Thursday, May 25, 2000,
Chandigarh, India
C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Ranjit surrenders in all cases; gets remand in two, bail in one
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 24 — The court of the UT Chief Judicial Magistrate, Mr Sant Parkash, was packed to capacity today, with large crowds gathering to witness proceedings in the case concerning the alleged kidnapping of Sunny Garg by Ranjit Bajaj, son of Punjab IAS couple Mrs Rupan Deol Bajaj and Mr B.R. Bajaj.

The court remanded him to police custody till May 27 while the police had requested for a police remand of seven days on grounds that the whereabouts of three co-accused in the kidnapping case had to be ascertained. It was alleged in the FIR that Ranjit, along with Bobby, Swarn and one unidentified person, had kidnapped Sunny on pistol point. Sunny alleged that Ranjit had snatched Rs 1.18 lakh and another Rs 1,000 from him.

The prosecution's request was strongly resisted by the defence counsel who stated that the entire case was "fabricated". He told the court that in fact Mr B.R. Bajaj had submitted a complaint to SSP Parag Jain on May 17, alleging that Sunny Garg had been caught stealing articles from Ranjit's suitcase. He further alleged that Sunny had been frequenting their Sector 16 residence and on May 14 also he had come there.

It was added that Sunny had been caught tampering with Ranjit's suitcase. Also, many articles belonging to Ranjit had been recovered from Sunny's car. It was added that after being caught, Sunny requested Mr Bajaj not to tell anything about the incident to his parents.

Stating that no action was taken on the said complaint, the defence counsel placed on record the affidavit of high court lawyer Chander Mohan Sharma who admitted that Sunny made this request in his presence. Counsel added that a senior officer's statement should be believed and action taken on it.

He also raised the issue of delay of two days in FIR registration. He said: "The alleged kidnapping took place on May 14 but a case was registered on May 16. The prosecution has not been able to explain the delay."

Ranjit's counsel further stated that Sections 25 and 27 of the Arms Act are not made out because the pistol recovered from Ranjit is not capable of firing firearm ammunition. He placed on file the certificate of the London store from where Ranjit had bought the pistol. The certificate mentions: "This is a blank firing pistol."

Later during the day, Ranjit also surrendered before Judicial Magistrate Baljinder Singh in the case dated May 5 in which Ranjit's car with a fictitious number belonging to his mother had been recovered from Gursameep Singh's possession along with some arms. In this case the court remanded Ranjit to police custody for two days while the police had asked for 10 days.

The defence counsel submitted that forgery is not made out because "no injury or deception has been caused to any person." It was added that when the recoveries were made, Ranjit was taking rest at home because he had been advised by the doctor to do so. He added that no cheating is established because by using the number CHI 1 "Ranjit neither caused any wrongful loss to anybody nor gained any wrongful benefit."

Regarding the arms licence, counsel stated that the same had expired in January and was now a "non-existent document". About Ranjit's photo on the licence, he mentioned that affixing a photo did not amount to forgery as a photo can be affixed anywhere.Meanwhile, Ranjit was bailed out today in the case (May 21) regarding alleged assault on police officers. He furnished a bail bond in the sum of Rs 15,000 along with a surety in the like amount.


Three caught for assaulting Ranjit
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 24 — The police has arrested the main accused and two of his accomplices involved in an assault on Ranjit Bajaj, son of a senior Punjab IAS couple, in the Sector 11 market on April 19.

A team of the Crime Branch arrested an Udham Singh Nagar (UP) resident, Jagtinder Singh alias Bagga, and two of his accomplices — a Ludhiana resident, Ranvir Singh, and a Pilibhit (UP) resident, Surjit Singh Dhillon — from Delhi.

This was stated by the UT IGP, Mr S.K. Singh, while addressing mediapersons here today. He said the police had been on the manhunt for the accused and had finally managed to track them down. "One of the accused, a Sector 21 resident, Makhan Singh, is still at large and will be caught soon," he said.

The three were arrested from the house of Sumeet alias Kala, their friend, who was living in Nidhri Colony in Ashok Vihar of Delhi, following a tip off from a source. They were produced in the court today and were remanded to the police custody till May 28.

Bagga and his friends had allegedly attacked Ranjit near the Sector 11 rehri market with sharp-edged weapons and had seriously injured him. He had been admitted to the PGI. The accused had been at large after the incident and the police had been raiding their suspected hideouts in UP and Punjab without any success.


Anandgarh protesters at minister’s house caned
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 24 — At least 30 persons, including six police personnel, were injured in a lathi charge when hundreds of villagers from the areas being acquired for the Anangarh project, forcibly tried to enter the Sector 39 residence of the Punjab Development and Urban Planning Minister, Dr Upinderjit Kaur, today. The police had to resort to the lathi charge on two occasions to disperse the crowd.

Earlier, the villagers, protesting under the banner of the Anandgarh Hatao Sanjhi Sangarsh Committee, had staged a dharna outside ministers' residential complex to protest against the move of the Punaab Government. At least six police personnel and the duty magistrate, Mr H.R. Nagra, were injured when the agitators resorted to stone pelting. The injured policemen include two Chandigarh constables — Arvinder and Parveen — and four personnel of the Madhya Pradesh State Armed Force ( MPSAF). They were discharged after first-aid. When water canons failed to disperse the crowd, the police resorted to lathi charge.

Meanwhile, members of the committee, while addressing the agitators, said the government, instead of creating the new city, should provide basic amenities in the villages. They said the government should also constitute a notified area committee in these villages. They said the sole motive of the government was to make profit at the cost of the poor. Mr G.S. Jammu, spokesman of the committee, said the new city should be shifted to Anandpur Sahib.

Mr J.S. Dhaliwal, General Secretary of the committee, said the minister had agreed to meet a delegation of the committee on June 1. The committee has threatened to launch an agitation if the government does not fulfill their demands.


Scrutiny of euro-I norms on
By Ajay Banerjee
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 24 — The deadline set by the Chandigarh Administration for vehicle dealers to procure certificates from manufacturers regarding compliance of euro-I pollution emission norms, has expired. At present, the scrutiny of the certificates submitted by the dealers is going on.

Vehicles not carrying such a certificate will not be registered in the city in the future. A final date for the implementation of this new rule will be decided after the scrutiny of certificates sent by manufacturers is over. The cut-off date for complying with euro-I norms was April 1. In the last week of March, the SDM (South)-cum-Registering and Licencing Authority, Mr Ashish Kundra, had issued a letter to all dealers saying that vehicles whether run on petrol, diesel or compressed natural gas, that are not complying with euro-I pollution norms and are manufactured on or after April 1, 2000, will not be registered in Chandigarh.

This sent a panic wave among buyers, who started asking the dealers to certify that the vehicle had been manufactured on or before March 31, 2000. In some cases, the registration of vehicles was also reportedly refused on the grounds that the date of manufacture was not specified correctly. Meanwhile, the dealers procured certificates from the Automobile Research Association of India (ARAI) proving the fitness of the vehicles. The Administration in turn continued to register new vehicles and set May 15 as the deadline for compliance with the new norms.

The Licensing Authority, Mr Ashish Kundra, says that most dealers have submitted certificates from manufacturers. Once the scrutiny, that will cover all aspects, is completed, vehicles not complying with the norms will not be registered.

The Chandigarh Administration is just following what is given in the Central Government Motor Vehicle rules, as amended in 1997.

The new rules will apply to all types of vehicles. But all vehicles that are manufactured on or before March 31, 2000, but have been sold even after April 1, can be registered without the mandatory compliance.

The pollution norms have been fixed at variable limits for two -wheelers, cars, jeeps , trucks, buses and other types of vehicles. These norms also take into account the fuel used by the vehicle, the type of emission and how dangerous it may be for humans. These norms have been fixed as per the level of pollution emitted by the vehicles.

To ensure that the dealers do not pass off vehicles manufactured after March 31 as those manufactured before March 31, the authorities had evoked Section 122 of the Central Motor Vehicle Rules, 1989. Under this the manufacturer of the vehicle is required to mention the date of manufacture alongside the engine and chassis number.


SDE charged with power, water thefts and encroachment
By Geetanjali Gayatri
Tribune News Service

PANCHKULA, May 24 — The Residents Welfare Association of Sector 12 here has alleged that a Sub-divisional Engineer in the Haryana Urban Development Authority has blatantly misused his powers and position to suit his fancy, which has been overlooked by his parent department despite repeated complaints.

In complaints to the HUDA Chief Administrator and other authorities, the association members have specified the alleged irregularities being committed by the SDE. These allegations range from power and water theft, illegal construction to encroachment on HUDA land. “The SDE has countinued with the activities defying all rules and regulations in the face of no checks”, Colonel Sham Singh (retired), the president, has claimed.

A member of the association, Mr Dalip Katyal, added that the violations came to light when residents of the sector were forced to go without water for eight days during the last fortnight owing to a burnt motor used for running the tubewell.

He added that additional load on one of the three phases following direct electric connection by the SDE had resulted in constant fluctuations, finally resulting in the burning of the motor.

The allegations levelled by the association were yesterday put to the man under fire — the SDE. While he outrightly denied some, he accepted the others and offered justifications for the same. He also reacted by disconnecting the “illegal” water and the electricity connection in less than 12 hours after The Tribune team left. Here is what he had to say:

Allegation one: A wire was found to be attached to the switchboard meant for operating the tubewell. It was seen passing along with the tubewell cable before ending in a switchboard with sockets and switches on the SDE’s side of the wall.

The SDE justifies: “This corner, pointing to where the switchboard is, is very dark and with approaching monsoon, the danger of snakes is heightened, especially with the presence of these bushes. I plan to install a light which will light up the entire corner and no permission is required if it is located in the premises of the tubewell. About the switchboard? This is just to put the light on and off, nothing more”.

Present position: The tubewell room is locked, the wire has been removed and the dug-up portion in the wall lies empty. Besides, instead of the switchboard bricks have been carelessly placed on his side of the house.

Allegation two: An underground water pipe goes to the SDE’s house directly from the tubewell for over five years now.

The SDE says: “This does not hold any water, especially since I have no direct line. (Pointing to the tap in the garden). This comes from the house inside and I can dig up the place to prove that (Later, he dilly-dallies over digging up the earth to prove his point).

Present position: A disconnected water supply line lies in the slush and the garden tap is pulled out. This lies in the passage to the doorway near the bricks.

Allegation three: A store constructed by him blocks the eight-feet-wide passage between the house and the tubewell and has not been razed to the ground by the anti-encroachment staff which removed hedges a few days back.

The SDE explains: This is unauthorised construction but was necessary because the public began using this to reach the road which was a nuisance. Also, this was spared by the encroachment staff because they came to remove the hedges only.

Present position: The store stands intact.

Allegation four: Encroachment over land belonging to HUDA has been done by transforming it into a garden. A swing has also been set up. The area is enclosed by a barbed wire fence running through the angle irons.

The SDE insists: No building can come up in this vacant plot near the tubewell. To beautify my surroundings we came up with this idea. (He smiles in reply to a question on why the angle irons have come up again after the demolition).

Present position: Status quo maintained — the angle irons are well in place and the swing still stays.

The residents add that over 20 HUDA employees were pressed into service last night to remove the alleged irregularities. They removed the electric wiring. The water connection was also cut off. The excercise continued late into the night and in the morning there were no electricity wires and a disconnected water pipe. Further, the tubewell operator has also been transferred from the tubewell, they informed.

Today, an employee of the Uttar Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam who had come for meter-reading at the tubewell cooled his heels at the venue since the tubewell operator did not have the keys owing to his transfer. Besides, no stop-gap arrangement had been made. 


Fun-filled learning for kids at workshops
By Ambika Kumar

CHANDIGARH, May 24 — To keep children occupied in creative activities during the vacation, a number of summer schools are being organised in the city. This is not only to encourage talent but also to make learning fun without classroom drudgery.

The concept of summer activities for children has metamorphosed from the unassuming aunty's hobby classes to professionally run, management oriented mini training programmes.

Hansraj Public School's third annual summer school programme, "Headstart" was inaugurated by Mr R.S Choudhary, Deputy Chairman, State Planning Board, in Panchkula today. More than 130 children from different schools are participating in the five workshops for the 4 to 15 age group.

Ms Taru Behl, creative consultant to the school, said, "Our effort is to add value to all the programmes. We try to make them better both in content and organisation. We have made a conscious attempt this year to shift the focus from fun-based to a more constructive-learning based approach."

Seven-year-old Aasha Gakhar excitedly held up her donkey, a cardboard cutout, which will be made into a string puppet to enact a story tomorrow. She is part of Bachon Ka Pitara, a story-telling and toy-making workshop. Children use their visualisation skills to imagine, express and enact scenes from traditional stories and those of their own.

Rohan is part of "Kaleidoscope", an activity workshop. He says, "I am here to learn dancing like Hritik Roshan. The "Adventure Experience" draws the maximum response from the 7-to-13 age group. It boasts of an impressive treks, outstation factory visits, rifle shoots, horse riding, gliding, nature walks with quizzes, cartooning, creative writing, games and competitions.

Ruchika Singhal of "Khaana Khazana", a special cooking, baking and housekeeping workshop for the 12-15 year-olds was thrilled with the iced tea and mushroom soup she has learnt to make.

"Big Byte", a certificate course on Windows '98 and Office 2000 conducted by Tata Infotech helps the students upgrade their computer skills. Mrs Rajni Thareja, Principal, said, "Today's children and parents are very discerning. Our summer school tries to fill the gap between what is taught in the regular school and what should be taught in an experimental set-up."

Blue Bird High School (Panchkula) is holding a Summer Workshop in Arts and Craft for children in the age group of 5-12 years during the vacations for 15 days since May 22.

The children will be learning colouring of different mediums like crayons, oil and water painting, thumb painting, thread painting, pot painting, leaf and foil painting, clay modelling and making utility articles from waste materials like dustbins, comb boxes, pencil, letter and handkerchief holders according to their choice and age.

In the afternoon session, the students of class 9, are attending the Art of Living course, which is of a week's duration, under the supervision of Art of Living instructors in the school premises.

Sanjivni Preparatory School and Day Care Centre commenced its summer camp- christened Kidz Klub, on May 15. It will continue till July 1. The camp caters to three age groups: 2-6 years, 7-15 years and the above 15 group. There are various courses like oil painting, sketching, drawing (screen, fabric, pot, glass), painting, mask making, greeting card making. Other classes include guitar, casio, western, folk and Indian dancing in addition to theatre, story telling and other exciting programmes.

"At the end of the summer camp, a finale exhibiting the art works, theatre performance and a musical show would be organised on June 27", said the Principal, Mrs Indu Luthra.

"The children have something to keep themselves busy as well as have fun. Even we stay relaxed and cool as we know that are kids are doing fine," felt a parent.


‘Islamic militancy a challenge to law’
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 24 — Islamic militancy, a major threat in South Asia, is a politico-military strategy which aims to Islamise domestic political arrangements and external political strategies. It is a challenge to the rule of law as well as democratic and secular systems.

This was expressed by former the Governor of Manipur, Lieut-Gen V. K. Nair (retd), during a lecture on the "Emerging Trends in Internal Security and Counter Insurgency Operations", delivered at the Chandi Mandir cantonment today.

The General was of the opinion that within Jammu and Kashmir, insurgency aims to alter demographic patterns and create Muslim-dominated areas in the Kashmir valley, Kargil, Doda, Poonch and Rajori regions.

He said that the internal security environment is influenced by the colonial past of South Asia, where borders between different states are not natural. He felt that for post-colonial South Asian states, neighbours presented the biggest challenges and when hostility among them heightened, it led to the sponsorship of terrorism.

He said that third world countries are in a period of consolidation and such an environment will continue and attention needs to be focused on this.

The key issue in Jammu and Kashmir, he said, was political ineptness which led to the alienation of the National Conference as well as the effort of the central government to impose political leadership in the state, which led to resentment among the local population.

On the North-East, General Nair was of the view that isolation, modernisation, ethno-nationalism and cultural insecurity are factors responsible for the unrest in that region.

A large number of station officers, including the Western Army Commander, Lieut-Gen Vijay Oberoi, as well as some senior retired officers attended the lecture.


Concern over areas near UT slums
Tribune News Service

SAS NAGAR, May 24 — The local police will write to the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) to plug breaches to separate the slums of Chandigarh bordering this town. The step will help in checking cases of theft and other acts of crime, suspected to be perpetrated by slum-dwellers.

This was stated by the Superintendent of Police, Mr BS Randhawa, while talking to members of resident welfare associations and representatives of political parties at a police-public meeting at Phase 1 Police Station here today. He said a specific problem of slum-dwellers of areas adjoining Phase 2 had been received at the meeting. The police was not averse to putting up police pickets at the vulnerable points along the Chandigarh- SAS Nagar border.

He said it had been observed that certain foreign nationals living in rented accommodation in the town indulged in drug peddling. He urged participants to see the Foreigners Registration Certificate issued by the police before giving their accommodation on rent to foreign nationals. After June 15, the police would start registering cases against the house owners who failed to furnish details of their tenants and servants.

Citing the recent incident in which a Chandigarh jeweller was murdered in a Phase 7 house, he said enquires after the murder revealed that the house was a favourite point for anti-social elements but no one in the neighbourhood had informed the police.

During the meeting, a delegation of the owners of stone crushers of Panchkula complained to the SP about the alleged terror struck by the local union of the half-body truck operators union.

They quoted several instances during the past few days when the members of the local operators union waylaid the drivers of the trucks bring construction material from Panchkukla to this town. The SP directed his subordinate staff to take action against the suspects.

Regarding a number of traffic-related complaints, Mr Randhawa said the staff with the local wing of the traffic police had increased from 12 to 23 and more personnel were expected soon.

Regarding the non-functional traffic lights at different points in the city, he directed the Traffic Incharge, SI Devinder Singh to take up the issue with the municipal council. He said cases under the Noise Pollution Act and challans for wrong parking would also be taken up. 


Jeweller's right arm recovered
Tribune News Service

SAS NAGAR, May 24 — Following the trail of severed body parts of Ashok Kumar, a Chandigarh jeweller, the local police today recovered his the right arm from a seasonal nullah near Papri village.

The severed legs of the victim were recovered from the same seasonal nullah yesterday. On Monday, the torso of the deceased had been recovered. The severed body parts have been recovered on the basis of the information being given by one of the suspects, Kulvinder Singh, who was today remanded in police custody by a Kharar court till May 25.

Sources in the police said questioning of the suspect revealed the sequence of events leading to the murder. The search operations to find the left arm and the head of the victim are on. Meanwhile, unconfirmed reports said a dark-grey-coloured Toyota car was purchased by the two suspects, Ranbir alias Shera and Lakha alias Rana, from Delhi a few days back for selling it.

Another report said the main suspect, Gurvinder alias Gary, was scheduled to go to London and had booked a ticket — a fact not confirmed by the police. The police officials said the airport authorities had been intimated about it. The wife of Gary is reported to be already in London.



Husband, in-laws booked in dowry case
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 24 — A city resident has lodged a complaint alleging that she was being harassed for bringing inadequate dowry.

According to police sources, Monica, a resident of Sector 19, reported that she was married to Manoj, an employee of the FCI at Yamunanagar, in 1995 and had been ill-treated by her in laws on this account.

A case under Sections 406 and 498-A, IPC, has been registered against Manoj and Rameshwar and Luxmi, her father-in-law and mother-in-law.

Suicide bid: Adesh Mishra, a resident of Colony Number 5, reportedly tried to commit suicide by consuming some poisonous substance. His condition is stated to be serious. He has been admitted to the Sector 32 hospital.

A case under Section 309, IPC, has been registered.

One arrested: The police has arrested Hira Lal and Lal Chand, for creating nuisance in Section 23. A case under Section 160, IPC, has been registered.

Cyclist injured: Cyclist Akbar Khan, a resident of Ropar, was hit and injured by a scooter (DHE 3012) near the sector 34 dispensary. A case under Section 279 \ 337, IPC, has been registered.

Scooter stolen: Sector 32 resident Nisha has reported the theft of her scooter (CHOIT 9252) from the Sector 35 market.

A case under Section 379, IPC, has been registered.


Nepali caught: Sunny Bahadur, a resident of Nepal, was caught by the police when he was trying to sell parts of a water motor in the Industrial Area.

Stolen goods worth Rs 6,000 were recovered from his possession. A case under Section 380, IPC, has been registered against him.


Gifts galore for millennium babies 
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 24 — For four babies from the city who bagged the Wipro Baby Soft Millennium awards here yesterday, life will be some different with the amount of felicitation they have received and are due to receive.

Hansita, Akshit, Saumya, Muskan and Abhijit were declared winners of the contest where Wipro was looking for the babies from the state who were born closest to the dawn of the new millennium. The winners will now participate at the state level and will be given Wipro Baby Soft Millennium Plaque, an education bond valued at Rs 2,500 at the end of five years and a signing sheet with the blessings from celebrities of the town. They will also get a special gift hamper and a Wonderful Years memory book.

The chosen children will now participate at the state level where the winners will receive an additional education bond of Rs 25,000 at the end of 10 years. This will lead to nationals where the winner will get a bond worth Rs 1 lakh at the end of 21 years.

At the contest held here yesterday, Mr Vivek Kumar, product executive, Wipro Consumer Care and Lighting, stated, "This is a very special moment for us where we culminate our nation-wide drive by offering the future generation thoughtful and caring gifts."

Dr Mangla Dogra and Dr Mrs Bhargava who delivered the babies were also honoured by Wipro on this occasion.



Marketing indecent exposure
By Saurabh Malik
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 24 — Media merchants — enticing newspaper readers by splashing sex over cover pages of poppy ''tabloids-in-broad-sheets'' — are laying bare a mission, candidly.

Nothing succceeds like sex-excess is the garbless policy. Human interest? Its all about nudity wrapped in six colour pages. Social responsibility, once the final cause, is nothing but ''babu journalism''. Why should anyone be bothered about it? These are the (Indian) times of media wars.

''The idea'', justifies a top marketing man with a national newspaper, ''is to come out with visually attractive results. To catch the subscribers' attention. Like in an advertisement. Besides, we are providing exposure to shy kids.''

Newspapers were ''homely''. In the good ol' days of decency, exposure was only of scandals. 'Adsmiths' too were blamed for parading angels in the raw to market sneakers. Bare watch was on cable channels. Or on the centrespread of semi-porno magazines.

Today, elite lensmen uncover the truth of human temptation, courageously. Aftermath? Alluring ramp models in gauzy translucent tops smile tantalisingly from glossy news pages.

''Compulsion of commerce'' is how a former head of Panjab University's Mass Communication Department, Mr Inder Mohan Soni, analyses the shift. ''Newspaper is a multi-crore industry striving to make the product saleable. No more a mission to attain freedom'', he explains. ''In the race for market supremacy, media giants are blowing cheese-cake photographs, once displayed by French books on the back pages, later by the tabloids, for luring the reader into buying.''

The target is the youth not yet committed to any sheet. ''Perhaps, in their sub-consciousness the newsmen are convinced about unchanging loyalties of old readers,'' believes Mr Soni.

But even for the youngsters, excessive, sudden, exposure to ultra-violent nudity, striking out of free supplements for the past few weeks, is embarrassing.

''Like’em. But can’t keep 'em on the table. Can't cover 'em under the mattress,'' complains communication student Kudrat Sekhon. ''And if you pick it up accidentally in dad's presence, can't even put 'em down hurriedly. Half naked, half clothed, babes with loose button shirts and visible UGs.... Lord, its too much even for imagined Chandyites.''

Literati too is censorious of the purposeless ''thrillers'' tossed by the hawkers over the boundary wall of your early morning life. ''Snapshots in porno-mags have something aesthetic about them. Unlike in the dailies now-a-days. They are outrightly vulgar. Cheap. In bad taste,'' asserts media observer N. K. Oberoi. ''The trend is negative, but justified if there is cliental.''

Feedback from the market will spread the true picture. How far, and well, will the sex sell, the coming times will tell.


Short vocational courses from May 29
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 24 — The Regional Centre for Entrepreneurship Development Chandigarh and Guru Nanak VBT Polytechnic, Mohali, will organise short-term vocational training courses during May 29 at Mohali.

The trades include computer courses, fruit/vegetable processing, bakery items, Chinese/fast foods, air-conditioning, turners course, tractor/automobile mechanics, tailoring, welders, electrician, plumbing, solar equipment manufacturing/repair etc.

The programmes are specially designed for students, housewives, professionals and technicians, to upgrade their skills and prepare them for jobs.

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