C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Teachers' Recruitment
Two arrested in cash-for-job scam
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 6
The Chandigarh police yesterday blew the lid off a cash-for-job scam for teachers' recruitment in the UT Education Department with the arrest of two persons.

Acting on a tip-off, a vigilance team arrested Jolly, a resident of Sector 7-B here, from Cafe Coffee Day in Sector 35 for promising teacher's job to Kamalpreet Kaur in return for an amount of Rs 4 lakh.

Earlier, the accused Jolly and Hardev Singh, a resident of the Sunny Enclave, Kharar, had promised job to Kamalpreet in the ongoing recruitment process.

An acquaintance of ADC PS Shergill, Kamalpreet had brought the matter to his notice who, in turn, informed Home Secretary-cum-Chief Vigilance Officer Ram Niwas.

Sources said the Home Secretary directed SSP SS Srivastava to keep a tab on the mobile phones of the accused. A surveillance on parallel telephone lines, which were set up to monitor the calls made from these mobiles, was conducted and the conversation recorded.

The deal for handing over the money was fixed at Cafe Coffee Day last evening. A trap was laid and Jolly was arrested on the spot while accepting the consideration from the complainant. After interrogating Jolly, another accused Hardev Singh was also arrested in the night. Hardev Singh reportedly runs country-made liquor bottling plant at Solan, while Jolly works as an electrician.

A case under Sections Section 420 and 120-B of the IPC has been registered at the Industrial Area Police Station Industrial Area.The accused have been remanded to police remand till September 8.

Saying that a thorough probe would be conducted in the case, Ram Niwas claimed that total transparency was being observed in the the entire recruitment process.

The arrest of "touts" should send a clear message to all concerned that there would be zero tolerance to any irregularities in the current recruitment process.

He also advised the candidates not to get misled by the touts, as the result of the written examination which was conducted by Panjab University had been sealed. Sources said the result of the written examination was not known to anybody.

It is to be opened in the presence of a committee under video surveillance. Out of 100 marks, the interview is only for 10 marks and the rest is based on an objective criteria consisting of marks of written exams, academic record and experience.

The Chandigarh Administration had recently advertised 532 posts of teacher and about 2,000 candidates had been shortlisted out of over 20,000 aspirants. The written test was conducted in July this year.



NCB Zonal Director nabbed taking bribe of Rs 2 lakh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 6
The Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) continues to be in the news for wrong reasons. A few months after Saji Mohan, a former Zonal Director of the NCB, was arrested in a drug-peddling case, the CBI today caught his successor, SK Sekhri, Zonal Director of the NCB, red-handed, while accepting a bribe of Rs 2 lakh from a Baddi-based industrialist at New Delhi.

Following a complaint, a team from the Chandigarh office of the CBI laid a trap in New Delhi and arrested him with the money, the CBI DIG, Chandigarh, Mahesh Aggarwal, told Chandigarh. The trapped officer had joined here earlier this year in place of Saji Mohan.

Sources said a pharmaceutical factory owner from Baddi filed a complaint with the DIG CBI, Chandigarh, that a team, led by Sekhri, raided his factory and asked him to meet him at the NCB office in Chandigarh.

The sources alleged that when the complainant went to meet Sekhri at his office, he demanded Rs 2 lakh from him, stating that otherwise he would be booked under the NDPS Act.

The CBI also alleged that Sekhri had asked the complainant to meet him in Delhi. He called the complainant to a public place in Delhi and again demanded Rs 2 lakh to “settle” his case.

The complainant then came with the record to Chandigarh and on finding that Sekhri was not available, he went to Delhi. Sekhri later reportedly told him to meet him in Delhi with the bribe amount of Rs 2 lakh. The complainant lodged a complaint to the Anti-Corruption Branch, Chandigarh. Meanwhile, the CBI has registered a case against Sekhri under the Prevention of Corruption Act. His residential premises is also being searched till the filing of the report.

Earlier, the CBI had arrested two other NCB officials - Ravi Kant Pawar, superintent, and Paramjit Singh, driver.



Selection of Lecturers 
PU Syndicate amends criteria
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 6
Clearing the National Eligibility Exam (NET) conducted by the UGC has now become mandatory for the candidates to apply for the post of lecturer in Panjab University and all affiliated colleges. Implementing the fresh guidelines issued by the UGC for lecturership, the PU Syndicate today decided to amend the criteria for the selection of lecturers.

