Tuesday, May 28, 2002, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S


What is worse: The horror or reliving the horror?
Smriti Kak

New Delhi, May 27
For the shell-shocked children who witnessed the insane fury that erupted in Gujarat, the horror is yet to wane.

Ferried to the Capital to narrate their harrowing tales, these six children, between eight and 14, are being traumatised further by being made to recall every gory detail instead of being allowed to overcome their trauma and personal loss.

Sample this. Fourteen-year-old Javed, who saw assailants rip open his pregnant cousin’s stomach, killing both the mother and the unborn child, is being made to repeat every grisly detail. For Javed, the trauma may never end. Having always cherished a desire to become a pilot, Javed confesses that he will never forget the ghastly act.

The recurring flashbacks make 11-year-old Shamsum Nissa cringe. The memory of the police mercilessly beating up her mother who had gone to fetch her ailing father will always stay in the inner recesses of her mind. The sight of a policeman may never be reassuring for Shamsum who is reliving the horrors of that fateful day.

In a peculiar response, the `well-wishers’ have gone into overdrive trying to focus the media’s attention on the sufferings of these children, not realising that they are aggravating their pain. This is the opinion of a number of psychologists and social workers engaged in the Herculean task of rehabilitating these innocent victims of the recent communal carnage.

“When a child has suffered it is necessary to make him or her talk. If a child does not talk, then it can lead to serious implications. The child can have a stunted growth or may be unsettled. Therefore, emotional ventilation is necessary. However, talking once or twice is quite different from making them go over the details time and again. If you make them relive these horrors, they will become jittery and irritable. They will develop hatred for a religion or a community that they believe was responsible for their adversity ”, points out Dr. R C Jiloha, Head of the Psychiatry Department, G B Pant Hospital.

The scars will take time to heal. Experts feel it will be a long-drawn process, requiring medical as well as therauptic aides.

“These children need to be gently brought out of this trauma. They need counselling and care. Most importantly, they need to be ushered into a peaceful ambience. They should be provided an environment where they can recuperate. If they do not have families, they should be provided surrogate homes and emotional support. They should never be neglected. Overall development should be the main aim. The idea is to help heal the wounds with care and affection”, adds Dr. Jiloha.

These experts suggest that the NGOs and other social workers should abstain from making these children recall their agony in public. It will only add to their woes. ``Give them love and affection and make them forget the pain,” is the consensus.

These children have been brought to the Capital by the Bachpan Bachao Aandolan, an NGO working for freeing of children from servitude. They are participating in the national seminar on effects of communal violence on child and its remedies.



Gurdwara polls: Decks cleared
R. Suryamurthy
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, May 27
The much-awaited poll process for the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC) begins tomorrow with the Directorate of Gurdwara Elections issuing the notification for the June 30 general elections and starting to accept the nominations.

The directorate has decided to go ahead with the process of issuing the notification even as the Delhi High Court reserved its order on a petition challenging the issuance of notification at a time when the directorate has not come out with the complete list of the electorate.

Sources in the directorate said they decided to go ahead with the process of issuing the notification for the polls after informing the court about the schedule. Moreover, the high court had neither stayed the process nor issued any interim order restraining the directorate from going ahead with the poll process.

The candidates, as per the notification, would have seven days to file their nomination till June 4. The scrutiny of the nominations would take place on June 5 and the candidates would get two days to withdraw their nominations, sources said.

The 15 parties, which have been allotted symbols, would get 21 days to campaign. There are 28 free symbols, which would be allotted to Independents. The 3.07 lakh registered voters would exercise their franchise in 342 polling stations to be set up in 46 wards of the Capital.

The last general elections to the DSGMC were held in 1995 after a gap of 17 years. The members are elected for a term of four years and the present committee has already completed its term in 1999.

The DSGMC comprises 56 members, the general elections are held for 46 wards in the National Capital Territory. Four members from the Singh Sabhas, one from the SGPC and five Jathedars of the five Takhts in the country are members of the committee. Except for the five Jathedars, all others have voting right.

Meanwhile, the pro-Tohra, Shiromani Akali Dal Delhi today formally launched campaigning for the DSGMC polls, by forming an eleven-member Campaign Committee with former Akal Takht Jathedar Ranjit Singh as its patron.

The former SGPC chief, Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra, who announced the constitution of the candidate selection committee, accused the former Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, of taking away Delhi gurdwara funds for political purposes in the state.

Mr Tohra said they would strive to give a clean administration to the DSGMC and eliminate the undue intervention of the committee members in the functioning of the educational institutions.

Mr Sarna alleged that Mr Avtar Singh Hit had “squandered away” religious donations and made the committee bankrupt.

Bhai Ranjit Singh said they would field candidates who have a clean image and subscribe to the supremacy of the Akal Takht in the polls.

The polls are likely to be hotly contested between the Akali factions.



