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Wednesday, October 14, 1998
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UT Home Secretary's
term extended

CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — The uncertainty over the continuation of Mrs Anuradha Gupta as the Home Secretary of Chandigarh seems to have finally come to an end. The final word in this regard has come from Union Home Minister L.K. Advani.

A neglected village still
ATTAWA (Chandigarh), Oct 13 — Even after six months of the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh passing a resolution for providing the basic facilities in the four villages incorporated in the civic body, nothing seems to have changed for this village.

line Chandigarh map

Where hygiene is last word
CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — A young boy in grubby clothes wipes the perspiration from his brow and uses the same hand to roll the dough used for making "matthies". Another youngster fills packets from a mound of namkeen lying on the dirty floor, unmindful of the flies and unhygienic surroundings.

50 years on indian independence 50 years on indian independence 50 years on indian independence
50 years on indian independence


Consumer awareness high
CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — Traditional scales have been gradually paving the way for electronic scales, thanks to increased consumer awareness for correct weight and measurement.

Phone 'directory' on computer
CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — The local Telecom department has produced an alternative to the bulky telephone directories provided to the subscribers.

Admn flayed on price rise
CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — Sector-level conveners of the Consumers Forum, Chandigarh today flayed the Central Government for not invoking the provisions of the Essential Commodities Act and clamping down on the hoarders.

Panel meetings
Cultural Scene
Rocky terrain
marks exhibition
Crime file
Scribe cheated
in car deal
Campus beat
Cash bonanza
for PU staff
Report on 3 IAS
officers examined

Ban sought on officials accepting gifts
CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — The local unit of the Janata Dal has demanded a ban on the officials of the Chandigarh Administration from accepting valuable gifts, including ornaments, electronic gadgets, on the occasion of Divali.




UT Home Secretary's term extended
By Yoginder Gupta
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — The uncertainty over the continuation of Mrs Anuradha Gupta as the Home Secretary of Chandigarh seems to have finally come to an end. The final word in this regard has come from Union Home Minister L.K. Advani.

Mrs Gupta, whose three-year tenure expires on October 25, will continue in her current post for another year.

According to sources, Mr Advani has written to the Haryana Chief Minister, Mr Bansi Lal, saying that while he appreciated a state's right to requisition the services of any officer of its cadre at any time, due to certain special circumstances it will not be possible to relieve Mrs Gupta at the expiry of her present term.

Earlier, the sources said, Mr Bansi Lal had written to Mr Advani saying that Mrs Gupta should be reverted to Haryana at the expiry of her term.

Mr Advani is believed to have written that since Mrs Gupta is supervising the investigation of certain sensitive corruption cases in her capacity as the Chief Vigilance Officer of the UT, her repatriation to her home State at this stage will cause a setback to the investigation.

Referring to the earlier concurrence of the Haryana Government to the UT's request for a one-year extention to Mrs Gupta, Mr Advani is believed to have written that probity should be maintained in public life.Top


A neglected village still
by Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

ATTAWA (Chandigarh), Oct 13 — Even after six months of the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh (MCC) passing a resolution for providing the basic facilities in the four villages incorporated in the civic body, nothing seems to have changed for this village.

Declared as a model village by the Chandigarh Administration in the early eighties, the hamlet now seems to be quite low on the agenda of the corporation despite the fact that it is being represented by a former Mayor and BJP councillor, Mrs Kamla Sharma. The civic body's reported plan to develop it as a model village again has been hanging fire for some time.

Though sewerage was introduced in certain parts of the village under the centrally sponsored scheme in the early eighties, in the absence of any follow-up the village does not have any sewerage system worth the name now. "In the rainy season, the entire sewerage system is choked flooding the low-lying areas and throwing the life out of gear", complains Mr Parmeshwari Das, a former sarpanch of the village.

He alleged since the incorporation of the village into the MCC, the condition of the basic amenities had worsened. The roads and streets had not been repaired for the past many years, he said, adding that in the time of panchayat the whole work was being supervised by elected representatives of the people. Now the residents did not know whom to approach.

He alleged that the community centre was in bad shape with its roof leaking in the rainy season. Repeated representations to the authorities concerned had failed to improve the things.

Another resident, Mr Hari Singh, alleges that though the sanitation work had been privatised cleanliness of roads and streets need much to be desired. Though workers of the contractors were quick to lift cowdung as it was a paying proposition, the same was not being done for garbage. In fact, sweepers "rarely" entered the village, rues Mr Das.

The haphazard construction activity, mostly in violation of the building bylaws, has been continuing in the village. Same is the case with encroachment on government land. Land worth lakhs has been encroached upon by shopkeepers on the road leading towards Sectors 41 and 40, making the area accident-prone and a traffic hazard.

And the ban imposed by the administration on the domestication of milch cattle is often observed in breach. This has become a source of nuisance for the residents of Sectors 43,42, 36 as cattle are left in the open for grazing.

Meanwhile, the demand of the residents for shifting the meat and fish market, which has become a traffic hazard, had not been met for a long time. Residents highlighted that the market should be shifted to a place earmarked for it near Burail jail and the area should be restored to a public park

Though the basic amenities are in a bad state, but what irks the residents most is the apathetic attitude of the MCC authorities towards their genuine grievances. So much so that the area councillor, Mrs Sharma, had been waiting for a reply from the MCC to her question on the follow-up action taken on the resolution passed for providing basic amenities over two months ago.

Flaying the "delaying tactics" of the civic body for providing minimum facilities to the residents of the villages, she said after many months of follow-up with the administration she was able to bring the record of four villages to the MCC in December. Since then nothing had been done by the civic body in this direction despite a unanimous resolution passed by the House of the MCC on March 27.Top


Where hygiene is last word
By Amarjit Thind
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — A young boy in grubby clothes wipes the perspiration from his brow and uses the same hand to roll the dough used for making "matthies". Another youngster fills packets from a mound of namkeen lying on the dirty floor, unmindful of the flies and unhygienic surroundings.

This is a common sight in about 10 units being operated illegally with the alleged connivance of various department officials. No official has ever visited the units, collected samples or ensured that the eatables are prepared and packed in hygienic conditions, allege residents.

The units are located in a cluster of about 20 houses along a side road near the level-crossing in front of Sitala Mata Mandir in Mani Majra. Many families also run dairy farms but the preferred avocation seems to be the preparation of sweetmeats and namkeens.

Some of the unit owners, though initially reluctant, admitted that the entire land was in the green area and could not be used for commercial and residential purposes. While power is drawn from the main line by kundi connections, water connections have been "provided" by some officials of the Public Health Department. Some of the more resourceful owners have installed generator sets and supply power to other people although distributing power is illegal as per the city by-laws.

The monthly going rate per factory for various departments according to the member of unit owners is Rs 1000 to the Electricity Department, Rs 500 to the Health Department and Rs 200 to Public Health department officials. While the "monthly" is collected by the officials of the Electricity and Public health departments, a halwai "collects the money on behalf of the Health Department officials concerned".

Water is also taken by some unit owners from the house of the original owner of the land, late Piara Singh, which has a water and power connection. According to his son, Mr Harbhajan Singh, the entire land, measuring more than an acre, has been divided into plots and sold several years ago. The owners include a DSP serving in Punjab.

Due to the festival season, owners are working overtime to meet the demand and the items being prepared include "gachak", toys made from sugar, patisa and petha besides an assorted variety of sewais and namkeens.

They said the administration should grant them licences besides regular water and power connections as they were willing to pay. Their applications were pending approval in the departments concerned.Top


World Standards Day
Consumer awareness high
by Prabhjot Singh
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — Traditional scales have been gradually paving the way for electronic scales, thanks to increased consumer awareness for correct weight and measurement.

Conscious of their rights, consumers, especially in the urban areas in a city like Chandigarh in particular keep an eye on digital of electronic scales as and when they go for shopping. This awareness notwithstanding recently, a Panchkula-based consumer, brought to the notice of The Tribune an interesting case of a sealed bag of wheat flour which he had purchased from a flour mill directly. Though the weight of atta was printed to be 10 kg, the bag weighed only 9.6 kg. A few other shops at which the mill supplied packed atta were checked by the consumer and came to realise that all bags were "underweight". The mill owner admitted the discrepancy and offered to withdraw the underweight atta packs.

In routine, a consumer does not check the weight of a pack and takes it for granted that the weight mentioned on the pack must be correct. Though the laws on the sale of packaged commodities are very strict, they are seldom enforced.

As very precise electronic scales are available now it does not take long for a consumer to check the weight of a packed commodity before buying it. And the latest electronic scales, with digital display, are easy to operate. As they do not have any moving parts, accuracy is generally guaranteed, says Mr R.S. Virk, a manufacturer of electronic weighing machines in the city. He is using the latest foreign technology.

If in a standard 100 kg scale accuracy is plus minus 200 gm, in an electronic scale of the same capacity, the accuracy is plus minus 10 gm, adds Mr Virk. "In case of any doubt, the user can himself calibrate the scale from the keyboard through the user programmed facility provided in these latest generation scales."

He says that electronic scales have a complete range and cater to the requirements of jewellers, provision stores, whole sellers, sweet shops, utensil shops and industries. Heavier machines which can weigh up to two tonnes are also available.

One of the important features of these electronic weighment machines, says Mr Virk, is that they are electronic. They can work without electricity up to 120 hours. This feature, he says, was unique in his machines because of the special power supply developed locally. He feels that greater encouragement is required for this industry as the public sector undertakings, including boards and corporations, should start using electronic weighment machines to encourage the local industry.Top


And now phone numbers on computer
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — The local Telecom department has produced an alternative to the bulky telephone directories provided to the subscribers. A set of two floppies that can be "loaded" onto a computer could now be used to browse through the directory and locate the number as desired.

The set of floppies can be had from the Telecom department's office in SCO No. 167-68 in Sector 8 upon a payment of Rs 200.

The floppies can be loaded onto the computers which have the "foxpro" programme. It takes just 20 minutes to load the floppies and the PC should be 386 model or better, telecom authorities said.

The directory can be assessed by either typing out the telephone number or the name on the screen. The computer also finds out the numbers through the addresses. By typing out a surname all phones listed under that name appear on the screen. The computerised directory will contain all numbers of Chandigarh, Panchkula, SAS Nagar, Kharar, and other surrounding areas.

A supplementary floppy will be issued every six months so that the users could upgrade their computer directories. These will be cheaper and cost much less, Telecom officials explained. The newer versions would also be upgraded subsequently and contain all information.Top


Union govt, Administration flayed on price rise
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — Sector-level conveners of the Consumers Forum, Chandigarh, in addition to prominent citizens of the city and SAS Nagar today flayed the Central Government for not invoking the provisions of the Essential Commodities Act and clamping down on the hoarders and stockists of various commodities, prices of which have spiralled all over the country.

A meeting in this connection was held at the Sector 11 Karuna Sadan today. The local administration also came under fire for not reacting to the situation and initiating measures to tackle the price rise. No raids were carried out on stockists or efforts were made to use government agencies to provide some relief to the common man.

The issue of the onions dominated the meeting and members said that onions were being exported when the government knew that the prices were going through the roof. Mr Jaidev Singh, convener of the forum, said such a price rise had been countered effectively by boycotting the goods in various western countries in the past.

It was resolved that the forum would distribute pamphlets, urging the people to stop buying onions till the prices came down. It was also decided that the people would be made aware that not using onions would not create any deficiency in the nutritional value of eatables. Top


Ban sought on officials accepting gifts
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — The local unit of the Janata Dal has demanded a ban on the officials of the Chandigarh Administration from accepting valuable gifts, including ornaments, electronic gadgets, on the occasion of Divali.

Dr Harjit Singh Babbar, secretary-general of the party unit, said that such sacred occasions were being used to "bribe officials of the Administration" and other organisations. Some of the gifts presented to officials at times found their way back into the market.

He appealed to the public to keep watch on the officials.Top


Dharna by power engineers ends
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — The week-long dharna organised by the Northern India Power Engineers Federation in protest against "unethical" restructuring of the Haryana State Electricity Board ended here today with the participation of power engineers from Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir in the dharna on the final day.

This also marked the end of the first phase of the agitation launched by the federation, which is also protesting against the victimisation of two HSEB engineers. Mr Padamjit Singh, Secretary-General of the All-India Power Engineers Federation, Mr Sunil Grover, Vice-Chairman of the NIPEF, Mr K K Vaidya, President of the HPSEB Project Engineers Association; Mr Moham Singh, President of the J&K Electrical Graduate Engineers Association; Mr V R Gupta, General Secretary, HP Power Engineers Association; Mr Ravi Uppal, General Secretary of the HPSEB Project Engineers Association and Mr H S Bedi, General Secretary of the PSEB Engineers Association, addressed the agitating engineers.

The federation alleged that it was a well documented fact that the World Bank preferred to deal with dictatorial and autocratic authorities which could disregard the public and push through the dictates from Washington.

It challenged the Haryana Government to reply to various issues raised by the federation on the restructuring of the HSEB.Top


UT staff come under Punjab rules or orders
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — The Chandigarh Administration has decided that all employees working in the Administration would be governed by the Conditions of Service of Union Territory Employees' Rules, 1992 and their service matters would be decided under the Punjab rules or orders, a press note of the Administration said today.

It further said that the new instructions would be irrespective of the scales — Central or Punjab — of the employee concerned.

The Administration has also directed all heads of departments to regulate their course of action in accordance with the Punjab rules and orders.Top


Administration order on vacant jobs
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — The Chandigarh Administration has directed the heads of departments, boards and corporations that besides notifying all the vacancies for the relevant categories to the regional employment exchange, they should also keep in view administrative budgetary convenience and arrange for their publication in Employment News and then consider all the candidates who have applied for a particular job.

Besides, notices for all recruitments should be displayed on the office notice board.

This decision has been taken after the scheme of employment exchange procedure came under scrutiny of the Supreme Court, a press note of the Administration said today.

The new order will not affect such cases where the process of recruitment through employment exchange to open advertisement has already been initiated.Top


Footpath workers hold rally
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — Members of the Footpath Workers Rozgar Bachao Samiti held a rally in front of the office of the Deputy Commissioner in support of their long-pending demands here today.

The protesters raised slogans against the administration for not acceding to their demands despite several assurances in the past.

Union leaders alleged that people who had been working as dhobis, barbers and vendors since 1966 had neither been rehabilitated nor allotted booths.

A demand charter was later submitted to the Deputy Commissioner who assured them that their demands would be met soon. Their demands include a survey to provide them with licences, permanent work places and provision for loans without interests.Top


Global Theatre Workshop in city
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — The Chandigarh Institute of Performing Arts (CIPA) will organise here the second Global Youth Theatre Workshop Festival '98 on the theme of "Discover India" under its Global Theatre Movement Programme from November 6 to 15, 1998.

According to Mr Shyam Juneja, Director of the CIPA, about 20 theatre artistes representing various countries like the UK, France, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Macedonia and India are participating in this workshop festival.

Various theatrical pieces based on the concept of Indian theatre, classical, folk and gatka dances will be presented at Tagore Theatre on November 15.Top


Sites earmarked for sale of crackers
From Our Correspondent

PANCHKULA, Oct 13 — The administration has banned the storage and sale of firecrackers in congested areas in the district with immediate effect.

The order will be in force till October 30.

The District Magistrate, Mrs Saroj Siwatch, said no person would be allowed to store or sell firecrackers without obtaining a licence under the Indian Explosives Act.

Only licenced fireworks dealers will be allowed to sell the fire works from the specified places in the district. In Panchkula town the Parade Ground in Sector 5 and open spaces in Sectors 14 and 16 have been earmarked for the purpose.

The sites in other parts of the district will be specified by the respective Subdivisional Magistrates.

Besides this, the use of dangerous crackers which go up to a height of five metres has been banned in congested areas of the town, Old Panchkula, Kalka, Pinjore, HMT Pinjore, Surajpur, Ramgarh, Barwala, Raipur Rani.

The District Magistrate in a separate order said the licence for sale of firecrackers will be valid up to October 20. The licensee would have to adhere to a set of 23 guidelines for storage and sale of firecrackers in order to prevent any mishap.Top


Adviser visits grain market, transport area
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — The Adviser to the Administrator, Mr Jagdish Sagar, today visited the Sector 26, Transport Area, Grain Market and Bapu Dham Colony for an on-the-spot study of the problems in these areas.

He was accompanied by senior functionaries of the Administration and the Municipal Corporation, Chandigarh.

Members of the Truckers' Association complained about poor upkeep of roads, streetlights, parking area and other basic civic amenities. The association wanted a post-office and a bank opened in the area.

Residents of Bapu Dham wanted a community centre besides complaining about poor civic amenities.

The Grain Market Association demanded removal of encroachments from the market and clearance of filth.Top


Panel meetings invalid, say two members
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — At least two members of the Finance and Contract Committee of the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh (MCC) have termed the last two meetings of the committee as "invalid", alleging that the quorum was not complete at the meetings.

The members, the Senior Deputy Mayor, Mr Prem Sagar Jain, and the expelled BJP member, Mr O.P. Goyal, said as per the provisions of the Punjab Municipal Corporation Act as extended to the union territory the quorum consisted of three of the five elected members whereas only one elected member, Mr R.K. Aggarwal, was present at the meeting yesterday. Others who were present at the meeting were the Mayor, Mr Gian Chand Gupta (ex officio chairman), and the Commissioner, Mr S.K. Gathwal (ex-officio member).

In a representation to the Mayor and Commissioner, Mr Goyal claimed that for constituting the quorum atleast three elected members should be present. He said out of eight members of the committee, three elected members plus the Mayor and Commissioner would continue the majority and hence quorum.

He said he was sending representation to the Local Self-Government Department tomorrow to set aside the proceedings of two meetings held on September 29 and yesterday. He alleged that he was "prevented" from attending the meeting of the Finance and Contract Committee on September 24 as meeting of the other committee — Arts, Sports and Culture Committee — was also fixed at 4 p.m. As he was the chairman of the Arts, Sports and Culture Committee, he could not attend the meeting of the other committee.

Mr Jain, while calling the meetings "invalid", said the quorum should be from elected five members as the Mayor and the Commissioner were ex officio chairman and member, respectively.

Meanwhile, according to sources, the matter of the quorum was also raised at yesterday's meeting. The Secretary, Dr Amar Pal Singh, who is the Member-Secretary, reportedly said under the rules three members constituted the quorum after which the meeting was held.

Union' s demand: The Chandigarh Municipal Corporation Horticulture Workers' Union has demanded that the arrears of revised pay scales before Divali.

Visit: A delegation of the Municipal Corporation of Banglore on Tuesday held discussions with senior officials of the MCC and certain councillors.

The imposition of proposed property tax by the MCC was discussed among other things.Top


Rocky terrain marks photo exhibition

CHANDIGARH: Landscapes, in particular rocky terrain, form the subject of Mark Lockett's photo-exhibition. Hailing from England, he is holding a show at the Museum of Fine Arts, Panjab University, till October 24. The remarkable feature of the exhibition is that it is replete with black and white pictures, providing a substantial boost to this dying art form. Mark has captured the work of natural elements on land and the effect of light.

All the photographs have been clicked near Britain's Atlantic shores, where the elements of nature — cloud, rain, wind, sunshine can be experienced in the space of a few hours. Though a battle between human habitation and natural forces goes on continuously here, it gives an inner sense of peace and tranquillity to the visitor.

Mark says, "I have been fond of black and white ever since I started photography. In this kind of work pictures can never go wrong. They are never good or bad, whereas colour pictures are either way. Besides the tonal quality in such snaps is also good".

His field of specialisation is landscapes. "I love doing landscapes and this has something to do with the countryside of England where I live". What is the status of chairoscuro work in his nation? "There has been a resurgence of black and white photographs in the last five years and now there are many people involved in it". The factor which contributes to it is that there are no problems in developing and printing as the raw material is in good supply. (Alas, lack of these two factors are leading to the death of this fine art in India).

