellence. The award was recently received by Dr Kuldeep Kumar Sharma, Associate Professor and Coordinator, Informatics Centre of NIT, Hamirpur, on behalf of NIT Director, Prof Rajnish Shrivastava, in a ceremony held in Mumbai, in a function Dr Kuldeep Sharma receives the award for NIT, Hamirpur, in Mumbai recently. A Tribune photograph organised by the ABP News National Best School Awards — 2013, at TAJ Lands End, Mumbai. Dr RL Bhatia, FounderProject Director of National Business School Affairs and World Education Congress, jury members and several Decision on four laning of Pathankot-Mandi highway hangs fire RAVINDER SOOD PALAMPUR, JULY 30 Despite repeated announcements made by the state government for converting the 220 km Pathankot Mandi national highway into four lane, which links Pathankot with Leh and other forward areas, official sources reveal that there is nothing in black and white which substantiate the claim of the state government. Till date, no budget allocation has been made by the Ministry of Surface Transport or the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) for the four laning of the highway. Official sources confirmed that the state government has got the project for the conversion of Shimla-Kalka and Chandigarh-Manali into four lanes sanctioned on built operate and transfer basis (BOT) from the Government of India, but Pathankot-Mandi NH did not figure in the list. Pathankot-Mandi National Highway-20 is considered as a life line for around 35 lakh residents of the northern region of Himachal Pradesh. This is one of the most significant roads of the country, which links Pathankot, Kangra, Mandi and Manali with Leh. Because of disturbed conditions in Jammu and Kashmir, army authorities are regularly using this highway for moving their supplies to Leh, Ladhak and other forward areas. The Ministry of Defense considers this road as the safest route for carrying army supplies and other heavy defence equipment to Leh and other boarder areas as the Srinagar-Leh highway falls within the firing range of the Pakistan army. During the Kargil war, this road was probed a boon to the nation as entire army supplies including heavy equipment and tanks were carried through this route to Leh, Kargil and other boarder areas. At present, the national highway is narrow at many points. Over one hundred bridges which were constructed by the Britishers have already lived its life and needs immediate replacement. www.tribuneindia.com education ministers were present on the occasion. Telling about this award, Dr Sharma said the basic purpose of instituting this award by the organisers was to pay a tribute to temples of learning and the Gurus (teachers), who shape the destinies of future creators. Prof Rajnish Shrivastava has congratulated faculty, staff and students of NIT, Hamirpur, for this achievement and said that it was a proud moment for the NIT family that their efforts were being recognised by the industry leaders and these awards would definitely inspire them to strive hard in order to develop their institute as a global centre of excellence in every sphere of life including academic and research. Prof AS Singha, Registrar, NIT, Hamirpur, said it was the result of the collective and continuous efforts, diligence and team spirit of the faculty, the staff members and the students. Withdraw entertainment tax from magic shows, says Samrat Shankar ASHOK RAINA KANGRA, JULY 30 Born in an Aggarwal business family, magician Samrat Shankar, 63, a selftaught magician, has attained a global reputation. While holding his show in the town recently, the magician made a fervent appeal to the public to keep the art of magic alive. He said governments should come forward to check the misuse of the art for commercial gains by unscrupulous people. He said he was attracted by street-corner magic shows and soon unravelled the mystery behind the magic and received guidance from BN Sarkar. He started doing public shows at the age of 12 but did not leave school despite his talent for magic and attaining popularity. Shankar passed his MCom from Government College, Delhi, and has now decided to devote his talent to free religion of superstitions. He said entertainment tax should be withdrawn from magic shows because Samrat Shankar performs at a magic show in the auditorium of Kangra Polytechnic. Photo by writer it was one of the major arts and a treasure of India, which was on the verge of extinction. Television was overshadowing it. The art needed to be preserved, Shankar said. He said, "I am concerned about the fading art of magic and plan to set up an academy to impart training to youth in the wonderful art to produce good professionals." Shankar said elders and children were now glued to the TV sets, therefore this form of entertainment was vanishing. Besides, some of the magicians were misusing this art. c m Samrat Shankar said, "Not many professionals are left who are pursuing magic as an art. Most of the practitioners of magic learn some basic tricks to impress people and often misuse these to make money." He said he was against the trend adopted by some foreign magicians to disclose the secret of the magic during TV programmes. Shankar says he has staged 28,000 shows across the world during the past 35 years. He demanded that entertainment tax be waived on magic shows in the country. y b ing faculty is enrolled as guest faculty. The master's in mass communication courses are being run entirely by the guest faculty. According to the university norms, since the master's in mass communication degree was being offered by the Centre, it should have permanent faculty at professors, associate professors and assistant professors levels. According to the university rules, the guest faculty comprises professionals who are called as guest faculty to provide guidance to students. However, the entire faculty in the regional centre of Himachal Pradesh University was being paid Rs 150 to Rs 200 per lecture as they were enrolled as guest faculty. Technically, however, the guest faculty cannot be enrolled throughout the year. It is enrolled just during lecture days. To add to it, for the past more than 15 years, the institute was being run from a temporary and ramshackle building. Though the new building of the institute was ready, it has not been taken over by the Himachal Pradesh University. Apart from the regional centre of the university, many government and aided colleges of the state were running many professional courses like BBA and BCA on self-financing basis. All government and aided colleges in the state running such courses have hired only guest faculty for teaching the students. In government college, Dharamsala, an MBA degree was also being offered. However, there is no permanent faculty. The institute has hired faculty on contract basis that is still better than guest faculty. Many government colleges were also running in the temporary and ramshackle building. The regulatory body formed by the Himachal Government for maintaining quality in education institutes was just monitoring the private education institutes. Inspections were carried out in these institutes to find out if these were adhering to the norms fixed by the All-India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) and UGA for recruitment of faculty. However, no checks are being imposed on the government colleges and institutes. Laxity in implementation of UGC or AICTE rules in government colleges was also leading to exploitation of teaching faculty at many places. Many lecturers in government colleges and the regional centre of Himachal Pradesh have been serving as guest faculty for the past many years. The government pays them paltry wages ranging from Rs 10,000 to Rs 12,000 per month, whereas the starting salary of a regular lecturer is about Rs 30,000 per month. The state government should put government colleges and institutes under the regulatory body so that they are also enforced to follow the norms fixed by the UGC or the AICTE and lecturers are saved from exploitation.
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