Saturday, October 6, 2001, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


New BSNL policy may deny connections to many
A.S. Prashar
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 5
The Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) may be induced to think in terms of denying its telephone connections to those who already have phone connections provided by rival private telephone companies like HFCL, Bharti and Reliance.

Absolves itself

The BSNL today sought to absolve itself of the responsibility for the hilarious bloomers it has made in the new telephone directory printed some time ago.

“We should not be criticised for the mistakes, wrong names and addresses in the new telephone directory because we have no means of updating it”, said Mr R.C. Vaish, Principal General Manager, Chandigarh Telecom, in a talk with newsmen. “Correctness of the telephone directory is a cooperative venture. The subscribers, including government organisations and individuals, must promptly intimate to the BSNL the changes in their names, designations and addresses.”

Unfortunately, very few respond despite reminders and even advertisements in newspapers in this regard, observed Mr Vaish, which led to printing of old and obsolete information in the telephone directory.

An indication to this effect was given here today by Mr R.C.Vaish, Principal General Manager, Telecom. He said the BSNL had already decided not to provide in future phone connections to PCO operators who also have phone connections offered by private telephone companies. New policy guidelines in this regard had been received and these would be implemented faithfully. Under the new policy guidelines, anyone applying to the BSNL for a PCO phone connection, would also be asked to submit an affidavit to the effect that he would not seek a phone connection from a private company.

The Union Territory of Chandigarh has nearly 3000 PCOs, many of whom have both BSNL and Connect phones. It is not clear if they, too, would be asked by the BSNL to surrender phone connections of the private telephone operator.

Mr Vaish denied that the BSNL move was borne out of fear of competition offered by private telephone companies. BSNL is not exactly a model of efficiency. Shoddy service, frequent breakdowns and the same old hostility towards subscribers exhibited by its employees when it was a government department remains the hallmark of the BSNL. Private telephone operators, on the other hand, are much more efficient, quick to respond to the problems of subscribers and the service is fairly reliable.

“We are not afraid of competition being offered by private telephone companies”, said Mr Vaish. “As a matter of fact, the only private telephone operator, Connect, is hardly in a position to offer us any competition right now because it has only 10,000 connections as against nearly two lakh provided by the BSNL in Chandigarh, Panchkula, Mohali and the surrounding areas including a host of villages.

Mr Vaish also said that if asked, he would recommend to the BSNL authorities not to issue BSNL phone connections even to those individual subscribers who already have phones provided by private companies.

Meanwhile, working phone connections in the Chandigarh Telecom Circle have increased by more than 16,000 during the first year of the existence of the BSNL. According to official information here today, there are 1, 89,000 working connections as against 1,72,180 a year ago. The switching capacity, too, has increased to 2,28,496 from 2,12,280 during the same period. The number of telephone exchanges has increased from 36 to 39.

During the year under review, the BSNL took a number of measures to make it more user-friendly. WLL services had been commissioned from September 29. Registration charges had been reduced from Rs 3000 to Rs 2000 in urban areas and from Rs 1000 to Rs 500 in rural areas. Tariff for internet services has also been reduced.


Villagers triumph after 30 years of struggle
Ajay Banerjee
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 5
After a wait of about 30 years, villagers who were ousted to develop the second phase (Sectors 31 to 47), Industrial Area, and also to expand the airport in the city, will get “maximum possible benefits” the Chandigarh Administration has assured the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on the issue.

Nearly 5,000 families were used to live in these 11 former villages will stand to gain after a three decade long struggle. Following the Administrations assurance, the NHRC has closed the case and has conveyed the same to the Pind Bachao Committee, which had petitioned the NHRC on the matter.

The Administration while replying to a notice by the NHRC has said that the representation of the Pind Bachao Committee is under active consideration and is also being examined to provide maximum possible benefits to eligible applicants. Already a list of the eligible persons is with the Administration.

Sources said the Administration was in the process of finalising a policy to rehabilitate these families in one of the fully developed and planned villages of the Union Territory.

