Friday, July 1, 2011

Officials urged to be ‘duty conscious’ not protocol sensitive

NAMCHI, 30 June: Chief Minister Pawan Chamling completed the South district leg of his village-to-village tour of Sikkim with a review meeting of the findings and schemes and projects sanctioned for the district during his tour. The meeting held in indoor gymnasium hall was attended by Ministers, MLAs, Heads of Departments and district officials.
Urging the government officials to be ‘duty conscious’ and not ‘protocol conscious’ the CM asked them to work diligently for the implementation of the schemes and projects sanctioned during his tour.

Hostel construction at Tadong College imperils houses above

GANGTOK, 30 June: A portion of the boundary wall of Government College, Tadong gave way last night, exposing compromised slope which is now posing danger to houses above it. The footpath between the wall and the buildings [outside the college campus] has also developed gaping cracks, the earth beneath it slipping away, a slope failure perhaps caused by the huge construction underway in the college compound. 
STOP-PRESS: What had started as anxious concern reached panic desperation late this evening when the mud caved away from below the boundary wall, setting in motion what everyone is convinced, is an accelerated slope failure which has multiplied the sinking area’s potential for destruction.

97.27% students of SU’s first batch graduate

GANGTOK, 30 June: The first batch of undergraduate students passed out from Sikkim University today. 3,966 students [in the entire university] had appeared for exams in their respective disciplines, out of whom 3,841 passed and 17 results have been withheld. The university has recorded an overall pass percentage of 97.27%.
Nine degree colleges across the State are affiliated with Sikkim University which also offers some undergraduate courses at the University as well.

CM holds up sports promotion as priority sector

NAMCHI, 30 June: Chief Minister Pawan Chamling has announced that sports will be a priority-sector for the government in the 12th Five Year Plan. He announced that ten-times more sports activities will be taken up to engage the youth and children in this healthy option.
He was sharing this with the Heads of Departments and district officials today during a review meeting of his South district tour held at Namchi indoor stadium today.
The CM informed that inter-school football tournaments at the constituency level will be organized and all efforts made to explore budding talent from all corners of the State and provide with a good platform to test their mettle.

Shared Blame

Has anyone wondered what would happen to Sikkim if the government were to pull away from its established role as the largest consumer. Not only is the government the largest employer, it is also the only consumer of local services [by way of contracts and supplies]. Although things are noticeably, one is still living in a scenario where the sharpest of entrepreneurs want to get into the government supply business and the best professionals aim a slot in the government machinery. Granted that given Sikkim’s small population, business models with the State as the end-user makes better economic sense, but surely there are many other small regions which are doing rather well for themselves and would prefer governmental presence to be phased out. In Sikkim, however, a situation has been created wherein the government is expected to play the role of the policy maker, the executer, the NGO, the entrepreneur, consumer and even the civil society.

Precarious perches the axe

GANGTOK, 30 June: The Forest Department today began removing trees that are ‘located precariously and are likely to fall during the monsoon’, in follow-up to the reminder of the East District Administration served to the Department on 20 June.
The district-level meeting on “Disaster Management and Pre-Monsoon Preparedness” convened by the District Collectorate [East] on 26 May had “strictly” directed the Forest Department that, “trees that are located precariously and are likely to fall during the monsoon shall be identified and be removed at the earliest.”

Illegally slaughtered beef seized at Ranipool

GANGTOK, 30 June [IPR]: A vehicle [bearing registration number SK-03-3700] was intercepted at Ranipool Bazar on 28 June at 5.10 a.m. transporting illegally slaughtered beef. This action was carried out under the supervision of Deputy Director (Marketing & Quality Control), Department of Animal Husbandry, Livestock, Fisheries & Veterinary Services, Dr Madan KS Shanker.
The confiscated beef weighing approximately 500 kg was auctioned and the revenue generated has been credited to the Government account.
A complaint on the matter has been lodged at the Ranipool Police Station to register a case under the provisions of Sub Section 1 of Section 12 of The Sikkim Livestock and Livestock Product Control Act 1985.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Forest officers retaining govt employees for domestic chores risk suspension

GANGTOK, 29 June: Forest Department officers, who divert the services of Forest Guards and MR employees for personal work at their residences, now do so at the risk of ‘immediate suspension’.
This was one of the directions of the letter issued earlier this month by the Principal Chief Conservator of Forest [Planning & Administration], Department of Forests Environment and Wildlife Management addressed to all Divisional Forest Officers informing that the Department has learned of such misconduct from “some reliable sources”.

West tour completed, CM gets busy wrapping up South district visits

NAMCHI, 29 June: Straight after winding up his village-to-village tour of West Sikkim with a review meeting with officers at Gyalshing yesterday, Chief Minister Pawan Chamling today toured Phali Dara, Lower Boomtaar, Sallebong Rong, Sumbuk and Compound Majhitar, places left out in the first phase of his South district visit. He completes his South Sikkim tour on Thursday.
At his last stop of the day, Compound Majhitar, he inaugurated a newly constructed Government Lower Primary School.
Addressing the public here, the CM, while responding to the demand seeking regularisation of forest land occupied by the people [65 households] there, directed the Forest Department to take up the matter with the Ministry of Environment & Forests, GoI, in the interest of the people.

Rajeshwari’s never give up attitude makes her first lady to be appointed as driver in govt service

GANGTOK, 29 June: The first lady driver to be appointed on Government service, Rajeshwari Rai, is a 30-year-old mother of a two-and-half-year old child and hails from Sawney, West Pendam near Singtam.
“Today, I realized that consistency and hard work eventually yield fruitful results in life,” said Rajeshawari, who was here at the Forest Secretariat to sign a memorandum with the Department of Forests Environment and Wildlife Management, where, she will now work as a driver.

Livelihood School trainees find placements in Madhya Pradesh

GANGTOK, 29 June: Seventeen trainees of Chujachen Livelihood School and Namchi-Singithang Livelihood School have been recruited as teachers at Shree Shanskar Academy, a CBSE-affiliated school and located in Madhya Pradesh, informs a press release.
They were selected by a team from the selection committee of the school from a campus interview held on 25 June. They were selected based on their proficiency in Computer Software and Hardware and the English language, the release informs.
The selected trainees will be provided with free accommodation at the campus with the following salary structure: class X pass with Rs 8000, class XII pass with Rs 9000 and graduates with Rs 10000, the release further informs.
They will also be given opportunities for further studies within the school campus. The parents of the trainees have signed NOCs allowing them to work in Madhya Pradesh.

Nothing Minor About Petty Crime

A burglary attempt was foiled in the capital recently, but not before the burglar had cut out two strong locks and smashed the glass door, the last obstacle between him and whatever he could snatch from a shop which houses a PCO and stacks mobile phone recharge vouchers. It was raining at the time, but the break-in attempt was still fearless. A police outpost is less than 100 metres away and the shop is along National Highway 31A. Even with the two lookouts who kept watch while the locks were filed away, chances of detection and even arrest, were high. And the attempt was foiled when the crash of the glass door drew the attention of a neighbour across the street, and the burglars fled when he came down to investigate.

Bhim Rawat elected Press Club president

GANGTOK, 29 June: The Press Club of Sikkim unanimously elected Bhim Rawat as its president, Joseph Lepcha as general secretary, Babbu Tamang as treasurer, Kabita Sharma as assistant treasurer, Nirmal Mangar as publicity secretary, Arjun Rai as literary secretary and Sagar Chettri as culture secretary. All of them sailed through uncontested.

SHRPP forms state-level committee, will disclose names later

GANGTOK, 29 June: A meeting of the Sikkim Himali Rajya Parishad Party was convened on 27 June under the chairmanship of its president, Dr. AD Subba. The meeting started by mourning the deaths due to landslides in West Sikkim.
The meeting was also attended by former Deputy Chief Minister, PT Lucksom, and formed a new state level committee while resolving to keep the members of the newly formed committee confidential for the time being except for Mr. Lucksom’s presence in it, informs an SHRPP press release.
The meeting also proposed to form committees at other levels, prepare political agenda, hold public meetings at the weekly haats in South and West districts from next month onwards and pursue the party’s programmes with a greater zeal, the release states.
The party has also decided to launch its own website and release video CDs for party publicity.

West Sikkim ladies trained on carpet design and development

GANGTOK, 29 June: Ninety ladies, thirty each from the villages of Ribdi, Chamba Gaon and Okhrey in West Sikkim, have completed an intensive 300-hour training on Carpet Design and Development held in their respective villages earlier this month.
The training, sponsored by the Ministry of Medium and Small Enterprises, GoI, under its Entrepreneurship and Skill Development Programme, was conducted by Gangtok-based DoCo Textiles & Handloom.
With Sonam Choden and Passang Tshering Dorjee of DoCo Textiles and Handloom as the main resource persons, the trainees, all from the Scheduled Tribes community, had Nim Doma Sherpa, Zemang Sherpa and Pem Diki Tamang as assistant trainers.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

CM inaugurates degree college for West Sikkim, Kyongsa to be developed as Education Hub

GYALSHING, 28 June: Chief Minister Pawan Chamling today dedicated the Government Degree College at Kyongsa here to the people of West Sikkim. On the final day of his West Sikkim tour, the CM delivered on an assurance that Gyalshing would get a degree college this academic session itself.
The college is situated around one km away from Gyalshing Bazaar, and as he inaugurated the new facility, the CM announced that the area will now be developed as an education hub. It already has a Girls Senior Secondary School and Kyongsa today received a degree college as well. Soon, a nursing institute, an ITI and a livelihood school will also be added to the bouquet of options for higher education available here, the CM announced.

ACT wants Forest Deptt to establish NHPC’s reliability to deliver on commitments ahead of public hearing for Teesta Stage IV

GANGTOK, 28 June: President, Affected Citizens of Teesta, Athup Lepcha, has written to the Forest Department to publish the “achievement report” of NHPC’s delivery on conditions imposed on it when it was allowed to proceed with the now commissioned Teesta Stage V hydel project. This, Mr. Lepcha wants released in the public domain by 10 July 2011, ahead of the public hearing called by State Pollution Control Board for 22 July for Teesta Stage IV which also is to be undertaken by NHPC.
In his letter to the Forest Secretary, the ACT president has reminded his office that when the Environmental Clearance ad Forest Clearance was given to NHPC for Stage-V, “specific and strict conditions” had to be satisfied by NHPC.

South cops unravel stolen car fencing nexus, seize 6 vehicles

NAMCHI, 28 June: The South District Police has unravelled a stolen car dealing nexus which it had stumbled upon last month and it has now been established that the network of car-jackers and fencers was wide, stretching from Sikkim to Madhya Pradesh and surrounding states. The case busted, the cops now have six stolen vehicles in their custody, even as investigations continue to get to the bottom of things.
SP [South], Manoj Tiwari, today informed that in connection with the Ravangla Police Station case of 07 May 2011 booked under Section 379/467/471/34 of the IPC [which deals with stolen vehicles], four Boleros and one Santro have been seized from Ravangla along with one Scorpio from Jorethang. All have been confirmed as stolen vehicles sold into Sikkim.

The lady who survived Khorong wipeout along with her children

GYALSHING, 28 June: Barsha Rai, who, along with her two children, survived the recent Khorong landslide in which 14 people perished, is currently staying in the rehabilitation camp set up at the Pelling Senior Secondary School staff quarters with other victims.
21-year-old Barsha and her two children were pulled out of the house in the nick of time by her husband who was not inside the house at the time. The family has lost all its belongings to the landslide. The material loss however pales in comparison to the death of Barsha’s father-in-law and mother-in-law in the incident.
Barsha was hit on the head by a small boulder and still shudders in fright when asked to recount incidents of the fateful night. She shares that the downpour was heavy throughout that day and when a small landslide hit the village at around 6 p.m., panicked residents of six of the seven house of the village rushed to her in-laws’ house which everyone felt was sturdy and safe from slides.

CM rounds up West Sikkim tour, issues clear direction to officials on tasks ahead

GYALSHING, 28 June: The West Sikkim leg of the Chief Minister’s village-to-village tour of the State wrapped up today with an interactive meeting between the CM, Ministers and MLAs with the Head of Departments and West Sikkim district officials at the Zilla Panchayat Bhawan here this evening.
On the occasion, the MLAs of West Sikkim, on behalf of the people of West Sikkim, Additional Chief Secretary, Karma Gyatso, on behalf of the officials and employees, and District Collector [West], Santa Pradhan, on behalf of the district administration, thanked the Chief Minister for his tour of different hamlets and villages, including the remotest areas and his sanctioning of a range of development demands here. They also made special thanks for the speed with which a college was established for the district.

Rajeshwari becomes Sikkim’s first lady Govt driver

GANGTOK, 28 June: Rajeshwari Rai has become the first lady to be appointed a driver in the State government service. She will be serving the Department of Forests Environment and Wildlife Management.
The final list of 10 selected candidates was put up on the notice board of the Forest Secretariat today.
Earlier, on 04 May, a total of 32 candidates had taken the viva-voce, among whom, Ms. Rai as was the lone woman.
Ms. Rai, a graduate, had to gone through the same screening as her male counterparts, which included, driving a Mahindra Pickup Utility on a congested road and driving a Marshall DI Turbo in reverse gear up a steep slope during her driving test after successfully passing the written examination.
She is scheduled to sign a memorandum with the Department along with the other nine drivers at the Forest Secretariat on Wednesday.
Similarly, five more women candidates have made to the final list for the 10 posts of peons in the same Department.

Stock Guru victims invited to get in touch with police

NAMCHI, 28 June: The SP [South] has called on victims of the Stock Guru India scam to get in touch with his office or with the Namchi Police Station OC with their complaints against the company or any other details they might want to share on the nature and extent of the scam.
The Police here, it may be recalled, has frozen one of the bank accounts [with deposited amount of around Rs. 10 crore] of Stock Guru India Ltd. which now stands accused of operating the banned prize chit-fund money circulation fraud.

Sikkim Rehab and Detoxification Society observes World Anti Drug Day

GANGTOK, 27 June: Sikkim Rehabilitation and Detoxification Society organized a program on the occasion of World Anti Drug Day at 32 No., Nimtar on 26 June. The programme began with a rally from the Rehabilitation Centre to 32 no Bazaar Petrol Pump participated by the people of 32 No., inmates of the Rehab Centre (Male/Female Wing), informs a press release.

Namphing plants

GANGTOK, 28 June: Students and teachers of Namphing Junior High School in South Sikkim observed 10 Minutes to Earth initiative by planting around 100 saplings of Amla in their school premises on 25 June.
Similarly, the villagers of Namphing GPU, along with Panchayat president Bikash Sharma, secretary, Madhu Tamang, officials from Forest Department including Range Officer, Pem Diki Sherpa and others also planted around 800 saplings of different species along the road at Chalamthang, Naya basti and Pabong.
Later, around 500 saplings of Amla were distributed to the villagers of Namphing, Pabong, Naya basti and Kamargaon free of cost by R.O., NTFP, South.

Commuters thrilled with Dikchu to Thingchim blacktopping by BRO

MANGAN, 28 JUNE:  Undaunted with the persistent rains of the past week, the Border Roads Organisation persisted with its task of completing the blacktopping work of the Dikchu-Mangan road till Thingchim Zero in North Sikkim. The BRO had assured people here of completing the task ahead of the monsoons and thereby improving the road journey to Mangan.

Scoring for Soccer in Sikkim

TEMPO BHUTIA has been part of SFA ever since its formation in 1976. He has been the president of the organisation for the last 13 years and is now hanging up his boots to concentrate on another football-related project very close to his heart. Here, he presents an update on the football scenario in Sikkim at present…

I have been associated with football ever since the formation of SFA in 1976. It has been a long journey from having to dig holes for goal posts, collect banners and hang them around the field, and putting grim-faces while checking tickets at the gates, to becoming the President of Sikkim’s biggest association for the last 13 years. Times have changed and with all-round development in Sikkim, Paljor Stadium too has been transformed from sandy surface and wooden gallery to international standard stadium with astroturfs.

SSTDS appoints new executive committee

NAMCHI, 28 June: The South Sikkim Tourism Development Society (SSTDS) has reshuffled its executive committee.
The new members are- chief patron, area MLA Binod Rai, chief advisor Chairman Namchi Municipal Council BT Tamang, chief co-ordinator Dr. Bimal Rai, president Chairman Tea Board Gagan Rai, vice- president Chairman Tribal Welfare Board Passang Rinzing Sherpa, general secretary Zilla Upadakshya South Himal Tamang, secretary Rup Narayan Rai, public relation secretary Bal Bir Tamang, publicity secretary Namo Dixit, joint secretary Dawgyal Lepcha and treasurer Sailesh Pradhan.
The Society also acts as an apex body of tourism organisations in the district and is also involved in developing ideas for the tourism promotion. It has 16 constituent members in village tourism societies from in and around Namchi.

MoEF unaware of hydel projects proposed on Rathong Chu, SIBLAC contends

GANGTOK, 29 June: Sikkim Bhutia Lepcha Apex Committee [SIBLAC] today released copies of a letter from the Ministry of Environment & Forests informing that while the Lethang hydel project has been rejected by the Standing Committee of the NBWL of the MoEF, this Ministry, without whose go ahead no hydel projects can be undertake, is not even aware of the 99MW Ting-Ting and 97 MW Tashiding HEP coming up on Rathong Chu. This, despite the fact that public hearings have been held for these projects.

Sikkim GJM appeals to Dooars and Siliguri residents living here to return and present case to joint verification committee

GANGTOK, 28 June: Gorkha Janmukti Morcha’s Sikkim-unit has appealed to the people from Siliguri, Dooars and terrai regions residing in Sikkim to visit their hometowns inform their constituents there about the survey to be conducted in those parts by the Joint Verification Committee to collect the people’s opinion on being included within the boundaries of the proposed Gorkhaland.
A committee is to be formed to survey areas dominated by the Gorkha community in Siliguri, Terrai and Dooars. The Committee will have representatives from Darjeeling and Jalpaiguri district administrative, Central Government and four members from GJM and scheduled to submit its report to the Central Government within 6 months from the start of the survey.

Unpreparedness Invites Surprises

“It took everyone completely by surprise”. Speak to survivors of the disastrous 23 June landslide at Khewadara near Gyalshing, and this is a common refrain. Even a visit to the site reveals no presence of the usual suspects – there is no new road being cut, no hydel project blasting the hill’s stability out of shape, at least not yet, and no new constructions toppling the alignment of the slope. So on surface, the nightmare appears to have visited out of the blue.

Plantation drive held at Enchey Monastery

GANGTOK, 28 June: With the aim to raise awareness on rising pollution and to encourage tree plantations to tackle natural calamities, one such effort was held at the Enchey Monastery here today.
The plantation drive, led by KN Topgay, Mayor, Gangtok Municipal Corporation [GMC] was joined by monks of the monastery, people of Chandmari ward, members of Makhmali Self Help Group, and representatives of Gyonten Yargay Kiduk. The drive started early in the morning and planted Rhododendron, Chaap, Guava, Apple, Pine and other saplings.

Former Sangha MLA alleges “sub-standard work” at Sang monastery construction

GANGTOK, 28 June: Former Sangha MLA and vice-president Sikkim Pradesh Congress Committee, Acharya Tshering Lama, has raised questions about the quality of work in the construction of a monastery at Sang Biang in Sang, East Sikkim.
In a press communiqué issued today, he states, “Following many popular representations, a monastery has been built at Sang Biang in Sang, East Sikkim. However, when I visited the monastery on 01 June following requests from the local people to assess the standard of construction and other aspects of the structure, I was shocked to see the quality of work being maintained”.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Nagi Pokhari at Namthang to be refilled soon

NAMCHI, 27 June: The Nagi Pokhari, falling under Rateypani-Namthang constituency, which had gone dry about 15 years ago is finally going to be refilled with clean water.
The pokhari was full in the 1980s, but gradually ran dry turning into a mini ground of sorts. On the initiative of area MLA, the Buildings & Housing Minister Tilu Gurung and BDO [Namthang], Robin Sewa, water is going to be channelled to the Pokhari from Nakdhungey Harkote, 9 km from Nagi.

Understand Addiction Before You Fight It

Sunday was observed as the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking. Sikkim is under assault from both fronts and going by the way it is handling the situation, it has very slim chances of succeeding. Agreed, there are many working diligently to curtail substance abuse and improve rehabilitation facilities, the State even as a customised Act which addresses the nature of addiction in Sikkim, but good intentions are not always enough.


Now, students to evaluate teachers
GYALSHING, 27 June: Chief Minister Pawan Chamling resumed his Sikkim Bhraman travelling through Gyalshing-Bermiok and Yangthang constituencies today. This is the 21st day of his village-to-village tour, projected to take 40 days to complete.
Through the day today, the CM interacted with the people and students at Legship Secondary School, Sakyong Secondary School, Langang JHS and holding his final meeting at the Gyalshing community centre. During his interactions with the people, he reiterated that his tour was an initiative towards delivering “direct democracy” to the people, bringing the government to their doorsteps. The CM is accompanied on his tour by Ministers and Heads of Departments.

Rabi Chongdong villagers complain of non-payment of compensation due for PMGSY road construction

MANGAN, 27 June: Villagers whose lands have been acquired for the construction of the PMGSY road here at Rabi-Chongdong in North Sikkim have complained against non-payment of the compensation due to them.
The construction of a 3 km road, linking Namok to Robi Chongthong under Namok-Sweyam GPU of Dzongu constituency, was started in the year 2009 and is now 90% complete, but the villagers are yet to receive their compensation, it is being claimed. A total of 45 houses have provided the land for the said PMGSY road. 

Minister and MLAs lead joint-inspection of West Sikkim’s litter of landslides

GYALSHING, 27 June [IPR]: A joint inspection of the massive landslide destruction suffered in Yangthang constituency of West Sikkim was conducted by the departments of Land Revenue & Disaster Management, Roads & Bridges and Irrigation & Flood Control along with the West District administration on 25 June, Saturday.
Deputy Speaker MB Dahal, who represents Gyalshing-Bermiok constituency in the Legislative Assembly, Roads & Bridges Minister RB Subba and the Yangthang MLA PL Subba headed the daylong inspection accompanied by the DC [West] S. Pradhan, Land Revenue Secretary BK Kharel, Secretary Roads & Bridges HS Sharma and Secretary Irrigation & Flood Control RK Khanna.

RUN, because life does not rewind

GANGTOK, 27 June: “Life Does not Rewind”, was the theme for this year’s World Anti-Drug Day celebrations observed across the world yesterday. Recovering Users Network [RUN], Jagriti Rehab Centre, Drishya Rehab Centre and Sikkim Network of Positive People [SNPP+], STNM Hospital Complex organized the day at Titanic Park here with generous support of the Sikkim State AIDS Control Society [SSACS].
According to Gyamtso Tamang, president, RUN, the funds generated from the programme will be used to sponsor at least five under privileged individuals receive treatment at different rehabilitation and detoxification centers.

BJP challenges all-round development claims of the Govt

GANGTOK, 27 June: The Sikkim-BJP has claimed that despite the rosy picture being projected by the State government about all round development in Sikkim, the villages remain underdeveloped.  Defining development in terms of availability of basic facilities like roads, water, health and education for the masses, the BJP has alleged that all of these are lacking in wide swathes of the state.
Speaking to media persons today, the state BJP president, Padam Bahadur Chettri said that the Chief Minister, as the head of the state, should take responsibility for the non-completion of development works, instead of just blaming the officials.
Referring to the ongoing state-wide padhyatra of the BJP, he said that during their village-to-village tour, the party functionaries have received a good number of complaints from the villagers. These include complaints of non-existence of necessary infrastructure and deficient services in the field of road connectivity, drinking water, health and education, added Mr. Chhettri.

'Ten minutes to Earth 2011' in South District

NAMCHI, 27 June: Marking the occasion of “Ten Minutes to Earth 2011”, a plantation programme was organized by Territorial Division of Forest Department at Kamrang South Sikkim.
Addressing the occasion, chief guest MLA Namchi Singithang, Binod Rai, said that South District falls under a dry zone with the existing water sources drying up and so, such areas should be covered by the plantation programme which can rejuvenate water sources.

Majhitar needs Immediate Solution

It has been more than a decade since the Sikkim Manipal Institute of Technology was set up at Majhitar and subsequently it became the educational hub of the State. The Himalayan Pharmacy institute also came up here and the volume of business in the area started rising. More and more houses were built with a marked increase in population.
Now, Majhitar is facing a wide range of problems, viz. bad road conditions at Lower Majhitar, no street lights, no drainage system, no garbage dumping yards for households, hotels and shops, no proper water supply system.

HOPE Foundation organises rally cum awareness on World Anti-Drugs day

JORETHANG, 27 June: Students from Jorethang Senior Secondary school, Bahai School, St Francis school, local NGOs, Nagar Panchayat and Police officials participated in a rally cum awareness programme today to mark the World Anti- Drugs Day, informs a press release.
Organised by Hope Foundation, Jorethang/Namchi, sponsored by Sikkim State Aids Control Society and supported by Nagar Panchayats and Police Department, Jorethang, the rally was flagged off by area MLA, Madan Cintury, Jorethang Constituency.

Seminar deliberates educational management in the Northeast

GANGTOK, 27 June: “People of North-Eastern states are lagging behind from the rest of the country due to lack of good educational institutions in the region,” said Prof. Mahendra P. Lama, Vice Chancellor of Sikkim University.
Speaking as the chief guest at the inaugural session of the two-day “19th Annual Conference-cum-Seminar on Educational Management with Special Reference to North East India”, organized by Harka Maya College of Education here at 6th Mile, Tadong, Prof. Lama said, “Good education will give people ability to know their rights and fight for the same which is found almost nil among the people of the North-East.”

Monday, June 27, 2011

At CCCT, its 385 students on a 19 acre campus without water supply!

A fire hose sits in its bracket as a cruel example of departmental superfluity in a campus which has been kept without a water supply connection for five years now.

GANGTOK, 22 June: A single bucket of water for three persons per day is what one has to manage with if that person happens to be a student at the Centre for Computers and Communication Technology [CCCT] Polytechnic College at Chisopani near Jorethang!
A total of 385 students study here, 150 boys and 85 girls staying at the hostels as boarders and there is no provision for clean drinking water. With the only water purification system at the massive 19 acre not in working condition and the failure of the electro chlorine machine that decontaminates the water, students here are compelled to drink and use water which comes in water tankers that ferry water straight from the jhora a few kilometers from Jorethang enroute to Melli.

Recovery operations continue in West Sikkim

NAMCHI, 26 June: West Sikkim continues to grapple with the horror visited on it by the landslide of 23 June which claimed 16 lives in three separate incidents. Working in the slush through the day yesterday, the search and rescue operations at Khewadara retrieved the remaining six dead bodies from the debris of the house in which 14 people perished.
The bodies recovered in a joint operation were of Man Maya Rai [30], Anup Rai [8], Buddha Rai [2], Pujan Subba [12], Sreejan Subba [11] and Dawa Tamang [66].

Residential school for Bongthings in training to open next session

GANGTOK, 24 June: The “Cultural and Traditional School”, an institute for Bongthings-in-training coming up at Naga-Namgor in North Sikkim, is scheduled to begin functioning from the next academic session- 2012.
Speaking to NOW!, Nim Tshering Lepcha, former Chairman and a major initiator of the project said, “This project is actually a Bongthingism Institute and will be run in the Cultural Bhawan of Renjyong Mutanchi Rong Tarjum [Sikkim Lepcha Association], under construction at present.”
According to Mr. Lepcha, a majority of the Bongthings are illiterate [in modern education], though they play a major role in society. Seeing this, they are trying to reach literacy to them and help keep the tradition alive.
“It will be difficult to educate the seniors, so we decided to educate those who are below the age of 13 years,” he said.

North farmers compensated for crops lost to wildlife intrusions

MANGAN, 26 June: The Forest Department’s wildlife division on 25 June, disbursed compensation to the farmers for crop damage suffered by them due to wild animals within the buffer villagers of the Khangchendzonga Biosphere Reserve. This disbursement was held under the “Integrated Development of wildlife habitats of Khanchendzonga National Parks 2010-2011” scheme. The disbursement programme was held here at Namprikdang Forest Bungalow in Upper Dzongu, North Sikkim.

Journos pedal awareness against addiction

GANGTOK, 26 June: A cycle rally on the theme ‘Life Does Not Rewind’ was taken out by journalists in Gangtok today. The rally was organized by the Press Club of Sikkim [PCS], supported by Sikkim State AIDS Control Society [SSACS] to observe International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, 2011.
Vice Chancellor, Sikkim University, Prof. Mahendra P Lama, flagged off the rally from Vajra Cinema Hall, Baluwakhani and ended at Ranipool Bazaar with brief stops at Lall Bazaar, Deorali and Tadong where the participants distributed pamphlets to the people to raise awareness against drug abuse and illicit trafficking.

Children of a Lesser God

One of the Days that Sikkim forgot to observe recently was the International Day Against Child Labour. If there is one day that the nation should observe and the media mark with special coverage, it is this day, because the victims here are, as the cliché runs, “the future” and unfortunately in no condition to speak for themselves. And yet, in Sikkim as well in the rest of the country, the day passed unnoticed. There is perhaps only so much that a guilty conscience can suppress with superficial tokenism. Or maybe no one wants to be reminded of how an army of under-14 year olds continue to slave in private homes as domestic servants. Sweeping even such token reminders under the rug helps, perhaps, in convincing employers that the children are receiving a better life here, away from the penury of their own families. Or even worse, is the collective responsibility being shirked because most of the victims are not from Sikkim? Of course, all of these are poor excuses and also illegal, and yet telling reminders surface of how this social responsibility towards the underprivileged young has been scaled down from the priority list of national engagement.

Governor and CM plant for Earth

Governor Balmiki Prasad Singh
GANGTOK, 25 June: Governor Balmiki Prasad Singh planted a Cherry sapling at the Chintan Bhawan complex on Saturday morning as part of the “Ten Minutes to Earth” initiative of the State. The Chief Minister planted a Rhododendron Arboreum (Guras) sapling at Smriti Van, Bulbuley. Sikkim observed this unique initiative from 10 A.M. to 10:10 A.M. across the State on Saturday as a collective effort to contribute towards the green cover.

Kitam complains against Forest Deptt lethargy in supporting conservation efforts

NAMCHI, 26 June: The people of Kitam in South Sikkim, the village which also a bird sanctuary named after it, had gathered to invest 10 Minutes to Earth yesterday and also took the opportunity to lash out against what they allege to be Forest Department’s lethargy in supporting the people’s initiatives to institutionalise better conservation efforts in the area. Their area MLA, Tulsi Devi Rai, also seconded their protests.
The occasion was the 10 Minutes to Earth observance organised by the Munal Club in the Kitam Bird Sanctuary premises.

West Sikkim landslide casualties condoled

GANGTOK, 26 June: The All Sikkim Democratic Labour Front has conveyed its ‘deep condolence’ on the death of labourers and local residents in the recent landslides in West Sikkim.
A meeting of the front chaired by its vice-president, BM Ramudamu, also observed a two-minute silence for the deceased yesterday.
Likewise, the Gorkha Janamukti Morcha Sikkim-unit has also expressed its condolence during a meeting of the party held on Saturday. The meeting was chaired its Sikkim-unit president, Bhawani Pradhan.
The meeting also decided that the state-unit members will donate blood in the second week of July in the memory of to the victims. The state-unit has also decided to send a delegation to the affected area to meet the families of the victims and concerned state administration officials.


I am sorry I cannot reveal my name and address because I am one of the main accused for getting my motherland ‘Jorethang’ a bad name. Be it in contributing to its notoriety as a ‘Drug Den’, be it in the form of making it an unhealthy society where I dispose my household garbage in the heart of the town, be it in spreading viral diseases, be it in indulging myself in a blame game, be it in whitewashing the walls and then spitting on it, be it in sticking chewing gums and engraving dirty writings on bus seats and public toilet walls. The list is endless. Like me, everyone knows it is bad yet we keep doing it. Why?

Rs. 30 lakh released for West Sikkim ex-gratia and relief

GANGTOK, 26 June [IPR]: As per a Press communiqué received from the Land Revenue and Disaster Management Department, the Gyalshing-Dentam and Gyalshing-Sabdong road have been badly damaged including due to landslide in West District and extensive damage caused to the crops.
The Roads & Bridges Minister, RB Subba, Relief Commissioner, Secretary, Irrigation & Flood Control, Secretary, Roads & Bridges, District Collector, West, Superintendent of Police and District Officers are involved in inspection and rescue operation.
The Relief Commissioner has handed over a cheque of Rs. 30 lakh to the DC for distribution of ex-gratia and relief.
A team of National Disaster Response Force stationed at New Jalpaiguri has been requested for help in the rescue operation and the team has already proceeded to West District.

Muscles against drugs

GANGTOK, 26 June: The Sikkim State Body Building Association took out a rally, a first for the organisation, through the capital today with the aim of not just spreading awareness against drug abuse but also to encourage the youth to stay fit and healthy. 26 June is observed around the world as the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.
More than 100 body builders and gym enthusiasts joined the rally. Representation came from all age groups, from young aspiring body builders to veterans of the field.
Perhaps as an enticement of what staying ‘clean’ and remaining fit could achieve, the rally had body-builders swagger through the streets in white vests and blue jeans. All of them also sported Red Ribbons endorsing their support for efforts to increase awareness on HIV/ AIDS.

BB Lopchan replaces Nima Theengh as STCS advisor

GANGTOK, 26 June: Nima Theengh, Advisor, State Trading Corporation of Sikkim has been relieved of his post and BB Lopchan appointed as the new Advisor, STCS vide a notification issued by the State Government on 23 June.
“The reason why the Sikkim Democratic Front [SDF] Government has taken this decision maybe in a positive manner and I look at it in a very simple and plain way as this is a daily routine work for me,” said Nima Theengh, while speaking to the media persons yesterday.
“Nobody’s post is permanent and so it is of no use to start thinking negatively on the whole issue,” he stated and added that maybe the party had a better post and added responsibility for him in the near future.
“I have been an Advisor for the last 2 years, one month and three days and think that other party workers should also be given a chance, and therefore I take this decision in a very positive frame of mind,” he added.

North addresses challenge of addiction

MANGAN, 26 June: Anti Drug Abuse Day was observed here in the North District headquarter town today with an awareness rally taken out through town.
The programme was chaired by Sr. SP (N), BK Tamang, and lso attended by SDM [Mangan], BK Lama, DFO (T), S Saring, Deputy Labour Commissioner, KR Limboo, DHEO (N), YN Sharma, PI Mangan, R Tamang, Mangan Nagar Panchayat President KJ Bhutia and councilors, representatives of Malling Youth Club, Nav Yuva Samiti [Rangrang], Anjuman Islamia, Youth Welfare Association, Mangan Local Taxi Drivers Association, Panchayats, members of the business community, Truck Drivers Association and local youth.

Lachen-Mangan reviews CM’s Rural Housing Scheme implementation

MANGAN, 25 June:  The Block Administration Centre organized review meeting on the Chief Minister Rural Housing Mission (CMRHM) for Lachen-Mangan and Dzongu constituencies at the Mangan BAC on 24 June.
The meeting was chaired by Lachen-Mangan MLA, TW Lepcha, who also chairs the CMRHM committee and was also attended by the BDO Mangan, ST Tamang, ACF, BAC Mangan, SK Subba, BAC staff, Zilla members & Panchayats of different wards.
The Mangan BDO, in his welcome address, informed that the Mission aimed to make Sikkim a kutcha-house free state by the year 2015 and said the pucca houses should be built on a 600 sq. ft plot by the beneficiaries themselves.

2 booked under SADA

GANGTOK, 26 June: Two girls were arrested in possession of contraband substances here yesterday.
Acting on a tip-off, the Sadar Police raided the rented accommodation of Binita Tamang [21] and her 16 year old friend, who were allegedly looking for prospective buyers at Manbir Colony, Burtuk in East Sikkim at 7.30 a.m. in the morning.
The police recovered 69 capsules of Spasmo Proxyvon [SP], 50 Nitrosun-10 [N-10] tablets, four empty Spasmo Proxyvon boxes, 14 empty Spasmo Proxyvon capsules and one empty bottle of Corex and Recodex cough syrup each from them.