Tuesday, May 23, 2000,
Chandigarh, India

C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Struggling between life and death
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 22 — Thirteen-year-old Rakesh, who was till a fortnight back playing with police personnel and other employees on duty, is now struggling between life and death at the PGI. His condition is reported to be serious.

Oblivious of the seriousness of the disease, Rakesh, who had been putting up with his parents in the night shelter of the PGI, was cheerful. He used to count days to go back to school. But Rakesh, who suffers from blood cancer, did not know that he may never be able to get back to school.

Rakesh is the eldest son of Mr Ram Chand, a rickshaw-puller from Mansar village, near Pathankot. Mr Ram Chand said when they noticed that Rakesh was often having mild fever and losing weight, they showed him to doctors in Pathankot, but unable to diagnose the disease, they referred him to the PGI. It was here after getting the tests done that he was detected to be suffering from blood cancer.

“We wanted him to become a doctor, but here we see him surrounded by doctors,’’ lamented Mr Ram Chand. Rakesh, who was admitted to a ward in the PGI yesterday, was sad. He had realised that all was not well. His father has spent his meagre earnings on the injections, which he is required to take regularly for a week and once a week now.”

Each injection costs around Rs 850. I have sold some of my wife’s jewellery to buy these injections. I am left with no resources no continue his treatment,’’ says Mr Ram Chand. He may not have been able to complete the dose of injections but for the help of some good Samaritans.

According to doctors treating Rakesh, expenditure on his complicated treatment is likely to exceed Rs 1 lakh. Doctors maintain that the child may be saved if monetary help is provided in time for chemotherapy.

Some people have come forward to help them but that is not enough to meet the expenses. Those interested to help this child live on can contact the office of the Medical Superintendent, PGI. The PGI authorities will also bear a part of the cost of his treatment from the special funds at their disposal.



Heart institute to be operational next year
Tribune News Service

SAS NAGAR, May 22 — Fortis Heart Institute, a super-speciality cardiac hospital project, initiated by Fortis Healthcare Limited (FHL), a company started by late Dr Parvinder Singh, promoter of Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd, will become operational by first quarter of 2001. The project, to be developed in two phases at a cost of Rs 1545 million, will have 293 beds.

This was announced by Mr Harpal Singh, Chairman of the FHL, at a press briefing after the Chief Minister, Punjab, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, dedicated the project to Dr Parvinder Singh’s vision of developing a world-class system of integrated health care in India.

The Chairman of the FHL said the project was part of its overall objective to emerge as a pre-eminent health-care provider in the country. The guiding principle of the institute would be to use the latest technology to deliver best patient care with empathy and compassion. The hospital would be equipped with the best and latest medical equipment, allowing world-class diagnosis and minimal invasive surgery. The hospital would provide multi-disciplinary out patients facilities supporting treatment for related diseases like diabetes, renal and nervous disorders.

Mr Malvinder Mohan Singh and Mr Shivinder Mohan Singh, promoters of the project, said the basic concept behind the project was a holistic approach to health-care.

Mr Harpal Singh said a mechanism would be developed through which the needy could benefit from the hospital. On the issue of selecting SAS Nagar for the project, he said the northern region had the highest rate of coronary diseases, next to Gujarat.

Earlier, the Chief Minister, while addressing the gathering, said: “It was a red-letter day in the history of Punjab as a super-speciality heart institute was coming up in SAS Nagar.” He asked the Ranbaxy Group to start small good healthcare centres on the lines of FHL in the border and backward areas of the state where people are deprived of good health care.

He promised to extend all possible help to the Ranbaxy Group if it was ready to jointly open small hospitals. He said the people in the backward areas need potable water, education and better health-care. He said the health insurance scheme needed to be started in a big way.

On the occasion, Mr Malvinder Mohan Singh announced to fund at least three tubewells and Rs 15 lakh for drinking water supply in backward areas.


Training on malaria for panches
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 22 — The malaria wing of the UT Administration will organise a day-long training programme for panches and sarpanches on May 26, with a view to prevent the outbreak of malaria, dengue and other vector-borne diseases. It will be inaugurated by the Director, Health Services, Dr Joginder Singh.

Giving this information, Assistant Director, Malaria, Dr G.C. Bansal said the programme was being organised to seek the support and involvement of the sarpanches and panches as they, in their capacity as opinion leaders, wielded considerable influence with villagers. He pointed out that most of the people were hesitant to get the insecticide sprayed inside their houses due to smell and other reasons. The sarpanches would be trained to convince them to get the insecticide sprayed so that the maximum area was covered.

Subsequently, sarpanches will be authorised as drug distribution centre holders and will be required to make available the anti-malarial drug, chloroquin. Dr Bansal said some of the educated sarpanches would be shortlisted to take charge of fever treatment depots in some of these areas and would be trained to prepare malaria slides. The sarpanches could, in turn, train any of their representative and the slides would be sent for examination, following confirmation they would administer the required doses to the patient.


FAI compliments SAI
By Our Sports Reporter

CHANDIGARH, May 22 — Mr Arvind Khanna, President of the Fencing Association of India (FAI), has complimented the Sports Authority of India (SAI) for starting fencing as one of the sport disciplines in its one-year diploma course in coaching from this academic session.

The academic wing had recently invited applications for fencing as one of the new disciplines at Netaji Subhas National Institute of Sports (NIS), Patiala. Mr Khanna said FAI had earlier requested SAI for inclusion of fencing in its regular schedule. The six-week certificate course in sport coaching in 31 disciplines is being held from May 17 to June 25 at Thiruvanthapuram, Imphal, Calcutta, Bangalore and Patiala centres of SAI. The 45th national school games held at Anandpur Sahib in February included fencing.

Mr Khanna said fencing could not generate much publicity due to lack of equipment and non-availability of qualified coaches. He hoped that the Government Of India would promote the game. He opined that with the new sports policy and the signing of a memorandum of understanding between the Confederation of Indian Industry and the Indian Olympic Association, fencing would find an entrepreneur.

Ball badminton meet: Manav Mangal School, Sector 21, and Shivalik Public School, Sector 41, moved up in the boys and girls sections, respectively, on the opening day of the Chandigarh junior ball badminton tournament, which began today at SPS-41. Earlier, Mr K.S. Sahota, Secretary of the Chandigarh Olympic Association, inaugurated the three-day meet.

Results: girls — GMSSS-21 b GHS-37 29-25, 29-7; MMS-21 b GHPS-40 29-3, 29-7; GMSSS-37 b GMSSS Club-21 29-12, 29-21; GHS-37 b GHS-Khuda Lahora 29-19, 29-16; SPS-41 b GHKS-40 29-2, 29-21; boys — GHS-41 b GHKS-40 29-6, 29-24; SPS-41 b GHS-Khuda Lahora 29-6, 29-21; GMHS-28 b GHKS-40 29-11, 29-21; MMS-21 b SNSC-22 29-17, 29-26.

Choikwangdo camp: The Hind Choikwangdo Martial Art Association will hold a month-long training camp from May 22 at Arya Samaj Mandir, Sector 9, Panchkula. The camp will be held in two hour-long sessions for five days a week, except weekends. “The fee for the course has been kept at Rs 50 per student,” Mr B.S. Thapa, chief instructor, said.



Rehris, pharis in apni mandis cause of concern
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 22 — The Apni Mandi Committee of the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh (MCC), at its meeting here today, expressed concern at the mushrooming of rehri and phari markets near the apni mandis in different parts of the city.

The committee discussed various ways and means to improve the conditions of the apni mandis pertaining to the sale of fresh fruits and vegetables by the farmers directly without the involvement of the middlemen.

The issue pertaining to the segregation of the vendors from the farmers and a provision for a separate arrangement for the vendors was also discussed. Stressing the need for the redress of complaints of corruption in the apni mandis and curbing the harassment of the farmers at the hands of the unscrupulous elements, the members unanimously decided to constitute a sub-committee which would pay a monthly visit to the site of the apni mandis.

The meeting also decided that the application relating to the holding of any function on the municipal land would be entertained only by the Apni Mandi Committee. The committee, if the need be, would the recommend the application to the Finance and the Contract Committee.

While taking stock of the scenario pertaining to the mushrooming of various unauthorised markets dealing in the sale and purchase of second hand vehicles, the committee asked the Assistant Commissioner-I, Mr Ashok Vashist, to get these markets surveyed and submit report at the next meeting..

Mayor's visit: The Mayor, Ms Shanta Abhilashi, visited Sectors 20 and 33 yesterday and took stock of various development works. Talking to residents, the Mayor assured them of expeditious redress of their grievances.

Elected: Mr Prem Sagar Jain and Mr RL Arora,were elected Chairman and Deputy Chairman, respectively, of House Tax Assessment Committee today.

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