Thursday, April 11, 2002, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S


Make CNG available first, CM tells Centre
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 10
Barely a few hours after meeting with Union Petroleum Minister Ram Naik and agreeing to the setting up of two committees to “monitor” and “expedite” the conversion of Capital’s bus fleet to CNG-mode, Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit – while accusing the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of politicising the issue – struck an equally belligerent posture by insisting on the Centre first making adequate supplies of the gas available. The biggest casualty of this war of words (Congress says CNG is Centre’s subject; transport is a State subject, retorts BJP) has been the commuter, who spent a fifth day worrying about the morning after.

The chief minister told the Delhi Legislative Assembly she had conveyed to Mr Naik that it was the Centre’s responsibility to implement the Supreme Court’s order and accordingly provide CNG to Delhi. “We need CNG for converting the 6,000-odd diesel buses that remain,” she said in her statement in the House, “Delhi is a customer and it is for the Centre to sell gas to it.” On the Centre’s move to bring about a legislation permitting the use of dual fuel, she said the matter was beyond the Government of NCT of Delhi’s domain and that it was for the Centre to consult the Opposition parties in Parliament.

Prior to the chief minister’s making a statement in the House, the BJP led by Leader of Opposition Jagdish Mukhi had insisted on the Delhi Legislative Assembly passing a suitable legislation providing for use of alternate fuel. “Let the Assembly first pass a legislation to the effect and then get the Centre to act accordingly,” Mr Mukhi said. Countering the Treasury Benches’ contention that the apex court has made “damning” observations against the Centre, he said the same court had earlier directed the Government of NCT of Delhi to convert to single fuel. “You should have said then that this could not be accomplished and made alternate plans.”

Asserting that fuel, or the shortage of it, was the only outstanding problem now that CNG buses were being added to the city’s pool of buses, Ms Dikshit said the Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) was performing at 98 per cent efficiency. It was on account of the shortage of gas and, therefore, the long queues at filling stations that a third of the buses, she said, were not able to ply. “If the Centre co-operates we can overcome the problem soon,” she told the members. Also that besides augmenting the Ring Railway, for which the chief secretary had spoken with Chairman of Railway Board, still more RTVs and other vehicles were being pressed into service. Since the court order, she added, 600 diesel buses had hit the roads after paying the penalty.

Referring to her 75-minute meeting with Mr Ram Naik earlier in the day, Ms Dikshit said they had agreed to set up two committees having the Union Petroleum Secretary and Lieutenant Governor as chairmen. While the committee headed by the secretary would “monitor” day-to-day activities, the other chaired by the Lieutenant Governor would “expedite” the acquisition of land and laying of pipeline. Both committees will have members drawn from the Centre, the Government of NCT of Delhi and the Indraprastha Gas Limited (IGL). Members, she said, would be notified soon.

War of words


* Congress says CNG is Centre’s subject.

* Sheila Dikshit says it is the Centre’s responsibility to provide CNG to Delhi.

* On the Centre’s move to bring about a legislation permitting the use of dual fuel, Sheila says the matter is beyond the Government of NCT of Delhi’s domain and that it is for the Centre to consult the Opposition parties in Parliament.


* But transport is a State subject, retorts BJP

* BJP counters that the Delhi Govt had an opportunity to clarify its position in the court earlier. But it chose to remain silent.

* Jagdish Mukhi wants the Delhi Legislative Assembly to first pass a suitable legislation providing for use of alternative fuel. Only then, the Centre will take appropriate steps in Parliament.



BJP blames Sheila govt for transport crisis
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 10
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) today rapped the Sheila Dikshit government for the “crumbling transport system” in the Capital.

A resolution passed in the working committee of the Delhi BJP said the government did not take any effective step to provide adequate number of CNG buses during the past three-and-a-half years and its inaction had resulted into the present transport crisis.

The Delhi Government, it alleged, did not deliberately make arrangements for CNG-run vehicles even as manufacturers of green buses had adequate number of them.

In another resolution, the working committee demanded the removal of Excise Minister Mahendra Singh Saathi for the death of several people in the Capital after consuming spurious liquor.

Presided over by Delhi BJP chief Mange Ram Garg, the working committee meeting was also attended by Minister of State in Prime Minister’s Office Vijay Goel, BJP parliamentary party spokesman Vijay Kumar Malhotra and former Delhi Chief Minister Madan Lal Khurana.



Kids cool their heels as buses fail to keep date
Our Correspondent

New Delhi, April 10
The government’s decision to reopen schools brought more distress than succor to the school children and their parents. The school buses, which were placed at the disposal of the DTC for two days, failed to observe their daily school pickup schedule.

