Monday, May 15, 2000,
Chandigarh, India
C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


‘Boy’ service to be counted
Pension & gratuity in defence
By Vijay Mohan
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 14 — Following an amendment in service regulations, the period of service rendered by any armed forces personnel as a ‘boy’ will now be counted as qualifying service for the purpose of fixing pension and gratuity.

‘Boy’ service pertains to the duration of service rendered from the date of enrolment till attaining the age of 18 years. The issue pertains to Navy and Air Force personnel other than officers.

A Ministry of Defence communiqué received here states that ‘’the President is pleased to extend the benefit of counting boy service from the date of enrolment as qualifying service for pension and gratuity’’.

The decision to count boy service towards pension had received the concurrence of the Ministry’s finance division in mid-April, following which the notification was issued. The pension applicable will be computed by the Principal Controller of Defence Accounts (Pensions), Allahabad, and intimated to the MoD for issue of necessary sanction for release of amount on ‘’charged expenditure’’ basis.

Given the recruitment process for certain branches and trades in the Navy and the Air Force, a person gets enrolled for training before he attains the age of 18 years. The period from the date of enrolment and attainment of the age of 18 years, generally spent as an artificer or apprentice was not counted towards fixing pension and other retirement benefits. The qualifying period for grant of pension is 15 years service.

The amendment of rules comes in the backdrop of Supreme Court as well as several high court directives issued in this regard.

In the most recent directive, the Punjab and Haryana High Court here had observed: ‘’The service rendered by a ‘boy’ is a concept duly accepted under the rules and regulations. The concept is elucidated by the rule making authority in regulation of the said regulation. Under those provisions, a ‘boy’ is entitled to get pension along with other persons specified therein.’’

‘’This further indicates that the ‘boy’ by virtue of his employment attains a status which is equivalent to the regular employee of the Navy in certain aspects and matters. The service so rendered entitled him to some other benefits at par with the regular members of the naval service,’’ the court also observed.

Pointing out that it is undisputed that a ‘boy’ is recruited in the Indian Navy by due process of recruitment and is obviously below 18 years at the time of recruitment, the court further observed that the service rendered by a person as a ‘boy’ is counted for the purpose of computation of 15 years for fixing the date of retirement. For no prudent reasoning, thus, the same could be excluded while considering qualifying service for fixing pension.


Puncom officers gherao police station
Tribune News Service

SAS NAGAR, May 14 — Members of the Puncom Officers Association today gheraoed the Phase 1 police station, alleging police inaction against certain employees of the factory who had assaulted an officer outside the Phase 8 premises of the factory on last Friday.

The agitators lamented that an executive of the company, Mr Gulshan Khanna, was bashed up by five workers of the factory — Mr Som Dutt, Mr Bharat Bhushan, Mr Didar Singh, Mr Harvinder Singh and Mr Ujjal Singh — resulting in injuries to the executive.

They said though a complaint in this regard was lodged by the victim and the Junior Vigilance Officer of the company on May 12, the police failed to register a First Information Report (FIR) against the suspect and no action had been taken against them. The victim, Mr Gulshan, told TNS that at about 6.20 p.m when he was leaving the factory premises his car was stopped by the workers. He alleged that no one from the police station accompanied him to the Civil Hospital in Phase 6 for his medical examination.

Demanding strict action against the erring workers, the members of the Puncom Officers Association gheraoed the police station.

The employees have written in this regard to the Chief Minister, the Finance Minister and the Director-General of Police (DGP), Punjab. Meanwhile, when the Puncom employees gheraoed the police station a case under Sections 323, 341, 506 and 34 of the IPC was registered against the suspects on a statement given by the Junior Vigilance Inspector of the company, Mr Amarjeet Singh.

The Investigating Officer in the case, SI Balbir Singh said the suspects would soon be arrested.

Interestingly, one of the suspects named in the FIR, Didar Singh, had got a case registered against his certain colleagues for cheating and committing forgery with employees of Puncom.

In the FIR he had said that an employee of the company, Mr Surinder Jeet Gill, had formed a thrift and credit society of PCL employees in August, 1994, and had enrolled members on a monthly fee of Rs 200 each. But in March, 1999, the investors came to know that they were never registered as members of the society.



PUDA crosses water supply, sewerage lines
Tribune News Service

SAS NAGAR, May 14 — Inhabitants of Sector 70, already unhappy with the lack of basic amenities, had a shock of their life when they discovered that the engineering wing of the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) had crossed a water supply line through a sewer inspection chamber in their sector.

While laying the water supply line from tubewell no 33 to an overhead tank in the sector few months back, the engineering wing, perhaps, ignored the consequences of their action. Enquiries revealed that the supply line was being used to pump water from the tubewell to the main water storage point of the sector.

The residents lament that in case of a leakage in the water supply line, feeding the overhead water tank, the water could mix up with the sewer posing a major health hazard. Mr JS Cheema, General Secretary of the Sector 70 Social and Welfare Association, said the association had sought an enquiry into the matter and action against the officials behind it. The state Pollution Control Board has also been intimated about the matter.

The residents are demanding the water supply line passing through the sewer inspection chamber be disconnected immediately. Much to the inconvenience of the residents the manhole cover on the sewer inspection was also missing. “ It has been luck that nobody fell into the chamber”, said Ram Karan, a labourer working at a nearby construction site.

Not only this, a number of other storm water manholes in the sector required immediate attention. Recently a committee comprising PUDA officials and representatives of the welfare association had identified at least 99 sites which required putting missing manhole covers, raising of level of manholes and repairing the damaged manholes.

Development of parks in the sector is another issue of concern for the residents. Mr Cheema said development of a strip of land below a high tension power line tower as park had been left midway. No other park in the sector had been developed by the horticulture wing of PUDA, said Mr JS Dhillon, President of the association.

The sanitation of the sector was nobody’s baby. Neither PUDA nor the Municipal Council was interested in sanitation of the sector. Private safai karamcharis had been engaged by the residents to dispose of their garbage.



Bilateral dialogue on Kashmir need of the hour: Karan
By Amarjit Thind
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 14 — There are no readymade solutions to the Kashmir problem and a bilateral dialogue with all the concerned parties, including Pakistan, was the need of the hour, says Dr Karan Singh, a former Sadr-e-Riyasat of Jammu and Kashmir, and a senior Congress leader.

He was in the city to inaugurate the local chapter of the Temple of Understanding, an interfaith organisation, here today. He is the founder and national Chairman of the organisation.

Dr Singh, a scion of the royal family of Kashmir, parried questions on a solution to the vexed Kashmir problem, but said he had his views on the Kashmir problem but was not willing to disclose it at this point of time.

“I am also waiting for the recommendations of the panel formed by the government on the issue. Autonomy was acceptable but for that the reaction of the Centre and the people of the state was required. The people are fed up with all the violence, the senseless killings in the past decade and wanted peace. The economy is a shambles making life hard for the common man”, he stressed.

He said nobody knew Kashmir and its people better than him by virtue of being a Union Minister and an MP. His grandfather had signed the instrument of accession to India and he had been a Sadr-e-Riyasat for nearly 18 years.

“Everything has to be solved by  talks since a solution by the use of force was not possible. We have seen that even after wars, peace is negotiated across the table. In this case, the leaders of the Panun Kashmir, Ladhakis, Dogras, Buddhists besides the leadership of the Hurriyat Conference have to be taken into confidence “, he opined.

Reacting to query as to why he had waited for so long to come out with his views, he said there is a time for everything and he thinks that the situation had reached fruitation.

On the political situation in Kashmir, he said he felt that there was scope for improvement and things could be managed in a better way provided the leadership showed some initiative. But one has to keep in mind the insurgency factor and the poor economic state of affairs in the state.

Commenting on the recent controversy surrounding the Sikhs, that the Sikh sect was a part of the Hindus, he said he had the highest regard for the religion.

The Sikhs have a distinct identity but nobody can deny that they have close relations with the Hindus, he affirmed.

He left for Delhi in the afternoon. 


Chapter of Temple of Understanding inaugurated
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 14 — The local chapter of the Temple of Understanding, a global interfaith organisation, was inaugurated by Dr Karan Singh, global Chairman and national President of the organisation, at Lajpat Rai Bhavan, Sector 15, here today.

The function was chaired by Sant Baba Waryam Singh ji, founder- president of the Vishav Gurmat Roohani Mission. Eminent dignataries of the city were present on the occasion.

Dr Singh, a senior Congressman and former Union Minister, said he had been associated with the organisation for the past four decades and had made efforts to bring about better understanding and tolerance about various religions since the goal and salvation, were the same.

He said the ways to God were varied but religion did not teach us to fight each other in its name. Tolerance, service, brotherhood and unity were the lessons for which religions were initiated. “Who are we to judge that one religion is better than the others” he questioned.

Speaking on atheism, he said he once asked Nikita Krushchev, a former strongman of erstwhile Russia, who replied that one had to renounce religion to become a member of the Communist Party. But today, churches are being built all over the country and religion is resurging. Similar is the case in Mongolia, which he visited many years ago, he recalled.

Recalling his association with the Sikh religion , he said his grandfather, Maharaja Gulab Singh, had been personally coronated by Maharaja Ranjit Singh on the banks of the Chenab. He had the greatest regard for the religion and the spirit of brotherhood and sacrifice that it stood for, he added.

Sant Waryam Singh exhorted the gathering to pray for sarbat da bhala and work for making the world a better place to live in. He said for being a better human being, one needed to believe in dharam. Although guru’s in a person are ordained by the Almighty, pravarti is decided by nature. It is an unending feud and the person who strives to attain the perfect balance is an enlightened person.

Recalling his visit to America, he said he once saw ‘God is one’ written on one of the walls of a gurdwara. Although he was to speak on another topic, he spoke on why God is not one. People were surprised to hear this but he explained in his discourse that there is nothing else but God.

He also stressed that religion had played an important factor in the history of mankind. He gave the examples when Kartarpur was spared from destruction on the orders of Emperor Aurangzeb due to the presence of a mosque in the village. Similarly, when Sirhind was being destroyed by Banda Singh Bahadar to avenge the bricking alive of the two younger sons of the Guru Gobind Singh, the Tenth Master of the Sikhs, the mosque was spared, he revealed.

Mr Rashpal Malhotra, founder- director of the Centre for Research in Rural and Industrial Development (CRRID), presented the vote of thanks.

Karam Singh’s stress on tolerance and service to mankind.


PU not to hike rate of eatables
By Sanjeev Singh Bariana
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 14 —Panjab University decided to rescind the hike in proposed in rates of eatables at the Students Centre following protest from students quarters.

Lemon water, mini meals, idlis, tea and burgers feature among the items where the university has accepted the demands of the students.

The meeting with the Dean Student Welfare also had representatives from the organisation in power. The list of office-bearers on the hike revision panel include all wardens of hostels, mess and canteen secretaries, members of the executive committee of the Panjab University Campus Students Council, and more than 25 others.

The Haryana Students Association held a demonstration last week. Mr Chand Singh Madaan, President of the HSA, said that university had accepted certain modulations in the new price list to suit pockets of students. "We also took into account the justified requirement of a hike in certain items because of the hike in the market rate of raw material for eatables," he said.

Dr V.K. Bansal, Dean Student Welfare, said that university had accepted the genuine demands of students. The rate list of hostels was decided at a meeting held earlier.

Mr Madaan said in one of the earlier meetings, students had accepted a hike in rates of several items, with the university promising improvement in quality which was 'poorest' in hostels.

The rate list proposed Rs 11 for mini meals instead of the existing Rs 9. The meeting agreed on Rs 10. Other prominent items where a slight change has been introduced include cold coffee, egg dosa, egg cheese omelette, vegetable burger and fresh lemon.

The HSA has promised a students' quality vigilance committee to ensure better food standards.



10 per cent of Cypriots online
Face to face with Cyber group chief
By Prabhjot Singh
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 14 — “Cyprus ranks third in the world in university graduates. And 10 per cent of its population is online,” says Mr Marios G. Eliades, a former Minister of Communications and Works of Cyprus.

Mr Eliades, who is the Chairman of the Cyber group of companies in Cyprus, is in the city to discuss the activities and expansion of Cyber Kids in India. “We are very happy to be in India. Cordial relations between Cyprus and India apart, we value India very much as a sizeable number of Indian professionals are occupying senior positions in business and other places in my country.

“India has a sizeable market and is the place for a real success story. Further, educational services in your country are of the highest level and it is a place where Cyber Kids programme will be a real success,” says Mr Eliades.

Accompanying him on the trip are Ms Androulla Andreou, Managing Director of Global Development Network Ltd, and Ms Ellen Pontikis.

“We are already there in eight countries, including Greece, Austria, Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt and the USA. Now we are in India. Cyber Kids is a new concept in computer education where children learn how to use a computer to execute educationally designed tasks and projects.

“Cyber Kids is not merely computer education. It is much more. It aims at developing intellectual skills by exposing children to a variety of subjects and issues, including environment, besides familiarising them with values in life. How to love nature, respect for environment, how to do business in life are some of the areas which are not covered by the mainstream education. Computer, we feel, is a tool to knowledge which facilitates the process of learning. Our system provides controlled environment and helps in bridging the gap between learning and technology,” the former Minister said.

For Mr Eliades, it is not his first visit to India. He has been here before three times, including once as a member of the official delegation when the then Prime Minister, Mr Rajiv Gandhi, played host to the Cyprus dignitaries.

“Indians will be treated favourably if they want to come and set up their units or offices in Cyprus. Tax concessions and other benefits are attracting a number of multinational companies to our country. We have about 40,000 multinational companies operating through Cyprus.

“Education in Cyprus is comparatively cheaper than in Europe or North America,” he said while referring to a number of private colleges and other institutions who offer transitory or foundation courses to Indian students prior to their admission in European or North American universities.

“India will do well to use Information Technology in bridging the gap between literacy and illiteracy. By using this technology, the entire country can become one big classroom with one teacher sitting in Delhi conducting the class through the use of this technology. It is here, we think, we can collaborate,” he added.

Mr Dheeraj Garg, who is the national or mater franchisee of Cyber Kids in India, says his company plans to open 10 more Cyber Kids centres in the North, including one in New Delhi in July and two more in Chandigarh. Other centres are being planned for Ludhiana and Jalandhar. Other places, he says, franchisees would be given.


Citizens oppose wine shops in residential areas
Tribune News Service

PANCHKULA, May 14 — The Citizens Welfare Association urged the Haryana Government to end the practice of allotting wine shops in residential areas and added that the disputed wine shop in Sector 19 should be shifted out of the residential area.

In a press note issued here today, the President, Mr S.K. Nayar, said that the Excise Department was allowing mushrooming of wine shops on borders of the the township to earn revenue. He said that the main entry the road dividing Sectors 18 and 7, has two shops, one belonging to Haryana and the other to Chandigarh. Besides, wine shops are operating at the Panchkula-Zirakpur barrier and near Dhillon theatre in a temporary khokha.

The latest addition to these outlets is the wine shop in Sector 19, running from a temporary shed, which has earned the wrath of the residents, it added.

Also, it stated that the matter had been taken up with Administrator, HUDA, Deputy Commissioner, Estate Officer, Excise Commissioner and the Chief Minister also. However, no action in this regard had yet been initiated at any level. 



City ‘bound’ by Sikh faith

A 15-km belt around Chandigarh is of great significance to the Sikhs. In the medieval period, this area was visited by the Sikh Gurus. Chandigarh is, thus, flanked by a number of historical Sikh shrines which are visited by all, irrespective of their faith.

Keeping in view the historical significance of the area, the shrines have been beautifully renovated and new structures on modern architectural lines have been raised over the sites visited by the Gurus. Here is a brief history of these shrines:

Nabha Sahib: About 15 km from Chandigarh on the road to Patiala, stands this magnificent shrine which reminds us of the Sikh history dating back to 1695. After the execution of Guru Tegh Bahadur in Delhi, his body was picked up by one Bhai Jaita for cremation at Anandpur Sahib. On his way back, he kept the body at this place at the request of an aged Muslim saint, Dargahi Shah Faqir, a disciple of the Guru. The people of the area rushed here to pay their last respects to the Guru.

Dargahi Faqir sent a message through Bhai Jaita to Guru Gobind Singh with a request to visit him as he was too old and sick to travel to Anandpur Sahib. After the battle of Bhangani against the Mughals, Guru Gobind Singh visited Nabha Sahib in 1689. After paying homage to his father, he met the Faqir, who left his mortal frame soon after. The smadh of the faqir in the vicinity of the shrine is also visited by devotees, who pay homage to him for his divine association with Guru Tegh Bahadur.

Later, in 1709, Banda Bahadur halted here to pay homage to Guru Tegh Bahadur and Dargahi Shah Faqir. From here, he advanced towards Sirhind. Every year on 21-22 Assuj (September), a big fair called Jor Mela is organised here in the memory of Guru Tegh Bahadur, Guru Gobind Singh, Dargahi Shah Faqir and Banda Bahadur.

Baoli Sahib: It is said a descendant of Baba Gurditta Ji of the Dhakauli village near Zirakpur meditated here for a number of years. On hearing about him, Guru Gobind Singh visited this village which is 10 km from Chandigarh on the Zirakpur-Kalka highway. The aged devotee requested the Guru to restore water supply to the thirsty people of the area. It is said the Guru shot an arrow into the ground from which sprang a baoli (a well with staircase).

A magnificent shrine has been raised here by demolishing the old structure. People of the area visit the shrine on every Amavas to have a dip in the holy water of the baoli.

Nada Sahib: In recent years, Nada Sahib has become immensely popular with devotees. Situated at the foot of the Shivalik Range on the banks of the Ghaggar, this shrine is 15 km from Chandigarh on the Panchkula-Naraingarh highway.

After the battle of Bhangani in the Nahan hills, Guru Gobind Singh and his forces reached here via Nahan, Toka Sahib, Raipur Rani and Manak Tabbra. He halted here for a few days. Baba Nadu Shah, a Lubana by caste and an agriculturist by profession, was so influenced by the piety of the Guru and his noble cause that he lost no time in serving milk to his army.

The Guru was pleased by his selfless service and blessed the Baba saying, “One day, this place will be visited by hundreds and thousands of persons and anyone coming here with sincere intention will be rewarded with the fulfilment on his wish, provided that he pays respects to Baba Nadu.” Every pooranmashi (full-moon day), the shrine attracts thousands of persons who come to pay homage to the Guru and Baba Nadu Shah.

Koohni Sahib: Originally known as Bageecha Sahib, this shrine, situated on the Chandigarh-Mansa Devi road, is not so popular as yet, although it has a unique history. Guru Gobind Singh and his army stayed here for a week. It is said the Guru came here especially to meet Mata Raj Kaur, wife of Ram Rai, who left Dehradun in order to stay away from her husband who was extending support to the Mughal emperor, Aurangzeb.

Since Guru Gobind Singh rested here on his elbow, the shrine is name Koohni Sahib. Devotees assemble here on the death anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev and on 26th January every year, on the occasions of Jor Mela and the death anniversary of Sant Baba Mehar Singh.

Amb Sahib: Situated in Phase VII of SAS Nagar, this place was visited by Guru Har Rai, the sixth Guru, in 1659. It is said the Guru came here from Kiratpur Sahib to meet his disciple, Bhai Kooram, a Lubana by caste. Here stands a mango tree which bears fruit even in winter, as ordained by the Guru. The inhabitants of this area were a notorious lot. Guru Har Rai brought them into the Sikh ways whereafter, this area flourished. The shrine is visited by thousands of devotees on the occasion of Sakrant in January when a large fair is held in the memory of the Guru.

— Joginder Singh Bedi



Flyovers and subways key to traffic problem

Inhaling smoke among the assembly of diesel trucks while waiting at traffic light has become an everyday experience for car and scooter using families. Many just pass it off as increasing pollution in the city. The Chandigarh Administration has already passed the “death sentence” on the beautiful roundabouts. It has only one solution to tackle the traffic congestion: remove these beautiful spots and replace them with ‘traffic lights’. They are not thinking of future or pollution but of convenience. The Chandigarh’s Planners probably see flyovers or subways as next replacement to traffic lights after say 10 to 15 years.

The smoke of diesel irritates the eyes and throat while your white shirt of the morning becomes sooty in the evening. The so-called City Beautiful is also going to change to another Delhi if the roundabouts are replaced by traffic lights for convenience.

Chest Physicians have already predicted many kinds of respiratory diseases with the smoky atmospheric conditions starting from allergic bronchitis to lung consolidations. The eye specialists warn of allergic conjunctivitis and secondary infections by rubbing the eyes. The inhaled smoke is also dangerous to the heart and our blood circulatory system as the toxic smoke in the lungs does not allow the blood cells to take up the required oxygen.

The Panchkula residents now have to cross four traffic lights to reach the city centre. A doctor who used to reach his clinic in 12 minutes before the traffic lights were installed, now takes 18 to 20 minutes. Thus, nearly 8 minutes of extra useful time of an individual are wasted and the same time for extra engine running of vehicles and automobiles smoke for 5 to 10 minutes.

To live in a peaceful and healthy environment is everybody’s dream. We in Chandigarh have not learnt a lesson from Delhi’s pollution.

To tackle the traffic congestion we have to stop thinking about short-term remedies like traffic lights and take decisions for flyovers or subways only. Lakhs are spent on fixing a traffic light and thousands to dismantle it. Moreover, the traffic lights are also uneconomical in terms of consumption of petrol and diesel.

The flyovers (like (Hyderabad) and subways (like Paris) will prevent pollution for 100 years. It will save time and petrol and the people from diseases. The target should be rapid clearance of traffic. Meanwhile, the police can teach people the rule of the roundabout by joining hands with NGOs.

— By Dr B.S. Aggarwal


Are autocop devices a nuisance?

SECURITY and safety of a vehicle is of prime concern to the owner. As such several opt for “autocop” type devices. The locking and opening of doors is done with the flick of a button in the car key-chain.

Each time an owner uses the device there is a squeaking noise. This happens even when someone leans against a vehicle or touches it. The entire neighbourhood echoes with the wail, often jarring.

Similarly several owners have a gadget fitted which produces sound every time the vehicle is reversed. This noise again shatters the silence and quiet of a given place.

The other day a colleague was in the PGI where within a short span of time at least three cars fitted with such contraptions were activated. The awkward sound was very disturbing as it pierced the eerie silence which envelops the place. Such usage is disturbing and causes agony to the patients.

Could such devices be switched off when in hospitals etc?

Rose Garden: One indicator of change of weather in Chandigarh is the rise or fall of number of early morning walkers and joggers, who make it to the open places and spaces. The other visible sign is the variety of trees whose new leaves and buds usher in the seasonal change.

But at dawn rather than the chirping and twittering of birds, what greets one are noisy two and three-wheelers driven by teenagers off for tuitions, smoke-belching CTU buses or an odd delivery truck carrying the breakfast essentials and of course peddle-rehris.

In the Zakir Rose Garden in Sector 16 there are unlit and dim-lit walkways. One often comes across old people, with walking sticks, groping in the dark. Several of the existing light points are not working. The Municipal Corporation would render a service if certain “dark” parts of the garden are properly lit. Better lighting is required where there are clusters of trees or near the two bridges .

One suggestion to visitors too. Those who eat and drink there should kindly throw the wrappers and tetrapacks into the dustbins which dot the vast expanse. And no smoking please, at least while you are in the garden.

The “ganda nala” flowing through the garden has become a cesspool emitting foul smell. Will the Municipal Corporation pay heed to that also? — TNS


Streetlights or show pieces?
from Bipin Bhardwaj

DERA BASSI, May 14 — None of the streetlights installed along the highway by the Dera Bassi Municipal Council under its development programme in December last year are in operation. Other streetlights in the town are also non-functional.

Due to the unoperational streetlights along the road, the accident rate has gone up within municipal limits. After spending Rs 10 lakh, the civic body had installed 500 electricity poles in the township. Of these, 50 electricity poles were installed on road dividers on a 1-km stretch of the National Highway from near DAV High School to Adarsh Nagar. The rest were installed on the streets of the town.

Residents of the area say the municipal council authorities claim that all the electricity poles, fitted

with sodium bulbs, have been installed along the highway and on these have blinked so far. In the absence of lights on the highway, speeding vehicles either crush pedestrians or ram into road dividers at night.

The civic body has hardly thought to maintain the ecological balance after digging the soil and removing some shrubs from road dividers for installation of streetlight poles, say some elderly residents. Most of the shopkeepers and other vendors opine that shrubs and ornamental plants should be planted on the road dividers. Plantation on road dividers will control the pollution emitted by vehicles in shape of smoke to some extent and will help in maintaining the ecological balance.

Mr Jagjit Singh Dalli, President of the Municipal Council, said over Rs 1.5 lakh had been paid for power connections to the streetlights, as per the agreement with electricity department authorities. A total of Rs 6.5 lakh would be paid to the electricity department for the power supply to all streetlights in the township and those on the highway. The lights would be in operation by May end.

The municipal council had a proposal to plant saplings of bougainvillaea and other ornamental plants. For this purpose it had tied up with the Punjab Public Works Department (Building and Roads) and permission was awaited, revealed Mr Dalli.


5 held for boozing
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 14 — The police has arrested five persons on the charges of consuming liquor at a public place.

According to Dr Sagar Preet Hooda, ASP (Central), the accused were consuming liquor in their cars parked outside the market in Sector 8. Those booked under Sections 61, 1 and 14 of the Excise Act are Raj Kumar, a resident of Sector 21; Vijay Garg, a resident of Sector 47; Ajay Sharma, a resident of Sector 20; and Gurpreet Aulakh and Sareen, residents of Sectors 21 and 27, respectively.

Besides this, Khuda Lahora residents, Rakesh and Gill were arrested from a restaurant in Sector 22 for consuming liquor. The waiter, Om Pal was also arrested, while the proprietor or the restaurant, Surinder Chadha, escaped. A case under the Excise Act has been registered.

Modesty-outrage bid: Ms Ramesh Rani, a resident of Sector 23, reported that Nasib Sharma, a resident of the same sector, attempted to outrage her modesty. When she raised the alarm, he ran away. A case under Sections 354 and 323 of the IPC has been registered.

Cash stolen: Mr B.K. Sood, a resident of Sector 15, has reported that someone has stolen Rs 6,000 from the cash box in his shop. A case under Sections 457 and 380 of the IPC has been registered.



Industrialists write letter to CM
Tribune News Service

PANCHKULA, May 14 — In a letter to the Chief Minister, Mr Om Prakash Chautala, the Panchkula Welfare Federation has appealed to the government to find a solution to the problems being faced by the industrialists and provide them with better infrastructure to make Haryana a lucrative option for them.

The President of the association, Mr J.S. Sangri, said entrepreneurs were preferring Mohali to Panchkula for opening industries in spite of the fact that the township was better planned and is pollution-free.

The letter adds that a study in the matter revealed that the township could be made more attractive by exempting sales tax to entrepreneurs for seven years, giving a subsidy of 20 per cent in projects, providing electricity as per requirement and allotment of land at reasonable rates as is being done in Mohali.



Banking facility from home 
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 14 — A new concept of doing your banking work from your home has been introduced by the HDFC. All one needs is an Internet connection.

According to Ms Neena Singh, Regional Business Manager, North, HDFC Bank, the concept is aimed to take banking away from the brick and mortar buildings and allow clients to have access to direct banking channels through telephone, Internet and automated teller machines.

The concept she says, minimises time for any transaction and does not need any employee to attend to a client.

In the net banking facility introduced by the bank, the client can order a bank draft, issuance of a cheque book, transfer of funds between various accounts he or she holds in the same bank; request to open a fixed deposit, stop payment and check his or her status and make account balance enquiry or fixed deposit enquiry at his or her leisure from the comfort of his or her home or office.

This net banking facility is free and being extended to all those who are opening new saving accounts with the bank. Even old customers can opt for net banking facility, she said.

As an incentive, the bank in business-to-business tie-up with Glide is offering 20 hours’ trialpack free to those opening new saving accounts with bank and opting for net banking facility.

The bank also plans to introduce telebanking from June.

Modalities have also been finalised to facilitate payment of electricity bills of Punjab State Electricity Board at SAS Nagar and Ludhiana through the Bank. Similarly, facility of payment of telephone bills of the Chandigarh Telecom Circle are also likely to be extended by the bank soon.

Mr Dheraj Garg of Glide said that there are already 11,000-plus subscribers to Glide ISP, of which nearly 8,000 were in Chandigarh alone. The facility of Internet connection through cable was being extended to commercial consumers in Sector 17 within a week and by the end of this month, similar facility would be extended to consumers in Sector 34. At present, the cable Internet facility was available in Sectors 8,9 and 26, he added.



Special training programme
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 14 — A special training programme on Direct Trainers Skills and Design of Training will be organised by the Ambedkar Institute of Hotel Management Catering and Nutrition tomorrow.

An official press note here today said that Mr M.P. Bezbaruah, Secretary of Tourism, will inaugurate the programme. Participants from hotel management institute all over the country are likely to participate.

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