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|July 6, 1998||
Army officials sweat it out in Himachal, courtesy old British law!
The army and media personnel who met at Palampur in Himachal Pradesh for an interactive session found themselves sweating it out -- under an old rule, from the times of the British, which forbade the use of fans in this army station.
Ecological changes over the years have caused summertime temperatures soar in this once-salubrious town, nestling in the Himalayan foothills. With the mercury showing more than 30 degree Celsius and high humidity, it was very uncomfortable to sit through without fans.
The seminar, organised by the 39 Mountain Division at its Holta camp, saw General Sharma speaking to the army personnel. He asked them to shed their media shyness and become more open in their interaction with the media.
Ninetyeight per cent of the army activites could be open to media scrutiny, he said.
Instead of being shackled by rigid rules, the army officers should try and build a rapport with media personnel so that they can put their view-point across strongly, he added.
The need to amend the Official Secrets Act and some of the army rules -- including the 'no fan' act -- was also discussed at the seminar.
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