Tuesday, April 24, 2001,
Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S



Panel accepts PGI staff demands
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 23
Long-pending demands of PGI employees in general, and medical technologists in particular, have been agreed upon by a high powered committee (HPC) of the PGI and these will be put forward for approval of the Standing Finance Committee (SFC) and the governing body of the institute.

Minutes of the meeting of the HPC held on March 31, suggest that the issue regarding backlog promotion scheme on the basis of other scientific institutions like the Central Scientific Instrumentation Research (CSIR) and the IMTECH, has been agreed upon. The issue was decided at the HPC meeting held on February 5, 1997. The backlog promotion will be placed before the SFC and the governing body as per procedure.

This means that the promotion policy, which had earlier been stagnating at a particular post, will be streamlined and the employees stand a chance to be promoted after eight years of regular service. The Assured Career Progression scheme, which had been implemented, did not find favour with the employees, as that meant a promotion after 12 and 24 years of service.

Moreover, an agenda for grant of higher pay scale to the medical technologists who are demanding this on the basis of their educational qualification (B.Sc/ B.Sc medical technologist) at the time of their recruitment will also be placed before the SFC. Incidentally, PGI technologists are better qualified than those at the AIIMS and Panjab University. Moreover, the Junior Speech Therapist in the PGI, who are recruited with similar qualifications, are already getting a higher pay scale.

The HPC under the chairmanship of Prof I.C. Pathak, a former Director of the PGI, met on March 31. The other members of the committee are: Mr Pawan Bansal, MP, Prof S.K. Sharma, Director, PGI, Ms Meeta Rajiv Lochan, Deputy Director, Administration, Mr Subhash Nirankari, president, PGI Employees Union, Mr R.K. Khanchi, president, Medical Technologists Association, Mr Lakhwinder Singh, president, Nursing Welfare Association, and Mr Lachchman Kakra, president, PGI Safai Karamchari Union.

The HPC has also said the PGI Director is competent to grant Hospital Patient Care Allowance (HPCA) provisionally on the pattern of the AIIMS. The HPCA to the technologists and pharmacists besides others had been earlier withdrawn from the Group B employees in December 1998. Group A officials in the AIIMS are getting Rs 1,000 and Group B Rs 800 per month subject to the condition that a recovery, in case of any adverse decision could be made. The Director, PGI, also pointed out that even nurses, who were earlier in Group B, have been reclassified in Group C , which means the lab technicians too can be given allowances irrespective of pay scale and designation as is being given to the nurses.



PGI employees’ leader sacked
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 23
A junior laboratory technician of the PGI, Mr Aswini Munjal, who is also the General Secretary of the PGI Employees Union, has been dismissed from service by the authorities.

As per the dismissal order of April 23, 2001, signed by the PGI Director, Prof S.K. Sharma, Mr Munjal has also been disqualified for future employment under the government as per Rule 11 (ix) of the CCS CCA Rules applicable to the employees of the PGI as per regulation 38 of the PGIMER Regulations, 1967.

Mr Munjal, who was charged with four articles for having ‘‘ committed serious acts of misconduct, resorted to coercion and physical duress, acted in manner unbecoming of an employee of the institute and failed to maintain devotion to duty,’’ as per the order has contravened the provisions of Rules 3.1 (ii), 3.1 (iii) and 7 of the CCS (conduct) Rules, 1964.

Mr Munjal was recently reinstated after a period of suspension from August 12, 1997, to March 12, 2001.


Children’s date with Dravid
Arvind Katyal

Chandigarh, April 23
It was a joyous moment for young children who converged on an electronic appliances showroom in Sector 22 to have a date with India’s cricket sensation Rahul Sharad Dravid. The moment Dravid stepped out of the vehicle, about 50 children, including young cricketers of the Sector 16 cricket coaching centre, welcomed him with bouquets. Then it was the turn of autograph seekers. Dravid obliged them. He signed on small bats provided by Mr Surinder Singh ‘Baijee’, secretary of the Chandigarh Cricket Association. Meanwhile, the more people converged on the shop. The message had spread about the cricket icon’s presence.

