|Saturday, June 3, 2000,
for Viagra, come to Haryana
Plot holders resent HUDA drive
Power supply in Haryana areas
Power bill defaulters to face
Six IAS officers shifted
Abhay promises security to Sikhs
Panches election on June 25
Appointment of GMCH MS
Abhay Chautala loses zila parishad
Physically challenged honoured
Residents sore over bad roads
Death sentence for killing three
Suicide by plus 2 student
Rs 4 lakh looted
Looking for Viagra, come to
HISAR, June 2 If you are looking for Viagra come to Haryana. The anti-impotency drug is not only freely available almost all over the state, it is also perhaps the cheapest in the world. While the blue-diamond shaped tablet (25 mg) is priced at $ 10 (Rs 440 approximately) in the rest of the world, it is available for Rs 300 a tablet in Haryana. Elsewhere in the country, it costs Rs 400 to 500 a tablet.
The much-hyped wonder drug has taken Haryana by storm ever since it appeared in the black market a few weeks ago. Sales have been picking up steadily since then through word of mouth publicity about its availability. While most customers are buying it without consulting their physicians, self-styled sex specialists have even begun prescribing it verbally and dispensing the drug to patients from their own stocks.
During the course of investigations about the sale of the drug, The Tribune stumbled upon interesting facts about its (mis) use. Although it is essentially an anti-impotency drug, it is widely perceived here as an aphrodisiac. As many as three highly qualified physicians contacted by this correspondent in this connection inadvertently admitted they had tried the drug and found that it had improved their sexual prowess. No wonder then that the layman is gung-ho over the perceived ability of the drug to improve his "performance".
Most of the users normally take one fourth of a tablet at a time. Their logic is simple. Since it is essentially an anti-impotency drug, a normal man will require a much smaller dose to "enhance prowess". Even doctors who are prescribing the drug unofficially stick to this dose. They say there are two reasons for this. Firstly, the manufacturer had fixed the dose with the average bodyweight of the American male as the benchmark. Indians would require a lesser dose because of their lesser bodyweight. The other reason, of course, is that "a healthy male needs a smaller dose to increase sexual prowess". said a local doctor.
However, Viagra website clearly says that a "health care provider" should prescribe the dose. Besides, it advises against cutting the tablet into parts. It also clearly states that Viagra is "neither a hormone nor an aphrodisiac".
Why does Viagra cost less in Haryana? Neither the users nor the chemists who sell it have any idea. While some say the rates in the USA have been lowered, others said it could be because of bulk imports. However, they fail to explain why the drug costs 25 per cent more in Delhi.
But many doctors say there can be only one reason the drug is spurious. One doctor pointed out that in the USA the drug is available in blister packs of 10 tablets each. However, the drug is available here in glass vials of 30 tablets each. But when shown the vial, even he reluctantly admitted that outwardly, there appeared to be nothing amiss with it.
However, another doctor said that many sub-standard drug manufacturers had begun selling similar Indian herbal anti-impotence concoctions under the brand name of Viagra to make a fast buck. However, when pointed out that even qualified physicians had admitted to the efficacy of the drug, he said many of the Indian ayurvedic products on sale were effective to a certain extent. "In any case if the user is not impotent, the drug only has a psychological effect. This is what is happening", he explained.
Whatever the truth, the chances of spurious drug being passed off as original Viagra can not be ruled out. Information gathered from Delhi indicates that chemists there usually accept the money in advance and supply the drug after a week or so. It is learnt that passengers from the USA arriving in India bring the drug and sell it in the black market. However, reports from several major towns in Haryana said the drug was literally available off the shelf.
Since the drug is neither manufactured in India nor has it been notified for sale here by the drug control authorities, there is no way a sample can be tested here to determine if it is original. Health officials said they were not aware of the sale of the drug in the black market. Besides, they said since it was a harmless drug, there was no cause for alarm.
However, leading doctors differ. They said the tendency of self-medication could be dangerous. For instance, they said, the use of Viagra was contraindicated in the case of diabetics and patients suffering from hypertension and a host of other ailments. They pointed out that immediately after the drug was introduced amidst much media hype, there were reports of deaths related to the use of Viagra.
The Viagra website lists several side effects of the drug, including flushing of face, dizziness, temporary blue vision and light sensitivity. Many of the users admitted that they had experienced one or more of these. However, they perceived these as "a proof of the efficacy of Viagra as an aphrodisiac". Even some of the doctors who admitted taking Viagra were not aware that these were the side effects of the drug. They were also not aware that the drug was available in 25 mg, 50mg and 100mg pills.
Strangely, those who
consume the drug for increasing sexual prowess, admitted
using it for extramarital sex on the sly. This is perhaps
the most telling comment on the psyche of the Haryanvi
male and their awareness of sex-related issues.
Plot holders resent HUDA
KARNAL, June 2 The anti-encroachment drive launched by the HUDA authorities here has hit hard small-plot holders in the HUDA area. The otherwise laudable step by the administration has reportedly led to panic among residents of HUDA colonies.
A deputation of small-plot holders met Mr Jai Prakash Gupta, an independent MLA, three days back and complained to him against the anti-encroachment drive and demanded an end to it. The MLA brought their grievance to the notice of the Deputy Commissioner, Karnal, and urged him to ask HUDA authorities to first utilise the land lying vacant on either side of the road in front of the plots instead of embarking on its present mission. Mr Gupta pointed out that the residents of the area had created small green belts in front of their houses which HUDA authorities had not cared to do. Now after the removal of grills in front of the houses, the empty portions of the land would not serve any purpose for HUDA.
Affected citizens pointed out that if the HUDA authorities had to remove the grills in front of their houses, they should now provide greenery there . In fact, the HUDA authorities have started the drive on complaints from general public that the HUDA laws were being freely violated in various sectors. For instance, no resident could have back side entrance to his house. But in HUDA sectors almost every house was running some unauthorised business establishment in the backyard of their houses.
This also violates the HUDA laws that no residential area could be used for running business. But in HUDA sectors here one can witness all types of business activities going on in the houses starting from beauty parlours to private health clinics and nursing homes. So much so that even PCOs, tea shops and property dealers officers have been opened in the backyard of the houses.
It is learnt that the HUDA authorities have served notices to all such owners of houses to close their business establishments before they swung into action. But those who are running such establishments question the very credentials of the HUDA employees. They point out how come business establishments in such large numbers have been started in houses without the permission of HUDA? Furthermore, those who run such establishments get themselves registered with the Sales Tax Department. How come that the department allowed them to violate HUDA rules and permitted them to run such business establishments? The owners of such business establishments/shops are now finding it difficult to close them.
The citizens also point
out that in HUDA colonies there is no place earmarked for
dumping waste material. The sweepers have themselves
chosen some spots in front of the houses to dump the
wastage. This leads to stinking and foul smell.
Power supply in Haryana areas
CHANDIGARH, June 2 The high-speed squall that swept northern part of Haryana yesterday led to disruption in power supply on the 132-KV Rai-Sonepat circuit.
A spokesman for the Haryana Vidyut Prasaran Nigam said one tower of the 400-KV Bawana-Abdullapur (Yamunanagar) line of the Power Grid Corporation was uprooted near Sonepat.
He added the power supply to Shahbad and Pehowa areas had also been affected. Two towers of 220 KV Nissing-Kaithal line were also uprooted affecting power supply to Kurukshetra and Kaithal districts.
The spokesman claimed that immediate steps were taken to restore the 220 KV Nissing-Kaithal line. The work on erecting the damaged towers was progressing. He added that normal power supply would be restored in a few days.
He said power supply to
the affected areas had already been restored from
alternative sources, though uninterrupted power supply
would not be maintained till the transmission network was
normalised. "Teams of the Haryana Vidyut Prasaran
Nigam have already been deputed to do the restoration
work," the spokesman said.
Power bill defaulters to face
CHANDIGARH, June 2 Ms Meenakshi Anand Chaudhry, Financial Commissioner and Secretary of Power and Non-conventional Energy in the Haryana Government, today said that drastic actions would be taken against the defaulting power consumers who had not settled their bills by the May 31 deadline.
