Saturday, May 24, 2014

Chamling convenes first Cabinet meet of new term

OVERLOOKED RULES TO BE IMPLEMENTED, PENDING RULES CODIFIED
GANGTOK, 23 May [IPR]: The first meeting of the newly formed Cabinet was held in the Cabinet Hall of Samman Bhawan on 21 May, 2014 at 3:00pm. The Cabinet thoroughly discussed the various proposals/ issues submitted for its consideration and took the following decisions:-
The State to be declared as- BPL-free State, Illiteracy free State and a fully organic State.
Revenue generating schemes to be prioritized.
Ongoing schemes/projects to be completed in time.
All Government policies to be development oriented.
Henceforth Government will extend only cash subsidy. This will be directly deposited in the personal account of the beneficiary.
Entry fee to be introduced at Char Dham. This is with a view to enhance the revenue generation in the State.
The method of promotion of teachers from Primary to Graduate Teacher and from Graduate Teacher to Post Graduate Teacher to be reviewed. The concerned department to formulate appropriate methodology/Rules in accordance with existing Laws. This will ensure that quality and standard is maintained.
Medical reimbursement to Government employee will be made admissible only to the employee himself or herself with a maximum of Rs. 5 lakhs at a time. The term “family” as defined in the State Government Medical Rules to be revised. By curtailing such expenditure, the fund so saved can be used for other developmental works.
Sikkim Subject Certificate/Certificate of Identification is an essential Pre-requisite while issuing driving licence, permits for taxi/truck, hawker licence, etc. so that the local people get maximum priority.
No sub-letting of any contractual work to be allowed. The concerned department should immediately draw up Rules and prescribe appropriate Procedures.
Submission of Sikkim Subject Certificate/ Certificate of Identification to be made mandatory while issuing enlistment Certificate of Contractors. This is to build healthy competition among the local Contractors.
All Check posts will be equipped with Weigh Bridges to ensure that the carrying of load limit is not violated.
Reservation policy of the State to be strictly followed while dealing with the Chief Minister’s Meritorious Scholarship so that students from all communities can avail of this benefit.
X-ray machines to be installed in all check posts. The Taxes so collected would enhance the State revenue. Such measures and strict surveillance would lead to proper security and imposition of appropriate taxes in the border check posts.
All Government Grade IV employees like drivers/ Peons etc who have been issued uniforms should wear it while on duty, with immediate effect.
In rural areas trade licence to be issued exclusively to Sikkim Subject/ COI holders.

No Adhoc and officiating promotions to be granted to the employees.

SG Lepcha sworn in as pro-tem Speaker

GANGTOK, 23 May [IPR]: Member of Legislative Assembly from Dzongu constituency, Sonam Gyatso Lepcha was administered the oath of office as the pro-tem Speaker for 9th Sikkim Legislative Assembly by Governor Shriniwas Patil at Ashirvad Bhawan, Raj Bhawan, Gangtok, today.
A Pro-tem Speaker is appointed by the Governor in exercise of the powers conferred upon him by clause (1) of Article 180 of the Constitution, to perform the duties of the Speaker till the Legislative Assembly chooses one Member as the Speaker.

Pro-tem Speaker, Mr Lepcha took the oath in presence of Chief Minister Pawan Chamling, Cabinet Ministers, MLAs, Secretaries and HODs and several senior government officials.

Elections over, tourist season picks up ANAND OBEROI

GANGTOK, 21 May: This year’s “tourist season” kicked off in earnest after 16 May with the completion of the election process across the country. The number of tourists coming into Sikkim has suddenly exploded with the private bus stand here at Deorali sometimes not being able to handle the pressure of incoming traffic and vehicles having to be diverted to the byepass.
The tourists visiting Sikkim at present are mostly “drop-in” tourists who prefer not to book their hotels or plan their travel in advance. Meanwhile, hotels in and around the capital are also catering to package bookings for budget tourists who are now storming low-end lodges, some even travelling with their rations and kitchen staff.
The traffic in Gangtok has also stepped into tourist season mode with most of the local taxis doing “point” sightseeing leaving the everyday Gangtok commuter waiting a little longer for share cabs.
Tourists say that most vacationers have fixed this time of the year for the holidays since it is the end of the elections while the intolerable heat wave in other parts of the country is also getting tourists for Sikkim.
With maximum temperature expected to go up by 2 to 3 degree Celsius in another 3 days as per the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), Sikkim should expect even more visitors over the weekend. The IMD has also issued a statement that heat wave conditions would prevail at a few places over Gangetic West Bengal and at isolated places over Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha and southwest Madhya Pradesh.
“This is a soothing experience since the rest of the country is steaming. We are here on a week-long holiday before we return to Maharashtra,” explains a tourist who is here with his friends for the first time.
MG Marg in the capital is also swarming with tourists trying to capture the appropriate photograph of their visit.

For thousands of tourists fleeing the heat wave for the mountain rain and sunshine, Sikkim makes for a fine holiday destination provided it also offers a pleasant experience sans the overcharging and heckling.
fotoCaption: Popular tourist spots like the Bakthang Falls at Burtuk above Gangtok are receiving sightseers by the packed jeepfulls...

SKM thanks MG Marg


GANGTOK, 23 May: Sikkim Krantikari Morcha [SKM] president and Upper Burtuk MLA, PS Tamang [Golay] led a ‘thank you’ rally through MG Marg today.
He was accompanied by the other victorious candidates of the SKM party from Gangtok [Pintso Chopel Lepcha], Syari [Kunga Nima Lepcha], Arithang [Shyam Sundar Pradhan], Upper Tadong [Timothy William Basnett], Martam Rumtek [Dr Mechung Bhutia] and party supporters.
They visited each and every shop and thanked the people for voting for the SKM party and for showing their support for the SKM party.

The party supporters also burst celebratory firecrackers at MG Marg and once the festivities were over, also cleaned up the area of litter that firework spilled on the litter & spit free zone.

SKM accuses SDF of vandalism

GANGTOK, 23 May: Sikkim Krantikari Morcha [SKM] has accused Sikkim Democratic Front [SDF] workers of setting a vehicle belonging to an SKM party worker on fire on Thursday night.
As per an SKM release, a Maruti Alto belonging to SKM party worker Jeewan Kumar Rai of Mamring was set on fire on the night of 22 May. The vehicle was parked in front of Mr. Rai’s house, it is informed.
SKM has further alleged that some antisocial elements and SDF party supporters have been threatening SKM party workers in Poklok Kamrang constituency of dire consequences if they did not leave the village.
SDF party workers are also accused of vandalizing one house belonging to SKM supporter Shyam Kumar Rai in Zoom Salghari.

SKM has accused SDF of resorting to such threats and violence against those who supported SKM in the recently concluded elections. 

PHE Minister assumes office

GANGTOK, 23 May: Minister for Social Justice, Empowerment and Welfare Department and Water Security and PHE, Tulshi Devi Rai assumed office today.
As per a press release, Principal Secretary [Welfare Department], GP Upadhayay and PHE Secretary, Ghanashyam Sharma along with other officers and staff from both departments welcomed Ms Rai at her office at Lumsay.
Principal Secretary, Mr Upadhayay briefed the Minister about the department and activities carried out in the past. He also apprised her of fund provisions of the department. During her interaction with the departments, the Minister stressed that she is first and foremost a representative of the people and her responsibilities lie with the people, the release mentions.
She urged the staff of both departments to work in close coordination keeping in mind the welfare of the people.

Ms Rai also urged them to prioritize on better and quicker service delivery to the people. She inquired about the various schemes and discussed at length about the hindrances and obstacles in the smooth delivery of those schemes and urged the officers to find ways to improve the service delivery. The Minister further promised every possible help from the government towards achieving these targets, it is added.

Subedi chairs his first RMDD meeting as Minister

GANGTOK, 23 May [IPR]: A coordination meeting of the Rural Management & Development Department chaired by its Minister, SB Subedi was held today in the Conference Hall of the Gram Vikas Bhawan. The meeting was attended by Secretary RMDD, DR Nepal and all officers and staff of the department.
At the outset, the Secretary welcomed the Minister who in turn thanked the officers and staff of the RMD Department for their hard work and sincerity resulting in good implementation of the Rural Development programmes on the ground.
He also emphasised that the good work be carried forward in the coming years and sought for co-operation and support from all the functionaries to implement the plans and programmes of the government in the coming days. He also directed the officers and staff to be punctual and work with utmost dedication and sincerity and develop a people friendly delivery mechanism. Public should not be inconvenienced in any way he said.
He suggested that all pending and incomplete projects be listed and expedited to ensure removal of hurdles and early completion of the same. In the end he requested all the functionaries to ensure quality in all works and timely completion of projects.

The meeting ended with a vote of thanks by the Special Secretary, RMD Department.

Akhil Sikkim Thami Sangh congratulates Chamling

GANGTOK, 23 May: Akhil Sikkim Thami Sangh has also congratulated the Chief Minister Pawan Chamling for forming the government for the fifth consecutive time in the state. A press release of the Sangh informs that its meeting held on Thursday congratulated and expressed its best wishes to the CM along with the Ministers and MLAs. 

MUSS Seminar on Science & Spirituality

GANGTOK, 23 May: A seminar on “Science and Spirituality” for the youth was organized by Manav Utthan Sewa Samiti, Youth Wing, Sikkim today here at Mannan Kendra. The seminar had Shri Vibhujee Maharaj as the key speaker. The seminar sought to “understand the complete reality of life, co relation between Science and Spirituality and essence of meditation in mankind, to further reap their benefits in day to day life,” it is informed. 

Sikkim Entrepreneurs Association congratulates SDF

GANGTOK, 23 May: Sikkim Entrepreneurs Association [SEA] has congratulated Pawan Chamling led Sikkim Democratic Front party on returning to power for the fifth consecutive time.
A press release informs that the association has also expressed hope that the fifth term of the SDF government would be fruitful for the local entrepreneurs as the association is concerned regarding the increasing number of struggling entrepreneurs in the state. This, the association feels is often because the local entrepreneurs are the first generation businessman, so they often lack in experiences as well as resources.

The association has also decided to call on the Chief Minister to reiterate the various demands and difficulties faced by the local entrepreneurs, the release mentions. 

Governor and CM greetings on Sakewa

GANGTOK, 23 May: On the auspicious occasion of Sakewa, the Governor of Sikkim, Shriniwas Patil and First Lady Rajanidevi Patil have extended heartiest greetings to the people of Sikkim.
The Governor has said, “Sakewa symbolises the worship of Mother Nature as the ultimate source of life and protector of mankind. The reverence and worship of nature, which is inherent in the life and culture of Sikkimese people is instrumental in the preservation of rich ecology and biodiversity that we are proud to possess.
The worship of mother nature has become all the more relevant at a time when the world is coping with the repercussions of overall degradation in the environment and quality of ecosystem. There is widespread threat of depletion of biodiversity by way of extinction of various species of flora and fauna.
The festival of Sakewa signifies the wisdom that our ancestors intended to pass on to the subsequent generations as a tradition in the quest to protect our environment, providing us the way of living in perfect harmony with nature.
On this propitious occasion, let us commit ourselves to promote and strengthen this tradition for the well being of all.”

The Chief Minister of Sikkim, Pawan Chamling and Smt Tika Maya Chamling have also extended their warm greetings and best wishes to the people of Sikkim on the auspicious occasion of Sakewa.

Rotary Education Expo- 2014 on 01 June

GANGTOK, 23 May: Rotary Club of Gangtok has announced its plan to hold ‘Rotary Education Expo- 2014’ here at Chintan Bhawan on 01 June. This is the first such event being organized by the Club.
This was informed during a press conference of the Rotary Club of Gangtok held here today. The day-long expo will have career counseling, career guidance, career consultancy and motivational sessions by experts.
Addressing the press conference, the chairman of the expo, Tirtha Sharma said that the Rotary Club of Gangtok has been working in various sectors like health, social and others in the state since it was formed. This is the first time that the Club is organizing an educational expo especially for class X and XII pass outs of the state, he informed.
During the expo, resource persons from the state and outside will conduct sessions on prospective colleges and universities, loan and assistance from banks, course selection and its scopes, state government schemes and aids, it was informed.
Mr. Sharma informed that experts from aeronautical engineering, pharmacy, management and other fields from various universities of Bangalore, Delhi, Kolkata, Assam and other places will be coming for the expo.
The expo will also have stalls of different colleges for spot admission while an official from the RBI will explain the process for getting educational loan and officials from the HRDD will explain the schemes and scholarships available.
Rotary Club of Gangtok has invited students especially class X and XII pass outs to visit the expo. The club is planning to make the expo an annual event, it was further informed.

The press conference was also addressed by senior club members, OP Singhi, Manoj Agarwal and Arun Awasthy. 

APS-Gangtok student excels in International Olympiad of English Language

APS student excelGANGTOK, 23 May: Rawnak Dutta, a class X student of Army Public School, Gangtok secured first position in his class in the 6th International Olympiad of English Language 2014 held recently.
A press release informs that he secured first position in the state and the 313th rank in the international level. The Olympiad was organized by Silver Zone Foundation in association with 3Gen and supported by Educational Society of English Language.

Rawnak had also stood first in the state in the All India Hindi Olympiad held in 2013.

Man dies from poisoning

GANGTOK, 23 May: A 42-year-old man has died from poisoning in West Sikkim. The man was brought to Yuksom PHC with symptoms of poisoning and died during treatment. The dead body was handed over to the family members after inquest and post mortem. No foul play has been detected so far. The case is under investigation. 

Two injured in truck accident

GANGTOK, 23 May: A truck fell off the road almost 300 ft down near St. Mary School, Gyalshing on Thursday. While the driver of the truck is undergoing treatment at Gyalshing Hospita, another occupant is reported to in serious condition and has been referred to STNM Hospital. The truck has been severely damaged.

A case has been registered against the driver at Gyalshing Police Station and is under investigation.

Assault at Dairy Dara

GANGTOK, 23 May: A case has been registered at Namchi Police Station against three persons for assaulting a man. It was reported that the victim was on his way to work when he was assaulted by the accused at Dairy Dara, South Sikkim for no apparent reason. Efforts are underway to arrest the accused. The case is under investigation.

Suspected peddler nabbed in Melli

GANGTOK, 23 May: Melli Police have arrested one man in possession of contraband substances on Thursday. The accused, a 27-year-old resident of Majhigaon, Melli was caught by beat duty officers while on their evening patrol near Melli Petrol Pump with a plastic bag full of contraband substances, as per Sikkim Police social media page. The case is under investigation. 

DR Thapa thanks Upper Burtuk public

GANGTOK, 23 May: SDF candidate from Upper Burtuk, DR Thapa has conveyed his gratitude towards everyone who voted for him in the recently concluded assembly polls. Mr. Thapa was defeated by SKM president, PS Tamang [Golay] by a slim margin of 573 votes from this rather large constituency of more than 12,000 voters.
Mr. Thapa congratulated Chief Minister Pawan Chamling, his Cabinet colleagues and MLAs on being elected to the ninth Sikkim Legislative Assembly. He further expressed hope that during the record fifth term in power, the SDF party will definitely endorse pro-people policies and programmes in the next five years.

