Sunday, May 19, 2002, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S


Builder takes his cut, turns back on Gnida dues
Parmindar Singh

Noida, May 18
Some 700 plot holders who booked plots with the Ansals in Golf Links of Greater Noida on Plot P-8, a 100-acre area at the rate of Rs 462 per sq yd, have accused the Ansals of having taken them for a ride and causing them tremendous loss and mental agony all through.

The Greater Noida Golf Links Plot Holders Welfare Association has charged the Ansals with having taken full amounts from the plot allottees, an approximate Rs 500 crore, while they have yet to pay Greater Noida Authority 90 per cent of the cost of the land according to the terms and conditions of the MoU signed by the Ansal Housing and Construction Ltd with the Greater Noida on 5 June 1997.

The payment of 10 per cent of the total cost does not entitle the Ansals to claim the land as Ansal freehold.

The GNA has recently issued a show cause notice vide no. Comm/Prop/Ansals/2002/1408 Dt. 18 to the Ansals, February 2002, for the cancellation of their allotment for violation of the terms and conditions of the MoU by the Ansals. The GNA has also accused the Ansals of non-payment of their dues to the authority.

Despite repeated efforts, it has not been possible to get a response from Mr Deepak Ansal, director, Ansal Housing and Constructions Ltd.

Ms Yashoda in his office said, “Mr Ansal was not available but someone either Mr Rajwanshi or Mr Kapor will get back to you.”

After waiting for two hours for their call when again Ansal office was contacted, Ms Yashoda said that Mr Rajwanshi had gone for some negotiations and now nobody was available for comments.

However, Mr Ramesh Chandani, officer on special duty in Greater Noida Authority, confirmed that a show cause notice had been issued to the Ansals as they have become defaulters.

Greater Noida Authority is quite vigilant in the matter and if the Ansals don’t comply with the requirement of MoU, a final notice will be issued to them and after that can take further action to cancel their allotment.

The allottees now only hope that the GNA will keep in mind the interests of the allottees and safeguard their interests who have invested their hard-earned money for the Ansals’ plots. They have also called upon the GNA to take some action against the GNA officials for their collision in the nefarious deeds.

The Ansals are accused to have clandestinely and fraudulently floated their scheme, viz “Ansals Golf Links Scheme” in April/May 1996 to promote the illegal sale of the said land by misleading the public on the factual position of the said land, as advertised by them in the leading national newspapers on May 1, 1996, when, the said land was neither owned by them nor possessed by them, say the GNGLPH Welfare Association.

Even the Greater Noida Authority had issued a letter, dated 4-5-1996, to the Ansals to stop such advertisements and sale proceeds with immediate effect.

Thereafter, on June 5, 1997, a memorandum of understanding was executed between the GNIDA and the Ansals for the said land, under which the Ansal Housing and Construction Ltd., New Delhi, had to explicitly observe/fulfill various terms and condition viz.

While developing the GNIDA land (Plot P-8 measuring 100 acres approx), the Ansals were to act only as their “licensee” during the period of development till the completion certificate was issued by the GNIDA. The completion certificate has not been issued yet by the GNA to the Ansals.

The Ansals were allowed to book/allot/sell plots-properties out of the developed land after the execution of “MoU” approval of terms and conditions of sale to its allottees/buyers and the approval of layout plan of the complex by the GNIDA. The Greater Noida Authority was to execute the sale deed in favour of the Ansals on freehold basis on receipt of the full sale consideration amount from them which has not been done yet. Without bothering to comply with the terms and conditions of allotment/”MoU” of 5 June 1997, the Ansals continued their fraudulent of booking/sale of plots-properties (out of the raw/ undeveloped land belonging to the GNIDA) in Golf Links-1, Greater Noida w.e.f. April/May 1996 onwards and that too at exorbitant rates on sq.yards basis against the legal binding (under which they could sell only on sq. mtr. basis) and collected from Rs 50 to 60 crore from the allottees, thereby robbing the “U.P. state exchequer” of its legitimate revenue.

The GNIDA had also failed to take some meaningful action against the Ansals under the terms and conditions of “MoU” for their fraudulent activities.

According to Mr V K Dhir, president of the association even as on date, the position of the Ansals is that of a “licensee” only since they have neither paid the full sale consideration amount to the GNIDA and registered the land in their name nor obtained the completion certificate from the Greater Noida authority as yet, leaving the allottees, in the lurch, who, have almost paid the full amount to the Ansals.

The Ansals in turn, have been using the allottees’ money for the development of their other projects/or to earn interest from some financial institutions.

Significantly, the allottees now demand that the day the Ansals hand over the plots/properties to them, they should work backwards for 30 months (as per the project scheme) and pay interest 24 per cent p.a. to them for the amount collected from the allottees by the Ansals prior to that period, as the allottees have also paid 24 per cent p.a. interest to the Ansals for any delayed release of instalment during the year 1996-2002.

Again, the Ansals have allegedly carved out additional plots illegally from the earlier earmarked park areas in Sector “C” jeopardising the environment of the complex and denying the residents of Sector “C” the requisite green areas.

The Plot Holders Welfare Association has demanded a thorough probe into this land scam so that the guilty, including the erring GNIDA officers can be suitably punished, says Mr Dhir.



Maken cracks the whip against DVB officers
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, May 18
Agitated residents, reeling under long hours of power cuts, confronted the Delhi Power Minister, Mr Ajay Maken, who was out on the roads to assess the power situation in the Capital today.

The ire of the consumers forced the minister to take on the spot action against three Delhi Vidyut Board officials, who were chargesheeted for dereliction of duty.

And, in a move to stage a comeback, the Bharatiya Janata Party, which was routed in the civic polls, is planning to hold a series of protests in the Capital to empathize with Delhities concerns over power and water shortage.

With Delhi Assembly polls due next year, the Congress government, which came to power on the onion wave, is taking all care, lest it loses its hold over the city for its failure to provide adequate civic amenities.

In a move to project a better image of the government, which is facing the ire of the residents over power cuts and the general apathy at complaint centres of the DVB, Mr Maken undertook surprise checking across the Capital during the course of which an Executive Engineer and two Assistant Engineers of Krishna Nagar area of East Delhi were found guilty of “taking too long to rectify a burnt transformer”.

“It took 18 hours to rectify the transformer when it should not have taken more than 10 hours,” Mr Maken said.

Stating that he would follow the ‘carrot-and-stick’ policy, the Minister said the government would reward the sincere and hardworking employees.

Citing an example, he said a Junior Engineer who had rectified a fault in a South Delhi area within a short span would be given an appreciation letter.

The objective behind his drive was to improve the response time to complaints lodged by general public regarding power breakdowns, Mr Maken said.

The minister said he has decided to visit complaint centres during the peak hours every night. He warned that action would be taken against any laxity.

He said one of the major problems confronting the DVB was that of power theft. “We have drawn a plan to curb it under which the enforcement staff of the DVB would be conducting raids and surprise visits,” he said.

Describing power theft as a Rs 1200 crore industry in the Capital, Mr Maken said the malaise was rampant in both posh areas and poorer localities.

On the other hand, the BJP is chalking out a programme to confront the government by taking to the streets. Former Delhi Chief Minister, Mr Madan Lal Khurana, who has been made the party’s incharge of Delhi, is known for his penchant for noisy demonstrations.

Accusing the government of “criminal negligence,” Delhi BJP president, Mr Mange Ram Garg, said the state government, on the pretext of privatisation, had stopped implementing improvement plans of the distribution system.

“The consumers are not getting regular supply of power, despite the fact that the Centre has sanctioned additional power to Delhi,” he said, adding, “The 400 KV ring scheme is still lying incomplete.”

The Delhi Power Minister stated that the Capital has made arrangement for 3400 mw of power and the government has estimated that the peak demand this summer would not cross 3200 mw.

This year’s normal demand is much more than the peak demand last year, he said, adding that the government has entered into an agreement with Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Chattisgarh for the additional power demand. The state government had also held talks with the Eastern Grid to secure additional power, if the situation demanded. The Pragati Power plant, with 100-mw capacity, would be functional by this month end with a team of experts from the US rectifying the glitches.



