Friday, November 9, 2001, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S



Panjab University deadline on registration returns
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
To avoid inconvenience to students of its undergraduate and postgraduate courses whose results have not been declared because their registration returns have not been submitted, Panjab University has announced October 3 as the last date for submitting student registration returns.

The result gazettes every year are splattered with the abbreviations like CS (candidate suspended), RL (result later), RLL or RL (fee). The registration-return documents include the migration certificate of the board or university from where a student comes to the PU or results of the eligibility test of the board or university.

The university has decided that “under special circumstances and compelling reasons”, students can submit their documents by November 15 after paying a late fee of Rs 500 each. “After this deadline, no document, except the ones approved by the Vice-Chancellor, will be accepted by the university,” sources said.

The university had given a deadline in this regard earlier as well, but the process had continued till the commencement of examinations, sources said.

A senior university official said it was difficult to say whether the university would be able to achieve 100 per cent success in this direction. There were various reasons, due to which, the receipt of documents by the university were delayed. There were cases where results were declared late due to a delay in the receipt of awards list and some other reasons like wrong marking or wrong allotment of marks, the official said.

It was said that, in such a case, the university would have to give more time to the students concerned to apply for the examinations. However, with this step, at least students will be under pressure to complete their documents at the earliest. The colleges will also have to be told to send documents of students to the university office well in time.

The university has decided that detailed-marks cards of students who are placed under compartment will also be sent to the colleges from where the forms have been received. The PU will do this instead of sending these forms directly to the candidates. This way, colleges will also be able to maintain records of such candidates.

The university believes that if colleges send students-registration returns to the university office by October 3, it shall be able to send the list of candidates who are not eligible for examinations to the colleges.

The university office shall maintain three copies of all attendance-and-absentee cards so that colleges also maintain a similar record. This is likely to help in enforcing attendance rules more strictly.

To minimise the RL cases, it has been suggested that university should first declare results of the first-year courses, followed by successive courses. All awards of practical examinations will be sent to the secrecy branch of the university through college principals. The copies of the awards-list should be maintained by the colleges and retained for at least two years.

The previous-year degrees will be sent to colleges by February 15 of the following year. All detailed-marks cards will be sent through registered mail. The result gazettes shall be sent through couriers or messengers.


Securitymen’s tents may not be removed
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, November 8
Though the Punjab and Haryana High Court has directed it to remove all unauthorised structures on public land here, the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) is considering to allow security personnel of the VIPs to pitch their tents on public land here. The concessions, however, would come at a cost.

Sources in PUDA said there indeed was a proposal to charge the VIPs on the basis of the area covered by tents in each case. They said, so far, these tents on public land were unauthorised and could be removed under the ongoing anti-encroachment drive in the town. An official of the local Estate Office also said the tents would have to go.

When the drive begun, a tent pitched by security personnel of a retired ADGP of Punjab was removed. The issue came into focus today, when the enforcement staff of PUDA went in to remove encroachment in front of the house of a dissident Akali Dal MLA, Mr Ranjit Singh Chajjalwandi, in Phase VII here. When the staff asked the MLA to remove the tents of his security personnel on an adjacent plot (plot 43), the legislator confronted them.

The PUDA officials told him that they would have to demarcate the plot, but the MLA’s reply was “harsh”. He refused to remove the tents, claiming that he was paying rent to the original allottee of the plot, but failed to produce any document in support of his claim. The PUDA officials said there was no provision under which a former allottee could rent out the plot even after selling it. The MLA was given some time to sort out the matter with senior officials of PUDA. A PUDA official said most of security personnels of the VIPs were in Phases IX and X, besides Sector 70 and 71.


PUDA to shift Guru Nanak Colony
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, November 8
In a significant decision, the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) today decided to rehabilitate the Guru Nanak Colony of Phase X and Lambian village at alternative sites. The evacuees would be offered plots at subsidised rates.

The Chief Administrator of PUDA, Mr K.B.S. Sidhu said it was decided to shift the occupants of Guru Nanak Colony located along the road leading to the PCA Stadium, to the land behind the bulk material market in Sector 65-A. The colony would be rehabilitated on nearly eight acres and in lieu around 15 acres of prime land under illegal occupation of the colony would be freed.

