Monday, February 28, 2000,
Chandigarh, India
C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


PU Syndicate clears pension scheme
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Feb 27 — The Panjab University Syndicate today cleared the pension scheme which had remained on the back burner for nearly a decade. It is to be implemented from April 1, 1998, and will be compulsory for those employees who joined the university after October 2, 1993.

The proposal is time bound and will be presented by the next Syndicate. Prominent supporters of the scheme included Prof Charanjit Chawla, Dr R.D.Anand, Mr G.K.Chatrath and Dr I.M. Govil.

The whole scheme will be monitored by a special pension cell. The proposal assures government rate of total sum for the pensioners.

In another significant move, the Syndicate decided to give students of the English honours schools the option of appearing either under the new syllabus or the old. The issue was taken up by Prof Charanjit Chawla where it was pointed out that students were informed about the new syllabus in November last, which was very late. The Syndicate resolution to give options was supported by Ms Sneh Mahajan, Dr Anand and Dr Govil, among others.

Dr Anand pointed out that the minutes of the Syndicate meeting were often not faithfully recorded. This was supported by Mr K.A.P.Sinha and Mr Satish Kumar. Dr Anand also protested against no response to several of his letters sent to the authorities seeking replies on critical issues. The Vice-Chancellor, Prof M.M.Puri, assured a look into the matter.

The house appreciated the achievements of Dr D.L.Goel, who has received the status of Professor from the University Grants Commission. Main speakers included Dr Raghuvir Singh among others. The issue of re-looking into the case of Dr Ajmer Singh from the sports department figured on the agenda. A quick action has been assured.

The Syndicate deferred the case of all appointments in the Sanskrit, Bio-physics and English departments. Dr S.K.Kulkarni from the pharmaceutical sciences was also felicitated. The appointment of the Dean and Associate Dean Colleges is all set to to be taken up shortly.

The house approved decisions of all eight cases of the Unfair Means Committee on those indicted during annual examination . Two of the total eight were caught on charges of impersonation . The penalty involves debarment from university examination for four to five years.

The item pertaining to the travel subsidy to the teachers was also postponed. Dr Chawla, Dr Raghuvir Singh, Mr Chatrath, Mr Govil, Ms Mahajan and Dr Ram Prakash spoke on the issue. It was said that while the old cases in the issue had not been decided , new cases should not be taken up till their disposal.

The Syndicate also took up the case of two teachers, Dr K.K.Bhasin and Dr Suniti Kumar, who were refused professorship by the High Court. Dr Ram Prakash and Mr Chatrath said that the case should be taken up under a SLP in the Supreme Court. Dr Chawla said the case of Dr B.S.Ghuman who was refused the post of a Professor should also be taken up.

The Syndicate also brought forward a case where it was proposed that a case of computer theft in the Computer Science department be written off. Dr Anand and Dr V.K.Bansal,however, demanded that an inquiry should be conducted into the issue.

The Syndicate approved NRI donation seats in a science stream course. Ms Sneh Mahajan and Dr R.D.Anand expressed their reservations on the issue. Prof Chawla expressed his dissent.

Dr R.K.Chandra , an academician based in Canada, has assured Rs 1.75 crore for a science block in the name of Aruna and Ranjit Chandran, which was accepted.

The Syndicate granted permission for postgraduate courses at the local Government Medical college, Sector 32. These included three seats each in the departments of anaesthology and general surgery, among others.

The forthcoming Syndicate meeting is scheduled for March 18. The Senate meeting will be on March 26. Change of faculties has been allowed on March 17.


Festival of Gardens concludes
Crowds, fun and litter
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Feb 27 — All roads seemed to be leading to the Zakir Rose Garden in Sector 16 here as crowds thronged the garden on the concluding day of the Festival of Gardens today.

It was fun and frolic for the Sunday crowd, including women and children, who made a beeline for the garden since morning. By the afternoon, the rush was so much that women and children had a tough time entering or going out as there was virtually a stampede at the two entry points on Jan Marg.

Tempers ran high as people jostled with one another to enter the garden. The police had to resort to a mild lathi-charge to control enthusiastic visitors.

Like all other events, there was an overwhelming response to the on-the-spot-painting competition, which was inaugurated by the Mayor, Ms Shanta Abhilashi, in the morning. Over 880 children from 3 to 18 years participated. Students of the local College of Art painted the faces and arms of the tiny-tots, much to their amusement.

The main stage remained the hub of activity, with dance teams from Nagaland, Rajastan, Punjab, Haryana and Assam enthralling the visitors. The rose quiz in the afternoon saw a keen contest, with teams battling it out for top positions in school and college categories.

However, while the people enjoyed the atmosphere, the flower beds were at the receiving end. Empty water cans, pamphlets and packets remained littered in a majority of the flower beds, spoiling the beauty of the roses. There was also some damage to the flower beds as people passed through the flowers beds, which were not protected by the wire-mesh.

The Adviser to the UT Administrator, Ms Vineeta Rai, distributed prizes among the winners of different contests held during the past three days. Meanwhile, the following are the results of contests held today:

Rose quiz — school category: Jyoti and Navinder from Government High School, Sector 46 (1), Dipika and Vidhya from Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 22, (2), Jasmeet and Anjali from Government Model School, Sector 40, 3; college category: Ipinder Kaur and Shikha Bansal from Goswami Ganesh Dutta Sanatan Dharam College, Sector 32, (1), Vini Chopra and Rupa Ghosh from Government College for Girls, Sector 11 (2), Sakshi and Urushi from MCM DAV College, Sector 36, 3; on-the-spot painting competition — 3 to 6 years: Aarzoo Ahuja (1), Pranav (2), Taania Majumdar (3), Arshita Sharma (consolation prize); 6 to 9 years: Kanav (1), Charanpreet (2), Baljit Kaur (3), Ankita Katoch (consolation prize); 9 to 12 years: Divya Rangray (1), Vijaya (2), Subhojeet Roy (3), Sachpreet Singh (consolation prize); 12 to 15 years: Deepali Thapar (1), Hitiz (2), Robina Gill (3), Nisha (consolation prize); 15 to 18 years: Swati Bhandari (1), Monica Malhotra (2), Simran Jit Singh (3), Guriqbal Singh (consolation prize).


PU staffers' money in postal scheme missing
By Sanjeev Singh Bariana
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Feb 27 — Panjab University employees who invested money under a special scheme of the Postal authorities were startled when they found their money missing from the accounts after the expiry period of the scheme.

Employees were seeking the matured amounts after the expiry periods, when they were informed by the bank authorities that the scheme had been 'discontinued' in their cases because of discontinuity in communications with the bank, highly placed sources said here today.

The issue took a serious turn when letters were written by the affected employees to the authorities, including the Finance and Development Officer and the Vice-Chancellor. Sources confirmed that a special committee has been set up in this direction. The Panjab University Teachers Association and the Panjab University (Non-teaching) Staff Association presidents feature on a special committee set up in this regard. An assistant registrar will head the committee. The final decision is awaited.

Informed sources also said that the employee under question for the 'mistake' was a junior assistant. He has offered to pay back the aggrieved parties from his own pocket.

Informed sources said that the PUSA president did not receive a formal letter announcing the meeting which was held earlier this month. There is no time limit on the submission of the report.

Under the special scheme, the university cuts an amount from the salary and sends it to the Postal authorities. Apart from interest on the amount, it also saves a big deal on interest on payment of salaries. It also has an impact on the LIC.

A senior staff member pointed out that the amount was to be deducted from the salary. The pay-slips showed that the deduction had been made.

A senior staffer said that there was a need to review certain related aspects. The argument that papers related to the scheme had been misplaced due to office negligence brought to light one of the biggest possible flaws in the university.


Ikram hero overnight
By Geetanjali Gayatri
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH Feb 27 — "We are on top of the world since our son told us that he had been chosen first runners-up at the Graviera Mr India contest, at 1.30 am, right after the show,'' a beaming Col D.S. Sandhu (retd), said when he was asked about his initial reaction to the title conferred on their son, Ikram Sandhu, at the contest held in Hyderabad.

"Since the show was not being telecast on television, we were anxious of the result, though we were sure of his being among the top three. His mother, kept awake till she had spoken to him and then she couldn't sleep because she was very happy,'' said his father.

Since the news came in, there has been a stream of visitors at the house to congratulate the proud parents. Music has been rolling and the party is on. Meanwhile, Ikram is having a great day in Hyderabad. He is also constantly in touch with his family, briefing them on all the merry making after his newly-acquired "star status''.

His mother, Ms Surinder Sandhu, said the title did not come as a surprise to his friends and family. "He always had it in him to rise in whatever he undertook. He is an achiever and has worked hard to win the title,'' she also said. She said Ikram was excited about winning the title but regretted missing the top slot by half-a-mark only. "However, He told us that the better chap won and he was content with whatever came his way,'' Col Sandhu said.

Ikram has a good combination of brains and brawn. He was an engineering student who did his MBA from Panjab University. He got a good job during the campus interviews. He is working as Adviser to Global Tele Systems in New Delhi. Though he has never given any serious thought to modelling, Ikram has dabbled in it for over a year now. "The idea was to use his spare time in something qualitative. His work is his bread and butter, this only provides a thrill,'' his father said. He also said Ikram might take a leave from his job for sometime till the "honeymoon was over''.

His father said Ikram joined this field after a little backing from his previous company. "They needed a model for their product and saw the spark in our son. Naturally, once into it, more modelling assignments came his way,'' he said.

Now, he is in the limelight and cameras are rolling to capture the "hero'' in his multifarious moods. A great orator with many prizes under his belt, Ikram's favourite pastime in the department was to hang out in the corridor of his department, wear his sunglasses and enjoy appreciative glances which came his way, his friends said.

Eligible Ikram loves to live life in the fast lane. Born on August 15, he took to the ramp with a panache and the leonine grace won tremendous applause for the guy. He has a passion for fast cars and mobikes and loves to play golf, especially when he is not modelling.

From the guy next door to the hunk who turned a thousand heads at the glitzy affair in Hyderabad, Ikram is on cloud nine but has taken the success in his stride. He will soon taking Germany by storm when he represents India in a show scheduled to be held around November.


Gazette declares winner panch loser
Victim cries for justice as loser attends meetings
Tribune News Service

SAS NAGAR, Feb 27 — A woman candidate of Sohana village who had won the election of panch of the Sohana Gram Panchayat in 1998 is running from pillar to post to get the records of the government gazette, which declared her a loser, straight. Representations at different government levels have so far gone unheeded.

The candidate, Ms Kamlesh Rani, had won the election on the symbol of cot. While she had secured 117 votes, her rivals, Ms Raj Rani, had got 99 votes and Ms Reshma had secured 62 votes. Following the announcement of the results, Ms Kamlesh Rani was given the oath of office on July 26, 1998.

The first meeting of the gram panchayat was attended by her on August 11 and at the next meeting of the panchayat, she was told by the Sarpanch that instead of her name the defeated candidate, Raj Rani was declared winner in the government gazette. After that, the defeated candidate started attending the meetings of the gram panchayat in her place.

Then the Additional Deputy Commissioner, Ropar, was approached by the complainant who directed the BDPO, Kharar, to probe into the matter. The BDPO informed the Additional Deputy Commissioner that the mistake had occurred to a typing error.

The error was also brought to the notice of the State Election Commissioner, Punjab. The complainant has alleged that certain lower level officials in the District Election Office and in the office of the State Election Commission were creating hurdles in her case.


'Constitution okay, politicians bad'
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Feb 27 — Janshakti, a social organisation, organised an open discussion on "Constitution review —the controversy" at Lajpat Rai Bhavan in Sector 15, here, today.

Prof Veer Singh of the Department of Laws, Panjab University, said it was not the Constitution which had failed the nation but politicians and bureaucrats which had failed the Constitution, and people and their aspirations. There were no institutional deficiencies in the Constitution, he added.

Prof Balram K. Gupta, advocate of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, said the Constitution was a dynamic document and not a fossilised instrument. It has the flexibility to respond to the needs and aspirations of the nation, he opined.

Prof P. S. Jaswal from PU observed that the Constitution was a complete document which included the powers and procedures of its amendments. However, low political morality, political dysfunctions, extreme rigidity of procedures of impeachment of judges and almost complete absence of bureaucratic accountability had led to various distortions in the functioning of the system.

Prominent among others who spoke were Mr Onkar Chand, Dr P. P. Arya, Col Kuldip Singh Ludra (retd), Mr R. P. Puri, Dr B. L. Talwar, Mr P. C. Suri, Mr P. S. Soni and Col B. S. Sekhon (retd).


Consumer awakening through posters
From A Correspondent

CHANDIGARH, Feb 27 — The Citizen Awareness Group, Chandigarh, and the Dev Samaj Polytechnic for Women, Sector 21, organised a poster-making contest on consumer awareness here today.

Many students from different colleges of the city participated in the contest. Top 10 students were selected for prizes. Mr Surinder Verma, Chairperson, Citizen Awareness Group, said that the prize distribution function would be held on the occasion of World Consumers Day on March 15.

A collage workshop was also held yesterday. About 50 students from different colleges attended the workshop in which Mr Ravinder Sharma, an eminent artist and designer, demonstrated various techniques of collage making.

The following are the winners of the poster-making contest: Adabbir Bains, Amita Chhabra, Arti Dod and Roohi Chawla (all from Government Home Science College), Jaspreet Kaur and Manjot Kaur (from the host college), Manreet Kaur and Nidhi Jain (Government College of Education), Monika Angrish (Government College of Arts), Sweta (Government College for Girls) and Neetu Kandhari, a private student.


Air Marshal visits 48 Squadron
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Feb 27 — The Commodore Commandant of 48 Squadron, Air Marshal K.N. Nair, Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Eastern Air Command, is here on a four-day official visit to the squadron,one of the premier transport squadrons of the Air Force.

Accompanied by his wife, Usha, Air Marshal Nair arrived here on February 25 and was received by Air Commodore S.K. Banerjee, Air Officer Commanding, 12 Wing, and Group Capt M.K. Devnath, Commanding Officer of the squadron.

Air Marshal Nair inspected the squadron premises on February 26 and addressed all personnel.

In the evening a function was held at the Officers' Mess where he interacted with some of the retired officers of the squadron and their families and also the families of those men who had laid down their lives while discharging their duties.

A barakhana was organised today. A variety programme was presented by officers, airmen and their families on the occasion.


Fast against reservation
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Feb 27 — On the call of the Aarakshan Samapti Sanyukta Sanstha Manch, the general category employees and members of various social organisations began a relay fast in Sector 17 here yesterday in support of their demands.

According to a press note, the demonstrators were demanding an end to reservation, both at the time of the recruitment and promotions in the government service. They also demanded the repeal of the 79th Amendment which extends reservation in the state Vidhan Sabhas and the Lok Sabha for another 10 years.

While calling for the withdrawal of the Bill proposing undue benefits for the SCs and the STs, they warned the Central Government of the consequences of the caste-based reservations.

They also submitted memorandums to the Punjab and Haryana Governors.



AT the inaugural ceremony of the Festival of Gardens and the Sector 23 Bulbous Garden, the local MP, Mr Pawan Kumar Bansal; and the Mayor, Mrs Shanta Abhilashi, besides the senior leaders of the ruling BJP-SAD alliance and other political parties, were conspicuous by their absence.

Though for the past few years, some events of the Festival of Gardens are held at the Sector 16 Shanti Kunj, no official functions were held there this time. Earlier, the administration had issued a press note which said that some events would be held at the Kunj.

The absence of political leaders from the function was understandable as they are unhappy over the composition of the Administrator's Advisory Council. But in that case, there was no explanation for the absence of the BJP and Shiromani Akali Dal leaders and former MP, Mr Satya Pal Jain, from these functions.

Topiary expert

Famous as a creator of topiaries of birds, animals and other creatures, 43-year-old Narinder K. Sharma, an alumnus of the Sector 10 Government College of Art, now plans to make huge pre-historic animals like dinosaurs from waste mild steel scrap for pioneering work in the field.

His parrot, maina, cuckoo and skylark first appeared at the inaugural chrysanthemum show held at the Sector 10 Leisure Valley in 1985. Since then he has never looked back.

In 1987, he created "jalpari" — a nymph with the body of a fish and the head of a woman — and later a flower bedecked charming lady with a jar on her head which was appreciated at the 1994 flower show and was subsequently included in the official calendar of the administration in 1998.

In 1991, he created an 11-ft-high giraffe, a tiger, a rhino, a camel, a lion, a deer, a dancing peacock, a kangaroo, a crocodile and a horse. His five-ft-high pair of butterflies made out of mild steel rods was the major attraction at the 1999 flower show at the Terrace Garden.

A flower bedecked pair of peacocks are attractions at Raj Bhavan on Governor's At Home on Republic Day and Independence Day. No flower show is complete without Narinder's flower-bedecked topiaries (see photo on top of the page). The Ludhiana Municipal Corporation felicitated him for a beautiful topiary display at the 1995 chrysanthemum show.


Mr L.C. Hans, Chief Manager, NRI Branch, Chandigarh, has been selected as a member of the SBI Chairman's Club — 1999 in recognition of his outstanding performance which is judged on the basis of a 10-point evaluation programme.

Only one Branch Manager is selected from each of the 13 circles of the bank throughout the country each year. This scheme of recognising and facilitating outstanding performers was introduced in 1995. Thus Mr Hans becomes only the fifth Branch Manager from Chandigarh Circle which covers parts of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal, Jammu and Kashmir and Chandigarh.

The members of the elite Chairman's Club are felicitated along with their spouses. They are provided with a suit with a crest. Each member of the staff of the branch, whose manager has been picked for the club's membership, also gets a citation.

Band display

The security forces' bass and pipe bands display during the Festival of Gardens was low key, being done only for about two hours. Financial constraints reduced it to a half-day concert. The authorities drastically reduced the budget allotment for this show from Rs 1.25 lakh in 1999 to Rs 30,000 this year.

Last year six bands participated in the display as against eight this year. To fill the gap, last year, the Environment Society of India arranged the folk dances and songs presented by the Federation of Migrant Groups from North West India (now Pakistan).

This year too, the huge arena vacated by the brass and pipe bands was occupied by Jhangi, Multani and other dancers for the three days. In folk dances, the stage goes to the people. This is why it attracted large and thrilling crowds of all age groups.

One such party of folk artists consists of sons of migrants from Sahiwal (Multan division now in Pakistan), DAV College, Jalalabad in Ferozepur district. This is a unique example by this college to preserve and promote their heritage.

Dr M.L. Madhu

Dr M.L. Madhu is our man in Moscow. Readers may be familiar with his political pieces but it may come as a surprise to them that he is also a poet and translator of repute. He has been awarded the Pushkin Gold Medal and diploma for his translation of the verses and novels of Russia's greatest poet, Alexander Pushkin, into Hindi. The award has been given to commemorate the 200th birth anniversary of Pushkin.

When Dr Madhu first and probably the only translator to have rendered Pushkin into Hindi, went to Russia in 1957, he did not know Russian at all, and did his first translations from English. But now he knows Russian almost as fluently as a native and has translated Leo Tolstoy, Anton Chekhov and Maxim Gorky.

Translating Pushkin was the most challenging job because of the subtle nuances of the poetry. His Russian wife would recite the verses for hours so that he could better capture their rhyme and melody. The result is "Kavyanjali", which has been printed in millions and is being sold in India at a heavily subsidised price to make it affordable to students and poorer sections.

Life Saver Squad

The Blood Bank Society and the Rotaract Club have formed a Life Saver Squad comprising the youth of Chandigarh who will be motivating people to donate blood.

Those who motivate 10 persons to give blood will be given a certificate, an award and a special badge. Those who are motivated should be first time donors or should not have donated in the last two years.

The first claimant for the LSS award is Shivani Bhatia, a student of Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan. The award will be presented to her today by Mrs Niti Sarin and Mrs Vanita Sahni on behalf of the Blood Bank Society.


Ordine Academics International "Greci-Marino", Ordine Academico Del Verbano, Italy, has appointed Dr S.S. Bhatti, former Principal of Chandigarh College of Architecture, "Academical Official Knight" in the department of arts.

The citation received from the General Rectorate reads: "The highest title of Academical Official Knight has been awarded to you for the great merits you have attained in the artistic sphere." A recipient of several awards and honours for architecture, art, engineering and poetry, Dr Bhatti is an impassioned protagonist of comprehensivity as against specialisation.

Three awards

Dr A.C. Vaid, Principal of G.G.D.S.D. College, Sector 32, has won three awards in a row. These are the "achiever of the millennium award"; the "national educational excellence award"; and "gyan jyoti award".

The millennium award (millennium hall of achievers fame) was conferred on Dr Vaid by the All-India Achievers' Conference in New Delhi and presented by the Union Minister of State for Chemicals and Fertilisers, Mr Ramesh Bais, at the 33rd national seminar on "challenges in the new millennium — the achievers perspective" in January.

The second award for excellence in education was conferred by the Indian Economic Development and Research Association and presented by the Minister of State for Science and Technology, Mr Bachi Singh Rawat at the 16th national seminar on "individual achievement and nation building" in November last year.

The Gyan Jyoti Award was by the Association of Business Entrepreneurs. It was presented by the Chief Election Commissioner, Dr M.S. Gill, at a seminar on "industrial development and national economy" in December last.

The G.G.D.S.D. College is now recognised by the business association as excellent institution. It has been given the "certificate" of proficiency.Back


Punjab electricity board manual punitive

Apropos the news item "New rules on faulty electric meters" (Chandigarh Tribune, February 19), I will like to point out that the amended Punjab State Electricity Board Sales Manual Instruction (No. 115) with regard to the dead stop and inoperative meters cannot be legally applied to domestic consumers of energy in Chandigarh.

Perhaps the Engineering Department has not considered that while in Punjab the meters belong to the consumers, in Chandigarh these are the property of the Administration and the consumers are charged a monthly rent of Rs 9 per 3 phase meter, irrespective of whether the meter is working or is dead. Some consumers have paid more than ten times the cost of the meter, besides interest-free security deposit.

The rules contained in the PSEB Sales Manual appear to be punitive and probably made with a view to compel consumers to keep their meters fully functional and to promptly replace the dead or defective ones.

How can a Chandigarh consumer be punished for the negligence and/or laxity of the Engineering Department officials for not regularly checking and recalibrating the meters and not replacing the dead or defectives ones promptly? Can a seller approach the police station about his own defective measuring instrument and lodge a complaint against the purchaser? It can happen when the seller is the Engineering Department of the Chandigarh Administration.

The consumption of electricity in a residential building is not based solely on its size or the connected load but also on the number of occupants and their lifestyles. Chandigarh has a lot of senior citizens, widows and widowers, who stay alone in large houses as their children are working elsewhere. Many times their houses remain locked for months.

I advise the Chandigarh Administration to seek legal opinion before taking any further step in this direction.

Dalip Singh Ghuman

Bad road

There was a time when roads in Chandigarh were in good condition. But things are not the same now. The stretch of road from the roundabout dividing sectors 29, 30, 31 and 32 to the rotary dividing sectors 46, 47, 31 and 32 is a rough stretch.

Besides being uneven, the stretch is broken at places and is dotted with cracks and pot-holes. The authorities concerned have done nothing over the years.

Going through the stretch at night, when it is dimly-lit or has streetlights off, is a nightmarish experience. It is a high-risk drive during the rains. It is time the authorities concerned repaired the stretch.

Tarundeep Aggarwal

Ray of hope

There have been some incidents which have brought hope to ordinary citizens. Judicial activism is one of these and the desire of the Chief Justice of India to hasten the disposal of cases at the earliest by various courts and the intent of the Chief Vigilance Commissioner of India to do justice to his duties are others.

The bold step taken by the Chandigarh authorities in demolishing some rooms of a school, which were in violation of rules, is another. I hope this touches the conscience of HUDA authorities in Panchkula and action is taken against the commercial establishments being run from residential accommodation.

V.M. Rohit

Direct train

I was happy to read the news item "Decks have been cleared for the operation of a direct Kalka-Mumbai train" (Chandigarh Tribune, February 16). The train will be a boon to the people going to Mumbai.

The Kalka-Howrah train is a necessity for the people going to Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Calcutta. At present, there is no direct train for these places from Chandigarh.

For the time being, three bogies can be attached to the 4887 Chandigarh Express at Kalka. At Ambala, these bogies can be attached to the 3006 Amritsar-Howrah Mail or the 3050 Amritsar-Howrah Express. On return journey, these bogies can be attached to the 2311 Howrah-Kalka Mail at Ambala.

I hope you will take up the cause for the convenience of the people living in and around Chandigarh and Kalka.

B.M. Lal

Private security system

Despite frequent cases of theft, robbery, chain-snatching and murder in Sector 4 and other parts of Panchkula, police deployment is not adequate enough to prevent their occurrence and provide effective security.

As citizens, we also have a duty towards assisting the police and the administration in improving upon and strengthening the Chowkidari system. An endeavour in this regard can be made by making private security arrangements in Sector 4 first and then replicating it in other sectors.

In Sector 4, there are approximately 3,000 houses. Every month a self-appointed chowkidar turns up at every house, charging Rs 20 to Rs 50 from each house for simply banging the bamboo stick randomly on the road without providing any security to the house-owners. If the services of these chowkidars are discontinued and every household starts contributing Rs 50 towards the proposed private security system, we can arrange Rs 1,50,000 per month for the purpose. We can appoint 40 to 50 securitymen, preferably ex-servicemen, permanently by paying them Rs 3,000 to 5,000 per month.

To reinforce these arrangements, we may requisition the services of some ex-Army officers from Sector 4 for drafting these securitymen and allocating duties to them. The sector may be divided lane-wise and street-wise, with at least one securityman catering to security needs of 100 houses, depending upon the sensitiveness of the area concerned.

Before appointing these securitymen, their antecedents maybe got verified from the police and the details of the scheme may be shared with the local police so that they can co-ordinate with these securitymen.

These securitymen may also be provided with light weapons out of these funds. The House-owners' Welfare Association and the Residents' Welfare Association may also play their role in coordinating the process.

The proposed security arrangements will be simply replacing the old chowkidari system, whereby even chowkidars of doubtful integrity are appointed. It will also make for more rationalised, systematic and responsive security mechanism. In addition to providing effective security in Sector 4, it will also serve the cause of employment generation.

B.R. Katial


3 held for forcible occupation
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Feb 27 — The police has arrested three residents of Gopalpur village in Ropar district for forcibly occupying the plot of a resident of SAS Nagar.

According to the police, Mr Karora Singh, in a complaint to the police, alleged that Prem Singh, Ujagar Singh and Sardara Singh forcibly occupied his plot in Khudda Ali Sher after threatening him. The accused have been arrested. A case has been registered.

Liquor seized
The police arrested Bittoo of Jalandhar from near the Mansa Devi turn in Mani Majra and seized 1,220 pouches of country wine which he was taking in his van. A case under the Excise Act has been registered.

Gamblers nabbed
Anand Kishore and Bhavnesh were arrested by the police for gambling at a public place near a petrol station in Sector 21-D here. A case has been registered.

Cash snatched
Mr Nek Pal of Dadu Majra Colony alleged that three persons forcibly took away some packets of cigarettes and Rs 3,000 from him on the night of February 25, when he was going to his house on a bicycle. A case has been registered.


IA open to more flights to Delhi
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Feb 27 — The management of Indian Airlines is open to the demand for increasing its frequency of flights between Chandigarh and Delhi to provide better connections to major destinations on the domestic circuit.

At present, the process of disinvestment has started. The management has decided to lower the retirement age of its employees from 60 years to 58 years. As a sequel to this decision, nearly 500 employees would retire by the end of this month. Within next three months, more than 800 employees would attain superannuation.

The management, instead of giving three months’ notice to those nearing 58 years of age, has decided to give them three months salary.

These were some of the remarks made by Mr Naresh Chand, General Manager (Sales-North), Indian Airlines, at the annual awards presentation function here last night.

Mr Naresh Chand said that at present, further expansion of operations was little difficult because of shortage of aircraft. He said the management was aware of the problems faced by loyal customers of the airline because of inordinate delays of its flights from Chandigarh because of various technical and climatic problems.

“We are trying our best to maintain the sanctity of our flight schedules. As far as passenger traffic is concerned, it has shown tremendous improvement. It has been 88 per cent during the current month,” he said.

Because of the decision to lower the retirement age, the Station Manager and Airport Manager of Indian Airlines here, Mr Kashmiri Lal and Mr Mahajan, would retire on February 29.

The place of Mr Kashmiri Lal would be taken by Mr Rajinder Kumar, who has been transferred from New Delhi to the city.

Mr Paramjit Singh Virdi of Hargobind Travels got the first prize for highest sales. Other prizes went to Air Pack Travels and On Wheel Travels.

Present at the function were Mrs A. Bhinder of Air India, Mr H.S. Bajaj, Mr Anil Anand, Mr Kanwaljit Singh Cheema, Mrs Paramjit Kaur Shergill, besides Mr Kashmiri Lal, Mr Mahajan and Mr Rajinder Kumar.

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