Wednesday, September 17, 2003, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


On-wheel mobile users to get tickets
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, September 16
The UT traffic police today launched a 15-day special drive to discourage motorists from using mobile phone while driving. Those found using the cell phone, while driving a vehicle will be challaned, which may run up to Rs 1,100. They will be challaned for ‘‘driving dangerously ’’.

Besides other places, the police today set up nakas near Matka Chowk, Aroma traffic light point and all entry and exit points of the city for the purpose.

The police has identified around 45 points in the city for setting up of such nakas.

Earlier, the challan amount was only Rs 100. According to sources, all Inspectors have been asked to issue maximum challans. The officers have also been asked to provide a daily list of challans to the SP’s office.

The police said if one wants to make or receive a call, while driving a vehicle, it should be stopped on the roadside and the engine must be turned off.

The engine must be turned off because otherwise, technically, the person would be considered driving the vehicle, said a traffic cop.

Those found using a mobile phone, while waiting on traffic light points, will also be challaned, said a senior police official.

While issuing a challan, the number from which the offender has made or received a call will be noted on the challan slip along with the time of the call as an evidence. 


Polythene bags banned, but not all
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 16
The Department of Environment, Chandigarh Administration, today banned polythene bags and plastic carry bags of thickness less than 30 microns and of size less than 8 inches by 12 inches in the city.

Following this order, no shopkeeper, vendor, retailer or rehriwala shall supply goods in polythene or plastic carry bags of thickness less than 40 microns and of size less than 8 inches by 12 inches. Further no person shall manufacture, store, import, sell or transport polythene/plastic bags of thickness less than 30 microns and of size less than 8 inches by 12 inches . Also each polythene bag shall be marked at the bottom by the manufacturer as per provisions of the Recycled Plastic Manufacture and Usage Rules, 1999.

Make the rules strict, the notification says the minimum weight of 50 carry bags of 30 microns of size 8 inches by 12 inches made of virgin or recycled plastic shall be 150 grams (plus or minus 5 per cent variation).

With regards to the enforcement of orders on manufacturing the Member Secretary, the Scientist ‘B’ and Asstt. Environmental Engineer of the Environment Department shall be responsible.

A list of officers of the Municipal Corporation has been drawn up to file complaints for violations of the directions under Section 19 of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986. These are The Additional Commissioner and Joint Commissioner; the Medical Officer of the Health, Municipal Corporation, Chandigarh; the Superintendent, Slaughter House; the Meat Supervisor; health supervisors in MOH office; the Chief Sanitary Inspectors in MOH Office; Sanitary Inspectors in MOH Office

Sources explained it had become necessary to issue such notification as the polythene bags were being used widely by shopkeepers, vendors and others in Chandigarh and these plastic bags are non-biodegradable and choke drains and sewerage and pollute soil, water and air, says the notification. It is observed that polythene bags were also being used to deliver food stuffs which may cause toxic affect. In order to minimise the use of plastic bags and in order to protect the health of people, animals and to improve the environment in general, this notification has been issued.


3 Blind School students hurt in mishap
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 16
Three blind children received minor injuries today when their school bus rammed into a Haryana Roadways bus (HR 37 8805) which suddenly applied brakes to avoid hitting cows on Dakshin Marg in front of the GMCH, Sector 32. The Blind School, Sector 26, vehicle was following the Haryana Roadways bus when the mishap took place. No case has been registered.

Sources in the hospital said no child from any accident was brought there. The accident took place only 100 metres away from the hospital towards the Sector 32 and Sector 33 round-about. The windscreen of the Blind School vehicle was smashed. The eyewitnesses said children hit against the seats. Blind School officials, however, denied that any child sustained injuries.


National air race from Nov 20
Union Minister may fly first leg
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 16
The Union Minister for Civil Aviation, Mr R.P.S. Rudy, is expected to fly the inaugural leg of the national air race from Chandigarh.

Stating this here today, the Chairman of the Chandigarh chapter of the Aeronautical Society of India, Air Cmde S.B. Prashar, said there were indications that the minister, who holds a private pilot’s licence, would fly the Chandigarh-Hindon leg, though final confirmation in this regard was awaited.

The air race, first event of its kind to be organised in the country, is scheduled to start on November 20. Participating aircraft have been divided into four regional groups, which will take-off simultaneously from Chandigarh, Goa, Bangalore and Barrackpore and touch down at Nagpur on November 22.

Hindon is the first stop over in the race’s 1500 km Chandigarh-Hindon Agra-Barailey-Kanpur-Khajuraho-Jabalpur-Nagpur northern circuit.

Of the 60-odd aircraft participating in the race, 12 would be taking off from Chandigarh. These are NCC microlites, Army helicopters and light aircraft from civilian flying clubs. The race is being organised by the Aeronautical Society of India to commemorate 100 years of aviation.

Air Commodore Prashar said the society was also organising a poster exhibition on aviation as a part of the commemoration events.

The exhibition, being held at the Lajpat Rai Bhavan here from September 18 to 20, will be open to the public. It will be inaugurated by the officiating Advisor to the UT Administrator, Mr R.S. Gujral.

The exhibition, conceived and designed by Wg Cdr D.P. Sabharwal (Retd), will cover all aspects of aviation. About 45 posters prepared by merging over 300 photographs will be displayed.

Special invitations have been sent to schools in Chandigarh, SAS Nagar and Panchkula and the morning sessions of the exhibition have been reserved exclusively for students.

A special feature of the exhibition, Air Commodore Prashar said, was a caption contest for visitors. They will be asked to write a caption for a particular picture and the winners will be awarded prizes. After Chandigarh, the exhibition will be moved to Delhi, Agra, Mumbai, Goa, Cochin, Chennai and Bangalore. It will be put up again in Chandigarh in December.

Chandigarh would also be hosting a national level aero-quiz in which one team from 14 cities, where the society has its branches, will participate.

The participating teams will be selected in quiz contests organised at the regional level by respective branch offices. The final round, which is scheduled to be held here on October 18, will be telecast on Doordarshan’s national channel.


Emerging from her mother’s shadow
Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 16
“Let my breath merge with cosmic breath…let my body be done to dust…let self-consciousness lose all meaning and the soul reign supreme…”

For those who seek purpose in art, life is bound to be an affair in harmony. Danseuse Kiran Sehgal’s life is no exception to the rule. Born into a family wedded to performing art, which saw its acme in the world of films, Kiran grew to become a proud harbinger of her parents’ dreams. Brought up amidst music and dance, which was a part of her mother Zohra Sehgal’s life, the celebrated odissi dancer says she could never really remain unreceptive to the experiences that filled her childhood days.

In the city on the behalf of SPIC MACAY today, Kiran Sehgal held an enlightening lecture demonstration for the students of YPS, Mohali. Not only did she portray the nuances of odissi, she also practised the basic “tribhanga” posture of odissi with some boys, who joined her in dance exercises on the stage. After the show, she talked to The Tribune, recalling her journey from home to stage.

“I took my first lessons in dance, as a part of Uday Shankar’s contemporary ballet movement. As a child, I acted in some plays of Prithvi Theatre. I also toured about 112 cities as a child artiste. Later, many film offers poured in but my father discouraged me completely. God had willed something else for me.” After imbibing the nuances of bharatnatyam, Kiran Sehgal went on to learn odissi, which became her ultimate medium of expression.

The Padma Shri dancer recalls: “As a dancer of two traditions, I was bound to mix one with another. There were occasions where I presented both. The transition often became very challenging. Although physically I could handle the stress, mentally I could not. So I gave up Bharatnatyam in the 1980s. Odissi was a better choice. It was more soft and lyrical as compared to bharatnatyam, which was about geometric settings.”

About her celebrated lineage, Kiran said: “I picked up my mother’s discipline, obstinacy and focus. I was so devoted to my art form that I ended up sacrificing a lot for the sake of dance. I was never into acting. I always had a problem in delivering dialogues, but dance came naturally.”

Kiran still remembers the day she saw Indrani Rehman perform at Sapru House in Delhi. “She looked like an angel. I could not resist the temptation of going her way. I chose odissi,” said the dancer, adding, “elegance is basic to odissi. It is a form essentially for women. I have never relished males dancing odissi. They are better gurus. Also the form is highly sculpturesque, the sequences coming from iconography. The dance is also influenced by paintings. Since I have studied display, design and painting in England, I can better relate with the finesse of the form.”

Having won awards like the Sangeet Natak Akademi award, the Parishad Samman, Indira Gandhi Priyadarshini award and many more, Kiran is now teaching odissi in Delhi. Ask her what happened to the Uday Shankar style and she says: “No one really kept it. Today we have nothing in the name of contemporary dance. Today’s fusion makes no sense.” For her part, Kiran has choreographed a piece, titled “Rhythm and moves of Odissi”, blending traditional with modern. She has also used her painting skills to choreograph the Ashok Vatika sequence in her work, “Ramayana.”


Repeal rent Act, cry landlords
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 16
Property owners of the city have demanded that the rent act be repealed totality and asked the political parties to come clean on the issue lest they may face the music later.

The attending people demanded a special forum for taking up tenant-landlord disputes for speedy settlements.

To allow repossession to the property owner on the termination of tenancy without recourse to litigation.

It was a question of giving justice to five lakh people of the city hence nothing unjustified would be tolerated, pointed out the Property Owners Welfare Association.

The meet was organised by Property Owners Welfare Association Chandigarh over the weekend and it was attended by more than 400 persons owning property in the city. Besides the POWA, representatives of more than eight welfare bodies of the city participated.

These include FOSWAC, Pind Bachao Committee, Federation of CHB allottees Associations, Defence sectors Welfare Association, Indian Ex Servicemen League, Citizens Association Sector 21 and Samadhaan.

Prominent among those who addressed the gathering were Brig Sant Singh (retd), Mr Angrez Singh, Air Marshal Randhir Singh (retd) , Col Dhillon (retd) , Major GS Sandhu (retd), Col Gurdial Singh (retd), Mr B.S Chhadha, Ms Shyama Negi MC Councilor, PC Sanghi MC Councilor, Mr Karnail Singh Doad and Mr RP Malhotra.

Speakers were of the opinion that immediate repossession of premises to the landlord without recourse to litigation, as prevalent in other developing countries.

Brig Sant Singh said investor friendly laws are need of the hour for giving boost to the economy of the country.

Pleading for total repealing of rent act, Mr RP Malhotra stressed for fair deal to the aggrieved land lords.

He emphasised that the tenants enjoying protection of rent act are getting undue benefit by evading Government revenue besides paying far low rent as compared to the market.

Mr Angrez Singh was much pained to narrate the agony of the UT villagers, who were deprived of the precious land by offering them meager compensation.

Flaying the Administration's policy of rehabilitating the migrant labours, Mr Angrez Singh advocated for a scheme for the settlement of Villagers.

Mr Karnail Singh Doad while announcing a donation of Rs 10,000 for the cause pleaded for unity to fight the cause as in democracy humans are counted not weighed.

To mount sustainable pressure on the Administration, unity is must, he said.

PC Sanghi pleaded that repealing of rent act is vital for generating large scale employment opportunities as more than 250 ancillary industries are linked with the construction sector.


No petrol price hike for now
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 16
Even as the Chandigarh Administration today clarified that there was no proposal to revise the rate of sales tax on petrol, for the time being, several queries are being raised in official circles as to how come a meeting was convened between officials of the Administration and the petroleum dealers of the city to discuss the hike.

Sources said there was no proposal on file to hike the sales tax on petrol and bring it on par with Punjab. Last week a meeting was convened, wherein the petroleum dealers were told that sales tax would be hiked from the existing 22 per cent to 27 per cent, prevailing in Punjab.

The hike would have raised the price of petrol by Rs 1.50 per litre in Chandigarh and diesel by Rs 2. Officers concerned have been questioned by their seniors.

At present petrol is Rs 32.79 per litre in Chandigarh. This was revised on September 1. If fresh taxes had been imposed, then the price would have gone beyond Rs 34 per litre.

Within hours of the meeting between the petroleum dealers and the Administration, the Chandigarh Petroleum Dealers Association had alleged that this was being done to please the powerful lobby of Punjab petroleum dealers.

They had said that the move was aimed to bring about price parity with neighbouring Mohali where petrol sells at Rs 35.27 per litre. In Panchkula the rate is Rs 32.45 per litre.

The officialdom, the dealers were told at the meeting that there was a need to increase the price of petrol and diesel.

At present the sale in 42 petrol stations in the city is about 7000 kilolitre a month while in neighbouring Mohali the sale is only 500 kilolitres a month.

The association had also pointed out that this hike would defeat the purpose of setting up a oil depot in sector 25.


Lake Club general manager resigns
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 16
The general manager of the Lake Club, Sector 1, here Lieut-Col Madhu Berry (retd), resigned from his job this evening. He was facing an enquiry into the alleged financial irregularities of funds and accounts of the club being run by the Sports Department.

Sources said Colonel Berry put in his papers following the sealing of liquor records of the club on Saturday night.

It is still not clear whether his resignation will be accepted or not. It was submitted to the Finance Secretary-cum-Secretary, Sports, Mr Karan Avtar Singh.

Officials state that since he is not a regular employee there will be no monthly pension from which the amount misappropriated can be recovered, if he is found guilty.

The Administration had initiated an enquiry after allegations that Colonel Berry was not maintaining the records of parties organised at the club properly.

The catering for parties at the club is carried out by the Chandigarh Industrial Tourism Corporation (CITCO) but the records of CITCO and the Lake Club do not tally.

Investigating officials point out that CITCO had catered to fewer functions than actually hosted at the club.

The booking records at the lake indicate that Colonel Berry had invited outside caterers on a few occasions.

Since the Lake Club and CITCO are both run by the Administration other caterers are not allowed.

Similarly the records of the bar were reportedly not in order when the raids were conducted on Saturday night.


Sale of unstamped meat resumes
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 16
Five months after the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh launched a major drive to check the sale of unstamped meat, the illegal supply of meat to shops has resumed in the city. Unlicensed slaughter houses are meeting the daily requirement of around 120 quintals of meat in the city.

A sizeable amount of the meat is being smuggled in to the city as about 150 animals are being slaughtered daily at the place authorised by the corporation.

Inquiries reveal that hoodwinking the enforcement agencies, the meat suppliers in the labour colonies use forged stamps of the corporation.

It may be pertinent to mention that last year the corporation had seized around 60 kgs of unstamped meat and 5 heads of sheep from a meat shop in Attawa village — unearthing a racket of illegal supply and smuggling of unstamped meat to the city.

The staff of the Municipal Corporation had also seized a sizeable quantity of meat from some leading stores. The meat had been destroyed after the corporation had claimed that the seized meat was not hygienic. All stores were then challaned for supplying unstamped meat.

According to sources the corporation had decided to lease out its slaughter house as it was incurring losses due to the unauthorised sale of unstamped meat in the city. Shortage of staff was coming in the way of keeping a check on the illegal business.

A senior officer said if the licenced stores continued to sell uncertified meat, their licence could also be cancelled.

In March last when the Mayor of the corporation, Mr Subash Chawla, had visited the slaughter house of the corporation, he had found out that only 55 animals had been slaughtered there. As per the Meat By-laws certification of quality, type, date, jhatka and halal had be procured from the slaughter house before selling the meat. It has also been noticed that at times, dead animals were shown as slaughtered and the meat of the same was supplied in the city.


Disco timing to go on till Nov 10
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 16
The Chandigarh Administration today extended its order allowing owners of restaurants, pubs, discotheques, clubs, wine shops and road side hawkers to keep their establishments open till 1 a.m. on weekdays.

On weekends (Saturday and Sunday night) the timing have been extended up to 2 a.m. Cyber-cafes can remain open up to 2 a.m. on all days of the week.

Orders in this regard were issued by the District Magistrate, Mr Arun Kumar, to extend the notification by a period of 60 days. The order shall remain in force till November 10.

The Deputy Commissioner also extended the order asking landlords to furnish information about tenants. He has issued orders under Section 144 of the Cr.P.C. The landlord of a commercial, residential and industrial property is needed to inform the Station House Officer concerned about the tenant. This order shall also remain in force till November 10.


Panchkula Diary
ESI tag for Sec 19 dispensary
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 16
The government dispensary in Sector 19, will now be converted to ESI dispensary. A decision to this effect was taken during the single window service meeting of the Haryana Chamber of Commerce and Industry (HCCI) with the administration today.

It was decided that besides the two doctors already posted in the dispensary, two doctors from the Surajpur dispensary will also be transferred here.

Earlier, the district administration had decided to take over this dispensary, constructed by the Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) and run it through the District Red Cross Society. This move came after the failure of the Health Department to take over this dispensary, as well as the Mansa Devi Complex, Sector 4 dispensary.

The industrialists also asked the administration to get the PVC water pipes in the Industrial Area changed, so that water leakage from these pipes was stopped. They said that water leakage was damaging the roads. HUDA officers, present in the meeting, said they had already replaced 1600 meters of the PVC water supply pipes and the remaining work would be taken up after the monsoons.

MC officials were also asked to dispose off all solid waste generated in the Industrial Area at a vacant piece of land in Industrial Area Phase I, till the time the solid waste disposal plant was not constructed. The industrialists also promised to purchase a fire tender and give it to the local fire station.

HUDA auction: The auction of 192 commercial sites in almost all parts of the town will be held by Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA ) on September 29. It is after almost one year that a one-time attempt for auctioning of commercial sites in almost all sectors has been made. Showrooms, SCO’s, booth sites, double storey shops in Sectors 2- 12, 12-A, 14- 17, 19- 21, 25 and Mansa Devi Complex Sector 5 will go under the hammer.


Sexual harassment at workplace alleged
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 16
A stenographer in the District Town Planning office has accused the District Town Planner (Enforcement), Panchkula, of sexually harassing her at workplace.

Acting on her complaint, Director Town and Country Planning, Haryana, Mr N.C. Wadhwa, today shifted the stenographer from under DTP (Enforcement), Mr Aniruddh K. Sharma, and transferred her under DTP (Planning), Ms Geeta Prakash.

In her complaint to the Director Town and Country Planning, the stenographer has alleged that the officer would call her in his office on the pretext of typing official letters on the computer, and would make passes at her.

The complaint was reportedly made to the Director a few weeks ago and the officer as well as the complainant were summoned by him. However, the order of transfer of the complainant has been issued today.

The DTP Enforcement, Mr Aniruddh K. Sharma, denied the charges levelled against him and said he was unaware of any such complaint made against him. He, however, accused the stenographer of being a work shirker.


PUDA notices to ’84 riot-hit
Our Correspondent

SAS Nagar, September 16
Resentment prevails among families affected by the 1984 riots over the notices being sent by the PUDA authorities, telling them to pay within 15 days the amounts due against the houses allotted to them here. The families stated that the Punjab Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, had given an assurance in June that the remaining dues would be waived. The assurance, they say, had no meaning in view of the notices received by them.

They further said the Chief Minister had constituted a three-member panel of ministers to look into the demands of the riot-hit families and submit a report within a month. However, no report had been presented so far.

They add that PUDA has warned them to pay their dues, failing which the houses will be resumed.


Cop succumbs to injuries
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 16
Sub-Inspector Nefe Singh (50), who was hit by an unidentified red-coloured Qualis on Sunday near the Sector 20 gurdwara, died today at the PGI.

Nafe Singh was posted with the Sector 36 police station and was on official duty when he met with the accident on the roundabout of the Sector 33 and 20. One of his sons is posted with the Sector 26 police station as a Constable.


Woman commits suicide
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 16
A “mentally unstable” 30-year-old woman Sarita Pandey, mother of two children and wife of a labourer, today committed suicide in Pandit Colony Kajheri, police said. She died on the spot.

Sarita Pandey poured kerosene on herself and set herself on fire outside her house when her husband Rajesh Pandey had gone to get water from the community tap in the colony early in the morning. Her younger son was standing at the door when she allegedly committed suicide.

The other son of the woman was with her in-laws who lived separately next door.

The neighbours of the woman tried to save her by throwing water on the burning woman but she died on the spot. Her body was taken to the Sector 16 Government Hospital for autopsy.

The police said her family members told it Sarita had been “unstable in her behaviour”.


Man crushed to death by bus
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, September 16
The failure of the Chandigarh Police to carry out the ban order regarding the movement of inter-state buses on Dakshin Marg took a life here today.

A man was crushed to death by a Haryana Roadways bus of Hisar depot opposite Pracheen Hanuman Mandir, Sector 32 at 7 p.m.

According to an eyewitness, the bus had started moving when the man tried to hop on to the bus from the front door but slipped and came under its rear wheels.

The bus driver, Brajesh Tyagi, has been arrested.


Market pulse
Kinetic launches 4 bikes
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 16
The Kinetic Engineering has launched four new models under the ‘Kinetic Biking’ brand. In the performance and premium segment, the company has launched two motor cycles under the GF 170 series, ‘GF 170 city’ and ‘GF laser.’ Other two models are ‘Velocity’ and ‘Boss 115’.

Launching the models, Mr Punit Chaudhary, General Manager of the company, said," By launching four models at a time, the company is trying to make its presence felt in all segments. The company has so far sold 20,000 motor cycles in the current year. Our target is to garner a share of at least 10 per cent of the total market in the next two to three years."

He said ‘Boss 115,’ priced at Rs 33,500, would be marketed in the economy class, which constituted 26 per cent of the 40 lakh annual market of motor cycles. The ‘Velocity’ model would be available for about Rs 38,000 and was targeted at the executive class, currently constituting 64 per cent of the total motor cycle market.

Mr Navneet Mehra, regional manager for greater Punjab, added that ‘GF 170 city’ and ‘GF laser’, designed in collaboration with Hyosung Motors, Korea, would be priced in the range of Rs 45,999 to Rs 49,998.

He claimed that features of the GF series included four valve engine, 15 bhp power and a top speed of 115 kmph.


TRAI directive to basic telecom operators
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 16
Coming down on basic telecom operators who provide land line phones, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has directed the companies not to “discriminate” against private Internet service providers (ISPs) and provide similar facilities to other ISPs also. The TRAI wants a level playing field for ISP operations, run by basic telecom operators and private ISPs.

The directive, posted today on the TRAI website, says “there should be no discrimination between their own ISP operations and private ISPs by the basic telecom companies while providing such facilities”.

The TRAI said it had received complaints that the basic telecom operators were entering into commercial arrangements for leasing their ISP operations. Sources in the sector said one of the grudges of the private ISPs was the free Internet access provided by the basic operators.

The private ISPs had to take a lease line on hire from the basic operators, put up modems and routers at a cost of a few lakhs.

In the past, the basic telecom operators had started their own ISP networks, which had put the private ISPs at a disadvantage.

The directive of the TRAI has been sent out to all basic telecom operators in the country and Internet service providers.

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