Friday, July 20, 2001,
Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S



PUDA issues occupation certificate to incomplete house
Dues over 2 lakh still pending with the owner
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, July 19
Skeletons continue to tumble out of cupboard of the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA). The local Estate Office of the authority has issued occupation certificate to an ‘incomplete’ house despite the plot holder owing over Rs 2 lakh as dues to the department.

Considerations other than professional seems to have weighed with the officials concerned, while issuing the ‘occupation certificate’ to the one-kanal house in Phase VI here on the same day the Estate Office received an application from the plot holder. It can reasonably be assumed that it takes some days for the field staff to report on the actual status of the construction of a plot.

Involvement of certain employees of local Estate Office in issuing ‘occupation certificates’ to houses still under construction was highlighted in these columns a few months back. A Subdivisional Engineer and a Junior Engineer had been suspended and explanation of the Estate Officer concerned had been sought by the government then. An enquiry into the occupation certificates issued in December last year was instituted to the Additional Chief Administrator (HQ).

The case in question also moved along the similar lines. A Junior Engineer of the area reported that a living unit, consisting of a room, kitchen and toilet was complete and the dealing assistant concerned had put up the file before the Estate Officer to issue the partial occupation certificate. Investigations revealed that an important aspect of dues over Rs 2 lakh pending on account of non-construction fee since 1988 against the plot no 765 were ignored while issuing the certificate on December 21. Under what circumstances these important aspects were left out while issuing the occupation certificate needs to be probed.

A visit to the plot revealed that against the report of the Junior Engineer that a living unit was complete, a single room with tin roof — minus the kitchen and toilet — existed. The floor of the room was not pucca. The construction could not be described as a living unit. It could be safely assumed that money made the mare go in the Estate Office. This was also corroborated from the fact an elderly couple, whose daughter owns a plot in Sector 70, had been running from pillar to post to get the occupation certificate of the plot. A harassed Ms Amarjeet Kaur claimed that they applied for the certificate in the last week of December after completing a dwelling unit. They met the Chief Administrator who then marked the case to the Estate Officer. But nothing happened. She lamented that in March this year they received a letter from the Estate Office that the living unit was not complete. ‘‘At least we should be told what are the pending dues. We should not unnecessarily harassed’’, she sought.

Meanwhile, the Punjab Housing and Urban Development Minister is reported to have ordered explanation of two Estate Officers, posted in the SAS Nagar Estate Office in December last, and charge-sheeting at least four junior engineers and a senior assistant, dealing with the issuing of occupation certificates. The directives by the minister follows an inquiry conducted by the ACA (HQ) into the issuing of occupation certificates to incomplete houses in the town. Sources claim the enquiry is reported to have indicated breach of all rules by while issuing the occupation certificates.



MEA reverses decision on RPO building
Vibha Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 19
Reversing its earlier decision to construct a new Regional Passport Office (RPO) building in Sector 27 here, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) has once again decided to have its building at a site in Sector 34, which had initially been allotted to it by the UT Administration. Sources said that a decision to this effect was recently taken by the ministry in New Delhi and has reportedly also been conveyed to the passport office in Chandigarh.

It may be mentioned that the UT Administration had allotted a small piece of land for the building in Sector 34 but the Administration had cancelled this allotment after the passport office made a request asking for an independent plot. That could be more secure. Following this, the UT Administration had allotted another site in Sector 27 on the Madya Marg.

According to sources, the latest decision of the government has led to confusion among UT officials, as it has already cancelled the allotment of the earlier site in Sector 34 where the MEA wants to construct its building now.

Meanwhile, it is learnt that the RPO has started a fresh process to get the Sector 34 land re-allotted in pursuance of the latest MEA order. Sources add that the MEA took this decision due to financial constraints as it did not have the money to construct a building on the bigger site.

According to RPO officials, “We wanted to have an independent plot so that we could raise a security boundary wall and have an open and spacious building for the convenience of public as well as smooth functioning of the office .But we cannot comment on the ministry’s decision because the MEA knows better about such matters.”

The Sector 34 plot is surrounded by shopping centres and is approachable from different corners, making it less safe and more vulnerable. It may be mentioned that in the beginning of last year, there was a major fire in the present passport office in which thousands of important files and a large number of index cards (vital passport document for official use) were destroyed.

