Wednesday, January 23, 2002, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S


Poll time-table of MCD hangs fire
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 22
Uncertainty persists over the Municipal Corporation of Delhi elections with opinion in both the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress divided on the poll time-table. The term of the MCD House expires on March 31.

The BJP leaders have begun sounding out their Congress counterparts on the likely post-March 31 scenarios and, public posturing and postulation notwithstanding, indications are that the Congress is not exactly lukewarm to the idea of deferring the polls.

The Congress, in the meantime, is keeping its fingers crossed on the court’s verdict on the petition filed by Election Commissioner S Malaichamy against his removal which would come up for hearing again on Wednesday.

What has apparently added to the ambiguity is the demand by several Delhi BJP leaders, including Member of Parliament and former chief minister Madan Lal Khurana, for a separate corporation for the sprawling East Delhi area which, according to them, needs urgent attention. The discussions are likely to centre around the same when Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit meets with Minister of State in Prime Minister’s Office and Chandni Chowk Member of Parliament Vijay Goel on Wednesday and also with All India Congress Committee General Secretary in charge of Delhi affairs, Kamal Nath, later in the day.

One such post-March 31 formulation offered to the Congress is handing over the reins of the corporation to a three-member panel comprising a “former” Mayor, a “former” Chairman of Standing Committee and a “former” Leader of Opposition, till such time as polls are held. Congress sources acknowledged as much but said no such overtures would be entertained.

According to the MCD Act, Administrator would run the corporation after the term of House expires till such time as elections are concluded.

While political machinations hold the Corporation to ransom, Congress corporators are becoming increasingly restless. Confounding them is the Sheila Dikshit Ministry’s lethargy in announcing the election schedule. “It would be suicidal otherwise,” fumed a corporator. Questioning the party leadership’s wisdom, the corporator said all that needed to be done was for the Cabinet to decide on the schedule. “Notification can follow later,” he added, referring to the Code of Conduct that would come into force from the day of the notification. Sources said the chief minister had convened a meeting of ministers Mahender Singh Saathi, Deep Chand Bandhu, the chief secretary and an Election Commission official last week and had agreed upon holding of elections on February 21. That, however, did not happen, after word reached the Lieutenant Governor.

The differences between legislators and corporators not withstanding, Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee President Subhash Chopra has reiterated that the party was prepared for the elections and that the polls would be held in spite of the BJP bid to postpone them.

He said the home secretary of the Government of NCT of Delhi had last week written a letter to the Union Home Secretary seeking additional police force for the conduct of corporation polls, but no response has been received yet.

“During the last Corporation elections the Election Commission had demanded the services of 116 companies but got only 12, and even with that small a number of personnel the elections were held smoothly and peacefully,” he said, “The fact that the Union Home Secretary has not so far taken note of the communiqué is a clear indication that the BJP leaders and the Union Ministry of Home Affairs were acting in league to stall the civic polls.”

The Congress has, meanwhile, decided to extend the deadline of distribution of tickets by another day and entertain ticket seekers on Wednesday also. Tuesday was otherwise the last day for distribution of tickets.



NCERT syllabi changes: Too little, too late
Our Correspondent

New Delhi, January 22
The reaction to the new syllabi released by the NCERT is mixed. While the historians have responded on expected lines, the NCERT has received kudos from the teaching fraternity for wielding the scissors and weeding out certain irrelevant portions. It is alleged by some that the NCERT has erred in bringing certain topics like Upanishads and terrorism within the ambit of the syllabi. They also frown upon the treatment of medieval and modern history. Another complaint is that the changes do not justify the inordinate delay in finalising and releasing the syllabi. Whatever the reservations over the interpolations or deletions, the historians are relieved at the concerted attempt to reduce stress, a move that has gone down well with the academics.

“I am happy that NCERT has at least reduced the burden on the students. From what I have gathered, the primary students will be relieved to see the deletion of irrelevant portions. Inclusion of project-based activities is another welcome step. We have always suffered in the absence of team spirit, but with more stress being given to group activities, we will be able to instill that quality in our children. It is also vital for our students to know more about our own country than about the neighbours. Though education now has spread across boundaries, it is essential that we understand our own country. With the changes I feel we have moved from content to concept”, said Lata Vaidyanathan, Principal of Modern School, Barakhamba Road. The deletion of irrelevant portion has found with teachers. “The changes will make studies less cumbersome. At least with regard to the primary student, the NCERT has been thoughtful. However, more thought should have been put in formatting the social science texts”, added Renu, who teaches in a school in Faridabad.

