Sunday, June 23, 2002, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


VC asks English Dept to probe ‘unfair results’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
The Vice-Chancellor has asked the English Department authorities to look into the case of alleged unfair evaluation in the MA I results declared earlier this week. This is in response to complaints of students corroborated by a former chairperson of the department.

The department has, meanwhile, denied any lackadaisical attitude on part of the evaluators. ‘‘The evaluation system of Panjab University needs a massive revamp. However, it would be wrong to say proper evaluation guidelines were not followed under existing conditions’’, said Prof Shelly Walia, Chairman of Department of English, while reacting to reports of students alleging foul play in MA I result.

The Vice-Chancellor has marked a letter to the department for looking into details of the matter and also sought a reply from the former chairperson who supported the students’ version.

Professor Walia said, ‘‘Against misinformation of only three to four teachers having carried out the evaluation exercise, the department had a list of 22 teachers who had carried out the process’’. Prof Manju Jaidka submitted a complete duty list to the Vice-Chancellor of these 22 teachers.

Professor Walia said the evaluation work had been carried out only by teachers who had taught the paper and the department had a list.

Against the ‘fallacy being created’ of general poor handling, the results showed that 69 students had passed and 23 were compartment cases which were high figures for a university result. The university had a total of nine candidates who had above 55 per cent which was also decent. Even if students’ grievance had some substance, they should go in for re-evaluation and if the differences in marks was significant, action should be initiated against the evaluators. It was wrong to blame the teachers without going into facts of the case. We should learn to give ‘value’ to the degree instead of generalised marking, Professor Walia said.

“In fact, if the differences in original and re-evaluation marks were significant, the university should permanently ban the staff member concerned from evaluation

He said the university, however, needed to seriously think on ways to improve the evaluation work. There was a need for more evaluators. Agreeing to the fact that all teachers did not join the evaluation work, he said in fact examination duty should be made mandatory for all teachers as a part of their routine work.

It was also agreed that all teachers on the duty list did not turn up for duty that needed to be checked. There was a definite need for introspection.

A student said the grievance of the students had been confirmed by a department’s teacher whose name also featured in the list of the evaluators and the university at least needed to have a look into the matter. Not taking merely the list into account, the university needed to find out how many teachers actually did the evaluation work and how many did not turn up despite being on the duty list.



Rentals of govt houses to be increased
Tribune News Service

Rentals of Government houses

Category  Present  Proposed For all categories
Type XIII  Rs 37 to Rs 55  5 per cent of the basic salary of the allottee and no rents on basis of category of the house.
Type XII  Rs 58 to Rs 72 
Type XI  Rs 69 to 97
Type X  Rs 81 to Rs 122 
Type IX  Rs 128 
Type VIII  Rs 162 to Rs 301
Type VII  Rs 260
Type VI  Rs 392
Type V  Rs 522
Type IV  Rs 590
Type III  Rs 863

Chandigarh, June 22
Sprawling government houses allotted to senior officers of the government on low monthly rentals will now cost more to the allottee. In fact, a hike in the monthly rental of all categories of government houses and flats in the Union Territory of Chandigarh is working its way to a final decision in this regard.

Last October a review of rents was ordered. Since the issue was ticklish, it has taken a long time to be decided.

The hike will be anything between five and ten times of the present rentals. Interestingly, the monthly rents will not depend upon the category of the house as is the case now. Under the new formula, the rent will be 5 per cent of the basic salary of the occupant, well-placed sources told The Tribune, while adding that the new formula is all set to be tabled for approval in the next house allotment committee meeting of the Administration.

The increase is in line with the recommendations of the Finance Commission set up by the Government of India. The move will also bring in more revenue and help in meeting the cost of maintenance of these houses which are about 13,000 in the city. At present, several crores are spent on houses just by way of basic maintenance.

The highest jump in terms of money will be in case of senior IAS and IPS officials. With their basic salaries being between Rs 20,000 and Rs 25,000, the houses they occupy under the new formula will now cost between Rs 1,000 and Rs 1,250 per month. At present senior officers occupy houses which have between four and six bedrooms while paying a rent between Rs 260 and Rs 590 depending upon the category of the house.

The hike in terms of percentage will be the most on the smaller houses. Type 13, 12, 11 and 10 category of houses are occupied by class IV and class III employees. These have between 1 to 3 bedrooms. At present the rents are as low as Rs 37 to Rs 122. This varies as per the age and type of the house. In such categories the rents will be between Rs 300 and Rs 700. This will again depend upon the basic salary drawn by the employee.

Similarly, rentals of category IX, VIII and VII type of houses will also rise. A move to hike rentals in 1998 did not materialise due to opposition from various quarters. Now it will be difficult to stop this as the Government of India is clear on generating more revenue from such assets.



Uncorked city let demon out
Nishikant Dwivedi

Chandigarh, June 22
Did laxity at the exit doors of the city allow the killers of the Sector 26 trader Ramesh Chawla to escape? With 13 main exit roads, Chandigarh is one of the most porous cities of India. A criminal can take many other routes to get out of here in a maximum of 10 minutes and enter Punjab or Haryana.

Chawla’s killers, too, may have found it rather easy to exit Chandigarh unchecked after dumping his body in woods near Panjab University. Details of Chawla’s missing car — Hyundai Santro (HR-43-D-0016) — had been passed on to policemen at every checkpoint on the morning he went missing, but still the killers escaped in it, which shows the vulnerability of the police in this regard. It is believed that the killers were in the city for at least for six hours before the exit.

Sources said, earlier, the city policemen used to man the exit doors, but following complaints of corruption and shortage of staff, paramilitary forces replaced them. The policemen at the checkpoints used to “harass motorists and extort money from them”. A senior police official, when contacted, said paramilitary forces manned the checkpoints and the police sent over its PCRs if required.

“The police has a contingency plan called ‘Red Capture’ to capture any marked vehicle before it crosses the city limits, but it works only when the police gets the information within minutes of the crime,” said a senior police official. The plan comes into action whenever an absconding killer or terrorist has to be caught. Policemen and the PCR squads have been given specific exit points to rush to in such a situation.

The city police has only 14 Maruti Gypsy vehicles and about 50 motor cycles in the PCR squad. The PCRs have to be deployed at strategic points and the squads have to rush to scenes of crime as well. Another top official of the city police, when contacted, said: “Ideally, a lot of things are required, but, so far, the number of PCRs that we have is satisfactory.”

Vehicle thefts have almost become a routine here. According to a senior police official, most of the stolen vehicles are sold by lifters within the city, but, if a theft is reported in time, the thief cannot escape.



5 murders in a month, 4 still unsolved
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, June 22
Five murders in the past month have left the city police groping in the dark as four of these murder cases still remain unsolved to date. The police has solved only one murder and the rest four, including the recent murder of Ramesh Chawla, is yet to solved. In one of the cases, the police may not be able to even apprehend the killer, admit sources.

It has been more than five days now but the police has failed to make any headway in the kidnapping of Ramesh Chawla and his subsequent murder. The police has interrogated several persons in this connection. The police has the post-mortem report of the deceased but the viscera report from Patiala is going to take ‘‘more’’ time, said police sources. Body of Chawla was found

The police has also failed to make any progress in the mysterious death of a servant of Haryana cadre IAS Officer, Mrs Sumita Singh Mishra. The servant’s body was found hanging from a ceiling fan at the Sector 7 residence of the IAS officer on June 5. The IAS officer and her family were away on vacation at the time of incident. Interestingly, the police has even failed to find where the servant used to live after he vacated his residence in Kishangarh village here. This despite the fact that he was employed as daily wage worker in the Haryana Electricity Regulatory Commission.

A report of the chemical examination of the servant’s body is also awaited from Patiala. A senior police official claims that the police has requested the officials concerned at Patiala to expedite the chemical examinations so that further investigations could be carried out in various murder cases.

The police is yet to arrest the murderer of Parkash Kaur, who was reportedly done to death by her servant on May 24 in her Sector 15 home. Search parties were sent to Bihar to nab the servant but returned empty hand, said sources. Sources admitted that chances were high that the servant might have escaped into Nepal, his native place, and thus chances of his apprehensions were quite remote.

An unidentified man was found murdered near the Railway Station on May 28 and this case still remained unsolved.

However, the police had claimed to solve another murder successfully which had taken place at the Railway Station on June 12. In this case the victim, Ram Avtar, was done to death by his wife’s paramour.



PowerGrid offers to maintain Kishangarh project
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
The PowerGrid Corporation of India Limited yesterday made an offer that it will maintain Chandigarh Administration’s newly set up 220 KV substation at Kishangarh free of cost for one year and after that levy a charge at 15 per cent of the cost of the project.

The Administration, after a final nod from the Finance Secretary, will okay the proposal. Modalities of what is to be paid after the first year will be worked out later. The corporation will also train the staff of the Chandigarh Administration in handling such big projects. The substation was inaugurated recently and has provided a direct link between the city and the Northern power grid.

The staff of the Engineering Wing had given a memorandum to the Union Power Minister, Mr Suresh P. Prabhu, that they want to manage the substation on their own rather than it being given to an outside body. A similar opinion had emerged among engineers as maintenance and further expansion would be easier if UT has its own staff posted at Kishangarh.

Already the PowerGrid Corporation of India is building a ring of 66 KV substations which will be linked to 220 KV substation, Mohali, via 66 KV substations. Then 220 KV substation will be linked to four 66 KV substations in the city at the Secretariat, Industrial Area (Phase-I), Phase-II and BBMB, Sector 28, thereby completing the 66 KV ring for Chandigarh. The work of providing these 66 KV links with other substations has been awarded to PowerGrid Corporation and is likely to be completed in March, 2003. This will cost around Rs 9 crore.

With the completion of this 66 KV ring, it would be possible to make power available from any source in any corner of the city. This will enable the UT Administration to have a reliable back-up arrangement in case one source of power fails.



Bus stand with starting trouble
Manoj Kumar
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
Despite excellent infrastructure, cleanliness and availability of almost all facilities, the Chandigarh Administration's pet project — to develop Sector 43 Inter-State Bus Terminus ( ISBT) as the model bus stand — has failed to take off.

The authorities have failed to ensure adequate number of bus routes through this terminus and the required additional but essential facilities, perhaps due to lack of imagination and sensitivity.

The Chandigarh Administrator, Lt-Gen J.F.R. Jacob (retd), who had inaugurated it, has ensured various facilities to passengers, but the ISBT has failed to click with the passengers, shopkeepers and even with drivers and conductors.

The officials at the bus stand admit that there are more than 100 times of CTU, Punjab Roadways and Himachal Pradesh Roadways Transport Corporation (HRTC) buses, for destinations like Ropar, Manali, Jammu and other stations in Himachal Pradesh. In fact, all buses starting from here pass through Ropar. Mr Ashok Kumar, a contractor from Una, says: ‘‘ The buses start at 5.30 am here and by 7.45 pm the whole bus stand wears a deserted look. After that all buses leave for the Sector 17 bus stand. Most of the passengers fail to understand this arrangement.’’ He adds: ‘‘Ironically, if the HP passengers have to embark on a second bus to Delhi or other towns, they will have to board a local bus for Sector 17 ISBT. Should the authorities not allow the buses, ending here, to Sector 17 bus stand? We have to spend unnecessary time and money to reach there.’’

One of the Punjab Roadways bus drivers, wishing not to be quoted, rued that the CTU and Ambala Syndicate buses illegally go to Sector 17 bus stand, resulting in heavy losses to them, as the passengers before boarding in their bus enquire whether the bus would culminate at Sector 43 or Sector 17 bus stand.’’

He lamented that there was no facility for the drivers or conductors to take bath there. Further, he said: ‘‘There is no good place for meals except CITCO’s restaurant that is not within our range.’’ He said though they had to pay Rs 50 as entry fee per round, and Rs 50 extra for night parking, most of the drivers preferred to park their buses at Sector 17 bus stand due to better facilities.

The passengers were of the view that there was no arrangement of cold water at the bus stand even during the summers. Mr Aassi Ram, who is running a juice bar there, said though most of the shopkeepers paid between Rs 6,000 and Rs 40,000 as rent, the average daily business was not more than Rs 1,200. He said, ‘‘The government must increase the number of routes from here. The buses towards Ludhiana and Patiala should also be started from here. The bus stand should work round the clock to make it economically viable for everybody.’’Mr Avtar Singh, a college student, said: ‘‘The administration has taken a good decision by starting buses from here. However, it should now pay attention to develop it as an attractive alternative to Sector 17 bus stand by providing additional services.’’



It’s about ‘The Minister’s Wife’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
The murky world of crime, politics and twisted carnality has all come alive under one title ‘The Minister’s Wife’, the first politically-laced erotic thriller of its kind by an Indian to hit the stands.

Authored by Amaresh Misra, who was on a personal visit to the city, here today, the book revolves around the story of a drifter called in to spy upon a minister’s wife, but when the denouement of the plot occurs it exposes the dark miasma of libidinal forces.

Speaking about his book which, he claims, is doing well, Misra says the inspiration came from American detective fiction and his experiences as a political activist.

“I was not interested in writing about India or the spiritual wasteland, as most other writers project it to be. I was always interested in projecting the hard core ground reality which exists in the alleys and streets of our country,” Misra adds.

With a couple of strands woven within, the book deals with the political journey of a leftist at one level. It also highlights the disoriented ideology during the 90s which was the contribution of the collapse of the USSR and the rise of `mandir-masjid’ movement.

Though this is his second book as far as his writing career is concerned, he claims, “My earlier book was a non-fictional one, dealing in the social history of Lucknow. I have explored the composite culture of the state. This, however, is a different ball game all together. With the feedback I am receiving, I think I have done a good job and am into fiction writing for good.”

Satisfied with his “performance” in the maiden attempt to pen down a novel, Misra has already worked out the plot for his next novel. The only thing he is ready to divulge is that the book is about a right wing assassin. “This would be ready for release around the same time next year,” he says.

About himself, he says, I have worked as a political activist, had a peek into personal lives of politicians in my brief stint as a journalist and worked at close quarters with the police. This experience has come in handy in the writing of my book and will stand me in good stead in times to come.”



Call centres another career option
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
The total turnover of call centres world-wide is likely to cross $ 60 billion by 2003. The share of India in this business is likely to cross Rs 1,90,000 crore by the end of 2008. This was a fast emerging area of career in computers despite slump, said speakers at a workshop held at Hero Mindmine, a subsidiary of Rs 7500-crore Hero Group, here today.

Ms Atianoor Salaudhin, Regional Manager of the institute, addressing a group of students, said that there were lot of opportunities for young boys and girls in this sector, especially for those with a right attitude, better communication skills, confidence and readiness to work under stressful conditions for customer services. She claimed that since the MNCs working in the USA and other developing countries found it cost effective to provide customer services through Internet, they were patronising call centres in India and other countries.

]The ample source of cheap educated youth force in India was the big reason for its emergence.

Mr Navdeep Singh, Senior Officer, Programme Sales, said the starting salary in the call centre business was anywhere between Rs 8,000 and Rs 10,000. In fact, there was a shortage of right kind of candidates in this field. The cost of training was Rs 4,000 to Rs 20,000. Moreover, the persons, who had worked at the call centres, could also find work in hotels, retail and corporate sales.

He advised students to acquire skills in advanced business English, customer service, basic computer skills and globally accepted accent of English language. The role of training, he said, was indeed very crucial. Most of the opportunities in this region, he added, were at present confined to Delhi, Gurgaon and neighbouring cities.



Maj Sandeep Sagar’s martyrdom day today
Tribune News Service

Maj Sandeep SagarPanchkula, June 22
Maj Sandeep Sagar of 1 JAKLI Battalion, who attained martyrdom in the course of his duty, fighting militants in Operation Vijay three years ago, was certainly a life nipped in the bud. His martyrdom day is being observed by the family and residents of the township tomorrow.

Born in Hoshiarpur on May 10, 1973, he had most of his education at Nakodar and Jalandhar. The only son of his parents, he was a fine cricketer and a fun loving youth. But fate had other plans in store for him.

He was selected as an Army officer and joined the Indian Military Academy, Dehra Dun in January 1994. He was also selected for the academy’s cricket team to play cricket tournament at Sandhurst Academy of Officers. He was later posted in the Rajouri sector of Jammu and Kashmir. It was while the officer was performing was important military duty near the LoC when he was killed in a mine blast.

His love for the country and his juniors was evident from the fact that after the mine blast the last words reportedly uttered by him were, “Are you Pakistanis or Indians?” “We are Indians, Sir,” came the reply from the soldiers.” Are there any other soldiers-injured,?” he asked. “Yes, sir, came” the reply. “Then leave me and evacuate them”, he ordered, and minutes later breathed his last.

His father, Prof Harbans Lal, while remembering him fondly, said that his son lived up to the true sense of Army motto-The welfare of the country comes first, the welfare of the men you command comes next and your own welfare comes last.



Defence officers’ panel meeting
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
The annual general body meeting of the All-India Released Defence Officers Welfare Association (DOWA) was held here.

Formed with an objective of fostering a sense of fraternity among all released commissioned officers, it also takes care of all such matters relating to the welfare of the released officers like their resettlement after the release from the Army, the matters relating to seniority and counting the Army service in respect of members serving in various Central or state governments and other public sector organisations, apart from promoting socio-economic and cultural activities.

In the meeting, a brief past history of the association right from its inception and the activities undertaken so far including setting up of a Cooperative Group Housing Society - DOWA Enclave at Panchkula was highlighted by Capt R.S. Pathania, vice-president of the association. After welcoming the members, a two minutes’ silence was observed in the memory of 15 ex-emergency/short service commissioned officers, members of the association, who had died during the previous years expressing the condolence to the families of the members.

In the meeting the general body of the association passed a number of resolutions on various issues brought out by the members and it was decided to take up these matters with the authorities concerned. The general body also decided to have a regular get-together of the members and their families on every last Friday of every quarter at Defence Services Officers Institute, Sector 36, Chandigarh.

Capt BS Garcha, Capt R.S. Pathania, Capt Himmat Singh, Maj A.S. Alawat, Capt Rajnesh Bansal and Capt GS Badwal were elected as president, senior vice-president, vice president, general-secretary, joint secretary and treasurer of the association, respectively.



Jana Shatabdi not likely from July 1
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
The much-awaited Jana Shatabdi between Delhi and Chandigarh, is not likely to run from July 1 as the Union Railway Ministry has yet to issue formal orders in this regard.

Sources said orders should have been issued by now if the train was to start running from July 1. It might start plying in a couple of weeks or even a month after the scheduled date. The Ambala Railway Division that would be operating the train needed seven days of advance notice to bring into place various equipment and men.

Sources said even the route extension of the Lucknow-Saharanpur Express up to Chandigarh would not be possible from July 1.



Elecrtronic meters faulty: association
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, June 22
The Panchkula Public peace and Welfare Association has accused officials of the Uttar Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam of high-handedness in dealing with complaints of excess consumption by three-phase electronic meters.

Mr Hemant Kinger, president of the association, has alleged that electronic meters are showing 20 per cent more consumption, which is an unnecessary burden on consumers. He claims that he got the meter tested by connecting a 1000 w bulb to an electronic meter which showed the consumption as 1.2 units as against 1 unit.

The officials of the UHBVN said they would install a parallel meter along with the original to test the accuracy of the previous meter, he says.



Kids visit milk plant
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, June 22
A month-long workshop for the children concluded at Little Angels School in Sector 43-B today. The workshop was attended by children in the age group of two to sixteen from different schools of the city.

Children were taught table manners, music and dance along with a special emphasis on personality development at the workshop.

The children were also taken around Milk Time plant. The children were familiarised with the processing of milk and were told about the importance of milk.



Parwanoo toll tax takes its toll

THE toll tax collection at the inter-state barrier at Parwanoo between Himachal Pradesh and Haryana, is hitting us hard. Everytime we dare cross the barrier for some routine job, we have to pay Rs 30, if we are travelling by our own car. This is not good governance but organised fleecing of the common man. I am afraid, after some time, we will be asked to pay tax for breathing fresh air or even while stepping out on to a road.

Chaos prevails at the Parwanoo barrier and so does the undercurrent of resentment among the residents of Parwanoo and Kalka, who are the major victims of this ongoing government onslaught, not to mention the suffering meted out to the other visitors to the state.

Parwanoo and Kalka are like twin towns, though separated by the inter-state barrier and people from all walks of life have no other option but to commute to and fro for their jobs, business purposes etc. While the industry in Parwanoo has more or less collapsed, the other business is also not in good shape. The salaried class is hard pressed, with many industries failing to pay normal salaries and wages to their employees. On top of all this comes the bitter pill of such irrational taxes and arbitrary increases.

This again depicts how badly we are at the mercy of our political masters. While politicians are busy enhancing their allowances, perks and continue to enjoy all sorts of privileges, they are cruelly squeezing the already hard-pressed common man and the present government seems to have done its every bit to achieve just that.


Why enquiry counter?

There seems to be no need for an enquiry counter at the Ambala Cantonment bus stand. Recently, I had a bad experience with the staff there. I wanted to board the Haryana Roadways bus for Faridabad. The person in charge of the enquiry counter did not perhaps have the precise information regarding the movement of the buses towards Faridabad. To my repeated queries from time to time, he first told me that the bus would come at 7.40 a.m. Then, he said it would come at 8.40 a.m. Then he said 9.40 a.m. But the bus never came.

I would like to ask the authorities a simple question: why do you spend money on a counter that does not serve the purpose intended?

DEVINDER PAL, Ambala city

Tourists’ travails

Our visit to the tourist complex at Madhopur on June 6 was a nightmare. It was a great disappointment because it had absolutely no facilities that would take care of the tourists’ needs and make them feel comfortable and enjoy the visit.

There was no telephone or intercom facility in the guest rooms. We did not have access to even local telephone facility, what to speak about STD. For making an STD call, one has to risk his life by crossing the highway. We reached the guest house in the night. And no staff member was present after 11 p.m.

When I checked out in the morning and wanted to file a complaint with the Manager, Mr Rajesh Kanda, at 9.30 a.m., he was not present. The complaint book was reportedly locked in the cupboard of the Manager!

There is no visible sign board which would attract guests to the complex. It’s only the insignia of the Punjab Tourism Development Corporation (PTDC) which could lead the people to believe that it’s a PTDC project. I wonder why the people sitting in the head offices do not have the vision to have the sign boards installed after a certain distance in order to attract guests to the complex.

NAVKIRAN SINGH, Advocate, Chandigarh

Repair garden walls

Last year, the entrance and partition of the adjoining boundary walls of Chandigarh’s Terrace Garden in Sector 33 between C&D were badly damaged after a huge mango tree fell on them. Ever since, this has been causing great inconvenience and hardship to regular visitors. Stray cattle freely enter and litter in the park, making it filthy and dirty. I appeal to the authorities of the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation to get the damaged walls and the broken entrance gate repaired expeditiously, before the onset of the monsoon.


Why challan me?

I don’t know why I was challaned by the staff of the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation. When I was standing on the back road of our showroom 2408 in Sector 22-C, Chandigarh, an employee of the Health Department challaned me when he noticed some garbage piled up on the road. I pleaded with the staffer that no sweeper had come here to clean up the road for so many years and that this was not the garbage thrown by us. But he did not listen and challaned us.

Since then, we have been writing to the Health Department on my behalf and of our Market Association, but the authorities concerned have done little to save us from unnecessary harassment.


Onus on MC

The Panchkula Municipal Corporation (PMC) had collected crores of rupees from us but it is not providing us the basic amenities we deserve. Apparently, the money collected from us by way of taxes is either being misused or not spent on development at all. Consider cleanliness and road maintenance. The Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) had gone on the spree of demolishing encroachments, good or bad, and in the process demolished the well-maintained fronts of the houses, which they cannot themselves maintain, leaving behind dumps, where cattle and other animals get an open invitation. So did the wild growth of parthenium called congress grass which further breeds mosquitoes, flies and brings in the problems of allergies and other infections.

The Health Department and others are warned about the impending epidemics of all sorts in the rainy season. This is the right time for taking preventing steps such as fogging, aviel spray, anti-mosquito and anti-fly, uprooting and proper disposal of the parthenium weed.

The cleaning of the surroundings of the general hospital should receive the topmost attention. There hospital waste is thrown away by the junior staff, encouraging the domestic helps of nearby houses to dump their kitchen waste and shrubs. This adds to environmental pollution, apart from being a health hazard.

SAKSHI, Panchkula

Unrealistic targets

The Chandigarh police’s recent drive to challan vehicles and drivers that do not conform to the traffic norms has landed me in trouble twice — once for overspeeding and then for crossing the red light.

Sincerely speaking, both the charges against me were false. The Traffic Police In charge allowed me to go without issuing me a challan. In such a case, no one can ever prove his/her innocence and the motorist is left to the mercy of the Traffic Police In charge. On further enquiry, a traffic constable told me that they will have to issue 10 challans daily which is their given target. The Traffic Police authorities should understand that by fixing such unrealistic targets, they are encouraging corruption and the non-conforming drivers and vehicles are still plying on the road comfortably.


Harassment by cops

Recently when I was proceeding to Mohali from Chandigarh on my scooter, I was stopped at the crossing of the dividing road between Sectors 61 and 62 adjoining the market. The traffic constable asked for papers. I showed him the necessary documents which were all in order. But he did not return my driving licence and told me that he would like to retain it with him for obvious reasons. Why? I objected and insisted that it should be returned to me forthwith. In the process, I had to bear the scorching heat of the noon. I could get it back only when I informed him of my advanced age and respectable status.

While returning to my scooter, I heard an elderly person telling his fellowmen that such checkings do take place daily and people are harassed at odd hours simply to secure undue favours. Imagine the plight of public, especially senior citizens and innocent women facing the hardship for no fault of theirs.

Check-ups in good faith are undoubtedly in the interest of smooth traffic but unnecessary harassment of law-abiding citizens is quite unfair and undesirable. The authorities should take remedial measures to curb malpractices, ensure the return of valid documents and save the people from unnecessary harassment at the hands of the traffic police.

J.S. NAGI, SAS Nagar



Credit card stolen; 2 held
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, June 22
Three cases of theft were reported from different parts of the city during the past 24 hours.

The police arrested two persons, Manish Kumar and Mahesh Kumar, both residents of Shiv Shakti Colony, Pinjore, allegedly for stealing credit card of Dr Kuldeep Sachdeva. As per police sources, the accused allegedly stole the card from a booth in Sector 45 at about 5 p.m. yesterday.

Dr Sachdeva said the accused had approached them last afternoon and introduced themselves as bank employees. “They said they had come to increase the credit limit of my card”, said Dr Sachdeva. The two asked him for a photograph and in the meantime, they vanished with his credit card.

Dr Sachdeva followed them and got hold of them at the traffic lights of Sectors 29 and 30. He said there were four of them, but two of them escaped.

The police has registered a case under Sections 379 and 420 of the IPC against a person who fled from the petrol station near Dhillon Cinema barrier in a Maruti Zen car (CH-01-N-4300) without making payment for the fuel. In his complaint, Mr Purshotam Singh alleged that the driver owed Rs 900 to the petrol station.

In yet another case of theft, thieves reportedly took away two tyres of a scooter belonging to Mr Varun Bajaj, a resident of Sector 23. The tyres were stolen from the residence of the complainant on the night of June 20.

LIQUOR SEIZED: In two separate incidents, the police arrested two persons, Shiv Kumar of Burail and Sandeep Kumar of Mani Majra, under various Sections of the Excise Act and claimed to have recovered 500 pouches and seven bottles of liquor from their possession here on Friday.


PISTOL STOLEN: A pistol belonging to an Army officer was reportedly stolen from a parked car at Ambala cantonment.

The incident took place near Arya Girls College. The Chinese pistol and eight cartridges were kept inside the Maruti car. When the Army officer returned to his car, he found both pistol and cartridges missing.


ASSAULTED: Ms Rajrani was reportedly hit with a sharp-edged weapon by Vidhi Chand and three other unidentified persons at her Sector-4 residence on June 18. They reportedly asked her to vacate the house or face dire consequences. The police has registered a case under Sections 323 and 506 of the IPC.

MOBILE PHONE STOLEN: Mr Sumit Sachdev's mobile phone was reportedly stolen from his residence in Sector 8 by Preetam on Friday. A case under Section 379 of the IPC has been registered.

STEREO STOLEN: A stereo was stolen from a car ( DL-4CB-VP-32) parked near the State Bank of Patiala. The car belonged to the Deputy Manager of the bank, Mr H.K. Suri.



2 held on assault charge
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, June 22
The police today arrested two residents of Colony No 4 on a charge of illegally detaining, assaulting and threatening to kill Sonu, a fellow resident. The three had allegedly kept Sonu in illegal confinement, with his hands and legs tied on Thursday night. Sonu was yesterday admitted to the General Hospital, Sector 16 with bruises and a swollen face, said police sources. Those arrested are Ram Gopal and Jairam and they were booked under Sections 323, 342, 506 and 34 of the IPC.



MIA dubs Budget innovative
Our Correspondent

SAS Nagar, June 22
The Mohali Industries Association (MIA), while dubbing the Punjab Budget proposals unique and innovative, has sought the immediate payment of capital subsidy of Rs 500 crore and adequate budgetary provision for the revival of sick units.

The MIA welcomed the abolition, of “inspector raj” and bringing in an era of self-certification, disinvestment of lossmaking PSUs and specific plans to reduce government expenditure.

The association urged the government to give special attention to certain areas, which included the non-levy of surcharge on sales tax on those units that are exempted from the payment of sales tax and non-enhancement of the power tariff for the time being.

It also said the withdrawal of sales tax exemption and other incentives under the existing industry should be done from January 1, 2003; first-stage sales tax should not be charged on those items that constitute raw material for other industrial units; and ICC/sales tax barriers should be removed immediately, as promised in the Congress manifesto.



Lovely lips were lucky lips
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
This day was all about ‘lip service’ at the hands of the most reputed brand in the world of Indian fashion industry. Lakme was here to conduct a strange hunt in town today, spotting girls who had lips that could equal those of brand’s model Yana Gupta's in shape and shade.

Loaded in a van, sported by a full-size video camera, was a full crew from Lakme, out to trace the most luscious lips around. And believe it or not, the stunt-cum-hunt had many takers, although most among them were apprehensive to get their lips judged in the first go.

Gradually, however, the fears subsided and many young girls were being observed by the Lakme lip watchers, who had two things in mind: whether the girls have attractive lips, and if they did, whether or not they were wearing a shade from the famous line of Lakme lip shades.

Those among the lucky ones who were seen wearing the latest shades from the Lakme lip card went home with a hoard of prizes, which ranged in content and style. Along with the prizes came comprehensive Lakme lip guides from the fashion gurus who talked about everything required to have those great-looking lips. So if a girl was lucky enough to be spotted by the lip watchers, she walked out not only with prizes in kind but also with a world of confidence.

The lip watching campaign by Lakme featured events which were held today at some happening spots like the Piccadilly Cinema, KC Theatre complex, Planet M, the Sindhi block in Sector 17 and of course all hot spots along the geri route in Sectors 10 and 11. Ebony store in Sector 9 was also on the list of spots where the hunt was conducted.

Interesting as the entire affair was, it turned out to be more and more exciting with girls coming forward to participate. Many among the winners were shot live and interviewed on the spot, with questions focusing on Lakme, as a brand name, as also on many other related aspects.



Workshop on business management
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
“If one wants to check pollution in one’s organisation, it does not mean that one has to incur an additional financial burden”. This was stated by Mr H.S. Bains, Chairman, Haryana Pollution Control Board, while addressing participants of the one-day workshop on ‘Integrating quality and environment towards total business management’ held here today.

Attended by 36 participants from various foundries, pharmaceutical, acrylics and chemical manufacturing units etc, the workshop, first of its kind in the region, was jointly organised by the Institute of Indian Foundrymen and International Certification Limited.

Mr Bains explained how the mobil oil replacement system for generating sets was deferred for more than three months during the implementation of ISO 14000 standards.

Addressing the participants, Prof P. Thareja of the Metallurgical Engineering Department, Punjab Engineering College, stressed the need for quality equipment, energy, enviornment, quality management, reduction of waste and austerity.

Talking of eight principles of quality management and three principles of enviornment, Mr Sunil Thaman, associate vice-president, International Certifications Limited, spoke about the importance of leadership teamwork and the factual approach to decision making as tools for profitable business management.

Mr Ram Nath, general manager, SIDBI, said unless business management was linked with enviornment management, the industry would not be able to survive in the days to come. He reiterated that recycling and waste management activities were very essential for any organisation.

Mr Viney Kumar, honorary secretary of the Institute of Indian Foundrymen, proposed a vote of thanks.


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