Monday, April 16, 2001,
Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Experts for satellite imaging of fissures
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, April 15
The Hyderabad-based National Remote Sensing Agency is being approached to take satellite images of the cracks in Nada choe area of Panchkula to determine the cause of fissures.

This was decided after a field study of the affected area by the experts of the local chapter of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation of Germany, here today.

‘‘We will try and arrange landscape pictures before and after the appearance of cracks on the earth surface though this could take some time. However, with a comparison, we may be in a better position to explain as to why this happened,’’ the president of the local chapter and the Director of the Central Scientific Instruments Organisation, Dr R.P. Bajpai said.

Dr Bajpai said that seismological data of choe recorded in the last month would also be studied to help in the analysis. ‘‘My observation is that the slipping geological plates led to the release of tremendous energy. Till the plates settle down in a comfortable position, incidents like these are bound to reoccur and safety of construction in the area will remain under threat,’’ he added.

A physicist, Dr V.K. Jindal, said the field study proved to be a fascinating experience though definite conclusions could be arrived at only after a detailed study. ‘‘The tearing apart of the tree trunk at one point and the crack running all along the hillock was especially an interesting phenomenon. This is an indication of the sudden release of energy which caused the cracks all over the place. A topography of the fissures and coordinated study is what will help the final analysis,’’ he explained.

From the Geology Department of the Panjab University, Prof L.N. Gupta, took the experts in the fields of physics, chemistry, and ground water around the area, explaining the changes that had occurred.

‘‘The varying depth of cracks at different locations was of particular interest to the experts and indicative of the activity which went on under the earth surface. This needed further examination,’’ Prof Gupta stated.

The Indian Geologist Association will hold a meeting of experts from the Wadia Institute of Mining and Geology, Dehra Dun, Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, the Geological Survey of India and the Atomic Minerals Division, New Delhi.

After an hour of discussion at the Department of Geology, Panjab University, the groups will carry out study in the Nada choe followed by a concluding session at the university in the evening to prepare detailed recommendations.



Lightning kills teenager
Tribune News Service

Shanti wails for her foster son, Anil, who succumbed to lightning, at Colony No 5 in Chandigarh on Sunday. 
— Photo Pankaj Sharma

Chandigarh, April 15
A 15-year-old boy was killed when he was struck by lightning in a playfield in Sector 45-C here this afternoon. The victim, Anil Kumar, was playing cricket with three of his friends. The lightning struck him on the chest and he fell down unconscious.

The incident took place around 3.15 pm. A flash of lightning struck the child at his chest as he was playing. The child immediately fell down on his stomach and began to bleed from his mouth. 

A visit to the spot showed that there was no sign of lightning having struck anywhere else in the field. It is also learnt that the victim, a Class X student of Government High School, Sector 32, was residing with his foster parents in Sector 29.

His own father was, however, staying in Colony No 5 and Anil Kumar used to frequent the area in order to be with his friends. “Anil had left his home at about 9 am today and had promised to be back home by 3 pm. I was waiting for him, when I got a call from the police regarding his death”, said his foster mother, Ms Shanti.

She informed that Anil Kumar was the son of her brother-in-law and that she and her husband, Radhe Shyam, had adopted the child when he was two. She too lamented that had the onlookers acted on time, her son could have possibly been saved.

When the lightning struck 15 to 20 persons gathered at the site. They continued to watch the plight of the boy. It was after 10 minutes Saahil (17) rushed the victim to a hospital.

Saahil Thakur, a student of BSc (1) in S D College, said he was in the balcony of his MIG flat which faces the playfield. He saw a flash of lightning striking the victim. As soon as the victim was hurt his mates ran away.

“Soon a crowd gathered near the boy. It took me around 10 minutes to rush to the spot. I called my friend, Vicky, and took the victim on a cycle-rickshaw to the Sector 45 police post”, he said.

The police called a police control room van. The victim was taken to the hospital where he was declared dead. 


NAAC team to visit PU today
Chitleen K Sethi
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 15
Tomorrow is an important day in the history of Panjab University. The National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) peer team will be in the university, visiting various departments and looking into the academic, administrative and financial attributes of the university and considering its accreditation.

Ready with its self study report and the team already in the city, the PU authorities claim that all details have been taken care of.

But a careful look at the requirements of the 10 parameters listed by NAAC for the university's self study shows that the accreditation process may bump at two major points.

The self study report of the university was to be prepared with 10 parameters in mind which are common to all institutions of the country. These are: institutional goals and objectives; curriculum design and review; teaching, learning and assessment; research and publications; consultancy and extension activities; organisation and governance; infrastructure facilities; support services; student feedback and counselling; and lastly the generation and management of financial resources.

The university is also supposed to provide, along with the report, documents relating to the ten parameters.

The university is likely to face difficulties in proving that it has an ‘effective mechanism to use student feedback for quality enhancement’ as required by the NAAC guidelines, since the university does not have any formal system of student feedback at all.

‘‘Other than the University Business School and the Department of Political Science, where there has been some formal assessment of the courses and teachers by the students and in the Department of History where evaluation by students has been on informally, no other department has any such feedback mechanism going,’’ says a university professor.

Since one of the document which the NAAC team is going to ask for is the record of student feedback, one wonders how the university is going to manage that, he said.

Another parameter which deals with ‘Institutional goals and objectives’ has a set of criteria which requires that the ‘goals of the departments are clearly stated, periodically reviewed and communicated systematically to all its constituencies’.

The university no doubt has a written and well formulated set of goals and objectives, but there does not seem to be any process by which these goals can be communicated to the faculty members, researchers and students.

‘‘There might be a mention of the goals of the university in the students handbook, but as far as the faculty is concerned there is no such formal communication,’’ states another faculty member.

Whatever might be the shortcomings, the fact remains that as far as the rest of the eight parameters are concerned the university has an effective system which caters to each one of these completely and fully without exception.

The visit of the ‘peer team’ is the second in the three-step process towards accreditation.

The first being the preparation of self study report by the institution and the last being the final decision of the NAAC based on the report of the team.

This is the first visit of a NAAC team to a university in the region.


Sangh pushing country to dictatorship: Kidwai
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 15
Accusing the RSS of ruling the country through the BJP, the All-India Congress Committee (AICC) General Secretary, Ms Mohsina Kidwai, today alleged that the country was being pushed towards dictatorship by the ideologies of the Sangh Parivar.

Addressing a rally organised by the Chandigarh Territorial Congress Committee (CTCC) following the expose of the Central Government by, Ms Kidwai said the government should have automatically resigned after the expose on moral grounds.

She alleged that it was for the first time in the history of India that the Defence Minister's residence had been misused by a political party for negotiating an alleged defence deal.

The first priority was to replace the corrupt government, Ms Kidwai emphasised. Terming the BJP as anti-poor, she added that the party had always kept the interests of the big businessmen and industrialists uppermost in its mind.

Coming down heavily on the policies of the government, she alleged that while foodgrains were rotting in country's godowns, the government was importing wheat and rice. Cuts in the farm subsidies had played havoc with the lives of farmers and unemployment was on the rise due to lop-sided policies of the government.

Demanding the immediate arrest of those shown in the tapes, Mr Mukul Wasnik, a Member of the Congress Working Committee (CWC), regretted that even after one month of the expose no FIR had been registered.

The Prime Minister, Mr Atal Behari Vajpayee, he said, was protecting the guilty. His intentions were clear as the former Defence Minister, Mr George Fernandes, had been retained as the NDA Convener.

The local MP, Mr Pawan Bansal, warned that the Congress would go to people if the majority BJP-SAD combine persisted in stalling the proceedings of the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh.

Mr Venod Sharma, a former Union Minister and senior CTCC leader, wanted a public apology from the government for lowering the image of the country.

It was virtually a comeback for Mr Sharma in the local Congress after his resignation as the party chief about two years back following the alleged involvement of his son Manu Sharma in the Jessica Lal murder case.

The Harmohan Dhawan group boycotted today's rally against alleged humiliation of Mr Dhawan at the party meetings in the past few days.

The Bansal faction and Sharma faction tried to put up a united front at the rally and raised slogans in favour of their leaders.

Prominent among those who spoke were the Mayor, Mr Raj Kumar Goyal, Mr Subhash Chawla, Ms Lalit Joshi Bhardwaj, Chandigarh Territorial Mahila Congress (CTMC) chief, and Mr Rampal Sharma, INTUC chief.

Meanwhile, Mr Wasnik, who is also in charge of the CTMC and the local unit of the NSUI, met delegations of these front organisations.


Groupism intensifies in CTCC
A. S. Prashar
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 15
The internecine warfare which has broken out within the Chandigarh Congress shows no sign of abating. If anything, it seems to be intensifying with each passing day.

Today's boycott of the political rally organised by the party at Nehru Park, Sector 22, on tehelka issue, by the group led by the former Union Minister, Mr Harmohan Dhawan, has only served to highlight the problems facing the party.

The Chandigarh Congress rests on four pillars represented by the local MP, Mr Pawan Bansal, the former Union Minister, Mr Venod Sharma, the CTCC chief, Mr B.B.Bahl and the former Union Minister, Mr Harmohan Dhawan. Three of them namely Mr Bansal, Mr Sharma and Mr Bahl have spent a life-time in the party. Mr Dhawan, however, is relatively a new entrant to the party.

Mr Dhawan has been a member of the Janata Dal and was elected to the Lok Sabha in 1989. After the fall of the V.P. Singh government, he joined the Samajwadi Janata party led by Mr Chandra Shekhar and became the Union Minister for Civil Aviation for a brief period of four months.

After the fall of the Chander Shekhar government, Mr Dhawan contested every parliamentary election from the city but without any success. It soon became clear to him that if he wanted to save his political career, he would have to join either of the two mainstream national parties namely the Congress or the BJP.

The opportunity to join the Congress came his way two years ago when the party needed to consolidate its fractured vote base in the UT in order to wrest the Chandigarh parliamentary seat from the BJP's Mr Satyapal Jain. He was approached by Mr Pawan Bansal, Mr Venod Sharma and other local Congress leaders with the offer of "adjustment" in the party if he supported the party nominee in the September, 1999 elections. Mr Dhawan agreed and after a round of meetings with the Central Congress leaders in Delhi plunged headlong in the poll campaign in the city.

His entry into the Congress ensured the victory of Mr Bansal in the election to the Lok Sabha. This is acknowledged by Mr Bansal as also the CTCC chief, Mr B.B. Bahl. But soon things began to fall apart for Mr Dhawan. Expecting to be "adjusted" in the party hierarchy soon, he found his claims being ignored by the Congress leadership. He had to undergo the mortification of seeing Mr Bahl elected as the CTCC chief. Finally, he had to be satisfied only with the membership of the AICC.

His attempts to have a large number of his supporters adjusted in the party's infrastructure also did not succeed. Soon the bitterness grew and this culminated into what he describes as ‘‘open humiliation’’ by the CTCC chief when he went to the party office a week ago to attend a meeting preparatory to today's rally. He was not allowed to sign the register because he was late. He feels that Mr Bansal, Mr Sharma and Mr Bahl have "ganged up" against him to marginalise him in the party.

This provoked him to announce his boycott of the party's activities including today's rally. Although Mr Dhawan vehemently denies that he ever was a candidate for the president of the CTCC, Mr Bahl's camp is convinced that he has been angling for just that position. This camp says that Mr Dhawan seems to be unaware of the Congress culture in which everybody has to work his way up. He has not even completed two years in the party as yet and therefore, would have to wait for sometime more before the party leadership would grant him some other responsibility.

Mr Dhawan has written a couple of letters to the Congress chief, Ms Sonia Gandhi, but has not evoked any response so far. He denies that he had resigned from the party a couple of months ago only to take back the resignation sheepishly because the threat was largely ignored in Delhi.

Mr Dhawan told TNS here today that he was consulting his followers about the next course of action. The parliamentary election may be years away but the local Municipal Corporation poll is due in a few months’ time. He will wait and watch till then before deciding to do what to do next. 


An ode to sun by Usha Kapila
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 15
Her mind houses unlimited themes, all bright and dazzling with colour. Usha Kapila, the Delhi-based artist, who opened her exotic works for public view in Chandigarh today, is so in love with colours that she cannot imagine a life without them. Her attitude reflects brightness, just as her canvases do. And she is happy to admit, “I never paint sadness. I love to be happy and spread happiness all around.”

The distinguished artist has brought together a delightful ensemble in tribute to her spiritual guru, Sant Shiromani Prabhudas , who is on his pilgrimage to Udhampur. The inspiration behind holding the exhibition in Chandigarh also stems from the fact that Usha’s guru has passed through this city in his quest for the unknown.

The show, titled, Sarang ke dainik sansmaran (Memoirs of the Sun Lord),” boasts of an amazing appeal. Laced with the brightest of colours, which add beauty to the spring, the canvases seem to be radiating bliss.

Just like the themes, Usha’s medium is also challenging. She uses crayons on paper to pay an artistic ode to the sun god. Captured on the canvas is a broad panorama of Nature’s majesty — sometimes in a conference of birds, and sometimes in bright flowers.

In all the 67 works Usha has been able to project clarity of thought. The works take out the weaver from complex emotions to a crystal-clear vision.

The exhibition was inaugurated today at Punjab Kala Bhawan, Sector 16, by Punjab Chief Minister Mr Parkash Singh Badal, and will be on view till April 18. (10 am to 6 pm)


Courtmartialled jawan seeks reinstatement
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 15
Two years after his conviction by a General Court Martial for allegedly possessing opium was quashed by the High Court, an Army jawan has now moved the Punjab and Haryana High Court seeking reinstatement in service along with consequential benefits. He was sentenced to 10-year imprisonment and dismissal from service.

In his petition, filed a few days ago, Lance Dafadar Balam Singh of the Armoured Corps has contended that in view of the High Court setting aside his conviction, he is entitled to be re-instated in service alongwith the grant of all consequential benefits, which had not been done so far despite the authorities being approached repeatedly.

Stating that despite several representations no action has been taken either by the government or the military authorities, the petitioner has also sought release of pay and allowances from the date of his dismissal to the date of reinstatement.

Enrolled in the Armoured Corps in October 1976, his stipulated period of service, as per his petition, is 24 years or till he attains the age of 47 years. At the time of his dismissal he had served 15 years and was about 34 years old.

Balam Singh, of 18 Cavalry, had been sentenced to 10 years rigorous imprisonment and dismissal from service by a GCM presided over by Col O.P.S Chauhan after a search of his house at Patiala had allegedly yielded 4.9 Kg of opium. He was convicted in May 1992.

His house had been searched by a team comprising personnel drawn from the Field Security, Corps of Military Police as well as from his own unit. Later, an FIR was lodged at the Sadar Police Station in Patiala and he was charged under Section 69 of the Army Act read with Section 10 of the Narcotics, Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act (NDPS). Section 69 deals with civil offences triable by a court martial.

In 1996, while lodged in jail, he moved the High Court and sought the quashing of the charge sheet and proceedings of the GCM on several grounds, including lack of jurisdiction of the GCM,, procedural irregularities,, as well as non-compliance of provisions of the NPDS Act. He also alleged that his house was searched illegally and without a search warrant.

In his petition he also pointed out that two civilians, Gopal Singh and Shankar Singh, who were also arrested in the same case and tried by a competent court, had been acquitted later.

The charge sheet, GCM proceedings and the sentence were thereafter quashed by a single bench comprising Mr Justice K.K Srivastava.

A Special Leave Petition filed before the Supreme Court by the Central Government, appealing against the High Court judgement, was also dismissed.



THE crack in the Ghaggar riverbed has generated a lot of interest among not only specialists interested in studying the activity but among the general public which sees it in the perspective of a new picnic spot waiting to be explored.

This week a team of specialists on a field study in the area got their families along for a trek in the adjoining hillock. The area looked transformed from the “serious’’ image it had acquired in the last month.

Sheets were spread out and food hampers dotted these as more and more cars joined the “gang’’ at work. By the end of the five-hour picnic while the geologists went about their work, for the families it was pure and simple fun and the satisfaction of having explored virgin territory as they made their way around the bends and curves of the hillock.

New paint

A long-pending complaint of road users in SAS Nagar of not being able to read the road signs and boards of important places is going to be solved with the civic body deciding to go for better illuminated road signs and indicators.

To paint the yellow road dividing line, a special illuminating paint is being used. On a trial basis the road dividing line from Phase 7 to Phase 3B2 is being painted with the illuminating yellow paint. A special material with illuminating lights is being used as road barriers at busy intersections to avoid mishaps.

Annoyance shows

Annoyance of the district administration with the president of the SAS Nagar civic body came to fore when the Deputy Commissioner, Ropar, during a recent public function to welcome a cavalcade carrying mortal remains of late Deputy Prime Minister Devi Lal openly expressed his anger at the civic body officials for not making proper arrangements to welcome the cavalcade being led by the Chief Minister of Punjab.

With few minutes left for the arrival of the cavalcade the Deputy Commissioner was seen literally firing the officials for making arrangements at the last minute.

For ex-servicemen

Nivruti Jawan Shiv Sena Trust has been established by the Shiv Sena to help ex-servicemen, their families and war widows. Lt Gen P N Hoon (Retd), former GOC-in-C, Western Command, and a city resident, has been appointed as the Trust’s Director General and trustee. He will be responsible for overall operations and affairs of the trust.

The trust has been affiliated to the Shiv Sena as a non-political autonomous body.

The aims of the trust include general welfare of defence personnel whether serving or retired, their families and next of kin of those killed in action or otherwise. The trust will provide relief and rehabilitation to crippled or sick persons of any rank, besides taking up problems connected with injustice and exploitation of service personnel and their families.

In addition to setting up a military school and vocational training centres for war widows / families, the trust aims to help solve national problems by providing a “think-tank” in matters concerned with national security, economic regeneration, social justice, strategic planning and education.

Also listed among its aim is to provide the Shiv Sena chief dedicated, honest, trained and capable personnel for nationalist tasks and objectives, to be executed in coordination with the government, besides having an effective and functional infrastructure in every state reaching out to district and block levels.

Spiritual tree

There is more to the personality of Mr Makhan Singh Bhullar than just his retired Punjab Police DSP status. The man sports an amazing artistic talent, which is currently being reflected in the massive Shehtoot tree, adorning his Sector 22 residence. Drawing inspiration from the Sikh scriptures, Mr Bhullar has worked on the tree for months together to give it the shape of the Nishan Sahib. After months of laborious investment, the self-taught artist has succeeded in giving it a spiritual bearing.

It took him many days to get together the branches of the tree so as to make them look like the spiritual symbol of Nishan Sahib (see picture). Today Bhullar is a proud man, for he has executed his work with such grace that everyone passing by house number 3761 in Sector 22, bows before the tree in reverence.

Here’s evidence

Kept waiting four months to give evidence ? Sounds odd. But an Army doctor has been attached to N-Area here for the past few months on the pretext of appearing before a general court martial trying an officer on charges of dereliction of duty during Operation Vijay.

While several officers from the northern sector as well as a locally based unit have been summoned and disposed off, the officer, who was the Regimental Medical Officer of the accused’s unit is yet to be summoned. With no other duties being allocated to him, here is a classic example of waste of professionally qualified manpower.

Attentive Adviser

One among the many people curious to know more about the visiting Roma delegates is the Adviser to UT Administrator, Ms Neeru Nanda. On April 12, about 13 Roma delegates were in Chandigarh to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the International Roma Union. The function, held at the Government Museum auditorium, was attended by two UT officials, Ms Nanda and Ms Madhavi Kataria. While Ms Kataria made quite an insightful speech on that day, Ms Nanda was more interested in hearing from the Roma delegates than addressing them.

When the compere, Mr Dev Bhatnagar, requested Ms Nanda to deliver a lecture, she walked upto the dais and softly asked Mr Bhatnagar to instead invite Dr Vania de Gila Kochanowski, the great Roma scholar, to talk about his works and his experiences in India. What Ms Nanda demanded, happened.

Later when Mr Bhatnagar requested Dr Vania to hurry up with his talk (considering the time constraint), he took the excuse that the Adviser was getting late. Ms Nanda, however, promptly intervened, “Mera naam kyun le rahen hain.” She was listening to Dr Vania very attentively.

Love for humanity

A more than 100-hour-long programme on teachings of the Guru Granth Sahib and messages of other religions designed by Brig Partap Singh Jaspal is now available on the internet.

A resident of Sector 33, Brigadier Jaspal Singh is happy to learn about the success of the programme on “love for the humanity” which has attracted audience from all religions on the net. “An attempt has been made to show teachings of saints and preachers of all religions at a common platform. The message displays Guru Granth Sahib’s concept on the universe and invisible powers that govern humanity”, a note says.

The programme is available at and

PU promotions

Details about the latest round of promotions of Panjab University teachers are out, at least unofficially. And they have generated their own grouse on campus. There is a lot of discontent among senior teachers. A commonly heard complaint concerns the large number promoted as professors “What”, the common refrain goes, “would be the sanctity of professors were they to be so numerous?”

A sagacious decision of the Senate some years ago has ensured that there is no distinction between open category professors and merit promotees. Otherwise we would have witnessed a spate of unseemly court cases between the two sets of Professors in PU as has happened in other universities of the region. Surely there is no reason to begrudge promotions for our respected professors, but the point to ponder over is this: universities really need to do some hard thinking on better career management for the brighter of their dons and put in place a mechanism for differentiating the deserving from the undeserving.

Moving address

Meeting Sushma Swaraj is an experience in itself. The lady seems to in every way live up to the expectations people have of her. At the annual convocation of MCM DAV College in the city, Ms Swaraj addressed the students in a style of her own, impeccable Hindi, brilliant oration and ideas which would have taken most of these students many many years to learn and there it was all being doled out by Ms Swaraj out of her own experiences.

To say that she was able to impress everyone who had come to listen to her would be an understatement. Her speech had the ability to move the listener, a quality many of our present-day political leaders lack.

Haste makes waste

Having someone really busy and important as the chief guest on a public function like a convocation has its own set of fall outs. With Ms Sushma Swaraj sitting on the stage waiting to deliver the convocation address, the Principal of the college was in a major hurry to get over with the rest of the function and reach that high point of the day.

It was big day for the 650-odd students who had come to receive the degrees but the way they were in the end given out to them must have made them feel let down.

The Principal in her huff and hurry ended up giving wrong degrees to the wrong students and creating a major confusion among the students who could do nothing but smile away their dissatisfaction. But giving out 650 degrees in 35 minutes flat was a job done fast but not done well.

Elusive SP

Being inaccessible is an “approved’’ way of gaining popularity. This seems true in the context of the officials of the Panchkula police who refuse to take a telephone call without creating a fuss.

A regular on night patrolling, the Superintendent of Police, Dr C.S. Rao, is in the habit of waking up late. A call to his residence usually elicits this response: “Saab so rahen hain. Raat ko do baj gaya tha.’’

Half-an-hour later the next call is answered with a “Saab ab bathroom mein hain’’ and so it goes on as reporters make call after call to get through to the police chief.

Finally, one tends to give it a break of nearly 15 minutes and the last you hear is: “Saab jaldi mein the, ab chale gaye hain.’’ This is usually the fate of all telephone calls from reporters wanting confirmations or clarifications. This surely does not meet the ends of justice. Does it, Mr SP?

— Sentinel


Balongi bypass opening in May
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, April 15
The Balongi bypass, providing an alternative link to this town from the Chandigarh-Ludhiana highway, is expected to be opened to traffic next month. Work on a 116-metre-long and seven-span bridge on a seasonal rivulet, Patiala-Ki-Rao, connecting the bypass with the town, was in its final stages.

The bypass will ultimately provide a direct connection between the Zirakpur-Patiala National highway and the Chandigarh-Ludhiana highway after some missing road links in the southern part of the town are completed.

Apart from decongesting the traffic in Chandigarh, the link road will serve as an alternative entry point for the SAS Nagar-bound traffic from Delhi. It will be another entry point to SAS Nagar from the Ludhiana side. At present, the traffic bound for Chandigarh and this township has to cross a narrow bridge on Patiala-Ki-Rao — a seasonal rivulet — near Balongi.

Knowledgeable persons in the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA), the nodal agency executing the job, say the existing narrow bridge on Patiala-Ki-Rao was burdened by the heavy flow of vehicular traffic on the Ludhiana-Chandigarh road. Work on a new bridge parallel to the existing one is yet to start. The new road, apart from providing direct access to buses bound for the local bus stand, will also link the planned railway station near Kambala village.

The link road, after taking a turn near Balongi, will join the road passing between Sectors 61, 68, 69, 70, 71 and Industrial Area. At present, the SAS Nagar-bound traffic has to pass through populated areas of the township. A 1.04 kilometre-long and 100 feet wide stretch of the road to a point near the cremation ground had already been laid and the remaining stretch from the cremation ground to the local bus stand was already operational.

The officials of PUDA say the joining of the link road with the Zirakpur-Patiala highway was a long-term plan. They say though the alignment of the road stretch from Sector 65 to Zirakpur- Patiala highway, which would include the construction of an underbridge on the proposed Chandigarh-Ludhiana railway track (yet to materialise), was not finalised, it would meet somewhere near Chhat village, known for the Chhat Bir Zoological Park.

Along with the bridge on the Balongi bypass, the Chairperson-cum-Housing and Urban Development Minister, Punjab, is expected to inaugurate a foot bridge in Leisure Valley in Sector 62, a musical fountain in Sector 70 and a community centre in Sector 59. Though no date for the visit of the minister to the town has been finalised, sources in PUDA said “she may also lay the foundation stone of a city park in Sector 68 and another bridge connecting Sectors 67 and 68 behind the National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research (NIPER).


Thankful villagers present Ravi Inder with siropa
Nishikant Dwivedi

Togan (Kharar), April 15
The resident of the 29 villages which were to acquired for the township of Anandgarh today honoured Mr Ravi Inder Singh, former speaker of the Punjab Vidhan Sabha and sitting MLA from Morinda, by presenting him a ‘siropa’. The MLA is said to be the motivating force behind the Anandgarh Hatao Sanhi Sangharsh Committee (AHSSC) which successfully fought the Punjab government’s decision to build Anandngarh both in the streets and in the court.

Speaking on the occasion Mr Ravi Inder Singh asked for the resignation of the Mr Parkash Singh Badal’s government. He said, ‘‘The Punjab and Haryana High Court had quashed the Anandgarh notification on point of law. Mr Prakash Singh Badal has no moral right to continue’’. Launching a sort of election campaign, Mr Ravi Inder Singh said, ‘‘The victory is not yet complete, we will be victorious the day the present government is removed’’.

The MLA announced that he would be concentrating on the areas like Zirakpur and Sohana where the violation of periphery law was also taking place. He announced his full support to the villagers if the government moves the Supreme Court challenging the high court judgement and assured them that there too the villagers would be proved victorious.

Over 300 men and women today gathered at Togan village to show their gratitude to the MLA for his consistent support to their fight against the proposed township. The occasion was special as the MLA made his first appearance in any of the village since the March 28 high court judgement in which the notification for the township was quashed. Mr Ravi Inder Singh was in Europe.

Mr Jasbir Singh Dhaliwal, general secretary of the AHSSC, said that they were proved right by the high court and if the government challenged the high court decision in the apex court, it would again face a humiliating defeat there. He said, ‘‘The villagers are with us, the God is on our side and the court has proved that government’s decision to build Anandgarh was not justified’’.

The others who addressed the gathering include Mr G.S. Grewal, Mr Karam Chand, Mr G.S. Dhillon. Besides the villagers were also addressed by the various office bearers of the AHSSC.

The crowd as well as the leaders were in jubilant mood. Mr Dhaliwal announced on May 13 a larger and much bigger rally would be held at Mullanpur Garibdas village to celebrate the victory. When asked why to delay that celebrations by over 20 days, Mr Dhaliwal said, ‘‘The wheat crop is ready and the farmers would be harvesting the crop’’.


Neighbourhood watch launched in Sector 61
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 15
The Chandigarh Police’s ambitious “Neighbourhood Watch Scheme” was launched today in the Sector 61 MIG flats by the UT Inspector General of Police, Mr B.S. Bassi.

This scheme has been launched in association with the Residents Welfare Association, 504 MIG Flats Houses, Sector 61. Those residing in the area where the flats of the Chandigarh Housing Board are located would be the members of the scheme. The scheme is aimed at enhancing the safety and the security of the area by improving the police- community interface.

Speaking on the occasion, Mr Bassi said community policing had to take the centre stage in order to curb the growing crime rate. He said in view of the overwhelming response to the scheme by the various Residents’ Welfare Associations, the police had decided to extend the scheme in as many sectors of the city.

It may be noted that this is the fourth sector in the city where the scheme has been launched. The scheme, a brainchild of the IGP, was first launched in Sector 38 (West) in January. Subsequently, the scheme was also launched in Sector 15 and 19-D.


DG visits ITBP battalion at Ramgarh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 15
The Director General, Indo-Tibetan Border Police Force, Mr S.C Chaube, visited the force's 9th Battalion at Ramgarh near here today. This is Mr Chaube's first visit to the city since he took over as Director General on April 1.

Besides inspecting the battalion's quarter guard and the motor transport section, he also attended a presentation on the deployment and operational tasks assigned to the 9th Battalion, made with the help of a sand model by its commandant, Mr K.C Kapoor.

The DG also visited the ITBP's Base Hospital at Ramgarh, which is a well- equipped institution providing medical care to ITBP personnel deployed in the Ladakh valley and Himachal Pradesh, as well as to the families of serving and retired ITBP personnel. He also went around the Industrial Training Centre established by the ITBP for wards of its personnel. The centre has about 60 trainees in the field of computer applications, electronics, radio and TV repair.

Mr Chaube was accompanied by Mr V.K Singh, DIG Himachal sector, and Mr J.C Rana, Additional DIG Logistics and Communications.


Watering of lawns banned
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, April 15
The Public Health Department has banned watering of lawns and washing of cars during morning supply hours. The Executive Engineer (Public Health) said the consumption of water had increased and the residents living at the first and second floors were facing water shortage.


Crime prevention society branch
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 15
The All-India Crime Prevention Society today opened its branch here in Sector 29. Mr Amrit Pal Singh was appointed its president, Mr R.T. Goyal general secretary, while Mr Neeraj Chopra was appointed the spokesperson. On this occasion a cultural show was organised in which Mr Avtar Singh was the chief guest.


City resident booked in case of fraud
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 15
A city resident has been accused of cheating Mr Bharpoor Singh, a resident of Badal Tune village in Fatehgarh Sahib, of Rs 2 lakh on the pretext of sending the complainant abroad.

According to the information available, the accused, Surjit Singh, neither made arrangements for sending the complainant abroad nor returned the money. The police has registered a case under Section 420 of the IPC.

Thefts reported: Two cases of theft have been reported from different parts of the city in the past 24 hours. Some miscreants are reported to have stolen goods worth thousands of rupees from factory premises in Phase II Industrial Area on the intervening night of April 13 and 14. A fax machine, an internal camera, a television set, a wall clock and a computer printer were stolen from the factory premises of Mr Roshan Lal Jindal.

In another case, a cutter machine and a moulding machine were stolen from the shop-cum-office of Mr Swaranjit Singh, in Sector 9, on April 13.

In both the cases, an FIR under Section 380 of the IPC has been registered.

5 booked for gambling: The police has booked five persons for gambling and playing satta in a public place in two separate incidents.

Four residents of Palsora village were booked by the police for gambling at a public place in front of their residence and Rs 130 were recovered from their possession. Davinder Sawhney, Ram Kailash Yadav, Varinder Mandal and Arun Kumar have been booked under Sections 13, 3 and 67 of the Gambling Act.

In another case, Billu, alias Sonu, was arrested by the police for playing satta near Khokha Market, Indira Colony and Rs 450 were recovered from him.

4 women held
The police arrested four women on charges of stealing gate lights from a house in Sector 9 on Sunday.

According to information, Payal, Manju, Reema and Sheila were picked up by a police party from the police station (North) early morning when they had allegedly stolen two lights. The accused, all residents of Bapu Dham Colony, were arrested under Sections 379 and 411 of the IPC. They were later produced in a court and given two days police remand.

Man killed
A 74-year-old resident of Sector 38, Gurcharan Singh, was killed in a road accident when his scooter was hit by a Maruti car (CH-01D-9826). According to information, the victim received injuries on his head and was rushed to the Sector 16 General Hospital, but was referred to the PGI, where he was declared dead.

The car driver, Davinder Mohan, was arrested under Sections 279 and 304-A of the IPC.

Theft case
The house of an IAS officer, Mr Ram Vilas, was burgled and goods worth thousands of rupees were stolen.

The family had been away since April 13 and it was only upon their return on Sunday that they found their house burgled. A computer printer and keyboard, VCR, silver articles and clothes were reported to have been stolen.

Man dies of burn injuries

Ramesh K. Bhatia, who was admitted with burn injuries to the Sector 32 GMCH breathed his last on Sunday. The victim who was running a factory in Phase IX had allegedly committed suicide.

Scooter stolen
Jaspal Singh in a complaint lodged with the police said his scooter was stolen from Phase 7 here yesterday. A case has been registered by the police.



Seminar on emerging trends in airline industry
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 15
A seminar on emerging trends in the airline industry was organised here today as a part of Travel Mart. The seminar focussed on improvements required in this industry in the region and career opportunities offered by it.

‘‘The region needs to have direct flights from Mumbai and chopper services from Chandigarh to other places of the region,’’ said Dr Gulshan Sharma, Director, ITFT.

The Amritsar Airport also needs to be upgraded, said the speakers. Mr S. K. Chopra, a leading airline analyst, said air tickets worth more than Rs 15 crore were being sold every month from the five international airports in the country. The share of Amritsar in international flights, however, was very small. The speakers recommended that more international airlines should be permitted to operate direct flights to Amritsar.

On the career opportunities, Dr Sharma said most of the airline companies today preferred youngsters from Northern India . In the past six months, more than 300 youngsters from the region have joined the tourism and hospitality industry. An audio visual presentation on career opportunities was also arranged by the ITFT.

Mr B. P. Nautiyal, Station Manager, Indian Airlines, and Mr Vinod Kumar from Air India were also present on the occasion.

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