Tuesday, June 18, 2002, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S


Punjab leaders to do their share of pressing flesh
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 17
Senior Akali leaders and party workers of the Akali factions from Punjab are likely to descend on the Capital this weekend to boost their respective party’s – Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal) and Shiromani Akali Dal Delhi – poll prospects in the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee. The elections are scheduled for June 30.

Sources said that the two parties have identified the wards where their candidates were on a weak wicket and would enlist the services of party workers to boost the electoral prospects.

Indications are that about 200 to 300 party workers would be present in these wards to turn the tide in favour of their faction. The average number of electorate in each of the 46 wards is about 7,000 and the voting percentage in the past has been less than 50 per cent.

Apart from the 45 sitting MLAs of SAD (Badal) in Punjab who would arrive in the Capital along with their supporters, with the assembly session ending this week, the youth wing leaders and political activists of the party would arrive in Delhi early next week.

Considering the importance of the DSGMC poll results would have on the future prospects of their parties, senior leaders of both the parties are taking no chances. While the SAD (Badal) chief and former Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, himself is holding crucial talks with the political leaders of the city, the former SGPC chief, Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra, is guiding the electoral strategy of the rival faction.

The SAD Delhi, which is a pro-Tohra faction, would have the veteran politician and former SGPC chief, Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra and former Rajya Sabha MP, Mr Prem Singh Chandumajra campaigning for it. Apart from these two senior leaders, the party would get the support of Baba Sarabjot Singh Bedi, the convenor of Panthic Morcha and the former Jathedar of Akal Takht, Bhai Ranjit Singh.

Sources said that the senior leaders of the party are closely studying the electoral rolls of the wards, where the party’s prospects are not that bright, the party workers would be present in sufficient numbers to convince the electorate in favour of their party.

Though Sikhism as a religion emerged as an antithesis to the prevailing social prejudices, caste system pervades and it continues to play a major role in boosting the poll prospects of candidates in several wards.

Senior party leaders told the ‘NCR Tribune’ that though it is unfortunate that the politicians and electorate weigh caste equations before casting their ballot, the issue cannot be shied away from by parties contesting the polls as it could mar their electoral prospects.

Even as the senior leaders are working on the poll strategy in the back rooms, the candidates donning holy saffron stole around their neck visit the Sikh homes with supporters accompanying them. Some of them take a round of the ward in an open top jeep motorcade and their supporters whiz past the pedestrians with slogans in support of respective parties.

Large billboards bearing laudatory adjectives for a single person are put up at the city roundabouts and other key locations. And lavish banquets are hosted even as allegations and counter-allegations, claims and counter-claims mark speeches at Sikh community meetings in the Capital.

‘’It is just like another political election where money and muscle are used in campaigning. Ultimately, we have to think which direction the Sikhs are heading for. Such political and electoral stunts are in themselves an adverse comment on the system that we have adopted to choose a religious committee,’’ Dr Jaspal Singh, a former ambassador and member of the outgoing DSGMC, said.



PGIMS chief ready to roll out the red 
carpet for VIPs 
Jatinder Sharma

Rohtak, June 17
The Director of Pt B. D. Sharma Post-Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences (PGIMS), Maj-Gen Virender Singh Punia (retd), who joined the institute just two months ago, seems to have been bitten by the VIP bug.

According to informed sources, the Director has been briefed by his ‘loyal men’ that what matters in Haryana is to keep the VIPs in good humour. His predecessor had suffered because he did not give the red carpet treatment to the so-called VIPs on the campus and kept himself busy in improving the hospital services, especially for the poor and rural patients.

On June 12, the Director issued an official notice which reads: “A liaison officer will be detailed by the Director along with the Assistant Security Officer who will check the route and time of arrival of the VIP. The Director/Dean/ Medical Superintendent will receive the VIP through the earmarked route and place. A small handout will be kept by the liaison officer and will be handed over to the staff of the VIP. The PRO will keep refreshments/ soft drinks ready. A small team will accompany the visiting VIP to the hospital. Unnecessary photographers will not be allowed (in order) to avoid crowding of wards, which adversely affects patient care. The press and camera will be permitted and coordinated by the PRO only. The department concerned will be informed in advance by the PRO where the round is to be taken by the VIP.”

The circular, interestingly, has not defined a VIP. It may include anyone from the top executive of the state to the chairman of the panchayat samiti or even a village sarpanch.

On June 13, the Director reportedly ordered the Accounts Officer to withdraw a sum of Rs 5,000 for arranging a dinner to bid farewell to the Commissioner, Rohtak Division, who has been transferred to Delhi. After all, she is the seniormost officer in the town and how could she leave without a ‘decent adieu’ by the institution authorities so conscious about VIPs.

But unfortunately, the Accounts Officer refused to oblige as there was no such provision in the rules. This brought down the proposal from hosting a dinner to a farewell tea. This was to be arranged in the office (to make it official) and not at his residence. An official circular was sent hurriedly on the morning of June 14 to some select heads of departments to join the farewell tea at 11am on June 15.

However, the decision to invite some heads of departments and ignoring others is said to have invited vociferous protests. Some of the heads of departments, informed sources told, directly telephoned the Director to register their protest that if it was an official tea party, he could not pick and choose the invitees. It had to be according to the hierarchy and protocol. If he was giving the farewell on his behalf, the Director should have held the tea party at his residence and he was then free to choose his guests.

There is also resentment among the faculty on the grounds that the administration had never cared to organise any farewell in honour of its retiring faculty members. The faculty has been holding such dinners for their retiring colleagues on contributory basis, but the administration was quick to honour the local Commissioner who was in no way connected with the PGIMS.

Another irritant to the senior faculty is that the Director has given officiating charge of Medical Superintendent to a junior Deputy Medical Superintendent, an HCMS doctor, rather than giving it to a senior professor as per the established practice.



Mahavir Chowk to take a turn for the better
Ravi S.Singh
Tribune News Service

Gurgaon, June 17
After a series of flip-flops to ensure smooth traffic flow at Mahavir Chowk, located in the heart of the city, the administration is now convinced that in the present situation, the roundabout is beyond redemption due to its architectural and designing defects.

During the course of an interactive session with industrialists organised by the Gurgaon Industrial Association (GIA), the Deputy Commissioner, Gurgaon, Mr Anurag Rastogi, said on Saturday that there was a serious defect in the planning of the crossing.

He said the administration was seized of the matter and studying the pros and cons to retrieve the situation. He gave broad indications to the effect that the chowk would be restructured and beautified.

Mr Rastogi made these observations when the GIA complained to him that public face a lot of difficulties in crossing the chowk because of traffic disorder. The crossing remains choked virtually at all times. There is chaos as it is often a free-for-all situation.

To add to the mess, the vehicles are parked illegally at the roundabout. The roads connecting it get encroached by vendors, further constricting the space for vehicular movement.

The crossing is the main junction of the city as it is connected to Delhi via the Old Delhi road and the Mehrauli Road. Also, the city is connected to other parts of the district and the state through this roundabout.

The predecessor of Mr Rastogi had put in place some firm measures to decongest the chowk and make the environment of the area free of pollution. To this effect, he had ordered that no bus or heavy vehicle would go to Delhi via the Mehrauli road and vice versa. Rather, they would have to take a detour at the Sheetla Mata Road. Besides, he had ordered that no vehicle would be parked at the roundabout.

The order had been issued a few days before he was transferred. It was implemented and the result was palpable. But this was seen as a fly in the ointment, especially by the private bus operators.

After the transfer of the predecessor of Mr Rastogi, things were back to square one. The order has not only been ignored by the private bus operators, but also by the drivers of Haryana Roadways buses and those of the Delhi Transport Corporation.

According to many, the administrative measures for the public welfare are generally ignored by the vested interests when their authors get transferred. The vested interests restore the status quo when there is a situation of flux on account of the transfer and when the new incumbent is yet unfamiliar with a lot many things.



An unconventional mother, she keeps dogs & cats close to her heart 
Smriti Kak

New Delhi, June 17
When a woman resolves not to have kids and instead insists on showering her attention and resources on stray animals, there are not many who would care to understand the sentiment. But for Irani Mukherjee, the decision of giving up motherhood for the sake of animals was met with approval from her husband and today she is happy bringing up her ever-increasing family of the four-legged.

“Ever since I was a young girl, I was fond of animals and was perturbed to see their plight. I got married to please my grandfather and made it clear in the beginning itself that I will not have kids of my own,” says the woman who now mothers more than 200 dogs and over 40 cats.

Mrs Mukherjee, who hails from Kolkata, founded the Circle of Animals (CAL) about a decade ago to take care of the hundreds of stray animals. Today she runs two hospitals, one in the Capitals’ Neb Sarai and the other in Sona in Haryana. “My hospitals are managed well and we spend close to Rs 3 lakh a month in these hospitals. We provide services like anti-rabies vaccination, immunisation programmes for animals and sterilisation finances are a problem, yet we manage with whatever we have on hand.”

CAL also runs mobile clinics and distributes around 100 food packets in different parts of the city every day. “Running two mobile clinics is not enough. There is so much to be done. Right now, I have no plans of expanding, but I certainly want to improve the existing infrastructure. I have a qualified team of doctors working with me, but there are so many different facilities that I want to give to these animals,” says Mrs Mukherjee who also runs shelters for animals.

Having grown up with animals, she says it was the pathetic state of animals that forced to her to take up the cause. “I lost my parents when I was 10. I was left with my maternal grandfather and my six dogs. It may sound like a motion picture, but the dogs practically brought me up. They were my constant companions,” recalls Mrs Mukherjee wistfully.

With aid from the Government, hotels and individuals, she has been able to work for the cause so close to her heart. “The government provides aid, then there

are many people who chip in voluntarily and I am constantly seeking sponsors who will help me in doing something for the animals.”

The animals at CAL are provided with clean food, lodging and care, unlike the shelters where they are left unattended and unaided. “People trust me, they know that I am going to look after the animals like children. The trust that people have in me is my reward,” says Mrs Mukherjee, who gave up her job as a teacher to focus all her attention on the animals.

“Nobody has been able to change me and I will continue to love and look after these animals,” the animal lover says.



Double murder in Lajpat Nagar
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 17
The owner of a call centre and one of his woman employees were found stabbed to death in the office-cum-residence in L Block of Lajpat Nagar in South Delhi today. The bodies of Virender Saklani and Kiran have been sent for the post-mortem examination.

The police said that cases of murder had been registered and further investigation to ascertain the motive and the identity of the suspects were continuing. Senior police officers, personnel of the Central Forensic Science Laboratory (CFSL) were summoned to the spot. The place was also dusted for finger prints.

The police said that the bodies with multiple stab wounds were found sprawled on the floor, which was littered with playing cards and empty liquor bottles. A senior police officer said that it appeared the two had participated in a late night party.

The double murder in the upmarket South Delhi colony caused considerable panic in the area. Hundreds of residents of the area thronged the building after getting the news.

According to the police, the murder was discovered this morning when some employees went to the office-cum-residence looking for the owner, Virender Saklani. They were confronted with the gory site of the blood-splattered bodies sprawled on the floor. The police were informed. Saklani used to live on the first floor while he used to run the call centre from the ground floor rooms.

Investigations so far have revealed that Kiran had called up her father, Kulwant Singh on Sunday and told him that he would be late as she was required in the office. However, when she failed to reach home at night, alarm bells started ringing. The father is believed to have contacted some of his friends and relatives who later found that the duo had been murdered.

While the exact time of death would be ascertained only after the post- mortem examination, the police believe that the murders could have been committed late in the night and perhaps under the influence of liquor.



Shooting case accused remanded in police custody
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, June 17
Yudhvir Singh, a dreaded criminal who is lodged in the district jail of Sonepat, was remanded in police custody today for two days for interrogation in a shooting case at a sweet shop and extortion of money from the owner of a private nursing home on Sarang Road in the city.

According to a report, Mr Inderjit, owner of the Haryana Mishthan Bhandar was shot at in the evening of June 5, though he escaped unhurt. The accomplices of this criminal had also gone to Dr Rakesh Honda, owner of the Honda Hospital and threatened him with dire consequences if he failed to give the extortion money to them. Both the cases were reported to the police, who, in turn, approached the court for a police remand of the criminal.

Meanwhile, a youth Jatinder of Kundli village has been arrested by the Kundli police in connection with the escape of Anil, alias Bhagta, a prisoner from the police custody on Saturday evening. The number of arrests made in this connection has risen to three. The prisoner is still at large and a hunt is on to apprehend him.

It is stated that six youths are involved in this case and three of them have been arrested.

The prisoner was being taken back to Ambala in a bus after producing him before a court at Tis Hazari (Delhi). According to Mr Paramjit Singh Ahlawat, Superintendent of Police, the arrested youths had fired shots on the police party chasing them. Anil had made two attempts earlier also to escape but failed.



Rising crime graph in Noida, a challenge
 for the police 
Our Correspondent

Noida, June 17
Growing incidence of crime in the district has not only created panic among the people of the area but has even rattled the police force here.

Serious cases of crimes, including murder, dacoity and loot have thrown an open challenge to the police force of the district. The gruesome nature of crime cases can be understood from the fact that dead bodies, packed in gunny bags, were found in different places of the district. Even as the police claimed to have achieved some lead into many of these cases, they are yet to solve any of the cases.

The new Senior Superintendent of Police, Rajeev Krishan, has often talked of new strategies to control crimes in the district and clearing the deadlock in old cases but nothing concrete has emerged so far.

The police chief has promised concrete results in many of the criminal incidents soon.

However, the morale of the police force in the district is so low that even his own men doubt the ability of the police to solve many of the high profile incidents of crime in the district.

The chain of crimes that started with Garhi Chaukhandi, under Sector-58 police station, does not seem to have been brought under control.

A murder was committed in the area after the then Senior Superintendent of Police Naser Kamal had sent the SHO of police station marching to the Police Lines for opposing the official policy line.

Subsequently, there was a dacoity incident at the house of the vice-president of Bharat Vikas Parishad, Mr Mittal, in Sector-55. Mr Mittal was deprived of jewellery, cash and his car in the incident.

In another incident in Sector 58, a man on a scooter fled away after dropping a dead body wrapped in a gunny bag on June 5. The police are yet to shed any light on the incident.

On the same day, criminals looted some railway passengers near the Chola station. In an easy way out, the police simply denied the incident.

Another dead body, wrapped in a gunny bag was found under Sector-24 police station. The body was later identified as that of one Krishan Chand, a resident of Sector-22 and the son of a Rajya Sabha employee. Predictably, the police are silent about the murder and have little information about the incident.

Soon after, two scooter-borne criminals deprived one Shanker Singh of Rs 1.50 lakh, that he had withdrawn from the Punjab National Bank in Sector-27.

Subsequently, a car was looted at gunpoint from Mr M.M.Atri, a resident of Delhi who had come to visit his friend in Sector-17.

On June 12, armed criminals shot dead a man who resisted their attempt to loot his house. On the same day, another group of criminals looted valuables worth lakhs by overpowering a security guard in Shyam Nagar Exchange under Dankaur police station.

In a daring incident in village Sallarpur, under Sector-39 police station, criminals shot dead one man and injured eight.

Clearly, while these unsolved cases have created panic among the people of the area, they have also put a question mark on the effectiveness of the police force of the district.



Roll back excise policy or face stir: Mukhi
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 17
The Leader of Opposition, Mr Jagdish Mukhi, today demanded the Delhi Government to roll back its excise policy, as it was against the stated objectives of the Constitution. He also threatened to launch an agitation to highlight the ill-effects of the government’s “liberal” liquor flow policy, if the Congress-led state government failed to reconsider its decision.

Stating that the liberal liquor policy of the government would “definitely increase the crime rate in Delhi, anti-social elements would dominate the city and the women will have to face atrocity”, Mr Mukhi said several social and religious organisations like Arya Samaj, Sanatan Dharam Sabhas and Jain Sabhas had decided to support the BJP’s move to launch a stir on the issue.

The Opposition leader said the government had announced the new excise policy only with the intention of increasing revenue to the exchequer by way of sale of more liquor in Delhi. However, by this policy, the Sheila Dikshit government had violated the Directive Principles of State Policy, which stated that State should endeavour to bring about prohibition on consumption except for medical purposes in intoxicating drinks and of drugs, which were injurious to health, he added.

The liberal excise policy, he said, contradicted the objectives of the Prohibition Directorate, which endeavoured to reduce liquor consumption in the Capital. Large sums spent by the directorate were a drain on the state resources as the excise policy promoted consumption of more liquor, he said.

He said the policy was also violative of a high court order prohibiting issuance of licence for serving liquor in farmhouses and banquet halls.

Countering the government’s claim that good quality liquor would be available in the city, which would bring down death rate due to spurious liquor, Mr Mukhi said the government had taken control of the sale of liquor in the Capital after it found that the liquor deaths had increased, when the trade was under the control of private persons.

He said compared to other states, the spurious liquor deaths in the Capital were quite few, as the trade was under the control of the government.

On the technology savvy move of allowing the consumers to order liquor over phone, fax or email, Mr Mukhi said as per the law, liquor could not be sold to anyone below 18 years of age. He wondered how the liquor vends would ascertain the true age of the persons, when orders were placed through these modern communication means.



Pak cannot be relied on: Jana
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, June 17
The president of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Mr Jana Krishnamurthy, has said that although the chances of war with Pakistan have receded, the nation would have to remain alert against terrorism as the neighbour could not be relied upon totally.

Speaking at the meeting of party workers of five districts here today, Mr Krishnamurthy said that while Pakistan had to yield before international pressure to check cross-border terrorism, “our campaign to wipe out terror should continue” and the Indians would have to remain alert. He said over one lakh persons had become refugees in Jammu and Kashmir due to terrorism and the country would have to fight it out without depending on or believing others.

Later talking to newsmen, Mr Krishnamurthy said the party had been trying to strengthen its rural base and involve common man in the policies and programmes.

Regarding Gujarat, he said peace had returned there as 12,000 persons had gone back to their homes. He said elections in Gujarat could be held in March-April next year, but he charged the Congress of playing politics of caste and communal policies. He said the Congress, in the past 50 years of Independence, had only ruled with the policy of `divide and rule’ and alleged that it was again trying to play with the sentiments of the people in Gujarat.

Mr Krishnamurthy did not say anything on the issue of extending support to the ongoing BKU agitation in Haryana. However, he said that no party should make any promise which it could not fulfill. He said the situation in Haryana could have been a result of such policies.

About the differences that have erupted among the coalition partners in Uttar Pradesh, he said such problems were common and could be sorted out through mutual discussion. He said differences had been in the views and there was no danger to BSP-BJP coalition government.



Admn ‘ignores’ Jatiya’s visit 
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, June 17
For the first time in the history of Sonepat, the district and police administration adopted an indifferent attitude towards a Union minister. The visit by Dr Satyanarayan Jatia, Union Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment, here on Saturday on the invitation of Mr Kishan Singh Sangwan, an MP and vice-president of the Haryana BJP, who is considered an important political opponent of the Haryana Chief Minister, Mr Om Prakash Chautala, evoked cold response from the authorities.

According to a report, the minister was given a warm welcome at the PWD (B&R) Rest House by a large number of BJP leaders and activists including Mr Devi Dass, a former MLA, and Mr Ram Singh Doda, a member of the Haryana BJP executive committee. None of the district and police officials were present on the occasion. The police authorities also failed to make arrangements to present a guard of honour to the minister on his first visit to this city.

Even the telephone of the Rest House was dead and the officials concerned failed to get it repaired or install a new one for the use of the minister. Mr jatiya and BJP leaders had to use their mobile telephones. Traffic police were posted outside the Rest House only 10 minutes before the minister’s arrival. However, the CID officials did not forget to shadow the minister and BJP leaders at the various functions attended by them.

Later, talking to mediapersons here, the minister highlighted various schemes launched by the central government for the benefit of Scheduled Castes and Backward Classes. He also gave the details of these schemes and claimed that these were aimed at improving the lot of the downtrodden. The minister also laid the foundation stone of a madrasa in Idgah Colony of this city. A large number of Muslim residents were present on the occasion.

Bonded labour alleged

The Haryana Pradesh Janata Dal (U) president, Mr Ved Parkash Vidrohi, has alleged that more than two lakh workers employed in the brick kilns of the state are in the grip of the kiln owners and are being exploited on some pretext or the other.

In a signed press statement issued here, he alleged that these workers were being denied their wages in accordance with the Minimum Wages Act and other facilities.

The successive `governments, he alleged, had also failed to revise the minimum wages of the brick kiln workers for the last seven years.

He pointed out that the majority of the workers belonged to SCs, BCs and Dalits and had come from Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, UP, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh for their livelihood. However, they were getting a raw deal not only from the brick kiln owners but also the state government.

Mr Vidrohi also alleged that these workers were being forced to stay at the brick kilns as `bandhua mazdoor’ and work for at least 16 hours a day. But they were not being paid overtime salaries. He urged the state government to take immediate and concrete steps to safeguard the interests of the brick kiln workers and punish the owners who are found violating the Minimum Wages Act and other labour laws.



‘Company secretary plays the role of a 
business manager’
Gaurav Choudhury

 Dr S P Narang.
The secretary of the Institute of Company Secretaries of India, Dr S P Narang.

With increasing focus on better corporate governance and a plethora of legislations being put in place, legal and secretarial practice is beginning to assume greater significance. The conventional role of the company secretary has undergone major changes, more so during the last decade after structural reforms were initiated in 1991.

In an interview with NCR Tribune, the secretary of the Institute of Company Secretaries of India (ICSI), Dr S P Narang, talked about various issues pertaining to the profession and the institute.

What are the functions of the ICSI?

The Institute of Company Secretaries of India (ICSI) is a premier professional body imparting education primarily through distance learning. It was established by an Act of Parliament (Company Secretaries Act 1980), to develop and regulate the profession of company secretaries in India (CIS). The CIS, besides conducting Company Secretaryship examinations, enrolling qualified students as members in matters pertaining to professional ethics and code of conduct. It also organises on a regular basis professional development and continuing educational programmes and brings out research publications, guidance notes, secretarial standards as well as a professional monthly journal, ‘Chartered Secretary’, for corporate executives; “Student Company Secretary” and “CS Foundation Course Bulletin” for students. The ICSI also regularly interacts with the government, regulatory bodies and chambers of commerce and industry on policy and professional matters.

What exactly is the role of the company secretary?

As the principal officer of the company, the company secretary is a vital link between the company and the Board of Directors, shareholders and governmental and regulatory agencies. He is a business manager and an important adjunct in corporate management hierarchy serving as the Registrar of the company. He acts as a confidante of the Board of Directors, takes part in the formulation of long-term and short-term corporate policies, maintains statutory books and records and ensures effective corporate governance. His duty involves advising the Board of Directors on the ramifications of the proposals under the consideration of the board.

As a corporate development planner he identifies expansion opportunities, arranges collaborations, amalgamations, mergers, acquisitions, takeovers, divestment, setting up of subsidiaries and joint ventures within and outside India etc. He looks after the entire secretarial functions, which includes preparing the agenda, convening, conducting and minuting meetings of Board of Directors, shareholders, AGMs, inter-departmental meeting and meetings with foreign delegations, financial institutions, regulatory authorities etc.

What are the career prospects for company secretaries?

A qualified CS has access to openings both in the private sector and in the public sector, financial institutions, stock exchanges and the central and state governments. As per Sec 383 A of the Companies Act 1956, companies with a paid-up share capital of Rs 50 lakh or more must have a whole-time company secretary. In case of a company with a paid up capital of less than Rs 50 lakh, a CS with an Intermediate Pass is also eligible for appointment. All companies seeking a listing on stock exchanges are required to have a full-time CS. The Department of Education of the Ministry of Human Resources Development has recognised the membership of the ICSI for appointment to the superior posts and services under the accounts branch of the Central Company Law Service of the Department of Company Affairs.

Almost every kind of organisation whose affairs are conducted by boards, councils and other corporate structures, be it a company, cooperative society, trust, association, federation, authority, commission board or the like finds its useful to appoint a person who holds the qualification of company secretaryship in key administrative positions. The members of the institute may also go in for independent practice. Being a versatile professional a company secretary in practice renders a wide range of services to companies under various corporate, economic, commercial, tax and securities laws.

Besides issuing statutory certifications and appearing before various quasi-judicial authorities as an authorised representative, he issues due diligence and comfort certificates, acts as a secretarial auditor and an adviser and consultant on finance and management.

How has the role of the company secretary evolved over time?

The enactment of the Companies (Amendment) Act 2000 will usher corporate India into a new era of good governance, better investor protection and strengthen corporate democracy.

Amendment to Section 383A is a commendable provision, providing for issue of compliance certificate by the company secretaries in practice. It will go a long way in ensuring due compliance of various provisions of law thereby enhancing the credibility of companies and ensuring good corporate governance, a necessary pre-condition for sustained corporate performance in a globalised corporate environment.

The provision has opened up a significant area of practice for the company secretaries as every company not required to employ a whole-time company secretary and having a paid-up capital of Rs 10 lakh or more shall file with the Registrar a compliance certificate from a company secretary in practice and a copy of the compliance certificate shall be attached with the Board’s report.

The position of a company secretary has assumed great importance in the context of the government’s emphasis on good corporate governance, as a key element for the development of the corporate sector.

By virtue of education and training in corporate hierarchy, with expertise to function in areas like finance, accounts, legal, administration, besides his own secretarial duties and responsibilities. Being an officer of the Board of Directors and as one closely working with the top management in the company, he/she is recognised as an integrated corporate manager.

Now, the company secretary has been given a new role in the practice area. Henceforth, companies having paid-up share capital above Rs 10 lakh and up to Rs 50 lakh are required to attach to annual reports a certificate of compliance from a company secretary in whole time practice as to whether the company has complied with all the provisions of the Companies Act.

What are future plans of the ICSI?

Today national boundaries have disappeared for trade and commerce. There is tremendous increase in international trade with fierce competition and increasing pressure for survival leading to leaner organisations with high efficiency and technology excellence. In such a scenario, company secretary being the principal coordinator, plays a crucial role as an integrated business manager and as in-house legal counsel encompassing all functional areas.

He will be called upon to provide support to various economic activities and operations of the company, including finance and accounts, internal audit, costing and budgeting, materials management, commercial and general administration besides legal and secretarial functions.

He will have to act, advise and guide on good corporate governance and assume a much wider role in ensuring compliance in an altogether new corporate set-up and legal procedural and disclosure requirements not necessarily originating from Company Law but other laws, which will be no less stringent and hitherto unknown to corporates in India, monitored by ever vigilant foreign investors, much more knowledgeable customers and society through various NGOs.

Issues such as competition law, intellectual property, environment, mergers and acquisitions, information technology and cyber laws and corporate governance, focussed attention on investor relations, market exploration and sustaining investors confidence and interest in the company, settlement of commercial disputes through ADR methods will all engage the attention of the company secretary.

With a view to creating professionals to meet the challenges of the structural changes, the ICSI has come out with a new syllabus and is in the process of strengthening training of students in close coordination with trade and industry and practising members.

For professional development of existing members, focussed attention is being directed by conducting professional development programmes as well as continuing education and participative certificate programmes.



4.09 lakh families to be provided BPL card
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 17
The Delhi Chief Minister, Ms Shiela Dikshit, today stated that the government would provide below poverty line (BPL) ration card to 4.09 lakh families in the Capital.

Ms Dikshit’s statement comes within days of her government announcing the decision to include religious priests living in shrines under the BPL category for drawing rations at concessional rates.

The priests, living in mosques, temples, gurdwaras and churches run by registered bodies, trusts and ‘samitis’ would be eligible for BPL coverage if their annual family income from all sources is below Rs 24,200.

However, this move evoked strong criticism from the former Delhi Chief Minister and in charge of Delhi unit of the BJP, Mr Madan Lal Khurana. He stated that the government had extended the scheme with political motives.

The Delhi Food and Civil Supplies Minister, Mr Haroon Yusuf, said the state government had requested the Centre to increase the base annual income level from Rs 24,200 per annum to Rs 50,000 per annum.

The minister said the present base level of Rs 24,200 was too low for the Capital and very few persons could be targeted under the scheme.

Incidentally, the National Capital Territory of Delhi has the highest per capita income in the country. The per capita income of Delhi was Rs 25,162 in 2000-01, an increase from Rs 24,032, according to a study carried out by ASSOCHAM. 



Motherly love for a few days! 
Our Correspondent

New Delhi, June 17
The Tihar jail grounds of Section 6-A were a meeting ground for a melange of emotions as the mothers who are inmates of the prison had a chance to spend some days with their children and satisfy some of their maternal instincts. A batch of such children, who had the luck to get close to their mothers, were sent back to their hostels today.

Thanks to the efforts of some NGOs and the jail authorities, children who are separated from their mothers housed in the jail are now given a chance to meet them at regular intervals. Children up to six years of age are allowed to stay with their mothers in their prison cells, but for those who have passed this age bracket, meetings like the present one are the only chance to enjoy motherly care, even if it is only for some brief moments. While for most of the women inmates, it is a chance to snatch moments of togetherness, which are otherwise denied to them, there are many who complain of being distanced from their wards.

The organising secretary of India Vision Foundation that has been working with these prison inmates, Ms Kamini, said, “We have been facilitating these meetings from 1994, when Dr Kiran Bedi won the Magasaysay award.

These children who are over five years and cannot live with their mothers are then admitted to schools in and around the Capital with the consent of the parents. Since the schools have been closed for summer holidays, these kids are given a chance to spend a few days with their mothers.”

Experts say that these meetings between the mother and the child facilitate the emotional development of the child.

It is suggested that because of the physical separation and the turmoil that these children go through, it is essential for them to meet their mothers as often as possible. As for the children between zero and six years, there are crčches run by NGOs like Navjyoti where the toddlers are taken care of. After spending sometime in the crčche, the children are allowed to get back to their mothers. But for the initiatives like these, children of these inmates would suffer far deeper emotional conflict, point out experts. The happy lot of children who have got a chance to meet their mothers would certainly vouch for that. 



Disenchanted villagers join Haryana Vikas Party 
Our Correspondent

Rewari, June 17
Close on the heels of HPCC(I) president Bhupinder Singh Hooda’s ‘padayatra’ through the Jat heartland seeking the dismissal of the Chautala government, Mr Anil Rao, the leader in charge of the affairs of the Haryana Vikas Party in south Haryana, is mobilising people of Ahirwal behind party cashing in on the growing “disenchantment” with the Chautala regime.

In line with recent trend, scores of residents of Shahpur, Anandpur, Kasaula, Jarthal, Jaisingpur Khera, Keshupur, Balawas Jat, Dhulera Khurd and several other surrounding villages joined the HVP here on Sunday after severing their links with their respective parties like the Congress, INLD, BJP etc.

Reposing full confidence in the stewardship of HVP supremo Bansi Lal, they assured Mr Anil Rao that they would participate in large numbers in the party’s demonstration at Rewari on June 21 to register their protest against the `anti-people’ policies of the Chautala government.

Reciprocating their sentiments, Mr Anil Rao assured them that they would be given due honour and regard in the party.

Flaying the foreign jaunt of Mr Om Prakash Chautala, Mr Rao said that it was a matter of grave concern that the Chief Minister along with 22 legislators had gone on a foreign trip at a time when things were in disarray in the state.

He further said that if the current sordid situation prevailing in the state was any indication, the oft-publicised slogan of the present state government “Bijli-Pani Ka Prabandh, Bhrashtachar bandh” (full arrangement for water and power and total elimination of corruption) seemed to have been reversed.

Several prominent HVP activists were also present on the occasion.



Ravi Chautala flays CM’s foreign jaunt
Our Correspondent

Rohtak, June 17
Mr Ravi Chautala, son of former MLA Pratap Singh Chautala and nephew of Chief Minister Om Prakash Chautala, has suggested that the Chief Minister should have visited the tense villages in Jind district instead of foreign countries in view of the gravity of the situation arising out of the ongoing farmers’ agitation.

Addressing newsmen here this afternoon, Mr Ravi Chautala stressed that the Chief Minister himself must come on to the negotiating table instead of deputing ‘incapable’ ministers if he was serious about resolving the crisis. He said it was unfortunate that nearly Rs 6 lakh was spent on every MLA for his foreign trip while the government had refused to provide any compensation to the kin of the farmers killed in police action.

He announced that he, along with his supporters, would block the Chetak road, which passes through Chautala village and goes up to Kandla port, if the present round of negotiation of the government with the farmers failed. After that, he would stage a dharna in front of the samadhi of former Deputy Prime Minister Devi Lal and former Prime Minister Ch Charan Singh.

He alleged that the Chautala government had lost the support among the masses and challenged the Chief Minister and his two sons to contest the elections against him from their constituencies.



Five killed, three injured in bus collision
Our Correspondent

Ghaziabad, June 17
Five persons were killed and three severely injured when two buses collided near Hafizpur police station. The accident occurred when tyres of one of the bus burst, leading to the driver loosing control of the bus. One of the buses was on its way to Rishikesh from Agra, while the other was going from Gulawati to Hapur, the police said. The injured were rushed to the Ghaziabad district hospital by the police.

Youth commits suicide

A 22-year-old married youth reportedly committed suicide by hanging himself in his room in Kasar village of the district today. According to information, the deceased, Jagarao, was working in Somani Factory. He consumed some poisonous substance first, and then hanged himself. Some domestic tension has reportedly forced him to take the extreme step.

TV institute

A majority of nearly 2,400 men and women trained at the Asian Academy of Film and Television (AAFT) at Noida are gainfully employed in their chosen field of creative work, which is a record in the history of the nation.

Claiming this during a press conference here this afternoon, Mr Sandeep Marwah, director, AAFT asserted that many of them had achieved remarkable success in their professional work. Quoting certain examples, he said Mr Kaushik Ghatak (director of several episodes of Star Plus’ popular serial ‘Kyonki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahoo Thi’ and Mr Raj Shekhar (associate director of Star Plus serial ‘Kahani Ghar Ghar Ki’) had attained a distinguished position in their fields.

Commenting on different courses being run by the academy, Mr Marwah said Rs 40,000 was being charged as course and production fees for the three-month course while Rs 1,29,000 was being charged for the one-year course which, he claimed, was only 25 per cent of the total amount spent on a candidate.

Groups clash before SP

Two groups of residents of Barwasni village clashed with each other in the presence of Mr Rajpal, Superintendent of Police, Crime Branch, Madhuban at the PWD (B and R) rest house here on Sunday. According to a report, additional police force was summoned to control the situation.

The residents had come to the rest house for giving their statements in connection with a case of murder of one Naresh of the village before the SP who has been deputed to hold an inquiry.

The body of Naresh alias Mando was found in the Western Yamuna Canal near Barwasni village on April 11. Mr Ram Singh, father of the victim, had lodged an FIR with the police alleging the murder of his son by five persons of the village. Three of the accused have been arrested whereas two others are still at large.

The parents of the victim had approached the IG, Rohtak Range and the DIG CID, Haryana demanding a high-level inquiry into the case and arrest of the remaining persons who are allegedly involved in this case. The SP Crime Branch recorded the statements of several persons belonging to rival groups in this case before leaving for Madhuban (Karnal).

Bid to molest woman

The police have arrested two persons — Samsher and Rajesh — in connection with the alleged molesting of a woman at Baroda village in this district. According to a report, the woman was asleep when the duo entered her house around midnight and made an attempt to molest her. When she raised an alarm, the duo managed to escape but they were identified by the members of the family. A case has been registered against the duo.

12 hurt in mishap

At least 12 passengers, including the driver and conductor, were injured when a tractor-trolley and a Haryana Roadways bus collided on the Sonepat-Rohtak road near Kharkhauda town, 19 km from here, on Sunday. The injured included four women and they were admitted to a hospital.

The tractor-trolley was on its way to Kharkhauda town whereas the bus was coming to Sonepat city. The driver of tractor-trolley applied the brakes all of a sudden resulting in the accident. Traffic was held for over an hour after the accident.

The driver of tractor-trolley managed to escape leaving the vehicle there. The police have registered a case against him and a hunt is on to apprehend him.

The injured persons were identified as Ramesh, Om Parkash, driver and conductor respectively of the bus, Sangeeta, Rajbala, Premwati, Lalita Devi, Prem Singh, Chhotelal, Jagat Singh, Arun, Prabhu Dayal, Maan Singh and Kitab Singh.



Wind-mapping station coming up
Our Correspondent

Narnaul, June 17
The DRDA, Narnaul, has completed the construction of a wind mapping station at Raghunathpura village, 3 km from here, under the solar energy programme at a cost of Rs 1.50 lakh. The project is likely be activated soon. This was disclosed by Dr R. Bhagat Langyan, DC, while talking to ‘NCR Tribune’ today. He said the wind mapping station was about 25 metres high and it would collect data about the wind pattern. If it was found that the wind had suitable velocity, windmills would be installed in the area, which would cater to the needs of power supply.

HVPN staff hurt

An employee of the Haryana Vidyut Prasaran Nigam and resident of Peer Aga Mohalla, Jai Narain, was injured seriously after a jeep hit him on Sunday. He was rushed to the civil hospital here with multiple injuries. The driver of the jeep has been arrested and booked for rash and negligent driving. In an another accident, Om Prakash (45), resident of village Dongli, was injured seriously after an unknown vehicle hit him on the Nizampur road on Sunday. He was rushed to the civil hospital here from where he was shifted to Jaipur Medical College.

Rain brings relief

The district had pre-monsoon rain today and on Sunday giving residents a respite from the scorching heat. The rain is considered to be useful for sowing Rabi crops.



Rs 1.5 lakh looted from two businessmen 
at gunpoint
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 17
Three motorcycle-borne, unidentified youths robbed Rs 1.5 lakh from two businessmen at gunpoint in the New Ashok Nagar area on Sunday night. The incident occurred when the victims, Parveen Mittal and Dinesh Mittal, were going from their shops to their residents in Noida on a motorcycle from Kondli.

As they reached New Ashok Nagar, their vehicle was intercepted by the motorcycle-borne robbers.

The robbers snatched the bag in which they were carrying the cash. The Ashok Nagar police have registered a case of robbery, the police said.

75 kg heroin seized: The Narcotics Branch of the Delhi Police today claimed to have seized around 5.75 kg of heroin worth Rs 6 crore and arrested seven persons from different areas of the Capital.

The police received a secret information that Roshan Lal, his wife Pushpa and their son Surender alias Shanty were involved in drug trafficking in Jahangirpuri. A raid was conducted on their house and 750 gm of heroin was seized. Roshan and Pushpa have been arrested while their son has absconded.

The police said that Rs 38,110 and 710 gm of jewellery were also seized from the house of the suspects. While the police team was climbing down the stairs of the house, one Manohar Lal and his wife Husna along with others attacked the police personnel. Both have been arrested.

In another case, Parsu Ram, a resident of Barabanki, was arrested from Raj Ghat and 500 gm of heroin seized from him. In yet another case, one Harnam Singh was nabbed from Defence Colony in South Delhi and 2 kg of heroin was seized. Another person, Sanjay Jaiswal, was arrested from near Baba Kharak Singh Marg in Connaught Place and 2.5 kg of heroin recovered.



Two held for Rajje’s murder
Our Correspondent

Gurgaon, June 17
The police have arrested two criminals who had allegedly murdered Rajesh, alias Rajje, on June 1 here.

According to the Senior Superintendent of Police, Mr Kuldeep Singh Siag, the police arrested Sombir, a resident of Jhajjar, and Binder, alias Virender, a confidant of the deceased. The duo had reportedly confessed to their crime before the police.

The SSP informed that the police had seized a 40-bore revolver and four live bullets from the possession of Binder. A gold chain that Rajje was wearing at the time of his murder, was also recovered from Binder. Rajje, a young political activist, was killed in broad daylight when three persons showered bullets on him at his hotel near New Colony in Gurgaon.

The police sources said that Rajje had been notorious for illegal activities, such as smuggling illicit liquor and arranging for illegal lotteries or cards or what have you in the city. He was also engaged in the real estate business. Mr Siag said that the third accused had also been identified as Karambir singh, a resident of Taoru.



Dowry harassment behind suicide

Rewari, June 17
Following a complaint lodged by Brijesh Sharma, son of Radha Krishan Sharma of Ashok Vihar Colony, Mathura (UP), the Dharuhera police have registered a case of dowry death and cruelty to woman under Sections 498-A, 304-B of IPC against Kuldeep Sharma, husband of the deceased Anupam Sharma, her father-in-law and other members of the family.

It is stated that Kuldeep Sharma was working and living along with his wife Anupam Sharma, in a rented accommodation in Maheshwari village near Dharuhera.

It is alleged that the continuous atrocities and cruelties by her in-laws for the failure of her parents to meet their dowry demands compelled her to commit suicide. It is further alleged that the body of Anupam Sharma was cremated without any post-mortem examination. OC


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