C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Punjab’s nod for PU’s central status
Smriti Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 23
In a significant move, the Punjab government has decided to recommend the central status for Panjab University to the Union government.

“The Punjab government will write to the Centre in this regard,” said the Punjab chief secretary Ramesh Inder Singh.

It is also speculated that SAD president Sukhbir Badal, who is scheduled to visit the Panjab University on August 25 for a function, is likely to announce the move.

The chief secretary added that colleges in Punjab which are affiliated to Panjab University would continue to remain affiliated to the university. However, this would also mean that the 40 per cent grant, which Panjab University gets from the Punjab government, would also be withdrawn.

The university gets 60 per cent of its budget deficit from Chandigarh and the rest from Punjab. It must be mentioned here that over the past few years, the Punjab government had frozen its grant to the university at Rs 16 crore instead of 40 per cent of the deficit.

The PU Teachers Association had been demanding the status for the past two months. The central status university will mean higher salaries to teachers and the increase of retirement age from the current 60 years to 65 years. It means that there would be a huge budget for the university. Research students’ stand benefited and the cost of forms and prospectuses will be uniform like in other central universities.

Earlier on two occasions, when Punjab Chief minister Parkash Singh Badal had visited the university, he was asked to clear his government’s stand on the issue.

Immediately after the Centre announced that there would be two central universities in Punjab, including one world-class university in Amritsar, Badal had categorically stated on the campus that if the central status to PU would mean cutting on one university in Punjab, it would not be acceptable.



Nayagaon Master Plan to allow only low-rise buildings
Chitleen K Sethi
Tribune News Service

Mohali, August 23
In a major shocker to the Tata Housing Development Corporation, the Nayagaon Master Plan released by the Punjab government today has allowed only low-rise buildings in the area north of Chandigarh’s Capitol Complex.

The company had planned Punjab’s tallest housing project on 52 acres of land in Kansal village barely 1 km from the Capitol Complex, which houses the Punjab and Haryana Secretariat and the high court buildings. The edict of Chandigarh specifically bans any construction north of this complex.

The THDC had planned to offer around 2,000 apartments in 13 multi-storey towers here. The tallest of these towers was planned to be 35 storeyed and another 31. The remaining towers ranged from 12 to 23 storeys.

The draft master plan released by the Department of Local Bodies today clearly points out that this area is eco fragile and seismic prone and only low intensity, low-rise housing will be allowed here.

The news will be equally disturbing to the 90 MLAs, who had sold their “Punjab MLAs Housing Society” land to the Tatas for the project. Led by Lok Sabha deputy speaker Charanjit Singh Atwal almost 70 Akali MLAs and 20 Congress MLAs had entered into a deal with the Tatas. Each MLA, who gave up his share in the society was to get Rs 82.5 lakh in cash plus an apartment in the proposed project. Two instalments totaling Rs 34 lakh have already been paid to each of these MLAs and they are desperately waiting for the project to come through.

The area is also regulated by the provisions of the Punjab Capital Periphery Control Act 1952 and the Punjab Land Preservation Act 1900 (PLPA). Parts of three villages were included to establish the Nayagaon Notified Area Committee (NAC) in 2006 despite objections from the Department of Forests that no development activity couldtake place in areas bound by the PLPA.

The master plan released today almost closes its eyes on these forest acts. The master plan points out that an order of the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests has de-listed this area from PLPA. The master plan completely ignores the fact that the de-listing was conditional and no activity other than bonafide agriculture was allowed. The entire area within NAC has been as a result “planned” for the future in the master plan.

“While we have planned development for the area, it will be subject to the decision of the Supreme Court or the Government of India. No buildings plans will be passed for these areas till the final decision is taken on the PLPA issue,” said a senior official in the Local Bodies Department. Almost 60 per cent of the area has been planned as residential while only 2 per cent has been kept aside as commercial. Almost 18 per cent of the area will be used up for transport and communication.



Woman leaps to death at PGI
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 23
A 33-year-old woman, Rajbala, of Sector 40 allegedly committed suicide by jumping off the fourth floor of the PGI’s New OPD Block here today.

The incident took place around 12.30 pm when the victim’s father had reportedly gone to purchase medicines from a local chemist shop.

The medicines were recommended by a doctor of the psychiatry department where Rajbala had been undergoing treatment for some years.

She reportedly did not accompany her father to the chemist on the pretext of going to the canteen for a snack. “When I returned, I couldn’t find her. While I started searching for her, my younger daughter called up on the mobile saying that a local news channel was flashing news about a woman committing suicide at the PGI,” said Harichand.

“I reached the new OPD ward where I saw some people washing bloodstains. They told me that the victim had been taken to the emergency. Still not ready to believe that Rajbala could have taken such a step, I went to check. My fears came true when I saw her body,” said Harichand while talking to the TNS at his Sector-40 residence.

Rajbala had not been keeping well for the past few days, Harichand said. He said she had been under depression for some years. “She had been receiving treatment since 1995 after she had failed to qualify PMT examination in 1994,” he said.

She was intelligent and had done her post-graduation in public administration from Panjab University, he added.



Mystery over drug addict’s death
Addiction centre docs tortured him: Mother

Himani Chandel and Kulwinder Sangha

Mohali, August 23
A 20-year youth was found dead under mysterious circumstances outside his house in the wee hours this morning. The victim, Surinder Singh, was a drug addict and admitted to a drug de-addiction centre at Balongi on Wednesday.

The victim’s mother alleged that her son was tortured to death by those running the centre and after he died they dumped him outside the house in Phase 3B1 here.

Surinder Singh was a drug addict and admitted to the rehabilitation centre. “For some reason, the centre’s men rushed him to two private hospitals in Phase IV and VI yesterday but he was declared brought dead by doctors,” said SP City Virenderpal Singh.

“Then they allegedly dumped the victim outside his house at around 3 in the morning.

The body had injury marks on the head, neck, arms and eyes. The centre has been closed since and managers are absconding,” added the SP City.

Though no FIR has been registered in the case so far, the family has alleged that he was beaten to death by doctors at the centre.

“The hospital staff might have beaten him up as he was used to taking capsules. His body had injury marks all over. They threw the body in the lawn outside and did not even bother to inform us,” said Daljeet Kaur, victim’s mother.

“We came to know about the body when we went outside after hearing the noise of a car,” she said. “We had admitted him to the centre with a hope that he might be cured. We did not know that he would die like this,” she said.

The police said a case would be registered only after the post-mortem report is received.

The SP said the hospital was requested to set up a three-member board of doctors to carry out the post-mortem which was videographed because of allegations made by his family members. The viscera had been sent for a chemical examination.

Surinder Singh was a driver but was at home for the past six months. “He left studies long back and took driving as his carrier,” added the mother. He was staying with his mother and grandmother and his father and brother are working in Dubai. No arrests have been made so far.



‘Only patient at centre’
Megha Mann
Tribune News Service

Kharar, August 23
Surinder Singh, who died under mysterious circumstances after getting admitted at a drug de-addiction centre in Balongi, was the only patient at the centre.

"There was no other patient at the centre, except Surinder," said Ravinder Raju, Phase III B-2 Mohali resident and owner of the Sankalp Nasha Mukti Kendra, Balongi village, where Surinder was admitted.

The centre is being run in a rented accommodation for the past five years. According to owner of the 10-marla house building, Ravinder Raju had taken the accommodation for the past five years.

Talking to TNS on the phone, Raju claimed that he was in Rajasthan and had come to know about Surinder's death. Raju claimed that Surinder came to the centre on Wednesday himself to get treated for addiction.

"Surinder had come to us with a will to leave addiction," Raju claimed. When asked about the cause of Surinder's death, Raju gave self-contradictory versions. Initially, he said Surinder had run away from the centre on Friday morning. "Most addicts run away from the centre and went back to their homes," Raju said. However, centre officials did not make any police complaint regarding missing Surinder and nor did they call up his family.

"We assumed that Surinder had gone to his family members," Raju said.

However, people living around the centre told TNS that they had seen two men from the centre carrying an unconscious man in a vehicle. To this, Raju claimed, "I got a call from the centre that Surinder was suffering from withdrawal symptoms. His condition deteriorated and he was taken to a hospital in Phase III B-2." He claimed that Surinder was taking capsules and intravenous injections.

As per doctors working for the de-addiction cause, withdrawal symptoms of people taking capsules and injections are not so severe that it may cause death.

