Wednesday, January 2, 2002, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S



Goods worth lakhs gutted at Sadar Bazar
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 1
At least several hundred shops and goods worth lakhs of rupees were destroyed in a fire, which devastated the Swadeshi Market in the congested Sadar Bazar area of central Delhi late last night. However, there were no casualties in the fire, which raged for several hours and was finally brought under control late today.

The Delhi Fire Service officials said that at least four flat-like structures housing a large number of shops collapsed after the fire consumed the central beams holding the roofs. The entire area was enveloped in a pall of thick smoke, which was further aggravated by the intense fog in the region.

It was panic stations as hundreds of traders and shopkeepers jostled with each other in the narrow lanes, having been rudely roused from sleep. The entire area has been cordoned off as a precautionary measure. Dazed shopkeepers rummaged through the rubble to retrieve their goods. “We have lost every thing and become paupers overnight” was the common refrain.

The police said that a case had been registered and efforts were being made to ascertain the cause of the fire. The police said that they were looking into reports that sparks from a welder’s torch, who was engaged in repair work in one of the shops, possibly caused the fire.

The entire area was strewn with charred remains of goods from the shops. Bystanders had to wade through the debris and the puddles of water that had formed near the fire tenders. Most of the narrow lanes around the ruined market were virtually unnegotiable.

According to the Delhi Fire Service, the fire broke around 10 p.m. last night in one of the shops in the four-storeyed Swadeshi Market and soon spread to the adjoining shops. Since most of the shops were closed for the day at that time, it is possible that the blaze might have raged for some time before it was detected.

Immediately fire tenders were rushed to the spot, but because of the congestion and the narrow approach, the fire tenders had to stop at a distance and lay additional pipes to douse the flames. They admitted that some time might have been lost in this.

“The initial attempt was to prevent the fire from spreading to adjoining markets, particularly the Rui Mandi, Gandhi Market and Suivalan, which stock combustible material”, a senior officer said. More than 35 fire tenders were involved in the fire fighting operation and teams, assisted by 200 men from the area police stations, worked continuously through out the night and better part today to douse the fire.

Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit today visited the Swadeshi Market. She spoke to the office bearers of the Traders Associations while assessing the impact of the tragedy. She also pointed out that over-drawing of power led to such tragedies. She further said that under the chairmanship of a local MLA, a committee of representatives of Traders Association and others concerned would soon meet to work out modalities to avoid such tragedies in future.



Proper security at last for ‘sitting ducks’
Ramesh Ramachandran
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 1
To meet the security challenges posed by the December 13 storming of Parliament by terrorists, the Government of NCT of Delhi has finally drafted an action plan for “de-inducting” the private security guards and reinforcing the security set-up in the Secretariat. Besides agreeing in principle to the deployment of personnel drawn from paramilitary forces or agencies registered with the Director General (Resettlement) of the Ministry of Defence, the general administration department has in its zeal gone ahead and imposed restrictions on the movement of officers and staff also. Accordingly, officers and staff have been told to use their “access cards” (which also double up as identity cards) for gaining entry into the different wings on each floor.

Sources say Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit is likely to take the decision of phasing out the posse of private guards contracted from the Delhi-based Indian Industrial Security Services Private Limited later this week. The contract awarded to this agency had expired in October 2000 but was extended pending deployment of Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) personnel. After the CISF placed certain pre-conditions for their induction, the matter was left to the Union Ministry of Home Affairs, which suggested that the deployment of personnel drawn from the agencies registered with the Director General (Resettlement) in the Ministry of Defence could also be considered for the task.

The need to reinforce the security set-up was acutely felt after reports that the Delhi Assembly was also among the targets of the terrorists who stormed the Parliament House. The revamped security measures were also necessitated by the fact that but for the posse of unarmed security personnel contracted from the private agency the building that houses the offices of chief minister and her Cabinet colleagues was virtually unguarded.

According to well placed sources, the circular issued by the general administration department stipulates that each access gate in the wings would be manned by a security guard who would ensure that officers and staff entering a wing use their access cards to gain entry into that particular wing. The circular further states that the electromagnetic doors that have been installed in different wings on each floor of the Secretariat for the dual purpose of controlling access to the wings and collecting data on the use of access cards by officers and staff, and which were not being used for various reasons, would be put into operation beginning January 1.

The curbs on their movement have evoked a caustic reaction from some of the officers and staff. Citing a ‘technical glitch,’ they say certain access cards – which allow entry to and exit from only a select few wings and floors – would hinder their work given the need to liaise with different departments and, by extension, officials. What has come in for particular criticism is the decision to use the access cards for monitoring of punctuality in office attendance.

According to sources, the circular issued by the general administration department states that a statement on the use of access cards, indicating therein names of the officers / staff using access cards for gaining entry and the time of entry in the wings, would be furnished to every Head of Department, who would make use of these statements to monitor punctuality of their respective staff and take necessary action in accordance with the instructions issued by the administrative reforms department. And if that were not a ‘deterrent’ enough, the general administration department has decided, pending approval of the chief secretary, to not “prepare or disburse” salaries of those staff who remain constantly absent for five days or more unless the period of their absence is regularised by the competent authority by sanctioning due leave. 


DSGMC to be made more transparent
Panel to review Gurudwara Act
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 1
The Delhi Government has finally decided to set up a committee to review the Delhi Sikh Gurudwara Act, 1971, aimed at ushering in democracy and bringing about transparency in the functioning of the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee. The review committee would be set up in the next fortnight and would go into all aspects of the functioning of the Act and suggest amendments, said Delhi Finance Minister, Mr M S Saathi, in-charge of Gurdwara elections.

“I have discussed this issue with the Chief Minister. She is also in favour of bringing about changes in the Act, as the present Act does not have enough teeth to bring about transparency and ensure democratic functioning of the DSGMC,” he said.

The review committee would comprise of five members – two MLAs, two members of the DSGMC and one Sikh advocate familiar with the functioning of the Gurdwaras. The panel would look into the legal aspects of the amendments; its report would be studied by the government and later sent to the Union Home Ministry, he said. One of the major lacunae in the Act is that there is no provision for time-bound election to the executive committee or the DSGMC general election. Since the Act came into force, there have been only three general elections to the DSGMC. This is despite the fact that the term of the DSGMC is for a period of four years.

The Act calls for holding of election to the executive committee each year. Such polls could only be held, if the president of DSGMC calls for an election for the executive. The one-year term of the present executive headed by Mr Avtar Singh Hit of the Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal) ended 18 months ago. However, he continues to be in office as the Act provides for mandatory holding of elections after each year.

“The general elections or polls to the executive committee of the DSGMC cannot be held unless the person heading the committee communicates in writing to the Delhi government to hold the polls,” Mr Saathi said, adding, “Past experience suggest that they are not eager to shun power.’’

It has been seen that almost each election to the executive committee has been provoked by the court. The last general election to the DSGMC was held in 1995 after a gap of 17 years; tterm of this committee ended four years later. A case is now pending in the Delhi High Court, seeking holding of the general election. In fact, the court has asked the Delhi Government to hold the polls before March 15. Sources in the Delhi government indicate that the state government is keen to hold the polls in the first week of March, a few days after the elections to the Municipal Corporation of Delhi.

The review committee would also discuss the need for lowering the voting age from 21 to 18 years. The Delhi Assembly had passed an amendment to this effect, and it is pending before the Union Home Ministry for the last seven years.



Former BJP office bearer shot dead
Our Correspondent

Noida, January 1
BJP’s former zonal president, Suraj Bhan Sharma, was shot dead yesterday by unidentified persons in his farm when he was watering his fields. The farm falls under Rabupura police station.

According to the police, diesel trader Suraj Bhan Sharma went to his fields along with some family members on December 30. While his relatives returned to the village in the evening, Mr Sharma stayed back to water the fields. But when he did not return till late in the evening yesterday, his relatives got worried and started looking for him. By morning, villagers also joined the hunt. Later, some of them found Sharma’s body lying in a nearby forest.

The police said the body had been dragged into a cluster of bushes by the assailants, in order to conceal it. His elder brother, Chander Bhan Sharma, has lodged a report with the police.

The police said Sharma’s murder appeared to be an outcome of some enmity. The police have detained some suspects for questioning in this connection.


