Total Pageviews

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Stricter guidelines framed for NGOs seeking govt aid

GANGTOK, 21 Nov:source;SikkimNow

All non-governmental organizations [NGOs] seeking grants from the State government will now have meet certain guidelines to become eligible for such grants. As of now, the more than 1,800 NGOs registered with the Law Department were not required to do much by way of following any rules, regulations or prescribed guidelines. The government, this time around, has also recognized that many of the registered NGOs are not active or actively engaged in any programmes and projects as they should be. Moreover, it is common knowledge that many are also formed to secure funding from agencies within and outside the state.
Interestingly, and in consideration of the above mentioned point, of many NGOs not being active, the government has prescribed that any NGO seeking grants-in-aid from the government should have worked actively for at least 2 years at the time of applying for the grant. Such NGOs will have to be registered under Notification No. 2602 A/H dated 25 March, 1960 or Sikkim Regulation of Societies Association and other Voluntary Organization Act 2008.
All such NGOs are required to have a properly constituted managing body with its powers, functions and responsibility clearly defined and laid down in writing.
More importantly, it is now prescribed that NGOs should have the required resources, infrastructure and trained personnel in the field that they have undertaken.
Non governmental organizations should not be run for profit to any individual or to a body of individuals and should have a bond/ joint account or the members of the managing committee.
As per the new guidelines, the NGOs should not be discriminatory in nature and should also procure a No Objection Certificate from the relevant department.
NGOs seeking funds from the State will also have to have their documents in order not only those pertaining to the organization but also to their schemes and projects. This includes having a renewal certificate for new projects, budget estimates for the financial year, audited accounts for previous years, annual reports and statement of income and expenditure.
In addition, such organizations will now have to also produce audited utilization certificates, Memorandum of Understanding/ Trust deed including Rules and Regulations/ byelaws and details of staff employed.
Also sought by the government are details of gender wise beneficiaries being benefited by the said Non-Governmental Organization and the scheme specific guidelines.
The government seems to be getting serious about the functioning of NGOs in the state with it directing that their accounts are to be always open to checking by officers of the Social Justice Department as well as monitoring of their activities.

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Darjeeling Himalayan Railway
UNESCO World Heritage Site
Niloy Kundu,
Delhi Public School

Agra Fort
UNESCO World Heritage Site
Disha Roy,
Sardar Patel Vidyalaya

Humanyun’s Tomb
UNESCO World Heritage Site
Maria Ashraf,
Rai School
New Delhi: With a view to enabling tourists to get a glimpse of life in rural India, heritage body INTACH is planning to set up `village museums` in the country.

For outsiders who have had no interface with rural India, the project, if implemented, will be a novel way of experiencing the “real India”.

The Indian National Trust for Art, Culture and Heritage (INTACH) is working on the concept of `village museums` and is looking for suitable areas to set up such centres.

“Such centres will depict the life in Indian villages and will be a showcase not only for foreign visitors but also for the urban Indians,” Chairman of INTACH, told reporters.

INTACHis in touch with an expert from the Philippines who has worked on such projects in many parts of the world, and has asked her to visit India to help the body on the project.

“We have approached a Philippines-based expert who has worked in the area, not only in her own country but also in other parts of the world,”
Kumari Selja Launches Cultural Heritage Young Leadership Programme on the Occasion of India Heritage Week

19 Nov 2011
The Union Culture and Housing & Urban Poverty Alleviation Minister Kumari Selja here today inaugurated the India Heritage Week and launched two new schemes - “Cultural Heritage Young Leadership Programme” and “scheme of Financial Assistance for publication of magazines and journals dedicated to Indian Culture and Heritage.” Addressing about 500 school children at the World Heritage Site Qutub Minar, she said 19th November is the birth day of late Smt. Indira Gandhi one of the great builders of modern India who was known for her keen concern for preservation and promotion of art and culture of India. She said that there is no country with a heritage more rich and vibrant than ours and the entire world is in awe of our diversity, the great ancient scriptures, monuments and the awesome dances and music of India. The Minister said our built heritage is testimony of our history and each and every child must have access to and take interest in this heritage. She said the scheme Cultural Heritage Young Leadership Programme aims to promote cultural awareness among school children, to develop a love for India’s rich cultural heritage. The Minister said, the focus is on the less-privileged children residing in backward areas through regional languages as a medium of communication as far as possible. The Scheme would broadly consist of distribution of existing audio-visual (AV) materials related to culture amongst schools, production of new AV material including publications related to culture. She said, It will support visits to monuments and museums by students of less-privileged schools. The financial assistance by the Ministry of Culture would consist of upto Rs. 5000/- per set of DVD in case of AV material; upto Rs. 1 lakh for production of CDs/DVDs/Publications for children and upto Rs. 500 per child, per trip in case of visits to monuments, which will include the cost of conveyance, food, entry fee for ticketed monuments/shows etc. Ministry of Culture may double this assistance in cases of exceptional merit.”

Referring to scheme of Financial Assistance for publication of magazines and journals dedicated to Indian Culture and Heritage, Kum Selja said under the scheme Ministry will give financial support of upto Rs. 10 lakh a year, and in exceptional cases, upto Rs. 20 lakh ,to magazines and journals dedicated to India’s cultural heritage. She said the scheme is intended to fill a gap being currently encountered in financial assistance for publication and support to journals and magazines dedicated to India’s culture and heritage. The Minister said it will also cover publication of books on Indian culture and heritage.

The Minister underlined the importance of Archaeological Survey of India in protection and conservation of monuments of the country and said apart from Government efforts it is the duty of each one of us to join hands and be part of this mission of saving built heritage of the country.

Trained volunteers of NGO Itihaas conducted the children around the monument and thereby providing them with quality exposure to their rich heritage. The Minister also gave away certificates to select young heritage volunteers of different schools and cash assistance to schools under the Cultural Heritage Young Leadership Programme

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

INTACH-Sikkim felicitates Miss Raksha Rai

March 17, 2011

The Indian National Trust for Art and Culture Heritage (INTACH) Sikkim Chapter felicitated the East India Regional Winner of the Indian Essay writing competition Miss Raksha Rai along with the other eight participants from Deorali Girls Senior Secondary School, Gangtok.

INTACH in collaboration with Fox History TV Channel had organized two events last year in 2010 namely Heritage Walk and Essay Writing Competition on the topic “My City My History”. Additional Secretary, Cultural Affairs and Heritage Department Mr. R.T. Lepcha also the Chief Guest for the day in his brief address congratulated the winners and the participants. “Heritage in the context of Sikkim is numerous,” stated Mr. Lepcha.

Mr. Lepcha said that the traditions should be kept alive and should be honored. Informing about the state government’s attempt to conserve the age old heritage Mr. Lepcha said that in total 900 traditional healers (witch doctors) are being paid with an amount of Rs 500/- per month by the government. Adding further Mr. Lepcha also informed that a Multipurpose Community Centre is on the verge of completion which will house a State Library along with all the modern facilities, construction of a State Museum below Tashi Namgyal Academy (TNA) compound and a Habitat Centre below White Hall will soon be started.

Raksha RaiRaksha Rai
Convener of INTACH Sikkim Chapter Mr. P.K Dong in his address said that INTACH was basically formed to create awareness in the community starting from the school children about the value of heritage and also to respect the knowledge, experience and skills of the past. Mr. Dong added that the All India Essay Writing Competition was for the school students of classes 6 to 9 and the participants had to write an essay on little known facts or unusual story about their own city, town or village. Four schools had participated from the state with a total of 20 students.

Though the quantity of participants was low, the quality of their essays was high, exclaimed Mr. Dong. To become a member of INTACH one does not need to be archaeologist or a historian. One has to be emotionally involved in appreciating the value to heritage, have reverence to our ancestors for their contribution in preserving nature and creating beautiful artifacts, music, costumes and many more along with enough care for the conservation of heritage of India in general and Sikkim in particular. Every day in the name of progress and development a historic monument, building, manuscript or a natural heritage is destroyed but we must remember a heritage once lost is lost forever added the convener.

Shri S K Sarda, Co-Convener, Intach-Sikkim also addressed the gathering.

The Principal of Deorali Girls Senior Secondary School, Gangtok Mrs. S.S. Lata Chettri expressed her gratitude towards INTACH and the former Principal of the school Mrs. C.C. Bhutia along with two other teachers under whose guidance the students were encouraged to come forward and prove their worth and make the state proud.

Out of 20 participants Miss Raksha Rai of Deorali Girls Senior Secondary School, Gangtok and Miss Anita Subba of Government Girls Senior Secondary School, Namchi were shortlisted among the 5 winners of the East India Region for their essay on “Sakewa” and “Rabdentse” respectively. All the participants of Deorali Girls Senior Secondary School, Gangtok articulated their essays during the function.

Courtesy: Sikkim Mail

Books on Heritage Sites for Children

Kumari Selja asks ASI to Produce Guidebooks for School Children on all Important sites in India Specially the World Heritage sites to help Involve Children in the Preservation Efforts

The Union Culture and Housing & Urban Poverty Alleviation Minister Kumari Selja today celebrated Children’s Day, the Birth Anniversary of India’s first Prime Minister Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru with about 700 school children including the less-privileged children at the world famous Humayun’s tomb in New Delhi. On the occasion, she released the first ever site specific guidebook for Children in India on Humayun’s Tomb.

Speaking on the occasion the minister said, Humayun’s tomb is one of India’s 26 World Heritage Sites and is visited by over 300,000 school children every year. She said, the guidebook will help involve children in the preservation efforts from an early age and inspire many of them to become archaeologists, architects and historians. She said, the country needs many more people to become actively involved in protecting and presenting India’s built heritage or at least to be concerned about protecting what our ancestors built before us.

Appreciating the efforts of the Archaeological Survey of India in this direction, Kumari Selja urged the ASI to produce such guidebooks for all important sites in India specially the World Heritage Sites or those sites frequented by school groups. She said, such publications should be brought out not only in Hindi and English but also in the regional languages to create awareness about country’s rich heritage in children from an early age. The Minister said, she expects ASI to complete this task within a year as ASI is celebrating 150th year of its establishment. The Minister announced that the ASI will give 1000 copies of the guidebook to MCD for free distribution among children of its schools in Delhi.

The Minister said, since 2007 the Archaeological Survey of India in partnership with the Aga Khan Trust for Culture is implementing a major conservation project on Humayun’s tomb. She said, the conservation efforts have been supported by Sir Dorabji Tata Trust and the Ford Foundation has supported a cultural awareness programme making this a very successful public-private partnership programme towards the preservation of our shared heritage.

The book authored by Dr. Narayani Gupta and illustrated by Anitha Balachandran brings to light some very interesting facts about the Mughal kings, the tomb of emperor Humayun and the folklore associated with the greater Nizamuddin area. From the times of Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya to the coming of Babur, from the building of Dinpanah by Humayun to the building of his tomb by Emperor Akbar, the book brings to light several interesting facts, beautifully illustrated. The book has been published by the Archaeological Survey of India.

Monday, 14 November 2011

National Monument Authority

To stop the rampant encroachment and construction around the monuments and other sites of archeological importance the Government has enacted The Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains (Amendment and Validation) Act, 2010.

National Monuments Authority (NMA) under the Act will be the highest body to oversee functions under the Act, particularly consideration of NOC applications for construction/reconstruction/repair and renovation in prohibited and regulated areas. National Monument Authority has been already established at Tilak Marg, New Delhi with a full time Member Secretary and small component of staff. The process of appointment of 1 full time member and 2 part time members is also in the final stages.

26 Competent Authorities (CA) under the Act have been already notified across the country. They are jurisdictionally co-terminus with circle SAs of ASI.

Announcing this in New Delhi the Minister of Culture and HUPA Kumari Selja said, steps have been also initiated regarding formulating monument-wise heritage bye-laws. The bye-laws for Begumpuri Mosque are being finalized in consultation with INTACH and once these are approved it can serve as model for other monuments.