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Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Edition 19: Baner Road at half the cost of Expressway

…and still it is not expected to finish as yet. The road is under construction for almost four years now but it is not reaching its destination. The flaw in the system has taken its toll on taxcpayer’s money with cost of this road skyrocketing to absurd levels.
City Blog Desk
The pathetic way in which Pune Municipal Corporation functions has taken a huge toll on the infrastructure in the city. Not only that, this has also made a dent in the taxpayer's pockets. A lot of public money has been wasted on some of the works which were to be completed years ago.

A case in point is Baner road which connects Baner to Hinjawadi, i. e. Pune-Bangalore highway. Believe it or not, but this small stretch of road which has an affluent residential profile around it, costs more than half of the cost incurred for the express way linking Pune and Mumbai.

Consider the facts. Pune-Mumbai expressway was completed almost 10 years ago in 2000. The money spent on constructing this first six-lane highway in the country was Rs 1630. This money was spent on making a world class road stretching 93.1 kms. The tenders for the road were floated in 1997 and it was opened for the public use in 2000.

Now consider the Baner road. PMC is building this road for the last four years. Till now it has spent Rs 26 crores on the works of the road but the work is still not complete. Now, last month another tender was floated for the same road at a cost of Rs 12 crores. This adds up to more than Rs 38 Crores for a stretch of four and half kilometre road.

Thit means PMC has spent almost Rs 10 Crores for one kilometre. The Pune-Mumbai expressway is 93 kms. long and its cost was Rs 1630 Crores. The cost per kilometer for e-way is Rs 17 crores while road stretching from Baner Gaothan to Balwewadi costs Rs 9.5 Crores. It is more than half the cost of expressway.

The Protest
People in Baner and political parties have consistently protested against the delay in the work. Last month, workers of Maharashtra Navnirman Sena had an agitation on the high-way wherein the workers halted the traffic at e-way. The workers alleged that PMC officials have not acted despite repeated requests.

The Baner road from Hotel Green Park to Balewadi still remains dug up on both sides with pipelines and cables on the road. Generally a time-limit of six months after the work order is given for completing a project.The PMC took up work on the Baner road in early 2008. However, it focussed more on Sus road later and completed it in time.The patches on Baner road were then asphalted with a promise to finish the work after the CYG.

Last month, on March 12, the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal mission (JNNURM) cell issued a tender notice inviting bids to complete the work at an estimated cost of Rs 12.21 crore. According to Vinay Deshpande, officer on special duty, JNNURM, "There were some problems with the earlier contractor. He was not doing the work properly. His contract has been cancelled and fresh bids have been invited. We expect the end-to-end work to be completed within six months."
However, this also does not hold water since the PMC has banned any type of road digging from April 15. This means for this monsoon period at least, the work on the Baner road is not going to be finished.

Edition 19: Pratap Dighavkar: Cop with Green Uniform


Pratap Ramachander Dighavkar, superintendent of police, Pune Rural, is dealing with underworld with the same determination as he has been planting trees since he was in Class XII in 1980, a simple fundamental is the guiding factor. That, if every person contributed equally towards environment, there would be no drought or famine in the country.

With this point in mind, he is trying to use his authority to achieve one goal — grow as many trees as possible. He has planted over one lakh saplings till date, without any financial aid from any government agency, with a conservative estimate of 90 per cent survival rate. But this soft heartedness towards greenery has not softened him as a cop as he has dealt with the criminals with a firm hand.

His efforts for tree planting earned him the Indira Priyadarshini Award, given by the ministry of environment, Government of India for year 2001. State government has also awarded him the Vanashree Award. He is also reciepient of Mahatma Gandhi Peace Award given by Maharashtra Government.

After taking over charge of his present posting, Dighavkar declared an innovative scheme of one criminal-one cop. His another plane was to put a tab on increasing number of accidents on highways. Dighavkar took charge from Ravindra Kadam in September last. Before coming to Pune, he was deputy commissioner of police in Mumbai.

According to Dighavkar, "Every police constable attached with the Pune rural police will be given responsibility of a criminal, who has previous record in property offences. The constable will have to keep a record of the criminal and his whereabouts, at least twice in a month. In our system, no track record of the suspects is kept. Suspects arrested for offences like robberies and vehicle thefts do the same crime again, once they are released from the jail."

Dighavkar is an IPS officer from 1987 batch. He worked in Kolhapur as Police Superitendent, as deputy commissioner in Mumbai and Navi Mumbai and as district superintendent in Raigad district. After taking charge in Pune, a major and sensitive case of a girl in Indapur division, Puja Jadhav was resolved under his guidance.

Dighavkar is also worried over the the rate of fatal accidents in the jurisdiction of Pune rural police, which is the highest in the state.

The New Initiative
The office of SP Pune rural) is now connected via video conferencing to 14 police stations coming under the Pune rural police as well as the local crime branch and the additional SP's office.

According to Dighavkar, the Pune rural police are first in the state to use this facility.
With this facility is place, the need for the top cops to physically attend frequent meeting has been dispensed with. The police personnel had to travel long distances for attending meetings in SP’s office thus wasting a lot of time.
The facility has been started in 14 police stations in the jurisdiction as this will help save time and energy. Now, the SP can even interrogate the suspects by sitting in his office.

"Members of the public in various parts of the district can also interact with him using this facility. According to Dighavkar, all 31 police stations coming under the Pune rural police will soon be linked via video conferencing.

Edition 19: National Monsoon Mission


India Meteorological Department organised the first South Asian Climate Outlook Forum (SASCOF) at Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology, Pune from 13 April to 15 april 2010. The even was a joint initiative with World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) and Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology, Pune (IITM).

Inaugurating the event, Air Vice Marshal (retd) Ajit Tyagi, Director General of IMD said, “The Ministry of Earth Sciences has proposed a national Monsoon Mission, where dynamic models for forecasting the monsoon will be developed over the next three to five-year .”

This is aimed to improve the accuracy of monsoon predictions by the India Meteorological Department (IMD). The focus of this mission will chiefly be on seasonal forecast, but the mission will also include aspects of short-range three days and medium-range forecasts.

According to Tyagi, “The currently operational model for long-range or seasonal forecast used by the IMD is not a dynamic one but a statistical one. Statistical model uses the relationship of eight parameters measuring atmosphere, ocean, and land conditions in various parts of the globe with the Indian monsoon” Dynamic weather models use supercomputers to simulate the weather at a particular time and have reduced estimate to days or weeks ahead.

Monsoon Prediction
In view of IMD’s forecasts missing the target in recent past, the need for changing forecasting module has been outlined by experts. Last year, IMD could not predict the rainfall deficiency. Instead, it predicted above average rainfall.

This aspect was the most useful outcome of the meet. Southwest monsoon plays a very crucial role in the entire socio-economic fabric of South Asia, critically affecting all walks of life. The southwest monsoon (June-September) rainfall accounts for 75-90% of the annual rainfall of the most of the countries of the region. The summer monsoon rainfall is also important for hydroelectric power generation and meeting out drinking water requirements. Thus, being essentially driven by the agricultural growth, the economies of all South Asian countries are inextricably tied to the performance of the summer monsoon. Monsoon prediction and outlook is therefore a shared challenge for South Asian nations.

In the concluding session on Thursday, chaired by Dr. Rupkumar Kolli, chief of weather forecasting and water, WMO, the experts said that this year the rainfall in South Asian countries will be average. El-Niño effect, temperature of Arabian sea and other factors were taken into consideration to arrive at this conclusion. This has come as a welcome news for us.

History

Concept of regional climate outlook forums (RCOFs) was conceived and given shape at the behest of the WMO. First and foremost mandate of RCOFs was to produce and disseminate a regional assessment (using a predominantly consensus-based approach) of the State of the regional climate for the upcoming season. Participating countries in such forums appreciates the potential of climate prediction and seasonal forecasting as a powerful development tool to help populations and decision-makers face the challenges posed by climatic variability and change.

In a meeting convened by WMO of the Directors General of the National Meteorological Services in South Asia and Permanent Representatives (PRs) of the respective countries with WMO, at the Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP), Trieste, Italy, on August 6, 2009, the PRS have unanimously agreed to establish a South Asian Climate Outlook Forum (SASCOF), to be implemented from 2010 onwards. WMO has agreed to assist in the coordination of SASCOF sessions initially, until a permanent arrangement is worked out. It has been agreed that the first session of SASCOF will be held by India and subsequent sessions will be hosted by the participant countries by rotation. It was also decided that the SASCOF will initially have exclusive focus on the summer monsoon, and the needs for covering other aspects of the sub-regional climate will be addressed in due course..


SASCOF-1 was hosted by IITM. The Forum is expected to provide a climate outlook for the coming summer monsoon season of 2010. Experts from the SASCOF member countries Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, as well as several regional and global experts participated in the event. The forum includes appraisals of country perspectives, assessing capacity building needs, global and regional indicators, consensus outlook generation, issue and user interaction. The participating national climate experts received guidance in using, interpreting and downscaling global seasonal prediction products, and in developing a consensus outlook.

Edition 19: Make your room look larger

he Nest
With summer time approaching, it is time to rearrange the rooms. Your home is not going to expand but with few tricks, you can make it appear larger. Maximize your square footage with these room-expanding tricks.

