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Is sense of failure turning students suicidal?

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editorcounsellor@gmail.com

DISCONTENTS Dear Editor, The cover page story of ‘The Counsellor’ Magazine of February 2014 issue titled ‘Coaching and its discontents’ by Bilal Mehmood was thought infusing and productive material to be taken seriously. I am quite convinced with facts and figures carried in the well elaborated text. How discreditable and dumbfounding it is, that there is no proper accountability in our jam packed private tuition centers established at length and breadth in municipal limits, particularly in uptown belts of trouble torn valley of Kashmir, where big band of students irrespective of gender face the brunt of humiliation and moral degradation instead of achieving aim and objective behind their studies. The fact is that poor parents despite financial constraints clamour their level best to admit their ward's to get result oriented educational skills. They urge their ward's to focus exclusively on the studies. Ironically impediments caused by Road Romeo's around tutorial do not permit them to act upon the advice of parents and carry-on the educational activity freely and fearlessly. That is why these centers have put in utter bugle every citizen with coaching management and education department in deep slumber. How would be, we able to uproot this incurable fistula and overcome waywardness on the rise. Again to say, it would be injudicious to blame alone private coaching centers functional in valley of uncertainty, even private and government schools where co- education is going on are too running in the same boat. Unless and until government do not act tough to bridle felonies indulged in eve teasing, harassment and humiliation in close co-ordination with tutorial management and parents vis a vis civil society, trouble won't end. For fitness of things, a strict law has to be enforced to ensure, 1) separate coaching centers for boys and girls, 2) female students picked from their respective door steps and dropped at tuition centers by coaching management at beginning

of period and dropped back to homes, at end of class on daily basis, 3) BOSE frame talented and dedicated squads to monitor and carry on regular raids to perambulate coaching activities apart from keeping proper eye on infrastructure support and fee structure. Fayaz Ahmad Govt. Employee, Batamaloo

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SCHEME FOR MENSTRUAL HYGIENE?

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WHERE SHOULD WE GO Respected Editor,

Kashmir University is the highest & the mother of all learning institute in the valley. If this institution doesn’t take into account the grievances of the common candidates, then, what can we expect from the other institutes? Every year the department of distance education of Kashmir University invites applications from B.Ed candidates, for M.Ed course and the selection is done on the basis of marks obtained in the B.Ed course. But time and again, we have demanded that a proper mechanism of selection should be made and a screening test for the selection of candidates should be conducted. But it is strange to know that the officials have bypassed the right criterion of selection, despite a large number of candi-

dates asking for the same. Securing high percentage in previous exams is not the best criterion to evaluate the candidates. In all professional courses and degrees, screening and competitive tests are must qualify for the selection. With the mushrooming of B.Ed Colleges in the state, everyone knows how the students studying in these colleges get the highest scores. There are candidates who have been applying for the M.Ed course, since years, but due less than the cut-off percentage they are not shortlisted, but where should these poor candidates go to study? Even recruitment agencies nowadays go for screening tests to evaluate skills candidates. Entrance and the screening test are supposed to extend the opportunity to everyone. It is a fair practice. Candidates who complete their B.Ed degree from the University of Kashmir secure lesser grades than those who pass from private colleges. Bypassing entrance test will result in the selection of most of the candidates from private colleges, which is not fair. The step by the authorities will mar the future of many rightful candidates. Higher education in the state must be exemplary and provide equal opportunities to everyone. It is a fact that everyone cannot seek admission in private colleges due to limited resources. For such candidates Kashmir University is the first and last choice. And if the admission doors are closed, where will these candidates go? Malik Yasin Students, Kashmir University

SEPARATE THE SEXES Respected Editor,

This refers to the cover story ‘Coaching and its discontents’ published in the February issue. The suggestions made in the report are thorough and invoking. It is true that there is tremendous pollution around coaching centres that need to be cleared. It would also help if the coaching centres are put under constant vigil. I would suggest that the education for boys and girls should be separated. That is the best option. Shoaib Baba Businessman, Srinagar

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editorial

The Counsellor Srinagar

Life and the Arts

A

rt can be expression of something mundane or magical, indifferent or intimate and serious or sassy. Art has been means to express creative human urge that remains central to the aesthetic fulfilment of any individual, society or culture. The role of art in life emerged as a profound political question during the higher organisation of human collective. It has been subject of vibrant discourses since the story of human collective unfolded. It must have begun with simple questions about the inherent human need to express itself through various means available like visuals and sounds. As the human existence kept graduating towards composite formations the questions and the subsequent answers kept assuming more and more complexity. Since then, from being subject of philosophy, religion and politics the debate about the role of art in human society has shaped the very perception of relationships between individual and society and between the societies. It keeps on informing the discussions about the social and economic re-organisation of people, societies and cultures. Such a discussion has always been a precursor to the fundamental debate of freedom and control, chaos and order in the societies, of which expression is the strongest manifestation. Amid the conflicting views of its role in individual and collective life, art and the artists flourished throughout the history and across the world, for arts have been instinctive and germane to human mind and condition. IMFA Srinagar has produced scores of artists that have sharpened the individual and collective expressions of history and culture of this place besides entertaining generations through their creative art-works. Thanks to the revolution that technology has brought to our times, where methods to control run neck to neck with means of expression, the role of art and artists assumes profound significance for a society like ours. Bogged down by the conflict for so long, people here richly deserve a breeze of creative energies that attempt to express people’s condition to people them-selves and to others as well. We deserve works of art and music that help society to unburden itself of the traumatic experiences of the long drawn conflict without simplifying or snapping their relations with such experiences. We need finer arts; arts that evoke life and much more the freedom to assert our dreams and aspirations based on thought and choice. Art that enlightens imagination and heals hurt without reconciling with horror or humiliation.

Wahid Habib

Printed and Published by: Wahid Habib | Editor-in-Chief: Wahid Habib | Editor: Faiz Wangnoo| Sub Editor: Zubair Mushtaq | Designed by: Creatwo Studio, 9906910717 | Photo Journalist: Sajad Rafiq & Tayzeem Rasool | Legal Advisor: Irfan Rasool Najar | Director Sales & Marketing: Wasim Raja | Publicity Manager: Khursheed Ahmed | Published From: Triangles Group, Top Floor, Bhat Complex, Opp. Distt. Police Lines, Balgarden Karan Nagar, Srinagar 190010, Tel : +91-9858765858, +91-9796398432 Jammu Office: 36, Sector 5, Guru Nanak Nagar, Jammu 180004 Tel: +91-9419077011 | E-mail: editorcounsellor@gmail.com | Printed at: Exxon Printing Press Bob Demb, Khanyar Srinagar

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content Is sense of failure turning students suicidal?

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COVER PHOTO TAYZEEM RASOOL

A IMF turing

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IMFA NURTURING FINE ARTS

Arts e n i F

t is to and artis social rough s th d le of e ro htene times realitie se, th e heig ess of ed by sen n In a retise thscious is informiation c con ical con which apprec l polit rk of art critica a wo open to and

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report

Amin Masoodi special Corrospondent The author can be mailed at masoodiamin@gmail.com

W

hat was it that pushed four class 12 girl students to attempt suicide a day after they were declared failed in results announced on January 16? The fact that all these girl students aged below 20 years attempted to take their own lives after they failed to pass in the class 12 examination and thought injustice was meted-out to them by the State Board of School Education. The students were from north Kashmir’s Kupwara district and one among them died at Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS) Soura, Srinagar on January 28. Even in such cases, when a suicide note explaining the reasons is found, nagging questions often remain unanswered but in this case the reason was never vague. The suicide attempt was a clear indication that they felt something was gravely wrong with their result. Growing suicidal tendencies among students especially those failing in examinations in turbulent Kashmir valley remains a serious concern to one and all. What is more worrying is the fact that there seems to be no end in sight to this problem that is only growing. It is generally believed that students attempt to end their lives in extreme depression after they fail to realize their dreams. The very thought of personal humiliation and social censure that such a failure brings in its wake itself becomes a spur for such an extreme step. Lacking the capacity to acknowledge their own inadequacies or to take up the issue with the concerned institutions if they really feel wronged also adds to psychological weakness that leads to such dangerous outcomes. However, one may ask can’t students be taught and prepared to face and overcome failures and challenges in their lives? Some people believe that it is the collectively responsibility especially of the parents and teachers to groom children in such a way that they willfully face the challenges and move on in their lives. In addition to this, opinion-makers especially religious clerics can play a crucial role in eradicating such social ills from society and put a check increasing incidents of suicides. 6

THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR MARCH 2014

IS SENSE OF FAILURE TURNING STUDENTS SUICIDAL?

The very thought of personal humiliation and social censure that failure brings in its wake itself becomes a spur for such an extreme step. What is more worrying is the fact that there seems to be no end in sight to the problem of student suicides, which are only growing in number


COLUMN REPORT

‘THE DECEASED STUDENT LOOKED FORWARD TO BECOME A CIVIL SERVANT’ A 19-year-old girl student of Government Higher Secondary School Batpora Magam in Handwara tehsil, who died on January 28, aspired to prepare for civil services and become a civil servant. “She was confident of securing distinction in 12th class and dreamed of joining civil services. Shocked to see herself failing in Political Science and Urdu, she felt depressed. We failed to console her because she was in a deep shock and consumed some poisonous substance on January 17. I don’t know whom to blame for her failure, which snatched her life. Board of School Education or the teachers at her school,” her brother told The Counsellor. What upsets the family of deceased girl most is the fact that the girl had secured first division in Matric and she was good at studies. “She would study round the clock and failure in two subjects literally shook her. It would not be wrong to blame BOSE for her death as it is the Board which conducts the examination and declares the result. We do not know what evaluators did to her answer scripts. Her failure in two subjects is unimaginable and there must be a major error in evaluation,” said father of deceased girl who is yet to come to terms with her demise. . “I am a simple vegetable vendor. I educated her and was looking forward to her bright future but her death has shocked me,” he added in a muzzled voice. The deceased girl’s class mate said that she was keen to complete graduation and secure good marks before preparing for civil services. “Urdu was her favorite subject and she would often support her arguments on Ghalib’s poetry. I know very well that Urdu was the subject of her strength. I cannot believe that she failed in her favourite subject,” she said. She was a good debater and photographs showing her participating in school debates seem to confirm that. “She would encourage her friends to deliver impressive lectures on important topics like drug-addiction and eve-teasing. She was committed to her studies

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REPORT

and had already set goal of civil services for herself. I never knew she would leave this world without realizing her dream,” said her mother. Out of 25 students enrolled at Higher Secondary school Batpora Magam, one student passed the examination. Chief Education Officer Kupwara Ghulam Mohidin Sofi told The Counsellor that in view of a directive from Director School Education Kashmir teachers of government schools, which showed poor performance in recently declared class 12 results, will face action. “Increment of teachers, who showed poor performance in results, will be stopped as per the directive. The directive applies to the teachers of Higher Secondary school Batpora,” he added. ‘FAILURE OF EDUCATION SYSTEM IS NOT THE SOLITARY REASON’ Experts say society as a whole must contribute to eradicate social ills like corruption, crime, domestic violence, drugaddiction and eve-teasing which have a negative impact on the mindset of an individual, prompting him/her to harm him/herself in one way or other. Prominent Psychiatrist of Kashmir Dr Mushtaq Margoob when asked by The Counsellor that what prompts a student to take extreme step? “You cannot only blame ‘failure of education system’ for growing suicidal tendencies among students. A student’s first teacher is his/her parents and they should be mature enough not only to inculcate good values in him or her but make him or her strong enough to face the challenges in life. A teacher should also understand his role beyond the teaching-job and raise the morale of student. Every single individual in society should join hands and make the society in which we are living in, free from all ills so that our children have sound bodies and healthy minds,” Dr Margoob replied. “Have you ever heard a religious cleric delivering a sermon that committing suicide is un-Islamic? Religious clerics can play a vital role in spreading awareness on how grave a sin is committing suicide and their role can prove every effective in combating the problem. Similarly there is a need to spread awareness among people through seminars and other means about the ill-affects’ of social ills like corruption, 8

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It is generally believed that students attempt to end their lives in extreme depression after they fail to realize their dreams. The very thought of personal humiliation and social censure that such a failure brings in its wake itself becomes a spur for such an extreme step. Lacking the capacity to acknowledge their own inadequacies or to take up the issue with the concerned institutions if they really feel wronged also adds to psychological weakness that leads to such dangerous outcomes

domestic violence, crime and drug-addiction”, he said. ‘COMPLEX SYLLABUS AND STUDENTS UNDER PRESSURE TO PERFORM’ Poet and social activist Zareef Ahmad Zareef observes that students are faced with complex syllabus and are under pressure from their parents to perform. “In my opinion, there is a need to mellow down the syllabus and make it student friendly. Teachers face extremely difficulties in comprehending the syllabus and it could well be imagined how they could do justice when they teach their students. Apart from sense of competition in classrooms and other places, students are under pressure from their parents to perform and when they end up performing below their expectations, they feel helpless and take the extreme step.” To a question, Zareef added, “Corruption has marred education as well and many students are forced to end their lives when their results appear contrary to their genuine expectations. You may be well aware of the recent MBBS scam where below average candidates made it to the top by paying handsomely and genuine candidates were shown the door. In such a situation, a candidate who has studied extensively round the clock and has a self-image becomes vulnerable to such instant and extreme step,” ‘RESULTS WERE SHOCKING’ Three girls who survived the suicide bids said that shocking results forced them to take the extreme step in depression. “Even n the wildest of my dreams I never thought I would fail even in a single subject. On seeing myself failing in education and Urdu, I was shocked and attempted to end my life,” said a student, who survived the bid. “I have applied for re-evaluation in both subjects and let us see what will happen,” she added. Despite repeated attempts, no BOSE official agreed to comment on the issue. 

masoodiamin@gmail.com


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cover

story

Bilal Mehmood special Corrospondent The author can be mailed at bilal.mehmood21@gmail.com

A F g M n I i ur

t r u N

s t r A e n Fi

o t is t a n d ar tis social rough f o h ro l e lities ne d es t , the heighte s of tim d by rea e s he se n me ne s In a retise t scious is infor iation c n c h n o e c o r i c c l t wh l a pp tica poli rk of ar critica a wo open to a nd

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COVER STORY

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A IMFA brief Established in 1965 by J&K Academy of Art, Culture and Languages; the institution was meant to provide formal guidance and training to those having an artistic bent of mind so as to develop their finer faculties. For painting, sculpting and graphic designing and music; a five-year degree course was started in each discipline. The institute runs two departments – Music and Fine Arts. Vocal, Sitar and Tabla are the three disciplines in the department of Music; while as Painting, Sculpting and Applied Art form the three disciplines in Fine Arts. From a five years course earlier, with two years as preparatory course and three years in specialisationthe institute is offering four year course since 2012. An aspirant, who has to be class 12 pass-out at the time of seeking admission, must qualify aptitude test for admission. Then he/she has to pass the entrance test after which selection is done. The first year is called a foundation year of the degree. Meanwhile, not long ago former Vice-Chancellor Kashmir University, Prof Reyaz Punjabi had announced that the institute will be shifted to university campus and separate block for music and fine arts would be established. The university has not come up with clear directives and initiatives in this regard.

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palpable hush builds in air as steps lead closer to the Institute of Music and Fine Arts (IMFA) College at Rajbagh in Srinagar. Quite adjacent to a paramilitary camp, a rust-colour gate of the institute opens into the campus with a pathway leading to the entrance of the building dotted with sculptures. Scores of paintings, sketches and other art-works are on display within the campus of IMFA—that shapes and refines the creative aptitude of hundreds of youngsters every year. For a half century now, IMFA has been nourishing the arts and music talent in the valley. Those who understand music and fine arts agree that the institute has produced some legendary artists in the history of Kashmir whose artistic brilliance shined beyond valley. After its “commendable progress”, the institute was affiliated to University of Kashmir in 1974. A year later, regular bachelors courses were started each in Music and in Fine Arts. “And since then, IMFA has progressed steadily. So many pass-outs from the institute are accomplished artists in their respective fields”, says Shaika Mohi, Principal IMFA, who herself is a reputed artist of the valley. ROLE OF ART For any meaningful discussion on the significance of formal training in music and fine arts, a basic question to be raised is this. What is the role that any art or an artist plays in the society? How does an artist contribute towards the well-being of a society? Many commentators stress a point that artists play a pivotal role in the society by portraying its different conditions through various mediums of art. The artists are said to voice common causes through their medium and style in order to convey an individual or collective purpose. The discourse about the art also maintains that art reflects reality at the very least. “Great Art stirs the imagination, causing us to pause, think and reflect,” says Iftikhar Jaffar senior faculty at IMFA, Srinagar. “Art allows our minds to escape into childlike wonder. Paintings are windows to the imagination.” Articulating the purpose of his art,


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one of the legendary names from the valley late Gayoor Hassan – who served IMFA as its principal – was once quoted as saying, “I want the idea to feel life within itself… Each sculpture with its new life stands ready to speak through its elements to the observer.” He was the distinguished Kashmiri artist and sculptor. Appointed as a lecturer in Sculpting in the institute before political turmoil took a severe turn in the valley, Gayoor was the pioneer and founder of Contemporary Sculpture Movement in Kashmir. He worked as the principal of the institute from 1990 to 1998. Apart from array of awards and accolades, Gayoor was awarded Sadiq Memorial Award and Citation for Life Time Achievement in Fine Arts. “He educated the first generation of students of sculpture in Kashmir. And he also streamlined the academics of this department”, says Iftikhar Jaffar. Gayoor, he adds, was instrumental in establishing a full-fledged Department of Sculpting in Kashmir Valley. Gayoor was the first Kashmiri to formally adopt sculpturing as his profession and he took this art, be it clay or wood work, towards new heights. About his sculpting genius, The Indian Express, reported on January 30, 1973: “The young Kashmiri sculptor shows a heartening maturity in his craft… Gayoor Hassan’s sculptures (wood) bring out the tension, the vertical leap and other movements in space that were originally suggested by the material before he worked on it.” A stone would become a piece of art in Gayoor’s hands — as he would chisel it into breathtaking sculpture. He was the first artist to turn deaver kaen or black marble into sculptures. “He appears a true devotee of the two immortals his work banks upon,” Keshav Malik, an eminent art critic and Padmashree award winner, wrote about Gayoor’s work. For Arshad Souleh, however, “Art is a human attempt to recreate reality”. Souleh is a well-known artist in Kashmir, who joined the institute in 1992 and specialized in painting. “The role of the artist is connected to the role of art, in whatever medium”, he believes. Souleh, whose works are displayed in

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Ü An inside view of IMFA Classroom

US, UK, Middle East and Pakistan says the current role of the artist is to create art by whichever means he or she would like to. “The artist doesn’t create art out of thin air,” he continues, “but within a societal context and which reflects the conditions of the time.” Since art caters to the finer sensibilities, it helps students in their per-


COVER STORY

sonal, intellectual and social development, he adds. But the question which thinking minds ask is: if art and artist are acting as a mirror of the reality, then why the same art has proved “spineless” to reflect the plight of people for last two last decades in the valley. Arshad Mushtaq, a renowned play

writer, filmmaker and director in the valley, who infused new lease of life in Kashmiri cinema after 40 years in 2006 when he made Kashmiri’s first digital feature film ‘Akh Daleel Lolech’, says, “Artist has to reflect common man’s pain, aspirations and dream. “And if he fails to do that, then he is merely an entertainer.” Being under the supervision of the

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state; IMFA can’t be expected to reflect the reality of the society, he says. “But in spite of its limitations, the institute has contributed its bit towards society”, he adds His first theatre play ‘Su Yee’, a Kashmiri adaptation of Samuel Beckett’s literary wonder ‘Waiting for Godot’, reflected the historical human dilemma about hope and hopelessness in the valley mired in political conflict. According to Mushtaq, the role of a good artist is to create or help to create works of art that reflect reality, create awareness about the conditions of that reality and explore ways to change those conditions while remaining open to critical assessment. In a sense, the role of artist in such a situation is to concretise the heightened social and political consciousness through a work of art which is informed by realities and open to the critical appreciation.

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Naushad Gayoor, son of late Gayoor Hassan who did his Bachelors in Fine Arts in IMFA in 1996 and is faculty at the institute since 2004, says the institute has always given preference to inculcate the ethic in students that art is important aspect of both the individual and societal existence. “You see, the role of the artist is to create art that is instructive to humanity—so that the members of the community can change those conditions”, says Naushad. “One way to achieve that is to create an awareness and understanding of our own humanity, to remind us of our beauty, our fragility, our limitations, our temporal experience, our strengths, our fears and our dreams.” Describing art in all its forms is the universal language, Naushad says, “It is the great equalizer and thinking agent. Art reaches across borders and connects the world.”


COVER STORY

Û

Principal IMFA, Shaiqa Mohi in conversation with The Counsellor correspondent

SONG OF THE MUSE Visual arts may create wonders for an observant eye but music is said to be the feast of the soul. For the simple reason that even infants feel soothed by the humming lullabies or happy tunes, music seems to be an instinctive impulse besides being a universal language. IMFA has been training music lovers since its inception. Of late a trend has been observed in the music department of the college that scores of female students seek admission in IMFA, who seem to follow the footsteps of recent musical sensations of the valley like Shazia Bashir and Mehmeet Syed who have gained increasing popularity in the state. Principal Shaiqa Mohi says that the girls learning music were 75% of students in each music discipline in last academic year. “There has been a gradual increase in

the number of girls studying music over the past few years,” she says. “In fact, girls now outnumber boys at the IMFA, which each year accepts 30 students to study sitar, tabla or vocal performance.” One of the young girls studying music in IMFA says, “I am passionate about music since childhood. My parents never raised any objections against the line of profession I chose for myself.” One of the music instructors, who impart music training to youth in downtown Srinagar, says growing inclination for music among the youth motivated him to start the institute a few years ago. “More than 60 students are learning music at my centre—out of which 20 are girls,” says Wasim Ahmad, a music instructor. OTHER ARTS Another budding artist from IMFA is Mir Suhail, a well-known cartoonist of the valley. His cartoons depict many tales related to the common man on street and the situation he lives in. Suhail believes, in order to create a large impact of something; common people must be taken on board. “When I started as a cartoonist, I thought myself as an artist and then somebody told me: first of all, think from the perspective of a common man, then only can your art strike a deep bonding with people and society around you,” says Suhail. Apart from cartooning, he is a professional designer as well. “I have designed a large collection of designs about the Kanni Shawls of Kashmir and I want to introduce them in luxury market very soon,” he says. He says art is an expression of both hope and despair, which embodies all facets of the human condition: “I believe, the worse things get, the more indispensable art becomes.” Apart from its glorious past, IMFA, Srinagar has its share in controversies too. Recently some students of the institute alleged that “little efforts” were being made to introduce the latest subjects in its curriculum. The students also alleged that the faculty wasn’t competent enough to teach updated methods and innovations that have revolutionised the field of fine-arts around the globe. But in spite of all this, nothing can undermine the fact that the institute pro-

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duced some brilliant artists who touched stars because of their learned capacities. Like a fine artist, Rajendra Tiku—who was awarded with Padamshree award for his contribution to art in 2013. Tiku, who currently teaches art in IMFA, Jammu is known for creating sculptures (depicting places of worship) in and around Jammu city. A student of Gayoor Hassan, Tiku’s contributions to the art of sculpture have received wide acclaim. Hailing from Wadwan village in central Kashmir’s budgam district, he holds Bachelor's Degree in Science and Law. Tiku received his training in Sculpture from the Institute of Music and Fine Arts, Srinagar. “Visual arts broadly comprise of paintings, drawing, clay modelling, architecture, photography etc,” Tiku says. “It is inter-related with entertainment. Artists truly are the movers and shakers of the world. The ages demonstrate that artists have been at the forefront of every epic era. Oscar Wilde’s famous quote, ‘Life imitates art far more than art imitates life’, illustrates this.” REAL PURPOSE Traditionally, artists produced descriptions of self and the world around. In contemporary times, the role has leaped ahead for creation of arts beyond description by means feasible to his creative expression. While many acknowledge the fact the valley’s lone Music and Fine Arts institute can’t go beyond a point in developing the creative talent of the valley, theatre director, Arshad Mushtaq articulates the wish many artists of his generation nurture. “We are still awaiting a liberal arts college. And the denial of the same is very calculated because these are the places from where profound questions will start raining. For the real purpose of art is to question what is almost accepted as tradition or system”, he sums up. 

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About this sculpture Portrait of Ali Mohammad Lone, famous drama artist and writer by Prof. Shanku Chowdhary dean Fine Arts MS University Board of Chairman Lalit Kalla Academy pioneer of Modern Indian sculpture


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profile

Wahid Habib Editor The Counsellor Magazine

INSIDE THE GREENLAND EVEN IF A SCHOOL HAS AN EXCELLENT INFRASTRUCTURE IN PLACE, OTHER FACTORS PLAY A CRITICAL ROLE IN HELPING STUDENTS BECOME STRONG CHARACTERS

T

he colourful and vibrant buildings of the Greenland Educational Society stand out as symbols of hope in the downtown area of Srinagar city. Started with just six rented rooms in 1970, this institute has developed into a degree college. Spanning on 21 Kanals of land with three campuses the institute is offering courses from preparatory to MBA. “My father, professor Mohammad Ashraf, started this institute with his three colleagues in 6 rented rooms and by the grace of Allah and with his will, we are developing it into an educational hub” Vice Chairman of the society Er. Suhail told The Counsellor. Greenland educational society was established to promote the education in the rotten society of Srinagar particularly in the downtown city of Srinagar. Located in Kohimaran Hawal area in Srinagar city, the institute has three more campuses at Gassiyar Hawal, MK Chowk Hawal and Nigeen Hazratbal. 20

THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR MARCH 2014

In 1977 the school was upgraded to high school and a second building was taken on rent in MK Chowk Hawal and in 2004 the Higher Secondary School was formed at Kohimaran Hawal where two storey concrete building was established on 8.5 Kanals of land, also in the same year the society established its first ETT college. It was because of the nineties turmoil which affected the development of the institute. “ The nineties period put a mark on development, especially due to migration of pundits” Er. Suhail said. Greenland Higher Secondary School is a comprehensive public high school enrolling 1,450 students in grades 1st to 12th. The school graduated its first senior class in the spring of 2006. Greenland Higher Secondary School is accredited by the J&K State Board of School Education. In addition, the senior secondary school have incorporated the BALA (Buildings as Learning Aids) concept of using the school

building as a learning aid in itself. The integration of this technique ensures that with multiple exposures to these inbuilt teaching learning aids, children will unconsciously inherit these concepts and remember them in the long run. The authorities also use Teach Next concepts of computer aided learning program. The building design promotes the natural flow of light and air, thereby saving electricity and providing a conducive and joyful learning environment to the students. In the year 2005-06 one more feather to the cap of Greenland Educational Society was added when another building of five storey’s was constructed in which B.Ed college and paramedical colleges were started, “I felt a need of B.Ed and paramedical courses in the Srinagar city, during that time only few colleges of education, paramedical and computer education existed” Vice chairman said. A computer institute affiliated to NIELT


PROFILE

(DOAECC) was started in 2009 by the Greenland society to make the people of downtown locality computer aware. Lack of drinking water and regular supply of electricity is a reality and a huge challenge in the downtown area of Srinagar. At the Greenland Educational Institute, various options like bore wells, submersible pumps and water tankers have been adopted to ensure regular availability of water. Additionally, alternate sources of power and the use of inverters are also being explored for school as the provision of electricity is a distant possibility. Also lack of separate, safe and clean toilets is a key reason for low enrollment and attendance in most schools Kashmir. All the campuses of the Greenland Educational Society have been provided with clean, safe and separate toilets for girls and boys to ensure clean sanitation facilities and prevent girl drop-outs. All the institutions of Greenland educational society are equipped with Kid Smart

Computers. “Use of technology is an integral part of the teaching-learning process in our schools. Computer lessons in our schools aim to help inculcate in children the yearning to learn, acquire IT skills and utilize technology most effectively” Er. Suhail told The Counsellor. 30 minute computer sessions are planned twice a week with each class. The schools often face a shortage of electricity; therefore the usability of laptops is being worked upon in the higher classes. These laptops, being given to the Head Teachers, are meant to support them in their administrative work, data management and in classroom teaching-learning process. There is extensive use of cassettes and CDs as part of the regular teaching process to support education across the Greenland Educational Institutes. All the preparatory schools are equipped with a CD-cum cassette player and smart learning system, used primarily for vocabulary development, teaching rhymes, enhancing language skills and even honing musical

skills in students. As part of CSR, the Greenland Educational Society is helping students in far off regions of Kashmir valley. The students from Leh, Kargil and Rajouri are given free of cost education and counselling, “our team of experts led by Mr. Khalid Bashir visits village to village in Leh, Kargil and Rajouri to promote education among the rotten parts of the society”. Er. Suhailtold the Counsellor. He further said that the education system of Kashmir is very backward and needs to be improved as Central Board of School education. So far Greenland Educational Society has produced 50000 successful students who are enjoying the different lifestyles and professionals. Still a dream of reaching heights is in the process of the young minds of this society “a new kind of elementary education is in mind, by which we could establish new institutes and could improve the overall scenario of education” the achiever told the counsellor. 

MARCH 2014 THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR

21


feature

Bilal Mehmood special Corrospondent The author can be mailed at bilal.mehmood21@gmail.com

T THE CURIOUS CASE OF HEPATITIS C Since the disease has appeared in the valley, medicos advise people that personal-care items such as razors, toothbrushes, and manicuring equipment can be contaminated with Hepatitis C Virus.

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THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR MARCH 2014

owards the end of year 2013, Mushtaq Ali (name changed) from downtown Srinagar developed some confounding health symptoms. First his appetite began to declining. Then fatigue and nausea followed. And soon after that, he felt muscle and joint pains. What alarmed him most was his weight loss. And then without any further delay, he sought an immediate appointment with doctor. The medico sniffed within seconds (after Ali revealed to him his ailing signs)—that, he is possibly suffering from Hepatitis C, the disease considered more dangerous than AIDS! But Ali soon knew that he wasn’t alone to have tested positive for the disease. In fact, the disease had already firmed its grip over a number of persons in downtown Srinagar. The ‘mass contacts’ of the disease surfaced when some people were tested positive in last week of Dec 2013. And as alarm bells started ringing, state health department furnished facts about the disease. Soon it was known that number of patients affected with this contiguous disease was on rise. And in some cases, all members of a family were diagnosed positive. The diagnosis reports prepared revealed that in downtown, a sizable number of people had developed contagious infections. The large number of people who developed the infections at secondary level through primarily infected few blamed the authorities for failing to act on time. “The delay in treatment has led to a severe situation,” said one affected person on condition of anonymity. On the other side—medicos treating the patients describe the nature of the disease by saying that it has a tendency to transmit after the primary infected person remains untreated. Also known as ‘silent killer’, medical science identifies Hepatitis C as an infectious disease affecting primarily the liver—caused by the Hepatitis C Virus (HCV). The infection initially doesn’t show any signs, but chronic infection can damage the liver. Medicos say, HCV spreads primarily by bloodto-blood contact—associated with intravenous drug use, poorly sterilized medical equipment and transfusions. “Hepatitis C infects only humans and chimpanzees,” says Dr Parvaiz Bhat, Physician Specialist from Srinagar. “This chronic infection can be treated with medication.” Overall, 50–80% of people treated are cured. Hepatitis C, continues Dr Bhat, is the lead-


FEATURE

ing reason for liver transplantation, “though the virus usually recurs after transplantation. And yes, no vaccine against Hepatitis C is available.” Sensing the trouble in making, Principal Government Medical College Srinagar Dr Rafiq Ahmed Pampori deputed a team of experts to downtown for damage control exercise. The team did verification of the affected families. But before that around 750 people from Takiya Magam in South Kashmir’s Kokernag area were tested positive for Hepatitis-C virus in January 2013. The immediate blame was then put on “unhygienic” diagnostic centers for spread of infection. By January 10 this year, a survey conducted by Doctors Association Kashmir (DAK) fuelled the doubts about the manner in which disease had been dealt. The findings revealed that inability to bear expensive treatment for Hepatitis C had pushed 90 % of patients in downtown to either skip the treatment or drop it half-way. “The medicines are costly and it costs around Rs 2 lakh for one patient,” said DAK President Nisar-ul-Hassan. “The expensive treatment costs have left poor patients with no option but to leave the disease untreated.” As the survey exposed chinks in state health department to deal with the menace, Minister for Health and Medical Education Taj Mohi Ud Din addressed the media. “We are serious about the issue and know that treatment costs from Rs 3 to 5 lakhs,” Taj said, “but the Government of India (GoI) has refused to release any such funds.” Taj was, however, soon left red-faced when Union Secretary for Department of Health and Family Welfare K N Desiraju rubbished his claims by saying “we have not received any such information from state”. K N Desiraju was heard assuring: “Proper initiative will be taken after I will ascertain the facts from state.” Amid state government’s misleading statement and central government’s assurance, DAK took it on itself by raising funds for infected patients. “As both central and state government have

failed to provide essential facilities to these patients, DAK will provide all necessary treatment free of cost to these patients,” says Dr Hassan. And then on January 15, 2014, the state government decided to launch a mass screening programme in downtown to check and raise awareness about the deadly Hepatitis-C virus. Screening was carried out in two major associated hospitals of Kashmir—Lal Ded and SMHS Hospital in the first stage. “We recommend the strategy for the treatment among the affected people. But, final decision will be taken only after the screening program is complete,” says Dr Safoora Bilqees who headed the screening procedure. However, an official finding later revealed that one person in a downtown has been affected by Hepatitis B. And that the case of Hepatitis C is still undetected. “However, we are apprehensive that there may be some people affected with the disease, that is why we have decided to screen the people,” Dr Bilqees said. While cases of Hepatitis C were being screened in downtown, certain quarters raised apprehensions, that whether or not, the disease has any chance to spread through unsafe sexual activity. Medicos said that there was an association between high-risk sexual activity and Hepatitis C. “But there is no conclusive evidence that Hepatitis C can be transmitted by sexual activity,” says Dr Suhail Andrabi, a general physician from Srinagar. “The majority of evidence supports there is no risk for monogamous heterosexual couples.” Since the disease has made its presence felt in the valley, medicos advise people that personal-care items such as razors, toothbrushes, and manicuring equipment can be contaminated with Hepatitis C Virus. “So better keep an eye on them before using them,” medicos advice. And yes, in case you are one of those who love to draw tattoos on your skin, then hang on. Even tattooing is associated with the risk of Hepatitis C. And as per conventional wisdom, stainless skin is far better than decorated mess! 

“We recommend the strategy for the treatment among the affected people. But, final decision will be taken only after the screening program is complete,” says Dr Safoora Bilqees who headed the screening procedure. However, an official finding later revealed that one person in a downtown has been affected by Hepatitis B. And that the case of Hepatitis C is still undetected

MARCH 2014 THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR

23


course of

the month

Dr. Seemin Rubab

The author is Associate Professor, Physics, NIT, Srinagar & can be mailed at drseeminrubab@gmail.com

Career in Science Journalism

S

cience and Technology have become an inseparable part of our daily life; hence the creation of scientific awareness has now become the need of the hour. The aim of science communication is to engage and inspire people of all ages with science, engineering and technology. One of the basic objectives of communicating science is to spread the message of the importance of science and its application among the people. Science communication attempts at generating scientific minded citizens. Science has contributed a great deal for human welfare. On issues ranging from environment, disease eradication, space exploration, energy security, information highway to name a few, science and technology has immensely benefited mankind. Biotechnology is making a major impact on agriculture, health, environment, industry and pharmaceuticals. Communication at lower costs, with greater accessibility, is another product of science and technology. Science communication helps in inculcating scientific temper among school children. It gives them the opportunity of learning and experiencing science in a fun way by actual participation in various hands on activities. The daily application of science like the use of safe drinking water, recycling of grey water, taking balanced diet, knowledge to eradicate contagious disease, the know-how of various agricultural practices to increase crop production, the usefulness of biodiversity conservation, etc., should be disseminated to the future generation. The goal of science journalism is to develop scientific temper and environmental sensibilities in common people. A dissemination of scientific facts could be done by any journalist using Wikipedia and other resources. But shaping the mindset of layperson cannot be achieved without proper training. The following training programs are available in India for science journalists. National Council for Science and Technology Communication offers a one week course on skill enhancement of promising science writers and three month course on the use of mass media for science pop-

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THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR MARCH 2014

ularization. NCSTC and Indian Science Communication Society (ISCOS), Lucknow has jointly undertaken a program to train science communicators, writers, and journalists in presenting scientific information in educating and entertaining manner. ISCOS offers a one year training program in Science Journalism through Distance Education mode. Devi Ahilya University, Indore, offers two programs, M.Sc & PG Diploma in Science Communication. They are also planning to start a doctoral program in Science Communication. PG Diploma in Science Communication is offered through Distance Education mode. This is a two semester course. The Institute of Mass Communication in Science and Technology, Lucknow University, is also running a similar course – M.Sc Mass Communication in Science. It is also a two-year full-time regular program funded by the NCSTC. Makhanlal Chaturvedi National University of Journalism and Communication, Bhopal has also started a one-year PG Diploma in Science and Technology Journalism. Madurai Kamraj University too offers an NCSTC-funded PG Diploma in Science Communication. The National Institute of Science Communication and Information Resources (NISCAIR), CSIR, New Delhi organizes shortterm science-writing training workshops. Center for Science Education and Communication Delhi University are involved in short term training and workshops related to science education and communication. National Council of Science Museums (NCSM), an autonomous scientific and research organization under the Ministry of Culture has also started a four semester M.S. course in Science Communication from 2005. NCSM’s MS course is meant for first class engineering graduates and science post graduates. Course contents include history and philosophy of science, mass communication, exhibit presentation and museum management. The Course also includes the tools of Science Communication and writing scientific articles. The final content of the course is a dissertation. This program is conducted in joint collaboration of NCSM and BITS, Pi-

lani on an off campus mode. The lectures and tutorials are held at NCSM, Kolkata. Career Prospect exists in mainstream media viz., Print (Newspapers, Periodicals, and House Journals), Broadcast media (Radio & Television) and organizations engaged in Science and Technology extension and outreach activities like NCSTC, NCSM, NISCAIR, HBCSE, Vigyanprasar and state councils of Science and Technology etc. magazines like Down to earth, TeraaGreen, Science Reporter, Hindu Survey on Environment specialize in science technology and environment. Science Journalists interested in making scientific documentary and a CD can develop programs for Vigyan Prasar, National Geographic and Discovery etc. Training in science communication would also provide opportunities as curators of science museums. At present there are 27 science museums/centers under NCSM. There is proposal of setting district level science centers. Science centers along with Science and Technology Parks are great tool of informal education of masses. Large numbers of private sector companies and corporate houses are also setting up science museums and technology parks as part of their corporate social responsibility thereby increasing the demand of science communicators. National awards for science communicators are presented every year to individuals and institutions in following categories. • Outstanding Effort in Science & Technology Communication • Outstanding Effort in Science & Technology Communication through Books & Magazines • Outstanding Effort in Science & Technology Popularization among Children • Outstanding Effort in Translation of Popular Science & Technology Literature • Outstanding Effort in Science & Technology Communication in the Print Medium • Outstanding Effort in Science & Technology Communication in Electronic Medium drseeminrubab@gmail.com


MARCH 2014 THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR

25


25

SUB DIVISIONS TEHSILS CD BLOCKS NAYABATS

20

20

16

17

15

14

12

12

10

11

10

10

9

7

7

5

5

2

1

6

7

2

1

1

JAMMU

2

SHOPIAN

5

4

KUPWARA

4

GANDERBAL

3

BARAMULLA

4

ANANTNAG

5

0

5

6

3

KATHUA

DODA

1

5

5

PULWAMA

1

KULGAM

1

3

BUDGAM

2

BANDIPORA

3

SRINAGAR

Units of J&K

New Administrative

7

8

8

9

11

9

10

12

13

14

15

15

11

17

20

21

25

25

graphictaire


8

8

7 5

5

6

5 3

LEH

1714 PATWARS

257 NIABATS

143 COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT (CD) BLOCKS

21 SUB DIVISIONS 82 TEHSILS

GAZETTED POSTS

358

2

REASI

3

UDHAMPUR

6

1

RAJOURI

NON GAZETTED POSTS

10163

10521 | POSTS GENERATED BY THE CREATION OF NEW ADMINISTRATIVE UNITS

2,217 TOTAL ADMINISTRATION UNITS

12

5

2

PRESENT STATUS OF ADMINISTRATION UNITS

13

KISHTWAR

4

5

7

8

8

9

9

10

10

12

13

257 NIABATS

143 COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT (CD) BLOCKS

82 TEHSILS

23

CRORES OF RUPEES FOR CAPITAL INVESTMENT

1254.71

CRORES OF RUPEES AS STATE REVENUE EXPENDITURE

255.51

1510 | CRORES OF RUPEES EXPENDITURE ON NEW ADMINISTRATION UNITS LIKELY

659 NEW ADMINISTRATIVE UNITS

16

21 SUB DIVISIONS

NEW ADMINISTRATIVE UNITS

3

KARGIL

3

SAMBA

RAMBAN

2

POONCH

3

5

INFOGRAPHIC: SOURCE: GOVERNMENTOF JAMMU AND KASHMIR SHEIKH PARVAIZ | FEDDBACK AT SHEIKHROUF@GMAIL.COM | RESEARCH BY: WAHID HABIB


edunews Over 4,700 varsity faculty posts vacant: President

A China now world's No. 3 education hub

C

hina has become the third most favoured nation of international students after the US and UK. According to data put together by the Institute of International Education on international student mobility in 2012, there are many more foreign students in China (3.28 lakh) than in Australia or Germany. South Korea continues to send the maximum number of students to China (21.3%), but a close second is the US (8%). With China pushing France to number four, the top three nations have now captured 35% of the international student market, which is growing at a feverish pace. Since 2000, the number of students leaving home in pursuit of higher education increased by 65%, totalling about 4.3 million students globally. India, which currently has 22,385 students in the UK and 96,754 in the US, is home to merely about 27,000 international students. Experts say the country will have to build a standard operating procedure to lure the brightest if it wants to transform itself into an international classroom. China seeks to host 5,00,000 international students by 2020. Singapore has been making rapid strides for attracting 1,50,000 foreign students by 2015 while, Japan has set a goal of hosting 3,00,000 international students by 2020

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THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR MARCH 2014

ddressing a conference of vice-chancellors of central universities at Rashtrapati Bhavan President Pranab Mukherjee said that Central universities suffer from an acute shortage of faculty with over 4,700 posts vacant. The conference was attended by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and vice-chancellors of 40 universities. Mukherjee said most central universities continue to suffer from an acute shortage of faculty. The vacancy figure had fallen from 6,422 last year to 4,784, showing that just 25 percent of the vacant posts had been filled up. The President said that during the past 18 months he had visited 58 institutes of higher education, including 17 central universities. These institutions had a huge potential which was untapped, he said. He said the National Mission on Education through information and communication technology (NME-ICT) and national knowledge network had connected 1,163 institutions and urged the remaining universities to become a part of this e-family quickly.

CBSE advises its schools across country to use canvas shoes only

T

he Central Board of Secondary Education has issued an advisory to all the heads of schools under its jurisdiction to introduce canvas shoes as part of the uniform. The step was taken on the request of Gauri Maulekhi, member secretary, People for Animals, Uttarakhand, who wrote a letter in this regard to the CBSE chairman last month. The board acknowledged the seriousness of the issue and put out the advisory. "I hope most of the schools will understand the grave environmental concern behind the advisory and opt for the change," said Sadhna Prashar, director, CBSE. The advisory points out that leather comes at a huge cost to environment

and animal welfare. "The production of leather involves highly toxic chemicals which can be avoided altogether if leather shoes are not made mandatory in schools. Canvas shoes are more resistant to wear and tear, more comfortable and relatively inexpensive," it says. Incidentally, this is not the first time that the CBSE has made a move towards animal protection."PFA had earlier made a request regarding banning of dissection of animals at all CBSE schools. An advisory on similar lines was issued by CBSE which was later implemented by even the state board schools. I hope the advisory on canvas shoes will also translate into positive action," Maulekhi said.


edunews Govt launches Rs 600cr scheme for educating adult Muslims

T 14 new IIITs to be established: Tharoor

T

he government has approved the establishment of 14 new Indian Institutes of Information Technology (IIIT), Parliament was told recently. "Under the approved scheme of setting up 20 IIITs on a not-for-profit public-private partnership, the central government has given approval for establishment in 14 states," Minister of state for human resource development Shashi Tharoor said in a written reply in the Lok Sabha. The new IIITs would be set up in Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and Tripura. As per the scheme, 50 to 100 acres of land will be provided free of cost by the concerned state government for setting up the IIITs.

UGC finds 77 universities have let NAAC certificate lapse

U

GC found that 77 universities across the country, including eight in TN, have let their NAAC accreditation expire in 2014. Of this, 29 have applied for re-accreditation. In Tamil Nadu, Anna University and Madras University are among those that have let their accreditation expire. Nasscom regional director K Purushothaman said NAAC accreditation is a "certification of credibility" that companies recognize while recruiting candidates. The 150-year-old University of Madras, commonly referred to as the parent university in the state, has been functioning without accreditation for nearly two years. The National Assessment and Accreditation Council awarded an 'A' grade to the university with a cumulative grade point average of 86% the last time.

he government has launched a new programme for educating adult Muslims, targeting over one crore of them. The programme 'Maulana Azad Taleem-e-Balighan', launched by minister of state for HRD Shashi Tharoor, aims to impart functional literacy, vocational skill development and continuing education to one crore Muslim adults with an outlay of Rs 600 crore. Besides, it promises to provide opportunities for upscaling basic education to around 2.5 lakh adults from the community and imparting livelihood skill training to around three lakh beneficiaries. 410 Sakshar Bharat Districts will be covered with a financial outlay of Rs 600 crore during the current Plan Period. Enrolment of Muslim children at primary level as percentage of total enrolment has increased from 9.4 per cent in 2006-07 to 14.2 per cent in 2012-13, and at the upper primary level, from 7.2 per cent to 12.1 per cent during the same period.

Two more attempts for all categories of candidates in UPSC's civil services exams

C

onceding the demand of civil services aspirants for more time to adapt to the changes effected in the Civil Services examination pattern in March 2013, the government has approved two additional attempts for all candidates with effect from the current year. A Department of Personnel and Training order said the Central government had approved "two additional attempts for all categories of candidates w.e.f Civil Services Examination, 2014, with consequential age relaxation of maximum age for all categories of candidates, if required". The relaxation in number of attempts comes as a relief to lakhs of aspirants aggrieved by the "sudden" change by the UPSC in the pattern and syllabus for the Civil Services Mains exam 2013. The UPSC had notified the revised pattern on March 5 last year, doubling the number of papers for General Studies and substantially increasing its weightage vis-a-vis optional subjects, months ahead of the Mains 2013 exam. Civil services candidates, who previously would get just four attempts to write the prestigious exam, will now get six attempts. OBC category candidates, who are allowed seven attempts as per the rules, can now take the exam nine times. There is no cap anyway on attempts by a candidate of the SC/ST category. A general category candidate who has attained the age of 21 years but not attained 30 years may apply for the civil services examination, as per eligibility mentioned in the notification. The upper age limit is relaxable up to a maximum of five years for candidates belonging to SCs or STs categories and up to a maximum of three years for candidates of OBC category. The Civil Services Examination (Preliminary), 2014 is tentatively scheduled to be held on August 24 this year.

MARCH 2014 THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR

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The Counsellor

Dr. Moses Simuyemba, CPC

The author is a medical doctor by profession a motivational speaker, writer and life coach and can be reached at mosessimuyemba@yahoo.co.uk

Self Motivation & Development

"To Thine Own Self Be True" INTRODUCTION Are you living your life based on the truth or are you living a lie? Is your life controlled by a lack of understanding of who you are, your capabilities and your shortcomings? Living by the truth is a necessity if you desire to live a fulfilling life. Today, many are living a lie. Firstly, they are living a life they neither designed, nor control. Secondly, they are living their lives based on false perceptions. GET RID OF FALSE BELIEFS If you desire positive change in your life you must be totally committed to recognizing and weeding out the false perceptions that are undesirable and that are a hindrance to achieving your dreams. Let me give you some examples. There are many people that are living in the misconception that if they work hard all their productive life in a “good” job, they will enjoy their old age in comfort and won’t ever need to work again once they get their hardearned pension. There are others that believe that they are not capable of ever having their own successful business or being wealthy and are content with just getting by. Conversely, there are those that are living thinking that they one day will be rich and yet they are doing nothing about getting there. Additionally, there are those that are living beyond their means because they think they already are wealthy. There are others who want to have a happy marriage and wonderful kids, yet they spend all their time at “the club” with their friends or at work. They do not put in the time and effort that is needed to have a good, happy family. There are yet other people that live the lie that their boss will one day wake up in a good mood and give them a pro-

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THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR MARCH 2014

motion rather than them having to do something outstanding to get noticed and to actually deserve the promotion. Never mind the fact that even if they got the promotion they would lose it in a week for incompetence because they had not prepared for it. LIVE BY THE TRUTH The list goes on and on and so could I. The point I am trying to get at is that if you desire to live a life of success you have to live by the truth. You have to be able to critically look at yourself and your life and see where you are in relation to where you want to be. It is not easy to look at yourself and realise that there are some things within you that you need to change. It is sometimes very painful to face the unpleasant things about yourself, your friends, your spouse and others. But if you don’t acknowledge and face the truth of your unpleasant situation how can you change it? LIFE IS HARD Generally speaking, people live the lie that life is supposed to be easy. We complain when things seem a little tough or we have to put some extra effort into something. But as Dr. Peck opines in his book: “Life is difficult. This is a great truth….because once we truly see this truth, we transcend it. Once we truly know that life is difficult - once we truly understand and accept it - then life is no longer difficult. Because once it is accepted, the fact that life is difficult no longer matters.” self motivation and development - you can make it easier This statement is only one side of the coin. The other side is that though life is difficult, there are ways to make it easier. There are ways to make life more fulfilling and more enjoyable. I am not saying these ways are easy, in fact they are not. That is why few people are will-

ing to travel that way. But for those that do, the rewards are great. A LESSON FROM HISTORY The list of great dreamers that were ridiculed and laughed at in their times is long and offers great insight into human nature and the folly of listening to the masses. Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison, Alexander Graham Bell and Henry Ford are people that we recognize today as having contributed a lot to the wellbeing and advancement of humanity. Yet these same people, at some point in their lives, had to shrug off the naysayers and those that called them “mad” because of their great dreams. Fortunately for us all, they did not listen to all the negative vibe that was coming their way. They persevered in the face of great opposition. That goes to illustrate one great truth about dreamers. They are not unrealistic or stuck in their own world, but to the contrary, they are very realistic and grounded in the truth. Their greatest crime is having a mindset that is way bigger than their peers’. DEDICATION TO THE TRUTH It takes dedication to the truth to discover the laws of nature and how they can be applied to benefit us. If Thomas Edison had not lived a life dedicated to the truth he would not have known half the things he discovered. CONCLUSION The only thing that people who reach out to their dreams are guilty of is being way ahead of their peers, family and friends in terms of their ability to see the dazzling future ahead of them. Next time someone criticizes you and tells you to “come down to earth” tell them to go and buy a pair of sunglasses. They will need them to keep from going blind when they see you shine! 


MARCH 2014 THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR

31


report

Bilal Mehmood special Corrospondent The author can be mailed at bilal.mehmood21@gmail.com

T

he issue of Urdu language being ‘given a step-motherly treatment’ recently snowballed into a public outcry and resulted in a furore in the Legislative Assembly. The issue came to fore when the department of Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution (CAPD) issued ration cards forms, in Hindi and English while ignoring Urdu, the official language of J&K, to public. It was ruling National Conference MLC Shehnaz Ganai who pitched her concern over what she termed “unfortunate that cards printed in Hindi were being issued in Urdu-speaking areas of state”. But she wasn’t lone voice expressing concern over the negligence of official language of state. Deputy Chairman Legislative Council, Javed Rana took the debate to a new level by saying that tomorrow there can be demand that “revenue documentation” should be done in Hindi. Finding himself at the centre of the storm, Minister for Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution (CAPD), Choudary Muhammad Ramzan described the whole thing result of ‘an error’. For him the issue was “blown out of proportion”. However, the explanation wasn’t subscribed to by sitting lawmakers who rather demanded that government take serious notice to ‘get the things right’. TAKING PROPER STEPS Terming the neglect of Urdu as a language very serious Chairman, Legislative Council Amrit Malhotra said, “Last year also the members expressed their concern over the matter after which a committee under the chairmanship of Chief Secretary was constituted to suggest necessary measures to ensure that Urdu gets its due share.” He asked the concerned minister to appraise the House about the status of the committee and its report. Asking the government to take “all proper steps” for promotion of Urdu in the State, he said, “It is our duty to make sure that we encourage and pass on this language to the next generation.” Earlier the members, during the Question Hour, accused the government “giving a step-motherly treatment” to Urdu and not taking sufficient steps for its promotion.

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MINDING THE LANGUAGE


REPORT

SEPARATIST TAKE But before CAPD minister called it “a case of error”, the language issue had triggered a new controversy with separatists saying that the move was aimed at damaging Urdu language. Leading from the front, Hurriyat Conference (G) chairman Syed Ali Geelani termed the move as part of a “larger conspiracy” to undermine the importance of Urdu in Jammu and Kashmir. “We do not nurse grudge against any language. However, Urdu being national language of Jammu and Kashmir serves identification for the Muslims living in the subcontinent,” he was quoted as saying recently. “It [Urdu] is the second most important language next to Arabic and Persian. It serves a purpose of communication between all parts of J&K including Pakistan administered Kashmir (PaK).” “Urdu is a national language of disputed territory, however, in this state it is reeling under tremendous onslaught through different means and conspiracies and is now on the verge of extinction,” Geelani added.

WHEN A LANGUAGE DIES, THE ABILITY TO UNDERSTAND THE CULTURE, THE TEACHINGS, CUSTOMS, ORAL TRADITIONS AND OTHER INHERITED KNOWLEDGE ARE NO LONGER TRANSMITTED AMONG NATIVE SPEAKERS, SAYS ZAREEF AHMAD ZAREEF

OTHER RESPONSES Apart from mainstream and separatist camps, reactions poured in from civil society as well. A civil society body, Tahafuz-e- Anjuman-e-Urdu staged a peaceful protest in Srinagar recently. The protestors were carrying placards and banners seeking revival of Urdu language in every government department. “After issuing ration card application forms only in Hindi and English languages, authorities have come up with handwritten forms in Urdu now which is an eyewash and disrespect to our official language Urdu,” Imdad Saqi, spokesperson Tahfuz-e-Anjuman Urdu says, adding that if government fails to act then they plan to approach Court. Furthermore, Adbee Markaz Kamraz (AMK) termed the development as an ‘unpleasant move’—at a time, when Urdu language is already “besieged with various challenges” which have posed “threat to its very existence”. “The government is expected to take steps for promotion and preservation of

MARCH 2014 THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR

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REPORT

“Language is an expression of culture,” says Mumtaz Ilahi, a linguist scholar. “As languages disappear, cultures die. The world becomes inherently a less interesting place.”

the language,” AMK said in a statement, “which is not only culturally and socially significant but also a connecting link between people of various regions of the state.” AMK warned that any move to subvert this language is a direct assault on the communication link of the people of the state. Soon, an outcry broke out in Poonch where a body called Tehreek-e-Baqaie Urdu (TBU) urged the state government to order reprinting of the ration tickets in state’s official language–Urdu. “It a conspiracy to change Urdu as official language of the state”, said TBU Spokesman Zakir Malik Bhallesi. DAMAGE CONTROL By January 24, 2014, the CAPD Department had started feeling the heat of the matter, and assured to re-print ration card forms in Urdu and English. Exactly after a month on Feb 25, the Legislative Council passed a resolution that urged the government to make Urdu language part of the examination process for recruitments to government jobs. The resolution also seeks to make Urdu as a compulsory subject for all State-run and private educational institutions in JK till class 8th. The panel in its report called for modifications in recruitment rules, appointment of subject-specific teachers, setting up State Council for Promotion of Urdu and strengthening Cultural Academy for giving fillip to the official language. “This move will definitely give Urdu language its due and deserving status,” says Amrit Malhotra, LC Chairman, adding that the resolution was a historic step towards promotion of Urdu language. IMPORTANCE OF LANGUAGE However, when collective efforts are on to prevent Urdu language from extinction, many are asking why a language is important for a nation or a state. The man, who is frequently seen in public gathering, pitching the impor34

THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR MARCH 2014

tance of Kashmiri language and a known literary figure and poet of the valley, Zareef Ahmad Zareef says language is an important part of any society, because it enables people to communicate and express themselves. “When a language dies, the ability to understand the culture, the teachings, customs, oral traditions and other inherited knowledge are no longer transmitted among native speakers,” Zareef says. “This results in identity crisis as people don’t appreciate their own roots and history.” Zareef says Urdu is a delicate and sophisticated language. And many of its words are used to show respect and civility: “The emphasis is given on adab [respect] or takalluf [politeness].” Rasheed Irshad, 75, Urdu poet from downtown Srinagar, who has many Urdu poetic compilations under his belt, says Urdu has a global reach with 100 million estimate speakers. He says spoken Urdu and Hindi are almost identical. “After learning Urdu, one will find it much easier to speak and understand Hindi and vice versa isn’t that easy,” he says. Irshad says Urdu language is over 90 percent similar to the Persian and Arabic language, “so learning Urdu will help you to read the Arabic and Persian.” LANGUAGE AS IDENTITY Few years back when Kashmiri was introduced as mandatory subject in school curriculum up to Class 10, Arshid Parray, 16, from South Kashmir’s Islamabad district started feeling uneasiness. Born and bred in family where Urdu is always in the air, he found it difficult to concentrate to learn Kashmiri. Back to school, his classmates would taunt him over his inability to communicate in fluent Kashmiri. As the period of taunt prolonged, he started doubting his own self—in other words he was facing identity crisis. “Yes, it can happen [identity crisis]—as language is primary face of one’s identity,” continues Zareef. “And if one detaches himself from it, it means loss in identity.”

Later, Parray had to take private tuitions to learn the language. Presently in Class 10, he observes, “Look, as children we tend to copy what elders and others do. So our parents and culture at home are responsible for such crisis that children like me find themselves in once we move ahead in our lives.” In fact, linguists also echo Parray’s concern. They believe language becomes endangered if the children, who do speak the language, are relocated to another area where it is not spoken. “Language is an expression of culture,” says Mumtaz Ilahi, a linguist scholar. “As languages disappear, cultures die. The world becomes inherently a less interesting place.” But at the moment when controversy over the status of Urdu language in the state continues to echo, Zareef claims “political situation in state or nation can play big dampener in language.” Are there any guesses as to why Urdu faced an axe in first place! 


MARCH 2014 THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR

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all about

KAS

Mir Mushtaq Quadir

Author is CEO/Director Northern Lights Academy and can be mailed at mirmushtaqquadir@gmail.com

KAS 2014 STARTEGY FOR GENERAL STUDIES, OPTIONAL PAPERS AND ESSAY

P

reparation for a Civil Services Examination requires comprehensive, profound and prolific study of the subject. The thrust of the civil service examination is academics. The question papers in the examination are akin to exhaustive academic variety. The papers, including the compulsory and optional papers give the impression of an exhaustive demand to be met only by a serious academically oriented candidate. Preparing for mains can be regarded as analogs to pursuing the three graduations’ simultaneously. Let us first come to the General Studies of mains. The two papers of the General Studies are quite rigorous. You need to be well informed on a number of topics. The questions in both these papers are a mix of 20 words, answer type to 150 words, answer types to 200 words answer type. However, most of the questions are factual in nature and almost all the questions stipulate word requirement in them. In other words, if you know your facts well you will do well, and you won’t know your facts well, unless you have made a serious study of the subject matter. Remember the speed of writing is directly co-related to the knowledge of the facts that you are going to write. One should always maintain the habit of writing at least two pages daily on any topic. One should never cross the word limit mentioned in the question. Also the number of 30 marks questions have also been reduced in the recent past which has made the paper lengthier. In order to be successful one has to give equal consideration to all parts. Selective study in no way can make you clear in this exam. It has been seen that many students don’t give much importance to statistics and science part, which finally proves to be fatal for them. The present pattern suggests that GS papers are becoming more and more comprehensive. Major part is domi-

36

THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR MARCH 2014

nated by history, polity and current affairs. Even questions coming from traditional areas and somehow related to current affairs only. This requires that a student must have a wider outlook rather than just cramming about certain facts. One should always maintain the habit of reading daily newspapers and at least one magazine in a month. Timely revision is a must for GS because of its vast nature. Most of the successful students accepted that what helped them a lot was the preparation of the short notes, which could be revised again and again during the last phase of the preparation. As far as the 4 optional subjects are concerned, they are exhaustive in themselves. Unlike university exam paper, it’s not easy to guess the likely questions and their exact frame. Unlike earlier, nowadays there are no sectional divisions in a single paper. In other words, you will require a complete mastery over your subject to do well. Today you cannot option for selective study even in the optional. One must be very careful in choosing the second optional. There are so much things called “Popular Subjects” like history, Public Administration, Geography, Sociology, etc. UPSC/PSC gives equal status to every subject and one must take only that subject in which he has the aptitude as well as the interest. You should not go with the flow or what other students are opting for. Just scientifically go through the syllabus and consult the expert. In selection of the optional papers you must keep following Do’s and Don’ts in the mind: The subject which you have studied in the past as part of your curriculum should be preferred. 1. Interest in the subject must be taken into account. 2. Availability of the essential reading material is another factor to be taken into account. 3. If your seniors and teachers in that subject are accessible you have an advantage.

4. 5.

6. 7.

8.

The required reading and time in your hand is yet another consideration. Not just interest but language ability/expressions needed for that subject is yet another important factor to be taken into account. A prior self evaluation in the subject, you have opted for, is also suggested. Initial few days should be given to judge your suitability for that optional, if you are not decided. The judgment should be as for as possible from all the angles and should take into account the opinion of your learned teachers and seniors also. While selecting your optional you should take into the consideration GS factor, Essay factor and Personality test factor.

Don’ts 1. Never option for a subject because others have told you to. 2. Never option for a subject only because it has proved to be scoring in the past. 3. Never choose a completely new subject if you have insufficient time to thoroughly study that subject a number of times. 4. Never select a subject only because you have got the notes of someone who is going among the toppers. 5. Never option for a subject because all the others in your group have jointly decided to opt for that subject. In other words, never choose a subject because of peer-pressure. 6. Never option for a subject because you have an example before you of an average and poor student who did very well in that subject and got selected. 7. Never option for a subject, in which you are not getting a good coaching.


ALL ABOUT KAS No

Categorization

Terms and Phrases

What they Imply

1

Analytical type

Appraise/assess/comment /critically/examine/discuss /Judge/Estimate/Evaluate/examine

Advantages and Disadvantages/ Merits and demerits/ For and Against/ Failure and achievements.

2

Casual Type

Account For

To Give reasons or causes

3

Chronological Type

Trace Out

To deal in a chronological order

4

Descriptive Type

Describe/Elaborate/ Give an account of / Enumerate/ List Out

To give in detail one by one

5

Explanatory Type

Elucidate/ Illustrate

To explain by giving examples

Essay paper happens to be a vital part of civil services main examination. 20 extra marks in the essay can shift the rank to the top brass. Essay writing in the civil service exam happens to be a different ball game. One has to be vigilant of all the dimensions involved in essay writing. An essay has two basic components ‘ Process’ and ‘content’. The process includes how to write a good essay and content involves what to write in a good essay that is a subjective matter. Writing an essay in a write way requires a multi-prolonged strategy. One must consider following points.

1. 2.

3. 4.

Proper, simple and grammatically correct language must be used. The ordering of the essay should be done. An Essay has three parts, introduction, main body and conclusion. All the three are equally important. A Good Conclusion can fetch 10-20 more marks. Correct information with daily, life experiences to give a personal touch and uniqueness to the essay. Proper time management should be there. Each and every minute should be utilized. Time

5. 6. 7.

should be allotted to each section in a rational manner. One should have a clear understanding of the topic on which he is writing. Always take close to the topic and avoid deviating from it. Don’t enter the examination hall with a particular mindset as it can restrict the flow of the ideas while writing your answers in the main examination, try to understand the key words, terms, and phrases attached to the questions. Explained as under. 

MARCH 2014 THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR

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feature

P

eople in Kashmir especially Baramulla and Anantnag districts welcome the announcement of setting up of two Medical Colleges. With the setting up of medical colleges, they hope that they will receive better health care facilities at their doorsteps and more significantly the move will also rid them of availing specialized treatment at the cost of a huge medical expenditure incurred in tertiary care hospitals like Sheri Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS) Soura Srinagar and All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIMS) Delhi. On February 14, Union Cabinet accorded sanction to a significant proposal of setting up 58 Medical Colleges across the country including four in Jammu and Kashmir. One medical college each will be set up in Baramulla and Anantnag districts and two in Jammu region. Each Medical college will be constructed at a cost of Rs 190 crore. Hailing the decision of setting up medical college in Baramulla district, people told The Counsellor that the move will not only better the health care facilities in the district but will also help the medical students of north Kashmir receive necessary training at their doorsteps. “Setting up of medical college in Baramulla district is a welcome development for people of the district in particular and Kashmir in general. Facing shortage of medical staff, the district hospital management here is struggling to cater to the increasing rush of patients and a good number of cases are referred to Srinagar hospital due to lack of modern health care equipments and specialist doctors. With the setting up of medical college in the district, the long pending problem of shortage of doctors and effective treatment especially to critical patients will be addressed,” said Niyaz Ahmad Malik, a trader and Baramulla resident. “The government should start work on the college at the earliest so that it is completed in time and people are provided better health care facilities at their doorsteps,” he added. Nazir Ahmad Ganie, a post graduate in Chemistry from Khawajabagh Baramulla told The Counsellor “I am hopeful that the dismal scenario of health care facility at district level will improve a great deal 38

THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR MARCH 2014

Amin Masoodi special Corrospondent The author can be mailed at masoodiamin@gmail.com

after medical college is set up in the district. At times, doctors in district hospital Baramulla are forced to refer even slightly serious patients to tertiary care hospitals like SKIMS and SMHS in Srinagar due to lack of modern facilities. Effective treatment will be ensured when a medical college equipped with all latest facilities and medical specialists will be in place,” “Poor patients who fail to afford the travel expenditure to reach hospitals in Srinagar for treatment will be benefitted most as they will get the specialized medical treatment in their home district,” he added. People in Anantanag also expressed satisfaction on the announcement of setting of medical college in district and hoped that the college will be set up in due course of time. Mohammad Yusuf Sheikh, a former headmaster of a government run school in Anantanag said, “Setting up a medical college in this part of Kashmir would help poor patients in availing quality treatment in their home district. It is a good initiative taken by the union government for the people of this district in particular,” “What is more important now is that the state government should take steps to start construction at the earliest and post top medical faculty to cater to the medical needs of ailing people. It is the need of hour to setup medical college,” he added. It has been learnt from sources in health department that in Baramulla and Anantnag the district hospitals will be up graded and transformed into medical colleges. The state government will bear only 10 to 20 per cent share of the total expenditure and the union government will bear the rest of expenses for completion of the colleges, they added. NEW JOB AVENUES The new projects will bring new employment opportunities to the jobless educated youth. Medical graduates and diploma holders said that they may get a chance of employment. "I have completed B Pharmacy last year and I am hopeful posts of pharmacists may be advertised after medical college is set up in the district," said Hial Ahmad War, 27 from Sheeri Baramulla. Rehana Rasool from Deilna Baramulla, who has completed nursing course in the

recent past echoed Hilal’s views. “Nursing is an important post in a health institution. I am looking forward to a job in my field of expertise in future,” she said. OFFICIALS HAIL THE MOVE Director Health Services Kashmir Dr Salim-u-Rehman said Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad’s decision of setting up medical colleges in districts was historic and will prove crucial in improving the patient-care. Talking to The Counsellor, Dr Salimu-Rehman said, “It is a historic decision taken by Azad sahib. He is keen to improve health care facilities in Jammu and Kashmir and this is a great step in that direction. The medical colleges equipped with modern facilities would


FEATURE

PEOPLE PIN HOPES ON MEDICAL COLLEGES IN OFFING

People of Baramulla and Anantnag nurse hope that they will receive better medical care after setting up of medical colleges in their districts. The new project will bring new employment opportunities, say jobless medical aspirants

be effective in ensuring effective patent care in districts and more significantly will relieve the tertiary care hospitals of ever increasing burden of patients. A good number of patients from south and north Kashmir hospitals are often referred to Srinagar hospitals for specialized treatment and the medical colleges at districts would rid the tertiary hospital of huge rush of patients,” “Despite best of our efforts to streamline patient-care mechanism in district hospitals, the department of health is struggling to cope with the ever-increasing rush of patients. In such a situation, one can realize how handy could be the services of a medical college at district level. I am hopeful necessary steps will be taken in near future to begin work on

setting up colleges,” he added. State Minister for Health and Medical Education Taj Mohiuddin while hailing the proposal of union health ministry said the state government has to work a great deal to up new colleges in the state. “It is a good move by the union government but the health department in state is already short of medical faculty. We will have to work hard to find faculty like

Professors and Assistant professors for such colleges,” said Minister. Chief Medical Officer Baramulla Dr Ashiq Ahmad told The Counsellor “Obviously, setting up of medical college in Baramulla is a great move by the union government, which will help a great deal in ensuring quality treatment to patients by the specialist doctors. Despite best of efforts, the hospital management fails to cater to the medical needs of people due to lack of medical staff and necessary facilities. Once medical colleges is in place, the patients will get best treatment and number of referrals will also come down drastically,” The Peoples Democratic Party president also welcomed the Union Health Ministry's decision to set up four medical colleges in the state, saying such a step would significantly improve health facilities. Mehbooba Mufti expressed her gratitude to Union Health Minister Gulam Nabi Azad for sanctioning medical colleges and two cancer centers. “The move would remarkably improve health facilities and medical educational opportunities in Jammu and Kashmir. There is a great scope for up-gradation of advance medical facilities in the state, especially in the field of treatment of cancer for which many people go outside the state involving a huge expenditure,” she said while addressing party workers in Noorabad constituency in South Kashmir on February 15. Member Parliament and President Jammu and Kashmir Pradesh Congress Committee Prof. Saifuddin Soz also welcomed the decision of sanctioning of four new medical colleges in Jammu and Kashmir. In a statement issued to press on February 16, Soz said "I welcome the decision taken by the Union Cabinet for instituting four medical colleges at Doda, Kathua, Anantnag and Baramulla. I take this opportunity to express my deepest thanks to Ghulam Nabi Azad Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare for this decision.” 

“Despite best of our efforts to streamline patient-care mechanism in district hospitals, the department of health is struggling to cope with the everincreasing rush of patients. In such a situation, one can realize how helpful could be the services of a medical college at district level. I am hopeful necessary steps will be taken in near future to begin work on setting up colleges,” Said Dr Salim-u-Rehman.

MARCH 2014 THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR

39


shout it out

Er. Syed Sohail Mehdi

The author teaches at Toppers Academy and can be mailed at srk.26303@gmail.com

Cryptocurrency The Financial Saviour or Slavery

T

he age of paper currency finally seems to be weaning away & slowly but surely paving way for the futuristic currency system – the Cryptocurrency- also known variously as virtual money, digital money, cybercash and God knows what next. While many of its protagonists glibly reason, arguing that the recent series of financial crises are enough empirical financial evidences to moot the case in favour of this so called decentralized and publicized form of money. Yet many a host of others has cast doubts and aspersions regarding its nature, legality, viability as well as control and regulatory features. Still, many, others, who consider it to be a step further to enforce modern day financial slavery upon the most of the mankind, the world over, give the clarion call for revision of the monetary system fraught with such dehumanizing elements. Before this so called new financial slavery takes hold of the realms of our day to day life gradually but unnoticeably, our intellectuals, academicians as well as ulema (Islamic scholars) need to come to the fore to explain and analyse its various facets. Wikipedia defines cryptocurrency as “a type of digital currency (which in turn is a type of alternate currency) which relies on cryptography, usually alongside a proof of work scheme in order to create & manage the currency. Cryptocurrencies are peer-to-peer and decentralized, currently all based on the first cryptocurrency-Bitcoin.” An early attempt to integrate cryptography with electronic money was undertaken by David Chaum via Digicash & eCash which used cryptography to anonymise electronic money. First described in 1998 by Wei Dei, cryptocurrency actually suggests the idea of a new form of money using cryptography to control its creation and transactions rather than a central authority. Bitcoin is the first implementation of this grand conception the first specification of 40

THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR MARCH 2014

which was published way back in 2009 by pseudonymous developer Satoshi Nakamoto in a cryptography mailing list. But now we have a host of other Cryptocurrencies such as Namecoin, Litecoin, PPCoin etc competing fiercely with one another. For the first couple of years of its existence, the Cryptocurrencies have gradually gained the attention from the media & the public since 2011, however, during this year itself interest in it has been on the rise owing to the price rise of Bitcoins in April 2013. This new form of money uses consensus network and an open source software platform which enables a new payment system and completely digital money. Cryptocurrencies offer many advantages such as payment freedom, very low or no fees, faster transaction confirmations, secure & irreversible transaction, protection against fraudulent chargebacks, customer’s sensitive & personal information protection, control by the users themselves, transparent & neutral as well as real time use and verifications. Regarding the working of the Bitcoins, one website observes: “From a user perspective, Bitcoin is nothing more than a mobile app or computer program that provides personal Bitcoin addresses and allows a user to send and receive bitcoins with them. This is how Bitcoin works for most users. Behind the scenes, the Bitcoin network is sharing a public ledger called the "block chain". This ledger contains every transaction ever processed, allowing a user's computer to verify the validity of each transaction. The authenticity of each transaction is protected by digital signatures corresponding to the sending addresses, allowing all users to have full control over sending bitcoins from their own Bitcoin addresses. In addition, anyone can process transactions using the computing power of specialized hardware and earn a reward in bitcoins for this service. This

is often called mining.” One can acquire Bitcoins via modes such as payment for goods or services, purchase Bitcoins at the Bitcoin Exchange (like Mt.Gox, the Tokyo-based exchange that currently handles about three-fourths of all Bitcoin trades in the world, & the Seattle-based Bitcoin exchange CoinLab), exchange Bitcoins with someone nearby, or earn Bitcoins through competitive mining. However, the concept of cryptocurrency hasn’t gone uncriticised, although its critics differ among themselves on the grounds of criticism. In terms of the degree of acceptance, many believe that it could pose a problem as many people aren’t still fully aware of it. Concerns have also been raised on the issue of volatility, as the total value of the currency in circulation as well as the number of businesses using it are still very less. Hence, relatively small movements in the market can significantly affect the price. Many others contend that the cryptocurrency softwares are still in beta with many incomplete features that are being developed actively. Most businesses related to it are new and still offer no insurance; as such, it still needs to grow enough to a mature stage. People like Bitcoin developer Gavin Anderson have shown worry that some Cryptocurrencies might turn out to be a scam. Some even feel that smaller cryptocurrencies could well be pump & dump schemes. In India, the RBI recently has expressed its concerns, voiced at a time when the United States authorities have cracked down on a cryptocurrency company Liberty Reserve when it was alleged to have been involved in money laundering. The RBI in its recent financial stability report raised the issue of and the grave challenges that “the unregulated link between cryptocurrency and the traditional one with a legal tender status poses as the complete control over the differentially denominated cryptocurrency is given to its user who governs the


SHOUT IT OUT

scheme and manages the supply of money at will.” Therefore, the RBI has adopted the wait-n-watch approach right now with a keen view on its development all over the world. But, one thing gets clearly established that the cryptocurrency is not backed by any physical assets. Issues were also raised about its legality, especially when it could be more attractive to criminals, drug traffickers and other antisocial elements because it can be used to make private and irreversible payments. However, in August this year, a federal judge in the United States ruled that Bitcoins are real money, thus a legitimate currency and can be regulated under the country’s law while ruling a case related to Ponzi schemes. The Marxists believe it to be the latest attempts in order to improve capitalism through such monetary reforms. They feel that instead of being decentralized one, it infact is a highly centralized monetary system in the sense that only the systems like that of the Bitcoin can create the virtual currency. They believe it to be controlled by a single central computer program that has been established to actually break the power of the banks. “Critics point out that the Bitcoin system is highly deflationary due to its programmed falling rate of growth of the quantity of bitcoins. If we treat Bitcoins as token money, they should, over time, climb in value against both conventional central bank-issued currencies and gold, unless the depletion of the solar system’s gold mines causes gold production to drop to zero by the year 2140.”, opines a Marxist critic. In the world of Islam, very few scholars seem to be showing the right kind of intellectual acumen as well as the penetrative insight and knowledge that could help common masses among Muslims to understand the fundamental dynamics of the changing and revolutionary times that we are witnessing now. One such personality is that of Sheikh Imran Hossein, who looks and tries to analyze such changes through the Islamic Eschatological paradigm. Therefore, he argues that such momentous changes and their overall impacts could be located in this subject. Since the subject of money is so strategically important, he reasons that the Qur’an as well as the large corpus of Ahadith could not have left this subject untouched. Rather, the Qur’an and the

Ahadith of our beloved Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasalum) explicitly explain this strategic subject and one could in the light of injunctions of the Qur’an and the Ahadith delineate the characteristics of money in Islam, to which Imran Hossein gives a name “Sunnah Money”. Taking the historical stock of the changes in the form and the nature of money, the Sheikh argues that the abandoning of the gold standards and the clamping of the paper currency has actually been a part of the well thought out plan on the part of those who want to control the whole world and force everyone to follow their dictates. According to him, the monetary system since 1844, when the system of paper currency was established in England with the passing of the Bank Act, was devised in such a manner that it could be evolved over a period of time. Lamenting on the failure of Muslim scholars, especially the ulema to recognize the nature of the paper currency system and the actual reality behind such changes in the monetary system, Sheikh Imran Hossein forcibly argues that the paper currency fails to qualify the test of Sunnah Money. Rather, he calls the non redeemable paper money as “fraudulent, bogus and utterly harram” which could be devalued any time in accordance with the wishes of those who control the system. Thus, the economic booms and growth periods on the one hand and the depression and the crisis periods on the other have in reality been due to human interventions and manipulations in the economic system based very much on the paper currency so that the wealth and the fruits of labour of ordinary people are transferred from them to the chosen few. The virtual currency is the evolutionary descendant of this diabolical economic system. This what the Sheikh writes in his booklet “The Gold Dinar and Silver Dirham: Islam and the Future of Money”: “The final stage of evolution in their monetary system would witness the universal embrace of electronic money, the brightest jewel of their evil monetary crown, which would totally replace today’s fraudulent paper currencies. Indeed, this final stage has already commenced, and all that the international monetary bandits now need is a world crisis (such as a nuclear attack on Iran, which has not as yet occurred, but which is expected at any time) that would result in a total collapse of the US dollar

and a consequent mass stampede away from paper currencies.” He further writes about the goals of such people who financially control the reigns of the whole world: “This essay goes on to explain that the enemies are not content with simply living off the sweat of others through exploiting to their advantage a monetary system that is unjust and oppressive. Rather, they have a grand design to so financially enslave the masses as to permit them to impose their dictatorship over the whole world. Their dictatorship would, in turn, pave the way for the Euro-Jewish State of Israel to become the ruling state in the world and, eventually, for a ruler of Israel to startle the world with the utterly fraudulent claim that he is the true Messiah. In fact, he would be Dajjāl the false Messiah or Anti-Christ!” In response to the momentous global changes that we have witnessed of late, it is of critical importance that we should try our utmost to revive the gold dinar and the silver Dirham based economic system where the value of money lies in the money itself. By this, we will not only be following the divine injunction of Allah and reviving the holy tradition of our beloved Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasalum) but also ensuring the preservation of our wealth from the so called legal theft by the oligarchs ruling the world. Governments in Muslim countries should muster this much strength so that they could start minting the gold dinar and the silver Dirham on microlevel bases which could also serve as a medium of education and awareness among Muslims about the real nature of money in Islam. However, if the current trends of political, economical as well as ecological crises’ and the solutions thereof be analyzed, it looks that the chosen few are likely to go ahead with their plans of clamping and imposing their system the world over. As such, it is a high time that the leaders, the intellectuals and especially the ulema of the world of Islam should come out of their shells and fulfill their duties and responsibilities, for abdicating the duty and responsibility to analyze, decide and, thus, to act is to let others to do same on one's behalf. This way one becomes a party to the diabolical scheme of the things without even knowing it.  srk.26303@gmail.com

MARCH 2014 THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR

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YI CHU NI SAHI

Wake up PDD... Service line runs just a few inches above the normal human height... Location Bemina. | Photo By Yasir Shafi

Many countries are short of drinking water and there have even been wars over water as a resource. The water is seen as a potential cause for major disagreements between countries and it is the cause of the major dispute between India and Pakistan. A large population crave for drinking water, but we being in rich in water resources don't care about it. As a kashmiri saying goes "add'en armaan ti aed pashemaan | Photo by Aabid Rah

42

THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR MARCH 2014

Where is SMC ? Kashmiri's are always taunted with these words "We have no work culture in kashmir!" Dustbin is overfilled with garbage and smc is in no mood to clear the mess. | Photo by Saima Bhat


YI CHU NI SAHI

Muflisi sab bahar khoti hai. Mard ka aitbaar khoti hai, While people enjoy it in the comfort sofas and hanging chairs, there are people who don't afford to put a shirt on. Education, we always chant to get rid of it, while there are people who crave for a book to read. How long we be putting an ignorant eye and just passing by these poor kids. | Photo By Mr. Abid Hussain Rah

These little hands instead of selling things for money to support family deserved a book. which unfortunately is being replaced by selling on roads. Their immaturity gets drained in the cycle of meeting the people where some treat them like unwanted weeds. | Photo by Mr. Yasir Shafi

Overloading in buses is not a new thing for us .... still we remain as mute spectators.......Is our transport system upto the par... Or you think it needs reformation | Photo By :Junaid Rafiq

The mental stress, moral degradation and unemployment in youths has serious consequences.Its peak time for people to realise and think about their society unitedly. | Photo By Mr. Shah Fuhaid

MARCH 2014 THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR

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STATE POWER

NHPC

1,400 MW

Power is available in State

GENERATES 1920 MW’S POWER FROM J&K

1,100 MW

Power is shortfall in state

`3600 Crore

Uri-I

ECLIPSE

Uri-II

Salal

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Sewa-II

Dulhasti

`1,200 Crore

Sales revenue generated in 2011-12

480-MW

240-MW

690-MW

390-MW

120-MW

ON THE MOON

WILL MANMOHANICS WORK, IN THE STATE OF J&K WHICH IS SUFFERING A LOSS OF RS. 50,000 CRORES ANNUALLY IN POWER SECTOR DUE TO INDUS WATER TREATY?

