|Wednesday, January 12, 2000,
Deceptive signboards to
ZIRAKPUR, Jan 11 Colonisers and property dealers operating in this town continue to mislead intending buyers of plots with boards announcing formal approval of colony awaited or to be approved by PUDA, although the Subdivisional Magistrate has instructed them to remove such deceptive signs.
These colonisers and property dealers who do not possess any licences from either the Punjab Urban Development Authority (PUDA) or Nagar Panchayat for establishing the colonies, are attracting investors with assurances of facilities like, sewerage, water, electricity, parks, wide roads and other civic amenities in their colonies. Plots in this unauthorised colonies are fetching a price of Rs 1,500 to Rs 2,000 per square yard.
The colonisers have started filling up the Ganda Nullah near Himmatgarh village at different places. They have, in the process, considerably narrowed the bed of the nullah. Acres of agriculture land have been converted into plots, leaving hardly 10 to 12 feet wide space for roads. There is no sewerage system in these colonies as such.
The Himmatgarh panchayat had objected on the filling up of the nullah by a coloniser. On its complaint, Mr Sher Singh Sidhu, SDM, had visited the spot and directed the Executive Officer of Zirakpur Nagar panchayat to take action against the colonisers. He had also directed the colonisers to remove the misleading boards.
Residents of the villages allege that earth and other solid waste continue to be dumped in the nullah and its width, which at one time was 50 feet, had now been reduced to 15 feet. During the rains, the nullah would overflow and threaten lives, crops and property, said Mr Jagdev Singh, sarpanch of Himmatgarh village.
Mr Sidhu said that a show-cause notice had been served on a coloniser, regarding filling up the nullah to channelise it. He said cases of cheating would be registered against the colonisers if they did not remove the misleading signboards.
The Administrator of Zirakpur Nagar Panchayat, Mr Surjit Singh also termed the inscription on the boards misleading. Refusing to comment on PUDAs approval to the colonisers, he stated: Probably the colonisers have approached PUDA directly.
He added that the
colonisers had been asked to plan their colonies
according to town planning scheme of the Municipal Act.
The Nagar Panchayat will not approve any
colony unless the colonisers adopt the
scheme, said Mr Surjit Singh.
Jacobs visit boon for
CHANDIGARH, Jan 11 The first visit of the UT Administrator, Lt Gen J. F. R. Jacob, to the Sector 26 police lines proved to be a boon for the force with the Administrator sanctioning a community centre which will benefit over 1, 000 families.
The Administrator made this announcement after witnessing a proficiency display by Chandigarh Police commandos. The show had been organised to show their preparedness to meet any eventuality.
In his brief address to the jawans, he said the centre would meet the long-standing demands of the personnel and would have the facility of a creche and an indoor gymnasium. Special classes in computers, sewing, tailoring, cutting and cookery would be started to benefit the wards of police personnel.
When the problem of woollen pullovers for the home guard jawans was pointed out to him, he announced a grant of Rs 50, 000 for their purchase on the spot.
General Jacob inspected a guard of honour and took the salute at an impressive marchpast. The battalions of the police, traffic, women and commando wings and the band were a part of the marchpast.
Later, the commandos displayed their proficiency in unarmed combat. The jawans thrilled the crowds with tent-pegging and a motorcycle show. The personnel, both men and women, presented bhangra and giddha performances.
While interacting with jawans at the samparak sabha, the Administrator listened to the grievances aired by the personnel. He also desired that the commandos should be trained on the pattern of the National Security Guards (NSG). He said the women should do regular firing practice.
Congratulating the jawans for the excellent show, the General desired that Chandigarh Police should set an example for excellence for the rest of the country and sought their cooperation.
Thanking the chief guest, Mr S.K. Singh, IGP, said the Administrator was taking keen interest in the functioning of the force and had always offered constructive suggestions. He was also keen to improve the wireless network and computerisation of all police stations.
