Tuesday, March 13, 2001,
Chandigarh, India
C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


MC meeting to take up privatisation of sanitation
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, March 12
The sanitation of residential areas of the town, including Sectors 70 and 71, will pass on to private hands from next month after being approved by the civic body at its meeting scheduled for March 15. The sanitation of the industrial area, located on the north-west and south-west side of the town, will be looked after the sanitation staff of the civic body.

An annual expenditure of around Rs 76 lakh has been earmarked by the local civic body for the privatisation of sanitation. An annual contract of around Rs 40 lakh for the sanitation of major part of industrial area, certain residential areas, Shahi Majra and Mohali villages ends on March 31 this month. Sources in the civic body said that after technical approval of the proposal by the Municipal Engineer, the proposal would go for administrative approval in the meeting of the council.

The Local Government Department has been insisting on the civic bodies in the state to privatise the maintenance of basic amenities. Privatisation of the water supply is also on the cards.

In the meeting, the issue of increased water and sewer rates was also on the agenda. Sources said there would be more reduction in the sewer rates as compared to the water rates. The overall reduction would be between 20 per cent and 25 per cent.

A proposal of purchasing a smoke extractor for the local fire station at a cost of Rs 90,000 and allowing 5 per cent additional house rent to the employees of the Fire Department has also been put on the agenda. The civic body has also proposed to purchase of jeep mounted fogging machine at a cost of Rs 3.90 lakh.

Besides, appointing a patwari for three months at a monthly salary of Rs 2750 per month to undertake the exercise of surveying the areas to be included in the limits of the civic body was being put up for approval. The council had also decided to raise its donation for Gujarat earthquake victims from Rs 5 lakh to Rs 10 lakh.


162 trees on Kalka highway face axe
Bipin Bhardwaj

Panchkula, March 12
Over 162 trees along the busy Ambala-Kalka highway at Surajpur village will face the axe soon. This stretch of about 5 km has been earmarked for the construction of a toll tax booth by the Building and Roads Wing of the Haryana Public Works Department.

The department has so far axed dozens of fully grown mango, shisham, black berry (Jamun) trees besides those of some other species in the area. Massive felling of trees has posed a threat to ecological balance in this area which is already being polluted by some stone crushing units running here.

Sources in the Haryana Public Works Department (HPWD) said the trees were being uprooted for the construction of a toll tax collection centre and widening of the road so that vehicles could be parked here without creating traffic chaos on the busy highway. The department will charge tax from the road users to recover the cost of a newly-constructed bridge at Surajpur.

Sources in the Haryana Forest Department confirmed that the HPWD has been permitted to fell 162 fully grown and small trees. Of these 38 trees on both sides of the road including 17 mango trees, eight of shisham, two of jamun and 11 of mixed species will be axed. Other several small trees and plants on this site will also be removed by the PWD soon.

Senior forest officials disclosed that the proposal of felling the trees has been approved by the Central Forest Department. It was also confirmed that the forest department has permitted PWD to fell the trees after paying a sum of Rs 1,19474 to the Forest Department.

While talking to The Tribune, Mr D.S. Barrak,Conservator of Forest, (North Circle), said the department has earmarked some land in the reserve forest area in Hai Reata hills to plant saplings of various species. To maintain ecological balance in this part of the district over 2,644 plants would be planted, he claimed.

Sources in Forest Department said the logs of felled trees will be stored in departmental sale depot in Chandimandir. Later, the wood would be auctioned. 


Invigilators fail to turn up
Exam starts 25 minutes late
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, March 12
Private candidates of Chandigarh and its peripheral areas appearing in the Class X and XII examination of the Punjab School Education Board (PSEB) at centres in Shivalik Public School in Chandigarh and SAS Nagar had to face a lot of harassment as 50 per cent of the staff on examination duty failed to turn up. The staff was to be provided by the board in coordination with the DPI (Schools).

The matric and senior secondary school examination are being held in the morning and evening session, respectively.

Due to the chaos the examination began around 25 minutes late after the management of the school intervened for the benefit of the candidates.

Around 4,000 candidates appeared in examinations at these two schools where 12 centres had been made.

Sources in the board said the staff on examination duty had to workout the sitting arrangement ahead of the examination time but it was not done. In some centres the students had to sit on daris to appear in the examination.

The sources said the board had requested certain schools in Chandigarh to allow centres in their respective school after the DPI (Schools), Chandigarh, refused to help the board due to their hectic examination schedule. Some candidates complained of not receiving the roll numbers.

Meanwhile, officials of the board said a total of 2,376 centres had been set up for the candidates appearing in the Class X examinations. For the Class XII candidates, around 1,176 centres, including 216 centres in colleges had been set up.

It could not be ascertained what the board authorities had done regarding the demand of college lecturers not to work at par with the school lecturers on the examination centres in colleges as no senior official was available for comments.


Puranjit Singh to be UT's Acting CE
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 12
The Chief Engineer, Municipal Corporation, Mr Puranjit Singh, is likely to take over as Acting Chief Engineer, Chandigarh Administration on March 31 when the present Chief Engineer, Mr R.K. Jain, retires.

A Departmental Promotion Committee (DPC) meeting scheduled to be held on March 30 as per the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) instructions has been postponed due to the closing of the financial year. Now the Administration has decided that since Mr Puranjit Singh is the seniormost engineer in the UT cadre he would be handed over the charge of Acting Chief Engineer till the DPC meeting is held. This will also end his deputation in the corporation, sources said today.

This is the second time that a DPC meeting fixed by the UPSC has been postponed. The UPSC had fixed a date for selection in October. However, this was changed on a request sent by the Chandigarh Administration. The Administration expressed its desire to hold simultaneous interviews to select Chief Engineers for the Administration and the Municipal Corporation, respectively.

A request for simultaneous interviews had first been turned down by the UPSC. The Administration then wrote to the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) requesting to ‘‘encadre’’ the post of Chief Engineer, Municipal Corporation, but it was also turned down. 


Man enters house, robs woman
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 12
In a daring case of robbery in a Sector 32 house here, a young man decamped with gold earrings after threatening an old lady in the house and locking her away in a room.

According to information available, at around 12:15 p.m. today, a young man, who appeared to be 20, knocked at one of the Survey of India flats in Sector 32 when the 70-year-old lady, Vishnu Devi was all alone. He asked her about the telecom office in Sector 32, the information about which was given by the woman, and he went away.

The woman saw the man go first towards the Sector 32 market and then in the opposite direction towards the GMCH, Sector 32, from her balcony. After a few minutes, she again heard the doorbell, and on opening the door, she found the same man standing there. He requested her to give him some food “as he had not had anything to eat”. The unsuspecting woman went inside the house, followed by the man towards the bedroom, where he caught hold of her and pulled one of the earrings.

Mrs Vishnu Devi cried for help, but the man caught hold of a pair of scissors and threatened her. She, however, managed to push him out of the room and locked herself in the room. The man got scared and after locking the room from outside, fled.

Later, the woman’s cries for help were heard by a few children playing in the balcony who came to her rescue. 


Shuttlers all praise for Gopi
Arvind Katyal

Chandigarh, March 12
What Indian badminton achieved yesterday was a befitting tribute to the Pulella Gopichand’s inimitable performance at the All-England meet, thus adding another page in the nation’s history. The win was in the presence of all the bigwigs of world badminton and this Hyderabad player surpassed all the top guns to accomplish his cherished goal.

Kanwal Thakur Singh, a former Commonwealth Games bronze medallist, said, “It was wonderful, spectacular and what not’’. Kanwal, who also won two bronze medals in the Asian Games, attributed Gopichand’s achievement to his hardwork, consistency and more so the good luck which prevailed to him during the entire tournament. Kanwal said that in 1980 when Padukone cornered glory for India, she was present there in Birmingham to cheer him. When asked to compare the two players, Kanwal said such champions always focussed on their priorities. She said the government should reward him to encourage the other youngsters. When asked about the participation of women in this game, Kanwal said Aparna Popat, B.R. Meenakshi, Gutta Jwala and Shruti Kurien are some of the promising players and what they require was the exposure in international arena and the day was not far when Indian women could also do the same feat which Gopi did.

Satish Bhatia, a former international badminton player, was extremely happy at Gopi’s feat. Bhatia said he watched all the matches he played and added that he was in total command of the game in every match he played. had accompanied Gopi to four-nation tournament when Gopi was only 18- year-old. He said Gopi used to remain aloof and tried to concentrate on the game. Bhatia said that in 1948 Devender Mohan of India was able to make it to finals of this tournament but Gopi followed Padukone which will help the game in reaching its zenith of popularity. He said that this time it was very difficult to win with all the top ranked players in the reckoning.

T.P.S. Puri, a former national badminton coach, who was now a International Badminton Federation (IBF) expert, said Gopi was more tougher mentally which finally paved the way to this astounding success. Puri, who had been Indian coach for nearly two decades and during the Padukone’s feat in 1980 was coach of India, praised Gopi since he frequently changed his game style in accordance to the opponents’ weakness. Moreover, the continous winning pattern during past few tournaments abroad helped Gopi to regain confidence on the court. Puri said during the senior nationals at Jaipur in February, 2001, Gopi had desired that during the international tournaments need a coach who could help him in conditioning and act like a friend. Puri said, in the All-England meet, G. Prasad, a SAI coach posted at Bangalore, was there to perfom the above job for which the Badminton Association of India deserve kudos. 


Install fare meter or face fine
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 12
Drivers of autorickshaws who have not installed fare meters on vehicles will face penalties from March 16. The Transport Department asked the SP (Traffic) and the Secretary of the State Transport Authority (STA) today to form separate teams to carry out the drive.

The Secretary Transport, Mr Raminder Singh Gujral, said the SP (Traffic) had assured him that details of all fines would be fed into the police computers. Traffic policemen will verify the past records of violations and fines from the computer control room over the wireless system.

According to the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988, vehicles of violators cannot be impounded for the first three violations. The drive is aimed at encouraging drivers to follow orders and not to harass them or impound their vehicles.


Call it a day at midnight
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 12
Owners of all restaurants, pubs, wine shops, discotheques and clubs, besides roadside vendors in the city will now have to call it a day at midnight. All such establishments will have to remain closed from midnight to 4.30 am on all days except Saturday and Sunday. On the these two days, the closing time will be 1 am.

The District Magistrate, Mr M. Ramsekhar, extended the order for another two months. The order will remain effective from March 13 to May 11 and shall not apply to coffee shops, restaurants and hotels. Cyber cafes can be kept open till 2 am on all days.

The DM has also ordered that all owners or managers of commercial establishments shall have to inform the police before employing any servant, helper, maid or part-time helper. The details will have to be furnished in writing. Any breach of the order will invite action under Section 188 of the IPC.

The DM has also directed that those who are seeking employment in the non-formal trade or service sectors, contract labourers, rickshawpullers, rehriwalas, phariwalas, washermen and cobblers should submit their particulars along with their photographs to the police for verification. Any breach of this order will invite action under Section 188 of the IPC. The order will be effective from tomorrow till May 11.

The DM has also imposed a ban on organising processions, rallies, public speeches, dharnas and carrying of sticks in areas north of Madhya Marg. The order will remain in force for 60 days from this midnight.

The orders will not be applicable on the police or military persons, besides government servants on official duty. For organising processions or meetings, a prior permission of the DM or the SDM will be required.

The order will not apply to the organising of wedding or funeral processions and will remain in force till May 11.


INLD wins Zila Parishad poll
Losers threaten to move court
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, March 12
The INLD-supported candidates, Ms Shimla Devi and Mr Sohan Lal, were elected chairperson and vice-president respectively, more by stroke of luck than by the number game, here today.

Even as the curtain came down on the Zila Parishad elections, almost a year after the process was started and re-started only to be abandoned midway each time, the Congress-supported members threatened to move court yet again against, what they alleged, was “contempt of court” by the district administration.

The elections were initially held by secret ballot in pursuance of the orders of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, as all 10 members elected to the Parishad arrived to cast their votes. However, the votes weighed equally in favour of both candidates, Ms Shimla Devi and Ms Upinder Kaur. The casting vote came by way of a draw, agreed by all those present at the meeting, which favoured Ms Shimla Devi.

The election to the post of vice-president seemed a repeat of the earlier elections as both candidates, Mr Sohan Lal and Mr Virender Singh, polled five votes each. This, too, was decided by draw of names, making the INLD candidate the winner.

Meanwhile, as the news of the results spread among the supporters of the candidates waiting outside, excitement of the INLD supporters mingled with disappointment of those supporting the Congress.

This resulted in a law and order problem, forcing the police to resort to a mild lathicharge as they attempted to push them outside the parking of the Secretariat. Tension mounted as a supporter in the crowd broke bottles and another, Vijay Kumar, a resident of Rajiv colony, was held while attempting to pelt stones. He was later released by the police.

After the elections, the Congress candidate, Ms Upinder Kaur, said that they would challenge the result yet again.

“Inside the room, we protested against the numbering of ballot papers, but our pleas fell on deaf ears. We will challenge this in court since without secrecy, the members were scared to vote in our favour. They had been threatened against voting for us,” she added.

Echoing similar views, the Kalka MLA, Mr Chander Mohan, present during the proceedings of the elections, said that it was unfortunate that the administration had not gone by the directions of the court.

The official version, as given by the Additional Deputy Commissioner, Mr S.K. Goyal, was that the elections were “free and fair” and coding was done as per rules laid down for holding elections by the State Election Commission and to the satisfaction of all members.


First meeting called on May 16, 2000 Postponed for absence of quorum
Second meeting called on May 19, 2000 Postponed after ADC proceeded on leave
Third meeting called on May 25, 2000 Shimla Devi declared winner; High Court grants stay on publication of result
High court orders elections; announced for February 7 Election is postponed after INLD- candidate appeals in Supreme court
Supreme court dismisses plea; election scheduled for March 12, 2001 Shimla Devi declared winner

The winning candidate for the post of chairperson, Ms Shimla Devi, said that she was expecting to win.


Extension of lal dora demanded
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 12
The president of the local unit of the Lok Jan Shakti Party, Mr Hem Raj, today demanded the extension of lal dora in the 22 UT villages.

Mr Hem Raj, who has recently been nominated president by the national president and the Communication Minister, Mr Ram Vilas Paswan, also declared at a press conference that the party would put up candidates from all wards during the elections to the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh (MCC) to be held later this year.

The general secretary and the spokesman of the party, Mr Amarjit Singh, claimed that several leaders from other faction-ridden parties had joined the party. These included Mr Payare Lal, chairman of the Backward Classes Cell of the Samajwadi Party, who had been made the vice-president. Similarly, Mr Sarbjit Singh from the Nationalist Congress Party had been nominated as the general secretary.

Meanwhile the following have been nominated office-bearers of the local unit by Mr Paswan: vice-presidents —Mr Tarlochan Singh Bittu, Ms Kaushlaya Devi and Mr Jaleel Ahmed Kurshi; general secretary — Mr Kamar Paul Ghahloth; secretaries — Mr Hans Raj,Mr Tej Pal Singh, Mr Amrish Kumar, Mr Ram Ashish and Ms Madhuri Devi; joint secretaries — Ms Anita Ahuja and Mr Raju Yadav; treasurer — Mr Sunil Gupta; chairman kissan cell — Mr Gurmail Singh Dhaliwal;l and chairman transport cell — Mr Gurdev Singh.


Chandigarh-Ropar highway blocked for two hours
Our Correspondent

Kharar, March 12
Traffic on Kurali-Ropar road remained suspended for about two-and-a-half-hours today, when a large number of truck operators, led by Mr Rajbir Singh Padiala, vice-president of the Sarb Hind Shiromani Akali Dal, sat on dharna from 11.45 a.m. to protest against the failure on the part of the district administration to implement a compromise reached on March 3 about a dispute of the Central Truck Union, Kurali.

Among others, Mr Mahesh Inder Singh Grewal (former minister of Punjab and present MLA), Mrs Daljeet Kaur (MLA, Kharar), Mr Karnail Singh Panjoli (president, Sarb Hind Youth Akali Dal) and hundreds of truckers and other persons sat on dharna in the Kurali Chowk and raised anti-administration slogans. They were demanding that the compromise be implemented immediately.

It is worth mentioning that following a dispute between two groups of the union, Mr Devinder Singh, SDM, Kharar, had imposed ban orders under Section 145 of the Cr PC and Mr Malkiet Singh, Tehsildar, Kharar was appointed as receiver of the union on March 2. The Kurali police, at that time, had arrested 12 persons, belonging to both the groups under Section 107/151 of the Cr PC. In the evening on March 3, a compromise was reached between the groups at a meeting held in the office of the SDM, Kharar. Mr Padiala, while talking to The Tribune said that the terms of the compromise were cases registered against members of both the groups of the union be withdrawn, the earleir committee having 12 members be allowed to function, and attendance of the trucks be marked every 20 days.

He said the SSP and SP assured the protesters that the compromise would be implemented soon and on this assurance, the dharna was lifted.

The next meeting of the truckers has been called by the administration at 10 a.m. in Kurali on March 13 in which all the problems would be solved.

Meanwhile, Mr Grewal warned the administration that if they failed to implement the compromise, all 14 dissident MLA’s of SAD would not only sat on a dharna but also would gherao the office of the SDM, Kharar.


Awareness generation camp concludes
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, March 12
Need of education and women’s role in uplifting the family status was highlighted by Mr Pawan Kumar Bansal, local MP, while presiding over the concluding session of an eight-day awareness generation camp organised by the Hitkari Social Welfare Society in association with the Chandigarh Social Welfare Advisory Board at Halomajra village here yesterday.

Urging the women to avail the opportunities provided by the government, Mr Bansal discussed various government schemes by which the rural women can attain economic independence.

Dr R.K. Thakural, President of the society, claimed that the camp was a success. The camp was organised with an active participation of panchyat of the village. 


Concrete slab falls; 1 killed
Our Correspondent

Lalru (Patiala), March 12
One labourer was killed while another sustained serious injuries when a concrete slab of a shop fell upon them here today.

Sources said the labourers — Dharma and Mukhtiar Singh — were pulling down the supports from a newly cast concrete slab over a shop in the market.

The two were sitting atop the portion of the slab itself which fell down along with both of them from a height of about 10 feet.

Dharma get buried under the debris which led to his death, while Mukhtiar Singh had a narrow escape. The slab came down at about 2.30 p.m.

The duo was engaged in renovating the shop of Mr Billoo a local resident. The shop-owner had purchased the shop a few months ago and was out of station when the incident occurred. 


New phone connection cheaper
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 12
The local office of the Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited slashed the registration charges for obtaining the new telephone connection from Rs 2,000 to Rs 1,000 today. A spokesman of the BSNL said all other charges would apply.


30,000, jewellery stolen from Sector 15
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 12
A domestic servant is alleged to have stolen Rs 30,000 in cash and gold jewellery from the house of Mr S.R. Chabbra in Sector 15-B on March 9.

According to an FIR registered under Section 381 of the IPC, it has been alleged that the domestic servant, Hari, a Nepali national, stole the valuables and cash, by breaking open the almirah.

Valuables stolen
In another incident, valuables and cash worth thousands of rupees were stolen from the residence of an ex-serviceman in Sector 7, while the owner of the house was out of station.

The servant in the household informed the daughter of the owner, Col. Gurdial Singh, who is residing in Sector 43 here this morning. Ms Upkaar came to the house and found that some valuables and cash had been stolen. A case under Section 380 and 457 of the IPC has been registered at police station, Sector 26.

2 hurt in accident
Two women were injured when the Kinetic Honda on which they were riding was hit by a Maruti car on the Madhya Marg in between the railway station and the TPT light points. Babita and Meena were injured and were rushed to the hospital. Later, a case under Sections 279 and 337 of the IPC was registered at the Mani Majra police station. The police has also arrested the driver of the car ( CH-03D-5943) .

Palsora resident’s charge
Mohammad Irshad, a resident of Palsora colony, has accused Happy, Tipu, Sonu and Sareema — all residents of Palsora colony — of having beaten him and threatening him after a minor altercation. The complainant is admitted in the PGI for treatment and a case under Sections 323, 506 and 34 of the IPC has been registered against the accused.

Bicycle stolen
Sunil Kumar has alleged that his bicycle was stolen from the Sector 37 Kisan Mandi yesterday and a case under Section 379 of the IPC has been registered.

4 booked for trespassing
The police has booked four persons, Parminder Pal Singh, Gurmukh Singh, Baljit Singh and Balwinder Singh, all residents of Barauli village in Ropar and one Tarsem Singh of village Singhpura in Ropar on charges of trespassing into the house of Satwant Singh in Sector 35 and threatening him. The police has registered a case under Sections 147, 149, 448 and 506 of the IPC at Sector 36 police station.

Liquor seized from ambulance
The police on Monday seized two cases of Indian Made Foreign Liquor from an ambulance of a Saharanpur-based hospital that had reportedly come here to get a patient admitted in the PGI.

The police had laid a naka near the Tribune chowk this morning when the ambulance bearing number UP-10B-1144 was asked to stop for a routine check. The police party found that the ambulance was carrying two cases (24 bottles) of 8 PM whisky. The police immediately arrested two persons in this regard Satish Kumar and Nadeem. The police has booked the accused under different sections of the Excise Act.Back

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