Actions such as snapping of electricity lines and even putting up landholdings of the rural families for auction for recovery of the bills were being contemplated, she said. She, however, expressed satisfaction at the result of the recovery operation, and said that people who were not paying their bills for almost a decade had complied with the government directive.
While Rs 65 crore was collected from defaulting private consumers up to May 15, Ms Chaudhry said that the amount collected in the following quarter was still being worked out. She said that once the calculations were completed, a list of defaulters would be prepared.
Though some of the
problematic villages stated to have responded well to the
recovery operation, personnel of distribution network
were still apprehensive about facing hostile resistance
in the rural areas in case of a line-snapping operation.
Ms Chaudhry said that they would pick up the villages one
by one for this purpose. A comprehensive strategy to deal
with the problem would be worked out, she said.
Six IAS officers shifted
CHANDIGARH, June 2 The Haryana Government today issued transfer orders of six IAS officers with immediate effect.
Mr R.D. Sheokand, Managing Director, Haryana Backward Classes Kalyan Nigam has been given the additional charge of Managing Director, Haryana Harijan Kalyan Nigam, against a vacant post.
Mrs Jai Wanti Sheokand, Joint Secretary, Irrigation, has been given the additional charge of Director and Joint Secretary, Women and Child Development and Managing Director, Haryana Women Development Corporation during the training period of Mrs Dheera Khandelwal.
Mr K.S. Yadav, Administrator, HUDA, Gurgaon, has been posted as Additional Resident Commissioner, Haryana Bhavan, New Delhi, against a vacant post.
Mr Krishan Kumar, Joint Secretary, Animal Husbandry and Dairy Development, has been posted as Director, Technical Education against a vacant post.
Mr Balraj Singh, Joint Secretary, Wildlife Preservation, has been given the additional charge of Joint Secretary, Animal Husbandry and Dairy Development.
Abhay promises security to
AMRITSAR, June 2 Mr Abhay Chautala, who paid obeisance at the Golden Temple after his victory in the Rori byelection, assured that Sikhs and other minorities would be given full security in Haryana.
He said this while replying to a query of a journalist that some Sikhs were stoned and injured in Sirsa district when they objected to smoking in a bus. Mr Chautala said that the INLD government would order a high-level probe into the incident.
Replying to another question, Mr Chautala said that his party would like to form a high-level committee at the behest of the Prime Minister to sort out the inter-state disputes between Punjab and Haryana. He promised that unlike the Congress party, his party would endeavour to resolve these matters with mutual trust.
Panches election on June 25
CHANDIGARH, June 2 The Haryana State Election Commission has decided to conduct bye-election to fill the vacant seats of 519 panches, 26 sarpanches, 48 members of panchayat samitis and five members of zila parishads on June 25.
Announcing this here today the State Election Commissioner, Mr T.D. Jogpal, said the nominations would be filed from June 13 to June 15. While scrutiny will be held on June 16, the last date of withdrawal will be June 19.
While counting of votes for panches and sarpanches would be held immediately after the polling, that for panchayat samiti and zila parishad members would be held on June 26.
Mr Jogpal said the bye-elections had been necessitated by a host of reasons like rejection of nomination papers of all the candidates or no candidate filing nomination papers in particular wards.
He said seven vacancies had arisen because of the death of elected members, while in five cases members were elected to more than one office.
Interestingly, in one of the wards of the Bapoli panchayat samiti in Panipat district, the electorate elected a candidate who died before the elections. Mr Jogpal identified him as Mr Shamsher Singh.
In Bamanawas panchayat all the 23 posts of panches remained unfilled when the voters did not cast their votes because of mass suicides in a family of the village one day before the polling.
Mr Jogpal said the
elections to the Bhiwani and Kaithal Municipal Councils
would be held towards the end of July. These elections
were cancelled by him in April last following complaints
of grave mistakes in the electoral rolls.
