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December 07, 1993 - Image 3

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1993-12-07

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TheMichigan Daily - Tuesday, December 7, 1993 - 3

*Students
protest
destruction
of mosque
By MELISSA PEERLESS
DAILY NEWS EDITOR
Gyanendra Pandey's voice rang
clear through the cold air, carrying
the words of the poem he chose to
commemorate the destruction of the
Babri mosque in India by Hindu fun-
damentalists one year ago yesterday.
About 30 people gathered on the
* Diag to mourn the first anniversary of
the incident and pledge to prevent it
from happening again.
All were visibly touched by his
words; despite the fact that they could
not understand the language of the
poem. The poem was written in Hindi,
.a language unfamiliar to most mem-
bers of Students Concerned About
South Asia.
Rackham student Radha
Rangarajan said the main purpose of
the ad hoc coalition of students from
India, Pakistan and Bangladesh is to
protest communalism, in addition to
the vandalism of the 16th century
prgayer structure.
After he read, Pandey offered a
loose translation of the verse.
"This poem is an affirmation of
secularism," he said. "It's an affirma-
tion of humanity, a promise to inter-
fere and not simply stand by and
watch."
The poem called into question a
popular Indian saying - "Hindu,
,Muslim, Sikh are all brothers" - in
light of recent events.
Sanket Amberkar, a second-year
graduate student in electrical engi-
neering, was studying in India at the
*time of last year's incident.
"Things were pretty bad then,"
Amberkar said. "We had expected
something to happen but nothing of
that magnitude."
He added that communalism has
been causing violence in India for the
past six years.
' He said that, while many Hindus
supported the destruction of the
mosque, he did not.
"It was just a bunch of fanatics,"
he said, adding that the attack was in
response to a feeling that Muslims
were receiving preferential treatment.
Anjan Ghosh, a Rackham student,
organized the protest. He called the
destruction of the mosque "a water-
shed event in Indian history.
"Politics has created animosity
between members of the community
* that has led to destruction, damage
and killing," he said.
At the pinnacle of the event, at-
tendees recited a pledge condemning
the action and expressing hope.
"We gather here to raise our hands
in firm protest against the use of our
religions to divide us and incite vio-
lence. ... On this 6th day of Decem-
ber, our hands are raised against ...
the religious discrimination of people.
'They are raised for peace, for con-
struction, for equality."

POW! BIFF! SOCKO! =

CSP embezzler
'gets probation

By RONNIE GLASSBERG
DAILY STAFF REPORTER
After embezzling approximately
$24,000 from the University last
spring, Andrea Banks was sentenced
to five years of probation Thursday.
Banks, who worked as an admin-
istrative assistant at the University
Comprehensive Studies Program
(CSP) for nine years, pleaded guilty
to two charges of false pretenses over
$100.
According to court records, Banks
authorized travel and other expenses
that never took place and then took
the budgeted funds.
"What happened is that she forged
signatures and submitted things with-
out approval," CSP Director William
Collins said. "Andrea was able to take
advantage of the accounting system,"
he added.
The University Department of
Public Safety (DPS) discovered the
stolen money during a routine audit
and traced it to Banks.
Banks forged the signatures on

the authorization forms. The
University's accounting office re-
viewed the forms and returned them
to Banks at CSP. Banks was respon-
sible for the returned forms as part of
her duties as administrative assistant.
CSP has made changes to prevent
something such as this from happen-
ing in the future. "We have changed
the reporting procedures so the records
from the accounting office go directly
to me instead of the administrative
assistant," Collins said.
DPS Cpt. James Smiley said the
University has also made changes in
its auditing system.
"I think they've taken measures to
audit more regularly," he said.
Besides the five years of proba-
tion, Banks will have to make full
restitution of the total amount she
embezzled.
Banks' attorney, William
McNally, said she had never been in
trouble with the law prior to this,
adding, "I think she is a person able of
being rehabilitated."

ELIZABETH LIPPMAN/Daily

Ten-year-old Ian MacDonald glances over a new selection of comic books yesterday.

v - ! 1 '

' students work with academ

- - -

i

By JESSICA CHAFFIN
FOR THE DAILY
The thought of attending classes
on Saturday evokes fear in the mind
of any student. However, University
students and high-school and middle-
school students skip sleeping in each
week at the Academy for African
American Students.
Approximately 40 African Ameri-
can University students donate their
time and energy to the program each
Saturday. These students work as
classroom tutors and in one-on-one
tutorial situations.

Engineering senior Arvon
Mitcham has been involved with the
program for two years.
"I am very proud of the program,"
Mitcham said. "To see kids coming
out on a Saturday when they could be
sitting at home watching cartoons or
relaxing is very motivating."
LSA sophomore Crystal Lander
tutors for the program as well. "I'm
really glad I got a chance to help
students who want to help them-
selves," she said "A lot of U-M stu-
dents came out and gave their time. It
just goes to show you that students do

have their hearts and their minds in
the right places."
Four years ago, the Ann Arbor
Public Schools announced an ongo-
ing achievement gap on standardized
tests between white students and stu-
dents of color. The district pledged to
close this schism by the year 2000.
This prompted Kathy Harris and
William Ratcliff, a counselor at the
Tappan Middle School in Ann Arbor,
to initiate the academy.
"We felt that some of these stu-
dents could do better if given the right
encouragement," Ratcliff said. "We

Ly to improve
needed to create a community of learn- gardless c
ers, and hopefully that would carry academic
over to the academic community." "One
The academy is primarily com- that stude
prised of students from Ann Arbor dents are
schools, though students from sur- They are
rounding areas such as Ypsilanti and levels, an
Belleville are enrolled as well. demic sk
The academy provides instruction gether,"I
in mathematics for high-school stu- Crysta
dents, and offers an integrated cur- been invo
riculum of mathematics, science and its incept
language arts for middle schoolers. the U-M
Ratcliff stressed the need for acad- tional rol
emy students to feel confident re- done this

minds

of differences, economic and
C.
thing that we try to stress is
ents are the same. These stu-
all trying to help each other.
from all different economic
d have a wide range of aca-
ills, but they all work to-
Ratcliff said.
al Pickett, a parent who has
ilved with the academy since
ion, said, "Its great to have
students there as genera-
e models, and to say 'I've
, you can do this."'

City council votes to delay
! !
airport improvement grant
By JAMES NASH agreement with the state got nowhere at last
DAILY STAFF REPORTER night's meeting.
The state is offering Ann Arbor $100,000 It was the third consecutive council meeting
to draft plans on repairing the city's deteriorat- at which the city government stalled accepting
ing airport, but the city council has voted three the grant. Airport tenants have expressed fears
times not to accept the grant. that the delays signal a waning commitment by
One councilmember calls it foot-dragging. city leaders to maintaining the municipal air-
Others say the caution is justified since the port on State Street on the city's south side.
grant comes with strings attached. Councilmember Peter Fink (R-2nd Ward)
Hung up over a clause councilmembers criticized the reluctance of his colleagues as
deemed unclear, the council voted last night to "more of the same old thing.
table a resolution to accept the grant from the "This item should have been cleared up
Michigan Department of Transportation three weeks ago," he said about the land dis-
(MDOT). To delay was the only agreement posal clause.
councilmembers reached after an hour-long But Councilmember Thais Peterson (D-5th
discussion. The vote was 7-4. Ward) said it is necessary for the city to "move
At issue was a clause requiring the city to ahead very carefully." Councilmember Larry
sell off airport property after the land is used Hunter (D-1st Ward) agreed, saying conversa-
for a noise-compatibility study. The clause tions with MDOT officials, the city attorney
further stipulates that the city eventually sell and Federal Aviation Administration represen-
land purchased under the grant for airport tatives would put the questions to rest.
development. Also last night, the council voted to go
The clause is ambiguous, councilmembers ahead with a $70,560 grant request for accessi-
said. A resolution to delete the clause from the bility upgrades to Martha Cook residence hall.

FENDER BENDER

A local towing company removes a car that has been
streets yesterday afternoon.

in an accident from Fourth and Liberty

House leaders consider taxes to raise school funds

Letterbombs plague Vienna

LANSING (AP) - House mem-
bers struggling to resolve partisan
differences over schools of choice
will add yet another ingredient this
* yeek to the educational improvement
package: taxes.
Most of the school finance bills
from the House Taxation Committee
are expected to make it to the House
floor by tomorrow.
Democratic leaders say they are
determined to wrap up school quality
legislation and push through educa-
tional funding bills by Friday. But
legislators will have to work over-
time to do it.
"I foresee late nights," said House

Democratic Leader Curtis Hertel.
School funding proposals, origi-
nally crafted by a House bipartisan
group, would offer voters a choice
between two tax plans that include an
increase in income tax and a partial
rollback of the property tax cut.
The income tax would go to 6
percent, up from its current 4.6 per-
cent. But it would be capped at 5.3
percent if voters approved a ballot
proposal to raise the sales tax from 4
percent to 6 percent.
The school finance plan would
also levy 16 mills on homes and 20
mills on other property. The property
tax on homes would be cut to 9 mills

if the sales tax increase was approved.
The bills would restore nearly all
of the $7 billion lost when the Legis-
lature voted last July to end the use of
property taxes to run schools.
But before tax issues come up for
debate, the House must resolve its
differences over schools of choice.
Gov. John Engler's plan would allow
schools to take students from outside
district boundaries. But districts
wouldn't have to take outside stu-
dents.
Meanwhile, a fight is gearing up
over tax increases to fund schools.
The tax plan would include pro-
posals to impose a 16 percent tax on

non-cigarette tobacco sales and a real
estate transfer tax of $10 for every
$1,000 of valuation.
Nearly $500 million for schools
would also be generated by increas-
ing the Single Business Tax by .6
percent, from 2.35 to 2.95 percent. If
the sales tax increase was adopted by
voters, the SBT increase wouldn't
take effect.

VIENNA, Austria (AP) - A mys-
terious wave of letter bombs is worry-
ing leaders in the wealthy city, strug-
gling to absorb an influx of immi-
grants from unstable eastern Europe.
The tenth such device since late
last week injured a young secretary
yesterday. Three more letter bombs
were detected before being defused.
Police have made no arrests in the

bombings, which began Friday. They
said the attacks were the work of one
or more right-wing radicals, appar-
ently angered by the thousands of
refugees entering Austria recently.
The most prominent victim has
been the Vienna mayor, Helmut Zilk.
The Social Democrat has champi-
oned minority rights and is a friend of
Vienna's small Jewish community.

S To: Th e Display advertising staff{
From: Jen, Kristen, & Renee
THANK o
lbTanks for all of your bard work this terin at

Student groups
[ Adult Daughters of Alcoholics
and other Trauma, meeting,
Michigan Union, Room 3200,
7:30 p.m.
U Arab-American Students As-
sociation, Arabic conversation
hour, Arabic House, Oxford, 7
n m.

Association, board meeting,
Michigan Union, Room 4202,
9 p.m.
11 Queer Action, meeting, Michi-
gan Union, Room 3116, 8 p.m.
U Saint Mary Student Parish,
Interfaith Marriage Class, 7
p.m.; Catholic Update, 7 p.m.;
331 Thnmnsnn St

U Holiday Card Sale, sponsored
by American Cancer Society,
Angell Hall Fishbowl, 10 a.m.-
3 p.m.
U Vigil for Recent Rape Survi-
vors, sponsored by the Third
Wave and Women' s Issues
Coalition, steps of Michigan
Uninn Rn m

I

sI

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