Sunday, January 14, 2001,
Chandigarh, India
C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Zila Parishad poll: HC order a setback to INLD
By Geetanjali Gayatri
Tribune News Service

PANCHKULA, Jan 13—The INLD-supported candidate of the Zila Parishad, Ms Shimla Devi, suffered a setback with the Punjab and Haryana High Court directing the state government through the officials of the district administration to hold election to the office of president and vice -president of the Zila Parishad within a month or receiving the order's copy.

In the order passed by Mr Justice A.S Gill and Mr Justice V.S Aggarwal, the court observed that the Additional Deputy Commissioner had proceeded to hold the election despite being well aware of the pendency of the writ petition. He had ignored the mandatory provisions of law while conducting the election and that the election of Shimla Devi as president was no election at all.

``Besides, this the court has stayed the publication of the result of any such election, and as such Shimla Devi cannot be deemed to have been duly elected president of the Zila Parishad,'' the order added.

In a petition filed by Ms Upinder Kaur, a candidate for post of chairperson of the parishad, and other elected members, it was alleged that despite a stay on the holding of elections and a telephonic message by the Additional Advocate General, Haryana, the ADC had declared Shimla Devi as the chairperson.

The same afternoon, the matter was brought before the court yet again and the court directed that the result of the election held that morning could not be published.

In his written statement, the ADC said nine out of 10 members of the zila parishad had attended the proceedings and participated in the election which was held by show of hands.

It added that the Advocate General informed him of the stay by the court at 11:10 am and the election of the vice-president was stopped while that of the president had already been held.

It may be recalled that on May 25 last year, nine of the 10 zila parishad members had arrived at the mini secretariat to cast their vote for choosing the chairperson. The tenth member, belonging to the group supporting Ms Upinder Kaur, Prem Singh, it was alleged, had been abducted from his residence on the night of May 23 and 24 and had been illegally detained by a police party, to be released after the election had been conducted.

During the meeting, four members with Congress backing stated that their repeated pleas of holding election by secret ballot were turned down. For this reason, they had not casted their vote. Later, the four members walked out of the meeting.

After the meeting, the officials of the administration formally announced Shimla Devi as the president elect. She was backed by the ruling INLD party and a partisan role of the officials was alleged by the Congress-supported candidates.


Round-the-clock work on overbridge
By Bipin Bhardwaj

DERA BASSI, Jan 13 — Construction work on the overbridge on the Chandigarh-Ambala highway at the Bhankharpur level crossing is progressing on a war-footing. The construction company which has been given the contract claims that the project will be completed in seven to nine months.

The project, which aims at relieving traffic congestion on this stretch of the highway, has been undertaken under the build, operate and transfer (BOT) scheme and is the first of its kind in Punjab.

The two-km-long overbridge will be built at a cost of Rs 35.73 crore, and the work has been divided into two parts — stilt concrete work and reinforced earth work with retaining walls on both sides. The stilt concrete work will be carried out at a distance of 321 meters on both sides of the level crossing and the reinforcement earth work will be done on a stretch of about 1.5 km of the highway.

On the main portion of the bridge, 17 RCC pillars of height ranging from nine meters to 12 meters will be constructed on 20-foot-deep piles. The piles have already been completed.

The company will recover the cost of the bridge by collecting a toll tax from the road users. Apart from issuing monthly passes to commuters, it will charge Rs 10 per car, Rs 20 per truck, and Rs 25 per goods carrier.

To streamline the work, more than 400 labourers, 10 civil engineers headed by a retired Punjab Public Works Department’s chief engineer have been pressed into service. Three electricity generators have been installed to enable the work force to operate round the clock.

The department has diverted traffic through two alternative routes — Dera Bassi-Mubarkpur-Bhankharpur and Dera Bassi-Issanpur-Bhankharpur — which has led to confusion on these diversions. These roads are not able to take the load of traffic and have been damaged at various points. 


Plan to realign Fatehgarh Sahib road
By Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

SAS NAGAR, Jan 13 — In order to maintain the smooth flow of traffic on the busy Chandigarh — Fatehgarh Sahib road passing through the town, the Town and Country Planning Department, Punjab, has proposed realignment of the SAS Nagar — Lakhnour section of the road. The proposal was expected to be implemented once the new Sectors ( 76 to 80) were developed.

The traffic on the existing road from Sohana village to Landhran has to wind its way through congested sections of Sohana. Sources in the Town and Country Planning Department said the existing road near the Octroi collection post at Sohana would be closed and would serve as the pherni of the Sohana village. Those intending to move towards Landhran would have to turn right from the intersection of Sectors 70 and 78 and pass through a 100 feet-wide road dividing Sectors 76 and 77.

The existing stretch of road passing through Sohana village would be widened from 20 to 40 feet to serve as the pherni of the village. The planners apprehend that with the development of the new sectors the existing road, with unauthorised shops on both sides, would become a major traffic bottleneck .

Apart from hitting at the commercial value of the unauthorised shops, the proposed realignment would provide a better alternative road link to Landhran.

According to sources another road link to Landhran had been proposed from the existing road passing through Sectors 59 and 60 of the town. Once the new sectors were developed the proposed road would be extended up to Lakhnour village by constructing a bridge before joining the Landhran road .

Meanwhile, the Town and Country Planning Department in its concept layout of the five new sectors has for the first time planned service roads along the 80 feet, 100 feet and 200 feet roads. In the past absence of service roads in the existing sectors has lead to serious traffic problems. The planners while using the swastik plan to earmark the plots have ensured that 70 per cent of the plots faced parks.

Besides, no commercial site has been earmarked in the area facing Sohana and Mauli Baidwan villages. It had been observed that the government was not able to fully realise the commercial value of its land as the shops were generally opened on the outskirts of the villages — located within the urban areas. 


UT among partner states, say House records
By Ajay Banerjee
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 13 — Going by what has been stated in the Lok Sabha in the past, the Union Territory of Chandigarh is entitled to partner status in the power projects of the Bhakra Beas Management Board (BBMB) just like Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Rajasthan.

It was reported in these columns today the issue to accord partner status to the UT has been shelved following an assurance from the Power Ministry to provide power to Chandigarh from Central projects.

Documents available with the Tribune reveal that despite the matter being taken up in Parliament, Chandigarh has been left out. Former Union Power Minister, the late P. R.Kumaramangalam, while replying to a question raised by Mr Satya Pal Jain on December, 12, 1998, had said that an official-level meeting convened by the Ministry of Power in Chandigarh on September 16, 1998. It was attended by representatives of the partner states, it was suggested that BBMB could consider according “partnership” status to the union territory of Chandigarh on the lines of the partnership status granted to Himachal Pradesh without prejudice to legal rights and contentions of the parties concerned and pending suit filed by the Himachal Pradesh Government before the Supreme Court.

“At present the BBMB is raising bills for this energy at the rate of 34 paise per unit but Chandigarh is releasing payment at the rate of 5.63 paise per unit. On being declared partner, the UT will be charged proportionate net operations and maintenance expenses as is being done from other partners,” the power minister had added.

Mr Kumaramangalam had then clarified that the BBMB had been was set up under the provisions of Reorganistion of States Act, 1966, to administer, maintain and operate the Bhakra Nangal and Beas projects on behalf of partner states, namely Rajasthan, Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Chandigarh. The matter regarding allocation of power to successor states was decided at a meeting held on April 17, 1967, according to which Chandigarh is entitled to 3.5 per cent of energy generated at the Bhakra complex after meeting the common pool requirement and share of Rajasthan.

The BBMB was requested in August 1983 to accord treatment to Himachal Pradesh and Union Territory of Chandigarh on par with Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan and the quantum of benefits from Bhakra and Beas projects presently allocated on the ad-hoc basis will remain unaltered until a final decision was taken on the sharing of rights and liabilities of all successor states in the two projects. The issue was considered at various meetings of the BBMB and representatives of the Punjab Government observed that the request of Central Government to accord partnership status to Chandigarh was a matter of policy and shall adversely effect the rights of the state of Punjab and linked the issue with the final apportionment of assets and liabilities of Bhakra Nangal and Beas projects among the partner states.

Meanwhile, Mr Satya Pal Jain, a former MP, has urged the Chandigarh Administration to move court and get partnership status. He also expressed shock over the reported shelving of the issue. He alleged the case of Chandigarh has gone in default and blamed the present MP, Mr Pawan Bansal, for the present situation. 

The ongoing cold wave has made the demand of power jump by 20 per cent in the city and has brought it on par with demand in summer months. On January 11 power consumption was 30 lakh units which is the average for a day during the peak of summer. Engineers informed that in the last week of December the demand was no more than 24 or 25 lakh units. But in the past five days demand has peaked due to use of heaters, blowers and geyser on account of the cold. 



Rights’ team indicts cops
From Our Correspondent

CHANDIGARH, Jan 13 — The Ludhiana police is shielding the accused in the killing of Avtar Singh of Ludhiana. This is the finding of a team of the Lawyers for Human Rights International. The report of the human rights organisation was prepared by Mr Arunjeev Singh Walia, Mr Ravinder Singh, Mr Mohinder Singh, Mr Yogesh Kumar. The team went to Ludhiana and conducted an investigation into the incident in which Inspector Gurmeet Singh allegedly killed a youth Avtar Singh.

The team was assisted by Mr Anil Sharma a social activist. The team examined six material witnesses and hundreds of other residents of the area. The still and video recording of the investigation has been made. The report has observed that the case had exposed the police-criminal nexus.

The board of doctors conducting the post mortem examination tried to manipulate the record. First, they ignored the fact as to which wound was firm. But later on due to public pressure records were corrected.

Meanwhile the Punjab and Haryana High Court has issued a notice to the Advocate-General of Punjab for January 18 on a petition filed under Sectoion 482 of the Criminal Procedure Code paying for fast track independent investigation by the CBI for the apprehension and prosecution of the accused in the murder case.


Special police team for R-Day
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 13 — For carrying out anti-sabotage checks in the city on and before the Republic Day, the Chandigarh Police has formed a special 70-member-team.

The team comprising DSPs and Inspectors will reportedly be headed by the Superintendent of Chandigarh Police, Mr Baldev Singh. It will not only assist the regular police in carrying out search operations in the slums and colonies, the team will also keep an eye on the movement of "certainsuspects believed to be involved in militant activities".

Vigil will also be maintained by the team on the parking lots in the city. The members have been asked to look out for abandoned vehicles to ensure against the possibility of bomb planting.

Confirming the formation of the special team, the Senior Superintendent of Chandigarh Police ,Mr. Parag Jain, said cops were also being posted at barriers at the city outskirts.

"We are not taking any chances," said the SSP. "After the Red Fort and the Srinagar Command Headquarters incidents, we have asked our men to be extra cautious".

The decision to form the team is significant as Chandigarh, according to sources in the police department, is an "ideal target". Besides being the capital of two states, it has two major Air Force installations, along with a civil airport. Porous escape routes to Punjab and Haryana also make the city vulnerable.

The Chandigarh Police, it may be recalled, has already sounded an alert in the city. commuters have been warned against touching suspicious and unclaimed objects, including bags and wallets, at the Sector 17 Inter State Bus Terminus.

Shoppers have also been asked to be cautious. The police has also requested the residents to inform them about people roaming under suspicious circumstances. 


Super Bazar closure: notice to Administration
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 13 — A Division Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court yesterday issued a notice of motion to the Chandigarh Administration on the closure of the Super Bazar for April 18.

The notice was issued by Mr Justice S.S. Sudhalkar and Mr Justice H.S. Gill on a petition filed by an employee of the Super Bazar against the alleged inaction of the Secretary Cooperation of the Administration to decide the appeal of the employees pending with him.

Meanwhile, the local unit of the Janata Dal has demanded a judicial probe into the circumstances, which led to the closure of the Super Bazar.

In a memorandum to the UT Administrator, Lieut-Gen J.F.R. Jacob (Retd), the party also demanded revocation of the orders of the closure of Super Bazar and restoration of the services of the employees.


Theft of transformer costs man life
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 13 — In an alleged attempt to steal a transformer from an electric pole, an unidentified person was today electrocuted in Dhanas village. His body was found clinging to the transformer.

Sources in the Police Department said the "victim" was electrocuted as he and his accomplices failed to disconnect an electric wire. They added that the thieves had managed to unscrew the transformer from the pole before placing it on the ground.

A senior police officer, when contacted, said the body could not be recognised. He said the deceased, in his mid-thirties, was about 5.5 feet tall, besides being well built.

The officer added that the information regarding the occurrence was given to them by officials in the Electricity Department. He also revealed that a case of theft under Section 379 and 511 of the Indian Penal Code had been registered.

The investigations, he said, were on and the police was on look out for possible eye witnesses and accomplices. He added that the possibility of the thieves being employees of the Electricity Department could not be ruled out.

Claiming to have sent the body for post-mortem examination, the officer added that the report was expected soon.


Amputated leg found near GMCH
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 13 — Panic gripped the labourers digging the ground for laying electric cables near the Sector 32 Government Medical College and Hospital in the morning today after an amputated leg was unearthed by them.

Seeing the possibility of a body being buried after seeing a foot jutting out of the ground, the labourers immediately informed the police. A team of forensic experts, along with senior police officers, rushed to the spot.

The ground was immediately dug but only the leg was found. The Deputy Superintendent of Chandigarh Police, Mr S.C. Sagar, when contacted, said the amputated leg could have been buried to prevent animals from devouring it. He added that it had been handed over to the hospital authorities and further probe into matter was on.


Film Review
An action thriller
By Sanjeev Bariana

‘FARZ’ (Nirman and KC Panchkula) is an expected saga of battle of fists and muscles from Raj Kanwar ‘Jat Puttar” Sunny Deol pitched against a macho Jackie Shroff in a negative role is a smart marketing package, at least for the initial draws.

Garbed in attire of all-violence, the presentation however has a smart presentation in rounding off roles of Deol, Shroff, Om Puri, Preity Zinta, Farida Jalal and Mukesh Tewari. Johny Lever has to his credit regular change in attires and situations showing a brand of humour typically and predictably his alone.

The ‘underworld-threatened’ Mumbai Police calls up Sunny Deol from Punjab Police in a situation where a foreign mercenary Jackie Shroff has created terror. He is executing criminal acts for growth of his brother’s business.

Sunny gives big business jolts to Jackie. The biggest one is execution of his brother in front of his eyes and capturing him. Nothing ends terror in such stories because they signal just the beginning of the war in personal ‘Kurukshetras”. It flows out with the escape of Jackie Shroff.

Sunny is framed in unlawful activities, interestingly, by the same organisation which gave him an out of turn promotion. Om Puri as father of Zinta and husband of Farida Jalal is also the immediate boss of Deol. He has effectively played the role of a cop more concerned about his family safety than his duty. He would like to follow the police rule-books in proceeding action against criminals unlike Deol who follows “a slap for a slap” policy.

Puri cannot stand Zinta meeting Sunny because Sunny acts fearlessly in his chase of goons ‘which spelt danger for a woman’ who happened to be his daughter. Zinta has managed a decent performance with a revolt against family no to wed Deol.

There can be several questions about level of conviction of audience minds with the progress of action. However, such action is not any different from the existing fad in Bollywood.

‘Farz’ produced by Sunil Saini is a Vishant International presentation. The all-out action film is an N.R. Pachisia show. Ishwar Birdi has done the photography; action is by Tinu Verma; lyrics are by Sameer and; music is by Uttam Singh. Anu Malik and Adesh Srivastava also have their compositions in the film. Can be a good outing for lovers of the action genre talkies.Back


Working women hostel powerless
From Our Correspondent

CHANDIGARH, Jan 13 — The working women hostel in Sector 23 Bal Bhavan is reportedly without electricity for the past four days due to power failure. A number of telephone calls were received by Chandigarh Tribune in this regard.

The girls said they were facing a lot of problems. They added that they had informed the Electricity Department but no action had been taken. The hostel warden was not available for comment.


Police holds complaint redressal camps
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 13 — Carrying out the "alternate complaint redressal" exercise in different parts of the city, the Chandigarh Police today disposed of several complaints regarding landlord-tenant dispute, eve-teasing and liquor smuggling.

As many as 14 complaints were disposed of at a camp organised at Maloya village. The Deputy Superintendent of Chandigarh Police, Mr S.C. Sagar, said most of the complaints pertained to tenancy disputes.

At another camp, residents of Sector 25 Kumhar Colony and Janata Colony were assured that law and order problem related issues would be taken up with the departments concerned.

The Assistant Superintendent of Chandigarh Police, Mr H.G.S. Dhailwal, said complaints pertained to illegal sale of liquor in certain pockets, besides law and order problems created by "anti-social elements". Eve-teasing at school hours was also brought to the notice of the police.

According to sources, president of Kumhar Colony Ramesh Manchal, along with other dwellers, also complained that thugs were duping residents of the colony by promising allotment of land. Problems arising due to water and electricity shortage were also discussed.

The exercise, said sources, was carried as per the instructions of the Inspector General of Chandigarh, Mr Bhim Sain Bassi ,and the Senior Superintendent of Police, Mr Parag Jain.

Sources added that such exercises based on the pattern of Lok Adalats, were meant not only to save the complainants and the witnesses the inconvenience of going through the legal rigmarole, but also to help the police in disposing of the complaints.


Bansal highlights farmers’ demands
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 13 — In protest against the ‘anti-farmer’ policies of the BJP-led Central Government, the District Congress Committee organised a rally here today.

Addressing the rally, the local MP, Mr Pawan Kumar Bansal, and the president of the Chandigarh Territorial Congress Committee (CTCC), Mr B.B. Bahl, demanded that the farmers of the region should be given minimum support price of their produce, subsidised power and fertilisers.

The rally was attended by prominent Congress leaders, including Ram Pal Sharma, Mr Parampal Matharu, Mr Subhash Chawla, Mr Surinder Bhatia, Ms Bhupinder Kaur, Mr Amar Nath Sarhadi, Mr P.C. Puri and Ms Lalit Joshi Bhardwaj.

Meanwhile, the CTCC has urged the Chandigarh Administration to involve the presidents of sector committees concerned in finalising the building byelaws as it had been observed that the market associations were not satisfied with the changes in byelaws.

A press note also demanded individual water and power connections to the shopkeepers of the Anand Complex in Sector 17.


2 children die in mishaps
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Jan 13 — A five-year-old child was declared dead at the Sector 32 Government Medical College and Hospital. He had been brought to the hospital after he fell from the roof of his house in Sector 46.

Sources in the Police Department said Rishu, playing with his friend, fell on the ground while trying to climb a water tank. They added that he was immediately rushed to the Sector 32 hospital where he was declared dead.

Tarunjeet Singh of Phase IX of SAS Nagar was admitted to the PGI after he fell from the terrace while basking in the sun. Sources in the Police Department said his condition was stable.

Seven-year-old Deepankar sustained injuries after his cycle was hit by a car on the road dividing Sector 37-C and D in the afternoon today. 


One held, stolen goods recovered
From Our Correspondent

CHANDIGARH, Jan 13 — The local police had arrested Raju, a resident of Colony No 5 in a theft case. Earlier, Bruno Dhillon of Sector 35 had reported with the police that his servant Raju had stolen a camera, a wrist watch and Rs 5,500, from his shop, here yesterday night. The stolen goods were recovered from the possession of the accused.

A case under the Sections 381 and 411 of the Indian Penal Code has been registered.

Held for eveteasing
The local police arrested Karamjit Singh, a resident of Sector 25, Panchkula, for eveteasing. He was arrested from near the Government College for Women, Sector 11, here yesterday. He was charged under the Sections 294 and 34 of Indian Penal Code.

Two vehicles stolen
During the past 24 hours, the local police received two complaints of vehicle thefts. Mr Jaswant Singh, a resident of Sector 20, reported that his Tata Sierra (DL-4CD-9240) was stolen from his residence. In the second complaint, a Sunny moped (PB-35-C-8163) of Ashok Aneja, a Sector 15 resident, was stolen from a Sector 17 parking. Cases under Section 379 of the Indian Penal Code have been registered.

Held with liquor
Suresh of Kumhar Colony and Dharminder Kumar of Maloya Colony were arrested for allegedly carrying liquor pouches. A total of 68 pouches were recovered from their possession. Case under the Excise Act has been registered.Back


Minor raped, killed
From Our Correspondent

KHARAR, Jan 13 — A minor girl of the near by Bajheri village was allegedly raped and then murdered by her lover in the village yesterday.

The father of the deceased has lodged a complaint with the Kharar police that her daughter, Pammi (17), was in love with a handicapped boy Bagga, who was running a tailoring shop in the village and they wanted to get married. But he did not agree to their marriage as the boy was handicapped.

He stated that yesterday the girl went out at about 7 a.m. to answer the call of nature, but did not return. On search, they found her lying dead in the shop of the tailor. An empty bottle of some poisonous substance was also lying close to her. The boy was also lying there with stab injuries on his neck and was bleeding.

The father alleged that the boy had first raped her and then gave her poison. He thereafter tried to commit suicide by stabbing himself with his scissors.

The boy who was seriously injured has been admitted to the PGI. The Kharar police has registered a case under Sections 376, 302, 309 and 342 of the IPC against him.


Calming tempers proves fatal
Tribune News Service

PANCHKULA, Jan 13 — A contractor, Swaminath Jaiswal, was murdered near his house in Maheshpur in Sector 21 last night while trying to calm a quarrel between two of his friends.

The Superintendent of Police, Dr C.S. Rao, said Jaiswal, along with four of his friends, Ved Prakash, Gurjinder Singh, Ajaib Singh and Harish Malik, got together at the house of Ved Prakash to celebrate Lohri. After consuming liquor, four of them, including Jaiswal, came to Jaiswal’s house.

Outside Jaiswal’s house, Ajaib Singh and Gurjinder Singh had an argument, which resulted in a scuffle between them. Trying to pacify the two, Jaiswal objected to their quarrelling outside his house.

An agitated Ajaib Singh picked up a brick lying nearby and hit Jaiswal in the face, who immediately he fell down and became unconscious. He was rushed to hospital, but he died on the way.

A case under Sections 302 and 120-B of the IPC has been registered. The police has arrested Ved Prakash, Gurjinder Singh and Harish Malik. Raids are being carried out at various places to arrest the main accused, Ajaib Singh, who is absconding.

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