Gurtajveer Singh, a Class II student of St Stephen’s School, swung into action. He climbed on a table to have an autograph of Dravid. Then it was Abhishek Mehan, a Class IV student of Hansraj Public school, Panchkula. He said it was really great to be in the midst of star cricketer. Angad Pal Singh Saini and Satrajit Singh, both brothers and cricketers, could not resist peeping from outside the showroom as they had reached late. But then they forced their way into the showroom have autographs of Dravid on small sized bats carried by them.

Then came the turn of Malwinder of DAV SS School, Sector 8, a cricketer who was accompanied by Varun Bakshi also of the same school. Both said: We used to worship Dravid. We used to imitate him. And today our dream has come true. Gaurav Gambhir, aged 13, and student of Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 35, said, he always wanted to bat like Dravid whose concentration at the crease was most admirable.

Similar were the views of Sumit Dhiman of Shivalik Public School, Sector 41, who said, “Dravid is the real driving force for me and now after talking and seeking his advice, I am quite happy”.

Soumanyu Talwar, a student of St Anne’s Convent School, Sector 32, was moved with Dravid’s presence. Dravid stayed for half an hour before leaving for his hotel.



Tennis tourney begins
Our sports Reporter

Chandigarh, April 23
Arjun Sehgal of Patiala and Digvijay Singh of Himachal Pradesh sailed into the second round of the Total Tennis Championship which began here today at the YMCA Total Tennis Academy, Sector 11. Arjun Sehgal, a Class V student of Yadavindra Public School, Patiala, whipped his opponent Siddharth with ease while Digvijay outplayed Arjit Gupta easily.

Results: Boys (under 10) — Arjun Sehgal b Sidhharth 5-0; Anshul Kadiyan b Raunak Khosla 5-0; Dev Karan b Adhiraj Gulati 5-1; Anish b Arpit 5-2; Amit Chauhan b Sidharth Singh 5-2; Akarshit b Sanchit Thareja 5-3; Gauravinder Toor b Alankar Narula 5-0.

Under-14: Inderjot b Harpreet 5-4 (7-4); Amandeep Singh b Vikram Malik 5-4 (7-4); Gursimran Brar b Yuvraj Singh 5-1; Ajitesh b Arjit Sidhu 5-0; Gurbir Singh b Raghav Singla 5-1.

Chess tourney from April 27

The Chandigarh Chess Association will hold a Chess Championship from April 27 to 29 at Sports Complex, Sector 42. According to Mr Vipnesh Bhardwaj, secretary of the association, the meet was open to players of the city and it will serve as a basis for the selection for the next tournament of high stature.

Entries could be given to Mr Karma Angdui at 1341, Sector 41-B, Chandigarh.



Slots’ allotment on April 30
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, April 23
The UT Administration is going to allot 50 vacant slots and three chambers of the District Court Complex in third phase of slots allotment on April 30 at the Estate Office. The administration has issued a notice of allotment to officials of courts and the Bar Association and the Estate Office.

Sources in the administration said the notice was issued by Deputy Commissioner, M. Ramsekhar. The draw of lots for allotment of vacant chamber in the District Court complex will be held on April 30 at 3.30 p.m. The notice was sent to the District and Sessions Judge, Mr H.S. Bhalla, Additional Sessions Judge, Mr Lakhbir Singh, president and secretary of the District Bar Association, Mr H.S. Hundal and Mr Davinder Singh, and Tehsildar , Mr H.K. Nagra.

Sources in the administration also revealed that the notice was also issued to the main allottee lawyers, who had not sent the consent to fill the vacant chambers and vacant slots. Sources informed that the administration had directed the main allottees to send the consent before April 26, otherwise the vacant slots and chambers will be allotted to the lawyers who had applied for the allotment in 1997. It may recalled that in 1997 the UT administration had invited applications for the allotment of vacant slots and chambers and about 300 lawyers had applied and submitted Rs 1000 with the administration.

However, there are few cases in the court where son and daughter of the main allottee had applied for the allotment of vacant slots lying vacant in his or her father’s chamber. But the administration had dismissed the plea on the ground that as there is no rule to allot vacant chamber or slot to the son or daughter of the main allottee.

Talking to Chandigarh Tribune, the UT Sub-Divisional Magistrate, Mr Prithi Chand, confirmed the allotment and said “The administration has given enough time to the main allottee to give the consent for co-allottee and hope that they will cooperate with us to make third phase of allotment successful. He informed that the administration had prepared a list of 221 lawyers for the draw of lots, who had applied for slots allotment in 1997. He also clarified that there is no rule by which the administration can allot vacant slots to the son or daughter of the main allottee.

The president of the District Bar Association, Mr H.S Hundal, welcomed the step of the administration and said “the Bar Association will definitely convince the main allottee lawyers to give their consent for the allotment.


MCC: new staff for enforcement
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 23
Following the ‘exposure’ of alleged corruption in the enforcement wing of the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh, the Commissioner, Mr M.P. Singh, has decided to entrust the enforcement duties to certain other officials of the corporation. A final decision in this regard is likely to be taken tomorrow.

According to sources in the corporation, this is being done to “get rid of the poor image of the Enforcement Department following the recent CBI raids” and also to ensure that the enforcement drives, being carried out in routine to remove encroachments from the MC land, are not stalled for want of staff.

Sources add that there is hardly any staff to carry out the operations following the arrest of Inspector Kashmira Singh, Sub-Inspectors Sunil Kumar, Avtar Singh and Dilbagh Singh. They add that two SIs are still absconding, while another was dismissed on Friday in another case.

The sources add that the officials, who will be entrusted the task, will work against the post of Inspector and Sub-Inspectors in their own pay scales. Officials maintain that this will help counter the alleged nexus between the enforcement officials and the rehriwallas, thereby streamlining the drives.

Meanwhile, the Commissioner has ordered the dismissal of Sub-Inspector, Devinder Pal Singh, of the enforcement wing on charges of grave misconduct and disobeying the orders of the superior.

It may be recalled that the said Inspector had been placed under suspension after he sold scrap confiscated from Industrial Area, Phase-I, during a drive on June 13 for Rs 4,600.

The MC besides registering a case against him had also initiated a departmental inquiry. The Accounts Officer, Mr Mohan Kapoor, who conducted the said inquiry, found him to be guilty and following the submission of the report, his orders of dismissal from service were passed two days back. This just leaves one Sub-Inspector at the disposal of the MC, out of the total strength of eight.


Form guidelines for property tax: Admn
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 23
The Chandigarh Administration has asked the Municipal Commissioner and the Deputy Commissioner, who is also the Estate Officer, to frame guidelines for imposing property tax on commercial and industrial properties here.

No time frame has been given to officials for this purpose. The Chandigarh Administration has already asked the Municipal Corporation to impose property tax in the city.

Commercial areas will be divided into various zones for fixing of “rateable value” of the property. A building facing the Sector 17 piazza will be rated higher than a property near the 30-bays building, an office area.

The civic body had passed a resolution in 1997 to impose a 10 per cent property tax on the “rateable value” of commercial land and buildings here. There will be a 10 per cent service tax on the government buildings. Sources in the Administration, say that even this tax limit on commercial property is the lowest in the country. Residential property is yet to be covered, but under pressure from the Administration, the MC may impose the tax.

Sources said this was being done to generate some revenue for the cash-strapped MC that has been adamant on not imposing the tax for the past four years.

To impose property tax, the MC House has to first approve the byelaws for its imposition. The byelaws were approved by the MC House Tax Assessment Committee headed by a senior BJP leader, Mr Prem Sagar Jain, in 1998 and the MC Finance and Contracts Committee. These will now be put before the House for approval, in which case, a committee of two councillors and the commissioner or his representative will form the guidelines.

Even the projected earnings of Rs 15 crore from property tax have been dropped from the MC budget, following objections.

The issue becomes significant as the MC elections are to be held at the end of this year. Each time the MC asks for more funds, the Administration reminds it of the need to impose property tax.

The Chandigarh Administration has said that there will be a proportionate decrease of 10 per cent per annum in the grant-in-aid to the MC. Estimates show that just by imposing property tax on commercial property, the MC will get Rs 20 crore.


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