Death sentence for killing
YAMUNANAGAR, June 2 Mr Dhani Ram, Additional District and Sessions Judge, Jagadhri today sentenced to death Puran Chand (50) son of Dalu Ram and Damla of village (Kishan Pura) in Yamunanagar district for murder committed on June 2, 1997, Puran Chand fired from his licensed gun on 2 June, 1997, and killed three persons of one family Ramesh Kumar, Surinder Kumar (brothers) and Ram Swaroop their uncle.
Appointment of GMCH MS quashed
ROHTAK, June 2 The Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT), Principal Bench, New Delhi, has quashed the appointment of Dr D.P. Mehta as professor, Hospital Administration-cum-Medical Superintendent of Government Medical College, Chandigarh, by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC).
Deciding on a petition filed by Dr O.P. Lathwal, a former Deputy Medical Superintendent at PGIMS, Rohtak, a Division Bench of CAT Principal Bench comprising Mr Justice V. Rajagopala Reddy, Vice-Chairman, and Ms Shanta Shastry, member (Administrative), has held that the selection of Dr Mehta is vitiated as violative of Article 14 and 16 of the Constitution and has to be set aside. The tribunal has directed the Union Government, the Administrator, Union Territory of Chandigarh and the UPSC to fill up the post as early as possible by inviting applications and to consider the candidates in accordance with law.
It has been observed by the Division Bench that the selection of Dr D.P. Mehta was influenced by Dr V.K. Kak, Director Principal-cum-Secretary, Medical Education, Chandigarh, who was not connected with the selection at all.
Earlier, the post was advertised and interviews were held. Dr Lathwal had also applied that time and he was reportedly the only candidate who possessed the postgraduate qualification in hospital administration. However, Dr A.C. Chaudhary, who did not have the required qualification, was appointed as Medical Superintendent. This appointment was also challenged in CAT but it did not intervene into the matter in the wake of the plea by the Government Medical College administration, Chandigarh that it was a stop-gap arrangement.
Dr Chaudhary continued on the post till his retirement and even got an extension.
When contacted, Dr
Lathwal said the verdict of CAT had established the fact
that the Government Medical College administration had
discriminated against him in the matter of appointment.
He appealed to the Union Government to look into the
matter and to take corrective steps so that this type of
injustice might not be repeated in future.
Abhay Chautala loses zila
CHANDIGARH, June 2 Mr Abhay Singh Chautala, who was recently elected as an MLA from the Rori constituency has ceased to be a member of the Sirsa Zila Parishad.
Mr Chautala, before the Assembly byelection, was elected the Chairman of the Sirsa Zila Parishad unopposed. He had expressed the desire to continue as the Chairman so that he could look after the development of Sirsa district.
However, by virtue of the Haryana Panchayati Raj (Amendment) Act, 1997, Mr Chautala ceases to be a member of the Zila Parishad subsequent to his election as an MLA.
Sub Section IA of the
Act says: "If a member of gram panchayat, panchayat
samiti or zila parishad is elected to the Legislative
Assembly or Parliament, he shall cease to continue as an
elected member of gram panchayat, panchayat samiti or
Zila Parishad, as the case may be, from the date he is
declared elected to the Legislative Assembly or
Physically challenged honoured
AMBALA, June 2 Haryana Social Welfare Minister, Risal Singh today said that the amount given to the physically challenged persons who are honoured will be doubled from next year.
Addressing a gathering at a state- level function to honour the physically challenged who have strived ahead despite facing problems, Mr Risal Singh said that a sum of Rs 184.73 crore has been spent on various schemes for the welfare of the people, out of which Rs 11.17 crore was spent on schemes for physically challenged.
He said that during this year, there is a provision to spend Rs 15 crore for the welfare of the physically challenged. A survey conducted revealed that there are 2.21 lakh physically challenged persons in the state and efforts are being made for their welfare, he said.
Director of social welfare department, M Kithan said that several schemes are being run by the state government for the physically challenged. He said that more than 46,000 physically challenged are being paid Rs 200 as monthly pension. A sum ranging from Rs 100 to Rs 500 per month is being paid to physically challenged students. About Rs 129.25 lakh has been spent under this scheme benefiting about 9,000 students for the year 1999-2000.