Earlier, only an M.Phil degree was required to apply for the post of lecturer in colleges and both PhD as well as M.Phil degrees for applying in PU. Now, according to the new directions issued by the varsity, clearance of the UGC’s NET exam is mandatory in both cases.

In another crucial decision, Professor Shelly Walia of the English Department was designated the new Director, Academic Staff College.

Among other decisions, it was concluded that the B.Sc. and M.Sc. (honours) classes would now be bifurcated into semester system. Also re-designation of the posts has been done, with the lecturers being re-designated to assistant professor and reader to associate professor.

According to another assessment, the salary of PU employees would be given as per new pay scale from the month of September. The resolution of renovation of PU guest houses (outstation) was also approved.

However, nothing concrete materialised on the inclusion of Punjabi sign boards in 
the campus.

“As far as the Punjabi signboards in the university are concerned, the Syndicate has decided that it shall do the best in the matter,” said Naval Kishore, Dean Student Welfare, PU.

The Syndicate declared a holiday in the university and affiliated colleges on Monday.



Scribe assault case: Bajwa granted bail
Tribune News Service

Kharar, September 6
The owner of Bajwa Developer, Jarnail Singh Bajwa, was today granted bail at Kharar after being arrested on Saturday night for assaulting a Tribune journalist.

Naib tehsildar-cum-duty magistrate Ajit Singh Laungia allowed the bail. The developer has been asked to appear before the duty magistrate on the next date of hearing fixed for September 9.

While being produced before the duty magistrate, a delegation of journalists who were present on the spot, demanded that the coloniser-turned-politician be sent to judicial custody as his presence in society would pose a threat to the victim. The duty magistrate said the colonizer was bound to abide by the law after being granted bail.

The district president of the BJP, Khuswant Rai Gigga and representative of a senior youth Akali Dal leader along a number of other persons were present in the court to furnish bail bond in support of the coloniser.

Meanwhile, his gunmen, Gurvinder Singh and Sohan Singh were also arrested this morning. Jagwinder, a resident of village Fatehpur in Kurali area, is constable with Punjab police. Another person, Sohan Singh from Panuva village in Kharar, is Bajwa’s private security guard. Later, they too were granted bail in the evening. Another Punjab police constable attached with the coloniser is yet to be arrested.


Colony a den of crime
Police looks the other way
Megha Mann
Tribune News Service

Promoter of Sunny Enclave Jarnail Singh Bajwa (encircled) coming out of the court of SDM, Kharar, after being granted bail on Sunday.
Promoter of Sunny Enclave Jarnail Singh Bajwa (encircled) coming out of the court of SDM, Kharar, after being granted bail on Sunday. Also seen in the picture is Mohali BJP President Khuswant Rai Gigga (second from left) who had come in support of the coloniser. Tribune photo: Vinay Malik

Kharar, September 6
Sunny Enclave, a private colony situated in the Desu Majra area of Kharar, has become more of a den of crimes that widely go unreported to the police.

Area residents rue that to guard 2,500 houses in this huge township, there are a handful of 35 to 40 guards who, too, are ill-equipped to meet the requirements of security cover in the area.

Spread in sprawling 347 acres, the township has a considerable population of migrant laborers, who live in a hamlet of 500 jhuggis on the colony premises.

In the past two months, more than 12 cylinders have been stolen from the area, claims a resident of extension number 3.

“Every time someone reports an LPG cylinder missing, the owner of the colony stops them from approaching the police. Instead, he pays from his pocket for the loss, saying that the matter should not go to the police,” said a retired person.

Also taps of houses locked in the colony are repeatedly found missing. The latest burglary of around Rs 3 to Rs 4 lakh was reported at the house of Rajinder Singh Rangpuri. Residents have time and again told Bajwa Developers Authority that migrant labourers are the main suspects, but no action has ever been taken.

While the Kharar police claims to have launched a verification drive to get names and addresses of tenants in areas registered at the police station, it has failed to bring any respite for the area residents. DSP Kharar SPS Dhindsa said that it is a gigantic and almost impossible task to keep track of migrant moving population. “Still some method can be evolved by which it should be mandatory for all contractors to duly get their migrant employees registered at the SDM offices concerned,” he suggested.


Sec-46 man also Bajwa’s victim
Tribune News Service

Sewa Singh shows injury marks on his body.
Sewa Singh shows injury marks on his body. A Tribune photograph

Kharar, September 6
This is not the first incident of Bajwa and his henchmen assaulting innocent and gullible people. 

Sewa Singh, a resident of Sector 46, Chandigarh, had also been a victim of Bajwa’s villainous attitude.

Sewa Singh said he was called to Bajwa’s office on February 27 this year. Bajwa and his men brutally beat him up, leaving serious injuries on his shoulder, left arm and head. 

He was admitted to the Civil Hospital, Kharar, where the medico-legal report (MLR) was issued by doctors.

He alleged that Bajwa’s gunman Gurinder Singh hit him with the butt of his gun, while another employee Sohan Lal hit on his left arm.

Sewa Singh claimed that he took the MLR report to the Kharar police for a complaint against Bajwa. 

“I ran from pillar to post to get a case registered but the police kept ignoring the issue. Cops took my statement but nothing was done,” he said.

He then approached the Punjab and Haryana High Court against the state government, the Kharar police and Jarnail Singh Bajwa. Interestingly, in reply to a court notice, the Kharar police had mentioned that no such incidence had ever happened in Kharar. Sewa Singh said he would pursue the case until a criminal case would register against Bajwa.



High drama after shrine board CEO-priest clash
Board SDE booked
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 6
A high drama was witnessed at the Mansa Devi temple here after a scuffle between the CEO of the Shrine Board, DP Dattana, and a priest, Inderjeet.

The priest, who was allegedly roughed up by the CEO and his couple of associates, also employees of the board, was admitted to a private nursing home with a “dislocated shoulder”.

One of the associates of the CEO, MS Malik, who works as Additional SDE with the shrine board, was later booked under Sections 323, 325 and 504 of the IPC.

According to eyewitnesses, the trouble started when Dattana spotted Inderjeet leaving the temple complex with a hand bag at about 1 pm. Suspecting that the priest was pilfering prasad, Dattana stopped him and this reportedly led to an argument between the two.

In the scuffle that followed Malik, allegedly hit Inderjeet and the blow dislocated his shoulder, said eyewitnesses.

Admitting that he had stopped the priest, Dattana said he had only asked him to distribute the prasad among the devotees rather than taking it home. “Instead of paying heed to my directions, Inderjeet felt offended and started shouting at me,” claimed Dattana, adding that the priest then charged towards him to attack him.

Denying that his associates had beaten Inderjeet, Dattana said, “They only tried to save me from being hit by the priest and in the process only pushed him aside.”

He said Inderjeet might have sustained the injuries when he lost his balance and fell on the ground.

Dubbing Dattana’s version as “false”, another priest, Sunder Lal, said Malik had attacked Inderjeet in his presence. He claimed that the CEO had unnecessarily created a scene and he had been only carrying a few of fruits, two bananas and three apples with him.

When The Tribune team visited the spot, agitated employees of the board were raising slogans against the CEO and demanded action against Malik.

SP Amitabh Dhillon said while Malik had been arrested and the role of Dattana was being looked into. The DC has marked a probe and its report will be submitted in a week.


Navodaya teachers protest
Tribune News Service

Members of the Joint Action Committee of the Employees Association Navodaya Samiti hold a protest on the Teacher’s Day.
Members of the Joint Action Committee of the Employees Association Navodaya Samiti hold a protest on the Teacher’s Day. Tribune photo: Pradeep Tewari

Chandigarh, September 6
Members of the Joint Action Committee of Employees Association/Forum of Navodaya Vidyalaya Samiti yesterday observed Teacher’s Day as black day for an inordinate delay in the acceptance of their demands.

The protesters assembled in Sector 25 and raised slogans against the managements for their dilly-dally tactics on their long-pending demands.

Meanwhile, in a memorandum to Union Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Pawan Bansal, the committee comprising ML Sharma, NK Pahwa, Sudhir Jaglan and Rajesh Choudhary, alleged that employees of the Navodaya Vidyalaya Samiti had not been granted benefit of CCS (Pension) Rules, 1972, by the Central Government.

For the past 2 decades, the employees had been raising their demand of the GPF-cum-pension scheme to the authorities concerned, yet nothing had been done so far.



Doc suspected with swine flu
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 6
More swine flu cases have surfaced in the tricity with a doctor, working with a private hospital in Mohali being suspected with the disease.

The doctor has been isolated and put on Tamilflu. Nodal officer of the pandemic in the state Dr Deepk Bhatia said his samples had been sent to the PGI for confirmation.

A child from Baltana (Zirakpur) had also been found to be suffering from the swine flu. “The child is being treated at Chandigarh, but since the child belongs to Punjab, we have traced his contacts and are administering prophylaxis to them,” said Dr Bhatia.

Two new cases of confirmed swine flu were reported in Punjab last week. While one patient is from Amritsar, the other belonged to Jalandhar. The patient from Amritsar was admitted on August 12 and has already been discharged following treatment. “His samples were sent to New Delhi and the report came in on August 26,” said Dr Bhatia.

Following a delay in confirmation, the health teams of the state are finding it difficult to trace his contacts. “Since, it has been over a fortnight since he was admitted, it would not be possible to trace his contacts,” added Dr Bhatia.

The State Health Department has also been awaiting the results of two more samples sent to New-Delhi in mid-August.

“The second confirmed case is from Jalandhar. His samples were sent to PGI and the reports came in within a day,” said Dr Bhatia.

Total number of positive cases of swine flu in the state has now gone up to 27. “Another five patients have been treated for swine flu like symptoms under category B on the guidelines issued by the Government of India,” added Dr Bhatia.



Seminar on ‘Chandigarh: The future city’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 6
A3 Foundation, a foundation for research and promotion of sustainable art and architecture, today organised a seminar on “Chandigarh: The future city”, at the Government Museum and Art Gallery auditorium.

Prominent experts, including eminent architect SD Sharma, town planner Jit Kumar Gupta, former principal of Chandigarh College of Architecture SS Bhatti and chairman of local unit of Indian Institute of Architecture Surinder Bahga, spoke at the seminar.

Meanwhile, journalist Apurva Bose Butta received the Award of Excellence for architectural journalism.

She has also been a part of the core team of India's leading architectural publications, namely Architecture+Design and Indian Architect & Builder. She has also contributed for a book called “Style Icons in Architecture”.



City-Delhi-city tour in just Rs 135?
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 6
Can you make a to-and-fro trip to New Delhi for a meagre Rs 135? The answer may be no, yet the chairman of the Chandigarh Housing Board(CHB) has performed this feat, reveals a reply sought under the RTI Act.

Surprisingly, the CHB chairman also undertook a two-day trip to visit the Ministry of Home Affairs in Delhi for the creation of special funds in just Rs 281.

Like his boss, the CHB’s CEO also travelled to Delhi and came back to the city in Rs 330.

However, on a five-day trip to Pune and another four-day trip to Mumbai, he spent nearly Rs 70,000 and Rs 81,000, respectively, the board's reply to an RTI apppication filed by Krishan Kumar has said.

The chairman of the Chandigarh Housing Board had also undertaken foreign trips to the US, Bangkok, Sydney and New Zealand at the cost of Rs 5.5 lakh; seven times more than that of his monthly emoluments of around Rs 72,000.

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Chandigarh Housing Board has undertaken foreign trips to Malaysia, Singapore and Canada at Rs 5.3 lakh; 12 time more than that of his monthly emoluments of around Rs 44,000.

The chairman went on an official five-day trip to Goa to discuss new liquor licensing policy, costing nearly Rs 40,000, while the primary job of the board is to build houses.

Meanwhile, without any mention of the purpose, a five-day official trip of the CHB’s CEO, who also is an IAS officer, to Bangalore had cost the board Rs 75,000. And, a five-day trip of the CEO for integrated project management for time quality to Goa, almost same distance and expensive as that of Bangalore, had cost only Rs 18,000.

“There is a huge discrepancy and mismatch in the domestic and foreign trip expenses details of the board’s officials, which ought to be accounted for,” demanded Amit Kumar, an RTI activist.



HDFC Bank told to refund Rs 5,618
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 6
The District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum has directed the HDFC Bank to refund Rs 5,618 to a complainant for deficiency in service.

Complainant Anil Narula, a resident of Sector 38, intended to buy a residential house in 2007, he was approached by the executive of the bank who told him to complete a few formalities before hand so that there was no problem in sanctioning the loan and assured him that there would be no processing charges before the sanctioning of the loan. 

Relying upon the words of the executive he signed a few documents and gave a cheque for Rs 5, 618.

Later, he informed the executive of the bank that he selected a house in Sunny Enclave, Deshu Majra, Kharar, and wanted to pay the token money upon which the executive informed that the documents had been verified, scrutinised and he could go ahead with it. 

Thereafter, the complainant paid Rs 2,45,000 as token money to the owner of the house on September 22, 2007, and the agreement to sell was given to the bank for completion of remaining formalities. On being enquired, the complainant came to know that his case was rejected but the cheque was encashed, which was contrary to their promise. 

He wrote letters to the bank seeking reasons for cancellation, refund of money as well as return of documents, but to no avail. Thereafter he could not purchase the house and Rs 1,60,000 was forfeited.

In their written reply the bank admitted that the complainant applied for Rs 24 lakh loan but the processing fee was payable with the loan application which was clearly mentioned in the loan application form. 

It was pleaded that the payment of processing fee does not confer any right on the complainant that the bank was bound to sanction the loan. It was also stated that the loan application was rejected as the complainant had given incorrect information about his income.



Dr Radhakrishnan remembered
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 6
As a mark of respect to Dr. Sarvpalli Radhakrishnan and to maintain Guru Shishya Parampara alive, September 6, 2009 was celebrated as ‘Guru Pratibha Day’ by KBDAV-7, at Tagore Theatre, Sector-18.

Keeping the tradition of the school intact, all Teaching and Non-Teaching Staff Members presented theme-based, value-oriented items for the school children, which were choreographed in an exceptional manner.

To grace the occasion, eminent dignitaries from respective field were present. Dr.. Nisha Peshin, Director (PS-III), DAV College Managing Committee, New Delhi was the Chief Guest of the show. H.S. Mattewal, Advocate General of Punjab was the Special Guest of Honour and Dr. Raj Bahadur, Director Principal, GMCH, Sector 32, Chandigarh presided over the function.

Other dignitaries like D.R. Yadava, Regional Officer, CBSE, Panchkula, Justice A.L. Bahri, Vice President DAVCMC & Vice-Chairman of the School, Dr. R.S. Khandpur, Director General, Pushpa Gujral Science City, Subhash Marriya, Manager of the school and Principals of local DAV institutions were present on the occasion.

The show started with lighting of lamp by the dignitaries present followed by prayer on ‘Namo-Namah’ by school students . Another song was presented by the ‘Saral Ahsaas’ students and their teachers.

The four houses Jasmine, Lotus, Rose and Tulip stood under tough competition to exhibit their theme based performances for the students which was indeed enjoyed by all.

The Lotus House was adjudged as the Best House by the member of jury for their excellent performance. Tulip House was declared as a 2 nd Best House and Jasmine House was declared as a 3 rd Best House.

The Principal announced five best teachers of the year 2008 , Dr. V.B.T. Malik, Pooja Parkash ,Ritu Sharma, Simranleen Kaur and Urmi Mala.



Parminder aspires to be next Sania Mirza
Archit Watts

Chandigarh, September 6
Having a tall stature of 5 feet 9 inches, Parminder Kaur, a 14-year-old tennis prodigy, have the spunk to outdo her rivals at the battlefield.

Having won several trophies and prizes, this under-14 tennis player has been ranked sixth by the All-India Tennis Association (AITA) and got 700 points from the International Tennis Federation (ITF).

“Sports is in my blood and I have to continue it by playing tennis,” said the player.

In fact, by winning the ITF semifinal in Mauritius, the ace player has added another feather to her cap.

Earlier, she was at the top position in India. She has won two national series, nine super series and six championship series. She has played around 36 AITA tournaments.

While practising at Lake Sports Complex, Parminder said, “I practise six days a week.

My fitness session is for three hours and game practice session is for five hours.”

Being a student of class IX at St Stephen’s School, Sector 45, she gives the credit for her success to her school principal Harold Carver.

She has also won two Triple Crown Titles. These days she is busy preparing for her next two grand tournaments, which will be played in New Zealand and Ludhiana in October.

Her father Manjit Singh, who is also a sportsperson said, “My daughter wants to be like Sania Mirza. She plays well and accepts every challenge.”

Manjit added that Parminder would be flying to Australia for two months with her coach Rajesh Pathania to get training from Micheal Barrow, a famous coach, who had coached Maria Sharapova for three years.

“My coach Rajesh Pathania motivates me to face every challenge,” Parminder added.



Brar an able administrator: Rodrigues
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 6
Punjab Governor and UT Administrator SF Rodrigues expressed profound grief over the demise of Harcharan Singh Brar, former Chief Minister, Punjab, and former Governor of Haryana, who died here today.

Describing Brar as a true patriot, an able administrator and a seasoned politician to the core, Rodrigues said he had successfully led the state as the Chief Minister and also set noble traditions while holding the office of Governor of Haryana.

He further said his contribution in various facets of national life had been laudable and Punjab had lost a true nationalist and good human being. 



Senior Citizens’ Day celebrated
Tribune News Service

Chandigrah, September 6
The Senior Citizens Welfare Association, Modern Housing Complex, Mani Majra, in collaboration with the Chandigarh Senior Citizens Association organised a function to celebrate the Senior Citizens’ Day at DC Montessori Smart School, MHC, Mani Majra, here today.

Union Minister for Parliamentary Affairs and Water Resources Pawan Kumar Bansal was the chief guest and director-principal, Prof Raj Bahadur, GMCH, Chandigarh, was the guest of honour.

Prof Raj Bahadur assured the senior citizens that GMCH-32 would continue to extend preferential treatment to them.

Eminent citizens from various walks of life were also honoured on the occasion. Prof Raj Bahadur, BB Gupta and HS Nagra were honoured as a mark of recognition in the field of value-based education and social service.

As per the prevailing practice, members of the association who were 75-year-old were given special mementoes. More than 50 children from the slum areas were given school bags and boxes of sweets. 



Cultural programme enthrals audience

Chandigarh, September 6
About 50 student artistes presented a captivating cultural programme under the aegis of Swar Saptak Society at the Randhawa Auditorium of Punjab Kala Bhavan yesterday.

The traditional Saraswati Vandana was rendered by guru Sangeeta Choudhry Laha, which was followed by a presentation of vocal classical compositions in various ragas by Vasundhra, Madhuwanti Dey, Sinjani, Nehal Gupta, Ishita and Utkrsisht.

A poignant poem on female foeticide written and recited by Dr Anita made many eyes moist, while young classical dancers Shreya, Jasleen, Mehak and Madhwanti delineated intricate mudras.

After an absorbing recital of raga “desh bandish” by Monika Jhingan, audience relished a drama titled “Dhoop Chhaon”. — OC



Money and arrogance
Raveen Thukral

On September 4, I received an SMS message from a very senior IPS officer. Presuming it to be either a tip off for a story or a complaint about a news report published in the paper, I casually opened it and was slightly taken aback with the wordings of the message.

It said, "On this day of universal forgiveness, I seek your forgiveness for knowingly or unknowingly hurting you by my words or thought or action". While cops only too often hurt people with their words, thoughts and actions and should, in a way, keep asking for forgiveness from their 'victims', this officer is of an all together different breed. 

I have known him for almost 20 years now and can vouch that he is a thorough gentleman and an officer, a stickler of rules, which surely is a rare quality among his likes.

Incidentally, the same morning, this newspaper had carried several photographs on the front page of the violence that took place at the DAV College. The frames, a young boy throwing a gas cylinder at his opponents, another one using glass bottles as missiles, a lone cop being pushed around by a large group of students and the shattered window panes of the college library, bore testimony to the sheer goondagardi that many youngsters indulge in on the pretext of doing politics.

These brazen acts of violence by the students, who frankly don't have anything to their own credit but their family's wealth, name and connections to flaunt, was in total contrast to the modesty of the IPS officer who sent that message to me. 

While wealth, knowledge power and lineage should usually breed sophistication, fineness, responsibility and modesty, unfortunately it's the other way round, particularly in our country and even the sub-continent, where it often brings out the worse in individuals.

Here, with money and power comes arrogance, defiance and a superiority complex of being above the law. While last weeks violence in colleges was one thing, the manner in which many of these 'poll-smitten' yuppies (a breed of youngsters who love flaunting their wealth) have been behaving for the past week, driving around on the streets in flashy expensive cars violating every possible traffic law and hanging out around in various markets with their vehicles parked as if they own the roads too, must have been witnessed by almost everyone in the city. One wonders from where this defiance and arrogance comes.

The Lyngdoh Committee's recommendations on students' elections reforms has in many ways ensured that youngsters with good academic credentials come forward to contest the polls but it has failed to check those who are behind them. The power centers, which ensure support and victory for most of the 'dummy' candidates, either here or outside, still remain the same old thorough bred student leaders and their protégées for whom politics is a way of life.

It's really unfortunate that student politics too has become all about money and power. The limit of Rs 5000 as poll expenses set by the Lyngdoh Committee notwithstanding, money flows during all university elections and everyone knows about it. It's sad to see this brazen display of wealth by these youngsters at such an age.

But can we really blame them when ostentation seems to have become a way of life for many of the moneyed people, especially the neo-rich class. The feeling of being 'above the law' that willy-nilly creeps into most of the rich people, thanks to the immensely corruptible system that works here, is a matter of concern.

While most of us would have encountered such arrogant people at some point of time, one of my colleagues had a harrowing time on Saturday at the hands of one such person, a Kharar based property developer. He was beaten up by the developer and his henchmen in his office where he had gone along with a friend, who had some complaints about a deal that he had with the company.

Though under pressure from scribes the developer was arrested by a reluctant local police, one cannot help but think how this audacious businessman would be treating his other customers when he can behave in such an uncouth manner with a journalist. His arrogance of beating up the journalist is his office and then threatening to eliminate him is borne out from his moneyed stature rather than anything else.

The fact that even after his arrest he was treated like a VVIP in the police station, with dinner being served to him and his friends in the SHO's room, speaks volumes on how well and how far money really talks. The developer has been given "security" by the Punjab Police and a constable too was party to the assault on The Tribune staffer.

It would be worthwhile to know why gunmen were allotted to this developer. Though police officials may now try to give several reasons for this, the truth is that with right connections in Punjab getting such a security cover is no big deal. A khaki wearing policeman in tow is a status symbol which some people love to flaunt and misuse.

The only way to deal with such arrogant violators is to ensure that they do not get any political or official patronage and they face the law as a common man. But alas, this would require an overhaul of the system and that may not happen soon, despite all the good intentions of our Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, who recently talked about going behind the "big fish". Catching or bringing the "big fish" to book will always remain a challenge.

Write to cityeditor@tribunemail.com



CityScope Letters
Shed personal egos

This is in reference to the article, “Stinking politics”, by Raveen Thukral published in Chandigarh Tribune on August 31. It is quite thoughtful of the writer for focusing on the pertinent issues of the tricity.

Both print and electronic media wasted a lot of their time and energy to commenting on the issues, which were of no significance to the general public and readers.

For instance, Fiza-Chand controversy was blown out of proportion by both print and electronic media.

The second is the MC garbage processing plant at Dadu Majra. Perhaps, the tug of war and dirty politics between the two groups of the MC is more stinking than the foul smell from the garbage plant.

The stink from the garbage plant could be controlled with the use of certain deodorants/chemical treatments and certain mechanical upgradation of the plant.

But so far, there is no chemical or medicine to check the foul smell of politics.

Therefore, it is the duty of responsible citizens, media and right-thinking councillors to force the unethical representatives of public to shed their personal egos and fall in line.

Capt Amar Jeet Kumar, SAS Nagar

Stop politicising issues

The Oxford dictionary defines politics as the activities involved in getting and using power in public life and being able to influence the decisions that affect a country or society.

Its protagonists, unfortunately, have been found revolving around the personal or party politics.

As a result, the MC waste processing plant suffered a lot.

Accusations and counter accusations have become the rule. Clash of interests leading into the functioning of the plant has brought to fore the “opposition” and the “stink” that has emanated on the issue.

The administration set up in Chandigarh is handicapped. Duality of administrative structure and clash of egos of the politicians and officers lead to “skirmishes”, which further lead to the loss of residents of the city.

People are more interested in a permanent solution to the foul smell emanating during the rainy season from the plant than the “stinking politics” in all seasons.

Satish Chandra Sharma, Chandigarh


Raveen Thukral has raised an important issue of “over killing” of a news or an event by the media particularly by the electronic media in his write-up.

Viewers looking for updated news on TV channels get bored with 24 hour flash of the same news and also feel cheated by the continuous repetition of non-events or pseudo-happenings.

I agree with the writer’s assessment of the character of Chander Mohan, former Deputy Chief Minister of Haryana: “One really wonders how this man reached where he was and what damage he could have done had he continued.” It is the luck of people of Haryana that Chand’s relationship with Fiza became an easy tool for Bhupinder Hooda, Chief Minister of Haryana, to remove the former from the post of Deputy Chief Minister.

Trishla Garg, Panchkula

Publicity stunt

The article was appropriate and also timely. The residents of the city are bored with two things- “overkilled” controversies of the Chand-Fiza affair and Municipal Coropration's garbage processing plant at Dadu Majra.

Both topics have been blown out of proportion. The reason behind both seem to be "generating publicity" and nothing else.

While the Chand-Fiza episode does not serve any purpose to the man in the street, the garbage processing plant does matter to the “aam aadmi”. It is a matter of utter shame that the rivalry between the Mayor, Kamlesh and chairman of sanitation committee Chander Mukhi Sharma has taken an ugly turn that each one is letting the other down for no reason. It is the people who are suffering due to the delay in the functioning of the plant and disposal of the city's waste as per rules. The attitude of Sharma is also condemnable, as he did not reach for the meeting of the house, which he himself called.

RK Kapoor, Chandigarh

Chand owes an explanation

The excessive exposure of short-lived Chand-Fiza marriage in the media was ridiculous. The Deputy Chief Minister of Haryana owes an explanation to the public. Fiza by marrying a married politician and then converting to Islam did no credit to her respectable legal profession and social ethics of Haryana’s culture.

In Chandigarh, the Municipal Councillors represent an enlightened and highly educated populace of the city beautiful. Some of them are opposing garbage disposal plant simply because it has been installed by a company other than the one they had recommended. The project should be allowed to work and specified type of solid waste to be supplied to it.

SS Beniwal

Divert energy to complete projects

I agree with Raveen Thukral’s anguish and concern in regard to petty politics played by the politicians, which gets the better of real issues affecting common man.

It is really unfortunate that the acts of the elected representatives in the local bodies, state legislatures or Parliament are most of the time motivated and dictated by personal rivalries and interests than the interests of the people they represent.

The writer has rightly admonished the fighting councillors of the Municipal Corporation to shun politicising issues and divert their energies to completing the development projects that would benefit the people.

Lajpat Rai Garg, Panchkula



School for dyslexics faces closure
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 6
Despite repeated promises of the UT education department, the delay in issuing the “extension letter” to a special resource centre for dyslexic students at the GMSSS, Sector 8, has compelled the latter to discontinue its partnership with the administration.

The postponement has not only left many such students, with specific learning disabilities (SLD) in city schools, helpless, it has also raised doubts on the keenness of department in solving their problems.

The teachers at this centre claim to have received positive appraisals from the Ministry of Human Resource and development (MHRD) and the World Bank, this coveted project launched by the Chandigarh administration after drawing inspiration from the Bollywood blockbuster- “Taare Zameen Par”, is now on the verge of shutting down.

“We had employed three teachers who had been working tirelessly for these students, but the fate of the centre is hanging in the balance. Though verbal assurances were being given to us, for the past five months, nothing has materialized till date,” said Bharti Kapoor, an official at the centre.

“Three training sessions of 40 government teachers each had to be conducted, but only one could be completed due to the delay,” she added.

The centre, which claims to be one of its kind in the city had earlier signed a pact with the Sarv Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) for assessing. Though the renewal of the agreement was expected in May this year, the delay has alarmed the parents of these children, since the institute was their only hope to handle their child’s disability.



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