Foggy Delhi tightens seat belts, laminated windshield next
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 1
Delhiites woke up to a misty morning on the New Year day as a thick blanket of fog engulfed the Capital and its periphery areas, throwing air and rail traffic out of gear due to poor visibility which, at one point of time, was less than 100 meters. For the second time in less than a week, the air-traffic schedule went haywire, since 4 am today. With the exception of a few international flights, no flights could take off from the Indira Gandhi International (IGI) airport. Sources in the airport said that the much-touted CAT III Instrument Landing System (ILS) remained grossly under-utilised as pilots are yet to acquire the necessary training for operating flights under the system.

In the domestic terminals at IGI, all flights were delayed by several hours this morning. Sources at the airport said that operations were expected to begin only around noon. Rail traffic was also disrupted as many trains were delayed because of foggy conditions; thousands of passengers and their relatives were put to hours of inconvenience. The Capital’s roads were witness to many accidents, though mercifully all of them were minor. The weather department, on its part, said that the fog had reduced visibility and at some places it had dropped to zero. It is forecast that the fog will continue to envelop the northern parts of the country during the next few days as well.

“The foggy conditions are primarily because of the lack of moisture element in the westerly winds that passed over the northern part of the Capital. Similar conditions are likely to prevail for a couple of days more, although visibility will increase subsequently”, sources in the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) said. The foggy conditions forced motorists to resort to extreme precautions as chances of road mishaps increased due to poor visibility. Incidentally, the Delhi Police has made it compulsory for motorists to wear seatbelts in the front seats form today to reduce injuries in cases of collision.

A theory is also gaining currency that a laminated windshield should be made compulsory as well to reduce injuries during accidents. In fact, a law to this effect was passed by the Union Government, which made it mandatory that all new cars be fitted with laminated windshields. However, no such law exists for the replacement market. Consequently, a majority of workshops and garages are replacing broken windshields of cars with bad-quality tempered glass, thereby compromising on the safety for the driver and passengers, road safety experts said.

The decision of the Delhi Police to crack the whip on drivers unwilling to tighten the seatbelt, many motorists were today seen wearing the accessory around their chests. However, there were many others who professed ignorance and tried to blame the police for not informing the public about the measure.

Road safety experts said that even if a driver or his co-passenger is wearing a seat belt, the purpose of the device gets defeated if the windshield shatters in an accident. “Moreover, laminated windshields ensure maximum visibility in fog and also minimises the glare from oncoming car headlamps”, said Ratish Ramanujam, Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Windshield Experts, a leading player in the windshield repair and replacement market.



Yet another year in fool’s paradise?
By Rohit Wadhwaney

New Delhi, January 1
Even as the year gone by had been eventful, there is little cheer for the common man in the Capital. As Delhiites usher in another year of the century amidst war cry in the region, and violence and chaos around the world, they are more bothered about the garbage that stinks outside their homes. They have little to rejoice as they fail to get even potable water. Creature comforts continue to elude the common man.

As Naresh Malik, secretary of the Malviya Nagar Residents Welfare Association (RWA), said: “Yes we are bothered about the world. We would love to have a peaceful world. However, the issues that concern us immediately are the local ones, such as whether we will get clean drinking water or what will happen to the park in our colony that has been dug up?”

Mr Malik wanted to know whether they were asking for too much when they demanded a better environment where they didn’t have to bribe the officials to get a work done. “Are we asking for too much? Maybe we are,” he said.

Several other residents across the Capital voiced the same opinion and pleaded for better living conditions which would be the best gift a nation could give to its citizens.

“I hope the new year is like the beginning of a new morning that can change one’s life. It

might be a dream, but who knows, it might come true some day,” said Suresh Thakur of the federation of RWAs of Vasant Kunj.

Gulab Rai, president of the Lajpat Nagar RWA, said: “The Government should do more to fulfil the aspirations of the common man.”

Abhinav Darbari, a final year student of Delhi University, expects little from the Government. “They are not bothered about us. We would be living in a fool’s paradise if we hope that the new year will prove better. Nothing will change,” said Mr Darbari.

He added, “What is there to celebrate? Right here, people are dying for food and water. Even the basic amenities like electricity are not available. Do we have to celebrate a defeat every year? Do celebrate when there is no garbage on the road; when people stop easing themselves in the open; when there is potable water in every house; when criminals are not protected by the police. That will be the time to celebrate.”