Today, the first prize was given to a lecturer of Kanya Varishtha Madhyamik Vidyalaya, Panipat, Mr Brij Mohan Gupta. Mr Gupta, 46, lost his vision at the age of five years but he continued his education and completed his MA in Hindi and cleared his BEd. He has participated in 203 radio programmes.
Mr Surjit Kumar Sharma, a resident of Faridabad, was awarded the second prize. Mr Sharma, 55, lost his vision due to small pox in 1952. He is an expert in candle-making and weaving of chairs and he has passed on this expertise to more than 500 students.
A resident of Kurukshetra, Mr Amarjit Singh, despite having an 80 per cent handicap, has already made two cassettes of songs. He is comfortable with Haryanvi and Punjabi lyrics.
The third prize was given to Mr Kishan Gobind, a resident of Rohtak. Mr Gobind, who cant utilise his one hand and leg, has done his BA, BEd, MA Public Administration and preparing for his MA English. He is right now teaching at Saini Senior School Rohtak.
Resident of Gurgaon, Mr Pravind Bahl, despite a handicap of 100 per cent, completed his MA and LLB and is working as a bank official. Despite his handicap, Mr Bahl has been working constantly for the welfare of the handicapped. He was awarded the national prize in 1982.
The fourth prize went to Ambala resident, Mr Balkar Singh. Mr Singh, 24, had been struck by polio at the age of six years and he lost the use of both his legs. Undaunted, he has been working for the welfare and progress of villagers.
Residents sore over bad roads
SONEPAT, June 2 Condition of roads brings to the fore the indifferent attitude of the state government as well as the district administration which no longer bother to improve the situation. Residents of the city allege that politicians and bureaucrats find no time to address their woes.
Almost all roads except in VIP areas, are full of potholes and patches. Some roads have been completely damaged in the rain. The condition of the road between Bahalgarh and Yamuna bridge is worst. Similar condition exists in Sector 14 and 15, residential colonies of HUDA.
The bad condition of the Sonepat-Kakroi and Bidhlan-Rohat roads have failed to open officers eyes who seem to have become immune to the problems of the residents.
A small portion of the concrete road in the button factory area built last year by the Haryana State Agricultural Marketing Board, has become pot-holed again and the authorities however have failed to get it repaired.
Suicide by plus 2 student
KURUKSHETRA, June 2 Upset over his compartment result in Physics of 10+2 CBSE annual examination declared yesterday, Sachin (18), a student of Geeta Niketan Awasiya Vidyala, here allegedly committed suicide by hanging himself from the ceiling fan at his university campus residence here yesterday.
According to police sources, Sachin was alone in house and his parents had gone to relatives at Nabha in Punjab while his only elder sister, an MBA student of Guru Jambheshwar University, was at Hisar.
father, Mr Ved Prakash Gupta, SDO (Electricity) and his
wife returned from Nabha to their residence yesterday,
they found Sachins body hanging from the ceiling
fan. The body was cremated today after the postmortem
Rs 4 lakh looted
FARIDABAD, June 2 Unidentified armed persons today looted Rs 4 lakh in broad daylight from a shop on Phawda Singh Chowk in the busy NH-I market.
Reports said that the owner of a metal shop had withdrawn cash from Bank of Rajasthan located on Bata-Neelam Road this morning.
Bhim Suhag MDU VC
CHANDIGARH, June 2 Maj-Gen Bhim Suhag (retired) has been appointed Vice-Chancellor of Maharshi Dayanand University, Rohtak, by the Chancellor and Haryana Governor, Mr Mahabir Prasad.
Major General Suhag, who is 59-year-old, retired from the Army service in 1997. Originally belonging to Rohtak district in Haryana, he is now settled in Noida.
Group C posts
CHANDIGARH, June 2
The Haryana Government has decided to exclude from
the purview of the Haryana Staff Selection Commission
Group C vacant posts in its departments to
absorb 105 Group C employees of financially
weak and defunct municipal committees.
CHANDIGARH, June 2
The Haryana Government has posted Mr M.L. Gaur,
HSS, awaiting posting order, as Under Secretary,
Education, Archives and Archaeology Departments in place
of Mr Jai Singh Sangwan, HCS.
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