Thursday, March 21, 2002, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S


Cops tying loose-ends
Natasha mystery will be cleared in two to three days: Police chief 
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 20
The police today claimed that it would clear the mystery surrounding the death of Natasha Singh in the next 48 hours. They were in the process of tying up some loose-ends. However, senior police officers were still reluctant to confirm whether it was a suicide or murder. The statements of some of the close friends and the report of the viscera will determine the outcome of the investigation into the mysterious death of Natasha Singh, a senior police officer told the NCR Tribune today. The viscera has been sent to the CFSL and it will take at least 72 hours to get the report of the analysis.

The Police Commissioner, Mr Ajai Raj Sharma, told media persons that it appeared to be a case of suicide and promised that the mystery would be cleared “in the next two or three days.” The media accosted Mr Sharma on the sidelines of the Indo-British conference on policing here.

Natasha Singh (31) was found dead on Sunday and her body was discovered on the terrace garden of a hotel in South Delhi; the police initially hinted at murder. But after the post-mortem the officials veered around to the view that it was a suicide.

Though two autopsies have been conducted, and both concurred that she died due to injuries sustained in the fall, senior police officers said that it did not necessarily mean she committed suicide. She could have been pushed off from the hotel’s rooftop.

A senior police officer, justifying the initial confusion and registering of a case of murder, said that they suspected murder after detecting three puncture-marks on the back. “Doctors were present at the murder scene and they also thought that she was shot and then pushed from the rooftop,” he added. Contrary to this, the autopsy report indicated that her bones had fractured and pierced the skin, creating the puncture marks. “This was because of the impact of the fall,” the officer explained.

The police are now trying to ascertain why Natasha Singh went to the hotel late on Saturday night and who were the people she met there. Over the past three days, they have questioned about 20 people, including her estranged husband Jagat.

“We are trying to find out whether she came to the hotel with someone and was taken to the terrace, from where she was thrown, or she was in a depressed state and committed suicide,” said the senior officer. The officer added: “We have questioned the hotel staff. But still we cannot say whether she was alone at the hotel.” A professional photographer, Natasha Singh, who was cremated on Tuesday, lived in the Greater Kailash area where she had rented an apartment after she got separated from Jagat a year ago. Her flashy lifestyle, rocky nine-year marriage to Natwar Singh’s son and her subsequent involvement with company executive Vinay Kapoor were subject of considerable speculation, further confounding the investigations.

The autopsy confirmed that she was drunk and the police are verifying whether she had taken tranquillisers before she died. “We found a half-empty liquor bottle and a few wrappers of anti-depression tablets.” The police were also intrigued that a bottle of whiskey was found while it was confirmed that she normally preferred gin and vodka.

The police have been trying to determine Natasha Singh’s state of mind in the days preceding her death. “Some of her friends told us that she was cheerful and full of beans, but others said she was depressed,” the officer said. The officer said that Natasha Singh’s friends and her husband had received mysterious SMS messages from her cell phone on the fateful morning. The statements of some of the close friends and the report of the viscera will determine the outcome of the investigation into the mysterious death of Natasha Singh, a senior police officer told the NCR Tribune today.

The viscera has been sent to the CFSL and it will take at least 72 hours to get the report of the analysis.



‘Papa will set things right’ syndrome afflicts 
super brats
Tribune News Service



Nitish and Natasha, Jessica: Pointers to a trend?

New Delhi, March 20
As Delhiites recover from the shock of the sensational death of Natasha Singh, questions are being raised about the rising crime graph among the rich and the powerful of the city. The glitterati, ably assisted by some sections of the media, have assumed a celebrity status, and the high society dos are quite often the talking point of many a roadside discussion.

Amid the din of the casual atmosphere of five-star hotels and the blaring music of discotheques and bars, however, a disturbing trend is now emerging, where the rich and the powerful are being involved in daring crimes – sometimes as victims but often as accused.

Flush with funds, influence and bravado that “papa will set things right”, the scions of the rich and powerful families are becoming a policing nightmare for the Delhi Police, laments a senior police officer who has seen the trend over the last few years.

The murder of Kunjum Budhiraja, the Shivani Bhatnagar murder case, the BMW incident, the triple murder case of Personal Point, the Naina Sahni ‘tandoor murder case’, the Jessica Lal shooting incident, the death of Anju Illyasi, the death of Nitish Katara and now the death of Natasha Singh are all pointers to this trend.

Senior Delhi Police officers here admit that enforcing the law and order among this class of people is a cause for concern. “These persons are children of influential people and wield clout in the government,” an officer said.

The Delhi Police have often borne the brunt of public cynicism for the poor conviction record in such cases. “Most of these cases would have been solved by now, but for the influence wielded by those involved,” an officer said.

Delhi Police officers said that large sums of unaccounted black money are primarily responsible for the rise of “you don’t know who I am” syndrome prevalent in the so-called “five-star culture”.

“The police are helpless if the witnesses and the kin of the victims turn hostile. There is no concrete evidence, but it may not be wrong to assume that moneybags change hands during the course of the investigation. The prosecution naturally gets weakened,” the officer said.

Observers say that the genesis of the ‘five-star culture’ can be traced back to the Asian Games of 1982. “Now partying out is more of a norm and less of an unwinding process. Otherwise how would one explain the mushroom growth of party clubs,” an old-timer said.

Perhaps, the exposure to western culture through the 24-hour television channels and tips from the Internet and the general erosion of the family ties with utter lack of supervision have contributed considerably towards this trend, several psychologists contacted by the ‘NCR Tribune’ claimed.

“The information boom has its own attendant evils and they have to be nipped at the lowest levels. Schools should play an important role in imparting values to children. The high costs of economy have only added to the problems as parents themselves struggle hard to keep up with the Joneses at work place,” a social psychologist said.



MCD polls: Akalis are testing waters
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 20
For the rival Akali factions, little is at stake in terms of seats in the forthcoming civic polls. However, the vote share in the municipal wards they are contesting would be a good indicator of which way the Sikh voters would swing during the Gurdwara elections.

While the Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal), which has an alliance with the BJP, is contesting on the “Lotus” symbol, the pro-Tohra group, Shiromani Akali Dal Delhi, has decided to go all alone and is contesting on the “car” symbol. Though the Akalis have sizeable influence in more than two dozen wards, they are contesting from six wards only.

The Akalis of the Badal faction in the fray for the MCD polls are: Gurmeet Singh (Nizamuddin), S S Sandhu (Sewa Nagar), Tarjeet Singh Nagi (Geeta Colony), Paramjit Kaur (Tilak Nagar) and senior party leader Onkar Singh Thapar (Pratap Nagar).

The Akali candidates put up by the SAD (Tohra group), Delhi, are: Ms Rajinder Kaur (Tilak Nagar), Harjit Singh Jaggi (Partap Nagar) and Kulwant Kaur from Raghubir Nagar. The Badal group had asked for 10 seats, but the faction had to settle for only five seats as the BJP did not accede to their demands. The SAD (Badal), which controls the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee, also debated the idea of contesting on their symbol “Scales”.

The party, however, decided to contest on the BJP symbol as the candidates’ poor performance would not only affect the SAD’s prospects in the gurdwara elections but also dent the party’s bargaining power in the assembly polls scheduled to be held in the next 18 months. Senior members of the DSGMC, which is headed by Mr Hit, had expressed reservations about the SAD-BJP ‘’alliance’’ for the MCD polls, saying their party itself ‘’had made a mockery of the term’’. ‘’Technically, one has to resign from the party to contest elections on a different symbol. Then, where does the question of an alliance arise? It is as simple as leaving one party and joining the other,’’ a senior DSGMC Executive member said.

However, the SAD Delhi, which had expressed its willingness to align with the third front or the Congress on certain conditions, has been forced to go all alone in the polls.



BJP digs up criminal records
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 20
As campaigning draws to a close ahead of Sunday’s civic elections, the rhetoric has got shriller with both the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress trading charges and counter-charges.

The BJP on Wednesday accused the Congress of fielding candidates who had more than one First Information Reports (FIRs) registered against them with various police stations in the Capital. Producing a list of 21 Congress candidates with criminal records, Leader of Opposition in the Assembly Prof Jagdish Mukhi accused the Congress of patronising individuals who had allegedly committed such heinous crimes as rape. Recalling the “Tandoor” murder case in which a Youth Congress activist was allegedly involved, the BJP said the mysterious death of senior Congress leader Natwar Singh’s daughter-in-law Natasha was one of many instances that highlighted the party’s “orientation.” Joining issue with the BJP, Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee (DPCC) President Subhash Chopra said BJP’s remarks on Natasha Singh’s death were not in good taste. The Congress, he said, would not “stoop so low” as to hit below the belt. Referring to the charge of fielding candidates with a criminal record, Chopra said most of the cases were politically motivated. Recalling the Election Commission guidelines, he said a candidate was innocent unless proved otherwise.

Congress Spokesperson Mukesh Sharma said the announcements of dearness allowance to government employees and pay scale for teachers were in violation of the code of conduct as was his earlier announcement relating to rentals of shops in some of Capital’s markets but, he continued, the Congress would not press the matter further in the interest of the beneficiaries. He said the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) candidate from Ward No 131 had joined the Congress. Meanwhile, BJP National President Jana Krishnamurthy addressed party workers at a meeting convened on Wednesday evening.

The civic polls, he said, were important as they were being held in the nation’s Capital and exhorted them to turn out in large numbers on Sunday. Union Minister of State for Railways O Rajagopal also joined in the campaigning.



A case of fence eating the crop
Ravi S.Singh
Tribune News Service

Gurgaon, March 20
The police in Gurgaon seem to have taken a leaf from the book of land sharks and poached upon the government land in the city where there is a high premium on the real estate.

The Improvement Trust, whose premises have been encroached upon by the police on Khandsa Road to set up a ‘chowki’, is helpless in the face of the law-enforcing agency. The Trust has asked the police department several times to vacate the place but in vain. It is a typical case of the fence eating the crop.

In the last correspondence, the district police chief told the Trust that the presence of chowki on Khanda Road was necessary to check the rising crime in the area.

However, he promised that the department would vacate the premises as soon as it got a suitable accommodation. The assurance had been given about five months ago.

The insiders in the Trust said that the police occupation of the premises has caused huge financial losses to the organisation. It cannot dispose of the premises.

Besides, the collateral loss has been through the depreciation in the market value of the shops near the premises. The Trust got a negative public response to its plan to auction eight shops adjacent to the premises. The reason for the lack of interest in the public to buy the shops was obviously the fear of police personnel.

The sources said that as the members of the Trust, including its Chairman, are private persons, they do not want to push the matter hard with the law-enforcing agency. Second they have already pleaded with the guardians of the law a number of times but of no avail. In any case, they are not sure of the kind of support they would get from the influential local leaders of the ruling Indian National Lok Dal (INLD).



Advocates assault cops in court complex
Our Correspondent

Ghaziabad, March 20
Two constables, who were investigating the theft of a motorcycle in the district court complex, were assaulted by three persons. The trio tore the uniform off the policemen and helped the youth, detained for interrogation, escape with the bike on Tuesday.

A report has been lodged against three persons, two of whom are advocates.

Anurag Gupta of F-Block in Shastri Nagar under Kavi Nagar police station area had parked his bike in the court. After a while when he came back, he found his bike missing. He immediately informed constables Salekchand and Gajender at the police post in the court complex.

Both the constables started checking the bikes at the main gate of the court complex. As they stopped a motorcyclist and asked him to show the papers of the vehicle, three persons descended on the scene and assaulted the constables.

They beat up Salekchand and Gajender, tore off their uniforms and helped the youth escape with the bike. The constables have named two advocates and the youth who sped away on the bike in the FIR. They have registered a case of assault on the government officials on duty, tearing off their uniforms, interfering in the performance of government duty and abetting the thief to escape with the stolen bike.



ASI gets lifer in dowry case
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 20
Taking strong exception to the conduct of a law enforcer who turned into a lawbreaker, a Delhi court today sentenced to life a Delhi police official and his son in a dowry death case. “Accused ASI Lekh Ram is in the police department and he was supposed to be the guardian of the law but went on to behave like a devil,” the Additional Sessions Judge S N Dhingra observed while sentencing the police official and his son, Paramvir, for the murder of his pregnant daughter-in-law Pramila.

Judge Dhingra said, “Accused persons do not deserve any leniency. They perpetuated cruelty on the victim continuously for four months for not bringing sufficient dowry”

“Being in the police department, he misled the police and stood in the way of proper investigation,” the court observed. The complaint filed by the mother of the deceased had alleged that her daughter was murdered by her in-laws four months after here marriage in July 1997 as her family was unable to fulfil the demand for a car. The victim was living with her husband and father-in-law. The complaint also alleged that the accused had misled the family and the police about the circumstances of the death as the autopsy report had confirmed that she was strangulated and died of asphyxia. The court also took strong exception to Lekh Ram’s story that two persons had come home with Pramila and after they left she was found murdered under her bed.



Drunken cop sprays bullets

New Delhi, March 20
An Assistant Sub Inspector (ASI), who in an inebriated state created panic by firing several rounds with his service revolver in the Krishna Nagar area of East district on Tuesday evening, was suspended today by higher authorities of the Delhi Police. Though nobody was injured in the firing, the Deputy Commissioner of Police, Mr Arvind Deep, has ordered an inquiry into the incident. Residents of the area informed the local police at about 10 pm that a drunken man was roaming around the area intimidating people. Police control room personnel reached the spot and tried to control the person. The suspect allegedly fired several rounds and created panic. TNS



Noida, Ghaziabad fail to attract fresh investments
Lack of infrastructure, amenities cited as reasons
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 20
Lack of infrastructure facilities in western Uttar Pradesh, especially Noida and Ghaziabad, has impeded industrial growth in the region, industrial representatives of the apex industry body, the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), said here today.