High time to make a noise about this pollution
Our Correspondent

New Delhi, May 18
The din in the national Capital is threatening to perforate the hearing ability, warn doctors. Noise pollution, like its environmental counterpart, is spelling doom and if not reigned in time could lead to serious cochlea problems.

“Very little attention is paid to noise pollution and its effects, even though it affects the efficiency and productivity of human beings”, claims the Director General (Medical Services) Indian Railways, Mr. K Suresh.

He was speaking at a seminar organised on Noise Pollution by the Association of Chamber of Commerce and Industries here today. The seminar was obviously organised in view of the growing decibel level in the city.

While experts studied the causes and effects of noise pollution on the populace, it was agreed upon that there was an urgent need to tackle this problem. It was also pointed out that the increasing levels of noise are causing a further deterioration in the health of the Delhities. Most of the places in the Capital have noise levels crossing 70 decibels against the permissible 55 decibels. Experts warn that noise above 80 decibels causes deafness.

“Deafness is an invisible handicap. There is a need for deafness prevention programme if the people are to be made aware of the ill-effects of noise pollution”, said Dr. A K Aggarwal, Director and Head of Department ENT, Maulana Azad Medical College. He identified industrial and occupational noise, vehicular noise, guns and exposure to sporting activities as major sources of noise pollution.

Blaming mechanisation for bringing in more noise into the houses, Dr. Aggarwal pointed out that the use of generators, air-conditioners and home appliances like vacuum cleaners, food processors and washing machines leads to an increase in the ambient noise level inside the homes.

A need for adopting noise free zones or silent zones in hospitals, places of meditation and also reinforcing the need for discipline were also stressed upon.

Dr. Aggarwal pointed out that persistent exposure to high intensity sound levels could lead to induced temporary threshold shift, permanent threshold shift and acoustics trauma. This apart from leading to rise in heart beat rate, could cause fatigue and eventually deafness over the years.

“The problem can be solved only by initiating corrective measures and will require a social movement to make people aware of the damage done by noise pollution”, he said.

ENT specialist, Dr. S K Kacker, said that preventive measures to counter noise pollution cannot be forced upon, the onus lies on the industries to volunteer to counter the pollution levels.

So, the next time you complain that the jarring noise will make you go deaf, chances are that you may just be right.



Free policemen immediately, Chautala tells 
BKU leaders
Vipin Sharma

Rohtak, May 18
The Chief Minister, Mr Om Parkash Chautala, has warned the Bhartiya Kisan Union to leave the agitational path and release immediately the four policemen kept hostage by the people at Kiloi village on Thursday night.

Speaking in an angry tone at nearby Brahamanwas village after laying the foundation stone of Bhagwan Parshuram Dental College on the Gaur Brahman Ayurvedic College premises on Saturday, the Chief Minister said that the generosity of the government should not be misjudged as its impotence.

Speaking in a satirical manner, he said that by collecting stones on their rooftops, the villagers at Kiloi should not dare confront the government. He also cautioned the Haryana Pradesh Congress committee chief, Mr Bhupinder Singh Hooda, against instigating the farmers not to pay their power bills. However, the irate residents of Kiloi village seem to be unaffected by the Chief Minister’s warning. A large number of villagers, including women, armed with sharp- edged weapons have been keeping a strict vigil on the strangers entering the village.

Meanwhile, the policemen held captive are sore over the ‘casual’ attitude adopted by the authorities in resolving the crisis. Although more than 45 hours have passed since the policemen were kept hostage, the authorities have not made any efforts for negotiation. Moreover, no FIR has been registered in this regard till the filing of this report.

DSP Darshan Singh and DSP Tikka Ram, who belong to Kiloi village, were deputed on Saturday by the government to negotiate with the protesting villagers. The presidents of different ‘khaps’ also held a meeting at the village to discuss the issue and chalk out the future course of action this evening.



Residents thwart mafia bid to abduct youngster
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, May 18
Fire shots in the dead of night scared the life of out of the residents of Dewru village about 2 km from here. A youth fired in the air by a country-made pistol to shoo off the residents who woke up and tried to prevent the members of the liquor mafia from taking away a 17-year-old youth, Bijender, a son of Mr Om Parkash at Dewru village last night. According to a report, the trouble arose when the members of the mafia reached the village and allegedly tried to kidnap the youth, said to be an associate of the liquor gang. When they were taking him, the residents tried to stop them from doing so.

Thereupon, the youth fired shots, but the residents overpowered him and took him to a village chaupal where he was kept in the custody of the chowkidar.

As soon as the police got information about the incident, they reached the village and tried to get the release of the youth.

The mob pelted stones on the police and resisted the their action. The policemen then waived their lathi on the agitated people and succeeded in releasing the youth from the custody of the village chowkidar.

In the meantime, the SHO of the Sadar police station along with a strong contingent of police appeared on the scene and rounded up a number of persons going on a tractor to Sonepat city to meet the Superintendent of Police and apprise him of the case.

It is stated that five persons received injuries in the lathi-charge and were hospitalised immediately. They are stated to be out of danger. There is no report about the kidnapped youth so far.



Hottest day in 4 yrs
Our Correspondent

New Delhi, May 18
The Capital today experienced the hottest day in four years with the mercury touching a high of 46 degree Celsius.

Today’s temperature of 46 degree Celsius is five degrees above normal and the highest since 1998 when the mercury touched 47.1degrees. The highest temperature recorded so far during the month of May in the Capital till now is 47.2 degree Celsius in 1944.

The Meteorological Department has, however, said that with the minimum temperature decreasing, the Delhities can expect cooler nights. The minimum temperature today dipped to 25.6 degree Celsius, one degree below normal.

The maximum and minimum levels of relative humidity have also decreased. The Met department has said that with such prevailing temperature, there seems to be little respite for the Capital.



BJP’s uneasiness with INLD comes to fore
Our Correspondent

Rewari, May 18
The BJP’s uneasiness with the Chautala government in Haryana came to the fore once again when president of the party’s state unit and MP, Mr Rathan Lal Kataria, met mediapersons here on Friday. He said that though there were differences between the Chief Minister and INLD supremo, Mr Om Prakash Chautala, and the state BJP leaders, they had been supporting the government from outside all along.

Elaborating the reasons as well as his compulsions in this regard, Mr Kataria said that it was an open secret that Haryana had five members of Parliament who had been serving as “Alladin’s magic lamp” in the hands of Mr Chautala due to the wishes of the BJP high command. It was ironical that while Mr Chautala was all praise for Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee, Union Home Minister L. K. Advani and BJP president Jana Krishnamurthy, yet he cared little for him (Mr Kataria), who was a state-level lieutenant of these BJP leaders.

He further explained that under these circumstances, he would go by the dictates of the party high command and he would do nothing that, in any way, went against the Vajpayee government.

Dismissing the Congress as almost a defunct party, Mr Kataria said that the state unit of that party wanted to use him as a tool to pull down the Chautala government in Haryana. But he asserted that he was not going to become a tool in the hands of the HPCC and would not play their game of harming the Chautala government.

Admitting that the arrest of numerous BJP activists in connection with the recent communal violence at Lahoru in Bhiwani district was proving a major irritant for the BJP, he asserted that the administration had falsely implicated BJP activists to make them scapegoats.

Mentioning the contents of the report of a fact-finding team of BJP MPs, who recently visited Lahoru in this regard, he alleged that the real culprits involved in the violence were supporters of a minister who wanted to grab the property of the former Nawab of Lahoru.

Mr Kataria also said that he had met the Haryana Governor, Mr Babu Parmanand, four times in the past few weeks and had placed the facts of the matter before him. Besides, he had also met the Prime Minister, the Union Home Minister and the BJP president and had apprised them about the entire incident as well as the subsequent arrests of the BJP workers.

He also disclosed that he had a telephonic conversation in this regard with the Chief Minister, Mr Chautala, recently. He refused to divulge the details of the talk. He hoped that the matter would be sorted out when they would meet the Chief Minister in the near future. He went on to say that they wanted that the law of the land should be obeyed, but none should be harassed on political grounds in such a grave matter.