Accepting his defeat and people’s mandate, he said that despite the loss he would continue to work for the people of the constituency. 

Counterfeit peddling couple nabbed

MANGAN, 23 May: A couple has been arrested for using counterfeit currency notes at Lower Kambal in East Sikkim today. Singtam Police picked up Sancha Maya Rai [a resident of Lingee, South Sikkim] and her husband, Bir Kumar Rai [a driver] at around 3 pm today.
It is learnt that the accused made purchases with fake notes of Rs 500 denomination this afternoon at several shops in Ralap, Tumin, Raley and Samdong. She was nabbed by police after staff at the Tumin petrol pump grew suspicious when she approached them asking for change of Rs 500. Soon after she left the petrol pump, the staff and local public followed her and caught her at a bakery at Lower Kambal near Jurassic Park where she was again trying to make purchases with a five hundred rupee note. They seized the keys of the Maruti Alto she was travelling in and informed the police.

Police recovered counterfeit notes worth Rs. 21,000 from her. Along with her, police also arrested her husband who was driving the vehicle and at present both are under police custody.

Sikkim Archery Association congratulates Chamling

GANGTOK, 23 May: Sikkim Archery Association [SAA] has congratulated the Chief Minister of Sikkim, Pawan Chamling on forming the Government of Sikkim for the fifth consecutive term.

An SAA press release states that the association has always supported the vision of the Chief Minister in the field of sports and would continue to be part of his mission to make Sikkim healthy and prosperous. 

Friday, May 23, 2014

HC directs Project Swastik to reassess compensation for land acquired in North Sikkim

GANGTOK, 22 May: The Division Bench of the High Court of Sikkim has directed Project Swastik to carry out a reassessment of the compensation to be paid to people whose land the army has been using. In the petition filed by members of the public of North Sikkim it was brought to light by Dr. Doma T Bhutia, amicus curiae, that the Chief Engineer, Project Swastik had not paid compensation for the temporary acquisition of the land.
The petition was filed in the year 2012 by the petitioners who were aggrieved of the fact that while the army had occupied their lands they had not been compensated for many years. Earlier, too, the court had directed that the rates of compensation be assessed for payment to the affected.
It was brought to the notice of the court that assessment for compensation was contrary to Rules. In addition to this it was also brought to the notice of the court that Project Swastik, in fact, was in possession of more land whereas compensation had been assessed for less land. A direction for re-assessment was sought for the full land acquired by the army in this regard.
The High Court agreed to the prayer, and the Chief Engineer, Project Swastik, who was present during the last hearing, was directed to re-assess the compensation to be paid to the land holders for temporary acquisition of the land along with the necessary documents of the land which had been acquired on temporary basis. A time period of 4 weeks has been granted by the court for the reassessment.

Rains damage water lines at source, supply to resume Friday

GANGTOK, 22 May: Due to heavy rains, water pipelines at the Char-chare source, around 9.5 kms from the reservoir at Selep, were washed away which disrupted water supply to the capital and surrounding areas on Wednesday, the DM East’s social media page informs.
Temporary restoration has been completed and water is now [as of Thursday evening] collecting in Selep reservoir. Water supply to affected areas in and around Gangtok will resume by Friday, the DM assures.

UGC team to inspect SMU

GANGTOK, 22 May: A team from the University Grants Commission is due to pay an inspection visit to the Sikkim Manipal University. It is informed that the inspection team from the UGC will be inspecting the Sikkim Manipal University on 23 and 24 May.
The inspection report of the UGC after it conducts its inspection of the SMU will supposedly be instrumental in deciding whether the SMU can continue with its distance education course. The SMU has opened several centres of learning outside the state of Sikkim through its distance education course programme and there are scores of students who are currently enrolled in various courses offered by SMU through its distance education programme.
However the authority of the SMU to open distance education centres outside the state of Sikkim was challenged by IGNOU. The 40th meeting of the Distance Education Council of IGNOU had decided not to allow SMU to continue with its distance education beyond the boundaries of Sikkim. In fact this decision pertains to all universities operating distance education courses. This decision of IGNOU was taken in June, 2012. At present, there are around 2.5 lakh students from all over the country enrolled in various courses offered by SMU through its distance education programme.
Following the controversy the SMU approached the High Court of Sikkim seeking to validate its legitimacy to continue with its distance education programmes. While the case is pending, the high court had earlier permitted the continuation of distance education by SMU subject to the final decision of the court in the matter.

SKM condemns repeal of second Saturday holiday

GANGTOK, 22 May: Sikkim Krantikari Morcha has condemned the state government’s announcement of making second Saturdays working days from now onwards. Terming it an act of “betrayal” against government employees, the party has said that the government should instead declare all Saturdays as holidays giving Sikkim a 5-day week system.
In a press release, SKM has said that “benefits” hitherto enjoyed by government employees should not be withdrawn.
The party has also alleged that businessmen who want their trade licenses renewed are also being denied and being told that renewal of licenses will take place only after the rates are increased. The party states that rates of trade license renewal are already high and should be reduced instead of being increased.  Renewals should also not be delayed for any reason, it adds.
SKM has further condemned bursting of firecrackers at MG Marg by members of Sikkim Democratic Front party on 21 May. MG Marg is a smoke free zone and such an act is in complete violation of the law in force, the party contends further adding that “SKM strongly opposes such activities which tortures government employees, business communities and public in general”.

Second Saturday holidays no more

GANGTOK, 22 May: The next second Saturday will not be a holiday. In fact, second Saturdays, from now on, will no longer be government holidays in Sikkim. All government bodies will now remain open on second Saturdays and government employees are expected to be present and working in full strength.
All educational institutions under the government of Sikkim will also remain open on second Saturdays.
This was put into effect through a notification issued by Chief Secretary R Ongmu today.
As per the notification, it has been declared that “…henceforth all second Saturdays shall be working days in all government offices, public sector undertakings and educational institutions under the government of Sikkim”.
When contacted, Home Secretary MG Kiran explained that the decision was taken to “improve the working of the government” and to make available the administration to the members of the public and also to “increase the number of working days”.
Needless to add, even though holidays on second Saturdays had become a practice almost unique to Sikkim among all the States [even neighbouring West Bengal does not have this day off], the suddenness with which it was ended is bound to attract criticism from the Opposition camp and rants from babus.

Chamling dissolves all SDF committees

GANGTOK, 22 May: Sikkim Democratic Front president Pawan Chamling has dissolved all the committees of the party today with immediate effect. This is informed in a press release issued today by SDF general secretary [administration], SK Pradhan.

The release informs that the SDF president has dissolved all the committees of SDF party viz all Sikkim Democratic Front committee, Central Working Committee, Central Executive Committee, District Working Committees, Constituency level committees, Block level committees, Ward level committees, Frontal Organization, Panchayat Affairs, Student Cell, Cultural Affairs etc with immediate effect. 

SG Lepcha nominated pro-tem Speaker, to be sworn in Friday

GANGTOK, 22 May: The Cabinet has reportedly approved the name of Sonam Gyatso Lepcha, the SDF MLA from Dzongu, as the Pro-tem Speaker of the Sikkim Legislative Assembly. He is scheduled to be administered the oath of secrecy and office by Governor Shriniwas Patil on Friday at 10:30 am at Raj Bhawan.
Mr. Lepcha is a fourth term MLA and was Minister in the previous Cabinet [2009-14]. In the recently held elections, he defeated his nearest rival Dawa T Lepcha of Sikkim Krantikari Morcha party to represent Dzongu in the Assembly. He has been winning from this constituency since 1999.
Mr. Lepcha’s name was unanimously approved by the Cabinet on Wednesday afternoon to complete the formalities to elect the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly. Meanwhile, there is a strong buzz that Poklok-Kamrang MLA, KN Rai, will be proposed as Speaker. That process is expected to be completed on Monday.
As the pro-tem Speaker, Mr Lepcha is expected to administer the oath of office to other elected members of the ninth Sikkim Legislative Assembly on Monday on the first sitting of the new Legislative Assembly.

When the Lok Sabha and Legislative Assemblies have been elected, but the vote for the speaker and deputy speaker has not taken place, a pro-tem speaker is chosen. 

NPS scores cent percent results in ICSE & ISC 2014 Exams

GANGTOK, 22 May: Namchi Public School has secured 100% results in the ICSE and ISC exams 2014.
A press release informs that Trishant Agarwal has topped the ICSE scoring 92.80% followed by Anupam Biswas and Palzang Norgay Bhutia at 87.60% and Prashant Pradhan 85.60%.  52 students had appeared for ICSE and 46 students appeared for ISC.
In the ISC category, Amar Minda topped in Science securing 84.25% and Tenzing Jigme Bhutia topped Commerce securing 73.75%.
Principal of the school, Rev. Fr. George A. D’Souza has congratulated all the students and staff for the excellent result. As the school is celebrating its Silver Jubilee this year, the excellent results is an added feather to the school’s glory, the release adds.

2ND DIVISION S-LEAGUE QUALIFYING ROUND UPDATE Pendam FA picks up more points

GANGTOK, 22 May: Pendam Football Academy outplayed Brotherhood Football Club today in the ongoing final league of the Second Division Sikkim-League qualifying round here at Paljor Stadium. In the contesting match, Pendam FA registered its 2-0 victory to earn 3 points.
Another closely played match of the day between Tadong United Football Club and JVC FA Singtam ended in 1-1 draw. Both the teams shared 1 point each from this draw.

On 24 May, the first match will be played between Sikkim Royal Sports Academy and Brotherhood FC while in the second match Pendam FA will take on JVC FA Singtam. 

International Biodiversity Day at Pangthang JHS

GANGTOK, 22 May: International Biodiversity Day was celebrated in Pangthang Junior High School today. The programme was organized by East Wildlife Division, Department of Forest Environment and Wildlife Management on the theme ‘Sikkim- An Island in the Sky’.
The programme was chaired by Headmistress Pangthang Junior High School, Donkala Thondup.
Also present were Nima Wangdi Tamang CF [WL], Usha Lachungpa, Additional Director State Biodiversity Board [SBB], Dichen Namdul ACF [WL, East], Nisha Subba ACF [WL, HQ], Samdup Bhutia ACF [WL, FWS], Peggyla Venchungpa ACF [SBB], Bharat Kumar Pradhan, Scientific & Technical Assistant [SBB], Sonam Norden Bhutia ACF [WP], Miss Shewani Pradhan ACF [Silviculture], Forest department staffs, school students, teachers and Pangthang EDC members.
A press release informs that the programme started with a presentation by Usha Lachungpa on Biodiversity of Sikkim and a message on conservation of Biodiversity. The school students also participated in a quiz competition on biodiversity. The students were made aware of the presence of diverse species in the water ecosystem through a movie clipping.
Donkala Thondup talked about the importance of conserving nature and keeping the surroundings clean. Stressing on every living being’s right to live, she spoke against hunting animals for sport.
NW Tamang also shared with the students, ways of conserving the biodiversity and emphasized on the protection of all species, the release adds.

TOURISTS FLOOD TO BAKTHANG FALLS:

Bakthang Falls near Burtuk, one of the “points” for tourists in-and-around Gangtok is flooded with tourists nowadays with minor traffic jams also taking place due to the huge number of cabs bringing tourists here. Visitors can be seen engaged in a myriad of activities here – from wearing traditional costumes for photographs to strapping in for a river-crossing experience to bargaining for trinkets. There is an excited buzz in the air at all times there.

Anti-Terrorism Day observed at Secretariat

GANGTOK, 22 May [IPR]: Anti-Terrorism Day was observed at Secretariat, Development Area, Gangtok today. Controller of Accounts, Gopal Basnet administered the Anti-Terrorism Pledge to the officers of various departments assembled at Secretariat.
The Day is observed to generate awareness in the country among all sections of people, about the danger of terrorism and violence and its effect on the people, society and the country as a whole. It was on this day in 1991 that former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated by LTTE terrorists.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

photographs of CM & Ministers for portfolio details

1. PAWAN CHAMLING, Chief Minister: Home; Finance, Revenue & Expenditure; Development Planning; Economic Reforms & NE Council Affairs and other departments which are not allotted to ministers.
2. DD BHUTIA: Energy & Power; Labour
3. GM GURUNG: Roads & Bridges (PWD); Cultural Affairs & Heritage
4. RB SUBBA: HRDD; Sports & Youth Affairs; Law; Parliamentary Affairs
5. SB SUBEDI: RMDD; Panchayati Raj; Cooperation
6. DT LEPCHA: PWD (Building & Housing); Transport
7. SOMNATH POUDYAL: Food Security, Agriculture & Horticulture; Irrigation & Flood Control
8. UGEN T GYATSO BHUTIA: Tourism & Civil Aviation; Commerce & Industries
9. NK SUBBA: UD&HD; Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs
10. TULSHI DEVI RAI: Water Security and PHE; Social Justice
11. TSHERING WANGDI LEPCHA: Forest; Mines; Science & Technology
12. AK GHATANI: Healthcare, Human Services & Family Welfare; Animal Husbandry, Livestock & Veterinary.

 2. DD BHUTIA: Energy & Power; Labour.








Chamling sworn in as CM for fifth consecutive time

GANGTOK, 21 May: Pawan Chamling was sworn in as the Chief Minister of Sikkim for the fifth consecutive term today at Ashirwad Bhawan in Raj Bhawan today in the presence of more than 600 dignitaries including senior bureaucrats, SDF party functionaries, opposition leaders and Justices of the High Court of Sikkim.
Governor Shriniwas Dadasahib Patil administered the oath of office to the Chief Minister and his Cabinet colleagues. Mr. Chamling is currently the longest serving Chief Minister in office in the country and is three years shy of breaking the 23 year record [1977 to 2000] of the erstwhile West Bengal Chief Minister Jyoti Basu.
Interestingly, Mr. Chamling also holds the record of being the longest serving Legislator in Sikkim, having been an MLA since 1984. The present year marks his 20th year as the Chief Minister of Sikkim and 30th as an MLA!
Mr. Chamling has retained the portfolios of Home; Finance, Revenue & Expenditure; Development Planning; Economic Reforms & NE Council Affairs and departments not allotted to any other Minister.
Born on 22 September 1950 at Yangang in South Sikkim, Mr. Chamling was elected to the Sikkim Legislative Assembly in 1984 from Damthang constituency. This term, he has won elections from Namchi-Singithang and Rangang-Yangang constituencies, both in South Sikkim.
Today, Mr. Chamling arrived at the Ashirwad Bhawan at 10:20 AM and took the oath of secrecy in Hindi [a first for him] as Chief Minister and signed his paper at 10:25 am. The Governor offered khadas to him and extended his best wishes.
The Governor also administered the oath to Mr. Chamling’s 11 Cabinet colleagues. There are five new faces in the Cabinet this time while AK Ghatani is also a first time MLA.
The four other new faces in the Cabinet are: Ugen T Gyatso Bhutia, elected from Tumin-Lingee and who served as Chief Whip in the last term; NK Subba, elected from Maneybong-Dentam who returns to the Legislative Assembly after a one-term lay-off; Tulsi Devi Rai a second term MLA elected from Melli; and Tshering Wangdi Lepcha, a second term MLA from Lachen-Mangan.
Chamling on swearing-in
While the Chief Minister Pawan Chamling refrained from talking to the media today, he wrote on a social media site: “Today, in all humility and sense of supreme duty and responsibility, I took oath as the Chief Minister at the oath taking ceremony administered by the Hon’ble Governor Shriniwas Patil at Raj Bhawan.
This day certainly calls for history in making as this glorious day will be inked to mark the historic victory of Sikkimese people for reposing their faith in Sikkim Democratic Front Party to govern the State for the record 5th consecutive term. SDF Party upholds and promotes the motto of peace, progress and prosperity and our party stands committed to fulfill range of holistic developmental programmes and socio-economic and cultural progress among hosts of commitments pledged to the people.
I, on behalf of my team of dedicated Ministers, MLAs and party functionaries assure to serve and work for the collective interest of Sikkimese people for all time to come. I once again congratulate my fellow Sikkimese people and extend my heartiest gratitude for giving us this resounding mandate once again”.





SKM-SDF stare-down at MG Marg, police intervention defuses situation



GANGTOK, 21 May: The government formation day today almost lapsed into an anticlimax of sorts here at MG Marg in a replay of the bitter and violent election campaign. While the Chief Minister was distributing portfolios to his Cabinet, down at MG Marg, SDF and SKM supporters and lieutenants were lined up in a standoff which lasted the better part of an hour.
The two groups were locked in a confrontation near Star Cinema at New Market with just about 15 meters between them and a cordon of Sikkim Police and SAP personnel. It took tremendous negotiation skills on the part of the Sikkim Police to persuade party supporters on both sides to withdraw their aggressive posturing and cool down their sloganeering.
Sikkim Armed Police personnel were also called into duty in case the situation got out of hand.
The intervention on the part of the Sikkim Police may have been late to start with. The SKM party supporters were first in the main bazaar area with sloganeering and bursting of crackers which they did with aplomb in the square in front of the Tourist Information Centre; following this they headed back to Star Hall at the junction of New Market and Namnang.
Not to be outdone, the SDF was soon on to the scene with their cache of firecrackers which they burst for over half an hour at the same place.  Later, led by former Speaker, KT Gyalsten, Deputy Mayor, Shakti Singh and Arithang Councillor, Ashish Rai there was an impromptu rally right up to Star Cinema with robust sloganeering as well. It was here that the two parties had a stand-off with party flags flying, intense slogan shouting and excited passersby and tourists clicking away at the photo op.
The police kept a tight rein on supporters of both parties with the help of SAP, not allowing them to break the cordon and make a move on the other group. Soon the SP-East, Manoj Tiwari arrived on the scene and both groups were persuaded to disperse.
“There is no law and order problem, political supporters are celebrating their victories with bursting of crackers and the police is here to make sure that they do not get out of hand. It has been a long electoral process and the Sikkim Police has maintained law and order and will continue to do so”, stated the SP East.

All pass ICSE at TNA

GANGTOK, 21 May: Tashi Namgyal Academy has scored a 100 percent in the ICSE Class X examinations this year.

All 121 students who sat for the exams have passed. 17 students got more than 90 percent marks in best of five average. In first position is Shruti Pradhan with 94.8 percent and she has passed with distinction [90% and above] in six subjects. In second position is Simran Dhakal with 93.4 percent and distinction in four subjects followed by Metabel Mangrati in third place with 93 percent and distinction in six subjects.

SKM accuses SDF of post-poll violence

GANGTOK, 21 May: Sikkim Krantikari Morcha [SKM] has thanked its workers for maintaining peace in the state. Meanwhile, the party has accused Sikkim Democratic Front of violence and vandalism against SKM workers and supporters after the election results were announced.
An SKM press release informs that the party has filed an FIR against SDF party workers of Lingee and Kokaley for allegedly manhandling Yogesh Dahal near Butterfly Falls in Tintek but no action has been taken yet. SKM further alleges that party offices and houses of SKM supporters and workers were vandalized by SDF supporters while SKM supporters were also allegedly threatened.
Instead of maintaining peace, the ruling party’s supporters with the support of their MLA are indulging in such acts and if this continues then SKM workers would also not stay silent, the party has said. SKM has further stated that SDF and the state administration would be responsible for any unfortunate incidents that might take place.

SJS Rhenock records 100% pass in ICSE

GANGTOK, 21 May: St. Joseph’s School, Rhenock has recorded 100% pass percentage in the ICSE Examinations of Class 10 held in the month of March 2014.
A press release informs that a total of 24 candidates appeared for the exams of whom 22 secured first division (60% and above) and 2 secured second division [50% being the lowest].
The highest percentage (90.65) is scored by Ashok Kumar of Rhenock Bazaar. The second highest (89.2%) is scored by Tamanna Soni also of Rhenock Bazaar and in third place (87.6%) is Pratibha Kaushal.

All the staff members and students of SJS Rhenock congratulate the successful candidates and especially the toppers, the release states. 

24 make it to grand finale of Sikkim Diva, 25th to be decided by facebook votes

GANGTOK, 21 May: Twenty four girls have made it to the final round of the Sikkim Diva beauty pageant being organised by event management company, Positude.
A press release informs that based on the auditions conducted in all four districts of Sikkim, 24 contestants have been shortlisted while the 25th contestant will be chosen on the basis of “likes” on the company’s Facebook page.
Photographs of the 35 contestants who auditioned have been posted on the Facebook page and the contestant who gets the maximum number of likes by 23 May will be selected as the 25th finalist.
The finale of the pageant is slated to be held on 15 June at Manan Kendra.

SDF Upper Tadong celebrates Sikkim victory

GANGTOK, 21 May: Sikkim Democratic Front candidate from Upper Tadong constituency, Bhasker Basnett chaired a meeting of the party today to celebrate the party’s victory in the 2014 Assembly and General elections. The meeting was also attended by senior party workers, Cheli Morcha members and SDF youth.
It may be mentioned that although Mr, Basnett lost to Sikkim Krantikari Morcha’s Timothy William Basnett by 122 votes in Upper Tadong, his party has won the elections and formed the government.
An SDF release informs that the meeting was called to celebrate the party’s victory and on forming the government for the fifth consecutive time. Mr. Basnett congratulated the party president, Chief Minister Pawan Chamling and other winning candidates of the party. He further stated that it is a glorious moment for the people of Sikkim on getting a leader like Mr. Chamling who, he said, is the most innovative leader ever produced by Sikkim. “It is a proud moment for the people of Sikkim to be under the leadership of such a dynamic leader,” he stressed.
Mr. Basnett further stated that he would continue to work for the people of Upper Tadong and is committed to work for the people. He also thanked supporters and the public for bringing a “peace loving party” to power for the fifth time, the release adds.

PNGS celebrates 90th Founder’s Day

GANGTOK, 21 May: Paljor Namgyal Girls School celebrated its 90th Founder’s Day today on the theme of “Service”.
Founded in 1924 by Mary H Hepburne Scott with just two pupils the school has become a pioneer in education in Sikkim.
The central focus of the day was to thank, pay homage and express gratitude to all the teachers who have served PNGS and to salute them for their dedicated service, informs a press release.
On the occasion, the PNG family felicitated 9 teachers posthumously along with 12 other dedicated teachers who retired before 1999. The process of recalling, remembering and honouring the dedication and service of the retired teachers will be part of a yearlong celebration, the release mentions.
The Principal, Jem Pandi Targain, an ex-Pngite, mentioned in her address that the celebration of the school’s 90th year will take place throughout the year on the theme of “Service”. As a former student she reminisced on the past and shared some of her memories of the school.
The traditional ceremony started with the school assembly, prayer and felicitation followed by the melodious Hostel Choir. The chief guest, Rev. R. Molommu [Moderator, EPCS] said that the school should continue the legacy of the PNGS family – as a pioneer of girls education in Sikkim.
The programme ended with the school song followed by the benediction from Rev. P.S. Tingbo. The ceremony was conducted by teachers Shyam Pradhan and Alka Chettri.

Modi congratulates Chamling

GANGTOK, 21 May [IPR]: Narendra Modi, the Prime Minister designate, congratulated Pawan Chamling, the fifth term Chief Minister of Sikkim today. Mr Modi tweeted, “Congratulations and best wishes to Pawan Chamling on being sworn in as Sikkim CM. We will work together for Sikkim’s progress”.

Hailing Mr. Chamling’s fifth consecutive win, online news portals like Yahoo India News have reported on Mr. Modi’s congratulatory note to him. Mr. Chamling is set to become the longest serving Chief Minister in India, breaking former West Bengal Chief Minister Jyoti Basu’s record of 23 years, writes the online news portal. 

Kitam Development Committee congratulates SDF

GANGTOK, 21 May: Kitam Development Committee (KDC) has congratulated the Sikkim Democratic Front party on coming to power for the fifth consecutive time.
A press release informs that KDC held a meeting on Tuesday where it also extended its congratulations to area MLA, Tulshi Devi Rai who won the 2014 assembly election from Melli constituency. The Committee has further thanked SDF president and Chief Minister Pawan Chamling for offering a cabinet portfolio to Tulshi Devi Rai.

Ms Rai is a dynamic, dedicated and motivated political activist of the constituency, the release mentions and adds that the people of the area expect a “developmental flood” in this term. 

It’s International Biodiversity Day today

GANGTOK, 21 May: On the occasion of International Biodiversity Day, Green Circle, an environment group, and Sikkim Ornithological Society have extended good wishes to the Sikkim Biodiversity Board which is entrusted to carry the mandate of sustainably conserving all varieties of life in this little “Island-in-the-Sky” we call Sikkim. 

Road accident near Saramsa

GANGTOK, 21 May: A taxi [Bolero] plying from Amba to Gangtok met with an accident on Tuesday morning near Saramsa. The IRBn personnel who were on morning P.T. responded and evacuated all the passengers to STNM hospital. All the passengers are stable. It is reported that the cause of the accident was due to over-speeding. The driver of the said vehicle was medically examined, arrested, booked for rash driving and later released on bail.

College student assaulted

GANGTOK, 21 May: Sadar Police have registered a case against one person for assaulting a college student on Tuesday. The accused, a resident of Daragaon, was arrested by police for assaulting a student of Sikkim Government College, Tadong on 20 May.  He was later released on surety bail. The case is under investigation.

Tourist dies in sleep

GANGTOK, 21 May: A family holiday turned tragic after a 47-year-old woman died in her sleep at a Gangtok hotel on Tuesday. The deceased along with her husband and son had come for a vacation to Sikkim on 19 May.
On Tuesday morning, when the husband tried to wake his wife up he realized that she was no more. She was brought dead to STNM Hospital by her husband at around 7.30 a.m. The dead body of the deceased was handed over to the family after autopsy. The case is under investigation.

Chamling convenes first meeting of HoDs as CM

GANGTOK, 21 May [IPR]: After being sworn in as the Chief Minister of Sikkim for the fifth consecutive term Pawan Chamling convened the first meeting of all Heads of Departments here at Chintan Bhawan today. The swearing-in ceremony of the Chief Minister and his Council of Ministers to the 9th State Legislative Assembly was held earlier this morning at Raj Bhawan, Gangtok.
In his address to the Heads of Departments, the Chief Minister stated that the Government has received the clear mandate of the people and has come back to power. The Government and bureaucracy should use this mandate positively to serve the people of the State, he added.
He called on the HODs to respect this mandate while implementing the policies and programmes of the Government.
The Chief Minister further made it loud and clear that implementation of all schemes and programs of the Government should be expedited and urged the HODs to take effective decisions and avoid delay in movement of files.
Mr Chamling also expressed his gratitude towards the Chief Election Officer and all officers and staff of Election Department, District Collectors, SPs, and all officers involved in the election process for the efficient conduct of elections.
“My Government will use the mandate in favour of the people and will continue working in the interest of the people of Sikkim,” he stated.
Earlier the opening remarks were made by Chief Secretary, R Ongmu, while the meeting concluded with the vote of thanks delivered by Principal Secretary Home, MG Kiran.
Meanwhile, on his Facebook page the CM stated that all schemes must be implemented within one week after policy formulation and files should receive clearance within 24 hours. He further said, “It was on 12th December 1994 that I had addressed bureaucrats for the first time as the Head of the State Government. And as I begin my fifth term today I pledge to serve the people and continue to fulfill their aspirations”.

Black Cats on Cycling cum Trekking Expedition to spread conservation message

GANGTOK, 21 May: The Black Cat Division organised a Cycling cum Trekking Expedition to Kanchenjunga Base to spread the message of ecological conservation. It was flagged off from Tashi View Point today by Maj Gen YVK Mohan, SM, General Officer Commanding, Black Cat Division.
A press release informs that the expedition will cover a total distance of more than 400 km on cycle and trek along Ravangla, Yuksom, Gyalshing and Namchi. The troops will interact with the villagers, tourists and taxi operators and distribute leaflets to spread awareness about ecological preservation.
The team will also deliver informative lectures at places, for which District Welfare Officers have also extended their assistance. During the expedition, the team will interact with Kanchenjunga Conservation Committee and bring back non bio-degradable waste from the Kanchenjunga Base Camp for proper disposal, the release mentions.
The expedition is part of the army’s ecological campaign which commenced in January this year.

APS-Gangtok scores 100% in CBSE

GANGTOK, 21 May: Army Public School, Gangtok has recorded 100% pass percentage yet again with all 33 of its students who appeared clearing the exam.
A press release informs that the toppers of the school who scored 10 CGPA [Cumulative Grade Point Average] are Gaurav Singh, Ayush Dalara and Ashutosh Pradhan. Out of 33 students who appeared, 11 students scored above 9 CGPA, 8 scored above 8 CGPA and the rest scored above 6 CGPA.
The Patron and the Chairman congratulated the children and wished them the best for their future, the release adds.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

SDF legislators elect Chamling as Leader of the House COUNCIL OF MINISTERS TO BE SWORN IN TODAY

GANGTOK, 20 May: In his capacity as president, Sikkim Democratic Front, Pawan Chamling submitted the resolution passed by the newly elected Legislators of the party for the Ninth Sikkim Legislative Assembly to the Governor, Shriniwas Patil, at Raj Bhavan today.
The resolution has unanimously elected Mr. Chamling as the Leader of the House and he has accordingly put forward his claim to form the next Government, informs a press release from Raj Bhawan.
Exercising the powers vested in him under Article 164 of the Constitution of India, the Governor requested Mr. Chamling to speedily constitute the Council of Ministers to aid and advise the Governor in exercise of his functions in consonance with the provisions of the Constitution.
The swearing-in ceremony of the new Council of Ministers is scheduled to be held at 10.15 a.m. on Wednesday, 21 May in Ashirvad Hall, Raj Bhavan.
Earlier in the day, the Governor on recommendation of the Council of Ministers dissolved the 8th Sikkim Legislative Assembly under provisions of Article 174(2)(b) of the Constitution of India, the release mentions. 

Career Fair treats students to array of degree options


GANGTOK, 20 May: SAPE events and media private limited organized a one-day educational fair – the 11th Sikkim Career Fair 2014 today at Chintan Bhawan.
Over 2,000 students visited the fair which featured stalls of over 50 Indian institutions. The event sought to provide aspirants a gateway to the entire gamut of academic and professional courses available in India in various conventional and non-conventional streams.

The event was organized by SAPE in association with The Telegraph, HRD Department, had Himalaya Darpan, Radio Misty and www.collegeofindia.org as media partners.

Tourist Traffic Jam at Upper Tintek

MANGAN, 20 May: This is one traffic jam that no one should have complaints about given that this is proof of the prosperity being ferried to North Sikkim by way of tourism. This spot at Upper Tintek Falls in East Sikkim witnesses a regular traffic jam due to the tourist vehicles which stop here en route to North Sikkim. This has become a popular sightseeing spot for the tourists. This however disrupts regular traffic at this spot and jams at times take up to an hour to ease due to erratic and inconsiderate parking. The non-tourist traffic suffers and commuters have been appealing to drivers to work out a better parking arrangement around this area.

5 Neil Tara Academy students selected for national Taekwondo c’ship

GANGTOK, 20 May: Five students from Neil Tara Academy Taekwondo Club situated at Church Road, Gangtok have been selected to represent Sikkim in 7th National Sub-Junior Poomsae and 32nd National Sub-Junior Taekwondo Championship which is going to be held at Kurukshetra University in Kurukshetra, Haryana from 05 to 08 June, informs a press release issued by the office of the Neil Tara Academy today.


The five students Himalaya Adhikari, Dorjee Bhutia, Kushal Ghimerey, Ashish Dahal and Manoj Adhikari were selected during the recent selection held in Namchi Gymnasium hall by the Sikkim Amateur Taekwondo Association [SATA] on 18 May, the release adds.

SKM Chujachen candidate thanks public

GANGTOK, 20 May: Sikkim Krantikari Morcha candidate for Chujachen, KB Gurung, who is also the East district vice-president of the party, along with his supporters met and thanked the people of the area on Monday.

An SKM press release informs that Mr Gurung toured Aritar, Khamdong, Poshakey, Mulukey, Pam Basti, Sungdung and other villages to thank the people. He thanked all his voters and the people of Chujachen and assured to continuously serve the people despite of his loss in the election. Mr. Gurung, it may be recalled, lost to SDF’s Bikram Pradhan.

State BJP congratulates Chamling and Golay

GANGTOK, 20 May: Bharatiya Janta Party, Sikkim has congratulated Sikkim Democratic Front president, Pawan Chamling on his party’s victory in the recently concluded Assembly and Lok Sabha elections.
On behalf of BJP-Sikkim and all its members, the party president, Palden Wangchuk Khangsarpa has congratulated the SDF president and expressed hope that with his re-election to the state legislature, Mr Chamling would live up to the hopes and aspirations of the people of Sikkim, by providing a stable and progressive government.

The BJP president has also congratulated PS Tamang and the nine other members of the Sikkim Krantikari Morcha for the party’s debut in the Sikkim Legislative Assembly. With a presence of 10 MLAs in the Sikkim Legislative Assembly he is hopeful that the SKM party can prove to be a worthy opposition in the house for the benefit of the people of Sikkim and also in the tradition of a truly democratic process.

ASDLF mourns demise of senior leader

GANGTOK, 20 May: All Sikkim Democratic Labour Front [ASDLF] has conveyed deep condolences on the sudden demise of its senior leader Chabbi Lall Sharma on Monday in Siliguri. It is informed that he was a patient of diabetes and died in a hotel in Siliguri on Monday.
An ASDLF press release informs that he was an active leader of the central committee of the front and always worked in the interest of workers. His sudden demise is a big loss to the front, it is stated.

ASDLF convened a condolence meeting here today and observed 2 minutes silence for the departed soul. It is informed that the meeting also expressed its condolences to the bereaved family. 

Inter-House essay writing cum essay presentation competition

School Dairy:-
Joshna Shiwakoti, class X
MIDDLE GYALSHING SECONDARY SCHOOL: An inter-house on the spot essay writing cum essay presentation competition was conducted at Middle Gyalshing Secondary school on 17 May, 2014. The essays were to be written in the Nepali language with four participants from each house, two from the juniors and two from the seniors.
The two teams were given separate topics and allotted one hour for writing their essays after which each participant presented their essays in front of the school.
There were four judges who judged the participants on fluency, content, presentation, subject matter and vocabulary. All the students participated enthusiastically. Rinchen Bhutia was adjudged the best speaker in the junior category and Joshna Shiwakoti in the senior category.

Green House won the overall competition followed by yellow, red and blue.

Sporadic incidents of post poll violence reported from West and South districts

GANGTOK, 20 May: A string of political violence has been occurring in the districts ever since the announcement of the election results on 16 May. Supporters of both parties, the SDF as well as the SKM, have been resorting to mild aggression post results such as pelting of stones and vandalism and threats.
On 19 May, the Kaluk police arrested a few SKM supporters on charges of assault and vandalism in the house of an SDF supporter Subhas Rai at Zeel, West Sikkim. The SKM supporters allegedly barged into the house of the complainant at around 11:15 pm on 18 May reportedly armed with lathis, stones and assaulted the gathered SDF supporters and vandalized the house.
The accused have been booked for rioting and intimidation.
Meanwhile, the Jorethang police arrested two persons today on charges of attacking the complainant, Deepak Bhandari, on 17 May; the accused had broken the window pane of his house and then set the house on fire.
Incidents of post poll violence were earlier reported from Melli, Temi and Jorethang. In Jorethang, an FIR was registered against Milan Tamang for pelting stones on a victory rally being led by Dil Kumar; Milan and 6 others were arrested.
More incidents of violence were reported from Jorethang. Unknown SDF supporters have been booked for pelting stones, vandalizing and attempting to burn the house of DB Rai of Samseybung, Jorethang; his house also served as the local SKM party office.
Another group of alleged SDF supporters have been charged with stoning the house of Krishna Maya Pradhan, also at Jorethang. 2 persons were arrested.

In Melli two cases were registered against Daud Tamang and other SDF supporters for rioting on 17 May. In one complaint, the house of Harka Maya Chettri of Turuk Panchgerang basti was vandalized and in another incident of violence, the house of Padam Bahadur Chettri of the same village was also vandalized. There have been no arrests in this connection thus far.

HIGH COURT DIRECTS TRANSPORT MINISTRY AND BRO TO FILE FRESH REPORT ON IMPROVEMENT OF NH 31 A

Drainage and reinforcement requirements reiterated
GANGTOK, 20 May: Sikkim High Court has directed the Ministry of Surface Transport and Border Road Organisation to take up the concerns raised by the Amicus Curiae in connection with the improvement of 31-A National Highway, JN Road.
Amicus Curiae, Advocate Tashi Rapden Barfungpa, filed a report with the High Court of Sikkim seeking court directions for improvement of drainage systems from Zero Point to MP Golai for safety reasons.
The report submitted to the court said that the drainage system needs immediate attention adding that the manner in which it is at present poses a serious threat to the lives of people driving vehicles as well a large number of people who walk down the National Highway on a regular basis.
“The condition of the drain is more vulnerable at stretches opposite Forest Department at Deorali, Gangtok, with exposed iron rods on the road side and at the Taxi Stand area at Amdo Golai and Daragaon, Tadong area, with unbalanced and huge uncovered drains,” the report says.
In regards to the North Sikkim Highway, the report assisting the Court for rendering justice to the people at large said that the widening of road towards North Sikkim without building protective walls has led to blockage of the National Highway due to landslides at several areas every now and then.
Protective walls have to be immediately and simultaneously built along the stretch where widening work has been done or is being done. The absence of protective walls has put the lives and properties of the residents living above the Highway at grave risk. It also poses a serious threat to residents and people travelling to North Sikkim who have no choice but to use the same on a regular basis to commute to Gangtok, the report states.
The division bench has directed the respondents - Ministry of Surface Transport and BRO under which Project Swastik is maintaining the roads - to examine and consider the said report and file a fresh report within six weeks.

Ghoom association alleges forceful takeover of monastery in Pedong

GANGTOK, 20 May: The Ghum Dun Gon Samten Choeling Association of Ghoom, Darjeeling, has alleged that monks of Tharpacholing Monastery, aided by members of some other groups from Kalimpong, have “broken into and forcefully taken over” the Gandencholing Monastery at Pedong, Kalimpong, on 18 May.
In a press release issued today, the central committee of the Ghoom-based association informs that the monastery belongs to “and is loyal to” the Domo Geshe Rinpoche Lobsang Nga-Kyi Wangchuk, who is a minor and presently studying in Shar Gaden Monastery in South India. The monastery had Passang Dorjee as caretaker who had been looking after the monastery and its attached fields for the past 42 years. He passed away on 11 May, the release adds.
The GDGDC Association details that attempts have been made in the past as well to take over the monastery, allegedly by the same group which has now “taken” it, as a result of which a case is underway in the District Courts there.

The monastery, it may be mentioned here, is the only one in Kalimpong which still propitiates Dorje Shugden and is informed to house an ancient statue of the deity and other sacred images which were installed there by the 1st Domo Geshe Rinpoche. Tharpacholing Monastery of Kalimpong was also established by Domo Geshe Rinpoche Ngawang Kalsang and had given up the worship of Dorje Shugden a few years ago.

Entries open for Inter-Departmental Football tourney

GANGTOK, 20 May: Forms for the upcoming 3rd edition of the Inter Departmental Football Tournament 2014 at Paljor Stadium are now available at Planet Sports here at Paljor Stadium complex. Interested departments can collect the forms from Planet Sports and can contact the Boys’ Club general secretary Nima Thendup for further enquiries. 

CELEBRATING INTERNATIONAL BIODIVERSITY DAY, 22 MAY 2014:

Sikkim: An Island in the Sky
SBS BHADAURIA, Special PCCF cum Member Secretary, Sikkim Biodiversity Board.
Uniquely positioned in the highest mountains in the world, the great Himalayas, Sikkim is a veritable horse-shoe shaped “Island in the Sky”, a hotspot of biological diversity in the Eastern Himalayas and part of the Endemic Bird Area. Biological diversity or the variety of life forms found here, is by far the richest in the Indian subcontinent, separated as it is, from the rest of the world by the Singhalila and Chola Mountain Ranges on either side and bounded by the great Tibetan plateau to the north. Our rich biodiversity includes not only wild orchids, rhododendrons, conifer trees, hornbills, pheasants, sunbirds, swallowtail butterflies, snow leopards, red pandas and other creatures, but also domesticated plants like ‘Murali Makai’, Krishnabhog Rice, Siri Cattle, and Banpala Sheep, and even microbial diversity such as is found in ‘Kinema’ and other fermented foods.
The United Nations has proclaimed May 22 the International Day for Biological Diversity (IDB) to increase understanding and awareness of biodiversity issues. The theme this year of Island Biodiversity was chosen to coincide with the designation by the United Nations General Assembly of 2014 as the International Year of Small Island Developing States.
Islands and their surrounding areas constitute unique ecosystems often comprising many plant and animal species that are endemic, i.e. found nowhere else on Earth. Legacies of a unique evolutionary history, these ecosystems are irreplaceable treasures. They are also key to the livelihood, economy, well-being and cultural identity of 600 million islanders—one-tenth of the world’s population.
Sikkim being situated in a Himalayan belt comprises mostly of lakes totaling over 227. This huge number renders it with rich wetland biodiversity. A wetland is a unique ecosystem that supports many species of flora and fauna. It is also a storehouse of clean water supply, scenic beauty educational and recreational benefits to the Himalayan people and important for our very survival. The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment estimates that wetlands cover 7% of the earth’s surface and deliver 45% of the world’s natural productivity and ecosystem services. However, the very existence of these unique resources is under threat. With the aim of generating awareness amongst the younger generation and masses about the unique wetland biodiversity, Sikkim Biodiversity Board will be celebrating IBD-22 May 2014 in all four districts of Sikkim under the theme “SIKKIM - An Island in the Sky”
The celebration of IDB (2014) will be done through diverse programmes such as Quiz / Painting / Essay competitions, Exhibitions, Awareness programmes on Biodiversity, Bird & Butterfly–watching, Indigenous Agriculture Varieties, Biodiversity in and around Villages, and Field trip to Forest/Wildlife Sanctuaries / Himalayan Zoological Park at the following venues in the respective districts of the state:
North Sikkim: Hee-Gyathang Sr. Secondary School
South Sikkim: Payong Junior High School
East Sikkim: Pangthang Junior High School
West Sikkim: Khandu Secondary School
The Sikkim Biodiversity Board welcomes one and all to celebrate our unique biodiversity individually or collectively on this day, 22 May 2014. We request you to share your celebrations with us at the contact below:
- Usha Lachungpa, Additional Director (SBB) – 9434025273
- Peggyla T. Venchungpa, Asst. Conservator of Forest (SBB) – 9679743324
Email address: sbbsikkim@gmail.com

CLASS X CBSE RESULTS DECLARED

Holy Cross School records 100% pass percentage
GANGTOK, 20 May: The class X CBSE results were declared today. While results for Chennai and Trivandrum region were declared on Monday, results for other regions including Sikkim were declared today.
Holy Cross School, Tadong has recorded 100% pass percentage with all 143 of its students who appeared clearing the exams.

The toppers of the school who scored the maximum of 10 CGPA are Aman Raj, Oindrilla Ghosal, Saswati Mishra, Simran Bhagat, Priyanka Chettri and Vipashyana Sharma. CGPA stands for Cumulative Grade Point Average which is the average of Grade Points obtained in all the subjects excluding additional 6th subject as per Scheme of Studies.

2nd DIVISION S-LEAGUE QUALIFYING ROUND UPDATE

Sikkim Royals and Brotherhood FC register easy wins
GANGTOK, 20 May: Sikkim Royal Sports Academy thrashed Tadong United Football Club today in the ongoing final league of the Second Division Sikkim-League qualifying round here at Paljor Stadium. Sikkim Royal SA registered an easy win with 4 goals to nil.
Meanwhile, following the protest lodged by Denzong Boyz regarding the identity and eligibility of some of the players of Brotherhood FC on 14 May, SFA decided on a rematch which was played today. In the match, Brotherhood FC thrashed Denzong Boyz 08-01.
On 22 May, Pendam FA will take on Brotherhood FC in the first match which will be followed by the other match between Tadong United FC and JVC FA Singtam.

Two suicides

GANGTOK, 20 May: A teenager reportedly committed suicide in Melli on 19 May. According to reports a 16-year-old boy of Pachregang, YBL Colony, Melli, committed suicide by hanging. Meanwhile in Temi, a suspected case of suicide has been reported after a 43-year-old woman from Niz Ramyang was found dead in the harvesting tank of the village. She is suspected to have drowned in the tank. The deceased had gone missing earlier that day.