At that time, senior officials of the passport office had apprehended foul play in the whole episode and expressed concern over security at the passport office. This was another reason that the RPO was pushing for a better location than the Sector 34 site, sources added.


PGI staff’s plea on cath laboratory
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 19
The Executive Committee of the PGI Faculty Association met the PGI Director, Prof SK Sharma and urged him to immediately restore the cardiac interventional surgeries at the PGI cath lab. Representatives of the association, Prof S.M. Bose and Dr K.L. Narsimhan asked the director to do so ‘ in interest of patient care.’

The PGI cath lab had stopped functioning completely following the CBI raids on June 20 last. However, yesterday as a special case , the PGI Director, Prof S.K. Sharma, had permitted a pregnant woman with twin pregnancies and a heart problem to undergo a interventional procedure following which three lives were saved.

The woman had been suffering from an heart ailment. But yesterday she had to be operated upon under emergency conditions as one of her heart valves had to be opened immediately following a complication due to pulmonary edema.

Sources add that after the case was presented at around 4 pm, the Head of the Cardiology Department wrote to the PGI Deputy Director Administration (DDA), who is also the Chief Vigilance Officer, to ask the CBI what should be done in the case as any delay would have meant loosing three precious lives. Due to urgency of the situation, the PGI Director gave his permission to carry out the procedure which was performed late at night. The mother is presently recuperating in the PGI CCU.

Doctors admit that functioning of the cath lab had stopped and only emergency cases were being undertaken as ‘functioning under a needle of suspicion is not easy and it is difficult to motivate a team under such circumstances,’ they added.

Some senior doctors also added that after the raids, most of them now also feared prescribing expensive disposables. ‘‘If the patients are overcharged, they might allege that we had recommended the particular chemist to them,’’ they said.

It may be mentioned that the CBI conducted search operations on June 20 and found more than 100 stents in the cath lab.

Although the CBI was asking for the account of these stents and trying to find out whether there was any wrong practice going on in the cath lab, the doctors said that these many stents were required round the clock in the cath lab so that emergency interventions could be performed in time to save a patient’s life.



CBI chargesheets Jerath
S. Satyanarayanan
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 19
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has filed a charge sheet against Kanwal Kishore Jerath, former Chief Engineer-cum-Secretary Engineering, Chandigarh Administration, for allegedly possessing assets disproportionate to his known sources of income.

The charge sheet has been taken cognisance by the Designated Court in Chandigarh and the accused has been summoned on July 31, 2001, CBI sources told The Tribune here today.

The CBI investigation revealed that Jerath was allegedly in possession of properties, movable and immovable worth Rs 93,72,359.02 acquired by him either in his own name or in the name of his wife Savita Jerath, son Kapil Dev Jerath and father-in-law Bal Krishnan Khanna.

The CBI had registered a case (RC.1(A)/98-ACU.II) on source information against Jerath on January 9, 1998, in the agency’s anti-corruption unit in New Delhi under Section 13(2) read with 13(1)(e) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988.

It was alleged in the FIR that K. K. Jerath while working in various capacities with the Chandigarh Administration from 1991 to 1997, had acquired assets to the tune of Rs 67,11,000 against his income of Rs 11,35,000. He had incurred an expenditure of Rs 2 lakh during the period and had a saving of Rs 9,35,000. Thus, he had assets worth Rs 57,76,000 which was disproportionate to his known sources of income for which he had no satisfactory account.

Jerath had joined the Chandigarh Administration as Sub-Divisional Engineer (Electrical) on June 26, 1968, and thereafter, he worked in different capacities and got promoted as Superintending Engineer (Electrical) on February 17, 1987, and as Chief Engineer on October 26, 1994.

Jerath was under suspension from November 24, 1997, to March 8, 1999, following a raid on his house (No. 8, Sector No. 7A, Chandigarh) conducted by income tax authorities on November 20, 1997, and was dismissed from service by the competent authority on March 8, 1999, according to a CBI FIR.

The check period for ascertaining the income, expenditure and assets of Kanwal Kishore Jerath was taken from January 1, 1991, to January 15, 1998, the date when the CBI had conducted his house search at Chandigarh, sources said.

Jerath had acquired assets worth Rs 1,87,631.77 prior to the check period, CBI sources said, adding that investigation revealed that during the period, the total income of Jerath from all sources, including net pay, was Rs 28,84,274.51. The total expenditure, including kitchen expenditure, etc of Jerath was Rs 11,35,445.85 during this time.



Notices to PEC and 2 other colleges
Tripti Nath
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 19
The Chandigarh Administration is yet to revise its reservation policy for the physically handicapped persons for admission to various courses as per the provisions of the Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995.

This was reported recently by the Principal of Government College of Art, Chandigarh, in reply to a notice issued by the Office of the Chief Commissioner for Persons with Disabilities (CCPD). The notice seeks evidence on compliance to Section 39 of the Disabilities Act which provides for 3 per cent reservation in seats for disabled students.

The office of the Chief Commissioner for Persons of Disabilities has taken suo motu cognisance of an admission notice for Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) courses which appeared on June 7. The notice states that the advertisement issued by the college gives “no indication” regarding a reservation for physically handicapped in accordance with Section 39 of the Act.

In a reply to the notice on June 27, the Principal of the College said the institution was following “the reservation policy of the Chandigarh Administration from time to time. According to the reservation policy issued on May 7, 1993, 1 per cent seats in each pool will be filled up from among the physically handicapped candidates. This policy has also been incorporated in the college prospectus.”

The college further stated it was awaiting since December 3, 1999, the decision of the Chandigarh Administration for considering necessary changes in the reservation policy for the physically handicapped.

The office of the CCPD has asked the College of Art to inform it of the action taken by the Administration by July 30.

The Deputy Chief Commissioner for Persons with Disabilities, Ms Anuradha Mohit, said the office of the CCPD had also issued notices to Punjab Engineering College for not indicating the reservation for the physically handicapped in accordance with Section 39 of the Act in a recent advertisement announcing admissions to postgraduate courses.

Sri Guru Gobind College, Chandigarh, has been given similar notice.

Other colleges which have been issued notices are Sri Guru Harkrishan College of Information Technology, Sangrur, Lyallpur Khalsa College, Jalandhar, for its admission notice for B.Sc. Bio-technology and Hindu Kanya College, Kapurthala, for B.Sc. (IT) Part I and II, B.Com Part II, PF diploma in Internet and e-commerce and other courses.


MCC scheme for harnessing rainwater
Poonam Batth
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 19
The Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh ( MCC) is all set to execute its ambitious schemes for enhancing the ground water levels by harnessing the surplus run-off rainwater in the city. This will also help meet the ever increasing need of domestic water.

According to official sources, due to heavy exploitation of ground water and increase in population of the city, the ground-water levels are continuously declining in the recharge zone. The paved areas in the city are also increasing every year due to construction of buildings, roads and concrete path, which has also reduced recharge of the aquifer system. Although the situation does not merit a red alert yet, the artificial recharge is the need of the hour to maintain the equilibrium in the recharge and discharge of ground water.

To begin with the MCC has decided to implement two artificial ground water recharge schemes, to be funded by the Central Ground Water Board at Leisure Valley and another at the roundabout dividing Sectors 19, 20-27-30 for augmenting the ground water recharge. Listing out the objectives, the SE ( Public health), Mr Swaran Singh Kanwal said that this will help arrest the rate of decline of ground water levels in the area and monitor the effect and rate of ground water recharge and popularise the system of rain water harvesting.

According to information available, Leisure Valley passes through the heart of the city, almost bisecting Sectors 3,10, 16, 23, 36, 42 and 53 onwards. It carries water throughout the year but during rainy season it overflows. All the storm water outlets of the city drain into the N-choe. It is a natural drain and flows through the centre of Leisure Valley. It has been proposed to utilise the run-off of the choe for recharging groundwater, which otherwise goes waste and floods the southern sectors during the rainy season. This will help recharging the acquifer system of the southern sectors where groundwater is being tapped through tubewells indiscriminately.

As part of this scheme, as many as eight injection wells have to be constructed on both sides of the N-choe. For collection of water, a pit with inverted filter will be constructed. The same is to be completed at an estimated cost of Rs 11.56 lakh. While Public health of the Engineering wing of the MC will be the implementing agency, funds for the scheme of artificial recharge will be provided by the government through the Central Ground Water Board to the MCC for construction of recharge wells and related civil works.

Earlier, the scheme was drawn out for Shanti-Kunj in Sector 16 but since it was found that the difference of elevation of the N-choe and surrounding areas falling in Sector 10 is much less, it will be more feasible to construct the recharge structures near the choe , which can be easily connected with the choe water. Even the desilting chamber can be constructed at a deeper depth here.

As part of the second scheme, it is proposed to tap off surplus monsoon run off at the roundabout of Sectors 27 and 19, 30 and 20. It has been found that water accumulates here during the rainy season and causes inconvenience to vehicular traffic. It takes hours to clear the water because the capacity of the storm water drain is much less than required.

As part of the scheme, it is proposed to construct four recharge wells in two trenches of 30 m length each. Here also, the scheme was earlier planned on the dividing road of Sectors 7 and 26.


Power Ministry panel seeks plan to ‘corporatise’ dept
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 19
In a significant development a high-level committee of the Union Power Ministry yesterday asked the Chandigarh Administration to lay down a blue print to corporatise the Electricity Department.

This would not mean privatisation in anyway, said sources while explaining that the government would continue to have a major controlling stake in the proposed corporation.

On employees the ministry said they would continue to be treated as employees of the Chandigarh Administration and they would be treated on deputation to the proposed power corporation. This would be on the same lines when an employee of the Administration was sent to the Municipal Corporation. The service conditions would remain the same, so the employees had nothing to fear, said sources. In the past one week employees had showed their displeasure over the idea of privatisation of the department.

The corporation would have autonomy in functioning like making purchases of better known companies and not be tied down to stringent government rules which at times could delay matters. The improvements might be by way of better working conditions and more modern tools for the workmen.

As a first step the department would lay down a benchmark on what kind of analyst to choose. A list of about 12 top companies had been made which could suggest an analyst. The analyst would collect technical data and evaluate the assets of the department and place before the Chandigarh Administration an idea as to what was to be done and lay down a road map.

Since Chandigarh only had distribution network the corporation would lay stress only on cutting down on line losses and theft.



Power supply to Chandigarh Club disconnected, restored
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 19
Power supply to the Chandigarh Club was disconnected this morning for allegedly consuming more power than the sanctioned load. This was part of a drive to disconnect power supply at all premises in the city where overdrawal was taking place.

The supply to the club was restored after five hours when the club authorities deposited 33 per cent of the sum sought by the department as fee to enhance the load. The club has 290 kw of sanctioned load and as per the records of the Administration, the withdrawal was to the tune of 291 kw. The reading of the electronic meters installed on the 11 KV line, from where the club gets its supply, show the overdrawl by the club said senior engineers.

Sources said that to draw this amount of power also, the club needs to have 430 kw of sanctioned load. Load enhancement requires additional cables and more equipment and the consumer pay for these additions.

The president of the club, Mr Ravinder Chopra, said, ‘‘I do not know how the disconnection was carried out because we were drawing as per the sanctioned load. Though we have deposited 33 per cent of the sum demanded by the Administration, but we will go in arbitration before the Administration’s dispute redressal committee”.

The penalties for overdrawal will be very heavy from August 1 under a new policy of the Northern Region Electricity Board (NREB), engineers said.


Admn notice to cable operators
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh July 19
The Chandigarh Administration today gave a 15-day notice to all local cable TV operators to remove TV cables which were supported on electricity poles or which were running in close proximity to the electricity mains and sub-mains.

In some cases the cable TV wires were crossing through live wires. No proper clearance had been ensured and this was which endangered human lives, the electricity department said while pointing out these were violations of the provisions under the Indian Electricity Act, 1910 and the Electricity Rules, 1956.



165 benefit under scheme to uplift poor SCs
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 19
A total of 165 city residents have benefited under a scheme for the uplift of poor persons belonging to the Scheduled Castes, Backward Classes, minorities and safai karamcharis. A sum of Rs. 78.50 lakh, by way of loans, has been sanctioned during the financial year ending March 31 this year.

Ms Madhvi Kataria, Managing Director, Chandigarh Scheduled Castes, Backward Classes and Minorities Financial and Development Corporation Limited, said the main objects of the corporation were providing for training in various courses and loans under two schemes.