As land in the sectoral grid is not available, there was no option other than allotting built-up flats to the oustees in the villages. Land is being identified in the villages for the purpose. As and when the enclave comes up, it will be on the lines of the Sector 38-West Scheme of the Chandigarh Housing Board.

The flats for the oustees would, of course, come at a price. However, a subsidy component will be inbuilt in some manner, said top sources in the administration. A policy was being worked out and all modalities would be looked into. Villagers say allotments should not be made the way rehabilitation colonies for slum dwellers are made.

In the past three decades, the Chandigarh Administration has rehabilitated several thousand migrants from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. However, it’s for the first time that villagers with a Punjabi background, who had been evicted for the development of city, were being rehabiliatated under some policy. As of date, no policy exists and this was admitted by the Chandigarh Administration in the Lok Adalat during a hearing on May 31.

In this case, the matter has been tragic. as residents of 11 erstwhile villages — Shahpur ( now Sector 38), Bijwara ( Sector 35), Faidan (Sector 47), Karsan (Ram Darbar), Datarpur (airport), Bair Majra (airport), Madhrian (Sector 34) Jaipura (Industrial Area), Chuharpur, Kanthala, Bhaktapur-Bijwari — were uprooted without being issued even an oustee’s declaration certificate. These villages made way for posh sectors. Several acres of ‘shamlat’ land were acquired without any compensation, allege villagers.

For 30 years, the villagers led by Mr Angrez Singh Badheri, president of the Pind Bachao Committee, have been arguing that the compromise reached between the villagers and the Government of India in 1950 should be followed in their case too.

Under this compromise, when 17 villages were acquired for the first phase (Sector 1 to 30) development of the city, a compromise was signed by the then Deputy Commissioner, Mr Jaswant Singh Uppal, on behalf of the government promising complete rehabiliatation of the villagers. However, the same formula was not followed for these 11 villages. Meanwhile, 22 other villages were saved from acquisition in 1980, as a notification was issued that no more villagers would be uprooted. This makes it a set of three different rules for the villages which formed a part of the Chandigarh master plan.

The biggest blow to the psyche of the villagers was that the land acquired by the Chandigarh Administration in these 11 villages was also used to establish rehabilitation colonies for slum-dwellers.


Security arrangements
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh/SAS Nagar, October 5
With various religious, political and social organisations giving a clarion call for a Punjab bandh tomorrow, the UT and Punjab police has made elaborate arrangements for security. All six entry points to the UT from Punjab will be sealed, with an officer of the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police or an Inspector manning each point. Around 35 to 40 personnel will be deputed at each of these points.

According to the information available, the protesters will block traffic on the roads leading to Chandigarh from Mullapur, Kharar, Sohana and Zirakpur from 10 am to 1 pm.

The Ropar police has deputed over 100 police personnel, equipped with tear gas shells, at all the entry points to SAS Nagar from different towns of Punjab. The main concentration of the force will be on the Kharar-SAS Nagar road, Landhran-Sohana road, Mullanpur-Chandigarh road and Phase XI road. If required, the traffic will be diverted to alternative routes.


Panel to study continuous evaluation issue
Sanjeev Singh Bariana
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 5
Taking a serious note of the Senate recommendations to improve the examination system, Panjab University has constituted a committee to study the issue of incorporating continuous evaluation of a student throughout an academic session for final evaluation.

The committee has been constituted to consider “that the evaluation system of students should be continuous. In order to incorporate some elements of continuous assessment of students, it was proposed in the principals’ conference held in August, 2001, that marks obtained in house examination be added in the final examination being conducted by the university”.

The proposal to give credit to continuous assessment is an interesting development, particularly in the wake of a little existing credit to the house examination. Students need just 25 per cent marks to be eligible for the final examination. The university has done away with the September examination absolutely. A change in rules would naturally add to the weight of the internal examination.

It is important to note that adjoining Kurukshetra University has abolished all house examinations in its affiliated colleges. Students straightaway appear in the final examination.

In a related issue, a proposal of giving 10 per cent weight age to classroom attendance had also come up at the principals’ meeting. This would give more credit to the under-consideration UGC proposal of ensuring minimum 75 per cent attendance to be eligible for appearing in the final examination. The move of increasing the classroom attendance, however, had witnessed opposition from a section of the Senate members.

The committee members on the issue of continuous evaluation under the chairmanship of Dean, University Instructions, include Principal Tarsem Bahia, Principal Harmit Kaur, Principal A.C. Vaid, Prof Charanjit Chawla, Dr R.P.S. Josh and the Controller of Examination, besides others.

In another follow-up of the university Senate meeting, fellows have been asked to send their comments on giving a third chance to compartment cases. Mr Ashok Raj Bhandari, Controller of Examination, has sought that the comments should reach his office by October 15.

It was expressed by certain fellows that no third chance should be accorded to students who did not clear their examination in two chances. This was not in any academic interest of the university.

On the other hand it was pointed out that a student should be promoted to the senior class whenever he cleared the junior classes in as many chances he could manage. The problem arose when a compartment candidate was promoted to the senior class and he cleared the examination of the senior class but was unable to clear the junior class.

The proposal of the third chance pertains to all classes at the undergraduate and postgraduate level. A meeting of the committee has been fixed for October 22.


BSP launches campaign for MCC poll
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 5
The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) here today took a lead over its rival parties with its supremo, Mr Kanshi Ram, launching campaign for the Municipal Corporation elections ahead of others.

Mr Kanshi Ram identified its constituency as the poor from villages and colonies and made the honour of Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar, whose photo was temporarily removed by the city Mayor, Ms Harjinder Kaur, an issue for the poll.

Terming Ms Harjinder Kaur a “fool”, he said, “Nobody in the country can get power by dishonouring the messiah of the downtrodden.”

The BSP supremo, however, did not take his favourite line of exclusivist theme saying the party would work for all sections. He made only a passing reference to Manuwadis and Gandhians. He, however, said, “Gandhiwadis and Manuwadis have been attacking Ambedkar.”

Raising his voice against corruption, he said the BSP was a party of the poor and only it could fight corruption. The parties represented by the rich could not remove this menace, he said.

In a bid to enthuse party workers for making a serious attempt to win the election, he said the party would form a government in Punjab and had already shown the way in Uttar Pradesh.

On the issue of support to the Chandigarh Housing Board Residents’ Associations Federation, he said he had received a memorandum and would examine it.

The BSP leader, however, showing his preference to the people from villages and colonies said their concerns would be given priority.

The local BSP chief, Mr Mataram Dhiman, said the corporation elections were being fought with the purpose of making a fair allocation of funds for various sections of society. He said 90 per cent of funds were being spent on 10 per cent VIPs. The priority would be reversed if the BSP won the elections, he said. If BSP won the corporation election, water and power would be provided free in colonies and privatisation efforts would be stopped, he said.

Prominent among others who addressed the meeting were Chaudhary Jagpal Singh, vice-president of the party in Haryana, and Mr Man Singh Maniara, general secretary of the Punjab unit.


GCM sacks Major Madhan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 5
Major V.K. Madhan of 2 Rajputana Rifles has now been dismissed from service by a General Court-Martial (GCM), which had reassembled at the N. Area here to review his sentence. He had been found guilty of malingering and disobedience during the Kargil conflict and was awarded eight years loss of seniority, eight years loss of service (for pension) and a severe reprimand.

The sentence, reviewed by a five-member court presided by Col A.K. Chopra, is subject to confirmation by the convening authority. He is the second officer to be dismissed for dereliction of duty during the Kargil war.

In his reply to the convening authority’s revision order, Major Madhan had contended that the court’s reconstitution was illegal and lacked jurisdiction as the Judge-Advocate has been changed and Member who had held the rank of an acting Major during the trial, has been reverted back to Captain. He also alleged that the convening authority was giving directions to the court.

During the seven month-long trial which concluded on June 30, Maj Madhan had been tried on four charges. The first charge related to an act prejudicial to good order and military discipline under Section 63 of the Army Act. According to the charge sheet, Major Madhan had, on May 29, 1999, during the induction of 2 Rajputana Rifles at Dras, improperly stated to his Commanding Officer, Col M.B. Ravindranath, that the situation in Dras was grim and something must be done to avoid going into that area.

The second and fourth charges, under Section 46 (B), related to malingering. Between June 3 and 13, and June 26 and 29, with intent to avoid taking part in the attack on Tololing and Three Pimples, respectively, feigned knee injury, the charge sheet stated. The third charge, levelled under Section 41 (2) for wilful disobedience, stated that when ordered on June 26 by the CO to go to Kajal outpost as the firebase commander, he refused to go.

While the court found him not guilty of the first two charges, he was convicted for the third and fourth charge.


Forlorn zebra mocks at wildlife celebrations
Bipin Bhardwaj

Chhat Bir, October 5
Visitors may enjoy watching a colourful male Zebra at Mahendra Chaudhary Zoological Park, transported from Kanpur zoo, on Thursday but may not feel the hapless condition of the mute animal. To avoid feeling of lonliness in animals, the Central Zoo Authority (CZA) her forbidden to keep single animals in any zoo of the country.

According to the CZA ruling, authorities of both big and small zoos have been prohibited to procure single animals. A single animal in any zoo should be paired by procuring its mate from other zoos.

Moreover, the CZA has also directed the zoos to procure animals in more than one pair so that in case of the death of one animal the breeding is not affected.

With the arrival of this zebra the number of single animals has gone to 13, including two wild bores, a rhinocerous (Prince), cassowary, a female chimpanzee (Rita), two brown bears, a jaguar, black panther, a crocodile and a capped African buffalo and a water otter.

A majority of these single animals are males and have been living a forlorn life but the Punjab wildlife authorities have apparently turned a blind eye towards their plight.

Though the animals are in such an apathetic state, the authorities are celebrating the World Wildlife Week in utter disregard to their condition.

Sources in the zoo say that single animals face a number of problems during their mating season. The health of Rita (a female chimpanzee), which is a cancer patient, deteriorates in the breeding season, the giant Rhino goes out of control during its mating season. Prince-the shino has reportedly lost its horn by dashing itself against the wall of its enclosure.

The brown bears, the jaguar, the black panther and the crocodile also suffer from such symptome. Mr Gagdev Sharma, an animal lover, said enclosures have turned into a dark room for the inmates without the company of their mates.

Mr R.K. Luna, Zoo Director, was not available for his comments on the situation.

When contacted, Mr Gurmeet Singh, Principal Chief Conservator of Forests, Punjab, admitted that the CZA rules have been violated. He assured that the authorities would do their best to procure mates to every single animal in the zoo by March next year’’.


‘Due respect must be given to holy scriptures’
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, October 5
The government should amend the relevant provisions of the law to give rigorous imprisonment to a person who shows disrespect to holy scriptures, and nobody should be allowed to play with the feelings of people practising different faiths, said Bhai Ranjit Singh.

He was addressing a gathering after listening to leaders of various religious organisations on the issue of acts of sacrilege at Amb Sahib Gurdwara here. The former Jathedar of Akal Takht said to uncover the conspiracy behind the acts of sacrilege, a long-term strategy had been worked out. He said the activities of Baba Piara Singh Bhaniaranwala was in the knowledge of the SAD-BJP government but no action was taken due to the vote bank at the command of the Baba.

The convener of the Shiromani Akali Dal Panthic Morcha, Baba Sarabjot Singh, said the future programme of the Panthic Morcha would be announced on the “paschatap” day being observed at Tarkhan Majra village. Regarding the tomorrow’s Punjab bandh call, the leaders of the Panthic Morcha said the call had been given by different political, religious and social bodies in Punjab.

They said the future programme of the Panthic Morcha would be announced on October 7. Earlier, the AISAD chief said Baba Bhaniaranwala was “the product of the vote bank policy engineered by the Congress but later adopted by SAD leadership”. Despite being told about the activities of the Baba, no action was taken by the government. Photographs of senior politicians in the Badal government and police officers which were part of the “Granth” published by the Baba had proved that government was ignoring the objectionable activities of the Baba. Action was taken against the Baba only after the Governor of Punjab interfered in the matter.


Stone of gurdwara building laid
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, October 5
The SGPC President, Mr Jagdev Singh Talwandi, today laid the foundation stone of a gurdwara building to be constructed at the historic Nada Sahib Gurdwara.

Although he was scheduled to reach the Nada Sahib Gurdwara at 11 a.m., he motored down here after 12.30 p.m. , much to the inconvenience of the public.

The proposed gurdwara room would be 70 feet wide and 110 feet long, with a 12-feet verandah.

The existing building of the gurdwara was not spacious enough to accommodate the massive gatherings that reached the gurdwara on every holiday and Sunday. The decision to raise the new building was taken for the convenience of the public.

Mr Talwandi was accompanied by a large number of SGPC members. They included Mr Harddial Singh Brar, Mr Jagir Singh, Mr Gurmel Singh, Mr Bhupinder Singh , Mr Joginder Singh Panjrath and Mr Mukha Singh .

Mr Harminder Singh Atwal, who was running a gas agency, was given a siropa for supplying free gas to the gurdwara for preparing prasad and langar.

Mr Talwandi was the first to be presented with a siropa. Later on, he presented siropas to all members of the SGPC and to Baba Sukha Singh, who would monitor the kar seva at the gurdwara.

Speaking on the occasion, Mr Hardayal Singh said since Mr Talwandi took over as the SGPC chief, kar seva had been in progress at several gurdwaras and many projects had been undertaken and completed.

Addressing the gathering at the gurdwara, Mr Talwandi said if one surrendered himself to the Guru, all his sufferings were mitigated. During his brief speech, Mr Talwandi quoted stanza after stanza from Guru Granth Sahib.

He appealed to devotees to take part in the kar seva at the gurdwara. He also appealed to them to donate for the cause.


Secretariat to have fire-safety system
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 5
The 10-storey-high Punjab and Haryana Civil Secretariat will at last have a fire extinguishing and also a fire-sensing system in place. This comes six years after a proposal to make the building fire safe was originally mooted.

It is from this building, located in Sector 1, that the Governments of Punjab and Haryana function. The Chief Ministers of the two states also have their offices here. The building is maintained by the Chandigarh Administration, it being the custodian under the Reorganisation of the States Act, 1966.

Various issues regarding the fire-safety systems were sorted out at a high-level meeting today. In the original scheme mooted six years back, a fire sensing system was proposed at a cost of Rs 74 lakh. Both state governments had paid the initial sum to the Administration as they were keen on safety measures to protect important files and documents kept here.


Eat as you relax
Harvinder Khetal
Tribune News Service

There are times when eating becomes incidental. What is of prime importance is ‘hanging out’. And if the preparation is yummy and the ‘hanging out’ jointes hep, it clicks. Just as it has clicked with Chandigarhians, mostly the youth, who throng Goldie’s Roost in the Sector 8 inner market (not Madhya Marg).

The scene is cool in the late evenings and night, with groups of friends and families enjoying soups, snacks and meals in the most relaxed manner. You may sit in their dining area and eat. Or sit outside and eat. Or stroll in the market area and eat. Or shop and eat. Or sit on the pavement railing and eat. Or even sit in your vehicle parked on the road and eat. The choice is yours. And chances are that you will bump into many of your acquaintances as you generally hang around. As I bumped into a familiar face while having soup on Thursday night. And the person was Mika, Daler Mehndi’s singer brother. Smiling, with his trademark earrings, long curly hair and a mole on the cheek, Mika said his friends had brought him to Goldie’s for chicken sweet corn soup. “I really relished it,” he said, breaking away from his companions in the parking area.

Begun in 1982 in one booth, basically as a soup and hot shop, by Mr H.S. Sethi, Goldie’s Roost has today expanded to six booths and a multi-cuisine menu. Mr Sethi’s young daughter, Sonal too, has joined the business, and is looking after behind-the-scene production activities. And they joined the ‘home delivery’ bandwagon (call 781449, 784708) a couple of years ago, in keeping with the competition. However, the southern sectors beyond Sector 34 are not catered to by this service.

While their soups with generous helpings of vegetables, chicken and other raw material continue to be the hot favourities, Mr Sethi introduced a Tibetan delight in the city — momos.

That many other restaurants too have followed suit is flattering. The original momo is a chicken, steamed, bland preparation. Keeping in mind the Punjabi palate and taste, they have improvised the dish to make it spicy and also of panir (for vegetarians) and brought out its fried version, explains Sonal. Its speciality lies in the unique sauce made of chillies and tomatoes.

Their other hot-selling item is the doner kebab. This is a Turkish delicacy. Grilled chicken pieces dipped in herbs’n spices-filled gravy along with finely diced green vegetables are filled in the pocket of a bun made of pita bread, baked in an oven. The preparation comes to you soft and fresh.

You many also pick up half-done marinated kebabs from the joint and cook them at home.

Then there are both veg and non-veg versions of Chinese, Indian and Mughlai cuisine as also fast food items like burgers, sandwiches, hot dogs, naans, biryani and combi-meals. The beverages include soft drinks, cans, tea, hot/cold coffee, coffee with ice-cream and lime soda. If it is ice-creams you dig for, you will get Blue Bunny flavours here.


Chandel advocates use of Hindi
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 5
Mr Suresh Chandel, an MP from Himachal Pradesh, today gave a clarion call to the public to promote and propagate Hindi in official correspondence.

Speaking at a function organised by the PGI on the occasion of Hindi Fortnight celebrations, Mr Chandel said even after more than 50 years of Independence, the upper strata of society continued to be influenced by English. “People should not forget that Hindi is our national language. It was opposed in the South, but now people of that part of the country had understood that it was our national language and our pride”, he said.

He told a select gathering that the Britishers had left behind certain things which continued to hamper our progress. He regretted that people of the country continued to be influenced only by those persons who used English in their day-to-day dealings. He urged the people present at the function to take a pledge to propagate Hindi, which would add to our national pride. He lit the traditional candle to mark the beginning of the function.

The PGI also organised a cultural function.


Federation seeks commissions help
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 5
The Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes Welfare Federation, Punjab, Haryana and Union Territory, has petitioned the National Commission to intervene to get policies corrected in favour of them in the Union Territory.

The federation submitted a ten-point charter of demands to the commission member, Mr Harinder Singh Khalsa, drawing his attention to the problems of these sections during his visit to the city, press note issued by the federation said here today.

The charter of demands urged the commission to intervene to ensure promotions, clearance of backlog, maintaining of roster, implementation of the promotion policy and issuance of caste certificate to those who had stayed in the city for between three to five years.

The federation also demanded abolition of contract system, loan for transport business, unemployment allowance, allotment of industrial plots, sheds, continuance of Ambedkar Awas Yojna and appointment on boards and corporation of the UT.


City police action resented
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, October 5
The Punjab Police has objected to “forcible picking” of four persons from Jhujhar Nagar, here, by the Chandigarh Police in a case of kidnapping of a travel agent of Maloya village.

The police party from the Maloya police post raided the place but did not inform the local police. Jasbir Singh, Nagar Singh, Bhinda Ram and Hans Raj were reportedly picked up by a police party from Jhujhar Nagar for allegedly abducting Mohinder Dass of Maloya village. The matter was taken up by the DIG ( Crime), Punjab, with the Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP), Chandigarh, after Ms Harjinder Kaur, wife of Jasbir Singh, complained against the alleged use of force by the Chandigarh Police.


Army Commander visits paraplegic centre
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, October 5
The General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Command, Lieut-Gen Surjit Singh visited the Paraplegic Rehabilitation Centre (PRC), here today. He went around the physiotherapy room, wards, vocational training workshop, family quarters and the recreation and information room.

The Army Commander interacted with inmates of the centre and presented them with gifts. He was also briefed about the activities and achievements of the centre by the Director, Col M.M.S. Randhawa. The Chief of Staff, Western Command, Lieut-Gen H.S. Kanwar, was also present.

Set up in 1978, the centre has at present 18 inmates who have been provided motorised tri-cycles by their units, regimental centres, the Directorate-General Resettlement or private agencies. The centre is engaged in making paraplegic soldiers and their families self-sufficient by imparting vocational training in cutting and tailoring, knitting, candle and wire-brush making.


Novel way to protest
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 5
In a novel way to protest, members of the All-India Passport Employees Association have decided to attend office on a holiday. According to a statement issued here today, employees of the Regional Passport Office would be attending office on Saturday.

The statement added they were promised by the authorities that their demands would be considered by June 15, but nothing had progressed till date. They are demanding formulation of a transfer policy, postings abroad and enforcement of office procedures.


Rally against retrenchment
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 5
Employees of the Government Press, Chandigarh, today held a gate rally to protest against the retrenchment of 133 employees and decided to join the strike by the Chandigarh Transport Undertaking on October 10.

The Government Press Union said the staff has been reduced to 650 from a strength of 1,300, alleging that the decision had been taken without taking employees into confidence.

It said the identification of surplus staff had been done in violation of norms as it required the assessment of staff requirement by an independent agency.

The Union said none of their employees would be allowed to be sent to other departments.


Governor releases book
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 5
A book in English, ‘Of Repose and Rapture’, authored by Justice Surinder Singh, was released by Babu Parmanand, Governor, Haryana, here today.

The Governor said, “This treatise is a treasure of peace and tranquility which inspires the reader to peep inside for attaining spiritual ecstasy. Axioms in the book inspire to listen to the voice of silence”.

Justice Surinder Singh said the book was his 13th creation based on his experiences in life.


Dead phones
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 5
Here is some good news for residents of Mullanpur: their dead telephones will come to life in a couple of months.

The telephones of Mullanpur, one of the biggest villages nestling in the shadow of Chandigarh, have been dead for some time past following a decision by the BSNL to shift its exchange from there to a building in the neighbouring Ratwara Sahib.

The bustling village has 260 telephones, with another more than 500 on the waiting list.


Servant decamps with Rs 4 lakh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 5
A man was duped of Rs. 4 lakh by his servant, when he had sent the latter to get a cheque cleared from a bank.

According to information available, Mr Satish Kumar, who run a fruit shop in Sector 26 Grain Market, had sent his employee, Shiv Kumar, to get a cheque worth Rs 4 lakh encashed from the Sector 28 branch of the Bank of Punjab.

However, the man did not return, although the amount was collected from the bank.

A six-year-old boy, Vikas, died after receiving an electric shock from a cooler at his Palsora residence today.

Theft cases
A driver sped away with his truck, which had been impounded by the State Transport Authority, from outside the Sector 31 police station.

According to an FIR registered under Section 379 of the IPC, Joginder Singh’s truck, (PB-08J- 3993) was impounded by staff of STA last evening. While the truck was parked outside the police station, the truck driver sped away with the truck.

A stereo was stolen from a car last evening while it was parked near Gurdev Studio in Sector 17. A case under Section 379 of the IPC has been registered.

One booked
Shiv Ashre, a resident of Shaheed Bhagat Singh Colony in Sector 49, has been accused of getting issued a ration card by producing a fake affidavit. A case under Sections 420 of the IPC has been registered on the complaint of Mr Sant Kumar, Food and Supply Area Inspector.

Utensils and a cash amount of Rs 300 was stolen from the jhuggi of Mr Anand Kumar Maurya in Nehru Colony yesterday after breaking open the lock A case under Sections 454 and 380 of the IPC has been registered.

Mr Lakhwinder Singh has accused Rama and Sonu of assaulting him with a knife on his head. A case under Sections 324 and 34 of the IPC has been registered.

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