SIKKIM NEWS: Hill accident claims two lives

SIKKIM NEWS: Hill accident claims two lives – most unfortunate holiday ?!!

From Haal Khabar
By Pravin Rai

Gangtok, 10 Sep, 2010: A vehicle with registration number SK04/6726 met with an accident at around 6:30 am along NH 31A near Ranipool, 10 kms away from Gangtok, today, claiming 2 lives and severely injuring five others including a one year old child.

Mr Ganpat Arora, 61, hailing from Uttar Pradesh died at the spot and Mr Anand Kumar Gupta, 18, also from UP succumbed injury at around 2:00 pm at Central Referral Hospital, informed Ranipool Police Station PI Ms Yankee Bhutia.

The vehicle was ferrying from Gangtok to Siliguri when the untoward incident occurred, wherein the taxi lost control and smashed into the wall along the highway.

Ranipool police rushed the injured persons to nearby Central Referral Hospital where the two persons from Uttar Pradesh died.

Mr Arora had come to visit his son, Mr Sanjiv Kumar Arora who is teaching at a Kendra Vidhyala here in Gangtok. His son, daughter-in-law Mrs Rekha Arora (20) and grandson Mrs Swarit Arora (1) had accompanied him to Siliguri in the taxi. They all are admitted at Central Referral Hospital with serious injuries.

The other injured persons were driver Mr Ganesh Chettri (20) from Melli, South Sikkim and Mr Mafar Rawat from Coochbehar, police said and informed that the cause of the accident has not yet ascertained and is under investigation.

State Health Department, finally finds a model for controlling suicides – occurrences too high, spirituality still to be re-discovered ?!!

From Haalkhabar
By Pravin Rai

Gangtok, 10 Sep, 2010: State Health Department accepted the lack of adopting any practical model in view of preventing suicide and managing the growing suicidal rates in and across the state, during a programme that was designed to commemorate World Suicide Prevention Day, today.

Sikkim ranks first among all states in the North Eastern States in suicide rates and fourth in the country as per National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) report 2006. In 2007, the rate of suicide in the state in per thousand was 18.88 and in 2008 and 2009, it reaches 43.16 and 35.28 that is highest in the country.

Dr PM Pradhan, Additional Director, State Health Service and Mental Health informed that the health authority is being trying to find a model, under which mental health will be of prior concern.

Since 1998, the suicide rate in the state records higher than that of the country but not have adopted any field measures to bring down the suicidal rate. But it is only after the launch of CATCH (Comprehensive Annual & Total Check Up for Healthy Sikkim) on 26 August, the authority has resolved to adopt it as a model in order to control suicides in the state.

At the outset, Dr Pradhan highlighted on the cause of the epidemic as depression, rapid development, economic changes, rapid changes in society, issues of unemployment, social cohesion, alcohol consumption, chronic illness, etc.

Apparently, some of the causes mentioned during the programme stands contrary to ‘peace-loving’ attitude of Sikkimese; the displayed statement reads – ‘impulsiveness and aggressiveness in Sikkim’s Society is also perhaps cause of worry’.

State Health Department, Dr Pradhan informed has undertaken various steps to prevent and to control suicide through primary Health center level.
The state health authority has also undertaken task to research on the growing rates of suicides in the state.

Since the year 2004, the suicide rate has been triggering from 19 per thousand in the state and at present, it hits 35.28 (2009) but it takes almost 6 years for the State Health department to adopt a model for preventing and controlling the epidemic.

Meet held on receiving Dalai Lama – His Holiness most lauded and awaited ?!!

From Haalkhabar
By Pravin Rai

Gangtok, 10 Sep, 2010: A coordination meet was conducted in the capital by the State Ecclesiastical Department to discuss over issue of visit of HH Dalai lama to Sikkim during December this year.

Mr Tenzing Gelek, Secretary, Ecclesiastical department said that the visit of Dalai Lama is totally organized by the state government and this is his fourth visit to Sikkim during the present government.

Routines have been scheduled and Dalai lama would arrive in the state on 15 December and will be visiting to various monasteries and even perform a public teaching.

Dalai Lama will also head the seminar with various learned scholars on the theme ‘Science and Buddhism’. The retreat center for Dalai Lama has been fixed as Tashiding, West Sikkim, which is under preparation and the same center will be turned into museum in the coming years, it was informed.

It has been learnt that Dalai Lama’s visit has been planned and scheduled for nine days in the state and on 23rd of December his holiness would return.

During the meeting, a total of 8 Buddhist organization form across the state were present to highlight the preparation for receiving Dalai Lama.

State Congress demands check in random projects and PMGSY scheme in state – a system of proper checks and balances ?!!

From Haalkhabar
By Pravin Rai

Gangtok, Sep 10, 2010: Sikkim Pradesh Congress Committee (SPCC) today demanded the State Government to pay heed to the landslide-affected aggrieved families of South and West District of the state and to maintain proper guidelines in the construction of roads under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojna (PMGSY) and in exercising different hydral projects.

While initiating his discussion on their 2-day visit to Mangjing, South Sikkim to analyse the condition of the 80 aggrieved and evacuated families, Mr KN

Upretti, Senior Vice President, SPCC said, the present condition of ousted families are grief-stricken and pathetic. Almost 35 families are completely washed away and have been camped at some safe areas but the State Government is neglecting the families with providing only Rs 1000 to those families, which is a sort of humiliation, he said.

‘What should the families do with those least amount of monetary aid?’, he posed.

SPCC claims that the contractors of PMGSY road are all favorites of the ruling government, Sikkim Democratic Front (SDF) and the roads have not been maintained with proper specifications. The roads are all incomplete and there is no maintenance of drainage system due to which sizeable damages have been reported with ousting a whole village completely.

The party mentioned that the demand they have placed is entirely on public interest and not carry any hidden agenda. The negligence of state government is vivid with no restoration of electricity in the damaged areas, he stated.

The aggrieved families, he stressed, have not been appropriately rehabilitated and to mention a few, the area MLA and Minister Mr CB Karki has ventured the area once but compensated the families with least amounts, it was informed.

‘The inflicted areas are not even facilitated with a single medical team’, Mr Upretti said.

The party also claims that they are not against the developmental work of the state government but the party is only trying to show the government a constructive way.

The various projects undergoing within the state and the road constructions under PMGSY have been going on randomly that need to be checked on public interest, SPCC claimed.

CM gives best wishes, flags off a team of mountaineers – experienced guides a great boon ?!!

From Sikkim Reporter
By SE staff reporter

Gangtok, Sep 9, 2010: Chief Minister Dr. Pawan Chamling gave his best wishes and flagged off a 12-member mountaineering expedition team to scale Mount Nepal Peak of Sikkim which is at the altitude of 7168 meters above sea level.

The expedition is organized by Manipur Mountaineering and Trekking Association in collaboration with Sikkim Mountaineering Association and is sponsored by North Eastern Council.

Out of 12 members, 6 are from Manipur, 2 each from Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh and 1 each from Mizoram and Assam. Among these 12 mountaineers, there are two female climbers, one each from Manipur and Arunachal Pardesh.

The Expedition team is being guided by Everester Mr. Pemba Sherpa and Mingma Thundup Sherpa. Minister Tourism, Government of Sikkim, Mr. Bhim Dhungel and Secretary were present on the occasion. The climbers will take the Lachen route and start there expedition from Green Lake, North Sikkim.

The team presented momento to the Chief Minister and the Minister Tourism.

German team to help Sikkim in work on climate change tranquil and investor friendly environment ?!!

From The Sikkim Reporter
By SR Bureau

Gangtok, Sep 9, 2010: A team of German Agency of Technical Cooperation Appraisal Mission on Climate Change Adaptation in the North Eastern region, led by Dr. Hans Helmrich (Consultant, Team leader), along with Minister Science & Technology, Mr. Bhim Dhungel and Secretary of the department called on Chief Minister Dr. Pawan Chamling at his official Mintokgang residence Wednesday.

In the meeting, Dr. Hans expressed his happiness for being in “such a beautiful state of Sikkim” where, he said, “the officials as well as the people are so much aware about climate change”. He told Dr. Chamling that people also said that they were quite aware about the efforts made by the government in this field.

He was also all praise for the kind of work the Chief Minister has initiated and conceptualized in the state for environment protection. Dr Hans also informed that his team will be working with 5 North Eastern states and will give technical support to Sikkim and Nagaland.

Chief Minister requested Dr. Hans and his team to give all technical and expert support to the state, while assuring full cooperation from him and his government. He also informed the team about the tranquil and investor friendly environment which exist in Sikkim and also about the rich bio-diversity, which makes the state “a unique one in India”.

Chief Minister hoped to work with the team in the field of climate change and achieve a good result as he is very much concerned about global warming. He handed over a copy of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on adaptation to Climate Change in the North Eastern Region, Sikkim, signed between the German team and the Chief Secretary of Government of Sikkim.

Swiss Institute signs MoU with Sikkim on organic farming – bringing in the best of the best ?!!

From Sikkim Reporter
By SR Bureau

Gangtok, Sep 9, 2010: Director FIBL Institute of Organic Research Centre of Switzerland Dr Urs Niggli along with Minister for Agriculture, Government of Sikkim, Mr. D.N. Takarpa, Secretary Mr. Vishal Chauhan, Principal Director Mr. K.K Singh and other officials called on Chief Minister Dr. Pawan Chamling at his official residence Mintokgang here in the capital on September 7.

Dr. Niggli was all praise for the kind of work being done by the Chief Minister in making Sikkim an organic state. He also added that though it’s a challenging task but very much possible to achieve with the kind of enthusiasm and sincerity with which Sikkim has been working towards the objective of going organic.

The Director who had earlier visited a village in Kitam, South Sikkim, was very impressed by the farmers for their commitment towards organic farming.

“With the ever growing demand for organic products in the market, if Sikkim can manage to go organic then it will not only yield a great deal of profit and recognition worldwide but will also be an example for others to emulate”, he opined.

Dr. Chamling, on the other hand, hoped to get all possible technical support from Dr. Niggli and his institute to turn the state into fully organic, which will be the first one to achieve this recognition in India.

“Though the task ahead is challenging we are absolutely committed to go total organic by 2015”, Chief Minister affirmed. He added, Sikkim needs all necessary technical know-how, help and support from Dr. Niggli and his institute to make the mission of going organic a reality within the next three years.

On the occasion a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by Dr. Urs Niggli and Secretary, Agriculture, Government of Sikkim, Mr. Vishal Chauhan, for a long term partnership in which the department will get all possible technical support from the institute on research and training and other related knowledge of organic farming. Calling it “a historic occasion”, Chief Minister hoped that “this partnership will have a lasting and positive effect on achieving the target. (With IPR input).


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