Good News

January 1, 2010 Off By Fried Eye News Service

4 Manipuri Plays to be Staged in National Theatre Fest

New Delhi: Four Manipuri plays will be staged in the 12th Bharat Rang Mahotsav to be held from January 6 to 22 in the National Capital. The festival organized by the National School of Drama will have the plays When We Dead Awaken by Ratan Thiyam, Rajarshi Bhagyachandra by M C Thoiba, Sanabam Thaninleima`s Ashang Eina Aton and Toijam Shila Devi`s Black Orchid. These along with other select plays from the country will share the stage with entries from other countries in the 17-day long festival— the biggest of its kind in this part of the world.

When We Dead Awaken by the Chorus Repertory Theatre is a 70-minute adaptation of Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen’s eponymous last play. It is a story of creativity, life and relationships in artistic and metaphysical realms.

Rajarshi Bhagyachandra is based on the life of a saint king of 18th century Manipur. This 75-minute play by Banian Repertory brings to the fore issues like war and peace, tradition, change and power politics. Playwright MC Arun presents Manipur’s rich political and cultural history through this contemporary play.

The 120-minute long Ashang Eina Aton is scripted by Ashing Zimik in the Tangkhul dialect. Staged by the artistes of Khenjonglang, this play is based on the Tangkhul folklore of Shimreisang Maitonphi.

Black Orchid is an 85- minute play by Budha Chingtham and presented by Prospective Repertory Theatre. It looks at the lives and experiences of people in a terror-riddled village and attempts to explore how scarred memories stand as testimony to gory histories. It especially focuses on women and children caught up in armed conflicts.

On the Anvil: New Law to Guarantee Govt Services

New Delhi: There is good news for the people in rest of India too. The Prime Minister’s Office has decided to implement ‘service-level agreements’(SLA), which will mandate penalties to be deducted from salaries of dealing officials if there are delays in providing citizen services like issuing ration cards and driving licences.
According to sources, Delhi will be the first to implement it in April, 2010. The Union Territories will follow suit. It is expected that other states would also take an initiative to implement the law. The people of the Northeast too hope that their state governments would go for it as soon as the beginning is made in Delhi.

At a November meeting with the Delhi government in the PMO, it was decided to initially cover nine services. These include:

• Issuing of ration cards
• Issuing and renewal of driving licences
• Registration of voters
• Issuing of voter identity cards
• Registration of births
• Registration of deaths
• Registration under Department of Value Added Tax
• Issuing of SC certificate
• Issuing of OBC certificates

The government will issue a notification to make the SLAs statutory, and just as commercial establishments are bound by their public claims, officials say the aim here is to bind government departments to time commitments for the service they seek to provide.

As per the new law, the clock starts ticking the moment the department concerned accepts the application form for any of the above services. A dealing official will be identified and the applicant will be informed at the point of submission of forms about who will be handling the case.

In fact, the agreement makes it clear that the onus to help an applicant complete and submit the form also falls on the officials of the department concerned. Once accepted, it will be assumed that all formalities have been completed and a time limit will be set for each applicant’s case. If any shortcomings are detected in the form after it has been accepted, then the SLAs hold the official who accepted the form accountable and not the applicant.

Erring officials will be penalized and their pay deducted. Although no slab has been identified, it is believed that it will start from a basic cut of Rs 200 and upwards through treasury receipts. The entire process will be monitored on the Internet through a centralized web.

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