CAGED INNOCENCE! MOHAMMAD RAFIQ SHAH

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Bring it on… Accountability!

1

"When you catch a clerk you resort to much publicity in the media. Why big sharks are being left out"

The Counsellor analyse top ten issues which people of Kashmir want to get resolved in this year

“We live in corrupt society, though action against it has already been initiated, but it will take some time before things will get on track again.” —NC spokesman, Tanvir Sadiq

Trying to Survive, Young minds ask for secure Employment

Rationalize Law Enforcing Agencies Make Judiciary Realistic and Pragmatic

4 Control Stagflation! 3 Deliver Public Services! “The silence by people over government’s policies might explode any moment in near future if it fails to provide basic amenities of life and safeguard them from further deterioration”

2

“Apart from raising fountains in the middle of the roads and installing traffic lights, let us also witness a planned and sustainable makeover of city this year sans diluting its traditional face value”

5 Effective Governance 6 “Now when 7 Better Health state is about to empower panchayat representatives, governance can be expected to travel to grass root-level for larger good of society”

"I made the mistake of not being seen or heard in the summer of 2010 when the trouble first started. I wish my mistake had been learnt from."

8

Care amid growing Crisis

—Chief Minister Omar Abdullah

Relief from Controversies & Scandals

Bring Justice to Human Rights Abuses

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MARCH 2014 THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR

45


YOUTH TALK

SABRINA MUNIR

RADIO PRESENTER

UG SCHOLAR

The author has done masters in English Literature and is currently working as a radio presenter and can be mailed at sabrinamuneer@gmail.com

Dhaar Mehak is a freelance writer and an undergraduate economics student & can be mailed at dhaarmehak@gmail.com

"Melancholic plays of enchanted life" Life has been crazy all these years, many trashed clocks; much wrecked days, flashbacks block my vision; tempering with fragile emotions, life has paled like never before. The thirst unquenched running t hrough abrupt veins, absurdly blemished path; tricking out uneasiness, whipping that draconic loneliness and guiding towards an unknown destination. Directionless, all time dumb; unrealised realities are revealed with every tick of the clock , flown has an era that could have fragrant essence spread. Was this play of life theatrized just to meet experience and give pinches so intense that would last for a lifetime? It has been sugary, at times salted but how peppery could this turn out of nowhere! Some rhythmless unsung songs of life that beat through the chest and roar silently, killing the demon while an armour to the wise. Crude chaos of an unusual kind mingle in this sea of life, where it rises with the tide of mercy and falls with penalty. Unassembled, distracted plots of life hither and thither rush in want of its sensitive audience, where birth is the prologue and epilogue being death, yet there are untold and marvelled stories in between...

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THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR MARCH 2014

DHAAR MEHAK

FEMININE ELEVATION In blue the words slant are marked, Anger punched over the white sheet. Body of a maiden how-come is scared; Evil will collapse and end shall the devil meet. A pious baby; little; crimson; white and pink By the very mistake of birth was winged down right here; Passionately she looked at her surroundings with a blink , Realized, Aah! with the cold melancholic tears, she wasn't dear! There began her miseries untold Each day a grim struggle for existence became; To a timid, suppressed, weak being she was molded, Set was all the social institution; ready as to tag her 'lame'. Nature portrayed her all in beauty Soft as a petal and calm as the mountain; Every aspect of nature verily manifested its creativity However; submerged the man made institutions her in pain. Beauty is to be realized; insanity mourned. Masculine hand to protect her being was destined Not to frighten the maiden supposedly adorned; Pity! You rose it awe fully at the lady ensnared! By nature, created she was in equality to men; Doom will soon the institutions of suppression. She one day will be the tactic owner of the PEN, Abstracting the ills; high will rise the lady falcon to elevation....!


YOUTH TALK

AMANJEET SINGH

STUDENT

The Author is currently preparing for IITJE and can be mailed at amanjeets65@gmail.com

CORRUPTION Our state performed extremely well along the nationally held corruption survey, which was entirely a dream without our politicians, employees infact the citizens of our state who in or another way promote corruption. Jammu and Kashmir was announced as the number second state (runners-up) in the race of corrupt states. Thanks to all of us for putting up extraordinary efforts. Now as a simple Kashmiri take an imaginary person Mr. Bitta Mr. Bitta was about to born in one of primary child care institutions in the Srinagar. When Mr Bitta’s mother was shifted to labor room, she was denied of giving a bed as officials there wanted to make some Chai which was a business for them. Mr. Bitta’s father without wasting a single moment searched for some money in his pocket and found 100 rupees note and handed over it to peon waiting for the bribe. Thus beginning the operation of the CORRUPTION. Mr Bitta’s father Is listening radio Kashmir, Srinagar and hears an announcement that it is mandatory to file the details of a new born child in order to obtain birth certificate. Mr Bitta’s father approaches the concerned department and is waiting for the concerned official after waiting for the whole day he comes to know that official is not attending the office from the previous couple of days and is told to come next day. Mr Bitta’s father again approaches the concerned official. Mr Bitta’s documents were checked by the official and hence a prey on the net. Without hesitation official demanded ONE THOUSAND rupees with the note upar tak dena padta hai [this money gets distributed to the higher ups also]. Mr Bitta is now going to appear in his 10th class examination. Mr. Bitta is not so brilliant in his studies, but as he is sure that he will pass not only pass but will do it with flying colors. We all know how it’s just a matter of give and take in between Mr Bitta’s father and examining staff appointed by the board. After two months result is declared and Mr Bitta secured 90 per cent and Mr. Bitta’s father is paying all credit to his son and his son’s hard work in studies. Really hard work he performed during three hours of examination Mr. Bitta’s mother is really happy and wants his son to be a professional. Mr Bitta

is a qualified professional again thanks to give and take processes going all the way during the examinations. On Mr Bitta’s success his father gifts him a brand new car. He is very delighted and family decides to visit Gulmarg but what he doesn’t possess driving license questioned her mother. Again, no problem Mr. Bitta is now an experienced man and knows Chai works everywhere. On their way they were stopped by traffic police cops and were allowed to proceed. I guess we totally know about the conversations and actions that happened in between them. Mr. Bitta believes that driving license is an important document not for driving a car but as an identity validation. And hence approaches the concerned department. Again the equation of give and take is applied and without checking the driving skills of the person license to drive is granted to the person. Jobs in government departments are being notified in the newspaper I and Mr. Bitta approaches the recruiting office for filling up an application phase. Now it’s time for big sharks. Mr Bitta’s father approaches the honourable minister and gets to know that the right hand side of equation give and take has been fixed as Rs five lakhs. Without wasting time Mr Bitta and his father visits the home place of mantriji took along some fruits, sweets and Gandhi [formally known as Chai as the definition gets changed with magnitude] and is assured that he will be in the list of selected prospects. As stated by the mantra ji Mr. Bitta got selected with the help of give and take process. Today is one of the important day of Mr Bitta’s life as he is going to marry. All the agreements are being managed. More electricity and water is an essential need during marriage ceremonies. For this again the problem is being worked out with the help of give and take process between the representatives of concerned departments and Mr Bitta. After 30 years of service Mr Bitta is now going to retire. He is ace of the respected citizens of the social club. He operated along the principle of depravity in every area of his biography. Developmental projects suffered, leave aside development common man suffered. But for one second think that you have to visit to some government establishments.

The foremost thing which shoots in our mind is bribe. Why this? I believe the solution is not so easy not because we don’t know the answer, but because we are also the part of what is falling out all here. We supply them with money or other things because we want everything should be answered in the manner we desire. Even admission in the nursery classes is not being spared. The money we pay to them for making admissions in the name of admission fees is not less than giving bribes. More the amount you pay more the chances prevail for the access of your clan. The interview is just an act of eyewash. This even gives me a humorous thought. Little kids wearing a yellow, orange coloured dress and actually looking like fruits are subjected from our positions to undergo interviews, long before they embark on the journey of life and the competitions within. A simple question, What about the child who was unable to qualify the interview? These things also add to corruption. Rather than checking these kinds of practices our government shifts our attention towards coaching centers. Mr Omar sahib, it is not the only the menace in coaching centers, but the big hole in the whole education system. Our education system is just like a pollution causing machine in which creativity, scientific temper and also the discipline comes out as a waste product and what we use is only the piece of paper on which the quality of student is inscribed. Our administration is very great in promoting corruption. Equally it is visible from its policies, I am referring to newly adopted job policy. How a newly recruited person is failing to serve justice to the demands of his family and more importantly education of their children No way out for him he has to practice corruption for the sake of his basic needs. Let our Government in general and finance minister in particular think over it once again keeping in his mind if he is instead of that employee. Listing some measures how to eliminate corruption in my article will stay on paper forever. And nothing is going to change on the ground. It's now in our work force either to remain dumb or to speak out some corrupt. Let us shout it out.

MARCH 2014 THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR

47


YOUTH TALK

JAVEED AHMAD RATHER

STUDENT

STUDENT

The author is pursuing M.A in English at Central University of Kashmir & can be mailed at junaidjaveed333@gmail.com

The author studies Medical Technology in SKIMS Soura and can be mailed at rstmagic@gmail.com

ROUF SADIQ TANTRAY

"I Died" or "LOVE WITHIN"

Health is Wealth

I LOVE YOU...In the midst of my Heart and Breath I LOVE YOU... In the garden with the trysts which holds my entire breath I LOVE YOU... In the voice of a bird which is waiting gong the feeling again to wreath. Is that feeling? Voice? or, the Desire? which veils the face infront of I. I who lorn You, You who hold I. I, that is not I, Its my love which is off course You not. Its I, who holds You Its You, who holds I. I make You, You I, that learns to feel I. I always remain in You, You in I. I am You, not I. You I, not You. Who made You? Bard in the Avon of Love. Who made You? Thought in the midst of I. Isn't that I, that make You dream, Isn't I, that makes You sleepless. Where are You? Who let drop You under the thought of dream, Isn't that I who learnt You to sleep while dreams may veil. Who resonate in You when sleep torn the dreams. Isn't that I, come in the every breath, Isn't You, holds breath in the breathe. Would I please come to say "I LOVE YOU... YOU LOVE I"? Do you know the day when clouds veiled the entire sky Every door was silent Stillness in air got stolen by misery with despair Birds cut their throats Entire cosmos went shut off, eventual. But You still in I, waits I....? When Suddenly someone's anklets hurdled in the silence Spread in misery with despair near to my hearing sense, Knocks my door, 'Still died in my eyes' Eyes fell exhausted meanwhile in the meantime I rose my voice start to gong my feeling of heart that of I, but I cease to exist. You died in following the anklets Again anklets deplete the breath Longs for Love... Rooms veiled by dreams wholly Suddenly I born, in a due course develop into You Affirm your hand Touches to my breast I assert your head in my lap Longs You for Love, I forget. It cause to start, to transit breath to breath with the touching lips Holding the Life into Life, veiled the soul endlessly with the 'Darken Shroud' You was eagerly desirous In the last minute of waited life, I played with You..., Do You Love I? I died....

Health is Wealth. Everybody is familiar with this old school of thought. When Health is lost, Everything is lost is another school of thought, true indeed. With advances in scientific research the lost health can be regained and a better life with good health can be lived because nowadays, we have cures for all most all disease with certain exceptions. Health care of a state implies the progress of a state, so our state government is seen spending huge amounts of cash on development of health care sector. Unfortunately, we have seen various unfortunate incidents happening in Kashmir valley recently, be it 450 infant deaths in GB Pant, infant deaths in LD hospital, flooding of markets and hospital supplies with spurious drugs or more recent four deaths in Chest Disease hospital due to power supply failure and the list continues. With all these things surfacing one wonders how Jammu Kashmir was awarded number one state in providing health care service. An authority which announced the award has made mockery of the award. When the world is making tremendous advances in every field, we witness deaths in hospital due to power failure. When the world is busy in developing the drugs against fatal diseases like AIDS and Cancer, our own people are busy in flooding the markets with sub-standard and spurious drugs. When the medicos in other parts of the world are performing miraculous surgeries with high success rate, our valley witnessed a surgery where a patient needed to be operated for Hemorrhoids (Piles) but was operated on the nose. Where are we heading in the 21st Century? A couple of months back, State government issued a press release published in leading newspapers of state, stating that in the last five years it had developed 200 health institutions, two new 200 bedded maternity hospitals, 50 bedded additional emergency block in GMC Jammu and the report contained a long list of developments claimed by the state government. While the government claims all these developments in its name, the ground level of the healthcare system in the state is proving all the government claims are nothing but a hoax. What is fun of developing new hospitals and health centres when the conditions of already established hospitals and health institutes have actually worsened? If any unfortunate event happens to occur, government orders a probe. But in the past no government probe has yielded results. By ordering probes government only helps itself to curb outrageous media and people. No strict action is taken against the perpetrators and the whole cycle continues. The NC-Cong coalition government is in its last phase. Let the bygones be bygones forever. Government should act strict now and ensure that no unfortunate event happens in the future. People have lost faith in government established hospitals and health care units. Lately in an enterprise to evolve healthcare in Jammu Kashmir, Union Health Ministry announced four new medical colleges for state two each in Jammu zone and Kashmir valley respectively. This is a welcome and praise worthy step by the Union Health Ministry. But before making such an announcement Union Health ministry should have looked once at deteriorated health care of Jammu Kashmir. There are hundreds of loopholes in the Health Care sector that needs to be corrected first. The new projects would take years to completion of construction and another few years to be fully functional.