As per Raju, there is no staff at the centre, except for his friends Goldy and Harmeet.

Raju claimed that the de-addiction center was registered as an NGO with registrar, Co-operative Societies, Mohali. He claimed that a physician from Kharar and a lady psychiatrist from Mohali had been visiting the centre.


Group Housing Societies
Transfer fee to be paid in 4 instalments
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 23
The Chandigarh administration has decided that charges for regularisation of general power of attorney (GPA) holders in the group housing societies will have to be paid in four instalments.

GPA holders will have to pay 25 per cent money in the first instalment and the rest of the money in four annual instalments.

Officials confirmed that group housing flats will be transferred in the name of GPA holders only after the payment of the transfer fee.

GPA holders are already up in arms against the hefty charges imposed by the Chandigarh administration for the regularisation of the GPAs.

Compared to its neighbouring state of Haryana, which charges a nominal fee of Rs 20,000 as transfer fee for regularising sale agreement, the administration is demanding lakhs of rupees as transfer fee.

A few years ago, a majority of the original allottees of cooperative societies had surrendered their membership in the wake of the cooperative movement not picking up momentum in the city.

And it was with the money of substitute members and GPA holders that a majority of cooperative housing projects were completed.

The administration had regularised substitute members in 2006 and authorised societies to fixed the substitution fee.

The substitution experiment could be replicated in the case of regularisation of GPAs also, as the substitute members had bought the flats on the GPA.



Caught in financier’s web, four cry foul
Swati Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 23
Watch out while borrowing money from a financier, for you may land in litigation and a whole lot of trouble. Ask four city residents, who have been making rounds of the courts after falling pray to one such financier.

Dharamvir repents the day when he decided to borrow money from a financier, Sant Kumar, as he has been caught in a vicious cycle of repaying the never-ending installments ever since.

When he stopped paying the installments, a case was filed against him by the moneylender.

Dharamvir claimed: “It is an organised racket run by a group of people. These financiers first issue loan and take blank cheques from the loanee. The loanee pays the monthly installments to the financier but no record is maintained. In fact, the payment slip is also not given.”

“I kept paying the monthly installments but installments kept coming. Whenever I used to ask about the pending balance, the financier assured me of telling him the next time. The payments continued and no account was maintained. When I stopped paying the installments, a case of cheque bounce was filed against me.”

Dharamvir is not the only victim. Ashok Rahlan, Birmal Saroop and Sarvar Khan have also fallen prey to the financier with one or more than one case filed against them.

Saroop said members of a single family are involved in the racket. “The whole family is involved in giving loans and then slapping a case on the loanee,” they said in chorus.

The kingpin who lends the money, Sant Kumar, has filed 87 cheque bounce cases in the courts, while Hari Krishan has 110 such cases pending in the courts. Another associate of the family, Sushma Kumari, has filed five such cases and Upma Kakkar has filed 70 cheque bounce cases on different respondents.

Interestingly, the counsel for all the accused is the same. The counsel said: “The respondents can complain of as many people as they want. All I can say is that these complaints are genuine.”

Even the judiciary is overburdened with cheque-bounce cases. Out of the 91,326 pending cases at the district courts, more than 52,704 pertain to cheque bounce.

The respondents have even complained about it to the SSP and the income tax department, but to no avail.

After the complaint was made to the Governor, an inquiry was marked and investigations were on to unravel the racket.

According to investigations carried out by The Tribune, almost 10 cases pertaining to cheque bounce are filed by financiers every day in the courts complex.



Crusader for soldiers languishing in Pak jails
Sumedha Sharma

Chandigarh, August 23
“I wonder how the nation sleeps in peace when those who sacrificed an entire lifetime suffer in dark prisons?” quips Heera Lal Yadav, a Gandhian who has turned crusader for the release of war prisoners of the 1971 aggression through his ambitious project “Rihaai”.

An insurance agent by profession, he is an activist today. His 60,000-km cycle journeys took him through countries like Thailand, Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia.

In 1997, when the country was celebrating the Independence Day, he felt the need to contribute his bit, especially for those soldiers with whose contributions the citizens were enjoying the fruits of freedom.

These days, he is touring the country to raise awareness about the sorry state of affairs of Indian prisoners languishing in Pakistan jails.

Talking to the TNS at Dev Samaj College here today, he discussed and provided an overview of his project that aims at sensitising people about the plight of war prisoners. Looks can be deceptive as nobody can judge his determination and strength at the first glance but this man is dedicated to his cause and is sure of his success.

He says: “A nation like ours can find replacements for all, even the President, but nobody can ever replace a soldier. According to official list, around 54 officers are in Pakistan jails and the government is just not bothered about them. The immense vacancies in the armed forces and the falling interest among youngsters in taking it as a career option proves the fact.”

As he elaborates on the awareness campaigns being run in association with families of these prisoners, one is sure to be doubtful of it catalysing their release but one example that has always driven him justifies his zeal: “Our freedom struggle was sparked by a mere sepoy and it took 90 years after that for the fire to spread. I await the same.”

The man not only carries with him a contagious positivity but some burning questions as well, like: “Why do we waste an entire Parliament session discussing punishments to militants and have nothing more than hoax promises for those whose sacrifice is dying unnoticed, unappreciated?” he says.

After an interactive session with students, he honoured the winners of a poster making competition held on the college premises.



Life Saving Techniques
Campaign ends with a run
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, August 23
Over 800 people, including students, senior citizens and corporate executives, today participated in Safety Run from the Sector 16 Cricket Stadium to Sukhna Lake.

Safety Run was the concluding event of the two-month-long “Emergency Response and Care Campaign” jointly initiated by Safety Circle, CITCO, a telecom company and an FM station, wherein more than 5,000 residents, including children, women and senior citizens, learnt about life saving techniques, first aid and CPR.

The objective of Safety Run was to enhance safety awareness amongst the people from all segments of society in which we live, work and play. Participation certificates were given to all participants by Safety Circle. “I have participated in Safety Run for fun. I enjoy running and it’s good for health as well,” said a student of St Annes School.

Meanwhile, Haryana Governor Dr A.R. Kidwai presided over the closing ceremony and released the Hindi edition of ‘Emergency Response and Care’, an illustrated book on life saving techniques based on the latest recommendations in the field of medicine and updated international medical practices.

S.P. Sharma, financial commissioner and principal secretary (finance), Government of Haryana, released the Hindi versions of illustrated ready reckoners on child safety, women health, home safety and HIV for community awareness programmes.



MC rapped for role in handling waterlogging
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 23
Janata Party’s local unit president Ajay Jagga has condemned the working of the Chandigarh municipal corporation claiming that it had done little to ensure least discomfort to city residents during the rainy season.

He said residents had to bear with poor planning of the corporation in tackling waterlogging in the city.

Even after faulty drainage system, the corporation had started work on digging roadsides to widen roads, which in some cases was over three feet. He questioned the logic behind starting the work during rainy season.

Alleging that the city’s drainage system had failed completely, he sought a probe into the manner in which the waterlogging situation had been handled. Jagga demanded that erring officials should be dealt with sternly.



Abhinav gifted Volvo S80
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 23
Abhinav Bindra’s triumph at Beijing Olympics continues to shower gifts on him. Today, Volvo Car India (VCI), manufacturers of luxury cars, presented him with a brand new S80 for his outstanding achievement, here today at Hotel Taj.

This luxurious car costs 44 lakh in the market and Abhinav’s father A.S. Bindra was the first one to buy this car in Punjab. Seeing this VCI decided to gift one to his son who too loves to drive this car.

Speaking on the occasion Paul de Voijs, managing director, Volvo Car India said, “It gives us immense pleasure to present Volvo S80 to Abhinav as he has done the country proud by winning a Gold Medal at Beijing Olympics.”

“The Volvo Ocean Race that will undergo for nine months and commence from Spain, is for the first time coming to India, later this year,” he revealed.

“I am really honoured by this kind gesture from Volvo Cars. The love and affection that I have received from everyone after winning the gold medal at Olympics has been overwhelming. I hope that we continue to shine brighter at the Olympics and do our country proud,” said Abhinav Bindra at the time of receiving the car.

“I am a big fan of Volvo car and have been driving the same when I was abroad,” he added.

“I am pleased with Volvo’s decision to honour my son. I have been driving this comfy car and I believe it’s the safest car on roads,” said A.S. Bindra.

Volvo S80 is the second generation of Volvo’s large prestige sedan.