Many are sceptical that the changes may be mere lip service. “We are yet to see the texts, you can never be too sure. There has been too much controversy lately. Slant towards a particular ideology or religion will harm the psyche of the students. History should be a fair account of what has happened, not what should have happened. There has to be a meaning in what the NCERT has done”, said a government school teacher, not wishing to be identified.

“I think the NCERT is a little late in coming out with this kind of student-friendly syllabi. However, it’s better late than never. I only wish they would pay more attention to inclusion of topics related to Modern India. We must teach our children about those involved in the freedom struggle. There should be an attempt to teach the children the basics of all subjects. Emphasis should be laid on memorising tables and familiarising students with the fundamentals, instead of forcing them to become book worms”, said Mr. S.S. Minhas, Principal of G.H.P.S., Vasant Vihar.



Eight Pak nationals under detention
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 22
The Special Cell of the Delhi Police has detained eight Pakistani nationals in the Capital during raids carried out to apprehend suspicious and anti-social elements as a precautionary measure before the Republic Day parade.

According to sources, the suspects had been rounded up from Central and South Delhi areas almost three weeks ago, but no case was registered against them. They have since been kept in R.K.Puram police station.

While the police were reluctant to comment on the detentions, sources said that the Pakistani nationals had been living illegally in the Capital for several years and were involved in subversive activities.

They used to leave the Capital after committing heinous acts and would return when the heat subsided. They are reported to have a nexus with some Pakistan-based fundamentalist groups.


No takers for court diktat on video theatres
Abhay Jain

Gurgaon, January 22
Despite the Punjab and Haryana High Court’s orders to close down video theatres running in Gurgaon in contravention of the Cinematograph Act 1952 and the Copyright Act 1957, the district administration has taken no steps to implement the court directions, given more than two years ago. There are more than 50 video-halls in Gurgaon City, functioning without a licence. The halls flout all rules and regulations related to safety bylaws, building plans, excise and taxation, and pornographic rules.

Following the orders of the High Court, the District Magistrate directed the Senior Superintendent of Police and all Sub-Divisional Magistrates (SDMs) in November 99 to ensure that the theatres adhere to the rules of the land. “But in spite of the orders, they are still running illegally, causing losses to the state exchequer and the cinema owners,” said Ganga S Vashisht, president of Gurgaon District Film Exhibitors Association.

The theatres are located close to the labourers’ colonies. The owners charge between Rs 5 and Rs 15 per head. In the halls, pornographic films are shown. Not caring two hoots for the district administration, the owners even prominently display the X-rated posters all over the city to woo the Peeping Toms. “The vulgar posters hurt the sensibilities of women,” protested Mrs Neelama Shourie, a teacher in a prominent public school.

The district fire officer informed The Tribune that fire safety rules stipulates that each theatre should have minimum two dry chemical fire extinguishers, two water Co2 cylinders and at least four buckets ready, just in case. There must be three exit gates in all the halls.

However, the laws are not being implemented. No building plan has ever been approved by the authorities. There is no proper sitting arrangement. The patrons are made to squat on the floor though cushioned chairs are provided in a few halls. While some cinemas are run in thatched halls, the interiors of some of them compete with those of big authorised cinema halls.



Captive power unit in Uttaranchal proposed
Govt moots projects in nearby states to meet power needs
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 22
The energy-strapped National Capital Territory is exploring the possibility of setting up power projects in neighbouring states to meet its demand.

Delhi Power Minister Ajay Maken is going to Chhattisgarh next week for selection of an appropriate site to set up a thermal power project dedicated to the consumers of the Capital.

Participating in an interactive session at the PHDCCI, Mr Maken said dedicated hydro projects would be set up in Himachal Pradesh and Uttaranchal and the Delhi Government would support private initiative in this regard.

To meet the immediate demand of the consumers, he said the first turbine of Pragati Gas-based power project would be commissioned by this month end and the other two turbines would also be commissioned in May and November this year, which would provide an additional 330 mw of power to the Capital.

Mr Maken said in Delhi, 35 per cent of the power supply was simply stolen by the consumers and another 12 per cent was squandered during transmission. While the Delhi Vidyut Board has curtailed the transmission and distribution losses from 52 per cent to 47 per cent, the primary objective of the privatisation of the distribution sector was to ensure reliable and quality energy supply to the people.

“This will be achieved by considerably reducing theft and ploughing back required investment to strengthen the power generation, transmission and distribution system,” he said.

Within five years, the unbundled DVB’s successor companies in generation and transmission segment would turn profitable and the state government, which has been forced to divert Rs 23,000 crore over the years to finance DVB losses, would be in a position to finance priority developmental project in the NCT to the advantage of the people, he said.

The DVB chairman, Mr Jagdish Sagar, said the load shedding this winter had been far lower compared to the last season. He said that the bulk supply tariff of the transmission companies would be uniform for the next five years and, for the purpose, holding companies of the DVB would provide Rs 2,600 crore to avoid steep hike in retail power tariff before the power distribution system was modernised.

Necessary precautions had been taken for the success of the power sector reform in Delhi after learning from the failure of the Orissa model. The T&D losses would be reduced by three to four per cent per annum with the privatisation of distribution through effective billing.

The success of the power sector reform, Mr Arun Kapur, PHDCCI president, said lay in achieving increased customer satisfaction and guaranteed improvement in the financial health.

The rationalisation of tariff for agricultural supply and the reduction in T&D losses were crucial issues to be addressed for the success of reform, Mr Ashok Kapoor, chairman of Delhi and NCR committee, PHDCCI said, adding that the state government must ensure an institutionalised system of good governance and strengthening of the legal framework to control the menace of growing theft and pilferage.



Case filed after 19 days
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, January 22
Nineteen days after a teenage-boy was reported missing, the police have now booked a case of kidnapping.

A plus-two student of a public school here, Rohit Vashist has been untraceable since January 2.

Seventeen-year-old Rohit, residing in Sector-8, had gone on a scooter from his house at noon, but failed to return.

It is learnt that he had failed to qualify the screening test of IIT Delhi and had been very upset, according to his family sources. Rohit had been very keen on passing the IIT test.

The police sent parties to various places to trace Rohit, but could not ascertain his whereabouts.

Surprisingly, the police had recovered the scooter of the victim the same day, but they informed his parents on January 8 only. The delay in informing the parents has angered the relatives of Rohit. Miffed about the conduct of the police, the relatives complained to the SSP that the cops of Kheri Bridge Chowki had been using Rohi’s scooter, but did not inform them about its recovery.

The ASP, Mr Sanjay Kumar, who was asked to conduct a probe, suspended one of the policemen in this connection. The police believe that Rohit might have been kidnapped. They are now searching for him.

However, the relatives of Rohit alleged slackness on the part of the police and feared that the dithering might have led to some unfortunate happening.



Auto spare scam in MCD; seven officials booked
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 22
The Anti-Corruption Branch of the CBI today claimed to have unearthed a scam in the purchase of auto spares in the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) and registered a case against seven officials, including an Executive Engineer.

The officials were booked for allegedly purchasing spare parts worth Rs 29.87 lakh for the corporation’s workshop from 15 unapproved and fictitious firms during 1998-99.

The suspects were identified as Ram Kishan, Executive Engineer of Civil Line Zone, Raj Veer, Junior Engineer of Rohini Zone Auto Workshop, Brij Lal, Accountant in Civil Line Auto Workshop, M. K. Gupta, Clerk in Civil Line, Naresh, Storekeeper, Somesh Bhardwaj, Storekeeper in City Zone and B. D. Dogra, Assistant Foreman in Civil Line. The CBI filed an FIR against them yesterday.

“All the officers of the MCD Auto Workshops, Civil Line, Rohini and Rohini zones and other unknown private persons and public servants” have also been made accused in the case. An official of the CBI alleged that the accused committed irregularities in the procurement of spare parts and repairs of official vehicles, which were carried out without any complaints and approval.

Subsequently, the bills for purchasing the spare parts were passed in the names of fictitious firms with an intention to cheat the MCD.

In fact, most of the firms did not exist at their respective addresses and only one such firm figured in the list of firms approved by the corporation’s Standing Committee.

The accused did not invite tenders even for major spares parts purchases. The complaint numbers and vehicle numbers were not mentioned on the sanction orders and the stocks were not verified at regular intervals.

Some of the firms did not mention their sales tax numbers on the bills and the Executive Engineer passed the bills exceeding Rs 3, 500 in violation of an order issued by the MCD Commissioner regarding the delegation of financial powers.



Saket breathes easy as MCD dumps lethargy
Rohit Wadhwaney

New Delhi, January 22
Drive down the Press Enclave road in south Delhi’s Saket and you just cannot help noticing a red brick cubical wall, with a couple of small lamps on top of it. The four stairs to the entrance, the beautifully designed railings and to cap it, a huge Maruti Zen advertisement on the wall which only beautifies it further.

Are you wondering what this structure could be? Well, it’s the newly constructed garbage dump in the locality.

With the completion of this ‘state-of-the-art’ dump, it seems the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) has at last turned a new leaf.

An MCD official, before the construction of the dump began, had told the NCR Tribune that they would not give the residents of Delhi anything to complain about and that the New Year would see a “new, result-oriented MCD”.

Though the residents have appreciated the governmental agency’s efforts of making a garbage dump look clean,, they are sure the New Year was not the reason.

“At least, the Municipal Corporation elections have made them work nicely,” said Mr Dinesh Gupta, a resident of Saket. “Nevertheless, I will have to give them credit for the beautiful work.”

Another resident, Mr V.K. Malhotra, said that he would dread taking the Press Enclave road to go anywhere as “the site of garbage overflowing all over the road was disgusting”, but now, he breathes easy while crossing this area.

“It is so nice to see a dump like this. It only goes to show that if our agencies work they can do a great job. All they have to feel is that they are as much part of the city as we are. And they have to believe they have the power and efficiency to make it better,” remarked Mr. Malhotra.

However, Mr Jeetender Kumar Kochar, member of the MCD Standing Committee said that the elections had nothing to do with the MCD turning a corner. “The minute we got the funds, we decided that the garbage dumps of the city were the first thing that needed attention.”

Mr Kochar added that the three garbage dumps on the road would be constructed similarly as soon as the work here inside the Press Enclave garbage dump would be completed.

Explaining the change, Mr Kochar said that all other dumps in the city would be bigger like the Press Enclave garbage dump, and their walls would be higher so that the passers-by could not see the garbage inside.

And the happiest man is Dr Ambrish Jain, the Medical Superintendent of the G.M. Modi Hospital in the area. And why not, the hospital was actually losing patients because of the dirt outside the road.

“Now the garbage dump looks hygienic. I am so happy The Tribune has made the MCD get their act together as far cleaning the garbage dumps in the area is concerned,” remarked Dr Jain.

Even the residents are as surprised as they are happy because they see the MCD karamcharis cleaning the dump every day, and what’s more, they are on time.

But only time will tell how long the dump remains clean; how long the bulbs inside the beautiful lamps are not stolen; how long the railings remain in its place. No wonder, the MCD has written on the wall of the garbage dump, “Help us to keep the city clean.”



A wonder of green fingers
Priyanka Gupta

New Delhi, January 22
Lush green lawn lined with big beautiful trees, flowers, sculptures and chirping birds offers a view of a small forest and if such verdant ambience is found at home, it will evoke a healthy and pleasant feeling. And if the showpieces are also of the same smoothness, curves and colours, it is quite amazing. But for Prabha Jain, a resident of Cavalry Lines, the task of maintaining two huge parks was not difficult as she has green fingers and the first lady in India to experiment porcelain in form of showpieces.

The pink of beauty and perfection.

For more than 20 years, Prabha has been maintaining her garden. She got driftwood for her lawn, transported from Bhutan. She said, “I was always interested in gardening but my source of knowledge was All India Kitchen Garden Association. I learnt from it how to maintain parks, plants and trees. I also picked up the art of maintaining temperature of tropical, tray and bottle plants. It has helped me a lot. I treat my plants as my child. We cannot live without water neither can the plants. However, whatever we put whether fertilizers or water, it has to be in proportion. Besides, as we feel cold in winter, even they feel it. So I prefer putting up net both in winter and summer to save my plants.”

Some of her collection of plants, includes Champa, Chameli, Mogra, roses, Raat Ki Rani, Juhi, Crotten, Defenvacias, Ficus, Bonsie, Palms, China Palm. Green vegetables includes cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, orcat, carrot, raddish, palak, methi, mint. Fruit trees include guava, mangoes, gray fruit, peers, Pomegranate, China Orange, lemon, sharifa and many more.

Prabha also obtains seeds by drying the plants after the season is off and for vegetables, she gets seeds from Pusa Road and even AIKGA distributes to its members.

In the beginning, Prabha used to devote 5-6 hours daily to develop her garden. Even now, she spends 2-3 hours for her baby, which includes preparation of manure at home in pits and preparation of pesticides.

Prabha said, “I lay emphasis more on organic manure and putting cow dung in plants. For tropical, one has to have proper knowledge of temperature to be maintained, layers to put up and other basics. My one weakness is that I cannot resist buying plants. Once I bought a plant called, ‘All Spice’, which gives a taste of clove, cinnamon and garam masala. Mixed flavour lasts long. It was very expensive.”

She also arranged for a fountain, but a few years’ ago, it was closed due to dengue fear. Also, it was the first fountain to be maintained at home in Delhi. For porcelain, Prabha is the only lady to reach the pink of beauty and perfection.

She has exhibited her work in Mumbai, Delhi and London. She joyfully said, “I never thought that I would get such a good response from people. Vyjanthi Mala, Late Madhavrao Scindia and many other professors of college of arts visited to see my work and appreciated it.”

A devoted gardener who has both love and vast knowledge of flowers and shrubs, cares for every small plant in her award-winning garden with tender care and motherly feelings. Her works adorn the private collections of royalties and art connoisseurs. Each piece is meticulously composed, handcrafted, painted and fired by her under extremely controlled conditions at home. It is true to say that there is a full-fledged garden, invisible in her fingers. She said, “I am dealing in Italian porcelain as it’s standardised. I make all the pieces myself. All are handmade, even big companies, dealing in porcelain, ask me how I do so fine in porcelain.”

Her fingers can carve and curve flawless smooth petals of flowers, landscape composition, each rough hewn surface, crafted with precision, giving original look to them and colours as per the products. At the institute of porcelain-making at Naples in Italy, her work was highly appreciated, acclaimed and she was awarded the institute’s insignia- a rare honour.



I’M – Where aesthetics weds technology
Smriti Kak

ACCIDENTS don’t always bring misfortune, they can steer the wheel of your life in a direction where success is a cornerstone. “I ventured into design accidentally. I used to accompany my architect hubby to meetings and the in-depth discussion about design and structure lured me,” says Punam Kalra, the lady behind I’M, a centre for applied arts.

A qualified engineer, Punam makes full use of her science background. “I understand metals and castings, I know how it works with amalgamations of different metals”.

Dedicated to the inner ego, I’M stands as a marvel of aesthetics and technology.

“At I’M, we are constantly experimenting. We are always thinking what colour, texture and material will be used and fused to create a new look. Our strength is our originality. Our signature series has limited editions”.

The Kalra duo even educate their clients about the pieces in which they are about to invest. “We actually explain aesthetics to our clients. We have to tell them what they are buying and why they are being advised to combine a little bit of this with a little bit of that. We even go to the extent of tailor-making packages for our clients. If their set up needs a particular carpet or a specific artefact, we make sure it is delivered.”

I’M reflects the myriad manifestations of imagination, a carpet shaped like a hat, a centre table, which is a bird in flight or a feminine and a masculine bell. The store also showcases the works of other sculptors and artists.

“It’s a tribute to art, nature and human spirit,” says the woman who is constantly thinking and experimenting to create.

Rendezvous with Swarovski chandeliers

Deep sighs and longing looks are just some of the reactions that these beautiful things invite. They have had the privilege of looking down (literally) on Royalty and Heads of State. They occupy the highest spot and dazzle blind and mesmerise.

Its time to look up to the wonder of Swarovski chandeliers, the magnificence of which has already found its way into the drawing rooms of the rich and the famous. From being the simple candleholders, they have now acquired an element of luxury.

Bathroom accessories major, Jaguar, has made a foray into the chandelier market with the introduction of stunning range of products made from Strass crystals.

These strass chandeliers will be imported from Austria from the house of Swarovski.

Initially, only 16 models ranging from Rs 56,000 to Rs 2,27,000 will be introduced. The exclusivity will be available in chrome, antique and 22-carat gold plating.

‘Tis time we counted the pennies!

Khadi, the new fashion statement

Khadi, the fabric of freedom, has long been accepted by the fashion fraternity. From the dress code of netas to the fancy of the movers and shakers, the fabric that Gandhiji promoted, has become a regular at national as well as international ramps.

The fashion gurus having done their bit, the government too has jumped into the fray in a big way to promote the fabric, which held an important place during the freedom struggle.

From Gandhiji’s simple fabric, it has risen to the rank of sophisticated merchandise. With the fashion conscious world over sporting the spin, khadi has more than just a few takers.

An exhibition on “Khadi-The fabric of Freedom” is being held in the Capital from January 30th to February 12th. Sponsored by the Volkart Foundation of Switzerland, the event will be inaugurated by the Prime Minister, Mr Atal Behari Vajpayee on Martyr’s Day.

Ritu Kumar, Abu Jani, Sandeep Khosla, Raghavendra Rathore and Manish Arora are some of the well known designers who will showcase their ensemble in the event, scheduled to take place at Mati Ghar, Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts.



MCF to adopt new accounting system
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, January 22
The Municipal Corporation, Faridabad (MCF) is planning to introduce the `double entry accounting’ system from the coming financial year to check the possibility of financial irregularities and malpractice.

The new system has been approved by higher authorities at Chandigarh and it could replace the old system in most of the municipal bodies in the state. The present system of accounting has reportedly failed to meet the requirement and the challenges posed thereby. It is learnt that the existing accounting system is very old and outdated.

Seminar on rights

Justice J. S. Verma, Chairman, National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), will inaugurate a two-day national seminar on “Women and Human Rights” to be organised by the Sociology Department of Maharshi Dayanand University on March 5.

Themes to be discussed under the main topic include human rights as women’s right, gender discrimination and human rights, poverty, women and human rights, girl child and human rights, democratic decentralisation, women’s participation and human rights, and Dalits, minorities and women’s rights. Well-known women activists, sociologists, educationists, members of national and state women commission, delegates from non-government organisations and voluntary institutions and elected women representatives would take part in the seminar.

Ornaments stolen

Unidentified thieves stole ornaments worth nearly Rs 20,000 from a house in Shiv Vihar colony here last night. According to police sources, the miscreants broke open the house of Sandeep and escaped with the jewellery. The police have registered a case.

Youth hostels

Mr T. C. Alakh, newly elected general secretary of the Haryana State Branch of the Youth Hostels Association of India, has said that the organisation is a constituent of the International Youth Hostels Federation, represented in 63 countries and linked by a chain of more than 6,000 youth hostels in the world.



Eunuchs castrate youth
Parmindar Singh

Noida, January 22
Eunuchs are in the news again. While in Noida they castrated a 19-year-old youth, the eunuchs of Loni in Ghaziabad were beaten up by their counterparts in Delhi. In Noida, some eunuchs are alleged to have cut the private parts of a youth to make him a member of the third sex. Though the youth is admitted in a hospital, the police have failed to take any action. The incident has caused panic in Dadri area. This incident is not the first of its kind, in which organised gangs are involved. According to information received from Dadri police, 19-year-old Dharmendra, son of Prakash, resident of Naye Ganj, Dadri, has filed a case under Section 144, 326 and 328 in which he has named Gudri, Naem, Ranjeeta, Pushpa, Parvati, Kajol, Nimmi, Bubbli and Indu of Ghaziabad. Dharmendra alleged that these eunuchs had served him tea, laced with drugs. As he fell unconscious, the eunuchs severed his private parts with a knife. Somehow, Dharmendra escaped from their clutches and is under treatment in a hospital now. The police are inquiring into reports that Dharmendra had married Gudri who, in connivance with her companions, had him castrated.

In the second incident in Ghaziabad, five eunuchs were injured in Loni area when they were attacked by their counterparts from Delhi. The assailants also reportedly abducted a eunuch and took ‘him’ to Agra. Livid over the incident, the rival eunuchs staged a protest at the local police station. There is an on-going feud among the eunuchs of East Delhi and Loni area over the territory carved out for the purpose of receiving cash endowments (baksheesh). According to Mehmood and Kiran, hockey sticks, clubs, ‘sarya’ and knives were used by the assailants who kidnapped Ruby to Agra. Sunita, Muskan, Shabanam, Amesha and Neha were injured in the attack.



Two ‘dowry’ deaths in Noida
Our Correspondent

Noida, January 22
Two dowry deaths have been reported. One young woman was set aflame while the other was allegedly poisoned by her in-laws in Noida. According to Sector-58 police, Rajinder Prasad of New Seemapuri, Delhi, had married his daughter Usha to Shiv Shankar of Master Park in Khoda Colony six month ago. Usha’s in-laws had been allegedly ill-treating her as she did not bring a TV and fridge in dowry. Shiv Shankar had also been harassing Usha. However, he suddenly informed her parents yesterday that Usha had died. Rajinder has alleged that his 21-year-old daughter had been poisoned. Police are investigating the matter. In the second incident, Dayawatti of Panipat had married her daughter Naro to Prakash of Itehra village six months ago. After the marriage had been solemnised, Prakash’s dowry-hungry family opened their mouth too wide. When the demands were not met, Prakash’s family allegedly killed Dayawatti’s daughter, setting her afire after sprinkling kerosene on her.



Two more members of Hansa gang nabbed
Our Correspondent

Jhajjar, January 22
With the arrest of two more members of the inter-state gang, involved in several cases of murder dacoity and looting, from near Jargadpur village of the district, the district police today claimed to have solved more criminal cases. Three members of the same gang were arrested on January 17.

According to a district police spokesman here today, a team of the crime branch at Bahadurgarh on a tip off arrested Satpal and Rajeev, residents of Goyala Kalan village, and seized a motorcycle.

On interrogation, they admitted being the members of the Hansa gang the members of which, including the leader, were arrested earlier last week.

Apart from their involvement in the Indica car robbery case and an attempt to loot a truck loaded with rice, they also confessed to have stolen five motorcycles, three from Bahadurgarh and two others from Delhi.

In another case, the Bahadurgarh police arrested Surjeet of Chhara village along with 50 pouches of liquor. A case has been registered against him.


1.5 kg heroin seized, 2 held
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 22
Two persons belonging to an inter-state gang involved in illicit trafficking of drugs were arrested from Sector III, Rohini and 1.5 kg of fine quality heroin worth Rs 1.5 crore in the international market seized by the North-West district police yesterday.

The accused, Mohammad Rafi alias Babbu (25), resident of Seelampur, and Rashid (24), were apprehended by a special team under the supervision of the ACP, Operations, Mr S. K. Sharma. The duo revealed during interrogation that they were in Delhi to supply the drugs to one Sultan of Shabad, Haryana.

Duplicate shampoos seized

The Delhi Police in association with the FICCI Brand Protection Committee seized large quantities of duplicate products with labels of Sunsilk and Clinic All Clear shampoo and Ariel detergent sachets. The team conducted raids in various places in the Capital and seized the duplicate shampoos and detergent worth about Rs 7 lakh. A case under Section 420 of the IPC and Section 63 of the Copyright Act has been registered. The duplicate products were violating the trademarks and copyrights of well-known brands such as P&G’s Ariel detergent and HLL’s Sunsilk and Clinic All Clear shampoo brands.



Sonepat bus depot makes record profit
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, January 22
The Sonepat depot of the Haryana Roadways has earned a profit of Rs 19.47 lakh during the month of December 2001, thereby creating a record in the history of the state.

Mr H. C. Jain, General Manager of the roadways, told mediapersons here today that the Sonepat depot had registered a loss of Rs 23.90 lakh during the corresponding period in 2000.

He said that the depot had a fleet of 207 buses and they covered a distance of 20.67 lakh km in December last year. The depot earned a traffic receipt of Rs 230.25 lakh at the rate of Rs 11.14 per km as compared to the fleet of 202 buses which had covered a distance of 18.69 lakh km at the rate of Rs 10.19 per km during December 2000. The depot had a fleet of 204 buses during the current financial year and these had covered a distance of 174.08 lakh km during the first nine months of the period under review. The depot, he said, had earned a revenue of about Rs 18.75 crore as compared to Rs 17.20 lakh earned during the corresponding period of the last financial year with a fleet of 201 buses, which covered a distance of 166.89 lakh km.

Mr Jain also disclosed that the depot had earned an average traffic receipt of Rs 10.77 per km during 2001-2002 as compared to Rs 10.31 per km during the corresponding period of 2000-2001. The increase in the income of the depot was more than 40 per cent during the first nine months of the current financial year as compared to the corresponding period of the year 2000-2001.

According to Mr Jain, the expenditure of the workshop was 21 per cent less despite the increase in the traffic receipts of the depot concerned.


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