C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S

Hallomajra Death
Police files murder case
But yet to decide against whom

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 11
The Chandigarh Police today registered a case of murder against an unidentified person for the death of Nirmal Singh of Hallomajra on the basis of the findings of a magisterial inquiry into the incident.

Sources said it would be investigated whether Nirmal Singh died had due to police torture while in custody or if he had sustained fatal injuries during a fracas with his neighbour on January 2.The case was registered on the basis of an inquest report by the court of Balwinder Kumar, judicial magistrate-first class (JMIC), which had said the death had occurred as a result of “cranio- cerebral damage consequent upon blunt trauma to the head. All injuries described are anti-mortem in nature and caused by a blunt force----".

The postmortem was conducted by a board of doctors at the Sector 32 Government Medical College and Hospital on January 4 in the presence of the JMIC. On the basis of the findings, a case of murder was registered and a special investigation team (SIT) of the crime branch under the direct supervision of the SP (Crime) constituted to investigate the case.

Nirmal Singh’s family had alleged the death had occurred in custody upon which the police suspended SHO H. S. Sharma, ASI Mukh Ram and head constable Kuldeep Singh. The police said on January 2, the police control room (PCR) received a message about a quarrel at 9.57 am in Hallomajra village following which ASI Mukh Ram went to the spot. There was a fight between Shinder Kaur and her family with Nirmal Singh over the sewer water in the village street.

Meanwhile, ASI Mukh Ram received information that the quarreling parties had been taken to the GMCH in a PCR vehicle. Shinder Kaur was admitted to the hospital, but the doctors told ASI Mukh Ram that she was "unfit for statement".

The same day at 6.15 pm, the police received information that an unidentified man was lying on the road near House No. 3115, Sector 31-D. The man was rushed to the GMCH in a PCR vehicle. The doctors declared him unfit for record statement. The man died during treatment at the hospital at 5.20 am on January 3.

The same day, Raghbir Singh, brother of Nirmal Singh, met ASI Sumer Singh who took him to the GMCH, where he identified the body as that of his brother.



Hi-Fliers ‘Chak de’ Dynamos
Disbelief, despair at Sector 42 stadium

Mandeep Puri

The Chandigarh crowd cheered in vain.
PHL: The Chandigarh crowd cheered in vain. — A Tribune photograph

Chandigarh, January 11
They came, saw and left even before the match ended. Such was the disappointment the local crowd felt when the home team lost to Bangalore Hi-Fliers in the final of the Premier Hockey League at the Sector 42 stadium here today.

The stadium saw a rush of spectators much before the match began. Many a hockey enthusiast had come with painted faces and colourful banners to cheer for the favourite team.

The atmosphere was electrifying with the stadium coming alive with the chanting of ‘Chandigarh Chandigarh aahhaa aahha’. The stands were occupied much before the match began at 6 pm. But Dynamo supporters, who had expected a victory, started to move out even before the end of the third quarter. The writing was clear on the wall. They knew it was all over.

“ I came with high hopes but the Dynamos have disappointed thousands of hockey fans like me.I can’t believe we lost. I won’t see Chandigarh playing again,” said a dejected resident who had come with his family to cheer for the team.

Pupal Chapra said: “ I took leave from office to see my home team winning the PHL trophy, but it seems a dream remains a dream.”

The police was on its toes most of the time, controlling the crowd.

There was some unpleasantness with heated arguments between mediapersons and organisers trying to guard the players.



Black Designs
Dimpy faces attempt to murder charge
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 11
Charges of attempt to murder were framed against fashion designer Dimpy Gujral in the court of additional district and sessions judge R.S. Attri today after 14 months.

Dimply and her daughters were booked for assaulting Darshanjit Singh Grewal, son of former High Court judge S.S. Grewal and his wife Upneet Grewal in October 2006.

The complainant and defendants are residents of Sector 8. Counsel for the complainant said: “The accused have been booked under Sections 147, 148, 307 read with 149, 506 and 452 of the IPC.” The victims had alleged that Dimpy would bring her dog in front of their residence where the pet would urinate.

According to the complaint, on the evening of October 23, 2006, when Niharika and Variti, daughters of Dimpy, along with the dog walked past the residence of Justice Grewal, his son Darshanjit objected to it, leading to an altercation.

On October 25 too a quarrel took place on the subject. The following day, Dimpy along with her daughters, one Ikroop Singh and three others entered Justice Grewal’s house. One of them dragged Darshanjit out of the house even as Ikroop Singh hit him with an iron rod.

The accused allegedly assaulted Upneet Kaur, wife of Darshanjit, when she intervened. A case of assault, rioting and criminal intimidation was registered against the Gujrals. The suspects were arrested from a poultry farm.



Gang of highway robbers busted
Its leader a panch of Gulabgarh
Tribune News Service 

Dera Bassi, January 11
The Mohali police today busted a gang of highway robbers responsible for at least three murders and six armed robberies in Punjab and Haryana, leaving several persons grievously injured. The gang leader, Harpreet Singh, is a member of the Gulabgarh panchayat owning over 20 acres in the village.

The four persons arrested have owned responsibility for the murders of security guards at petrol stations in Banur and Chandi Mandir in 2004. The police has recovered stolen arms and cash from them.

“The gang was active in Mohali, Banur, Chandi Mandir and Ambala areas where they targeted petrol stations and liquor vends. The gang worked without fearl, striking at two petrol stations twice,” said DGP N.P.S. Aulakh at a press conference here today.

Harpreet Singh, alias Peetu, worked as a security guard with the National Dental College Dera Bassi. He was arrested along with his accomplice Baljit Singh, alias Bhola, from Seoli, a Punjab village bordering Haryana. The two were carrying .12 bore rifles hidden under blankets.Bhola is a truck driver.

Said SSP R.S. Khatra: “One of the rifles recovered was snatched by the gang from Nagar Singh, a security guard near village Dandrala, this year. The gang attacked Nagar Singh with kirpans leaving him severely injured.”

The gang has been active since 2004 when it struck at a petrol station in Chandi Mandir, Panchkula, killing one person. Harpreet also murdered his own gang member, Hardeep Singh, alias Bittu, a mechanic, the same year.

“Hardeep and Harpreet both wanted to be the ring leaders. Hardeep had a fight with constable Balwinder Singh of the same village. Harpreet killed Hardeep and left a suicide note in Hardeep’s pocket, blaming Balwinder for his death. Hardeep’s body was left on the rail tracks near Gholu Majra,” said the SSP.

Balwinder was arrested for the crime and was recently sent to five years in jail. His parents Gulzaar Singh and Swaran Kaur told mediapersons that their son had remained in jail for two years for a crime he had not committed.



4 school kids go missing
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 11
Four students of Guru Nanak Public School in Sector 36, all friends, have gone missing. SHO Devinder Sharma said Anmol, Gurmanjit, and Inderpreet are in Class VIII while Yuvraj is in Class X. All residents of Mohali, the students were reportedly under stress because of the parent-teacher meeting tomorrow as they had not done well in their December tests.

The police said the petrified parents approached them late this evening. One of the students had a mobile, which had been tracked to Shankar Gardens, New Delhi, before being switched off. A police party has been sent to trace them.



Day II: Major traffic snarl-up at Pinjore
Arun Sharma
Tribune News service

Panchkula, January 11
Major traffic disruptions were witnessed in the main market of Pinjore with the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) continuing its anti-encroachment drive on the second day, near here today.

In order to minimise the blockade, authorities decided to demolish the buildings on only one side of the road so that traffic was not impeded. Yesterday, it was a nightmare for commuters as thousands of vehicles were stranded for several hours on all the three roads leading to Pinjore from Chandigarh, Parwanoo and Baddi.

Meanwhile, sub-divisional magistrate-cum-secretary regional transport authority, Kalka, has declared the stretch of National Highway passing through Pinjore and Kalka as ‘No Overtaking Zone’ and ‘No Parking Zone’ in compliance with the report of the High Court appointed team in Harish Kumar Puri versus State of Haryana and others. However, ambulances ferrying patients are exempted from the rule.

“A total of 175 encroachments have already been removed and the drive will continue for the third day as 21 encroachments are still to be cleared,” said B R Kapoor, Xen, NHAI.

Earlier, 196 persons were issued notices by the NHAI to remove encroachments from the government land at Pinjore. However, six shopkeepers said they were issued notices despite them having an order against demolition of their shops from the court of additional district judge, Ambala, in 1996. “In the notice issued to me it was said that there was an encroachment of 31 feet while the size of the shop was merely 26 feet,” said Surinder Kumar, owner of shop number 70.