Subsidies and other forms of allurement no longer matter to the industry captains in their decision to direct fresh investment. To attract fresh investments, the state government must improve the infrastructure and living conditions in the area and improve the quality of life offered in these townships, industrialists taking part in an interactive discussion organised by the CII said.

“The government started out with providing subsidy in almost all the sectors but that was just a temporary solution. Subsidy cannot be a substitute for infrastructure,” said an entrepreneur from Noida.

Development and growth of a state or a country were dependent on its industry and emphasis should be given to providing infrastructure for its development, he said.

The representatives urged the administration to co-operate with the industry to develop the potential in the state and expound the areas of advantage for them to follow.

Even though the western region, including Noida, Ghaziabad, Sahibabad and Greater Noida Industrial Area, has close proximity to the Capital, investments were not forthcoming because the state government was not playing a “pro-active role”, they said. These issues had been pending from a long time and they remained un-addressed, they added. Infrastructure had to be made attractive for investors, especially foreign companies, to invest in Uttar Pradesh, they pointed out.

The state administration, represented by the District Magistrates of Noida and Ghaziabad, Noida Export Processing Zone (NEPZ) Development Commissioner and Greater Noida Additional Chief Executive Officer, assured the members of all assistance in helping the industry in the state.

Mr Deepak Kumar, District Magistrate, Gautam Budh Nagar, said the district administration had taken steps to counter the law and order and labour problems staring the industry. He assured the industry that the administration was fully geared to handle issues like transport unions, labour unrest, waste disposal, roads etc.

Mr Kumar said the administration would work closely with the industry to provide stable law and order conditions in the district.

Meanwhile, the District Magistrate of Ghaziabad, Mr Debashish Panda, said the district administration had taken a number of industry-friendly initiatives on various issues of concern to the units in the district. A few focused core groups had been formed on the areas of concern with industry representatives.

Mr S. K. Mishra, Development Commissioner, Noida Export Processing Zone, said with an area of 310 acres, it was the highly export oriented area. The export from the area had increased from Rs 550 crore in 1995-96 to Rs 1,034 crore in 2001. He said Uttar Pradesh had contributed more than 25 per cent of exports of the total EoU exports from the entire northern region.

Over 150 industry representatives from Noida, Ghaziabad, Sahibabad and Greater Noida, Software Technology Park of India and Noida Export Processing Zone attended the interactive session.



No new CGHS dispensaries in NCR
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 20
The Central Government Health Services (CGHS) dispensaries are already functioning in the cities of Ghaziabad, Gurgaon and Faridabad where CGHS beneficiaries are given OPD treatment. In addition to this, private hospitals have been recognised under the CGHS where the beneficiaries can get various medical procedures and tests after the prescribed procedure, Minister of State for Health A. Raja informed the Lok Sabha today.

However, the question of authorising private medical attendants under the CGHS did not arise as the beneficiaries can get treatment through the CGHS dispensaries, the minister said.

He also informed that it was not possible to open more CGHS dispensaries in Ghaziabad, Gurgaon and Faridabad at present, as there were constraints of manpower and resources. He was answering a question on whether most of the central government employees have opted for private medical attendants or hospitals due to the non-availability of CGHS dispensaries in the NCR.

On whether the government was aware of the wrong blood transfusion cases in the hospitals including the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), the minister said that so far, there had been no such reports in the central government hospitals like Safdarjung, Ram Manohar Lohia, AIIMS, LHMC and associated hospitals. He said that the procedure under the Drugs and Cosmetic Act, 1940 and the rules made thereunder for quality assurance were being strictly followed in blood banks of the central government hospitals and AIIMS to avoid the cases of wrong blood transfusion.

He said that there were no plans to set up any computerised blood bank in the Capital now. Many blood banks in Delhi and rest of the country had some aspects of their operations computerised for their more efficient functioning, he informed.

Mr Raja said that the ministry had appointed a Chief Medical Officer, CGHS dispensary, Jawaharlal Nehru University, as the enquiry officer to look into the “prevailing” irregularities in the Unani Wing of CGHS. The enquiry officer had already given the enquiry report and it was under examination.

Replying to another question, he said that the Government of NCT of Delhi had informed that a Centralised Accidents and Trauma Scheme (CATS) was started under the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in 1984. It was taken over by erstwhile Delhi Administration in 1989 and had been smoothly functioning since then.

At present, there were about 35 ambulances operating from various points located all over Delhi with the central command and control for effective monitoring and deployment. The Sushrut Trauma Centre under Lok Nayak Hospital is good for basic life support and advanced trauma life support for trauma victims and functions round the clock. Apart from this, another trauma block had been established in the Guru Tegh Bahadur Hospital.

Meanwhile, Minister of State for Small Scale Industries Vasundhara Raje Scindia said that the total number of complaints received at the Prime Minister’s Office pertaining to Delhi from January 1, 1999 to December 12, 2001 was 25,883. These complaints, inter alia, related to unemployment, service-related grievances allotment of flats, plots, complaints against police officials, and other public servants, unauthorised constructions and encroachments.



Road modernised in record time
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, March 20
The work for the widening and modernising of the 56-km-long road between the inter-state Yamuna bridge and Gohana town (National Highway No. 11) has been completed in a record time of one year. The Deputy Commissioner told mediapersons here today that the work was carried out by Messrs KNR Constructions Limited, Hyderabad (Andhra Pradesh) and the company had given a guarantee for six months. Any defect developed in the construction work would be removed at its own cost.

He disclosed that the state government had spent a sum of Rs 11.81 crore on this work and the district administration had expressed satisfaction at the use of material and timely completion of the work. He also denied that the road had developed cracks on account of use of sub-standard materials. The DC also disclosed that the width of the road from Sonepat to Gohana had been increased from 5.50 metres to seven metres and it had helped in the smooth flow of traffic.

He said that the quality of the material used in the road was being examined at the Hot-Mix Plants Laboratory at Sonepat and Karnal. This followed a series of public complaints received by the district administration in this regard.

According to the DC, the state government has allocated a sum of Rs 67.70 lakh for 35 development works in 24 villages falling under the jurisdiction of Sonepat Assembly constituency of this district. The Chief Minister, Mr Om Parkash Chautala, announced the launch of these works during the second leg of his tour under Sarkar Aap Ke Dwar Programme in the state.

The villages selected are: Shahzadpur, Lehrara, Jahri, Bayyanpur, Chitana, Naina Tatarpur, Kilorad, Mahra, Mohana, Bhatana Zaffarabad, Hulehri, Khizarpur Jat Majra, Salimpur Trauli, Pinana, Barwasni, Bohla, Juan-II, Bhatgaon, Qumashpur, Murthal, Sandal Kalan and Sandal Khurd. The DC disclosed that the district administration had taken a series of steps to complete the work on the priority basis.



Huda to regularise basements in markets
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, March 20
The Haryana Urban Development Authority (Huda) has decided to regularise the basements developed in various market places in urban sectors here. However, only those basements will be regularised which were constructed before June 2001, and the applicants will have to pay a penalty for this. According to the administrator’s office, for basements developed under the main booth area, the owner will have pay a fee at the rate of Rs 1,000 per square feet while those developed under SCO (shop-cum-office) and shop-cum-flat (SCF) schemes, will have to deposit Rs 2,000 per square feet.

While the development of basements in Huda markets is illegal, several shopkeepers have built such basements in several markets. The Huda officials last year had announced their decision to ‘close’ all the basements and impose a penalty; however, the move could not materialise as many affected persons went to court. As the matter is still pending in the court, the Huda authorities have thought of the aforesaid scheme to tackle the problem; moreover, this move will earn a handsome revenue to the department. According to a survey carried out by the department, illegal basements had come up in at least 558 booths and 136 SCFs before June last year.

The Administrator has now decided to regularise those booths which are not embroiled in litigation. About 390 basements have come up in corridors of the market, which will have to pay the fine to get regularised, but on certain conditions laid by the Huda, said an official.



1,300 bitten by stray animals in Faridabad
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, March 20
Dogs, pigs and monkeys here bit at least 1,300 persons in the past 11 days. They were given anti-rabies treatment at Bhadshah Khan civil hospital here. The menace of stray animals has alarmed the people who simply do not know how to tackle with the situation.

The administration on its part says all the stray animals including pigs, dogs and monkeys will be caged and sent to a distant place. The team deputed caught three pigs here on Tuesday.

According to figures and estimates, the industrial town spread on over 2,750 square kilometres could have about two lakh stray dogs and pigs at present.

Besides, hundreds of monkeys and cows have been present in various localities. A prominent school in Sector-17 here had recently taken up the issue of monkey menace with the district authorities.

The school had pleaded for caging of all the simians posing a danger to the residents here.

Since March 9, the civil hospital has recorded 1,300 animal bites. There are cases which are simply not reported to civil hospital as many of the victims prefer to take treatment at private clinics.

According to details, the civil hospital had 79 cases on March 9, 170 on March 11, 180 on March 13, 172 on March 14, 185 on March 15, 180 on March 16, 184 on March 18 and 150 on March 19. The most affected localities include Sanjay Colony, Dabua Colony, Parvaitya Colony, Old Faridabad, Chawla Colony, Ballabgarh and several villages located in the municipal limits and outside it.



Computerised centres for power complaints
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, March 20
The Uttar Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam (UHBVN) has set up the computerised complaint centres in different parts of the city for a speedy redressal of the grievances of the power consumers. Mr R K Gupta, Superintending Engineer Operation of the Sonepat circle of the UHBVN told mediapersons here today that the centres had started functioning in the Suraj Steel, Gohana Adda, Circle Office, Mini-Secretariat, Kumaharan Gate, Bahalgarh, Garhi Brahmanan, Old Power House, RRI Bahalgarh, Sector 14 and the power house at Fazilpur.

Every complaint centre has also been allotted code numbers which are as follows: Suraj Steel (1101), Gohana Adda (1102), Circle Office (1103), Mini Secretariat (1104), Kumahran Gate (1201), Bahalgarh (1202), Garhi Brahmanan (1203), Old Power House (1301), RRI Bahalgarh (1302), Sector 14 (1303) and Power House at Fazilpur (1304).

He disclosed that the consumers have to dial telephone numbers 251420 or 244772 and after the beep, they are required to press 0 digit for Hindi and 9 digit for English for registering their complaints.

The facility to know about the action taken in the previous complaints has also been provided, he added.



Army recruitment camp on April 15
Tribune News Service

Panipat, March 20
An army recruitment camp for aspirants from Panipat district will be held at Hisar Cantonment on April 15. Besides, another camp will be held for the wards of ex-servicemen and widows on April 16. To be organised by the Branch Recruiting Office, Rohtak, the camp would be held for recruitment into the soldier (general duty), soldier (technical), nursing assistants, clerks and storekeeper.

Police diary: The police have registered 58 cases under the Excise Act and recovered 12 bottles of IMFL, 67 bottles and 1,080 pouches of illicit liquor during the current month. Besides, 870 kg of ‘lahan’ has also been seized.

According to the SP, Ms Mamata Singh, 1.5 kg opium was seized and a case under the NDPS Act had been registered during he period. She said nine cases had been registered under the Arms Act and eight country-made pistols and 9 live cartridges recovered. As many as 61 persons had been booked under the Gambling Act and Rs 29,782 recovered from them.

The police also registered five cases of looting and recovered Rs 33,000 of the looted Rs 1.40 lakh. Similarly, Rs 23,700 of Rs 2.74 lakh looted was recovered in 11 cases of burglary. Thirty-three theft cases were solved during period and Rs 2.3 lakh of the stolen Rs 5.62 lakh was seized, the SP added.

10-year jail term: The Additional District Judge, Mr Manjit Singh, today sentenced Matia Bai, a resident of Rajasthan, to 10 years’ imprisonment and a fine of Rs 2 lakh in a case against her under the NDPS Act.

It may be recalled that the accused was held by the police from the local bus stand and about 3 kg of opium was seized from her about two years back. She would undergo two years’ additional imprisonment in default of the fine.

PNDT panel meet: A meeting of the district-level committee constituted under the PNDT Act 1994 was held here today under the chairmanship of the Civil Surgeon, Dr D. P. Arora. Dr Arora informed the meeting that all ultrasound clinics in the district had been registered. And with a view to creating awareness about the Act, a conference would be organised at the Bal Bhavan here on April 5, Dr Arora added.



Police nab elusive undertrial prisoner
Our Correspondent

Rohtak, March 20
The police arrested an undertrial prisoner, Pramod, who had recently escaped from the police custody, from the Gandhi Camp area on Tuesday evening. According to police sources, the Sampla police had arrested Rajender and Pramod on the charge of stealing electricity cables. Pramod had managed to escape by “pushing away” the cops at a busy roundabout when he was being taken to jail after producing him in a court.

It is learnt that the police had received information that Pramod, a drug addict, would certainly visit the Gandhi Nagar area to purchase drugs. It is pertinent to mention here that the Gandhi Nagar locality has established as a drug market in the town.

Clinic in the dock

The Pre-natal Diagnostic Technique (PNDT) Advisory Committee has suspended the registration of a clinic in the town in view of the complaints of sex determination tests conducted by the clinic. A decision to this effect was taken at a meeting of the committee held under the presidentship of the Civil Surgeon, Dr K. K. Ranjan, on Tuesday evening. The members of the committee inspected various registered clinics in the town and directed the doctors concerned to strictly adhere to the rules and regulations.

Seminar on JP

The Department of Rural Development of Maharshi Dayanand University will organise a seminar on ‘Relevance of JP at this juncture’ on March 22 on the occasion of the birth centenary of Jai Prakash Narain.

Noted political analyst Yogender Yadav of the Centre for Study of Developing Societies in Delhi would be the key speaker in the seminar.

Convocation held

The annual convocation ceremony of Government College at Bahadurgarh was held here today in which 285 graduate and postgraduate students were conferred with degrees. Mr D. K. Chugh, principal of Government College for Women, Faridabad, was the chief guest on the occasion.

Thirty-two students were awarded with Roll-of-Honours for their distinctions in the fields of studies, sports and cultural activities. Out of total 285 students, 198 were arts graduates, 13 commerce (honours) graduates, 27 commerce (pass) graduate, 11 science graduates and 36 were postgraduates. Ms R. C.0 Marvah, principal of the college, presided over the function.

Eye camp

As many as 150 eye operations were conducted at a special camp organised at Bhadshah Khan civil hospital here with the help of the Vaisya Samaj. About 40 persons were operated upon on Tuesday alone. The team of doctors was led by District Eye Surgeon Dr Ravinder Mathur.

51 autos fined

About 51 autorickshaws were challaned by the police on Wednesday for not meeting the traffic norms. The district administration has launched a drive to check plying of illegal autorickshaws in the town.

Copying cases

Members of the flying squads constituted by the Board of School Education Haryana carried out surprise raids on a number of examination centres, including those in Bhawar, Ahulana, Mohana, Butana and Dubeta villages, and detected 11 cases of using unfair means by the examinees appearing in the middle standard examinations, which began on Tuesday. According to a report, large crowds of toughs and anti-social elements were seen moving outside the examination centres violating the prohibitory orders enforced by the District Magistrate banning the assembly of five or more persons and carrying of firearms within the radius of 200 metres around the examination centres.

It is also alleged that the policemen as well as the staff of the examination centres were in league with the outsiders in rendering help to the examinees and smuggling answer notes inside the examination halls.

HVP rally on April 6

The Haryana Vikas Party (HVP) is organising a rally on April 6 in the city to protest against the “anti-people” policies of the ruling INLD. Mr Rajiv Jain, general secretary of the HVP, told mediapersons here today that the rally would be addressed, among others, by Mr Bansi Lal, former Chief Minister and supremo of the party, and Mr Surinder Singh, former MP and the general secretary of the party.

Dowry death

The police have arrested two persons, Rajpal and Sanjay, both brothers, of Khewra village in connection with the dowry death registered against them on the complaint of the father of Sunita who had set herself and her children afire in their house on March 7. According to a report, the number of arrests made by the police in this connection has risen to three now. The husband of the victim was held earlier.

Polio camp

As many as 150 operations were performed by a team of doctors at the anti-polio operation camp organised jointly by the District Red Cross Society, the Jain Milan and the Bhagwan Mahavir Viklang Kalyan Samiti, Jaipur-Delhi here on Tuesday. According to Mr H. C. Jain, General Manager of the Haryana Roadways and the convenor of the samiti, a similar camp would also be organised between May 8 and 15 in the city.



L-G reviews election arrangements

New Delhi, March 20
Lieutenant-Governor Vijai Kapoor, who reviewed the preparations for Sunday’s Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) elections, has directed the 35 poll expenditure observers to keep a watch on the election processes and the police to launch a drive in slums to check trade and consumption of illicit liquor and bootlegging. Meanwhile, the Government of NCT of Delhi has declared six days from March 22 through March 29, with the exception of March 26 and 28, as dry days.

The Lieutenant-Governor also directed the MCD to effectively remove posters and plastic buntings from public property. These decisions were taken in today’s meeting of Mr Kapoor with the Election Commissioner, other officials of the Election Commission and Delhi Police.

The elections to the 134-seat MCD would be held on March 24 while counting will take place on March 27. TNS



Woman held for Rs 60 lakh fraud on bank
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, March 20
The CIA wing of the local police has arrested a woman from Ropar district in connection with a fraud of Rs 60 lakh, inflicted on the Oriental Bank of Commerce (OBC) here last year.

The accused, identified as Karamjit Kaur, had allegedly opened an account in the OBC in the name of Darshan Kaur and drawn the amount in an illegal manner. One of her relatives is also stated to be involved in the crime. The accused and her relative had also opened accounts in bogus names at a bank in Mohali to stash away the money. The Punjab Police has also booked a case, in this regard.

The Faridabad police, which had visited Punjab at least five times in this connection, had failed to arrest her. she was nabbed from Thanola village in Ropar district on Monday night. She was living with her brother-in-law.

The police had launched an investigation into the fraud on the basis of an FIR lodged by the Chief Manager of the OBC at NIT police station here on November 21 last. The court has sent her to police remand.



Husband booked for woman’s suicide
Tribune News Service

Panipat, March 20
The Model Town police have registered a case against four residents of Binjohl village on the charges of forcing a married woman, Sarla, into suicide for not bringing enough dowry.

According to the police, those booked were her husband Suresh, father-in-law Jai Singh, mother-in-law Ratni, and brother-in-law Jagdish.

Sarla’s family alleged that she was forced to end her life on Tuesday night when harassed by the in-laws to bring a motorcycle and more money for starting a business.

Sarla and her sister Neelam, residents of Ramra Samaspur village in Sonepat district, were married to real brothers — Suresh and Dilbagh — on April 2 last year.

However, within a few months of the marriage, Sarla was harassed for bringing more dowry and money, the family alleged.

The Mahila Mandal, Sonepat, had also tried to intervene to sort out the matters but in vain. A case under Section 304-B of the IPC has been registered.



Four forge DDs to dupe loan aspirants
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 20
With the arrest of four persons, the Delhi Police today claimed to have busted a racket in forging bank drafts and seized five such drafts, Rs 40,000 cash and a computer.

The suspects were identified as Mukesh Nigam, prime suspect, his associates Ajai Yadav, Ajai Verma and Javed. They were arrested from different areas of the Capital. The suspects used to cheat innocent victims by posing themselves as finance consultants and offering to help them getting loans from the banks. They used to take five per cent commission of the total amount of the loan, the police said.

The racket came to light when they gave drafts for Rs 15 lakh of Punjab National Bank to a retired Air Force officer. For that, they took Rs 75,000 from him as commission. When the officer went to the bank to get it encashed, he was told that the drafts were forged.

He reported the matter to the Special Cell of the Delhi Police which arrested the suspects after making thorough investigation of the case.

During interrogation, the prime suspect, Mukesh, disclosed that he had cheated several people in Delhi and Uttar Pradesh. He used to read the newspapers and meet the people who wanted loans from banks and finance companies. He used to open offices in any area and would close them after cheating the people there, the police said.



Man held for raping, murdering minor
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 20
The South district police arrested a sweeper for raping and murdering an eight-year-old girl on Monday (March 18) in a jungle in Ambedkar Nagar.

The accused, Kamal Kumar (20) of Dakshin Puri, lured the minor girl, a class 2 student, to a nearby jungle and raped her. After that, he killed her by hitting her head with a stone.

The police said that the girl was reported missing from Monday night and an FIR was registered in Ambedkar by her parents.

Preliminary investigations revealed that the girl was last seen with Kamal Kumar who was working as a sweeper in Nehru Place.

On sustained interrogation, the accused confessed to the crime and the police recovered the body and the stone, which was used for killing the girl.



No clue to abducted youth

Ghaziabad, March 20
The police have not been able to trace the youth kidnapped from Sahibabad police station area since February 24. A ransom of Rs. 6 lakh has been demanded. The kidnappers are reportedly in touch with the family of the youth, it is learnt. The kidnappers even asked the family to deliver the ransom amount in a railway station building, but they failed to turn up, possibly because they feared that the police had been sounded. The police, apparently, had surrounded the building, which in turn alerted the kidnappers. Later, the kidnappers threatened to kill the youth in a letter sent to the family through a child. Manoj Sharma, 20, son of Ram Avtar Sharma, left Arthala colony for his factory near Mohan Nagar check post on February 24 and did not return. The family came to know that he never made it to the factory. To make matters worse, for three days the police took no action. But on February 27, a phone call informed Ram Avtar Sharma that his son had been kidnapped and that he should arrange for a ransom of Rs. six lakh for his release. OC



2 held for running satta

Sonepat, March 20
The police have arrested two persons, Surinder alias Mahasu and Ramesh alias Tori of Devipura Gohana, and seized Rs 6,500 they had allegedly stolen from some shops and temples. The Superintendent of Police, Mr Paramjit Singh Ahlawat, told mediapersons here today that both the culprits, during interrogation, had confessed that they had broken the locks of some shops and temples at Gohana and looted the cash from there. A case of theft has been registered against them and further investigations are in progress. He also disclosed that the police also arrested a youth, Mukesh, of Kot Mohalla here on the charge of satta (gambling) and recovered Rs 210 and other articles used for the crime. A case under the Gambling Act has been registered against him. OC


Ravi Sinha new CII state council chief

New Delhi, March 20
The CEO and group head of SRF Ltd, Mr Ravi Sinha, has taken over as the Chairman of the Delhi State Council of the Confederation of Indian Industry. He succeeds Mr Ajay S. Shriram, chairman and senior managing director, DCM Shriram Consolidated Ltd.

Mr Sinha, a mechanical engineer from Dayalbagh College of Engineering, Agra, joined SRF Ltd in 1968 as a senior management trainee. In 1994, he was appointed deputy managing director on SRF’s board and the managing director in 1996. He was re-designated CEO and group head in 2000.

He is responsible for introducing strategic planning in the SRF Group. He was also responsible for the setting up of the auto electrical project and the refrigerant gases project. He supported the government in successfully obtaining financial compensation under Montreal Protocol for the Indian refrigerant gas industry. Mr Sinha is also the chairman of CII’s national committee on chemicals and petrochemicals. TNS


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