There’s something amiss in Patiala Courts
Tarun Gill

New Delhi, May 18
The Patiala House Courts, the final destination of all the litigants from South, South-West and New Delhi is in a shambles. Lack of adequate parking space, sanitation, toilets and constraints on the chamber space for lawyers are only a few of the problems.

What used to be a magnificent mansion of the Maharaja of Patiala was converted into Patiala House Courts in 1978 by the Delhi Government. “The majority of lawyers were unhappy when the New Delhi Courts were shifted to Patiala House from Parliament Street; the reason was lack of adequate space. Change is always for the better, the Patiala courts are much more spacious compared to the court complex on Parliament Street,” says Mr D. S. Bhardwaj, a noted criminal lawyer and former president of the New Delhi Bar Association. But the problems followed.

All those justice-seeking people with a car will have to think twice before taking their vehicles into the Patiala courts’ premises. No, lawyers won’t take your cars as the fee but the lack of parking space would test the skills and patience. “It takes me at least half-an-hour to park my car and by the time I reach the court, the agitated judge gives me a piece of his mind,” says a perturbed lawyer.

If you happen to be lucky and somehow manage to park your car, the next problem is where will you go. There is no enquiry counter to direct you to the right chamber or court. Even Lawyers find it confusing enough to locate a room, which practically doesn’t look like a courtroom.

“After all, it was a palace. We have to give some benefit of doubt. But the government should have taken some measures to make it look like a court. It clearly reflects improper planning. A lot of space is being wasted,” says Mr Sharma, a lawyer.

It’s ironical that people only smoke at a place where there is a signboard which says ‘no smoking area’. Walls of the corridors are all red, thanks to the paan chewing persons, who spit at their convenience.

Delhi’s most prestigious criminal court is now being increasingly referred to as a crowded legal market, teeming with not only litigants but lawyers too. “There is a provision of only 700 chambers for lawyers but there are at least 2,500 of them who are practising in this very complex. Lawyers are forced to sit in corridors, which has further aggravated the scenario. May be, another sign of the population explosion,” says Subhash Gulati, a lawyer

Don’t be surprised if you find any malodorous smell haunting you, because there is hardly any provision for sanitation. There is no provision for drinking water either, so forget about cleaning the toilets, if at all you can locate one.

“All we can do is to get water from our respective houses. Otherwise, rely on a glass of juice, which costs Rs 10,” says Mr Jha, another lawyer.

The lawyers say that it is quite perplexing that Uco Bank in the Patiala courts, which has a turnover of Rs 40 crore, has just an extension counter. “We have the best of lawyers practising here but the government has left us like orphans. Forget about the bank, we don’t even have a regular post office. The lack of medical facilities has made things worse. We also don’t have any railway of airline reservation counters,” Mr Raju Dudani, present secretary of the New Delhi Bar Association, lists the problems. 



Fatal accidents on decline in Capital: Pereira
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, May 18
The day the Joint Commissioner of Police (Traffic), Mr Maxwell Pereira, claimed that the accident rate in the Capital is on the decline, a truck hit an autorickshaw killing two persons, including a woman, on DDU Marg near the Police Headquarters this morning.

The auto driver, Shambhu, died on the spot while the woman, a resident of Shastri Park in North-East district, succumbed to injuries in LNJP Hospital. The truck driver, Jagdish, has been arrested.

Later in the day, Mr Maxwell Pereira claimed that there had been a decline in fatal accidents in the city this year till April compared to the same period last year due to the imposition of several stringent measures.

While reading papers in a seminar on ‘Noise Pollution’ he said, “The number of lethal accidents in the Capital till last month were 73, compared to 245 during the same period last year.”

“We have imposed several strict measures such as fines for not putting on the seatbelts or jumping red lights and also for honking at every intersection in the city,” he said. “I am very happy that the people are helping the police by following the traffic rules,” Mr Pereira said, adding that “however, I cannot claim a 100 per cent success.”

On the long CNG queues visible all over the city thereby blocking traffic and increasing the chances of accidents, he said the police were dealing with the crisis on a priority basis. He said: “We have limited sources. But we have to tackle the problem with the resources available with us.” The Delhi police would not allow double parking in front of any CNG station in order to avert any accident, Mr Pereira said.

The Short Message Service (SMS) introduced by the Delhi Police last Monday to provide traffic information had been highly successful, Mr Pereira claimed. “In fact, on the very first day, we had 800 hits, which shows the eagerness among the people to avail the service,” he added. “Yesterday after the Shastri Bhavan fire, we have to temporarily close down the service for three hours,” Mr Pereira said.



The need for stainless scribes

If the shame of the Fourth Estate crawling before brute force during the Emergency is considered a blot in the history of the Press in the country, the media has covered itself with glory in the way it has consistently portrayed the truth in Gujarat, beginning with the incident of the Godhra train burning on February 27.

All the same, the Home Minister, Mr L.K.Advani, recently claimed that the media was using Ayodhya, Tehelka tapes and the Gujarat issues to bring a bad name to the party. In these issues, investigative journalists made brave attempts to expose dishonesty and wrongdoing in the government and society. It is one thing to expose the wrongdoers and point out injustices and quite another issue if such exposures had not resulted in censure and punishment of the guilty.

Revolutions in information technology have made it increasingly difficult for the individuals and groups to cover up evil; technology seems to join the ‘conspiracy’ to declare from housetops whatever is done in secret. But no amount of technology can take the place of individuals who are willing to take a stand on the side of righteousness without counting the cost.

The Indian media may have many shortcomings. Quite often, journalists themselves have become preoccupied with their careers, private agenda and bank accounts, forgetting that they have a responsibility towards society, of which they are a part. Journalists here have often been blamed for assuming that they are exempt from the ethical, social and even legal demands that are on the citizens of a country. The symposium held in the shadow of the events in Gujarat has recorded that we have men and women in the media who could be counted upon to act with responsibility.

Societies and professions everywhere are in need of men and women who are committed; persons “who cannot be bought, whose word is their bond; who put character above wealth …who will not lose their individuality in a crowd …who will make no compromise with wrong …who do not believe that shrewdness, cunning and hard-heartedness are the best qualities for success ; who are not afraid to stand for the truth when it is unpopular; who can say ‘no’ with emphasis although the rest of the world says ‘yes’ .” (Harold R. Nelson )




Trekking or meditation with boots on
Tribune News Service

Breathtakingly beautiful snowcapped hills
Breathtakingly beautiful snowcapped hills

With mercury soaring, it is time to search for new highs in the unexplored territories of Himachal Pradesh. If the pleasure of trekking is added to it, the mystic beauty of the mountains multiplies manifold.

The state tourism department has explored new treks in Kinnaur and Spiti areas, which were till now a forbidden land for the tourists. They have now been opened to the daring and adventurous people. In a marked contrast from the beautiful alpine meadows in Kinnaur, one finds the barren terrain of the “Cold desert” of Spiti with breathtaking beauty.

In the offing are a few exciting treks, which lead from one mountain to another of varying altitude, appearance and formation, from a pine-covered slopes to cold deserts under the expert guidance and care. The well-trained camp team also offers warm hospitality and best services.

Lahaul and Spiti lie north of the Himalayan axis in a rain shadow area. The area gets little rain and the region is dry and, for the most part, barren. Kinnaur is a transition zone between the forested valleys of west and dry Tibetan region of east. Upper Lahaul comprises the Bhaga and Chandra valleys. Lower Lahaul is the region below the confluence of Chenab river. Keylong is the main town in the Lahul and Spiti region.

Earlier, lack of roads and limited knowledge about Lahaul deterred people from undertaking trekking and climbing expeditions in this beautiful area. In the past, these expeditions could not materialise for want of road communication up to the base camps.

These days rations like dehydrated and tinned foods, mineral water, etc are easily available in Keylong at competitive rates. With the creation of infrastructural facilities, the Lahaul valley offers all sorts of opportunities to explore the region.

Much will depend on the taste, interest and aptitude of the individual. One thing is certain that Lahaul’s magnificent peaks, snow serpents, ie glaciers, awe-inspiring precipices, spectacular gorges, blue water lakes, refreshingly verdant valleys, potato fields, alpine-Himalayan flora and fauna, mystique monks, monasteries, its myth, legend, folklore and a totally different tribal culture will leave an indelible impression on the minds of the visitors.

Mt Kinner Kailash: Eight days trekking package, 4 days by bus, 4 days by trek. Mount Kinner Kailash, a majestic mountain (6050 m), has religious significance of huge ‘Shivalingam’, the representative of Lord Shiva. This mountain changes colours several times a day with the change of weather conditions. The circuit around the whole range attracts many trekkers and pilgrims every year. The ‘parikarmas’ begin from Kalpa via Thangi, Kunnu, Chhitkul and terminate at Kalpa via Sangla valley.

Bhaba-Pin Valley: Ten-day trekking package, including 5 days by bus. The trek starts from Kafnoo (Bhaba Nagar) in Kinnaur district through the lush green meadows and grazing fields on the bank of Bhaba river and extends to valleys of monasteries i.e. Spiti divisions of Lahaul Spiti district through the picturesque land, high passes, glaciers, wide pastures full of medicinal herbs and seasonal flowers.

Geologically and archaeologically, Spiti valley is a living museum. The barren rock mountains are devoid of any vegetation due to erosion by wind, the sun and snow over thousands of years.

Chandigarh-Churdhar trek: Three days’ trekking package: Mount “Churdhar” is a holy mountain (11966 ft) related to “Shiv Linga”, a sign of Lord Shiva. Except January to March, all weather is suitable for trekking in Churdhar. This mountain is full of thick forest of deodar, Kail and Rai, which gives more satisfaction to enjoy the real beauty of nature. Thousand of pilgrims and trekkers visited here to enjoy the nature every year. Trekking to Churdhar is mostly a three-day programme. It can be extended for five days to cover the next hill station.

Monal, a state bird of Himachal Pradesh, can be seen in large numbers in this range. Churdhar is close to plain area like Harayana, Punjab, Dehradun (UP) Chandigarh and Delhi.

Travel Info

Approach To Lahaul Valley: Up to Kullu by air (Bhunter Airport) or road, then proceed to Manali from where one can easily reach Keylong the headquarter town of Lahaul Valley through Rohtang Pass from Manali by bus/ jeep. It’s 115 km-journey from Manali which takes six hours. Although one can opt for other approaches such as Shimla- Reckong Peo- Kaza – Kunzom – Keylong. Leh- Tanglangla – Baralacha la – Keylong.

Approach To Spiti Valley: Spiti is linked via the Sutlej Valley of Kinnaur with motorable road. Up to Shimla by air, rail or road. By road from Shimla to Kaza (The headquarters of Spiti division), the distance is 412 kms. This is via Narkanda, Rampur, Jeori, Wnagtu, Karcham, Powari, Jangi, Puh.

Climate: Since the valley is situated in rain shadow area, north of the Pir Panjl ranges, the weather remains pleasant and quite comfortable during summer, i.e. from May to mid-October. This is the best season to visit this valley. It seldom rains and the mercury level does not exceed 30 degree Celsius and never falls below 15 Celsius throughout the period mentioned above. One can always enjoy bright sunshine wandering within lush green valley. During winter, i.e. from November to April because of western disturbances, it snows heavily and the temperature goes down below minus. There is an average annual snowfall of seven feet.



Roadways conductor beaten up by bus owner

Jhajjar, May 18
Employees of the Haryana Roadways depot held up traffic at the local bus stand in protest against the beating up of a roadways bus conductor by some private bus operators today. According to information, a roadways conductor, Mr Subhash, was thrashed by the owner and his associates of a private bus plying on the Jhajjar-Dhasa Border route, reportedly on the issue of picking up passengers at Dhasa Border. The victim complained to the roadways workers union. A meeting of the union decided to block traffic around the bus stand.

Members of the union parked the roadways buses on the road. As a result, traffic came to a standstill for about an hour. The workers raised slogans against the District Transport Officer and the state government. They alleged that the DTO was encouraging the private operators. Meanwhile, senior roadways officials and police pacified the agitators and lifted the blockade. OC



Policemen foil prisoner’s suicide bid
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, May 18
Harish, an undertrial prisoner of Hari Nagar, reportedly made an attempt to commit suicide in the police custody at Ganaur town, 16 km from here, on Friday. According to a report, the prisoner was arrested in a dacoity case and he was taken to the police station for interrogation. The prisoner was seen hitting his head against the wall of the police station and the cops who noticed this managed prevent grievous injury. The prisoner was given a first aid and sent back to the jail.

According to another report, Mr Rajpal Sangwan, Company Commander of the Home Guards, was allegedly roughed up by a drunken police head constable in his office here on Friday. It is stated that Mr Sangwan was engaged in work as usual when the head constable reached his office under the influence of liquor. Mr Sangwan asked him to go home as he was interrupting him in his duty.

Thereupon, the head constable became furious and made objectionable remarks. When Mr Sangwan ordered a medical examination of the head constable, the latter attacked him and roughed him up. Mr Sangwan was saved by other home guards jawans present there. Meanwhile, the Deputy Commissioner has ordered Mr J. P. Thamman, City Magistrate, to hold an inquiry into the incident.

Couple commit suicide

A young couple are reported to have entered into a suicide pact and ended their lives by taking sulphas tablets in their house at Giaspur village, about 15 km from here, on Friday evening. According to a report, the victims have been identified as Mr Sher Singh and Mrs Kamlesh. Both were married about a year ago and a dispute over the construction of the house was stated to be the main cause of the suicide.



Portal on sustainable development launched 

New Delhi, May 18
A Web portal and online community focused on information and communication technologies for global sustainable development, Digital Opportunity Channel, was launched here on Friday.

The new channel is aimed at bridging the divide between the developed and developing countries. Speaking about the channel, its editor, Kanti Kumar, said, “Our portal aims at giving organisations and community leaders in the South a platform for their voice to be heard, a place where they can work together with colleagues and strive to develop smart strategies for using ICT to make a real and lasting difference in the lives of the poor.” OC



Six hurt as canter overturns
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, May 18
At least six persons were injured, some of them seriously, when a canter loaded with vegetables overturned on the G. T. Road near Kundli village, about 25 km from here, today. According to a report, the canter was on its way from Jajal village in the district to Azadpur vegetable market in Delhi. The injured persons were identified as Mahesh, Seeshe, Bina, Dinesh, Vijay and Aklesh. All of them were immediately hospitalised.

In another incident, the Civil Lines police arrested six persons while they were engaged in gambling on Friday evening. 



One killed in riot over park in Narela
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, May 18
One person, Baljit Singh (65), was killed and several others, including two women, were injured in a riot in Narela today. Eight persons have been arrested on the charge of rioting.

According to the police, Daya Kishan, a resident of Narela, had a dispute with the MCD over a park in front of his house. He had filed a case in the court claiming that the land of the park was his personal property and the MCD had encroached on it. He had thrown out a few iron tables installed by the corporation to develop the park. Baljit Singh, neighbour of Daya Kishan, again put the tables in the park which made the latter angry and both fought with each other. Family members of both persons arrived on the scene and they too involved in the fight. Baljit was seriously injured and was taken to a hospital where he was declared brought dead. Two women of his family also sustained injuries. Eight persons were arrested in the case, the police said.

Rs 2.90 lakh robbed: Three motorcycle-borne unidentified youths robbed Rs 2.90 lakh from employees of an agency of biri from Inderpuri this afternoon. Two employees of the agency of Pataka Biri, Rakesh and Gaurav, were going on a two-wheeler to deposit the amount in Indian Overseas Bank branch in Inderpuri when the youths came from behind and hit their vehicle. The bag in which they were carrying the money fell down. The youths decamped with the bag, the police said.

Scraps looted: Eight unidentified persons robbed aluminum scraps from a scrap godown at Nangli Sakrawati Extension in the Najafgarh area. The robbers came in a truck and beat up the employees of the godown and locked them up in a room. Later, they drove away with the aluminum scraps in the truck. Owner of the godown, Rajpal Katyal, lives in Hardev Nagar. A case of robbery has been registered, the police said. 


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