The evacuees would be offered plot, measuring around 25 sq yard at less than Rs 500 per sq yard. The services like roads and streetlights would be provided by the authority. However, the water taps and toilets would be provided at certain points in the proposed rehabilitation colony.

The shifting of the colony would enable PUDA to utilise five acres of land behind Sector 49. A decision was also taken to shift Lambian village to the land in the proposed Sector 80 behind Mauli village. 


BSNL charge on cable damage
Tribune News Service

Telephone cables of the BSNL which were damaged near the Tribune Chowk.

Chandigarh, November 8
The BSNL authorities have alleged that its underground cables, along with ducts carrying cables in the Industrial Area Phase 2 near Tribune Chowk, have been damaged by Reliance Engg while laying their underground cable.

In a press release, the Principal General Manager Telecom stated that around 100 BSNL telephones had been reported to be faulty in the exchange due to this.

He said a similar case of cable damage by the contractors authorised by the Municipal Corporation, Chandigarh had been reported in Sector 32, I B Colony. A 100 pair cable had been damaged and around 90 telephone lines were dead due to this, stated the release.

Meanwhile, in its endeavor to create awareness among its customers, the BSNL will participate in Chandigarh Fair to be organised by the CII from November 9 to 12. Live demonstration of video conferencing, Internet on ISDN, Virtual Private Network and IN services, free phone, premium rate, India telephone cards etc will be given by BSNL, said Mr R C Vaish, PGMT, in a press release here today. He said BSNL would also display automatic cheque collection machine and duplicate bill collecting machine at its stall. 


Police building on the brink of collapse
Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
A prime building of the UT police department is waiting to crumble. This statement might sound exaggerated, but it stands justified after a brief visit to the police station (East) building, which is facing the threat of collapse. On the face of it, there may appear to be nothing grossly wrong with the building, except that its boundary wall is housing a big fissure. But the story of the building, which houses three important offices (Crime Branch office, DSP, East office and the police station), does not end at the crack. It only begins here...

Over the past two years, the building has been developing cracks at various points. And all this on account of big peepal trees that have been seeping into the walls of the building and eating away its foundation. The problem may not appear grave on the surface, but a conversation with the personnel deputed in the building clarifies how grave it can get if not taken seriously.

While one of the trees (about 11 feet high) has grown firmly along the rear wall of the building, another 14-ft-high peepal tree is growing along the sidewall of the building that runs parallel to the road heading towards Sukhna Lake. This tree is growing fast, so much so that its branches are now spreading inside the enclosures on the top floor. While the sidewalls are weakening with each passing day, the wall in the backyard has already started to crumble. so have some walls of the Crime Branch office. Trees can be spotted growing along other walls also.

Speaking to The Tribune about the impending problem, one of the officials posted in the police station informed that on four occasions he had himself engaged labour to cut some fast growing trees. He added, “We are here to check crime and not maintain buildings. This is the work of the UT Engineering Department, which is least interested to act. We have sent at least five reminders to them, but nothing has happened so far.” The same is the case with the fissure in the boundary wall which appeared about eight months back after a water supply pipe burst. An official informed that the leaking pipe was not repaired immediately and caused a crack in the wall.

The problem of walls decaying due to heavy moisture is also growing. An official said, “Considering the gravity of this problem, I have hired a plumber on personal level. He has been asked to suggest how we can prevent further moisture in the walls.” Another highly-placed source in the department informed that many a time the responsibility was being shifted between the Maintenance and Irrigation and Public Health wings of the Engineering Department. So we called officials of both the departments at the same time. They had come for inspection many days ago. But nothing has yet been done.”Back


Pvt agency, cops for security of waterworks
Sanjay Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
In view of the threat posed by bioterrorism, the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh (MCC) has engaged a private security agency apart from the police to man its waterworks.

The private security agency provided its personnel for the security of the Sector 37 waterworks from November 1.

The police has also, meanwhile, provided security for the waterworks of the MCC.

The private agency will also place its armed personnel at all waterworks once licences for their arms are arranged, official sources told Chandigarh Tribune here today.

The corporation had also issued identity cards to all those visiting waterworks and a strict check is being maintained and everybody is being frisked.

The security of the waterworks had been taken from the Chandigarh police in 1995 sources added.

The Municipal Corporation had been asking the police to provide security to the waterworks. The police had been rejecting the demand, saying it did not have manpower to spare and the corporation itself was required to make arrangements for the same.

The police, however, had been giving waterworks security when these were under the Union Territory Administration.

The ball was set rolling in this direction when the Administrator, Lt-Gen J.F.R. Jacob (retd), visited waterworks recently and realised that the security of the citizens was at risk.

The Administrator accepted the need of the police and suggested that the corporation should also have its own private security.

As the corporation did not spare manpower for the purpose, it floated a tender for getting a private security agency to do the job.

Officials said the security of these facilities is so vital that if there was any drop in vigil in the face of new form of terrorism, lives of people could be at risk.


Floatation gear for Mi-8s
Vijay Mohan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
To meet the requirements of flying in hostile, off-shore environment, a number of Mi-8 helicopters have been equipped with emergency floatation gear. The project has been undertaken by No.3 Base Repair Depot here.

Sources say that in case of an exigency, the emergency floatation system will allow a chopper to float on water for some time, giving the crew additional reaction time to don life jackets, float dinghies or destroy any classified material on board.

The project was initiated soon after an IAF chopper carrying a high-level BSF party crashed in the marshy Rann of Kutch after it descended to check out some fishing boats.

Sources say that the displacement over water of a chopper is very less and it case it crashes over water, it will sink very quickly. “Though the emergency floatation gear does not turn it into an amphibian, it will allow additional time for the crew to save themselves before the aircraft sinks,” an officer here said.

The emergency floatation system comprises three inflatable air balloons mounted on the lower side of the fuselage, which would be activated when required.

This is the first time that such an experiment has been undertaken for an helicopter the size of a Mi-8, though the IAF had earlier equipped the lighter Chetak helicopter for amphibious roles by mounting fixed flotation balloons on its undercarriage. These were deputed to serve with the Oil and Natural Gas Commission for carrying out logistic support to off-shore oil platforms.

Sources reveal that a team a team of engineers from Russia and Ukraine had been stationed at the depot to help IAF carry out the modifications on two Mi-8s. IAF sources say that helicopters from units tasked with off-shore flying have been modified.

Inducted into the IAF over a period from 1971 to 1985, the Mi-8 equips seven helicopter units and is used for communication, paradropping, casualty evacuation and special heli-borne operations, besides forming a part of the specially modified detachment attached to Air Headquarters for ferrying the President and the Prime Minister.

An exhaustive study carried out on the oldest Mi-8s by 3 BRD last year concluded that the stipulated lifespan of these aircraft can be easily extended by five years or more. The first batch of Mi-8s are nearing the end of the manufacturer’s stipulated “calender” lifespan of 30 years, while just half of their stipulated “fatigue” lifespan of 12,000 flying years has been exhausted.


Burning issues of Fire Department
Ruchika M. Khanna
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, November 8
All proposals for upgrading the local fire station are pending with the Haryana Urban Development Authority for long now, after the functioning of the Fire Department has been transferred to the newly constituted Municipal Council.

According to sources, HUDA has not been entertaining any new proposals for upgrading the station. There was a proposal to add two fire engines and a jeep fire engine to the existing fleet of two fire engines in the station here. It was also proposed to have a hydraulic platform worth Rs 2.75 crore and construct two garages and family quarters at the fire station. According to government guidelines, there has to be one fire engine per 50,000 persons and a leading fireman, four firemen and a driver have to be present in a each shift at the station.

While all other proposals have been rejected, the proposal for buying a hydraulic platform is still pending with HUDA. Sources say that ever since the transfer of the department’s functioning to the MC in April, HUDA has shown no interest in spending money on these proposals. Even the salaries of employees of the Fire Department are being paid by HUDA , to be, later, deducted from the extension fee to be forwarded to the MC by HUDA.

