News in Brief
GNOU to train Tripura teachers
New Delhi, August 17 (PTI): The Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) today signed an agreement with the Tripura government for training 11,884 elementary level teachers from the state. The agreement confirms training to teachers through the varsity’s two-year diploma in Elementary Education programme, for those who possess the qualifications stipulated as per the National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE) norms and are working in government or its recognised primary/elementary schools, a release said. Both IGNOU and Tripura will develop a context-specific block on elementary education in the state. The objective of the block is to familiarise all enrolled teachers with dimensions of elementary education, it said. “The training shall be conducted in a phased manner, enrolling only one hundred students per programme study centre,” Poonam Bhushan, coordinator for the programme, said.
Sharmila gets married in Kodaikanal
Chennai, August 17 (IANS): Civil rights activist Irom Chanu Sharmila on Thursday married her lover Desmond Coutinho in Kodaikanal in Tamil Nadu. The low-key ceremony was held in the sub-registrar’s office in the hill station in Dindugal district. “The two came in the morning and completed the formalities. They also exchanged garlands,” an official in the sub-registrar office told IANS over phone. Sharmila, who hails from Manipur and fought against the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) by going on a hunger strike for 16 years, decided to settle in Kodaikanal after losing the assembly poll in her home state this year. Some political outfits and people had objected to her marriage while some people had supported her during the two-month notice period for marriages conducted in the sub-registrar’s office.
500 trees to be trimmed in M’laya
Shillong, August 17 (IANS): As many as 500 vulnerable trees would soon be trimmed in Meghalaya to avoid accidents, Deputy Chief Minister Roytre Christopher Laloo said on Thursday. The government’s decision to trim vulnerable trees in and around the city came after three persons were killed and two others injured on August 12, when a eucalyptus tree, which had stood tall at Raj Bhavan here for several decades now, came crashing down across the road. “Apart from the 500 trees which have been identified by the forest department to be trimmed, another 50-odd weak trees identified by the public in different localities of Shillong would also be chopped down,” Laloo told IANS. However, Laloo said the government will have to plant 6,000 trees as per forest rules if 600 trees are being cut. “I have asked all the departments to identify the places where these 6,000 trees can be planted,” he said. Earlier on Monday, the state’s forest department announced three dedicated helpline (mobile) numbers for “cutting down dangerous trees”.
Floods disrupt train services in NE
Agartala/Guwahati, August 17 (IANS): Due to severe floods in Assam, West Bengal and Bihar, the northeastern region has been cut off by rail from the rest of India for about a week, officials said on Thursday. “As many railway tracks and stations in Assam, North Bengal and Bihar have been submerged by flood waters, train services have been suspended since August 12,” a Northeast Frontier Railway (NFR) official said. “The Railway Board has directed all zonal railways to cancel trains running to and from the northeastern region until August 20 when the situation will be reviewed.” NFR’s Chief Public Relations Officer Pranav Jyoti Sharma said a vital rail bridge was damaged on Wednesday, disrupting train links between Katihar and Kumedpur in Bihar. Sharma said telecommunication network in the entire section was also badly affected. The NFR serves seven districts in West Bengal and five districts in north Bihar besides the eight northeastern states. All the trains between northeastern states and the rest of India pass through New Jalpaiguri station (North Bengal) and Katihar station (in Bihar).