Saturday, February 23, 2002, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S


All set for MCD poll on March 24
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, February 22
Setting the stage for the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) elections, the Delhi State Election Commission on Friday said the notification of the civic polls to be held on March 24 will be issued on February 25. The freeze on rotation of seats will stay, said Election Commissioner MP Tyagi. Also that ballot papers would be used instead of electronic voting machines (EVMs) and Code of Conduct comes into force from Saturday (February 23.)

Even as the Election Commission declared the poll schedule, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders huddled together for drafting their strategy. The 15-member committee chaired by party president Mange Ram Garg met during the day to formalise the exercise of selecting candidates. Over the next two days, party sources said, the committee would screen prospective candidates before declaring the final list.

The Congress, which was the first to get off the block by inviting applications from prospective candidates, however ran out of steam soon enough on account of the uncertainty over the date of election. That over, sources said party leaders would be meeting over the weekend and early next week to formalise their poll preparations.

Election Commissioner MP Tyagi told mediapersons the process of filing of nominations will begin on February 25 and conclude on March 4. After the scrutiny of nominations on March 6, the last date for withdrawal of candidature will be March 9. Counting will be held on March 27.

According to Joint Election Commissioner DM Khaneta, 46 wards are reserved for women, including nine for Scheduled Caste women and 16 for Scheduled Caste men. There are 134 wards in all. The Commission, he said, had appointed 35 returning-cum-scrutinising officers.

For conducting the civic polls the government will be incurring an expenditure of an estimated Rs 17 crore. Quoting figures, Mr Tyagi said there were 550 registered but unrecognised parties and 42 state-level recognised parties. The number of electors, he informed, had dipped from 82.3 lakh in 1997 to 78.9 lakh this year. The largest number of electors happens to be in Rohini (Ward No 33) that has 1,55,084 registered voters. Mr Tyagi said 40 companies of security personnel had been requisitioned from the Delhi Police for deployment at 9,453 polling booths. (In 1997, there were 8,516 polling booths.) A 50,000-strong staff would be enlisted for election duties.

The code of conduct for candidates and political parties comes into force on Friday (February 23.) Issuing instructions to political parties and candidates for observation during general election to Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD), the Election Commissioner said under the West Bengal Defacement of Properties Act, 1976 extended to the National Capital Territory, posters or banners could not be used indiscriminately.

The instructions, among other things, stipulate that no election pamphlet, poster, circular, placard, etc should be without the names and addresses of printer and publisher thereof. The right of every individual for peaceful and undisturbed home life shall be respected.

Political parties will seek prior permission to make use of any individual’s land, compound wall, buildings, etc for suspending banners, pasting notices or writing slogans. There should be no block or hindrance to traffic on account of processions.

Furthermore, ministers shall not make use of official machinery or personnel during electioneering work and government transport, including official vehicles, shall not be used for furtherance of the interest of the party in power. Also, ministers shall not sanction grants / payments out of discretionary funds, announce any financial grants or promises thereof, lay foundation stones of projects, or make any promise of construction of roads and provision of drinking water facilities.



Warrants out for Vikas Yadav
Our Correspondent

Ghaziabad, February 22
A Ghaziabad Court has declared Vikas Yadav an absconder and issued arrest warrants for him on the application moved by the city police.

Yesterday, the court of the Chief Judicial Magistrate had issued a notice for the attachment of property of Vikas Yadav and his cousin, Vishal Yadav. Both Vikas and Vishal are the main suspects in the Nitish Katara abduction case.

The charred body found in Shikara under Khurja police station in Bulandshahr district seems to be that of Nitish Katara and has been identified by his mother, Mrs Neelam Katara, and other relatives on the basis of his height, physique and body contours. But the Ghaziabad police, to be doubly sure, have sent the body samples for a DNA test at the Institute of Cellular and Molecular Biology in Hyderabad. “I shall wait for the DNA test report, as it will help me fight for justice” said Nitish’s mother in a stoic display of courage and control.

The advocates of Vikas and Vishal Yadav have moved an application on behalf of their clients seeking three days’ time for surrender. This is considered by many as a clever ruse to hoodwink the police who have been raiding places in Ghaziabad, Bulandsahar Delhi and Haryana to nab the suspects. Today also the police were present in great strength in the Ghaziabad court premises.

Even day before yesterday the Ghaziabad police had been waiting for Yadav to surface in Patiala House, where he was supposed to appear in connection with the Jessica Lal murder case, in which he is one of the main accused.

According to reliable sources the accused, Vikas Yadav, and his cousin, Vishal, will in all probability surrender somewhere else; Vikas did that earlier too in the Jessica Lal case. Vikas is the son of former UP Minister and Rajya Sabha M P, DP Yadav.

The charred body found in Shikara was bereft of clothes. Nitish Katara’s watch, ring, chain and other accessories were also not found. They were ostensibly removed by the kidnappers, to make identification difficult, said Ghaziabad SSP Prashant Kumar. The post-mortem examination had indicated that the victim had been hit on the head; when he went into coma, he was killed and later burnt.

The SSP said that only after the DNA test report is received, “we shall have irrefutable proof that it was indeed Nitish Katara’s body.”

It may be recalled that Nitish Katara, son of a joint secretary in the Union shipping ministry and himself a senior executive in a multinational company, was abducted from a marriage reception in Kavi Nagar on early Sunday morning. Mrs Neelam Katara, in her report to the Kavi Nagar police, had said that her son was called out by two persons at the reception. He never returned after that. This was disclosed by Gaurav and Bharati, Nitish’s classmates at a local management training institute, who were present at the reception. Mrs. Katara had stated in her report that Nitish’s friendship with Ms Bharati, his classmate, might have led to her son’s abduction. Bharati is the sister of Vikas Yadav, who apparently did not like their friendship.



Ministerial largesse to cost Greater Noida a package
Parmindar Singh

Noida, February, 22
A minister of the UP Government has reportedly issued orders, contrary to the set rules of Greater Noida, for payment of land compensation to a farmer, reportedly close to him. The minister seems to be unmindful of the fact that the implementation of the order in this case alone would mean a loss of Rs 19 crore to Greater Noida.

If the authority takes action, other farmers would also file similar claims for compensation, driving the authority to bankruptcy.

Surprisingly, the award for compensation of the acquired land has not been declared yet. All the files pertaining to it have been reportedly summoned by the Revenue Department of the State Government in Lucknow.

According to reliable sources, 1,285 farmers have obtained the registration now as decided by Greater Noida. About 75 per cent farmers in Tugalpur, Haldauna, Gulistan, Surajpur, Sakipur, Habibpur and Tussyana villages have received 80 per cent compensation as per the new procedures agreed to by Greater Noida.

The authority has completed the payment of compensation to the farmers at the rate of Rs 213 per sq. yard. Quite a big chunk of the agricultural land of the farmer, known to be close to the minister, had been acquired by Greater Noida in Tugalpur, Haldauna and Tussyana villages. The farmer had allegedly complained to the minister concerned in writing that Greater Noida had adopted two different policies and parameters with regard to the payment of compensation to the farmers. He had also reportedly instigated other farmers not to accept the compensation. As a result, the files of the farmers were summoned by the revenue department in Lucknow. The minister also had a meeting with the authority officials. The officials explained to the minister the policies regarding the payment of compensation. The authority received a letter from the principal Secretary, UP, in July 2001 in which he had raised the question of the authority’s following double policy. The administration’s letter had accepted as basis the rate of award of payment made on the date in villages like Haldauna, Kasna, Namauli, choohrpur Khadder while in Tugalpur, Tussyana and Haldauna, 80 per cent of the compensation was made on the basis of date of payment.

This way, the authority had decided two different parameters for paying the compensation, the letter said.

The district magistrate, Gautam Budh Nagger, could not announce the award because all the files had been retained in Lucknow. The intention was that the chosen farmers who were close to the seat of power would oppose the delay in announcement of the award.

The authority again pleaded with the state government to review the decision. But the minister again had a meeting with the authority officials who explained to him the position pertaining to the criteria and the system being followed for the compensation. But there was no result of the meeting. The UP Government principal secretary in his communication of November 27, 2001, accused Greater Noida of exploiting the farmers by adopting a double standard. This letter, superseding the government order of July 2001, entailed that the compensation might be worked out. Reliable sources in Greater Noida say that if they make payments under the government order, it will have to pay over Rs 19 crore as interim relief.



Delhi Budget: Mounting debt an area of concern 
R. Suryamurthy
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, February 22
Though Delhi is a revenue surplus state, yet the mounting debt is an area of major concern and needs to be tackled effectively in the forthcoming budget of the National Capital Territory, according to economists who have carried a pre-budget review of the state’s finances.

The fiscal deficit increased to 3.2 per cent in the current year compared to 2.09 per cent in 2001-02. The debt increased to Rs 5183 crore in 2000-01, an increase of 37 per cent over the previous year. The Delhi Budget is scheduled to be presented in the first week of April. The government is likely to present a vote on account in the last week of March. The main reason for the mounting debt is the persistent losses of Delhi Vidyut Board, Delhi Transport Corporation and the Municipal Corporation of Delhi. They are in red despite the State Government earmarking 9.5 per cent of its taxes for sharing with the local bodies. The budget should aim at reduction of non-plan expenditure by rationalising and reducing government employment, inducing self-discipline in management of finances to achieve efficiency and imposing reasonable user charges and limiting subsidies on public services.

Economists said that the MCD, DTC, DJB and DVB were capable of generating more revenue and reducing the costs. There is a need for professional management and policy changes to generate additional resources. The root cause of the financial problems is the existing pricing anomalies.

They said the focus must be changed from dependence on government subsidy to a more commercial orientation based on revenue from sales. The apex body of industries in the region, the PHDCCI, in its annual pre-budget exercise said that the state government should its rationalise tariff policy. Also it must check leakages of revenue and make the various layers of administration accountable.

Stating that there is considerable scope for the MCD to generate revenue by increasing the property tax, the association said there should be periodic property enumeration, improved assessment of owner-occupied properties, removal of tax exemption for properties of Central Government and embassies.

While the Delhi Jal Board is making attempts to cross subsidize user groups and consumption levels, its own efforts should be directed at reducing its establishment costs and checking water leakage. There is a need for long term action through institutional and management reforms. The subsidy should be limited to poorer sections of society.

The huge losses being incurred by the DTC are largely on account of leakages and inefficiency. The chambers suggested that the DTC should be restructured to provide for the setting up of three to four private companies to efficiently manage the public transport system in Delhi. Public transport for students should be subsidised to the extent of 50 per cent only. It is pointed out that the monthly bus pass fee was fixed three decades ago.

While welcoming the move to privatise the DVB, the chambers said the budget should ensure that steps are taken to put assets of government-owned units to productive use. Even the profit making undertakings should be restructured and managed by an autonomous and professional board of directors without outside interference in the day-to-day working. Stating that there is a need for downsizing the administrative set up, it has been suggested that a Committee on Administrative Reforms be set up.

The outlay for health and social welfare should be further enhanced to provide more allocation for schools, hospital; the outlay for tourism and development and maintenance of related infrastructure should also be enhanced as Delhi is the Gateway to India.

The government should come up with a time-bound plan for the relocation of JJ clusters from industrial areas and adequate funds allocated for the purpose.



Kenyans elude cops in raid at Rohtak
Our Correspondent

Rohtak, February 22
Two Kenyan youths, who were residing here illegally, managed to escape when a police team raided a house at Tilak Nagar, where they had come to look up their girl friends last evening. According to information, a police team led by DSP Teeka Ram raided the house following a tip-off. However, Mariam and Beeta, the two Kenyan sisters and occupants of the house, raised an alarm, enabling their Kenyan friends, Dennis and John, to escape. The police seized the passports and other documents of the youths and are interrogating the sisters. During interrogation, the girls told the police that the youths were studying in a college at Gwalior, where they were also registered. They often visited them at Rohtak. Mariam disclosed that she was a student of LLM at Maharshi Dayanand University while the student visa of her sister had expired.

According to sources, the police recently toughened its drive against foreigners who are staying illegally in different parts of the state after the expiry of their student visa.

Wedding party shootout toll three

Sonepat: The death toll in the Wednesday’s shootout at the wedding party at Palra village in the district has risen to three with reports of the death of another person, Mr Sukhbir (35), coming in today. According to a report, all the victims belonged to the same family. Mr Suraj Mal (55) and his relative, Mr Narain (65), had died on the spot. Sukhbir is the son of Suraj Mal. And all of them belonged to Dichao village of Delhi. The police have so far failed to achieve any breakthrough in tracking down the alleged assailants who had managed to escape under the cover of darkness soon after the shootout. However, the police believe it to be a case of rivalry among the victims and the alleged assailants. The victims had come to the village to attend the marriages of two daughters of Mr Bhagwan Singh, a lambardar of the village. One of the barats had come from Kheri Manajat village in the district and the other from Dichao village of Delhi. 



Coffee Home renamed
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, February 22
The Delhi Tourism and Transportation Development Corporation (DTTDC)-run Coffee Home at Baba Kharak Singh Marg will be named after Jag Parvesh Chandra, who died on Thursday.

DTTDC Chairman Romesh Sabharwal said the late Congress leader was the protagonist of the Coffee Home movement in Delhi and it was when he was Chief Executive Councillor that the Coffee Home at Baba Kharak Singh Marg was opened by the Corporation.

According to Mr Sabharwal, several other coffee homes in different parts of the Capital owed much to Mr Chandra’s initiative and personal interest. Recalling his meeting with the veteran Congressman, Mr Sabharwal said Mr Chandra had written a letter to him wishing him luck and godspeed to make Delhi a premier tourist centre.

The letter read : “My dear Shri Sabharwalji, Delhi is an ideal place for the development of tourism. It is a unique blend of historicity and modernity. As such the city of two towns – old and new – holds fascination both for the Indian and foreign tourists of all ages. I wish you all super success. When I leave the hospital I shall first go to Tourist Corporation’s Office. 28.1.02 Jag Parvesh Chandra.”


‘Apna yaar chala gaya’ 
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, February 22
“Apna yaar chala gaya” (our friend has gone), Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee today said in a fond tribute to veteran Congress leader Jag Parvesh Chandra, who died here on Thursday. The 85-year-old bachelor had suffered a heart attack a fortnight ago and had been treated at the Escorts Heart Hospital. He suffered another attack at his Hauz Khas residence yesterday and died immediately.

The Prime Minister and several other political dignitaries paid their last respects to Mr Chandra, the grand old man of Delhi politics, at the DPCC office at 2, Talkatora Road here this morning. “Apna yaar chala gaya”, Mr Vajpayee wrote in the condolence book after placing a wreath on the veteran leader’s body at the DPCC office. Earlier, the Congress president, Mrs Sonia Gandhi, and a number of other party leaders paid homage to Mr Chandra at the AICC office at 24, Akbar Road, where his body was brought from his residence this morning. The veteran leader was accorded a state funeral at the electric crematorium at Nigam Bodh Ghat later. The Delhi Government declared all its offices closed today as a mark of respect to the departed leader, who nurtured the state unit of the Congress party for a number of years. Senior party leaders, bureaucrats and members of the Cabinet were present at the cremation.



Four labourers buried alive

New Delhi
In a tragic incident, four labourers were killed and one injured while they were trying to insert a pipe for a job assigned to them by the Delhi Jal Board in the afternoon today at Chowkandi Road in Tilak Nagar. Police have identified the four dead persons as Gariba (17), Baruah (24), Jagua (24) and Shiv Prasad (24). The injured Ram Lal, was immediately rushed to the DDU Hospital and reported to be out of danger. There were seven contract labourers, digging the 15-foot pit to insert the pipe. The gushing sewage water mixed up with the dug-up mud and the poor men got stuck into it. TNS



Hand-painted film hoardings go begging in PVR days
Rohit Wadhwaney

New Delhi, February 22
There was a time, not long ago, when hand-painted film hoardings with their various colours and garish layouts, decorated the theatres all over the city.

Now, in times of multiplexes cinema halls run by Priya Village Roadshow (PVR), with all the computerized technology, the hand-painted hoardings and their creators have been pushed away from the limelight.

However, even as these artists, putting up in the Mughal-built old quarters of Delhi, admit to their declining fortune in the last few years, it is still considered a significant form of art. Ghulam Ali, who has been painting hoardings for over the decades, says hand-painted hoardings still create more impact on the public than any computerized technology. “It is the best way to advertise,” he adds.

It all started with artists applying brush and paint to open walls. This graduated to black and white posters, pasted on fixtures, which were taken around the streets on wheels. Finally, the print media moved in to provide the critical edge needed to enhance its reach and impact.

Ali says despite the growing technological trend, hand-painted banner still attract advertisers. A banner would cost anywhere between Rs 4,000 to over Rs 1 lakh. “It all depends on the size. But most of the artists work on a daily wage basis,” Ali says.

Surely, the movie-goer would hardly look upon these paintings as a form of art. For them, it is just a banner. And most artists agree that it is quite a thankless job. “No one ever praises us,” says Ali’s colleague, Raju.

“When people go to a cinema hall, they don’t even look at the hoarding twice. For them, it is nothing more than a film hoarding. For us, it is our passion, even more than our bread and butter.”

Thirty-four-year-old Raju, who got into the business of painting hoardings at the tender age of 12, says he loves to paint Amitabh Bachchan and Shahrukh Khan. “My father was in the same profession and that’s how I picked up the art.”

It might take a day or even a week for most of these painters to paint a banner, depending on the size. But for Raju, it doesn’t take more than a few hours to paint his favourite actor’s film banner. “Ask any painter, all of them will have their favourite stars that they paint with passion. And they’ll do it in a jiffy. It takes long when a newcomer sets foot in the film industry,” he laughs.

Ironically, these painters also admit that they are unable to see even half of the movies whose banners and posters they paint. “I must have painted about 200 hoardings, and I haven’t seen even 50 of those movies,” says Asif.

Even as Asif agrees that his business “has not been adversely affected because of the multiplexes opening up in the Capital”, he is quite upset about the fact that the multiplexes don’t need hand-painted hoardings.

Asif recalls that most of his painted banners were put up in Anupam (which is now a PVR multiplex). “I painted a lot for that hall (Anupam). But they don’t need us anymore. That’s okay. It isn’t the only cinema hall in town.”

Surely, it isn’t. No matter how many more multiplexes open in the city, they can never outnumber the traditional cinema halls that still feel hand-painted film hoardings are “beautiful decoration pieces” on their walls.

“A hand-painted film hoarding gives a great look to cinema halls,” says an owner of a cinema hall in south Delhi. “Maybe the movie-goers don’t really look at the hoardings to appreciate them, but people do get attracted to them. And that is because of the hard work, one can invariably see, that has been put into those hoardings.” The owner feels that even the multiplexes should have hand-painted hoardings just to keep the tradition alive.



Reshuffle in Delhi Police likely
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, February 22
There is speculation in the Delhi Police over the successor to Mr R. K. Sharma, Special Commissioner, Administration, following his transfer as Special Secretary, Home. The post of the Special Secretary, Home, had been lying vacant since December 13 when Mr M. B. Kaushal retired.

Mr Sharma was the senior-most IPS officer in the Delhi Police and there was rumour in the police circles last month that he could be promoted as Commissioner of Police in the Capital. Now Mr R. S. Gupta, Special Commissioner of Police, (Security and Operations) has become the senior-most officer in the Delhi Police. Mr Sharma’s name for the post of Special Secretary came as a surprise as there was a long list of officers for the coveted post. In fact, one of the aspirants to the post was Director-General of Police of Punjab, Mr Sarabjeet Singh. He has been in the Capital for the last couple of days and was spotted in the corridors of the North Block giving rise to speculation that he could be canvassing for the post.

Mr Sharma’s transfer from the Delhi Police will lead to a major reshuffle as a few Delhi Police officers are still awaiting postings. Promotion of a few others is also due. Mr S. K. Kains (Joint Commissioner of Police) is expected to be promoted to the post of Special Commissioner of Police. Also waiting in line to take charge of some post is Mr Neeraj Kumar who was reverted to the parent cadre on Thursday after a prolonged stint in the CBI. Mr Kains is likely to succeed the Joint Commissioner of Police (Northern Range), Mr Ajay Chadha, who has reportedly been earmarked for deputation with the Research and Analysis Wing.



The real message of love gets buried in the hype

Do You Have A Grouse?

Do you have a grouse against the apathetic attitude of the authorities? Are you fed up with the dilly-dallying tactics of officialdom and the stranglehold of red tapism? If so please write to us. We have a full half page every week reserved just for you. The letters should be clearly marked Speaking out, NCR Tribune, First Floor, Dyal Singh Library Building, 1 Deen Dayal Upadhaya Marg, New Delhi-110002.

LAST week, we celebrated two martyrdom days. The one, which was of ancient origin having no cultural link with our country, was publicised by the media weeks in advance before the actual day and hyped on a scale hitherto unknown. The other which was of recent origin and concerned with our cultural identity received little notice by the national media. Both were celebrated in a manner, which violated their sanctity.

The first was St. Valentine’s Day (14 Feb.) which commemorates the martyrdom of the brave Christian Valentinus. It should be observed in a solemn way with red roses offered as an expression of one’s eternal love - love of one human being for another, love for a person to whom you cannot express it publicly.

It would be interesting to know that later on the celebrations took the form of sending romantic greeting cards or love letters, most often anonymously or sending red roses also. So, the particular valentine does not know about the author of the letter or the sender of the roses. Love is a thing not meant to be exhibited or demonstrated on a public street, but the vested interests and the tricksters have vulgarised the day as an occasion for dating and mating, wining and dining. The day as it is celebrated in the elite circles in India, presents a classic example, how an alien language and culture can destroy a country’s ethos, values, culture and orientation.

In our Constitution, it is rightly enshrined that to carry on an occupation, trade or business does not give anybody a right to corrupt its society and violate Indian ethos, values and culture.

On the Valentine’s Day, the Church also owns some responsibility to propagate how to celebrate this day in a solemn and sacred manner. This exhibition of vulgarity needs to be stopped.

The other martyrdom day, of which the media took no notice, was the International Mother Language Day (21 February), proclaimed as such by the UNESCO. It was on this day in 1952 that a number of Bengalis of the then East Pakistan fell to the bullets of the police to protect their mother tongue.

The day is celebrated all over the world to protect the linguistic pluralism and cultural diversity and the heritage of humanity. And this very day has a special significance for us in India, where our mother languages are under constant threat from an alien language, not only in the affairs of the state but in education as well.

The Indian mother tongues are the prime vehicles of our cultural identity, but thanks to the machinations of the elite and vested interests, hovering around the positions of power in the country, the languages face the danger of decay and disappearance in the next 20 years or so. For the last more than two decades, the Indian languages are being displaced by English as medium of instruction even in primary schools, and an international conspiracy is behind all this. The rot needs to be stemmed forthwith.

It is the need of the hour that we celebrate every day of the next year as the “Save the mother language day” and throw the alien language lock, stock and barrel out from the field of elementary education in the country. There is no better way to celebrate the mother language day than to nip the conspiracy against the Indian languages and the country’s ethos, values and ideas. It is a conspiracy against the democratic fabric of our society.

Sudarshan K. Kapur, Krishna Colony, Gurgaon

MDU’s appointments in a muddle

The Maharshi Dayanand University (MDU), Rohtak, was established in 1975 as a residential university in the vicinity of Medical College and Hospital, with an emphasis on the study of life sciences. Its jurisdiction was extended to cover half of Haryana.

The university’s main functions are receiving examination forms, conducting examinations and declaring results, etc. As per the MDU calendar volume II, page 199, which speaks in regard to the Appointment of Superintendents and Assistant Superintendents. The following person shall be eligible for appointment as superintendents: Teachers of recognised colleges or teaching departments of the university, who have sufficient experience of conducting examinations and have worked as Asst Superintendents. The superintendents at the various centres ordinarily be appointed from a college other than the college of the examinations, but in case of emergency or genuine difficulty, the Controller of Examinations may, at his discretion, make the appointment locally or from the same institution, depending on the circumstances. The Asst Superintendents are directly under orders of the Controller of Examinations in matter of appointment and removal.

In the light of above information, it is understood that the teachers of the recognised, i.e. affiliated/constituted colleges, can be appointed as Superintendent, Deputy Superintendent Asst Superintendent in any of the districts such as Rohtak, Jhajjar, Sonepat, Faridabd, Gurgaon, Rewari, Mohindergarh and Bhiwani. These districts’ colleges fall under the jurisdiction of the MDU.

Until five years back, this rule was implemented in the spirit of the above-mentioned rule. Subsequently, the MDU started appointing the staff within the district only. This is not in accordance with the rule. It might be done on the instruction of Controller of

Examinations, Registrar or Vice-Chancellor of the university.

Yes, the Vice-Chancellor is empowered to issue the instruction under statute 9(5) of the MDU Act, 1975. By putting up the same instruction in the following meeting of the Executive Council (syndicate) and the EC if approves, the same instruction take the shape of a rule and is incorporated in the rule book, i.e. MDU calendar.

Last year, in March and April, lecturers working in the MDU-affiliated colleges, falling in the districts of Sonepat or Faridabad were ineligible to be appointed as Superintendent or Asst Superintendent in Rohtak but in May and thereafter, these lecturers became eligible and were appointed in Rohtak.

Several lecturers are victims of this rule. For example, Mrs ‘X’ and Mrs ‘Y’ working in the colleges of Mohindergarh district, interested to be appointed without TA/DA as Superintendent or Assistant Superintendent in Sonepat or Faridabad district in April, are ineligible, whereas these lecturers are eligible to be appointed in Narnaul, Krishnanagar or Ateli in Mohindergarh district with TA/DA. Similarly, Mr ‘A’ or Mr `B’ working in

Faridabad or Rewari colleges, interested to be appointed in Rohtak or Jhajjar districts without TA/DA are ineligible but eligible to be appointed in Palwal or Hodal in Faridabd district and Nahar, Kosli or Kanwali in Rewari district with TA/DA. Without going into the details, it is requested that examinations concerning invigilatory appointments by the MDU may kindly be made in accordance with the pucca (permanent) rule, i.e. not within the district only but throughout the districts, falling under the jurisdiction of the MDU. Yes, if the MDU wants to adhere to within the district appointment, then the rule should survive throughout the year and not for a month or so.

It is also suggested that the university should take prompt action keeping in view the forthcoming April appointments.

Om Prakash Wadhwa Lecturer, Govt. College, Rohtana (Sonepat)

Pension documents

I am an infirm defence widow pensioner and drawing my family pension from DPDO Gurgaon payable at SBI Ujina. My HO No is 35281.

Despite having written applications on different occasions: March 13, 2001; October 5, 2001; January 7, 2002 and personal visits several times to DPDO Gurgaon, my pension documents have not been transferred to SBI Ujina. Moreover, a sum of Rs 142.00 on act of LTA of my late husband has not been paid to me for the last 17 months. I wish to bring to the notice of ZO (PD) Delhi Cantt as well as CDA (PD) Meerut Cantt about the delay in the transfer of pension documents as well as payment of LTA, pending since September 2000.

Mrs Shanti Devi Sangel, Gurgaon

Water harvesting

DREAM COME TRUE: The water supply brings cheer in Nasarpur
DREAM COME TRUE: The water supply brings cheer in Nasarpur

At present, the contentious issue is how to save water. Delhi is facing an acute shortage of water. The situation gets worse in summer. Water is the basic necessity for survival. Though the sources of water are diminishing and the demand is increasing, but the people do no stop wasting it. The ground water level in all parts of the country is going down fast and the water bodies are shrinking. Just recall the pathetic situation of those villagers who do not even get sufficient water to drink. They have to trudge a long way to collect it. Even in some of the villages, especially in hilly regions, schools have changed their timings as the student go to fetch water during the earlier timings.

Earth is the only planet where life is possible. But if the grim situation about the shortage of water remains, the day is not far when this planet will also become lifeless. This is high time that we should take active steps to stop the wastage of water.

First of all, an awareness should be created among the public for the right use of water and its harvesting. People should be educated enough so that they can understand its importance. However, the Government on its part should take a strong action to prevent its wastage. People who are found wasting water should be penalised. Apart from rivers, the main source of water is rainfall. Monsoon comes for four months and this period is the right time when we can preserve enough water to meet the demand of people without burdening our already over-burdened water bodies. But the only thing that we need is to propagate various techniques to harness for recharging the ground water table and other water bodies for the future use. During the non-monsoon period, strict measures should be taken to prevent the misuse of potable and ground water. Water is a splendid gift given by nature. If we keep wasting it, we shall be doing great harm not only to our fellow citizens, but to the coming generations also. Posterity will not forgive us for our profligacy.

Shweta Kohli Shahdara, Delhi-32

Kudos for Delhi cops

It is a matter of great satisfaction indeed that the Delhi Police arrested a Pak-trained terrorist from Kotwali area. The ultra was carrying two improvised electronic devices and 9 kg RDX. In my opinion, the persons who help such anti-national elements deserve no sympathy and should be hanged in public.

Subhash C. Taneja, Rohtak

Thank you, Tribune

In your column of “Speaking Out”, my letter was published as a grievance in The Tribune dated 15-12-01. The Additional Secretary (Finance) Himachal then disposed of my case of revised pension and the Sr D.A.G. has issued the PPO. But for your assistance, the matter would have lingered on. I express my gratitude to you for carrying the letter.

M R Khanna, Faridabad.

Potable water dream

The Village Water and Sanitation Committee, Nasarpur, took the credit of being the first registered committee in Alwar district to improve the water and sanitation conditions. It was registered under the Rajasthan Societies Act, 1958 on September 29, 2001. It was the dedication of the committee, backed by the support of the community, which brought fame to the village as it achieved the distinction of becoming the first village in Rajasthan to have implemented the water supply scheme under the Sector Reform Project of Rajiv Gandhi Drinking Water Mission.

This was a landmark initiative, ushering in a new era where a dream of self-reliance can be realised. An era where the community takes the responsibility of identifying its need and coming up with the solutions.

The motivation of the community and its immediate response, through the community participation brought a dream come true on January 22, 2002, when the motor in the new bore well became operational, supplying water amidst the assembly of the whole village.

The village having 94 households and a population of 785, had an acute shortage of drinking water. It was relying on just two hand pumps which became least productive during summers.

The bore well’s functioning really gave a big hope to the community members who shouted slogans, danced and distributed sweets. Today, the committee has gained the trust of the community and is ready to take up the issues of sanitation as well.

Today, Nasarpur has made a difference by having smokeless ‘chulha’ in all the households. The day is not far when Nasarpur will be declared one of the cleanest villages in the district.

Manoj Mudgal Alwar



Award scheme to encourage small savings in Rohtak district
Our Correspondent

Rohtak, February 22
An amount of Rs 54.36 crore has been deposited under the small savings scheme in the district till January during the current financial year.

A spokesman for the district administration said that with a view to promoting such savings, the state government had introduced a `puraskar yojna’ which would remain in force till March 31, 2002. The scheme started on October 1 last year. He said 8,778 prizes carrying cash amounting to Rs 10.50 lakh would be awarded to the lucky savers.

Woman dies

Two persons, including a married woman, have died in separate incidents in the town since Thursday.

Nirmal (35), wife of Ram Balak and resident of Jawahar Colony, died after she consumed a poisonous substance at her house. She was admitted to Escorts Hospital here but died on Thursday.

Yogesh, son of Om Prakash of the same colony, was killed after he was run over by a train near Ballabgarh station Thursday night. In other incidents, Sangita (8) of Kalyanpuri and Radha of Jawahar Nagar were injured in separate mishaps.

Meanwhile, two youths who were coming towards Faridabad from Palwal on Thursday were attacked by five youths and robbed of Rs 15,000 near Palwal town. It is stated that the victims, Rajesh and Sanjay, were attacked with a razor by the assailants.

Ticketless travel

The Haryana Roadways has intensified the campaign against ‘ticketless’ travel in its buses of Sonepat district.

Mr H. C. Jain, General Manager of Sonepat depot, told mediapersons here today that the officials of the Roadways had found 8,880 passengers travelling without tickets during the first nine months of the current financial year. All the ticketless passengers, he said, were tried on the spot and the Roadways had recovered about Rs 8.29 lakh as 10-time fine from them.

Mr Jain also disclosed that the officials had detected 1,111 ticketless passengers during January this year and recovered Rs 90,170 as penalty from them.

He further disclosed that the Transport Department had formed four `jhota flying’ in addition to the seven flying squads to check the Roadways buses for apprehending the ticketless travellers. This step, he claimed, had yielded substantial increase in the revenue.

Farmers block traffic

Traffic was held up by irate sugarcane growers on the Gohana-Meham road near Ahulana village, about 45 km from here, on Thursday in protest against the refusal of HAFED-sponsored sugar mill authorities to accept their produce and closure of the main gate of the mill.

According to a report, a large number of sugarcane growers from different villages had come to the mill for supplying their produce and the tractor-trolleys were lined up on both sides of the road. In the meantime, the officials of the mill closed the main gate and asked the growers to come from another gate the path of which was potholed and slushy. Thereupon, the farmers became furious and they blocked the traffic on the road in protest.

On receiving information, the officials of the mill and the police arrived on the scene and succeeded in lifting the blockade by reopening the main gate of the mill. Meanwhile, mediapersons of Gohana town have decided to boycott the official press releases in protest against the banning of journalists from entering the mill.

Polio surgery camp

The District Red Cross Society, the Jain Milan and Bhagwan Mahavira Viklang Sahayata Samiti, Delhi and Jaipur are jointly organising a one-day free polio corrective surgery pre-operative camp on the premises of the Shri Digamber Jain Mandir in the mandi area of the city tomorrow.

Mr H. C. Jain, General Manager of Haryana Roadways and convenor of the samiti, told mediapersons here today that the chairperson of the District Red Cross Society would inaugurate the camp.

Annual kirtan darbar

Shree Guru Tegh Bahadur Sewak Dal, Sonepat is organising its annual kirtan darbar on the premises of the gurdwara in Hem Nagar here tomorrow.

According to Mr Sardar Singh, secretary of the Sewa Dal, several ‘raagi jathas’ headed by Bhai Charanjit Singh, Bhai Sadhu Singh and Bhai Charan Singh Alamgir will take part in it. The programme, he said, would be concluded with Guru Ka Langar around midnight.

Auction for mining

The Haryana Mines and Geology Department will hold the annual auction of contracts for extraction of saltpetre bearing earth up to the period of October 31 from revenue estates of Jind, Kurukshetra, Kaithal, Panipat, Karnal, Hisar, Fatehabad, Sirsa, Bhiwani, Rohtak, Jhajjar, Sonepat, Gurgaon and Faridabad at the office of the Mining Officer at Jind on February 26.

Harassment alleged

Resentment prevails among a number of liquor contractors against the “harassment” caused to them by the officials of the Excise Department in the district. Some contractors alleged that the officials of the department had declined to make entry of their tenders till they get ‘nazrana’ from them.



Farmer-scientist meet to improve production 
Our Correspondent

Rewari, February 22
About 100 farmers of Rewari, Mahendergarh, Gurgaon and Bhiwani districts participated in a farmer’s meet held at the Krishivigyan Kendra (KVK) at Rampura on Thursday. Dr O.P.Dhankhar, Regional Director of the HAU station of Bawal, presided over the meet.

The farmers presented their problems pertaining to mobilisation of financial resources for higher crop production, marketing of pigs and medicinal plants and availability of improved breeds of piglets.

The farmers, who were addressed by the scientists, seemed quite satisfied by the answers to their questions. Dr Dhankhar and other scientists particularly emphasised the urgency of diversification of crops, cultivation of medicinal plants and adoption of integrated animal husbandry practices to enable the peasantry to increase its income.

Mr N. N. Pandey, a fisheries scientist, stressed upon the fact that the farmers should adopt fresh water pearl culture and ornamental fish-breeding, while Dr Kapoor Singh, Chief Training Organiser of the KVK, said that a ten day training camp in first-aid cattle-cure would be held at the KVK from March 11. Simultaneously, Mr R. K. Ahlawat, Deputy Divisional Manger of NABARD, apprised the farmers of the various schemes of NABARD that could benefit the farmers. As many as 18 trainees, who had received training in pig-farming from February 14 to 20 at KVK, were awarded certificates.



New phone numbers from March 1
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, February 22
The Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) has decided to introduce a new scheme for converting the telephone numbers of the subscribers from five digits to six digits covered by the SDCA exchanges at Kundli, Rai, Bahalgarh, Jakhauli, Murthal, Ganaur, Bhigan, Kharkhauda, Nahra and Mehlana with effect from the midnight of March 1.

Giving this information, Mr R. C. Hooda, General Manager, Telecommunications (GMT), Sonepat district, told mediapersons here today that the subscribers would have to add the number 3 at the beginning of the existing numbers from Kundli, Rai, Bahalgarh and Jakhauli exchanges whereas the figure 4 from Murthal, Ganaur and Bhigan exchanges. Similarly, the number 5 would have to be added from Kharkhauda, Mehlana and Nahra exchanges.

Sonepat city and Gohana town in the district, it may be recalled, had already been covered under the scheme and the subscribers are required to add the figure 2 and figure 6 from Sonepat and Gohana, respectively, at the beginning of the old numbers. All other exchanges would be covered under the scheme later on, he added.



LPG blast at beauty saloon
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, February 22
A minor LPG explosion was reported today afternoon in a beauty saloon in the Pratap Gali area of Paharganj. Fortunately, no one was injured in the blast.

The police said an electric spark from a refrigerator sparked the blast as there was leakage from an LPG cylinder kept in the kitchen of the shop.

According to the shopkeeper, the explosion had reportedly damaged windowpanes and some other glasses of the shop. Immediately after the incident, a team from CFSL was summoned to the spot. The Paharganj police have registered a case of negligence against the shop owner.



Sex racket: Four women nabbed
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, February 22
Four women were arrested on Thursday for allegedly running a racket in flesh trade in the Sat Nagar area.

Acting on a tip-off that a sex racket is on in the area, the Prasad Nagar police sent a decoy customer to trap the women. The police conducted a raid soon after and arrested the four women, including the chief operator of the racket.

The alleged chief operator, Usha Gupta (40), resident of Sat Nagar, along with other three women in their early thirties — Neha of Aram Bagh, Paharganj, Archana of Shakarpur and Neha Sharma of Maujpur — were taken into custody and booked under Immoral Trafficking Prevention Act. .

Drug traffickers held: The Anti-extortion cell of the Crime Branch has apprehended three members of an inter-state gang which was allegedly involved in trafficking illicit drugs in the Capital and neighboring states.

The police also seized 1 kg of fine quality heroine and 5.5 kg of opium worth Rs 1.25 crore in the international market from the suspects.

Acting on a tip-off that some drug peddlers were in Delhi to supply a huge consignment to an unknown customer, the police team stopped a Maruti van (DL-2C-G-0479) and arrested the three passengers — Vijay Kumar (42) of Model town-III, Ajay Singh (43) of Nirman Vihar and Anil Kumar alias Manoj (45) of Sonepat..

During interrogation, the accused revealed that they had been in the illegal trade for several years and procuring the stuff from a supplier, Wazir, resident of Mangolpuri. The police have launched a hunt to nab Wazir. The trio belonged to middle class families and entered the trade to make quick money. They had no criminal records against them prior to this.

Burglars nabbed: The North-West district police have arrested two persons in Bankner who were involved in a night burglary on February 14 at a garment shop in the Narela area. The suspects had reportedly stolen away cloth materials worth Rs 3 lakh from the shop after breaking open its locks on the night of February 14.

The duo, Salim (28) and Irshad (38), both residents of Panipat, are part of a five-member gang that had stolen the cloth and disposed it of in Bijnore in Uttar Pradesh. Both the suspects confessed to their crimes and disclosed that they stole ladies suits, shirts, and trouser pieces from the shop. They also disclosed the names of their associates — Habib, Sharif and Kalua who were involved in the burglary.



Gang of car thieves busted

Rohtak, February 22
With the arrest of three youths today, the Crime Branch of the district police claimed to have busted a gang of car thieves. The police also seized five cars which were stolen from places under the Rai police station and claimed that the gang had stolen 15 cars from different parts of the town so far. The arrested persons have been identified as Dharmender of Gohana, Pawan Kumar of Sonepat and Mohammad Yusuf of Meerut. During interrogation, the accused reportedly told the police that they used to sell the stolen cars after changing their registration numbers. They admitted that certain other members were also involved with them in this business. The police are conducting raids at the possible hideouts to nab the rest of the members of the gang. OC


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