2011

April  -  22

News Highlights

Copyright © 2008, The Arunachal Times Publications Pvt. Ltd., Siang House, Sector - E, Itanagar, Arunachal Pradesh - 791111, India

All rights reserved.

Readers Forum

Illegal appointments should not be allowed to continue

 

(I)

Dear Editor,

I thank this esteemed daily "the Arunachal Times" for publishing my letter to president AAPSU and also to the President AAPSU for responding to my letter. I always look on to the AAPSU as strong and support based student organization and indeed, I’m proud to see them play role of opposition party in absence of later.

Dear president AAPSU, I could feel the situation you faced as you described in  your letter and also of them (illegal appointees) if their service are terminated. But my point of contention is how long would such illegal appointment continue and what AAPSU is doing to check such grave practice of nepotism and favouritism. Had this practice been fought against strongly in earlier instance by AAPSU, I'm sure illegal appointment of more than 2000 would not have happened today. The silent of yesterday is having effect today and in fact AAPSU need not to have succumbed to undue pressure whatsoever. It is good you have advised student to be sincere and hard working taking example of Sarah Enung Borang and her success of cracking APPSC exam despite belonging to poor family. In the meantime, I hope that AAPSU would fight to ensure equality of opportunity to all the students.

The big question is who the main culprit behind such illegal appointments. AAPSU can pressurize Govt to take action against erring officials or can opt for legal option against the Govt if the state fails to cooperate.

Last but not the least, I would like to suggest that AAPSU should serve strong notice to the Govt and all the departments to adhere strictly to the Recruitment Rules. AAPSU should not spare the violators of notice in order to stop illegal appointment for ever.

Yours,

The poor student

 

 

(II)

Dear Editor,

This is in response to “AAPSU always fight for the benefit of poor students” by AAPSU president Takam Tatung. I really appreciate works of AAPSU under the presidentship of Takam Tatung. But I don’t appreciate his response about illegal appointment being an unemployed struggling person. People are paying huge amount of money for a job.  Many of them sell their land to get a job.  But, what about us?  We don’t have huge amount of money to buy a job. We don’t have land to sale. APPSC can’t accommodate all the struggling unemployed students.

This illegal appointment is a destructive virus, if we don’t stop it today it will infect all, it may destroy Arunachal someday. A day may come when those who have money will buy job for their sons, grand son, even for grate grand son.   

I appeal to AAPSU president please stop these illegal appointments.

Yours,

An unemployed

struggling candidate

 

 

Give us a chance

Dear Editor,

This is regarding the date fixed for AE (civil) examination by APPSC. The Commission should have at least checked the dates fixed for examinations of final year engineering  students before fixing the APPSC exam for AE.

I would like to request the APPSC to kindly  reschedule the AE exam date for accommodating final year candidates aspiring to appear in the Commission examination.

Yours,

Tania Mibang

On email

 

 

Cry of the victim of illegal appointments

Dear Editor,

I qualified in SSA teachers’ written examination twice from East Siang District, but still I am jobless due to this rampant illegal appointment in the district. If there were no illegal appointments, sure there would have been larger percentage of job vacancy and I would also have got employed by now. I think, before appointing new candidates directly, the authority should look back at the interview they had previously conducted and instead of appointing new candidates, waiting list candidates should be appointed. Further, due to the illegal appointments the sports and physically challenged reserved quota has also been reduced. I appealed to the authorities concerned of all departments to look into the job problems of the differently abled person. I am not opposing illegally appointed candidates as they are also belongs to poor family like me.

However, choose and pick policy of the concerned authority and political leaders is a matter to ponder.

Yours,

Bomi,  Pasighat.

 

 

 

********************************

 

All email and surface mails must be accompanied with contact numbers and full postal address. Do keep writing but please make sure that letters are short and to the point.        

