Sunday, February 3, 2002, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Poll violence claims first victim
Protest rally, bandh in Naya Gaon
Our Correspondent

Naya Gaon, February 2
Poll violence in Punjab claimed its first victim today, when Kaka Singh, a SAD supporter who had been stabbed yesterday and admitted to the PGI in Chandigarh, succumbed to his injuries. Kaka was a resident of Madanpur village in Panchkula district. Those who had stabbed him were allegedly supporters of the Congress candidate from Morinda.

The police has arrested three men accused of killing Kaka. One of them, Pal Singh, is a resident of Chandigarh. These men had allegedly attacked Kaka in the election office of the SAD candidate, Mr Ujagar Singh Badali.

The situation in the village was tense when Kaka’s body was brought there today.

The SAD candidate led a convoy of over 100 vehicles in the funeral procession that he called a protest march. Shopkeepers of the area were urged to observe a bandh, which they did. No untoward incident was reported as the police presence was heavy.

A condolence meeting and rally in protest against the killing was also held, where, besides Mr Badali, Mr Brij Lal Rinwa and Mr Avinash Jaiswal, president and general secretary, respectively, of the BJP state unit were also present.

Pal Singh is a resident of Khuda Ali Sher village. His son Gursewak Singh and a man called Puppy are the other two who have been arrested on murder charge. The other accused — Onkar Singh, Gurpal Singh, Nirmal Singh and J. Sharma — are still at large. The police has formed special teams to catch them.

According to villagers and the police, Kaka Singh had left for the village at about 8 pm yesterday to meet a relative. He had reportedly approached the Congress election office in the village and asked the workers there for directions to the SAD-BJP election office. Later, he was stabbed in the SAD-BJP office.

Some villagers, on the condition of anonymity, said one of the accused, Onkar Singh, had earlier been beaten up by activists of the SAD.

Meanwhile, senior police officials visited the spot today and reviewed the situation. Mr Jaspal Singh Dhanova, Superintendent of Police (D) at Ropar, said the security would be beefed up and two more patrol squads had been deployed in the area.

Villagers were agitated over “inadequate” police security in the area. They said poll violence had become a routine here. This was the second incident of poll violence in this area. Earlier, the Congress workers had alleged that workers of Mr Badali had attacked a Congress supporter, Manjeet Singh Kamboj.

Meanwhile, Mr Jagmohan Kang, Congress candidate from the area, in a press note issued here today, condemned the incident and demanded a high-level inquiry into the incident. He said the Punjab Government was responsible for the incident and the CRPF or the BSF should be deployed here for free and fair elections.



Encounter with justice’ after 9 years
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 2
Nine years after an SAS Nagar resident was allegedly picked up by the police before being eliminated, the Punjab and Haryana High Court today ordered the payment of Rs 1 lakh as interim compensation to his widow.

In her petition seeking Rs 5 lakh as compensation, the wife of missing transporter and petrol pump owner Sukhdev Singh 'Sukha', Kamaljeet Kaur, had earlier claimed that the Ropar police was annoyed with her husband as he had tried to raise his voice against the "repressive state machinery".

Her counsel had added that Sukhdev Singh was directed to come to a police station in Sohana before being detained at different places. He had added that Sukha's whereabouts were unknown and there was a strong apprehension regarding his elimination.

Referring to a report by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), he had added that certain police officers had been found guilty of kidnapping 'Sukha'. He had further added that as per the CBI's report, the petitioner's husband had been eliminated but the date, time and place of the encounter could not be ascertained.

After hearing the arguments and going through the documents, Mr Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel of the High Court observed: "As per the report dated September 29, 1998, filed by the CBI before Ropar's District and Sessions Judge, it was found that Sukhdev Singh was kidnapped on February 18, 1993, and killed by the police."

The judge concluded: "In this view of the matter, without prejudice to the rights of the petitioner's, it is a fit case to direct the State of Punjab to pay an interim compensation to 'Sukha's' widow. Accordingly, the state of Punjab is directed to pay Rs 1 lakh to the widow within a month of receiving the order's copy."

The High Court, while taking up another petition filed by Kamaljeet Kaur, had come down heavily on the Director-General of Police for not implementing court orders, directing him to consider the advisability of placing two Deputy Superintendents of Police under suspension. Mr Justice V.M. Jain of the High Court had also directed him to immediately transfer one of the DSPs to a far-off place before giving him a side-line posting.

Allowing another petition filed by Kamaljeet Kaur, a Division Bench of the High Court had also directed the Union of India and other respondents to issue her a passport within a month of receiving the order's copy.


Mobile OT takes to road today
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 2
The UT Administrator, Lieut-Gen J.F.R. Jacob (retd) will inaugurate the city's first mobile operation theatre tomorrow. As part of the upcoming Indo- American Eye Care Centre, the mobile operation theatre will be conducting eye surgeries inside a bus which can be taken either to the patient's home or at far flung areas where the facility of a complicated operations is not available at low costs.

The Indo-American eye care centre is being set up in collaboration with the South East Retina Centre, PC, USA, and is a unit of the Sri Guru Harkrishan Sahib (C) Eye Hospital Trust situated at Sohana, Punjab, established in 1995.

The trust aims at providing surgical facilities to poor and under-privileged people at their door step.

The eye care centre set up in Sector 8 in the city is likely to have state of the art technology in eye care. The hospital too will be inaugurated by the UT Administrator tomorrow.

A run for eye donation will also be organised on the occasion by school children to motivate the public for eye donation. The mobile operation theatre will be used to accommodate the maximum number of needy patients and will be funded by the hospital.

Those who are expected to attend the function include Dr Alan Stocks, Dr Harinderjit Singh and Dr G.K. Brar from USA and Dr G.S. Attariwala, Canada.



Farmers to get 60 cr land price soon
Ajay Banerjee
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 2
The Land Acquisition Officer (LAO) of Chandigarh will announce awards for acquisition of land in the Union Territory within the next 10 days. The Administration had acquired 229 acres in Badheri, Kajheri and Palsora villages, so, a Rs 60 crore payment would now be distributed among farmers and land owners.

The last date for the announcement of awards under the Land Acquisition Act of 1894 is February 13. Sources said the awards had been held back, as it required a huge sum to pay off the land owners, which was not available immediately.

Now, the Union Government, in the revised budget, has sanctioned Rs 54 crore for land acquisition, which is part of the Rs 77 crore special package sanctioned a week ago.

In the past four years, land owners in these villages had continued to use their land and they would be eligible for receiving the interest as well.

On this land, the Chandigarh Housing Board plans to build a big housing project in Sectors 52 and 53. This will be held up till the land is in the possession of the Administration. Due to the time gap, this land is also open to encroachment.

For the land owners, the average rate of interest will be calculated from August 1998 to August 1999. This will be a relief for farmers, as, at one time last year, the Administration was planning to pay the average rate of interest as calculated for three years, from August 1996 to August 1999.

August 1999 is the cut off date, as the Administration had, then, issued acquisition notices under Section 4 of the Land Acquisition Act of 1894. The land, which is now Sectors 52, 53, 54, 55 and 56, is being acquired for planned sector development.

Regarding the release of funds, a source said it would not be difficult, as certain agencies like the CHB and Housefed and a conglomeration of co-operative housing societies have shown interest in buying this land.

Had the average for three years been taken, the compensation to farmers would have been much lower. In the one-year calculation, the average rate of payment per acre is about Rs 25 lakh, Rs 15 lakh and Rs 16 lakh, for Badheri, Kajheri and Palsora, respectively.

If three-year average had been taken, the price per acre would have been less by anything between Rs 5 lakh and Rs 6 lakh.

Meanwhile, the head of the Pind Bachao Committee, Mr Angrez Singh Badheri, said the Administration should first extend the ‘lal dora’ before announcing the award.



Cheque trouble

THE LAO is finding it tough to locate persons whose cheques sent by post have been returned to his office because these have been sent at wrong addresses. Any person whose land is acquired is eligible for getting a dwelling unit in Chandigarh under new rules for oustees framed in 1996.

Many persons have applied for units under the scheme and deposited the initial sum as well. The cheques of those found ineligible had been sent in mail, but several of these had been returned.


SE booked for refusing poll duty
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, February 2
The police registered a case against a Superintending Engineer of the PWD (Band R) for allegedly refusing to report for election duty. The engineer, Mr T.S. Gill of the supervisory staff, had allegedly refused to accept the orders of the Returning Officer on several occasions.

Meanwhile, there are reports that a voter of Kurdi village has died after consuming liquor supplied allegedly by a candidate. The Sohana police says that it has no information of any such incident.

The election observer for Ropar visited the town here today for inspecting arrangements. She noted down the registration number of several campaign vehicles.


Police clueless in shooting case
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, February 2
Mystery shrouds the shooting incident in which a jeweller was fired at by unidentified persons in Sector 16 on the night of January 31. Even as the victim, Vipan Goyal, has been discharged from Civil Hospital, the police remains clueless in the case.

Vipan Goyal, a Sector 9 jeweller, was shot at by a youth on the night of January 31 night when he was about to enter his residence in Sector 16. As soon as he got out of his car (HR-03- 8757), an unknown miscreant fired at him. He received a bullet shot in his back. The miscreant then fled on a black motor cycle with his accomplice.

Mr Shyam Lal Goyal, father of Vipan Goyal, who was standing just a few steps away, raised an alarm. His other son came out of the house and they tried to follow the miscreants, but to no avail.

The bullet will be sent to the Forensic Science Laboratory for examination, it is learnt. The members of the family told the police that they had no enmity with anyone.

Police sources maintain that at the time of the incident, the victim himself was carrying a licensed .32 bore Italian-made revolver, but never used it in self-defence. Also, the fact that the victim’s father, who was standing barely a few steps away, did not rush to his son’s rescue and conflicting statements given to the police by him and his other son, have raised many an eyebrow. It is also learnt that Mr Shyam Lal Goyal was carrying Rs 90,000 when the incident took place.

A senior police official said they were suspecting the hand of some migrants from Uttar Pradesh in the incident, who had visited the shop of the victim a few months ago and had an altercation with him. A police party has already been sent to Uttar Pradesh in search of the suspects.


Awareness programme on environment
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 2
Implementing and adhering to the international management standards has become essential as the trade barriers vanish, International Certifications Limited (ICL) and the Chandigarh Pollution Control Committee (CPCC) jointly organised “a one-day awareness programme on environmental management systems ISO 14000:1996 here yesterday.

During the programme, Mr P.J.S. Dadhwal, Member-Secretary, CPCC, laid emphasis on complying with Indian environment legislation and how it could help the industry in preventing pollution and protecting the environment.

Expressing concern over depletion and improper utilisation of resources, Sunil Thaman, General Manager, ICL, said today this had become a universal concern. “Because of scarcity of resources, we have to adopt a sustainable development approach, a development which meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.”

ISO 14000 is an international series of standards through which an organisation can develop an environmental management system that can help mitigate the unwanted losses and protect our environment.

During the awareness programme, a thrust was given on practical approach towards implementation of this system, thereby sustainable development. A successful EMS for an organisation would entail as an environment policy, planning, implementation, taking corrective and preventive measures and management review. The benefits would include conservation of natural resources, prevention of pollution and reduction of health hazards. The programme was attended by over 50 representatives of the industry like Tube Products of India, PSIEC, Institute of Microbial Technology, Mountview Hotel, Pfizer India, Groz Beckert, Ordnance Cable Factory, Environmental Consultants and Auditors from various certification bodies.


Include philosophy

This has reference to the public appointments. The Director of Public Instructions (Schools) should include the subject of philosophy also out of the seven elective subjects for submission of applications, as in BA ‘philosophy and sociology’ are regarded as a combine. Even for admissions to B.Ed., these two subjects are taken into consideration.

SONIA, Chandigarh

No rental hike please

The reduction of STD rates by BSNL is most welcome. However, if reports were to bear scrutiny, the monthly rental charges of telephones will go up soon. This would be unfair. In fact, there is a strong case for reducing the monthly rentals further. When the BSNL had introduced the local call facility for a call within 200 km, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) had increased the monthly rental of telephones. As a result, the subscribers had to pay Rs 140 more for two months. Add to this Rs 7 towards service charges. It would have been better if the rental charges were slashed from Rs 500 to Rs 400 for two months. Now this benefit will go only to a few people.

The STD customers throughout the country fear that the rental charges will go up following the slashing of STD rates. TRAI should see reason and should not increase the rental charges arbitrarily. The subscribers should also mobilise strong public opinion against any such move, being contemplated by TRAI.

M.L. GARG, Chandigarh


Protest by Sec 19 residents
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, February 2
Residents of Sector 19 here staged a dharna in protest against the laying of a sewerage boosting pump near the Oustee Colony and New Housing Board Colony this morning. They did not allow the labourers hired by HUDA to carry on with the digging work and forced them to leave.

It is learnt that HUDA is laying a sewerage boosting pump here at the cost of Rs 18 lakh in order to first collect the sewerage at a common point and then shift this to Industrial Area Phase I through a pipeline to be then shifted to the Sector 20 sewerage treatment plant.

The HUDA authorities had begun digging work near the Oustee Colony here for making a deep well for collecting sewerage. As of now, the system of sewerage disposal here is into a nullah that flows into Punjab. It may be noted that the Oustee Colony and New Housing Board Colony are near the Punjab boundary.

Some women gathered today here and began putting plinth in the deep well that was being dug here. The residents are reportedly protesting under the misconception that the sewerage will be lying in open and they would have to suffer. However, the HUDA authorities have clarified that the entire system would be laid underground and that there would be no problem.


ADGP bereaved
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 2
Ms Bhagwati Devi, mother of Mr Gurdial Singh ADGP, Internal Vigilance Cell, Punjab, died after a prolonged illness today. She was 90 years old. She is survived by her son, Mr Singh, and a daughter. The cremation will take place at the Mani Majra cremation ground tomorrow at 1 pm.


2 rickshaw-pullers arrested
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 2
Two rickshaw-pullers were arrested by the police for reportedly plying their rickshaws on the wrong side of the road near the Sector 17 bus stand. The accused have been identified as Balam Hussain, a resident of Colony No. 5, and Manoj Kumar, a resident of Maloya. They have been booked for endangering human life and obstructing public way.

1 arrested: A resident of Bilaspur, Pawan Kumar, was caught red-handed while he was trying to steal a tin of refined oil from a plot in Industrial Area. His accomplice, Sanjiv Kumar, managed to escape.

Three injured: Three persons were injured after a Contessa car hit a cyclist near the Airport chowk. The cyclist, Rajinder Kumar, a resident of Ram Darbar, and the car driver were admitted to the hospital. The driver’s companion escaped with minor bruises.

Stolen: An inmate of Sarojini Hall in Panjab University, Nazia Halim, has reported that a gold chain, some clothes, cosmetics and Rs 1,500 have been stolen from her room.

Vehicles stolen: A Sector 34 resident, Sandeep Garg, has reported that his Maruti car (PB-11-B-7700) has been stolen from his residence. A resident of Khuda Ali Sher, Harinder Singh, has reported that his Bullet motor cycle (CH-03-F-0929) has been stolen from the Panjab University campus. The police has registered cases.

Home | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Editorial |
Business | Sport | World | Mailbag | In Spotlight | Chandigarh Tribune | Ludhiana Tribune
50 years of Independence | Tercentenary Celebrations |
122 Years of Trust | Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |