Tuesday, June 6, 2000,
Chandigarh, India
C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S

CHB allows changes in flats
By Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, June 5 — There is good news for thousands of Chandigarh Housing Board (CHB) allottees as the board has decided to permit certain need-based changes in its dwelling units.

According to sources, the Chairperson of the board, Ms Neeru Nanda, has set up a sub-committee and a main committee for scrutinising the suggestions received from various residents welfare associations and individuals. In April this year, the board had invited suggestions from the general public in connection with affecting changes in dwelling units.

Over 120 associations and individuals had written to the CHB authorities in connection with permitting changes. A majority of the representations pleaded that the allottees be allowed to extend their covered areas through the construction of the additional room. Permission to make additional partition in the internal structure of the flats, proper utilization of the terraces, conversion of leasehold into freehold and issuance of conveyance deed were some of the important changes suggested by the allottees.

The sub-committee, under the chairmanship of Mr Bhupinder Suri, Architect, will meet on June 7 to discuss suggestions received from the public. The sub-committee will forward its recommendations to main committee, headed by the Chief Executive Officer, Ms Varsha Joshi, which will finalise the changes to be ultimately approved by the Board of Directors.

The sub-committee will examine the representations sector-wise and Sector 47 is likely to be taken up first. Only minor changes can be allowed and no changes will be permitted which may endanger the main structures.

It is not for the first time that the CHB has allowed minor need-based commercial activities in the dwelling units. In April, it had allowed the professionals or consultants, including doctors , advocates, architects and property dealers, to use a part of their residences to a maximum of 50 square feet or 25 per cent of the covered area, whichever was less, for offering professional consultancy only.

The allottees were also allowed to instal STD, PCO, fax or photostat machines in a portion of their dwelling units.

In fact, need-based changes had been a major demand of the allottees for the past several years. These changes, while giving relief to the allottees, will help control the ‘inspector raj’ to an extent.Back


Water byelaws amended
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, June 5 — The Chandigarh Administration has amended the Chandigarh Water Supply Byelaws.

According to a press note issued here today, the water used by the public standposts and lavatories shall be charged at the rate of Rs 400 per stand post per month.

The security amount would now be calculated according to the size of the meter as follows:

In case of non-payment of water charges or meter rent by the consumer, the authorities may receive the arrears out of the security deposited by the consumer, it said, adding that the security will be refundable only at the time of disconnection of the water connection.

Meters of all sizes shall now be arranged by the consumers themselves or the same could be purchased from the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh (MCC) if the consumer desired so. The consumer will be responsible for the replacing the defective meters. The consumer, who purchased the meters themselves, will be exempt from the monthly charges, it said.

Now the rate for first 15 kilolitres (kl) will be Rs 1.40 and from 15 kl to 30 kl, the rate would be Rs 2.60 per kl. For above 30 kl, the rate proposed now is Rs 4 per kl.

According to the press note, the water consumed in the institutions shall be charged at the rate of Rs 4.50 per kl.

Similarly, the water used in government, semi-government offices and industrial and commercial establishments will be available at Rs 6 per kl.

For the unmetered water supply in the urban areas, a flat rate of Rs 100 per connection per month or metered connection as per the choice of the consumer.

The water supply through tankers will be available at the rate of Rs 200 per tanker. And for the construction purposes, the rate would be 0.5 per cent of the total cost of construction. However, for the new private residential and non-residential construction the charges would be Rs 3.25 per square feet.

For supply to villages and the resettlement colonies, the charges are Rs 150 per connection per month for the houses having up to three taps. For houses in milk colonies up to 5 taps Rs 300 per connection would be charged.

Water consumed for the irrigation of lawns but separately metered in the residential premises an amount of Rs 2.50 per kl will be charged. However, for the treated effluent water for irrigation of lawns and parks the rate would be Rs 50 per kanal per month and Rs 500 per acre per month, respectively.

The new rates of the owners of tubewells, who install tubewells with the prior permission of civic body will be charged at the following rates:

Size of meter                                                                               Security

1/2 inch or 15 mm                                                             Rs 350
3/4 inch of 20 mm                                                             Rs 550
1 inch or 25 mm                                                                Rs 700
2 inch or 50 mm                                                                Rs 1400
3 inch or 80 mm                                                                Rs 2000
4 inch or 100 mm                                                              Rs 3250
6 inch or 150 mm                                                              Rs 5000
8 inch or 200 mm                                                              Rs 7500

Size of the bore                                                                        Amount (Rs)

50 mm(2")                                                                        9,000
65 mm                                                                            15,000
80 mm(3")                                                                       22,000
100mm(4")                                                                      26,000
120mm(5")                                                                      40,000
150mm(6")                                                                      45,000
Above 150mm(6")                                                             50,000




Congress workers court arrest
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, June 5 — More than 1,800 local congress workers, including the local MP, Mr Pawan Bansal, a former Union Minister, Mr Harmohan Dhawan, and 33 women workers, courted arrest after protesting against the acute shortage of power and water in the southern sectors and the cut in subsidies on essential items like food grains , LPG, kerosene and urea.

This was the first rally the local unit of the Congress organised since the general elections held in September last year. The Congress leaders have declared that this is the first phase of the agitation to highlight the gross inefficiency and mis-management of affairs of Chandigarh.

The arrests were peaceful as the local MP, Mr Pawan Bansal , had expressed a desire that the party workers should not breach the barriers at the roundabout on the Madhya Marg at the intersection of sectors 16, 17, 9 and 10.

In one of previous congress rallies, traffic had been blocked for hours and the police had to use teargas and water cannons to disperse the congress workers. Today it was different as groups of congressmen started converging behind hotel Shivalikview around 8 am. Between 6,000 and 7,000 persons marched towards Madhya Marg. The rally stopped 10 yards short of the barricades and the arrests were carried out . Initially the police did not have adequate arrangement to arrest the protesters.

A minor scuffle between women workers of the Congress party and a lady cop was prevented after Mr Bansal intervened. In the melee, lists comprising names of those arrested was torn off. Once near the barricades, the rally was addressed by Mr Bansal , Mr Dhawan and Mr B.B. Bahl , the newly appointed President of the local unit of the Congress.

The speakers criticised the Municipal Corporation and the Chandigarh Administration, saying new taxes were being imposed in an irrational manner. On the other hand, no step was being taken for the introduction of the Apartment Act on the lines it existed in Delhi and to implement the scheme for conversion of leasehold property into freehold.

In a memorandum submitted to the UT Administrator, the Congress said the Administration was denying rights to village panchayats and was not extending the lal dora of villages, while sales tax rates were no being rationalised as per Central Government guidelines, helping traders in Punjab and Haryana .

The women workers, led by Ms Lalit Joshi Bhardwaj, carried inverted vessels on their heads to show how the cost of living had gone out of control. Besides Mr Bansal and Mr Dhawan, prominent among those who were arrested were Mr B.B. Bahl, councillors Ms Sunita and Ms Kamlesh, Mr Subhash Chawla, Mr Devinder Singh Babla , Mr Chaman Lal Sharma, Mr Shiv Talwar, Mr D.D. Jindal, Dr O.P. Verma, Ms Satinder Dhawan and Ms Lalit Joshi Bhardwaj.



Guru’s martyrdom day observed
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, June 5 — Holding of special kirtan darbars, community kitchens and chhabils of sweetened water marked the martyrdom day of Sri Guru Arjun Dev today.

In almost all the city gurdwaras, after the bhog ceremony of Akhand Path, special congregations were held where eminent ragis recited Gurbani from Guru Granth Sahib. Discourses on the life and teachings of the fifth Sikh Guru by eminent scholars and religious preachers were also organised. In some gurdwaras, school children also joined kirtan darbars by reciting slokas from Gurbani.

Besides chhabils of sweetened water, langar was organised in all gurdwaras.

In fact, the entire city and its surrounding areas were dotted with chhabils of sweetened water. At places, even some snacks, including cooked chanas, were served.

In Sector 17, employees of Punjab and Sind Bank organised a chhabil which continued till late in the evening. In Sector 47-D, staff members of the Punjab and Sind Bank also organised a chhabil.

SAS NAGAR: Chhabils of sweetened water on the roadside and community kitchens marked the martyrdom day of Guru Arjun Dev which was celebrated in the town with traditional gaiety and fervour. Special kirtani jathas performed at gurdwaras in Phases 1, 3B 2, 4, 7 and 11.



Seminars, camps mark Environment Day
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, June 5 — To mark World Environment Day, rallies, workshops, training programmes, seminars and free camps to check vehicle pollution were organised in the city today.

About 100 lecturers, teachers, principals and senior class students participated in the millennium workshop-cum-training programme organised by the Indian Council for Environment Education in collaboration with the UT Administration's Department of Environment at DAV Senior Secondary School.

Speaking on the occasion, Mr H.S Sohal, Director Environment and Chief Wildlife Warden and Deputy Conservator of Forests, blamed the increasing number of vehicles in urban areas for causing pollution.

Dr S.K. Sharma, Director Energy Research Centre, stressed upon the need to use non-conventional energy resources to reduce pollution.

Mr Khazan Singh, Chief Conservator of Forests, Ministry of Environment and Forests, explained the measures being taken to preserve the forests .

Dr Vikas Kohli, General Secretary, ICCE, also stressed upon the need to converse forest resource. "Trees are not just timber mines but mother of rivers and factories of soil building," he said.

Dr D. K. Upreti, Scientist at National Botanical Research Institute, Lucknow, talked about the scientific activities by India in Antarctica. "Antarctica's unexplored and unsolved mysteries of the universe are a challenge for the scientists," he said.

The ICCE in collaboration with Petroleum Conservation Research Association (PCRA) organised a free pollution check camp at a petrol station in Sector 7. The camp was inaugurated by the President, Mr Ravinder Talwar. About 200 vehicles were given the certificate of "Pollution Under Control". A rally on "Keep Chandigarh Pollution Free" was flagged off by Mr H.S Sohal from D.A.V Senior School in Sector 8 to Sukhna Lake where around 100 students participated.

At another function, the Mayor of Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh, Mrs Shanta Abhilashi, called upon the residents to plant trees and take measures to curb pollution. "Increasing number of industries and vehicles has aggravated the situation. Besides regular checking of vehicles, proper instruments should be installed to reduce industrial pollution", she said.

Among others present during the function were the President of Environment Society, Mr S.K Sharma, Director Technical Education, Mr S.K Aggarwal, and the Principal of the Central Crafts Institute, Sector 11, where the function was held.

A seminar was also organised by the Chandigarh Social Welfare Advisory Board in collaboration with the Mother India Educational Welfare and Industrial Society at Bapu Dham Colony. The theme of the seminar was "Women and Environment" under Vikas Parv-2000. Mrs Kamla Sharma, Chairperson, Chandigarh Social Welfare Advisory Board was the chief guest. "Development at the cost of the environment should not be promoted. Fresh air and pure drinking water should be included in human rights", she asserted.

Dr H.S Sohal presided over the function. Mr. Satish Narula, horticulture specialist, gave tips to women about the development of the kitchen garden. Around 200 women attended the seminar.

Meanwhile, speaking at a function organised by the Green Environment Club at Central Crafts Institute, Mr. S.K. Sharma, President of the Environment Society of India, said, "The citizens should all work unitedly to preserve and protect the environment." He urged upon the Administration to plant more medicinal plants in the city to ensure biodiversity and create employment opportunities.

Dr. S.K. Aggarwal, Director Technical Education of the union territory said that environmental ethics were not separate from human ethics because man and environment were not separated from each other. He said that awareness should be created among the masses to keep the environment free of pollution.

The chairperson of the club Ms. R Rangarajam highlighted the contribution of the club in spreading awareness among the students.

Later, the chief guest, Mrs Abhilashi, gave away the prizes to the members of the club for their performance in folk music, dances and other group items.

PANCHKULA: The Environment Society of Haryana organised an environmental sanitation awareness campaign in Indira Colony. The residents were urged not to use open fields for defecation as it could lead to the spread of various communicable diseases.


CET candidates harassed
From Our Correspondent

CHANDIGARH, June 5 — The entrance tests for the various graduate and postgraduate courses are going to be held from June 6 to 11. About 10,000 students are likely to take these tests. Students seem to be a harassed lot for they have not received either original or duplicate admit cards.

Even till 5.30 p.m. today around 350 students were going through the tiring process of getting the duplicate admit cards. According to reliable sources, the roll numbers were sent to the students by May 26, but they may not have got the admit cards due to postal delay.

The facts are contrary to the claims of the officials of the university as the admit cards to certain students had not been despatched till today. The worst sufferers are the students coming from the far-flung areas. Parents of a girl from Jaipur, who have accompanied her, said that they had spent a lot of money on travelling, besides paying the requisite fees for the test, but are still uncertain about getting the admit card.



‘Insurgency needs a political solution’
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, June 5 — "Infiltration has been a favoured method by Pakistan to secure Jammu and Kashmir. They are determined to do it in spite of the fact that on every account Indian army has blunted their attempt," said Lt-Gen Vijay Oberoi, GOC-in-C of Western Command, while speaking on Proxy war by Pakistan at a function at Rotary Club here today. He said insurgency in Jammu and Kashmir was not a military but a political problem. "It needs a political solution as we need to address militancy and not militants," he asserted.

Lt-Gen Oberoi spoke on the subject comprehensively. "We need to create political consensus to increase dialogue, besides some major structural changes, to achieve strategic ties," he said.

Lt-Gen Oberoi felt that the main objective of Pakistan was to annex Kashmir at minimal cost and force settlement at their terms. "They also want to destabilise us and weaken our potential strength," he said.

He said the problem started from the first instance of invasion in 1947. Whereas the original international border with Pakistan was 1,225 km, the Line of Control today stretches for 110 km, besides the actual ground position line of 110 km.

"The fact is that it is not very well defined and is also porous in nature. Pakistan has used all means, ranging from direct to indirect methods, along this line to secure Jammu and Kashmir," he said.

Talking about the UN resolution, he said the most important fact was that plebiscite under the aegis of the UN was to be undertaken, provided there was immediate ceasefire and excessive troops were withdrawn. He said Pakistan's compulsion was mainly because it felt that it lacked strategic depth. "Pakistan has an identity crisis," he said.

According to Lt-Gen Oberoi, Pakistan has the desire to be the leader in the Islamic world and their internal dynamics, like the economic mess and the narco-terrorism, compels them to indulge in the proxy war against India. Quoting General Zia-Ul--Haq, he said hostilities with India were essential for the survival of Pakistan.

He said our neighbour's plan was very well executed. "It is ISI controlled and they have been doing it under a well developed strategy. They want to degrade our conventional superiority," he said. He felt that now was the time for internal introspection.

According to documented facts, there are 80 training camps in PoK, 69 in Pakistan and 14 in Afghanistan. There are more than 2,300 hardcore terrorists and 1,300 foreign mercenaries. According to Lt-Gen Oberoi, there has been a quantitative escalation in militancy. "A major threat is the regeneration of women terrorist groups," he said.


Pollution level unchanged in Antarctica
By Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, June5 — “Going by the periodical estimation of concentration of elements like Iron, copper, lead and chromium in lichens growing in the Antarctica, the level of pollution is the same there for the past five years.” These are the inferences of D.K. Upreti, a scientist in the National Botanical Research Institute at Lucknow, who had been to the Antarctica with the 11th Indian expedition in 1991.

Dr Upreti was here today to take part in the workshop- cum- training programme on environmental education organised by the Indian Council for Environmental Education and Department of Environment, Chandigarh Administration, to mark World Environment Day.

He had been selected for the expedition to estimate the level of elements in the lichens and estimate the pollution level in the Antarctica.

His research also suggests that the area in and around Maitri, the Indian research station in the Antarctica is free of pollutants. Lead was not detected in 12 samples of lichens collected by the Indian scientists.

About the depletion of ozone layer over the region Dr. Uprati says that ozone is being depleted by chloro-flouro carbons (CFCs) used as coolants in refrigerators and airconditioners. The damaging effect of chlorine present in CFCs on the ozone layer is enhanced by the extreme cold during the three months of darkness.

In these conditions chlorine and other gases accumulate in the environment. The ultra violet rays of the spring sun initiate the reactions and chlorine and other gases become active resulting in f a hole in the ozone layer, says Dr Upreti.

“The production of CFCs needs to be cut drastically if the ozone layer is to continue to shield the earth,” said the scientist.

Talking on the lichens as ‘bio-indicators’, he said these micro-organisms show the presence of pollutants in a place. They lack a cuticular membrane in their bodies and are exposed to the environment directly.

What makes them unique for the scientists is that they are formed of two types of micro-organisms, fungus and algae. The vital activity of photosynthesis is carried out by algae and if pollutants are present then this activity ceases. They are attached to the lower substratum in such a way that they absorb the pollutants very easily. This renders them more sensitive than the higher plants and fit for environmental impact assessment.


Lively interaction with Gurdial Singh
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, June 5 — “I have received many awards in my life and the characters in my novels and plays are the true representatives of my creativity,” said Jnanpeeth award winner, Padma Shri Gurdial Singh, while speaking at a Ru-Ba-Ru’ organised at the Chandigarh Press Club here today.

The lively interaction with the eminent writer was largely attended by journalists, litterateurs and members of the Chandigarh Sahitya Academi. Gurdial Singh answered questions ranging from the problems faced by society to the characters of his novels and his career as a writer.

As a honour and recognition to his works in Punjabi literature, he was presented with the Press Club memento and a cash award. The President of the club, Mr Jagtar Singh Sidhu also presented Mr Gurdial Singh with the honorary membership on behalf of the club.

Mr. Sidhu said that it was an important day in the history of the club. “ In the past we have had many eminent personalities speaking from this rostrum, but it is great honour for us to have Gurdial Singh with us here today. After Amrita Preetam, he is the only writer in Punjabi literature to have been honoured with both Jnanpeeth and Padma Shri,” he said.

Gurdial Singh in his speech reiterated that he was a simple man. “Jnanpeeth award has been given to 38 writers but none of them belong to a background similar to mine. I am an extremely simple man belonging to an otherwise very ordinary family," he said.

Recalling days from his childhood, he said family circumstances forced him to leave studies after Class VII, “ It was much later that my teacher and guru, Master Madan Mohan inspired me to study further and later also got me a job as a primary school teacher. Nature has bestowed me with a very good brain, which I have used extensively, and at times even ruthlessly. Otherwise I am a simple man who has learnt mostly from life. My experiences with life honed my skills as a writer,” he asserted

He said it was because of the characters in his novels and plays which had made him a known writer. About his characters he said, many writers preferred to write about their colleagues. “ But I feel that a story is a factual projection of life. The fact is that society is riddled with many problems, including the age-old ‘castes within castes’. I prefer writing about these,” he added.

In an answer to a question, he said there were too many adversities and contradictions in life. “ What is really sad is when in our country there are people and animals dying due to drought, all a very senior Central Minister can do is pray in temple.”


Cool weather thrills people

SUNDAY morning brought respite from the scorching heat wave, which had been sweeping this region for the last few days. It was a welcome change not only for the humans, but for animals and birds too. As dark water-laden clouds covered the blue sky, all living creatures heaved a sigh of relief. The charm of holiday increased manifold and immediately children and adults started planning a picnic— a trip uphill, or to Pinjore.

Though Chandigarh and adjoining areas experienced storms in the last couple of weeks, rain had been eluding the region. So, the water pouring from heavens was more than welcome. Peacocks living in jungles and villages within the vicinity of Chandigarh and nearby cites loudly announced their pleasure, while parched throats of bovines thanked the Almighty for this favour. Gardening enthusiasts, whose plants had dried due to scarcity of water, were delighted as rain infused a new lease of life into the plants. Hitherto they had to abandon watering them in the morning due to latest instructions of the administration. But today it was morning with a difference.

Rain can be described as precipitation of liquid drops of water. The diameter of such a drop varies from 0.5 mm to 3 mm. Depending on the size of the drop, they can attain a maximum speed of 25 ft. per second. Large-size drops are broken into smaller ones by their rapid fall through the air. Usually the Meteorology Department advises that such & such mm of rain was recorded. How is it done? Expressed as depth of water that collects on a flat surface, the quantity or volume of rainfall is measured in a rain gauge to the nearest 0.25 mm. Rainfall is classified into three categories — ‘light’ if it measures less than 2.5 mm per hour; ‘moderate’ if it measures between 2.5 mm and 7.5 mm per hour; and ‘heavy’ if it measures more than 7.5 mm per hour.

— Thakur Paramjit



Do service lanes serve any purpose?
By V. S. Mahajan

THE planners of Chandigarh provided the city with service lanes hoping that these would help them to get better services while keeping the front of their houses undisturbed. It is more so in case of small houses where it was more desirable to keep their small fronts more neat and clean and provide easy access to the front road.

In the case of bigger houses, particularly in the northern sectors, these service lanes were more to help residents to have easy access to their neighbours living backside avoiding travelling the entire road length. And of course, to facilitate movement of hawkers, newspaper vendors and others who could find easy access to houses on both sides.

It was indeed a far-sighted idea to break the monotony of daily living by having easy access to neighbours as well as to basic services. But then over time this basic facility which occupies a good chunk of the city’s prime land, has been much misused.

Most of service lanes are in bad shape and in poor state of maintenance. Unfortunately being nobody’s baby, neither the administration ever bothers to maintain them nor the residents ever care to keep them in good condition; rather they dump much of their unwanted stuff in these lanes. With the result that these are often cluttered with every sort of leftover, including even unused building material. Thus it has become highly unsafe to move through these service lanes.

In fact during the rainy season their condition worsens with rain water finding easy access and collecting in pools here and there making these lanes breeding spots for flies and mosquitoes which play havoc with the sanitary condition of neighbouring houses as well as turn out to be the source of malaria and other diseases.

In case of bigger houses, while their front land meant for footpath is often well maintained by converting it into well-maintained grassy area with flowers. Nobody, however, bothers to take care of service lanes which as a result have become dumping ground of solid building material endangering the civic life of the residents.

As said, a lot of the city’s prime land is locked in service lanes but could have had a better alternative use, but then there is no point thinking of it at this stage.

The best way to ensure that these lanes serve their purpose for which they have been created is to maintain them in proper condition. But then the experience shows that it is going to be a very tough job unless there is full cooperation from the residents and the administration is prepared to spend money and attention for their upkeep.

The alternative is this land is sold to the neighbouring houses at a reasonable price which would help them to extend their area and thus their maintenance would no longer be the headache of the administration.

Under the circumstances when these lanes have become a source of nuisance and nobody is coming forward to take their responsibility, one feels that their outright sale to house owners in the neighbourhood is the only feasible solution to this problem. The money thus realised should be utilised for better maintenance of these sectors.



Menace of stray cattle
Tribune News Service

SAS NAGAR, June 5 — Growing stray cattle menace in this town, which has been projected as information technology city of the state, has become a threat to lives of local residents.

Often fatal accidents due to stray cattle were reported from here. Deepinder Singh, a student, and resident of Phase 10, dashed against a stray animal and fractured his arm. As his three papers were due in the annual examination, he faced a lot of difficulty in getting those papers attempted with the support of a helper provided by the university.

Now he is to appear in the entrance test for admission to the LL.B .course and he has to knock the door of the Punjab and Haryana High Court for getting a helper appointed for attempting the question paper.

Following this and other accidents in the recent weeks, residents of Phases 9,10 and 11 have taken up the issue with the local administration, urging it to find a solution to check the stray cattle menace. They have also written to the local Executive Officer for getting the hedges pruned for providing better view to those using two-laned roads. Residents say that stray cattle often rest under the shade of hedges planted in the dividers of two-laned roads and suddenly come out of these leading to accidents.

Residents says that the road leading to Cricket Stadium here from Chandigarh requires the attention of the local Municipal Committee for getting rid of the stray cattle.


Couple booked for detaining woman
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, June 5 — The police has arrested a Sector 15 tenant couple for illegal confinement and criminal intimidation of a woman.

According to police sources, Rashmi, a resident of Sector 20, went to meet Mrs Chaudhry, the owner of the house. There she was illegally detained by Mohinder Lal and his wife, Parveen, in a room and abused. They also threatened to kill her.

She somehow managed to get out and inform the police following which the duo were arrested. A case under Sections 342, 506 and 34, IPC, has been registered.

Four arrested: The police has arrested Balwinder Singh, Lal Bahadur, Mohinder and Virashe from near the Mani Majra bus stand for roaming about under suspicious circumstances.

Purse stolen: Ms Kama, a resident of Sector 12, Panchkula, reported that someone stole her purse containing a mobile phone, cash and some important documents from Sukhna lake. A case under Section 379, IPC, has been registered.

Scooterist injured: Scooterist Vikramjit Singh, a resident of Sector 44, was hit and injured by a car (CHO3-A-9281) in Sector 36. The driver, Mohali resident Talwinder Singh, has been arrested. A case under Sections 279 and 337, IPC, has been registered.



E-commerce catches up in city
By Prabhjot Singh
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, June 5 — For Ms Neena Singh, a senior executive with a private bank here, doing "grocery" had always been a problem until some months ago. She would either get no time from her busy schedule or miss one item or the other from her list. At times, her children would get angry for the items of stationery, including notebooks, they wanted her to pick up from the market, would be forgotten by her.

"But things have changed now. I am very happy with this e-commerce. Since I am always on my computer terminal as a part of my official assignment, I take out a few minutes to do my shopping by sitting in the comfort of my office room. A click on my computer gets everything delivered home. Time is no barrier. I can place my orders any time I am free and also fix the time for the delivery of goods at my home. It is very convenient and a great help to working couples," she adds.

There are hundreds of other working women who have taken to the new concept of e-commerce. They have their requirements home-delivered.

Many of them neither own computers nor have Internet connections. But a majority of them use their office computers and Internet connections for their online shopping.

"It is a misconception that you must have a credit card, a computer and an Internet connection to do online shopping," says Mr Dheeraj Garg, Managing Director of Glidemart, city's own e-commerce company.

Interestingly, a survey by the Chandigarh Tribune reveals that more and more lower middle class families have taken to the concept of online shopping. The highest number of online orders executed in May came from Sector 23, a Sector which is predominantly inhabited by government employees.

In this sector, the penetration of home personal computers (PC) may perhaps be among the lowest as it is basically a "salaried" sector.

How does the system work ?

All those who are familiar with computers and Internet need to do is get themselves registered, free of cost, with any of e-commerce companies offering online shopping facilities. Once you are registered, you have a password, you go to any cyber cafe or any place which has a computer and Internet facility and you visit the website of the company and place your order.

"We also have undertaken a door-to-door campaign to educate households about e-commerce. We are using 100-odd specially trained for this job," he adds maintaining that the concept of e-commerce has already got overwhelming response and has come to stay.

His views are corroborated by some of the working couples.


Shopkeepers oppose digging of trench
Tribune News Service

SAS NAGAR, June 5 — The shopkeepers of Phase 7 today protested against the digging of a trench in front of booths in the market by a private telecom company to lay optical fibre cable in violation of the specific guidelines issued by the local Municipal Council. They lamented that the digging work badly affected their business as their passage was blocked.

A recently laid footpath by the council in front of the booths was also damaged in the digging process. The Shopkeepers association said that in a letter issued by the council to the company it had been specifically mentioned that the digging work should not affect the movement of traffic and the company should put proper illumination signs at the site.

The shopkeepers lamented that the digging work had blocked the entry to their booths. A delegation of the shopkeepers would tomorrow meet the officials of the council.


Accommodation a mini-industry
By Amandeep Kaur and Ruchi Bhandari

CHANDIGARH, June 5 — Providing accommodation to the students seems to have emerged as the main source of income for certain city residents.

The city offers vast educational facilities ranging from schools, colleges and polytechnics to coaching centres and computer institutes. While most of these offer hostel facility, seats are limited. In the face of such a demand, a mini-industry has cropped up in the form of hostels. Some families also offer paying guest accommodation to students.

“Nearly every sector has some family offering facilities as paying guest or running a full-fledged hostel. Though the latter is more paying, it can sometimes be a headache too," says Ms Kavita, who has about twelve girls under her wing and charges Rs 2,100 per month for accommodation, besides separate charges for lunch and dinner.

Incidents of indiscipline and general lawlessness are on the rise in and around hostels. “It is very difficult to keep an eye all the time on these girls. While the reporting time in the hostels is 7 p.m., girls tend to return from the so-called ‘gheris’ or discotheques late in the evening,” owner of one of the private hostel comments.

The girls differ. They say the rooms are dark and cramped and the bathrooms are untidy. The food is unpalatable. In winters they have to pay Rs 5 extra for a bucket of hot water and have to pay extra charges for getting their clothes washed. They long for a good hot meal and miss home.

Instead of showing love and affection to the students, certain owners of hostels and paying guests reportedly have a harsh attitude towards them. Recently, the plight of one such hosteler came to light when he was grievously injured following a quarrel in a Sector 20 hostel.


400 saplings planted
Tribune News Service

SAS NAGAR, June 5 — World Environment Day was observed by the staff of the JCT Electronics by planting 400 saplings on the premises of the factory here today. Mr Parkash N. Patankar, Vice-President (Works), said during the past two years the company management had integrated environment awareness in every sphere of its functioning.

Acknowledging that the environment awareness had resulted in the prevention and control of environmental pollution, he said the measures had reduced consumption of resources, and encouraged reuse and recycling of waste material. A poster competition on the environment theme was organised for the staff and their families.

The winners of the poster competition are Ruchi Sharma 1, Urmila Sharma 2 and Shumega Gautam 3. Rohit Dutta, Archita Pandit, Vishal Gupta and Amarjeet Singh get consolation prizes.


Home | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Editorial |
Business | Sport | World | Mailbag | Chandigarh Tribune | In Spotlight |
50 years of Independence | Tercentenary Celebrations |
120 Years of Trust | Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |