C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


India-England match
PCA stadium entry norms go for a six
Deepankar Sharda
Tribune News Service

Mohali, January 23
Contacts in the Punjab Police come handy for several cricket fans who did not have tickets but were allowed entry to the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium to watch the One Day International between India and England in Mohali today. Several Punjab officials, who came from different districts with their private security guards, were seen helping cricket fans to enter the stadium, two hours after the match started.

The craze for cricket made the fans seek entry to the stadium by hook or by crook. Gate numbers 5, 6, 7 and 11 mostly witnessed free entry service being provided to visitors.

“We have come from Patiala and our area Station House Officer has links over here. He just asked us to reach the stadium two hours after the start of the match. The policeman will meet us at gate no. 6,” said a cricket fan, Aanand Singla.

Not to be left behind, a bomb squad took full advantage of their power in arranging free entry to their relatives and well-wishers. The officials were seen providing their metal detectors to fans to help them gain entry into the stadium as part of the squad.

“They are not our relatives. They are part of the squad,” said an official while pointing towards two teenagers, who were in casuals and holding metal detectors.

Certain private security guards were charging Rs 800 for arranging entry for two persons. “He is a member of our family, so he is helping us gain entry into the stadium,” said Sohan (name changed). When asked about the amount charged by a security guard for arranging his entry to the stadium, he said: “It’s a gesture of love.”

A police official said: “The personnel deployed at every gate are from different district. It is very difficult to nail any single person for the illegal practice. Although the ticket-checking machines make it impossible to gain entry into the stadium without ticket, the card access provided to private security guards also helps many to enter the stadium. These gates are the same as installed at metro stations,” said the official.



Policing takes a hit
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Mohali, January 23
With most policemen deputed at the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium, the local police stations wore a deserted look today. “Sahib stadium ki duty pe hain (boss is on duty at the stadium)” was the common answer given to visitors to most police stations. The Tribune team found only a handful of constables, including munshis, handling the affairs at the police stations.

“I have come to meet the DSP for my case but he is not here. A policeman told me that I could meet him only after the cricket match,” said Gursharan Singh at the Phase 8 police station.

Another resident of Mohali, Sandeep Kumar, said he had come to meet the station house officer at Phase 1 to discuss a fraud case but failed to meet him today.

“We are sending all the visitors back today as all our seniors are busy at the stadium. Surely, work at the police stations is suffering,” said a constable.



Fans celebrate India’s victory over England
Deepankar Sharda
Tribune News Service

Mohali, January 23
The day starting with a dense blanket of fog might have given anxious moments to cricket fans a few hours before the match started, the afternoon turned pleasant and India’s victory over England made the day memorable.

The fourth One-Day International day and night match between India and England, at the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) Stadium, Mohali, witnessed ample number of spectators coming to cheer for team India with painted face, colorful head-wigs and tri-color in hands.

“I reached the venue, well-in-time, in order to book a seat providing perfect view. The match was a crucial match for the Indian side, so to name the series,” said Sourav Sharma.

As soon as the gates were opened, a huge crowd rushed all the entry points. Long queues were seen on gate number 5, 6 and 11, 12. “Even after possessing the ticket, it’s not that easy to enter the stadium. The security personnels perform checking head-to-toe and that takes time. But nevertheless, I could wait to see the match” said Nikhil Ghosh.

A bio-teach student of Panjab University added, “I hardly missed any match here. Earlier, I used to come from my home town to witness these matches and now pursuing my studies here, I cannot afford to miss this match,” said Pritpal.

Biggest Fan

Cricket’s living legend, Sachin Tendulkar, is no more part of India’s one-day International squad. But his greatest known fan was there to cheer team India. With his upper body painted in Tricolour, hair cut as country’s map and waving the Indian flag, Sudhir Gautam, a resident of Muzzafarpur in Bihar, had impressed Master Blaster Sachin Tendulkar with his love for the game. Notably, he has been provided with the passes of every match of Indian side by the team memebers. “My mission to come here and see my team win, is completed,” said Sudhir while cheering up the Indian team at the PCA Stadium. Adding further, “I met him (Sachin) during 2003 at his residence in Mumbai on my bicycle. After that, he started giving me passes of every match. I have not missed any single international match held in India,” claimed Sudhir.

Caught red-handed

Acting strictly on miscreants, the Mohali police reportedly caught 2 persons while lifting mobile phone and a black-marketer.

Baggage issues

Many spectators coming to witness the match were unaware over the list of belongings allowed inside the stadium. The police personals asked them to drop headphones, pens, coins, bags and any type of sharp item outside the gates. Although, after the match was over, many people were struggling hard to find their mobile phone headphones and bags.



Yuvi's fans disappointed at his early dismissal
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Yuvraj SinghMohali, January 23
Fans of local hero, Yuvraj Singh, were left disappointed when the star cricketer was trapped before the wickets on mere three runs against England today evening. After his remarkable recovery from stem cell cancer, Yuvi took on his home turf for the first time. Several fans of this ace cricketer came to see him live in action. But his early dismissal left these cricket buffs upset.

“We were in Delhi for some work but returned today, especially, to see our favourite hero in action in front of our eyes. We had hoped that he would play memorable innings at his home turf. But Yuvi disappointed us today,” said Mehak Bhalla and her brother Vidur Bhalla, both residents of Panchkula.

Similarly, Neeraj Bajaj and his close friend Pappan Trehan, who came from Ludhiana were not happy even after India won the match and the innings as well.

“We wanted to see some firework from the bat of local star Yuvraj Singh but we are disappointed as his bat did not work today,” said the duo.

Earlier, there was pin drop silence in the stadium, when the umpire declared Yuvi out on ball of James Tredwell.

“Yuvi is a fighter. We wished that his will would have worked here today. We wish him good luck for future,” said Ekta and her sister Yukta while leaving the stadium.



Resentment among state cadre officers
UT cadre officer posted as ADC-cum-Addl Excise & Taxation Commissioner
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 23
In an unprecedented move, the Chandigarh Administration, while ordering a reshuffle today, posted Kavle V Parashuram, a UT cadre IAS officer, as Additional Deputy Commissioner (ADC)-cum- Additional Excise and Taxation Commissioner, a post traditionally held by state cadre officers.

The move, which smacks of downsizing the state cadre, has been made when the Punjab Chief Minister, Parkash Singh Badal, has sought personal intervention of the Prime Minister and the Union Home Minister regarding having a 60:40 ratio in the posts filled from among IAS, IPS and state cadre officers of Punjab and Haryana coming on deputation to the administration.

In the order issued this evening, Kavle relieves Mahavir Kaushik, a senior HCS officer, of the post of ADC, who has been given the departments, Registration and Licensing Authority (RLA), Joint Director Food and Supplies and Rural Development, previously held by Kavle. Other departments held by the UT cadre IAS officer have been given to another PCS officer, Amandeep Kaur.

The move has triggered resentment among the state-cadre officers, who highlight previous incidents of their officers being sidelined to accommodate the UT cadre IAS officers. The move also suits the political bosses. The recent move of the administration against encroachers and shopkeepers did not go well with the ruling party, which is eying the 2014 general elections.

Claiming that there is nothing wrong in the reshuffle, officials in the administration said while getting two posts of additional secretaries from the UT cadre, the UT has also got the post of the ADC converted into a UT cadre post. “It has been long since the post of ADC had been made a UT cadre post. Now, the decision has been implemented due to certain compelling reasons,” said sources.

In the reshuffle, Gurpeet Kaur, a Punjab cadre IAS officer, has been given the charge of Director Higher Education.

The UT Administration had recently stated that it was not keen on appointing officers from Delhi and Andaman and Nicobar Islands Civil Services (DANICS) on posts held by the Haryana Civil Services (HCS) and Punjab Civil Services (PCS) officers.



Army to impart specialised training to city cops
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 23
Imparting specialised training to police personnel and transferring two acres of the defence land for the expansion of the Chandigarh airport were among the important decisions taken at the annual civil-military liaison conference held between the Headquarters, Western Command, and the UT Administration here today.

The Chandigarh Police is in the process of raising two additional battalions and the Army would be training its personnel in specialised disciplines like bomb disposal, handling improvised explosive devices and commando operations. Training would be conducted at one of the stations under the Western Command.

Chairing the conference, Governor of Punjab and UT Administrator Shivraj Patil said the police force should keep abreast of the techniques and protective gear used in a nuclear, biological and chemical (NBC) environment. He urged the police to make available maximum police personnel for the specialised training.

On the issue of the security of dams, Patil was of the opinion that Punjab and Himachal Pradesh were required to be taken on board and that the response to various disaster or terrorist contingencies needed to be rehearsed.

Stating that the Army should be an integral part of all the major events organised in the city, the Governor also said the field area family accommodation (FAFA) complex in sectors 28 and 29 would be maintained in all respects by the Municipal Corporation, Chandigarh. He also said reservation for ex-servicemen in various groups, as mandated, must be ensured. Regarding the transfer of a piece of Kendriya Vidyalaya land in Sector 47 on lease to the Air Force, he directed the officials concerned to ensure its early transfer to the IAF.

The Army also agreed to transfer two acres required by the Airports Authority of India for the expansion of the Chandigarh Airport, after obtaining the due approval of the Ministry of Defence in this regard.

The General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Command, Lt-Gen Sanjiv Chachra, thanked the Governor for allotting land for housing the NCC Group Headquarters and its constituent units. He also pointed out that the problem of flooding of the Chandigarh Airport had largely been solved.

Top officials from the Western Command, Air Force Station, Chandigarh, and the UT Administration attended the conference, which was held to discuss issues relating to security, welfare and other matters of mutual interest.



Need for creating more entrepreneurs: Justice Sodhi
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 23
The former Chief Justice of the Allahabad High Court, Justice SS Sodhi, made a clarion call for creating more entrepreneurs at a book launch function here today. He launched the book, “Making Entrepreneurs: Lesson from the Life Time”, authored by Padamshree Chandra Mohan, former vice-chairman and managing director of Punjab Tractors and Swaraj Mazda.

While addressing the audience, Justice Sodhi said Indian economy was reeling under distress at present. “The GDP growth has come down from 9 per cent to 5 per cent, and the crucial weakness lies in the decline of the manufacturing sector. In such scenario, we need more entrepreneurs,” he said.

Justice Sodhi said entrepreneurship was a way of life, and was a powerful force deep down inside that drives you to achieve your dreams, despite dubious odds and doubts of others. For the emerging entrepreneurs, there are at least three major motivations, the first being “a yearning to create something novel and useful”; the second, to “build something that will last forever; and the third is “to have freedom, and being your own boss.”

“Some of the references in this book are a good example how an entrepreneur can create a positive difference in society,” he said.

Justice Sodhi said Punjabis were known for their entrepreneurship for so long. “This book is the testimony of this same spirit,” he said.

Talking to the audience, the author, Chandra Mohan, said it took him over three years to complete this book, and it was based on over 40 years of his service. Recounting the old days, Chandra Mohan, former vice-chairman of Punjab Tractor Limited, said when the PTL was stated in 60s, many said it was a waste of time but it reached to the level of the biggest employer in the region at that time.

He said this book was his attempt to understand the Indian economy in a better way. The book exemplifies the belief that an entrepreneur was someone who perceives opportunity to use his knowledge to innovate, create and build something new of recognised value, he said talking about the book.

This is just what he himself did with Punjab Tractors Ltd (PTL) and the 100 per cent Indian ‘Swaraj’ tractor that his team designed and built from scratch in a national lab 47 years ago, then mass-produced and marketed it against the best of CKD-based global brand names. He thinks that Punjab did not require any outside help as it required to look within and revived the entrepreneurship for which it is always known.



Bus crushes Home Guards volunteer
Tribune News Service

The bus, which hit the Home Guards volunteer in Chandigarh on Wednesday. Tribune photo: Manoj Mahajan

Chandigarh, January 23
A Home Guards volunteer with the Chandigarh police was killed in a road accident last night. The victim, Chottu Ram (32) was going to a police station for duty on a bike when a Punjab Roadways bus hit him at the light point near Colony Number 5. He was crushed under the front wheels of the bus and died instantly.

He was posted at the Sector 17 police station.

The victim was a resident of colony number 5. The bus driver, Gurmeet Singh, fled the scene leaving the bus behind. He was later arrested.

The police has registered a case of causing death due to negligence at the Sector 34 police station.


Issue notification for post of GMCH Director in a week, CAT directs UT Administration
Aneesha Sareen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 23
In a significant order, the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) today directed the Chandigarh Administration to issue a notification for the appointment to the post of Principal GMCH, Sector 32, within a week. Five in-house doctors of the GMCH had challenged that they should also be included in the interview for the coveted post and the eligibility criteria had come under a scanner with the result that the fresh appointment was hanging fire.

In a 40-page judgment passed today, the Tribunal held that the application by the doctors is allowed to the extent that the applicants too are declared to be eligible for consideration for appointment on deputation.

The Tribunal also partially allowed the application for consideration of appointment to the post of the GMCH, unimpeded by the fact of the applicant being in the receipt of the Academic grade pay.

“We would direct that, in addition to those who had already applied for consideration those desirous of putting in a plea for consideration might do so within a week from the date of issue of a notification to the effect,” ruled the Tribunal.

“It shall also be incumbent upon the Chandigarh Administration to issue a notification to that effect in the leading English newspapers both regional and national having wide circulation,” stated the order.

The Tribunal also said the applications shall be processed and forwarded by the UT Administration to the UPSC within further one week thereafter.

“Though we are cognizant of the fact that the dockets with the Commission are fairly heavy we trust that the Commission shall conclude the process of recommendation within one month from the date of receipt of applications from the UT Administration. The matter should be accorded priority in view of the fact that it is in the larger interests of administrative efficacy that a regular incumbent heads any dispensation of the level of GMCH,” states the order.

Last year, the UPSC deferred the interview for the post of the next director-principal of Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32 (GMCH-32). No date has been specified by the UPSC as to when will the interview take place now.

Five GMCH-32 faculty members, Dr AK Attri, Dr Atul Sachdeva, Dr SK Garg, Dr Ram Singh and Dr Anju Huria, filed the petition on August 13 last year in the Tribunal seeking a level playing field as far as the contest for the next director-principal is concerned. Prior to that Dr SK Singh, a urologist from PGIMER had got relief from the Tribunal after the UT Administration, despite him fulfilling the eligibility criteria, did not forward his name to the UPSC for consideration. After the order of the CAT, his name was sent to the UPSC for consideration for the coveted post.

Earlier this January, during the final arguments, counsel for the applicants reiterated that as per the advertisement of the UT Administration issued in September 2011, the post of the director principal could have only be filled either by deputation or by direct recruitment and in both the cases, there was no way that in-house candidates could have become eligible for the said post.



Rape bid: Evidence recorded in an hour

Chandigarh, January 23
Setting a record of one of the fastest trials, the district court today made history by recording the entire evidence in an attempt to rape case in an hour. The case was registered only in September last year and charges were framed in the case on December 4.

Public prosecutor, Manu Kakkar, today examined three witnesses in the case in an hour in the court of Additional District and Sessions Judge, Shalini Nagpal. The case has now been listed for next hearing tomorrow. The case was registered in September last year when the police had arrested Gurvinder Singh, alias Bindri, for an attempt to rape and kidnapping of a girl in Khuda Ali Sher. Initially, there was no eyewitness in this case and was termed as a blind case till the police got the footage of the CCTV, which was installed at the rooftop of a house.

In the absence of any eyewitness it was the CCTV camera footage, which helped the police nab Gurvinder, who was accused of attempting abduction and rape of 19-year-old complainant in the case.

In the CCTV footage, a well-built man was shown over-powering a girl and taking her to a nearby isolated plot. Later, he allegedly forced himself upon her but ran away after she resisted and raised an alarm.

Sources said the accused belongs to an affluent family of the village and his is a sarpanch of the village. — TNS



Sector 17 fire
Shop had no proper exits: Fire officials
Notice to boutique owner for violation of safety norms
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 23
The fire department today served notice to owner of the Sector 17-based Classic Boutique that had caught fire on Tuesday morning and claimed one life. According to fire officials, there were no fire safety arrangements in the building and that the fire safety norms had been violated. Also, there were no proper entry and exit points.

Chief Fire Officer of the Municipal Corporation, Rajiv Gupta, said the area housing the boutique was found to be housing gross violations. The small cabins, which were destroyed in the massive fire, were set up in corridors. This is a complete violation of building by-laws and stands illegal, he said.

Officials of Estate Office said due to building violations, they had issued a resumption notice to the owner of the building. An official said they had issued a notice and the case was pending before senior officials.

“It was second such fire incident in these shops. In 2001, a major fire had broken out here,” said SK Nayyar, owner of Dot Graphics, whose shop was also damaged in the fire. Over eight cabins of other shops were also reduced to ashes while 12 cabins were damaged in the fire.

The fire had broken out on the first floor of SCO 71-72-73 in Sector 17-C. During the incident, a 52-year-old tailor was charred to death. Parmal Singh, the victim was sleeping inside the boutique when the fire broke following a short circuit inside the boutique. Parmal’s partially charred body was taken to the Government Multi Specialty Hospital (GMSH), Sector 16, on Tuesday morning. The family of the victim rushed to hospital and identified him.

The postmortem examination report of the deceased had cited burn injuries as the cause of his death. The viscera sample had been sent to the CFSL lab in Sector 36.



Transfer property without NOC soon

Chandigarh, January 23
After the Supreme Court upheld the decision of the Punjab and Haryana High Court regarding quashing the mandatory NOC required for selling or getting any property registered in the city, the UT Estate Office would soon open the transfer without the NOC.

But the relief would come with certain riders to ensure that no fraudulent transactions were held. After taking the final decision, the Sub-registrar would be intimated to allow registry or sale of property on the basis of attorney.

Sources in the administration said ever since the orders of the High Court were upheld by the apex court after the UT had challenged it, officials had been holding hectic parleys to withdraw the mandatory clause of the NOC, said a senior official.

As per the proposal, the sub-registrar would seek an undertaking in form of an affidavit from the buyer and seller regarding any building violation, misuse or pending dues with the estate office. “The administration wants to ensure that no discrepancy remains in the transaction,” said the official.

The apex court has observed that the NOC can be made mandatory only if there is provision in the rules.

It may be mentioned that in 2012, the High Court had quashed the 2009 order of the UT Administration that made it mandatory to obtain an NOC from the Estate office to get any property registered or sold in Chandigarh.

The High Court had ruled that the NOC demand by the Administration “before effecting sale of the freehold properties is not supported by the Act or the Rules”. Ever since the Administration passed a circular on September 2, 2009, making it mandatory for the original owner of a property to get an NOC, there had been several complaints. — TNS



Landran students launch club to check eve-teasing
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Mohali, January 23
Initiating a unique effort to deal with the menace of eve-teasing and other such related incidents on the college premises, students of the Chandigarh Group of Colleges at Landran launched a club, ‘Astitva’, here today.

“The objective of forming the club is to make the college environment healthy. It’s not that such incidents are rampant here, but we want to remove the problem outrightly,” said Nandini, general secretary of the club. The idea of forming the club surfaced after the incident of eve-teasing during the college’s annual function two months ago. “We don’t want to repeat such incidents in our campus. So, we have come up with the club,” said Nandini.

Aditya and Kashish, other members of core group of the club, said: “We will chose our coordinators from each department and also make members. “If any student is found indulged in anti-social activities, we will counsel him at our own level. If needed, the help of qualified counsellor would also be taken. We will involve the management only if the matter goes out of hand,” said Aditya and Kashish. The club core team has also planned to hire a professional martial art trainer to impart self-defence training to girl students here.



Teachers hold protest

Chandigarh, January 23
A large number of teachers, under the banner of the Joint Action Committee of UT Teachers, assembled at Masjid Ground, Sector 20, Chandigarh, to highlight a number of issues. The teachers expressed resentment against the Education Department, Chandigarh Administration, for not promoting all cadres of teachers, especially master cadre, to lecturers that was pending since 1993, and no action on the regularisation of SSA, contractual and computer teachers.

They also demand to stop the inflow of deputationist in light of various judgments given by the CAT and the Punjab & Haryana High Court. Principal and heads junior to the UT cadre teachers from other states should be reverted back immediately, said the teachers. They also demanded immediate shifting of officers working against unsanctioned posts such as Deputy Director School Education-I & II. — TNS



2-yr-old dies of swine flu at PGI
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 23
A two-year-old baby suffering from cancer and pneumonia died at the PGIMER today. The patient from Manimajra had also contracted swine flu, which, according to officials, aggravated the ailment.

Also, a 51-year-old man from Sector 24 tested positive for swine flu today. The total number of swine flu cases at the city hospitals has reached to 31 so far.

These include 8 deaths. Among them, six patients tested positive for H1N1 from the city, 13 from Punjab, 2 from Himachal Pradesh, 1 from Jharkhand and 1 from Haryana.

Last week, a 6-month-old baby from Mohali died of swine flu at the GMCH-32. Two weeks ago, a 29-year-old woman from Manimajra died of swine flu at the PGIMER.



R-Day: Security beefed up

Chandigarh, January 23
In view of the Republic Day celebrations, massive police force has been deployed to ensure the safety and security. It includes policemen deployed in uniform, in civil clothes as well as home guard volunteers.

Quick reaction commando teams have also been deployed in the city to effectively counter any terrorist attack. — TNS



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