Sunday, April 23, 2000,
Chandigarh, India




THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
H A R Y A N A

VC denies son cheated in exam
KURUKSHETRA, April 22 — The Vice-Chancellor of Kurukshetra University, Dr Hoshiar Singh, has ordered a high-level probe into allegations of copying by his son in a Centre at University College Kurukshetra.

Shop backyards bulldozed
KURUKSHETRA, April 22 — Shops in Palika Bazar here were closed today in protest against the bulldozing of the newly constructed backyard portion of nine municipal shops yesterday.

Rs 50,000 ex gratia for families of martyrs
AMBALA, April 22 — Eight relatives of EME soldiers martyred in various operations from 1947 to 99 were presented ex gratia grants of Rs 50,000 each at an army function here today. Brig Awatar Singh, DDEME, Hq 2 Corps presented the cheques to the widows of martyrs. The recipients of the grants were from Ambala, Yamunanagar, Bhiwani, Mohindergarh and Patiala districts.

Cong for White Paper on power
CHANDIGARH, April 22 — The Congress today demanded a white paper on power position in Haryana and on the status of loan agreement between the state and the World Bank for power sector reforms.

Haryana CM may announce package
CHANDIGARH, April 22 — The Haryana Government is expected to announce a package for the Panchayati Raj institutions of the state on the occasion of the swearing in ceremony of the newly elected members of the institutions on April 26.

Warrants against ex-minister cancelled
ROHTAK, April 22 — The bailable warrants issued by the Chief Judicial Magistrate under Section 82 Cr P.C. against former Minister Sri Kishen Dass and Mr Anil Kumar, an IAS officer, were withdrawn today.

Wheat arrivals pick up in Haryana
CHANDIGARH, April 22 — Even as the flow of wheat to mandis of Haryana is picking up, the arrivals this time are expected to be less than the previous year.



YOUR TOWN
Ambala
Chandigarh
Hisar
Jind
Kaithal
Kurukshetra
Rohtak
Sonepat
Yamunanagar


EARLIER STORIES
 

Interest on delayed payment ordered
CHANDIGARH, April 22 — Allowing a writ petition, a Division Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court here has directed Haryana Vidyut Parsaran Nigam Limited and two other respondents to pay interest at the rate of 18 per cent on delayed payment of retiral benefit to former Chief Engineer Kirat Gopal.

Kidnapping: SP told to take action
YAMUNANAGAR, April 22 — The Human Rights Commissioner has directed the Superintendent of Police here to submit a report in connection with the alleged kidnapping of Kapil Kumar (19) within six weeks.

Dental camp confirms fluorosis
ROHTAK, April 22 — A 10-member team of doctors of Dental College, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences today organised a free tooth check up camp at Indira Colony and examined nearly 400 people including 200 children.

Heat wave, water scarcity in Hisar
HISAR, April 22 — As if the abnormal rise in temperature was not enough, acute water scarcity has added to the woes of people here, Hisar is reeling under intense heat wave, with the maximum temperature already touching 44.6C eight degrees more than the normal temperature.

Farmers adopt cost-effective tilling technique
HISAR, April 22 — Haryana farmers are fast adopting the "Zero Tillage" farming. The system which saves time, labour and money is already popular among the farmers. "Zero Tillage" technique developed by the scientists of CCS Haryana Agricultural University saves Rs 800 to Rs 1000 per acre compared to conventional tillage.

Dist Cong chief quits
AMBALA, April 22 — Ambala District (Urban) Congress President Brij Anand, a former MLA, today resigned from the primary membership of the party without assigning any reasons. Mr Anand, who sent his resignation letter to Haryana Congress President Bhupinder Singh Hooda, however told UNI that he had resigned for “personal reasons”.

Partial bandh observed
KAITHAL, April 22 – A partial bandh was observed in the town today on a call given by some trade organisations to protest against the killing of a local businessman Ramesh Miglani by some unidentified youths here yesterday. The victim was shot dead when he came to open his shop yesterday.

BSF jawan Rajinder Singh cremated
JIND, April 22 — BSF jawan Rajinder Singh, who was killed on April 19 in Pakistan shelling in Sunderban sector of Jammu and Kashmir, was cremated at his native village Igrah in the district yesterday.

6,700 duplicate cassettes seized
ROHTAK, April 22 — About 6,700 duplicate cassettes of a well-known brand were seized by the police from a shop here. The shopkeeper has been arrested.

DoT starts new scheme
SONEPAT, April 22 — The Department of Telecommunication has introduced a voluntary scheme for subscribers to avoid payment of surcharge and disconnection of telephones.Top




 

VC denies son cheated in exam
From K.G. Dutt
Tribune News Service

KURUKSHETRA, April 22 — The Vice-Chancellor of Kurukshetra University, Dr Hoshiar Singh, has ordered a high-level probe into allegations of copying by his son in a Centre at University College Kurukshetra.

Mr S.K. Singh, Dean, Students Welfare and Professor in the Department of Laws of the University, has been appointed to conduct an enquiry into how teachers were assigned duties as invigilators during examinations by the Conduct Branch of the University. The Enquiry Officer would also probe where the son of the Vice-Chancellor, who was appearing for BA Part-I (English) was sitting during the examination.

The enquiry will also throw light on how Mr Mahender Pal, a Lecturer at the Government College, Narwana was appointed Deputy Superintendent at a Centre at the University College, Kurukshetra.

The Vice-Chancellor, in an interview with TNS today, denied the allegations that his son was found indulging in copying during the examinations or he, in his capacity as Vice-Chancellor, had manoeuvred to seat him in a separate room. He also refuted the accusation that he had visited the examination centre with Mr R.K. Dhawan, Deputy Registrar (Establishment) with the motive of helping his son. He also wondered why, if his son was found involved in copying or was seated separately, the matter was not brought to his notice during his visit to the examination centre.

The Vice-Chancellor said that there were three centres functioning at the University College. He had gone there on a routine check at about 11.30 a.m. — two and a half hours after the examination had started. He had visited all the three centres and met the superintendents and other staff to find out about conveniences and facilities.

He emphasised that even though Mr Mahender Pal, who is alleged to have made a representation to the Haryana Governor and Chancellor of the University, Mr Mahabir Prasad, against the seating arrangements of the Vice-Chancellor’s son, was present there he did not complain to the Vice-Chancellor.

Dr Hoshiar Singh said he was astonished to read about the episode in the newspapers a week after the incident.

When questioned about the compelling reasons for the removal of Mr Mahender Pal, Deputy Superintendent, immediately after visiting the Centre, the Vice-Chancellor said that the Deputy Superintendent was found ‘Not performing his duty properly’. He said The Deputy Superintendent was resting with eyes closed in a corner of the verandah and did not even notice the Vice-Chancellor entering the examination centre. When he enquired from the concerned branch how such people were being appointed on examination duty, which otherwise was very important, he was informed that Mr Mahender Pal belonged to Narwana and was posted on examination duty here.

It was later found that the Conduct Branch routinely appointed staff at examination duties convenient to them often on extraneous considerations.

The Vice-Chancellor showed documentary evidence indicating extraneous considerations were at work during assignments of such duties to invigilators.

The Vice-Chancellor said he ordered the removal of Mr Mahender Pal after satisfying himself that his appointment as Deputy Superintendent at the centre had been ‘manoeuvred’.

The Vice-Chancellor also denied allegations that his son had already appeared in two papers at that Centre before the incident. He maintained that his son was released from Ambala Central Jail on parole on April 9 to appear in an English exam. The jail record bore testimony to this.

Dr Hoshiar Singh maintained that the entire incident was cooked up by vested interests to defame him as his selection for a regular Vice-Chancellor of the University was pending.Top

 

Shop backyards bulldozed
From Our Correspondent

KURUKSHETRA, April 22 — Shops in Palika Bazar here were closed today in protest against the bulldozing of the newly constructed backyard portion of nine municipal shops yesterday.

According to the affected shopkeepers, they were shocked to learn on telephone at about 3 a.m. that such an action was taking place. They said when they reached the site they found that the chowkidar on duty was made to sit on one side and the "operation" was going on in the presence of heavy police force, district administration and municipal staff.

When this correspondent visited the site, it found that the newly constructed backyard portions of their respective shops had already been pulled down, storage tanks on roof tops had been smashed and the shuttering material had been damaged. The tin sheds erected on bamboo poles had also been pulled down after breaking some portion of the boundary wall of the godown at the back of the shops.

The affected shopkeepers told this correspondent that they had started the construction only after they received a letter signed by the secretary, municipal committee, saying that after considering their applications and affidavits and municipal committee administrator’s order dated March 29, sanction to allot the backyard portion of their respective shops for the construction at their own cost was being granted. The order also indicated the increase of 25 per cent in rent from the date of sanction. They also distributed photostat copies of the order among mediapersons.

The shopkeepers said the backyards of the shops was got vacated by requesting the godown owner, who had already taken the godown on rent from the municipal committee about 35 years ago. They said the majority of them had borrowed the construction amount ranging from Rs 60,000 to 1 lakh at the rate of 3 per cent per month. Moreover, they were allowed to extend their backyards by 10 to 25 per cent.

The shopkeepers are seeking compensation and a permission to reconstruct the backyards of their respective shops by restoring the possession to them.

Meanwhile, the godown owner told mediapersons that he had taken the godown on rent and on the request of the shopkeepers, he surrendered the possession of 195 sq yards of the 400 sq yards to the municipal committee. Moreover, he had already deposited the rent for the next year in advance to the municipal committee for rest of the land under his possession.

He alleged that the tin sheds and the building material worth Rs 4 lakh had been damaged and some of the building material was missing as some portion of the boundary wall had also been broken to carry out the "operation".

However, when contacted on telephone the Deputy Commissioner, Mrs Jyoti Arora, said when she came to know that some fraud had been committed by allowing the shopkeepers to extend their respective shops, she appointed a one-man inquiry panel under the SDM, Thanesar, who, in his report pointed out that the land was rented to the shopkeepers at a cheaper rate. Thus, she quashed the municipal committee resolution permitting the shopkeepers to construct the same, she added. Top

 

Removing encroachments politely
From Vipin Sharma

ROHTAK, April 22 — With folded hands he politely requests the encroachers to clear the encroachments in public interest. The encroachers are also cautioned that the district administration would have to remove the illegal construction after a notice of two to three days in case the request is not considered to it’s pleasant surprise, the anti-encroachment squad finds that more than 75 per cent of the encroachers are removing the encroachments themselves when it reaches the sites concerned after the expiry of notice period.

The tactful handling of this sensitive matter by the Deputy Commissioner, Mr Rajesh Khullar, appears to be a successful campaign after a gap of nearly 30 years.

The problem of encroachment and illegal construction on public land had acquired alarming proportions in the town in the past over 30 years. Encouraged by the lethargy of officials, shopkeepers had encroached upon footpaths and even roads in almost all markets. Not to talk of four-wheelers, people had to face difficulty even in walking on foot in the markets like Quilla Road, Railway Road, Jhajjar Road, Gohana Stand etc. A large number of complaints in this connection were received by the district administration from time to time and steps were also taken by the administration but the drive against encroachment was suspended every time due to pressure from various sites.

Similar is the situation in almost all residential localities. Residents in HUDA, Sector 1, Sector 14, Old Housing Board, Model Town, Mansarover Colony etc have encroached upon the greenery lane, footpath and roads. This has resulted in the reduction of the width of roads from 15 to 30 feet in these localities. Cement constructions have been made over sewer lines leaving no scope for desilting operations. Similarly, electricity poles have been taken inside the boundary wall by several residents.

To tackle the situation, Mr Khullar launched a crusade against encroachment on April 15. During the past one week illegal construction in Quilla Road, Jhajjar Road and Railway Road have been cleared. The shopkeepers were politely told to remove their encroachments themselves. At the same time the Deputy Commissioner kept vigilant during the operation so that the shopkeepers were not harassed during the drive. At times he was seen among the public wearing half pent and T-shirt and sometimes observing the response of the people on a bicycle.

When contacted, the Deputy Commissioner told this correspondent that encroachments in markets would be cleared till April 30 in the first phase while illegal constructions in residential localities would be removed by May 30 in the second phase. He said nobody would be spared and at the same time harassed unnecessarily during the campaign. He said six HCS officials had been deputed to ensure that the demolished structures do not come up again.Top

 

SDM for removal of encroachments
From Our Correspondent

FATEHABAD, April 22 — The administration has served a notice to the local shopkeepers to remove their encroachments from the footpaths and the government lands within three days or else it would remove these at the cost of the shopkeepers.

Mr R.K. Chauhan, SDM, organised a meeting at his office here today in this regard. The DSP, Fatehabad, the Secretary, Municipal Committee and the representatives of various trader organisations were present at the meeting.

Mr Chauhan said that the administration was determined to follow the directives of the state government regarding the removal of encroachments from the roads, footpaths and other government land.

He warned that the municipal authorities would start their anti-encroachment drive in case the encroachments were not removed voluntarily within three days. Top

 

Rs 50,000 ex gratia for families of martyrs
From Our Correspondent

AMBALA, April 22 — Eight relatives of EME soldiers martyred in various operations from 1947 to 99 were presented ex gratia grants of Rs 50,000 each at an army function here today. Brig Awatar Singh, DDEME, Hq 2 Corps presented the cheques to the widows of martyrs. The recipients of the grants were from Ambala, Yamunanagar, Bhiwani, Mohindergarh and Patiala districts.

Those who were awarded the grant included Mrs Dayal Kaur w/o NK Mangal Singh, Mrs Pritam Kaur w/o Sep Puran Singh, Mrs Chand Kaur w/o Sep Ganpat, Mrs Hamesh Parbat w/o Sep Azmat Singh, Mrs Gurmit Kaur w/o Hav Gopal Singh, Mrs Dharam Kaur w/o Sep Risal Singh and Mr Ajmer Singh father of Sep Baldev Singh.

Most of the widows complained they were not given due recognition after the death of their husbands. Mrs Gurmit Kaur (72) whose husband Hav Gopal Singh was killed in the Indo-Pak war in 1971 said that since the death of her husband this was the first time she was getting an ex-gratia grant.

After her husband’s death nobody came forward to help her and she worked as a maid servant to bring up her two sons. She could not provide proper education to her children due to financial constraints and while one of her sons passed the matriculation exam the other did not. She had been trying to get them jobs for the past several years even in the army, but could not.

Mrs Krishna Devi (70) the wife of late Sep Azmat Singh lost her eyesight as she could not get proper medical treatment. Her only son died for lack of medicines when ill. After the death of her husband she had to arrange the marriage of her three daughters but she did not get any assistance from the army authorities. She said the next of kin of Kargil martyrs had been given the maximum assistance while the soldiers who laid down their life during Indo-Pak and Indo-China war were ignored.

Mr Ajmer Singh whose son Baldev Singh was killed in Indo-Pak war in 1965 said that he was proud that his son had laid down his life for the country. He was very happy to get the grant of Rs 50,000. He said the government should at least allot them some land so that they may be able to feed their families as the family pension they got was not sufficient. Top

 

Cong for White Paper on power
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, April 22 — The Congress today demanded a white paper on power position in Haryana and on the status of loan agreement between the state and the World Bank for power sector reforms.

An HPCC statement, quoting its chief Mr Bhupinder Singh Hooda, said here today that delay in loan agreement with the World Bank had cost the state dearly and the people had been suffering badly since these reforms had come to a halt.

Strongly condemning the power cut imposed in Haryana from the midnight of April 22 Mr Hooda said it should not have been done in this summer when water was most needed for irrigation as well as for drinking purposes. " The HVPN authorities claim that only two hours’ power cut has been imposed. But the fact is power cut was already continuing for more than six hours in urban areas and more than 10 hours in the rural. The authorities are deliberately concealing this fact ", Mr Hooda said.

The HPCC chief also criticised the state government for its inability to formulate a water policy for Haryana. Mr Hooda said the Chief Minister Om Prakash Chautala should give up his "friendly verbal duel" with his Punjab counterpart and try to use his links with the BJP to solve the water crisis by getting Haryana’s share of the Ravi-Beas waters.Top

 

Haryana CM may announce package
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, April 22 — The Haryana Government is expected to announce a package for the Panchayati Raj institutions of the state on the occasion of the swearing in ceremony of the newly elected members of the institutions on April 26.

Official sources said Chief Minister Om Prakash Chautala would announce the package while administering the oath of office and secrecy to the Panchayati Raj members. The swearing-in ceremony would take place at the police lines at Jind. About 55,000 panches, more than 6,300 sarpanches, 2,400 panchayat samiti members and 314 Zila Parishad members would participate.

The sources said the main idea behind the package was devolution of power and ensuring grassroots level participation in developmental activities. The package will also substantially enhance the Panchayati Raj institutions’ ability to mobilise their own resources, it was stated.

The sources said that the groundwork for the package included extensive studies of the Panchayati Raj institutions of Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Karnataka and West Bengal, where the Panchayati Raj institutions have been strengthened by providing them with a lot of powers.Top

 

Warrants against ex-minister cancelled
From Jatinder Sharma

ROHTAK, April 22 — The bailable warrants issued by the Chief Judicial Magistrate under Section 82 Cr P.C. against former Minister Sri Kishen Dass and Mr Anil Kumar, an IAS officer, were withdrawn today.

The Chief Judicial Magistrate, Mr R.K. Sharma, issued the proclamation under Sections 82 and 83 Cr PC on March 28 last and directed Mr Sri Kishen Dass and Mr Anil Kumar, a former Deputy Commissioner, to appear in his court on May 8 next.

Both Mr Sri Kishen Dass and Mr Anil Kumar have been booked by the State Vigilance Bureau (SVB) under Sections 420, 406, 409, 467, 468, 471 and 12-B of the IPC and Section 13 (i) (D) of the Prevention of Corruption Act along with Mr Garg, Executive Engineer, HUDA, and Mr Manmohan, son of Mr Sri Kishen Dass.

Mr Anil Kumar today appeared in the court of the Chief Judicial Magistrate in person and said that he was always willing to join the investigation and had never evaded or avoided his presence to the investigating officer. The investigating officer, Mr Banwari Lal, DSP, SVB, confirmed that on two occasions, Mr Anil Kumar had met him in connection with the investigation of the case.

Mr Sri Kishen Dass told the court that he was residing in house No. 142/9, Babra Mohalla, Rohtak, and was ready to join the investigation. He however, requested the court to direct the investigating officer to meet him at his residence as he was bed-ridden and unable to move.

Withdrawing the proclamation issued by him on March 28, the Chief Judicial Magistrate said that since the addresses of the accused were known to the investigating officer, there was no need to seek their presence through proclamation.

The Chief Judicial Magistrate, however, directed Mr Anil Kumar and Mr Sri Kishen Dass to join the investigation as and when directed by the investigating officer. He also directed the investigating officer to call the accused by issuing a notice mentioning therein the reasons, date and reasonable time.

He further directed the investigating officer to interrogate Mr Sri Kishen Dass or join him in investigation at the former minister’s house located in Babra Mohalla here after giving intimation regarding the visit to his house by issuing a notice.

Since Mr Garg, and a co-accused in the case has not so far presented him self before the court, the Chief Judicial Magistrate ordered to take up the life on May 8 for proceeding further against Mr Garg.Top

 

Wheat arrivals pick up in Haryana
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, April 22 — Even as the flow of wheat to mandis of Haryana is picking up, the arrivals this time are expected to be less than the previous year.

Official sources said that more than 12 lakh metric tons of wheat had arrived in the mandis till yesterday, out of which the government agencies procured over 11 lakh metric tons. The arrivals of wheat last year in the corresponding period were more than 21 lakh metric tons. The sources said that relatively poor arrivals of wheat this time were due to the delayed onset of summer as harvesting started in Haryana about a week later than it started last year.

While the total arrivals in the mandis last year were about 39 lakh metric tons official circles expect the arrivals of 38 lakh metric tons this time. The sources, however, said that about 1.70 lakh metric tons of wheat had started pouring in the mandis on each day on an average and the target of 38 lakh metric tons would be attained.

The sources said that the procurement operation by the government agencies would go on till June 30. While HAFED would collect the maximum amount of wheat, 38 per cent, the Food and Supply Department would collect 20 per cent, the FCI 18 per cent and the Agro Industries, CONFED and the Haryana Warehousing Corporation would procure 9 per cent each of the total procurement by government agencies, the sources said.

Reacting to news reports that labourers strike was affecting the procurement operation at Kaithal, the sources said that they had no such report. "The government agencies have about 3000 labourers and there is no unrest among them", the sources said.Top

 

Interest on delayed payment ordered
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, April 22 — Allowing a writ petition, a Division Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court here has directed Haryana Vidyut Parsaran Nigam Limited and two other respondents to pay interest at the rate of 18 per cent on delayed payment of retiral benefit to former Chief Engineer Kirat Gopal.

The Bench, comprising Mr Justice G.S. Singhvi and Mr Justice J.S. Khehar, also directed the calculation of interest on the death-cum-retirement gratuity (DCRG), leave encashment, commutation of pension and pay from the date of the petitioner’s retirement till the date of actual payment.

Seeking directions to the respondents for grant of interest at the rate of 18 per cent per annum, the petitioner had earlier alleged that "in the garb of show cause notices, the payment of DCRG, leave encashment and other dues had been delayed from nine to 11 months".

After hearing arguments, the Bench observed that the show cause notices served upon the petitioner requiring him to furnish explanation regarding certain allegations could not be equated with a charge sheet.

The Bench also observed that no charge sheet was shown to have been served upon the petitioner and "therefore no departmental enquiry could have been treated as pending justifying the withholding of the arrears of pay and retiral benefits. In view of this, we have no hesitation to hold that the petitioner deserves to be compensated by the award of interest for the delayed payment of DCRG etc".

In their detailed order, the Bench observed: "In the facts of this case, we are of the considered opinion that the petitioner should be adequately compensated for the harassment suffered by him on account of patently illegal action of the respondents". Top

 

Kidnapping: SP told to take action
From Our Correspondent

YAMUNANAGAR, April 22 — The Human Rights Commissioner has directed the Superintendent of Police here to submit a report in connection with the alleged kidnapping of Kapil Kumar (19) within six weeks.

In a letter written by the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) to the Superintendent of Police here, the commissioner demanded police action in the said case.

Mrs Tara Rani in a letter to the commission informed that her son Kapil, alias Lalli, was waiting for a train at the railway station, Jagadhri, in 1996, for Saharanpur. She alleged that Rajinder, Mohinder and Pawan Kumar kidnapped the boy from the railway station.

She added that a case was registered by the Government Railway Police (GRP), Ambala Cantonment under Sections 363 and 365 IPC. She further alleged that the same persons snatched Rs 10,000 from her elder son on July 21, 1996 and pushed him out of the train. A case was registered at GRD Saharanpur under Sections 323, 382 and 506 IPC.

The complaint was placed before the commission on March 10.Top

 

Dental camp confirms fluorosis
From Our Correspondent

ROHTAK, April 22 — A 10-member team of doctors of Dental College, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences today organised a free tooth check up camp at Indira Colony and examined nearly 400 people including 200 children.

The camp was organised in view of a news item published in The Tribune on April 19, highlighting that the residents of several localities of the town were suffering from dental fluorosis, a disease caused by excessive consumption of fluoride. The residents of such localities have to depend on underground water as they are deprived of the supply of piped water.

The doctors’ team examined the patients from 9 am to 1.30 pm and prescribed medicines. They issued cards to patients suffering from severe forms of the disease and asked them to visit the dental college for thorough treatment. The dental staff and patients had to face problems due to power failure for several hours during the check up.

Mr Rajbir Saini, general secretary of the District Congress Committee said 80 per cent of residents, including children, were found affected from dental disease and apprehended that their condition might worsen if adequate steps were not taken in time. He said the doctors’ team would organise another such camp on next Saturday as a large number of patients were left unexamined.

It is worth mentioning here that a good number of people residing in different localities in ward 1 the largest ward in the town in terms of area having a strength of about 25,000 persons, are affected from dental fluorosis.Top

 

Power situation in Haryana ‘normal’
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, April 22 — Even as the HVPN announced extensive power cuts in the state from last night, power situation in the state remained normal, Ms Meenaxi Anand Chaudhry, HVPN Chairperson, said. She said power would be provided to the consumers following supply of power to Haryana by Punjab. On Sunday too power supply was likely to remain normal, she said and added that power situation in the state would be reviewed again on Monday.Top

 

Heat wave, water scarcity in Hisar
Tribune News Service

HISAR, April 22 — As if the abnormal rise in temperature was not enough, acute water scarcity has added to the woes of people here, Hisar is reeling under intense heat wave, with the maximum temperature already touching 44.6C eight degrees more than the normal temperature.

Water scarcity has been caused mainly by the breach in the Balsamand Minor canal a week ago. The canal is the only source of drinking water for the entire city. Since the water was stopped in the canal, its impact is being felt, with the Public Health authorities starting rationing of water.

Drinking water is supplied in the city by the Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) and the Public Health Department. While the HUDA supplies water to the new city, including the Urban Estate, Model Town, Sectors 13 and 15, the Public Health Department supplies water to the old city.

Sources in the two departments disclosed that the city was short of two million gallons of water a day. This is mainly due to the stopping of water in the Balsamand Minor. The Public Health Department officials said, they supply on an average 70 million gallons of water in its area every day. The supply has been reduced by 10 million gallons. However, the supply is said to have been reduced much more.

There are three main water storage tanks in the city in Mahavir Colony, Kemri Road and Tosham Road. While some water is said to be in store in Mahavir Colony and the Kemri Road reservoirs, the Tosham Road reservoir is said to have already dried up. The authorities have started sinking handpumps, so that water is made available from there only for the time being. As most of the ground water is saline, this experiment is not proving to be fruitful.

Most of the people The Tribune talked to yesterday complained that the water was being supplied for shorter duration and the pressure was also low. People living in first or second floor were not able to store water due to low pressure. The people have already started purchasing water tanks.

Both the HUDA and the Public Health Department authorities sought to underplay the crisis. They said, on the day when the breach occurred in the canal, sufficient water was stored. They said, the people should not feel panicky as the normal water supply was being restored. However, that depends only on the resumption of water to the Balsamand Minor, which will take some time.

Same is the case with the power supply. Unannounced and unscheduled power cuts have already become a routine. An official of the Electricity Department admitted introduction of power cuts. He said, since the load had increased due to increase in temperature, it was not possible to maintain uninterrupted power supply. However, he blamed the consumers for the same. He said, the consumers did not bring the increase in their load to their notice. He pointed out, hundreds of people use electrical gadgets, which increased the load, but without informing the officials. "If we are informed we can arrange our supply accordingly", he said.Top

 

Farmers adopt cost-effective tilling technique
Tribune News Service

HISAR, April 22 — Haryana farmers are fast adopting the "Zero Tillage" farming. The system which saves time, labour and money is already popular among the farmers. "Zero Tillage" technique developed by the scientists of CCS Haryana Agricultural University saves Rs 800 to Rs 1000 per acre compared to conventional tillage.

According to Dr R.K. Malik, Professor Weed Sciences, "Zero-Tillage", assists in better weed control besides replacing the lengthy procedure of wheat sowing. He said, conventionally wheat is sown after six to eight tillages. Sowing of wheat is now possible only minimum of tillage any time during the crop-sowing season. Besides it proves to be cost-effective and eco-friendly.

The system was landed by a 12-member team of scientists from China, Bangladesh and Pakistan that visited fields recently. This team of scientists visited Haryana and Punjab in previous week and reviewed the current relevance of Zero Tillage over a travelling seminar. The team also had detailed interaction with farmers in Nangla, Teek and Govindgarh villages of Fatehabad, Kaithal and Karnal districts of Haryana and carried out a study regarding the impact of conservation tillage technology on sustainability of rice-wheat production system. It discussed with the farmers the need for further improving the "Zero Tillage" technology and the machinery for the cultivation of wheat and paddy crops.

Over the past several years, stagnating productivity of rice-wheat system had been major source of concern to farmers, agriculture scientists and planners. There are several reasons for the malady such as evolution of the iso-proturon resistant biotypes of Phalaris minor, delayed sowing of wheat particularly after the harvest of basmati rice, reduced use-efficiency of agriculture inputs, greater incidences of nutrient deficiencies, receding groundwater tables and deterioration of soil.Top

 

Partial bandh observed
From Our Correspondent

KAITHAL, April 22 – A partial bandh was observed in the town today on a call given by some trade organisations to protest against the killing of a local businessman Ramesh Miglani by some unidentified youths here yesterday. The victim was shot dead when he came to open his shop yesterday.

The local Sarafa Bazar, Main Bazar, Shastri Market, Pehowa, chowk, Janata Market, Bhagat Singh chowk, Gugga Marhi chowk, Talai Bazar railway gate and some other markets remained closed to protest against the gruesome murder.Top

 

Dist Cong chief quits

AMBALA, April 22 (UNI) — Ambala District (Urban) Congress President Brij Anand, a former MLA, today resigned from the primary membership of the party without assigning any reasons. Mr Anand, who sent his resignation letter to Haryana Congress President Bhupinder Singh Hooda, however told UNI that he had resigned for “personal reasons”.

Mr Anand was served with a show-cause notice by Mr Hooda some time ago for his alleged anti-party activities during the recently held assembly elections. He was asked to explain why disciplinary action should not be taken against him for working against official candidate, Mrs Sudarshna Dua, and supporting independent legislator Anil Vij in the assembly elections.Top

 

BSF jawan Rajinder Singh cremated
From Our Correspondent

JIND, April 22 — BSF jawan Rajinder Singh, who was killed on April 19 in Pakistan shelling in Sunderban sector of Jammu and Kashmir, was cremated at his native village Igrah in the district yesterday.

Mr Karan Singh, Sub-Inspector of 5 Battalion of the BSF who brought the body of his village, said Rajinder Singh was killed when his bunker was hit by a bomb.

A large number of villagers from surrounding areas attended the funeral. Mr Dhup Singh, father of the martyr, lit the funeral pyre.

Mr Sher Singh, MLA, Julana, former Inspector-General of the BSF Kulbir Singh, former Haryana minister Amar Nath, Sub-Divisional Magistrate Samay Singh, Deputy Superintendent of Police were also present.

Rajinder Singh was married two years ago and had a son. His elder brother Jaivir Singh is also serving in the BSF as a Havildar.Top

 

6,700 duplicate cassettes seized
From Our Correspondent

ROHTAK, April 22 — About 6,700 duplicate cassettes of a well-known brand were seized by the police from a shop here. The shopkeeper has been arrested.

According to police sources, the accused identified as Harish had been allegedly selling duplicate audio cassettes of a well known brand. A complaint was lodged by Suresh Kumar of Noida with the city police, which later raided the shop and recovered at least 6,700 cassettes. A case under Section 420 of the IPC and 63 of the Copyright Act have been registered.

Meanwhile, in two separate incidents culprits decamped with a photocopier and jewellery worth several thousands of rupees from a shop and a house in the town in the past 24 hours.Top

 

DoT starts new scheme
From Our Correspondent

SONEPAT, April 22 — The Department of Telecommunication (DoT) has introduced a voluntary scheme for subscribers to avoid payment of surcharge and disconnection of telephones.

According to official sources, the subscribers, under this scheme, are required to deposit a minimum of Rs 1,500 and more Rs 500/multiples with the department and in return, the department would pay the interest at the rate of 12 per cent annum on this amount. This amount will be adjusted at the time of surcharge and disconnection of telephones of the subscribers.

Meanwhile, the department has also increased the rent of the telephones from Rs 200 to Rs 237 after every two months and this increased amount is being charged from the subscribers from March this year. The capacity of a telephone exchange had increased beyond 30,000 lines. Sonepat exchange is one of such exchanges, which had more than 30,000 telephone lines.Top

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