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Sunday, September 19, 1999
Chandigarh Tribune
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Insurance exposition on October 15
City to be hub of foreign insurance companies
By Amarjit Thind
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 18 — City Beautiful is all set to become a hub for operations of foreign insurance companies in the country following the safe passage of the Insurance Regulatory (IRA) Bill in Parliament.

The city has been chosen after more than four years of detailed study of the city's strengths and weaknesses in comparison to the major metropolises and it was found that the city was ideal to judge the response of the people towards new insurance products.

The profitability during the launch would also provide an accurate and proven data for actuaries to sense Indian attitude and conditions which would assist in repricing the product before being launched at the national level.

It is towards this end that the first National Insurance Exposition is being held by UGCE and the Indo- American Chamber of Commerce in the city on October 15 which will see the participation of Mr N. Rangachary, Chairman, IRA, besides global leaders in the field, like Zurich Risk Management, Prudential (UK), Allianz, and representatives of various other national organisations.

According to Mr B.K. Sharma, Chief Coordinator of the event and who has compiled data on the city, said the Chandigarh has many firsts to its credit and these have been largely instrumental in shifting the balance in favour of Chandigarh. With its satellite towns, the potential for business is unlimited.

He said the city has had no catastrophic experience in the past 50 years and was not likely to have one in the near future. The literacy rate is very high and the number of two-wheelers and four-wheelers registered are more than three to four times the national average.

The city was slotted as the second most expensive city in the country and the premium collections per annum in Chandigarh vis a vis Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and J&K were 40:1,000 million USD in case of the LIC and 20:300 million in case of the GIC.

Mr Sharma said the city had more than 10 private banks and more than 40 automatic teller machines (ATMs). Besides, there was one telephone per 10 residents as compared to the national average of one per 1,000. The number of Internet connections was also on the rise.

Chandigarh has a density of 7,000 persons per square km as compared to 8,000 persons per square km in the case of Delhi. The city has 12. 6 km of roads per square km as compared to 12.8 km in Delhi.

The health and pension segment was waiting to be tapped which was a dismal 5 per cent in case of health and only about 2 per cent in case of pension.

He said the mortality rate was the lowest in the country, the incident of fatal accidents was also the lowest. There was no history of any major epidemic in the city, the city was relatively free of any major water-borne disease, and the pollution levels, water, air and noise, were the lowest in the country.

Similarly, the city had the largest number of stadiums, health centres and gyms and was equipped to handle various events and had the infrastructure to fulfil all needs till 2005. The city had the largest per capita number of hotel rooms. The petrol consumption was also the largest in the country.

The number of schools, colleges and other educational institutions were the highest in view of the population, the concentration of doctors and other professionals was the highest in the country. The green belt comprised almost 30 per cent of the city's area, again the highest nationally.

The water and power tariffs were the lowest in the country and the city had a large number of English newspapers, besides vernacular ones.

Besides this, the city had an excellent law and order set-up, with 11 police stations and a police control room manned round the clock.Back


Captivating display by contestants
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 18 — The Mr and Miss India North contests, being organised by the Fashion Revealers in association with the Chandigarh Press Club, Sector 27, held a sub-title event of Mr and Miss Talented here today.

The event was organised at a discotheque in Sector 9. The 18 female contestants and 29 male contestants presented cultural events..

The girls danced to traditional and western numbers, while some presented mono-acting shows. There was an interesting presentation on hypnotism by one contestant.

The boys showed off their bodies. They also presented strumming of guitar, magic shows and bhangra dances.

The final event would take place at the club tomorrow evening. Back


Syndics oppose UGC letter
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 18 — Heated exchanges followed by an adjournment marked the Punjab University Syndicate meeting here today when the issue of confirmation of minutes of the previous Syndicate meeting came up for discussion.

The differences arose when members of a group pointed out that very often the minutes of the meeting are not recorded properly and that the Action taken Reports (ATR) of the previous meetings are not made available to them well in time. The issue was raised by Mr Rajinder Deepa, Mr Randeep Surjewala and Mr Ashok Goyal.