Parents could be seen fidgeting with their children at bus stops, waiting for the buses. While some were lucky, others had to run around to arrange transport to ferry their children to school.

“We waited for over an hour for the bus to come, but then most of us got together and drove the children to school. Most of the colony residents had to organise car pools because there were no buses”, complained a parent.

While parents insisted that it was the responsibility of the schools to arrange transport, the school authorities expressed their helplessness. “ We are as concerned as the parents. We are trying our level best to find an alternative, but it is not easy.

Parents should understand and cooperate with us. It is not that we are not doing anything. When children stand for hours waiting to be picked up, it pains us as much as it pains them”, said Mr. Kirpal Singh, Principal, GHPS, Kalkaji.

He explained that out of 12 buses, they had managed to get just nine. “ Even then I am hopeful that we will be able to find a solution within a couple of days. Until then, parents and school authorities have to cooperate”, he said.

Absence of buses is not the only problem being faced by the parents and the children as some schools have abruptly changed the school timings to cope with the transport crisis. “My son’s bus used to pick him up at 7.30 in the morning, but we have now been told that the bus will come at 6.05 am tomorrow. For a child of six getting up at 5 am is going to be difficult. Another problem is that the children will have to spend more hours in the school”, pointed out Mr. Kumar, whose son studies in Amity International School, Noida.

Some parents complained that though the buses picked up the children at the usual hour in the morning, they did not turn up in the afternoon.

The parents had to rush to the school to pick up the kids.

“We did face this problem. But we arranged taxis and autos to ferry the children home. It was a testing time for us as three buses failed to turn up”, said Mrs. Gupta of Bhatnagar International School, Vasant Kunj.

There were, however, some schools that did not face any problems, “We didn’t have any problem, the DTC provided us with all the buses that we required”, said an official at Modern School, Vasant Vihar. Meanwhile, the parents and the school authorities are keeping their fingers crossed, hoping that the crisis will blow over.



Rs 12.83 lakh fine deposited 

New Delhi, April 10
The Delhi Government today deposited in the Supreme Court Rs 12.83 lakh fine, collected from bus operators for plying diesel buses, which have been banned by the apex court. While about 50 per cent of the amount was collected from those operators who preferred to surrender their permits, the balance was paid by those who preferred to ply their buses by paying the penalty, an official said. The operators, who had not surrendered their permits despite keeping their buses off the roads, were also required to pay the fine, as it would be presumed that their buses were on the roads. TNS



Faridabad industry needs a kiss of life
Bijendra Ahlawat
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, April 10
A sea complains that it wants water! Well, that is what is happening in Faridabad. The city contributes about Rs 650 crore in the form of annual taxes to the state exchequer and Rs 560 crore to the central pool. Still, it is ailing for want of funds and badly needs a kiss of life.

Both the town as well as the state are paying a heavy price for this scarcity. During the past three years after the new Industrial Policy of Haryana came into being, as many as 61 large and medium industrial units and 2,600 small-scale units, involving an investment of Rs 788 crore, have been set up in Haryana. But the situation in Faridabad is different. It has been witnessing closure, downsizing and exodus of industrial units. Not a single large industry has come into the district during the past 20 years.

There has been no investment in the largest industrial hub of the state, and if the trend continues, the tax collections would suffer and the industrial sickness would plague the town. All the same, the town is fighting hard to preserve its entrepreneurial glory. After all, the city has produced quite a large number of entrepreneurs during the past two decades.

The Faridabad Small Industrial Association (FSIA), which is a leading organisation of small units in the northern India, has highlighted some of the problems in a memorandum to the district authorities during its ‘silver jubilee’ function here recently. The main problem is about the maintenance and upgradation of infrastructure facilities in the industrial areas.

The roads are in disrepair. The sewerage system is choked and the area remains submerged in slush during the rainy season. The Municipal Corporation which collects a number of taxes has failed to provide the basic amenities, the unit owners feel. The association opposes the imposition of professional tax on the industrialists as it claims that a licence fee is already charged under the Municipal Corporation Act.

In its memorandum, the association asked the government to end the dual system of taxation. It demanded better facilities for the small scale units (SSIs). They include developing small plots ranging from 100 to 1000 metres and allotting them to the SSIs, which, it claimed, would help check the growth of small units in non-conforming areas and unauthorised areas. The association also asked the state government to come out with a long-term policy towards the SSIs, cottage and tiny industries, as it was the only way to solve the employment problems. The demands of simplification of the procedures regarding the Change of Land Use (CLU), External Development Charges (EDC) and Local Area Development Tax (LADT) have also been taken up with the state government for reviving the ailing industrial scene.



Mystery death of BA student in her flat
Tribune News Service

Noida, April 10
Mystery shrouds the death of 28-year-old Prabha Singh, a member of the UP State SC-ST Commission and a BA first year student. Prabha Singh reportedly committed suicide by hanging herself with her saree in her official flat.

Originally, a resident of the Bijhoda village at Jahagirabad in Bulandshahar and daughter of Mahaveer Singh, a former officer in child development project in Delhi, Prabha Singh had been living with a 30-year-old Veerpal Singh who called himself her ‘nephew’.

Only two days back, Veerpal Singh had brought her to the local Muslim Degree College in Bulandshahar. She had to appear for her social science paper in the college. Subsequently, she attended an engagement ceremony also.

Veerpal was the only person in her flat at the time of the suicide in mid-night, the police said.

In the village, her brother-in-law Lal Singh was also present at the function. Veerpal Singh made a somewhat strange statement that “he had taken a loan of Rs 2,000 from her without her knowledge”.

Lal Singh had reportedly told Prabha about this which apparently angered her.

She told Veerpal to go to the drawing room and sleep and went to her bed room. After burning some papers and files, she wrote a two-line note on the commission’s letterhead: “I am going to have eternal sleep-away from the untruthful people.”

At 1.30 am, Veerpal Singh found her hanging from the ceiling fan. Prabha Singh had reportedly moved to flat No. B-133 in the government colony in Lucknow after staying at the state guest house for some time.

Appointed as the member of the SC-ST Commission on October 5, 2000 when Mr S D Bagla was the chairman of the commission, she was also a chairperson of the women wing of the district Lok Tantaric Congress, Bulandshahar.

The police have sent her body for the post-mortem examination and taken Veerpal in custody.



DVB bids below par, companies lay down terms

New Delhi, April 10
With the companies today bidding below par and laying down certain conditions for take over of the loss-making Delhi Vidyut Board, the privatisation of the energy sector in the Capital could encounter some stumbling blocks. The Delhi Cabinet is scheduled to meet on Thursday to discuss the conditions and the bids by the four companies - BSES Ltd. CESCON Ltd., Reliance Power Ltd. and Tata Power Co. Ltd. – for the proposed three distribution companies, which were opened on Wednesday.

While Reliance and CESCON have not bid for any of the three distribution companies, BSES is the sole bidder for the Central-East company. For the North and North-West company and South-West company, the Tata Power and BSES have placed their bids.

The Delhi Chief Minister, Ms Sheila Dikshit, and the senior officials were closeted for more than three hours late this evening discussing the low quotation. TNS



New team takes over at MCD
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 10
Ms Jaishree Panwar, Congress Councillor from Greater Kailash I and Mr Panna Lal Khairwal from Madangir were sworn in as Mayor and Deputy Mayor respectively today. Mr Ram Babu Sharma was nominated as the Leader of the House and Chairman of the Standing Committee.

Ms Jaishree Panwar secured 116 votes against her rival of the Bharatiya Janata Party (MCD), Ms Arti Mehra, who was able to manage only 16 votes. The candidature of Ms Jaishree was supported by two Janata Dal (S), two Jharkhand Mukti Morcha and four independent Councillors, including Mr Asif Mohammad Khan who was in judicial custody at present. He got permission by the Delhi High Court to take oath today.

The BJP’s Onkar Singh Thapar, who won the MCD elections on the Akali Dal (Badal) ticket and had filed his nomination for the post of Deputy Mayor against Mr Panna Lal Khiarwal, was defeated.

Ms Jaishree who is a known social worker in her segment is the fifth woman in the history of the corporation who has been elected as a Mayor. She expressed her gratitude on being elected to the coveted post. Addressing the House, she said that she would leave no stone unturned in fulfilling the responsibilities bestowed upon her with utmost dedication and devotion. She would try hard in making Delhi a clean and beautiful city.

She pledged to provide the residents of the Capital a clean and transparent administration, promote unity and brotherhood, root out corruption and lethargic attitude of corporation officials. Besides, roads, parks and gardens would be given a new look, she promised.

Besides newly elected Mayor, 133 elected members of the MCD attended the swearing-in ceremony presided over by senior most Councillor Ramesh Datta who was administered the oath by Deputy Municipal Commissioner (Central), Mr X. K. Mehto. The other Councillors were administered the oath of office by the presiding officer. A Councillor from North Zone, Mr Prem Lal, was absent in the ceremony.

Elections of the Mayor and Deputy Mayor were held after the oath-taking ceremony of the Councillors. Six members of the Standing Committee, including its Chairman, Mr Ram Babu Sharma, were nominated by the Mayor. Members of other committees on Education, DDA and DDA Advisory Committee will be nominated next week.

The ceremony was also attended by DPCC president Subhash Chopra, DPCC spokesman Mukesh Sharma, Congress MLA Mahender Yadav and Janata Dal MLA Shoaib Iqbal.

Mr Iqbal said he came to mobilise the votes of independents and candidates of other small parties in favour of the Congress candidate for the coveted post of Mayor.

The Leader of Opposition, Ms Arti Mehra, Leader of the House, Mr Ram Babu Sharma, the Municipal Commissioner, Mr S. P. Aggarwal, and other bigwigs welcomed and congratulated the newly elected Mayor.

In the second session of the oath-taking ceremony, BJP Councillor Vijender Kumar Gupta raised the issue of minutes of the last budget session of the corporation scheduled to be signed by the House today. However, it was not included in the agenda. He threatened that if it were not signed today he would go to the court against the Congress-led House of the corporation.



Self-employment ‘the only solution’ to joblessness 
Our Correspondent

Gurgaon, April 10
Self-employment is the only solution to the unemployment problem in the state, said the MLA and former State Transport Minister, Mr Dharambir Singh.

Jobs in the government sector are not available and in private sectors, the youths do not get emoluments as per their ability. Most of them are exploited by the employer, said Mr Singh.

He was speaking on the occasion of valedictory function of the students who had received the training in screen-printing and book-binding, conducted by Rudset institute here.

The former minister said that the wage employment board has restricted the development process both in government and private sector whereas in self-employment, there are unlimited opportunities for progress and development. An entrepreneur has to be persistent and honest in his work, said Mr Singh.

He lauded the efforts of Syndicate Bank and Canara Bank in starting an institute like Rudset which provides quality training with the facilities.

While welcoming the guests, the Rudset Director, Dr M L Chawla, spoke about the institute’s activities.

He informed that this programme was sponsored by Sidbi and during the course, a rich knowledge of techniques of screen printing and book binding had been imparted to the trainees by the experts in these fields. Besides, other important aspects, the training also included the behavioural aspects and managerial traits, added the director.

The chief guest, Mr Dharambir Singh, distributed the certificates to the successful trainees.

The next training on motor rewinding and pump set repair would be conducted from April 22, the director said.



South African judge calls for structural 
changes in society
Our Correspondent

Rohtak, April 10
“We need to make structural changes in our societies to achieve the goal of social justice,” this was stated by Justice Zakeria Mohammed Yacoob of the Constitutional Court in the Republic of South Africa. He was delivering a lecture on ‘Constitutional provisions and social justice’ in the Department of Sociology, Maharshi Dayanand University today.

Commenting on the similarities of Indian and South African societies, Justice Zakeria said that constitutions of both the countries were the product of the struggle for freedom.

“Both the countries have a large number of poor people. Freedom of religion and the fundamental rights are the main features of both the constitutions,” Justice Zakeria said. He said that the universities and other academic institutions could play a vital role in the field of social justice as they had privileges to direct the research in the direction of social justice.

In the context of the South African freedom struggle, he said that the process of passive resistance was started in South Africa and perfected in India by Mahatma Gandhi. He explained the fundamental rights were given to the people by the Constitution of South Africa.

Earlier, Major-General Bhim Singh Suhag, Vice-Chancellor of the university, welcomed the Justice and said that both the countries shared common interest and challenges. Dr K. S. Sangwan, Head of the Sociology Department, introduced the speaker and Dr Jitender Prasad delivered the vote of thanks.



Indian democracy standing on foundation 
of graft: Vittal
Our Correspondent

Ghaziabad, April 10
The Indian democracy is standing on the foundation of corruption. This was stated by Central Vigilance Commissioner N. Vittal while presiding over the seminar on corporate governance in the BLS Institute of Management in Mohan Nagar, Ghaziabad on Monday.

“Every political party is collecting funds in the name of donations which are nothing but black money contributed by the capitalists who derive huge benefits in return. But only five crore people in this country are corrupt while 95 crore are honest,” Mr Vittal declared. Corruption could be mitigated. For this, the country needed officers of honesty and proven integrity, he said.

“During my tenure, people have developed a faith in the Vigilance Department,” he claimed and added the number of complaints about corruption had jumped from 2,800 a year on an average to 17,000.