Add Multipurpose Pieces
Investing in furniture that serves many functions is a great way to streamline a room. An ottoman with built-in storage lets you tuck away blankets and books, and also makes a compact footrest.
Paint With Light Hues
Dark colors may seem design-friendly, but they make rooms look smaller. The lighter the shade is, the more open your space will appear, so stick to pale blues, grays, greens, yellows, and creams.
Reflect Your Room
Wall-to-wall mirrors may seem like a ’70s design leftover, but adding a little glass opens up the area and reflects light. On a budget? Cruise flea markets and garage sales for bargains.
Space Things Out
Automatically think you’ll make your room look bigger by shoving furniture against the wall? Sometimes a piece looks better at an angle or surrounded by space. Give your furniture breathing room, whether it’s angling your bed or floating your sofa in the living room with a skinny console behind it.
Fold It Up
Dining tables that can be made smaller or larger with removable or drop leaves let you make the most out of a combined living-dining area.
Go Monochromatic
Expand your room by painting the walls, trim, and detailing in different shades of one color, such as white, off-white, and beige. Or pair a bright white with a white that's tinted with yellow or blue so you can use the deeper hue on trim and detailing.
Make Your Ceiling Pop
While you’ve probably heard that a clean, white ceiling will open up a space, giving your ceiling texture with bright colors and fun fixtures draws your eye upward, creating the illusion of height in a room
Get Perspective
Leaving your windows uncovered will trick your eyes into thinking that your pad's got depth -- and reveal the natural beauty of the landscape outside.
Think Big
It’s easy to assume that you should decorate a small space with small furniture, right? Well, you’ll actually create an airier atmosphere by displaying one prominent item -- from a statement sofa to a curved armchair -- rather than putting tons of tiny pieces everywhere.
Color Code
In a small space, even your favorite items can quickly look like clutter unless you give them a little structure. Arranging knickknacks, books, and vases by color will make everything appear more streamlined.







Are Women Safe In Pune?

News Desk
There is a spurt in the crimes against women in Pune. As the city is shell shocked to witness four rapes in a week, the faire sex seems to be a soft target. The specific types of rising crime against women in the State are maternal deaths from violence, crimes against Dalit women and sex selection resulting in female foeticide.
According to results of studies done by NGO, Tathapi, which works on issues of women and violence, burns constituted the highest single cause of death in Maharashtra among women in the reproductive age group (15–34 years), accounting for 20 to 24 per cent of deaths in this age group. Most cases are reported as accidents. According to Tathapi, the rate of death of such “accidents” is much higher than from tuberculosis of the lungs or complications in pregnancy.
According to police officials, quick urbanisation and non-availability of enough number of police personnel are the chief causes of the primary reasons for steady increase in incidences of rape in the city in last ten years. A total of 257 cases were recorded between 2000 and 2004 and 380 cases between 2005 and 2009.
However, there was a decline in the number of rape cases from 91 in 2008 to 66 in 2009. Even the molestation cases are also on the rise. The total number of rape cases in the last ten years is 637 whereas the molestation cases are 785.
Activist Vihar Durve, who sought the statistics under Right to Information (RTI), says that it’s not just rape and molestation cases that have gone up, but most other crimes including dacoity and murder have also increased.
Neelam Gorhe, Member of Legislative Council, says that there are several shortcomings in the way investigations are conducted in rape cases. She said, “There is a need for systemic change in the administration. Rapid urbanisation of Pune in particular creates a necessity for better vigilance, especially in areas like Aundh, Baner and Hinjewadi. But nothing of that is seen even after making demands repeatedly. Rape has not been on the agenda even of political parties”
The recent incidents became more upsetting because well educated women became victims of the crime. This has raised the question over Pune’s position as safest city for women.





60 minutes: Keep Your Children Active

Health Day
It's easy to help your children get their recommended 60 minutes of daily physical activity, according to the Alliance for a Healthier Generation.
For starters, join them. That's the best way to persuade kids to be active. And you can share the fun and health benefits, too.
The group also suggests that adults:
• Encourage children to get on their bicycles, roller skates or blades and scooters. Make sure they wear helmets and protective pads.
• Teach children to walk as often as possible, such as to a friend's house, to the store, around the mall or any other place where it's safe to walk. If they don't have a particular destination, suggest that they take the dog for a walk.
• Turn up the music and dance. It doesn't have to be formal or perfect, just have fun.
• Organized sports aren't the only way to enjoy team activities. Children can meet with a few friends to play street hockey, shoot some hoops, kick a soccer ball or toss around a football or baseball. Check neighborhood recreation centers for open gym times and for activities such as tennis or swimming.
• Teach children how to get younger kids doing active things such as hopscotch, jump-rope, tag, hide-and-seek, kickball, T-ball, hula hoops or kite flying.
The Alliance for a Healthier Generation is a partnership of the American Heart Association and the William J. Clinton Foundation.
…………

Edition 19: Bollywood News

Taste of Bollywood For Jacqueline

PTI
Sri Lankan beauty Jacqueline Fernandez, who started in the Hindi film industry with 'Aladin', got her true taste of Bollywood while shooting for 'Jaane Kahan Se Aayi Hai' where she had to imitate screen icons like Amitabh Bachchan and Dharmendra.

Till about a few months back, the only Bollywood personality that Jacqueline knew was Big B, Riteish Deshmukh and Sanjay Dutt, her co-stars in 'Aladin'.

However, it took a 'Jaane Kahan Se Aayi Hai' to make her aware about other major film personalities like Dharmendra, Mithun Chakravorty, Sunny Deol and Ajay Devgn amongst others.

"Who doesn't know Amitabh Bachchan? After all he is an icon all over, including Sri Lanka. However, even after stepping into the world of Hindi films, I wasn't really too aware about her other screen personalities. I am sure not many would mind though, I am still learning," she told PTI.

But she had her share of Bollywood celebrities while on the sets of 'Jaane Kahan Se Aayi Hai'. In the film, where she plays a woman from planet Venus, Jacqueline is required to be a part of a hilarious sequence where she puts on TV and finds various actors staring from the screen channel after channel.

"Yes, this is a hilarious sequence where Jackie, who has just landed from Venus, gets her first taste of Bollywood medicine," said Milap Zaveri, the writer-director of the film.

"As she starts flipping channels, she comes across Himesh Reshammiya, Sunny Deol, Dharmendra, Mithun Chakravorty, Ajay Devgn, Sridevi and Amitabh Bachchan. She is quite amazed on seeing their on screen antics and starts copying their trademark dance steps, dialogue delivery and kicks & punches," he added.

So what Jackie gets to see is Himesh Reshammiya coming up with a nasal rendition, Sunny Deol getting into the 'Yaara O Yaara' (Jeet) jig all the way, Sridevi coming up with her historic 'Nagina' act, Dharmendra with his 'jat yamla' persona, Mithun's disco-dancer act and last but not the least, Bachchan's 'Tiger' roar from 'Hum'.

Sigh of Relief for Sushmita

PTI
Sushmita Sen can sigh now what with the Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court upholding an order of a lower court which dismissed a criminal complaint against her for her comments on pre-marital sex. Sen, a former Miss Universe, had landed in legal trouble for her comments in a TV interview that "No male or female in India is having chastity or virginity.
" A plain reading of the interview given by Sen to a TV channel showed that she had answered a question relating to her personal life and it reflected only a personal opinion,” Justice G.M.Akbar Ali observed. Dismissing a Criminal Revision Case filed against a city judicial magistrate’s dismissal of a criminal complaint against her for her comments on pre-marital sex, the judge said the lower court had rightly considered all aspects.
Moreover the Tamil newspaper which had published her interview had only reproduced an earlier interview telecast on a English channel on Oct 6, 2007 the judge said. There was no material to show a prima facie case against the actress, Justice Ali said.
Greesh Kumar, an advocate, had filed the complaint against Sen under Sec 292, 292(a) 293, 294,(obscene acts and song) read with Sec3(4)(6) of Indecent Representation of Women Act and also under Sec 2 and 3 of Young Persons(Harmful Publication)Act 1956. Counsel for Kumar contended that Sen had categorically stated that in her opinion no male or female in India "is having chastity or virginity" and it had been published in dailies also.

Abhishek Gets I-PAD From Sister

IANS
Bollywood actor Abhishek Bachchan recently got a belated birthday gift - an Apple iPad - from his sister Shweta Nanda which is not yet available in the Indian market.
'His sister has just got him his delayed birthday gift... the much talked of and recently hogging much of the limelight - the iPad,' Abhishek's father and megastar Amitabh Bachchan posted on his blog.
'He has spent the entire day sorting out this rather sleek looking gadget and I dare say it is indeed a marvellous piece of equipment. Have pestered the daughter to get me my birthday gift in advance and present me one as well,' he added.
Ipad is a 9.7 inch touchscreen tablet which is just 0.5 inches thick. It is thinner and lighter than any laptop or netbook and delivers a battery life of up to 10 hours.
……………………

Who Can Replace the Kat?

E24bollywood.com
It is confirmed that Bollywood star Katrina Kaif was the first and only choice for Tees Maar Khan.

Reveals a source,” The lead role in the film is a meaty one and plenty of actresses must have been keen to play it. However Katrina was the only one approached for the film”

Additionally sources add that the role in Tees Maar Khan was tailor made for Katrina Kaif hence casting of any other actress was out of question. The gorgeous Katrina Kaif seems to be the flavor of the season with the best movies in her kitty and the best brands riding on her pretty shoulders.

Confirming her decision to cast Katrina says director Farah Khan “After meeting Katrina we knew we found our female lead for Tees Maar Khan. She is so beautiful and talented with such great screen presence that she suited the role perfectly. From among the established actresses in Bollywood, the only one we considered and approached for the role was Katrina hence speculation over us considering other actresses should end.”

Katrina often considered Bollywood’s lucky mascot is set to work her magic on the box office this year with Rajneeti, Tees Maar Khan and Dostana 2.

Edition 19 : Martina Navratilova fights cancer and Tiger back to woods

Martina Fights With Cancer In Same Spirit
Jon Bramley
As a tennis player, Martina Navratilova showed a fighting spirit all through her career. The indomitable spirit was also evident in her life off the court. Now, she battles one of the hardest battle of her life. With cancer.
Martina, held as one of the finest female tennis players of all time, has been diagnosed with breast cancer, she told U.S. online magazine People. "I cried," the report quoted Navratilova, 53, as saying about the moment in February when a biopsy came back positive after a routine mammogram revealed a cluster in her left breast.
"It knocked me on my ass, really. I feel so in control of my life and my body, and then this comes, and it's completely out of my hands."
The report said she would begin six weeks of radiation therapy in May following minor invasive surgery called a lumpectomy and the prognosis for survival was extremely good.
She was diagnosed with a non-invasive form of breast cancer, called ductal carcinoma in situ, or DCIS, which in her case had not spread to the breast tissue.
"It was the best-case scenario you could imagine for detecting breast cancer," Mindy Nagle, a good friend of Navratilova, told the magazine.
The nine-times Wimbledon champion, who still plays tennis and ice hockey and competes in triathlons, said she was lucky, as she had not been getting regular check-ups.
"I went four years between mammograms. I let it slide. Everyone gets busy, but don't make excuses. I stay in shape and eat right, and it happened to me. Another year and I could have been in big trouble."
Czech-born Navratilova, who became a U.S. citizen in 1981, won 18 grand slam singles crowns.


Tiger Return To Woods

Jim Slater
Tiger Woods showed he has lost neither golf skills nor spectator support, making an impressive return from a five-month layoff and a humbling sex scandal on Thursday at the 74th Masters. Roaring into contention for a 15th major title and fifth Masters crown, Woods fired his best opening round in 16 Masters starts, shooting a four-under par 68 to stand two strokes off the lead at Augusta National Golf Club.

"It felt just like normal, like every other start, nothing really different," Woods said. Bolstered by applause and supportive cheers from spectators throughout his round, Woods fired two eagles -- another first for him at the Masters -- and took strength from what he called the best support he has had at the event.

"It was heartfelt to have ovations like that all day," Woods said. "The reception was incredible all day. I had not heard them cheer that loud all the years I've played here. It certainly helped keep my spirits up."

Playing his first event in 144 days, the 34-year-old American superstar drew the world's attention with his return after having confessed he cheated on wife Elin while more than a dozen women claimed sexual affairs with Woods.

Woods answered curiosity about his ability to continue dominating golf after the revelation of his secret affairs, but downplayed taking any special meaning from the day, sounding much the same as he has after rounds for 15 years.

"It meant I'm two shots off the lead," Woods said. "I'm here to play golf."
Thousands of others jammed the first tee to see if the exposure of his secret sex life had destroyed his golf game. They quickly learned humiliation was just another adversary for Woods to conquer.

Edition 19: Fergussion College: From Landmark to Heritage


With the end of the East India Company’s regime in India after the failure of first armed uprising in 1857, a new era dawned in our country. The Founders of the Fergusson College, which had names like Vishnushastri Chiplunkar and Lokmany Bal Gangadhar Tilak among others had first started the New English School, Pune in 1880. They later founded the Deccan Education Society (DES) in 1884.

This was followed by the bold step to start the first ever privately managed college in India, on the 2nd January 1885, naming it as the Fergusson College. The name was given in appreciation of the support of Sir James Fergusson, the then Governor of Bombay Province and also the first Patron of the DES. Principal William Wordsworth, the grandson of the famous poet, was the master of the ceremonies at the inaugural function of the college. Thus, the Fergusson College bridged the gulf between the great city of London and Poona, the city of the Peshwas and on this occasion Sir Fergusson wished God’s blessings on this new venture. The college received affiliation of the University of Bombay and began its onward march in higher education with the opening of the Arts classes, followed in 1892, with the science classes.

The college held these classes, for almost ten years, in the old Gadre Wada and other locations in Poona. A plot of about 37 acres (a portion of the present extensive campus) was acquired on a 99 years’ lease in 1891 by the DES. The foundation stone of the Main building of the Fergusson College, was laid in 1892 and the building was completed in 1895. The college started functioning on the present campus in 1895. From then onwards, the college has emerged as a nation-building institution. It has a place of pride in the hearts of the people, as a historical monument and a symbol of the country’s freedom struggle.

While the founders Vishnushastri Chiplunkar, Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Gopal Ganesh Agarkar, Mahadev Ballal Namjoshi and Vaman Shivram Apte have become legends, in the history of education and the freedom struggle in India, the college has also received significant support from academicians and statesmen, such as Principal William Wordsworth, Principal F. G. Selby, Lord Rippon, Sir William Wedderburn and Sir James Fergusson. Justice Mahadeo Govind Ranade, the wisest protagonist of liberalism and secular political ethos, emerging in Indian Society, described the opening of Fergusson College as having, “unquestionably a great political importance as well”. The truth of this statement is evident by the fact that the Fergusson College has produced great political leaders, such as the former-Prime Ministers P. V. Narasimhrao and V. P. Singh, former-Chief Minister Babubhai Patel, former-Minister of Information and Broadcasting Barrister V. N. Gadgil; Acharya Kripalani, Veer Savarkar and S. M. Joshi.

Gopal Krishna Gokhale, who was described by Mahatma Gandhi, as his political guru and mentor, gave a distinctive touch to the Fergusson College. In his address delivered at the time of laying of the corner stone of the New English School and the Fergusson college building, on the 5th March 1885, Sir James Fergusson declared that the opening of the College was more a national than a local undertaking. All through its history of 125 years of a shrine–like existence, Fergusson college crossed the mark of being a local landmark to being a national heritage.

FC has given to the country, from among its alumni, great patriots, thinkers, philosophers, poets, writers, teachers, social workers, scientists, industrialists, entrepreneurs, researchers, administrators and defense officers. In keeping with its eminent standing in the educational field, some of its teachers and students have brought laurels to the college, by being appointed as Vice Chancellors of Pune and other Universities.

The FC completed 50 years in January 1935 and Sir C. V. Raman, the only Indian recipient of the prestigious Nobel Award in science, was the President of the Golden Jubilee function. He had said at the time, “ … … Standing here today, I feel that history has been written in Poona- history of self-help, history of self-reliance, history of great and constructive national effort- that history has been written in Poona, has been written on this very spot …” Mahatma Gandhi, in his message to Principal Dr. Mahajani on this occasion, wrote, “Who will fail to be enthused over the noble record of the service rendered by the D. E. Society and the Fergusson College to the cause of education?”

The Centenary of the college was celebrated on 1st June 1985. Rajiv Gandhi, the then Prime Minister of India referred to Fergusson College as a pocket of excellence producing individuals who can rise to the levels unheard of and unbelievable. Now the college is has approached another milestone with completing 125th anniversary. City Blog wishes all the best for the future journey of the college.

With the end of the East India Company’s regime in India after the failure of first armed uprising in 1857, a new era dawned in our country. The Founders of the Fergusson College, which had names like Vishnushastri Chiplunkar and Lokmany Bal Gangadhar Tilak among others had first started the New English School, Pune in 1880. They later founded the Deccan Education Society (DES) in 1884.

This was followed by the bold step to start the first ever privately managed college in India, on the 2nd January 1885, naming it as the Fergusson College. The name was given in appreciation of the support of Sir James Fergusson, the then Governor of Bombay Province and also the first Patron of the DES. Principal William Wordsworth, the grandson of the famous poet, was the master of the ceremonies at the inaugural function of the college. Thus, the Fergusson College bridged the gulf between the great city of London and Poona, the city of the Peshwas and on this occasion Sir Fergusson wished God’s blessings on this new venture. The college received affiliation of the University of Bombay and began its onward march in higher education with the opening of the Arts classes, followed in 1892, with the science classes.

The college held these classes, for almost ten years, in the old Gadre Wada and other locations in Poona. A plot of about 37 acres (a portion of the present extensive campus) was acquired on a 99 years’ lease in 1891 by the DES. The foundation stone of the Main building of the Fergusson College, was laid in 1892 and the building was completed in 1895. The college started functioning on the present campus in 1895. From then onwards, the college has emerged as a nation-building institution. It has a place of pride in the hearts of the people, as a historical monument and a symbol of the country’s freedom struggle.

While the founders Vishnushastri Chiplunkar, Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Gopal Ganesh Agarkar, Mahadev Ballal Namjoshi and Vaman Shivram Apte have become legends, in the history of education and the freedom struggle in India, the college has also received significant support from academicians and statesmen, such as Principal William Wordsworth, Principal F. G. Selby, Lord Rippon, Sir William Wedderburn and Sir James Fergusson. Justice Mahadeo Govind Ranade, the wisest protagonist of liberalism and secular political ethos, emerging in Indian Society, described the opening of Fergusson College as having, “unquestionably a great political importance as well”. The truth of this statement is evident by the fact that the Fergusson College has produced great political leaders, such as the former-Prime Ministers P. V. Narasimhrao and V. P. Singh, former-Chief Minister Babubhai Patel, former-Minister of Information and Broadcasting Barrister V. N. Gadgil; Acharya Kripalani, Veer Savarkar and S. M. Joshi.

Gopal Krishna Gokhale, who was described by Mahatma Gandhi, as his political guru and mentor, gave a distinctive touch to the Fergusson College. In his address delivered at the time of laying of the corner stone of the New English School and the Fergusson college building, on the 5th March 1885, Sir James Fergusson declared that the opening of the College was more a national than a local undertaking. All through its history of 125 years of a shrine–like existence, Fergusson college crossed the mark of being a local landmark to being a national heritage.

FC has given to the country, from among its alumni, great patriots, thinkers, philosophers, poets, writers, teachers, social workers, scientists, industrialists, entrepreneurs, researchers, administrators and defense officers. In keeping with its eminent standing in the educational field, some of its teachers and students have brought laurels to the college, by being appointed as Vice Chancellors of Pune and other Universities.

The FC completed 50 years in January 1935 and Sir C. V. Raman, the only Indian recipient of the prestigious Nobel Award in science, was the President of the Golden Jubilee function. He had said at the time, “ … … Standing here today, I feel that history has been written in Poona- history of self-help, history of self-reliance, history of great and constructive national effort- that history has been written in Poona, has been written on this very spot …” Mahatma Gandhi, in his message to Principal Dr. Mahajani on this occasion, wrote, “Who will fail to be enthused over the noble record of the service rendered by the D. E. Society and the Fergusson College to the cause of education?”

The Centenary of the college was celebrated on 1st June 1985. Rajiv Gandhi, the then Prime Minister of India referred to Fergusson College as a pocket of excellence producing individuals who can rise to the levels unheard of and unbelievable. Now the college is has approached another milestone with completing 125th anniversary. City Blog wishes all the best for the future journey of the college.

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Presidents Recounts Tryst With FC

President of India, Pratibha Devisingh Patil graced the occasion of ‘Concluding Ceremony of Post Centennial Silver Jubilee Celebrations’ of Deccan Education Society on April 19, 2010.

Speaking on the occasion, Mrs. Patil said, “Educated class should come forward for the resolution of problems like poverty, unemployment and corruption.” She said that

Also present on the occasion were K. Sankaranarayanan, Governor of Maharashtra, Chhagan Bhujbal, Deputy Chief Minister of Maharashtra and Chhatrapati Shahu of Kolhapur, President of Deccan Education Society, Subhash Zanak, minister for women and child welfare. Recounting the glorious tradition of people behind the institution, she said that the Fergusson College is no longer an institute of providing the higher education but it has metamorphosed in an institution of great ideals.

She reminded with pride that her father Nanasaheb and uncle Shripat Patil had studied in the same college. A souvenir was also published at this occasion.

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Caption For Photo:

President Smt Pratibha Devisingh Patil being welcomed on stage and being presented a memento at the concluding function of the Post Centenary Silver Jubilee Celebrations of Fergussion College by Chhatrapati Shahu Maharaj of Kolhapur, president of Deccan Education Society.

Volkwagen, Twitter and Saas Bahu Viewers

Celebrations at Volkswagen
Volkswagen India is celebrating the first successful year of completion of its Pune plant. The theme for the celebration is 'Volkswagen India. Building Cars. Winning Hearts'. The Pune plant is one of the most modern plants amongst the Volkswagen Group and was inaugurated on March 31, 2009.

The celebrations were set in motion on March 27. With a view to share its joy with the city of Pune, Volkswagen distributed muffins with a 1-year candle as a symbol of a birthday cake at the screening of the IPL evening matches at Ishanya Mall on March 27 and 28.

On Tuesday, March 30, the works of Artist Lala were unveiled at the Volkswagen India Plant. Artist Lala is a German settled in Pune and her work represents the cultural exchange between the two countries. There will be around 20 paintings that will be exhibited by her at the Chakan plant on March 30.

On March 31, exactly 1 year after the inauguration, Volkswagen organised an art competition for their employee children between the ages of 6-12 years with the theme of “Volkswagen Employee Children. Winning Hearts with Polo.” These paintings will be displayed at the plant.

The Pune plant covers all stages in the production process from press shop through body shop and paint shop to final assembly. It has a maximum annual capacity of 110,000 vehicles. In addition to the Volkswagen Polo, the Pune plant also builds the Škoda Fabia.

With a total financial commitment amounting to Rs 3,800 crores, the Volkswagen plant in Pune is the largest investment to date by a German company in India. Volkswagen plans to employ some 2,500 people locally by the end of 2010.

With its headquarters in Pune, Maharashtra, the Volkswagen Group is represented by three brands in India: Volkswagen, Audi and Skoda. The Volkswagen Group is completing 10 years of its India journey which began with the entry of the Skoda brand in 2001, Audi brand and Volkswagen brand in 2007With 17 models in India and 120 dealerships, Volkswagen Group India is all set to capture the Indian market with the inauguration of the Pune plant which has an investment of Rs 3,800 crore (580 million Euros) and a production capacity of 110,000 cars annually.




Twitterers Get Better By Day

Vinay Dora
Twitter wits just like stand-up comic acts require an impeccable comic sense and being reflective on those thoughts that audiences can relate to.
However unlike conventional acts in both real and reel life, where you have your moment of glory without intrusion, in the Twitter world, there's no limit to the number of people who can butt in on your moment. The only restriction here is that your tweet cannot go beyond the 140 character (alphabets) limit.
Also, just like a good fine-leg glance in cricket would require timing and placement, a witty tweet needs a great sense of timing and placement (of their smartphone, too) for it to capture every special moment.
We've toiled while at work, forgotten how to burn our midnight oil and were called 'twits', just to be around witty tweets , haven't we?
So how does one become a witty Twitterer? Well there may be no 7, 8,9,10 steps to becoming one; a good starting point would be to look at the tweet streams of some witty Twitterers.
Bet on the Twitter community to captilise on the contemporary. On the Sania-Shoaib 'match-fixing' story, the Great Bong tweets 'Shoaib Malik to Sania Mirza: You have already done a double-fault. One more and our marriage is over.#3talaqs', while Krish Ashok feels 'The problem with Shoaib Malik is that he never mastered the art of the Doosra' and hence his many woes.
Some Twitters have been keeping a close tab on politics. Ramesh Srivats has a request for the Karnataka government, he tweets 'BJP says they're going to spend Rs.22500 crores in Blr. For a population of 7 million that's like Rs.30K per head. Can I take cash instead?' Ramesh also has something to say about former Karnataka CM & now India's Foreign Minister - 'Krishna to press China to buy rice, mangoes. So the man is sometimes a hawk and sometimes a hawker'.
There's no harm in trying to be different as long as you don't have to pay for it. Here Spy Maami has the same thought, she tweets 'I just discovered that I can send a text to myself. Wait. I hope I am not charged for this kind of creepy behaviour.'
And finally, with the IPL in full flow, there have been innumerous tweets not just from the stars but also the 'aam viewer'. As Creatitwittytweets 'The mongoose bat was first created by Shahid Afridi. Oh, nothing special; he just began biting the blade, starting at the shoulder'.

Sas-Bahu Dramas Catch Men’s Fancy

Shilpa Jamkhandikar/Reuters
When 42-year-old business executive Sam Joy gets home from work, like millions of employees around the world, he turns to television for some relaxation, but it's not the TV you'd expect.
Instead of tuning into a news or sports channel, a reality TV show or some thriller, Joy watches "Uttaran", a popular prime-time soap opera about two women in love with the same man.
Joy is just one of many men in India hooked to soap operas, breaking a stereotype that these shows attracted women-only and forcing entertainment channels to tweak programming for the men.
"When reality TV became a part of the programming, we managed to pull in a lot of male viewers from news channels," says Ashvini Yardi, head of programming for the Colors channel, which airs "Uttaran".
"But they stayed back for the daily soaps because the content of the daily soaps has undergone a change.
"We find that men like strong women characters and there is a high recall value for them, so that is something else we keep in mind when we design our programming," says Yardi.
In recent years, Indian television has moved on from family dramas revolving around wicked mothers-in-law to social themes like female infanticide, child marriage and poverty.
These topics appeal as much to the male viewer as they do to women, with the average Indian spending around 150 minutes huddled around the television each day.
Television ratings indicate that nearly 43 percent of the audience for general entertainment channels over the last two years is male.
At an industry conference in March, the CEO of Star India, Uday Shankar, said the amount of time men spent on entertainment channels had gone up by 25 percent in the last couple of years.
"We have to innovate and create new programming to appeal to the changing general entertainment channel audience," Shankar told the conference.
That innovation is coming in the form of more and more reality TV shows, moving away from the safe haven of singing competitions and venturing into realms such as psychological therapy and television weddings.
As for Joy, he prefers his daily dose of soaps but would watch more news if he had more control over the remote, which is usually wielded by his wife.
"But I would also check to see what's happening in Uttaran. So far, I like it. I hope they don't turn it into the regular soap story," he said.

The children world over are spending three hours a day or more watching TV or using computers, according to a study by World Health Organisation researchers. The positive side of this study was that girls in India are found to be most active among 34 nations.
Regina Guthold of the World Health Organization in Geneva and her colleagues surveyed 70,000 teens in 34 nations between 2003 and 2007. They found that most children aren't getting enough exercise and it made no difference if they lived in a rich or a poor country.
"With regards to physical activity levels, we did not find much of a difference between poor and rich countries," Guthold told Reuters Health. The researchers defined adequate physical activity as at least an hour of exercise outside of gym class at least five days a week. Children who spent three or more hours a day watching TV, playing computer games, or chatting with friends -- aside from time in school or time spent doing homework -- were classified as sedentary.
The researchers found only one quarter of the boys and 15 percent of the girls were getting enough exercise by these definitions. A quarter of boys and nearly 30 percent of girls were sedentary and didn't get enough exercise with girls less active than boys in every country aside from Zambia.
Girls Top List
Girls from India were the most active, with 37 percent meeting exercise recommendations, while girls from Egypt were the least active, with just 4 percent getting adequate exercise. Uruguay had the highest percentage of active boys, at 42 percent, while Zambia had the lowest, at 8 percent.
Children in Myanmar were the least sedentary, with 13 percent of boys and 8 percent of girls classified as sedentary. The most sedentary nations were St. Lucia and the Cayman Islands, with 58 percent of boys and 64 percent of girls spending at least three hours a day in sedentary activities.

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CityBlog Pune is weekly paper launched by Orange Publications and Productions Pvt Ltd. It aims to create a forum where each issue will be followed up. We will have citizen to express and not just read what others have to say. Just like an on + offline blog