Tuesday, April 2, 2002, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


UGC gives Rs 5 cr to PU
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
The University Grants Commission has sanctioned and released an initial grant of Rs 5 crore to Panjab University for developing a ‘Centre of Potential in biomedical sciences’.

This has been conveyed to Prof K.N. Pathak, Vice-Chancellor, Panjab University, by Dr Pankaj Mittal, Joint Secretary, UGC, in a communication two days ago.

The communication also says that the commission may, however, consider providing further funding for continued development of the centre in the future depending on the quality and quantity of inputs, the pay index, the excellence shown and the future vision and projection to be assessed periodically at the end of each academic year.

The communication recalled that Prof Pathak had been invited by the UGC to present his proposals to create an ‘Island of Excellence’ in any sector or emerging area in the university to provide a superior education of merit and distinction in line with the new developments and challenges both of present and future.

“You were kind enough to make presentation on behalf of your university on February 13, 2003, before the UGC expert committee in New Delhi.”

“Out of many proposals presented by you for consideration for an ‘Island of Excellence’, the commission decided to request your university to develop ‘Centre of potential in biomedical sciences’. This was done under your endorsement keeping in view the strength, achievement and acclaim already earned by your institution in this field. You are requested to develop this very specific area in terms of ‘excellence plus’. The UGC shall be providing the necessary inputs in terms of money and manpower to help the university to achieve and sustain the superior quality of education and research in this context. Due emphasis both on teaching as well as on reach in this specific field be given by the university.

You may consider starting the undergraduate courses followed by PG and research programmes in the said area. New degree programmes may also be considered with nomenclature not yet specified by the UGC. Such new degrees if launched shall be processed for UGC’s specification.”

“The governance, the admission criteria, fee charged from the students, recruitment of faculty and resource funding may well be made different in this area than the others if it becomes a necessity to attain the excellence. The flexibility and the liberty so granted shall be with the intention to focus an excellence as understood in the international context. The status of ‘Centre of potential in biomedical sciences’ is for a period of five years subject to the review and monitoring of your performance done every year by the UGC expert committee.”

“In case the performance of the university falls below the level of expectation, the status shall be withdrawn at any stage during the period of five years. The award of ‘Centre of potential in biomedical sciences’, however, may further be continued provided the excellence is sustained and improvements made as per the UGC’s expectations.”



Liquor licence rules amended
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
The Chandigarh Administration today issued a notification to amend the Punjab Liquor Licence Rules, 1932, in force in the Union Territory, Chandigarh. This is to incorporate the recently introduced changes in the liquor policy of the U.T.

These rules will be called the Punjab Liquor Licence (Chandigarh Amendment) Rules, 2002 and shall come into force with effect from April, 2002.

This allows L-4 retail vend of foreign liquor in a Hotel/Pub/ Restaurant having facility of 2 Star or above or gross turnover of Rs.50 lakh and above. L-5 for the retail vend of Foreign liquor in a bar hotel/pub/restaurant having facility of 2 Star or above or gross turnover of Rs.50 lakh or above.

All the L-4 and L-5 licencees shall get their supplies necessarily from the designated vend of L-2 licencee of the area. Each and every label of bottle of liquor, or bottled beer at L-4 and 5 premises shall have an identification mark of the L-2 licencee of the area. These L-4 and L-5 licencees shall maintain proper ledgers of supplies procured from the local L-2 vend. The L-4 and L-5 licencees shall be allowed to sell only that category of liquor, the landing cost of which is above Rs1000 per case, in pegs of 30 ml and 60 ml only. The condition of sale in pegs of 30 ml and 60 ml should not be applicable in case of wine. If any L-4, L-5 licencee is found to have procured supplies from an unauthorised source or found guilty of any malpractice, his licence would be cancelled, says the notification.



Pranksters caught them unawares
Monica Sharma

Fiery fool

At about 11 pm, just when the fire fighters were getting sure that All Fools Day had passed off peacefully, the calm of the night was shattered by the ringing telephone. The anonymous caller told the officials that a fire was devouring everything around it in Sector 40-D. The caller even gave his telephone number. But when the officials called up, they found that no one had called up the fire department from that number. Still, as a precautionary measure, a fire tender was rushed to the spot. Cops too were informed, but in the end the fire fighters realised that someone had played a "cheap trick".

Chandigarh, April 1
“For just Rs 1, I will reveal the secret of becoming a multi-millionaire,” screamed a college student in front of a CITCO stall near Arts College in Sector 10. As another student paid him the amount, the announcer whispered, “Do the same thing.... Anyway, do not mind, today is All Fools’ Day”.

Just as a resident stepped out of a nationalised bank in Sector 17, he saw a Rs 100 note lying on the ground. As soon as he bent to pick it up, the note moved forward. He tried again and again, only to encounter the same result.

After at least four unsuccessful attempts, the resident realised that the note was glued to a fine thread held by a bunch of school students. Hiding behind a pillar, they pulled the thread every time someone tried to pick the note.

In schools, pranks on the occasion of All Fools’ Day continued throughout the day.

Children sometimes asked their friends to look out for an imaginary bee or to be cautious of a teacher supposedly in a foul mood.

Even journalists were not spared. An early morning call by a colleague warned a reporter that he had missed a “big story” carried out on page one of a rival newspaper. After he scanned all newspapers one after the other, he was told on the phone once again that it was just a prank. Commoners were not the only ones made to appear stupid on April 1 — All Fools’ Day. Businessman and top executives became easy targets as well. If tricks were not played by their colleagues, their little ones kept calling them up in the office, at one moment in desperate tone and at the other telling them that their contention was just a joke.

All jokes, however, were not harmless. An executive, working with a multinational organisation, received an SMS to say that his wife had been admitted to a hospital with severe stomach problem. He rushed to the hospital only to find none of his relatives present there. Frantic calls at his residence revealed that someone had played a prank.

The message was later traced to a caller in Kullu. After several minutes of hard search, the original sender turned out to be his brother-in-law who was all set to scream, “April Fool”. One thing good about this year’s Fool’s Day pranks was that neither the police control room nor the fire department received any hoax call.



25 illegal structures removed
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, April 1
The Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) today resumed its anti-encroachment drive, which was launched in December last year in the Housing Board colonies in Sector 18, 15 and Sector 11. More than 25 illegal structures were removed in various sectors of the township today.

As many as 18 illegal structures were removed in Sector 18, including the authorities closing the illegal doors of business establishments here. In Sector 15, at least eight houses were demolished, while the HUDA authorities closed the illegal entry doors of five business establishments opening on the main road in Sector 11.

The HUDA staff was led by the Estate Officer and accompanied by a large police contingent led by the DSP Headquarters, Mr Jag Parvesh Dahiya, were leading the demolition drive. Officials from the district administration, a tehsildar, Mr Ashwani Sharma , was also present on the occasion along with members of the Enforcement Wing of Estate Office. The staff from the Housing Board was also accompanying HUDA officials during the anti- encroachment drive today.

In Sector 18, residents were more or less taken by surprise. Though a number of residents had heard that the drive could begin today, they were quite unprepared. They had reportedly been issued several notices by the HUDA officials for closing down their business establishments, but to no effect.

HUDA also sealed three booths in Sector 14.



Accident leaves trail of sorrow for victims’ kin
Tribune News Service

A number of patients of the ill-fated school bus, admitted at PGI today blamed the driver, Surinder Kumar, for the accident. One of the patients, Ms Shweta Singla, while talking to TNS said the driver of the truck, which the bus driver was trying to overtake when the accident took place, had signalled him not to overtake. “But the driver decided otherwise and the bus fell into the gorge. I have heard that he escaped with minor injuries and rushed off from the accident spot with his two children.”

It is learnt that the DSP, Nalagarh, is now contemplating asking the school management for documents to show the road worthiness of the school bus. A case in this regard will be registered only after the police has taken statements from the survivors of the accident and accountability will thus be fixed .

Panchkula, April 1
The place should have been bubbling with activity after a brief spring vacation today. Instead an eerie silence greeted the visitors to Springdale Public School in Sector 12 here. A notice outside the school reads that the school will now remain closed till April 7.

Friends and family members of Sharma's, who were running this primary school, rushed here on hearing the news of the bus accident near Barotiwala yesterday and prepared themselves to receive the body of 19-year-old Shaurya Sharma, younger son of the school Principal Ms Rewa Sharma.

Alongwith Shaurya Sharma, 25-year-old Archana Rangra and 35- year-old Shashi Kashyap (both teachers at the school) were killed when the school bus fell into a 250-foot deep gorge in Theodpura village, 10 km from Barotiwala, last evening.

Most of the Class III and Class IV employees of the school, had come here in the morning, oblivious of the tragedy that had happened last evening. One of the messengers said, “I was looking forward to the school re- opening today. The staff was very friendly and the Principal, though a strict disciplinarian, would ensure that working here was fun.” Mourning the death of two teachers and Shaurya, these employees prayed for the well being of the Principal who is still in a critical condition.

Ms Daisy, sister-in-law of Shaurya Sharma, informed that he was studying in B.I.M.T. First year at Patiala. “He was a fun loving person. He had come here for Holi and had extended his stay by two days in order to go on the picnic at our insistence. I wish no one had pestered with him to stay on. Even now, I feel this is just a bad dream and he would come in giggling through the door and say that he was playing a prank on us”, she says before breaking down again.

Most of the family members of the Sharmas were away to Nalagarh, where the body of the boy had been kept since yesterday. The body was brought here in the afternoon and later cremated here at Manimajra in the evening.

Heart-rending scenes were also witnessed at the Sector 4 residence of Ms Archana Rangra. Though she was the fourth daughter of the family, close relatives of the family say that she was very enterprising and was shouldering the entire responsibility of the household. Her father, Mr Gobind Singh Rangra, who had retired from the Punjab Irrigation Department more than 10 years ago was inconsolable.

Talking to TNS, the elder sister of the deceased, Ms Renu, said Archana had been teaching at the school for the past two years. She recalled her last few minutes with the deceased and said Archana was very excited about the trip. “Strangely, the night before the trip, she talked with me in great detail of her future plans and asked me to look after our parents while she was leaving for the trip yesterday morning,” she said.

Meanwhile, the body of the third victim, Shashi Kashyap, who had put in five years of service at the school, was taken to Delhi by her husband Mr Sunil Kashyap. The couple, alongwith their nine-year-old-son, Abhishek, had been staying in a rented accommodation in Sector 21 for the past six years.

Their landlord and neighbours remembered Shashi as a person full of life.



Need for dam on Ghaggar: Jacob
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
The Ghaggar river needs to tapped and a dam needs to be built on it near Panchkula as it is an immediate necessity. This will help tide over the drinking water problem of Chandigarh and its surrounding areas, said the UT Administrator, Lieut Gen J.F.R. Jacob (retd), while speaking at a meeting of the National Water Resources Council in Delhi today.

The Chandigarh Administration was willing to contribute its share of budget of the dam. Already Chandigarh has paid the Haryana Government a sum of Rs 99 lakh in instalments. Chandigarh, the General said, would be needing 380 cusecs water from this proposed reservoir, for drinking as well as irrigation purposes as against a provision of 208 cusecs in the project report on Ghaggar dam.

The General highlighted that Chandigarh did not have surface water sources as no river passed through the territory. Dependence to a large extent was on underground water sources, both for drinking and irrigation requirements. On account of increasing density of population of Chandigarh and full provision of sewerage, the requirement of water of the city was higher than in some other cities in the country. This had necessitated the use of surface water for drinking purposes and for this the water requirements of the city were being mainly met by bringing water from a distance of 28 km from Bhakra Main line canal, which was further supplemented by ground water through tubewells.

The requirement of water was increasing and for this surface water sources available in the adjoining Panchkula needed to be shared, General Jacob said, while stressing the importance of a dam on the Ghaggar. Water allocation needs of Chandigarh should be given priority, but so far no share of surface water had been allocated for its irrigation requirements.

On the national front the General demanded that conservation of water had been very appropriately included as an item in the policy framework. In Chandigarh, 5 million gallons a day of treated water was used for irrigation purposes, which could further be increased, if funds and required permissions to augment capacity was available. Simultaneously, many underground water recharge schemes were being implemented with assistance from the Central Ground Water Board.

The most important issue, however, was with respect to household consumption especially in the flush tanks. Chandigarh had started the scheme for replacing the existing flushes with flushes having smaller capacity, which would lead to substantial conservation of water, but was handicapped due to large amount of funds required on account of large number of government houses in the city. The Central Government, as a matter of policy. should supplement the efforts of the government/Local Bodies, wherever, such an initiatives were being undertaken.

The a provision for checking the degradation of water quality of the surface water was a must. Although there were provisions to check it through the Water Pollution Control Laws but the National Water Policy should also have a stringent provision to check the pollution of the sources of surface water. Chandigarh was already treating 30 MGD of sewage water, out of which, 10 MGD could be treated up to territory level. Another plant of 5 MGD capacity was under construction. In this context, the General said that the government and different institutions dealing with the use of water should be enabled both technologically and financially to treat the effluents before it was discharged into natural streams.



Four lions sent to Gujarat
Bipin Bhardwaj

Chhat Bir, April 1
To tackle the problem of excess lion population, the Mahendra Chaudhary Zoological Park today started its animal exchange programme by giving two pairs of lions to Gujarat. A pair of sulphur crested cockatoos — an Australian bird — was received by the zoo authorities.

Being a hybrid ones, no other zoo was coming forward to take the animals.

The Chat Bir zoo authorities claim to have saved a sum of Rs 4 lakh annually after having sent six animals to the Sayaji Bagh zoo, Vadodra, in Gujarat. In addition to this, the authorities have made more space for the lions and the bears and introduced a pair of exotic birds — sulphur crested cockatoos.

The lions and the bears were caged after being tranquilised and were loaded in a truck to deport them to the Sayaji Bagh zoo in Vadodra.

Mr Gurinderjit Singh Sandhu, Secretary, Forest and Wildlife Department, Punjab, inspected the animals and asked Dr. Vinod Sharma, Chief Warden (Zoos), Punjab, about their health and age. Later he also took a round of various enclosures and cages.

He than handed over the keys of the cages — containing animals — to Dr C. B. Patel, a veterinary doctor of the Sayaji Bagh zoo.

Dr Sharma, said that two pairs of lions — Kala (six), Surbhi (four and a half), Bhola (one and a half), Sheela (one ) — were gifted to Gujarat while a pair of bear — Raja (6) and Rani (5) — was exchanged with Sulphur Crested Cockatoos.

With this deal the number of lions and bears have reduced to 72 and 18, respectively. While the sulphur crested cockatoos had added to the zoo attraction, added Dr Sharma.

It may be recollected that the Chhat Bir zoo had got a pair of lions from the Junagarh zoo in Gujarat in 1978.

Dr Patel, revealed that the Vadodra zoo, would exhibit the cubs and would not let them breed as per the guidelines of the Central Zoo Authorities (CZA). ‘‘The zoo is already having nine aged lions there. Himalayan black bear would be the attraction of visitors in the Sayaji Bagh zoo’’, he added.

He said that the sulphur crested cockatoos were successfully breeding in the Vadodra zoo and hope so in the Chhat Bir zoo too.

For the convenience of visitors the zoo authorities have put up 30 benches and 20 additional dustbins.

In addition to this an interpretation centre, equipped with a TV set, VCD player to educate the visitors the behaviour and habits of the animals, has also been set up in the museum near the main gate.



Army-media understanding essential for war coverage
Pritam Bhullar

DURING our Army’s deployment for Operation Parakram in December-January last, some of the newspersons started giving out operational moves of formations and units which was objected to by the Army authorities. The result was that strict instructions were issued in the Army not to disclose anything concerning operations to the media.

What the mediapersons need to understand is that war coverage is different from peace time coverage. In the former, the secrecy of operations, interest of the country, morale of troops and morale of the public cannot be sacrificed for the sake of objective reporting. And it is here that professional interests of a journalist often clash with professional interests of a solider. A solution to this problem has to be found by developing a good understanding between the media and the Army. For, national interest and security of the country cannot be jeopardised for the sake of factual reporting.

Defence coverage cannot be compared with any other coverage. It is, therefore, essential that defence correspondents get proper training to understand the intricacies and sensitiveness of this coverage. The experience of this writer of the “defence correspondents courses” at Mhow and “media communication courses” for senior Army officers at the Indian Institute of Mass Communication, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, at which he has been delivering lectures, shows that these courses, besides training both sides, have gone a long way in creating a better understanding between the Army and the media.

Diplomacy and soldiering

No doubt, diplomacy helps in every profession. But in soldiering, you cannot afford to be a diplomat at the cost of calling a spade a spade.

A few days ago, the Public Accounts Committee of the Parliament (PAC) demanded phasing out of old fighter aircraft MiG Variants, because a large number of them had met with accidents. The committee also recommended the immediate induction of the Advanced Jet Trainer (AJT) for the training of pilots to fly supersonic aircraft.

The Chief of Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal S. Krishnaswamy has reacted to the PAC’s recommendation by saying, “No pilot of mine is flying an unairworthy combat aircraft in the IAF fleet”. Undoubtedly, no one knows better than the Air Chief about the combat worthiness of his fleet. But then, what does he attribute the high rate of MiG-21 accidents to? For, which he has categorically stated that there was not even one unairworthy aircraft in the IAF, he has observed complete silence on the induction of the AJT on which the government has been dragging its feet for almost two decades.

Perhaps, the Air Chief felt that by saying that the absence of the AJT was the main cause of these accidents would not go well with the government. Admittedly, this is the reason why the powers-that-be are not much concerned about the loss of precious lives of hundreds of young pilots and aircraft. And this is the reason why the armed forces are getting a raw deal from the government.

Adopt buddy system

A number of suicide cases of cadets at the Indian Military Academy (IMA), Dehra Dun, have come to light in the past few years. The latest one occurred on Marcy 23, when cadet C.M. Devia was found hanging from a ceiling fan in his room. Our selection system, which is on the same lines as that in Germany, is considered foolproof to assess the mental make up of a candidate by the psychiatrist.

Granted that the error of judgment cannot be ruled out in an odd case. But then why is this “error” on the increase now? There can only be two reasons for this. One, an unsuitable candidate gets selected due to someone’s influence. Two, such cadets are harassed to an unbearable extent.

What all this boils down to, is that there is a deterioration in the selection and management system. Notwithstanding this weakness, a remedy can be found by introducing the good old “buddy system” among the cadets on the same lines as it used to be prevalent in the Army.

Buddies were formed on the basis of ethnic affinity, language and liking between each group or two jawans in a unit and sub-unit, so much so that they lived and worked together like close friends, wherein each of the two jawans in a buddy knew everything about the other. This not only gave an indication of any untoward happening on the part of one comrade to the other but also forestalled it because of early warning.



Steps against corruption a positive sign’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
Members of the People’s Action Front (PAF) and the Association for Social Action (ASA) at a joint meeting held here today appreciated the recent steps taken by the Punjab Government in cleansing the state administration of corrupt practices through prompt and bold action against the highly placed public men.

Prof Joginder Kaushal, President, PAF, and Mr S.Likhi, a former IPS officer and President of ASA, in a joint statement said the present government in Punjab had got the people’s mandate on the strength of mainly two election promises— eradication of corruption and providing efficient administration. They hoped that the crusade would continue and heads of the departments would be held accountable for all corrupt practices found in the departments under their control.

Both the voluntary organisations also appreciated the concessions given by the Punjab Government to the police personnel facing charges for fighting against the terrorists.

The People’s Action Front and the Association for Social Action condemned the recent incidents of violence in Gujarat that had resulted in loss of life and property on a massive scale.

They held the BJP government responsible for the carnage in Gujarat and sought immediate dismissal of the Modi government.



'No indication of new petrol prices’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
Petrol and diesel prices in the region will remain static even as the Administered Price Mechanism (APM) was dismantled and new pricing regime was enforced across the country from today. Mr T.S. Sahni of Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited said: “There is no indication of new prices.”

After dismantling of the APM the price will be more or less linked to international crude prices. Oil companies were to fix the price and a meeting in this regard was held in Mumbai yesterday, according to sources in the oil sector. Following this meeting it was expected that a new price would be announced. It was being speculated that the price would come down, however, a spurt in the international crude prices during the past few weeks also triggered a fear that prices may actually go up. The Government of India has said it may be forced to cut on import duty to keep the prices within the existing range.

Meanwhile, the secretary of the Chandigarh Petroleum Dealers Association, Mr Amanpreet Singh, said the issue had created a confusion. “The price will remain same even if the price of crude oil fluctuates a little”, he added.



Scientist on peace mission
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
An employee of a Kolkata’s premier scientific institute has undertaken an all-India cycle expedition to spread the message of peace.

Mr Shyamal Das, who left Kolkata in January, plans to cover all 39 laboratories of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR)laboratories to take the message to the scientific fraternity in the country as well as improve relationship between laboratories.

Mr Das has come to the city in this connection. He visited the Central Scientific Instruments Organisation (CSIO)as part of the network.

A technician for 16 years with the Biomembrane Division of the Institute of Chemical Biology, Mr Das plans to complete his expedition by May 25 covering 150 km per day.

The cyclist’s message through expedition is to symbolise hard work for scientific achievements.

He has already visited laboratories in Hyderabad, Jamshedpur, Nagpur, Goa, Pune, Bhopal and Pilani apart from the city.

Mr Das will now leave for the Institute of Petroleum, Dehra Dun, and then Delhi, Lucknow, Dhanbad, Durgapur, Jadhavpur and Kolkata, among other places.

He was felicitated by the staff of CSIO, Chandigarh.



Student ends life
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
Failure in Class VIII examinations reportedly led to a 14-year-old Palsora resident committing suicide in the afternoon today. Sonia, who consumed poison after learning that she had not been able to make it in the examinations, died at the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research at about 5.10 pm.

According to sources in the Police Department, Sonia was alone in the house when she took the extreme step. Her brother had gone out to run some errand and learnt about the tragedy on his return.

Sources add that Sonia, after learning that she had failed, returned home from school and allegedly consumed “celphos” (aluminium phosphate). On realising that she had consumed poison, her parents rushed her to the Civil hospital in Phase VI in SAS Nagar from where an attempt to wash her stomach was made. But when her condition deteriorated, she was referred to the PGI at about 2.30 pm.

Her father Rattan Chand and brother were accompanying Sonia in the PGI when she breathed her last.



God can be realised, says Vilayat Rai
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, April 1
“We read, recite and chant hymns of holy scriptures but forget that the great masters and prophets who wrote them sought the world to follow and act upon them,” said Vilayat Rai, a learned scholar of Sant Nirankari Mission, while addressing a congregation.

‘’ It is a matter of great blessing to be born as a human being, but this uniqueness is attached not with mere birth but with the actual achievement of the purpose for which this opportunity has been provided,’’ added Vilayat Rai.

He further stated that prophets like Lord Rama, Lord Krishna, Sant Kabir and ten Gurus had to seek God realisation through their contemporary Gurus. Actual knowledge is the essence of true religion and forms the bedrock of humanism.

The local zonal incharge of Sant Nirankari Mandal, Mr Kesho Ram, said a countrywide exercise was being undertaken to inject spiritual awakening among children and youth to groom and mould them as ideal citizens of the world.



Teenager dies in hospital
Our Correspondent

Dera Bassi, April 1
Mystery shrouds the death of a teenager who died at the Civil Hospital, Ambala, yesterday.

Police sources said the deceased, Chaman Lal (19), a resident of Meera Mali Mohalla was admitted to a local hospital when his health deteriorated suddenly.

A tailor, Chaman Lal was rushed to the Civil Hospital, Ambala, where he died.

After registering a case, the police has sent the body to the Civil Hospital, Rajpura, for post mortem.



MC employee detained in car
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
An enraged visitor to the Empire Store parking lot in Sector 17 here today held a Municipal Corporation employee captive in his car for a little while.

Mr Sukhbans Singh driving a vehicle bearing registration number PB 32C-4252 when asked for taking a parking slip, refused to take it despite agreeing to pay the parking fee.

When Corporation employees in the Empire Store parking lot insisted to give him a parking slip apparently to blunt the allegations that they were not issuing parking slips, Mr Singh drove away but was stopped by those holding a rope.

This infuriated Mr Singh who caught one of the employees holding the rope and locked him in his car for few minutes, eyewitnesses said.

Mr Singh refused to recognise any of the municipal employees and asked them to show their identity card. Surprisingly, only one of the employees had a card.



Decision hailed
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
The joint action committee of financial institutions against paid parking hailed the decision of the Municipal Corporation to exempt government employees from the parking fee here on Monday. “The Municipal Corporation has given a relief to employees in a high living-cost era,” observed the committee at a meeting held in Bank Square. The convener announced that a society against repression and injustice to citizens would be formed.



Four Tribune employees retire
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
Mr Manohar Singh, Deputy Manager (Personnel), Mr D.V. Joshi, Assistant Press Manager, Mr Bhajan Pal Singh Sodhi, Senior Bromide Paster, Mr Rachha Ram, Time-Keeper, Tribune group of publications, retired yesterday after putting in 38, 42, 18 and 36 years of meritorious service, respectively.

A warm send-off was today given to them by their colleagues and the management staff. Among others Mr R.N. Gupta, General Manager, and Mr O.P. Arora, Additional General Manager, lauded their services to the institution and wished them a happy and healthy life.



Tribune employee bereaved
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
Mrs Vimla Dhall (60), mother of Mr Sandeep Dhall, Asstt. Computer Engineer in The Tribune, died at the PGI here today following a prolonged illness. She is survived by her husband, two sons and a daughter. She was cremated at the Manimajra crematorium. Her cremation was largely attended.



Another accused in fake currency racket held
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
The Chandigarh Police today arrested a third person reportedly involved in a fake currency racket unearthed in the city yesterday. The accused, 25-year-old Rashid, alias Guddu, was brought here from Sarsawa near Saharanpur by a special team of the Operations Cell this evening.

In addition, another resident of Sarsawa, Samir Sharma, was also arrested in this connection by the Uttar Pradesh Police. A total of Rs 5 lakh in fake currency notes have been recovered from their possession.

Following the interrogation of two accused, Mohammad Hassan and Javed, who were arrested by the local police yesterday, a special team of the Operations Cell raided the residence of Rashid in Sarsawa and recovered Rs 3 lakh in fake currency along with some poll campaign material from his room. The haul included 395 fake notes of Rs 500 denomination and 1025 fake notes of Rs 100 denomination. Rashid has told the police that he got into this business because of a debt of Rs 5 lakh, which he had to repay.

The local police, accompanied by personnel of the Uttar Pradesh Police also raided the premises of Samir and recovered Rs 2 lakh in fake currency along with a scanner, a colour inkjet printer, paper, coloured inks and 39 computer printer cartridges. Samir runs a screen printing press in Sarsawa and used to put fake water marks and other security signs on the fake notes.

Police say that the accused had managed to print fake currency notes totalling about Rs 9 lakh so far. Notes denoting about Rs 6 lakh have so far been recovered while the remaining amount is yet to be recovered.

Since the printing press is located in Sarsawa, a case against Samir has been registered there. The accused have been booked under sections 467, 468, 471 and 489 of the Indian Penal Code. The police is also probing their links with various other dealers of fake currency and further arrests and recoveries are expected.

Jeep knocks down scooterist: A resident of Sector 5, Umesh Chand, was injured after his scooter was hit by a jeep near ISBT, Sector 17. He has been admitted to the General Hospital, Sector 16. The police has arrested the jeep driver, Satyawan, a resident of Panchkula and registered a case.

Car stolen: An employee of a Sector 46 taxi stand, Desh Vir Singh, has reported that a client stole an Indica car (CH-01-T-1300) from the stand. Desh Vir Singh, a resident of Mohali, has stated that Neeraj, whose address is not known, hired an Indica car from the stand on March 23 and drove it away himself. He did not return the car. The police has registered a case of breach of trust.

Booth broken into: Sector 46 resident Ram Bansal has reported that his booth in Mauli Jagran was broken into and cash amounting to Rs 50,000 was stolen. A case has been registered.

Scooter stolen: A resident of Ropar, Harmit Singh Sandhu, has reported that his scooter (HR-49-7864) was stolen from Sector 32. The police has registered a case.



Man crushed under road-roller
Our Correspondent

Panchkula, April 1
A person was killed while two others sustained injuries in two separate accidents in the district in the past 24 hours.

According to police sources, Chhote Lal (30) was crushed to death by a road-roller near Old Panchkula.

A case under Sections-279, 304-A, 201 and 120-B of the IPC has been registered against the accused on the complaint of Mr Vinod Kumar, Sarpanch of the Ghaggar village.

In another case, a resident of Kakkar Majra village sustained injuries on his leg when a tractor hit him near Bagwala rival. The police has booked tractor driver, Jagdish, a resident of Kakkar Majra, under Sections 279 and 338 of the IPC.

A resident of Sector 15 sustained injuries in an accident involving a car (CH-01X-6640) and a scooter (CH-01-2080) near Nursery Chowk in Sector 19. A case has been registered with Sector 15 police station in this regard.



Industrialists welcome Exim policy
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
The recently announced 5-year export import policy will provide a major boost to the exports in the country, feel the industrialists here.

According to the PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the thrust that has been laid on agro products is a timely move. Removal of quantitative restrictions , fiscal incentives for industrial units in the country and other measures to encourage exports would help the economy as a whole “, said Mr Beant Singh. He said the emphasis on agriculture sector was the need of the hour and being an agrarian country the emphasis on this sector would also prove to be beneficial for other sectors also. However, he emphasised on the need for proper implementation and said the government should not hesitate in taking more policy decisions in this regard if required.

He said the chances of heavy duties on imports were not likely to stay for long as other economies might take steps in this regard. “With countries like China having become members of the WTO , the country will face stiff competition in the coming days and the export import policy would be specially effective”, he said.

Welcoming the measure of simplification of procedures, the Chamber of Chandigarh Industries stated that manufacturing and engineering exports are expected to get a fillip and the special thrust given to the cottage and handicraft sectors shall help this otherwise neglected sector.

However, more relaxations to facilitate the flow of raw materials and inputs to the exporting small scale sector should be allowed, said Mr A.L. Aggarwal. He said steps like subsidy up to say 50 per cent once a year to single entrepreneur in case of air travel tour for exporters, reimbursement of air fare in case of participation in international trade fairs and easy loan facility from private banks were required .

The Chandigarh Chamber stated that in case of small scale units which were exporting engineering products and main products of iron and steel and had their units far away from the ports, relief in freight payments need to be provided.

Availability of cheap foreign funds at globally competitive rates and the move to provide transport subsidy on export of products, including vegetables, fruits, poultry etc, have also been welcomed by the local industrialists.


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