Sunday, September 8, 2002, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S


Cong-BJP row: Old game, new players
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 7
  The year was 1993. The Indian National Congress (INC) ruled the nation. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was in power in the NCT of Delhi. The INC framed the Transaction of Business Rules in November that rendered the BJP’s Chief Minister dependent on the Lieutenant- Governor. The BJP cries foul.

  The year is 2002. The BJP-led coalition rules the nation. The INC is in power in the NCT of Delhi. The BJP-led coalition amends the Transaction of Business Rules that renders the INC’s Chief Minister more dependent on the Lieutenant-Governor. The INC cries foul.

  In 1998, a BJP Chief Minister writes to the Centre asking for more powers. The INC supports the move.

  In 2002, an INC Chief Minister writes to the Centre asking for more powers. The BJP supports the move.

History repeats itself.

Clash of egos precipitates a crisis yet again, only this time the players are new. The INC sets the ball in motion when Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit gets Principal Secretary (Finance) Ramesh Chandra to write to the ministers and tell them there is no need to send files to Raj Niwas. Lieutenant-Governor Vijai Kapoor feels insulted. A piqued Kapoor then gets the Centre to issue a clarification that screams, “I’m the boss.” The clarification triggers off a political crisis with the Council of Ministers headed by Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit making known their displeasure. Much ado about nothing? Yes, says Delhi Pradesh BJP president Madan Lal Khurana. No, it is unprecedented, biased, retrograde, against established conventions of democratic governance, protests Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit. Meanwhile, allegations are flying thick and fast. If the Chief Minister on Friday levelled certain allegations against the Lieutenant-Governor, the BJP today claimed the privatisation of (now erstwhile) the Delhi Vidyut Board (DVB) was done in a hurry and the memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed without the Lieutenant- Governor’s knowledge so that the private companies could reap a windfall.

The verbal duel will reach a crescendo on September 11 when the two political parties clash in the Delhi Legislative Assembly. The Congress sees in the day-long special session of the House an opportunity to wrest the initiative going into an election year. The BJP hopes to box the Treasury Benches into a corner by picking holes in the Congress’ vision for statehood to Delhi. September 9, Mr Khurana asserts, will be a time of reckoning for the Sheila Dikshit Ministry. “If the Congress supports this proposal, it will convince Delhiites its intentions are honourable. If it opposes, people will call their bluff.”

“All or none,” Mr Khurana reiterates, referring to the powers Delhi should have. “Sheila Dikshit cannot say she wants to keep land with her but not the police,” he says and proposes a Unified Authority that will eliminate multiplicity of authority and put an end to the blame game being played out among agencies of the NCT of Delhi. And to press for their demand, the party will hold a sit-in outside the Assembly on September 11 and either propose an amendment to confer unqualified powers on the Government of NCT of Delhi or move a resolution for complete statehood with land, police, etc. Launching a broadside against the Sheila Dikshit Ministry, Mr Khurana says the Lieutenant-Governor’s being kept in the dark about the terms and conditions contained in the MoU the Government of NCT of Delhi entered into with Tata Power and Bombay Suburban Electric Supply was “another” provocation for the Union Ministry of Home Affairs’ circulars dated July 25 and August 29.

The accusation comes a day after the Chief Minister accused the Lieutenant-Governor of doublespeak and putting roadblocks in the way of undertaking of development works.

“The 16 per cent assured return to the private players is illegal. The Lieutenant-Governor should have been informed. Such a clause is a ploy to give benefit to the private companies. We are talking of crores of rupees if the percentage is increased or decreased by even as much as one per cent. This is a scandal of epic proportions,” alleges Mr Khurana. The officer, he continued, who wrote to ministers asking them to stop sending files to Raj Niwas was also instrumental in the negotiations for privatising the (now erstwhile) Delhi Vidyut Board. 


ABVP wins hands down in DUSU poll
Our Correspondent

New Delhi, September 7
A short spell of sunny skies in an otherwise cool and rainswept day formed the backdrop for the declaration of the much-awaited results of DUSU elections at the Police Grounds today.

The final outcome of the week-long saga of oscillating fortunes, allegations and counter-allegations fell firmly in favour of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) whose candidates had the last laugh, winning three out of the four posts on the Delhi University Students’ Union (DUSU).

The results were a reversal of last year’s elections where NSUI managed to bag three posts leaving ABVP to stay content with the post of vice-president, which went to Nakul Bharadwaj. His run of fortune at the elections continued this year, as he managed to pip Ragini Nayak of the National Students’ Union of India (NSUI) for the post of president. Till last evening, the race between the two seemed close, but in the eventual analysis, Nakul’s victory margin was a comfortable 1,577 votes over Ragini.

ABVP also managed a victory in the form of its vice-presidential candidate, Shiv Sunder Dagar, who scraped through at the expense of the NSUI candidate, Neeranjan Rana by a slim margin of 505 votes. Dipti Rawat, the ABVP candidate for the post of secretary, won in contrasting style, managing the largest margin of victory – of 3,573 votes over Vinay Solanki (NSUI).

The best-laid plans of ABVP went slightly awry and it could not make a clean sweep as its candidate for the post of joint secretary, Akash Deep Tiwari, was defeated. Ashok Basoya held a lead of 1,190 votes over him at last count, and also served as a saving grace for NSUI, who were comprehensively humbled.

Despite the active campaigning and large claims of smaller parties such as Chhatra Lok Janshakti (CLJ), Students Federation of India (SFI) and All India Students’ Association (AISA), the eventual battle boiled down to the contemporary NSUI versus ABVP contest.

The declaration of a comprehensive victory for ABVP heralded a large-scale procession from their side, which eventually transcended upon the main university campus. The three victorious candidates with around 200 supporters, accompanied by senior BJP leaders, made no attempt to underplay what they had achieved – a defeat for the Congress. The environment on the campus bore a festive look once the losing candidates became obscure as the winning candidates (including Ashok Basoya) made speeches at the Vivekanand Statue in Arts Faculty.

The victory marks a return to power for ABVP, which began a trend in the downward direction after having stayed in power for almost 25 years. BJP leader Mahendra Nagpal attributed this victory to the growing awareness of the student community.

The other more prominent explanation for the NSUI loss seems to be the selection of the NSUI panel, which has come under widespread scrutiny. An NSUI supporter said, “This strategy of fielding a good-looking female candidate without experience cannot work every time. I still don’t understand how they could overlook someone like Rohit Chowdhary who has been a prominent NSUI face for a long time.”


GIA proposes a win-win formula for small units
Tribune News Service

Gurgaon, September 7
The Gurgaon Industrial Association (GIA) has expressed deep concern over the working of the district administration while implementing the orders of the Punjab and Haryana High Court in shifting the polluted industrial units functioning in the residential areas in the city.

Making a statement specifically about the 243 industrial units short-listed by the local Municipal Council for shifting purposes, the GIA viewed that most of these 243 units do not fall under Section 128 of the Municipal Act, 1973, for offensive and dangerous trade.

The GIA has appealed to the Deputy Commissioner, Mr Anurag Rastogi, to review and reconsider the list of these units.

Casting reflections on the working of the MC, the industrial body has said, "The status reports need to be reviewed in the presence of representatives from the industries, the Haryana State Pollution Control Board and the Gurgaon Municipal Council. A committee may be constituted to look into the same, it added. The President of the GIA, Mr Jagan Nath Mangla, said after conducting a free and fair re-survey, the industries, which were causing noise, water and air pollution in violation of the prescribed rules and regulations, could be relocated.

These units were very small in nature and could not afford the reserved price of the plots being offered by the state government in its different industrial estates, said the president. It must be ensured that the plots to these units are allotted at cheaper rates. Interest-free loans and long-term instalment plan must be offered to them as the financial position of these units is not such that exorbitant prices can be paid for the plots, said Mr Mangla.

He added that they are not even able to pay earnest money @ 10 per cent. The GIA President added that the decision of the Supreme Court with regard to shifting of the units from Delhi may be kept in view as the Delhi Government had offered land at cheaper rates to the industrial units which were uprooted following the order of the Supreme Court.

He revealed these units comprised welding shops, small services shops well-connected with the people of the area in their day-to-day working. The capital investment of a majority of these units does not exceed more than the capital investment of tiny and cottage units and does not fall under the purview of the industry, observed the GIA.

The consequence of closure of these units will not only leave thousands of people jobless but also result in huge revenue loss to the state exchequer, opined Mr Mangla.

The government must resolve the issue by drawing a win-win formula for everybody, he suggested.


Three booked for gangrape

Om Prakash and his two accomplices, Ashok Kumar and Dabboo, who allegedly kidnapped and then gangraped a young married anganwari worker of Kosli for several days, have been booked on charges of rape, abduction and criminal intimidation under Sections 363, 366, 376, 506 and 34 of the IPC by the Kosli police following a directive from SP Hanif Qureshi.

The accused have absconded. It is reported that Om Prakash Yadav of Bhakli village near Kosli was a tenant in a shop owned by Jagdish Kumar, husband of the victim. He was made to vacate the shop recently. On August 27, when Jagdish’s wife was returning from the anganwari centre, she was allegedly lured by Om Prakash to a place where they were joined by Ashok Kumar of Nautana village of Mahendragarh district and Dabboo of Kasni village of Jhajjar district. The woman was taken to an undisclosed place near Jaipur where she was kept for several days and repeatedly raped by the trio. They later dropped her near her house on August 31.


Cops get their act together 
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 7
Concerned over the growing incidents of robbery in moving buses, the Delhi Police today announced several measures, including deployment of plain-clothes men, stringent checking by police pickets and increasing mobile patrolling.

Addressing newsmen, Joint Commissioner of Police (Southern Range), Satish Chandra said that the police have arrested 118 suspects, including criminals and proclaimed offenders. Of them, 10 suspects have criminal background. Besides, three gangs, who operate in South Delhi, have been identified. They will be busted soon.

Bus conductors and drivers have been advised to stop buses near police pickets or police stations if anything wrong happens with the passengers. In case, they are unable to stop the buses at these places, they should use blinkers to give indication to policemen deployed on roads in plain-clothes.

They have also been asked to inform the police if they have knowledge of any such group which commits robbery or indulges in molestation of girls in the buses. If they do not inform the police despite having information of such groups, legal action will be taken against them.

The police have also increased patrolling in vulnerable areas of the Capital. The police have identified some points where such incidents take place. Buses plied on these points are being checked.

The step was taken following an hour-long meeting of all the district police chiefs and other senior officers with the Commissioner of the Delhi Police.

To control robbery and molestation in moving buses, cooperation of bus conductors and drivers are significant It will be difficult for the police to control such crimes without their cooperation.

The police are questioning all bus drivers and conductors plied between Rajouri Garden and Shalimar Bagh to identified the suspects who molested a girl student of the Delhi University on Friday. Three buses have been spotted so far and the culprits are likely to be arrested, Satish Chandra said.

One of the suspects involved in South-West district robbery that took place in a moving bus has been arrested. He has been identified as Bunty, alias Khursheed.


13-yr wait for a mini secretariat
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Panipat, September 7
It has been a 13-year-long wait for the residents of the district for a mini secretariat. Still, there is no sign of such a thing happening in the near future. Tall claims of the district administration regarding the early construction of the mini secretariat notwithstanding, hundreds of residents frequenting the city for routine administrative jobs are left to fend for themselves. And this was despite the fact that the foundation stone of the project was laid by the then Chief Minister, Mr Bhajan Lal, on June 3, 1994.

In fact, the story of laying of foundation stone makes an interesting reading. While the foundation stone on the 66 acres was laid by Mr Bhajan Lal, the ownership of the land was disputed. The absent-minded district administration thought the land belonged to it till the defence authorities staked its claim and even reportedly moved the court in this regard. Finally, wisdom dawned on the administration and it proposed to transfer a “suitable” land to the defence authorities at Ambala in 1999.

Even the DC, Mr Mulk Raj Anand, had repeatedly gone on record saying that the land had been transferred to the defence authorities at Ambala and the construction work on the project would commence soon. However, the project had been hanging fire since then.


Finding it hard to keep the wolf from the door
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, September 7
Circus, once a form of complete entertainment, no longer casts a spell over urbanities. It is on its last legs in many parts of the country. This seems to be the view one gathers from the Dussehra ground here where the Asiad circus has put up its tents.

“We are getting only one-third of the spectators, while we have seats for 2,400 persons in a show, though the crowd is better on a holiday,” the circus manager, Mr K J Menon said. Speaking to the ‘NCR Tribune’ here today, Mr Menon, who has been associated with the circus industry for several decades, described the future of circus companies as dismal.

Blaming several factors for their sorry plight, he stressed that the concept and means of entertainment had undergone a sea change in the past couple of decades.

Performing animals like lions, tigers, elephants and bears, clowns, acrobats and riders had been the key players in a circus, but with the ban on the performance of some of them and with the expansion of other forms of entertainment, circus and its artistes are fighting for their survival.

Stating that his circus company, Asiad Circus, had been only five years old, Mr Menon disclosed that only 1 or 17 circus companies in the country out of total about 200 registered had been active at present. The majority of circuses had become inactive due to high running costs and changes brought regarding the animals and other issues.

He said circus was known to be a place where the children and people who had not seen wild animals could enjoy their pranks from close quarters.

The Asiad Circus was mainly carved out of the Empire circus about five years ago. The circus has about 272 persons employed on salary basis, 24 animals including four elephants, five horses and 15 dogs.

The company had to hand over all the lions and tigers to the wildlife department last year, after the Supreme Court had passed a ban on the performance of some wild animals.

The company is paying several charges to the local civic administration including a rent of Rs 2,700 daily for the ground and Rs 75,000 as contract charges for cycle and scooter stand for a month.


Hooda only a paper tiger: kisan union leader
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, September 7
The President of the Haryana Kisan Union, Mr Dharam Pal Deswal, has alleged the state Congress under the leadership of Mr Bhupinder Singh Hooda has failed in not only exposing the misdeeds of the Chautala government but also in effectively exposing the cause of the common people.

In a signed press statement issued here today, Mr Deswal alleged that the Chautala government had lost its popularity in a short span of two and a half years because of deterioration in the law and order situation, imposition of heavy house tax, firing on farmers, installation of fast electricity meters and many other acts of commission and omission.

He regretted that the Congress, which was the main opposition party in the state, could not put the Chautala government on the mat because of the weak and directionless leadership of Mr Hooda.

He said the non-performance of the central and state governments would have ensured the victory of the Congress candidate in the Yamunanagar Assembly byelection.

Mr Hooda’s leadership had put a question mark on the prospects of the Congress nominee.

Already, the party, he said, had lost the elections it had contested under the leadership of Mr Hooda.

Mr Deswal appealed to the Congressmen in Haryana to teach a lesson to those party leaders who were responsible for weakening the party in the past six years.

If loyal and sincere Congressmen remain silent at this juncture, the party cannot come to power in Haryana and the common man in the state will continue to suffer, he added.

Opposing making Mr Hooda the CLP leader and Leader of the Opposition in the Haryana Assembly, the kisan leader said that Mr Hooda was an incompetent and inexperienced leader.

He added Mr Hooda was a paper tiger and would not be able to meet the challenge of the ruling party.

He demanded immediate removal of Mr Hooda from the post of CLP leader as the rank and file of the party were disenchanted by the decision of the Congress high command.

Mr Hooda, he alleged, was still misguiding the people by saying that he would become the Chief Minister in case the Congress came to power in the next Assembly elections.


Computers open brave new world for humble boy
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 7
It’s a story with a fairy tale twist. Something you’d associate with the world of childhood, of dreams and Hans Christian Andersen—of stately swans hiding behind ugly ducklings and ethereal mermaids changing into princesses!!

This story of transformation is no less magical. It’s about an economically challenged family, a 80-year-old mentor and about a scholarship that altered the life of two young Gurkha boys, opening up avenues before them that they had only fantasised about.

It all began in 1998 when Mr Kohli, an octogenarian of Faridabad, decided to make his peace with the wonder machine—the computer. Having lost his wife earlier and with two children settled in the USA, the senior citizen looked upon IT learning as a means of staying in regular touch with his son and daughter and keeping in tune with the world around him.

A short-term Swift Jyoti course from NIIT, Faridabad, gave Mr Kohli the freedom he craved —freedom from loneliness and separation — which not only gave him the capability to bridge the geographical breach that detached him from his children but also strengthened his bond with his family.

His gaze fell on teenagers Vishnu and Ram Sharma, sons of his veteran Nepalese housekeeper and man Friday, who had been taking care of him for a large part of his existence.

Fed on a diet of government school education and as far away from the realm of computers as chalk is from cheese, the sprightly boys appeared quite content playing street cricket and watching movies on TV. Mr Kohli, however, had other plans for them. Assuming the role of godfather to these youngsters, he encouraged Vishnu to take the Bhavishya Jyoti Scholarship exam in 1998 and join an appropriate NIIT course.

It was more than just luck that brought GNIIT to Vishnu at 50 per cent of the original cost of the course. NIIT’s Bhavishya Jyoti Scholarship, which aims to help both financially challenged and meritorious students, came to the rescue of the adolescent, enabling him to undertake the three-year programme with a substantial fee waiver. With Mr Kohli generously agreeing to pay the required amount, Vishnu was ready to step on to unknown terra firma and take his chances, a senior NIIT official said.

Today, Vishnu Sharma has a job in the USA. He works for an IT firm in New Jersey and ranks among the fortunate few who have managed to use IT knowledge to break their shackles of economic hardship, rise above their existing social strata and fashion a brave new world for themselves.

Had Vishnu been a member of India’s creamy layer, a part of society where opportunities flow thick and fast, this achievement would have got lost among the deluge of other such success stories. Vishnu, however, was neither rich nor revolutionary. He was just an ordinary boy with not too many expectations from life. His achievement is, therefore, extraordinary and spectacular.

Vishnu Sharma’s story isn’t over yet. Its narrative has been taken over by younger brother Ram Sharma who has managed to enrol himself in the GNIIT program, with a little bit of help from the Bhavishya Jyoti Scholarship!


Ex-employee ‘behind’ hospital owner’s murder
Parmindar Singh

Ghaziabad, September 7
The murder of Surinder Jain (62), proprietor of Sharda Hospital on G. T. Road under the Mussori police station, is said to be the direct fallout of a controversy about the employment of a technician, Vinode. Three cops, including the in charge of the police post, had been suspended by SSP Chander Prakash for negligence in the case.

Since Surinder Jain himself had gone to the police station to seek security for himself, which the police failed to provide, the police have also to take a part of the blame for his murder. Surinder Jain and his son had gone to the police station on the evening of September 4 and the fateful morning of yesterday to impress upon the police that their life was in danger, but to no avail.

Vinode, who had shot at Surinder Jain and his son Neeraj (35), had been working as a technician in the hospital.

The police had rushed Surinder Jain and Neeraj to Sarvodya Hospital. Surinder Jain was referred to Ganesh Hospital where he died after sometime.

Jain had opened the hospital six months ago in memory of his wife, Sharda. Vinode had been given a room in the hospital for his stay. But Surinder Jain had been opposing anti-social elements who used to visit Vinode, who was reportedly not of a good character. Three months ago, he had assaulted people following which he was thrown out of the hospital.

Following this, accompanied by his friends, the accused often used to threaten Jain and his son. He used to pressurise them to take him back and also to pay him Rs 5 lakh.

According to a friend of Jains, Anand Sharma, the accused had come to the hospital along with his two friends and picked up a quarrel with Jain. He came along with his friend in the afternoon again and after picking up a quarrel shot Surinder Jain.

Many complaints had been made to the Mussori police that the accused was creating disturbance in the hospital and threatening to kill Surinder Jain, Mr Sharma said. The police did not take the threat seriously even yesterday morning and no action was taken against Vinode.

The alleged killer’s sister Manju was admitted to the hospital for delivery. When she got better, Surinder Jain had told Vinode to take her home. This is stated to be the immediate provocation for the quarrel and subsequent murder. His sister also fled from the hospital on learning that his brother had shot Jain.


MC to display names of house tax defaulters at public places
Our Correspondent

Panipat, September 7
The Municipal Council authorities are planning to disconnect the sewerage and water supply connections of those who have not yet cleared their house tax dues despite several concession schemes. The connections will be cut after displaying the names of defaulters at public places in the town.

The list included the names of eight such defaulters, who had taken loans amounting to over Rs 100 crore, but had not bothered to return. The list also included the names of those who had taken a loan of more than Rs 1 crore each, but were declared defaulters by the banks.

According to Mr Sanjay Bhatia, Chairman of the council, displaying the names of main defaulters had brought some positive results and many of them had deposited their house tax arrears. Besides, a number of other defaulters too had cleared their arrears fearing that either their names might be displayed at public places in the next list, which was being prepared by the council, he said.

The council was planning to target those who had not bothered to clear their dues even after displaying their names at public places, he said.

Meantime, the council’s initiatives have also encouraged different banks to initiate action against the major defaulters of loans. A list of major defaulters had already been submitted with the Deputy Commissioner, Panipat, by the Haryana unit of All India Bank Employees Association urging him to take steps for recovery of long-pending bank loans amounting to crores of rupees.


Sena protests against ‘Chhoti Si’ screening
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 7
Shiv Sena activists today protested outside a cinema hall in the Capital against the screening of the controversial film, ‘Ek Chhoti Si Love Story’, and threatened to take strong action if the movie was not taken off from all theatres in the city.

Dozens of Sena activists shouted slogans outside the PVR multiplex in Vikas Puri in West Delhi during the afternoon show of the Manisha Koirala starrer and threatened they would not let the movie with the “obscene scenes” be screened. The activists, however, did not try to disrupt the show.

Delhi Shiv Sena president Jai Bhagawan Goyal said that today’s protest was a “symbolic” one. If the film was not taken off from all the theatres in the Capital soon, the Sena would go for stronger action against them. Responding to their protest, he claimed that the owner of Regal Cinema in Connaught Place had assured him that he would take the film off his theatre. 


Autos fined for violating pollution control norms
Our Correspondent

Rohtak, September 7
A team of traffic police led by City Magistrate G. L. Yadav challaned nearly 60 autorickshaws in the town under for violating the pollution control norms today.

According to information, around 5,000 autorickshaws have been plying in the town, a majority of which do not fulfil the pollution control standards.

The Deputy Commissioner, Mr Ashok Yadav, had warned the erring autorickshaw owners to get completed their documents and fulfil the pollution control norms just after he took over here. However, thousands of autorickshaws had been violating the pollution norms as well as the traffic rules causing nuisance for the residents of the town.

Meanwhile, the official team also removed several hoardings from the National Highway 10 today following the direction by the high court in this regard. The Deputy Commissioner ordered to remove all the hoardings from the National Highways within two days.

Staff plan protest

Employees of the power department would hold protest meetings in front of their offices all over the state from September 9 to September 11 in response to the call given by the Haryana Employees Joint Action Committee.

Mr Bharat Bhushan, spokesman of the Haryana Karamchari Mahasangh, said today that the meetings would be organised from 8 am to 9 am as a mark of protest against the closure of Haryana State Minor Irrigation and Tubewell Corporation (HSMITC), retrenchment of employees in different departments, rationalisation and privatisation.

He warned that the state-wide agitation would be intensified if the government stuck to its ‘adamant’ attitude. He appealed to the employees to participate in all agitation programmes in large numbers so as to display a show of strength before the government.

Killed in collision

A youth was killed and six others were injured when a jeep carrying them collided with a tanker approaching from opposite direction near Kalanaur town last evening.

The deceased has been identified as Joginder. A case under Sections 279, 337 and 304-A of the IPC has been registered in this connection.


Have a blueprint for the journey of life

Most of us are accustomed to making adequate preparations while planning a train journey. As for the journey of life, we hardly take time to make a plan. Most men will confess that they have not engaged in a personal search for truth so as to decide the destination they are headed for. It is strange that one should be found journeying and is ignorant of the destination!

At the Temple of Consciousness at Aliyar in Pollachi, a 92-year-old sage has inscribed the following mission statement on the walls of the Omkar Mandapam he has got built. It contains the basic principles he had enunciated for his life’s journey; for living the good life: These are: each person must live by earnings made through his own mental or physical labour. One’s method of living should not cause any physical or mental suffering to any other person. One should not kill any living being for food. One must have the utmost respect for the possessions and freedom of others and help to protect them. One must cultivate loving-kindness and strive to alleviate the miseries of others to the extent possible.

Vethathiri Maharishi or Arul Thanthai (beloved father) as he is known to thousands in this country and abroad, while labouring all these years for world peace, had gained insights from life’s experiences and had laid down rules on their basis to govern one’s conduct.

Now, your experiences may vary from his; you may adopt a different priority. What is important is to have a blueprint for one’s life; or in other words, a mission and a continuous striving towards the same.

Now take the question of living by one’s labour. Every one needs to find a vocation and acquire skill in the same. Of late, there is in evidence among the youth here an inclination to a life of ease crass materialism does not seem to produce a culture of hard work; it is rather promoting ‘get-rich-quick’ mentality. The lottery trade, in a sense, reflects the love for easy money. Lawyers and doctors seek excessive profits giving rise to the charge of thriving on human misery. In fact, the deterioration of standards in society has not spared any profession or vocation.

The very concept of success in life is about the ability to “grab” the maximum from society, while contributing the least to its well-being “The value of a man,’’ declared Einstein, “should be seen in what he gives and not in what he is able to receive.’’ It is in this spirit, a preacher Washington Gladden (1836—1918) wrote down an important resolution of his life: “One thing I am resolved upon, I will not be a sponge or a parasite. I will give an honest equivalent for what I get. I want no man’s money for which I have not rendered a full return. I want no wages that I have not earned. If I work for any man or any company or any institution, I will give my best thought, my best effort, my most conscientious and efficient endeavour. No man, no body of men, shall ever be made poor by their dealings with me. If I can give a little more than I get every time, in that shall be my happiness. The great commonwealth of human society shall not be the loser through me. I will take good care to put into the common fund more than I take out.’’ These are words that ought to be inscribed upon the door-posts of every factory or office in this country.

It does not take much wisdom to understand man’s interdependence. The current level of civilization has been achieved by the cooperative endeavour of successive generations on this globe. Science has made this world a global village. Eliminating distances and speeding up communications, it has given to the human race a sense of neighbourhood. Men have come closer to one another physically but this has not led to a sense of brotherhood. Wars and conflicts still trouble our world. It is in this context, Vethathiri Maharishi’s crusade for world peace and a world government acquires greater significance.

Great minds had always opposed violence as a means of achieving life’s goals. The sage is aware that the quest for peace must imply the desire to work for social justice, sharing of the resources of the earth particularly water and food. This is only possible with the recognition of the oneness of the human race: “The life protecting air that we breath is common for all; the sun that warms and lights the entire world is common for all; the sea water that evaporates and rains are common for all. None of the above has been created by anyone in this world…’’writes the sage in his book, World Peace, that carried his revolutionary ideas.

He emphasizes the world could be transformed only when individuals change their attitudes; when they open their minds to expand and encompass the welfare of the whole world community. This would call for a recognition of those negative and cancerous traits such as anger, jealousy and hatred that had bedeviled human relationships; indifference to the lot of the poor and the wretched that had wrecked peace and a resolve to repent of these evils, turning a new leaf.

Thousands of disciples celebrated the 92nd birthday of Vethathiri Maharishi, (He does not lay claim to be a Guru) on August 14. All his life he had fought for peace and the World peace Congress held in his small town in August 2002 will be recorded as a monumental success of his humble and dedicated life. The principles he lived by and his example should prompt us to make our own mission statements.

M P K Kutty


Mt Abu draws picnickers and pilgrims alike
Tribune News Service

Mount Abu is the only hill station that Rajasthan has. In a state which abounds in sand dunes, the lakes of Mount Abu come as a pleasant change. Spread over the rocks on a 1,220-m granite table mountain at the far south western end of the Aravalli hills, it is built around a lake and surrounded by forests.

A paradisical view.Although a part of the Aravalli range, it is completely detached from it by a narrow valley and the highest point, Guru Shikhar, is situated at its northern end. Interestingly, this is the highest point between the Nilgiris in the south and the Himalayan range up north. Mount Abu, owing to its good rainfall, has the richest vegetation in Rajasthan making it green and refreshing.

Legend goes that the place owes its name to Arbuda, a serpent who descended to the spot to rescue Shiva’s bull, Nandi. The hill station besides being a pleasant holiday destination is also a major pilgrim centre. Famous Jain temples draw lakhs of visitors to Mount Abu.

Apart from these delightful Dilwara temples, there are the lakes said to have been created by God Himself.

A pilgrims’ delight.The best time to visit the place is between March-June and September-November.

For sightseeing are the: 
Dilwara Temples. These Jain temples are Mount Abu’s main attraction. The more famous of these are two temples where marble carvings reach unsurpassed heights. The older of the temples is the ‘Vimal Vasahi’, built in 1031 and dedicated to the first tirthankar, Adinath. The front of the temple has a herd of elephants marching in procession to the temple entrance. The other temple called ‘Tejpal Temple’ is dedicated to Neminath, the 22nd tirthankar, and was built in 1230 by the brothers Tejpal and Vastupal. The carving is so fine that, in places, the marble becomes almost transparent.

Kesar Bhawan

Kesar Bhawan Palace is one of the oldest places in Mount Abu, built in 1868. The Kesar Bhawan was used as a guesthouse by the dignitaries. For over 100 years now, several maharajas and royal guests from the west have been entertained in Kesar Bhawan. Built to suit the climatic conditions of Mount Abu, which has an average rainfall of 150 inches annually, the palace has a closed corridor running around the building, providing it protection from rain. Terraces and patios offer a panoramic view of the surrounding hills and valleys.

Sunrise Palace

Situated on one of the highest points in Mount Abu is the summer palace of the Maharaja of Bharatpur. The 80-year-old palace resembles a British mansion in its construction.

Vimala Vashi Temple

It is the oldest temple, built in 1030 by Vimala Shah, a minister of Solanki ruler of Gujarat. The temple is said to have involved a work force of 2,700 men, and taken total 14 years to complete. Made of white marble, it is an outstanding example of Jain temple architecture.

Luna Vashi Temple

Built in 1232 by two wealthy brothers. Its carved ornamentation is even richer, denser and more delicate. Ornate pediments and plasters frame the doorways of the temples, the columns are magnificently carved.

Nakki Lake

Nakki Lake is virtually the heart of Mount Abu and is a big attraction for tourists. The lake takes its name from the legend that it was scooped out by a god, using only his nails, or nakh. A dilapidated concrete boat-shaped snack bar on the lake is an added attraction.

Gomukh Temple

Down on the Abu roadside, the temple derives its name from a small stream that flows from the mouth of a marble cow. There is also a marble figure of Nandi, Shiva’s bull and vehicle. The tank here, ‘Agni Kund’, is said to be the site of the sacrificial fire made by the sage Vasishta, from which four of the great Rajput clans were born.

Connaught House

Connaught House in Mount Abu was the official summer residence of Sir Donald Field, Chief Minister of Jodhpur and now it is available to tourists and holiday-makers.

Achalgarh Fort

This fort was built by the warrior King Rana Kumbha, who conquered Mount Abu from its Chauhan rulers. It lies 5 miles from Mount Abu. Nearby there are several ancient temples. Of these, the most interesting is the 15th century temple of Lord Shiva.

Guru Shikhar

The peak of Guru Shikhar, the highest point in Rajasthan, lies about 2 miles beyond Achalgarh.

It commands a bird’s-eye view of Abu and the surrounding areas. Temples located in this area are ‘Mira temple’ and ‘Chaumundi temple’.

Adhar Devi Temple

Three kilometres north of town, some 365 steps lead to this ‘Durga temple’, built in a natural cleft in the rock. You have to stoop to get through the low entrance to the temple. There are fine views over Mount Abu from up here. This temple is one of the favourite tourist spots of Mount Abu. It is believed that the image of the goddess was originally hanging in mid-air, hence the name is ‘Adhar Devi’.

How to reach Mount Abu

There are many deluxe buses operating from Mount Abu to Jaipur, Ajmer, Udaipur, Jodhpur, Ahmedabad and Surat.

By train: There are direct trains run from Mount Abu to Ajmer, Jodhpur, Jaipur, Ahmedabad and Agra.

Air: The nearest airport to Mount Abu is Maharana Pratap Udaipur Airport, Dabok (Udaipur) 207-km. One can hire a taxi to get to Mount Abu.


‘Delhi Darshan’ begins again
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 7
The popular sightseeing bus service for tourists, ‘Delhi Darshan’, which had been temporarily suspended, was reintroduced today by the Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC).

The bus service, which starts from Scindia House in Connaught Place, has a fare of Rs 100 per passenger for both morning and afternoon tours. The timings of this tours are from 9.30 am to 5.15 pm.

The fare for single trip, however, will be Rs 60 per passenger. The service will be available on Saturdays, Sundays and government holidays with the deployment of one bus, a DTC release said.

Prakash Utsav celebrated

The first Prakash Utsav of Shri Guru Granth Sahib was celebrated at Gurdwara Moti Bagh. Fervour marked the festivities. A shabad kirtan and gurbani were also organised.

A meeting of Shiromani Gurudwara Sewadar Committee was also held and Tehal Singh Taneja has been elected president while Pritam Singh Walia has been elected secretary to the panel of its Delhi state unit. Calling for the need to have educated Jathedars for the Takht, it was also pointed out that the Jathedars of Akal Takht should come forward for the unity and upliftment of the Sikh community. 


1,100 jail wardens to be recruited
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, September 7
The Haryana Government has sanctioned the recruitment of 1,100 new jail wardens in the state. Stating this, Mr Laik Ram Dabas, Inspector General of Police (Prison), told mediapersons here last evening that the number of prisoners was increasing day by day and this had resulted in inadequacy in security arrangements in various jails of the state. He said that the number of jails was 18 and these had a capacity of 5,000 but they had been housing more than 12,000 prisoners.

He claimed that the shortage of staff would be removed only after the fresh recruitment of 1,100 wardens. He said that the department of jails was also contemplating the increase in the number of armed staff for controlling the prisoners. The jail department, he said, had already got 87 policemen on deputation from the police department for monitoring the security arrangements in the jails.

Power cut today

Rohtak: Power supply in several old localities in the town would be disrupted from 8 am to 10 pm tomorrow and on September 9. Stating this here today, the Executive Engineer (urban), Uttar Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam (UHBVN), said the consumers would have to face the hardship as the transformer of a capacity of 8 MVA would be replaced with that of 16 MVA.

He said power supply in nearly 30 localities in the old town, including Para Mohalla, Quilla Mohalla, Salara Mohalla, Kaisthan Mohalla, Babra Mohalla, Tej colony, Mahavir colony, Krishna colony, Sainipura, Prem Nagar, Vaish College campus and the areas near Sunarian road, Kutcha Beri road and cooperative sugar mills would be cut during the period.

DSP’s son named for murder

Faridabad: The son of a serving Deputy Superintendent of Police, Haryana, has been named as one of the accused in the daylight murder of a person here on Thursday. Five youths have been arrested for the murder while one suspect is still at large.

The incident happened when Yoganand Jha, a resident of Sainik Colony, Tilpat, had been going on his bicycle. He was intercepted and stabbed by about six youths travelling in a Maruti van. No passer-by came to his rescue during the hour-long incident of stabbing.

The body was removed by the police and sent for a post-mortem examination. The police recovered some papers from his possession and are investigating.

Rs 30,000 stolen from mobike

An amount of Rs 30,000 was stolen from the tool cabin of a two-wheeler in Ballabgarh town. According to a complaint lodged with the police, Mr Promod of Gadkhera village said that he had parked his motorcycle in the main market. He had kept an amount of Rs 30,000 in the tool cabin of the motorcycle, which was found missing when he came back from a shop.

In another incident, some criminals entered a house in Ajay Colony here and decamped with valuables worth Rs 22,000. They also allegedly beat up the occupants of the house.


Crushed to death

New Delhi
A child, Jaipreet, 2, was crushed to death by a speeding truck in Karol Bagh this morning. The truck driver is absconding. The incident occurred when the victim’s mother, Davinderjeet Kaur, was travelling in a Blue Line bus (route number 308). When the driver applied brakes, the child was thrown out of the window and was crushed under the wheels. TNS


Inter-state gang of robbers busted

Sonepat, September 7
With the arrest of three persons, including a dreaded criminal, the CIA staff of Gohana has busted an inter-state gang of highway robbers operating in parts of Haryana and Delhi for the last few months.

The Superintendent of Police, Mr Paramjit Singh Ahlawat, told mediapersons here today that these culprits were arrested after an exchange of fire. However, none was hurt in the firing. The arrested culprits were identified as Ram Phal of Pokhri Kheri village, Bhagat Dayal alias Bhagta of Madana Kalan village and Devinder of Khandrai village.

He disclosed that the culprits were planning to commit robberies on the road near Katwal village. When the police conducted the raid on their hideouts, they fired shots and the police returned the fire. The police recovered three country-made pistols, six live cartridges and some other arms from their possession. OC


Power companies promise a cooler summer
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 7
The private power distribution companies yesterday promised a significant improvement in the power scenario in Delhi within six months.

Two major companies, Tata Power Company and the BSES, yesterday said they were focusing not only on uninterrupted power supply but issues like billing, complaint redressal, staff training as well.

“A major initiative will be in the field of IT infrastructure, which would mean interactive portals where the customers can not only file applications, but will also be able to get the records of their bills, previous payments etc online”, said Mr Anil Sardana, Chief Executive, Tata Power Company, during an interactive session on “Power Distribution in Delhi- Road Map to Excellence”, organised by the PHDCCI. He said the company would also tie up with various banks to facilitate payment of bills via banks.

Talking about the power problem the Delhi residents had to face in July, Mr J.P. Chalasani said the companies had just begun operations then and several adverse factors had contributed to the situation. “In due course of time, we aim to give the best of supply in terms of quality and quantity and next summer will not see any such complaints”, he said.

Poor existing infrastructure has been a major cause of the power problems, said representatives of both the companies. “The current situation is such that even if additional power is supplied the existing infrastructure is not strong enough to handle the same “, said Mr Chalasani. He said in the next six months the company would improve the capacity of the system to enable power to reach the customers.

Apart from system upgradation, the private companies were laying strong emphasis on manpower training, especially the staff, to handle public grievances.

Mr Ashok Kapoor, Chairman, Delhi and NCR Committee, PHDCCI, highlighted the key power issues concerning the industry. Mr Jagdish Sagar, CMD, Delhi Power Supply Company, and Mr Ravi Vig, Chairman, Energy Committee, were among others present.

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