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


BJP workers protest against Satya Pal Jain
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Dec 24 — Simmering discontent in the BJP today spilled on to the streets of Chandigarh with a large group of party workers staging an angry demonstration against a section of party workers who they said were responsible for the defeat of the party nominees for the posts of Mayor and Senior Deputy Mayor.

They were demanding the removal of BJP leader and former MP, Mr Satya Pal Jain, and the councillors owing allegiance to his group. The alleged cross-voting by some members of the group was responsible for the defeat of the ruling BJP-SAD alliance candidates for the two top posts in the last term of the House.

The members of the working committee, at a meeting held soon after, unanimously decided that a committee be constituted to investigate into the causes of defeat and the issue of cross-voting and the report be submitted to the party president within the next seven days. The right of constituting the committee was given to the state party president, Mr Dharampal Gupta. The future course of action will be decided after the submission of the report to the party high command.

Sources reveal that the members were of the opinion that the councillors who had indulged in cross-voting and their group leader, Mr jain should be expelled from the party. Of the 31 members, 27 attended the meeting.

The four who did not attend include Mr Satya Pal Jain, Mrs Savita Sethi, Mrs Asha Jaiswal and Mr Yashpal Labia.

A large number of party workers, including those from colonies and villages turned up in large numbers at ‘kamlam’, the party office and gheraoed the president, Mr Gupta.

They criticised his working style and said that he was liberal in his approach towards the traitors and the party defeat has been the consequence of the same. “All you have to say, when action is sought against the traitors who let down the party is that “we will call a meeting and then decide on the necessary action. But the action is never taken,’’ rued a party workers.

They further pointed out that at this stage the party workers were dejected and if the prevailing situation continues they will not come out to work in the next elections.

Slogans like “Satya Pal Jain murdabad’’ and “party ke gadaron ko, joote maron saalon ko’’ were raised by the party workers and supporters for over two hours. And when the party mayoral candidate Ms Ranjana Shahi, came to attend the meeting, slogans of “Ranjana Shahi zindabad ‘’ rent the air.

Mr Hari Shanker Mishra, president of the labour colony cell of the party, vociferously demanded that Mr Jain and the councillors owing allegiance to his group be expelled immediately. He alleged that followers of Mr Jain were seen congratulating the Senior Deputy Mayor, Mr Gurcharan Dass Kala after his election yesterday at the MC office.

He further said that no injustice will be tolerated for this is the second time that this has happened with the party. “If no action is taken against the traitors till tomorrow, the party workers in large numbers will head towards the high command and meet the All-India party president to seek the expulsion of his Mr Jain and his group of eight councillors.

Agitated councillor, Mr Rajender Kumar, alleged that the sincere and dedicated efforts of the party workers have suffered a serious jolt due to Mr Satya Pal Jain joining hands with Mr Pawan Kumar Bansal and the defeat is on account of a pre-planned strategy. He further alleged that the opposition by Mr Jain was on a larger issue and not just one years Mayor’s post.

The general secretary of the colony cell, Mr Dileep Kumar Sharma, pointed out that the Jain group was responsible for the defeat of the party candidates for the posts of Mayor and Senior Deputy Mayor in 1998 also and the BJP vice president, Mr K.L. Sharma, in the Lok Sabha elections last year. Mr Dinesh Srivastava, president of the Kabari Market Samiti, said Mr Jain has never done anything for party workers. Mr Prabhu Dayal, president of the SC and OBC Morcha accused Mr Jain of bringing down the image of party.

Meanwhile, late in the evening large number of party workers turned up from the villages of Kajehri, Ottawa, Daruah and Hallo Majra. Mr S.P Bansal from Kajehri said that by indulging in cross-voting, the traitors have not only ignored the party whip but have also insulted the party high command. Such members should be expelled, demanded. 


‘Spy’ Roop Lal goes on fast
From Our Correspondent

CHANDIGARH, Dec 24 — Mr Roop Lal, who spent 26 years in Pakistani jails, today sat on an indefinite fast, here at the Sector 17 Piazza. His demands include a residential flat and a plot to establish a detective agency in Punjab.

Roop Lal was arrested in the Sialkot Sector, Pakistan, for spying, along with another 18 Army officers. He was sentenced to death by the Pakistan courts. Roop Lal has alleged that he was refused permission to meet the Punjab Governor by his secretary despite a prior appointment. He is demanding a residential place from the discretionary quota in Punjab so that he could ‘‘ keep serving the motherland’’.

According to sources, Lal had a prior appointment to meet the Punjab Governor but he was denied permission after screening . Sources said that the authorities in Punjab Raj Bhavan found his demand unjustified as the government has no such discretionary quota to allot house in such a case.

Sources close to Lal said after his release from Pakistan jails, he spent most his time in his sister’s house at Delhi. His supporters allege that the Central Government did not pay any attention towards him. They allege that Mr Vinod Khanna, Member of Parliament from his home town of Gurdaspur, did not allow him to stay at his Delhi residence.

Roop Lal was reportedly released from Pakistani jails when the Pakistan Human Rights Commission intervened when he suffered a paralytic attack in 1987.

Supporters of Roop Lal alleged that the police did not allow them to erect tent at the Piazza. So he started his fast in the open. He is accompanied by his younger sister and brother-in-law.

Roop Lal said despite the government’s apathy towards him, he would keep serving his motherland. He want to establish a detective agency in the city to train the youth.

Meanwhile, about 100 supporters of the All-India Crime Prevention Society shouted slogans in favour of Roop Lal’s demand.

The society has pledged its all support to Roop Lal. This was stated by Mr Navjit Brar, chairman of the society, in a press note.


NRI offers to maintain piazza
By A.S.Prashar
Tribune News Service

chandigarh, Dec 24 — An NRI builder, who has made it good abroad in real estate development, has offered to undertake development and maintenance of the pride of the City Beautiful, piazza in the Sector 17 shopping centre.

Mr Balbir S. Brar, who heads a Washington-based company, points out that the city has been planned and built by the world-famous master architect, le Corbusier. “It is unique and till date, remains unrivalled in the world. It is, therefore, sad to see that the Chandigarh Administration and the citizens have not been able to pay due attention to its upkeep and maintenance,” he says. He adds that they owe it to the master architect to ensure proper maintenance of the city.

Designing and construction of a building is as important as the environment and the ambience, says Mr Brar. In India, people tend to concentrate on keeping their houses clean and beautiful and pay little attention to their surroundings. This is what seems to be happening in Chandigarh. People have nice houses but leave their surroundings neglected or expect a cash-strapped UT Administration to take care of it, which is not possible.

“My concern is the surroundings and the ambience. We have beautifully designed plazas and buildings. But they are in a very bad shape, to put it mildly...They are almost like slums. There is still time to do something. I will like to undertake the project of beautifying the commercial area in Sector 17 to begin with. The project will involve landscaping the plaza, provision of good, clean public facilities and of

Continued on page 4 col 5Continued from page 1 col 8

course parking. Landscaping and parking go hand in hand. We can have automatic parking meters, mechanised parking lots where space will be earmarked for the shopkeepers. I will be willing to undertake all the investment of a couple of crore of rupees. Parking garages can also be built in according with the building code of the area,” he says.

If the Administration so desires, I can undertake a demonstration project in one of the sectors and if the Administration approves of it, it can be extended to the entire city. It will be a paying proposition. The income from the project can be shared between him and the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation,” he adds.

Mr Brar has undertaken projects worth over 160 million dollars in the USA during the past 25 years, is the first construction engineer from the South Asian community in the USA. The business has been good and he has built some of the finest building projects in the USA and elsewhere.

Currently in Chandigarh on a visit, he was interviewed by Chandigarh Tribune on Sunday. “We buy a piece of property and then we try to develop a concept before it is built and sold. The concept part is the most difficult and the construction part is the simplest and the easiest,” he says.

Mr Brar says that the Indian construction industry was decades, if not centuries, behind the industry in the US and other developed parts of the world. “Construction industry all over the world has modernised and are using new techniques to cut down costs without compromising in any way on quality and strength and durability. The building costs in India can be cut down by at least 35 per cent if modern techniques are adopted. This will also result in an enormous saving of construction materials like cement etc,” he states.

The bricks which are being used in the construction of buildings in India, he says, are neither eco-friendly nor cost-effective. These consume a lot of energy, use up precious soil and deliver indifferent quality.

Mr Brar hails from Ferozepore. He went to the USA way back in 1956 as a student and qualified as an engineer. He has been building hostels, housing, projects and highly specialised laboratories in the USA.


Musical tribute to martyr Major Dhaliwal
From Our Correspondent

SAS NAGAR, Dec 24 — The ninth Dr M.S. Randhawa Sabhyacharak Mela was organised by the Punjabi Cultural Society at Dasehra Ground, Phase VIII, here today.

The mela was dedicated to the memory of Major J.D.S. Dhaliwal, a resident of Phase VII, who had sacrificed his life during Operation Rakshak.

The show was inaugurated by Mr Baldev Singh Kang, Managing Director of Naraingarh Sugar Mills, Shahzadpur. The chief guest on the occasion was Capt Kanwaljit Singh, Minister for Finance and Planning, Punjab.

People large number had gathered at the mela to listen to their favourite singers.

Sukhi Brar started with a religious song Channa chon chan, gujri da chan. She also sang Tumba nahin kade tunkda, tambe di taar bina, Rang sanduri hai, gori chitti hai, Heer and Mirza.

Two children, Manpreet Golu and Amanpreet Priti, danced to Harbhajan Mann’s popular number Sham sham sham sham sham kardi, kothe te aa jana.

Harbhajan Mann, who had been honoured by the society today, did not perform at the mela as he had to rush to Patiala for a show. However, on request by the organisers he sang Jad teer tor te sahiban ne, marad hoyia mirza ki kehnda before leaving.

Humourists Gurdev Dhillon (Bhajna Amli) and Suman (Sunti) enthralled the audience with their jokes.

Jagtar Patiala sang a song in memory of Major Dhaliwal Jiunde mapiyan de marde jawan kyon.

Paramjit Sidhu (Pammi Bai) sang Jee nahin jaan nu karda ranglee duniyan ton, Sadke tere nachan ton nee.

Among those who enthralled the audience with their performances were Surinder Shinda, Hardeep and Raj Tiwari.

The society honoured song writer, Gill Surjeet, Arjun Award winner Baldev Singh and international cultural artist Professor Rajpal Singh.

Mr Phul Raj Singh, president of the society, presented a memorandum of demands to Capt Kanwaljit Singh. In the memorandum, the society demanded a cultural centre in the town which should be named after Dr Randhawa, a degree college for girls, a senior secondary school in every phase and one for girls only and a memorial to Major Dhaliwal.

Capt Kanwaljit Singh announced a grant of Rs 51,000 for the society. He assured that a bhawan would be constructed in the town. He asked the organisers to look for a proper place and where a statue of Major Dhaliwal could be installed by the government.

The society honoured Ms Ramanpreet Dhaliwal, widow of Major Dhaliwal.


Overwhelming response to coaching tests
By Monica Sharma

Chandigarh, Dec 24 — Coaching tests for higher secondary classes, organised in government schools in the city on every Saturday, have got an overwhelming response from parents and students.

The step for tuitions has been initiated by the UT Education Department. Leading private schools of the city have also started the practice.

Private tutorials have been worst effected by these coaching classes. The loss is ‘tremendous’ as most of the students have stopped opting for the private tuitions. This step has improved the classroom attendance.

A group of ten teachers form a panel for conduct of the examination. They prepare the test and also provide solutions to the questions. The examination were scheduled to take off right from the start of the academic session and the first date was marked as August 5. The students were given ways for perfection in mathematics, biology, physics and chemistry.

The classes have taken a turn from the routine in the sense that they do not cater to the normal board annual examination. The pattern of the question papers was totally changed from the routine for entrance examination to the professional colleges.

The students were given these tests to make them aware of the competitive exams like IIT, CET and board exams. Through these tests the students came to know about the time management, speed factor and above all quickening of thinking process, says Ram Kumar.

The students believe that the coaching has helped them a lot. The coaching they were going through really benefitted them. Some of the students said, “The IIT screening test which was held on December 10 was much easier than the Saturday tests conducted in our schools. Some of the questions were same as given in the schools tests.”

Nitin says the coaching of the schools has helped him a lot. The money problem of paying heavy amount to the tutorials has got solved. These practices should come up in colleges also, he adds.

Shikha Rana, a class XII student, says, “When I appeared in the IIT test, I felt it was really easy and it appeared as it is another Saturday test. I found the IIT test quite easy and it was not a horror for me.”

Anubhav, another class XII student, says, “The coaching given by our teachers really benefitted us. I fared well in the IIT test. I credit it that it was only due to the previous tests held in our schools. Our teachers have also worked quite hard to make this test a success for us.”

By undergoing the rigorous tests the students will perform much better in the competitive exams. A pattern of systematic study has come up through these tests and the students take the studies seriously. Each chapter has been covered thoroughly so that no topic remains untouched, says Sunil Kumar, chemistry teacher in Sector 35.

“Every Saturday all the teachers used to gather after the test at one school and used to discuss all the questions and find out the solutions in the brain storming sessions. We have also grown professionally through the test method. Teachers interact with each other which makes the difference,” says Dr Gulzar Singh, a mathematics teacher.

Parents of students have also welcomed classroom coaching to the students for the competitive exams. This system has reduced the burden from their shoulders. It has helped them financially as well as the problem of from where to get the right coaching to the children has been solved.

Mr D.S. Saroya, DPI (Schools) said the spirit behind this project was to impart quality education to the students on the schools and to relieve them from the clutches of private tutorials. The students were given three-hour test covering the entire syllabus of IIT on November 18 and November 20 prior to the screening test. 


World Punjabi Conference

World Punjabi meet for mending visa rules
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Dec 24 — It was seminar time at the ongoing World Punjabi Conference which entered its third day today. While the organisers had promised that all the seminars, read agriculture seminar, NRI seminar, the West Punjab seminar, seminar on challenges being faced by education in the 21st century and those by Punjab and Punjabiat, will commence and conclude in time, there were certain deviations from the laid path.

The first seminar of the day, which aimed at gathering expert opinion on the problem of plenty and that of a low standard of living of farmers in Punjab, was delayed. This caused rest of the day’s programme to run about two hours behind schedule. But as and when the first seminar started, the discussion was held on the matter of subsidy to Punjab farmers and also on the government’s decision to provide free power to them.

Presiding over the seminar was a small farmer from Ludhiana who made it big in California, Mr Charanjit Singh Baath, known to all as the ‘grape king’. Among other speakers were former agriculture communicator, Government of India, Mr Sukhdev Singh, Mr Surinder Singh Hara from Yamunanagar, Prof A.S. Atwal, former Dean, College of Agriculture, PAU, Ludhiana, and Mr G.S. Shergill, former chairman, Punjab State Education Board. The gathering had Mr Charanjit Singh talking about how he faced the odds to make it big in life. The PAU Vice-Chancellor, Mr G.S. Kalkat, was conspicuous by his absence.

The focus of discussion was on providing better educational facilities for the kith and kin of Punjabi farmers. While Atwal talked positively about those policies of the Punjab Government which aim at ameliorating the conditions of farmers (like direct subsidy and free power), Mr Shergill laid emphasis on diversification of agriculture and more education for children of farmers. He said only 30 to 40 per cent of farmers had land and capital enough to go in for specialised farming like agroforestry. “The rest of farmers have small pockets of land. They are more concerned with better pricing of their produce,” he said, adding that direct subsidy was a very good solution to the problem.

Mr Baath laid emphasis on marketing the product well. Being a member of the association of progressive farmers abroad, he said better marketing was very important. “It is also important to know your market well before starting with any kind of farming. When I left Ludhiana for California, I did not have any educational facilities backing me. I learnt by experience.” He, however, did not rule out the importance of good education for the kids of farmers. He also talked high of the path of diversification being shown by the various research oriented work going on in agricultural universities of the region.

The agriculture seminar ended an hour later to the scheduled time (12.30 pm) and the organisers were quite concerned about how to accommodate the other speakers of the NRI conference. So before declaring this convention open, they requested the speakers to keep their talks limited (they did not wanted lunch to suffer). During the NRI conference, light was thrown on the problems being faced by non-resident Indians. Mr Prem Singh, the founder director of NRI Sabha, presided over the function in the absence of Mr Ujwal Dosanjh and Mrs Geetika Kalha.

Mr Prem Singh focused on the property disputes which many of the NRIs had landed themselves into. Saying that the NRIs were emotionally attached to the land of their birth, he said the government should cultivate a soft corner for them. A mention was also made of the black list under which the government has the power to refuses visas to those who they suspect are in any way linked to the 1984 riots.

Mr Prem Singh said under FEMA, the agriculturist NRIs should be given the right to buy and sell property. He tried to justify his point by saying that 80 per cent of Punjabi farmers were NRIs. “If they are accommodated, they will like to invest in India,” he said. Another idea floated was that NRIS should set up units in which the government also has a share (as in Kerela). “That would minimise chances of risk,” he said.

Present director, NRI Sabha, Giani Resham Singh, lauded the Land Tenure Act passed in 1998 as a milestone in improving the conditions back home for the NRIs. The Punjab Chief Minister featured many a time during his recordings. Mr Avtar Singh Johal gave highlights from his paper on problems of non-resident Indians and persons of Indian origin. In the paper, which has been co-authored by Sohan Singh Sandhu, Indian passport provisions have been viewed in context with NRIs for whom the issue of overstay and passport renewal is a major cause of concern. Here the focus was on reducing the fee for a lost passport to that of emergency passport in India, which is Rs 1500 to Rs 2200.


Punjabi culture has suffered in Pak: Zaman
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, Dec 24 — “There is a need to be aware of the latest advances in information technology and make efforts to internationalise Punjabi, so that, the others could also know about our rich traditions,” said Mr Fakhar Zaman, a former Pakistan minister and head of the Pakistani delegation that is here to attend the World Punjabi Conference. He was speaking at a seminar on Punjabi in the 21st century and the challenges ahead.

He said the Pakistani regimes in the past four decades had done nothing to popularise the language in his country. “During the martial law of General Zia-ul-Haq, all prominent Punjabi writers and intellectuals were put behind bars and those who resisted were punished,” he said.

“It is a virtual linguistic imperialism that has forced about 70 crore Punjabis to converse and write in Urdu which is the official state language. Efforts by us to freely use our mother tongues have so far been crushed. There was a ray of hope during the Benazir Bhutto regime, when nearly 137 MLAs had passed a resolution to speak in Punjabi in the Assembly Hall. However, it was back to square one when Nawaz Sharif took over. It is a healthy sign to see the new generation learning Punjabi,” he said.

Mr Zaman said the fight would continue till Punjabi was made the official language. He said Punjabis here had preserved their traditions well. The former minister also impressed upon the delegates to get out of cliches, develop a new vision and experiment with the mediums. There was need to get classics translated in other languages so that the world could know about Punjabis and Punjabiat, he added.

Mr J.S. Garcha, Punjab Minister for Technical Education, presided over a seminar on Challenges in education in the 21st century. He said there was need to revamp the education policy which had failed to serve the nation and had resulted in unemployment. In this context, IT must be made a compulsory subject in schools, he suggested.

Dr Kehar Singh, chairman of the Punjab School Education Board, said the faulty education policy was the main culprit, followed by the job security the teaching community enjoyed. He said the UNESCO report of 1996 suggested that education be made flexible.

There should be more choices and children could do without the level of English and mathematics that had no practical value in real life, he said. Education should have more choices and should be in tune with the kind of work force the country needed and the individual capacity of students.

He said the policy-makers should shed the notion of making doctors, engineers and management professionals, who comprised just 1 per cent of those taught, and also cater to the average and below average student. In the absence of this, only semi-literate individuals with inferiority complex and little self-esteem were being churned out, he opined. This was colossal waste of natural resources, he claimed. The need of the hour was to have different capsules for various groups, he said.

He stressed the need for making Punjabi compulsory till matriculation and urged the state government to do something in this context. He came down heavily on the lack of coordination between the schools and the universities. There was no gradation levels and the same things continued to be taught at the graduate and postgraduate levels, he said. He said it was sad to see that the universities had failed the nation. There was hardly any quality research, he added.

Earlier, Principal P.S. Sarai lamented the way education was being imparted in the country. There was no standardisation of schools at any level, he said. Anyone could set up a school and there was no check on the quality of education. The parents were not involved and there was no orientation and training of teachers, he rued.

According to him, the situation was worse in government-run schools. It was criminal to waste the precious years of a child who ultimately was neither educated nor equipped to deal with his future, he claimed. The reason behind this was that teachers had too much security and did not do justice to their job and the huge salaries they drew, he elaborated.


Bansal honours Ujjal Dosanjh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, Dec 24 — Mr Ujjal Dosanjh, Premier of British Columbia, Canada, was the guest of honour at a breakfast reception hosted this morning by the local Congress MP, Mr Pawan Bansal, at his residence here.

In his welcome speech, Mr Bansal lauded the achievements of Mr Dosanjh and stated that due to his intellectual capabilities and sheer hard work put in by him over the years in the service of the people of British Columbia coupled with the praiseworthy sense of total devotion and dedication towards his adopted country, he had attained the coveted position. “Every Indian and particularly the Punjabis have the right to feel proud on the achievements of Mr Dosanjh”.

In his brief speech, Mr Dosanjh said that his ascendancy to the premiership of British Columbia was in fact a recognition of the untiring services rendered collectively by a few hundred thousands of Canadian nationals of India origin over the past 100 years. “The Indians have thoroughly mingled into Canadian society and there was no discrimination against anyone”, he said.

Prominent among those who attended the reception included Justice S.S. Kang, Governor of Kerala, Mr Justice J.L. Gupta of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, Ms Vineeta Rai, Adviser to the Administrator, UT, Chandigarh, Mr Rakesh Singh, Finance Secretary, UT Administration, Mr Venod Sharma, a former Union Minister, Ms Harbans Dhillon, the first woman Judge in Canada working as a Judge in provincial court, Vancouver, Mr B.B. Bahl, President, Chandigarh Territorial Congress Committee, Mr Jagmohan Singh Kang, a former Punjab minister, Mr Chaman Sharma, President of the Chandigarh Club, and Mr Amarjit Singh Sethi, General Secretary of the Chandigarh Nagrik Sabha.


Judge Harbans Kaur from Canada is here
By Prabhjot Singh
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH,, Dec 24 — Ms Harbans Kaur Dhillon, the first ever Indian-Canadian woman to become a fulltime judge in British Columbia province of Canada, is here in the city.

A distant cousin of Mr Kewal Dhillon, a noted industrialist of the city, Ms Dhillon was appointed to the Provincial Judicial service of British Columbia last year.

“I was appointed to the Bench when Mr Ujjal Dosanjh was still the Attorney General of British Columbia,” she says. Interestingly both were together at Mr Kewal Dhillon’s house on Sunday afternoon.

But her appointment as a judge was not before she appeared before the Judicial Council of British Columbia for an interview. The recommendations of the Council go straight to the Attorney General. After approval by the council of ministers of the province, the appointment is made public.

“It was Ujjal Dosanjh Premier of British Columbia, who rang me up to inform me of my appointment after the Cabinet had approved it,” she says maintaining that it was a dream come true for her after nearly 12 years of practice as a lawyer with the oldest law firms of Vancouver.

Ms Dhillon, Banso to her friends and relatives, was born in Hong Kong, and had her initial schooling in South East Asia before immigrating to Canada. She did her undergraduate and graduate courses from University of British Columbia before doing Law .

In 1987 she joined a law firm. In between, she was elected a member of the executive of the Vancouver Bar Council. The Council is one of the biggest and has 7,000 members, says Ms Dhillon, maintaining that besides fighting criminal and civil cases in the court, she has also joined a civil Liberties group. “My work, both as a lawyer as well as civil liberties activist was considered before I was called for interview by the Judges and the British Columbia judicial Council,” she said.

“The appointment has made a world of difference to me. Three other Indian-Canadians, all men, judges in British Columbia, were among the first few to congratulate her on her appointment.

My grandfather and grandfather of Mr Kewal Dhillon were real brothers, "she says, maintaining that her grandfather, a retired superintendent of police and touching 90, lives in Bathinda. Her father has moved from Barnala to Patiala and ultimately to Chandigarh.

“I had only some years of education in India. Mostly I have been educated in Canada,” says Ms Dhillon.


Housing body may move court
Tribune News Service

PANCHKULA, Dec 24—The Haryana Group Housing Promoters and Builders Federation has threatened to move court if the Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) did not begin development works in Sectors 23 and 24 which have been delayed for long.

Addressing a press conference, the president of the federation, Mr BK Sanghi, said that despite allotment of land to 39 housing societies in the two sectors two years ago and depositing Rs 15 crore, no development has been carried out in the area.

He alleged that in view of the “irresponsible’’ approach of HUDA, three of the eight societies in Sector 25 are considering the option of pulling out. He stated that the zoning plan of the area had also been delayed and that delaying tactics by HUDA were responsible for soured relations with them.

The president of the Tribune Friends Coop Group Housing Society, Mr Vinod Kohli, said that HUDA had issued a possession letter in May while the zoning plan was approved in August this year. “Possession has no meaning without the zoning plan. In addition, HUDA levied an interest of nearly Rs 9 lakh instead of giving one year moratorium which was unjustified.’’

The President of the Thinkers Coop, Sector 23, Mr J. Kalra, said that the inordinate delay in carrying out development works had resulted in withdrawal of over 50 societies out of the 148 which were allotted land in 1998.

The secretary of the Chief Coop Group Housing Societies, Mr BB Chhabra, said that they had surrendered the plot to HUDA at a loss of 10 per cent earnest money because of their inability to carry out development works as promised.


Residents submit memo
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Dec 24 — The LIG Residents Welfare Association, Sector 41-D, has again drawn the attention of the authorities concerned towards the problems of the sector.

In a memorandum to the local MP, Mr Pawan Kumar Bansal, the association, while demanding the upgradation of model high school, wanted that the reserved and forest areas should be cleaned. Besides, separate post office and dispensary should be built for the sector. Ban on the entry of heavy vehicles in the Sector was also demanded.

The memorandum demanded the development of the parks and a ban on tying of cattle in the parks. Apart from this, the scooter market for the sale and purchase of two-wheelers should be shifted from V-3 road of Sector 41-D and 40-C.

Provision of streetlights in certain parts of the sector, development of greenbelt, and completion of dividing road of Sector 41-B and 41-C near the community centre were major demands listed in the memorandum.


Jacob, Badal send greetings
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Dec 24 — The Punjab Governor, Lieut-Gen JFR Jacob, (Retd) and Punjab Chief Minister, Parkash Singh Badal today extended heartiest felicitations to all Punjabis and Christians on the eve of ‘Christmas’.

In a message, they said. “Let this day promote compassion, love and brotherhood among all, ushering in an era of peace and prosperity in the country,

They called upon all Punjabis to celebrate the festival collectively to strengthen the secular character of India.


2 turkeys released at the lake
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Dec 24 — As a Christmas gift to the city residents, the Managing Director of CITCO, Mr S.P. Singh, today released a pair of turkeys and two pairs of guinea fowls at the Sukhna Lake island.

It was beautiful sight to see the male turkey danced to the beat of drums as “Chhej” and “Jhoomer” artistes performed near the chef, lakeview. The function was organised by the Children’s Alliance for the Protection of Environment (CAPE).

Mr S.P. Singh hoped that with the addition of these birds the number of tourists will increase at the lake.

Mr S.K. Sharma, president of the local unit of Environment Society of India, informed that another pair of black turkey would be released in the lake shortly.


Waste removal project launched
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, Dec 24 — Yuvsatta, an NGO, in collaboration with the local Municipal Corporation, has started collecting segregated waste from households in Sector 15.

Mr Pramod Sharma, president of the organisation, said a truck was purchased with funds made available by Mr Pawan Bansal, MP. The waste would be collected in the truck and taken to dumping and recycling sites. In case the project is successful it would be replicated in other sectors, he added.

Meanwhile, the Kranti Workers Cooperative has been formed for improving the working conditions of ragpickers engaged in collecting waste from households. 


Where has compassion gone, ask scholars
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Dec 24 — Janshakti, a social organisation, organised an open discussion on “India still fighting for its freedom against intolerance” at the Lajpat Rai Bhavan in Sector 15 here today.

Prof N.N. Wig, Professor Emeritus of the PGI, who presided over the discussion, expressed concern at the reduced level of intolerance at the individual, social, communal and gender level.

A retired Professor from the Department of Philosophy of Panjab University, Prof Dharmendra Goel, said intolerance was in-built in humans from ages. Tracing history of intolerance in various religions, he said we should tolerate others with compassion.

Prof Rama Kant Angirus, a former Professor of Kali Das Chair at the PU, said humans identified with ideologies to such extent as to lead to religious and political intolerance.

Dr Harjinder Singh Laltu of the Department of Chemistry of PU said values should be given primary importance in human life. The secretary of the Servants of the People Society felt proud of the tolerance ingrained in Indian philosophy.


Nilgais play havoc with crops
From Our Correspondent

DERA BASSI, Dec 24 — Herd of nilgais are playing havoc with crops in the surrounding villages for the past couple of months forcing villagers to spend sleepless nights in the fields.

Villagers complain that the animals descend from the lower Shivalik Hills in the crop seasons and attack during the night. The animals are frequenting for the past many years and often destroy standing crop of maize, wheat, sugar-cane and other crops.

The affected villages include Kakrali, Mubarikpur, Daffarpur, Haripur, Neembuan, Pandwala, Sundran, Dappar and Samgoli. The animal strike even the nearby areas of Lalru, Dera Bassi and Zirakpur up to the Chhat Bir Zoo.

Farmers have to guard the crops through out the night. They make machans, set off fire crackers and beat drum to keep the animals away.

Mr Ramesh Gupta, a resident of Mubarikpur village, complained that number ‘‘Earlier, their numbers was very less and damages were low. But within a span of three to four years, the farmers have to bear heavy losses’’.


Contests mark carnival
From Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, Dec 24 — On the spot painting, mask making, clay modelling and face painting competitions were the highlights of the second day of the Chandigarh carnival at Leisure Valley in Sector 10 here today. Children performed a play under the guidance of Gurcharan Singh.

However, the carnival spirit returned with performance by Sardool Sikandar in the evening.


Three arrested in molestation case
From Our Correspondent

CHANDIGARH, Dec 24 — The police has arrested three of four car-borne men who allegedly molested a teenager near a famous restaurant in Sector 17, here yesterday. The suspects allegedly beat up the brother of the girl who was accompanying her.

According to sources in the Police Department, Ms Surjeet Kaur along with his son Neeraj and her 18 year old daughter had gone for a dinner to a Sector 17 restaurant. When they came out of the restaurant, four men in a Maruti car began passing comments to the girl, to which Ms Surjeet objected. The boys reportedly did not pay any heed to her warnings.

At this moment Neeraj intervened. The men in car reportedly beat up Neeraj who suffered minor injuries.

The arrested include Pawan Deep Singh, resident of Sector 44, Harsimran Singh, resident of 3BII, SAS Nagar and Happy. A case under the Sections 354, 323, 427 and 34 of the Indian Penal Code has been registered.


Intruder injures 17-year-old
Tribune News Service

PANCHKULA, Dec 24 — In an attempted theft in a house in Sector 8, 17-year-old Sahil Dogra was injured after a miscreant attacked him with a rod on the night of December 22.

Relating the incident, Sahil said he saw a man enter his room. Thinking it was his father who had come to wake him up, he asked what time it was. Instead of answering to him, the man tried to escape his eye by swooping.

“Suspicious, I got up and went in the direction of the man. Probably standing in wait of me, the man attacked me in the abdomen with a rod. I cried out in pain as the man attempted to escape,” he said.

Hearing his cries, the Dogras, sleeping on the first floor, made their way to where the son was sleeping alone on the second floor. Finding him in pain as he tried to explain what had happened, Dr Ramesh Dogra, his father, rushed to the terrace and caught a glimpse of the fleeing intruder. All attempts to nab him failed and he managed to escape.

The police was informed of the incident and a spot inspection was carried out by the police. Though no clue is available as to how he gained entry to the top floor of the house, theft is suspected to be the motive of the crime.

An attempt to kidnap the victim was made in October this year from near the market in Sector 8. Sahil, however, managed to escape from the clutches of the kidnappers in Samrala. The motive of the kidnapping was not known. 


Drug related crime around city
From Our Correspondent

MULLANPUR-GARIBDAS, Dec 24 — The increasing number of thefts by youngsters on drugs have become a cause of concern in villages around Chandigarh. During the past three months at least nine such cases have come to light in these villages. Though the Punjab police has not registered any case till date, senior officers confirm that investigations into the matter were on.

On Friday night, alleged drug addicts broke into the Primary Health Centre here and ransacked the premises. They reportedly tore the boxes containing schedule H medicines and ‘‘took away some of these”.

An employee at the centre said it was the third incident of theft in the centre. Earlier, thieves had taken away medicines and other things.

Three weeks ago a thief — allegedly a drug addict — broke into a village gurdwara and took away money from the golak. He was later apprehended by residents of Tira village (Kharar).

Villagers also say youngsters from Chandigarh, Panchkula and SAS Nagar frequent the area in search of hemp. They also buy schedule H drugs from chemists of the area.

A Punjab police official on condition of anonymity admitted that such cases do come to their notice but most of the time they were let off after stern warning.


Mani Majra girl missing
From Our Correspondent

CHANDIGARH, Dec 24— The Mani Majra police station has received a complaint about an abduction of a girl by an unknown person yesterday. Mr Jang Prashad of Indira Colony reported that his daughter has been missing since she went for her class yesterday.

A case under Sections 363 and 366 of the IPC has been registered.

Two arrested
The police arrested two persons in an assault case, here on Sunday. Mr Pal Singh of Dadu Majra Colony reported that four persons of his colony trespassed into his house and assaulted him. The complainant also alleged that they threatened him.

Two alleged accused named Ram Asara and Kala have been arrested while two others namely Romi Krishina and Sarswati are still at large. A case under Sections 147, 149, 452, 323 and 506 of the IPC has been registered.

One injured
Mr Ram Sukh, a rickshaw-puller, was hit by a car on the dividing road of Sector 45 and 46, here on Saturday. He was admitted to the PGI. Jorge Dass, driver of the car, was arrested. A case under Sections 279 and 337 of the IPC has been registered. The driver was later released on bail.

Case registered
The police arrested Nafe Singh of Palsora and Bal Krishan of Sector 22 for drinking liquor at a public place on Saturday. They were arrested from near the Aroma petrol pump parking, Sector 22. A case under the Excise Act has been registered.

Scooter stolen
Mr Devinder Kumar, a resident of Sector 41, reported that his scooter (CH O1-H-4008) was stolen from his residence, here on Saturday. A case under Section 379 of the IPC has been registered.

Scibe injured
The car of an Editor of Northern News was damaged when it was hit by an army truck, here on Sunday. According to police sources, the truck was apprehended by the police. Ms Nimmi Sandhu was driving her car when the tuck hit it from the left side at the roundabout of Sectors 46, 47, 48, and 49.


Bootlegger held
The local police has arrested a person named Jagar Ram of Jhujhar Nagar village and seized nine bottles of liquor from near Behlolpur village. It has also registered a case under the Excise Act.

Four hurt
Four persons were injured in two road accidents near here. According to the police, one person was injured when a bus (PB-12-D-9550) collided with a Maruti van (CH-0I-H-0134) near Mundi Kharar village. Mr Harjit Singh, his wife and another person were injured when his scooter collided with car (CH-0I-1411) near Daon village. The police has registered a case.


PUDA-BoP tie-up for Mohali plots
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, Dec 24 — The Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) and the Bank of Punjab have entered into an agreement to finance the earnest money for the residential plots that have been floated by PUDA in the five new sectors of SAS Nagar. The agreement was approved by the Chief Minister, according to an official spokesman here today.

Giving details, the spokesman said 10 per cent earnest money payable at the time of the application was in the region of Rs 1.80 lakh for one kanal plots, whereas the amount was more than double for two kanal plots. Under this agreement, the bank will finance the earnest money to the prospective applicants under its own terms and conditions. The applications will be processed by PUDA along with the others and no preferential treatment will be given to these. However, in case an applicant was successful in the draw of lots, the letter of intimation of allotment shall be sent to the address of the bank although the letter will continue to be in the personal name of the applicant. Similarly, in case of the applicant not being successful in the draw, the refund cheque will be issued in the name of the applicant in person but delivered to the bank.

The spokesman called upon the prospective applicants to make use of this scheme. As many as 18 branches have been nominated by the bank for the scheme. The Spokesman also said in view of the “rousing response to the scheme”, the last date for the closure of the scheme would not be extended beyond January 2.

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