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Skills take centre stage
Odisha Campus
An instructor of the Air Hostess and Hospitality Academy, Bhubaneswar, grooms contestants for the upcoming Navy Queen Beauty Pageant. Picture by Sanjib Mukherjee

Natya Chetana, an internationally acclaimed touring theatre troupe, staged two of its popular plays at the Indian Institute of Mass Communication (IIMC)-Dhenkanal on December 10. The group created its first play Mountain Cries along with members of a South Korea-based theatre group, Mindulle. The story centred on a mountain called Gine, whose existence is threatened by a car factory near the yellow sea region in South Korea.

Chiring Chiring (voice of birds), the next play, was based on Mohapatra Nilamani Sahu’s popular story Bihanga Biplaba (Revolution of the Birds). It projected the power structure of a society, where democracy is practiced under the cover of autocratic rule. “It was improvised to lend a contemporary touch suitable for an adult audience,” said Subodh Patnaik, founder of Natya Chetana. “Our plays do not depend on any modern instruments. The scene changes with the entry and exit of the characters. There are no light-cuts or any operation during a play,” he said. The group has produced over 70 plays through a bicycle expedition since 1985. It has set up a theatre village in Khurda district to demonstrate a committed community life among theatre activists.

Beauty queens

Instructors of the Air Hostess and Hospitality Academy (AHHA), Bhubaneswar, groomed contestants for the upcoming Navy Queen Beauty Pageant in Chilika. The young girls were given tips on the various aspects including catwalk, diction, meditation, persona enhancement and positive thinking. The beauty pageant followed by a Navy Ball is a prestigious and popular social event graced by the civil and defense personnel. The participants are selected for the event after qualifying intense preliminary rounds. The finale will be held on December 29.

Funds for volunteers

In order to make NSS activities more vibrant at the grassroot level, the Council of Higher Secondary Education (CHSE) has allotted funds for 2,900 volunteers in 58 colleges across the state. This was decided at a recent CHSE meeting with principals and NSS officers from those colleges. Convenor of the programme, Ramesh Chandra Behera said efforts would be initiated to launch the first-ever website for NSS in the state, facilitate allocation of grant online and create a database software to compile details of the 26,500 volunteers in the state besides taking steps to undertake more new activities.

Students of Raghunath Jew School of Management Studies, Balasore, with the awards they bagged at a district conference organised by the Rotary International in Rourkela. Telegraph picture

Full of beans

The Raghunath Jew School of Management Studies (RJSMS), Balasore, bagged the maximum awards at “Sunshine… Ray of Hope”, a district conference organised by Rotary International earlier this month in Rourkela. Around 227 youngsters from 22 Rotaract Clubs of Odisha, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh took part in the event. A 19-member team of Rotaract Club of RJSMS under the leadership of BBA final-year student Satyabrata Pramanik took away 14 awards in the conference and was adjudged the most vibrant club of the Rotary district. While Madhusmita Panda won the title of Sweet Smile, Debomita Chatterjee was awarded for the candle-lighting activity. The other categories in which the college won prizes included dog-n-bone, Hindi alphabet writing, tongue twisters, balloon blast, rangoli and best dress.

Brand stand

KIIT University’s School of Management organised a national marketing conclave on December 15 on the theme “Brand management in the new age”. Corporate honchos, marketing gurus, academicians and students attended the event and discussed the challenges in brand management because of advancement and changes in media, regulations, markets and consumers. Inaugurating the conclave, founder chairman of Shining Consulting Shombit Sengupta spoke about building customer touch points through execution excellence. He focused on three areas: intangibility, self initiative and leadership. General manager (marketing), Raymond, Vishnu Govind talked about the transition of brands ranging from 1980 to 2000. He stated that there is a two-way interaction between the brands and the consumers, while underscoring the importance of striking a balance between short and long term branding goals and having the right mix between them. Other speakers concentrated on the contemporary management scenario, advertising and popularity of viral media marketing.

Speakers at the national conclave on banking and financial services held at Asian School of Business Management in Bhubaneswar. Telegraph picture

Banking challenges

A national conclave on banking and financial services was held at the Asian School of Business Management (ASBM), Bhubaneswar, on December 15. Principal accountant general of Odisha Gargi Kaul was the chief guest on the occasion. She said: “India is still way behind other countries to fully implement the financial inclusion plan and a meagre 20 per cent of the population of India has life insurance cover and 9.6 per cent in other insurance schemes, which needs to be improved.” Another guest, Praveen Gupta from the State Bank of India expressed concern that Odisha was not part of the direct cash transfer scheme. Professor S. Srinivasan of IIT-Kharagpur said a balanced monitoring and control system must be put in place to check financial fraud. The inaugural meeting was followed by technical sessions in which senior bankers and financial analysts presented their views.