Source reveal that while opposing the "unnecessary and unwarranted" behaviour of Mr Deepa, Syndics Mr Anmol Rattan Sidhu, Mr S.S. Gill and Mr Deepak Manmohan Singh challenged Mr Deepa for wasting the time of the House and asked the Vice-Chancellor to proceed with the meeting. But when Mr Deepa objected to this, Mr Rajinder Nath Sharma Dr I.M Govil, Mr Ashok Goyal, and Mr Randeep Surjewala stood at their respective places. Seeing the chaos, the Vice-Chancellor adjourned the meeting for 25 minutes after which everybody reassembled.

The Syndics from all sides spoke against the University Grants Commission (UGC) letter dated August 31, 1999, putting an embargo on filling vacant posts among other economy measures. Mr Randeep Surjewala pointed out that the Union Ministry of Finance had violated the election code of conduct by directing universities and colleges to implement the same with immediate effect. He pointed out that how could a ministry under the caretaker government take a policy decision on such a pertinent issue and then make them mandatory.

Most of the Syndics were of the view that financial constraints could not be allowed to influence the standards of education and are self defeating and damaging. The Vice-Chancellor, Prof M.M. Puri promised that he would write to the UGC and convey the sentiments and reservations expressed by the Syndics. The same will not be adopted till the issue is finally clarified by the commission.

In another significant development, the recommendations of the Regulation Committee, constituted under the chairmanship of Mr Randeep Surjewala were set aside and the House reiterated its decision of the last meeting regarding fixing November 6 , 1998, for effecting the enhancement in the age of retirement from 60-62 years. The Vice-Chancellor and Dr S.S. Gill pointed out that the Regulation Committee by extending the date of the enhancement of the retirement age from November 6, 1998 to July 27, 1998 and by recommending the inclusion of two members of the Senate on the Board of Finance has transgressed its powers. While the discussion mainly revolved around whether the regulation committee has to power to amend the decision of the Syndicate, Mr Randeep Surjewala, Mr Ashok Goyal, Mr Rajinder Deepa and Dr Ravinder Sharma pointed out that the university calendar does not specify anything in this regard and the Syndicate can at best reject the proposals. Mr Surjewala tendered his resignation from the chairmanship of regulations committee twice on the grounds that his integrity is being doubted but the same was unanimously rejected by the House. The VC also refused to accept the same on the ground that since he is not the appointing authority, it is beyond his jurisdiction. But sources reveal that Mr Surjewala did not withdraw the same.

As per the directions issued by the Punjab and Haryana High Court, the appointment of Mr Devinder Mehta, Mr Kaya Dharamvir and Mr Tankeshwar Kumar to the post of Readers in the Department of Physics were passed. These appointments had earlier been rejected in 1998. The appointment of Mr Ashok Bhatti, who was on the waiting list was also approved.

Meanwhile, the Sydnicate unanimously and with an applause accepted the donation of Rs 70 lakh from the Puri Foundation, Nottingham for the construction of another floor in the Life Sciences Department. The establishment of a Centre for Security Studies at the university was also approved. They also approved the award of doctorate degrees in Philosophy to five candidates. They are Ms Susham Shankarrao, Mr Naresh Kumar Batra, Ms Kavita Manju, Ms Meenu Kaushal, Ms Kamlesh Bhatt and Mr Mehdi Hajivalie.

The House condoled the death of Mr J.D Sharma, former fellow of the university and Pandit Mohan Lal, former Syndic and fellow of Panjab University. Back


Pinjore health centre in sick state
From Our Correspondent

PANCHKULA, Sept 18 — Residents of Pinjore, Doon and Raiten areas have appealed to the authorities to restore the original status of the primary health centre (PHC) at Pinjore as a community health centre (CHC).

They see this as the only solution to their problems of general health facilities which have compounded over the years. The hospital cries for basic amenities. It has been over three years that the hospital does not have any emergency service. In the absence of it, patients who require urgent attention have to be taken to distant hospitals during odd hours.

There are only two doctors in the hospital and none at night. The doctors who attend to patients in the day commute daily from Chandigarh or Panchkula in the absence of residential accommodation for doctors. The heavy rush of patients is difficult to be handled by only two doctors. Due to this, patients are forced to go to private practitioners.

The hospital is in a dilapidated building. During a heavy rain, roofs of most of the rooms leak. The hospital which has only six beds, lacks in its inventory of medicines. Many patients, at most times, are turned away because of insufficient medicines. The hospital lacks essential equipment to face any emergency. Cleanliness of the hospital is also neglected.

The issue of providing essential services at the hospital has been raked up several times by residents at grievance committee meetings presided over by the Deputy Commissioner but to no avail.Back


7 'outsiders' held from PU
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 18 — The local police today rounded up seven "outsiders'' from three different places at Panjab University in apprehension of the breach of the peace during the forthcoming elections to the Panjab University Students Council.

All seven were booked under Sections 107 and15I, CrPC, and sent to judicial lock-up by the Executive Magistrate, Mr Ashish Kundra, till September 20. The vehicles being used by them have been impounded.

In the first case, Sanjeev Kumar, a resident of Sector 21, and Ramandeep of Sector 19 were found carrying a heavy wooden rod in the dickey of their car when intercepted by the police. Both of them were unable to disclose any specific visit to the university.

In the second case, Mr Gurkirpal Singh of Mohali and Roopinder Singh of Sector 35 were found to be carrying a baseball bat in the dickey of their vehicle and were not able to give any reason for coming to the university.

A case was also booked against Rupinderjit Singh of Kharar, Jaswinder Singh of Chappar Chiri village (Kharar) and Ajay Sharma for moving under suspicious circumstances in the university.

The SHO of the Sector 11 police station, Mr Vijay Kumar, said preventive arrests will be made on a regular basis to maintain law and order on the campus before and during the elections slated for September 24. While police forces have been posted at all the three entry-exit gates of the campus, search operations to nab outsiders and trouble creators on the campus, particularly hostels, will be further stepped up till the elections are over. Strict action will be taken against those who try to hire such bad elements to create trouble on the campus, he maintained.

A record of 'outsiders' will be maintained and the antecedents of some of them will be verified from the police stations of their permanent residences.Back

PU poll scenario remains quiet
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 18 — The election scenario in Panjab University awaits to pick up top gear as the campus witnessed a quiet atmosphere today.

Only members of the NSUI-HSA-PUSU alliance campaigned in hostels. Other prominent organisations, including SOPU and SFI, maintained a low profile and indulged in door-to-door campaigning.

The ABVP-SOPU alliance was formed following a meeting, sources said. This left the SFI in a peculiar situation, of whether to contest alone or to support an alliance. Mr Dayal Pratap Randhawa, a former President of the student council, was likely to be the presidential candidate of the SOPU alliance.

Mr Randhawa was asked to react to a question about being accused of his involvement in violent incident on the campus, due to which he could not contest the elections. He said the university calendar provided that only those proved guilty could not contest.

The HSA members differed on the issue, saying the calendar stated clearly that the accused should not be allowed to contest. The university authorities should clearly state the exact meaning of the word 'accused' as applicable in the elections. The HSA-NSUI-PUSU said all prominent members in elections and contestants had a clean record.

The alliance counter in front of hostel I had a heavy rush. The counters of other parties in front of hostels II and III were largely empty.

The Haryana Students Association (HSA), in a press note, said declaration of Mr Bhupinder Beniwal to contest on the seat of Haryana Student Union was a step to create confusion among voters. Mr Chand Singh Madaan, Chairman of HSA, said Mr Bhupinder Beniwal was neither with HSA nor had he shown willingness to work with the association. He was associated with Students Organisation of Panjab University.

A senior member of the HSA said the organisation was not limited to any particular region or community. This was obvious from the membership. The association appealed against 'negative politics'. Social, cultural and educational measures were on the top of the agenda, Mr Madaan said.

The SOPU, which had a low profile campaigning, said welfare of students was on top of the agenda and the party did not have to hold big rallies for its real support. A meeting to chalk out election campaign was held.

The President, Mr Dayal Pratap Singh Randhawa, put placement of students on top of the agenda. He said a special cell, created temporarily, had shown positive results.

The ABVP, in a press note, said both organisations had been working for the cause of the students without 'political affiliations'. A joint committee had been set up to decide on the panel of contestants.

A senior student said election scenario was quiet to a large extent. Only small groups of campaigners entered classes. Big rallies were expected towards the end of campaigning.

The HSA members said the response was visible when students were told about the ground work of the party. The main works included agitation on the fee hike, which had shown positive results.Back


5 trees felled for shops
By Bipin Bhardwaj
By Our Correspondent

DERA BASSI, Sept 18 — Five full grown eucalyptus trees were chopped off to pave way for the construction of a shopping complex near Ramleela ground here today.

These trees on government land were uprooted with the help of a JVC machine which was used to remove the boundary wall around the local Badminton Stadium. Of the five trees, two were nearly 20 years old and the rest about 12.

The authorities did not take any measure to save the trees which were providing shade for a number of vendors. The residents of the town alleged that the authorities had felled the trees without taking any permission from the Forest Department.

Capt. Kanwaljit Singh, Finance Minister, Punjab, had laid the foundation stone of this complex in June. The government will spend Rs 30 lakh on the construction of the complex having 45 shops. The section of the complex from where the trees have been uprooted, would have a provision of 20 shops (8x16 ft) and a covered corridor.

Meanwhile, a member of the Punjab Pollution Control Board, Patiala, said that the authorities of the Municipal Council should have thought about the re-plantation of the trees as the Chandigarh Administration did in such cases to save the environment. "The municipality should have thought about the increasing pollution rate before felling of these trees in this area of various industries ," he added.

The Executive Officer, Municipal Council and the Forest Department authorities were not available for comments.Back


Leprosy "more than a medical problem"
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 18 — The second day of the 21st biennial conference of the Indian Association of Leprologists was inaugurated today by Dr N.K. Ganguly, Director-General, Indian Council of Medical research (ICMR).

Delivering the keynote address of the day, Dr Yo Yuasa from Japan, said that leprosy was much more than a medical problem. He traced the development of the human approach towards the disease and restoration of the dignity in its sufferers. He clearly delineated the difference in the terms often used without complete understanding, like the terms of control, elimination and extinction. Dr Yuasa defined all these terms with special reference to leprosy, while emphasising on the social economic problems related to leprosy and the responsibility of the healthy population towards those affected by this disease.

Four scientific sessions were held during the day covering all the important clinical aspects of leprosy, its treatment, the study of the immune mechanism in the causation of lesions of leprosy and its complications and studies on experimental leprosy.

Speaking on the clinical manifestations of the disease, Dr Ranju Rai, from the PGI's Department of Dermatology, noted that a majority of children found to be suffering from leprosy in the city belong to the poor social and economic stratum, and hail from areas of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. Dr Somesh Gupta presented details on a classic mimic of leprosy namely Post Kala Azar Dermal Leishmaniasis.

There were also some interesting papers on recurring leprosy lesions following adequate treatment from Mumbai and Hyderabad, as well as studies on eye disease in leprosy from Bankura in West Bengal. Patchy lesions in leprosy with reduced sensation and colour were highlighted in the presentations from Agra and Karigiri.

The second session of the day was dedicated towards the treatment of leprosy. Major work form Agra regarding the usefulness of conventional and newer drugs was presented. Other presentations in this session dealt with the adequacy of clinical follow up of leprosy patients, surgical procedures on the feet and assessment of the risk for the development of reactions in the treatment of leprosy in the field.

Dr R. Ganapati from Mumbai stressed the importance of single dose treatment for early leprosy and the long-term follow up of these patients. He also highlighted a comparison of three different methods to treat those people with advanced leprosy who suffered a relapsed after initial treatment.

The third session focussed on the study of the immune mechanism in the development of the disease. Major presentations from Mumbai, Agra, London, Bangalore, Chengalpattu, Jaldha, Coimbatore and Chennai were made at the session. The emerging menace of resistant leprosy bacilli was reported from Mumbai. An interesting experimental study showed that even killed leprosy germs could induce changes in the nerves when injected into mice. A study from Agra described that unlike tuberculosis, leprosy did not seem to be more aggressive in patients with HIV infection.

The final session of the day was on the presentations regarding experimental studies in leprosy. Works from Chandigarh, Coimbatore, Agra, Bhubaneshwar, Madurai and Chengalpattu were presented.

The symposium also had displayed some 60 interesting posters on many clinical and community aspects of the disease.

On the occasion, two books on leprosy were also released. The first is a work by the Department of of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprology, PGI, in which Dr Bhushan Kumar and his team have listed the updates dealing with all aspects of leprosy and the work that has been carried out by the department in the last couple of years. The second book which was released has been penned by Dr D. Porichha titled 'Mycobacterium Leprae Speaks with Grief'.Back



2 jailed for cutting buffalo’s tail
Tribune News Service

PANCHKULA, Sept 18 — The Civil Judge ( Junior Division), Panchkula, Mr S.K.Garg, has sentenced two persons to six months of rigorous imprisonment and a fine of Rs 2,500 for maiming a buffalo owned by Ratia Ram of Bairellly village.

The two persons, Raj Kumar and Collector Singh, had allegedly cut off the tail of the buffalo owned by the complainant in October, 1993. The police had then registered a case under Section 429 of the IPC against the suspects.

While passing the judgement, the judge announced a compensation of Rs 3,000 to the complainant.

Noble School is best
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 18 — While stressing on the need of having discipline among students, Mr K.P. Singh, an eminent social worker, said students should be prepared to be real nation-builder. He was speaking on the occasion of national group song competition organised by Bharat Vikas Parishad here today.

As many as 13 teams from different schools from the district, consisting of about 150 students, participated in the function. Following were the winners in different categories — I Noble Public School, Pinjore; 2 DC Model School, Sector 7; 3 Government Senior Secondary, Sector 7. In the senior secondary section, DC Model School was first, St Xavier School, Sector 6, was second and Army School, Chandi Mandir, was third.

While honoring the winning teams, Mr K P. Singh also donated a sum of Rs 11,000 to the organisation. The winning teams will contest in the state-level competition at Narnaul on September 26.

Teachers' meeting on Sept 25
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 18 — The executive body of the Government Teachers Union (UT) will hold a general body meeting of UT teachers on September 25 at Masjid ground, Sector 20 A, to discuss their long-pending demands and also hold elections to the union.

A delegation of the union yesterday met the DPI (Schools), Mr D.S. Saroya, and submitted a charter of demands. According to a press note, their main demands include release of seniority list of teachers, confirmation and regularisation of the services of teachers, release of central pay scales, promotion of both master cadre and language teachers, clearance of LTC, medical claims and long leave cases, modification in the local examination system including unit test system, review of ACR proformas, besides reduction in their workload and student teacher ratio.

They have also demanded the re-instatement of the suspended teachers. The Press Secretary, Mr Ram Dev Shastri, has claimed that the DPI assured them an early solution to all their long pending demands and other problems.

CITCO to hold contests
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 18 — As part of World Tourism Day celebrations, which falls on September 27, CITCO will organise inter-school declamation and on-the-spot painting competitions.

According to a press note, while the painting contest will be held in two categories, for classes 1 to IV and classes V to VIII, the declamation contest is open for classes IX to XII. The Principals of the schools can send the names of five students for the painting competition and two students for the declamation contest to the CITCO office by September 21.

Apart from this, a discount of 20 per cent will be offered at Hotel Shivalikview and Hotel Mountview on the day. A 15 per cent discount will also be given at the Chef at the Inter-State Bus Terminus in Sector 17, Chef Lakeview and Chandigarh Yatri Nivas.

Radha Ashtami celebrated
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 18 — The local body of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) today celebrated Radha Ashtami, the birthday of Radha, at Hare Krishna Dham, Sector 36-B.

Thousands of devotees throng the temple on the occasion. The celebration of Radha Ashtami began with Radharani charan darshan at 4.30 p.m. along with mangla aarti which was followed by darshan aarti , Mahabhisheka of Randhani.

A discourse on the transcendental quality of Radharani, distribution of prashadam and Nauka Vihar were the other attractions of the programme.

Talent-finding contest held
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 18 — A talent-finding contest in music and histrionics was held at DAV College, Sector 10, here yesterday. More than fifty students participated.

Following are the results — ghazal: Akarshan (1), Piyush Vig (2); geet: Sanjay Kumar (1), Rajat Jadaik.(2); folk song: Gursharan Gill (1), Varinderjeet (2); shabad/bhajan: Mukesh Kumar (1), Rachit Goel (2).

Instrumental — folk/dholak: Divan Singh (1); non-percussion — flute: Aditya Dasta (1), Varun Jain (2); percussion (classical instrumental) — tabla: Nitin (1).

Histrionics — mono-acting: Manik Bedi (1), Parveen Chandel and Mukesh (2); Chandandeep (consolation prize).Back

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