It is a luxurious car with an elegant and dynamic profile influenced by modern Scandinavian design.



‘Youth shirk social responsibilties’
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 23
Youth in the northern region is taking less interest in projects related to social causes. This has resulted in failure of picking up of ambitious programmes launched in this region. These views were expressed by Dr Avnish Jolly, resource group member of the solution exchange, an initiative of the United Nations (UN) country team in India, while talking to The Tribune here today.

He added that a number of good projects failed to provide benefits to the people as the youth, who are messengers to publicise such programmes, were shying away from social activities.

Jolly revealed that the members of the organisation provided guidance, direction and support in collaborative work to tackle key challenges and evaluated performance and impact of the project to provide a platform where social workers could share their experiences. The group comprises 34 members whose main aim is to acquaint people about social and related issues.

Jolly said the community moderator, supported by a research associate, organise the production of consolidated replies and other knowledge products and support community activities.



18-year-old boy swept away
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, August 23
An 18-year-old boy was swept away in the Ghaggar here today. The victim has been identified as Sartaj belonging to Devi Nagar village. The body was later recovered downstream.

According to information, Sartaj drowned in the river when he was reportedly crossing it to collect woods from a nearby forest along with his friends.

As soon as Sartaj and his friends — Kalu, Meena, Atia, Rinku and Kamlesh — reached the centre of the river, he lost balance due to strong current and was swept away.

His friends raised the alarm, following which people from the village reached the scene. His body was found at some distance.

After the incident, the family buried the body at the village burial ground.

The police claimed that it had not received any complaint in this regard.

In another incident, the body of a 50-year-old man was found near Nirjhar Vatika, Sector 5, this morning.

The victim, identified as Bhudia Parkash, used to iron clothes.

The police believes it to be a hit-and-run case.




Be vigilant on Janmashtmi

Janamashtmi celebrations often include substantial crowds. Some people turn Krishna's birth into an occasion for eve teasing and pick-pocketing. Women are whistled at and boys act rowdier than usual.

We need to be vigilant. One should keep a close eye on mobile phones, bags and cameras. The police should check vandalism, alcohol and anti-social behaviour on public places to make sure that everyone coming along has a safe and enjoyable time.

Rajesh Krishan

Readers are invited to write to us. Send your mail, in not more than 200 words, at news@tribuneindia.com or, write in, at: Letters, Chandigarh Tribune, Sector 29, Chandigarh – 160 030



Brawl at DAV college, student leader hurt
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 23
In another incident of violence in campus, Simrit Gill, SOI president, got seriously injured at DAV College today.

He was allegedly beaten up by Sunny and other members of SOPU.

The police has registered a case on charges of rioting, threatening, causing hurts under Sections 146, 147, 148, 323, 324 and 506 of the IPC against president of SOPU, Amandeep Singh Multani, Gursewak, Gokal and other unknown persons in Sector 3 police station.

The altercation began when members from both the organisations were campaigning for the forthcoming students elections of Panjab University on the college premises.

While campaigning, a SOPU member commented on the SOI after which members from both parties exchanged verbal spats.

Sunny, who was the college president of SOPU for last year, started beating Gill.

Simrit Gill got seriously injured on the head and was taken to Government Hospital, Sector 16. His condition is said to be stable.

The students started fighting inside the college premises and a few outsiders were also present on the college premises. Till the time the police reached the spot, the students had already fled from the college leaving behind injured Gill. Principal B.S. Josan was not available for his comments. Meanwhile, Har Sahai, SHO, Sector 3 police station, said an FIR had been registered and action would soon be taken.

After the incident at SD College, where two students were suspended on the basis they were inclined to political parties, this is the second such incident. This is not the first time that such an incident has taken place at DAV College. Last year, there had been firing in the open by some college students.



From Schools & Colleges
Alisha, Akanksha win power point presentation
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 23
Alisha and Akanksha of Government College, Sector 11, emerged winners in the power point presentation, while Priyanka of DAV-10 won first place in essay writing competition held at Government College, Sector 11, here today.

BITS, the society of department of biotechnology of GC-11, organised the competitions.

The topic for essay writing, ‘Nuclear Power and Alternate Source of Energy’, was given to students on the spot. Four teams participated in power point presentation and ten participants took part in essay writing competition. Principal Dr A.L. Gauba was the chief guest. The competition was sponsored by CREST.

Results: Power Point Presentation:

1. Alisha and Akanksha, GC-11

2. Deepshikha and Shikha, GC-42

3. Aditi and Varsha, GC-11

Essay Writing:

1. Priyanka, DAV-10

2. Parul Malik, PEC

3. Pratibha, GC-42

Seminar: Science faculty of Government College for Girls, Sector-11, here organised a seminar on ‘Emerging Interactive Sciences: Road to Global Development’, in collaboration with department of science and technology, UT administration today.

Chief guest Prof R.C. Sobti, vice-chancellor, Panjab University, said in order to empower India and make her a global player, we need scientific integration, innovation and invention. Dr Lalit M. Bharadwaj, deputy director and head, biomolecular electronics and nanotechnology, CSIO, Chandigarh, while talking about bio-nanotechnology and hybrid devices, highlighted the convergence of nanotechnology with information technology, modern biology and social sciences.

Prof Ravi Shankar from IIT, Delhi, remarked that concept of questioning the prevailing scientific assumptions is pivotal in understanding many intriguing aspects of modern innovations in the field of chemistry, medicinal chemistry and drug-design, material chemistry and micro-electronic devices etc.

Dr I.S. Dua, chairman, botany department, PU, made a presentation on ‘Emerging Interactive Sciences: A Source of Jubilation or Jitters’.

Prof S.K. Kulkarni, dean, university instructions, PU, brought into fore the need for an interaction in sciences as he felt that this could serve as a road to global development.

Orientation Week: Orientation Week, featuring curriculum introduction, talks and competitions, concluded at Government College of Education, Sector 20, here today. Principal Dr Harsh Batra welcomed the new entrants of the college. Aspects covered during the week-long programme were: ‘know your college’, library services, co-curricular activities, time table, examinations, scheme of studies, lecture requirements, NSS, guidance and counselling facilities.

Students were allotted various optional craft subjects of their choice. Talent search competitions on various items like geet, ghazal, bhajan, poetry elocution, skit, solo and group dances were also organised.

Results: Poetry: Sukhpinder, Tegmeet, Ashwini, Tanu, Samta, Vandana, Richa, Medha.

Geet, ghazal and bhajan: Prabhdeep, Sonam, Ishmeet, Aditi, Sanjeev Kumar, Rajinder.

Dances: Renu, Sumandeep, Paramjit, Navdeep, Sonam, Renuka.

Comedy: Megha.

Skit: Jyotika and group.

Janmashtmi: GGDSD College, Sector 32, here celebrated Janamashtami with traditional gaiety and fervour on the college campus today. Swami Brahmeshananda of Rama Krishna Ashram, Sector 15, Chandigarh, was the chief guest.

Swami Brahmeshananda advised the staff and students of the college to read the Geeta everyday and inculcate the teachings of Lord Krishna in their everyday thoughts and actions. "The Geeta," he said, "is not only a book of values, but a way of life as well."

He also exhorted that a healthy body, mind and soul were necessary for excellence in life. He said one must never lose mental peace even in the most adverse situations and the best way to do so was meditation. It was through meditation that one could increase the concentration of mind, which was crucial for growth and performance.

Principal Dr A.C. Vaid urged the students to follow the path of karma as preached by Lord Krishna in a detached and conscientious way. While deliberating on the Geeta, he said, "Only those, who have studied the text, are in a position to comprehend and value spiritual love." Dr Vaid also asked the students to study hard.

Dr Saroj Bhanot, HoD, department of Sanskrit, and Dr V.P. Malhotra, HoD, department of Mathematics, also shared their views. Bhajans were rendered by Dr Ramesh Dogra, HoD, department of chemistry, and Sunita Arora and Prince Narula, students of the college.

Freshers’ Party: Department of computer applications, Government College, Sector 46, here organised a freshers’ party for first-year students of BCA. Dr K.S. Saluja, principal of the college, presided over the function as the chief guest. Prof Deepshikha, coordinator of the department, welcomed the chief guest. She encouraged the students to work hard and achieve their goals. Prof Bikram Rana also encoraged the students to become good citizens.

A cultural programme was organised. Nitin Bagga and Ramandeep Kaur bagged titles of Mr Fresher and Ms Fresher, respectively. Sakshi Bali and Sunny Kumar were given titles of Ms Charming and Mr Personality. A special prize was also given to Parveen Chauhan.

DANCE CONTEST: Girls of Moti Ram Arya Senior Secondary School, Sector 27, clinched the trophy in Inter-School Group Dance Competition. The programme was organised by education department at Government Model High School, Sector 38, here today. According to J.S. Basota, cultural secretary of the department, GGSSS-20 and ISDSSSS-21 jointly got second prize whereas GMSSS-33 got third prize.

Among individual prizes, Harry Preet of Moti Ram Senior Secondary School, Sector 27, was declared best dancer whereas Joyti of GMSSS-33 and Pratibha of GGSSS-20 were jointly declared second. Poonam and Arti, both from ISDSSSS-21, got third place.

WORDZ: WORDZ-the debating society, an initiative of four students from the city, in its attempt to realise its vision of providing a platform for students to enhance their public speaking and leadership skills, organised two debates and one public speaking workshop. The first phase of the event, which includes training, held at DPS, Sector 40, here today. The programme was sponsored by Chandigarh tourism department and STEPS.

CELEBRATION: KV Highgrounds, Chandigarh, celebrated the festival of Janmashtami with fun and fervour. Students of primary section enacted a dance drama depicting the life of Lord Krishna. Savita Sharma gave a speech about the importance of the festival.



From Schools
Janmashtmi spirit grips city schools
Tribune News Service

Mohali, August 23
Students of Genius Public School, Sector 69, celebrated Janamashtmi with great enthusiasm, devotion and religious fervour.

Students dressed as Krishna and Radha performed rasleela and other scenes from the life of Lord Krishna.

The principal of the school impressed upon the students to make the teachings of Lord Krishna an indispensable part of their life. Teachers spoke about the teachings of Lord Krishna.

Gian Jyoti Institute of Management and Technology: The management, staff and students of the institute paid floral tributes to Lord Krishna and bhajans were also sung. GJIMT chairman J.S. Bedi presided over the function.

AKSIPS-65: To mark the festival, a special assembly was conducted wherein director of the school Jasmine Kalra urged the students to fight for good and shun all evils like Lord Krishna did. The pre-primary kids visited a nearby temple and sought blessings.

Swami Ram Tirtha Public High School: The function commenced with a bhajan. A cultural programme replete with songs, dances and speeches was presented by the students.



Hit-and-Run Case
Accused gets clean chit after 2-yr ordeal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 23
After two agonising years, Gurpal Singh Bains of Kharar can finally take a sigh of relief. The court has given him a clean chit in a fatal accident case in which he was never involved.

The orders were pronounced today after the police submitted a report in the district courts clearing Bains of all charges. The report was submitted under the directions of the High Court.

On June 3, 2006, Bains was booked by the city police for causing death due to rash and negligent driving. The registration of the case came as a rude shock to him as on the fateful day his car (CH 01 Z 7812), which purportedly ran down a resident of Bapu Dham Colony, Rajesh Kumar, had been seized by the Chandigarh Police at least three hours before the accident.

His car had broken down near a place of worship at Maloya village. Before Bains could get help to tow the car away, it was picked up by the police and taken to the local police post around 7.15 pm. All relevant entries were made in the log book.

However, three hours later, around 10.15 pm, a fatal hit-and-run case was registered against Bains by the Sector 26 police on the basis of a complaint of constable Vijay Kumar, who was the eyewitness to the accident and had noted down the car number. Subsequently, Bains was arrested after a month and was granted bail.

What then began was the beginning of an ordeal for Bains, as he ran from pillar to post to prove his innocence.

He even complained about it to the SSP wherein he mentioned that he had differences with two sub-inspectors of the Punjab police and was being framed in the case but no action was taken.

Adding to his woe, the wife of the victim filed a claim of Rs 10 lakh on him.

Bains filed a writ petition with the Punjab and Haryana High Court wherein he sought reinvestigation.

On the direction of the High Court, a reinvestigation was started on April 8 by DSP (south) and DSP (east) and SHO police station-26.

Under the directions to submit the report within a month, the police admitted that Gurpal Singh Bains was innocent and apparently Vijay Kumar had wrongly noted down the registration number of the car.

With Bains cleared of the charge, the culprit still remains at large.



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