Friday, May 17, 2002, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S


Two die in yet another market fire
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, May 16
At least two persons were killed, three others injured and electrical goods and appliances worth lakhs of rupees destroyed in a fire which ravaged at least a dozen shops on the ground and the first floor of the busy Bhagirath Palace in Lajpat Rai Market near Red Fort in the walled city today.

The deceased were identified as Piyush and Pappu. Their bodies have been sent for a post-mortem examination.

The firemen battled with the flames for over two hours before the blaze was brought under control. In all, 25 fire tenders were rushed to the spot after a call was received around 11.40 a.m. This is the third incident of fire in less than two months in the area.

The injured were rushed to a nearby hospital and discharged after first aid . They were not seriously injured. There was considerable panic in the area as the shopkeepers ran to safety and others tried to save as many goods as possible.

The traffic around the congested electrical goods market was also diverted, resulting in chaos all around.

According to the Delhi Fire Service, the fire broke out at 11.40 a. m. in Shop No. 208 and soon spread to other shops. While the cause of the fire is being investigated, preliminary reports suggest that it could have been caused by a short circuit in an air conditioner.

Fire Service officers at the spot said that the fire was a medium one and their initial attempt was to prevent it from spreading to other areas in the congested commercial area. The fire tenders had some problem reaching the spot because of the narrow approach roads. They had to lay extra hoses to douse the flames.

While the fire was brought under control after two hours, some areas continued to smoulder till late in the afternoon. The affected shopkeepers claimed that they were yet to assess the damage which could run into to lakhs of rupees. Bhagirath Palace is one of the largest storehouses of electrical and electronic goods in the country.

In another incident, a minor fire broke out in the Kailash Colony house of the union law minister, Mr. Arun Jaitley, early this morning. The Fire Brigade said that the fire was confined to the generator set in the house and it was extinguished within minutes by four fire tenders which were rushed to the spot.



MCF digs into PF kitty to buy ACs
Bijendra Ahlawat
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, May 16
Has the fund-starved Municipal Corporation, Faridabad, used the PF contribution of its employees to pay off the dealers of air-conditioners. It seems so. The corporation, which is the largest civic body in Haryana, purchased air-conditioners worth about Rs 5 lakh recently. And the poor staff’s PF money was used to make the payments, according to reliable sources.

It is alleged that the corporation failed to deposit the PF amount collected from the salary of the staff for the past six months, according to the sources. The MCF, which is still to clear a sum of at least Rs 30 crore towards the payment of the contractors and for the arrears of the staff on account of increased wages, has purchased several ACs for its conference hall.

However, the amount towards the payment has been released from the PF contribution which ought to be deposited in the account of the employees. Some of the amount of the PF contribution has also been used to clear the pending payments of some of the contractors.

It may be recalled that the MCF owed around Rs 15 crore towards contractors by the end of last month and several cheques issued by the corporation to the contractors had bounced at the time of payment.

The corporation has about 4,800 employees and their PF contribution amounts to about Rs 17 lakh a month. But the employees alleged that although the PF was being deducted from their salaries every month, the corporation instead of remitting the amount to their account, had been using the money for other purposes, including clearing the payments to the parties.

“We are not getting the slips regarding the deposits made for our PF contribution for about past six months,” said an employee.

It is stated that the 10 ACs have been fitted in the main conference hall of the MCF, where a meeting is held after every two months. Some of the employees also alleged that the bills of contractors were released on ‘priority basis’, as certain officials received some commission on the payments made.

The MCF had also arranged for the loan schemes from various banks in the past to enable its staff purchase refrigerators, motorcycles or other consumer durables on the monthly instalment schemes.



DVB snaps power supplies to Kalindi Kunj
Syed Ali Ahmed
Tribune New service

New Delhi, May 16
The power connection of Kalindi Kunj, a picnic spot developed and managed by the Irrigation Department of the Uttar Pradesh Government, was disconnected by the Delhi Vidyut Board on Tuesday morning for non-payment of bills for the last few months, much to the chagrin of the late night visitors seeking relief from the sweltering heat.

However, the power supply to this popular picnic spot, nestling between Delhi and Noida, was restored the next day following a solemn promise by the Irrigation Department officials that the dues would be cleared by May 25.

The Irrigation Department did not pay the power supply bill of Rs 6 lakh after repeated reminders by the DVB. The official concerned of the DVB met personally the officials of Kalindi Kunj and Executive Engineer of Irrigation Department, S.K. Shivalia, who reportedly did not pay any attention to the clearance of dues, a senior official of the DVB said.

He also reminded the authorities concerned — the irrigation department of the UP government in Lucknow – about the dues but no reply came to the DVB. Eventually, power supply of Kalindi Kunj was disconnected.

The Executive Engineer of DVB (Nizamuddin Zone), R.C. Upadhyay, said that the Irrigation Department of the UP government had to pay the power supply bill of Kalindi Kunj for the last three months. When the power connection of the picnic spot was disconnected on Tuesday, a few senior officials approached the DVB for restoring the power supply and promised that dues would be paid within 10 days. Following the assurance, the DVB restored the power supply till May 25.

If the dues are not paid by May 25, the power connection will be disconnected for good, he said.

The Executive Engineer of the Irrigation Department was not available for comment.

Sources in the Irrigation Department said that dues were not paid due to the internal politics of the department and political changes in UP. The dues were not paid when the BJP government was at the helm. Now, the case has been placed before the new government led by Bahujan Samaj party leader Ms Mayawati.

The Irrigation Department has to pay Rs 2.5 lakh to the DVB, but for the last three months it has defaulted on the payment. The total amount, which the Irrigation Department had to pay, is Rs 20 lakh. About Rs 14 lakh has been paid and the balance would be paid within a few weeks, he said.

An official at Kalindi Kunj said: “The funds for maintaining the park and for other works come from Lucknow. Sometimes there is delay in securing the money from Lucknow. This time the delay in payment of DVB dues is politically motivated,” he said.

“We earn enough money from visitors at Kalindi Kunj to maintain the park. The average number of visitors per day at Kalindi Kunj is 700. The ticket for adults is Rs 15, while for children it is Rs seven. The rate for film shooting is Rs 20, 000. Besides, if a visitor goes to the park with video camera he has to pay extra amount of Rs 150 and for an ordinary camera Rs five only. Apart from this, most of the visitors come in their own vehicle. For parking a car, one has to pay Rs 15; for a scooter, it is Rs five only. The Irrigation Department daily from Kalindi Kunj.

There is no need to wait for funds to arrive from Lucknow to maintain the park and pay electric dues. The money earned from the picnic spot is enough to maintain it, the sources said.



With the lid off Sidhu scam, DSGMC 
polls get murkier
R. Suryamurthy
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, May 16
As the countdown for the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee polls begins, the ongoing disclosures in the multi-crore Sidhu scam are casting their shadow on the Capital’s scene with rival Akali factions firming up respective strategies either in defence or against it.

While the pro-Tohra Shiromani Akali Dal Delhi is jubilant with the opening of the Pandora’s Box, resulting in the linking of Mr Parkash Singh Badal’s name with R S Sidhu, the Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal) is accusing the rival faction of joining hands with the Congress.

Reacting to reports of Mr Badal writing letters and having telephonic conversations with the Prime Minister for securing a berth for Punjab Public Service Commission chief, Mr Ravinderpal Singh Sidhu, in the Union Public Service Commission, the president of Shiromani Akali Dal Delhi, Mr Paramjeet Singh Sarna, said: “The nexus between the Akali leader and the scam tainted Sidhu has now been exposed.” He, however, added: “I feel sorry that Akali Dal’s name is being tarnished…’’

Stating that his party would raise the issue of corrupt practices in Punjab and Delhi during the DSGMC polls, Mr Sarna said: “It is high time that people with a moral standing fight the polls and take control of the Sikh religious body.”

On the other hand, the general secretary of the SAD (Badal), Mr Kuldip Singh Bhogal, dismissed the “Badal letter issue” as Tohra-Congress conspiracy with vindictive designs. Mr Bhogal said, “As the Tohra group did not fare well in the Assembly polls in Punjab, it is trying to malign the Badal faction. The people in the state have rejected the Tohra faction, even though they played up the corruption issue there. Similar would be the fate of the party here.”

Mr Bhogal said the party is preparing a list of misdeeds during the tenure of Mr Sarna as the DSGMC chief and would ask the electorate to question the Tohra faction about the misappropriation of Sikh institutions’ funds. With each passing day, the tone is likely to get shrill with each party planning to wash the contestant’s dirty linen in public.

Observers here are questioning whether the elections to religious institutions should be contested in the midst of such slanderous allegations. Some observers and intellectuals have suggested that there should be a rethink on the election process as the ‘first-past-the-post’ method is unlikely to elevate the DSGMC to any great heights. Some have suggested the need for setting up an Electoral College.



Power dues: Small fry in net, big fish get away
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Panipat, May 16
It is official now. The power bill waiver scheme announced by the Haryana Government to recover the outstanding dues from the defaulters has evoked a lukewarm response in the district, if official figures are to be believed.

In the wake of poor response to the scheme, the government has now decided to extend the last date for depositing the dues to May 31. According to officials figures, till Wednesday, the original last date, 7,243 defaulters had deposited Rs 1.79 crore as against a total outstanding amount of over Rs 30 crore in the two divisions — the City Division and the Sub-Urban Division. (The category-wise figures were not available from the official sources.)

And this is despite the tall claims by the Deputy Commissioner, Mr Mulk Raj Anand, that the scheme had been a “big success” and the people in large numbers were thronging the Electricity Department to deposit their outstanding bills. Though the people may be rushing to the power offices to deposit the bills, the number of defaulters depositing the “big amount” had not been reflected in the total collections. And this was one of the reasons why the last date had been extended, sources said

Sources conceded that the collections had been poor though a large number of consumers had “benefited” from the scheme. Poor collections point to another disturbing factor. It has been only small consumers who have paid up while the big fish continue to elude the department’s net. What action, if at all any, would be taken against the big defaulters is anybody’s guess. A circular of the department warns that the connections of defaulters would be disconnected if they fail to pay up by the due date (May 31).

The sources alleged that a part of the blame must lie with the current INLD government, led by Mr Om Prakash Chautala, for the massive arrears in the state. Before the INLD came to power about two-and-a-half years ago, it had allegedly instigated the farmers not to pay the electricity bills as they would be waived when the party came to power. The party did come to power but power consumers, mostly farmers, continue to wait for the waiver scheme. In the process, the power bills continued to rise giving the government many a sleepless night.

And with the power sector reforms becoming the talk of the town and power scenario in a shambles, the state bureaucracy came up with the scheme, which asks the consumers to pay 25 per cent of the arrears and pay 50 per cent in installments. However, the scheme has evoked lukewarm response in several parts of the state. This is despite the best efforts of the district-level officials. The officials had been highlighting that the money deposited by the defaulters would be spent on the overall development of the village.



CNG supply to MUL cut to meet Delhi’s needs 
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, May 16
The Indraprastha Gas Limited (IGL) has cut the CNG supply by 50 per cent to Maruti Udyog Limited to meet the current requirement of public transport in Delhi. IGL supplied the gas to Maruti to be used for captive power generation, Lok Sabha was informed today.

To meet further requirement of CNG, supply to other industries may also be curtailed in due course, Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas Santosh Kumar Gangwar said in a written reply.

Indraprastha Gas Limited plans to achieve the total CNG compression capacity of 16.11 lakh kg per day by June next year by opening more CNG station and acquiring compressors of higher capacity, Gangwar said, adding the present capacity of IGL was approximately 6.39 lakhs per day. CNG was supplied to vehicles only and not to industries, he said, adding the price of CNG in Delhi was Rs 16.83 per kg.

At present, the total demand of CNG was approximately 135 lakh kg per month in National Capital Territory of Delhi, Gangwar said in reply to another question and added that the supply of CNG presently was adequate in relation to demand.

The Delhi Police have informed that out of total 278 number of fatal accidents involving heavy transport vehicles in 2001, 113 accidents happened during night hours, Rajya Sabha was told today.

Drivers found violating traffic rules and regulations can be prosecuted by the enforcement agencies of the state government for various categories of offences under provision of Motor Vehicles Act, 1988, and Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989, Minister of State for Road Transport and Highways B C Khanduri said in a written reply.

Driving licenses can also be revoked/ suspended/ cancelled, he said, adding further, the introduction of smart card based driving licenses was also expected to act as a check.

Railways have authorised ticket booking at Ring Railways in Delhi to various private contractors, said the Minister of State for Railways, Mr O.Rajagopal

IBP has approved two proposals relating to the reconstitution of retail outlets in Delhi in the month April, Gangwar said. No proposal for dissolution of partnership during the month of April was received by IBP, he added.

LPG distributors are under instructions from the Public Sector Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) to undertake mandatory inspection of LPG equipments at the customer’s premises once in two years for safety purpose, Gangwar said.

For the purpose, they are authorised to collect Rs 25 as inspection charges, the Minister said, adding the complaints received from consumers regarding forced sale of hot plates and other spare parts, were being investigated by OMCs. On receiving the complaint, action against the erring LPG distributor was taken in terms of Marketing Guidelines (MDG), 2001, he said. 



There’s no place for this village in Sonepat’s scheme of things 
R. D. Sapra

Sonepat, May 16
Kailashpur, a tiny village on the outskirts of this city which came into being about 90 years ago, is yet to find a place on the map of Sonepat district. According to a report, the village, which is inhabited by Kashyap, Rajput (Jheewar) biradari, has a population of only 400 persons and most of the residents are illiterate.

Of them, only one person, Tara, is working as a `gardener’ in the office of the Haryana Urban Development Authority (Huda) of this city. While Sector 15 of the Huda is on one side of the village and Rewli village on the other, the village of Garh Shahjahanpur is situated on its third side and the Sonepat-Murthal road on its fourth side.

Some residents recalled that their ancestors had worked as agricultural labourers with the Muslim farmers before Partition. The Muslim farmers had given about 10 acres of land in 1912 for the construction of huts and houses and they had handed over all the documents of this land to them before they left India after Partition. But they failed to get the entry of this land in the revenue records because of illiteracy.

After Partition, this land was allotted to the Punjabi migrants from Pakistan and the original residents of this village had not put any claim of this land even after 30 years of Independence. With the increase in the population of the village, the aged persons distributed the donated land among others for the construction of houses, leaving only enough space for building streets.

However, some property dealers and influential persons instigated the residents of nearby Rewli village to grab the land. However, they failed in their repeated attempts because of the stiff resistance by the land owners, and the members of the gram panchayat. On some occasions, the residents of Rewli village had made the claims to this land and tried to grab it but they could not do so as the wards of the original inhabitants became educated and they succeeded in getting ration cards and including the names of their parents in the voters’ lists.

Many residents also pointed out that they did not recall that they had exercised their franchise in the village itself. At the time of elections and voting, they have to go either to Rewll village or Garh Shahjahanpur village to cast their votes.

Their village was included with Garh Shahjahanpur village when the elections to the gram panchayat were held. They cast their votes during the municipal elections when the city boundary was expanded and their village was included in Sector 15.

This village falls in the jurisdiction of Sonepat assembly constituency. There are 100 houses of which 25 per cent are `pucca’ buildings. The remaining are `kutcha’ houses and there is no proper path to enter this village. The residents can go to the village only after crossing the Garh Shahjahanpur village and this route is in a bad condition. Even all the streets of the village are in a poor shape.

The main source of the income of the residents is agriculture. The residents have to fetch water from tubewells for drinking purposes. The Postal Department has not yet put up any letterbox in the village and the residents have to post their letters in the nearby villages or in Sonepat city. Lack of health services is also another bottleneck for the residents and they have to seek treatment from private doctors whenever they fall ill.

The Food and Supplies Department has also failed to issue yellow ration cards to the families living below the poverty line (BPL) here. The district administration too remains a silent spectator on this issue.

The village school is in a poor condition and the residents are now contemplating to raise funds for the renovation of the school building. There is only one room each for a primary school and the village chaupal, which were built through public contributions. The names of the owners of the land are still missing on which the village is inhabited. The hope of the residents rose when Phoolan Devi, former bandit queen who was elected as MP from Mirzapur, visited the village and assured all-out assistance to them. But after her death, this hope has receded.



CPM asks HPSC to subject itself to probe
Our Correspondent

Rohtak, May 16
The Haryana unit of the CPM has asked the Haryana Public Service Commission (HPSC) to subject itself to an impartial inquiry to prove its credentials in view of the allegations of malpractices in the recently announced results of Haryana Civil Services and Allied Services examinations conducted by it.

While making this plea, the party today said that it had become incumbent upon the HPSC to prove itself that it was above board in the light of allegations of irregularities in the selections to the civil services.

The state secretary of the CPM, Mr Inderjit Singh, said that this had become all the more necessary when horrible revelations had come to the surface in relation to the Punjab Public Service Commission whose chairman was under judicial custody facing grave charges of amassing unaccounted wealth through bribery. It had brought a bad name to the high constitutional office and had also exposed the political credibility of the erstwhile Akali-BJP alliance government, he said.

Mr Inderjit Singh said that the CPM had been striving since long and demanding maximum transparency in the appointment of members to the commission and in its functioning for ensuring fair play in selections to the top administrative posts.

The CPM was of the clear opinion that a total overhaul was needed by making some minimum standing as a requirement for the appointment of members to the commission and putting an end to the political discretion in this matter. The system of written examination needed to be made free from any tampering and the quota of marks of oral interview should also be cut down which actually was fraught with greater scope for manipulation. 



Opium smuggler jumps out of moving train, killed 
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, May 16
A narcotics smuggler from Nepal died after he jumped out of a moving train when the railway police tried to search him today. Meanwhile, his Assamese accomplice was nabbed with 8 kg of opium.

The deceased, identified as Ram Singh of Nepal, and his accomplice, Kamal of Assam, were travelling in Mangla Express when the railway cops asked them to show their belongings. Ram Singh immediately jumped out of the moving train. He died on the way to hospital. It is learnt that the duo was carrying the opium to deliver it somewhere near the Nepal border. Kamal has been remanded to police custody for three days.

Havildar held

In its ongoing drive to nab corrupt government employees, the district authorities today arrested a Havildar of CIA staff of the police after being caught red-handed taking a bribe of Rs 15,000. The accused, identified as Havildar Hari Singh working in the SSP office here, had allegedly demanded Rs 15,000 from one Pappu Singh of Chhupa village of Palwal subdivision for saving him from a “fabricated” case. The complainant who met the Deputy Commissioner had alleged that the Havildar and a Sub-Inspector of CIA staff had demanded money from him and had threatened to implicate him if he failed to pay. The Deputy commissioner deputed the vigilance cell and Tehsildar to conduct a raid today. While the Havildar was caught red-handed, the SI could not be arrested.

Gallantry medal

Commandant Rajender Singh Ahlawat of 41st battalion of the BSF would be awarded President’s gallantry medal posthumously in a special ceremony to be organised on December 1. The gallant soldier, a resident of Kharkara village in this district, made the supreme sacrifice fighting against the infiltrators in Anantnag district in Jammu and Kashmir on June 4 last year.

Minor raped

A minor Dalit girl was raped by a Dalit youth at Chandi village today. The 13-year-old victim stated in the FIR that Hemraj of the same village violated her chastity while she went to answer the call of nature near a school. The Meham police have registered a case under Sections 376 and 506 of the IPC.

Murder plot

The Mussori police arrested a woman of Zakir Colony in Pipleda on Wednesday night for allegedly conspiring to kill her husband so that she could marry her lover.

According to the police, Sajjad, resident of Dehla village under the Pilkhua police station, was murdered in Zakir Colony by some unidentified assailants. Sajjad was living in the colony along with his wife, Mobina, who had developed illicit relations with one Wahid. She had asked Wahid to eliminate Sajjad from their way.

According to a plan, Wahid and his friend Masqoor had a drinking session with Mobina’s husband on Wednesday night and later murdered him. The body of Sajjad has been sent for post-mortem examination. Both the alleged killers are still at large.

Assaulted over water

Many areas of the city here witnessed violent clashes today over water. Several clashes were reported from other parts of the district also.

According to a report, a group of persons assaulted two women, an old woman and her daughter-in-law, with hockey sticks and belts at Kot Mohalla here following a quarrel over fetching drinking water. Both of them were hospitalised. They are stated to be out of danger. Residents of the area pointed out that there was only one public tap to collect drinking water and the supply would always be erratic.

Death sentence

Additional District and Sessions Judge Ahmed Shamim has awarded death sentence to a father who had stabbed his daughter to death. His son had filed a report in the police station against the accused. The murder had taken place in September 1998. The son and daughter of the accused had both deposed as witnesses in this case. They accused their father of having stabbed Renu repeatedly till she was dead.

Spurt in diarrhoea

Diarrhoea cases are on the increase in the district due to the heat wave conditions. All these cases have been reported within a fortnight. Sixty-seven of these were reported in the district hospital while 79 have been reported in Primary Health Centres.



Smart cards planned to boost tourism 

New Delhi, May 16
As part of an effort to boost tourism in the Capital, the state government is planning to give “smart cards” to tourists, open 24 hour coffee homes and start a hospitality reception counter at airports. Delhi Tourism and Transportation Development Corporation (DTTDC) has also proposed a common entry ticket for tourist wishing to visit all historic monuments as against the current multiple entry ticket system and train students as wardens to guide tourists in the Capital, the DTTDC chairman, Mr Romesh Sabharwal, said here today.

He said, “We are also trying to work out a mini-guide for all tourists which will be distributed along with their disembarkation card. We have distributed eight lakh maps free of cost.” TNS



Executives held for defrauding sugar mill
Jatinder Sharma

Rohtak, May 16
Executive Director Mihir Chokshi and Marketing Executive S. K. Bishwas of Gujarat Cypromate Ltd, Ahmedabad, the firm which allegedly defrauded the Rohtak Co-operative Sugar Mills of Rs 50 lakh, have been arrested by the local police in a most dramatic manner.

The sugar mill had placed an order in August 2001 with Gujarat Cypromate for the conversion of 14.73 MT of brass tubes. As per the agreement, the firm was to deliver the converted tubes within one month of the receipt of old brass tubes in the mill.

But the Ahmedabad firm allegedly kept on delaying the delivery and failed to honour its commitment within the stipulated period of one month, despite repeated telephonic reminders and letters by the sugar mills

The Gujarat Cypromate, on September 12, sent a fax message to the sugar mill intimating it that their tubes were ready for dispatch and thus asked the sugar mills to sent 90 per cent of the cost of conversion. Honouring the agreement, the Managing Director of the Rohtak Sugar Mills, Mr P. K. Sharma, sent the demanded money through a courier to the said firm.

But to the utter dismay of the sugar mill, the Gujarat Cypromate neither sent the tubes nor returned the amount received by them towards the conversion cost.

The Ahmedabad firm had given a counter guarantee cheque worth Rs 13,67,600 to the sugar mill which was to be encashed in the event of delay in the delivery of the tubes in time.

Mr P. K. Sharma presented the said cheque for encashment but it bounced. The sugar mill then lodged a complaint with the police against Mihir Chokshi. Following the registration of the FIR, Mr P. K. Sharma and Chief Accounts Officer laid a trap to apprehend the culprits. The Ahmedabad firm had on May 9 sent one of its emissary to Rohtak to inquire about the FIR. He was accorded a warm reception by the sugar mill management.

The emissary was advised to persuade the management of Gujarat Cypromate to come to Rohtak and sort out the dispute with the sugar mill. Accordingly, the Ahmedabad firm deputed its Executive Director and Marketing Executive to visit Rohtak and sort out the problem. As soon as the two reached the premises of the sugar mill here, Mr P. K. Sharma informed the local police and got both of them arrested.

A police party headed by ASI Bhim Singh has gone to Ahmedabad to arrest the remaining accused and recover the tubes of the sugar mill.



Suicide by housewife over dowry demand 
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, May 16
A housewife in the Walled City reportedly committed suicide by hanging herself from a ceiling fan in Teli Vara today. The victim identified as Suman, (35) reportedly took the extreme step due to harassment for dowry by her husband, Pyare Lal and her in-laws.

While her husband was arrested, her father- in-law, Kawar Singh and brother-in-law, Laxman, are absconding. The arrest was made following a complaint lodged by her brother, Niranjan Singh, who worked with the Delhi Police. The victim was married four years ago and had a two-year- -old son.

Stabbed to death: The police arrested one Ahmed Ali, (20) who originally belonged to West Bengal, on the charge of murder of a rickshawpuller, Manaia alias Vicky. Reportedly, there was an argument between them before the victim was repeatedly stabbed. He was admitted to the trauma centre where he succumbed to his injuries, the police said.

Pirated books: With the arrest of two persons, the Delhi Police today claimed to have unearthed a racket of pirated book. The police seized 9,000 pirated books of foreign publishers, valued around Rs 80 lakh. Besides, a loaded truck of printed material was also seized. The suspects were identified as Anoop Kumar and Rajni Kant.

The books were pirated allegedly by M/S Kamal Prakashan at Kucha Rohilla in Daryaganj. The raid was conducted after a complaint was lodged by Shri Akash Chittranshi, an authorised representative of the publishers association. The seized materials included books of engineering, computers and medical science, the police said.

Constable held: The Anti-Corruption Branch arrested a constable, Ashok Kumar, (26), posted at Samaipur Badli, for accepting a bribe of Rs 1300 from a complainant, Raj Kumar. Raj Kumar said that there had been some quarrel among his brother and a few other residents of the locality, including some police personnel during the Holi festival and his brother was arrested. The arrested constable allegedly came to the complainant and asked him for a bribe of Rs 1500, failing which the constable threatened to involve him in the quarrel and arrest him. The complainant agreed to pay Rs 1300. Raj Kumar reported the matter to the Anti-Corruption Branch which laid a trap and arrested the constable red- handed, the police said.

Racket in CDs: With the arrest of Sudhir Anand, the police today claimed to have busted a CDs piracy racket. Pirated CDs and software worth Rs 3.5 crore were seized. It is one of the biggest seizure from the Nehru Place complex, the police said.

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