Though the officials of the local agencies have promised to turn over a new leaf, the residents are doubtful.

A resident of Malviya Nagar, S. S. Madan said, “Promises are made every day of the year. If the various government departments have to work, they don’t need a new year. All the same, we have waited so long, we can wait a little more.”



Lotteries: Hankering after a mirage
R.D. Sapra

Sonepat, January 1
Thousands of people, mostly from the lower classes, have taken to gambling and betting in Sonepat district. Many of them, who dreamt of making a fortune, have turned just beggars.

A lottery, whether by the government or private parties, sells dream. Though everyone admits this, men, women and even school-going children in the district throng to buy lottery tickets. It is a common sight in the district to find people scanning newspapers and draw sheets to see if their numbers have proved lucky.

Several shops, scattered in different parts of the cities and towns, have mushroomed to sell the “dream that inevitably turn into a nightmare”.

It is a big business for the government, private lottery agencies and their agents. Unfortunately, it is the common people who become victims of the lost dream.

Those who buy the tickets are mainly from the middle class. They include lower level government officials, small businessmen and at times, even

professionals who buy the tickets and then look to the goddess of wealth to smile on them.

Basically, it is the new scheme of daily lottery which has hooked the people more than ever. It is a common sight in Sonepat City and elsewhere in the district to see both young and old, buying and selling lottery tickets.

These dream merchants abound at the bus stands, railway stations and the various bustling markets in the district.

In an environment where no one cares for economic ethics or political morality, some concerned social organisations want the Centre to enact a law to stop the mushrooming growth of lottery culture in the district.

No doubt, for those involved in the lottery business, it is a potential gold mine.

However, to the discomfiture of the police, and the society at large, the practice threatens to destroy the life of those, out to earn quick buck.

People are becoming addicts. Unfortunately, the majority of them are poor rickshaw-pullers, labourers and schoolchildren.

No wonder, the lottery stalls are cramped and thronged by the customers with stars in their eyes.

The police attribute the growing menace to the disquieting fact that certain illegal activities are carried out in the garb of lottery business in the city.

The most common form is the single-digit lottery, wherein the result is declared by the end of the day.

According to sources, tickets from certain unauthorised lottery agencies are also sold in the city. Among the unauthorised agencies are many state lottery agencies which do no pay taxes to the Haryana Government.

The main areas where the trade is flourishing are Model Town, Railway Road, bus terminal and Sector 14.

Sources in the city police revealed that lottery business in Sonepat was worth several lakhs of rupees daily.

Unfortunately, the state government is yet to assess the implications of the business. Apart from its socio-economic repercussions, the lottery business can create a serious law and order problem in the district.



Tubewell operations in Faridabad privatised
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, January 1
Close on heels of handing over cleanliness work of the eastern part of the town, the Municipal Corporation of Faridabad (MCF) on Tuesday, handed over the work of operating its water supply tubewells to a private company.

About 120 tubewell maintained earlier by MCF employees were handed over to a private company at a function here. Civic Bodies Minister, Mr Subhash Goyal, inaugurated the scheme, while Mr Abhay Singh Chautala, the son of the Chief Minister and MLA from Rori Assembly constituency, presided over the function.

Sources say that the MCF has agreed to pay Rs 11,200 per month as operation and maintenance charges per tubewell to the company, while it had been bearing expenses of about Rs 18000 earlier.

It is claimed that the MCF would be able to save around 42 per cent of the cost, which was borne by it earlier. The MCF had also been in the news when it had allotted the civic work to the Sulabh International, about six months ago.

Faridabad is one of the first town where part of the civic services have been privatised. This has caused severe resentment among the employees of the MCF. Consequently, employees of the MCF have warned the government that they would resort to agitation if the government does not heed its warning.

They MCF employees fear that this step by the government could lead to retrenchment of about 550 workers of the corporation in the district.



Vehicle pollution in Capital up 8%
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 1
The vehicular pollution in Delhi has registered an increase in the last decade, which is supplemented by a phenomenal increase in petrol and diesel consumption, a study conducted by Tata Energy Research Institute (TERI), said.

While the pollution has grown from 64 per cent to 72 per cent in the last decade in Delhi, petroleum and diesel consumption grew by over 400 per cent and 300 per cent respectively, in the last two decades, the study on air environment of the Capital said.