A number of high-rise buildings have come up here, especially in Sectors 4, 5, 14 and 20, besides Mansa Devi Complex. However, the present fire engines can combat fire only till 35 feet from the surface, because of which, HUDA had, reportedly, okayed a proposal for buying a hydraulic platform.

Shortage of staff (only 16 personnel) is a major problem that the department faces. After its transfer to the MC, a proposal for increasing the staff strength by almost double was sent to the authorities concerned. However, there has been no decision on this, so far.

There is only one fire station for entire district that includes Kalka, Pinjore, Raipur Rani, Chandi Mandir and Morni. Fire engines from here are rushed to wherever there is a fire at these places.

With a large number of forest area in Pinjore and Morni, forest fires are common in summer. Senior officials say that it is difficult for fire engines to reach these places because of the distance. Also, a number of fires break out in the rural belt of Chandi Mandir and Raipur Rani that have to be extinguished by fire engines that go from here.

Officials say that they fight resource crunch by taking the services of fire engines of the HMT Pinjore and Terminal Ballistic Research Laboratory near Ramgarh whenever there is a big fire in the district. Donations from the District Red Cross Society are being used for buying a new fire engine, with the administration chipping in with some funds.


Seminar focuses on domestic violence
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
Forced marriages, domestic violence, child rights, child abuse and community policing were the major issues discussed at a seminar on “Partnership with community and criminal judicial system” organised by the Central Institute of Correctional Administration (CICA) in collaboration with the Punjab State Human Rights Commission, Chandigarh Police and the West Midlands Police here today.

The speakers included Mr Michael Layton, Mr Steven Burrows and Mr H.S. Rai — all the from West Midlands Police; Mr A.P. Bhatnagar from the PSHRC, Mr Ajay Kashyap and Mr Parag Jain from the Chandigarh Police and Dr Upneet Lalli from the CICA. Among other participants were Mr B.S. Bassi (IG, Chandigarh Police), Justice Iqbal Singh, Dr Vidhu Mohan (Panjab University), Mr Mark Howe, Mr Ramesh Kumar (West Midlands Police) and Dr Prabhjot Kaur (Panjab University).

For Mr Layton and his team from the West Midlands Police, it has been the second visit to the city during the current year. Mr Ajay Kashyap, DIG, Chandigarh Police, sought more interaction with the West Midland Police on the issues related to handling of situation arising out of slowing down of economy, development of leadership in the police force and privatisation of certain areas.

The UK policemen will also interact with Punjab Police officials, besides visiting Anandpur Sahib, Punjab Police Academy (Phillaur) and Punjab Armed Police campus (Jalandhar) during their week-long stay here.

Dr Upneet Lalli, who conducted the proceedings, said crime prevention did not mean elimination of crime but to work in such a way that it frees everyone from the fear of crime.

Mr Michael Layton, Chief Superintendent, said the West Midlands Police was the second largest after the London Metropolitan Police in England with 8,000 men and was looking after 2.5 million people. The visits to India had been, he said, very useful in understanding the Indian cultures and ethos that helps in dealing with a strong Indian community in England.

He said seven county police forces were involved in the special project on “forced marriages”. Mr H.S. Rai, who later spoke on child abuse and domestic violence said during the past three months, there were six cases of forced marriages reported to the West Midlands Police alone.

Mr Rai talked about child protection and steps taken to prevent child abuse in West Midlands. He said every week, one to two children died of cruelty in England.

Mr Steve Burrows talked about community policing and Community Safety Bureau which, he said, was an intelligence-driven centre of expertise, providing strategic and tactical advice.

Mr A.P. Bhatnagar talked about various projects of the PSHRC, including the training programmes on prevention of child abuse and rights of children.

Mr Parag Jain talked about community policing in Chandigarh. He spoke about various issues of community policing by talking about citizens’ input, personalised service delivery decentralised decision making, problem solving and community participation.

Mr Michael Layton presented mementos on behalf of the visiting police team to the main speakers and participants of the seminar.Back


Residents welcome SC ban on smoking
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, November 8
Describing the Supreme Court of India’s orders banning smoking at public places as a ‘‘step in the right direction’’, a majority of non-smoking city residents have welcomed the decision. They have, however, expressed apprehension about its implementation.

Smokers, on the other hand, have sought creation of ‘special smoking zones’ at bus stops and railway stations, besides other public places, including restaurants and fast food joints.

The non-smokers, Chandigarh Tribune talked to, said they would finally be saved of the inconvenience of inhaling passive smoke. They asserted that travelling in buses, particularly in the interior areas, had become virtually impossible due to the presence of dense black cloud of smoke hovering overhead. They added that even though some of the restaurants had zones earmarked for the smokers, the fumes still suffocated them in air conditioner-fitted rooms.

The smokers, on the other hand, contended that some kind of provision should be made for them. ‘‘What will we do if we feel the urge to smoke?’’ they questioned.

A large number of residents were also apprehensive about the implementation of the orders. They argued that a similar ban on smoking in government offices was imposed by the Chandigarh Administration earlier also, but no one paid much attention to it.

The Supreme Court, in its verdict delivered on November 2, had, according to media reports, made it compulsory for all states and the Union Territories to ban smoking in public places and public transport. The ban orders, issued on a public interest litigation filed by Congress leader Murli Deora, covers public places, including hospitals, educational institutions, libraries, auditoriums and courts.

‘‘The order is a landmark display of activism in public health’’, said Juhi Kapoor, a plus two student. ‘‘It will not only prove beneficial for the health of the non-smokers, but will also discourage smoking’’.

Agreeing with her, another undergraduate Nidhi Dutta asserted, ‘‘For most of the youngsters, smoking is a statement, a way of telling the world that I am no more a kid, but a man. A way of impressing pretty damsels. Once it is banned, the youngsters will not smoke in public in an attempt to impress the girls’’.

Neetu Singh of Sector 23, a young psychologist, also believed that a ban on smoking will go a long way, not only in curing the youngsters of the addiction, but also in discourage the youngsters to pick up the habit. ‘‘Most of the students imitate their seniors. Once they do not see their seniors smoking, they will not pick up the habit’’.

Siddharth Sharma, a non smoker, asserted, ‘‘Let the smokers blow their lungs out. They have no business of harming my health.’’

A smoker, Dheeraj Chauhan of Sector 27, on the other hand, argued, ‘‘There are special zones for smokers in foreign countries. Such facilities should be provided to us — the smokers — in India also, particularly at the railway stations and the bus stops’’.

Businessman Ajay Bagga questioned, ‘‘But how will the ban be imposed.... That is my question?”


MC in hot water over laying storm water line
Health Dept fails to deliver goods, despite payment
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, November 8
The SAS Nagar Municipal Council could not have found itself in such an awkward situation. Despite paying over Rs 1.95 lakh from its pocket to the Public Health Department, the council is finding it difficult to get done a deposit work of laying a storm water line in Phase III B-2 here.

It had been two months since the funds for the development work were released. But the chances of completion of the work appeared remote in the near future as well. Several 10-feet-deep ditches along a road ( as seen in the picture) had been dug to construct storm water gullies These had now become virtual ‘death traps’.

A worker at the site said the existing storm water line had been blocked by dust and earth when digging work was going on. Much to the inconvenience of the residents, no warning sign had been erected at the site to make people aware of ditches. Mr N.K. Marwaha, a councillor of the area, expressed his helplessness in getting the work completed as the delay was on part of the Public Health Department.

As per the rules, the Public Health Department undertook the development and maintenance works in the town and charged money from the civic body.

The President of the civic body had also talked to Public Health officials to complete the work. Inquiries revealed that after flooding of a pocket of houses ( from 172 to 187 and from 188 to 199) during the rains, the Public Health Department had prepared an estimate of Rs 1.95 lakh to lay a storm water line. Accordingly the money was sanctioned in July 2001 and the work was supposed to be completed in 10 days.

Digging revealed that a storm water already existed but was chocked. A parallel storm water pipe was still laid.