----Editor

News Impact

AISU demands early release of HTS bills

ITANAGAR, Apr 20: Arunachal Indigenous Students’ Union (AISU) has demanded the state Government to immediately release the pending Hill Transport Subsidy (HTS) bills to the contractors as per court orders.

It criticized the state Advocate General for allegedly misleading the Government and opposing the payment of outstanding HTS bills to the contractors.

 

Cooperate with  traffic police: NSUI

ITANAGAR, Apr 20: National Students’ Union of India, Arunachal Pradesh Unit highlighting about the poor road and traffic facility in twin capital city said that the present road can hardly accommodate two vehicles at single crossing which cause several mishaps.

The union urged the state government to introduce one way road from Bank Tinali to ANSU Office Itanagar and appealed to the Transport Department to restrict movement of heavy vehicle during day time in the twin capital city.

It further urged the state government to construct commercial parking lot in  Naharlagun/Itanagar and appealed to the people to obey traffic rules and cooperate with the traffic police.

 

KVK's farm school

DAPORIJO, Apr 20: The Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK), Upper Subansiri district organized a Farm School at Bararupok under the sponsorship of ATMA, Daporijo.

Addressing as chief guest on the inaugural ceremony, Dusa Lida, District Agriculture Officer, Upper Subansiri district, appealed to the farmers to acknowledge the importance of agriculture and try to take maximum advantage from the technical classes. He advised them to purchase farm implements from the department of agriculture and avail the subsidiary benefits given to them by the government.

Tago Rilo, Agriculture Development Officer, Maro also spoke on the occasion and told the farmers to follow scientific technologies for efficient transition from subsistence to commercial farming.

The inaugural session was followed by technical session.  The farm school will continue till mid June 2011. Around 26 farmers of Bararupok village registered as students in the school.

 

Unions react

ITANAGAR, Apr 20: Four students unions of Papum Pare district, the All Papum Poma Students’ Union, All Kimin Students’ Union, Capital Students’ Union and All Mengio Students Union, in a joint press statement, strongly condemned the FIR lodged against the president of All Papum Pare District Students’ Union (APPDSU) in connection with the case of construction of a mini stadium within the premises of GHSS, Sagalee and demanded immediate withdrawal of the same.

They also condemned the ‘immature’ and ‘provocative’ press statement made by some panchayat leaders of Sagalee constituency and its local MLA cum UD and PWD Minister. The students unions appealed to APPDSU to launch a series of democratic movements, if the matter is not solved amicably within a given period.

 

Appointments

ITANAGAR, Apr 20: Techi Jyoti Tara has been appointed as President of All Arunachal Contractor Welfare Association, City Unit Itanagar Capital Complex for a period of three years.

Er Sunil Degio and Radu Degio have been selected as Chairman and General Secretary of newly formed Degio Welfare Society in its first clan conference held at Yangsey village, East Kameng District.

 

NCP leader passes away

ITANAGAR, Apr 20: Nationalist Congress Party, 38th Pasighat East (ST) Assembly Constituency expressed deep shock over the untimely demise of Taki-Lalung NCP President Tamyo Tabing, who died at his residence yesterday after prolonged illness.

Tamyo is survived by his wife, two sons and four daughters. He was a young and dynamic leader of Bosing Banggo area, his untimely demise is a great loss to the people of the area.

The rank and files of NCP, Pasighat East prayed for the eternal peace of the departed soul and extended its condolence to the bereaved family members.

 

Longte festival

ITANAGAR, April 20: Former Minister Tatar Kipa and BDO Tadar Tari would attend as Chief Guest and Guest of Honour in the Longte festival celebration at Dolo village, Nyapin circle. The three-day festival   will begin  on  April 24.

 

3 dead in road accident

KHONSA: Three  people were killed on the spot and many including the driver were seriously injured when 407 private truck laden with sand coming from Joypur skipped off the road near Borduria on April 18 last. Those killed have been identified as Hangpong Wangsam, contingency staff of PHED from old Laptang, Ms Phokhow and Ms Chohnop, worker of Pokkom School from Soha village.

The injured have been evacuated to AMC, Dibrugarh. People from Borduria rendered great services in retrieving the dead bodies from the accident site and evacuating the injured. Later police from Khonsa Police Station rushed to the site and verified the case.

Meanwhile, the relative of victims have extended their gratefulness to the people of Borduria and Public of Khonsa for their service. DIPRO

 

Restore electricity and drinking water supply

ITANAGAR: All Leel Youths Association appealed to the electrical department and PHE department, Sangram circle, Kurung Kumey District to restore electricity and drinking water supply at Leel-I village immediately.

It claimed that the villagers have been deprived of electricity and drinking water supply for the last six months.

 

May Day

ITNAGAR: Along with the rest of the world, All Arunachal Pradesh Workers Union (AAPWU) will celebrate May Day (International Labours Day) at Mopin Solung Ground, Itanagar on 1st May. MLA Karya Bagang and renowned social worker Techi Nera will address the gathering as the chief guest and guest of honour respectively on the occasion.

 

Congress rally in Changlang

ITANAGAR: The block and district level rally of Congress party in Changlang district will be started at Miao on May nine.

Various achievements of UPA government at the Centre and Congress led Govt. in Arunachal Pradesh would be highlighted during the rally to be patronized by Finance Minister Setong Sena.

Sanjoy  puts Pawan Hans in dock, demands construction of airport at

Itanagar and Tawang

Itanagar, Apr 21: Arunachal Pradesh MP Takam Sanjoy today raised several questions on the credibility of Pawan Hans helicopters after a 24-seater MI 172 chopper crashed at Tawang on Tuesday last. Sanjoy also demanded that accountability be fixed on poor maintenance and mandatory inspections of the services as per DGCA rules.

In a memorandum submitted to the Civil Aviation Minister Vayalar Ravi today, Sanjoy  wants that the ministry concerned take up the matter seriously. He said chopper crash has severely affected the credibility of Pawans Hans. “Whenever some technical problems occurs during the  operation time of choppers, people of North East recollect the ill fated accidents of two Pawan Hans helicopters in the  region—one being in Arunachal and another in Meghalaya” Sanjoy said in his memorandum.

"It is a matter of serious concern that despite repeated requests from the Arunachal Pradesh Government, the two MI 172 helicopters operated by Pawn Hans for the state develop frequent technical snags of serious nature."

The MP  demanded that to stop any further accident in future and loss of lives, the Union Government should immediately start the Greenfield Airport project at Itanagar and also construct a Green Airport in Tawang, which was deferred in 2008.

The MP further said that Airport Authority of India had also studied the feasibility  for Tawang Airport, environment and forest clearance has also been obtained, but the fund has still not been released for Tawang Airport.  He added that Tawang is the most important tourist destination of the state and delay in airport project is resulting in loss of lives.

The memorandum further said that the 1996-97 manufactured chopper’s scheduled flight to Seppa was cancelled on Monday due to technical problem, and its maintenance taken up before it flew to Jorhat on a test flight and for refueling. The next day, it left Guwahati with 18 passengers (2 minors) and five crewmembers for Tawang, and was scheduled to halt there for the night and fly back to Guwahati on Wednesday morning. But it crashed; killing 17 while 6 rescued from the burning chopper by onlookers.

Sanjoy appealed the union Minister to see whether the  Pawan Hans stick to the mandatory maintenance schedule of the chopper.  He further questioned why was a fire brigade not stationed before landing as mandatory norm?  He said that most of the landing ground in the state has no fire tenders which are a violation of DGCA guidelines.

Sanjoy  has also taken up the issue of ‘pilots not being acquainted with the topography and terrain and operating the  choppers without having regular flying license”.

 

Chopper crash leaves many questions unanswered: NCP

The State NCP President Ngurang Pinch today said that the  tragic Pawan Hans chopper crash in Tawang on April 19  has left  many questions unanswered on the safety and security of passengers  availing the chopper services in the state.

What exactly Pawan Hans authorities are doing to avert such unfortunate happenings in the future, was the accident due to human failure or technical snag?  Pinch questioned and added that in either of the cases the Pawan Hans not only owe to the nation an immediate explanation but also an assurance that it would be extra cautious to meticulously check the machines before flying them in the valley of Arunachal Pradesh.

Pinch also blasted the state Govt saying that equally with Pawan Hans the government also can not shirk off its responsibility of providing safety and security to the tourists  visiting Arunachal Pradesh.  He said that the tourism industry in the state is already rickety and such fatal accidents affecting the tourists would add insult to injury the state tourism sector is suffering from owing to multiple reasons.

The routine compensation and enquiry notwithstanding, the lives which have been lost in the crash can not be gained back, Pinch said.   The state NCP leader demanded the government to do their best to totally avoid any recurrence of such ghastly and tragic incidents in the future.

 

Apex Bank announces future plan, to set up HRD training centre

ITANAGAR, Apr 21: The Annual conference of the Branch Managers of the Arunachal Pradesh State Co-operative Apex Bank was conducted by the Bank Management on April 20 at APCTC, Naharlagun.  The programme also includes six days capacity building of BMs on the topics Co-operative Banking & Social Responsibilities and Micro finance.

T. Thongdok, MD, Apex Bank in his welcome address dwelt with the performances of the Bank and its achievements. He informed that the Bank is coming up with a vision of financing in agriculture and micro finance with the formations of 5000 SHGs through LAMPS during current financial year with a view of implementation of NRLM in the state as decided by the State Govt.

He further said that Bank will establish a Training Centre with the support of NABARD for conducting human resource development training programmes for the junior level staff of the bank and LAMPS. The Bank has recently conducted a meeting with the SHGs and villagers at Basar-Nallo under “Village Adoption Programme” supported by NABARD to start the process of adoption of the village. Like wise, the Bank will make a strategy to adopt one village by each branch in a year. He also informed that MDMI will conduct a Basic Computer Training for the staff from April 25-30 at APCTC.

NABARD, GM Dr. B.G. Mukhopadhaya said that the management of the Bank should give stress on the major thrusts on sustainability, good governance, and self reliance. He expressed his satisfaction on the planning and process of the Bank as started on priority sector lending , HRD programmes and capacity building of staff.

R.D.Thongon, Jt. RCS, extended thanks to Dr J.B. Dutta, Director, MDMI, for conducting training programmes for all the stakeholders from the co-operative sector and appealed to the BMs to interact with the Resource Persons during the sessions and be competitive as other banks have come up and bring back the image of the bank by providing efficient services to the customers.

Dr J.B.Dutta, stressed on the importance of HRD and capacity building and good governance in the Co-operative Institutions.

S. Laskar, MD, AP Agri. Marketing Board, informed that the State Govt has full faith on the Bank and the Bank has been identified as prime institution for financial inclusion. The State Govt has earmarked Rs.12.00 Crores for current financial year for formation and financing to the SHGs through LAMPS under NRLM.

Dr M M Sathe, Professor in University of Canberra, Australia and Australian treasury man authority on banking & finance shared his experiences and knowledge with the officers of the Bank. He suggested that a Banker should work with the feeling of social responsibilities and should have helping attitude.

Focus should be given on the quality not the quantity for smooth banking and financial management and for achieving the targets of deposits, recovery and cash management, the Bank should change or amend the policies as per need of the hour, he added.

 

Religion has nothing to do

with culture: Gamlin

Aalo, Apr 21: Religion and Culture are two different identities and our people should not mix it up during festivals and festivities which are as old as existence of our tribal society, said Jarbom  Gamlin, Minister Power and Parliamentary Affairs Minister while gracing  Mopin festival celebration at Gemo Tali  village on April 20 last.  He said that annual celebration associated with our fertility cult and  general wellbeing should be an occasion to bring us closer to each other.

Speaking on the occasion Nyiken Lollen, ADC Kamba said that it always more important to assimilate all values that our culture gives us. Young generation should know its importance  and shoulder the responsibilities to keep it alive for generation together. President Sige Raksap, Secretary Digru Kancham, Marto Tali and Purge Tali also spoke on the occasion. DIPRO

 

Self-defence  training  for girls  

ITANAGAR, Apr 21:  A 50-days summer camp – a self-defence training course for girls – is being organized by the Arunachal Pradesh Police (APP) at the officers’ club here from April 19.  Altogether 108 girls aged between 7-16 years are undergoing training which is intended to equip minor, vulnerable girls to protect themselves against violence and to boost their confidence. All India Karate Federation national referee and judge L Marik (Black Belt, 5th Dan) along with five colleagues are the trainers in the summer camp.

While inaugurating the training camp on April 19, IGP SBK Singh described it as a path to confidence-building that will help the girls face any challenge in the future.

DIGP Robin Hibu assured to organize more such camps. He appealed to all parents to give full cooperation to their children during the training period, adding that provision has also been made for participants who may later opt to go for further training.

This reflective idea of the police department was evolved after studying the number of registered cases against crimes such as rape, kidnapping, molestation, domestic violence, sexual harassment, etc, in the state.

As per data made available, a total number of 168 (crime against women/girl) cases  were registered in 2006.  It was 185 in 2007; 175 in 2008; 164 in 2009 and 173 in 2010. Papum Pare district witnessed highest number of cases registered.

 

Corps Commander calls on Governor

ITANAGAR, Apr 21: General Officer Commanding in Chief, 3 Corps, Lt Gen Dalbir Singh, called on Arunachal Pradesh Governor Gen JJ Singh at Raj Bhavan here today.

During the meeting, Governor reviewed the overall security scenario of the state. He also discussed issues related to Army Cantonment, which will be coming up in Arunachal Pradesh.

Underlining the importance of early establishment of the Cantonments, Governor said, by the presence of the Army, it will not only provide security to the area but also create opportunities for socio-economic benefit to the local people, thereby helping to the local economy.

Governor said, it will encourage handicrafts and local produces, such as vegetables and fruits, which are produced by the people of Arunachal Pradesh. Beside that, it will also help in communication, Gen Singh pointed.

Corps Commander Lt Gen Singh, who is stationed at Dimapur, Nagaland has the eastern part of Arunachal Pradesh including Changlang and Tirap district under his command. The western part of the state comes under 4 Corps, Tezpur under the Command of Lt Gen Gyan Bhushan, who took pivotal role in organizing recently held Army Exposition here at Itanagar.

Col B B Sandhu and Adm Commander Lt. Col Vikram Singh accompanied the Corps Commander. (Pro To Rajbhawan)

 

Orgs. mourns tragic death

ITANAGAR, Apr 21: Condolences are still pouring in as the pall of gloom enveloped Tawang  after the chopper crash on Tuesday last.

Itanagar Buddhist Cultural Society (IBCS) has mourned death of 17 people in a helicopter crash at Tawang. Members of IBCS observed one minute silence in respect of the departed soul on Wednesday during the first day of exhibition on herbal medicine held at Siddharth Hall, Itanagar. Members also prayed to Lord Buddha for speedy recovery to six injured passengers of ill fated Pawan Hans helicopter.

All Nyishi Students Union(ANSU) while condoling death of 17 people in tragic Tawang chopper crash had urged state government to learn from this loss of valuable lives. In a release ANSU General Secretary Arjun Panye said this is not the first time that fingers have pointed towards poor service of Pawan Hans Helicopter Limited (PHHL) in Arunachal and its time state government looks into this matter seriously.

“Most of the helicopters used by PHHL in Arunachal are very old. We don’t know what kind of safety measures are being adopted by them and whether routine checks up of these choppers are being properly done by service providers PHHL,” questioned Arjun Panye. He further added, “In view of tragic Tawang accident, state government need to review the MOU signed with PHHL to provide chopper service in Arunachal. A new global tender should be called in and let best company to provide service in Arunachal.”

Arunachal Pradesh Veterinary Association (APVA) deeply mourned the sudden and untimely demise of one energetic and talent veterinarian of the state,  Dr. Nawang Tamden in a tragic chopper crash at Tawang on 19-04-11. APVA also extends condolence to the bereaved family and pray to almighty to rest the departed soul in eternal peace.

All Tawang District Students Union (ATDSU)  also expressed deep shock at the chopper crash.

It is tragedy for all of us, the union said while adding that  death of Dr. N. Tomden is great loss for the whole district.  He was an inspiration for the youths, it said.

The union conveyed deep sense of condolence to the bereaved family and prayed for early recovery of injured.

NCP state unit also deeply mourned the death of passengers in the chopper crash.

 

Villagers unaware of Yamne hydro projects

Ojing Tayeng

ITANAGAR, Apr 21: The Adis who inhabited the forested land in middle portion of Arunachal Pradesh for thousands of years depend on forest products for their livelihood and live in close contact with nature till today particularly in Upper Siang district.

They inherent right over forest produce since time immemorial and directly or indirectly protect the flora and fauna of the region. But the signing of numbers of hydropower MoUs and MoAs in the state in the name of development has threatened  their existence  and relation with the forest.

The Abir construction private limited who has been assigned to construct hydels at Yamne-I and Yamne-II is engaged itself in survey works in the Yamne area. But neither the state government nor the company and the local MLA had communicated or educated the villagers of the area regarding the construction of micro hydels, its merits and demerits.

While interacting with the villagers of Damro village regarding the construction of hydels over River Yamne during my recent visit, it has been observed that the authority or the company is taking full advantage of the ignorant villagers.

The villagers are uninformed about the impact on ecology, environment and other consequences.

They are unaware of the agreements as neither the company nor the state government nor  local MLA have conducted any meeting regarding construction of Yamne hydels till today despite their ongoing rigorous survey work in the area.

It is very unfortunate that the community land are being proposed and used  while the community people  of the affected area are unaware of such  project construction.

Many tribal land, forest and rivers have been earmarked by the government for setting up of hydro power (mini or macro) in the state without consent of the affected people, which clearly indicates the dictatorial nature of the government over the ignorant villagers of the state.

Further, the feasibility study by Capital Fortunes Pvt Ltd on Yamne hydro electric projects indicates one sided reports. Despite vast forest land, agricultural activities and human settlement particularly in downstream areas of River Yamne, the report said that the forest cover was not particularly dense nor could we notice any protected species of trees that are cause to raise any concerns regarding MOEF clearance.  ‘No other habitation was noticed along the course of the river apart from some scattered huts at highly elevated locations which are not cause of any alarm’, reports added.

 

Siang Fraternity Football

Tournament gets underway

AALO, Apr 21: The 2nd Siang Fraternity Football Tournament organized by West Siang District Sports Association got off to a colourful start on April 20. Altogether six teams, two each from Upper Siang, East Siang and West Siang are in the fray for the coveted trophy. The final match of the tournament is slated on April 29.

Roja XI-2, BPDSC, Bogong SC, Renging SC, Memo SC and Young Rising Club will lock horns with each other in all league matches.

The chief guest of the inaugural function, Kumar Waii, Parliamentary Secretary Forest and Environment, said win or loss is a part of the game and our motto should be to spot out talents from the participating teams. Waii said that there is no dearth of talents in this region and Govt. is quite aware on this sector to hunt talents. The effort put in by DSA Secretary Kenjum Riba and members to organize Day/Night matches simply show their love for games and sports in this part of the state, he observed.

Earlier, Jarkar Gamlin welcomed the gathering and expressed his gratitude to one and all for the successful start of the tournament. In the first night match encounter BPDSC West Siang beat Roja XI-2 Upper Siang by a margin of 6-3 and all important goals were scored by Jumli Padu. Gemo Diyum and Vijay Tamuk enthralled the crowd in a brief cultural programme that preceded the football match. The fire crackers, music, sounds and illumination on the day gave a clear message of love, unity and brotherhood among three Siangs.

The Power Minister Jarbom Gamlin, incharge DC Kanki Darang and Hods were present to witness the opening ceremony.  DIPRO

 

APCC condemns the act of vandalism

ITANAGAR, Apr 21: Arunachal Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) has severely criticized All Papum Pare District Students’ Union (APPDSU) and its leadership quality for ‘destroying an under-construction mini stadium’ in the premises of Govt. Hr. Sec. School Sagalee and described the act as shameful and anti-development.

“It is a matter of great shame that a students’ union like APPDSU is indulging in such unlawful and criminal activities. It has exposed the students union’s character, integrity and leadership quality,” APCC said in a release. “Instead of indulging in such act of vandalism they should concentrate in their study--the first and foremost duty of students,” it said.

The stadium, a laudable initiative by the local MLA and UD and PWD Minister, was undertaken for larger interest of the students community and future generations of the area with a purpose to expose their hidden talents in fields of sports, culture etc. Instead of demanding resignation of the Minister they should come forward and cooperate with Govt for early completion of the stadium, APCC said.

“Since it is meant for the benefits of students of the area and there is no scope for hampering the students and the school, the demand for resignation of the minister does not arise,” it added.

Meanwhile, All Sagalee Students’ Union (ASSU), which was instrumental in bringing the scheme, condemned the demand for resignation of the minister on this developmental issue.

Appreciating the constitution of interim committee of APPDSU, ASSU urged for finding an amicable solution to the issue. It also appealed to withdraw the case registered against the issue.

Meanwhile, All Papum Pare District Students’ Union (APPDSU) has clarified  that  the union never adopted resolution demanding resignation of PWD and UD minister. It only passed resolution for immediate withdrawal of FIR lodged against its president. The union regretted the resignation demand and said that it was ‘typing mistake.’  

 

Maken to inaugurate NE Games

M  Doley

ITANAGAR, Apr 21: Around 1500 athletes and officials from eight Northeastern states, including Sikkim, will take part in the 25th North East Games, 2010-11 which will kick off at Dirang, West Kameng district on April 25.

Union Minister for Youth Affairs and Sports Ajay Maken will inaugurate the region’s biggest sports extravaganza as chief guest at Lopen Stadium, Dirang.

Host Arunachal Pradesh is fielding a record 182-strong contingent in 11 disciplines, viz. Archery, Athletics, Badminton, Boxing, Football, Judo, Karate, Table Tennis, Taek-won-Do, Weightlifting and Wushu. Of the 182 athletes, 103 are male and 79 female.

The sports events will be conducted at Dirang, Bomdila and Rupa. While Judo, Badminton, Karate, Taek-won-Do and football would be held at Dirang  Archery, Boxing, Table Tennis would be held at Bomdila. Track & Field events and Wushu would be held at Rupa, according to Directorate of Sports & Youth Affairs (S&YA) sources.

The hosts are expecting to reap rich rewards from Karate, Boxing, Taek-won-Do, Weightlifting and Wushu. Besides the hosts would look up to their Archers, Shuttlers, Paddlers and Judukas to boost the medals scoop from the Games.  Also this time, the state is fielding a strong contingent in athletics.

The Sports Directorate conducted a month-long intensive coaching camp for the players to hone their skills and prepare them to compete in the big event. The team is leaving for Dirang on batch wise. The last batch will leave here for Dirang tomorrow.

Papum Pare District Sports Officer O.B. Meitei is the Chef de Mission, the sources informed.

Arunachal Pradesh bagged over 30 medals, including five gold, in 24th edition of the Games held in Shillong last year.

Manipur topped the medal’s tally with 39 gold, 22 silver and 36 bronze followed by Assam (29 gold, 37 silver, 25 bronze) and host Meghalaya (23 gold, 14 silver, 26 bronze).

 

Debatable strategy of value-neutral biomedical research and the

superbug(s) politics

Ajay K. Tripathy

Should the pure science and applied science, including medical science, remain value-neutral or they can be value-based? Many may favour pure science to remain value-neutral; and keeping the applied-science value-based. Gone are the days where the researchers can afford to hide the scientific studies beyond their commercial worth as well as the politics of market-economy.

Research is fast emerging as a successful enterprise in health-sector with better profit in clinical and biotechnology areas. Where profit is more risk is naturally high; and there are chances for the researchers getting trapped either knowingly or unknowingly. Where profit matters a lot, there ethics can be pushed to the back-seat while conducting biomedical research. Should every researcher do some homework to know the real donor, the supporter of the supporter, and what are donors’ interests?   

Thanks to our health ministry for asking the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) to study the reported prevalence of drug-resistant superbug NDM-1. However, it would be much better if our government could wake up when the Lancet, vol. 10, published article in August last year on the emergence of New Delhi metallo-b-lactamase 1 (NDM-1). Delayed action also reflects the poor financing and administration of health research in contemporary India.

Let’s concentrate on latest article of the Lancet, published online 7th April 2011, as the study claims the dissemination of NDM-1 positive bacteria in India’s capital. The methodology adopted for the study is bit surprising and it hardly reflects anything substantial about the ethical considerations. So, the role of ethics committee of that study or even the presence of an active-committee can be questioned.  Furthermore, some of the researchers also received financial support from different pharmaceutical companies which may like to sale their new drugs for tackling NDM-1. It’s difficult to rule out the possibility of any extraordinary link between the pharmaceutical industry and researchers, and no researcher can simply wash his hands by putting a conflict-of-interest column in article.

There is a reference to the Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) notification in the methodology part of the study. However, why the study team members take the shelter of foreign-trade notification in India if they or their sponsors did not have any commercial interest? Why they did not take the health ministry of India into confidence? What’s wrong in taking the technical help of ICMR or department of health research for such a study than reportedly blaming the government agencies? It also appears that nobody bothered about the concept of informed-consent in biomedical research ethics while choosing the place and subjects of research. Are few people still taking India and Indians as granted while pursuing their academic, scientific or commercial interests? Last year while writing about malaria control on 18th November in this newspaper; I mentioned that Indian villages, now I have to add cities too, need not be overused in the name of health-research. Of course, the developed world researchers and their sponsors know that such studies cannot be easily done in communist rule countries.

Misuse of antibiotics, chloroquine resistance malaria, multi-drug-resistant tuberculosis, etc. have been a matter of concern both for the scientific and administrative communities of the health sector in India. However, exaggerating the issue of drug resistance with the help of NDM-1 and imposing such findings can be debated. This becomes rather muddy when the researchers relate it with the health tourism in Indian subcontinent. Irrespective of different socio-economics problems of South Asia it’s likely to become a major health-tourism hub in near future, so, are the health economists of developed world are worried about the financial implications?

Delhi government deserves appreciation for help preventing panic public-reaction after the controversial dissemination of NDM-1, in this month, through the Lancet. Would it not be better for the research team to handover their findings to the Delhi government or health ministry, as the researchers of health sector have obligations towards different stakeholders especially the residents of study-area? Common people expect the professionals of health sector to be more accountable, demonstrate collective responsibility and perform with harmony. Indians would like to see that our government gives due importance to research in health sector, or else, we shall be facing the threats of superbugs time and again which can only benefit few pharmaceutical companies.

(The writer is a Health Economics & Policy scholar at the Christian Medical College (CMC), Vellore. These are views of author and not necessarily of the institution. He can be reached at ajaytripathyindia@gmail.com ).