For loans under the corporation scheme the cases were sponsored to various banks. On sanction of 25per cent of the loan amount or Rs 6,000, whichever is less, is provided as subsidy from the special Central assistance in way of grant in aid received from Government of India. The loans under bank tie up were sanctioned up to Rs 35,000. During the financial year 2000-2001, 132 cases were sanctioned by banks.

The Managing Director added that the corporation was acting as channelising agency for four national corporations to provide finance for setting up self-employment projects which included small business, photostat machine and vehicles for taxi purposes as per approvals by the national corporations.

The income eligibility criteria was that annual family income should be below double the poverty line that was Rs 42,412 per annum in case of SCs, BCs and minorities. There was no family income limit for safai karamcharis. During the year 2000-2001, corporation had sanctioned 202 cases.

During the year the corporation had provided free training to 332 persons in various trades of stenography, computer, cutting and tailoring, dress designing, fabric painting, driving and beauty culture, said Ms Kataria.


Danger lurks at Press Chowk

Proximity to Sector 17, the commercial hub, and Sector 9, the administrative centre, makes Press Chowk one of the most accident prone areas of the city.

According to the traffic police, four major accidents have taken place at this junction so far this year. Three persons were seriously injured in these accidents. However, officials concede that number of accidents at this chowk is much higher. Two or three minor accidents take place here every day. Accidents take place here not only during the morning and evening rush hours, but also late in the night when the traffic lights are turned off. Though there is no rush after 11 pm, the drivers are either in a hurry (the road leads to two main hospitals) or are drunk (returning from clubs or pubs in Sector 17).

Most of the motorists ignore the blinking lights after 11 pm and collide with vehicles coming from side roads. As heavy vehicles are banned in this part of Madhya Marg, accidents occur mostly between cars and two wheelers.

Since Sectors 9, 8 and 17 house most of the commercial and administrative establishments, there is a heavy rush of not only of those working in these offices, but also of visitors, all through the day.

Sliproads built from the Sector 9 market to Madhya Marg, and from Madhya Marg to Sector 18 cause confusion among the motorists and accidents take place between those taking the slip roads and those on Madhya Marg. Recently, a woman scooterist was seriously injured when she rammed into a car on Madhya Marg as she emerged from the Sector 9 sliproad.

Though a police vehicle is permanently stationed here to keep a check on drunken driving, speeding and other traffic violations that could cause accidents, the number of accidents has not decreased. TNS


The eight ordinary symbols

The eight ordinary symbols claim to be the eight treasures according to Feng Shui. To make the home auspicious, one must keep these symbols within one’s home. There are several versions of these eight treasures and unless one is acquainted with the legends of ancient China, one is likely to be confused.

I believe that these good-luck symbols activate great success and luck within one’s home.

One can place all of them or as many as one can get hold of in one’s home. First of all I will tell you the names of these symbols. The symbols are: the dragon’s pearl, the golden coin, the mirror, two books, the artemesia leaf, the stone chime, the rhinoceros’s horns and the lozenge.

It is not possible to have all of them as they are difficult to find. So, I suggest that you should keep as many as possible and place one or all of them on a table in the living room in the corner that represents your success direction according to your date of birth and year. The golden coin is a must as this also symbolises wealth.


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



Hoshiarpur girl wins trip to USA
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 19
A consumer campaign jointly launched by Pepsi and Hot Millions ended here this morning. Mr Kewal Dhillon, chairman of Dhillon Kool Drinks and Beverages, gave away the prizes.

Ms Monika of Hoshiarpur won the first prize comprising a free ticket to the USA.

The other prize winners were Mr Amit Dhawan of Ambala Cantonment and Mr Ankur Garg of Raipurrani in Panchkula district, who won a Hero Wheelie and a Hero Puch, respectively, while Mr Rajesh Marwah of Chandigarh, and Ft-Lieut M.P. Singh of Mohali won an inverter each.

Mr Kewal Dhillon, chairman of Dhillon Kool Drinks and Beverages, presented a free airticket to Monika to the USA, in Chandigarh on Thursday.


Stray cattle back with a vengeance
Geetanjali Gayatri
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, July 19
Beginning Friday, the civic administration will not know what to do with its share of stray cattle with the contract for rounding up these animals slated to expire tomorrow.

One fact, however, is undisputed The private contractor entrusted with the task of doing the needful will certainly not get an extension in view of the large number of complaints against him.

Beyond this, uncertainty and ambiguity prevails in the Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) over the handling of the ``additional charge’’ which will be thrust on it. And they are completely at sea over the fate of cattle left behind at the cattle-pond.

The Administrator, HUDA, Mr Arun Gupta, says: “The department has made no prior arrangement as far as the cattle business is concerned.

However, we have received a number of complaints against the present private contractor and his services will be done away with. An extension to him is not on the cards.”

Sources in HUDA said that while complaints against the contractor was one reason for discontinuation of the contract, the other bottleneck came by way of finances.

“Our contribution to the exercise utilises a lot of funds.

The present arrangement under which funds come to us makes no provision of hiring private services for an activity which falls within our ambit,” an official said.

Privatisation was introduced for the first time in the city last year following the meteorically increasing number of stray cattle dotting all open spaces, roads and markets, a nuisance the city could have done without.

After it was introduced, the experiment was well-received by residents of the city, troubled with the menace.

Within weeks of the contract being given to a private party, the city began wearing a cleaner look and accidents on account of stray cattle also came down considerably.

Now, the position is back to square one with the contractor, aware of the non-renewal of the contract, having stopped the arduous exercise of running after stray cattle which have begun making an appearance in the city all over again. While they are back with a vengeance, HUDA officials are groping in the dark over the next move.


Gold chain snatched
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 19
An unidentified cyclist snatched a gold chain from a woman, Sheela Devi, in Ram Darbar (Phase II) this afternoon.

It is learnt that the cyclist sped away after snatching the gold chain. The police has registered a case in this regard.

Stolen: An amount of Rs 7,000 and some important documents were stolen from the car of Mr Gurmeet Singh (CH01-V-0192), a resident of Sector 21, which was parked on the Sector 26 Madhya Marg.

A case has been registered.

Theft cases: Four cases of theft were reported from different parts of the city during the past 24 hours.

A scooter (CH-01U-5489) was stolen from the Industrial Area (Phase I), while a moped (CH-01R-4989) was stolen from outside the State Bank of Patiala, Sector 17. The police has registered FIRs under Section 379 of the IPC.

Devi Dayal was caught red-handed while stealing shuttering plates from a construction site in Sector 41 late last night. A case under Sections 380 and 411 of the IPC has been registered on the complaint of Mr Rakesh Kumar Gupta.

In another interesting case, Rakesh Kumar and Ram Chander were caught red-handed while stealing two bags of potatoes and a rehri from Grain Market last evening. A case under Sections 379 and 411 of the IPC has been registered.

Liquor seized: Rajesh, alias Tiger, was arrested from DM Colony yesterday and 25 pouches of whisky were seized from his possession. A case under Sections 61, 1 and 14 of the Excise Act has been registered.


Orders issued to check crime
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 19
To keep a tab on the activities of anti-social elements, who may disguise themselves as petty job seekers in the city, the District Magistrate has imposed orders under Section 144 of the CRPC directing all those seeking employment in petty and non-formal trade or services, contract labour, like rickshaw pullers, rehriwallahs, phariwallahs, washermen or cobblers, to provide their particulars along with their passport sized photographs to the local police to enable identification or verification of criminal elements.

Any breach of this order will invite action under Section 188 of the IPC. The order that comes into force from tomorrow will remain in force till September 16.

Interrogation of criminals by the local police reveals that some of them or their accomplices are from among the migrant labourers and those engaged in petty, non-formal trades and services. The orders were passed after it was found that such people did not get their antecedents verified and as a result crime prevention became difficult.


FIRs registered against kundi connections
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 19
Anyone who puts up a kundi connection will face registration of first information report (FIR) and encroachments made to extend houses dangerously close to overhead power lines will be dismantled, the Chandigarh Administration said today.

In the past three months since the department started a drive to curb kundis 35 FIRs have been registered.

The Administration today said any power drawn through a kundi without a proper connection and use of earth wire instead of neutral was an act of ‘theft’ under Section 39 of the Indian Electricity Act, 1910 and had been declared as a criminal offence.

A spokesperson of the Chandigarh Administration said on number of occasions in the past jhuggi dwellers and residents of various colonies and villages had been asked to refrain from utilising power through unauthorised kundi connections. Another suggested refrain was to desist from carrying out unauthorised construction under the live electric wires so as to ensure safety to human life and property .

Despite a number of requests a large number of jhuggi dwellers, residents of the labour colonies and villages outside the Lal Dora continue to resort to this dangerous and illegal act.


No headway in Sector 6 firing case
Our Correspondent

Panchkula, July 19
The Panchkula police has failed to make any headway in the Sector 6 pool firing incident, even after a week.

Pratap Mahanbir, the main accused, had fired at Sachit Bhasin, but the bullet missed the target brushing aside the head of another person, Rajiv Sharma, who was working on computer in a cyber cafe.

After the incident, Mahanbir fled from the spot and left the car abandoned in Sector 11, which was owned by his friend Sanjay Rahi.



Traders oppose ‘Sunday shopping’ move
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 19
City traders have reacted coolly to the recent “Sunday shopping” proposal of the Labour Department of the Chandigarh Administration.

Terming the proposal as “socially not acceptable”, the traders told Chandigarh Tribune that businessmen like other sections of society also needed a day off. Since a number of social functions are organised on Sundays, the proposal of opening the shops on Sunday was not “feasible”, said Mr Jagdish Pal Singh Kalra, general secretary of the Traders Association, Sector 17.

Since Chandigarh has a five-day week, a majority of the people prefer to shop on Saturday, he said, adding that what the traders wanted was “extended business hours”. The shopping timing from 10 am to 10 pm was the need of the hour and a consensus was emerging on that, he quipped.

Another prominent trader of Sector 22, who did not want to be named, wondered why the “Sunday shopping” proposal had been brought into focus again when the present arrangement was working perfectly. “The traders and businessmen are also an integral part of society, have families and want time to relax. We fail to understand how the shoppers suffer on Sunday when Panchkula and the Notified Area Committee (NAC) market in Mani Majra are open”, he added.

Traders highlighted that when essential services such as chemist shops, petrol stations, sweets and barber shops and beauty parlours are open on Sunday, the “Sunday shopping” proposal seemed “far-fetched”.

Supporting Sunday as the closed day for Chandigarh, Mr Ashwani Sondhi, president of the NAC Market Committee, Mani Majra, which remained open on Sunday, said it was only on Sunday that the market witnessed shopping activity.

The Labour Department, while announcing certain concessions to the shopkeepers about two weeks back, had given them the option of opening the shops on all seven days of the week. This intervention was reportedly proposed keeping in view the changing socio-economic environment and the requirements of the city.

It is not for the first time that the Administration had toyed with the idea of “Sunday shopping”. Over a couple of years back, the Administration had floated the idea but the lukeworm response from the traders ensured that the proposal remained on papers only.



SBI function:
The Haryana zonal office of the State Bank of India on Thursday organised a function to honour those members who excelled in the fields of customer service, deposit mobilisation, community service banking and overall performance during the year 2000-2001. Mr Jagdish Kumar, Assistant General Manager, was adjudged the best AGM and Mr M.L. Karol the best Chief Manager (General Banking) in Haryana module. Deposit mobilisation trophies were given to the Chandi Mandir, Kurukshetra University, Mini Secretariat at Hisar, Hansi, Baholi Refinery Panipat and Rohtak branches. Shamgarh, MDU Rohtak, Tohana, REC Kurukshetra, Ambala Cantonment, and Karnal branches got the first trophy. TNS

Interactive session: The PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry will organise an interactive session on Sales Tax Reforms in Punjab . Mr Adesh Pratap Singh Kairon, Minister for Excise and Taxation, will chair the session. The session will focus on similarities and differences of sales tax, tax rate structure under VAT, calculation of tax liability system etc. TNS

Scooter on display: Honda Activa, a mid-size scooter, is on display at Platinum Honda in Sector 35 here. The scooter will be formally launched in North India on August 17. The scooter is being manufactured by Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India (Pvt) Ltd, a subsidiary of Honda Motor Company of Japan, at Manesar in Gurgaon district. It has 4-stroke, single cylinder and 7 bhp engine. TNS


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