Friday, May 4, 2001, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


IBP petrol pump continues to violate norms
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 3
The Sector 33 company-owned and company-operated petrol pump of IBP seems to be bent upon deviating from norms. After the direct opening of the petrol pump on the V2 road was closed down by the UT Administration workers yesterday, authorities of the petrol station have evolved yet another way of keeping up their sales.

They have bypassed the rules by placing big stones in front of the sand heaps placed by the Administration to close the opening. It may be recalled that on April 28, the Chandigarh Tribune had published a report exposing the way this petrol pump was flouting the Chandigarh Master Plan with impunity. Following the report, the Administration had closed direct access of the pump to the V2 road. Direct entry to the petrol pump from the V2 road existed despite a slow carriageway, and the pump people were honest enough to admit that they had pressurised the Administration to let the opening be so that their sales were not adversely affected.

A visit to the area this morning, confirmed that the pump authorities had placed stones in front of the huge heap of sand which the UT Administration had placed to block the entry yesterday. Not only that, they had also deployed an attendant at the area of closed access. He was found guiding the vehicles passing by the V2 road into the petrol pump. Interestingly, not knowing that he was being carefully watched, the attendant talked to this reporter about his duty.

“The Administration had sent some workers to close the entry yesterday. Due to this, the vehicles were drifting away from our pump. Many people do not know that the slow carriageway exists. I have been asked to stand here and direct the vehicles towards the petrol pump.” The attendant even directed this reporter’s vehicle towards the station.

The most surprising confession from the attendant was that although the Administration had closed down the opening, the petrol pump people had acquired some “written permission” from the police of the area to manage entry of vehicles into the petrol pump. The police, however, denied knowledge of the matter.

The present act of the petrol pump authorities is all the more appalling, keeping in view the fact that they were already violating the provisions of Chandigarh Master Plan which bars all institutional and commercial buildings in the city from having direct access to the V2 roads of the city.

Access the road was earlier justified in the absence of a slow carriageway. But strangely enough, the opening to the petrol pump on the main road still existing despite the construction of a slow carriageway by the UT’s PWD Department.

Official at the Administration , when contacted today, confirmed that they had closed the entry and were about to make a concrete closure. The official concerned said that he was not aware that the pump authorities were still violating rules.


Rotational power cuts from today
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 3
Residential as well as commercial areas of the city will witness rotational power cuts from tomorrow. However, hospitals, railway station, All-India Radio Station, telephone exchanges, defence installations and water works, will be exempted from the cuts.

The demand for power in the Union Territory of Chandigarh has further increased with the rise in temperature, thus the need to impose the cuts, said a spokesperson of the Engineering Department.

With existing steps like staggering of weekly off days of industrial consumers and strict implementation of peak load hours restrictions for industries, it has not been possible to contain the power demand within the allocation, resulting in overburden on the system.

In order to maintain grid discipline as per the instructions of the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC) and to maintain proper frequency as per the guidelines provided in the Indian Electricity Grid Code, the Chandigarh Administration today decided to impose cuts in the residential and commercial areas, including the villages. The cuts will be for a period of one-hour duration in each area between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. as per schedule enclosed. The cuts will be rotated after every fortnight and will continue till June 30.

Time details of area to be shutdown

9 a.m to 10 a.m.: Sectors 19-C parts, 20-B, C&D parts, 27-C, 27-D parts, 32, 33, 43-B, 44-A, 46, 47-B, 47-C parts, 49-A&B, 52, 55, 61, Kajheri and Colony No 5

10 a.m. to 11 a.m.: Sectors 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7-A & B, 8-B & C, 9, 10, 11-A & B, 15-A, B & C parts, Assembly Hall, Punjab & Haryana Civil Secretariat, , Khuda Alisher, Kaimbwala, Rajendra Park, Engineering College and Lawyers Chamber.

11 a.m. to 12 noon: Sectors 7-C&D-16 C&D, 17, 18-D, 22-A parts, 26 parts, 27-A & B, Modern Housing Complex Category-IV and Category-I parts.

12 noon to 1 p.m.: Sectors-12 parts, 7-C parts, 19-A, B, C & D parts, 20-A, 22-A, B, C & D parts, 26, 27-D, 28, Institutional Area Sectors-26, 41, 42, 44-C & D, 45-A & B, Kishangarh, Bhagwanpura parts, Mani Majra and Burail Jail.

1 p.m. to 2.p.m.: Sector-9 parts, 10 parts, 12, 14, 15-D parts, 30-A & B, Grain Market, Timber Market, Police Line, Police Line Colony, Bapu Dham Colony, Lahora Khuda and Jassu, Dhanas, Milk Colony, Aman Chaman Ambedkar Colony, Sarangpur, Behlana, Hallo Majra, Darua and Colony No.4.

2 p.m. to 3 p.m.: Sector-8-C parts, 9-B & C parts, 18-A, B & C, 16-parts, 17-parts, 19-A parts, 19-D, 21-A, B & C parts, 22-A & B parts, 23-A & B parts.

3 p.m. to 4 p.m.: Sector-29, 36, 37-A, B, C & D parts, 40 parts, 41-A & B, Mani Majra Town, Modern Housing Complex Category-I parts, Category-II & III, Duplexes, Shivalik Enclave, Mauli Jagran, Raipur Kalan and Makhan Majra.

4 p.m. to 5 p.m.: Sector 24-B, C & D parts, 30-C parts, 31, 37-D parts, 38, 39, 40, IMT, 47-A, B & C parts, 55, 56, CSIO, Ram Darbar Colony, Dadu Majra Colony, Maloya and Palsora.

5 p.m. to 6 p.m.: Sector 20-A & C, 21-A & D, 21-B & C parts, 22-C & D parts, 23-A & C parts, 34, 35, 45-A & B.


Power, sewer rates revised
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, May 3
There is good news for residents of the town. After a wait of over one-and-half month, the Municipal Council has finally written to the Public Health Department to charge consumers at the revised water and sewer rates. A roll back in water and sewer tariff was approved by the civic body in its meeting held on March 15 last.

Sources in the civic body said the revised rates would be adjusted in the bills next due. The rate for commercial consumers continues to be Rs 5 per kilo litre (KL). Despite the reduced water tariff, domestic consumers in the town would continue to pay more as compared to their neighbours in Chandigarh and Panchkula.

Before the roll back in the tariff, an over 140 per cent hike in the water and sewer rates had been effected in November last by the civic body on the directives of the Local Government Department. Not satisfied with the roll back, residents and councillors of the opposition group had been demanding that they should not be taxed and that the original rates be maintained. Mr Shyam Bansal, a councillor from Phase 1, said when the Public Health Department was not properly maintaining the sewers, it had no business to charge sewerage cess.

The council officials on the other hand said that it was not possible to completely roll back the tariff any further, as with each passing year expenditure of the Public Health Department — responsible for supply and maintenance of the water supply — had been rising as compared to its income.

They said even after the hike and the subsequent roll back in the tariff, the civic body was expected to face a deficit of Rs 1. 40 crore by the end of the current financial year.

Privatising water and sewerage maintenance in the town was one of the options that the civic body had been exploring. This, said the civic body officials, was expected to save “wasteful expenditure” of around Rs 1 crore annually.

The civic body is shelling out over Rs 4 crore annually to the Public Health Department for maintenance of water supply, storm water and sewerage. This includes 14 per cent departmental charges being levied by the civic body.

Comparison of the original and the revised water and sewerage rates in SAS Nagar.

                                                Original             Hiked               Revised

Water rates (per KL)

Domestic                               Rs 1.20               Rs 2                 Rs 1.80

Commercial                          Rs 2.50               Rs 5                 Rs 5

Sewerage rates (per seat per month)

Domestic                               Rs 10                   Rs 25              Rs 15

Commercial                          Rs 10                   Rs 40              Rs 30



Criminal tribes bring police on its toes
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 3
The onset of summer means busy time for the city police, with criminal tribes from Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh making a beeline for the region.

Two persons have been killed during past week — one each in Lohgarh village and Fatehgarh Sahib district — and several others injured in armed attacks. According to police sources, both incidents appeared to be the handiwork of such tribes, the former of the Bawariyas and the latter of the Dhehs. Fearing attacks by these tribes, an exercise of laying nakas in the peripheral areas and the surrounding villages in the UT was conducted on the night of April 28.

Though the city has never been a witness to their attacks, peripheral areas and various villages in the Union Territory, besides the satellite townships, run risk from these organised gangs and criminal tribes. The Dhehs, the Bawariyas, the Baazigars and various small groups like the Saini group have been active around the city in the past.

A total of 65 nakas were laid as part of the special exercise, including the five parties deployed in the outskirts of the city. This drive was conducted as a precautionary measure against the robbery in Lohgarh village. The local police officials say they are unable to keep up with the tempo because of shortage of staff. The personnel from other units like CAW, EOW and CBO were deployed for this exercise.

A large number of persons were killed in attacks by various criminal tribes in Zirakpur, Kharar, Ludhiana, Jagraon, Phagwara, Barnala, Bathinda and other parts of Punjab last year. While the Pardis of Madhya Pradesh, dressing up in black underpants and known as Kaale Kachchewale in the local lingo, were mainly held responsible for the robberies in Punjab, the Bawariyas and the Baazigars of Rajasthan were responsible for the series of robberies in various parts of Haryana, including Panchkula.

These tribes move about with their families from one place to another. They begin their operations at this time of the year and the trends for the past couple of years have shown that these attacks continue till September. They reside at a town or city adjacent to the one they are targeting.

They leave their womenfolk behind at the temporary hutments they construct at a public place to make themselves noticeable. The men work as roadside vendors and roam about from place to place, scanning the area and their prospective targets. Police sources point out that other than these criminal tribes, a large number of migrant labourers from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar have also formed their own gangs and are involved in highway robberies on the Zirakpur- Banur and Zirakpur-Patiala roads.


4 lose membership of coop society
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 3
In a significant decision, the UT Joint Registrar of Cooperative Societies (JRCS), has removed certain office-bearers of the Labour Bureau Employees Cooperative House Building Society Limited from the membership of the society on the charge of dual membership.

The JRCS, Mr Chander Shekhar, exercising the powers of the Registrar of Cooperative Societies, in his order, removed three office-bearers and a member of the society from the membership under the provisions of Rule 15(2) of the Punjab Cooperative Societies Rules,1963, which specifically prohibited dual membership.

Those, whose membership has been cancelled are Mr SK Sharma, president, Mr RK Chaturvedi, treasurer, Ms Mohinderjit Kaur, vice-president, and Mr Om Parkash, a member of the society. The case was filed b Mr Prem Lal Gill, a member of the society.

“After hearing rival contentions of the parties, I am of the considered view that respondents cannot continue with dual membership of the societies , particularly when the objects of one society are similar to the objects of the society of which he is a member and the provisions of Rule 15(2) of the Punjab Cooperative Societies Rules,1963, specifically prohibits dual membership”, the order said.

The order further noted:”In this way, such an individual, who has become a member of another society with similar objects, either or both of the societies,shall be bound to remove him or them from the membership of the society and this court has no option except to remove the respondents from the membership of this society”, the JRCS said.

The applicant, the order said, had made a number of claims, which included a probe into the affairs of the society, confiscation of its record, appointment of an administrator and initiation of action against the respondents. Since the allegations were serious in nature and he deemed it appropriate to appoint an administrator to look into the functions of the society, who would take over the functions of the society immediately, the order added.

Mr Gill, in his application, claimed that Mr Om Parkash, in his affidavit for membership of the society, had concealed his wife, who was dependent on him, was a member of the Silverton Society since 1987. Moreover, he had also obtained the membership of the Bureau’s Unique Cooperative Group Housing Society Limited, Panchkula, again by submitting a false affidavit.

Similarly, Mr Sharma was also a member of the Paragon Cooperative House Building Society, registered at Panchkula. Apart from this, Mr Chaturvedi was a member and beneficiary in the Bureau Unique Cooperative Group Housing Society Limited, Panchkula, the complaint alleged.Ms Mohinderjit Kaur enrolled herself as a member of the society by giving a false affidavit as her husband was an allottee of a subsidised house from government in SAS Nagar, the complaint alleged.

Meanwhile, membership of at least 35 members of the society was likely to be cancelled if the present order of the JRCS was taken into account, added Mr GS Cheema, a member of the society.


Fire, panic follow storm
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 3
A fire which broke out in Ram Durbar, Phase II, today evening led to partial burning of overhead electric wires, transformer and a few rehris, following the duststorm, which hit the city at around 6 pm. Though the cause of the fire is yet to be ascertained, no loss of life and property was reported.

Due to sparking and small blasts, there was panic among residents of the area who came out of their houses. The power supply to the area was also affected for a few hours after the damage to the wires. The rehris, which were lying near H No 2277, also got partially burnt.

Sources in the Fire Department disclosed that as soon as the fire call was received, two fire-engines, one each from Industrial Area and Ram Durbar fire stations, were pressed into action and they were able to control the fire. The fire, according to them, could have been caused either by short-circuit or the ignition of a spark in the sanitation bin close by due to the intensity of the winds. Electricity personnel were asked to switch off the connection till the fire fighting operation was on.

Meanwhile, a fire also broke out in the jungle behind the Sector 43 ISBT-II, but no damage was reported and fire-engines from Industrial Area was sent to control the flames. The heavy winds also led to another jungle fire in Daruah village, near railway station. Two fire-engines, one each from Mani Majra and Industrial Area, were sent to prevent any damage to the godown of the FCI nearby. Earlier, a small fire also broke out on some garbage near ARC company near Daruah, which if not controlled could have caused damage to a transformer nearby.


Residents rejoice at completion of V3 road
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 3
The formal opening of a newly constructed V-3 road, which also happens to be the last road in southern most ward of the city, popularly called the Jagatpura road, today marked the completion of all the roads in ward No: 17, comprising sectors 31 and 47.

The Residents Welfare Association, Sector 47, held an informal function in this connection. Earlier, the concerned authorities in the UT Administration had simply ignored this comparatively backward area in the south.

According to figures made available, the V-3 road dividing Sector 31-32 and Sector 46-47, which have a heavy flow of vehicular traffic between Industrial Area-II and Mohali has been strengthened by specialised treatment at a cost of Rs 70 lakh. Besides this, all the remaining V-5 and V-6 roads in Sectors 31 and 47, measuring 15.36 km and 20.58 km respectively, have also been strengthened and recarpeted at the cost of Rs 75 lakh. In fact, the recarpeting of V-5 and V-6 roads in all sub- sectors of Sector 31 was completed in 1997, the very first year of the present MC and on some of these roads work was undertaken after a span of about 16 years. While the V-6 roads in Sector 47 were completed in 1998-99, the V-5 were completed in 2000.

The newly-constructed 1.27 V-3 road of 12 feet width, situated on the East of Sector 47, constructed at a cost of Rs 12.84 lakh will sustain the load of heavy vehicular traffic passing through it towards Punjab. It is pertinent to mention that to strengthen its durability, special treatment has been given on the advice of a highway expert. The residents of the area, who were grateful for now the heavy vehicular traffic would not ply through the internal V-5 and V-6 roads, thereby making lives more safe and peaceful for them.

Dr. M.S. Chauhan, president, Ward No. 17, and Wg Cdr Rajesh Pal Saini of Army Welfare Association, have on behalf of the residents, thanked the officials of the Corporation and the councillor, whose hard work and dedication have led to the strengthening of the roads. To begin with work was started in Sector 31, which is an airmen dominated area , who are not even voters. While commending the developmental work, the residents who had gathered in large numbers distributed sweets.

Among those present were the Mayor, Mr Raj Kumar Goyal, Commissioner, Mr M.P. Singh and Chief Engineer, Mr Manmohanjit Singh, SE (Roads) I.S. Sokhey and area Xen, Mr Mukesh Anand.


6 Mohali projects await inauguration
Kulwinder Sangha

SAS Nagar, May 3
Six projects undertaken by the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) in the town have now been nearly completed and are likely to be inaugurated soon.

The projects, except a bridge over a rivulet, may be inaugurated around mid-May by the Housing and Urban Development Minister, Dr Upinderjit Kaur. Sources say the bridge may be unveiled by the Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal.

The projects are, the main bridge over the Patiala ki Rao rivulet; providing an alternative link to the town from the Chandigarh-Ludhiana highway; two community centres in Phases V and XI; two foot bridges over the nullah in the Sector 62 Leisure Valley; and a musical fountain in the Sector 70 park.

The 116-metre-long bridge over the rivulet will provide an alternative entry point to SAS Nagar-bound traffic from Delhi, besides easing traffic in Chandigarh.

The Phase V community centre has a covered area of about 9,000 sq ft, with the plot measuring 1.1 acre. It has space for a variety of activities. On one side, there is a big lawn for gatherings and functions. An open-air stage, accessible by a ramp for persons on wheel-chairs, forms part of the open space. An open-to-the-sky enclosure has been provided for small gatherings while the medium and large open spaces can be used for different ceremonies and functions.

The community centre building, with an impressive facade, has a multi-purpose hall to seat 250 persons, with a stage and green-rooms for performances. The hall provides space for buffets and gatherings. Also provided are a games room and a senior citizens’ hall, along with a kitchen and a pantry.

The first floor has a reading room, dormitories for residential purposes, a store and toilet facility. A large terrace, along with a service counter on the first floor, provides additional space for get-togethers and functions.

The Phase XI community centre, a project which has been delayed, also has a multipurpose hall on the ground floor measuring about 57 feet by 38 feet, an indoor games hall (37 feet by 28 feet), a kitchen and pantry, a store, the manager’s room, an office, toilets and changing room. The first floor has a library (28 feet by 18 ft) and three dormitories of different sizes. The covered area of the ground floor is 6,205 square feet, while that of the first floor is 3,255 square feet. The estimated cost is about Rs 59 lakh.

The two-foot bridges over the nullah dividing the Leisure Valley in Sector 62 have been constructed by PUDA at a cost of Rs 30 lakh. As a landscape feature, creepers would provide a six-foot-high green vertical screen along the horizontal bridge rails to curtain the unsightly nullah. It would basically be a corridor with a 6-foot-high green cover on the sides, with an arched GI pipe frame overhead at intervals.

The musical fountain in the Sector 70 park is a 15 metre by 10 metre water body lined with bluish glazed tiles. Pavements, six metre wide with red pavers, surround the pool, which can be approached from different directions of the park.

An earth-sheltered, red tile-faced control room has been integrated with the landscape. The dancing fountain, synchronised with music, has been provided with coloured light effects to create an impressive impact.


Villagers block traffic for two hours
Tribune News Service

Ramgarh, May 3
Traffic on the Ramgarh-Panchkula road remained suspended for nearly two hours, here today, as irked villagers of Ramgarh, Jaisinghpura and Mankayo blocked the road in protest against installation of electric meters at their residences.

Beginning at 9.30 am, the villagers, nearly 1,000,alleged that the newly installed electric meters, put up over a week back by the Electricity Department, were ‘faulty’.

“Instead of the usual five to seven readings, the units consumed have shot up to 25 units for a day. The meter seems to be moving faster than it should. This means that the department has installed faulty meters at our residences. We will not pay the exorbitant bills at any cost,’’ the sarpanch of Ramgarh, Ms Kamla Rani, said.

Lasting for two hours, traffic flow was resumed after villagers were assured that all meters installed would be checked by employees of the department. The police stepped in to clear the road and removed the villagers from the road.

An official of the Electricity Department said, “We have offered to check all meters and are willing to begin now. However, nobody is ready to take us to their house. The new meters are pilferage proof and cannot be tampered with to slow down the recording of units consumed.’’ Approximately 500 meters have already been replaced and an equal number were still to be replaced.

While the police managed success after two hours in Ramgarh, residents of Bana and Madanpur blocked traffic just a few kms down the same road. Here again, officials of the Electricity Department assured a complete check of the installed meters to disperse the mob.


New transit bus stand for Mohali soon
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, May 3
To tackle the problem of heavy vehicular traffic within the town, especially the movement of buses from the main bus stand here, the government plans to construct a transit bus stand on the outskirts of the town — along the Chandigarh-Ludhiana national highway. Once complete, the government would be able to sell off the land of existing bus stand valued at around Rs 17.50 crore

Officials of the Transport Department say a persistent problem of Chandigarh-bound buses not touching the existing bus stand much to the inconvenience of local commuters will also be solved as the new bus stand would come up along the national highway necessitating the long-route buses to pass through or stop there. Evasion of adda fee will also be checked this way, said the officials. Already the work of constructing the bus stand in an area of about five acres adjacent to the Verka plant in Phase 6 here has been given to the Punjab Small Industries and Export Corporation (PSIEC) instead of the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) which had earlier been asked to undertake the project under a joint venture with the Punjab State Bus Stand Management Company (PUNBUS). The project has been transferred to the PSIEC from the PUDA as the latter has quoted high rates — a fact denied by the PUDA officials.

The Principal Secretary, Transport, Ms Tejinder Kaur, talking to the TNS confirms that work on the transit bus stand will begin soon. She says the site has been selected on the outskirts away from the populated area. An additional bridge on the Patiala Ki Rao choe and replanning of an existing rotary near the Verka plant is being done to regulate entry and exit of buses from the proposed bus stand. Not denying that owing of the cost of the project the work has been given to the PSIEC, she says the PUDA has already a lot of projects in hand.

She says it will only be a transit bus stand, meaning that buses will pass through it and a permanent bus stand will be constructed in Sector 77, land for which is being acquired. As per a preliminary report, around 13 parking bays for buses will be constructed under a single storey structure. The length of the platform will be around 550 feet. Around 1800 buses are expected to daily pass through the bus stand. An administrative block and sitting rooms and another basic facilities for the commuters have been planned. Sources in the PSIEC say conceptual plans of the proposed bus stand have been given to the transport department. They say the project will cost around Rs 2 crore as minimum earth filling will be done at the site to reduce the cost of the project. The PUDA had given a rough estimate of around Rs 3. 90 crore for the project.

On the condition of anonymity PUDA officials say the site, being a low-lying site, it will require a lot of earth filling to bring it the level of the National Highway. It being a floodable site, that level of the site makes it necessary to raise it. A regular gradient has to be given before laying the storm water and sewerage lines . “We were asked to do the earth filling within garbage but we refused . The issue was discussed at the meeting chaired by the Chief Secretary regarding modernisation of bus stand in Punjab. They said at least three feet of earth filling had to be done at the site.

“Interestingly, the PUDA had invited tenders for the project when the work was reallotted to the PSIEC. We were waiting for the administrative approval but the senior officials decided to give the project to the PSIEC”, they added.

Meanwhile, Once the transit bus stand will be constructed, the transport department will start a local bus service to enable the commuters to reach different parts of SAS Nagar.

Four laning of the section of the Chandigarh — Ludhiana highway from Balongi bridge to Dara Studio has been planned to regulate flow of traffic to the proposed bus stand.


Councillors’ houses to be “gheraoed”
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 3
The Chandigarh Vikas Manch today announced their plan to “gherao” the houses of elected councillors of the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh (MCC) from May 5, in protest against their role in stalling the proceedings of the civic body’s House.

Giving details of the “jag jagran abhiyan”, while addressing a press conference here , the manch president, Mr Harmohan Dhawan, said the peaceful “gherao” was aimed at making the councillors realise their duty towards the residents, who had elected them.

He alleged that the disruption of the proceedings of the House had brought developmental activity in the city to a standstill. Due to infighting between the Congress and the BJP on one side and within the Congress on the other, the corporation had been reduced to a battleground for politicians, said Mr Dhawan, while renewing his demand for MCC polls without party tickets.

While demanding direct election to the post of Mayor for a fixed term of five years on the UP pattern, Mr Dhawan was hopeful that better sense would prevail on the councillors and they would let the House function smoothly. He disfavoured the dissolution of the House.

According to him, the Mayor, Mr Raj Kumar Goyal, could have controlled the situation when the BJP had alleged irregularities in the construction of shops at Mani Majra by the Mayor. Instead, Mr Goyal and CTCC chief, Mr B.B. Bahl, went to the Press levelling corruption charges against BJP councillors, which further compounded the problem.

The “gherao” would start outside the residence of Mr Des Raj Tandon, leader of the opposition in MCC, on May 5. The following day, the residences of the Mayor and the Senior Deputy Mayor would be “gheraoed”.

The schedule of the “gherao”, however, exempts four councillors, including Congress councillor and wife of Mr Dhawan, Ms Satinder Dhawan. It also exempts Mr Mohinder Singh and Ms Harjinder Kaur, both from SAD, and the BJP councillor, Air Marshal RS Bedi(Retd). Their houses would be “gheraoed” in the next phase, Mr Dhawan added.


Slip road given the slip by authorities
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 3
Residents beware. The slip road carved out on the Chandigarh-Ambala highway near The Tribune Chowk has a crater at least four feet deep and two feet wide right in the middle.

The situation is worse at night as there are neither traffic lights nor any indication warning drivers of impending danger. Three boulders have been placed there by some Good Samaritan. Unfortunately, they are not enough.

Every other day accidents occur on the road. But the authorities seem to have turned a blind eye towards the problem.

The crater has not been filled even though residents have been complaining about it. In fact its size has increased over the weeks, with heavy vehicles crossing over it on way to the Transport Chowk.

“The size of the pot hole is so big that if a child falls into it by chance, the consequences can be grave,” says Ganesh, a pan-bidi vendor.

“The apathy of the authorities can be gauged from the fact that they have not bothered to do anything about it. Furthermore, in the absence of street lights on the road, the chances of vehicles slipping into it increase”.

Another passer-by remarked, “Such pot holes are a regular feature on roads which have not been recarpeted during the past 10-15 years and the surface of those roads has become so weak that no repair work lasts on them, but it is unusual to see such craters on a new road, the work on which is still in progress”.

Ganesh has a suggestion for the authorities. “If you cannot repair the slip road, close it. At least you will not be playing with the lives of innocents.”

Interestingly, when an official in the planning circle (Road and Highway) in UT Administration was contacted, he said that he was not aware of the same and tried to shift the onus on the officials of the Public Health circle by saying that they had to repair the same.

An official of the public health circle however maintains that it is not under their purview and if at all the problem is on account of shifting a sewerage line, the Municipal Corporation should do the needful. Since the authorities continue to shift blame, no end to the problem seems to be in sight.


PUDA land case takes new turn
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 3
The case of land acquisition by Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) for further expansion of SAS Nagar has taken a new turn, with the counsel of the petitioners, who had taken a status-quo regarding possession of land in Sohana village in a legal notice to the Chief Administrator of the PUDA, stating that PUDA by issuing public notice that the stay order of the court were only qua the land of the individual petitioners, was misleading the successful plot allottees.

The counsel said in the notice that according to the misunderstanding of statute and law, they unwittingly committing contempt of the court by taking further steps to enforce the impunged notification.

Quoting CWP 5512 of 2001, he said even notification issued under Section 9 had been challenged and the whole matter was sub judice.


Duststorm lashes city areas
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 3
The city and its surrounding areas were lashed by a duststorm this evening with wind speeds touching 70 km per hour. The local met office classified it as a ‘‘ squall’’ while adding the conditions will not result in rain as there was little moisture content.

The storm was followed by a pleasant cloud cover which brought down temperatures and by the evening a gentle breeze was blowing through the city. Hundreds of people thronged the Sukhna Lake, the Rose Garden, the Terrace Garden and Fragrance Garden for an evening walk.

The met office said the storm had occurred due to a cyclonic circulation build up over Haryana. Reports of mild rain have been received from parts of Haryana.


Lawyers call off strike
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, May 3
The strike by lawyers of the District Courts here on the issue of a police raid at the residence of a lawyer was called off today after a compromise with the police which got the nod of the general body of the bar association.

The criminal case filed by Mr Ravi Sharma, the lawyer whose house was raided by the police in connection with the arrest of the main accused in the fake transfer case, against the SP and the DSP was scheduled for hearing in the court of the Chief Judicial Magistrate, Mr Ved Pal Gupta.

It is learnt that when the case came up, DSP Sultan Singh asked for permission to speak to the lawyers where he admitted that the raid was unknowingly carried out at the residence of the lawyer since their was no nameplate outside. He added that he would be more careful in future.

The spokesman of the bar council said following the apology, an emergency general body meeting was held and the apology accepted. Later, the criminal complaint was also withdrawn.


Options for co-op societies
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 3
Co-operative building societies will now have an option to have lands allotted to them on leasehold or on freehold basis.

Societies which opt for freehold will have to pay Rs 2,850 per square yard while those opting for leasehold will have to pay Rs 2500 per square yard, Chandigarh Administration said today.

The scheme to allot lands on a chunk basis to co-operative societies came into existence in the year 1991 and under this scheme, several societies applied for land and deposited sums with the Chandigarh Housing Board (CHB) by the stipulated date. Though the scheme stands repealed, land has to be allotted to different eligible societies by following the provisions of the scheme.


Tribune employee bereaved
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 3
Ram Dass, father of Mr Prem Singh, a Sectional Head working with The Tribune Trust, died today at Khudda Ali Sher here. He was 90. The deceased, who had been unwell for the past few days, was cremated today. The bhog ceremony will be held at his native village on May 13.


BSNL starts work on wireless service
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 3
The Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) today started installing equipment to operate its much awaited wireless in local loop service which enables limited mobility for the user.

The installation process would take about two months. The commencement of work was today inaugurated by the Chief General Manager, Telecom, (CGMT), Mr S.C. Choudhary. The equipment would be installed in Sector 17, 34 and Mani Majra exchanges.


Abandoned baby finds home
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, May 3
A nine-day-old girl child, who was recently found abandoned near Akal Ashram in Sohana, has finally found a home. A couple from Phase XI has been handed over the custody of the child by the Subdivisional Magistrate, Mr Jaipal, after he quizzed five couples under the rules of the Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act , 1956, in order to satisfy that the adoption would be in the interest of the child.


Book released
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, May 3
A book titled “Fifty years of research on sustainable resource management in the Shivaliks” was presented to the Deputy Commissioner, Ms Jyoti Arora, by the Principal Scientist, Central Soil and Water Conservation Research Centre, Prof S.P. Mittal, here today.

Ms Arora assured that the administration would provide all possible help in implementing rain water harvesting structures. She asked the Additional Deputy Commissioner, Mr S.K. Goyal, to discuss the feasibility report of water harvesting in the district with the Soil Research Centre, Chandigarh.

Prof Mittal explained the usefulness of the Sukhomajri and Bunga projects executed in the 70s and 80s by the Research Centre. He emphasised the creation of more and more rain water harvesting structures in the entire Shivalik belt.


Wind Chimes: An Enhancer

WIND chimes are Feng Shui enhancers that can either be made of wood, ceramic or metal. Wind chimes have hollow rods approximately half inch in diameter. The length varies and depends on the size of the room and the purpose it is meant for. The specific purpose of a wind chime is to cleanse the energies around the place where it has been put and enhance that special luck which is associated with the same part of the house. There are many contradictions and rumours associated with wind chimes. Somebody told me in one of my presentations that the wind chimes awaken the spirits in the house. One should not pay heed to these myths. Wind chimes can turn out to be very beneficial if they are energised and put properly. Wind chimes only bring good luck, fortune and prosperity. Wind chimes are mainly hung in areas like a living room of a house. Wind chimes, at times, depending on their requirement, number of rods and element act as rectifiers also. There are many wind chimes available in the market but be sure to buy the authentic ones. Another myth that is related to wind chimes is that they will work even if they don’t tinkle. This is absolutely not true. The gentle tinkling causes wind chimes to act faster. Wind chimes should also not move so violently that it destroys the balance of the house.


Address your Feng Shui queries to:
Postal address: C/o F.S. TIPS
The Tribune, Sector-29, Chandigarh-160020.



Man beaten up, hospitalised
Our Correspondent

Zirakpur, May 3
A 35-year-old person was injured in a clash among neighbours at Lohgarh village on Wednesday night. The victim was attacked with sharp-edged weapon.

Sources said the victim, Mr Ajaib Singh, a tubewell operator in Chandigarh, sustained severe head injuries and was rushed to the Government Medical College and Hospital in Sector 32. Being in a critical condition, doctors referred him to the PGI where his condition is said to be critical.

According to family members of the victim, Manjit Singh, Gian Singh and Bhim Singh — who were to perform thikri pehra on yesterday night — came and asked Ajaib Singh to accompany them for the pehra. He had just reached home when the trio called upon him. They were allegedly drunk.

‘‘Being tired after harvesting throughout the day, he express his inability to sit on pehra on that particular night and assured to join them the next day. But they took him and beaten him up”, alleges Mr Mangal Singh, an elder brother of the victim.

Later, Mr Dalip Singh, a former sarpanch, and Mr Santokh Singh, a nambardar of the village, took the injured to the GMCH.

Villagers alleged that despite of approaching the police twice about the incident, they were told to bring the injured to the Lohgarh police post by police personnel on duty.

The police came to investigate the matter in the morning today, say residents. However, the alleged accused have been missing since occurrence of the incidence.

A case under Sections 307, 323, 324, 452 and 34 of the IPC has been registered.


Mechanic commits suicide
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, May 3
A 27-year-old cable mechanic, Vijay Singh, committed suicide in Sector 11 here today.

Hailing from Garhwal, the mechanic was employed at the workshop of a cable operator. The operator, Mr RC Puri, said the mechanic had been with him for the past seven years and had recently come back after a visit to his house.

“There was no reason for him to take this extreme step. There was no worry on the home front and he was happy with the work. Any problem and he used to come to us for help. Last night, when he went to his room, there was no anxiety or problem to our knowledge,” he added.

This morning, when Vijay failed to turn up at his usual time of 8:30 am, Mr Puri went to knock on his door. When there was no response, he peeked in through the window and found him hanging from the ceiling fan with a cable wire.

The body was removed for postmortem. The police has initiated inquest proceedings under Section 174 of the Cr PC.


Poultry farm owner duped of Rs 27,000
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 3
Two persons are alleged to have duped a poultry farm owner of Rs. 27,000 by impersonating as the Chief Security Officer of PGI on the pretext of supplying him with maize.

According to the information, a man claiming to be Mr. P.C. Sharma went to the Mullanpur-based farmhouse of the complainant, Sukhsagar Singh and proposed to sell him maize at government rates.

The deliberation continued for two days and the deal was struck for Rs 41,000. Today the accused asked the complainant to meet him at the PGI gate with the money. There the accused introduced Sukhsagar Singh to another of his accomplice and they handed him a false bill and took Rs 27,000. However, the complainant did not get any maize as promised till today the evening.


Sec 34 office burgled
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 3
A burglary has been reported in office premises in Sector 34- A, while a theft attempt in a gurdwara in Khuda Jassu village has been thwarted by alert residents.

Computer parts were stolen from the third floor office of Mr Navin Gupta in Sector 34 between April 28 and May 1 after breaking open the lock.

In Khuda Jassu, Mangal Singh, alias Raju, was apprehended by the local residents while he was trying to break open the lock of a gurdwara.

Two booked
Two persons were accused of forcibly taking away Krishan Kumar’s ‘rickshaw-rehri’ and Rs 3000 on April 27 near the Modella light point. A case under Section 382 of the IPC has been registered.

Car stolen
A car was stolen from outside the Sector 37 residence of Mr R.C. Sharma. The theft took place on the night of May 1.

One assaulted
Ravinder Pal Singh, a resident of Maloya, was assaulted by Dharminder and a few others on April 29. A case under Sections 325 and 34 of the IPC has been registered.

One arrested
Ashok Kumar was arrested for eve-teasing in Sector 32 yesterday. A case under Section 294 of the IPC has been registered.

Cylinder burst
A welding cylinder burst in a scooter mechanic’s shop in Sector 7 this morning. No one was hurt, but a few vehicles were damaged.

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