Saturday, September 9, 2000,
Chandigarh, India
C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Decision on ad hoc promotions soon: IG
By Amarjit Thind
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 8 — The issue of ad hoc promotions in the local Police Department will be resolved soon.

A decision in this regard will be taken in the coming days since senior officers feel that the issue has to be resolved in light of the directions of the Punjab and Haryana High Court on such promotions in the Punjab police recently. The promotions have also been challenged by those affected in the Central Administrative Tribunal. The decision of the tribunal, which is reportedly in favour of the plaintiffs, is expected soon.

The issue became more vexed after several officers, who were on duty at the civil airport, were reverted to the department recently only to find that there were no vacancies. They are presently on deputation with CITCO and are not happy at being sidelined in posting.

Commenting on the matter, UT IGP B.S. Bassi, said: “I want to resolve the issue once for all. The issue has been hanging fire for a long time but somehow no decision was taken in the past years. I will take all necessary administrative decisions, including reversions, to resolve the matter,” he emphasised.

He said the decision had been deferred since the department was expecting the clearance of the bomb disposal squad which is expected in a few days. “Once the proposal, which is in the final stages of clearance by the Ministry of Home Affairs, comes through, we will have no problems of adjusting the personnel,” he said.

Sources said the ad hoc promotions given to more than 150 employees at the Head Constable and ASI level had aggravated the problem. Many of these were given during the militancy days but many reportedly managed to get them from obliging seniors upsetting the promotion schedule. Now that such employees were being reverted in Punjab following court orders, the same must be followed here too, the sources stressed.

This was one welfare aspect that had been ignored for the past many years and needed to be redressed without fail, they added.

The compact police set-up here is reportedly in the grip of severe stagnation and there are Head Constables who have been on the same level for a period varying between 10 and 14 years. Despite many recommendations to the authorities concerned, nothing has been done so far.

Resentment prevails in the recruitment of two batches of probationary ASIs too. This was done despite the fact that 20 persons who had cleared the intermediate course are awaiting promotion for the past six years. With no likelihood of promotion for the next five to six years, the number of years the personnel will reportedly stagnate will rise to nearly a decade.

The sources said one of the few incentives in the uniform was promotions after a fixed interval of time. What motivation would a junior employee have if he knew that no matter how hard he worked, he was going to be on the same rank for more than a decade.

This menace was not only at the junior level, there were instances where even at the senior level employees were on the same rank for nearly 15 years with no opening in sight for another four to five years. Many were already on the verge or retirement, the sources added.


Gujral is UT Home Secy
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 8 — Mr Raminder Singh Gujral, a 1978 batch Indian Administrative Service (IAS) official of the Haryana cadre, was appointed as Home Secretary of the Chandigarh Administration here today.

Information regarding the appointment was received here from the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) this morning. The appointment comes after his predecessor, Mr N.K. Jain, was removed around four months ago on charges of corruption. A panel of Haryana officials was sent and the file to appoint Mr Gujral was cleared a few days ago by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) following which the MHA issued the orders.

Mr Gujral is expected to join duty by Monday evening or Tuesday morning, officials sources said adding that orders of the Chandigarh Administration had been issued in line with MHA orders. Mr Gujral will be returning from abroad tomorrow, his family members said when contacted this evening.


Pay fee, get violations regularised
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 8 — A fresh set of directions on compounding fee to get violations regularised in commercial buildings were issued by the Chandigarh Administration today.

The directions include various fee compositions for calculating payments for violations, and new changes allowed in buildings under the amendments. These also regularise unauthorised sewer connections in residential as well as commercial areas.

In case of 2 bay showrooms in sectors 8, 9, 17, 22, 34 and 35, a total of 5 per cent of the calculated value or Rs 4 lakh, whichever is more, will be charged for regularisation of division of shops. In case of 3 bay showrooms in sector 17, a total of 8 per cent or Rs 6 lakh, whichever is more, will be charged. The calculation on a per square yard basis will be arrived at by taking into account the auction price of three previous auctions and dividing the total by three.

In case of violations in showrooms in sectors 7, 15 and 26, including the grain market, a total of 5 per cent of the present market value or Rs 2 lakh, whichever is more, will be charged. The regularisation of building violations even after the payment of composition fee will be subject to fulfilment of other terms and conditions required, as per existing provisions.

To allow depression in floor of in the shop-cum-office and the shop-cum-flats in all sectors of the city, a fee of Rs 50 per square foot has been fixed. A minimum of 1.5 feet and a maximum of 3 feet depression will be allowed.

In a significant development, operation of restaurants on the first, second and third floors has been allowed upon payment of 3, 2 and 1 per cent of market value, respectively. The market value on a per square yard basis will be calculated on the same formula as applied in case of 2 and 3 bay shops, the government directions say. No division or partition will be allowed.

In case of allowing glazing of verandahs in shop-cum-offices in Sector 22, a sum of Rs 200 per square feet will be charged, besides fulfilment of other terms and conditions. For calculation purposes, the total carpet area of the SCO on the front and rear verandahs will be taken into account. The area of verandahs on the the first and second floor vary, but the calculation will depend the area covered by the allottee or the owner.

The Administration has also allowed regularisation of irregular sewer connections in all buildings in Chandigarh. This includes residential, industrial, semi-industrial, dhabas, SCFs, SCOs, government buildings, and societies, educational religious and cultural institutions. In case of residential buildings the rates start from Rs 5,000 for 6 marla plots. For 6 to 10 marla, it will be Rs 10,000 and for 10 to 15 marla, it will be Rs 15,000. From 15 marla, to 1 kanal, the charges will be Rs 20,000 and for 1 kanal, it will be Rs 30,000.

In case of societies, it will be Rs 5 per square foot of covered area of each dwelling unit. In case of hotels, the Administration will charge Rs 75,000 and Rs 1 lakh, depending on the size of the place. Similarly, Rs 15,000 will be charged from dhaba sites. Theatres will shell out Rs 2 lakh in case a irregular sewer connection has to be regularised.


SDM calls meeting, fails to turn up
From Our Correspondent

MAJRI (KHARAR), Sept 8— Chaos and anger prevailed at the meeting of sarpanches and lambardars, as the SDM, Kharar, failed to turn up at the meeting called by him, here today. The meeting was to discuss the law and order situation in the villages.

The SHOs of Kurali and Mullanpur were also to attend the meeting but they too were not present at the venue. Instead two lower ranking police officials were seen talking to the invitees. ‘‘They have no power to take decisions, then why have they come here’’, asked a sarpanch.

There are 110 panchayats in the Majari block and representatives of nearly 100 villages reached to attend the meeting. All of them reached the venue well ahead of the schedule time of 11 a.m. They were told the SDM would be reaching. All of them kept waiting for the SDM till 2 pm, but in futile.

‘‘The authorities think we are fools’’, complained Ms Surjeet Kaur, sarpanch of Mastgarh village. Mr Maan Singh, sarpanch of Khedrabad village, said, ‘‘I came here to tell him about the illegal sale of panchayat land in my village’’, and added, ‘‘ I guess the authorities think that we have no work to do’’.

The Gram Sewak and officiating Panchayat Officer, Mr Harmeet Singh, had a tough time placating the invitees. He said he heard the complaints of the invitees and promised to forward these to the SDM.

When contacted, officials of SDM’s office, said the SDM was ‘‘attending a meeting at Ropar’’.


Make city 100 pc literate’
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 8 — The UT Adult Education Department organised a function at Government Senior Secondary School, Mani Majra, here today to mark International Literacy Day. Ms Vineeta Rai, Adviser to the UT Administrator, appealed the community to come forward and join hands to make the National Literacy Mission Project a success. She said it was high time that Chandigarh should join the group of cities with 100 per cent literacy rate.

Senior officers of the Administration, NGOs, sarpanches, representatives from regional resource centre, adult education centre, Punjab University, heads of different schools, nodals, preraks and learners were present. An exhibition displaying different types of vocational training, such as food preservation, soft-toy-making, dress-designing and knitting was also held. A cultural programme based on the theme of literacy was presented by the learners of various centres. Prizes were given away by the chief guest to the winners of different competitions.

The NSS volunteers of Government College of Education, Sector 20, organised a rally-cum-procession to mark International Literacy Day in Kajheri. The rallyists conveyed the message to achieve maximum literacy by holding placards and banners. Dr C.L. Narang, Programme Coordinator, NSS, Punjab University, flagged off the rally from Government High School, Kajheri. Addressing the volunteers, he said it was the responsibility of the young generation to bring about literacy among the masses.

Earlier, Ms Surinder Kaur Tangri, Principal of the school, welcomed the chief guest. She appealed the students to put in their best efforts to educate more and more countrymen in order to eradicate illiteracy and to create awareness among masses about their rights. A survey was also conducted on 400 families of the village by a group of school children between the age group of 6 to 14 years and percentage literacy of the village was calculated.

Government College, Sector 11, also organised a function on the occasion. Dr S.N. Singla, Principal of the college, highlighted the objectives of this day. He emphasised the importance of literacy in our country. He exhorted students to own the responsibility of educating at least one illiterate person of their area or locality.

Later, the students were addressed by Prof Shyam Sunder, Prof VK Deveshwar, Prof Hem Nagpal and Dr Maghar Singh. The speakers emphasised the role of education in life. They stressed the need for the spread of education for coping with various problems of the country.

Earlier, Dr C.L. Narang, Co-ordinator, NSS, PU, said there were almost 45 crore illiterates in the country, who were accounting for the main cause of perpetuating poverty and unemployment. He also said with this large population of illiterates, the progress and development made by the country since independence would be rendered valueless, if not futile.

The day was also observed by the Family Planning Association, SAS Nagar, in collaboration with Lions Club in Guru Nanak Colony. A function to mark the day was organised in Government Primary School. Mr M.S. Midha, Vice-President of Lions Club, SAS Nagar, distributed books among 20 children on behalf of the club. Mr Midha, while emphasising the role of education in improving the status of the people, promised all help for the school and its children.

The Citizens Awareness Group organised a rally of about 100 participants of nine centres run by the District Literacy Council, Chandigarh Administration, in Ram Darbar to observe the day. The rally was flagged off by Mr Saroj Mittal, Principal, Government Senior Secondary School, Karsan. The need of literacy awareness was stressed. Mr Surinder Verma, Chairman of the group, appealed to the residents to send more learners in the centers.

Government College, Sector 46, organised a function in the college to celebrate International Literacy Day. The function was presided over by the Principal, Mr D.P. Singh, and coordinated by Prof Hansraj. More than 300 NSS volunteers took part in the function and pledged to educate people from the rural areas near the college.

The day was also celebrated at Government College for Girls, Sector 11, by the college’s NSS units, which organised a paper-reading contest. A total of 26 students expressed their views on topics like illiteracy as a curse, literacy and economic growth, literacy and social progress, illiteracy and social problems, adult education schemes in India and role of UNESCO in illiteracy eradication.

The NSS volunteers took an oath to follow the slogan ‘each one teach one’. Dr C.L. Narang, Director, NSS, Panjab University, presided over the function. Ms Vijaylakshmi, Principal of the college, gave away prizes to the winners of the contest.

Dev Samaj College of Education, Sector 36, held slogan-writing, poster-making and creative writing competitions on the occasion. More than 50 students of the NSS units of GGS College for Women, Sector 26, visited their adopted village, Raipur Kalan. They held a survey regarding the number of illiterates in the village.

The Adult Education Committee, Sector 38, organised a function to create awareness among the women of slum areas, specially in Sectors 38, 39, 40 and 41. More than 150 women participated in the function. Ms Harjinder Kaur, Municipal Councillor and President of the Sikh Nari Manch, was the chief guest. She spoke about educating the mother to remove illiteracy in the family. The President of the committee, Ms Ravinderjit Kaur, proposed the opening of vocational centres for the adult educated needy. The adult education committee’s executive members pledged to work for the uplift of illiterate women.

The Department of Adult and Continuing Education, Panjab University, celebrated the day at the ICCSR Complex. More than 80 persons, including field workers, students, writers and poets, participated in the function. Dr G.S. Preet, Director, Health Services, Punjab, presided over the function. Dr Ajaib Singh, Director of the department, welcomed the participants.

Dr Preet said some psychological factors were responsible for the sluggish growth of women in India. Prof Jatinder Mohan of the Department of Psychology, Panjab University, explained the importance of International Literacy Day. Prof Rajesh Gill of the Department of Sociology said 90 per cent of women in India were working in the unorganised sector, where they were being denied basic rights. Major Jiwan Tewari, a former Director of the department and an educationist, cited examples of China, Korea and Sri Lanka, advocating the adoption of suitable strategies for child education.


Unruly movie-goers cane-charged
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 8 — The police had to resort to a mild lathi charge to disperse reportedly unruly cinema-goers who had gone to watch the latest Hrithik Roshan-Karisma starrer Fiza at the Piccadily cinema here today.

According to police sources, hundreds of persons had assembled at the cinema hall as a result of which those with tickets had problem getting inside. As appeals to make way failed and pushing and shoving started in a section of the crowd, the cops had no option but to resort to a mild cane charge. Some persons reportedly suffered minor injuries in the stampede.

The show began behind schedule, the sources added.


Mother’s endless wait for justice
By Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 8 — Tears roll down the wrinkled cheeks of Siyawati Devi as she recalls the fateful day of September 12, 1997, when her 15-year-old son Surinder came home bleeding from his school. He had been brutally beaten up by three of his class fellows at Rajput High School, Sector 24, following a minor scuffle over a notebook. Surinder never recovered from that fatal attack, and about 12 days later he succumbed to injuries in Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32.

Since September 24, 1997, when Surinder breathed his last, his mother Siyawati has been engaged in a seemingly lost battle for justice. And while she spends her life making rounds of the district court where the case of her son’s murder is fixed for the past about three years now, the three boys accused of murder namely Lakhwinder Singh, Sanjay and Sohan Lal are out on bail since long. The boys, all residents of Kumhar Colony, were booked by the local police here on December 31, 1997, following a detailed medical report on the cause leading to the death of Surinder. The post mortem report had clearly mentioned: “The boy has died due to severely damaged kidney.”

Though the three boys were arrested by the police and remained in judicial custody for some time, they were later granted bail. Significant to note is the fact that the three accused were arrested much later after the registration of the case of murder against them. The arrests were, in fact, effected only after the parents of deceased approached the National Human Rights Commission which then issued a notice to the IGP, Chandigarh, in the matter.

While the arrests were later effected, the case is nowhere near decision. So much so that Siyawati and her husband Palaram have no idea to whether the case is being heard also or not. The Assistant District Attorney, who was earlier fighting the case on behalf of the state, when contacted today, said that he was now not pursuing the case. “Since the case is in the juvenile court held by the Chief Judicial Magistrate, the ADA attached to that court would now be handling it,” said the ADA who was earlier contesting the case. He added, “I however, know that the case has not been closed.”

But going by the way things are progressing, the case might well be closed due to lack of evidence. Siyawati and Palaram informed that for three years now, they had not been called over for recording of their statements. “Our statements have never been recorded. We don’t even know which court to attend. We just go and sit outside the DA’s office. No one in the courts helps us. We don’t know who is the state’s counsel in this case,” said a dejected Siyawati.

Another confusion over the issue of the three accused being tried as juveniles. Said Siyawati, “My son was 15 when he died, and the three accused were certainly 15 year old or more, but they were shown to be under 14”. While the local police maintains that the three were juveniles and hence were being tried by the juvenile court, independent inquiries in Rajput High School where the three accused studied revealed that they were not less than 14 years when the crime took place. (Seen in this context, the accused did not fall under the Juvenile Justice Act which requires a child to be under 14 years of age.)

While the future of the trial in this case which was registered under Sections 304/34 of the IPC remains uncertain, parents of the deceased can do nothing but sit in the hope that justice will be done.


Downpour disrupts life in city
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 8 — Heavy rain this morning, at the fag end of the Monsoons, disrupted normal life in the city and its surrounding areas.

According to the Meteorological office, the downpour, which started around 11 a.m. lasted about an hour flooding certain parts of the city and affecting the vehicular traffic. Visibility was reduced to just few metres and the motorists had a tough time driving their vehicles even after switching on the headlights.

The 38 mm rainfall led to a fall in the temperature with today’s temperature being 30.06 degree celsius, 1.6 degree celsius below yesterday’s temperature.

As usual, the areas around the roundabouts were the worst-affected. The areas were flooded, putting the road users to a lot of inconvenience as the capacity of storm water drainage system is not adequate. Scores of vehicle users were left stranded as their vehicles broke down in the middle of the roads.

The residents of the low-lying areas in the city, particularly the labour colony residents, were at the receiving end as rain water entered their houses. They could be seen draining out the water even several hours after the rainfall had stopped.


Fire destroys three jhuggis
Tribune News Service

PANCHKULA, Sept 8 — A minor fire broke out here today in the jhuggis housing the permanent labour of the Haryana Urban Development Authority in Sector 21. While three jhuggis with goods and belongings worth Rs 30,000 perished in the fire, the cause of the fire could not be ascertained.

Putting his loss at over Rs 20,000 which includes a television and his cash earnings, Kulbir Singh said, he along with the others living in the colony had gone for work when the incident took place. “We left our homes together as usual and my wife, a maid, went to her work. Though we use a stove in our home, it could not have been the cause of fire. Maybe a short circuit led to the fire is all we can think of,’’ he said.

The three said the maximum loss suffered by them was on account of their savings which had gone up in smoke. “We keep building our savings over the months and go back home down south. We had collected money over the last six months which went waste. We have no greater regret,’’ they added.

The fire was spotted by another jhuggi-dweller in the cluster which has over 30 families staying in the area next to the shopping complex in the sector. The fire brigade was immediately informed and they arrived on the scene well in time to control the spread of the fire. So closely packed together are the jhuggis, that any delay might have reduced them all to ashes. It took over an hour to bring the fire under control.


Privatisation of civic services advocated
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 8 — The economic liberalisation in India provides tremendous opportunities for states and local governments to encourage the privatisation of some of the services of municipalities, said Dr Kamlesh Misra, Director of the Institute of International Management and Technology, Gurgaon, here today.

Speaking at a seminar on Strategies and principles of urban financial management organised by the Mahatma Gandhi State Institute of Public Administration, Punjab, in Sector 26, Dr Misra, said the local governments could be responsible for overall provision and delivery of services. Services such as maintenance of streetlights, maintenance of roads and garbage collection could be privatised in the first phase, he said, adding that such experiments were on in Hyderabad and other cities.

Dr Misra, along with Dr Vinnie Jauhari, has studied the financial position of over 250 civic bodies in Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Gujarat, Kerala, Maharastra, Punjab and West Bengal. He informed that municipalities in Maharastra spent, on an average, Rs 534 per capita, compared to only Rs 57 in Assam. It had also been found that the highest per capita expenditure was in Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Kerala and West Bengal was lower than the average per capita in Maharastra.

About 60 per cent of tax receipts of the municipalities were derived from property taxes in the non-octroi states. Revenue from octroi was a major source of tax revenue in states such as Gujarat, Maharastra and Punjab. Talking about the financial position of civic bodies, he informed that state transfers to municipalities in the form of shared taxes and grants accounted for a high of 68.2 per cent of the total revenue receipts in West Bengal to a low of 9.2 per cent in Maharastra. The shares stood at 40.9 per cent in Andhra Pradesh, 29.2 per cent in Assam, 16.6 per cent in Kerala and 12.1 per cent in Punjab. On the revenue from own sources side, 53 per cent of the total revenue of Andhra Pradesh was accounted for by these sources. The figures for the other states are Assam (70.7 per cent), Gujarat (88.9 per cent), Kerala (83.4 per cent), Maharastra (90.8 per cent) and Punjab (87.8 per cent).

Giving more details, Dr Misra said the municipality with the highest per capita grant in Maharastra received, on an average, over nine times as much for each of its citizens as compared to the highest per capita grant-receiving municipality in Assam. Similarly, the lowest per capita grant of Rs 0.09 was received by a municipality in West Bengal, a state largely dependent on state transfers. Stressing the need for mobilising local revenue sources to strengthen the fiscal conditions of civic bodies, he pleaded that more taxes, such as entertainment and motor vehicle taxes, should be transferred to the local governments.

Naming property tax as a major revenue generating area, he wanted the municipalities to make efforts to broaden the tax net and to lower the tax rates to encourage the payment of property tax. Area or zone-based taxation of property might have greater potential even under the condition of lower tax rates. Assessment of property on fair market rent prevailing in each area of zone and taxing the vacant land more heavily than the structures to discourage speculation in land were the other measures suggested. Mr RC Nayyar, Director of the institute, Dr MS Chauhan, a Fellow of the institute, Mr MP Singh, Commissioner of the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh, Mr Puranjit Singh, MCC Chief Engineer, Mr Manmohanjit Singh and Mr IS Sokhey, MCC Superintending Engineers, Mr HS Sood, MCC Chief Accounts Officer, Mr RK Jain, Joint Director, Economic and Institutional Organisation of Punjab, and Mr Rajiv Moudgil, an SE working with PUDA, were present.


Planning alien to civic body
Tribune News Service

SAS NAGAR, Sept 8 — In its zeal to beautify the town, the local municipal council appears to have swept the planning under the carpet. Lakhs of rupees spent on laying concrete pathways at the cost of the state exchequer is going down the drain as the civic officials appear to be least bothered about the planning part.

The concrete pathways throughout the town have been laid at cost of the essential services like telephones and storm water drains. Any problem with the essential services and the pathways under which they pass have to be removed. Further “careless” uprooting of the pathways make their repair altogether more difficult and expensive. Though council officials say that concrete pathways ensured longer maintenance-free life, the residents lament that it was sheer wastage of money. Mr Bhupinder Singh, a resident of Phase 7, said the pathways had to be uprooted whenever there was a fault in the essential services laid underneath.

In a specific case a recently laid pathway in Phase 4 has been uprooted for laying of telephone cables. Residents apprehend that the repair of the damaged portion of the pathway would take long. In another case, sections of a pathway in Phase 3-A had to be uprooted to repair a blocked sewer line running underneath. A round of the town revealed that there were several sites in the town where the damaged portions of the pathways had not been repaired for months together..

Officials of the Public Health Department, Electricity Department and other agencies involved in laying the essential services say that the council should adopt some practise in laying the pathways so the public money does not go waste.


Army show begins on Sept 14
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 8 — A seminar on “Army - industry partnership”, equipment display and Army show as well as a mela and medical camp are among events being organised by the Western Command to commemorate its 53rd raising day next week.

Briefing mediapersons at Chandimandir today, the Chief of Staff, Lieut-Gen B.S. Malik, said that a seminar-cum-exposition on “Army-industry partnership in the new millennium” would be organised with the aim of providing an interactive forum for the Army and industry to understand each others perceptions and identify areas of concern and cooperation.

“Christened Army-Industry Partnership - 2000”, the seminar is being conducted jointly by the Headquarters Western Command and the CCI on September 14 and 15. The seminar will be inaugurated by the Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal.

The seminar will be followed by an exhibition of various types of military equipments at CII premises, which will be inaugurated by the Governor of Haryana, Babu Parmanand.

The seminar will have four sessions, chaired by senior Army officers and will include eminent personalities from the industry and the Army. The sessions include clothing and allied stores of the Army, spares and overhauling, information technology and communications, and utilisation of trained human resources of the Army by the industry.

The Army show will be held at Panchkula on September 16 and 17, which will include a flypast by helicopters, skydiving by paratroopers, deployment of artillery guns, horse show, dog show, dare devils on motor cycles and martial music by mass bands.

The arms display will include T-72 tanks, BMPs, artillery guns, assault bridges and engineer equipments, infantry weapons as well as weapons captured from Pakistani intruders in Kargil during Operation Vijay and also those recovered from militants in Jammu and Kashmir.

A mela by the Army Wives Welfare Association is also slated to be held on September 16 and 17 at the police parade ground, Sector 5, Panchkula, to create awareness about AWWA activities, provide light entertainment and refreshments. A medical camp is also being organised at the mela to provide medical assistance to ex-servicemen and their families.

A wreath laying ceremony will also be held at the Veer Smriti war memorial on September 15 to honour those who had laid down their lives in the line of duty.


Talk show at Press Club
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 8 — The Women Journalists Committee of the Chandigarh Press Club, Sector 27, will organise a third talk show on “Dowry deaths and daughter’s right in her father’s property” today at 11 am at the club. Ms Brinda Karaat of the National Federation of Women Organisation, will address the issue. Short documentary film will also be shown.


Girl succumbs to injuries
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 8 — A Panchkula resident succumbed to her injuries here today after she was hit by a Haryana Roadways bus near the railway traffic lights.

According to police sources, Isha, a student, was going to her college at about 8 am, when she was hit by the bus from behind. She succumbed to her injuries on the spot. The driver of the vehicle, Janaki Ram, has been arrested. He has been booked under Sections 279 and 304-A of the IPC.

Minor abducted
A Palsora resident reported that his minor daughter had been abducted by some persons of the same colony. According to police sources, Mr Ram Brij reported that his 15-year-old daughter had been kidnapped by Markanda Sharma and Raj Kumar. A case under Sections 363 and 366 of the IPC has been registered.

Room burgled
Dr Tawinder Pal Singh of the Kairon block of the PGI reported that someone broke into his room and stole diamond and gold ornaments and Rs 2,000. A case under Sections 454 and 380 of the IPC has been registered.


Liquor seized
Tribune News Service

PANCHKULA, Sept 8 — The police has recovered 299 pouches of liquor and arrested two persons. The Superintendent Police, Ms Kala Ramachandran, said 234 pouches were recovered from Rajinder Bhagat, a resident of Rampur Siudi, and Rulda Ram of Bhakshiwala. However, Rulda Ram escaped while the other accused was arrested. In Pinjore, Puran Chander, a resident of Naya Gaon, was arrested after 65 pouches of liquor were recovered from him.


Sold out on the “cell”

THE cellular phone, popularly known as the “cell”, is a gadget which has made the world seem small and easily accessible. Truly speaking, the lives of its subscribers have started revolving around this instrument. To say it is fast becoming indispensable would not be an exaggeration.

To promote it further, the cellular services providers are coming up with services which make it more chic and possessable. Don’t be surprised if a youngster is seen typing on the mobile phone instead of a typewriter or a keyboard. He is using the Short Message Services (SMS) to send sweet nothings to his girlfriend.

Mind you, this is just the beginning. “e-mail, fax, internet, mobile banking would soon be a button away on your cell,” says Mandeep Bhatia, Head of Marketing for a telecom company. This would give a city like Chandigarh a global standing.

Apart from availing these international facilities, a subscriber of cellular services in the city and in the state of Punjab can also make use of numerous value added services which make day-to-day life easier and smoother.

Want to know your daily horoscope or book a ticket for the latest movie in town hall? Now you do not need to go to an astrologer or stand in a long queue. This is all possible through the mobile phone clutches in the hand.

Monsoons and snakes slithering out in courtyards and lawns go hand-in-hand. But don’t panic. The Snake Cell headed by an ex-army personnel, an expert in catching snakes, is easily accessible. Call up the cell number and he will be at your doorstep in a jiffy.

Legal and tax related hassles would make even the dead turn in their graves. There are times when a deadline has to be met and there is no ready legal help available. Press three digits on your cellular and advice and guidance will be in your hands, literally.

It is a friend’s birthday or anniversary and you want to send flowers but don’t have the time to go to a florist. Pick up your phone and dial; what are you waiting for!

Cells or cellulars or mobiles are surely here to stay. To what extent a common man’s life is going to be dependent on them, with their international, national and localised services, is anybody’s guess.

— Priti Verma

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