A flurry of activity was
noticed all of a sudden at the Additional Deluxe
building, Sector 9, at 4.55 p.m. today. At a time when
most government employees of the building were already on
their way to home after work, many employees were seen
rushing back to their place of work. Some were even seen
clearing their tables and making their work places
presentable. The reason? The Governor of Punjab and
Administrator, UT, Lieut-Gen JFR Jacob (retd), was
visiting the building.
First rainfall of the season
CHANDIGARH, Jan 11 The city and its surrounding areas received the first rainfall of this millennium and also the ongoing winter season in the early hours today, thus breaking a dry spell lasting exactly a hundred days.
Despite the 0.8 millimetres of rain recorded today, the temperature during morning and evening hours rose and was recorded at more than the normal average for this time of the year.
Todays rain also broke the continuous dry spell persisting in the area since October l, the last time when it rained. The light drizzle started around 5 in the morning. The roads became wet and slippery. However, the minimum temperature rose sharply and was recorded at 10.4°C, 3° above the normal average for this time of the year. This was almost one degree more than that recorded yesterday.
The maximum temperature also continued to rise and was recorded at 21.6°C, 2° above the normal average. In the past five days the day time temperature has gone up from 13°C recorded on January 7.
The local meteorological office said that the rain had been caused due to western disturbances over Jammu and Kashmir aided by an upper air cyclonic circulation over north western Rajasthan , adjoining Punjab. Explaining the rise in minimum temperature despite the rain, the Director of the local met office, Mr S.C. Bhan, said that a cloud cover prevents the temperature from dropping beyond a certain limit, thus making residents feel warm. More rain has been predicted for tomorrow. If it rains continuously the night temperatures will drop. Otherwise the mercury will rise, Mr Bhan added.
Meanwhile, the dry spell that ended today has already created a record of sorts. For the first time in the records of the local Meteorological Department there has been no winter rain during the months of November and December.
The local observatory
was set up in 1982 and since then no year has gone by
when it did not rain. The closest to the present ongoing
dry spell was 15 years ago in 1984 when the city received
only 0.1 ml of rain. Even last year the rain during
November and December was not much as only 7.3ml was
recorded. Quite interestingly, on the other hand, in 1997
these two months received the maximum rain when a total
of 156 ml was recorded. And in the year 1996 only 0.8 ml
of rain was recorded.
Lohri items flood markets
SAS NAGAR, Jan 11 A wide variety of the Lohri-related items, including delicacies, are available in the markets of Chandigarh and SAS Nagar with a variation in the prices as compared to last year. A variety of packed Lohri delicacies are also on sale.
Interestingly, the prices of the lohri-related items were marginally less in the markets of SAS Nagar. An important part of the festivity, reori, made of sugar and jaggery was being sold in attractive shapes and sizes with prices varying from Rs 40 to Rs 50 a kg. A stall owner in Chandigarh's Sector 26 market was selling the sugar reori at Rs 40 a kg. A better quality of the item was available at Rs 50 a kg. Three varieties of reori made of jaggery was being sold at Rs 30, Rs 35 and Rs 40 a kg, depending upon the quality of the til and the jaggery used.
Enquires from the people dealing in or manufacturing Lohri-related items revealed that as the wholesale prices of til had decreased from Rs 45 a kg last year to Rs 35 this year, the margin of profit has gone up. Similarly, the wholesale prices of edible oil had decreased from Rs 50 a litre last year to Rs 32 this year.
An attraction was til patti (made of sugar and til) in the shape of a heart. A 200-gm piece of the til patti was being sold at Rs 15. Last year its prices were around Rs 13 a piece. A 400-gm square piece of the item was being sold by a stall owner in Sector 20, Chandigarh, at Rs 25. The til patti made of jaggery was being sold at Rs 25 a piece (200 gm).
Groundnut was selling at between Rs 25 and Rs 35 a kg. A stall owner in the Phase 5 market in SAS Nagar was selling a variety of the item at Rs 25. Another delicacy, gachak, made of sugar was selling at Rs 40 a kg. The gachak made of jaggery was available in three varieties. The cheapest variety was selling at Rs 30 and the dearest at Rs 40 a kg. Two varieties of the gachak made of jaggery and groundnut were selling at Rs 40 and Rs 50 a kg.
Another delicacy in the local markets was chana ki dal in jaggery, which was being sold at Rs 25 per 500 gm. Another item, rolls made of khoya and til was being sold at Rs 50 per 500 gm. Bugga was being sold at between Rs 70 and Rs 90 a kg. In the markets of SAS Nagar, the item was selling at Rs 80.
Besides, the prices of
firewood have almost remained static when compared to
last year. Different varieties of firewood were being
sold at Rs 1.5, Rs 2 and Rs 2.5 a kg. Due to a
competition in the market the retail prices had remained
almost the same.
Ministers Secy denies
CHANDIGARH, Jan 11 Denying the allegations of pressurising and threatening a Sector 15 tenant by posting police personnel, Political Secretary to the Punjab Co-operative Minister R.S. Brahmpura, Mr Charanjit Singh, along with another defendant, has stated that the security has been provided to him by Punjab state.
In a written statement to the suit filed by tenant Baljit Singh for restraining the defendants from interfering in the peaceful possession and enjoyment of the premises, Mr Charanjit Singhs counsel stated that the plaintiff cannot question the grant of security essential for the safety of the defendant residing on the first and second floors and also in occupation of the annexe portion along with the lawn.
Counsel further stated that the security personnel performed their duty and enquired about the identity of the visitors. He added that the defendants had never interfered either in the possession or the enjoyment of the tenanted premises.
Earlier in his civil suit Mr Baljit Singh had also asked for directives to the defendants to remove all security personnel deployed at the main gate or anywhere on the ground floor being without any authority.
His counsel had alleged that the plaintiff, on December 8 last year, was not allowed to enter the premises by the security personnel. He was not even allowed to park the car inside the house. The personnel, at the instance of the defendants, had also used filthy and abusive language, he alleged.
The court, it may be recalled, had on December 16, 1999, restrained the defendants from dispossessing the plaintiff from the demised premises except in due course of law.
The suit will now come up for replication and consideration on January 18 before the UT Civil Judge (Junior Division), Mr Baljinder Singh.
Meanwhile, denying the
allegations of insisting upon the plaintiff
to vacate the house, the counsel for the
defendants stated that they had merely requested for the
same as the house was required for
selfoccupation of the owners. He added that
Mr Charanjit Singh was an attorney of Dr Harbhajan Singh
and Dr Kirpal Kaur.
Road Safety Week begins
CHANDIGARH, Jan 11 Despite the drizzle, a large number of people turned up at the inauguration of the Road Safety Week at the Sector 17 Plaza here this morning. The week was formally inaugurated by Mr S.K. Singh, Inspector-General of Police. The event is being held in cooperation of the Traffic Warden Cell.
School children, traffic wardens and eminent citizens from various parts of the city were present on the occasion. The week is being organised to make road users aware of various traffic rules to curb the rising incidence of accidents and to enhance the level of road safety.
The others present on the occasion included Mr Asad Farooqui, SSP, Operations; Mr Ajay Kashyap, SSP, HQ; Mr Parag Jain, SSP; Mr Alok Kumar, ASP, Traffic; and Mr Amar Manchanda, Chief Traffic Warden.
Mr S.K. Singh said the accident rate had gone up over the years and during 1999, 129 fatal accidents claimed 137 human lives. Besides, 17 cases of murder took place during the year.
As many as 418 persons suffered injuries in non-fatal accidents.
Stressing that cooperation of the public was paramount in controlling accidents, he said something had to be done about the increasing number of vehicles on city roads. As per figures available with the department, there were only 40,000 vehicles in the city in 1969 and the sanctioned strength of the traffic police was 101 personnel. Today, when the number of vehicles registered is more than 5 lakh, the traffic police strength is 175, he said.
An exhibition on road safety was also inaugurated by the IGP. He released pigeons to mark the beginning of the events.
Earlier, while welcoming the participants, Mr Jain stressed the need for saving precious lives lost on the road everyday and sought the cooperation of the public in this context. It is not possible to post cops on all the roads as the force was not in consonance with the field requirements, he added.
Commenting on some new schemes, he said the police had identified 10 schools where the traffic was being regulated by students and teachers who had volunteered to do so.
Students of Shivalik Public School, Sector 41, and the GMSSS, Sector 22, presented songs on the need for obeying traffic rules. Students of the GMSSS, Sector 40, presented a gidha item. A blood donation camp was also organised.
On January 12, there will be an on-the-spot-painting competition for school children at the Government Museum and Art Gallery, Sector 10.
The Sukhna Lake would be venue for a brisk walk competition for senior citizens at 6.30 a.m. on January 13. A traffic workshop for drivers of the CTU, Punjab Roadways and Haryana Roadways will be organised at the Traffic and Security Lines, Sector 29, on January 14.
While girl students of local colleges will take out a scooter rally from opposite Neelam cinema at 9.30 a.m. on January 15, a skit contest for school children at Tagore Theatre would be the highlight on January 17.
GMCH website from tomorrow
CHANDIGARH, Jan 11 The Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32, is all set to go hi-tech with the launch of its website on the National Informatics Centre's server on January 13. It will be inaugurated by the Administrator of UT, Lieut-Gen J.F.R. Jacob (retd).
The website provides useful information about the services in the GMCH. The website is broadly classified into two categories hospital for treatment and college for studies. In addition to it, there is a message from the Director, GMCH, highlighting the achievements and contributions of the college hospital. For ready reference there is an option where telephone numbers with extensions of all essential offices and services are easily available. There is also an option of telephone directory where telephone numbers and addresses of the staff are available.
A profile of the Government Institute of Mentally Retarded is available on the opening page.
The statistical data of the GMCH has been compiled from 1991-92 onwards in graphs and tables for the financial and non-financial achievements. It can be accessed through statistics option in the opening page. And to post the feedback or for having any information about the GMCH, there is an option to send mail through feedback option.
Apart from history of both hospital and college the key features for hospital include department with all relevant details regarding staff, services and facilities available, OPD or laboratory schedule with timings and the charges for various services, including wards. The location of the rooms for OPDs and wards has been specified. For the medical college information regarding the faculty of various departments, courses available and the admission procedure is available.
Later once admissions to
various courses commence, prospectus and admission forms
will be available on the website. Even certain
publications of faculty members appearing in various
national and international journals will be made
available on this site. The site has been designed and
developed by the NIC Chandigarh.
Mauli Jagran booths in
CHANDIGARH, Jan 11 Crores of rupees, spent by the Chandigarh Housing Board (CHB) on the construction of 70 booths in the Mauli Jagran rehabilitation colony here seem to have gone down the drain, if their pitiable condition is any indication.
Constructed in the early nineties by the board, the booths have fallen on bad days on account of continued administrative apathy and lack of will on the part of the board authorities to auction them or put them to some productive use.
A visit to the shopping complex could prove to be a nightmarish experience. Certain small booths at the one end of the complex are being used as sites for keeping pigs by colony residents. In fact, as a Tribune team entered the complex today it was greeted by a number of pigs and other stray cattle. The stench of the garbage and pig droppings was unbearable. It had been so for the past many years and little had been done to clean up the area, said Mr Ram Chandra, a nearby hawker.
And despite a garbage bin, the open space enclosed by the complex is used for dumping garbage by the residents. The rag-pickers, stray cattle and pigs shuffled through the garbage littering it in the area and creating more insanitary conditions.
To top it all, in the absence of any check by the authorities, certain shops had been encroached upon by the residents. And with hardly any maintenance over the years, their condition was going from bad to worse. The plaster of certain parts of the shops, particularly corridors, had started coming off. While some shutters had apparently been stolen by anti-social elements, others are dying a slow death, as in the absence of proper upkeep, they had started rusting.
It is strange but true that the CHB is shamelessly dilly-dallying either on the allotment of the booths or putting them to some productive for the past many years. The board did make a feeble attempt to auction the commercial property in 1995. Of the 70 booths put under the hammer, only one could be sold off reportedly due to the higher price of the property. After that the board authorities again went into deep slumber.
To bring the shops back into proper shape, the board will have to spend lakhs of tax payers money, which seems unlikely if the condition of vacant property worth crores of rupees in other parts of the city is any indication.
In fact, Mr Sanjeev Kumar, a chemist, who purchased the lone booth for Rs 8.40 lakh, is today a disappointed man. He rues the day when he successfully bid for the booth as insanitary conditions and non-development of the market had seriously hampered his business. Apart from this , an illegal chemist shop nearby had only added to his woes, he alleged.
He confided that the
shops were being misused for carrying out illegal
activities, including immoral activities and sale of
liquor, and the authorities had turned a blind eye to his
repeated representations. And there seem to be not many
takers for the shops as the colony had a large number of
illegal shops running from residential premises, he
Passenger alleges harassment on
CHANDIGARH, Jan 11 For a professor teaching in Samrala , it was a humiliating experience aboard a Haryana Roadways bus on January 4. Dr Rajinder K. Singla lives in Sector 42 here.
Narrating the incident, Dr Singla said he had boarded the bus from Samrala. Though I was to travel up to Chandigarh, but I had to meet someone in SAS Nagar so I had bought a ticket till Kharar hoping to catch a local bus for the onward journey, Dr Singla said. Upon reaching Kharar, Dr Singla realised that he was getting late and decided to proceed to Chandigarh directly in the same bus.
As he was waiting for the conductor to come and issue tickets, a ticket checker entered the bus. Upon finding the ticket till Kharar, the checker started accusing him of deliberately not buying a ticket till Chandigarh. He publicly told the conductor to identify him, Dr Singla said in his complaint to the Haryana Roadways authorities.
Dr Singla said it was well within the rights of the checker to screen all tickets but he had no right to insult a passenger. Dr Singla said the incident had embarrassed him as he was frequent traveller on the route.
He later lodged a complaint with the local Haryana Roadways authorities. However, that did not end his harassment. Someone started making threatening phone calls to him on the telephone number mentioned on his letter head. The residence is presently being used by Mr Singla s friend and his family. The caller , Mr Singla said, used highly abusive language when he telephoned on January 6.
Mr Singla lodged another complaint with the roadways authorities. The Haryana Roadways authorities, when contacted, said that an inquiry was being conducted into the matter.
What peeved Dr Singla further were the phonecalls he got the very next day to browbeat him.
Homoeos threaten fast
CHANDIGARH, Jan 11 The students of Homoeopathic Medical College, Sector 26, have decided to continue their strike and start fast if the matter is not solved by the management at the earliest.
This was stated by Mr Alok Garg, President of the college unit of the ABVP, at a press conference on the college campus today. He alleged that Mr K.K. Dhiman was not eligible to be the Principal since he was an assistant professor in the subject of homoeopathy. The guidelines of the Central Homoeopathy Council specified that a professor should be the head of the college. The University Inspection Committee, which had come to grant affiliation to the college, had also submitted that the Principal was an assistant professor. The Principal had in a letter written to the Secretary of the Central Council accepted that he did not fulfil the eligibility criterion.
The students have been protesting to seek the removal of the Principal for his vindictive attitude towards them.
Ritu Jain, a student of the 1996 batch, alleged that the Principal had made the teachers to deliberately fail her in the practical examination as she had lodged a case against the college authorities and the same had been judged in her favour. Davinder Kaur has alleged that she was failed in the practicals of two subjects in the internal assessment as she too had lodged a case, but had withdrawn the same following a compromise.
Alok Garg further alleged that the college management committee had been threatening him for his association with the ABVP.
The Secretary, Mr C.L. Dhamija, had been misguiding the inquiry committee constituted to look into the allegations and not letting them subit the report.
Health centre under
DERA BASSI, Jan 11 The construction of a 30-bed community health centre as part of the Civil Hospital here has gathered speed. Nearly half the construction work, which was started on November 4, has been completed.
The Punjab Health Systems Corporation (PHSC) is constructing the building with the World Banks help amounting to Rs 113.09 lakh. A construction company of Bathinda has been allotted the work to be completed within one year. The foundation stone of the building was laid down by Capt Kanwaljit Singh, Finance and Planning Minister of Punjab, on May 25.
The health centre which will have modern equipment will come up at a cost of Rs 1.25 crore. It will have facilities like surgery, general medicine, orthopaedics, dental care, ENT treatment, paediatrics and gynaecology. The building will have an emergency block, an examination room, a registration office, doctors consultation rooms, operation theatres (OT), a recovery room and a six-bed emergency ward.
The emergency ward will be linked with the female ward with 14 beds and with the main OPD block. The diagnostic area will have an X-ray plant and a laboratory. The female section in the building would have a delivery OT with baby wash, change rooms and a sterile room.
Though the Finance Minister had directed the Deputy Commissioner to get the forest land next to the hospital building for doctors residences, three residences are being constructed within the hospital premises. The ambulance promised by the minister is yet to arrive.
The residents of the
town and some social organisations have demanded that a
blood bank and a trauma ward should be added to the Civil
Hospital which was situated on the Kalka-Ambala National
Highway 22 which had a high rate of accidents.
Proclaimed offender gets bail
CHANDIGARH, Jan 11 Proclaimed offender Manjit Kaur, accused of occupying a vacant Chandigarh Housing Board House without authorisation, was today granted bail by the Additional District and Sessions Judge, Mr S.K. Goel.
The accused was earlier booked by the Chandigarh police for house trespass and theft under Sections 448 and 379 of the Indian Penal Code. According to the prosecution, a criminal case was registered against her after she failed to vacate the house "not allotted to anyone".
Opposing her bail plea, the Public Prosecutor stated that the accused was declared a proclaimed offender by the UT Judicial Magistrate (First Class), Mr A.K. Bishnoi, on August 28 last year. It was added that the accused was arrested on December 18, 1999.
Seeking her release on bail, defence counsel, on the other hand, argued that the accused was admitted to the Sector 32 Government Medical College and Hospital as she was a heart patient and was also suffering from diabetes.
Pronouncing the orders in the open court, the judge observed: "There is nothing in the file which may show that she is a habitual offender.... Without commenting upon the merits of the case, no useful purpose would be served by keeping the accused anymore in the judicial custody without trial."
The judge added:
"In order to safeguard the interest of the
prosecution that she might not absent from appearing in
the case, it is fittest of the things that she is asked
to furnish two local sureties. The accused is admitted to
bail on her furnishing bail bonds in the sum of Rs 20,000
with two local sureties of the like amount, to the
satisfaction of the Illaqa or the Duty Magistrate."
UP resident held with poppy
CHANDIGARH, Jan 11 The police has arrested a resident of Uttar Pradesh and recovered 10 kg of poppy husk from his possession.
According to police sources, the crime branch received information that Om Parkash from Kandharpur was involved in trafficking of poppy husk. A trap was laid for him. He was arrested from the ISBT and the poppy husk was seized. A case under Section 15 of the NDPS Act has been registered at the police station central.
The injured were rushed to the PGI for treatment. A case under Sections 279 and 337 of the IPC has been registered.
Case against trader
KHARAR, Jan 11 The Kharar police has registered a case under Sections 406 and 420, IPC, against Surmukh Singh, proprietor of Surmukh Industrial Corporation Ltd, Balaungi, following orders passed by Mrs Neelam Arora, Judicial Magistrate, Kharar.
Mr Charanjit Singh, in a complaint submitted in the court, alleged that the accused contracted with him to sell his six machines on September 1, 1999, and the whole amount of Rs 55,000 was paid in advance and a receipt was obtained by him. He claimed that these machines were to be delivered by September 30, 1999.
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