Each frame by Mark is a masterpiece. The picture quality and the play of contrast is superb. The texture of the rocks, the weeds, the splitting of the wood all have been beautifully captured. In one of the pictures he has shown the vast expanse of sky and land and it seems as if the sky has come down to meet the earth. In yet another, one can see a clear reflection of sky in water, giving a feeling of the blue vastness quenching its thirst.

This show should be on the must visit list.

— Priti Verma



Crime file
Scribe cheated in car deal
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — A scribe, Mr Radhey Sham Sharma, has been at the receiving end. He has been cheated by a local jeweller, who sold him a car that was hypothecated to a finance company and payments to the tune of Rs 2 lakh were long overdue.

The Sharmas were caught in the trap when their daughter, Captain Sunita Sharma — an aviation trainer at Karnal — went to a jeweller's shop in Sector 35, in February to buy a lucky stone. She during her purchase mentioned about her desire to buy a car. The proprietor of the shop said that he was selling a car and asked if she was interested in buying it.

The care was in the name of Mr Gurchet Singh, nephew of the proprietor. A deal was struck for Rs 1.80 lakh which the Sharmas paid. The jeweller hid the fact that the car had been hypothecated in the name of a finance company. He even gave an affidavit, saying that the car was free from encumbrances. He did not even give the registration certificate, saying it was at his house.

A few months later Mr Sharma approached him for RC. Once again the jeweller evaded the query. Later Mr Sharma learnt that the car had been hypothecated.

The jeweller once again issued an affidavit, saying that the car was free from encumbrances excepting the money payable to the finance company. He promised to pay back the money and get the car registered in the name of Mr Sharma.

The economic offences wing of the Chandigarh Police has registered a case.

Cyclist killed: A cyclist was killed and another two-wheeler rider was injured in separate accidents in the city in the past 24 hours.

The cyclist, Ramesh Chand, was crushed to death by an unidentified vehicle in Sector 44 late on Monday night. Chand, a resident of Colony No 5, was an employee of the Telecom department.

Though the accident occurred on Monday night the body was recovered on Tuesday morning when a person out on a walk called up the police.

Meanwhile, Raj Kumar of Burail village who was riding a moped was hurt when he was hit by a tractor-trolley on the roundabout at Sectors 34, 35, 43 and 44. Raj Kumar has been admitted to Government Medical College and Hospital in Sector 32.

Fraud case: Yet another case of fraud on the basis of false promise of sending abroad has come to light. Mr Ujjagar Singh of Badbar village in Sangrur district has alleged that Anil Kumar of an advertisement company took a sum of Rs 32,000 and promised to send his son abroad.

The son was neither sent abroad nor was the money returned. The police has registered a case.

Kidnap: A case of kidnap has been registered against Harish of Sector 24. He allegedly kidnapped a girl from her house in Mani Majra.

Motor cycle stolen: A brand new motor cycle (CH-01-1688-T) owned by Mr Puneet Mongia of Sector 21 has been stolen from Sector 17.


Cop booked: Ram Singh, a Head Constable of the Haryana Police posted at Kalka treasury has been booked for allegedly creating nuisance in an inebriated state.Top


Campus beat
Cash bonanza for PU staff
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — Panjab University today sanctioned amounts ranging from Rs 2,500 to Rs 5,000 to various categories of non teaching employees.

While a Class C category employee will get Rs 2,500, clerks and senior clerks will get Rs 3,000. Similarly, junior assistants and senior assistants/ASO will get Rs 3,500 to Rs 4,000 respectively. Superintendents and above will be paid Rs 5,000.

Sources said that the lumpsum amount sanctioned would be adjusted at the time of payment of arrears on receipt of grants from the government. The payment of the balance of arrears would be taken up in phases of short duration.

Dharna deferred: The Panjab University Students Union which is demanding elections to the College of Evening Studies in the university postponed its dharna till Wednesday.

Munish Anand, a former president of the Panjab University Campus Students' Council, who was spearheading the agitation said the dharna had been deferred following an invitation of a meeting with the DSW.

Binder Singh, president of the PUSU, said there was no reason why the elections should be stalled particularly when the Syndicate had decided that a democratic council should be elected in the college.

A group of students had gone to the residence of the Vice-Chancellor, on Monday evening, demanding elections.

The VC is understood to have asked the students to meet him in his office. Following this, students sat in dharna in front of his office throughout the night.

Strike: Teaching work remained affected in the Department of Laws with students expressing their dissatisfaction with the datesheet announced for the December semester examination.

Binder Singh, president of the Panjab University Students Union, said the teaching work would end on December 4 and the examination would begin from next day onwards. This was unfair.

Teaching this year has been affected due to teachers' strike and special Olympics. Even the number of classes held were far below the essential number of days, a student of the law department said.

The agitation is likely to continue.Top


HC examines report on 3 IAS officers
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Oct 13 — The Punjab and Haryana High Court today examined the record pertaining to the inquiry entrusted to the CBI by the Rajinder Kaur Bhattal government against three senior IAS officers, Mr R.S. Mann, Mr Bikramjit Singh and Mr I.S. Bindra, and the record relating to the appointment of Mr Mann as Chief Secretary and Mr Bikramjit Singh as Principal Secretary to the Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal.

The record was examined by a Division Bench consisting of Mr Justice J.L. Gupta and Mr Justice N.C. Khichi on a request made by the counsel for Mr V.K. Khanna, former Chief Secretary of Punjab, who had contested the inquiry ordered against him by the Akali Dal-BJP coalition government in the state.

The Bench also heard prolonged arguments advanced by Mr Khanna’s counsel against the inquiry ordered against his client.

The counsel told the court that the inquiry against Mr Khanna was ordered with a mala fide intention, based on extraneous considerations with a view to victimising him.

During his more than three-hour arguments, the counsel for Mr Khanna apprised the court that the petitioner was the seniormost bureaucrat in the country, next only to the Cabinet Secretary. Belonging to the 1963 batch of the IAS, Mr Khanna was appointed Chief Secretary on July 2, 1966 when Mr H.S. Brar was the Chief Minister of the state. He also held this high office during the regime of Mrs Bhattal.

The counsel apprised the court of the fact that Mrs Bhattal had sent a note on February 6 from Lehragaga saying that there were several complaints against Mr Bikramjit Singh and certain other officers.

The note was delivered to Mr Khanna by Mr Baghchi, Adviser to the Chief Minister. The note, inter alia, said Mr Bikramjit Singh had transferred 15 acres of land owned by the Sports Department to the Punjab Cricket Association. As desired by Mrs Bhattal, Mr Khanna prepared a detailed note on this subject and sent the same to Mrs Bhattal.

The Chief Minister expressed the view that since it was an important matter, it should be entrusted to the CBI for detecting the financial irregularities committed by senior IAS officers.

The state Assembly elections were held on February 7, 1997, and the results were announced on February 10. Mrs Bhattal resigned on February 12 and Mr Badal was sworn in on the same date.

On assuming the office of the Chief Minister, Mr Badal asked Mr Khanna to issue orders appointing Mr Bikramjit Singh as Principal Secretary and Mr Mann as Chief Secretary.

In his note Mr Khanna brought to the notice of the Chief Minister that since several inquiries were pending against Mr Bikramjit Singh, it would not be advisable to appoint him as Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister. As for Mr Mann, he was 13 steps down to other IAS officers. Therefore, it would be inappropriate to appoint him as Chief Secretary.

Since the arguments remained inconclusive till the rising of the court, these will continue tomorrow.Top


Financial aid for 26 students
From Our Correspondent

PANCHKULA, Sept 13 — Under a new scheme "brilliant but poor students financial help scheme", started by the local Shivalik Foundation, as many as 26 students from 13 government schools in the district have been selected.

Mr Gian Chand Goel, president of the foundation, said of the total students identified, 13 were girls.

The students will be provided financial aid in two instalments.Top

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