Residents of the area were irritated over these ditches and afraid as well that these ditches could result in a tragedy if they were not covered. Inquiries revealed that the Public Health Department did not have any machinery to clear the blocked storm water lines.


Mudslinging on for MC poll
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
The campaign for elections to the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh (MCC) has begun with allegations and counter-allegations from the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party.

At a rally in Sector 7 here yesterday, the Congress accused the Atal Behari Vajpayee government of failing on all fronts. It said the local unit of the BJP had failed to serve the people in spite of being in majority because its two factions were busy fighting each other.

The BJP, at its rallies in Colony Number 5 and Ward Number 6, alleged that the Congress was ignoring the city so much that even its MP’s development fund had lapsed.

The party cited what all development works it had undertaken during its rule in the MC.

The President of the Chandigarh Territorial Congress Committee (CTCC), Mr B.B. Bahl, said the party, if it won the majority in the MC, would not levy any tax.

The Congress’ promise of a tax-free corporation is a like the BJP’s promise before the last elections. The policy led to the civic body be starved of funds for development and it had to survive on Central grants. The situation has made the corporation heavily dependent on the Administration due to its weak financial muscle.

The BJP’s star campaigner and a former MP, Mr Satya Pal Jain, talked about the development activities here during his term. He said the party had been able to get the city the Chandigarh-Ludhiana railway line, a Doordarshan Kendra, 16 community centres, gas connections for 70,000 persons, ration cards for a large number of residents, the Transport Chowk flyover and changes in building bylaws.

The Congress campaigner and the local MP, Mr Pawan Bansal, accused the BJP of shielding the corrupt and referred to Mr George Fernandes, Mr Bangaru Laxman and Mr Harin Pathak in this regard.

The gathering at the rally organised by the CTCC as part of a nationwide programme of the Indian Youth Congress was also addressed by the IYC General Secretary, Ms Tilotama Singh, among others.

The former head of the local unit of the BJP, Mr Dharampal Gupta, accused the Congress of shying away from elections as the Minority Cell of the Congress had demanded that the election date be extended.


Employees firm on strike
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
Even as employees of various wings of the Municipal Corporation and the Chandigarh Administration will go on four-hour pen-down and tool-down strike on Friday, the Chandigarh Administration again said the strike would mean “no work, no pay”.

The coordination committee of the employees unions said the strike would be complete for 4 hours as the Administration was not meeting its genuine demand of bonus. The following unions will participate: the Government Transport Workers Union, the Mechanical Workers Union, the Capital Project Mechanical Union, the MC Employees Union, the Building Maintenance and Electrical Union, the United Front Public Health Union, the Health Sweepers’ Union, the Horticulture Workers’ Union, the Road Workers Union and the Streetlight Workers’ Union.

On its part the Administration said the coordination committee of Government and Municipal Corporation Employees and Workers, UT, have issued a notice for a half-day pen-down tool-down strike on November 9.


2-hr strike by CTU buses today
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
CTU buses will remain off road from 10 am to 12 noon tomorrow, a press note issued by the Chandigarh Government Transport Workers Union stated tonight. This is being done in support of the pen-down and tool-down strike by the coordination committee of the MC and UT employees, the union said.


Zoo gets vet on contract basis
Our Correspondent

Chhat Bir, November 8
Disturbed by the increasing number of deaths in the Chhat Bir zoo, the Punjab Government has appointed a veterinary doctor.

Mr R. K. Luna, Director, Zoo, said that Dr Ashwani Kumar has been appointed veterinary doctor on contract basis till March 31. He said that to abide by the rules of the Central Zoo Authorities (CZA), an additional post of veterinary doctor has been created by the government.

The Chhat Bir zoo falls under the category of big zoos in the country and as per the CZA directions, such zoos should have two veterinary doctors for the upkeep of the animals, said Mr Luna.


Miss Perfect and Miss Charming
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
Krati Jain was chosen as Miss Perfect at the annual function organised by girls of Government Post Graduate College, Sector 46, here today.

Sukhdeep Bhogal was chosen as Miss Charming.

Songs, dances and skit lent gaiety to the occasion. The chief guest for the function was Major D.P.Singh, the principal. Mrs Neelam Rekhi, Dean, said such functions gave an opportunity to the young students to gain more confidence in their future lives.

Dr C.L. Narang, Director of NSS, Panjab University, also spoke on the occasion.Back



Chautala govt criticised
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
Perturbed over the failure of the Chautala government to announce any concessions in house tax in the Vidhan Sabha today, various organisations of citizens and traders have reacted sharply.

In a joint statement issued here today, a number of such organisations, including the Ambala Cantonment Traders Federation, Ambala Citizens Council, Scientific Apparatus Manufacturers Association, Ambala Scientific Instruments Manufacturers Association and the Federation of Welfare Societies of Residential Colonies, have said that from the so-called failure of the November 2 bandh, the government should not make an impression that the people of Haryana had accepted its house tax policy.

They said the people were opposed to the house tax policy from the core of their heart but had not participated in the bandh on a large-scale because of the fear of the vindictiveness of the government. The statement said the policy was anti-urban. The system of assessment was entirely wrong as the house tax had been converted into property tax.

Bodies alleged that the bureaucracy had tried to divide the urban and rural sections of society and it had created discontentment among the people against the government. While heavy tax was being sought to realise from the people, but no amenities were being provided to them by the civic bodies they said.


Demonstration by telecom officials
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
Members of the Telecom Engineering Officers Association (TEOA) held a lunch-hour demonstration in front of the office of the PGMT, Sector 18, here today. 

The agitated members demanded sanctioning of proportionate SDE posts under India-mobile personal communication services (IMPCS) project and instead post already working junior telecom officers (JTOs) and Subdivisional Engineers (SDE) in the IMPCS project.

The gathering was addressed by Mr Amarjit Singh, secretary, and Mr Y. J. S. Sodhi, president, of the TEOA.


SBP disburses loans
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
Mr J.R. Devgan, General Manager, State Bank of Patiala, disbursed 50 loans under the bank’s SBP-Utsav scheme and 35 under karamchari suvidha yojna at the bank’s NIS branch, Patiala.

Speaking on the occasion, he stated that more innovative products backed by the latest technology were being introduced so as to provide efficient and friendly service to customers.

State Bank of Patiala has introduced a number of new loan schemes under the retail banking segment. Keeping in view the aspirations and hopes of people during different times, new schemes have been introduced to fulfil their needs.

Total home loan scheme for the general public provides for a house and household goods like furniture. Under greh kaya kalp scheme all needs of repairs, renovation and extension of the house are met. Medi home flexi finance scheme provides financial help to doctors to meet all their needs. The recently launched scheme like SBP-Utsav provides festival loans to employees.

Mr S.K. Sreen, DGM, Patiala, and Mr Desh Pande, DGM, were also present on the occasion.


Gunjan, daughter in Nari Niketan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
Nari Niketan, Sector 26, has come forward and adopted the patient, Gunjan, and her daughter, Chandni, after the press highlighted her plight.

The Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32, Medical Superintendent, Dr Raj Bahadur, has in a press note thanked the Director, Social Welfare, Mrs Madhvi Kataria, for being instrumental in shifting Gunjan to Nari Niketan.


Ahoi Ashtami celebrated
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, November 8
A large number of mothers in the city today observed fast on the occasion of Ahoi Ashtami for the well-being of their children. 

The women woke up before sunrise and after having some refreshments went to temples to offer prayers for the long life and good health of their children. 


Punwire officials booked
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, November 8
The police booked several officials of Punwire in different cases for misappropriation of funds of the company to the tune of Rs 57 crore. According to the information, an AGM of the PSIDC, in a complaint lodged with the police, said the MD of the company, Gurpal Singh, ED Ved Parkash and Ashok Jerath embezzled Rs 55.95 crore.

In another case, Ved Parkash, DK Singla, Ashok Jerath and DG Mand allegedly misappropriated Rs 1 crore. A case under Section 420 and 34 of the IPC has been registered.

In another case, Ved Parkash, Sanjeev and DK Singla have been booked under Sections 420, 468, 471 and 477 of the IPC for allegedly misappropriating Rs 70.72 lakh of the company’s fund.

2 girls abducted: Two minor girls of Jhota Kut colony were allegedly abducted by two youths from the colony here Thursday. According to information, a 13-year-girl, Taskeen and another 14-year-girl, were reportedly abducted by Kaniya Lal and Balister. A case under Sections 363 and 366 of the IPC has been registered by the police.

Injured: Ajay Kumar, a resident of Phase II, was injured after being attacked by Rinku of Phase V, here on Wednesday. A case under Section 324 of the IPC has been registered.Back


2 booked for demanding dowry
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
A Sector 20 resident, Neelam, has lodged a complaint with the Crime Against Women Cell over harassment by her UK-based husband, Manoj Sood, and her mother-in-law Prembala Sood for demanding dowry. Her husband has gone back to the UK. They had been married in July, 2000.

Based on her complaint, the local police has registered a case under Section 406 for criminal breach of trust and under Section 498-A, IPC, for harassing a women to bring more dowry.

One held: The police has arrested Rajiv Sandhu, a resident of Ram Darbar and recovered stolen equipment from his possession. A resident of Mohali, Mr Karnail Singh, had earlier reported that the accused had stolen two dye sets and some tools from his factory in Ram Darbar.

Pouches of whisky seized: The police has arrested a resident of Colony No. 5, Ranjit Singh, from the Sector 34-35-43-44 chowk and seized 45 pouches of whisky from his possession. A case under the Excise Act has been registered.

One hurt: Kushal Kumar, a daily-wager employed in the Industrial Area, was injured after he was hit by a Haryana Roadways bus (HR-56-0552) on the Chandigarh-Zirakpur road. The police has arrested the driver of the bus, Sunil Kumar, and impounded the bus.

Scooterist injured: Varinder Kumar a resident of Sector 27, was injured and admitted to the Sector 16 General Hospital after his scooter was hit by a Maruti car near Hotel Mountview. The driver of the car fled the scene. The police has registered a case.

Cyclist hurt: A cyclist hailing from Ropar, Prem Chand, was injured and admitted to the PGI after he was hit by a car near the Sector 2-3-10-11 chowk. The police has registered a case.

Attempt to outrage modesty: The police has registered a case on a complaint by a Palsora resident, who had reported that two scooter-borne persons had tried to outrage her modesty near a bus stop, adjoining the Government College for Girls, Sector 42.

Cars stolen: A Sector 44 resident, Mr Gurmit Singh has reported that his Maruti car (CH-01-X-4959) has been stolen from the parking lot of Minerva Hotel, Sector 22. The police has registered a case. A Mohali resident, Gurvinder Singh, has also reported that his Maruti car (PB-05-D-0111) has been stolen from the Sector 34 parking lot. The police has registered a case.

Remains found: The remains of a human body were found at the dumping ground near Dadu Majra, today. The police say that the body, which has been bady decomposed, appears to be over two months old and bears injury marks. It was discovered by some scavangers, who informed the police. The body has been sent for a post-mortem examination.


Traders’ plea on Divali Mela stalls
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 8
The Sector 17 traders here today urged the UT Administrator, Lt-Gen J.F.R. Jacob (retd), to direct the Municipal Corporation to allow setting ups stalls in the market during three days of Divali Mela.

A delegation of traders comprising the Chandigarh Beopar Mandal president, Mr Jagdish Arora, its general secretary, Mr Jagdish Kalra, vice-president, Mr Kamaljit Panchchi, general secretary, Mr L.C. Arora and Mr Neeraj, submitted a memorandum to the Administrator’s office.

They condemned the MC for threatening that their tents, if put up, would be confiscated. The delegation said that the traders never asked for setting cracker stalls and tents in the sector.

The delegation also went to meet the Municipal Commissioner, Mr M.P. Singh, but could not meet him.

Members said the permission they were seeking was not a blanket one and may be 15 to 20 shops require such a facility to display their wares. They said only food and toy sellers would require such a facility. They showed willingness to pay the Municipal corporation charges for setting up such stalls.

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