Wednesday, June 26, 2002, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


University likely to reschedule admissions
‘Student interest kept in mind’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 25
Panjab University is likely to reschedule the admissions for postgraduate courses offered on the campus in the light that the results of BA III are expected a day after the last date for submission of admission forms.


  • The last date of filling up forms for postgraduate courses is a day before the expected day of declaration of qualifying (BA III) results.
  • The admission forms submitted to the departments will be incomplete.
  • BA III results are needed to calculate the final merit for admissions to the postgraduate course.
  • Results of honours school is added to the total marks to calculate the merit during admissions, which comes after the normal results.
  • Students do not get marks-sheet on the day of declaration of results. So, a delay was inevitable.

Prof K.N.Pathak, Vice-Chancellor, said he was aware of the facts and a new schedule would be fixed keeping in mind the student convenience and to streamline the process in tune with the declaration of the results of the lower class.

The university authorities said last-minute details were being worked out before declaring a date for filling up the forms. The university did not want to postpone the date in case the results were not declared as per the announced schedule, before declaring a date. A new date is expected within a couple of days.

The definite problem at hand for the students had been highlighted by The Tribune on June 20. The Students Organisation of Panjab University has also in a letter to the Vice-Chancellor sought rescheduling of the dates for filling up the application forms to the departments. Sources in the examination branch confirmed that it would be difficult to declare the results before June 29. Re-scheduling of the dates for submission of forms was, therefore, in the student interest.

In case students filled the forms by the scheduled date of June 28, the forms would be incomplete. For admission to a postgraduate course, in majority of arts and languages streams, the university did add the total of BA III to calculate the merit.

The complication does not end here. In order to calculate the final merit, marks of the student in that particular subject are also added to the total. So, calculating the merit would not be possible even if results were declared on the gazette, but students were not issued the detailed marks sheet immediately.

The departments where admissions are based on an entrance examination can go ahead with the admissions on a provisional basis. The re-scheduling of dates will be greatly beneficial to students of honours school in the arts and languages streams in particular.

This is because honours school result comes a few days later after the normal results, and these students top the list of new admission in postgraduate courses because of additional weightage for honours school marks in admissions.


BSNL launches ‘cheque-drop boxes’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 25
The BSNL telephone subscribers will no longer have to stand in queues to deposit their bills through cheques or cash at the nigam counters. The BSNL has provided them the facility to drop their cheques into the ‘‘ cheque-drop boxes, ’’ installed at 16 different places in the city.

This was stated by Mr M.Deena Dayalan, General Manager ( Finance ), BSNL, here today. Addressing a press conference, he said that these boxes had been installed at DTO, Sector 31-D; Telecom Centre, Sector 17; CTO, GPO building, Sector 17; Telecom centre, Industrial Area I; AO ( TRA) South, Sector 34; DTO, Sector 5, Panchkula; Telephone Building, Sector 7, Panchkula; CTO, Phase vii, Mohali and Telephone building, Phase iv, Mohali, among other places.

The subscribers would have to drop the cheques in the boxes before the date of payment, in the name of AO ( cash), BSNL O/O Pr. GMT, Chandigarh, and mention their bill numbers. The cheques deposited before 3 pm, he said, would be credited on the same day.

They may enquire about the deposit at phone no 606306 subsequently.

Mr Dayalan said that due to lack of awareness among subscribers, only 1200 subscribers were using electronic clearance facility of nearly 2 lakh subscribers in the Chandigarh circle. The nigam has already provided the facility to deposit bills at 15 online counters, 69 post offices and 42 bank branches in the Chandigarh circle. It has further plans to start 24-hour service to deposit cheques at the ATMs in collaboration with the ICICI bank, he added.

Regarding the rate of defaulters, he said out of Rs 286 crore collections in the circle, only Rs 16 crore were outstanding during the past one year. The collection had gone up from Rs 220 crore during the previous year, to the present level. He said the BSNL’s decision to disconnect the telephones of all defaulters had resulted in recovery of Rs 1 crore during the past few days.


GMCH clerk remanded in graft case
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, June 25
The UT Vigilance Department yesterday arrested an employee of Government Medical College Hospital(GMCH)-32 for possessing assets disproportionate to his known sources of income and for submitting affidavit giving false information to get government accommodation in the city.

Sources revealed that the employee, Rajesh Kumar Sharma working as a clerk at GMCH, had invested about Rs 8 lakh in the purchase of a house in the city and deposited Rs 2, 29, 000 in his name and Rs 1, 18, 000 in his wife’s name in banks. He was booked by the Vigilance Department on charges of cheating and under the Prevention of Corruption Act.

The case against the accused was registered after the Vigilance Department got permission of the UT Home Secretary-cum-chief-Vigilance Officer. He was booked by the Vigilance under Section 420 of the IPC and 13(1)(E) and 13(2) of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

Sources said the Vigilance Department had received a complaint against Rajesh Kumar on April 20 that he had been allotted a house in Sector 27-C by submitting a false documents. Rajesh also allegedly owned a house in Sector 30.

Thereafter, the Vigilance Department inquired into the matter. Investigations revealed that the father of the accused, who had been working in the Printing and Stationary Department, retired on August 31, 1998.

Thereafter, Rajesh applied for out-of-turn allotment of house in Sector 27 on January 1, 1999 but it was dismissed by the allotment committee on February 5, 1999.

Another plea for allotment of house on June 25, 1999 was again dismissed. Thereafter, Rajesh moved an application for allotment of the house on September 11, 1999 and was allotted the house on October 18, 1999.

It was alleged that to get the government house he had submitted an affidavit falsely stating that neither he nor his family members owned any house in Chandigarh, Panchkula or Mohali despite the fact that he owned a house in Sector 30.

He was produced before the UT Judicial Magistrate(First Class), Mr S. S Bhardwaj, today, who remanded him in police custody for a day.

The Vigilance Department had sought two days police remand of the accused to find out the sources of income of the accused and recover more documents related to the property. Rajesh pleaded before the magistrate that he was falsely implicated in the case and that he did not own a house in Sector 30. He said his brother was a businessman and was the owner of the Sector-30 house.

He said he had submitted all details of his and his family members’ income in his department. He said the documents of the house were not in his name but in the name of the actual owner.

The counsel for the accused opposed the police remand on the account that as Rajesh had submitted all documents in his department, therefore custodial interrogation was not required.


Sect 11 rehri market dhabas raided
Adulterated food being sold
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 25
Food inspectors of the UT Health Department raided dhabas at the Sector 11 rehri market here today after receiving information that these dhabas were selling adulterated food prepared in unhygienic conditions.

While five of these dhabas were challaned for selling food products prepared under unhygienic conditions and storing food exposed to dust and flies, the team led by senior food inspector M.K. Sharma also took samples of various food items from these eating joints for lab tests. The results of these tests will be made public after finding out if these are adulterated.

Yesterday, the Director, Health Services, Dr Rameshwar Chander, had through a public notice informed that M/S Snow Top, manufacturers of ice cream, ice candy and kulfi had been, in the interest of public health, prohibited from the sale and manufacture of these products after samples collected from the premises were found to be highly adulterated by the Senior Food Inspector, Mr M.K. Sharma.

The food inspectors also found that the manufacturer was using an artificial sweetener saccharine in the products which is illegal. Moreover, the products were also being manufactured in unhygienic conditions.

The manufacturer has been issued a notice and will not be allowed to sell any of these products till fresh permission from the DHS is sought.

During the last one week, as many as 38 challans were issued to some of the top sweet shops in the city after they were found to be violating rule 49 and 50 of the PFA.

Most of these sweet shops had not covered their products to protect them from flies and dust. Some of the sweet shops which were challaned under this act include Uttam Sweets & Dairy, Sector 46; Gobind Sweets & Dairy, Sector 46; Guru Nanak Sweets & Dairy, Sector 44; Mohan Sweets & Dairy, Sector 44; Kesari Sweets and Nanak Sweets, both in Sector 19; Alpha Sweets, Raja Sweets and Rajani Sweets of Sector 17 bridge market.

Readers of this newspaper will recall that a week back some dhabas in Mani Majra had been raided and samples collected. The cooked dals were found to have non permitted colours and the quality of the raw material used was also found to be sub-standard. Some of these dhabas were also challaned under rule 29 of the PFA.


Hoteliers move HC over Admn’s decision
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 25
Issuing notice of motion for July 22 on a petition filed by the Hotel Association of Chandigarh seeking directions for quashing a note in a notification allowing without charge the use of upper floor office space for lodging and guest houses, besides hotels, a Division Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court today ruled that “the change of use granted by the UT Administration hereinafter shall be subject to the final decision of the case”.