The commission could take action in cases of corruption even without a formal complaint. Where the commission suspected large-scale bungling, it initiated action quickly, he said.

He has asked 295 large public sector undertakings to draw out lists of 10 most honest, 10 less honest and 10 least honest officials in their organisations.

Reacting to the general feeling that a large number of technical institutions are being accorded approval by the All India Council of Technology despite the fact their standard is going down by the day, Mr Vittal said if a formal complaint was lodged with the commission, he could initiate action against the council as well as write to the Union Ministry of Human Resource Development.



Noida memorial to honour Kargil heroes
Our Correspondent

They gave their today for the nation’s tomorrow.
Patriots Supreme: They gave their today for the nation’s tomorrow.

New Delhi, April 10
A memorial built to honour those who sacrificed their lives in the Kargil war by the residents of Noida will be jointly dedicated to the nation by the three services chiefs on April 13.

The dedication ceremony will be a solemn service where the three services chiefs will consecrate and dedicate the memorial to the nation. The families of the martyrs will lay wreaths and a souvenir will also be released to mark the occasion.

The memorial was conceptualised in 1998 when the residents of the township wanted to not just honour its brave sons, but also to encourage and inspire the younger generation.

Funded by voluntary contributions from individuals, schools and the corporate sector, the memorial is an example of dedication and the teamwork of a group of ex-servicemen of the Noida Shaheed Smarak.

The smarak was conceived as a tribute to those defence personnel who have laid down their lives since 1947.

The work of building the memorial began in 1998 and gained momentum in 2001 when funds started pouring in.

This is perhaps for the first time in the country that a memorial has been built by a township to honour those who died fighting for their country.

The memorial has been constructed in Sector 29, Noida and a charitable society called the Shaheed Memorial Society will maintain it.



Computers to link police stations
Our Correspondent

Rohtak, April 10
The police stations in Haryana will be linked to the State Police Headquarters and the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) through a computer network. Speaking at a ‘meet the Press” programme organised by the Press Club here today, Mr Alok Rai, the SSP who assumed charge recently, informed that five police stations in Rohtak district would be covered in the first phase of computerisation in the state.

The process of computerisation was under way and it would be accomplished in the next three months, the SSP said adding that the funds for the purpose were provided by the NCRB.

Claiming that Haryana was far ahead of other states in the matter of linking police stations with State Police Headquarters and NCRB through computer network, Mr Rai said that the state police stations would have direct access to the NCRB databank through the computer network which would provide vital information necessary for solving various types of criminal cases.

About his priorities, the district police chief said that the setting up of a helpline for providing counselling to the adolescents about various problems, training of police personnel for stress management and friendly behaviour with the law-abiding citizens, proper management of traffic, vehicular pollution control and instilling confidence among the people would be his priorities. Besides, he would see to it that stringent action was taken against the criminals, especially the chain and purse snatchers, vehicle lifters and extortionists.



Pickpocketing on the rise around India Gate
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 10
Organised gangs of pickpockets are having a field day at the children’s park at India Gate where hundreds of parents and children visit everyday. A large number of parents have complained of loosing their money and valuables at the hands of the nimble-fingered criminals. The private security guards posted at the park have apparently been unable to provide adequate security to the visitors.

Sources said that the menace was even greater on Sundays and other public holidays when the rush of visitors was at the maximum at the recently renovated park. One of the parents recalled seeing groups of youths hiding behind trees and bushes counting the looted money and throwing away the empty wallets.

Asked about the menace, the Additional Commissioner of Police (New Delhi), Mr Sunil Garh, said that he had directed the area SHO to deploy adequate policemen at the park.

Meanwhile, reports of an increase in pick-pocketing in the overcrowded buses are also pouring in. With more than 7,000 buses off the roads, the CNG buses plying in the Capital are overcrowded which makes it easier for the pick-pocketing gangs to cash in on. 



SAD(B) hails govt refusal on pilgrims’ Pak visit
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 10
The Delhi unit of the Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal) today welcomed the government’s decision to refuse permission to the Sikh pilgrims to visit the historical gurdwara in Pakistan on the occasion of Baisakhi.

The party’s general secretary, Mr Kuldip Singh Bhogal said that the government’s move was appreciated in view of the tension between the two countries. Till the time the tension eased at the border, it was not in the interest of the community to visit Pakistan, he said. Mr Bhogal said that several times in the past also like in 1965, 1971, 1984, 1992 and 1999, Sikh jethas did not visit Nankana Sahib in Pakistan on the occasion of Baisakhi in view of the hostile conditions.



Govt staff union stages dharna

Rohtak, April 10
A large number of government employees of various departments led by Mr Jal Karan Balhara, chairman of the Haryana Karamchari Maha Sangh, staged a dharna in front of the office of the Deputy Commissioner here in protest against the non-acceptance of their long-pending demands and privatisation of the Transport Department today. Later, they submitted a memorandum to the Chief Minister through the Deputy Commissioner.

Addressing the agitators, Mr Ram Chander Phogat, president of the district unit of the sangh, demanded immediate implementation of the revised pay scales for the employees of all boards and corporations with effect from January 1, 1996. He sought a revision in different allowances including that of house rent, medical and uniform. Besides, he demanded regularisation of services of the employees serving on contract basis, removal of anomalies in the pay scales, a check on privatisation and retrenchment of employees, withdrawal of the decision as per which the field employees and the teachers were put under the control of panchayats. OC



Petrol station owner arrested for fraud
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, April 10
The owner of a petrol pump here has been booked and arrested by the police in connection with a fraud. According to the complaint lodged with the police, the accused had issued a cheque of Rs 50 lakh to his partner for taking over the pump in his name. But the cheque bounced when it was presented in the bank.

Scribes dharna

Journalists of the district have decided to stage a dharna at the Neelam chowk here tomorrow in protest against the beating up of mediapersons by the police at the Sabarmati ashram in Gujarat recently. A memorandum will also be submitted to the President through the Deputy Commissioner.

This was decided at a meeting held at the canal rest house here today. The meeting was chaired by veteran journalist M. S. Rajnikar who condemned the attack on journalist at Sabarmati and described it as an assault on the democracy as `Press’ was its fourth pillar. They demanded action against those responsible for the incident.

Purse snatched

Some miscreants snatched the purse of a woman doctor near the mini-secretariat here on Tuesday evening. According to information, Dr Sudha Sharma was returning to her house located at Lal Chand colony after closing down the shutters of her clinic. She alleged some youths snatched her purse, containing nearly Rs 3,300 and fled. The police have registered a case.

Meet on house tax today

The Haryana Chief Minister, Mr Om Prakash Chautala, has convened a special meeting of the Deputy Commissioners of all the districts and officers of the Local Bodies Department for tomorrow at Chandigarh to take a final decision on the issues like the levying of house tax under the new policy, shifting of dairies from the cities and towns and solid waste management.

Demolition drive

Under the face-lifting programme of the city, the officials of the district administration pressed into service JCB machines and removed encroachments in the Murthal Adda area here on Tuesday. According to a report, the officials also demolished the walls of the local Government Girls Senior Secondary School in a bid to widen the road in this area. 



Delhi policeman faces rape charge

Jhajjar, April 10
A 19-year-old unmarried girl was reportedly raped by her uncle (husband of her mother’s sister) Baljit Singh, a Delhi policeman, in Gubhana village of the district on the night of April 6.

The district police sources said here today that the parents as well as the family of the alleged rapist tried to keep the incident under wraps. However, the victim appeared before the police in the Bawana police station and lodged a complaint.

The police said that the victim, daughter of Ramphal, a resident of Mandora village falling under the Kharkhouda police station in Sonepat district, was working with the LIC in its Najfgarh branch after completing an agent-ship course. She was also a student of BA-I (correspondence). The girl had been staying with his aunt and uncle in Gubhana village since June 2001 and was a daily passenger from Gubhana to Najafgarh.

In her complaint, the victim stated that she had visited her friend’s house in Jahangirpuri on April 4. Then she phoned her uncle at his office at Alipur, who brought her to Gubhana, the next day. On April 6, she slept in a room in which her uncle was also sleeping.

She alleged that in the middle of the night, her uncle came to her bed and tried to molest her. In the scuffle, both of them received bruises on their faces. Later, the victim fell unconscious and the accused raped her. In the morning, she disclosed the whole incident to her aunt on which her father was called, who took the girl to his home in Mandora village. Later, her parents and her aunt decided not to disclose the incident and also directed the victim to remain silent. In their bid to smother her voice, the girl was held in captivity for a couple of days.

However, she finally appeared in the police station in Bawana and reported the whole incident. The case has been transferred to the Bahadurgarh Sadar police station where the accused has been booked under Section 376 of the IPC. He has not been arrested so far.



Rs 13-lakh petrol pump robbery solved
Our Correspondent

Rewari, April 10
With the recent arrest of a hardened criminal, Raghbir alias Sahil alias Tagir Ahmad, resident of Kumoda village under the Jyotisar police station of Kurukshetra district in Haryana, by the Preet Vihar police (East Delhi), the long-pending Rs 13.39-lakh robbery of Jubilee Petrol Station near Bawal on National highway No 8 here has been solved.

Raghbir, who was arrested by the Preet Vihar police in a case under Section 25/27/54 of the Arms Act, was remanded in Tihar Jail by a Delhi court on Saturday. Meanwhile, the Preet Vihar police informed the Rewari district police that during his interrogation, the criminal had confessed to his involvement in the petrol station robbery. Consequently, Raghbir was brought from Tihar Jail to Rewari for further interrogation by Mr Ram Mehar, CIA Inspector, and his team on the basis of a warrant issued earlier by the Chief Judicial Magistrate here. On Monday, Raghbir was produced in the court of the CJM who remanded him to police custody for 14 days.

According to a press note issued by the district police, during interrogation, the accused revealed the identity of four other accomplices, Vig alias Rajbir and Lillu, residents of Abhaipur village under the Sohna police station of Gurgaon district, and Aas Mohammad and Mehtab Moola Jat, residents of Baraut in Uttar Pradesh.

It may be mentioned that the gang had looted Rs 13.39 lakh from the Jubilee Petrol Station after firing at the cashier on January 28 this year. They decamped with the booty in an Indica car, which was stolen from Baraut and which was abandoned at some distance from the petrol station. Later, they escaped in a Tata 407. Later, they divided the booty among themselves. Police parties, along with Raghbir, have been sent to the hideouts of his other accomplices in UP.

Held for rape: The Kasaula police have arrested a youth, Mahendra Singh, for allegedly raping a teenaged girl, who was alone in her house in Raliawas village, about 10 km from here, on Monday. It is stated that when her mother was out in the field for harvesting and when she was alone in the house, the youth entered the house and raped her. 



490 power theft cases detected
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, April 10
The Uttar Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam (UHBVN) has stepped up its campaign against power theft in its Sonepat circle. The campaign so far has yielded good results.

Stating this, Mr S. N. Roy, Deputy Commissioner, told mediapersons here today that the officials of the Nigam had checked as many as 2,683 premises of consumers and detected 490 cases of power theft during the campaign that ended on March 31.

The officials, he said, had imposed a penalty of Rs 38.38 lakh on the erring consumers and recovered Rs 13.43 lakh on the spot.

He disclosed that the officials also lodged FIRs with the police against 67 consumers who failed to deposit the amount of penalty within the stipulated period. The officials had also detected 19 cases of overloading and imposed a fine of Rs 1.09 lakh on the erring consumers.

In the Gohana division alone, the officials of the Nigam had detected 143 cases of power theft last month.

A penalty of Rs 8.79 lakh had been imposed of which Rs 1.31 lakh had been recovered on the spot from them.



Two of burglar gang nabbed, 17 cases solved
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 10
With the arrest of two desperate burglars of the Vishal and Nizam gang, the special staff of the West district police today claimed to have solved more than 17 cases of burglary in the district. Two button-actuated knives were seized from them.

The special staff acting on a tip-off apprehended Shiv Ram alias Raju and Sanjay alias Dandi, both residents of Uttam Nagar, from near Hastsal Ganda Nalah bridge in Uttam Nagar on Tuesday.

During sustained interrogation, they disclosed that they used to operate in Janakpuri, Tilak Nagar, Vikas Puri and Uttam Nagar. They also disclosed that they along with their associates used to take a recee of locked houses in the posh areas during the day. Later in the night, they would break open the locks and loot cash and jewellery, said the Deputy Commissioner of Police (West), Mr Tajender Luthra.

The looted jewellery was sold to different jewellers in different areas. Raju and Sanjay both hailed from Bihar and would take safe refuge there after committing crimes till they planned their next move in Delhi. The other members of the gang, Inder Gullu, Kishan Pal and Kanhaiya are absconding and a massive hunt is on to nab them.

Hunt for killers: The West district police are looking for two persons in connection with the murder of a 30-year-old unidentified pregnant woman, who was found murdered on March 28 in the first floor of a rented house in Swaran Park in Mundka.

According to the police, the woman was accompanied by two men, in their late twenties, on March 26 and they helped her to get the rented accommodation. But both disappeared the next morning and the landlord who rented the house neither had checked the antecedents of the woman nor informed the police about his tenants.

60 kg ganja seized: The Delhi Police Crime Branch has apprehended a person and recovered 60 kg of ganja in Old Delhi Railway Station on Tuesday. The suspect, Noor Hassan (25), resident of Bihar was found with two huge boxes and when the police inquired about the contents, he failed to give a satisfactory reply.