The total vehicular pollution load in tonnes per day (tpd) in Delhi is as high as 1046.30 compared to as low as 226.25 in Chennai and 293.71 in Kolkata, the study said.

The second most polluted metropolis, Mumbai, has recorded only 659.30 tpd vehicular pollution load.

Regarding the increase in the consumption of petrol and diesel, the study noted that it should be kept in mind that the fuels were also used to run diesel generator sets.

Beside vehicles, the other two major sources of air pollution are fuel combustion in industrial activities and domestic stoves, it added.

Among the large-scale industries, thermal power plants are the biggest defaulters, the study said. There are three coal-based thermal power plants in the Capital, located at Rajghat, Indraprastha and Badarpur.



House tax policy mired in controversy
Our Correspondent

Rohtak, January 1
The ‘passage’ of the resolution on the new house tax policy, at a recent meeting of the local Municipal Council, has been embroiled in controversy.

Srikrishan Kharab and Om Prakash Bagri, Executive Officer and officiating Chairman respectively, of the council claimed that the resolution was passed unanimously at the meeting held on December 28.

On the other hand, several councillors, repudiated the claim and asserted that no such resolution was passed at the meeting.

In a joint statement here on Tuesday, many councillors including Jagbir Singh Rathi, Raj Singh Panchal, Gulshan Ishpuniani, Naveen Saini and Surender Batra, alleged that the masses were being misled on the issue.



HFC cuts interest rates on loans to industries
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, January 1
The Haryana Financial Corporation (HFC) has announced a reduction in the interest rates on term loans, advanced to the industrial units in the small-scale sector.

According to official sources, the rate of interest for loans up to Rs 25 lakh has been reduced by 0.5 per cent and for loans above Rs 25 lakh, the interest rate has been reduced by 0.25 per cent. The effective rate of interest for the small-scale industrial sector would now be 13.5 per cent a year for the loans up to Rs 25 lakh and 13.75 per cent a year for loans above Rs 25 lakh after two per cent rebate for timely repayments.

This step has been taken to give impetus to the tiny sector in the state. For projects under Technology Department and Modernisation Scheme and ISO 9000 scheme, the corporation was providing loans at the rate of 12.5 per cent a year.

For the medium-scale units, the effective rate of interest was 15 per cent a year. However, during the current financial year, the corporation had already achieved sanctions of about Rs 100 crore, disbursement of Rs 41.50 crore and recovery of Rs 105 crore.

Power generation

The Haryana Government has decided to generate 900 MW of power through the non-conventional energy sources like municipal waste in five towns of Faridabad, Ambala City, Ambala Cantt, Gurgaon and Yamunanagar in the state.

According to official sources, Rs 78.29-crore scheme of non-conventional energy had been sanctioned for Haryana under the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in two phases.

Under the scheme, a sum of Rs 10 crore would be spent on setting up the projects of non-conventional energy at 273 places in the state. Out of the amount, Rs 9 crore would be provided as subsidy by the Central Government.

Official sources also revealed that solar system shops would be set up in all the districts of the state. Such shops would function in the districts of Hisar, Panchkula and Faridabad by March-end.

Development works

Mr Suraj Mal Antil, an INLD MLA and the Chairman of HAFED, distributed cheques amounting to Rs 64.52 lakh among the sarpanches of 22 villages for the execution of 26 development works announced by Chief Minister Om Parkash Chautala under `Sarkaar aap ke dwaar” programme, at a function organised at Bahalgarh village about 10 km from here yesterday.

Free operation

One free eye operation will be conducted every day by a state-of-the-art machine throughout the year from today at Satya Om Eye Hospital in Sector 14, a residential colony of the HUDA in the city, according to Dr Om Dutt Sharma, owner of the eye hospital.

However, the patient will be charged for the lens and medicines.

Group fracas

Six persons, including two women, were injured seriously in a clash that took place between two groups at Hoodawala village about 40 km from here yesterday.

According to a report, all the injured persons were immediately taken to a hospital. They are stated to be out of danger.

The police has registered the case and further investigations were in progress. However, no arrested has been made in this connection.

The parking of a tractor and a jeep in a street was the cause of the brawl.

Jeweller burgled

Jhajjar: Thieves struck at a jewellery shop and decamped with ornaments worth about Rs 3 lakh in Bahadurgarh town last night.

Jeweller Prem Kumar said that when he along with his brother arrived at the shop in the morning, they found that the rear wall had been broken and the lockers were tampered with. Burglars had struck at his shop earlier also a year ago. An FIR has been lodged.



‘Satya’ behind the saga of designing
Smriti Kak

THINK about Satya Paul, and you are transported to a land of colourful hues. Ties, Sarees, Scarves adroitly designed to coax and lure even the hard to please eye.

Not so long ago, three musketeers met. Two had quit their white collar jobs, leaving behind a career, which could have sent them banking their way to the Wall Street and the third had a riot of designs waiting to be reiterated.

“I just wanted to do something of my own and do something big, before I was too old”, points out Sanjay Kapoor, who is a part of the Satya Paul group. Sanjay along with Jyoti Narula “reached Satya Paul’s doorstep” and thus began the saga of designing exquisite clothes. The three have outlined their niches with efficiency to pave way for a comprehensive whole. While Puneet Nanda “steers the ship of design”, Jyoti looks after “things that come after designing” like marketing and client servicing and Sanjay handles “strategy” also insisting that he is the in-house “entertainer”.

Widely known for their quality ties, Satya Paul has given the modern thinking woman - a reason to celebrate. With their well crafted repertoire of fabrics and ready to wear clothes, the women’s wear has snaked its way into the wardrobes.

“Genesis Colours Private Limited is the brand that offers everything to the intelligent, sensitive and desiring woman of today. It fulfills desire, drama and dimension the three essentials for uniqueness in design”, quip the men who take pride in dressing others.

The three had been toying with the idea of making their foray into the women’s wear segment for a long time. “However, it just about a year and a half ago when we brought it from the back burner onto the forefront”, chips in Sanjay. “We don’t follow fads or fashions. We like to create a trend. Simultaneously we offer choices without forcing our choice. Our USP is creating beautiful things that people enjoy wearing”, points out Puneet, who also exercises his vocals, having trained under Ustad Zahiruddin Dagar for almost three years.

Satya Paul creations are present at all leading stores in different parts of the country. Sarees and scarves in crepes, georgette’s, satin, chiffon and nets cater to all age groups. From 16-60 women are sure to find a special something from their range.

“We are improvising on the arts. Even when we are fusing the west with the east it is done after a whole lot of research, there is no dumping together of this and that”, explains Puneet.

The fabric is treated intricately in different ways, like using vegetable dyes or is hand painted. Occasionally, embroidered or dabbled with sequins and zari the pieces stand out in a melee of designer clothes. Working across different market price and quality segments, the Satya Paul brand is all set to open its store in the near future.

A state-of-art design studio and a well networked force all over the country coupled with “appropriate price tags” and innovative designs is reason enough for the trio, to embark on the mission to “dress individuals as they should, and not follow fads that make them look like sheep, which translates to being dressed alike.

Babita’s collection

This one didn’t jump into the already burgeoning world of fashion design, instead she studied and tested waters before she took the leap.

Straight from Calcutta, Babita is here to cheer the fashion conscious Delhities with her outfits - a blend of east and the west. Having studied the preference of the Dilliwallas for over two years, this designer can claim to know what people like.

Number of meticulous planning goes into making her clothes look different. Top models Yana Gupta and Helen Brodie will unfurl her collection and open her store in the Capital’s West Punjabi Bagh.

Babita’s collection distinguishes itself by merit of the cloth, work, style and fit. The designers has her eyes set on being a part of leading designer in the country as well as to cater to the Indian abroad.

The designer points out that her range pays obeisance to the Indian woman’s preference for the innate grace of Indian dressing.

Apno Ghar

Entertainment and theme parks are the latest attractions for a family, planning a day out and even for picnic goers.

A new entertainment park ‘Apno Ghar’, has recently opened its doors. Situated on the Delhi-Gurgaon highway, the park is accessible and provides a whole lot fun.

Apart from recreational feature, one can enjoy the comforts of a three star hotel, air-conditioned rooms and bar and live performance by ghazal singers.



Journey from Management to music
Nalini Ranjan

ARMED with a master’s degree in Business Management, this youngster chose to move away from the conventional. Instead of the black and white world of numbers, he stepped into the colourful world of music.

Yatin Vashisht took the task of making people dance with his tune. Associated with India’s front ranking DJ Company, ‘Sound of Music’ runs by noted Disc Jockey Sunny Sarid, Yatin is steadily climbing his way to the top.

Having performed in various parts of the country Yatin is particularly proud of his performance at a show organised in the Delhi University’s Shankar Lal Hall.

Presently he is pursuing a course in instrumental music from the Delhi School of Music. Yatin rehearses for about six to eight hours everyday. He is also nurturing the idea of opening a state-of-art studio to help aspiring DJs, and believes that the art of disc jockeying should be taught. He wishes it to be introduced as a subject in the Sangeet Academy where music lovers, who wish to make a career out of it.



Spurious henna factory unearthed
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, January 1
The drug control authorities today raided a factory allegedly preparing spurious henna powder of a well-known brand at a nearby village. Samples of the product were lifted and the machines and raw material were seized by the authorities. A case has been registered against the owner of the factory.

The team which conducted the raid was led by the Additional State Drug Controller (ASDC), Mr G L Singhal. He was assisted by the SHO of Old Faridabad police station, Mr Ajit Singh.

It is reported that this was the second raid on the factory in the past seven months. The factory is located in nearby Bhadshapur village. It had been preparing henna powder under the name of ‘Black Henna’, patended as copyright by another company. The sarpanch of the village was also present. This is the second case against the factory owner. The first case is still pending in the court.



Auto-lifters held, vehicles seized
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 1
The Anti-Auto theft squad of North District has arrested a gang of three auto-lifters including a dismissed BSF jawan, and recovered eight vehicles from their possession: two Maruti Zen cars, one Maruti Esteem, one Wagon R, two Maruti 800s, one Eisher tempo and one scooter.

The suspects Kartar Singh (30), BSF jawan Bhikari Singh (22) and Surender Singh (32), all residents of Uttar Pradesh, had been stealing vehicles in Delhi and adjoining areas like Uttar Pradesh and Haryana. According to police, Kartar Singh was dismissed from the force in 1992.

Following an increase of auto-lifters in North district, a police team led by Inspector L C Yadav, was constituted. The team gathered intelligence about the criminals and their modus operandi.



Thieves find a happy hunting ground
Our Correspondent

Ghaziabad, January 1
The increasing incidents of theft during the past three days have shaken the residents of Ghaziabad. Four incidents of theft were reported in the city, three of them in Vijay Nagar area alone during last 24 hours.

Interestingly on Sunday night, some criminals had looted goods worth lakhs from three shops in Bajariya under Kotwali police station. A day earlier in Nehru Nagar II under Sihani Gate police station, criminals had stolen Rs 15,000 and jewellery from the house of a contractor. On December 31, thieves took away Rs 10,000, jewellery and other valuables from a house in B Block of Pratap Vihar. They also took away a motor bike from the house of Sunil Sharma, a resident of the same colony. The thugs also looted the shop of Ayoob Ali in Vijay Nagar and took away cloth worth thousands of rupees and 65 pairs of shoes.

All these thefts over three days have left the people of the city in panic. The police have not been able to solve any of the cases so far.



Fake medicine unit unravelled
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 1
The North-West district police today located a spurious medicine manufacturing unit, making duplicate Jhandu Balm and Iodex in Samaypur Badli. Owner of the factory, Rajender Kumar and his accomplices Raju and Ajay were arrested.

The police received a tip-off about the manufacturing of the duplicate medicine and conducted a raid on the factory premises. During the raid 2500 bottles of Jhandu Balm, 690 bottles of Iodex, one electric packaging machine, sealing machine, wrapper boxes drying machine, gas cylinder and burner were recovered. Around 9,000 empty bottles of both the medicines, chemical in the form of menthol and large number of plastic bags, cans and drums have also been recovered, the police said.

Man Killed

A 45-year-old man died and two other injured in an accident when their Maruti car hit a truck from behind near Noida crossing this morning. While Jagdish Chand died on the spot, two other occupants of the car, Nathu Prasad (51) and Sunil (45) were hurt.


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