C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Fiza died a painful death
Poison strong enough to cause severe nausea, breathlessness: Doctor
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Mohali, September 9
Death certainly came to Fiza in a very painful way. A connoisseur of good things, Fiza spent the last moments of life suffering from hypoxia (lack of oxygen), nausea and breathlessness as aluminium phosphide (celphos), found in her viscera, is a deadly poison known to cause all these effects on human beings.

While it is yet to be ascertained whether she had committed suicide or was murdered, Dr Parminder Singh Bhatti, who headed the medical board that conducted Fiza’s postmortem, said that anybody who died due to consumption of celphos, suffered from hypoxia, which finally led to one’s death.

“When aluminium phosphide comes into contact with moisture or any liquid, it starts producing phosphine (PH 3) gas. The gas produced begins to finish oxygen inside the body and causes nausea, severe

breathlessness and leads to severe pain in the stomach. The person, who consumes celphos dies a painful death and Fiza was certainly not an exception”, said Dr Bhatti while talking to Chandigarh Tribune.

The revelation of presence of the poison in her viscera has brought to light that she had suffered a lot of physical agony before she died.

“One may take few hours or even some days to die after consuming the poison. It all depends on the quantity of poison taken”, said Bhatti. Bhatti further said that she might have been in pain for few hours before she died.

If she had died a painful death then there should have been signs of her struggle after consumption of the poison, but the police claim that there was not even a wrinkle on her bedsheet where she was found lying.

“She was found lying on the bed with slightly folded legs. There was no sign of struggle for life. There was no wrinkle on the bedsheet she was found lying on”, said the police officials, who had searched the room immediately after getting the news of her death.

As the body was highly decomposed and maggot infested, fluid was scattered around it, said the police.

Unanswered Questions

  • If Fiza had taken deadly poison in her house, why was there no sign of struggle for life? Experts claim that after having poison, one vomits and suffers from hypoxia, breathlessness. In such a condition one cannot remain inside the room. But the police did not find any traces of vomit or any such signs in the house
  • If she had committed suicide, then some wrapper, bottle or tablets should have been inside the room or the house. But the police claimed that no such item was found
  • The celphos tablet cannot be left in the open as it starts producing poisonous gas immediately, after coming in contact with moisture. This indicates that if she had the poison in the house, then surely some wrapper or bottle should have been found

Attempted suicide twice

Her close friends, acquaintances and relatives claim she was not a kind of woman, who could have committed suicide. However, she had attempted suicide twice, in 2009 and in 2011. In both the cases she had consumed sleeping pills. In 2011, those close to her claimed her last year’s attempt was not more than a ‘farce’ as she herself had called up several friends and told them that she had taken sleeping pills. Both times, she did not write any suicide note



Tense family ties led to acid attack
Uncle booked, his minor son under scanner, both absconding
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
Police investigations into the acid attack on a youth yesterday have allegedly found bigamy to be the reason behind the attack. A day after the attack on the youth, Amit in Sector 22, the police has booked his 42-year-old uncle Vijay (husband of his father’s sister) in the case. The role of a 14-year-old boy, who is Vijay’s son, is also suspected.

Vijay had married his niece who happened to be Amit’s cousin and both Amit and Vijay were not on good terms owing to Vijay’s second marriage.

Both the accused are yet to be arrested, as they managed to give the police the slip by absconding from their Shahpur residence near Ludhiana, an hour before the police reached them today.

The police suspects that Vijay got the attack executed through someone else and they would soon establish his identity.

DSP Ashish Kapoor said Vijay had a six- month-old daughter from his second wife who was Amit’s cousin. Both Vijay and Amit had entered into a scuffle a fortnight ago when Vijay came to Amit’s Sector 38 residence. “Amit’s mother had objected to Vijay being served tea and a scuffle had ensued then. Vijay wanted to avenge the treatment meted out to him and then planned an attack on Amit,” he said.

Vijay has left his first wife, who was Amit’s aunt, which had led to strained relations between the uncle and the nephew. After the acid attack, Vijay had called up Amit’s sister Neelu, and threatened her that this time he had only thrown acid on her brother, but next time he would eliminate him.

22-year-old Amit sustained burns after acid was thrown at him in the busy Sector 22 market last evening.

Accused has criminal record

The police said Vijay had a criminal background and many cases were registered against him in Ludhiana.



A snatching that never was
Youth booked for criminal breach of trust
Aneesha Sareen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
The UT police has booked a 24-year-old man in a case of criminal breach of trust after he called up the police control room yesterday saying that two youths had snatched Rs 54,000 from him. The accused identified as Rajkumar had taken around Rs 3 lakh loan from his employer in the grain market on pretext of his mother’s illness but had spent the money on living a lavish lifestyle and buying expensive mobile sets. He had then enacted a drama to befool the police and his employer that the money had been snatched from him.

The police reached the spot in Maloya where they found Rajkumar who told them that two persons on a motorcycle snatched Rs 54,000, which was lying in the dickey of his scooter, and fled.

On investigating, the police found that Rs 2,000 kept in his pocket and his expensive mobile phone was not snatched while the youths had taken away the money that was kept in the dickey of his scooter.

On further interrogation, Rajkumar told the police that his employer Mahesh Gupta, a Zirakpur resident, who is a commission agent in the Grain Market, Sector 26, had given him the cash for work. The police then summoned his employer Mahesh Gupta who then told the police that Rajkumar had taken loan of Rs 2.54 lakh from him some months ago and was dilly-dallying returning it. Only a day before yesterday he had taken another Rs 65,000 from him on pretext of his mother’s illness.

Rajkumar used this money to buy expensive mobiles and also purchased an Activa scooter. As police grilled him further, he disclosed that he had enacted the drama as he was unable to return the money to his employer. The police then arrested Rajkumar in a case of criminal breach of trust under Section 406 of the IPC. The police said he had also enacted a similar drama in Sector 15 some days ago.

Not the first incident

Last year, Abir Malhotra, a Sector-48 resident, had called the police control room and had given a false information that he had been robbed of Rs 8 lakh. He had, however, later committed suicide as he was unable to get rid of the guilt



Over 100 road-engineering proposals pending
Panel formed to speed up work
Aneesha Sareen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
Efforts of the Chandigarh Traffic police to improve the traffic scenario in the city have borne little fruit all these years, as over 100 road engineering proposals mooted since 2006 are lying pending with the engineering departments of both the UT administration as well as the Municipal Corporation.

Even as the city witnesses grave accidents on a daily basis, steps to improve traffic is the need of the hour. The proposals mooted in the Chandigarh Traffic advisory committee as well as otherwise have remained only on paper. A majority of these proposals date back to 2006 and are still pending, reveals a traffic police study.

Some of these proposals pending with the engineering department of the Administration include construction of slip roads with proper sign boards, provision of battery back up for all traffic lights in the city, repainting of zebra crossings, installation of speed limit sign boards, repair and replacement of iron grills at certain roundabouts and construction of footpaths and cycle tracks.

Other important proposals that are pending with the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation, include marking of lanes for two-wheelers in all the parking lots of Chandigarh, provision of foot overbridge for pedestrians between Rose Garden and Leisure Valley on Madhya Marg, shifting of local bus stop near gate number one of Panjab University and installation of rumble strips, speed-limit sign boards, flashing blinker lights and provision of lay byes for parking of police vehicles deployed for emergency duty.

Sources said that the proposals are pending since the last six years owing to red tapism and many of these get stuck in procedural wrangling.

The UT Traffic police has now formed another committee to see that all proposals sent by the traffic police are effectively implemented.

The committee consists of six executive engineers of both the UT administration as well as the Municipal Commision, as members as well as an assistant town planner and an architect besides senior traffic police officials.

“The committee will meet at least once in a month to review various pending road engineering proposals and address all issues coming in way of their implementation,” said Maneesh Chaudhary, UT superintendent of police (traffic).

Pending proposals

  • Installation of automatic pelican lights and marking of zebra crossing on road between Rose Garden and Leisure Valley
  • Fixing of strong iron grills on road dividers in place of barber wires on Madhya Marg
  • Replacement of broken iron grills from railway station light point to Fun Republic Light point
  • Provision of foot overbridge for pedestrians between Rose Garden and Leisure Valley on Madhya Marg
  • Provision of battery back up for all traffic lights in the city



Texting turns a leaf, and dat’s the problem!
Messaging tests teachers’ patience, makes language learning a tough task
Vivek Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
“The leeves dnt perform fotosinthsis widout sunlite ...
The leave aplication wil be submited tomorrow……
I ofen wached thos peple clim that bilding

Some of these notes, extracted from the students’ copy from schools in Chandigarh, point out ‘shorthand and ‘SMS’ approach of students, seeping in the formal education these days.

Several city teachers have expressed concerns over how the excess use of text messaging and social media language by students is swiftly changing their formal expression not only in language subjects but also subjects across the board.

“This tendency has really picked up in recent years, says Anjali, an English teacher at DAV, Sector 15. She says that the words like ‘dat’, whn, whr, frenz, have become common mistake in students’ notebooks. At times, students use weird and loose abbreviations, which becomes even hard for us to figure out, she said.

Gurmit Singh, an English teacher at St Johns’ High School, says that the words like ‘coz, ur, asap, dis, dem, n’ are often found in students’ notebooks and even in exam papers of students above class VII standard.

According to him, the problem seems apparent and imminent. While texting or on social media, students just convey the message in the shortest possible way and there, it doesn't matter whether the user is right or wrong. Unfortunately, this habit is carried over to the formal writing tasks in the classrooms and it is a challenging job to retrieve the students to formal expression of language.

Mona Rajwade, a parent, says that the new ways of communication has definitely affected the written as well as spoken language of this generation. “Children are not ready to learn the correct rules and I feel that the correct ways of language will soon meet a fag end like the Shakespearean English, she adds.

Shabnam Singha, senior coordinator, Strawberry School, however thinks that the issue needs to be seen on a wider scale considering the fact that every era brings changes in the way the language is written and spoken. That is the reason the Shakespearean language is out of usage.

“I think it is fine if students use short-hand language for SMS or quick informal mail. Even we adult do the samething especially while text messaging. But the students should repeatedly be sensitised that there is a difference between informal interaction and formal class-room teaching even though it is a challenging task considering the change the technology has brought in our lives, adds Shabnam.

On speaking to some students, they said that they did not write the language deliberately. School student Revant Bogra, a resident of Panchkula, says that the problem is more at the unconscious level. Sometime I unknowingly use short forms such as Imma" "Gonna"(I am going to) "tever" (what ever) "lemme" (let me), though at conscious level I know that these are wrong spellings.

He says that one should read more books other than oschool books to expand vocabulary. As per the information, the CBSE has recently made a novel compulsory for classes 1X to X11, but many feel that one novel in a year is not enough.

Speaking out

Need to Keep a check on them, say teachers

It will be an utopian dream if we think that texting or social media is not here to stay. I think it is the duty of a classteacher to keep a repeated check on students and regularly discuss the problem with them. Today, the children are very innovative and right counselling can minimise the bad effect of social media and technology.

— Harold Carver, director, St Stephen’s School, Sector 45

The problem of casual language in formal education can’t be ruled out. The best way is that students must be corrected every time he or she makes a mistake. Both the teachers as well as the parents must act swiftly and repeatedly.

— Atul Khanna, director, Strawberry School, Sector 26

Teachers can incorporate word games in classroom teaching. They can design an activity in a way that it involves all four skills of the language- listening, speaking, reading and writing, students must be encouraged to read more

— Neerja Jain, English teacher, GSSS, Sector 16



Chandigarh, Panchkula police at loggerheads
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 9
Ever since the Chandigarh Police has arrested ACP Adarshdeep Singh, both the Panchkula and Chandigarh police officials have been at loggerheads. Post-Arshdeep incident, policemen on both sides are taking swift action.

Soon after the Chandigarh Police arrested Adarshdeep, the Panchkula Police paid in the same coin and arrested its Inspector.

The stand is contrary to previous instances wherein policemen involved in wrongdoings were shielded by both the state police departments.

It was on August 20 when the under-training Panchkula Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Adarshdeep Singh and his kin were arrested for allegedly thrashing a Chandigarh Police head constable at their residence in police colony at Sector 51. He was released on bail on September 1.

Adarshdeep is currently posted as the Station House Officer of the Sector-14 police station, Panchkula.

“Ever since the Chandigarh Police has arrested our ACP, despite the fact that he was not at fault, we, too, have decided to pay in the same coin,” said a senior police official of the Panchkula Police.

When the medical of the son of a Chandigarh Police official was to be conducted after he had rammed the car into hutments near Surajpur, the IO was a little hesitant in doing so.

It was after a senior official present on the spot said “ When the Chandigarh Police can arrest our ACP, why can’t we take action against it" that the medical was conducted.

“They don't seem much interested in coordinating with us," said another official of the Panchkula Police.

It was on September 7 when the Panchkula Police had arrested Inspector Tarsem Rana for helping the fake IPS officer, Aman Kumar, by allowing to avail a Gypsy car.

As per the Panchkula Police, Adarshdeep Singh was innocent and was unnecessarily implicated by the Chandigarh Police. A report was also sent to the Haryana government mentioning that the Chandigarh Police had acted in a biased manner.

The Chandigarh Police, however, has denied the allegations made by the Panchkula Police.

"There is nothing of this sort," said a senior Chandigarh Police official to this correspondent.



Open House Response
Night eateries: A boon or bane?

The nightlife in Chandigarh is booming at a fast pace. In the interest of the residents, the Chandigarh Administration must allow opening of late night eating joints. These will prove to be boon for students and youngsters who come to Chandigarh for studies and jobs. It will also promote the night tourism in Chandigarh.

People have the right to eat whenever they feel like. But in the wake of increasing brawls, fights and murders in the night, the question of safety arises. For that purpose, the Chandigarh Administration must tie up with the Chandigarh Police to make appropriate security arrangements to ensure safety. The police should increase man power to protect the citizens and to maintain the law and order situation in the Tricity. Also, self-discipline is important for all and it is the need of the hour in Chandigarh too. People should not over drink and behave responsibly.

Vineet Kapoor, Chandigarh

24x7 eatery means compromising with safety

Darkness to dawn is the time for armed robbers to score their best. The city which is already witnessing rise in crime, especially during night hours, should not contemplate on increasing the number of late night eateries.

The bashing of UT policemen at a liquor shop in Sector 22B at 2 am, murder at a parking lot in front of an eatery in Sector 22 around midnight followed by a murder of business man in Sector 22 around 11pm, are real-life examples of the fact that 24x7 eateries means compromising with safety.

Recently in USA the city council of Newark has voted unanimously to restrict the hours of restaurants throughout the city. The risks to employees and customers probably are greater at night than during the daytime. If such eateries are opened then the burden on police will increase at a time when it is facing insufficient infrastructure.

During day there is a consistent and visible police presence in the city whereas during night hours the presence is very thin. The 24x7 eateries are absolutely unsuitable for the city.

Ajay Jagga, Chandigarh

More eateries should not be allowed

The liberty given to some eateries to stay open till late night are often misused by youngsters. Incidents of brawls even murders and road rage have been reported near such 24X7 eateries. The late night crowd certainly does not deserve this great facility, like the Aroma's 24X7 eatery or the Night Food Street near PU.

Involvement of high-profile brats, in such incidences, further complicates the matter for the police as well as the genuine visitors to these eateries. Until steps are taken to maintain a safe and secured environment for the visitors at the existing 24X7 eateries, new late night eateries should not be allowed in the city.

Rakesh Chopra, Chandigarh

Cities needs more late night eateries

Chandigarh is a highly-planned city with provision of high-tech infrastructure and latest facilities. However, there are limited options when it comes to 24X7 eateries. It becomes difficult for common people, who visit Chandigarh to get treatment at the PGI or government hospital. Those looking for a job in IT Industry or students living as paying guests face a lot of problem due to the absence of enough eateries. The Administration has, otherwise, permitted a lot of hotels, restaurants, and night clubs to enjoy this facility.

There is an urgent need of late night food streets and kiosks that maintains hygiene and food quality. The Municipal Corporation should fix sites, particularly one each at the PGI, Government Medical College and Hospital and Government Multi-Speciality Hospital, and also one each at bus stand, IT Park area, Industry Area Phase I and II. The strength of such eateries should be increased from existing one. These eateries must have proper security arrangement to counter chances of violence and disturbance.

The Municipal Corporation or Chandigarh Administration should frame policies relating to allotment or auction of sites, fixation of reasonable rates, and assurance of quality food as well as provision for parking along with high-tech security system.

Sukhpal Singh, Chandigarh

Recreation is okay, but not at the cost of life

Chandigarh is known as City Beautiful. The city used to be referred as the city of ‘babus’, as a large numbers of government employees of Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh reside here.

However, since 1991, under the garb of so-called economic reforms, the government has opened the floodgates for MNCs. The affect of these MNCs is discernible when they have opened their branch offices, regional offices in the city. The work culture of these establishments is to work till late hours. Those who work in these companies would naturally like to enjoy their evenings with families and friends. Thus there came the need to have 24X7 eateries in the city.

It is good that at present the city has only a few 24x7 eateries. Keeping in view the deteriorating law and order situation in the city, the eateries should not be allowed to remain open beyond midnight. To maintain this character of the City Beautiful, it is essential that Administration, NGOs, hotels and restaurants associations and people at large should contribute and cooperate. Leisure and enjoyments should not be at the cost of life.

SK Khosla, Chandigarh

24X7 eating joint is a must

Chandigarh city will soon be in league of metro cities. Many BPOs are coming in the city, which work till odd hours. Those who are return home late can't have food outside because there are a very few 24X7 restaurants in the Tricity. Chandigarh needs a few more such eateries as that would solve problems of many people.

Chandigarh Administration should become more liberal in allowing other eating joints to keep remain open till late night. But with that the security also needs to be tightened. More police force should be deployed outside these eating joints. The Administration should give licences to more and more joints to stay open till late night but with more security. However, liquors should not be served should not after 10 at night. But a few more 24 hours eating joints is a must.

Guryog Kaur, SAS Nagar

Ensure safe nightlife first

There is certainly a dire need for 24X7 eateries for convenience of city residents. But is Chandigarh safe enough to handle the night culture? In the wake of incidents like brawls, road rage, drunken driving, molestation and even murders, denizens of Chandigarh feel quite insecure while moving out at night.

Before initiating any project on 24X7 eateries, the Chandigarh Administration must ensure a safe nightlife. To promote night tourism, security must be beefed up and night patrolling needs to be increased, especially at sensitive areas like hotels, restaurants and discotheques.Special nakas and check-posts must be installed during late nights to catch rowdy youths carrying weapons and also tipsy youths driving rashly.

Shruti K Chawla, Chandigarh

Yes to late night food, no to drinking

The Chandigarh Administration should think over the issue of opening more late night food outlets. At present, there is no reasonable food outlet or eating joints that are open till late nights. Chandigarh simply does not provide that luxury, except the Night Food Street. However, consumption of alcohol at late hours should not be allowed. According to me, late nights in Chandigarh are the best time to discuss crucial issues of the city with a nice cup of coffee.

Sachin Sharma, Chandigarh

Change in lifestyle boost late night eateries

With the coming of IT jobs, the work culture in the city has changed. Now we have day and night shifts and the work goes on 24x7. People are always on their toes and there is no time and energy left for cooking. They need a place where they can grab a quick bite anytime- while going and coming back from their job.

Chandigarh has a very few all day eateries. Most of these are coffee shops of five-star hotels which are out of the reach of a common man. Even tourism is rising and flights and trains arrive at odd hours. The tourists need places to go and eat after their long tiring journey. The city needs to have more eateries which are open 24x7. The authorities need to be more lenient and allow restaurants to be open till late night

Isha Dahiya, Panchkula

Open House Question

There have been instances where kin of police personnel were found involved in criminal cases. It is a serious matter as the guardians of law have been found defending their kin involved in heinous crimes. What needs to be done to stop this trend? Send your suggestions to openhouse@tribunemail.com


Chandigarh scan
Workshop on law

The Akhil Bharatiya Adhivakta Parishad North Zone Lady Advocate Workshop was organised at Law Bhawan, Sector 37, Chandigarh, on Sunday. The workshop was attended by 78 women advocates from Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, Himachal Pardesh, Chandigarh and Jammu and Kashmir.

The Workshop began with the national song Vande Matram. The first topic "Introduction of Adhivakta Parishad and Objects of Workshop" was presented by Jyotika Arora, advocate-on-record, Supreme Court, who stated that ABAP was of the view that in the given scenario, the legal fraternity should stop the continuous abuse and misuse of the spirit of the constitution.

Achin Jakhar, Advocate from Gurgaon and Akhilesh Vyas presented the topic of "Cyber World Applications and Complexities of Laws" and both explained the definition of cyber crime and told about the cyber laws. Dr Viney Kapoor, Professor, Department of Laws, Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, explained about the importance of family in relation to the welfare of the nation. All the women advocates actively participated in the discussion.

Action sought

CITCO Workers' Union has demanded to register a criminal case against Jawahar Kalra, former employee of the corporation, for misleading the corporation by giving a fake degree and availing financial benefits. The information about the case under RTI act was not supplied by the corporation, Kashmir Chand, president of the union said.

Monthly interaction

The First Friday Forum organised its monthly interaction programme on "e-Governance: Cure for Corruption" on Sunday. Pallav Mukherjee, architect and former councillor of the local municipal corporation said," In spite of being the world's largest democracy, both our natural and man-made assets are being sold for a song to the vested interests." He stressed on the need of implementing e-governance to hold the bureaucracy accountable.

Cardiovascular diseases on rise

"One in six people in the city is likely to suffer from brain stroke in the life. Cardiovascular diseases claim the highest number of lives with heart attack and brain stroke top on the list. Brain stroke is one of the biggest health hazards that the people suffer due to hectic daily routine today. ironically, none of the leading hospitals of the city provide the full care to these groups of patients." This was stated by Dr HS Mann, senior consultant neurologist, here on Sunday.

Dr Ravul Jindal, said the good news was that now narrowing in these arteries could be treated with proximal protection.

Anti-ragging campaign

Aryans Group of Colleges, Chandigarh, launched an anti-ragging campaign in the college on sunday. The senior students of BTech, MBA, BBA, BCA, B Ed organised a programme on the occasion in which they explained the various negative aspects of ragging through a play. The play was played by Faaiz and Group. Through their play, they also showed the impact on the careers of the students who indulge in ragging.

Annual day celebrations

Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32, celebrated its 21st annual day on Sunday. Pawan Kumar Bansal, Union Minister for Parliamnetary Affairs, was the chief guest. GMCH has been selected for the Regional Centre for Applied Paramedical Sciences and Centre for Institute of Mental Health. "The selection of 408 nurses out of 22000 candidates, including 350 nurses for GMCH-32 and rest for GMSH-16, was one of the key developments made in the last one year," said Dr Raj Bahadur, Director Principal, GMCH-32.

Theatre festival begins

A three-day theatre festival by city-based Amateur Theatre Group will open today at open air the theatre of Punjab Kala Bhawan, Sector 16.

Three plays will be played from september 10 -12 at 7.00pm daily. On September 10, the play “Subha Kab Hogi”, which is written by Girish Bhakshi will be staged. On the next day play “Khidki Band Kar Do” again written by Girish Bhakshi will be staged. The concluding day on September 12 will have play “Dedh Inch Uppar” , which is written by Nirmal Verma. All plays are directed by Gaurav Sharma.

Themes in all the plays depict differences and misunderstandings in human relationships. The play "Khidki Band Kar Do" depicts difficulties and challenges of a divorced woman in the modern world.

Cultural function

SPIC MACAY (Society for the Promotion of Indian Classical Music And Culture Amongst Youth), Chandigarh, is organising a concerts of Pt Kaivalya Kumar Gaurav, artist of hindustani vocal genre of Indian classical music, on Monday.

His will perform on Monday evening at 6 pm at IISER, Sector 8, SAS Nagar, followed by repeated performance on September 10 at IMTECH, Sector 39-A. On September 11 he will give another performance at PG Govt College, Sector 11, Chandigarh.

Mohali scan

New centre for MAT 2012

The All India Management Association (AIMA) has approved Doaba Group of Colleges, Kharar, as a centre for the online Management Aptitude Test, (MAT) 2012. MAT is a standardised all India examination, which is being conducted by AIMA since 1988. Earlier, the group was also selected as an approved centre for the online Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE) 2012. GATE is also an all India examination, conducted jointly by the Indian Institute of Science and seven IITs on behalf of the National Coordination Board of the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD). GATE qualification is also a requirement for the various fellowships/ scholarships, awarded by many government organisations.

Goodwill tour

A group of 20 members from Mohali Senior Citizens Association is going on a good will tour to China (Beijing and Shanghai) with a view to establish a rapport with the senior citizens of that country. The group will leave on September 16 for a period of eight days.

Senior citizens talk to media about their China tour in Mohali on Sunday. Tribune Photo: Vicky Gharu

Grandparents' day celebrated

Grandparents are an inalienable part of the family who dispense love and guidance to all members of family. Grandparents also epitomise moral values, upright conduct, which serve as example for all junior members of a family and society in general. Grandparents and their grandchildren share a special bond, which is based on love. In order to celebrate the unique, sacred and very close relationship which prevails between the grandparents and their grandchildren and to honour the role Small Wonders School, Mohali, defined the role of grandparent in life here on Grandparents' Day on Sunday. — TNS



Acid attack
Victim family’s lone breadwinner
Ritika Jha
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
Even as Amit, the acid attack victim, is battling for life at the PGIMER, he might not be able to see the light of the day again. While the doctors are trying hard to revive his vision, they said his chances for regaining vision were very bleak.

Both the eyes of the 24-year-old victim are severely damaged and blood vessels inside the cornea of his eyes have been ruptured due to the acid blocking blood flow completely.

The only breadwinner in the family, Amit, has been bearing the expenses of his younger brother's (10) education following his father's death.

Working as an assistant at a mobile repair shop, the Sector-38 resident had been taking care of the needs of his family well. "Amit started working early. Being a bright student, he, however, wanted to continue his education," said his mother.

His employer, owner of the mobile repair shop in Sector 22, who brought Amit to the hospital said both the eyes were completely swollen and became discoloured by the time he reached the hospital.

"Looking at his condition yesterday, the doctors here at the PGI had told us that the damage is too severe and the possibility for him to see again is bleak," said Amit's employer, Amit Kumar.

"We are yet trying to extend maximum help to him since he has been already struggling to support his family with his meagre income. Losing his eyes, he will be completely unable to earn even as much as he had been earning at my shop. Besides, he is a sincere employee and it is painful for me to see him suffer," Kumar added, while accompanying the victim at the PGI's Advanced Eye Centre.

Senior doctors at the PGI said nearly seven to eight cases of acid attack were being reported every year. The victims of acid attack suffer deep mental trauma. More than providing the required treatment, the doctors have to offer them counselling to motivate them and move ahead in life. An acid attack survivor, especially a female victim, undergoes deep agony and starts considering his or her life meaningless. They discard their social circles and often move to other cities.

Both the eyes of the 24-year-old victim, Amit, are severely damaged and blood vessels inside the cornea have been ruptured as the acid has blocked blood flow completely.

Unregulated sale of sulphuric acid continues. Despite a surge in the cases of acid attack, especially on women, the local authorities have failed to check the sale of acid. Inquiries reveal that acid can be easily procured from hardware shops and mechanics dealing in sale of batteries.



No end to stray cattle menace in Mohali
Kulwinder Sangha

Stray cattle cause traffic problem at the road separating Phase IV and Industrial Area in Mohali on Sunday. Tribune Photo: Vicky Gharu

Mohali, September 9
The town continues to be plagued by the problem of stray cattle inviting flak not only from residents but also from the Punjab Gau Sewa Board. Cattle can be seen on roads and even in parks with the Municipal Corporation authorities seem to be failing to curb the menace. The problem is more acute in the developing sectors and in areas close to villages falling within the jurisdiction of the town. Several persons have been injured and have lost their lives due to mishaps caused by stray animals.

It is learnt that even the chairman of the Punjab Gau Sewa Board Keemti Bhagat brought the problem to the notice of the Deputy Commissioner through a letter.

Bhagat stated in the letter dated August 30 that a number of cows were roaming in the town without shelter and protection. These cows not only proved to be a traffic hazard but also led to accidents. He said that it was the responsibility of the corporation under the law to take care of unprotected animals for which cattle ponds or ‘gaushalas’ should be set up.

As many as 65 residents of Matuor village had also complained to the Commissioner of the civic body through a letter that a large number of cows moved about in the area endangering lives of people. Sukhminder Singh Barnala, former municipal councillor, said he had also brought to the notice of the Commissioner the menace of stray animals. Roads in the area were blocked by cows, which were left in the open to graze after milking them.

Local Municipal Corporation Joint Commissioner JC Sabharwal said a lot of vegetation was there because of the rainy season and owners left the animals for grazing in the open. A penalty of Rs 1,000 was imposed in this regard but it had been proposed to the raise the penalty amount in the case of those who defaulted repeatedly.

Impounded cattle will not be returned, says DC

In a bid to get rid of nuisance created by cattle on roads here, Mohali Deputy Commissioner Varun Roojam in a recent meeting said cattle found roaming in the city would not be returned to their owners.

He said it has been observed that people leave their cattle in the morning, which come in the town and create nuisance. “To teach such people a lesson, we have decided that the cattle, being caught by our officials, would not be returned to their owners,” said Roojam.

So far the officials of the local Municipal Corporation last week have caught over 60 cattle. The animals have been sent to local “gaushala” located in the Industrial Area, here. A maximum of 100 animals can be kept at the gaushala in the Industrial Area, said the officials whereas the new gaushala with the capacity of about 800 animals is being constructed near the existing ones.



Slow pace of work worries sector welfare body
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
The Federation of Sector Welfare Associations, Chandigarh (FOSWAC), an association body of 60 different resident welfare associations, held its executive committee meeting at the community centre in Sector 8 today.

The meeting was held under the chairmanship of PC Sanghi and was attended by 40 representatives of different associations. The members expressed concern over the delay in execution of several projects and slow pace of development works such as providing civic amenities in densely populated Sectors from 48 to 61 and regularisation of need-based changes in CHB flats.

The members also highlighted the problems of traffic congestion and parking space and implementation of Right to Service Act and Model Rent Control Act. After deliberation, they unanimously resolved that the Disturbed Area Act promulgated in the city in 1983 in contiguity with the state of Punjab when the terrorism was at peak, should be abolished.

They resolved that the post of the Chief Commissioner be revived in the city to provide better accessibility to the common people. The members expressed concern over the law and order situation in the city. The data of incidents of chain and purse snatchings and other crimes reported in various police stations in the city since January, 2012, is alarming. The latest instances of demanding bribe by the police officials, including a senior IPS officer, has jolted residents.



Extortion rampant at Mansa Devi
Residents allege that accused posed as RWA president to demand money
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 9
The Sector-15 extortion racket has not been settled, when another extortion racket has come to the fore in the Mansa Devi Complex, Sector-5, Panchkula here today.

Vendors and other people of the market and taxi stand of the Complex have given a written complaint, a copy of which is with The Tribune, to the Municipal Corporation (MC) and Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) alleging that a person under the garb of president of the local Resident Welfare Association (RWA) extorts money from them and also asks for the fruits, vegetables and taxi facility for free.

Not only this, the Administration has also been befooled. Grants are given by the Administration to RWA, when there is no 'legal' president or other member of RWA in this area. No formal election of RWA has taken place.

When contacted the Executive Officer (EO) of the MC, OP Sehag, said, “What is taking place is wrong. An enquiry will be ordered.”

The complaint made to the MC states: “Subash Sachdeva, a local resident, calls himself as the president of RWA. He threatens us that if we don’t give him a monthly payment, he would shoo us away from this place with the help of HUDA and MC authorities.” It further states, “Sachdeva and his cohorts take kilos of fruits, vegetables and also uses the taxis. When we ask for the payment, he threatens us.”

A memorandum by 300 people alleging harassment by the accused has also been submitted.

The complaint mentions that signatures were forged to take grant from the Administration. “The grants are given to the body which is not ‘lawfully formed’. I don’t work for them. The accused came to me and asked me to give my signature on a document. When I asked for the reason, they said it is for verification. Later, I came to know that the document mentions I work for them as a Mali, which is false,” said a local gardener on the condition of anonymity. There is a taxi stand at the Complex that also helps the residents in emergency situation, like providing ambulance facility. The accused is said to be extorting money for this facility as well.

“We don’t know this man. The election for electing the RWA team was never held. I don’t know why he is calling himself the president of the area and harassing innocent people. The authorities should take strict action against them,” said Zeenat Sharma (name changed), a resident of MDC, Sector-5, Panchkula. When contacted Subash Sachdeva, he said, “All these allegations are not true. I have the proceeding books and other papers to prove it otherwise.”

It was on August 11 when the extortion racket at gunpoint from small vendors and rehri valas in Sector-15, Panchkula, had surfaced.



Spurt in snakebite cases
Ritika Jha
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
A spurt has been witnessed in snakebite cases. Over 300 cases of snakebite were reported in city hospitals during this monsoon season. Among these, the highest number of cases were reported from areas surrounding Chandigarh, owing to the dense forest cover in these areas.

While about 120 patients were rushed to the emergency ward of the PGIMER, the number of cases reported at Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH), Sector 32, went as high as 150. At Government Multi-Speciality Hospital (GMSH), Sector 16, the number was 10.

Most of the patients came from Panchkula, villages surrounding Chandigarh and Mohali and parts of Himachal Pradesh. Also, in more than 90 per cent of the cases, the patients were found to be bitten by non-venomous snakes.

Doctors said snakebites affected the victims psychologically, due to which their condition deteriorated further. Following a snakebite, a victim needs to be kept under observation for at least 24 hours, even if the victim is bitten by non-poisonous snakes.

"The key cause of snakebites, especially during the rainy season, is the increased inflow of snakes from nearby forests as these tend to find shelter in human dwellings," said a doctor at the GMCH, Sector 32.

A senior doctor at GMSH Sector 16 said anxiety and increased blood pressure could result in fever.

The best precaution in such cases is to bring the patients immediately to a hospital. 



Re-allotment of dwellings
CHB to table issue in board meeting
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
The issue regarding major changes in the rules governing the re-allotment of dwelling units is being tabled in the forthcoming board meeting of the Chandigarh Housing Board (CHB).

Officials in the CHB said before scrapping the draconian condition of ban on the sale of a dwelling before five years from its date of possession would be removed, various legal impactions of the issue were being studied.

Under the proposed changes, the CHB will allow re-allotment of dwelling units subject to payment of certain transfer fee. The Section 16 of allotment will be amended to allow the re-allotment.

Sources said officials were studying the ban imposed by the Supreme Court on general power of attorney (GPS), officials were keen to ascertain that while amending Section 16 of the allotment rules, there was no violation of the Supreme Court order.

The sources said despite a ban on the general power of attorneys for sale of the CHB flats, a number of allottees had been illegally selling the flats on the basis of GPA registered in the neighbouring states. This not only led to a huge revenue loss to the CHB, but also resulted in unending litigation between the seller and the buyer as the flats could not be transferred in the name of the buyer, five years from the date of possession of the flat.



Fats beneficial for liver disease: Experts
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
"Almost 25-30 per cent of the total energy requirements for patients with acute or chronic liver disease can be derived from fats to enhance the recovery," said experts during a CME at the PGIMER here today.

The experts stated that malnutrition had become common among patients with alcoholic liver disease (ALD) owing to lack of adequate diet intake and alcohol abuse.

"These patients usually suffer from energy and protein deficiency with very low albumin levels. Collection of fluid in the abdomen cavity is another very serious complication of the disease coupled with inadequate proteins," said one of the speakers.

It was also discussed that condition of such patients could improve with high-protein diets like milk based or egg white based diets with very restricted sodium intake. Micro nutrient deficiencies are also commonly observed in such patients who need to be supplemented accordingly.



Gaping hazard

Chandigarh: A major tragedy was averted when a truck loaded with cement and construction material got stuck in a caved-in portion of a road opposite the road separating Sectors 31 and 32 at 11 pm on Saturday.

The truck remained stuck for more than one hour.

The incident has brought to light the lackadaisical approach of the UT Administration as well as the municipal corporation towards the maintenance of city roads.

A caved-in portion of the road separating Sectors 31 and 32 in Chandigarh; and (right) a truck that got stuck in the crater. Tribune photos: Pradeep Tewari



Extra sections put burden on schools
Vivek Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
The decision of the UT Education Department to start new sections of arts stream in as many as 14 government schools, mostly in rural and suburb area, has further burdened the limited teaching resources and put the extra burden on the infrastructure of the schools.

These new sections, as per the information, have been created to accommodate the students, who failed to get admission in the first three counsellings due to their lower CGPA. Surprisingly, more than 1400 students were enrolled against the 800-900 seats in schools, located in areas like Karsen, Khuda Alisher, Mauli Jagran, Behlana, Sarangpur, Raipur Khurd, Dhanas, Kaimbwala besides some city-based schools at Sector 23, Sector 45 and Manimajra.

While more sections were created to meet the rush of the students, the ground level facilities in these schools had posed serious issues.

For instance Government Senior Secondary School, Karsen has no lecturer for economics and physical education and having shortage of lecturers for hindi, english and political science.

Moreover, there is only one english teacher for three sections of class XI and two sections for class XII besides one section of stenography.

Harveer Singh, principal of the school, said, “The school need more teachers for senior secondary classes and additional section will further increase their responsibility but we are trying our level best to give best possible results with available resources.”

The problem is similar in Government Senior Secondary School, Behlana, where there is no teacher for hindi and sociology subjects. Besides, the guest faculty has been appointed for english and political science subjects. Principal of the school, Ravinder Kaur, said that the higher authorities had been informed about the shortage of teachers and they had assured to solve the problem very soon.

The number of teachers is short in other schools too. For instance government school in Mauli Jagran village, which has been upgraded to senior secondary level from this session, has just one lecturer for three sections. A teacher informed that JBT and TGT teachers are teaching senior students.

Vinod Sharma, president of the Government Teacher Union, said the problem had reached to such level because there was lack of constant effort on the part of higher authorities to recruit the teachers on priority basis. Further the promotion issue is pending for last 20 years, he said

DPI (School) Upkar Singh said the department was very serious about the shortage of teaching faculty and was in process to take several measurements. 226 TGT teachers would soon to be recruited, he added. "The advertisement for JBT teachers is almost finalised and will be issue within two-three days. The situation will definitely improve in near future,” Singh said.



Assistant professor alleges alteration in internal assessment
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
An assistant professor at the Sociology Department of Panjab University has moved a complaint against the chairperson for altering the internal assessment marked to the semester III students in the 2010 exams. The teacher in a compliant to VC has sought permission to initiate criminal proceedings against the chairperson.

Moniva Sarkar of Sociology department has alleged that professor Rajesh Gill, who is currently chairperson, and others altered the marks given to semester III students in 2010.

“I gave the internal assessments to the students as per UGC rules but when the students got their detailed mark sheets the internal assessment was different to what I had allotted to the students,” she alleged.

Prof Rajesh Gill refuted the charges and said the assessment given by the Moniva was not accepted by the department as she didn’t follow the mandatory steps, which needed to be adopted before giving assessment to the students.

“All the students were allotted full internal marks while the teacher didn’t take into account any class tests, snap tests, the record of attendance, which was required for allotting the assessment. Therefore, the matter was reported to the then Vice-Chancellor RC Sobti who constituted a committee to inquire into the mater,” Prof Gill said.

Gill added, as there was no record of the students appearing in the tests and there attendance record was not maintained, the committee offered the students either to appear in the tests or the internal assessment would be given in proportion to the marks obtained by them in theory exam.

“The students had appeared before the committee and decided that they should be given internal marks according to the marks obtained in theory paper. It has been recorded in the minutes of meeting,” Gill said.

However, Sarkar claimed no such provision or rules exists under which marks allotted by course teacher could be changed by any authority, including VC, Dean University Instructions and Controller Examination.

The complaint was submitted to Vice-Chancellor Arun Grover in July,however, the complainant claimed she had not received any communication from VC office regarding the complaint.



PUSU finds solace in being single largest party
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
PUSU is not dejected because of its defeat in the resent Panjab University Campus Student Council (PUCSC) elections. In a press conference on Sunday the party leaders said there was no need to be sad over poll results because PUSU had emerged as the single largest party on the campus. PUSU had lost elections with a margin of only 533 votes to SOPU, that had contested elections in alliance with HSA-SOI-SFI.

In a press statement PUSU president Sukhjit Singh Brar said, “Though the party fought in alliance with NSUI, yet all candidates, except one, were fielded by PUSU alone. So it was PUSU alone that fought against an alliance of parties and PUSU is the single largest party.”

“The loss by 533 votes is not bad after considering the fact that the party got the largest number of votes,” Brar added.

Meanwhile, PUSU had alleged that NSUI did not gel with the party but later in another press conference said they got full support from NSUI Jaswinder Singh, a NSUI leader, stated that their support was with PUSU and it was the joint panel of both the parties that contested the elections.

Sumit Goklaney, party In charge of PUSU, claimed that the university adopted dual standards against PUSU, “The authorities on the pretext of Lyngdoh Committee rules stopped us from waving flags at our rally on September 4 whereas they didn’t stop the SOPU-alliance from taking flags along them in a rally. The matter was brought to the notice of police who had assured us that they would not allow them to carry the banners and flags," Sumit added.



PU Syndicate to seek views on new internal assessment system
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
Panjab University Syndicate on Sunday has decided to send the proposal of swapping September and December exams with new assessment system to the city colleges. The proposal was submitted by Ajoy Sharma, Director Higher Education (UT). DHE had suggested to swap September and December exams in the city colleges with class quizzes, assignments and presentations. The proposal is aimed at ensuring that students receive 180 days of teaching in a year.

The proposal stated that the existing pattern of internal assessment in colleges was based on in-house exams but long schedule of exams led to the loss of around 30 teaching days, which could be saved with the adoption of alternative assessment system.

DHE has suggested class quiz, assignments for students and class presentations as other mode of assessment. Moreover, it is suggested that assignments should be on the university exam pattern and student should be asked to complete it in a single sitting of 3 hours.

DHE has suggested that the alternative internal assessment system may be approved for the city colleges and can be put in place on pilot basis for a period of three years and after two years of implementation in UT colleges a study should be instituted to assess the outcome of the pilot project.

The Syndicate has decided to send the proposal to all affiliated colleges for consideration .As per UGC guidelines, there must be 180 teaching days in an academic year. In this year's academic calendar the university has allocated 182 teaching days but a closer look at the calendar reveals that there are only 140 teaching days in an academic session.



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