“NHAI officials have been provided the required papers, still they are marking the walls of our shops for demolition,” said Sahib Ram, another shopkeeper.

On the other hand, NHAI has denied any move to demolish these shops. “We are examining the papers submitted by them and no demolition would be undertaken before going through the court case,” said Xen, NHAI.



Forensic science lab on anvil
Tribune News Service

Mohali, January 11
The city would soon have a forensic science laboratory of the Punjab police. Punjab DGP N.P.S. Aulakh announced this during a press conference here this afternoon.

“Currently the lab is functioning from an annexe in the Punjab police headquarters and will be shifted to a proper building here,’ said the DGP.

Giving details of the project, SAS Nagar SSP R.S. Khatra added that a piece of seven kanals of land, lying vacant in Phase IV, had been identified for setting up of the lab.

“The land belongs to the police department. Funds for the building and other infrastructure will be provided by the Bureau of Police Research and Development, New Delhi,” said the SSP.

The lab will include facilities for DNA analysis, narco-analysis, chemical examination of viscera, fingerprint analysis, lie detecting, creation of computerised sketches etc.



Tribune ex-employee dead
Tribune News Service

Krishan Lal Sharma Chandigarh, January 11
A former employee of The Tribune group of publications, Krishan Lal Sharma (69), died after brief illness here yesterday.

He is survived by his wife, three sons and a daughter.

His cremation took place at the Sector 25 crematorium where his eldest son Rajesh Kumar, an employee with the group, lit the pyre.

Bhog and antim ardas will be held on January 20 at 2-3 pm in Pracheen Shiv Mandir, Sector 19, Panchkula.




Parking woes

Parking problem in Phase 7 market, particularly in the block, which houses various banks like ICICI, HDFC, PNB, SBP, PSCB, is increasing day by day. We met GMADA chief six months back and submitted a request for expansion of the parking. But nothing has been done so far. As there are a number of offices and banks, there is a lot of traffic and sometimes people even park cars and two-wheelers on the roadside. The lights in the area are also not working from the past seven years.

I request the market association to expand the parking area and fix the problems of lighting and marking.

Onkar Singh, Mohali

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Unhygienic Preparation
One quintal ‘gachak’ seized in raid
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 11
A team of health department today raided three premises at Burail village and seized huge quantity of “gachak” being allegedly prepared under unhygienic conditions.

Acting on specific information, a team led by Dr S.K. Bhandari and Dr Rajesh Dhir, local health authorities, swooped down on the premises in the morning.

During the raids, the team found workers preparing “gachak” apparently meant for Lohri celebrations under insanitary condition, sources said. The sources added that the department had deputed health inspectors to survey the area as customers.

During the survey, it was found that the “gachak”, prepared under unhealthy conditions, was being supplied to several stores.



Workshop owner held with stolen car
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 11
The operations cell of the Chandigarh police arrested a Ram Darbar-based motor workshop owner and recovered a stolen car from him. The police said the accused was caught while dismantling the vehicle at his workshop.

DSP (operation cell) Vijay Kumar said a police team arrested Shashi Kant, owner of Sajan Motor workshop, Phase II, Ram Darbar, following a tip-off and recovered a stolen Tata Indica car (CH 03 V 2836), which was being dismantled there. The car was stolen from Sector 8 last night. Sources said the accused had a novel modus operandi, as they modified the structure of the vehicle after dismantling it within hours of theft. A police officer said efforts were on to trace other members of the gang.



‘Fake’ lecturer held
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 11
The UT vigilance cell today arrested Amar Singh, a lecturer at Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 22, on the charges of obtaining a fake MSc (Mathematics) degree. Sources said a case of cheating and forgery under Sections 420, 467, 468 and 471 of the Indian Penal Code was registered against him today on the complaint of the DPI (S).



Reach out to poor, Capt Kanwaljit tells banks
Tribune News Service

Mohali, January 11
Punjab cooperation minister Capt Kanwaljit Singh has asked all banks to reach out to the common man and provide lending facilities to the poor as well.

He was presiding over the 6th district-level consultative committee meeting, SAS Nagar district, which was convened by Punjab National Bank.

The minister said the banks should reach out to the common man and involve khadi and village industries as well. He said the banks should adopt a liberal approach towards micro-finance and involve government agencies as well.

Deputy commissioner H.I.S. Grewal appreciated the banks in the district for achieving the targets under the ACP 2007-08 upto the quarter ended September 2007.



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