Marathon DVB talks stuck over give & take
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, May 27
One hundred hours of negotiations later, the Government of NCT of Delhi and the bidders for the distribution companies of an unbundled Delhi Vidyut Board (DVB) are still to arrive at an agreement. The parties, according to an official engaged in the talks, are stuck at the “give and take” stage. However, Power Minister Ajay Maken attributes the delay to “fine tuning” of certain clauses. The core committee mandated to negotiate with the two bidders – Tata and BSES – and comprising Principal Secretary (Finance) Ramesh Chandra, DVB Chairman Jagdish Sagar and Secretary (Planning) Rahul Khullar on Monday briefed Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit and her Cabinet colleagues. Ms Dikshit told media persons the committee was still to submit its report.

A member of the core committee said negotiations were still on with the bidders to iron out outstanding differences. The talks are apparently stuck on the pre-conditions laid down by the Government of NCT of Delhi, that of bringing down the aggregate technical and commercial (AT&C) loss by a certain percentage within the stipulated time table and ensuring adequate returns on the investment of the bidders.

Although the Government of NCT of Delhi is not generally willing to offer a higher percentage of returns as is being sought by the bidders, sources told the NCR Tribune it could agree to re-examine the stipulated 20 per cent reduction in AT&C loss. Negotiations, the power minister said, had not been concluded and the core committee has time till May 31 to submit its report to the government.

The sources said the government could lower the AT&C losses from the 20 per cent over a period of five years. The two private companies are insisting on 12 to 14 per cent. (The Government of NCT of Delhi had stipulated 19.5 per cent for distribution company I and 20.75 for Discom II and Discom III.) The bidders also insisted on an anti-theft legislation as the Capital has the unique distinction of 58 per cent transmission and distribution losses with posh localities accounting for the bulk.

According to a recent World Bank report, the national average of T&D losses is around 23 per cent; in Delhi it is as high as 58 per cent. Of that percentage, transmission losses account for about 12.5 per cent and distribution losses 45.5 per cent.

The member of the committee said Monday’s weekly meeting of the Cabinet was apprised of the progress of the talks and that no definite proposal had come up for discussion. “Not less than 100 hours of negotiations have taken place,” the member said, “Talks are progressing satisfactorily and progress is good.”

Besides taking up for discussion this matter, the Cabinet approved the placing of orders by Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) for 1,000 CNG buses. Ms Dikshit said the Cabinet also approved the deployment of the 5,000-odd conductors and other “surplus” staff of the DTC (1,758 daily wagers included) to man the services after those new CNG buses begin to ply.



Why champions and match-winners no longer roll out of Delhi University
Tarun Gill

New Delhi, May 27
Inadequate sporting facilities, mismanagement of funds, ambiguous norms and general apathy of the authorities have combined to ensure that champions and match-winners no longer roll out of the campus.

Sources in DU said that several discrepancies had crept into the selection procedure on the basis of sporting laurels. Strangely enough, sources said, the rules laid down by the DU are not in conformity with those prescribed by the University Grants Commission (UGC).

Sources said that despite the UGC’s intervention, colleges in DU preferred to follow their own set of rules which do not necessarily confirm with those of the Central authority.

In fact, the UGC had taken strong exception to the practice and issued a circular asking all colleges to take “appropriate action” following a communication from the Union Ministry of Sports and Youth Affairs in 1998 when the matter was brought to its notice.

“It is seen that despite UGC’s guidelines, the universities and colleges have not been following them uniformly”, the Ministry had written to the UGC way back in 1998.

Acting upon the UGC’s communication, the DU Sports Council issued a circular in February this year to all colleges, asking them to adhere to the basic guidelines.

Sources in DU, however, said that the colleges continued to violate the suggested guidelines and certain amount of “subjectivity” had crept into the selection procedure, thereby affecting the overall performance level.

The UGC guidelines stipulate that ten per cent seats in the first year of the under-graduate level degree course may be reserved for sports persons who have represented the state or nation at the national or international level.

The DU, however, has reserved only five per cent of the total seats at the undergraduate level for students proficient in sports and extracurricular activities (ECA).

When contacted, the Principal of a leading college in DU said : “We follow the DU rule of reserving five per cent seats for sports and extra-curricular activities, including debates, photography, theatre etc.”

“Lack of funds” is another factor inhibiting the sporting environment on the campus.

“The problem is within the system. One can’t expect things to change overnight. And we are doing the best we could,’’ Director, Sports Council, Dr G S Naruka, Delhi University, said.

“We are trying to do our level best to give sports a much-needed promotion at the University level. But we are helpless we are short of funds’’, according to Sudershan Pathak, Deputy Director, Sports Council, Delhi University.

Ironically, every year each a student pays Rs 20 as sports development fee. Over one lakh students are studying in about 80 colleges in DU, thus generating more than Rs 20 lakhs every year in the name of sports development. Once you add to this the funds the University receives from Central authorities, it appears to be more a case of poor fund management rather than inadequacy.

The failure of DU to equip the aspiring and talented sportsmen has forced students to shift their base to other universities.

“I was told by many of my relatives and friends to select a University like DU for my B.A as I also happen to be a national body builder. I was under the impression that DU sports facilities will allow me to continue the sport with my studies. But I realized DU doesn’t even have a gymnasium of its own. Now, I have no other option but to look for some other university which at least gives me some ground to train’’, says Rampal, a perturbed DU student.

Unlike some other universities, DU does not offer any degree courses in physical education or sports. This has been cited as another reason for the state of affairs on the campus.

“If CBSE can have physical education as a mainstream subject, there is no reason why DU cannot offer sports as a full-fledged course”, S K Chakravarty of the Department of Physical Education in St Stephen’s college said.



D. P. Yadav’s lieutenant shot dead
Our Correspondent

Ghaziabad, May 27
Parmanand Yadav, vice-president of the Rashtriya Parivartan Dal led by Mr D. P. Yadav, was shot dead in cold blood by unidentified youth, aged between 22 and 25, in his house in Sector 4 of Raj Nagar here at about 7.30 today morning.

The youth knocked on the door that was opened by a servant. They told him that they wanted to see Mr Yadav to discuss something. As Mr Yadav came out and called them in, they suddenly took out a pistol and shot him from point blank range, according to the SP City, Mr Umesh Kumar Srivastava.

The Rajya Sabha Member, Mr D. P. Yadav, whose son and nephew are the main accused in the Nitish Katara murder case, had made Parmanand Yadav the vice-president of the Rashtriya Parivartan Dal. Mr D. P. Yadav himself is the president of the party.

A history-sheeter of the Sector 58 police station in Noida, Parmanand Yadav has 48 cases pending against his name, including those of murder, loot and illegal occupation of land and property. He was considered a notorious criminal of the area.

According to the SSP, Mr Chander Prakash, the assailants were talking in Khari dialect and the murder was part of a big conspiracy, which the police should be able to unravel very soon.

Parmanand Yadav had been very careful since a murderous attack on him on the bypass road in Ghaziabad recently. A rickshaw-puller was killed in that attack. Mr Yadav himself was wounded.

The police suspect that the assailants in today’s attack must be well known to Parmanand Yadav as he had called them in and offered them a glass of water, too. Meanwhile the DIG, Meerut Range, Mr Arun Kumar, also visited the site of the crime and discussed the case with district police officials.


DDA chief engineer shoots self
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, May 27
A serving 58-year-old chief engineer with the Delhi Development Authority (DDA), Mr S S Gupta, reportedly committed suicide by shooting himself with his licensed double-barreled gun in the bathroom of his Saket residence late last night.

The police said that the body had been sent for post-mortem examination and the gun had been recovered from the spot. However, there no suicide note was found . Family sources indicated that Gupta was suffering from depression for the last couple of years and was under treatment at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS).

According to the police, the incident occurred around 10 p.m. last night when the family was waiting outside in the car to go out for a social engagement. Gupta reportedly took leave, saying that he had to go to the bathroom and returned to the house. He reportedly locked himself in the bathroom and shot himself with the gun while sitting on the toilet seat.

The family members rushed inside the house on hearing the gun shot. Since the bathroom was locked from inside, they broke open the door with the help of neighbours and found Gupta dead with the gun lying beside him.

The police said that further enquiries were continuing to ascertain the cause and the statement of the family members had been recorded. The medical records were also being scrutinised.



‘Defeat in MCD elections has shaken the BJP terribly’
R. Suryamurthy


Elections to the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee are seldom held on time. What is the way out?

After 17 years, it was only on the basis of the case filed by me in the court that the DSGMC elections were held in 1995. I feel sad that this time too, the general elections have not been held even though the present committee had completed its term in 1999.

The general elections should be held every four years and the executive polls each year. Requisite amendments should be brought about in the Act to make the polls mandatory and they should be strictly enforced. If an amendment were moved in the assembly, the BJP would support it. But, the initiative to amend the Act has to come from the Congress.

HE is a low profile leader who is little known outside the party forum. Yet, he is considered to be one of the shrewdest strategist and organiser, whose help is sought by the political leadership for the successful launch of any campaign.

The vice-president of the Delhi unit of the BJP and DSGMC member, Mr Swinderjit Singh Bajwa, has never clamoured for posts either within the party or outside.

Mr Bajwa, a staunch loyalist of the former Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, was personally asked to join the BJP as a move to cement the political alliance between the Akalis and the BJP.

The BJP leader highlighted the strategy that would be adopted by the party in the coming months to boost its political prospects and measures that need to be taken to ensure timely polls to the DSGMC and bringing in pride amongst the Sikh youth to follow the basic tenets of the religion.


As a senior leader, what measures are being taken by the Delhi unit of the BJP to revive the party to pose a challenge to the Congress in the assembly polls, scheduled to be held next year?

The defeat in the MCD elections has shaken the BJP terribly. Though the party had not hoped to come back to power, it had not expected to perform so badly in terms of the seats won by it in the corporation.

There are several factors behind the party’s poor performance in the civic polls. Apart from the anti-incumbency factor, the Union Budget proposals affected the party’s prospects. Several provisions in the Budget had a direct bearing on the BJP’s vote-bank, who took out their anger against the party by not coming out on the polling day and casting their votes.

The rotation of seats, which was stayed at the last minute, appears to have boomeranged. Though several corporators had done good work in different wards and the BJP, during its tenure in the civic body, had undertaken several projects, whose benefits would be felt in the years to come, yet there was a feeling that they did not meet the hopes and aspirations of the electorate and the party workers. Since the party had come to power after a long gap in the civic body, there was an unrealistic expectation from us. But, the party workers were disenchanted that they could not get all their work done and did not come out openly in support during the elections.

The poll results show that other smaller parties like the Bahujan Samaj Party and Samajwadi Party garnered sizable portion of the vote share indicating that in the future polls, the contest won’t be a straight one between the BJP and the Congress. Smaller parties, though they may not win seats, yet they could prove to be a crucial factor in the victory of the BJP or Congress or considerably lower the victory margin.

Keeping this in mind, the central leadership of the BJP has appointed the Delhi MP and former Chief Minister, Mr Madan Lal Khurana, as in charge of the state. Mr Khurana, known for motivating the party worker, is a leader who can take the battle to the opposition camp and change the fortunes of the party.

As part of the strategy, the party is planning to raise several issues of public concern, hold protest marches and come out with several welfare measures for the people in the coming months. The Congress government in Delhi would be exposed and its misdeed unraveled.

As a member of the minority community and as somebody who had witnessed the 1984 riots in the Capital, how do you see the recent riots in Gujarat? Have they instilled a feeling of insecurity amongst the minority communities?

I do not agree with the view that the riots in Gujarat have instilled a feeling of insecurity amongst the minorities, especially amongst the Sikh community. There has not been any kind of migration from the state nor from any other parts of the country.

I would like to state in this context that the BJP government in the state handled the situation effectively and contained the riots within a record time. If one compares the way in which the 1984 riots were handled by the Congress government in the Capital, I would state that the BJP performed much better in Gujarat.

Elections to the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee are seldom held on time. What is the way out?

After 17 years, it was only on the basis of the case filed by me in the court that the DSGMC elections were held in 1995. I feel sad that this time too, the general elections have not been held even though the present committee had completed its term in 1999.

The general elections should be held every four years and the executive polls each year. Requisite amendments should be brought about in the Act to make the polls mandatory and they should be strictly enforced.

If an amendment were moved in the assembly, the BJP would support it. But, the initiative to amend the Act has to come from the Congress.

There have been allegations of misappropriation of funds by members of the DSGMC. Are you in favour of the committee members disclosing their assets before the elections are held and they swear in an affidavit about the criminal cases, if any, pending in the court of law?

It is quite unfortunate that the DSGMC is shrouded in all sorts of allegations of financial bungling. People managing religious institutions like the DSGMC should be above board and should be persons against whom nobody should be able to raise a finger.

Unfortunately, the reality is that the DSGMC has several members, who have amassed wealth beyond their known sources of income. Such persons bring disrepute to the body and also lower the dignity of the organisation.

Such acts of financial misappropriation by certain individuals discourages upright and educated individuals to come to the service of the community by becoming the members of the DSGMC. Such decisions by the members of the intelligentsia further harm the interest of the community.

There are several DSGMC-run schools in the Capital, but they have failed to attract talented persons and even the members of the Sikh community prefer to admit their wards in public schools. What needs to be done to restore the lost glory of these schools?

It is quite saddening that the standard and quality of education in the DSGMC-run schools have dipped over the years and nothing much has been done to check it. The Education Council set up by the present committee exists merely on paper, as the DSGMC has not transferred full powers to the council.

The schools should be run professionally without any direct control over them by the DSGMC members. The council should have representatives from the intelligentsia and they should have overriding powers for the running of the educational institutions.

With modernity and increasing consumerism, the Sikhs in the Capital and in other parts of the world are searching for a new identity. By doing som, they are deviating from the basic tenets of Sikhism. Has this been an issue of concern among the members of the community and what measures needs to be taken to reverse this trend?

The members of the community are concerned over the increasing consumerism affecting the basic tenets of the Sikhism itself. The religious bodies like the DSGMC and SGPC should undertake programmes, which would highlight the sacrifices made by the Sikh gurus to preserve and propagate the religion in adverse circumstances.

As a working president of the DSGMC in 1998, I set up an exhibition of sacrifices made by the Sikh gurus and it evoked huge response.

The exhibits, which have travelled across the country, have forced people to pause and think about Sikhism.

Modernity and consumerism cannot be stopped. But, we can certainly make the youths more aware about the religion, how it emerged, its basic tenets and the need to maintain the Sikh identity. Instilling in them the pride to be a Sikh would, I am sure, motivate them to follow their lives as preached by the Sikh gurus.



Women show the way in curbing the family’s size
Our Correspondent

Ghaziabad, May 27
The women, in spite of their being labelled uneducated and orthodox, have beaten men in adopting family planning measures, especially operations. According to the Health Department figures, it has done tubectomy upon 81,841 women during the last 12 years as against 902 men having gone in for vasectomy for the same period in Ghaziabad district.

The Chief Medical Officer, Dr Vinode Kumar, regrets that even today men believe that they would grow weak after vasectomy and it would effect their routine work. This mentality is shared equally by people in both urban and rural sectors, when all know that it is possible to perform these operations without even a cut or stitch. There is a tendency to push women to undergo tubectomy whenever couples are advised to go in for family planning, Dr Vinode Kumar says.

During 1990-91, as against 5,960 women undergoing tubectomy, only 175 men had gone in for vasectomy. In 1991-92, only 224 men had volunteered for vasectomy against 7,287 women undergoing tubectomy. Against 7,888 women’s tubectomy in 1992-93, only 176 men had undergone family planning operation. After this, there has been a steep fall in the number of men every year.

During 1993-94, only 105 men had undergone the operation while 8,577 women had volunteered for tubectomy. In 1995-96, only 50 men against 9,768 women had come forward while for 1994-95 no records are available with the Health Department.

From 1996-97, the situation has constantly been deteriorating when against 5,894 women’s tubectomy only 41 men went in for vasectomy and in 1997-98, only 11 men against 5,817 women had gone in for family planning operation.

During 1999-2000, about 9,000 women and 15 men and for 2000-2001 6,262 women and 39 men had gone in for tubectomy and vasectomy respectively. During the year 2001-2002, 54 men and 7,471 women had undergone the surgeries.

The Chief Medical Officer says that though the administration has fixed 14,000 vasectomy/tubectomy as target in the district this year, in past 12 years, the department could only do 9,000 surgeries on an average in one year.



INLD, BSP workers join Congress
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, May 27
Mr Sukhbir Singh Prajapat, district general secretary of the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), along with hundreds of party workers quit the party and joined the Congress Party at a workers’ meeting of the latter held at Akbarpur Barota village, 8 km from here, on Sunday evening.

According to a report, a large number of BJP and INLD workers also resigned from their parties and joined the Congress on the occasion. All of them expressed their faith in the leadership of the AICC president, Mrs Sonia Gandhi, and the former Chief Minister, Mr Bhajan Lal, and said that the Congress alone could safeguard the unity and integrity of the country by fighting against cross-border terrorism.

Speaking on the occasion, Mr Dharampal Singh Malik, former president of the Haryana Pradesh Congress Committee, hailed the decision of the BSP, BJP and INLD leaders to join the party and said that the Congress would emerge the single largest party and form a government on its own after the assembly elections in the state.

He also lashed out at the Chief Minister, Mr Om Prakash Chautala, and alleged that he had backed out from all his promises, including the supply of free power and water made before coming to power in the state. Instead, Mr Chautala had let loose a reign of terror on the farmers for the recovery of power bills.

Mr Malik warned that if the harassment of farmers and other sections of the people were not stopped, the Congress would launch a statewide agitation against the government for dislodging it.

Mr Azad Singh Nehra, president of the district unit of the Human Rights Cell of the Congress, Mr Rajesh Chhikkar, Mr Satyapal Chauhan and a former MLA, Mr Jai Kishan Balmiki, were among those who were present on the occasion. The meeting adopted a resolution demanding immediate payment of compensation to the injured persons and the next of kith and kin of other victims of the police firing and at Kandela.



Tributes paid to freedom fighter
Our Correspondent

Rewari, May 27
Rich tributes were paid to Prem Swarup Data (75), veteran freedom fighter and noted social activist of the town, at a ‘Shardhanjali Samaroh’ organised in the community hall here on Sunday evening to mourn his sudden demise which occurred on May 20.

Among those who expressed appreciation of his valuable services to the society included Dr Tara Saxena, former president of the Rewari Mahila Parishad and a close confidant of the Data family, Mr Ram Kishan Gupta, former president of Pradesh Congress Committee, Capt Ajay Singh Yadav, Deputy Leader of the Haryana Congress Legislature Party, Mr Om Prakash Grover, former president of the Haryana BJP, Mr Ved Prakash Vidrohi, president of the Haryana Pradesh Janata

Dal (U), Mr Vijay Somany, president of the Rashtriya Navchetna, Mr Ratnesh Bansal, president of the Rewari District Beopar Mandal, Mr M. L. Rustogi, a former principal of KLP College and Prof V. D. Randev.

Thanking the citizens for their participation in large numbers at the samaroh, octogenarian Shanti Swarup Data, elder brother of the deceased, urged one and all to devise ways and means to fill up the void created in the public life of Rewari by Premji’s death.

Swami Somananda ji Maharaj, saint of Sewa Ashram, Noorgarh (about 25 km from Rewari), conveyed his (written) blessings for the departed soul. Besides, condolence messages were also received from various social, political and commercial organisations as well as educational institutions of the town.

A two-minute silence was observed as a mark of respect to the departed soul.

Earlier, a resolution was also unanimously adopted at the samaroh which urged the civic administration to carve out a “Swantantrata Senani Prem Swarup Data Marg” in the Model Town or elsewhere in the city to perpetuate the memory of this veteran freedom fighter.



CM wants Delhiites to be prepared for war
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, May 27
“With tension building up between India and Pakistan, Delhi could be the most targeted city in any armed conflict,” says Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit. People, therefore, ought to prepare themselves to face any eventuality and know what should be done for avoiding casualties. Addressing a seminar, Ms Dikshit on Sunday said people should be aware as to what should be done as the first few hours were crucial in avoiding casualties. She underlined the need for preparedness of disaster management teams at various places in Delhi.

Her Cabinet colleague and Health Minister A. K. Walia, in turn, said the government of NCT of Delhi had sanctioned Rs 14 crore for establishing three disaster management control centres. “These centres will have all the necessary state-of-the-art rescue equipment, emergency appliances and machinery to deal with chemical disasters,” he said.


Power bill waiver scheme an eyewash: Ex-MP
Our Correspondent

Rohtak, May 27
Mr Surender Singh, secretary general of the Haryana Vikas Party (HVP and a former MP, has alleged that the power surcharge waiver scheme recently announced by the government is nothing but an eyewash. He was addressing party workers on the concluding day of a training camp for partymen here this afternoon.

The HVP leader alleged that the surcharge waiver scheme was an artifice to persuade the innocent farmers to clear their dues in a single instalment. He claimed that the HVP chief and a former Chief Minister, Mr Bansi Lal, had granted comparatively higher concessions to the power defaulters to clear their pending bills in four instalments during his regime in May 1998. He also quoted examples of certain farmers to strengthen his claim.

Mr Surender Singh alleged that the people were forced to lead a miserable life in almost every village due to the acute shortage of power and potable water while the government had repeatedly claimed that sufficient power and 70 litres of water per person a day were being supplied to every village. He said that the police in the state were in low spirits as the government had frequently used the force to crush the people’s voice.

He told party workers that they could not be accommodated in the party well due to the coalition compulsions of the party in its last tenure. However, he assured them that due regard and place would be given to each worker in the party if the HVP came to power again.

Robbers held
The police arrested four members of an inter-district gang, which was allegedly indulging in snatching trucks loaded with marble, and seized two trucks with marble worth Rs 5 lakh on Sunday evening. Those arrested include Balwan, Rajbir and Anoop of Rohana village and Dharambeer of Kharkhauda village.

Three members of the gang — Satyabeer, Vinod and Krishna — had already been arrested. The police had recovered two trucks loaded with marble worth nearly Rs 5 lakh. According to police sources, two members of the gang are yet to be arrested.



Father, son killed in road accident in Jhajjar
Our Correspondent

Jhajjar, May 27
A scooter borne man and his five-year-old son was killed and his wife seriously injured when a truck hit the two-wheeler on which they were travelling on the Bahadurgarh-Jhajjar road near Noonamajra village of the district on Sunday evening. According to information, deceased Lakshman Singh along with his son, Sachin and wife Asha, were resident of Bupania village, and were going towards Bahadurgarh when a truck (No. HR 61-0348) coming from the opposite direction hit their scooter.

While Lakshman and his son died on the spot, his wife was rushed to the hospital in serious condition.

The driver of truck escaped, leaving his vehicle on the spot. The police have registered a case in this connection.

Robbers arrested

The Rai police arrested four highway robbers who were fleeing after snatching a Tata vehicle on the G.T.Road, near Samalkha town on Sunday night.

The Superintendent of Police, Mr Paramjit Singh Ahlawat, told mediapersons here today that the arrested robbers were identified as Darshan Kumar of Anand Vihar in Hari Nagar (Delhi), Rajesh and Anil of Kutcha Tihar village, Delhi and Rajiv, a Nepali resident.

The police, he said, also recovered a country-made pistol, an empty cartridge and the vehicle from their possession.

Giving the details of the arrests, the SP said that the police organised a `nakabandi’ after receiving the information about the snatching of the vehicle.

When the driver was asked to stop the vehicle near the Bahalgarh chowk, he crashed into the barricade and made an attempt to escape.

But the police apprehend them, after a hot chase. The robbers fired shots in the air.

He disclosed that cases were registered against the highway robbers and further investigations were in progress.

Jat Maha Sammelan

The All India Jat Maha Sabha is organising its two-day Maha Sammelan from May 30 at the Talkatora Stadium in New Delhi.

Mr Tara Chand Mor, co-convenor and the spokesman of the Haryana Jat Aarakshan Sangharsh Samiti, told mediapersons here today that the Union Agriculture Minister, Mr Ajit Singh, will inaugurate Maha Sammelan.

Delegates from Delhi, Rajasthan, U.P, Haryana and Punjab will take part in it.

He also disclosed that the Prime Minister, Mr Atal Behari Vajpayee, and the noted wrestler and film actor, Mr Dara Singh, would be the chief guests at the Maha Sammelan.

The issues to be discussed at the Maha Sammelan would be the various social evils and their remedies, besides the delay in the declaration of job reservations to the Jat community in Haryana.

Dharna held

Large number of government employees affiliated to the Sarv Karamchari Sangh, Haryana, held a peaceful demonstration in front of the office of Mr Suraj Mal Antil, an INLD MLA and the chairman of the HAFED here yesterday, in protest against the closure of the Haryana State Minor Irrigation Tubewells Corporation (HSMITC) by the state government.

The employees raised slogans against the state government and the Chief Minister, Mr Om Prakash Chautala.

They dispersed peacefully after staging the demonstration. Mr. R.K.Nagar, a leader of the Sarv Karamchari Sangh, said that Mr Antil left the office after receiving information about the demonstration.

He warned that if the government failed to accept the demands of the agitating employees, the agitation would be intensified.

Earlier, a rally was also held and it was addressed by the leaders of the Sangh and other employees unions.

They threatened to take direct action if the state government failed to fulfil the demands of the agitating employees immediately.

The leaders also appealed to the government employees to remain united and continue their agitation till their demands were fulfilled.

BJP convention

The Beopar Cell of the Haryana BJP would be holding its one-day state convention on June 9 in this city.

Mr Ram Singh Doda, vice-president of the Beopar Cell, told mediapersons here today that more than 200 delegates from all over the state will take part in this convention.

The convention would discuss the problems faced by the traders and shopkeepers in the state.

He also disclosed that Mr Rattan Singh Kataria, MP, and president of the Haryana BJP, Mr Kishan Singh Sangwan, and Vice-President of the Haryana BJP, Mr Ramesh Kashyap, Mr Veer Kumar Yadav, and other leaders of the party will address the convention.



Hailstorm lashes Capital
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, May 27
The Capital was lashed by a hailstorm and rain today, giving a pleasant change to Delhiites long suffering from hot and humid conditions. The maximum temperature shot up by 5 degree Celsius from Sunday’s to reach 38.4 degree Celsius while the minimum temperature also went up by 3.5 degree Celsius to touch 24.2 degree Celsius on the day. Still, it was three degree Celsius below the normal temperature. The maximum relative humidity was recorded 73 per cent and the minimum was 27 per cent.

However at 5.30 pm, about 1.4 mm rain was recorded in Safdarjung area. However, rain was quite widespread and covered about 75 per cent area of the Capital.

“One circulation over Western Rajasthan and adjoining Punjab is responsible for moisture incursion taking place in Delhi. This may continue during the next 24 hours also resulting in intermittent rains. However, since the circulation is shallow, the rain is expected to be light and not very heavy,” sources said.

This is the third time the Capital experienced rains this season. But the hailstorm is lashing for the second time.

During the next 24 hours, the sky may be partly cloudy with light rain or thunderstorm during the night. The maximum temperature tomorrow was expected to be about 37 degree Celsius.

“The weather in the Capital has now turned pleasant. We don’t expect any reversal to the hot conditions.

The monsoons are also expected to come on time as of the 16 parameters, about 11 to 12 parameters are favourable. Monsoon will enter the Kerala coast on June 1 and reach Delhi on time on June 29,” they said.

On Sunday, the maximum temperature had reached lowest in May to 33.4 degrees Celsius and the minimum had also plummeted to 20.7 degree Celsius due to 46.2 mm rain experienced. Last year’s lowest maximum temperature in May was recorded at 28 degree Celsius.



Lightning kills scores of sheep
Our Correspondent

Alwar, May 27
As many as 230 sheep and goats were killed and four shepherds injured when lightening struck at Village Maswasee here on Saturday night, the police said today.

According to police and district administration sources, the incident occurred during the storm that lashed the area on Saturday night.

The shepherds were out in the open along with the herds when lightning struck.

The injured, identified as Rajukhan, Mohammad Khan, Yaseen and Ibrahim, were admitted to a hospital where they are reported to be progressing.

The storm, which came after a prolonged heat spell in the area, left a number of trees uprooted as well.



Exam failure: Girl commits suicide

New Delhi
Nidhi Gupta (16), who failed in the class 12 examinations, reportedly committed suicide by hanging from a ceiling fan today. She was a private candidate with accountancy as the compartment subject. She was found hanging from a ceiling fan in her house in Rajouri Garden.



Another govt employee caught taking bribe
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, May 27
The list of officials and employees caught red-handed by the district authorities is getting longer. As many as 13 of them have been nabbed so far since January this year.

The latest one is a patwari working in Fagulpur village of the district. The accused, identified as Balraj Singh, had demanded Rs 2,000 from a farmer, Umed

Singh, of the same village in connection with entering a piece of land in the revenue records. He was caught today by a team led by the DSP (vigilance), Mr Ravinder Kumar, as he accepted `powdered’ notes from the complainant at Palwal town.

According to the district authorities, 12 employees and officials of various departments have already been nabbed under the drive launched to root out corruption in the government offices dealing with the public.

The Deputy Commissioner has announced a reward of Rs 10,000 for getting caught a non-gazetted and gazetted rank of officials. The government servants who have been arrested and booked so far under the Prevention of Corruption Act include the former PA to the Deputy Commissioner, Mr Ravi Mangla, a doctor and attendant of Bhad Sshah Khan Civil Hospital here, a veterinary doctor at Palwal, two head constables of Home Guards, a clerk of the Haryana Vidyut Prasaran Nigam, a junior engineer of the Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) and a Havildar of the CIA staff (police) here.



Corporator booked for attack on MCF squad
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, May 27
A member of the Municipal Corporation, Faridabad (MCF) is among 10 persons who have been booked by the police in connection with the attack on the demolition squad that went to raze illegal structures in Sector 22 here on Friday. It is alleged that the accused were among several persons who had damaged the JCB, manhandled the officials and created obstruction in the work of the removal of encroachments.

A team of the MCF officials led by a Joint Commissioner had gone to Sector 22 on May 24 to remove the iron grills and constructions put up by residents outside their houses. But a large number of people came out on the road to oppose the drive and there were minor clashes between the officials and residents.

The authorities took the help of the police to disperse the mob, which in turn led to a mild lathi charge. Several persons were injured, including Dr Ramanand Rastogi, the local corporator. But some persons resorted to violence and broke the windscreen of the JCB machine and deflated one of its tyres.

The authorities, claiming that the people were incited to resort to violence and cause obstruction in the work, lodged a complaint with the police who booked a case. But several elected members of the MCF have opposed the action of the police and have demanded the withdrawal of the case. A delegation of corporators met the SSP on Sunday. A DSP has been asked to inquire into the matter before taking further action.



Duplicate electrical goods seized, five held
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, May 27
The North district police seized duplicate electrical goods like switches, Miniature Circuit Breakers (MCB), and distribution board worth Rs 15 lakh, being sold under the brand name of a reputed company, Havells. The factory manufacturing the seized duplicate goods was sealed and five persons suspected to be involved in the racket were arrested. They arrested persons were identified as Ashok Kumar Jain, Phool Chand Kapoor, Anil Kapoor, Tara Chand and Jatinder.

The police said that they received information that duplicate electrical goods, with brand name of Havells, were freely sold in Bhagirath Palace, the whole sale market for electrical goods.

A decoy customer was sent to one of the identified shops and a deal was struck for 50 MCBs.

After the delivery of the goods, the shopkeeper, Ashok Jain, was arrested from Sabzi Mandi.

Subsequently, raids were conducted at Chandni Chowk, Bhola Nath Nagar, Mandavali and Mukherjee Nagar.

The police seized a large quantity of raw materials, manufacturing machines, semi-finished and finished goods. During the investigation of the case, the police found that Jatinder Singh alias Mintoo and Tara Chand had made a duplicate die by Havells India Limited from Germany. It took them one year to prepare the die. The goods were manufactured at the house of Jatinder in Mukherjee Nagar. The goods were supplied to Phool Chand Kapoor and his son, Anil Kapoor at Katra Lachhu Singh, Bhagirath Palace.

The police said that the die was so well made that only an expert could differentiate between the original die and the duplicate die. However, the raw materials and the technology for the manufacture of circuits were of very poor quality, making it dangerous for the consumers, the police said.

In another case, the Anti-Auto Theft Squad busted a gang involved in the manufacturer of duplicate shock absorbers, who sold them under the multinational brand of “Gabriel”. The police arrested two persons, Akram Khan and Ravinder Kumar. In the raid conducted at their godown, goods worth Rs 20 lakh were seized.

Their modus operandi was to repair old shock absorbers and pack them in a new wrapper, boldly displaying “Gabriel Shock”. The product was then sold in the market at about 30 per cent of the original Gabriel products, the police said.



CBI nabs Central excise inspector for taking bribe
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, May 27
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has nabbed a Central Excise Inspector on charges of demanding and accepting Rs 25,000 from an industrialist for extending official favour. The CBI arrested Sanjeev Kumar, working as an Inspector in the Legal Cell of the Central Excise head office, for allegedly accepting the bribe money from a Delhi-based industrialist, against whom a case had been registered.

The CBI alleged that the accused called the industrialist to his office, informed him about the complaint and demanded Rs 2 lakh for hushing it up.

The accused threatened that if the bribe was not paid, the complainant’s factory would be raided and he would be implicated in false cases, according to a written complaint by the industrialist. The CBI laid a trap and the official was arrested while accepting Rs 25,000, the first instalment of the bribe, the complaint said.

Man killed
Jamuna Kant Thakur, 60, a resident of Mandawali in East district, was reportedly hit by a Maruti van at Vikas Marg on Sunday. He was admitted to Walia Nursing Home from where he was shifted to the Trauma Centre. The victim succumbed to his injuries in the hospital. The driver of the car was arrested on charges of causing death due to rash and negligent driving, the police said.

Murder worked out
With the arrest of Hemant Kumar (19) and Heera Lal (19), the North–East district police today claimed to have worked out a blind murder case wherein Ved Prakash, a resident of Uttaranchal Colony Society in Ghaziabad, was found seriously injured in Gokulpuri, a few days back. He was admitted to GTB Hospital where he succumbed to his injury. The police also recovered weapon used for the offence from their possession. During interrogation, the suspects confessed to their involvement in the case.

They disclosed that they were drug addicts and were in severe need of money to buy drugs. They targeted Ved Prakash with the intention to rob him. However, when the victim did not yield, they stabbed him repeatedly, the police said.Back

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 |