In their petition taken up by the Bench, comprising Mr Justice J.S. Khehar and Mr Justice Jasbir Singh, the association, through general secretary Ashok Bansal, had earlier stated that as per the note “the use of upper floor office space for purposes such as lodging houses, guest houses or hotels, excluding any restaurant, dining room or banquet facility, shall be considered to be of the same intensity as office use, and shall be allowed without any charge, subject to building bye-laws and zoning plan”.

Terming it as “arbitrary” and “illegal”, counsel for the petitioner had added that the same would cause prejudice to the interest of the association members. He had further added that the note was also violative of Article 14, besides 19 (1) (G) of the Constitution of India.

It may be recalled that counsel for the Chandigarh Administration, during the hearing of another petition for alternate sites filed by guest house owners running business from residential area, had earlier stated that the authorities were willing to allow the change of user from general trade to lodging-cum-restaurant for enabling the guest house owners to shift their business from residential areas to shop-cum-offices lying vacant.

Counsel had stated the owners could easily shift over to the SCOs as they were lying vacant due to the paucity of tenants. Giving details, he had added that as many as 12 SCOs had been recently auctioned.

It may be recalled that the high court, while directing the Chandigarh Administration to ensure the closure of guest houses, had asked it to explore the feasibility of providing alternate sites in the non-residential areas. The Judges had ruled: “The Chandigarh Administration will have to balance the need of the visitors for accommodation at reasonable rates with the rights of the residents of the locality and ensure closure of these guest houses while exploring the feasibility of providing alternate sites....”

Meanwhile, in a press note, the Hotel Association of Chandigarh has “urged the Administration to take stern action as per the building rules and stop the functioning and erection of all those hotels and lodgings coming up without prior permission, sanction of building plans, and without paying of any charges to the Administration”.


Pollution due to suspended particles on the rise
Ajay Banerjee
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 25
Pollution caused due to suspended particles in the air is on the rise in the city. In the past four years, the graph has gone upwards. On the other hand, thankfully, sulphur dioxide and nitrogen oxide are well below the standard limits for gauging ambient air quality. The solution is to plant more and more trees.

The SPM, as suspended particles are known, are higher in Industrial Area than in Sector 17, main commercial centre of the city. Readings are taken at these two places only. Industrial Area has an average of 460 micrograms per cubic metre. This is about 100 micrograms more for each cubic metre. Sources said this was the annual average and during summers the figure could be higher by another 25 per cent when dust and other particles abound. The figures are according to the new revised norms of pollution control.

The level of nitrogen oxide has come down from as high as 35 micrograms per cubic metre in 1993 to the present count of 10 micrograms. The SPM count in Sector 17 has more or less remained at a gradual incline but within limits. It has shot up in Industrial Area. In 1993, the SPM count was 250 micrograms per cubic metre and has not dropped below the 400 mark in the past three years.

Various causes are attributed. One is dry spell that makes the suspended particle count go up. Dust and other small particles settle down if it rains frequently. A source said this was amply demonstrated from the fact that the nearby Shivalik Hills were best visible only after a spell of rain. The count of suspended particles in the air also rises when farmers in adjoining areas burn the residue of wheat crop in late April. Gusts of wind bring in the residue within the city limits. Nothing can be done in this regard as farmers will keep on burning the crop residue before planting the next crop.

Diesel vehicles release fumes further deteriorating the quality of air. Suggestion that a bypass should be made for all vehicles passing through Chandigarh has fallen on deaf ears. At present thousands of vehicles, including trucks, pass through the city. Any vehicle coming from Delhi and headed for Manali, Dharamsala, Kangra, Anandpur Sahib and Kiratpur Sahib has to pass through Chandigarh. Similarly, any vehicle coming from Ludhiana, Jalandhar and Amritsar and headed for Shimla also passes through the city.

During peak season, the number of vehicles rises manifold. Planners have been demanding the construction of a bypass for long. Diesel vehicles running in the city also add to the fumes and particles. The proposed electric trolley buses, if started, will also help in bringing down pollution.


Govt adamant despite protests
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 25
An agitation of trade unions and federations of employees of various corporations, boards and department of Punjab for the past many days has so far failed to impress the state government to make any announcement on the Disinvestment Commission in favour of employees. The Budget session is coming to close tomorrow.

Another dharna was held at the Matka chowk here today, in which members of the Coordination Committee Para-Medical and Health Employees, Punjab, the Punjab Subordinate Services Federation and others participated. Speakers at the rally claimed that the government had already forced employees of some corporations to accept pre-mature retirement or transferred them to other departments. Workers alleged that staff had not been paid salary for the past six to 12 months in Punjab Poultry Corporation and others.

Mr Paramjit Singh Gandhri, president, Punjab Subordinate Services Federation, urged the government to reject the recommendations of the commission, especially regarding merger/ closure of PSUs and decrease in allowances.

Among others, employees of Markfed, PSIEC, PSIEDC, PFC, Eltop Tubewell Corporation, Schedule Cast Land Development Finance Corporation, Poultry Corporation, Tourism Corporation, Spinfed, Forest Corporation took part in the rally. 


Power cuts irk Mohali residents
Our Correspondent

SAS Nagar, June 25
The power supply situation here is attracting strong criticism, with complaints being received from consumers in different phases.

The common complaints relate to frequent supply disruption, low voltage and unannounced power cuts, adding to the woes of residents during the summer.

The supply position is so unsatisfactory that even the Civil Hospital is affected on many occasion. This hits laboratory work and puts patients to inconvenience. A proposal to provide a power “hot line” to the hospital has been pending since 1991, says Dr Manjit Singh Bains, SMO in charge of the hospital. He says if the tripping is due to excessive load, the situation may improve when a new supply line is provided to the recently opened hospital block.

Mrs Narpinder Kaur, a resident of a 10-marla house in Phase III-A, says the supply, except to the power plugs, is cut off almost every day around 10 p.m. and is restored only after midnight. This has been going on for more than a month now.

Mrs Manmohan Kaur, municipal councillor living in Phase II, says she has been receiving a number of complaints from consumers in her ward regarding the power supply position. She says the supply is cut almost daily, especially in a pocket of 7-5 marla houses in Phase II. The supply is usually disrupted for an hour or two every day. Some days ago, she says, the streetlights system where she lives remained non-functional for around 15 days.

Dr Ajay Pal Singh, a resident of Phase III B 1, says the power supply in his area is erratic. On June 22 the supply was cut from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. without any prior notice to the consumers by the Punjab State Electricity Board. It is normal, he says, for the power to get disrupted several times over a 24-hour period sometimes for an hour at a stretch.

Officials at the Municipal Council office in Phase VII complain that the power supply is cut at least twice a week, with period extending from two to three hours.

However, two residents of Phases V and X Mrs Poonam Sharma and Mrs Paramjit Kaur, respectively — say there was no major power problems in their areas.


Filing of IT returns simplified
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 25
From now on income tax assessees will not have to fill in the cumbersome 10-page form as part of the income tax return filing process for the year ending March 31, 2002. Instead, members of the public filing their tax returns will have to use the form called “saral”. This form has just two pages of information and is considered easy to fill and understand.

This ruling will apply to all those who are in the below Rs 2 lakh per annum category or above Rs 2 lakh per annum category, sources in the Income Tax Department’s North Western Region office confirmed here today. The detail form would be applicable to the salaried class as well as businessmen whose accounts have not been audited.

The 10-page form was designed to collect information on all aspects of the person filing the return. Detailed information was required on the number of vehicles, money spent annually on petrol, fee paid for kids in school or college. Besides the detailed of credit card use, income from residential property, commercial property were included in the detail form.

A few days ago, the Union Finance Ministry had issued a clarification that people with income less than 2 lakh per annum need not fill in the detail form but fill up “saral” to file their return. Now the same has been extended to the people having income more than Rs 2 lakh per annum.


MC staff remove tiled pavement
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 25
The encroachment wing of the Municipal Corporation removed the tiled pavement in Sector 28 market here today. The pavement had been built by the Chandigarh Administration and the Municipal Corporation itself.

Meanwhile, the Chandigarh Car Accessories Dealers Association, in a press release here tonight, said that not a single tile was placed by any trader in the market.

Shopkeepers in the area tried to reason with the staff, saying this was public property but it fell on deaf ears.

Mr Ramesh Goyal, this president of the association, alleged that officials of the enforcement wing had made this out to be a case of personal ego, as the pavement is not part of any encroachment.

In the past few months, the Municipal Corporation has cracked down heavily on encroachers and road-side mechanics.

Traders said that with the uprooting of the pavement, an open mud pit has been exposed which will worsen during the monsoons.


Rally in support of Punwire staff
Our Correspondent

SAS Nagar, June 25
Representatives of trade unions held a rally here today in support of the demands of Punwire employees.

The rally, which was held at the Balongi road barrier, demanded that Punwire should be made operational again and the staff be paid their salaries pending for a period of more than two years.

Mr Bant Singh Brar, general secretary of the Punjab unit of AITUC, said there was hardly any difference between the policies of the present Congress government in Punjab and the previous SAD-BJP regime. Capt Amarinder Singh and Mrs Rajinder Kaur Battal had given an assurance before the assembly elections that Punwire would be revived, but nothing had happened so far.

Mr Brar said the reopening of Punwire was not only in the interest of the employees but also of the nation. Products of Punwire were used for defence purposes, including Kargil conflict.

He condemned the state government’s decision to freeze DA, TA and bonus. He regretted that the government was interested more in closing down factories and slashing salaries rather than stopping the theft of power and the evasion of various taxes which ran into crores of rupees. He said 50 per cent of small-scale industries in Punjab had closed down. These units gave the maximum employment. These should be given various incentives to ensure that they remained viable.

Mr Balbir Singh, general secretary of the Chandigarh, SAS Nagar and Kharar units of CITU, said workers had voted for Mr Bir Devinder Singh, MLA (Kharar), in the assembly poll after he gave an assurance that Punwire and JCT would be made operational. He felt that there was a need for a third political front in Punjab which could provide benefits to the people.

He said ordering of probe into Punwire affairs was not enough. It was necessary to reopen Punwire so that employees could earn their livelihood.


Rules for public inconvenience

A VISIT to the Punjab Civil Secretariat in Chandigarh is a blunt reminder to the common man that his life is worse than a dog. It is an experience and exercise in humiliation where the helplessness of the man in the street stares him in the face and makes him envious of those who break the rules with impunity due to their position and status in society. Surprisingly, the rules are only for the riff-raff and their violation is a rule rather than an exception. I had a bitter experience during a recent visit to the Punjab Civil Secretariat. The torture began when I was stopped about half a kilometre away to park my two-wheeler. After parking the vehicle, I followed some people who were proceeding towards the secretariat. I was stopped by the security post and told to go from the other side.

When I had pointed to the people walking through the end that I was about to approach, I was informed that they were police personnel. Should it be understood that rules are not universally applicable? Security personnel are perhaps above the law. The staff at the reception counter need a refresher course in public relations. They should not forget that their job entails interacting with public. Some politeness can make the situation better for every one concerned.

With great difficulty, I managed to get a pass. But I was stopped again by the security personnel who informed me that mobile phone or pager is not allowed inside the secretariat premises. On asking where I could leave the mobile phone, I was informed anywhere but not with the reception staff. Why can’t the visitors be allowed to deposit their mobile phones/pagers with the reception staff? This is in fact the practice in many places. The visitors could also be provided with receipts after they deposit their mobile phones. These receipts could be used by the visitors for taking back their mobile phones. Will this not add to the convenience of the public?

I am also surprised why the authorities have not put up a notice board in the parking area with a warning that visitors are not allowed to carry with them mobile phones/pagers inside the secretariat? These problems would not have arisen had a notice board been put up. Obviously, rules such as the one in vogue today are only meant to harass the public.

Surprisingly, though so much fuss is being made about the security aspect in the secretariat premises, nobody seems to bother about the visitors’ vehicles that are left unguarded metres away from the building. Maybe, in the authorities’ scheme of things , the common man’s life and property is not worth protecting.


Pet dog nuisance

As in Chandigarh, many residents in the Modern Housing Complex at Mani Majra are fond of keeping pet dogs. However, very few of them have the decency of taking their pet dogs out to help them ease out or defecate. Most dogs defecate in front of the flats, on the road beams, in parks, market place and so on. This has become a big nuisance and something should be done to put an end to this menace.

In foreign countries, pet dogs cannot indulge in this kind of nuisance. The question of violation of rules or awarding punishment does not arise as the owners\dog keepers are very much particular about this. While taking them out for a stroll, the owners\dog keepers keep with them rubber gloves, a small belcha and a pot. Why cannot we emulate this practice here?

Some time back, the Chandigarh Administration made the registration of dogs mandatory. Similarly, the authorities concerned should enact a law, making the dog owners/ keepers responsible if dogs defecate in public places.

T.R.GOYAL, Mani Majra (Chandigarh)

Fire safety in cinema halls

The cinema owners in Chandigarh should take all possible measures to prevent fire mishaps in the cinema halls. In this regard, it would be better if the Chandigarh Administration convenes a meeting to take stock of the fire safety measures being followed by all cinema halls. The owners of cinema halls, police and the Chandigarh Administration officers should be invited to this joint meeting. An action plan could be formulated at this meeting to decide the kind of safety norms required to be put in place so as to prevent fire accidents.

The cinema owners should be directed to display prominently the fire safety norms for the benefit of the cinegoers right at the entrance of the cinema halls. The officials concerned should check once in three months whether the fire safety norms are being followed by the cinema owners in letter and spirit. Hefty fines should be imposed on those found wanting in this regard.

Ironically, even though India is one of the biggest producers of films in the world, our track record in following appropriate safety norms in the cinema halls is poor. A reversal of this trend is in order.

J.S. PURI, President, Cinegoers’ Welfare Association, Chandigarh


Army wives donate blood for soldiers

NOTHING is impossible in the profession of arms, provided the leader at each level sets an example for his subordinates. This is how a good leader mesmerises his jawans to accomplish any task that sets for them.

When the Army started mobilising for “Operation Parakram” in December, 2001, military hospitals began gearing up to receive casualties which always occur in war. All soldiers being blood donors, there is never any shortage of blood in military hospitals. Since during the period of an intense battle, the number of casualties goes high, sufficient stock of different groups of blood has be the kept in reserve to cater to the life-saving surgery cases.

Here again, it is the personal example of officers that sets all ranks moving to donate more and more blood. What one needs to marval at is that the leadership qualities in the armed forces also travel to women who never miss a chance to prove their mettle. In many units, officers’ wives donated blood liberally to save the lives of seriously wounded soldiers. For them, it almost became a mission to donate blood. No doubt, a soldier is not only willing to shed his blood in battlefield but he and his wife are also willing to donate it to save lives.

Sherwood Shimla

When you want to get away from the scorching heat of the plains for a week’s holiday in the hills, you have an ideal place to stay at Shimla.

Ten well furnished guest rooms, three two-room suites and seven one-room suites, with a TV set and telephone in each suite, are established at the first floor in the Engineers’ Block by the Army Training Command (ARTRAC).

Christened as Sherwood, these suites are meant for the defence services officers, both serving and retired, at very reasonable rates, for a short stay. There are excellent bar and mess facilities for the occupants. The Command CSD canteen is also located in the same block. What adds to your comfort is the attitude of the untiring mess staff. For a cup of tea or coffee in your room any time, you have just to press the bell and in a moment your telephone will ring to get your order, which is complied with promptly.

Since Sherwood is located in the ARTRAC complex, it is quite close to the Mall which is a favourite haunt of all the visitors to Shimla. The allotment of Sherwood suites is done by the Quarter Master General’s Branch of the ARTRAC. Because of the heavy rush in the summer months, especially in May and June, the booking has to be made well in advance.

No doubt, some of the Army holiday homes have improved a lot. But then, you have to do your own cooking there which becomes quite cumbersome.


In November last year, all formalities for appointing a Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) for our defence forces were completed and formal announcement for filling the post was to be made shortly. Then came “Operation Parakram”.

That the three services are still not mentally prepared to have a joint head for them was unmistakably clear from the discussions at a seminar “Role of Navy in future operations” held at CII in Chandigarh on June, 20. The speaker at this seminar was Vice-Admiral P.J. Jacob (retd). It was presided over by Lieut-Gen J.F.R. Jacob (retd), Governor of Punjab and Administrator of Chandigarh, and attended by a large number of defence officers, including two former chiefs, Army Chief General V.P. Malik and the IAF Chief, Air Chief Marshal A.Y. Tipnis.

Five-star Marshal

One seeing a five-star Air Force car parked near the Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) building on the Mall the other day, no doubt was left in my mind that the Marshal of the Air Force Arjun Singh was at Shimla. Sure enough, he accompanied by his wife and daughter, emerged from Bar is Espresso Bar and started walking upright on the Mall, totally betraying that he was an octogenarian. Next morning, he was taken ill and was advised complete rest for two days. Was it a strain? Seems age demands respect.

Income tax exemption

There seems to be some doubt about the income tax exemption to the disabled officers of the armed forces. It is clarified that their entire disability pension i.e. disability element and service element are exempt from income tax.

Pritam Bhullar



Power failure in Sec 17
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 25
Power supply to the city's main commercial centre, Sector 17, failed this morning as an indoor transformer got damaged leading to power failure of more than six hours. The damaged transformer was wedged between two transformers and the crane could not reach it, thus the transformers on both sides of the damaged one were switched off to enable the staff to work.

This snag affected half of Sector 17, including the DC office , other government offices and trade in showrooms, beside the telecom exchange. Partial restoration was done by 1 p.m. The new transformer was installed late at night. Meanwhile in Modern Housing Complex, Mani Majra, power supply failed for more than one hour in the evening. Residents complained that supply had been erratic this summer.


Brothers killed in mishap
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, June 25
Tragedy struck at Railla village late last night when two brothers were crushed to death by a vehicle. The deceased — Surjit Singh (50) and Sant Singh (40) — died while on their way to hospital.

According to information available, the two had gone to buy vegetables from the Sector 20 sabzi mandi. On their way back, around 11 pm, they took a ride from an acquintance to the Sector 12 chowk, near the village. As soon as the two got off the car to cross the road, a speeding Tata Sumo, ran them down. Their legs and lower abdomen were badly crushed. A large number of people gathered and identified the two as residents of Railla village. Their families were informed and the injured were taken to the General Hospital, Sector 6. From there, they were referred to the PGI, Chandigarh, but they died on their way to the hospital. Meanwhile, a pall of gloom descended on the village this morning, when the bodies were brought. The deceased had been staying in the village along with their families. Their third brother, Charan Singh, also hails from the same village. Sant Singh was working as a driver and is survived by his wife Pal Kaur and eight children, while Surjit Singh had a small dairy and is survived by wife Kashmiro Kaur and four children.


Dr Bhat is head of vets panel
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 25
Reacting to a news item published under the title “Vets association meeting held,” in the June 15 issue of Chandigarh Tribune, the Indian Veterinary Association has stated that certain faculty statements mentioned in the item are factually incorrect.

Dr R.S. Sharma, who has been mentioned as current president of the association, is actually a former president. It has been added that Dr Sharma is currently not associated in any capacity with the association headquarters in New Delhi and Chennai. The current faculty of the association is: Prof Dr P.N. Bhat — president; Dr S. Salvarajan, Dr A.K. Singh, Dr G.S. Chahal and Dr N. Mohanan, — vice presidents.


Grants sanctioned
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, June 25
The district administration will spend Rs 2.50 crore under Swaran Jayanti Gram/Shehri Rozgar Yojana, Employment Assurance Scheme and Gram Samridhi Yojana during the current financial year.

This was disclosed by the Deputy Commissioner, Ms Jyoti Arora, while presiding over a meeting of district rural development agency and district urban authority here today. Under Swaran Jayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojana , a sum of Rs 32.64 lakh has been sanctioned, out of which Rs 19.70 lakh would be provided to self help groups and Rs 6.52 lakhs would be spent as training purposes and as revolving fund.


RBI office closed on June 29
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 25
Mr Madan Lal, Regional Director, Reserve Bank of India (RBI), Chandigarh, in a press note issued here today, informed that the office of the RBI would remain closed on Saturday, June 29 for public transactions on account of yearly closing of accounts. 


4 booked for immoral trafficking
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, June 25
The police has booked four persons, including a woman, on charges of immoral trafficking. They were arrested from a guest-house in Sector 12, here last night.

It is learnt that the special cell of the police led by Sub Inspector Fateh Singh had received a tip-off on the illegal activity going on in the guest-house. Immediately, the police raided the place and found three men and a woman- in a compromising position.

The accused have been identified as Man Mohan, Amit and Vicky. The three, along with the woman, were arrested and produced in a local court today.


Chain snatched
Another case of chain snatching was reported in the city yesterday. At least four similar cases have been reported from different parts of the city during the month of June. Interestingly, in most of the cases the snatchers happened to be two in number and scooter borne. And such incidents often took place in evenings.

Police sources said during summers chains hanging from women's neck were usually visible. In winters, however, the chains are normally covered by warm clothes.

In the yesterday's case, two scooter-borne youths, reportedly snatched gold chain worn by Ms Parmila Sadana in Sector 37 at around 8.40 pm. According to police sources, the incident took place when Ms Sadana was standing near her house. She could not note down the registration number of the scooter. The police has registered a case under Sections 356 and 379 of the IPC.

House burgled
Mr Krishan Chand, a resident of Sector 20, reported to the police that his house was burgled sometime between June 23 and 24 and the thieves took away a gold “mangal sutra”, a pair of earrings and Rs 3,000. A case has been registered.

One beaten up
Mr Jagdish Singh, a resident of Sector 24, reported to the police that he was beaten up and threatened by Sanjiv Kumar, a resident of Sector 23, and others in Sector 37 market on June 19. An official press note of the police department stated that a case has been registered under Sections 147, 148, 149, 323 and 506 of the IPC.

Vehicles stolen
Mr Rajiv Sarwal, a resident of Sector 15, reported to the police that his Maruti car (CH 03 D 9447) was stolen from his residence yesterday. Mr Harminder Singh, a resident of Sector 21, also reported to the police that his Bullet motor cycle (CH 03C 7075) has been stolen. Two cases of theft have been registered.


Woman found dead
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, June 25
A 22-year-old married woman, Geeta, was found dead at her Panjab University residence here today. Her body was found hanging from an iron rod fixed on the ceiling of a room.

As per information available, Mr Anil Kumar, husband of the woman told the police that at about 1.30 p.m. when he returned home from office, he found the entrance door locked from inside. He thought that she was in bathroom and hence was not responding to knocks on the door. However, when there was no response to his repeated knocks on the door for long, Anil forced opened the door only to find his wife hanging form a saree from the ceiling.

The police has not found any suicide note. It is not known why Geeta chose to take the extreme step. Meanwhile, preliminary investigations ruled out any foul play in the incident. Anil is a gardener in the PU and the couple had no children. Inquest proceedings under Section 174 of the Cr PC have been initiated.


Digital cameras launched
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 25
Jupiter Infosys Limited, one of the biggest distributors of International IT brands in the country, has launched two premium digital cameras — Frontech Classycam and Slimcam. What makes these cameras unique is the fact that they are a digital camera, a digital camcorder and a PC camera rolled into one.

The Classycam has a built in flash and its 64MB memory can store anywhere between 192 to 480 colour images. It has a LCD display and is compatible with MS windows 98/2000/ME. It’s extremely easy to use and can be connected to any windowsbased PC through its USB port. The Frontech ClassyCam - JIL 2206 is priced at Rs 8,000 (MRP).

The Slimcam is truly slim; just 1.2 inch wide and 4.9’’ inch in height, it is extremely lightweight and handy. It 16 MB memory can store between 80 to 320 pictures. Its LCD display supports functions such as ‘‘battery low status, self-timer, Continuous mode’’ etc. Compatible with MS windows 98/2000/ME/XP, the SlimCan also has an USB port for hassle-free connectivity to any windows based PC. The Frontech Slimcam JIL-2205 is priced at Rs 6,000 (MRP).

Both cameras can run on USB power, by which the power is generated from the PC itself when the camera is connected to its USB port. The cameras can also be run on 2 dry cell batteries.

Meanwhile, Red Apple Travel Limited, UK, that has recently launched its successful advantage card in India, offers highly attractive and value-added summer packages for its members as well as general public.

Known for its value for money, options provided to its members cover provided to with over 2000 member-establishments in India and 25000 across the globe which honour the card, Red Apple Travel is set to revolutions the travel trade with honest to goodness services at down to earth prices.

Announcing the packages Joint Managing Director Suneet Goenka said: “Our main strength is our vast network of member establishments across the globe hich offer a whole lot of services and benefits to our esteemed customers. In this highly competitive service industry our main aim is to provide our members with a range of options at the best possible prices”. Also, benefits like providing insurance cover to each of its members against air and road accidents is something that shows the company’s concern for its members.

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