When the police opened the boxes, they found 60 kg of gangs inside the boxes. Efforts were on to trace the other sources who used to supply the stuff to the accused.

Runaway robbers: The PCR staff stationed in the Kalkaji area nabbed three persons who robbed a person of Rs 1,200 and his wristwatch on Tuesday night. According to the police, Arjun Singh (28), resident of Dakshinpuri, who works in a restaurant left for his home after finishing his midnight duty. He took an autorickshaw in which two persons were already sitting.

Midway, the three accused, Satish (22), the auto driver, Jagjit (21) and Khurshid Khan (23), hit the victim and robbed him of his cash and wristwatch. The victim immediately complained to the police, and the PCR van which spotted the auto (DL-1R-5728) apprehended the three and handed over to the Malviya Nagar police station.



In-laws arrested for dowry death
Our Correspondent

Rewari, April 10
The Dharuhera police have arrested Sardara Singh and Om Devi, father-in-law and mother-in-law respectively of Sumitra Devi, wife of Inderjit, in connection with the latter’s death.

Sumitra Devi reportedly had burnt herself to death in Garhi Alawalpur village near Dharuhera on Sunday. She took this extreme step due to alleged torture and harassment by her in-laws following her parents failure to give more dowry. Her husband, Inderjit, is stated to be absconding.

Earlier, on the basis of a complaint lodged by Rajendra Singh, brother of the deceased, the police had registered a case of dowry death under Section 498-A and 304-B of the IPC against the husband, father-in-law and mother-in-law.

Sumitra Devi of Raipur village was married to Inderjit about a year ago and had allegedly had been facing harassment at the hands of her in-laws for the past several months.



20 govt officials booked for ST racket

Rohtak, April10
Nearly 20 government officials along with several clerks and class IV employees have been booked under the Prevention of Corruption Act in connection with a sales tax evasion racket busted recently.

According to police sources, two excise and taxation officers, three assistant excise and taxation officers, 14 sales tax inspectors and a sub inspector and a head constable of the CID along with others have been found guilty of taking bribe from traders for evading sales tax.

The district police got a tip-off that three trucks of Malik Transport Company carrying unaccounted goods were coming from Delhi to Rohtak on March 28.The police raided and found that nearly two-third part of the goods loaded in the trucks was without bills. The police arrested Prem Singh of Rohtak in this regard and seized some diaries from him. After going through the diaries, the police interrogated and booked nearly 40 persons. OC



Cops save kids from house set on fire by father

New Delhi
SHO of the Chittaranjan Park police station Harcharan Singh and Constable Pitamber rescued the life of a girl and a boy when their house was set on fire by their father in a bid to commit suicide on Tuesday night.

Puri, a habitual drunkard, set the house on fire on Tuesday night in a bid to commit suicide. Though the two policemen who saw the fire tried to douse it, Puri resisted the cops from entering the house. However, the police entered and saved the life of the three and took Puri into police custody.

According to the police, Puri was a habitual drunkard and used to create problems in the colony. He had been booked in three criminal cases, including a murder case. Even on Tuesday night before he attempted to commit suicide, he broke the windshield of his neighbour’s car with an iron rod.



‘Rain of gold’ for ghee consumers 
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 10
VRS Foods Limited, manufacturers of Paras brand of desi ghee and other dairy products, has just concluded a successful promotional contest, ‘Sone Ki Barsaat’. The contest was aimed at rewarding its ghee consumers.

The lucky Paras ghee winners won exciting prizes in gold, with the bumper prize money running into lakhs of rupees. Any customer who bought Paras Premium Pure Desi Ghee got an entry coupon, in which there was an easy question and a slogan to complete.

The entry coupons were made available to all Paras ghee consumers with the purchase of all packed varieties, namely pouches, Tetra, Polyjars and Tin pots. All respondents stood an excellent chance to win a gold ornament on sending their complete coupons.

Every week, 200 consumers won an exquisite gold locket each. The 10-week duration of the event saw 2,000 such lucky winners getting gold lockets as prizes.

The sole criterion for choosing the winners (from the complete entries) was the merit of the slogan.

In fact, those who had already won prizes could participate again by sending any number of entries, thus raising the chance of winning more weekly prizes.

Among these respondents, six lucky winners ended up winning the bumper prizes which are gold ornament sets worth lakhs of rupees!

The company claimed that it was an unprecedented contest which went a long way to win new consumers.


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