Chandigarh Tribune
Monday, January 31, 2000,
Chandigarh, India
C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Steel barricades to partition city
By Prabhjot Singh
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 30 — The Chandigarh Administration has decided to make the city greener, not with vegetation but with parrot green painted steel barricades which will separate Sector 26 on one side and Sectors 27 and 28 on the other.

After suspending the work on the barricading of Madhya Marg with mild steel railings for some time, the administration has now decided to resume it, first on the stretch between Sectors 26 and 27 and subsequently between Sectors 26 and 28.

Though there were silent protests by eminent architects, town planners, engineers and others, who felt concerned over "partitioning of the city", the administration had a couple of months ago, ordered suspension of the work. Instead, it was suggested to consider "cheaper and more environment friendly means" to check the wrong way of crossing the road by pedestrians at this busy traffic area of the city.

The Engineering Department, in the process of erecting these nearly six-foot high heavy steel barricades, not only sacrificed what was left of the bougainvillaea plants on the central verge of this road, but also covered the cables that ran under this verge, including those of sodium-vapour lamps.

For the past two days, truckloads of specially crafted heavy steel barricades have been unloaded along the stretch of Madhya Marg dividing Sectors 26 and 27. Men are also busy in painting the steel barricades which were already erected. Parts of the already erected barricades were given two coats of green colour (olive green and parrot green). The administrative approval, it was learnt, went in favour of the parrot green colour.

All these mild steel railings will virtually divide the city between what are called "northern" and "southern" sectors. Subsequently, these railings will be painted parrot green.

According to sources in the Engineering Department, the work on barricading Madhya Marg, between Transport Chowk and Grain Market, was to be completed by October 15 at a cost of more than Rs 10 lakh. The contractor, however, did not begin the work and the contract was subsequently cancelled.

The second stretch of Madhya Marg, the work on which began sometime ago, will soon have the steel barricades erected on it at a cost of Rs 10 lakh. When the work on this stretch between Sectors 26 and 27 began, Chandigarh Tribune took up this issue, following which, the work was suspended. Along this stretch now, a large number of specially-crafted heavy mild steel railings have been unloaded to resume the work.

The barricading of Madhya Marg, which is a part of the state highway between Chandigarh and Panchkula, from Transport Chowk to the overbridge on Sukhna Cho, has already been completed long time ago.

Now, the administration has decided to complete the barricading work between Transport Chowk and Grain Market Chowk on one hand and Grain market Chowk to Ambedkar Bhavan Chowk (Sectors 7, 19, 27, 26) on the other. The project is estimated to cost more than Rs 20 lakh.

Meanwhile, the work on erecting a low mild steel railing along the slow carriageway on Madhya Marg, parallel to the Sector 26 Grain Market till Timber Market is nearing completion. This railing, too, is likely to be painted green. After all, the administration wants to make the city green, though with steel and not vegetation.



Tributes paid to Gandhi
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 30 — Functions, talks and weaving on charkha marked the martyrdom day of Mahatma Gandhi in the city today.

Speaking at a major function at Gandhi Smarak Bhavan in Sector 16, the UT Administrator and Punjab Governor, Lieut-Gen J.F.R. Jacob (retd), called upon the people to fight injustice and inequality in society.

Speaking after paying tributes to Mahatma Gandhi, he said the Mahatma had envisaged a Constitution for the country which would ensure that the voices of the poorest would be heard. He had visualised that all communities would live in harmony and the curse of untouchability would have no place in society.

He said Gandhiji's message was still relevant, we only had to see its new implications. Earlier, the Governor weaved the thread on the traditional charkha, singing Ram Dhun. The function began with children singing one of Gandhiji's favourite bhajans, Vaishnav Jan.

Mr S.N. Vasudev welcomed the Governor and Mr Mahesh Dutt Sharma, Chairman of the Gandhi Smarak Nidhi, spoke on Gandhiji. The Adviser to the Administrator, Ms Vineeta Rai, also paid floral tributes to the Mahatma.

A number of the Mahila Congress activists sang Rahugpati Raghav Raja Ram at Congress Bhavan in Sector 35.

While a shanti sabha was organised by the Labour Cell of the Congress in Sector 32 here, activists of the Youth Congress went to the Institute of the Blind in Sector 26 and distributed fruits among the inmates.

Ahimsa (non-violence) is the only solution in this age of nuclear weapon threats, said Mr Onkar Chand, secretary of the Servants of the People Society, here today.

Mr Chand was speaking at a lecture on the martyrdom day of the Father of the Nation at Gandhi Bhavan of Panjab University.

Gandhi was fearless and this transported him to a platform of universal adulation in his journey of non-violent struggle, he said.

The unquestionable leader of millions gave light in the direction of solving the current world situation. People were disillusioned and corruption had become an everyday life's fact. Mr Chand highlighted the need for a collective awakening in this direction.

Bhisham Sahni, a renowned writer, in his presidential remarks said that Gandhi had the strength to struggle relentlessly. There was need to improve the implementation aspect of Gandhi's values. Mere academic exercises were not an enough tribute to the Mahatma. Back


PGI — where upkeep takes back seat
By P.P.S. Gill
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 30 — A cross-section of the PGI faculty says that sanitation and upkeep of available hospital equipment requires better care.

To enable the medical superintendent to perform more effectively the post must be upgraded besides empowerment of the incumbent.

Given the widespread of labs and building infrastructure, better system of test reports becoming available in the wards and to the consultants on the in-house computers is imperative. It is quite a reflection on the PGI functioning that a visitor had to file a public interest litigation (PIL) to make the PGI look after the cleanliness of its toilets!

The consultants see a distinct possibility of the PGI lagging behind similarly placed institutes in the country, if corrective steps are not taken in time. In fact there does not seem to be any prospective plan available now. The initiative seems to have been lost. Not many professors are able to bring research projects and have tie-ups with institutions at home and abroad.

Some of the work in key departments is still in infancy. The research in basic sciences is slackening. The PGI must explore newer medical fields like molecular biology, etc. It does not, for instance, have a data bank on the major health problems and diseases prevailing in the region, which it serves like any other hospital though essentially it was to be a “referral” hospital.

The justification for the proposed projects gives an insight into the need for the same. Take the advanced eye care centre: several preventable and unpreventable factors cause blindness; among these are illiteracy, low socio-economic level, lack of resources and unavailability of medicare. At least 77 per cent of blindness in India can be cured or prevented by simple surgical procedures. Cataract accounts for 80 per cent of the total blind population.

Vitamin A deficiency leads to incurable blindness. It is highly prevalent in Bihar, UP, MP, while, in Punjab it is 4 per cent, 5 per cent in Haryana and 3 per cent in Himachal Pradesh. Even cornial blindness has not received proper attention, though, 80 per cent could be cured or rehabilitated. The proposed centre would enable the doctors pay more attention to eye care and train doctors.

Over 75,000 trauma patients are examined at the PGI annually. The facilities and staff are grossly inadequate to provide satisfactory treatment.

There is no trauma centre in this part of India. The trauma centre will require Rs 22 crore. The PGI has drawn up a case following the desire of the planning commission itself that all government hospitals should have one such centre.

The bone marrow transplant centre: at the PGI approximately 500-600 new patients and 4000 to 5000 follow-up patients of haematological disorders are seen in adult and paediatric haemato-oncology clinics every year. Many of the patients could benefit if bone marrow transplant centre is set up.

The need of the hour is to make the PGI a “nerve” centre for providing integrated clinical services to the seriously ill patients.

Project sites have been selected, drawings prepared and financial implications mapped. The PGI is all set to take up work on the proposed projects. But there is no money. It is widely believed and there is also a growing apprehension that if the PGI is not taken care of due to various serious problems it itself will become “terminally sick”; symptoms are visible.

One could understand the long working hours being put in by senior and junior residents and the teaching, training and examination work by the faculty. Were the supporting staff — paramedics and technicians to show similar devotion and ‘safai karamcharis’ discharge duty with a sense of responsibility, things could take a turnabout. At the same time, requirements in the emergency and operation theatres have to be met more expeditiously. That all is not well at the PGI is known and visible from the fact that the PGI accepts test reports done by private labs in the city!



1-year RI for rash driving
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 30 — Nearly four years after a cyclist was killed after being hit by a truck, the UT Judicial Magistrate (First Class), Mr K.K. Goyal, on Friday sentenced the driver of the truck Ramesh Kumar to rigorous imprisonment for one year, besides imposing a fine of Rs 600.

It was on May 18, 1996, that Jaswant Singh fell on road after the cycle he was riding was hit from behind by a truck "being driven rashly and negligently" near The Tribune chowk here.

Complainant Jeet Singh, on another cycle right behind the victim, had stated that the truck's right side front wheel had run over Jaswant Singh, dragging the cycle "20 to 25 steps".

The driver, Ramesh Kumar of Kangra district, was subsequently booked by the Chandigarh Police for causing death by rash and negligent act and endangering human life by driving rashly or negligently under Sections 304-A and 279 of the Indian Penal Code.

When confronted with the incriminating evidence against him, the accused had, however, denied the allegations. Claming himself to be innocent, he had asked for a trial.

Convicting the accused, the Judicial Magistrate observed: "It is held that the prosecution has succeeded in proving its case to the hilt against the accused and has succeeded in bringing home the guilt of the accused beyond any reasonable shadow of doubt".

The Judicial Magistrate also observed: "Accordingly, the accused is convicted under Sections 279 and 304-A of the IPC and for not having valid driving licence in his possession while driving the truck, under Section 3 / 181 of the Motor Vehicle Act". Back


Bansal vows to take up dam issue with Centre
Tribune News Service

PANCHKULA, Jan 30 — The joint candidate of the Bharatiya Janata Party-Indian National Lok Dal (BJP-INLD) from the Kalka assembly constituency, Mr Sham Lal Bansal, said here today that he would take up the issue of construction of the Ghaggar dam near the township which has been stalled by the present government. “We are in favour of the construction of the dam which will benefit the whole state. If need be, we will take up the matter at the Central level as well as we are in power”.

Mr Bansal, who was talking to mediapersons, announced that solving the water problem, whether it was for irrigation or drinking purpose, would be another priority of the BJP which would also press for the construction of the SYL canal.

He contended that the `Nau tod’ issue in the Morni hills which has been hanging fire would be decided if he came to power following which he will ensure that the ownership of land was transferred to the tillers. Mr Bansal added that the Periphery Act issue which was “a gift of the Congress to the people” would also be looked into.

Mr Bansal said the Education board of the regional centre which had been shifted to Bhiwani during Mr Bansi Lal’s rule would be brought back to the township. The party would also initiate proceedings to open an all girls college in the town. Also development works would be carried out at a faster pace in the township and constituency. “The nullah which runs from Sector 1 right up to the Industrial Area, is an eyesore in the township. We will have a wall made along the side of the nullah and have it covered. This will help make more land available in the city and plots could be cut from these,” he added.

Condemning Mr Bhajan Lal for not showing results in developing the township after announcing that he would work towards making it the “Paris of India”, Mr Bansal said the works initiated in the six-month regime of Mr Om Prakash Chautala were far more than the works started and completed by Mr Bhajan Lal.

Mr Bansal averred that his party would take up the issue of providing plots to people living in clusters as per the directive of the court which is yet to be implemented. During the tenure of Mr Bansi lal and Mr Bhajan Lal very few new schemes and programmes were announced, whereas the development works proposed by Mr Chautala were already in progress.

He alleged that in 1993 and 1996 Mr Chander Mohan won because the Deputy Commissioner, the Superintendent of Police as also the Sub-divisional Magistrate were his men. Asked about his chances of winning now that ‘his men’, appointed by the INLD-BJP alliance, were in the same seats, he said he was likely to win the seat and by a greater margin than the 1993 win of Mr Chander Mohan in previous elections. “We will emerge victorious with a thumping margin without employing ‘foul means’.”

A senior leader of the BJP, Mr Hans Raj Swan, said there was no controversy in the seat-sharing issue and it had been solved amicably to everybody’s satisfaction. “We have inaugurated our camp office in Sector 16 today and party workers of the BJP and the INLD will work together to ensure the success of Mr Sham Lal Bansal,” he said.

The state general secretary of the INLD, Mr Pradeep Chaudhary, who was a prospective candidate of the INLD from the seat before it was given to the BJP, was conspicuous by his absence. He was scheduled to address the press conference along,with Mr Bansal.Back


Tableau with catchy slogans

A tableau on eco-conservation brought out by the Department of Forest, Wildlife and Environment, a major attraction at the Republic Day Parade at the Sector 17 Parade Ground, conveyed a deep message through catchy slogans painted on sides.

The department also successfully depicted flora and fauna of Shivalik Hills and the catchment area of the shrinking Sukhna Lake. Shown in the tableau were some birds, monkeys, deer, black buck, a tiger and black boar. Some of these wildlife attractions face extinction because of poaching in the area.

Depicted beautifully in the tableau were efforts of the department in soil conservation showing dams. Equally interesting were the slogans painted on the tableau, including: "Shoot us, but with camera".

According to Mr H.S. Sohal, Director, Chief Wildlife Warden and Deputy Conservator of Forests, it took nearly four days for the department to prepare this tableau.

Human care: In response to a story in The Tribune highlighting the plight of an Asian gold medalist in discus throw, Parduman Singh, on December 18 last year, Human Care Charitable Trust, a Delhi-based welfare society, has started rendering financial assistance to the veteran athlete in penury.

Mr N.P. Thareja, who will be completing 75 years in December this year and is the Managing Trustee of the Human Care Charitable Trust, has in a letter to Mr Parduman Singh assured him that he would be getting Rs 1,000 per month as long as he needs it.

Mr Thareja, who retired as a senior functionary of the State Bank, had set up this Trust on August 12,1996, and is engaged in social work, providing succour to the helpless, the aged, the sick and the needy. Since its inception, the Trust has spent about Rs 24 lakh in this regard.

"Keeping in view the present-day plight of the downtrodden, indigent students and widows who on account of their weak financial position are not able to have proper treatment for their physical ailings, the role of charitable institutions like Human Care becomes important," says Mr Thareja.

Among the major projects of the Trust have been two free dispensaries, pension to about a dozen indigent persons, funding cataract operations and providing spectacles to the patients besides extending other aid, in cash and kind, to individuals in distress. The Trust also maintains a beautiful park in D-Block, Saket, in New Delhi. It now plans to diversify into education by starting schools for children from economically deprived sections.

Custody death: A recent case of death of a 25-year-old man of Sohana village while in police custody on the eve of Republic Day has once again brought the functioning of the Punjab Police under the spotlight. The victim, Jasbir Khan, had died after he allegedly consumed an insecticide after being taken in police custody in connection with a case of theft. Human rights activists are up in arms against such custody deaths.

Subway: After raising the height of the iron railing on the road divider opposite the ISBT in Sector 17, the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation and the Chandigarh Administration need to focus on the upkeep of the pedestrian subway linking Sector 22 and the ISBT.

Since the height of the railing was raised to nine feet with pointed tops, almost all people use the subway or take a detour around the railing. However, the subway has been encroached upon heavily. The shopkeepers, who have small booths in the subway have blocked almost half of the subway by way of encroachments. These shopkeepers have laid out iron folding beds to sell their wares on the space meant for the public. This is in addition to the shop space they already hold.

The marble on the stairs of the subway is laden with dust. The floors are very unclean while the walls are dirty and look ugly due to the numerous posters pasted on them. On either side of the subway nothing is written to guide a person. Once inside there are no written directions for the outsider to be followed in case of emergency exits. Already suggestions are being made to have another subway at the other end of the road dividing Sector 22 and 17. One just hopes this one will come up fast.

Employment days: With a plethora of models roaming the streets of the city without much work in hand, winter months must surely be welcome for most of them. It is in these chilly months that the cultural activity comes alive and with a host of sound and music shows being held in the city what better way to earn money than to star in them?

And that was what was seen in the recently organised Lohri Dhamaka show at the Parade Ground, Sector 17. Most of the city models could be seen dancing alongside singers like Jasbir Jassi, Mika and Harbahjan Mann. Such song and dance shows sure provide employment to a lot of such aspiring models and even actresses!

One-to-one show: Overheard recently at a dance performance organised by the North Zone Cultural Centre (NZCC), Patiala, where not more than 12 people could be seen in the audiences:

"I feel like Amitabh Bachchan from the film 'Sharabi', in which he buys all the tickets of Jaya Prada's show. With hardly any people in the auditorium here to watch the show, I feel as if the performers are dancing for my eyes only".

"Naviyan Kalman": It seems that the city is being flooded with cultural events because of which most such activities go both unnoticed and unattended. One such example is the regular Sunday morning programme, to introduce new entrants to the field of literature, called "Naviyan Kalman", organised by the General Secretary of the Punjab Sahitya Kala Akademi, Ms Rama Rattan.

Of late she has been introducing her own nieces and nephews in this programme for want of talent and audiences. The latest entrant to this programme is her brother, Dr Suresh Rattan, Associate Professor at the University of Aarhus, Denmark, who has been writing mainly in Punjabi since 1985 and has also penned a couple of books for children. A "Navin Kalam" indeed!

Pawan Verma: With a respectful demeanour and a smiling countenance Pawan Kumar Verma would be there to greet everyone at the Sangeet Sammelan each year. Touching their feet and earning the blessings of the seniors was a spontaneous gesture he never failed to make.

He shared the stage with many a renowned musician of the country both in India and abroad. Always polite and humble there were no airs around him.

A brilliant future lay ahead of him and many years of noteworthy accomplishments but destiny chose otherwise and took him off the scene way before he was ripe to go.

Having seen him on the tabla from his earliest unsure days to a well seasoned expert who provided accompaniment to the topmost classical musicians of India the image of a pleasant faced Pawan will forever remain in the hearts of the organisers and the audience of Chandigarh's Sangeet Sammelans.

Blood syringes: OPDs in the PGI require patients' blood to be tested for various purposes. For this, blood collection centres in the hospital put patients and their attendants to a lot of inconvenience by asking them to arrange disposable blood syringes themselves from a chemist shop.

PGI staff members, while collecting blood, invariably tell patients that syringes are in short supply. The PGI is required to provide syringes for blood collection as fee is charged for blood testing. Or should one believe that there is some nexus between PGI staff members and chemist shops in the institute regarding the provision of syringes by creating "artificial shortage"?

Senior citizens: The Senior Citizens Welfare Council has urged the Chandigarh Administration to grant 50 per cent concession to the senior citizens travelling in the Chandigarh Transport Undertaking (CTU) buses plying in the states of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Delhi.

In a representation to the UT Administrator, Lieut-Gen JFR Jacob (retd), the association has hoped that the concession would provide great relief to the senior citizens besides reducing their dependency on their wards.

At present senior citizens are given 50 per cent concession by the CTU authorities while travelling in the Union Territory.

Press note sympathy: Press notes from the local units of various political parties flooded this newspaper following the decision of the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh (MCC) to effect a massive hike in the water rates and levy sewerage tax in the city.

The parties, whose only major demand seemed to be the dissolution of the BJP-led civic body for allegedly burdening the residents with taxes, woke up from their slumber and competed with one another in condemning the hike and threatened agitation against what they called "anti-people" decisions. In certain cases, leaders belonging to different factions came out with separate statements flaying fund-starved corporations' decisions.

And with no elections in sight for a couple of years, there is hardly any possibility that the parties will take to the streets in protest against the massive hike ranging from 100 per cent to 600 per cent.

Now we know why the parties get hyperactive during the election time or when the interests of their vote banks comprising migrants and labour colony residents are involved.Back


Challenges of new millennium discussed
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 30 — Human resource development, multi-culturalism and social integration, globalisation and international cooperation; and poverty and employment were the four themes discussed during the two-day regional seminar on "India at the threshold of a new millennium: the unfinished agenda and challenges ahead" organised jointly by the Centre for Research in Rural and Industrial Development and the Indian Association of Social Sciences Institutions.

The seminar was inaugurated by Dr Arun Ghosh, former member, Planning Commission of India.

Prominent participants, including Prof Ashish Bose, a well-known demographer; Dr Partha N. Mukherjee, Director, Council for Social Development; Prof B. B. Bhattacharya and Prof S. K. Ray of the Institute of Economic Growth; Mr T. K. A. Nair, Chairman, Public Enterprises Selection Board; and Mr Salman Haider, former Foreign Secretary, discussed the themes at length as significant conclusions and suggestions emerged in the course of discussions. Mr Rashpal Malhotra, Director of CRRID, conducted the seminar.

The discussion on human development highlighted the need for focussing on the area as a whole, with particular attention to the health and educational needs of the children. Emphasis on provision of universal education so that the boys and girls might begin their adult life with an equal and appropriate level of education and work for further development in life with equal ability was stressed. Need for improving educational infrastructure so as to offer a wide spectrum of alternatives so that individuals through exercise of their choice might develop themselves continuously was also felt. The need for treating development in the public health areas, like sanitation, environment and water supply as a part of human development programme was also stressed.

In the matter of globalisation, it was generally held that effort should be made to ensure that the country received at last as much gain through opening up as it offers to other countries through this process.

It was also held that under the current arrangements, globalisation had been only partial to the extent that free flow of labour and knowledge is not allowed while only flow of capital is unrestricted. A feeling was expressed that exchange on equal terms among unequal participants could be harmful to the weaker participants like India and, therefore, efforts might also be made to form smaller regional blocks to acquire greater bargaining strength and also to obtain greater market accessibility through trade among the block participants, and improve the competitive strength of the regional enterprise for standing up to the forces being formed through merger and accession in the developed world.

In the context of multi-culturalism and social integration, it was brought out through presentation of data that the acceptance of family planning practices did not differ much among the Hindus and Muslims in the country. There was no specific injunction against family planning in the Muslim religious sect. It came out that in a plural society like India, there could always be issues on which differences will occur but these might also get resolved in a natural way through readjustment of spaces available for living as it happened over the past millennia.

Regarding poverty, it was held that if an appropriate programme, targeted on a community or a population group, with an objective to bring about reasonable development, could be tried, greater success might be achieved. Analysis of data on poor with various classifications also brought out that provision of education could be a reasonable instrument for alleviating poverty in the country.Back


Chander Mohan vows to implement promises
Tribune News Service

PANCHKULA, Jan 30—The Congress candidate from the Kalka constituency, Mr Chander Mohan, held public meetings in various sectors of the township and at Kalka today.

Speaking at the meetings organised in Sectors 4, 8, 11, 16 and 19 and in Maheshpur village and BEL colony among others, he said the Bansi Lal Government and that led by Mr Chautala had made “empty promises” with the people of the township but had completely failed in delivering the goods. They were using caste and religion as planks to get power whereas the Congress had won as all sections of society found representation in the party.

Mr Chander Mohan reiterated that he would stand by all the promises he would make in his manifesto and that he would work for the betterment of the township.``From spread of education by opening ITIs, to providing tubewells to water for irrigation, I have done it all and have results to substantiate my claims,’’ he said. The demand for an all girls college in the township would also be fulfilled if his party came to power.

Referring to the electronic voting machines, Mr Chander Mohan said the township had gained the reputation of being indifferent towards coming out and voting. He appealed to the people to “depart from tradition’’ and vote in the coming Assembly elections.Back


Anti-Leprosy Day observed
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 30 — Anti-Leprosy Day was observed here today.

The District Leprosy Society of Chandigarh organised a programme at Kusht Ashram, Sector 47, wich the Deputy Commissioner-cum-Chairman of the society, Mr M. Ramsekhar, and Director, Health Services, Dr Joginder Singh, visited.

They took a round of the ashram and talked to inmates to know their problems. The Deputy Commissioner announced the release of a special grant to the ashram.

Fruit, clothing, shawls, rations and dressing material for ulcers were distributed among the inmates. Dr Vanita Gupta, District Leprosy Officer, said all inmates of the home were living with their families. They sell vegetables and do dairy farming and their children go to work and to school. Women have been trained in tailoring.

The District Red Cross Society, Rotary Club of Chandigarh, Indian Council of Social Welfare and Chetana, an NGO, also participated in the programme.Back


'VIPs encroaching with impunity'
Tribune News Service

SAS NAGAR, Jan 30 — The local Anti-Encroachment Committee has in a representation to the Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, pointed out that a number of politicians of the party in power and influential persons in the township had encroached on government land in front of their houses and the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) was turning a blind eye to it.

The President of the committee, Mr N. S. Minhas, said a number of meetings with PUDA officials to start the encroachment drive in the township had failed to start as the axe would fall on the VIPs. The committee has threatened to file public interest litigation (PIL) if the PUDA failed to act in this direction.Back

Journalist bereaved
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 30 — Mr Vernon Banerjee (60), brother of Donald Banerjee, News Editor, The Tribune, died of a heart attack at Anand (Gujarat) late last night. He was cremated in Anand this afternoon. Back



Conference on Punjab situation
From Our Correspondent

KHARAR, Jan 30 — As per the call given by Mr Ravi Inder Singh, a former Punjab Vidhan Sabha Speaker and MLA from Morinda, the Punjab Aarthak Front will organise a political conference at Anaj Mandi, Morinda, on February 5 to discuss the present economic and political situation in the state and to find out solutions to the economic problems faced by the state.

According to sources, leaders of different political parties would participate in this conference and invitation was also sent to the punjab Government to send its representatives. The political, economic, religious and social situation would be discussed at the conference.

Meanwhile, a meeting of panches, sarpanches and other workers of this area was held in Tewar village on January 28, in which more than 100 panches and sarpanches participated. According to a press note, they criticised the working of the Punjab Government. They were fully behind Mr Ravi Inder Singh and praised his services.Back


Technology Day observed
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 30 — As part of the computerisation of its 2000 branches, the main branch of the State Bank of India, Sector 17, organised ‘Technology Day’ here on Friday.

Speaking at a customer relation programme organised on the occasion, Mr Gurmukh Singh, AGM, apprised the customers of various schemes launched by the bank after computerisation on October 25 last year.

He detailed the customers about the multi-option deposit scheme, which provided a lot of flexibility.

He informed participants that the extension counters of the bank at UT Secretariat, Markfed Office and the SBI Local Head Office would soon be linked through computers for better service. A demonstration of the printing of passbooks, receipts of term deposits and drafts was held on the occasion.Back


One killed in accident
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 30 — A resident of Colony No 5, Phoola, was killed when he was hit by a Canter near Transport Chowk, Sector 26, last night.

According to the police, Phoola, who was driving a three-wheeler, was injured when he was hit by a Canter (HR-38-BC-4178). He was rushed to the PGI where he was declared dead by the doctors.

The police has arrested the driver, Raj Kumar, a resident of Bapu Dham Colony, Sector 26, and registered a case against him.Back


One killed in road mishap
Tribune News Service

SAS NAGAR, Jan 30 — A resident of Phase 7 of SAS Nagar was killed after the car he was driving rammed into a stationary truck near the traffic lights of Phase 3A and 7 here late this night. According to information available, the victim, who was driving Maruti car (CH-O1-D-5633), was coming from the Madanpur side when it banged into the truck ( PB-12-A-4558), parked on the road leading to YPS school.


Cash stolen: Mr Sat Pal, a resident of Burail village, in a complaint with the police, alleged that someone has stolen Rs 42,000 and a gold ring from his house last night. A case has been registered.

Liquor seized: The police has arrested Madan Lal, a resident of Nagari village in Ropar district, and seized 100 pouches of whisky from his possession.

A case under the Excise Act has been registered.


Khair wood cut: A resident of Manakpur Nanakchand village, Pinjore, Labh Singh, registered a complaint with the police that four persons sold him 15 quintals of khair wood which was cut from Charnia village. The police has arrested three persons, Ajmer, Ramesh and Mukhtiar, while the fourth accused in the case has absconded.

Suicide: Surinder Kumar, a resident of Mandana village, committed suicide by hanging from a tree on the Morni-Panchkula road. He was first noticed by a grass cutter, Devinder Chhota, a resident of Bir Ghaggar, who informed the police. The boy had been missing from his house since January 24.Back


Chaos, encroachments at ISBT
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 30 — Missing or broken seats for waiting passengers, shopkeepers inching forward in their drive to encroach upon more and more precious space, lack of parking space, no indication in writing at important points about the various facilities. This is the Inter State Bus Terminus (ISBT) in Sector 17.

No doubt the ISBT is getting crowded with each passing day, but adding to the chaos are various factors. One of the main things missing is the lack of written information that should be normally placed or hung on boards at strategic points. Nowhere at the ISBT is it written where the actual location is of the enquiry, the railway reservation counter, the cloak room, the tourist information centre, phone facilities, various eateries and toilets. It is an ordeal to ask the roadways staff manning the ticket selling counters about the location of the enquiry or other services. It is not mentioned where one can board buses for particular destinations. Each counter mentions destinations but nothing is available in a consolidated form that should be at various points .

Although at one place the location of almost every important point is written, it provides no user-friendly information as to where the exact location is to be found. Someone seeing it for the first time cannot make sense out of it.

Shops housing channa bhatura sellers, juice sellers or book-sellers have encroached upon more than double the space allotted to them. Some have provided makeshift seating arrangements for their customers, all at the cost of space that should have been rightfully used to add more facilities for passengers. At certain points the shops have extended so much that the corridors have been partially blocked.

To locate the toilets one has to once again ask the roadways staff as nothing is written at any strategic point. Same is true if one has to find a bookstall, or lodgings within the ISBT. Every information has to be had from some person who may not be connected with it or may not even be knowing about it in detail, said a woman who was trying to find to phone to place a call to her relatives, while talking to The Tribune. Though there are STD pay phones available, finding them can be an ordeal, especially for someone, who is not a frequent traveller.

If one has to board an autorickshaw or a rickshaw, there is no one to guide the traveller, who is at the mercy of the autorickshaw drivers. The tourist information centre is located on the first floor. But how to find it ? Once again ask someone as nothing in written about it. Today the ISBT extends to almost a half a kilometre is one direction but there is no inter-link between the various platforms. This becomes a problem in pouring rain or the hot summer months.

The parking space is inadequate. Several people , who come to buy railway tickets, also struggle to find parking space. The newly constructed parking lot is already under strain as more vehicle-users are preferring the new place.Back


Oil conservation run
From Our Correspondent

KHARAR, Jan 30 — A run for oil conservation was organised today by the Indian Oil Corporation, Chandigarh Division Office, as part of the Oil Conservation Fortnight being observed all over the country.

According to a press note issued by Mr Sushil Kaushal, President of the Ropar District Petroleum Dealers Association, Mr Umesh Kumar, (Manager Sales) of the corporation, flagged off the run from Milk Plant, Morinda, in which 100 school children from Kurali participated. The run terminated at National Public School, Kurali, where Mr Umesh Kumar addressed the participants on oil conservation. All Indian Oil dealers of Ropar district participated in the run.Back


Decision on ST flayed
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 30 — The decision of the Chandigarh Administration to rationalise sales tax rates has come in for severe criticism from various quarters.

The spokesman of the Chandigarh Beopar Mandal, Mr Diwakar Sahoonja, while alleging that the decision had been taken without taking the trading community into confidence, said the Administration had not clarified the status of surcharge and CST, without which the uniform sales tax would be meaningless.

Mr Ram Karan Gupta, President of the Grain Market Karyana Association, said there was a lot of disparity in ST rates, as on pulses there was no tax in Delhi while in the city it was 2 per cent. Similarly, on karyana items it was 8 per cent in Delhi and 4 per cent here, added Mr Raj Kumar Goel, Chief Adviser of the Grain Market Association.

The President of the Chandigarh District Congress Committee (Urban), Mr PC Puri, urged the Administration to reduce ST to 8 per cent on electrical goods on the Punjab pattern. Mr Ranjeet Singh Dhaliwal, Samata Party chief, termed the amendments as a ‘burden’ on the poor and middle classes.Back

Home | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Editorial |
Business | Sport | World | Mailbag | Chandigarh Tribune | In Spotlight |
50 years of Independence | Tercentenary Celebrations |
119 Years of Trust | Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |