Wednesday, August 16, 2000,
Chandigarh, India
C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Beware of elements from across border: Jacob
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Aug 15 — The UT Administrator, Lieut-Gen JFR Jacob (retd), while appealing to the citizens to beware of those elements from across the border who were trying to create instability, today emphasised the need to harness the growing power of information technology (IT) for development and progress.

Addressing a gathering after unfurling the Tricolour on the occasion of the first Independence Day of the new millennium at the Parade Ground here, General Jacob said, “Our vision is to create a knowledge-based society through the extensive use of IT. We are working to create a scenario, wherein every citizen should be able to access the benefits of IT by 2005.The main features of this policy include setting up of the optical fibre cable network, an IT tower complex for software industry, an IT college and computerisation of major public-dealing government departments,” he said, adding that a comprehensive IT policy had been released on April 28.

Paying tributes to all unknown and known freedom fighters and martyrs who had made “the freedom and integrity of our country a sustained reality,” he saluted the brave soldiers who fought valiantly and fearlessly from the icy heights of Kargil last year to evict the Pakistani intruders.

Expressing concern at the growing demands of water and power in the city, he said the per capita water supply availability in Chandigarh was almost double the national average and this called for better utilisation of the available water by the residents. To improve the water supply system, the work on the fourth phase of the Kajauli water supply scheme, intended to bring 20 million gallons per day (MGDs) of additional water, was likely to start in the current financial year.

In order to ensure adequate availability of growing need of power, the Chandigarh Administration had taken up the matter for long-term power purchase agreements with the Governments of Punjab and Himachal Pradesh, besides from the power stations controlled by the Indian Government. The completion of the 220KV substation in Kishangarh village in January, 2002, and country’s first optical fibre link between Chandigarh and Delhi would result in better management of power distribution in the region.

For the development of the third phase sectors, about 1,250 acres falling in Sectors 48,49,50 and 56 had been acquired and a major portion of the land would be utilised for the allotment to cooperative house building societies, whose cases had been pending for many years.

Similarly, the Administration had decided to construct 16,000 dwelling units for eligible slum- dwellers. Construction of permanent booths for the relocation of temporary rehri markets, which had been pending for over seven years, had also been taken in hand, he informed.

Talking about various initiatives taken by the Administration to improve the quality of life of the residents, he said the state-of-the-art equipment had been installed in the Sector 16 General Hospital and upgraded the health institutions in Sector 45 Polyclinic, Sector 35 Dispensary and the Mani Majra Civil Hospital. New schools had been planned in the Bapu Dham Colony, Mani Majra, Kajheri, Colony number 5 and Sector 45, he said, adding that extensions had been planned in the schools of Behlana, Khuda Lahora, Buterla, Indira Colony, Kajheri, Dadu Majra and Hallo Majra. So far, 28 government schools had started double shifts and five triple shifts for the benefits of the slum children.

The Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh had constructed three community centres in Maloya, Mauli Jagran and Palsora. Over 150 km of road length had been recarpeted, with special focus on southern sectors, 200 parks developed and 11,000 saplings planted by the civic body. As part of the overall efforts to keep the city clean, the corporation was setting up a plant at a cost of about Rs 5 crore for the conversion of solid waste into organic manure at the dumping ground in Dadu Majra.

The Administrator said steps had been taken for modernising the police to make it a proactive people-friendly force. A scheme to provide online computer connectivity to all police stations with the Police Headquarters has been initiated. Electric trolley buses had been proposed to be introduced for local transport.

For further improving the ecological balance and environment, work on the botanical garden over 180 acres, with 200 acres of reserve forest as its conservatory, and a herbal garden in the Rajendra Garden in Sector 1 garden in the Leisure Valley of Sector 1 would begin soon. The Administration was committed to the upgradation of sport infrastructure in the city, he said, adding that a football academy had started functioning in Sector 42 Sports Complex.

Earlier, General Jacob took salute to an impressive marchpast by the contingents of the local police, Home Guards, Punjab Police, paramilitary forces, Fire Brigade and school children. Mr SS Randhawa, DSP (Traffic), was the parade commander. School children from local schools presented a cultural programme, which included Haryanavi dance, bhangra, skits and patriotic song.

Patriotic songs mark Independence Day celebrations
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Aug 15 — Heavy downpour did not deter Independence Day celebrations in the city, which were marked by greetings, patriotic songs, cultural programmes and hoisting of the National Flag, here today. Later, as the sky cleared, a large number of enthusiasts gathered in different parts of the city to pay homage to freedom fighters and pledge to serve the nation on the first Independence Day of the new millennium.

Patriotic songs and fervour marked the Independence Day celebrations at the Central Revenue Building, Sector 17. Mrs Surinder Pal Kaur, Chief Commissioner of Income Tax (North-West Region) unfurled the National Flag at a function organised by the Central Excise Department in collaboration with the Income Tax Department.

Speaking on the occasion, Mrs Surinder Pal Kaur called upon the employees to imbibe in themselves moral values and national spirit. She exhorted them to rise above casteism, communalism and parochialism. Emphasising on the need for women empowerment in the country, Mrs Surinder Pal Kaur said that gender bias should be removed so that women could move with men for the progress of the country.

Mr Inder Raj Soni, Commissioner, Central Excise, stressed on the need to collect revenue honestly. "We need to develop a spirit of camaraderie and friendly relations with the assesses as we travel from an era of force to one of persuasion," he added.

Later, a cultural function was organised by the Indian Revenue Services Ladies Association (IRSLA). Patriotic songs were rendered by employees and their children. Mrs Nisha Soni, President of the IRLSA, gave away prizes to the participants in the cultural programmes. Trees were planted to mark the occasion.

The Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) celebrated Independence Day with great enthusiasm at its base near Chandigarh airport. The National Flag was unfurled by the Commandant of the ITBP, Mr A.S. Chhina, who was the chief guest on the occasion.

Lauding the services of the ITBP personnel, especially during natural calamities, Mr Chhina emphasised on the need for more vigilance in the terrorist hit areas. The chief guest urged everyone to perform their duties with zeal and zest. The highlights of the celebrations included competitive events and a bara khana in the evening.

At Panjab University, the Vice- Chancellor, Prof K.N. Pathak, hoisted the National Flag. Speaking to the faculty, employees and students, he sought cooperation, support, enthusiasm, courage, idealism and optimism for the welfare of the entire university community. "I have a desire to see our university attain the standards of the top universities of the world," he added.

The PGIMER also celebrated Independence Day with great enthusiasm. The faculty members, nursing staff, technical, ministerial and classes III and IV employees took part in the ceremony. Prof S.K. Sharma, Director, PGI, unfurled the National Flag.

Paying tributes to the departed heroes who sacrificed their lives for achieving independence for the country, Prof Sharma exhorted the doctors, scientists and other staff to contribute their best for the betterment of the institution. Dr Sharma also said that the pay anomalies of the employees would be corrected very soon.

Mr Prabhakar Sharma, Chief General Manager of the State Bank of India, unfurled the National Flag at its head office. Congratulating all those gathered for the occasion, Mr Sharma paid rich tributes to those who had sacrificed their lives in the freedom struggle. He also lauded the sacrifices made by the Indian soldiers during Operation Vijay at Kargil. The SBI had served the nation as its prime banker in maintaining foreign exchange reserves at the level required for the nation, he added.

The local unit of the Samajwadi Party celebrated Independence Day at Colony No 5, Palsora and Dhanas. The party President, Mr Shivi Jaiswal, and the General Secretary, Mr Davinder Singh Dhillon, and other leaders, while speaking on the occasion, took an oath to work for the unity and integrity of the country.

The Lions Club Chandigarh Shivalik celebrated Independence Day at the Government High School at Dadu Majra village. The Tricolour was hoisted by a former region Chairman, Mr R.M. Gupta.The club donated fees and stationary to 62 children of the school for the year 2000-2001. The Principal of the school, Mrs Suman Malik, asked the club to keep up the good work.

Mr N.K. Matoo, Vice-President of the local unit of Janata Dal, hoisted the National Flag at functions organised at the Palsora Colony, Sector 25, Maloya and Nehru Colony. Speaking on the occasion, Mr Mattoo, urged everyone to work together to fight against terrorism, corruption and casteism so as to strengthen the country.

Dr Ambedkar Institute of Hotel Management, Catering and Nutrition, celebrated Independence Day with nationalistic fervour and zeal. On the occasion homage was paid to the freedom fighters who had laid down their lives for their country.

The Lions Club Chandigarh Supreme celebrated Independence Day at Government Senior Secondary School, Sector 45. Mr B.S. Garcha hoisted the National Flag and distributed sweets and fruits among children and others.

The National Flag was unfurled by Mr Ram Avtar, President of the Employees Union of Government College, Sector 46, on the college campus. A cultural programme, signifying the importance of unity, integrity and prosperity of the country, was presented on the occasion.

The Lions Club Chandigarh Vishal celebrated Independence Day by distributing stationery items, sweets and fruits amongst children of Bal Niketan. Mr R.K. Joshi, President of the club, urged the children to work hard and prepare for a better future.

Prof K.N. Pathak, Vice-Chancellor, Panjab University, was the chief guest at the Independence Day function at Sri Aurobindo Bhavan. On the occasion, children presented patriotic songs, besides a play based on the life of Shaheed Bhagat Singh. Mr B.K. Mehan, Chairman of the society, urged the children to serve the nation and follow the path set by the great freedom fighters.

The Valmiki Jan Chetna Parishad celebrated Independence Day at the Kumhar and Janata Colony in Sector 25. The chief guest on the occasion, Mr M.L. Gill, unfurled the National Flag. While paying homage to the great martyrs, he urged all to work for the underprivileged and the weaker sections of society. Back


Holiday in schools
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Aug 15 — All schools in Chandigarh, Panchkula, SAS Nagar and Dera Bassi will remain closed tomorrow. The Governor of Punjab and Administrator of Chandigarh, Lieut-Gen J.F.R. Jacob (retd), has declared August 16 as a holiday in schools of Union Territory, including all independent and government-run schools.

He was speaking at the Independence Day function at the Parade Ground, Sector 17.

Meanwhile, the Deputy Commissioner of Panchkula, Mr S.K. Monga, also declared August 16 as a holiday in all Panchkula schools. He was speaking at the Independence day function organised at the Parade ground in Sector 5. Mr Tara Singh Ladal, Minister for Primary Education, Punjab, declared a holiday in SAS Nagar while speaking at a subdivisional-level function organised at the GMSSS, Phase 3B-I.


14 honoured
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Aug 15 — As many as 14 persons were honoured by the Chandigarh Administration on the occasion of Independence Day here this morning.

While Inspector Gurdial Singh was honoured with the President's Police Medal, DSP Vijay Pal Singh, Inspector A.S. Jaggi, ASI Ram Lubhaya and Constables Rakesh Rasila, Dilbagh Singh and Suresh Kumar were honoured by the UT Administrator for their distinguished services.

Paramjit Singh, Simple Sethi, D.S. Kapoor, Abhinav Bindra, Inderjeet Singh and Jasvir Singh were also honoured for their contribution towards the betterment of society and sports and helping citizens in distress. 

7 honoured at I-Day function 
Tribune News Service

SAS NAGAR, Aug 15 — The Minister for Primary Education, Mr Tara Singh Ladal, unfurled the Tricolour at a subdivision level function organised to celebrate Independence Day at Government Senior Secondary School, Phase 3B1, here today. Heavy downpour, which lasted for about half an hour, stopped a few minutes before the minister was about to unfurl the National Flag.

On the occasion, the students of different local schools presented colourful items. Some of the cultural items had to be cancelled due to the rain. The local administration honoured at least seven eminent persons, Dr Attamjit, a dramatist, Pt Rattan Shankar, a kathak dancer, Mr Paramjit Kaur, a social worker, Mr Santokh Singh Dheer, a writer, Mr KS Kang, Mr Jasbir Kullar, a writer and Mr SS Sandhu, an industrialist.Back



Liquor sold on I-Day
Tribune News Service

SAS NAGAR, Aug 15 — Some of the liquor vends in the town remained open in violation of the directive of the district administration. A visit to different liquor vends revealed that the liquor vends in Phases 1, 7 and 8 were doing brisk business. An official of the local administration said the police authorities and the Excise Department had been directed to comply with the orders of the Deputy Commissioner and challan the violators. 

Rain fails to dampen I-Day spirit
Tribune News Service

PANCHKULA, Aug 15 — The rain and the puddles of water dotting the parade ground were no dampener on the spirit of the children who had gathered to perform at the venue in Sector 5 on the Independence Day function, here today.

Dressed in white uniforms, the students of a government school presented a drill, undeterred by the surrounding slush. They stomped and squatted on the water-soaked ground, unmindful of the marks it left on their uniforms. The girls of DAV School, Sector 8, put up an equally enthusiastic Haryanavi dance performance. The whirling and twirling colourful lehngas, the joyous mood reflected in the song and the music were added attractions.

Action songs by students of Bhavan Vidyalaya and Satluj Public School and patriotic songs were among the other items on the occasion. The giddha by students of the government school in Sector 6 and the garba performance by students of Jaynendra Public School were also appreciated.

Earlier, the Deputy Commissioner, Mr SK Monga, unfurled the National Flag and took the salute of the parade. Speaking at the function, he said the nation was proud of the sons of the soil who had laid down their lives to bring freedom to the country. He appealed to the youth to derive inspiration from great leaders like Mahatma Gandhi, Subhash Chander Bose and Bhagat Singh to steer the country to progress and build up the spirit of unity.

Adding that the day of celebration was also one of introspection, Mr Monga said there was need to seriously consider duties towards the nation and that adoption of technology from abroad was as essential as keeping the legacy of our culture alive. He spoke of the progress in the town after it was declared a district around five years back. He said the Haryana Urban Development Authority had provided the essential services and infrastructure to develop a modern city, while a plan of installation of more tubewells to provide clean drinking water in rural areas was in the pipeline.

While the district police, home guards, junior and senior cadets of the NSS and students from various schools participated in the marchpast, Mr Monga announced a cash award of Rs 101 for all students who participated in the cultural programme and the marchpast. In academics, a student of City Heart High School, Suman, was awarded for standing first in the middle school examination, while Monica of New India School was awarded for obtaining second position. Similarly, Neha Surya and Yogesh Verma of New India and government school of Barwala were honoured for securing first and second position, respectively, in Class X examination. A number of employees were honoured for dedication to their work.

The Rotary Club also celebrated Independence Day with the handicapped inmates of Saket, Chandi Mandir. The tricolour was hoisted by the chief guest, Mr Yoginder Paul Gupta, Special Correspondent, The Tribune. The members distributed fruit and packets of snacks to all the inmates and enquired from the Director of Saket, Dr Rakesh Jhalani, for any other requirement at the institute.

On his request, the club agreed to donate four emergency lights for the hostel rooms. Most of the members came dressed in traditional wear. An interesting cultural programme was presented by the handicapped inmates. The club has also sponsored a handicapped child from Saket for studies and hostel fee at Gurukul, Old Panchkula, for Classes 9 and 10. The Director of Saket, Dr Jhalani, expressed his gratitude to Mr Ramakant Bhardawaj, President of the club, for the help offered to the inmates.

The State Bank of India , Staff Training Centre, celebrated also Independence Day. Mr Ravi Kant Aggarwal, officiating Assistant General Manager of the centre, hoisted the Tricolour on the occasion. The trainees, staff members and their families also presented a cultural function on this occasion.

The Principal of Government College, Sector 1, Dr RL Madan, hoisted the National Flag on the college premises this morning. The students presented the National Anthem and patriotic songs to mark the occasion, while NCC cadets participated in the parade.

Students of Sophia International School, Phase II of Industrial Area, also took part in a cultural programme. The Principal of the school, Mr Suraj Chopra, appealed to the students to devote their lives to the progress of the nation.Back


VIPs to lose security cover
By Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

SAS NAGAR, Aug 15 — Several political leaders and civil officers in the town will lose the armed security cover provided by the Punjab police. The Ropar police has already asked the local police to withdraw the security cover of at least nine persons with immediate effect and send the cops to the Police Lines for further posting. Those who still figure in the threat perception list of the police are, however, being allowed to retain the security cover — which may, however, be reduced in some cases.

This follows directives of the Director-General of Police (DGP) to review the threat perception of the political leaders, distinguished persons, civil and police officers. The ADGP ( Security), Punjab, had directed the Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP), Ropar, to provide the details of the security cover provided to persons in the district.

On the basis of the inputs given by the local police officials the SSP, asked them to withdraw security of at least nine persons, including a former President of the Indian Youth Congress (IYC), Mr Manish Tewari. According to Ropar police records, Mr Tewari had been provided with at least three police personnel.

Sources in the police say that at least 63 persons living in Chandigarh, SAS Nagar and other parts of Ropar district have been provided security cover. At least 160 cops of the Ropar police, including those in the escort, provide security cover to the 63 persons. According to information available, orders for the removal of the security cover to Mr Gurvinder Singh Dhoomcheri of the Tohra group have been passed. Others on the list are Mr Dharam Singh, Chairman of the Minorities and Dalit Front, Punjab, Mr Maninder Singh, an artist, Mr H.S. Cheema, Mr Lakhwinder Singh and Mr N.S. Minhas, an advocate.

Orders have also been passed to remove the security of the State Transport Commissioner, family of a late IPS officer of Punjab, R.S. Hundal and a civil officer of the Punjab Transport Office.

The sources said a number of persons, who were holding key positions in the ruling political party in Punjab, former Members of Legislative Assembly (MLAs), former ministers in the Congress regimes and some religious leaders will, however, still enjoy, the security cover because of the threat perception to them. The sources said in certain cases the security cover was more of a status symbol.


New facilities at paediatric centre 
By Poonam Batth
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Aug 15 — With the Advanced Paediatric Centre (APC) heading for the development of super-specialities in the fields of paediatric surgery and medicine, highly advanced treatment will now be available to patients from the region.

The development which includes augmentation of the existing infrastructure, introduction of newer specialities like paediatric pulmonology, paediatric nephrology and paediatric cardiology form part of the second phase of the APC advancement. Another highlight — the APC strategy, which is due to be completed by the end of next year, is the addition of 120 beds to the existing 180 beds.

Giving the details, Dr Lata Kumar, Head of the Department of Paediatrics, disclosed that the APC had been originally planned as a 300-bed centre. The availability of additional beds would fulfil the requirement of the increasing number of patients. Emphasis would be laid on developing specialities in pulmonology, nephrology, cardiology in paediatric medicine along with facilities of orthopaedics, neurosurgery, ophthalmology and ENT in paediatric surgery.

"With the development of these specialities, the centre would be able to provide comprehensive diagnostic and therapeutic services to children under one roof,'' maintains Dr Kumar. Two new operation theatres will also be added to the existing two to cater to the needs of the newer specialities. Besides, seven new laboratories will be started such as for microbiology, pathology, etc for advanced investigations and diagnosing metabolic diseases.

According to Dr Kumar, the centre will be equipped with the latest hi-tech equipment required for quality patient care. A sum of Rs 1313.67 lakh will be used to buy state-of-the-art equipment, besides augmenting the existing imaging services in radiology and other such services in the intensive care and neo-natology units, she adds.

Ancilliary services in occupational therapy and physiotherapy will also be started for the benefit of the handicapped and those who are visually or aurally impaired.

Emphasis will also be on developing community paediatric areas by encouraging staff to move out in the slums and the rural areas around the city and also by ensuring active participation in the national health programmes during the second phase.

The APC will also be provided with additional faculty and staff for effectively starting the new specialities. Nearly 500 employees of different categories are likely to be recruited in the next few months. Of these, there will be 28 posts of professor and assistant professor. She further informs that now that money has been made available, work on the second phase of development will be initiated. Plans are also afoot to have a separate telephone exchange for the APC and computerisation of the OPDs.

Dr Kumar claims that the APC project, on final completion, will offer facilities for diagnosing diseases for which diagnostic facilities are not available in most parts of the country. Later, certain non-evasive and safer techniques would be developed to diagnose the disease early and easily. 


Electioneering for civic poll hots up in SAS Nagar
From Kulwinder Sangha

SAS NAGAR, Aug 15 — With the second municipal poll in the town scheduled for August 20, electioneering has intensified, with candidates going from door to door to woo voters.

Colourful banners and posters have come up at various places and loudspeakers mounted on rickshaws and autorickshaws blare out the names and symbols of candidates, appealing for votes. Most of the contestants have opened election offices. The use of hand-bills by candidates is common.

A large number of local issues have been thrown up, though most of these focus on civic amenities like better water and power supply, improvement in sanitation, development of parks and provision of roads in good condition. Candidates in wards 2 to 7 are enthusiastic about bringing about positive changes to make the town a better place. The poll in ward 1 had been cancelled due to technical reasons and will now be held on August 29, along with wards 14, 17 and 20.

Mr Bhupinder Singh, a former municipal councillor who is standing as an Independent from ward 2, says he will ensure the completion of the works cleared by PUDA relating to parks in his ward. He will also get developed the green belt from Mohali village to Dara Studio, work on which has got PUDA’s sanction. Internal roads in the ward will be got repaired and he will oppose any increase in the water and sewerage charges.

Mr Ramesh Chand Jhingan, who is also standing from ward 2 as the joint candidate of the BJP and the SAD, says he will get industrial workers allotted government quarters on a hire-purchase basis. They are now staying in these quarters on rent. He will fight the pollution menace in his ward from industrial units. He will also get a primary school building constructed in his ward. PUDA has cleared the site and design of the building but has taken no further action, he adds.

Six candidates are contesting from ward 2. These include Mr Sukhjit Singh Lehal, Mr Balwinder Singh, Mr Mohinder Singh Mann and Mr Rajinder Prasad. They are all Independents.

In ward 3, an Independent candidate, Mr Ghan Shyam (Shyam Bansal), says he has not prepared any manifesto as he does not want to make false promises to the voters. However, he will try to solve the parking and drainage problems in the HE quarters area. He will also get the streetlight system improved.

Mr Prem Kumar Bansal (Independent), a former councillor from ward 3, says he will ensure the completion of the pending development works. He will also get constructed a government primary school building for which the site has been earmarked by PUDA.

The third candidate from this ward is Mr Jaswinder Singh (Independent).

Ms Indu Sehgal (Independent), a former councillor who is again in the fray from ward 4, says she wants a government dispensary and a government high school in her ward. She says PUDA has built sheds at the site earmarked for the dispensary. She favours permanent booth sites for khokha owners in the ward.

Ms Chanda Oberoi (Independent) from ward 4 says her priorities are sanitation and the water supply system. She says water often does not reach the upper floors of houses. Prospective tenants are keeping away from such accommodation. She wants a government dispensary as well as a government primary school in her ward.

Other candidates from ward 4, reserved for women, are Ms Kalawanti (Independent) and Ms Joginder Kaur (SAD).

Mr Bharat Bhushan Mynee (Independent), a former councillor who is again contesting from ward 5, says he will try to solve the problems of voters at the individual level relating to different government departments in the town, apart from the Municipal Council. He will press the authorities to sink a deep-bore tubewell to mitigate the water problem on the upper floors in the HE quarters area. He will also ensure the setting up of a community centre and a government dispensary in his ward.

In the six-cornered contest in ward 5 is BJP candidate, Mr L.D. Jindal. He says there are many industries in SAS Nagar, yet local youth are unemployed. These young persons should be given priority in jobs in the industrial sector. He wants the municipality here to run its own local buses. Children and senior citizens using these buses should be given concessional passes. He regrets that the supplementary voters’ list issued on August 11 has various names of voters whose houses are not in his ward area.

Other contestants from ward 5 are Mr Sher Singh, Mr Kulwant Singh Bindra, Mr Nand Kishore (all Independents) and Mr Mewa Singh (SAD).

Mr Amrik Singh Mohali (SAD), a former Senior Vice-President of the Municipal Council, who is once again standing from ward 6, says he favours a shopping complex which will also house the main government offices. He will also seek a recreation centre which will also have health facilities and a provision for social functions. He will oppose the privatisation of octroi collection as the public has faced harassment under this system. He will also ensure uninterrupted supply of power and water and the development of parks. More ration depots should be opened, he adds.

Contesting from the same ward is Mr Amrik Singh Mohali’s next-door neighbour, Mr Avtar Singh Walia (Independent). He wants a garbage treatment plant set up as this will occupy limited space and also produce manure. He wants the jhuggi colony (adjoining phase 2), which falls in Chandigarh territory, to be cut off as the occupants are creating sanitation problems. He favours the rooting out of congress grass, besides better water and power supply and the development of green belts and market areas.

Mr Varinder Pal Singh (Independent), also from ward 6, wants the elimination of congress grass. He said he will fight for a drug-free town. He favours the earmarking of a place where senior citizens can spent their time for a social cause.

The fourth contestant from ward 6 is Mr Bhupinder Singh (Independent).

In ward 7, also reserved for women, there is a direct contest. Ms Manmohan Kaur, a former councillor and an SAD candidate, wants an exclusive college for girls in the town. She also wants a cultural centre to be developed as cultural organisations have been making this demand for quite some time.

Ms Manmeet Kaur, an Independent candidate, says the ward has been neglected for the past four years. The councillor of the area had gone abroad. Now she will have to take the development of the ward as her top priority.

65 booths for MC elections
Tribune News Service

SAS NAGAR, Aug 15 — In clear violation of the model code of conduct, candidates contesting from different wards have put up banners at public places. A visit revealed that banners and other publicity material have been put up on streetlight poles and other vantage points right under the nose of the officials of the Electoral Registration Office (ERO).

Meanwhile, the ERO has set up 65 polling booths for the 23 wards of the council. The election to four other wards will be held on August 29. For Ward No. 2, the polling booth will be at Shivalik Public School, Phase 6, for Ward No. 3, in the PUDA office complex in Phase 1. For Ward Nos. 4 and 5, booths have set up at the electricity board office, Phase 1, and Paragon Public School, Phase 1, respectively. For Ward No. 6, the polling booth has been set up at Government Primary School, Phase 2, for Ward No. 7, it will be the Community Centre, Phase 2. For Wards Nos. 8, 9 , 10, 11, 12, 13 , 15, 16, 18, 19, 21, 22, 23, 24 and 25, the polling booths are at Government Senior Secondary School, Phase 3B 1; St Xavier School; Community Centre in Phase 3B2; Sant Isher Singh School in Phase 7; Dr Ambedkar Institute in Phase 3B2; Government Primary School in Phase 5; Sant Isher Singh School in Sector 70 and Government Middle School at Matour village; Government Primary School, Phase 8; Government Primary School, Phase 7; Khalsa High School, Phase 8, Housefed complex, Phase 10; Grand Public School, Phase 10; ITI, Phase 10; Community Centre, Phase 11; Sandeep Model School, Kambala. For Ward Nos. 26 and 27 the polling booths will be at Government Primary School, Phase 11. Back



Rakhi celebrated with fervour
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Aug 15 — Raksha Bandhan was celebrated with fervour and enthusiasm in the city today. Almost all the men in the city were seen adorning colourful rakhis on their wrists.

Rakhi, an occasion to rejoice for brothers and sisters, strengthen the ties of this sacred relationship. The sisters who were away from their brothers wished them through e-mail and sent them electronic cards. Being a holiday today much hustle and bustle was witnessed in the city.

The sweet shops did a brisk business today. They were all finished with the sweets early morning and the buyers had to go disappointed during the later part of the day. The confectioners witnessed a heavy rush of customers who were eager to buy beautifully packed chocolates.

The rakhi sellers were little disappointed as the sale was not as per their expectations. They blamed it on to the aping of the western culture by the young generation. A shopkeeper lamented that this generation was forgetting the traditional values and was adopting western way of life.


Jayanti Devi fair draws devotees
From Our Correspondent

CHANDIGARH, Aug 15 — Hundreds of devotees thronged the 550-year-old Mata Jayanti Devi Temple at Jayanti Majri village, about 17 km from here, on the first day of a two-day fair yesterday. The fair is held on the eve of Raksha Bandhan, every year.

“About 700 devotees from the nearby villages offered prayers,” said Mr Om Prakash, the temple priest.

Langar was also organised at two places. The locals say the fair started in 1901 when a sadhu decided to test the power of a goddess. He cut his tongue and placed it at the feet of the Mata. He remained unconscious for one week. At last, the local people gathered and started praying to the goddess to save him.

At last, the goddess listened to their prayer on the eve of Raksha Bandhan. Since then, this mela is held here annually.

Incidentally, the pucca road to the temple, passing through Khuda Lahora, to the village ends much before temple’s stairs. “The government has not bothered to complete the road”, said an irate devotee. “Thank God, the CTU at least runs special buses during the festival days,” said the priest.

Jayanti Devi Temple, according to a legend, was located at Kangra in Himachal Pradesh about 550 years back. The Princess of Kangra was a devotee of Mata and would not have food without darshan.

When she was married to the Prince of Hathnaur, the present day Mullanpur, the temple was shifted and was installed at a nearby cliff surrounded by the beautiful Shivalik Range.


Christopher Thomas to deliver lecture
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Aug 15 — Mr Christopher Thomas, former South Asia correspondent of The Times of London, will deliver a lecture at the Chandigarh Press Club tomorrow at 11 a.m. The lecture will be followed by a question-answer session.

A book written by Mr Thomas on Kashmir will also be released on the occasion.


Thieves sent to judicial custody
From Our Correspondent

CHANDIGARH, Aug 15 — Two persons were sent to judicial custody by the UT Judicial Magistrate (First Class) till August 24. The accused were arrested by the local police in Hallo Majra village on a charge of theft.

According to police sources, Mr K.I.P. Singh, SHO, Sector 31 police station, received information that two members of a gang, which operated in the city and SAS Nagar, were planning a major strike. Accordingly, police parties were sent to various places.

One of the parties stationed on the outskirts of Hallo Majra saw two persons walking on a mud track leading to the village. They were signalled to stop, but on seeing the police party, they tried to flee. They were overpowered after a chase.

The accused revealed their names as Ajay Sharma, a resident of Phase V, Mohali and Satinder Singh, a resident of Sector 38, Chandigarh. After interrogation, they admitted to be the members of a gang that was active in the city and its periphery.

They also admitted to have committed 10 burglaries and thefts in the city alone. They also led the cops to the place where the stolen goods were stored. As many as seven coloured televisions, four stereos, mixer-grinders and other assorted household goods were recovered. The total value of the goods is more than Rs 1. 50 lakh.

Their modus operandi was to identify locked houses during the day and burgle them at night. More recoveries were expected, police sources added.

They had been remanded to the police custody till August 24.Back


6 hurt in accident
From Our Correspondent

LALRU, Aug 15 — Six persons, including five members of a family, were seriously injured in an accident involving a Tata Sumo and a truck on the Chandigarh-Ambala national highway at Lalru here this afternoon.

Sources said the Tata Sumo (HR-01E-6675), going towards Chandigarh, collided with the truck (HP-12-3480) loaded with cans of some chemical fluid, opposite the old bus stand at Lalru village.

Victims of the accident included Ms Shakuntla Devi, Ms Salochna, Ms Anita, Mr Anil and his wife, Minakshi, and their driver (unidentified). Three of the seriously injured, Ms Shakuntla, Mr Anil and the driver, have been referred to the PGI in Chandigarh where their condition is said to be critical. 

The rest have been admitted to the Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32, Chandigarh. 

The Ambala-based family was going to Chandigarh for finalising their daughter’s engagement when they met with the accident.

Sources said that the shopkeepers and villagers rushed the victims to Chandigarh. The police has impounded both the vehicles and the truck driver is said to have fled the spot.

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