Monday, January 8, 2001,
Chandigarh, India
C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Rs 20 crore sought from Centre for IT set-up
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, Jan 7 — The Information Technology Department of Chandigarh Administration is sending a detailed demand to the Union Ministry of Information Technology (MIT) seeking a sum in the range of Rs 20 crore for setting up of IT related infrastructure in the city.

A detailed proposal named ‘‘ Smart City — Chandigarh ’’ is being sent to MIT after the ministry asked the Administration to send details of work and projection in the IT sector. Apart from the financial assistance the Administration is also seeking intellectual help from MIT in setting up various projects like the IT park in Kishangarh and paraphernalia for ‘e-governance’ to link offices, sources in the Chandigarh Administration said.

MIT wrote to the Administration asking for more details after the UT Administrator, Lieut Gen J.F.R. Jacob (retd), while speaking at the Prime Minister’s conference in Delhi a few months ago, asked that Chandigarh should be made a model IT city.

On the other hand , the IT Department has sent a long list of amendments which are required in the labour laws. These include allowing longer working hours and also allowing women to work in the night shifts. Besides taking the IT sector out of the industry sector. The Chandigarh Administration is also set to allow setting up of offices of IT companies in residential areas and necessary amendments in the building bye laws have been mooted.

Initially this will be allowed in houses of 2 kanals or more. For this the Urban Planning Department has been asked to identify areas which have ample parking space.

The Administration is also moving to make the IT Department into a corporation which is likely to cost Rs 5 crore. The Corporation will have a Managing Director and other officials as any other corporation. A formal approval has been given by General Jacob.


Cold wave claims fifth victim
From Tribune Reporters

CHANDIGARH, Jan 7 — Cold wave conditions continued to prevail in the city and its surrounding areas today also as residents woke up to a foggy morning. The fog lifted around noon but daytime temperatures continued to be below the normal average for this time of the year.

Meanwhile, the cold wave reportedly claimed its fifth victim today. the victim's body was found in Mauli Jagran village, here.

According the police the victim had slept in the open after getting drunk last night. The deceased was in his early thirties.

Ruling out the possibility of foul play, senior police officers, when contacted, maintained that the death was "due to natural reasons only". The body has been sent for post - mortem examination.

Earlier,on Saturday, Joginder Singh, employed with a dhaba in Sector 37,had died due to "the sudden chill in the air". An unidentified beggar was found dead in Sector 17 market on January 2. The death, senior police officers maintained, was also due to "natural reasons".

On December 29,2000, a rickshaw-puller was also found dead outside a showroom in Sector 22 in the morning. According to senior police officer Rajinder was suffering from tuberculosis. On December 9, the body of an unidentified beggar was found in the Mani Majra Motor Market. Police officials had claimed that the death was due to cold weather.

The maximum daytime temperatures was recorded at 15.4 degrees celsius, which was 5 degrees below the normal average for this time of the year. The temperatures were a shade more comfortable than yesterday’s 14.2 degrees celsius.

The local meteorological office said the fog and mist would prevail tomorrow morning also. The temperature on Tuesday morning was expected to be 5 degrees celsius, the meteorological office said.


Pay Pak back in same coin, say ex-defence
top brass
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 7--Under the auspices of the Servants of the People Society, Jan Shakti organised an open discussion on "Kashmir: the peace initiative" at the Lajpat Rai Bhavan in Sector 15 here today.

While presiding over the discussion, Maj-Gen Rajinder Nath (retd), welcomed the peace initiative of India. He, however, added that as India had "lost" several times on the negotiation table in 1947,1965 and 1971 he hoped that history would not repeat itself this time.

Flaying the policy of Pakistan to bleed India by thousand cuts through infiltration, ISI activities and cross-border terrorism, he wanted a check on Pakistan's attempts to clear Kashmir of all non-Muslims.

Air Marshal Randhir Singh (retd) wanted the adoption of an offensive strategy and outlook in dealing with the Kashmir problem. The proactive policy on Kashmir should not remain within the forewalls of Parliament but should be given a practical shape, he said.

Col P.K Vasudeva (retd) believed that insurgency should be met with counter-insurgency and guerrila warfare with counter-guerrila warfare. He lamented that India was lacking in strategic defence planning.

Mr Onkar Chand, Secretary of the Servants of the People Society, condemned Pakistan's designs to capture Kashmir. He said the Indian Muslims should support a secular democratic Kashmir.

Prof PP Arya, convener of Janshakti, wanted a meaningful dialogue to continue to achieve permanent peace in the region. Both the countries should go in for peace initiative on their own rather than under international pressure.

The meeting passed a resolution that there should be no compromise on the existing borders of India. It also passed a resolution that major communities of the state, including the Kashmiri Pandits, be involved in a meaningful peace process. It also condemned the uprooting of people from the state on religious basis and demanded their rehabilitation.


White-collar crime up 
Tribune News Service

SAS NAGAR, Jan 7 — The town has registered a substantial increase in the cases of white-collar crime. Police records reveal that at least 57 cases of cheating and fraud were registered in 2000 as compared to 30 cases in 1999 — a 47 per cent increase, with 17 cases involving crores of rupees being registered against officials of Punwire alone.

Some cases of duping of gullible persons trying to emigrate abroad were also reported. Closely following white-collar crime were road accidents, both fatal and non-fatal. A 37 per cent increase in the road mishaps was recorded during last year over 1999. Expressing concern over the increase in road accidents, the Superintendent of Police, Mr G. S. Chauhan, said several measures were being adopted to enforce traffic rules and make the roads safer in the new year.

An increase in the vehicular traffic on the roads apart, faulty design of the major road junctions was seen as a cause of trouble by the traffic police. The Phase 7 and 8 traffic lights and the Kumbhra junction on the Chandigarh- Sohana road, the PTL traffic lights, traffic lights of Phase 3 and 5, Frenco traffic lights in Phase 2 and PCA lights of Phase 9 were quoted as some of the major accident-prone areas in the town.

Alarmed at the spurt in the number of road accidents at the Kumbhra traffic lights, the junction where the Chandigarh -Sohana highway meets the road leading to the local bus stand, residents of Sector 70 had recently organised an akhand path in the memory of the those who lost their lives in mishaps at the junction.

At least seven murders took place in 2000 as compared to 1999. The police remains clueless about an unsolved murder case of a jeweller in Phase 7 here in May last. The police was on several occasions, close to arresting the assailants in the murder case.


College lecturers’ recruitment age
Admn ignores Centre’s directive
By Chitleen K Sethi
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, Jan 7 — More than two years after the government of India passed the notification regarding the increase in the upper age limit for recruitment, the Chandigarh Administration has failed to incorporate it into its set of recruitment rules for college lecturers, the latest edition of which, the administration notified in February 2000.

This, however, is not just the first miss of this kind by the administration. Rules remain unimplimented even after 10 years of the UT Administration having formulated, notified and gazetted the recruitment rules for colleges in the city for the first time, with an aim to replace the 1937 rules.

While the new DPI (Colleges) UT Administration is hopeful that the latest set of the recruitment rules are foolproof and worth implementing , the fact remains that with the GOI orders the upper age limit of those who can apply for lecturership in the city’s government colleges had been increased from 35 to 37 years and the administration’s failure to incorporate this order debars many from applying for the new posts advertised.

Such earlier misses have not just ended up in the administration being dragged to the court of law at least twice on different matters in the past 10 years, but have also raised serious doubts regarding the sincerity of the administration in giving a fair deal to all those who have desired to be recruited as lecturers in the city’s government colleges.

The latest in the line of misses in the latest set of rules notified in January, 2000 and gazetted in February, 2000, is the crucial order of the Government of India notified in December, 1998, pertaining to the increase in upper age limit by two years and applicable to “all cases of direct recruitment to any central civil service or civil post under the Central Government for which action for recruitment is initiated through open advertisement or otherwise before the 1st day of April, 1999.”

The Chandigarh Administ-ration’s Department of personnel endorsed this order on March 15, 1999, and yet failed to incorporate it into the Rules of Recruitment it notified almost 10 months later. Even the advertisements issued by the administration for recruitment of lecturers through the UPSC published on April 10 and 24, 1999 did not lay down the increased upper age limit in accordance with the GOI orders. These advertisements were quashed later by an order of the court, on a different issue, and the administration issued a corrigendum on the advertisements in accordance with the court orders as late as June 2000, but again no mention was made of the increased upper age limit. 


District courts lawyers' strike today
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, Jan 7 — Lawyers of the local district courts will abstain from work tomorrow in protest against the removal of three canteens functioning inside the court complex by the UT Administration.

Mr N.K. Nanda, president of the District Bar Association, said the action of the UT Administration was wrong. This was more so when viewed against the background of the fact that eight such canteens were operating in the High Court complex.

They had neither been declared illegal nor removed. It was not clear why the Administration had singled out district courts for its attention. He also pointed out that the district courts received 3000 to 4000 visitors every day. Many of these needed the services of canteens, he added.


Chhatwal for civil service board system
By Yoginder Gupta
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 7 — The time has come to constitute civil service boards in all States to prevent the political leadership from using postings and transfers as tools to punish and reward inconvenient and convenient officers, as the case may be.

So feels Mr S.J.S. Chhatwal, a former Chairman of the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC), who is here these days on a private visit to City Beautiful.

In an exclusive interview with TNS Mr Chhatwal said the civil service boards, which should comprise senior civil servants of the state concerned, should forward a panel of officers for a particular post to the political leadership, which would have the liberty to pick any officer from the panel.

Since in a democracy the right of the political leadership to appoint officers cannot be taken away altogether, Mr Chhatwal says it should be made mandatory for the political leadership to assign reasons in writing if it chooses to appoint someone from outside the panel. Both the recommendations of the board and the reasons assigned by the political leadership for not adhering to these recommendations should be transparent and open to the public.

Mr Chhatwal, who joined the UPSC as its member in January, 1991, and retired as its Chairman in 1996, says the system of civil service Boards will make it difficult, if not impossible, for the politicians to play with the careers of the officers.

Mr Chhatwal joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1955. In his 36-year service span, he remained Indian High Commissioner to Canada. He was also the head of Indian missions in Malaysia, Kuwait, South Korea and Sri Lanka. He was the Indian representative in Cuba during the missile crisis in the early sixties.

He was the first Indian Foreign Service officer to be nominated to the UPSC. After retirement, Mr Chhatwal has been associated with a number of Delhi-based non-government organisations working in various fields. He is the coordinator of a think-tank on international affairs. He is also associated with another think-tank on public administration.

Mr Chhatwal says for the past one and a half decades, more and more people with a rural background are making it to the civil services. The monopoly of certain universities and educational institutions over the civil services has been broken, which is a welcome change. He says the change has come because now people from the rural areas have an opportunity to study in cities. Though the civil services are still preferred, people from the urban areas are now joining fields like industry, trade and financial institutions. For the good of the country, like the civil services, these fields, too, need intelligent persons.

Mr Chhatwal says another welcome change is that with the spread of education among women, members of what was considered hitherto as the weaker sex are joining the civil services in a big way. It is a pleasant surprise that a large number of women aspirants want to join the Indian Police Service.

“The cake of the educated and intelligent young generation is growing in size. Hence, brighter people are joining not only the civil services but other fields also. I do not agree that now second-class students are joining the civil services,” says the former diplomat.

He feels that the selection process is too academics-oriented. There is need to change the selection process, which has always laid stress on academic excellence right from the days of the Indian Civil Service (ICS). The stress on academic excellence may be justified in the past. Experience shows that a person, who may be excellent in academics, may not necessarily make a good administrator.

Mr Chhatwal says experts in fields like psychology should be associated with the selection process, particularly in the interviews, so that it can be judged whether a person possessed the qualities necessary to make a good administrator.

He says the functions of a District Magistrate have undergone a change. He is no longer a mere revenue-collection agency or concerned with law and order. He regrets that most of the bureaucrats still consider themselves to be the rulers and not the providers of service to the people. This colonial mindset must be changed through training and by example set by peers. The training must inculcate an element of service among the civil service probationers. The training should not concentrate on academics alone. The purpose of the training should be to impart the qualities of leadership and the spirit of service to the bureaucrats in the making.

Mr Chhatwal says the public is like a client and a bureaucrat must provide it the service for which he is being paid. To make bureaucrats responsive, he suggests that at least in the case of those officers who work in public utilities like the milk supply scheme and public health, some creditable and well-known NOGs working in the relevant field should be consulted while assessing the performance of the officers.


Golden Forest offices start functioning
From Our Correspondent

CHANDIGARH, Jan 7 — Offices of the Golden Forest group of companies, which were sealed by the Punjab Police Vigilance Bureau last month, business last night.

According to company’s defence counsel, all the offices have reopened on the basis of a case filed by the company with the Mumbai High Court. The Punjab Vigilance Department has permitted the company to open the offices in view of the Mumbai High Court order whereby a private receiver has been appointed to sell the property and to disburse it among the investors.



RAIN disrupted the New Year-eve celebrations last week, which had been planned for a long time, but nobody is complaining. People had been praying for the rain for such a long time that when it finally came, it was welcomed with a sigh of relief.

The rainfall, the first of the current winter season so far, not only induced the first snowfall of the season in Shimla, but also brought cheer to the farmers of the region who had been anxiously scanning the sky for the much-needed bounty.

In the absence of the rain in the plains and snow in the hills, the weather had remained unusually warm throughout November and December, provoking “roadside experts” to hold forth on the perils of global warming and environmental degradation.

They have now been silenced by the rain, which, though not heavy, has been extensive and somewhat adequate. It has touched off a cold wave in the region, claimed a few lives, given the hosiery industry something to cheer about, besides giving rise to fog on some days and an overcast sky on others. Shimla had another round of snowfall on Saturday. In the plains, even though the sky remained overcast, it did not rain.

Grand mela

The recently concluded 53rd annual conference of the association of otolaryngologists of India at the PGI had all the trappings of a grand mela. Notwithstanding the huge attendance by the ENT specialists from all over the country and abroad, accompanying wives and children added to the milieu.

Interestingly, even the sponsors, which included some major pharmaceutical companies, had put up stalls for entertainment of the families while the delegates attended the extensive three-tier very hi-tech, hi-tech and basic scientific sessions. There were tambola stalls, and targets for darts, painting and drawing material for the children, an area to relax — with manjis, moodhas and, believe it or not, a madari replete with his bandar.

Falling vacant

With the Adviser to the UT Administration, Ms Vineeta Rai, having been posted as Additional Secretary in the Union Urban Affairs Ministry, the topmost bureaucratic post in the Chandigarh Administration is set to fall vacant on January 12. The Adviser is departing on that day. Already during the week, the corridors of power in UT Secretariat located in Sector 9 have been buzzing with activity of the gossipy kind as the change of guard will result in newer equations among the top four officials, meaning the Administrator, who is also the Governor of Punjab, the new Adviser, the Home Secretary and the Finance Secretary.

Every day “gupshup” is exchanged. And at times a word uttered by some official becomes a point of detailed discussion by evening as each piece of new information on the new Adviser is lapped up and exchanged among officials with scribes on the Administration beat joining in.

Hectic lobbying is also under way for the post. The Union Home Ministry first cleared the name of Mr K.M. Sahni, a 1969 batch IAS officer of the UT cadre. But the officer, who has just been relieved of his charge as Finance Secretary to the Delhi Administration, is said to be disinterested in the job. If the MHA does not appoint a new Adviser then it is obvious that the work will be handed over temporarily to the seniormost officer, that is Ms Neeru Nanda.

Mangoes in winter

Mangoes in winter? strange, but true. It is a New Year gift for Mr Ashok Singla, a Sector 17 resident of Panchkula. Laden with five bunches of three to four pieces each, the tree was planted by the family 10 years ago which started bearing fruit about six years ago.

The unique thing is that it had been bearing fruits for the past four years regularly in the month of October. The mangoes ripen by this time of the year every season.

Mr Singla claimed that the mangoes, weighing about 100 gm each, ripen at the fag end of the year. Last year, we celebrated the new year by distributing mangoes to our neighbours, he added.

A similar case of unseasonal mangoes has also been reported by Mr DM Kapoor of Sector 8 of Chandigarh. News of mangoes in winter have also poured in from different parts of the city and surrounding areas.

Blood vessels run dry

“Can you please request the Income Tax Commissioner to relax in the adjoining room,” was the request made by the doctor supervising a blood donation camp organised by the Lions Club here recently.

“But, why the ITC? He is our chief guest!!,” responded an inquisitive organiser.

“You see, we are having problems. Blood vessels of most of the donors have run dry in the presence of this IT man,” retorted the doctor. The organiser got the hint and politely requested the chief guest to move to the next room for tea and refreshments.

This anecdote was narrated by Mr Jaspal Bhatti while participating in the annual cultural programme organised by the Central Revenue Department here in the city.

Come again?

The heavy voice of a cop cracked over the telephone: “Jai Hind sir, what can I do for you ?” Polite cops are not so easy to find. And when a reporter come across one, he wants to get the maximum out of him.

Encouraged by the police official’s “soft attitude”, the correspondent asked: “What about the case pertaining to that lady’s death. Have you lodged a first information report? Heard her family is alleging murder”.

“No, no, sir. Nothing of that sort. Hers was a natural death. No indications of any foreplay, sir”.

“What?” The reporter questioned. “No, foreplay suspected, sir”, the cop repeated. The reporter was baffled till he realised “no foul play” was what the policeman wanted to say.

Convocation confusion

Last fortnight was a busy one for the Panjab University Vice- Chancellor, Dr K. N. Pathak, with the convocation to organise and conduct. It was the first convocation of his career as the Vice-Chancellor and things were not as perfect as they could have been. The PU Registrar and the Vice-Chancellor were constantly discussing what to do next while the PU Chancellor, also the Vice-President of the country, waited to know from them about what to do.

Since the complete ceremonial tradition was being followed by the book, the whole affair initially looked extremely artificial and stiff. But then there were some lighter moments too when the VC’s traditional convocation headgear unceremoniously landed at his feet and he let out a full throated laugh.

Vineeta who?

The Adviser to the Administrator, Chandigarh Administration, Ms Vineeta Rai, was the chief guest at a function at a local catering college. When the awards to the runnersup were being presented by another guest, the name Vineeta was called out and our ever alert Adviser was on her feet all ready to do her duty till she realised that Vineeta is the name of a winner who was to be awarded. Like a good sport, she had a good laugh and sat down waiting for her turn to give away the prizes.

Ms Rai that day showed a lot of interest in the cookery contest for which she called. She enquired about all the ingredients that had gone into the prize winning dishes and how many calories they had, how these had been cooked etc.

For record

Camera-conscious Dr C.S Rao, Superintendent of the Police, Panchkula, has no qualms about preparing for a photo-session anytime and everytime, even if it means pausing during a press conference for the perfect look.

Visibly relaxed, Dr Rao was doling out crime statistics of the district at the yearend press conference when a few photographers walked into his room. Immediately, the note on his table was forgotten as he hurriedly picked up his cap and began adjusting it on his head even as a smile crossed everybody’s face.

Much to everybody’s surprise, he had no hesitation in admitting: ”If they have to photograph me, I might as well look prim and proper”.

Dr Ajmer Kaur

One of the oldest woman doctors the city has known, Dr Ajmer Kaur, died last month. She was a Chief Medical Officer (CMO) of the General Hospital, Sector 16, when she retired in 1965.

The 93-year-old lady doctor had served with the Punjab Government in places like Nabha and Faridkot and was a hit with members of the public wherever she worked. She had done her schooling from Lahore and later on went on to study medicine with distinction from Lady Harding Medical College, Delhi, and was also awarded the gold medal.

Dr Kaur is survived by her husband, Dr Gurdev Singh, a former Deputy Director, Punjab Health Services, two sons and two daughters.

Future belongs to....

Dr M.S Gill, Chief Election Commissioner of India, is all praise for the efforts of the vernacular reporters and their style of writing. He was in the city last week on the first death anniversary of his father, Col. Partap Singh Gill, former Governor, Daman and Diu.

“As one of the ‘Englishwallahs’ myself, I do today strongly believe that it is the vernacular press which swings the opinion of 100 crore Indians. They all have very big sales and in frugal India each paper is read by four or five people, says Mr Gill.

“The vernacular reporters, in my view, writing in their own languages invariably write better stories. They also put across my views accurately, and in my language.’’ Therefore, I have to say to all the “fuddy-duddies” (from my generation) that our days are gone and the Daler Mehndis of India have arrived.

— Sentinel


Water pressure low in Sector 61
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 7 — The Residents Welfare Association of 504 MIG flats, Sector 61, has complained of low water pressure for the past several days.

According to a press note, the water does not reach the top floors. Besides, water comes at a very low pressure on the ground and first floors and the tanks remain empty resulting into lot of inconvenience to the residents. Apart from this, the muddy water has become a health hazard for the residents.

It may be recalled that the tubewell installed for Sector 61 was also now shared by the newly-constructed EWS/LIG flats in Sector 52. The residents demand that a separate tubewell should be installed for Sector 52 as the existing tubewell cannot meet the requirements of both the sectors.



Road Safety week concludes
Tribune News Service

PANCHKULA, Jan 7 — The “Road Safety Week,” being observed in the city since January 1, concluded with a challaning drive, here today. Beginning in the morning, violators were challaned for not adhering to traffic rules till 7 pm on the road dividing Sectors 7 and 8.

The SP, Dr CS Rao, said the drive had continued throughout the week at different points in the city identified as “trouble spots”

Primarily, the drive targeted two-wheeler riders without helmet. Dr Rao said though the special drive had concluded but, he would carry it further provided there was manpower available and no other programme came up. 


Bishop inaugurates church
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 7 — The Navjeevan Church, built by the Good Shepherd Province of the Salesians of Don Bosco, was inaugurated by the Bishop of Shimla-Chandigarh, Rev Gerald J. Mathias, at Sector 24-B here yesterday.

The church was built by the Salesians in order to commemorate the Great Jubilee 2000 through the Fratelli Dimenticati Foundation. The foundation has made generous contributions towards the completion of this project.

The church is being visualised as a resource centre for spiritual experience and growth as persons in their chosen career. According to an official press note, the church has been conceived and given shape by Mr S.D. Sharma and the interior of the church has been designed by Ms Shivani Sharma.

The construction methodology of this structure is new and unique. The sloping walls are built with a steel frame cradling; the main column free prayer hall is kept single floor and the residential area has been arranged in three levels to fit in well with convent needs. Confirming with the church ethics, the exterior is clad with brick tiles.


Egan is Grand Master
From Our Correspondent

CHANDIGARH, Jan 7 — Dr Pritam Singh Egan was installed as the Grand Master at the annual meeting of Grand Lodge of Upper India, held at the Freemasons Hall, Sector 18, here today. He was also given Order of Service to Masonry, the highest award in the organisation.

Speaking on the ocassion, the new grand master lauded the contributions of the organisation in the region. He asked the members to make their contributions to the society. He replaced Mr M.W. Bro Ajit Singh Ranauta.

The Grand Lodge presented a medal of 50 years long-term service to the Craft to Col Jagjit Singh Chima, a 40-years-medal to Col Dr Dhan Singh Thind and 25-years- medal to Maj-Gen Dr R.N. Dogra, Mr Shamsher Singh Mand, Mr Jagjit Singh Paik and Mr Kapil Dev Joti.

At the meeting Dr K S Thind, Master of Lodge Yadvindra 21, was installed as the Senior Grand Warden, Dr Surjan Singh as Deputy Grand Master, Mr Kamaldeep Singh Egan as Grand Treasurer and Mr Rakesh Mittal as Grand Secretary.


7 join Brahma Kumari mission
From Our Correspondent

CHANDIGARH, Jan 7 — Seven women dedicated their lives to the Brahma Kumaris Ishwariya Vishwa Vidyalaya at a ceremony held at Rajyoga Bhavan, Sector 33, today.

An interaction with sisters revealed that their decision to convert as Brahma Kumari was initially taken as surprise by the member of their families. Sister Neelam said “In 1993 I joined the ashram. It took me and my family many years to take the decision, but today all our doubts were cleared.”

Another sister Savita, who was working as IT teacher, came to know about the services done by Brahmakumaris from her student. ‘‘I was so much influenced that I decided to join”, she said.

The oath taking ceremony started with Brahma Kumari Vasuda, who was followed by Poonam, Rajesh, Neelam, Savita, Suahma and Harabander. The ceremony was presided over by Brahma Kumari Achal, zonal chief, covering Chandigarh, Punjab, Haryana, Himachal and Jammu and Kashmir.

Among others who present on the occasion were Brahmakumar Aamir Chand, vice-chairman of the All-India Social Service Wing of the Rajyoga Education and Research Foundation, the Mayor, Mr Raj Kumar Goyal, and the former Inspector-General, Mr S.K Singh.


Public places raided, 24 held
From Our Correspondent

CHANDIGARH, Jan 7 — Hotels, guest houses, pubs, eating joints and other public places were raided by the local police yesterday night to check the presence of anti-social elements. Under a special drive, the police arrested at least 24 persons from the eastern sectors of the city. As many as 186 stranger rolls were also issued.

According to Dr Sagar Preet Hooda, Assistant Superintendent of Police (East), who supervised the drive, the raids were conducted on the basis of prior intelligence reports. The Chandigarh police has launched such drives after receiving instructions from Mr Parag Jain, Senior Superintendent of Police.

During the three-hour drive which started at eight in the night, at least 17 patrolling parties were put on 15 nakas specially erected for the drive. During the drive, 17 persons were arrested for creating nuisance at public places under the influence of liquor. All of them were booked under Sections 34, 5 and 61 of Police Act.

Two persons were arrested from Mani Majra, for roaming under suspicious circumstances. Another person, Kulwinder Singh of Mukerian was also arrested from Bapu Dham Colony and booked for driving under the influence of liquor.

The police also arrested four persons for drinking liquor from a Sector 21 guest house. They were charged under the Excise Act. Besides this, 186 persons were rounded up as suspected and stranger rolls were issued. They were let off after verification.

The ASP said in the past, such drives had been carried out and would also be continued in the future. Dr Hooda stressed upon the need of checking the activities of anti-social elements creating nuisance at public places.


Three mishaps, five hurt
From Our Correspondent

CHANDIGARH, Jan 7 — During the past 24 hours three cases of road accidents were reported from different parts of the city. The police has arrested one person. In all five persons were injured.

Rajhans, a resident of Colony No. 4 was hit by a truck near the CTU workshop here late in the evening. He was going on his bicycle. He was rushed to the PGI in a serious condition.

Two cyclists were hit by vehicle, near a liquor shop at Bapu Dham Colony, here late in the evening on Saturday. According to sources in the Police Department, Ramesh a resident of Panjab University and Arjun Singh of Darwa village received injuries. They were admitted in the Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32. There condition was reportedly stable. A case under Sections 279 and 337 of the Indian Penal Code has been registered.

In yet another road accident, scooter-borne Gulshand Kumar of Sector 55 was hit by a Maruti car on the dividing road of Sector 45 and 46 at about 1.30 p.m. here yesterday. He was injured and was admitted to the Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32.

The driver of the car was later arrested under Sections 279 and 337 of the Indian Penal Code.

Three arrested
The local police arrested three persons from a Sector 21 guest house for drinking here yesterday. According to the sources, the police raided the guest house three times and each time arrested a person.

At 8.30 p.m. Sarbjit Singh, a Sector 16 resident was arrested and 300 ml of liquor was recovered from him. At 8.55 Sudhir of New Delhi was arrested and same amount of whisky was recovered from his possession. Late in the night, a Sector 46 resident Sanjeev Kumar was booked. All of them were charged under the Excise Act.

Held with whisky
Som Nath was arrested for allegedly carrying liquor pouches from Dadu Majra Colony here late in the evening. Ninety pouches were found in his possession. A case under the Sections 61, 1 and 14 of the Excise Act has been registered.

Yamaha stolen
Mr Nikhil Mittal of Sector 8 reported that his Yamaha motorcycle (CH 03 C 3756) was stolen from his residence on Friday evening. A case under the Section 379 of the Indian Penal Code has been registered.


Reduce booth price hike: Bansal
From Our Correspondent

CHANDIGARH, Jan 7 — In a letter to Lieut-Gen (retd) J.F.R. Jacob, Administrator of Chandigarh, Mr Pawan Kumar Bansal, the local MP, has urged the UT Administration to withdraw the “exorbitant” increase in price of booths and spare-part shops constructed in Sectors 48 and 38 to rehabilitate the persons running their business in open spaces in front of the markets of Sectors 21, 27 and 28.

Mr Bansal has written that rates have been enormously increased to about Rs 48,000 per square yard from the rates varying from Rs 4,000 to Rs 12,000 in 1996. He claims that if the rates are not reduced, the scheme will remain a none starter and the objective of the scheme will be defeated.

Terming the prices as highly unwarranted, Mr Bansal has added that no person is in a position to pay such a high price. The scheme is meant to rehabilitate and relocate persons engaged in auto spare-parts business in the open spaces, the MP says.

The MP has claimed that the scheme is meant for only 431 persons. No fruitful purpose can be achieved as the total number of such persons is over 1,500, he adds.

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