Monday, February 24, 2003, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Jagat assistant manager held
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 23
The assistant manager of Jagat Cinema, Ravinder Singh, who allegedly paid “supari” for the murder of Harjinder Singh, the manager of Kiran and Jagat cinemas, was arrested near Sector 20 here this evening.

The manager was shot on November 20 last year. Terming it as a case of contract killing, the police has arrested a gang of professional criminals that had been hired by the assistant manager of Jagat cinema to eliminate his boss. The assistant manager, who had paid Rs 2.7 lakh of the total Rs 5 lakh fixed for the killing, would be produced in a local court tomorrow for a police remand.

A police official said Ravinder had collected the money to be paid for the killing by embezzling funds of Jagat cinema. According to the police, the reason for the murder was professional jealously. Ravinder Singh saw Harjinder Singh as a hurdle in his way of earning money through wrongful means. So far, Rs 2.70 lakh had been paid in installments. The conspiracy was hatched in March last year.

The investigation into the murder had been transferred to the CIA wing of the Chandigarh Police. According to the police, Ravinder Singh came in contact with Mohinder Pal Rana, a former contractor of cycle shed at Jagat cinema. He then met Ram Asra Yadav and came in contact with Om Parkash Saini.

The police said a total of seven persons were involved in the execution of the plan. So far, the police has arrested Ram Asra Yadav, Om Parkash, Sunil Kumar and Om Pal. Three others — Ravinder, Naresh Kumar and Mohinder Pal Rana — are yet to be arrested.

The assailants had purchased six country-made pistols from Saharanpur in Uttar Pradesh. Three months before the murder, the assailants had conducted a recce of the area where Harjinder lived. But it being summers, the strike was delayed.

Three days before the murder, a Maruti car was stolen from Sector 37 and a factitious registration number of Haryana was used on the day the killing took place.

The police officials said on the day of murder, Om Parkash Saini had followed Harjinder Singh from Jagat cinema to Kiran cinema.

On reaching his house, as soon as the manager alighted from his car to open the main gate, one of the assailants, Sunil Kumar, called him and a shot was fired at the victim by Om Pal from point-blank range. 


Academy students left in lurch
Sanjeev Singh Bariana
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 23
A number of students of an academy have been left in a lurch because the college of the university which offered them “affiliation” for many years has “withdrawn” it from the current session onwards.

Mata Ganga Girls College, Kottan, is affiliated to the university in the Ludhiana belt. For years it offered “affiliation” to an academy at Jarg village in the region which made students at the academy appear as regular students of the university.

The very fact that an affiliated college of the university further granted affiliation to some other institute is an issue which needs an immediate probe. As a consequence of this certain students who had opted for physical education as one of the subjects at the undergraduate level are left in a lurch. These students now in the second or the third year will not be allowed by the university to appear in the subject because the subject needs the candidate to clear the test in practical examination of the paper as well. It is also decided that only colleges which “offer” physical education and similar subjects which have practical examination will be allowed to offer the subject.

The students of the academy who appeared in the physical education practical at Mata Ganga College will now not be eligible to appear in the practical from the academy. This means the students in the second or the third year will lose two or three years of their academic life. The only option left will be to commence the graduation from the first year because there is no provision for change in subject in the second and the third year.

The matter was first raised by Principal Tarsem Bahia in the last year December Senate meeting. The matter was once again raised in the Syndicate meeting by Prof Charanjit Chawla and Mr S.S.Hundal. They have communicated the issue in a written representation to the Vice Chancellor.

It is felt that instead of spoiling the academic interest of the students, the university should consider giving them a mercy chance. The students could be asked to continue the subject and allowed to attend the practical classes in a nearby college.

It has been pointed out that technically it was wrong on the part of the academy to accept the affiliation or the college to offer any. However, the decision for the “partnership” is understood to have been taken due to ‘political interference’.


Mani Majra resident among bus mishap victims
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, February 23
A pal of gloom descended at the Mani Majra residence of Raman Sharma (35), who died in a bus accident in Nawanshahr this afternoon. Another resident of the city, Mr Shinder Pal Singh, his wife, Shinder Kaur and their two daughters are among the injured.

Two of the seriously injured Joginder Pal, a resident of Panchkula, and another unidentified male have been admitted to the PGI.

The other city residents who were injured in the mishap are Ms Satya of Sector 20 C and Mr R.S Ahluwalia, a lawyer based in Sector 48. A resident of SAS Nagar, Ms Surinder Kaur, also sustained injuries in the accident.

Raman Sharma, is son-in-law of Mr Narinder Sharma, Manager at the Jalandhar sub office of The Tribune group of publications. The deceased was an employee of Punjab Housefed Corporation and was staying at Mani Majra Housing Complex here with his wife Ms Aarti Sharma and 10-year old daughter Aakshi Sharma. He had gone to Amritsar and was on his way back home when the accident took place.

The body was brought to Mani Majra at around 10 pm tonight.

According to the police the ill-fated bus of Punjab Roadways bus was coming from Amritsar to Chandigarh when the driver lost control of the bus and it rammed into a tree near Barnala gate on Chandigarh road. 


Man poisons wife
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, February 23
A Class IV employee of the Haryana Urban Development Authority in Panchkula is alleged to have poisoned his third wife to death near Abheypur village yesterday.

According to the police, the suspect Kaka Singh allegedly killed the victim, Jasodha, after he got control over the latter’s money and other material assets.

According to the police Kaka Singh had married Jasodha, only for her money and once he got the money, he thought of eliminating her. The fact that Jasodha had failed to conceive in the past two years had also been a bone of contention between the couple.

Jasodha was a widow and her first husband had been a colleague of Kaka Singh. After her husband’s death almost three years ago, Jasodha had got over Rs 30,000 from HUDA. She also owned some jewellery, besides being a permanent employee of HUDA. It was primarily because of her financial state, that the subject had married her two years ago.

It has also been learnt that Kaka Singh had been married twice earlier and had a son from his first wife. His first wife, as per the police sources, had immolated herself almost seven years ago. After police investigation it was confirmed as being a case of suicide. Kaka Singh’s second wife had divorced him.

The police say that yesterday morning, when the accused came for work near HUDA nursery, Kaka Singh gave her tea laced with some poisonous substance. He himself rushed Jasodha to the General Hospital, Sector 6, here to avoid suspicion. However, as the victim was in a serious condition she was referred to PGI, Chandigarh.

She died at PGI within two hours of being admitted there. The suspect thinking that the matter would be brought to the notice of the police, escaped from PGI. The police has registered a case under Section 304-B of the IPC against Kaka Singh in Sector 19 police station here and are now on the lookout for him.


MC seeks 75 pc extension fee from PUDA
Chitleen K. Sethi
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, February 23
Following the Panchkula Municipal Council example, the SAS Nagar Municipal Council, has demanded 75 per cent of the extension fee charged by the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) from its allottees.

This demand of the council here follows an agreement between the Panchkula MC and the Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) according to which HUDA will be forwarding 75 per cent of its extension fee, building application fee, composition charges etc to the council to carry out maintenance of these plots.

PUDA here, according to sources, is earning over Rs 2 crore per year as extension fee charged from allottes whose plots are lying vacant. The MC is supposed to maintain these plots but does not get any amount from PUDA to carry out the works. Similarly various sanitation and water works are carried out by the MC, but PUDA does not pay for these either.

According to MC officials, the demand has been pending for a long time now. ‘‘The HUDA-Panchkula MC agreement took place in December 2001 and since then we have been formulating a similar demand for PUDA. Now since recently the HUDA-Panchkula MC agreement has been implemented we should have a similar agreement with PUDA as soon as possible.’’said an MC official.

If PUDA agrees to this demand, the MC here is likely to earn over a crore rupees per annum. The MC has demanded that 75 per cent of the extension fee be paid by PUDA and for all phases which have been transferred by PUDA to the MC from the date of this transfer.

‘‘The details will be worked out later. Initially there is a need to carry out an agreement with PUDA. Certain other decisions regarding the transfer of tubewells from PUDA to the MC, the transfer of Community Centres also need to be taken up, ’’said Mr Sarabjit Singh, Additional Executive Officer, MC here.

PUDA officials on the other hand state that they are open to such an idea but nothing certain can be said till a meeting is called to look into the matter.


MC budget session likely to be stormy
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 23
The annual general body meeting of the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation scheduled for tomorrow is expected to witness a stormy ‘session’ as the budget proposals for the next financial year will be taken up for discussion.

The draft proposal of budget estimates for the year 2003-04 with a total deficit of Rs 6.48 crore, proposal to privatise sanitation work in 20 sectors, liability of Rs 4 crore on MC for handing over the maintenance of Kajauli Water Works project to Punjab Government, proposal to increase the strength of staff in various departments, including the Commissioner’s office, enhancement of councillor’s allowance and Rs 2.2 crore earmarked for “ward development fund” by cutting the budget of various departments, are the main issues that are likely to be raised by the SAD-BJP councillors.

The budget estimates for the year 2003-04 pegged at Rs 183.48 crore with a total deficit of Rs 6.48 crore as against Rs 161.83 crore for the current financial year (revised to Rs 150.16 crore) will come up for discussion. The annual plan of the MC has been estimated at Rs 57.47 crore and the non-plan budget has been estimated at Rs 126.01 crore for the next financial year. The MC is expecting a grant in aid to the tune of Rs 100 crore from the local administration that includes Rs 30 crore under the plan head and Rs 70 crore under the non-plan head. However, the total collections from MC’s own resources are expected to be around Rs 77 crore by the end of March, 2004.

An estimated Rs 10 crore have been earmarked for the prestigious water supply scheme (phase-IV) at Kajauli, Rs 7 crore for the improvement of roads, Rs 3.5 crore for purchasing hydraulic platform-cum-turn table ladder (Snorkel make) for the fire wing, Rs 1 crore for improvement in the water supply by adding additional pipelines in the city, installation of tubewells and construction of underground reservoirs during the next financial year.

Out of Rs 10 crore earmarked especially for the Kajauli Water Works, Rs 4 crore are likely to be paid to the Punjab Government (as demanded by it) against maintenance charges and at least Rs 2.5 crore against electricity bills and other expenditures. Thus, Rs 3.5 crore only will remain with the MC to initiate work on the fourth phase of this prestigious project. Many councillors are not in favour of handing over the maintenance of this project to the Punjab Government and may raise the issue for discussion.

Meanwhile, SAD-BJP councillors have also alleged that the Mayor is unnecessarily delaying the formation of various committees of the MC.

The proposed outlay of Rs 2.2 crore for ward development funds has been proposed for 20 elected councillors. This amount will be met out of the annual plan from the head of accounts of B&R circle (Rs 75 Lakh), landscaping (Rs 85 lakh), electrification (Rs 35 lakh) and public health (Rs 25 lakh). Reducing the budget allocation in these departments that already need more funds has irked many councillors. They are likely to raise this issue to press for a separate head of accounts for ward development funds.


Excommunicate those behind clash : Riar

Chandigarh, February 23
Hidden differences among various Sikh organisations in the city surfaced after yesterday’s violent incident in Amritsar in which 19 persons were injured in a group clash.

The local unit of SAD and Khalsa Conference have appealed to the Jathedar of Akal Takht to excommunicate those members of Khalsa Panchayat from Sikh Panth who were involved in a clash with the SGPC staff outside the SGPC office in Amritsar. On the other hand, a few other Sikh organisations have blamed the All-India Sikh Students Federation (Mehta group) and the task force of the SGPC for the unfortunate incident.

Addressing mediapersons here today, Mr Gurpratap Singh Riar, president of the local unit of SAD, appealed to the Jathedar of Akal Takht to excommunicate those members of Khalsa Panchayat from Sikh Panth who were involved in the yesterday’s incident. He also urged the state government to suspend the Deputy Commissioner and the SSP of Amritsar. TNS


Advani stops over in city
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 23
The Deputy Prime Minister, Mr L.K. Advani, today made a brief stop-over at Chandigarh Airport, while on his way back to New Delhi from Himachal Pradesh.

He was received by Punjab Governor, Lieut-Gen J.F.R. Jacob, (retd.) and Haryana Governor, Babu Parmanand at the airport. Those who received the Deputy Prime Minister included, Mr Partap Singh Bajwa, Minister of PWD (B & R), Mayor, Municipal Corporation, Chandigarh, Mr Subash Chawla and Chief Secretaries of both Punjab and Haryana.



While the fluttering flags and the gently swaying waters of the Sukhna Lake provided a perfect backdrop for the Navy Band, which put up a special performance on “Sounds of the Sea” for select guests at the Lake Club, it were the CDs on naval music which attracted the guests’ attention.

The CDs of selected tunes composed by the Navy Band which were put up for sale at the venue went up for grabs. And priced at just Rs 70, it was a deal. A fully-coloured coffee table book on the International Fleet Review, organised by the Indian Navy in Mumbai during 2001 was also for sale.

This was the band’s first visit to these parts of the country and the public response to its performance was good. At Lake Club, a couple of naval marches were played on the special request of the Punjab Governor, Lt-Gen J.F.R. Jacob (Retd), who was the chief guest.

Human insensitivity

The indifference of Chandigarhians was reflected recently when a large number of passersby decided to back off from the site of an accident on the Chandigarh- Panchkula road upon requests by the victim that he be taken to a hospital.

The incident took place on February 17, when the victim, a 20- year-old employee of a computer firm in Sector 17, was on his way to work. His scooter apparently skidded after it hit a brick lying on the road. Eyewitnesses said that since his helmet was not tied properly, it flew off his head before he hit the road.

Bleeding profusely, the victim, a resident of Panchkula lay on the road, even as a large number of commuters stopped by to see him lying in a pool of blood. Then, two cyclists went near him and lifted him from the road and took him on the footpath.

The victim, still in a state of shock, asked that he be taken to a hospital. Hearing this, more than 20 odd commuters who had stopped by, quickly vanished in their cars and scooters. The cyclists who had helped him asked several other people for help, until a woman car driver stopped by and offered to rush the victim to the hospital.

Dangerous trend

The college and university teachers are never tired of giving lectures to their students about social morality and not to spend too much on marriages. But, they would not hesitate to spend huge amounts “from their lifelong savings” for arranging “decent” receptions and marriage parties for their sons and daughters. Ironically, they would often complain that the government is not making enough payments for their “nation-building service”. There is no pension for us, they would often cry.

In the ongoing marriage season, a look at some of the receptions and marriages on the university campus would force one to think: Where are national builders going? Recently one of the senior professors invited more than 500 guests to give blessings to the couple and to enjoy the music and food.

17-year wait

At last, after 17 years, the Public Health Department of Punjab has woken up from its slumber and started cleaning overhead water tanks in the type-II and III flats of the Punjab Government in Sector 39-D.

The 360 type-II and III government flats were built by the Punjab Government around 17 years ago and since then the cemented overhead water tanks were never cleaned.

The occupants had made several representations to the authorities concerned from time to time but no one ever turned up until this Saturday when a survey of the water tanks was conducted under the supervision of SDO concerned. It came to light that most of the tanks and water pipes were leaking resulting in seepage in many flats.

Tug of war?

Divided they stand! It seems these girls of MCM DAV College, Sector 36, are slightly confused — one group is insisting to sit in the ground and enjoy the sun, while the other is adamant to return to classes as the annual examination are just a few weeks away.

Stray animals

Did you know it was illegal to kill homeless animals and that you could be prosecuted for doing so? Sections 428 and 429 of the Indian Penal Code make it illegal to maim or cause injury to any animal. The code also makes it illegal for cars to purposefully injure or kill dogs, cats and cows on the street. Offenders can be fined Rs 2,000 or sentenced to a jail term up to five years.

While this law, like many others, rests in the shelves for want of execution, city residents violate it day in and day out, sometimes due to sheer ignorance and sometimes due to lack of sensitivity. On the morning of January 21 a dog was hit while it was crossing the road near Tribune Chowk. Instant death of the animal was a natural fallout. So was the cold reaction of hundreds of passersby. The dog’s body kept lying on the road for over 30 hours.

This is not an isolated incident. As per estimate, there are more than 3,000 street dogs wandering about in a miserable condition. Reasons behind the lack of support system for stray animals are many. While the government machinery fails to act, people also add to the apathetic system by believing that stray animals had no right to live.

There are several organisations working for the protection of the stray animals. “When you see an animal knocked down by a vehicle, get its number. Check whether the animal is alive. If possible, move it to safety and administer first aid. If you can’t treat the animal, call an animal welfare organisation that has an ambulance, according to PETA India, an organisation working for the protection of animal rights.

Giving details, the organisation further suggested that once the animal is taken care of, lodge a complaint against the offender. It is illegal for the Municipal Corporation to round up stray dog and abandon them outside the city limits.

“Nature discovery”

Last Sunday, the Commonwealth Youth Programme (CYP), Asia Centre, opened the doors of the project called the “Nature discovery”, the first visitor to this park was Mr Donald C. McKinnon, Secretary General, Commonwealth Secretariat, London. An illustrated folder on this venture was released.

The site at which the CYP is situated was a part of a village-Shehzadpur, which was depopulated along with 58 others to construct the city of Chandigarh about 52 years ago. Mr McKinnon was thrilled to note that the village cultural traditions have been revived while creating the “Nature discovery”.

A huge platform around the Peepal tree, a rainfed pond and an amphitheatre were constructed. Soil of good quality was spread in the pond, paste of wheat straw mixed with cowdung was applied on the surface and buffaloes were pressed to puddling in order to seal the water leakage.

It was under this nature’s canopy that the Department of Environment and the Environment Society of India organised a workshop for government/non-government organisations/school/college/ Eco/Environment clubs. The CYP will organise guided tours for members of these clubs on all Saturdays.

— Sentinel


54 in fray for  15 wards
Bipin Bhardwaj

Zirakpur, February 23
On the first day of the election campaign for the Zirakpur Nagar Panchayat poll, Congress, SAD and BJP leaders inaugurated election offices apart from arranging meetings to garner support for their parties. Mr Deepinder Singh Dhillon, the Additional Advocate-General of Punjab and Congress leader, opened three offices at Lohgarh village.

Capt Kanwaljit Singh, general secretary of SAD, who is also an MLA from the area, addressed a meeting to seek public support for SAD-BJP candidates contesting elections from the different wards of the civic body.

Mr Jaspal Singh, a former sarpanch of Zirakpur village and Congress candidate from Ward No. XI, kicked off his election campaign after opening an election office and distributing sweets among his supporters and the residents of the ward.

Mr Rajinder Singh, an independent candidate from Ward No. XI, took out a procession along with his supporters to mark the first day of his election campaign.

The SAD candidate and former sarpanch of Lohgarh village, Mr Narinder Sharma, organised a meeting in Ward No. VI and sought the support of the residents.

The candidates tried to lure the residents to get their support by making promises regarding development issues and basic civic amenities.

At present, 54 candidates (15 of Congress, 15 of SAD-BJP 15 each 24 independents) are left in the fray for the 15 wards of civic body. The poll is scheduled to be held on March 2.


Research centre in Kalpana’s memory
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 23
A world-class space research centre in memory of India-born astronaut Kalpana Chawla will be set up at Punjab Engineering College (PEC) here, where Kalpana had studied aeronautical engineering.

A proposal in this regard was mooted at the PEC Old Students Association’s annual general meeting organised here today, which got a unanimous approval.

The association would establish Dr Kalpana Chawla Memorial Foundation, under the aegis of which the research centre would be set up.

According to the association president, Dr S.K. Goyal, who mooted the proposal, the old students would contribute for the establishment of the foundation.

Nearly 300 PEC alumni from various states attended the meet. A two-minute silence also was observed in memory of Kalpana, who was the first Indian women to fly in space.


Sood Rattan’ award 
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, February 23
‘Sood Prince and Princess’, best couple of the year, oldest couple and sports events beside others events marked the 41 annual Sood Mela held at Sood Bhavan, Sector 44A here today. More than 1,000 Sood families from the region participated in the mela.

Late Jishan Lal Kuthiala, a timber businessman, was awarded with ‘Sood Rattan’ award for the year 2002 for his services the community. Dr V.K Sood, Associate Principal, National Dental College and Hospital, Patiala, was the chief guest while and Mr Kulbhushan Sood, a Banglore-based businessman, was the guest of honour 


Murder accused escapes from police custody
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 23
A dreaded criminal, alleged to be involved in at least five cases of murder, reportedly escaped from the custody of Shimla police at the Sector 43 bus stand here this evening.

According to the information available the criminal escaped from the custody of the cops on the pretext of going to toilet. He escaped in a white Maruti car bearing registeration number in Punjabi. The criminal had been brought to the city to be produced in at the local courts in connection with some case. Before fleeing the suspect reportedly made a phone call.

Held: A dismissed employee of the Haryana Police, Pawan Kumar, was today arrested by the CIA wing of Chandigarh Police, for possessing nine grams of smack . He was arrested near Shahpur colony. A case under the NDPS Act has been registered against him.

Stolen: A scooter (No CHQ 7079) belonging to Mr Chander Mohan, a resident of Sector 45, was reportedly stolen from his residence here yesterday. A case under Section 379 of the IPC has been registered.

Theft: The police has registered a case of cheating and theft under Sections 420 and 379 of the IPC against driver of an auto-rickshaw (No CHV 1664) allegedly for stealing gas from a cylinder in Sector 20 here yesterday. The suspects, however, fled from the spot leaving behind the rickshaw.

Assault: Mr Musafir, a resident of Colony No 4 sustained fracture after allegedly being beaten by three persons here yesterday. The police is investigating the matter.

Held: During the past 24-hours the police has claimed to have arrested Dharik Paswan and Baljinder Singh under various Sections of the Excise Act and seized 40 pouches of liquor from their possession.

Crushed to death: A 12 year-old boy was crushed to death when his bicycle was hit by a truck near the Shahpur chowk under the Sector 39 police station here this evening.

The victim, Pankaj, a resident of Janata colony in Sector 25, was riding on the bicycle with two other children. The driver of the truck fled away from the spot after leaving behind the truck. A case has been registered at the Sector 39 police station.


Labourer found dead: Mystery shrouds the death of 25-year-old labourer, Prem Kumar, in a flat in Group Housing Society No 39, Mansa Devi Complex this morning. The victim was found dead in a flat under construction.

Stolen: A car (HR-03D- 1535) was stolen from outside the Sector 12-A house of Mr B.K. Sharma. The car had been parked outside the house and was found missing at about 11. 30 pm last night.


Software launched

Chandigarh, February 23
Optimiser Infotech Financial Services has announced the release of their windows based business accounting software with VAT features. The same can be downloaded from The company is also providing necessary documentation for VAT to be submitted to the Excise and Taxation Department. OC


Furniture exhibition
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 23
On the concluding day of the two-day exhibition held at the Parade Ground here, Mr Vinay Kaushal, the organiser of the event, said: “For the past 10 years we have been exporting furniture to various countries. Mr Kaushal, who runs V.N. Luxury House, a Panchkula-based furniture exporting firm, claimed that his company’s products were there at the Rashtrapati Bhavan, several five-star hotels, airports and tourist resorts. The visitors to the exhibition appreciated the range of products.

Home | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Editorial |
Business | Sport | World | Mailbag | In Spotlight | Chandigarh Tribune | Ludhiana Tribune
50 years of Independence | Tercentenary Celebrations |
123 Years of Trust | Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |