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


HMT offers land to NZCC in lieu of investments
By Ajay Banerjee
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 14 — After realising that Rs 5 crore invested in bond certificates of a public sector undertaking have sunk, the North Zone Cultural Centre (NZCC) is considering an offer from the PSU to take land in lieu of the cash.

The governing body of the NZCC, headed by the Punjab Governor, Lieut Gen J.F..R. Jacob (retd), meets on Monday to discuss if the offer of the land made by the PSU in question — Hindustan Machine Tools Ltd (HMT) — can be accepted to recover the amount invested in 1994.

HMT, once a giant of an industrial unit of the pre-liberalisation era, has fallen on bad days and is in no position to return the cash it owes to the NZCC. The Board of Directors of HMT has reportedly offered land to the NZCC in Bangalore and Pinjore (near Chandigarh) as a pay back of the amount. At both places HMT owns several hundred acres of land.

The question is what will the NZCC do with the land ? A thought among authorities is to sell the land to real estate developers and get back the money that is part of corpus fund invested in various places. The NZCC is partially funded by interest generated through such investments. Even selling of the land will not meet the entire sum of the NZCC, said sources.

All this is not easy as it seems , sources in the NZCC said as the land owned by HMT in Pinjore is gifted. Can it be transferred in the name of the NZCC and further can it be sold ? Are some of the questions that will come up in the governing body meeting. The land of HMT in Bangalore is said to be a prime property but the NZCC is not keen on it as it will be difficult to see the location and check other aspects of the land thus the proposal is not on the immediate list.

For the Pinjore land, a sub-committee formed by the NZCC has already inspected it. The Director, NZCC, Mr R.T. Jindal, when contacted confirmed that HMT owed Rs 5 crore to the NZCC. ‘‘The money had been invested in bond certificates floated by the PSU in 1994. HMT was paying interest on the money till 1997, ’’ he confirmed.

As per rules, the Government of India is not liable for any dues anyone has to recover from sick PSU’s, said Mr Jindal while replying to query as to why the NZCC is not seeking intervention from the Government of India to recover the dues.

Among the other methods the NZCC is using to get its money back is through legal notices that are being issued to HMT. Till the governing body decides the next course of action the money cannot be recovered. Another things that may be playing on the mind of the NZCC is that HMT may soon be on the disinvestment list.Back 




NRI free to go to SC on plot allotments
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 14 — Dismissing a petition alleging “discriminatory approach” by the review committee in favour of persons “holding high positions” while regularising the allotment of plots under the Chief Minister’s discretionary quota, the Punjab and Haryana High Court has granted a non-resident Indian the liberty to file an “appropriate” application or petition before the Supreme Court.

Alleging the application of different yardsticks in different cases, petitioner Deepak Raj Gupta, currently residing in Australia, had earlier claimed that the cases of common men had been rejected while cases of those holding high political, judicial and administrative positions had been regularised.

He also alleged that allotments in the case of Justice Gurpartap Singh Chahal, former Chief Minister H.S. Brar’s son Harinder, former chairman of Services Selection Board Manmohan Singh Chaudhary, Punjab’s former Governor Lt. Gen. B.K.N. Chibber and IAS officer Jagjit Puri had been regularised even though no construction had taken place.

Going into the background, the petitioner had stated that the review committee was directed to be set up by the High Court, while setting aside the allotments, “for examining and regularising the allotments falling under the categories carved out”.

Seeking directions for quashing the orders “vide which HUDA Chief Administrator had conveyed to him the review committee’s decision of rejecting his prayer for regularising the allotment of plot to him”, the petitioner had stated that the opportunity of hearing was not granted to him.

After hearing counsel for the petitioners, Mr Justice G.S. Singhvi and Mr Justice Nirmal Singh observed: “Ordinarily, we may have entertained the petitioner’s grievance about the apparently discriminatory orders passed by the review committee, but keeping in view the fact that the petitioner has already filed a writ petition before the Supreme Court for quashing the order vide which the allotment made in his favour was cancelled in pursuance to the direction given by the full Bench, we feel that it would not be proper for this court to enquire into the issue....”

In their detailed order, a copy of which was received today, the Bench also observed: “We feel that the petitioner should raise this issue by filing an appropriate application in the pending writ petitions or by instituting a fresh petition before the Supreme Court mentioning all the facts for consideration and appropriate decision”.

The Bench concluded: “The writ petition is dismissed with the liberty to the petitioner to file appropriate application/petition before the honorable Supreme Court”.


13 city cops may face reversion
By Amarjit Thind
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 14 — As many as 13 officers of the Chandigarh Police, presently posted in the airport security, are likely to face reversion in rank when they report for duty on July 22.

The officers will report back since the security of the airport was taken over by the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) on June 22. The officers, one of the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), besides 51 others were part of the security detail at the airport which included two sections of the Security Services Bureau (SSB) and the Punjab Police.

Sources said the officers who reportedly face reversion include three Inspectors and 10 sub-inspectors and ASIs. As many as 39 personnel, including Head Constables and constables, have already been adjusted against vacant posts in the various units of the department.

There are no vacancies at the level of Inspectors and Sub Inspectors and as such there is no alternative but to resort to such an extreme step. The junior-most officers in such ranks will face action, but efforts were afoot to grant such cops promotions under the own rank and pay (ORP) scheme following which they will not have to bear the embarrassment of wearing a lower rank.

Sources said the lone DSP joining duty has been adjusted against a vacant post but in the case of others the department could not create additional posts as this requires the sanction of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA).

A decision in this effect could have been taken earlier but was delayed as the MHA directed the department not to withdraw the force so that the CISF could have ample time to carry out their familiarisation exercises.

There is resentment among the officers who will reportedly face reversion. They point out that many officers are enjoying ad hoc promotions blocking posts which are rightfully theirs. They opine that such personnel should be reverted and they be given their due. They said this has been brought to the notice of the authorities in the past but no action was initiated.

Others point out that the deputationists should be sent back to their parent state and in not doing so the department would be committing an injustice with the parent cadre officers and men. Ours is the first claim to posts in the department whenever such a situation arises.

Some officers are of the view that it is only in the interests of natural justice the deputationists should go and those enjoying the benefits of ad hoc promotions be reverted. Although this has never been done in the past, it is time that the rightful be given their due. The exercise will be tenuous since many of the deputationists have been staying put for the past more than two decades and those in the ad hoc posts have been in place for more than a decade, sources added.

A decision in this context will be taken in the coming days since the concurrence of the administration has to be sought, sources added.



Chaudhary rejects offer to shift to India

PANCHKULA, July 14 — The deposed Fijian Prime Minister Mahendra Chaudhary today rejected a suggestion to come to India, his country of origin, in the worsening condition in the Pacific nation and vowed to fight for the restoration of democracy.

Mr Chaudhary communicated this to his niece Mukta Chaudhary here today in a wee hour telephonic conversation, first in India after his release from 55-day long “tortuous” captivity.

The deposed Prime Minister said this when his niece asked him to come to India for his and his family’s safety.

Ms Mukta said she could not talk to her uncle yesterday, the day when he was released from captivity along with his ministerial colleagues, but the almost two-month long wait broke with Mr Chaudhary’s assertion that he will not “leave Fiji till the last drop of his blood and fight for harmony between ethnic Indians and locals.”

Mr Chaudhary told Mukta that he was confident due to the overwhelming support of his countrymen — both ethnic Indians and Fijians — and international initiative that democracy will be restored in the tiny island nation.

The deposed Prime Minister consoled his niece that few people supporting the coup leader George Speight will soon be persuaded to make way for a democratic government due to countrymen’s and international pressure.

Mr Chaudhary said the situation is far better in the country than 1987 when there was large-scale violence against ethnic Indians when Colonel Rabuka took over. 


“We will build joint future on past links”
By Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 14 — He has long been associated with the activities of the British Council all over the world and his job, as Minister (Cultural Affairs), British Council Division, has involved supervision of programmes initiated by the council worldwide. Keeping in view his rich experience vis-a-vis India where he often toured, he was recently appointed Country Director, British Council, South Asia. After joining office in Delhi on July 10, the new Director of the British Council in India, Mr Edmund Marsden, was today in Chandigarh on his first official visit. The Tribune caught up with the official when he was in the British Library in Sector 8 this morning to assess the success of the latest venture of the council.

Significantly impressed by the comfortable Shatabdi journey, Mr Marsden could not help saying that this journey was the best ever train journey he had. “India has come a long way and it is developing at a very fast rate. It is this very potential of India which is immensely respected by us. I must also mention that the youth of this nation reflect a sense of optimism which is incredible. We are here to open all conceivable channels of knowledge to them and we believe that they will take it all.”

Commenting on the council’s vast network spread over 13 locations in India (the largest network in the world), Mr Marsden attributed the trend to the very strong cultural and educational links between India and Britain over the past. “We have been historically bound to one another and that is perhaps one reason why we are going fast in India,” he said.

Talking about his role as the Director of the British Council in India, Mr Marsden said that his prime concern would be to utilise links of the past to build a joint future. “We are roping in the support of Indian organisations to expand our network here. Barring the four metros, we have opened up our centres in collaboration with the Indian Council of Cultural Relations. Our objective is to promote sharing of knowledge and technical knowhow. I am concerned about the feedback to our ventures, and also about any suggestions for improvement.”

Attaching great significance to the need to strike a balance between knowledge compiled in books and that available through electronic communication, he said that “connectivity has to be improved. We will open up opportunities for distance learning, and once we achieve that, our next target would be promoting learning through face to face contact between people of the two countries. Also I will see in this fast expanding technical scenario, the Indian youth have access to all possible opportunities. For this we will also introduce re-training and upgrading facilities.”

Mr Marsden said that in the coming times all means of education have to be made flexible and user friendly. “I want our network in collaboration with the local organisations to promote this need. To achieve this I will be regularly visiting all the 13 centres we have here because personal contact is very essential,” he said.

On the lighter note, Mr Marsden seemed quite impressed with the well laid out city which he compared with Brasilia. He added that the city intrigued him for its thriving artistic community and also for its great educational potential. “I have heard there are some great book depots here. I am just going to visit Capital Book Depot in Sector 17,” he said.

Mr Marsden was accompanied by his wife Megan Marsden, Mr P. Jayarajan, Head, Library Services (India), and First Secretary Ms Morna Nance.Back


Should driving licence age be lowered to 16 ?
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 14 — Prashant Goel, (Student) : No doubt the Motor Vehicle Act says that no one below the age of 18 will drive a vehicle except a 50 cc moped. But in the changed scenario this rule is not appropriate because driving is a skill and there is no age limit to learning a skill. Moreover the rules of the MV Act were framed long ago when automobiles were few and driving a vehicle seemed a difficult task. But now the mental level of children has risen tremendously and they are able to learn and drive easily. But the worrying factor is rash and fast driving by teenagers.

It is the need of the day to change the criteria from 18 years to 15 years along with a provision of strict action in case of violation of rules, such as cancellation of the licence on the very first occasion of overspeeding or rash driving, driving a two-wheeler without helmet or any other violation of traffic rules.

The age limit should be lowered but with this condition.

Dr Rakesh Khullar, (Surgeon and Traumatologist) : Yes, the driving licence age should be lowered to 16 years and the Motor Vehicles Act (MVA) amended accordingly.

The youngsters of today are mature both physically and mentally than their counterparts of yesterday. These teenagers are extensively exposed to the latest technological developments. They get familiar with the functioning of various types of vehicles from an early age. These children are literally born with vehicles all around them. They are fast learners and become capable of handling these machines.

But basically it is the procedure of issuing a driving licence that needs to be modified. International norms and standards should be strictly adhered to. There has to be a written as well as practical test before granting a driving licence. The written test can even be taken on computers while sitting in one’s home.

Unfortunately, getting a driving licence for a consideration or because of the influence of power is not uncommon in our country. Therefore, honesty in issuing a driving licence must be stringently adhered to.

Sumit Mongia (Student of diploma in computers) : Since most of the youngsters are thrilled by speed, the minimum age for issuing a permanent licence should remain 18 years. We cannot handle vehicles at this age. Most of us are used to driving in our streets and think that we can also drive on main roads in the same fashion but get confused by the heavy traffic. This can be a major reason for accidents involving youngsters.

However, a learner’s licence can be issued to those below 18. Non-geared vehicles are easy to handle. Parents should also not allow their children below 18 to drive geared vehicles. They should encourage the children to use bicycles.

SHARAD DIWAN (Student) says, a heavy burden falls on students especially if one happens to be in the science stream. One is supposed to attend two or three tuitions a day. With hardly 10 or 15 minutes between tuitions, they have sometimes to move from one corner of the city to another. And often this is not possible on a moped for which a learner’s licence can be had at the age of 16. These students have to move on their own as the parents have hardly any time to drop them for the tuitions daily.

The pressure of the group adds to this. While a friend has a stylish Bullet, you feel small going about on a moped.

Most of students who throng tuition centres do not have driving licences. Only a few have learner’s licences. And most of them drive cars or scooters. Lowering the age for a driving licence will solve this problem. But the youngsters too should abide by rules and be responsible drivers.Back


Press Club function
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 14 — The Chandigarh Press Club will celebrate 20 years of its existence and subsequent growth into a premier institution of the journalistic community of the region tomorrow.

According to a press note, the celebrations will start with a function where the club will exhibit its concern for a better environment. In collaboration with the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh and the UT Administration, a tree plantation and beautification drive will be launched at 11.30 a.m. by the MCC Chief Engineer, Mr Puranjit Singh.

In the evening, an elaborate programme has been planned for the members. A founder-member will cut the anniversary cake at 8.30 p.m. An impressive fireworks show by experts from Malerkotla has also been planned. Attractive prizes will be on the line in the special tambola.

Naresh Jacob and his troupe will regale the members.


Amarnath Yatra arrangements
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 14 — The Shiv Shakti Seva Mandal, Chandigarh, has arranged five buses and seven Sumos for the Amarnath Yatra.

The group leaving on July 15 will undertake the pilgrimage through the Pahalgam route, while the group leaving on July 16 will adopt Baltal route. Special arrangements have been made for the registration and stay of the pilgrims. The mandal will also organise a langar for the pilgrims.


Red Cross meeting on July 18
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 14 — The Haryana state branch of the Indian Red Cross and the St. John Ambulance Association will hold its 27th annual general meeting on July 18. The meeting will be attended by the executives of the state branch of the society.

According to Ms Kiran Bala, Hony. Secretary of the Haryana Red Cross and the St. John Ambulance Association, a presentation about the activities of the society in the years 1997-98 and 1998-99 will be made during the function. Besides, the agenda also includes goals and requirements for future activities.

The meeting under the presidentship of the Governor of Haryana, Mr Babu Parmanand, will be also attended by the Divisional and Deputy Commissioners, besides the District Education Officers of the state. The Governor will also present shields, souvenirs and awards to outstanding social welfare work.Back


Should Chandigarh have an international airport?

Chandigarh was conceived as the state capital of the joint Punjab in lieu of Lahore by the late Mr Partap Singh Kairon with the blessings of the first, Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru. It became a Union Territory on Nov.1, 1966, on the trifurcation of Punjab and became the state capital of the Punjab and Haryana. The Western Command HQ shifted to nearby Chandigarh.

The city adopted a special architectural design much different from the traditional concept, for a well-planned, environment-friendly atmosphere with a vast peripherial area around it. It is known the world over as the master piece of the French architect, Le Corbousier, and attracts foreign and budding architects for study. To derive advantage from the existing infrastructure in Chandigarh, Panchkula and SAS Nagar were planned by Haryana and Punjab Government, respectively, much against the Peripherial Control Zone, since then these satellite towns have been expanding fast. Industrial belts have also come up around Chandigarh putting pressure on Chandigarh’s infrastructure. Export oriented units have been established, some with foreign collaborations. Industrial activity invites foreigners to the city. But more investors are discouraged since the city is not linked internationally.

Chandigarh is one of the best education centres imparting world class education through Panjab University, PEC, PGI etc. Students from Asian and South-African countries are on their rolls. The internationally famous health care institute, PGI, is frequently visited by domestic and foreign faculty members and patients.

Similarly the city and its neighbouring towns have not lagged behind in providing sports facilities of international standards. The cricket stadium as SAS Nagar, hockey, football & indoor game’s stadiums at Sector 42, green and hard courts for Lawn Tennis, Gold Course and rowing channel and water sports at Sukhna Lake all exist at Chandigarh which has produced players of international fame.

Rock Garden of Nek Chand, Asia’s largest Rose Garden — a gift of Dr M.S. Randhawa, the artificially created Sukhna Lake are also added attractions for visitors. The Rose Festival is included in the calendar of the country for festivals of India to attract foreign visitors.

The administration is working hard to develop infrastructure and create a congenial atmosphere for holding national and international level conferences away from the national capital. CITCO has taken a lead in this direction by un-grading its hotels (Mountview & Shivalikview) while a five-star-hotel in the public sector is coming up.

Kalagram for holding art exhibitions is nearing completion. Besides, the construction of a permanent exhibition-cum-conference hall in Sector 31 is also on the cards. The electronic media has also established a large network in Chandigarh. Lands and funds have already been earmarked by Punjab, Haryana and UT to develop information technology parks.

The region is also the hub of activities of the NRIs who have to frequently visit Chandigarh, since all important state and central government offices are located here. It is also a gateway for pilgrimages to HP and J&K.

Joginder Singh Bhogal is a non-official member of the Board of Directors, Chandigarh Housing Board.


Chandigarh has matured into a regional hub of the north catering to the needs of Haryana, Himachal, J&K and Punjab. Having an international airport at Chandigarh can save hours of driving to New Delhi for a large population of this area. Also, receiving guests at Chandigarh will add a touch of cosmopolitan culture to the city beautiful.

But are we prepared for this? Could we match the international life style? Chandigarh does not have even direct air link to metros. If Indian Airlines is not interested in Chandigarh why can Chandigarh not invite other private airlines for air linkages with Calcutta, Guwahati, Chennai, Thiruvanthapurum, Bangalore & Mumbai?

We do have the mighty Panjab University and the PGI for education and medical research, a pollution free industry, a large banking network, a market for consumer durables and Nek Chand’s Rock Garden. But is it enough for the international tourist? We have to promote the IT industry and entertainment channels and may be casinos or a race course besides discotheques to cater to the international tourist. We need theatres to showcase the art of the region like Lido at Paris and of course hotels and restaurants, offering international cuisine.

The tourist is always fascinated by the original customs and culture of the people of this region and not by imported shows. The stay should be comfortable and entertaining. Hosting international events in education, sports, culture, music and fashion can add colour to the city beautiful.

We have to develop more infrastructure to meet the tourist crowds like the Rapid Traffic Clearance System by adding flyovers and subways at busy crossings. Let us sit and plan, of a five-year comprehensive show to welcome the first international plane and experience the thrill of having an international airport at Chandigarh.

— Dr B.S. Aggarwal is a senior orthopaedic surgeon and past President of the Indian Medical Association, Chandigarh.


An international airport is the need of the hour as Chandigarh is the heart of the northern region. Thousands of air travellers including politicians, businessmen, bureaucrats, sports persons use the Indira Gandhi International Airport Delhi. According to the airport authorities the maximum number of travellers i.e. about 60 per cent are from this region.

If Chandigarh gets an international airport a lot of money and man hours could be saved and it will help in reducing the load on the Indira Gandhi International Airport. Chandigarh has facilities for landing of Airbus 310 aircraft with a capacity of 150 to 170 passengers. It can be easily place in the group of Agra, Patna, Coimbatore, Jaipur and Varanasi.

People of this region have gone and settled in various countries of Europe, America, Australia, Canada, New Zealand and even in small countries like Fiji. Many relatives of these immigrants go to Delhi to see off and receive them.

In inclement weather people have to travel more than 500 km in buses, taxis, cars and trains and have to stay sometime overnight in Delhi by spending a huge amount. Needless to say that infrastructure for handling aircraft is available at Chandigarh. Only some additions may be required like high intensity runway and instrument landing system.

— Mr Bant Singh is a former Vice-Chairman, Federation of Welfare Societies of Chandigarh.


Most of the exponents advocating the necessity of an international airport at Chandigarh have missed a point which may bring about the possibility of an airport in its trail.

We have to approach UNO to shift some of its offices from Geneva to Chandigarh like the FAO, ILO, Health, Human Resource Development and International Courts etc. Let Chandigarh be conferred with the status of Geneva, with all its benefits and privileges. This is quite feasible as the changed circumstances in the part of the world have concentrated UNO’s attention mostly on the near mid-east, north Asia, south east Asia, and far east.

With Europe’s economy prospering Arab-Israel problem almost settled, Iran-Iraq relations improving, NATO’s expansion right into eastern Europe, North-South Korea’s reunification parleys, Sino-American trade relations flourishing, Talibans’ rule over most parts of Afghanistan, Japan’s ambitions to outdo China, the UNO would prefer to monitor all these developments from close quarters. What better place than Chandigarh in the region? If a formal invitation is extended, there choice will naturally fall on Chandigarh.

Such a scenario will give a fillip to our economy and improve the standard of living of the people. World Bank and UNO’s other financial organisations will liberally contribute to augment our national funds to a large extend. This will also solve the lingering problem of claiming Chandigarh by Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh.

Let us extend a formal invitation to the UNO to that effect.

— Mr Dalip Singh is a retired Lieut-Colonel


I strongly feel that there is a great necessity of an international airport at Chandigarh keeping in view the following points justification:

(i) Chandigarh is being developed as an international city for industry, business, tourism and sports. So upgradation of its airport is essential for meeting global trends.

(ii) Chandigarh being the capital of Punjab, Haryana needs to be linked by air to all capitals of the states and important cities of the world.

(iii) It is called City Beautiful and has important gardens like the Rose Garden and Rock Garden where annual festivals are celebrated. Tourists from all parts of the world should be provided with direct air travels to Chandigarh.

(iv) The city is near to the hills and hilly resorts like Shimla, Kasauli, Chail, Kulu-Manali and the Kashmir valley. Regular international flights to such places are necessary.

(v) Chandigarh is a well known centre of education, learning and sports as many universities and institutes are situated near about and many conferences are held there. Students, scholars and sport persons should be provided with facilities of quick travel at concessional rates.

(vi) Moghul Gardens at Pinjore where Mango Festival is celebrated every year is quite near to Chandigarh. Restaurant at Parwanoo which is linked by a rope way provides an added charm to tourists.

—Mr HC Malik is a retired IAAS officer


Residents hold dharna
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 14 — Members of the MIG Residents Welfare Association, Sector 46-C, yesterday sat in a dharna against the issuance of notices to the allottees, who had allegedly made illegal encroachments on government land.

A press note issued by Mr Jatinder Bhatia, Mr N.K. Bhatia and Mr A.S. Oberoi, chief patron, president and general secretary of the association, respectively, urged the civic body to lease the space to the house owners on a nominal rent and withdraw notices immediately.

The residents had utilised the space at their own cost and it was not a violation but a need-based requirement. It has become a necessity as the Chandigarh Housing Board had not provided any space for parking of scooters and cars on the lines of the new flats, it said.

While calling upon the regularisations of the need-based alterations and renovations, the association demanded the grant of “conveyance deed” as over 80 per cent of the allottees were the GPA holders.



Guru Purnima celebrations
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 14 — The executive of the Shirdi Sai Samaj will celebrate Guru Purnima on July 16 at 6, Sector 29-A.

The programme will start with mangal shanan at 6 am, which will be followed by sai charitar path from 6:30 am to 6 pm, bhajan and satsang from 6 pm to 8:30 pm and bhandara from 9 pm onwards. All devotees are invited to attend the function.


Riar re-elected SAD unit chief
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 14 — Mr Gurpartap Singh Riar has been re-elected president of local unit of the SAD, according to a press note issued by Mr Kirpal Singh Badunger, Secretary of the party.

Meanwhile, SAD faction led by Mr G.S. Palia, in a statement condemned the statement of the election saying that “the statement is completely absurd and has been given in connivance with those people who wanted to lower the prestige of the SAD in particular”.


Rotary chief takes charge today
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 14 — Dr Vanita Gupta, will take over as president of the Rotary Club Midtown tomorrow.

Addressing a press conference here this morning, Dr Gupta, a dermatologist and District Leprosy Officer, unveiled plans for the year 2000-2001. She said in addition to continuing the earlier club projects, this year the club had adopted Sarangpur village located on the western boundary of Chandigarh. The village has a population of about 1700 and there are 52 households in the Dalit basti.

The plans are to build a block of community toilets close to the Dalit basti, as the women of the Harijan basti still have to go to the fields to ease themselves. Other targets include 20 individual toilets for poor households, provision of filtered and cool drinking water in the high school, supply of five sets of text books, from Class VI to X to be kept in school library and to be circulated to poor children every year. Swings for nursery classes, vocational training for males — electrician & women-stitching, tree plantation, health-care camps including three day eye camp with free intraocular lens implants, mid-day meal for slum children attending evening schools, disbursement of interest-free loans and scholarships and improvement of girl child status.

Also, the club is having joint projects with the Patiala Club regarding loan disbursement and scholarships and with other clubs in Punjab regarding awareness against child labour.

Apart from Dr Vanita Gupta other members of the team are Secretary — Dr S.K. Sharma; President-Elect, Indrajeet Sengupta; Past President — Capt. M.S. Kahlon; Vice President — Ravinder Krishan; Joint Secretary Palav Mukherjee; Treasurer — Ajay Gupta and Directors L.B. Gupta, R.K. Goyal, D.R. Aggarwal and RTPS Tulsi, Sergeant-at-Arms, Col. A.J.S. Gill.

The Rotary Club Chandigarh Midtown was established in 1977. The first major project which continues till today is of Kusht Ashram. Under this project, 65 leprosy sufferers and their families have been rehabilitated.

During the 23-year of its existence, the organisation has carried on various projects to help the under-privileged classes of this city. Some are like sheds in cremation ground, cardiac vans for general hospital, library for industrial workers, refrigerated centrifuge, revolving loans, artificial limbs for handicapped, mid-day meal in school, braille equipment for the blind and adoption of a Kargil martyr’s child.


Body found near liquor vend
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 14 — The body of a Sarangpur resident was recovered by the police from near a liquor vend late last night.

According to police sources, the body of 40-year-old Dharam Singh, which had some burn injuries on the upper part of the torso, was seen by some people and the matter was reported to the police. A forensic team was brought to the spot which gathered some evidence but a post-mortem would be conducted tomorrow, the sources said. Meanwhile, a case under Section 302, IPC, has been registered.

Held: The police arrested Hari Om, Phool Chand and Rajinder Pal, all residents of Ram Darbar, who had allegedly stolen the purse of Rupesh Kumar, a resident of Hallo Majra, containing Rs 1, 050 in cash. The purse was recovered and the accused were booked under Sections 380, 411, IPC.

Cars stolen: Sector 35 resident Ajit Sigh Cheema reported that someone had stolen his car, CH-OI-7606 (T), from his residence. A case under Section 379, IPC, has been registered. Similarly, R.S. Arora, a resident of Jalandhar, reported that his car CHK 1908, was stolen from the Sector 17 parking. A case has been registered.

Eve-teasing case: Dhanas colony resident Ramesh has been arrested on the charge of eve-teasing near the India Holiday Home and booked under Section 294, IPC.


Killed: Mr R.P. Singh, Manager at the Mullanpur branch of Punjab National Bank, died in a road accident on the Chandigarh-Mullanpur road, near here, yesterday. Mr Singh was going to his office from his residence in SAS Nagar when the scooter he was driving was involved in an accident between a truck and a bus.

In another case, an employee with the local municipal council, Chajju Ram, died when the cycle he was riding was hit by an autorickshaw near Phase 7 here last night.

Case registered: The local police has registered a case under Section 317 of the IPC in connection with an abandoned baby girl found near the Phase 6 Civil hospital here on Thursday.Back



Revised admission schedule of PU
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 14 — Panjab University today announced revised schedule for admissions to undergraduate courses in arts, science and commerce streams in its affiliated colleges.

According to the revised schedule, the “normal” admissions without late fee will be held from July 27 to August 4. Admissions with late fee of Rs 100, with the Principal or the Joint Admission Committee’s permission, will take place from August 5 to August 14. Admissions with the Vice Chancellor’s permission, with a late fee of Rs 500, will be held from August 15 to August 31.

Interviews: The interviews for admission to MA sociology (semester-I) will be held on July 28 at 9:30 am in the Department of Sociology, Arts Block-IV, Panjab University, according to a press note issued by the university.

Entrance test: The entrance test for admission to MA Sanskrit (Part-I) will be held on July 28 at 9 am in the Department of Sanskrit, Panjab University.

MA Hindi interview: The interviews for admissions to MA Hindi will be held on July 27 at 9am in the Department of Hindi.Back


Punwire employees end fast
From Our Correspondent

SAS NAGAR, July 14 — A 24-hour fast, observed by employees of Punwire in support of their demands, ended here yesterday.

Fiftyone employees, including 11 women, took part in the fast.

The protest was backed by Mr Sajjan Singh, Chairman of the Punjab and UT Employees Joint Action Committee, and Mr Raghbir Singh Sandhu, President of the UT Trade Union Council.

The employees also held a rally. Among the speakers were Mr Pawan Bansal, Mr Prem Singh Chandumajra and Mr Jagmohan Singh Kang.

Their demands include the payment of the pending staff salaries and steps to ensure that the unit is not declared sick and is brought back to normal functioning level. 


E-funda for Internet awareness
From Our Correspondent

CHANDIGARH, July 14 —To spread Internet awareness among the kids of Chandigarh the exercise called E-funda has been started from today. The school-going children aged 7-15 years can enroll themselves for a start-up session on the Internet at any of the computer wizkids centers across Chandigarh, Mohali and Panchkula. Uniqueness of this session lies in the fact that kids are educated on Internet free of cost.

All the participants will get a certificate of participation and hence will be termed as “Internet literate” at the end of session. This session of 1-1/2 hours on Internet will be carried out from July 14 to July 23. Three separate groups of children from age group of 7-9 years,10-12 years and 13-15 years would be given focussed training depending on their needs and mental aptitude. Most of the session will be based on live interactive training.

The event was inaugurated by Mr Harold Carver, Principal, St Stephen’s School, Chandigarh. Mrs J.Saupins, Principal, Saupin’s School, presided over the function.

Informing about the concept, Rajesh Khurana, wizkids official said, the objective of this exercise is to make fundamentals of Internet clearer in the minds of kids. The basic aim is to make children familiar with this new buzzword and increase their knowledge regarding the subject.

With the end of the session there will be a separate contest for all the age groups. The winners will get prizes from Coca Cola, Satyam Online and Computer Wizkids.


Demonstration by bank officers
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, July 14 — On a call given by the All India Bank Officers Confederation (AIBOC) more than 400 officers of various banks participated in a demonstration held here yesterday. Similar rallies were organised in Jalandhar, New Delhi and Patiala.

Speaking on the occasion, Mr G.S. Khera , President said the management is trying to curb the growing voice against corruption. The ‘vindictive action’ of the management shall not deter them to highlight the ‘misdeeds of the management’, he said. The Organising Secretary of the Union, Mr R.P. Singh, elaborated the demands which include an enquiry by the CBI about shelter being provided to the corrupt, timebound promotion policy, transparent transfer policy, waiving off loans in case of death of employee and restoration of pre-Gulf war period petrol allowance.Back


Bandh call in Panchkula
From a Correspondent

PANCHKULA, July 14 — The Beopar Mandal Panchkula has given a bandh call in the township tomorrow. A decision in this regard was taken at a rally held in the Sector 12 market here today.

Mr Kuldeep Chitkara, president of the association, said the bandh call had been given to oppose the enforcement of transit challan, which he said was causing harassment to traders. The committee demanded the abolition of the system of depositing the “triplicate” copies by the dealers.

Meanwhile, Mr B.B. Singal, president, Chemist Association of Panchkula, said that the chemist shops in Sector 6 would remain open for public convenience.Back

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