C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Work at RLA hit for the second day
New server also crashes within half-an-hour of installation
tribune news service

Chandigarh, August 4
Services remained crippled at the offices of the Registering and Licensing Authority (RLA) for the second consecutive day today owing to a breakdown of the server due to power failure.

A new uninterrupted power supply (UPS) installed last night crashed this morning due to excessive load and burning of a wire. The fault could be rectified only in the evening which resulted in hundreds of visitors at all three offices being forced to wait for hours in queues to get their driver’s licence and registration certificate.

While the snag erupted in the Sector 17 office, the other RLA offices in Sector 42 and Industrial Area were also affected after the centralised server crashed.

Yesterday too, scores of applicants had to go back due to a breakdown of the server. While the authorities installed a new UPS system late last night, it conked out within half-an-hour after it began functioning this morning. It was only at 2 pm that power was restored and some work was initiated. The repair work began at 4 pm again and no work could be executed. As a result, very few transactions were conducted during the day as the public windows remained closed.

Serpentine queues were witnessed in all the three offices for a major part of the day. Many applicants had taken half-day leave from their office and got drenched in the rain only to be told to go back.

On August 1, the RLA had initiated the process of issuing high-security registration plates (HSRP) to owners of new vehicles. Compared to 184 authorisation slips issued on the first day, the RLA issued only 110 slips today. The snag is likely to increase the backlog of issuance of licence and RCs. 

RLA not self-reliant

The snag exposed the lack of preparedness of the RLA and its dependency on the electricity wing of the engineering department of the Administration. While hundreds of visitors throng the RLA everyday, it does not have technical experts and has to summon engineers from the Administration and the company owner of the UPS system for repair work.

‘Sheer harassment’

I have been standing in a queue for over an hour and now I am told that I should come tomorrow as the server is down. It is sheer harassment.~

Haryaksha Sharma,  a Sector 43 resident

‘Trying our best’

It was a technical snag  and we have been working  to restore it since yesterday. We are trying our best to  see that the services are not affected. Work will go on smoothly from tomorrow  as a new UPS has been installed.

Vinod Kavle, RLA official



More paper work for existing registered owners 
tribune news service

Chandigarh, August 4
The change of software for the registration of vehicles by the Registration and Licensing Authority (RLA) early this year is set to spell hardship for owners of vehicles registered before 2010. Those in possession of a registration certificate issued in 2010 and earlier (green RC), have to submit additional documents for procuring a high-security registration plate (HSRP) in the absence of synchronisation of the old and new softwares.

The RLA had switched to Vahan software, nationally centralised software for preserving and updating records of registered vehicles this year. Earlier, the RLA was using Tata software. Data is yet to be synchronised with the new software for those in possession of the registration certificates issued in 2010 and earlier.

The licensing authority will ask them for an insurance certificate and other relevant details while receiving their application for the HSRP.

The documents pertain to vehicle number, name of the vehicle owner, engine number, chassis number, make, year of manufacture and colour.

Besides, a photocopy of the vehicle insurance cover note and original registration certificate is also to be submitted.



Fake degrees used to seek jobs abroad
PU confirms 262 such cases in past two years
Kamaljit Singh Banwait
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
In response to details sought under the Right to Information Act, Panjab University has confirmed at least 262 cases in which bogus PU academic degrees were misused in applying for admission in colleges or seeking employment abroad during the past two years.

What is more interesting is the fact that the varsity has not passed on any information regarding fake universities in other countries to the police.

As part of the information provided to The Tribune correspondent, PU received 45,885 queries from abroad for verification during the past five years. Among the long list of enquiries received during the past two years, as many 262 cases were found to involve fake degrees. The correspondent had sought information regarding the total number of cases where the university was asked to provide a report on the authenticity of the academic degrees that students had submitted while applying admission abroad during the past five years. Though details were also sought on the number of cases where degrees were found to be bogus, information pertaining to only two years was provided.

formation regarding authenticity of PU degrees had been sought by various agencies from foreign countries. PU officials said the details had been passed on only to those who had asked for specific details. Any candidate who was not satisfied with the varsity’s reply was free to contact the PU office of the registrar.

Sources requesting anonymity said: “PU officials were very well aware about an existing racket in fake degrees.”

When contacted, PU VC RC Sobti said any information on the matter should be sought in “writing”. “I’m unaware about any fake degree racket in PU. Steps are being taken to make the entire system foolproof,” he added. Asked to elaborate on the “foolproof system” he refused to divulge details, saying it would be revealed at the “right time”.



Class X student injured in clash
tribune news service

Chandigarh, August 4
After a period of lull, violence seems to be back in city schools. A 17-year-old class X boy, Vishwajeet Singh, was injured in a clash held outside the gates of Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 16, today.

The incident, which took place around noon, has brought the security of the school under the scanner as the school authorities pleaded ignorance about the incident which happened right under their nose.

“Nothing has happened. We checked everything and left after 2 pm. This may have happened somewhere outside,” said a teacher.

Son of a police head constable, Vishwajeet was returning to his school with his brother Navjeet after winning a match in Sector 37 when a group of boys, including his classmate Paras, attacked him with sharp-edged weapons.

According to the police, Paras had a spat with Vishwajeet a few days ago and had called his friends to settle scores. The boys cornered Vishwajeet and hit him on the head. His brother sustained minor injuries. The duo was rushed to the Government Multi-Speciality Hospital, Sector 16, by the police. A case has been registered.

Not the first time

It is the second such incident when a school student was attacked with sharp-edged weapons outside a school within three days. On August 1, a class VIII student of the GMSSS, Ramdarbar, was attacked outside the school gate and the police had arrested nine youths, including five juveniles, for attempt to murder.



Vendors getting bulk orders 
tribune news service

Chandigarh, August 4
With only two authorised vendors operating in the city for supplying the HSRPs, increased workload and heavy rush is resulting in a long waiting list of vehicle owners. The vendors are burdened with bulk orders and are asking customers to wait for more than a week for the plates. Celex Technology Limited, operating from the Sector 17 ISBT, has received over 100 orders for the HSRP in the last three days and is asking customers to wait till August 12 for the plates. The company is yet to set up its own manufacturing unit in the city.

Utsav Safety System fastened 25 HSRP plates in the Sector 42 RLA office. Another vendor Shimnit Utsch India will be setting up its unit in the city soon.



Don’t summon married daughter, plead parents 
Rajinder Nagarkoti
tribune news service

Panchkula, August 4
In an unusual request, parents of a Kalka gangrape rape victim today requested the court not to summon their daughter since she was now married and her husband and in-laws were not aware of her traumatic past.

The victim’s statement is crucial for the prosecution as three key witnesses have already turned hostile against the last accused in the case. The victim’s parents told the court that though they wanted the accused to be punished, but at the same time, they did not want to disrupt her happily married life.

They requested the judge not to summon their daughter for recording her statement in the case against the fourth accused. They informed the court that before the arrest of the fourth accused, Sushil Kumar, the victim had got married.

To keep it a low-key affair, they had solemnised the wedding ceremony outside Panchkula district and they had also left the district, her parents told the court. They pleaded that if the court would now summon their daughter for the identification of the accused, her husband and in-laws would come to know of the heinous act and it would ruin her life.

After hearing the victim’s parents, the court has deferred the hearing for next week. Last week, the court had issued directions to the Panchkula police to trace the victim and her parents.

The victim and her parents had given a statement against the three accused, who were awarded 10-year imprisonment, but were not coming forward to record their statements against the fourth accused.

The police had recently nabbed Sushil Kumar, alias Diwan, and his trial was running separately. The court had awarded 10-year imprisonment to the accused -- Vikram Chaudhary, Madan Yadav and Sumit, all residents of Uttar Pradesh.

On the night of January 9, 2010, the accused allegedly abducted the victim a few metres from the Kalka police post and gangraped her in a car. The police spotted the car when it was crossing the Parwanoo barrier. Accompanied by a team of the Himachal Police, the Panchkula police nabbed the accused when their car met with an accident near Dharampur.


DC orders ban on fruit sellers on national highways
Tribune News Service

Zirakpur, August 4
For ensuring free flow of traffic on the stretch between Zirakpur-Ambala and the Balongi-Kharar national highways, the Mohali Deputy Commissioner has ordered that vendors and rehriwalas would not be allowed to function along the roadside.

Earlier also directions have been issued to the authorities concerned to ensure free flow of traffic. The Punjab and Haryana High Court has also been directing the authorities to ensure there are no obstructions in the plying of vehicles.

The new ban orders should be effective till September 26. The DC told the officials concerned to initiate action against the violators for causing traffic hazard.

On February 8, the NHAI carried out a drive to close the unauthorised access to the commercial establishments and closed 12 illegal entries. Earlier, the NHAI closed 21 unauthorised entries on January 25. Later, the NHAI had submitted complaints against the violators to the police.

The Zirakpur Police had registered a case under Section 188 of the IPC (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant) against 12 violators for disobeying the prohibitory orders issued under Section 174 of the CrPC issued by the Deputy Commissioner for compliance of the Punjab and Haryana High Court direction regarding streamlining of traffic on the national highways.



Roads cry for repairs, but MC & GMADA turn a deaf ear to residents
Tribune News Service

Mohali, August 4
Development of the town has failed to touch the lives of Mohali residents. Battered and potholed patches on roads make driving a nightmarish experience for commuters everyday.

Be it the traffic junction between Phases 3A and 7 near the residence of the Mohali SSP, the main road from Phases 9 to Phase 11 or the road from the Forest Complex at Sector 68 to Industrial Area, battered roads make motorists jittery.

Claiming to have spent crores on recarpeting of roads, the municipal corporation and GMADA have failed to spend a few lakhs on undertaking patchwork and repairing potholed roads here.

Officials with the municipal corporation say work has been stopped due to the monsoon. District Planning Board chairman NK Sharma says work will resume after the rains.

The enforcement of the code of conduct due to SGPC elections has also brought development works to a standstill.

Not buying the version of officials of the municipal corporation, residents lament that repair work has never been carried in a proper manner.

They say the corporation has not been able to repair trouble spots despite repeated complaints. They claim that the civic body has not carried out repairs even before the monsoon.

While moving from Balongi to Phase 11, motorists come across several spots where the road has given way or potholes have surfaced. The story is the same near the 66-KV substation at Sector 71 and the Forest Complex at Sector 68.

Commuters using the roads frequently complain that the suspension assemblies of their vehicles are being damaged.

The road linking Sector 56 of Chandigarh to Phase 6 of Mohali is the worst affected. Repairs have not been carried on the road for years. Inner sectoral roads and parking areas are also in need of urgent repairs.

A few months ago, the public health department got a pothole on the road separating Phases 10 and 11 filled, but potholes had reappeared now.



Four kids rescued 
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, August 4
The District Child and Social Welfare Department today come forward for the rescue of four minor children, who were shown the door by one of their relatives in Majri Chowk area in Panchkula.

The department received a call on its helpline about these children and the kids were brought to Shishu Grah in Sector 15.

District child and social welfare officer Virender Singh said the youngest one is a four-month-old boy.

He added: “Neighbours had informed us that the father of these children had allegedly killed his wife and thereafter children were staying with their relative. On Thursday, the relative showed the door.”



Advocate surrenders
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, August 4
A local advocate surrendered at the district courts here yesterday in connection with a case of forging property documents. The accused, Brig PS Ghumman (retd), had been booked after two brothers, Kingston Gill and Upinder Singh, alleged that their sister Amrita attempted to usurp their house at Sector 6 here.

The NRI complainants had alleged that Amrita had tried to grab the house on the basis of a forged will of their father. During investigation, the police had found that Ghumman helped Amrita in forging the documents.



Lone BSP, 3 BJP councillors to lose their wards
Congress’ Kuldip Singh’s ward also reserved
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
In a development that may bring cheer to the ruling Congress, five sitting councillors of the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh (MCC), including three of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the lone Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) councillor, will lose their wards in the forthcoming civic body polls.

With the UT Administration proposing to reserve ward numbers 12, 13, 19, 20 and 24 for Scheduled Caste (SC) candidates, these councillors and Congress councillor Kuldip Singh (Ward No. 12, comprising Sectors 43 and 61, LIG and EWS Colonies in Sector 52 and Kajheri village), will have to look for safer wards to contest the election.

The BJP councillors who will have to shift to the other wards include Sarita Devi (Ward No. 19, comprising Sector 26 and Bapu Dham), Raj Kumari Mishra (Ward No. 20, comprising Sector 29, Phase I of the Industrial Area, Sanjay Colony and Colony No. 4) and Anil Dubey (Ward No. 24 which includes areas of Mauli Jagran Complex, Bhagat Singh Colony, Vikas Nagar, Ambedkar Colony and Shivalik Enclave).

The ward of the only BSP councillor, Ram Sumer Morya (Ward No 13, comprising Sectors 49, 50, 51, Colony No. 5, Nizampur Kumbra and Sector 63) has also been reserved for the SC candidate, sources said here today.

Out of these five newly reserved wards, a draw of lots will be held to reserve the wards for the women SC candidates. A meeting of senior officials of the UT Administration is slated to be held next week to finalise election schedule, sources said.

The reservation of wards of the sitting councillors for the SC candidates would have political ramifications as the political parties, primarily the opposition, would have to find an alternative and safer wards for these councillors. Their “rehabilitation” in the new wards could spark off protest from the sitting councillors and ticket seekers in the wards concerned.

In the 2006 MC poll, Ward No. 5 (represented by Sheela Phool Singh), Ward No. 6 (represented by Kamlesh), Ward No. 7 (represented by HC Kalyan), Ward No. 11 (represented by Manjit Singh Chauhan), all from the ruling Congress, and Ward No. 23 (represented by BJP’s Ram Lal) were reserved for the SC candidates.

Municipal Corporation elections
Polls as per 2006 population data

There will be no delimitation of wards for the 2011 elections. The UT Administration seems to have dropped the idea of increasing the wards from the current 26 to 32. Since the detailed population data for the 2011 Census would only been available in 2012, the UT Administration has proposed that the election should be held according to the 2006 mid-term population data. 



Upload list of faculty members on website: MCI
Anuja Jaiswal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
The Medical Council of India (MCI) is likely to make it mandatory for all medical colleges to upload the list of their faculty members, with relevant details and photographs, on its website in order to curb the practice of ‘dummy professors’ being showcased by unscrupulous institutes for gaining recognition for new courses.

The bribe-tainted MCI, which is still struggling to come out of the infamy of its former president Ketan Desai arrested by the CBI last year for allegedly accepting a ‘kickback’ of Rs 2 crore from a Patiala-based medical college, is also making it mandatory for the private medical colleges to file monthly bed occupancy reports. This step is being taken to end the possibilities of colleges indulging in the act of putting up fake patients to hoodwink the MCI inspection teams.

Talking to The Tribune, the newly appointed chairman of the MCI’s governing board and former PGI director, Dr KK Talwar, said all attempts were being made to make the system of granting recognition for degree courses more transparent and immune to corruption.

He said by mid-August, the MCI would introduce certain measures, including mandatory uploading of faculty details by all medical colleges, to check the reported practice of private medical colleges of hoodwinking the MCI inspection teams by putting up dummy professors for seeking recognition to their courses.

Talwar admitted that certain medical colleges in the past had managed to get recognition for their courses, despite not fulfilling the criteria of qualified faculty.

He said in absence of any checks and balances, colleges had managed to hoodwink the MCI teams by showing senior professors and doctors on their rolls when they were working elsewhere.

He said once all medical colleges started uploading their faculty details along with their photographs on the MCI website, such hoodwinking would become impossible as the MCI team would know which faculty members was working where and for how long. He said the new provision of filing monthly bed occupancy report would stop the practice of colleges filling up their beds with dummy patients at the time of inspections.. Talwar revealed that the MCI was planning to organise teacher-training courses across 10 centres in the country. He said attempts were being made to involve leading institutes like the AIIMS by urging them to adopt five to ten medical colleges.



Contractors making money off CITCO’s laxity
Poultry, fish being bought at higher rates
Akash Ghai
tribune news service

Chandigarh, August 4
Certain private contractors supplying poultry and fish to the Chandigarh Industrial and Tourism Development Corporation (CITCO) for consumption at its hotels could not have asked for more. The state-run enterprise is suffering losses running into lakhs of rupees as it has been paying much more than the retail market price to buy items like eggs and fish, benefiting contractors.

By rough estimates, CITCO is paying around Rs 2 lakh more per month to procure poultry and fish. Sources reveal that the corporation finalised the tender for the whole year to procure the poultry products, but the rate variation to buy the same products in summer and winter was not taken into consideration. The rates of the products in summer are always less.

An egg is available at Rs 2.20 (today’s price) in the open market, but it costs the corporation Rs 3.50, thanks to the rate mentioned in the tender for the entire year.

According to an estimate, around 1,500 eggs on an average are consumed daily in CITCO hotels and other units being run in the city, which means a loss of around Rs 50,000 per month to the corporation.

The other item, which causes losses, is Sole Fillet fish, which is being procured at the rate of Rs 549.94 per kg. It is available at Rs 450 per kg, meaning that CITCO is paying Rs 100 more per kg for the product.

A CITCO official said on the condition of anonymity that the average daily consumption of the fish was around 30 kg these days, which meant a loss of around Rs 90,000 per month. Similarly, the Pomfret fish rates are pegged at Rs 444.94 per kg while it can be purchased between Rs 300 and Rs 350 from the market.

Two contractors are supplying eggs and fish to the corporation. 

Amanpreet Kaur, CGM, CITCOThe contracts were given through e-tendering and on purely merit basis on the recommendation of the committee concerned. We had rejected tenders for eggs four times for higher rates. No one can predict future rates of any item. As the rates of these items tend to go up generally, it  will be beneficial for us to buy them when the rates go northwards.   — Amanpreet Kaur, CGM, CITCO

A folly’: There used to be a practice of accepting two separate rates of these products for summer and winter from a contractor. I don’t know why that practice was discontinued. The contractors are earning handsomely from our folly.  — Kashmir Chand, 
president, CITCO employees’ union

Contractors’ liability: The contractors have deposited Rs 25,000 as security money. If they fail to provide things for any reason during their contract period, CITCO can forfeit the security, besides blacklisting the contractor.



e-filing of IT returns clicks 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
Electronic filing of income tax returns by the salaried class seems to have taken off in a big way as the number of returns received by the Aaykar Seva Kendra (ASK) this year till July 31 has declined almost 30-40 per cent compared to the previous year.

According to figures available with the ASK, 84,176 assessees from CIT-I and II filed their IT returns up to July 31 this year as compared to 1.35 lakh filed during this period last year. A majority of returns pertained to the salaried class.

A senior IT official said due to the easy procedure and user education, the website is attracting those who can use this mode. The assessees can go to the website and file their returns easily. The process has been kept very simple and understandable.

Officials claimed that with the establishment of a centralised processing centre in Bangalore, processing of returns had become quick and easy. Fast processing of returns has facilitated quick refunds to the taxpayers and this is attracting people to file their returns electronically.

IT returns filed till July 31

Range 2011 2010

I 9,144 18,515

II 4,779 22,034

III 11,101 20,897

IV 11,872 15,000

V 21,253 14,000

VI 26,027 43,621



Tricity scan

Saplings planted

A plantation drive was carried out in Government College of Education, Sector 20-D, on Thursday. Municipal corporation Commissioner Prerna Puri and area councillor Kamlesh planted saplings in a Park at Dadu Majra. Seventy 70 saplings were planted, while 50 were distributed among residents. 

Good response to ‘Sansad Gherao’
“Sansad Gherao” is receiving an overwhelming response in the city, a press release of the Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) stated. State president Maheshinder Singh Sidhu while addressing a gathering during a meeting of the morcha’s state office-bearers, said he had visited a number of wards in the past few days and there had been a good response to the programme scheduled for August 9. 

United Nations conference held
Finance and Education Secretary VK Singh today inaugurated the BVCMUN'll (Bhavan Vidyalaya Chandigarh Model United Nations Conference) at Bhavan Vidyalaya. Chief guest VK Singh congratulated the principal and the school staff on providing students a platform to enhance and hone their skills as public speakers. He said MUNs should be held on a regular basis in schools.

Tej celebrated
The art, culture and sports committee of municipal corporation (MC) unanimously decided that Teej celebrations would be held at Dahlia Garden opposite Fragrance Garden, Sector 36, on August 6. Chairman of the committee Brig Kuldip Singh Chandpuri while addressing mediapersons stated that the highlights of the event would be Haryanavi ragini, Haryanavi folk dance, Punjabi pop, bhangra and giddha.

‘Festival of swings’ celebrated
Ashmah International School celebrated “Teej” with fervour and enthusiasm today. A function was held to mark the celebrations. Children were dressed as flowers, butterflies, animals and trees. Director of the school JS Kesar urged students to plant saplings.

Campus placement 
@Wipro Infotech Ltd, The India, Middle East and Africa IT Businesses division of Wipro Ltd, Bangalore, conducted a joint campus placement drive for students. While 46 colleges participated in the drive, a number of BCA, diploma and BTech students were hired by Wipro Infotech. The company offered a package of Rs1.8 lakh per annum to simple graduates and up to Rs 3.25 lakh per annum to degree holders. 

Power shutdown 
Due to urgent maintenance work at 220/66 KV sub-station, Kharar, the power supply to villages being fed from 66 KV sub-station, Mullanpur Garibdass, will remain suspended from 10 am to 2 pm on Friday.

Foreign delegates visit school
Delegates from different countries visited Shastri Model School. They were invited to India by an NGO AIESEC. They gave a presentation on global warming and environment to students of classes IX and X. They urged students to keep surroundings neat and clean. They took up the students’ queries. 


Dr BS Islam, state organising commissioner, Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan, State Bharat Scouts and Guides, inaugurated an exhibition in Kendriya Vidyalaya II, Chandimandir Cantt, during a Rajya Puraskar Testing camp. Around 800 youths visited the exhibition. tribune reporters



Cyber cell files chargesheet

Chandigarh, August 4
The cyber crime cell of the Chandigarh Police today filed a detailed chargesheet against IA Quadri, accused of stealing confidential data of his employer’s company, Metro Exporter Private Ltd, along with two others.

The accused had taken a cue from Bollywood flick ‘Rocket Singh’ and adopted modus operandi of stealing their employer’s data and opening a separate firm within their office. They then targeted clients of their employer and earned huge profits.

Quadri and two others -Ajay Singh Thakur and Rajesh Nanda - were booked under Section 406 and 420 of IPC and Sections 66, and 72 of the Information Technology (IT) Act on June 2.

Accused Thakur and Nanda are absconding and their anticipatory bail applications are pending in the Punjab and Haryana High Court.

The case was registered on a complaint of company MD Samita P Bhatia. — TNS



57 CTU conductors recalled to duty 
Buses parked at depots to be in use again

Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
As many as 57 Chandigarh Transport Undertaking bus conductors who were put off duty and assigned other tasks have been requisitioned back on buses following a report that was published in these columns on July 25.

The decision to bring the conductors back on their regular duty will help the transport department in plying buses on local and long distances routes that had earlier been closed down. Buses that were earlier parked in CTU’s four depots due to staff shortage will be pressed into service again.

The Tribune had reported that a fleet of about 80 CTU buses had been taken off the roads due to unavailability of drivers and conductors. These buses could have earned the department lakhs of rupees in revenues by ferrying thousands of commuters every day. On Thursday transport director Sunil Bhatia issued the order to reassign bus duty to the conductors with immediate effect. The conductors will have to join route duty on August 6.

CTU general manager SP Parmar said 33 conductors at depots I and II who will rejoin the duty will help the department is resuming bus services on long routes that were either closed or the frequency of buses reduced due to staff shortage.

“The frequency of buses plying to Delhi, Ludhiana, Shimla, Una and various areas of Punjab will be increased with the conductors being transferred to route duty. Services on around 25 routes will be resumed. With 24 conductors joining duty at depots III and IV, services on about 18 local routes will be resumed, benefiting thousands of commuters”, Parmar added.

The conductors were earlier posted in various departments including booking, box, cash and TSI branches, computer cell and duty section. Officials said with more buses in service the frequency on local as well as long routes would go up. The department is going to press in more buses on local routes with a high passenger occupancy rate.



P’kula MC to spend Rs 3 cr on streetlights
Arun Sharma
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, August 4
The town is set to don a new look at nights with sodium electrical lights as the Municipal Council is to take up the issue to install such lights in the streets at a cost of Rs 3 crore. Over 50 per cent of the streetlights in the sectors are lying out of order.

Streetlights in a majority of wards were replaced with ‘T5 tube lights’ last year only when money for the purpose was allocated to the ward executive committees. The ward committees, headed by local councillors, got the electricity light points repaired and T5 energy saving tube lights were installed in place of the conventional tube lights.

The costly T5 tube lights, however, could not stand the vagaries of weather and within one year of their installation more than half of them stopped working, putting the area into darkness. Now, the council has decided to install sodium lights in the streets of all the sectors.



A tale about rejection
SD Sharma

Chandigarh, August 4
The Adakar Manch, Mohali, gave a new dimension to the ongoing festival of Rabindranath Tagore’ s works by staging a Punjabi play “Baat Suhe Phullan Di” at the Tagore Theatre today. The play was based on two original stories “Once There Was a King” and “Victory” authored by noble laureate Dr Sahib Singh. It laid emphasis on wrong decisions and egotism. King Narayan of Amarpur kingdom married his 15-year-old daughter Ajitha to a seven-year-old poor boy, who happened to be the first to pass by the palace

in the morning. The boy rejected her and left the palace to become a poet of astounding merit of a Raj Kavi Shekhar. The sets were symbolic and functional. Rajinder Rozy, Baniderpal Singh, Mallika, Harhem Neel, Sarthak Narula and Harmanpal played major roles. “Chirkumar Sabha” directed by Sudesh Sharma will be staged at 6.45pm tomorrow.



PEC shows 4 students the door, detains 20
Fail to meet mandatory parameters set by college
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
abbing a seat in region’s prestigious engineering college-PEC University of Technology may be tough, but once admitted, “proving” that one has an aptitude to be an engineer is trickier!

Figure this- four first year students of PEC have failed to clear the mandatory conditions to continue second year of bachelors of electronics and have been ‘terminated’ by the authorities, while 20 others, who could not qualify mandatory parameters, required to graduate to second year, have been asked to repeat BE (first year).

PEC has been following the practice since 2008 to ensure retention of serious candidates. Once enrolled in first year, students are expected to clear three compulsory conditions. These conditions include one-a student must score at least a Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) of 5, two- must get 24 credit points out of total 47 for all subjects in first year and three- has to pass in a minimum nine out of 11 exams of BE (I).

However, rules are not as rigorous for students in subsequent years as in the first year, confirm PEC officials.

“Like every year, we had announced the system of clearing conditions during the orientation programme this year also. Each year we get a special prospectus released containing rules and regulations of clearing conditions and details of all courses and faculty members. These are sent to the departments and then distributed among students,” said Sanjeev Sofat, Dean (academics), PEC University of Technology.

In what is an indication of students’ slack approach to know the “rules and regulations” of the institute, nearly 150 out of 450 students enrolled in first year (academic session 2010-2011), never collected their copies of prospectus.

Incidentally, marks scored by candidates, who have been “shown the door” by PEC authorities, showed their non-seriousness or incapability. While one student had a CGPA of 0.37, others had 1.91, 2.14 and 3.28 cumulative points, which are way below the average score of 5.

Insiders said a majority of students detained or terminated were the ones who got admission in reserved categories during joint counselling.



Detention not acceptable, say students

Chandigarh, August 4
Students for Society (SFS), a group comprising students of PEC University of Technology, today held a press conference on the issue of detention of first year students.

Representatives of the SFS claimed that nearly 50 students of BE (first year) were suffering due to stringent rules. “The process of termination by PEC authorities is not acceptable. Nearly 50 students are affected by the stringent rules every year and they are either detained in first year by the authorities or terminated from the college,” said Pradeep, a member of SFS. Certain other first year students, including Jasdeep and Hunarbir Singh, alleged that their career was at stake due to strict rules and criteria to pass the first year exam. — TNS



Orientation programme

Candigarh: Virasat, the heritage society of Post-Graduate Government College for Girls, Sector 11, held an orientation programme today. Students were acquainted with various hues of Indian heritage. Society coordinator Dr Neena Goyal spoke on the importance of the relation between history and heritage. Around 500 members were enrolled in the society.


Post Graduate Government College, Sector 46, organised a three-day library orientation programme for BCom, BCA and BA first year students. A book exhibition “Know your library” was organised. The audio-visual section of the library also organised an exhibition of clippings on various topics like religion, career, health etc. Principal Dr Sham Lata graced the occasion. — TNS 



Case registered against managers of printing press
Tribune News Service

Mohali, August 4
A month after the Punjab School Education Board authorities lodged a complaint with the police in an alleged Rs 65 lakh textbook printing scam, a case of cheating, forgery and hatching criminal conspiracy has been registered against Rakesh Kumar and Suresh Kumar, managers of New Bharat Offset Printers, Noida, MB Printing Press, Noida, and employees of the publication branch of the board. The complainant is former vice-chairman of the board Ranjit Singh Bajwa.

The board has also taken a disciplinary action against three employees in connection with the alleged scam. Action has also been taken against a retired official. His pension has been cut by 10 per cent. In 2008, the board had given the work of printing textbooks to two Noida-based firms. Later, it was found that books printed by these firms were less than the order placed and receipts were tempered with to show excess supply of books. A four-member committee was set up to probe the matter which had submitted its report to board’s chairman Dr Dalbir Singh Dhillon. Earlier, two other panels had also conducted an inquiry into the matter. 



Last date extended
 Applications for masters
Tribune News Service

andigarh, August 4
The department of women’s studies and development has extended its last day of submitting applications of masters degree till August 13.

The authorities said out of the total 18 seats, six were lying vacant due to high admission standards. “We received many applications, but unlike last year a majority took admission just to grab hostel seats. We do not promote dummy admissions and do not relax the standards at all. A few seats are lying vacant as we did not get appropriate candidates,” said chairperson Dr Rajesh Gill.

Interested candidates must submit their complete applications by August 13, 2011, up to 5 pm. Counselling for the course will be conducted on August 16, 2011, from 10 am to 1 pm. No separate letters for the counselling would be issued, the chairperson stated.



Crusade against corruption
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
Representatives of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) today launched a campaign “Bhrastachariyo Gaddi Chhodo” against corruption at Shaurya Bhawan, DAV College, Sector 10, today.

Dinesh Chauhan urged students to join them on August 9, 2011. He said in Orissa the poor people were starving and corrupt leaders were stacking millions of dollars abroad.



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