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THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR MARCH 2014


YOUTH TALK

SHABIR AHMAD

ER. M.M.IDREES UL HAQ BEIGH

TEACHER

HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVIST

The author has done masters in English and is currently working as a teacher and can be mailed at sheikhshabir518@gmail.com

The author is a Srinagar based Human rights activist and can be mailed at beighidi@gmail.com

A Rose in Pain

Girl child victimization on Rise in Jammu & Kashmir

Stones, bushes all around Alone I wandered here and there Suddenly saw a big crowd The crowd of people when I went near, Back I turned from the foul smell Air of fragrance broke my fast pace Save me dear came a yell! Away pulled me with a race What I saw in a drain Oh, it was a lovely rose! Caught in trouble, in pain Thorns and thorns and thorns were close Lovely rose, what is ailing thee? Fragrance I give, honey I make Yet, in disdain, people do keep me Worry not dear, they can't break Smell thee fair, smell thee final, Love of truth has pain; love of truth has a grain; Form may disappear, thee smell destroy rival Happily, happily suffer the pain till the hour of fertile rain.

Everyday there is news of Girl Child being foeticide or Raped in our State which is increasing by every passing day. Since Jammu & Kashmir have own J&K Pre-Conception and Prenatal Sex Selection/Determination (Prohibition and Regulation) Act 2002, but it is proving to be a good income source for some anti elements of the society who have made sex determination tests and abortion a high-profit business in J&K. The ground reality is so much different that one fails to examine how this threat came into our state. During the previous decade, J&K has witnessed a mushroom growth of illegally operated imaging centers, ultrasonography laboratories and abortion clinics, often owned and run by quacks. With the authorities turning a blind eye to their activities, their trade has survived many ‘newsmaking raids’ and crackdowns. Over hundreds of such units are believed to be making a fast buck while sharing their revenues with Police and Health authorities. As any census done, does not search for reasons behind the loss, many of the sociologists and economists rate, female foeticide as the key ingredient in a drastic decrease of Girl Childs in our country. I looked at the census report of 2011, It has indicated an alarming degree of female foeticide in Jammu and Kashmir as a drastic decrease of 79 females per thousand of babies has been remarked in the basic age group of 0 to 6 age. In each unit of 2,000 children, there were 941 females and 1059 males in 2001. The ratio has been found to have fallen to 862 females: 1138 males in 2011. This phenomenal decline has brought J&K down to the bottom of the list among all Indian States with just Haryana and Punjab behind it. In 1981, J&K was better off with 963 females in Child sex ratio. It gradually dropped to 941 females in 2001, dipping further to 862 females in 2011 and raising questions with regard to the official claims about crackdown on prenatal sex determination tests and female foeticide. In J&K, all the 22 districts have witnessed a decrease in the number of female children. Pulwama tops the list with the loss of 217 female children per thousand. Budgam follows with the significant fall of 172. While as Pulwama (829) and Budgam (832) have fared as the worst, these two districts were ironically on the top of the best performing districts with 1046 and 1004 respectively in 2001. Seven out of ten districts in Kashmir have lost more than a hundred females every thousand. According to the official records which were recently published in a local newspaper, various districts of the state during 2011-12 collectively registered 578 cases of rape, the figures revealed a shocking tend, and capital cities of Jammu and Srinagar are witnessing the highest number of rapes. Jammu tops the list with 39 cases in 2012 and 35 in 2011 followed by 34 and 32 cases in Rajouri in 2012 and 2011 respectively. In Srinagar district 19 rape cases were registered in 2012 and 13 cases in 2011. Likewise, in the Udhampur area of Jammu region, 30 cases were recorded in 2012 which is very high as compared to 14 rape cases registered in 2011. If this trend of female foeticide and rapes remains the same, time is not far when our province would be a crime hub. The most alarming aspect of the crime situation in the state is an unprecedented increase recorded in the crimes against women last year with about 303 rapes, 1322 molestation cases, 373 abetment to suicide cases and 8 dowry deaths, against 277 rapes, 1194 molestations, 369 abetment to suicides and 11 dowry deaths in the year 2011. I strongly urge the state government to look into the matter on the fast tract basis & urgently make a strong legislation in the state so as to save the future of the girl child in the state.

MARCH 2014 THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR

49


GET GOING

Sri Lankan apartment block to be world's tallest vertical garden Clearpoint Residencies, based in Kotte just outside Colombo, will be the first sustainable high-rise apartment complex in the country, with solar panels for electricity generation, a waste water recycling system and planted facades. Building began last year and is expected to be complete by 2016, at which time it is claimed that the building will be, "the tallest residential vertical garden in the world, with planted terraces circling the entire structure." The completed construction will rise to 46 stories and a planned height of 186 m (610 ft), although Clearpoint Residencies said that the final height may yet be increased. Either way, it will surpass that of One Central Park in Sydney when it is complete. Clearpoint will contain 164 apartments, each with 2300 square-feet (213.68 sq m) of floor space. The apartments are designed to give the residents a sense of ground-level living, as well as privacy and tranquility despite being located in a bustling city. The planted terraces for each apartment will help to absorb sound, provide shade and cleanse the air by absorbing carbon dioxide.

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THE COUNSELLOR SRINAGAR MARCH 2014

180 kg Lotus C-01 motorcycle to use 200 hp 1200cc V-twin Lotus Motorcycles has released the first images of its new lightweight C-01 superbike, produced by a collaboration of motorsport veterans led by Dr Colin Kolles of Kodewa, with support from the Holzer Group, all under license from Group Lotus plc. The C-01's external bodywork has been crafted by acclaimed designer Daniel Simon while the bike's geometry and construction is the work of Holzer, a company that has a hand in designing several Moto One and Moto Two world championship motorcycles, not to mention Formula One and LMP2 cars. So apart from the name that carries so much gravitas, the team behind it comes with serious credibility too. The limited edition (100 only) 180 kg Lotus C-01 is powered by a 200 hp, 75 degree v-twin Rotax motor similar to that used in the KTM RC8R superbike. Wearing one of the most revered names in motorsport, the Lotus C-01 certainly looks the part, with styling and paintwork that immediately identify the heritage and provenance of the brand, yet translate it from four-wheels to two-wheels, and that's not surprising given the portfolio of Simon, the former designer at Bugatti, but is best known for the ‘Lightcycle’ in the 2010 Disney motion picture ‘Tron: Legacy’ and the ‘Bubbleship’ used by Tom Cruise in the Universal sci-fi hit ‘Oblivion’.

Device helps surgeons see cancer cells during operations When doctors are operating on a patient to remove a cancer, they face a major challenge: telling healthy and cancerous cells apart. But a new, as yet unnamed device being developed by researchers at Washington University in St. Louis' School of Medicine could provide a safe, affordable and portable solution. The team's goggle-based device allows the surgeon to see the cancer cells, glowing blue. Tests have shown it could make visible tumors as small as 1 mm in diameter. To make the cells appear blue, the FDA-approved contrast agent indozyanine is injected into the tumor. The compact system is battery-operated, wireless, wearable and most importantly, hands-free. A night vision viewer from which it was developed was retrofitted to provide near-infrared excitation and white light illumination simultaneously. The visual data captured by near-infrared (NIR) fluorescence is displayed directly on the eyepiece with adjustable amplification. The wireless capability, adapted from a battery-operated radio frequency video transmitter, allows the system to transfer real-time video to a remote site, where the wearer's view can be displayed graphically. This enables a remote expert to observe what is happening during the operation from the point of view of the local surgeon, and provide expert feedback and image analysis. This way the system could be applied to point-of-care medical interventions, help generate real-time pathologic assessment of tissues, and even allow for remote medical consulting.


GET GOING

Lechal haptic footwear guides you by buzzing your feet Anirudh Sharma, the researcher at Hewlett-Packard Labs in Bangalore, India, has developed a shoe that could be used to guide the wearer via haptic feedback. Sharma and business partner Krispian Lawrence announced that the production version of the Lechal will soon be available for pre-order, and it's aimed at helping all people navigate the city streets although it was intended primarily for use mainly by the blind. There are actually two Lechal products – a complete set of shoes, and polyurethane insoles that can be put inside existing shoes. In both cases, they work by communicating with the user's smartphone via Bluetooth. That phone is running a dedicated Android, iOS or Windows navigation app. In order to guide the user from their current location to their destination, it lets them know where and when to turn by causing one of the shoes to vibrate – the left shoe for a left turn, and the right for a right. According to Sharma and Lawrence's company, Ducere Technologies, the shoes and insoles are antibacterial and washable, as long as the battery/ electronics module is removed first, of course. They come with a two-battery USB charger that responds to audio cues such as finger snaps, by emitting an audio tone of its own that indicates the charge level of the lithiumpolymer batteries. Besides its use for navigation, Lechal can also be utilized as a fitness tracking system, as it's able to count steps, track calories burned, and create interactive workouts.

Details of McLaren 650S supercar emerge ahead of Geneva McLaren has surprised the world by releasing full details and images of its latest supercar ahead of the Geneva Auto Show next month. The new 641 hp 650S appears to reside in a special place somewhere between McLaren’s “affordable” 12C and the stratospheric supercar realm of the million dollar P1. The 650S, which receives its less than original name from the new 641 hp V8, doesn't seem to deliver much in the way of aesthetic surprises. The 650S’ nose certainly carries over design traits from the P1 while the roofline, cabin treatment, dihedral doors and massive engine intakes are straight from the 12C. The engine cover and lines leading towards to the car’s integrated spoiler/airbrake are also remarkably similar to the 12C. The side mirrors on the other hand have definitely received some attention. Overall the car appears heavier and more substantial than the 12C but not as extreme in execution as the P1. Beneath the new supercar’s transparent engine cover resides an updated and more powerful version of McLaren’s award winning and much loved twin-turbo V8.

Bionic pancreas could be life-changing for diabetics For people living with type 1 diabetes, a constant process of monitoring and adjusting blood sugar levels is required. A change may be on the horizon, though. A bionic pancreas trialled among 30 adults has been very wellreceived by the participants, and has been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for three transitional outpatient studies over the next 18 months. People with type 1 diabetes are unable to produce insulin, a hormone that is required to control the level of sugar in the bloodstream. As a result, blood sugar levels can vary dramatically, causing potential damage to body organs when too high, or confusion and loss of consciousness when too low. The device comprises a sensor inserted under the skin that relays hormone level data to a monitoring device, which in turn sends the information wirelessly to an app on the user's smartphone. Based on the data, which is provided every five minutes, the app calculates required dosages of insulin or glucagon to maintain optimal blood sugar levels and communicates the information to two corresponding hormone infusion pumps worn by the patient. The bionic pancreas has been developed by associate professor of biomedical engineering at Boston University Dr. Edward Damiano, and assistant professor at Harvard Medical School Dr. Steven Russell. To date, it has been trialled with diabetic pigs and in three hospital-based feasibility studies amongst adults and adolescents over 24-48 hour periods.

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Events Held

Certificate Distribution held at IHM Srinagar

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wo certificate distribution functions were held at the auditorium of IHM Srinagar, ‘Hunar Se Rozgar Fauj Ki Madad Se’ and Driving Skills course in which Youths particularly from downtown of Srinagr area were imparted with free of cost driving course. In consonance with the new thinking of the ‘Chinar Corps’ under ‘Project Sadhbhavana’, an Artillery Regiment deployed on the line of control in Machhil Sector under Thunderbolts Brigade of Vajr Division has specially designed a unique program in collaboration with Institute of Hotel Management, Rajbagh, Srinagar. Under this prgramme ‘Hunar Se Rozar Fauj Ki Madad Se’ 48 youths of Machhil Sector were selected for six and eight weeks training in Food and Beverages Service and Food Production. This function was presided over by the Principal, Mr. Nisheeth Srivastava, Mr. A.A.Banday Mr. Tariq Ahmad Mir, Training and Placement Coordinator, Kashmir Division. These youths were imparted free of cost training by Institute of Hotel Management, Rajbagh. Being from remote areas and poor background, during training they were provided fee boarding and lodging facilities. On completion of training,

‘On Campus Placement’ has been organized. Twenty three youths have already been selected by Taj Hotel, Batra Hotel & Institute of Hotel Management at Srinagar for employment and further training. The other function was Driving Skills in which Mr. M. Anees, Regional Transport officer, Kashmir was the Chief Guest who admired the Institute for

such a course from a recognised Maruti School Peaks Ltd. Rajbagh. The other dignitaries present at the ocassion were, Mr. Snehanshu Banerjee, General Manager, Lalit the Grand, Mr. Harsh Saxena, Corporate Manager – (HR), Lalit The Grand, and Mr. Kounsar Imam Jafri, General Manager, Batra Hotel.

Nikkah Ceremony held

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n exemplary Nikah Ceremony of 22-year-old Mohammad Aamir who is the President Islamic Fraternity and Editor-in-Chief Islamic Revival Megazine, Chairman/Director Islamic Global School was performed in a simple and modest way. Maulana Abdul Majid Dar, a renowned Islamic Scholar in the valley,

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shed light on the Importance of spouse’s rights in Islam. Maulana exhorted audience to represent the real system of Islam by the practical examples. He also urged people to respect and fulfill the rights of each other in respective of spouse’s rights. He complimented and expressed commends to Mr. Amir, for performing nikah in a simple way and fixing only

Rs. 20,000/ as Mehar .Engineer Inaam ur Rehman, General Secretary Salfiya Educational Trust, also made a speech and congratulated Mohammad Aamir. Thousands of people attended the function held at Masjid Shareef Syed Sahib Rajouri Kadal Srinagar. The Counsellor Magazine wishes a Happy and Prosperous life to New wed couple


Youth Start-up

Loan Scheme



The Counsellor - March Issue