Thursday, March 13, 2003, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Congress wins MC poll
Our Correspondent

Dera Bassi, March 12
The Congress here today wrested the Dera Bassi Municipal Council from the SAD-BJP alliance, winning eight of the 13 seats.

Counting was conducted for 12 wards today amid tight security at the local community centre. Of the 12 results declared, candidates belonging to the Congress won eight seats while the SAD-BJP alliance could win only four seats.

The following have been declared winners: Ms Surinder Kaur from Ward No. 1, Mr Bakshish Saini from Ward No. 2, Mr Chaman Lal from Ward No. 3, Mr Gurmit Modi from Ward No. 4, Ashwani Sharma from Ward No.5, Ms Davinder Kaur from Ward No. 7, Dr Shushil Raj Kumar from Ward No. 8, Mr Om Prakash from Ward No. 9, Ms Kamlesh Sharan from Ward No. 10, Mr Amrit Pal Singh from Ward No. 11, Ms Malkiat Kaur from Ward No. 12 and Ms Vimla Devi from Ward No. 13.

Due to stay orders, counting of votes for Ward No. 6 was not conducted.

Mr Amrit Pal Singh, a Congress candidates, made a comeback after defeating a former president of the civic body, SAD candidate Jagjit Singh Dalli.

An SAD candidate, Ms Malkiat Kaur (Ward No. 12), talking to mediapersons, alleged that Mr R.R.Bhardwaj, Deputy Chairman of the Punjab Planning Board, and Mr Hardyal Singh Kamboj, district Congress president, visited the counting centre and asked the electoral staff to favour the Congress candidate.

To celebrate their victory, the candidates organised “victory processions” in their respective wards amid beating of drums and bursting of crackers. 


Ward No. 2 poll on March 23
Our Correspondent

Kharar, March 12
In a notification issued regarding the elections at Ward No. 2 of the municipal council, the Election Commission has fixed these for March 23.

An announcement in this regard was made here today. The last date for filing of nomination papers is March 13 and voting will be held on March 23.


Five die as car, bus collide 
Our Correspondent

Dera Bassi, March 12
In a head-on collision between a car and a Haryana Roadways bus the five car occupants died on the spot at Jawaharpur village on the busy Chandigarh-Ambala highway near here today.

On its way to Chandigarh the Maruti car collided with the bus, which was on its route to Yamunanagar from Chandigarh, at about 2.15 p.m. Subhash Parashar, Jai Singh, Arvind Kumar, Shiva Kant and Madan Lal died on the spot.

The deceased were working with S. Atul and Company, an Ambala-based electronic company, for the past couple of years. The owner of the company was among those dead.

Vehicular traffic on the highway was disrupted for hours following the accident.

According to relatives and family friends of Subhash Parashar, he was a government contractor and was going to Chandigarh along with his technicians when the mishap occurred. Mr Balwinder Singh, DSP, along with Mr Jatinder Singh, SHO, Dera Bassi, reached the spot to supervise the extrication operation. It took over an hour to extricate the bodies after cutting the windows and other parts of the car in the presence of the families of the victims.

The impact of the collision was such that the car got turned around and was dragged for 20 yards by the bus.

Mr Amit Kumar, an eyewitness, said as the ambulance of the Dera Bassi Civil Hospital failed to reach the spot in time a seriously injured, who struggled for life for over 20 minutes, could not be saved. The reason was that the vehicle was deployed with the Dera Bassi Community Centre where the counting of votes for the civic body election was going on.

The driver of the bus fled the scene. Meanwhile, a case under various sections of the IPC has been registered against the bus driver and the bodies have been sent to the Civil Hospital, Rajpura, for a post-mortem examination.


Man dies in cylinder blast
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 12
A man was killed and another seriously injured when an oxygen cylinder used for welding burst in the Industrial Area, Phase-II, here this morning.

The mishap occurred when Nathu Ram (36), an autorickshaw driver, and his colleague Muni Ram (28) had gone to deliver oxygen cylinders at M/s Gurnam Singh and Company. The incident took place around 11.30 am. Nathu Ram is survived by his wife, a daughter and a son.

Muni Ram, whose leg was ripped off, was rushed to Government Medical College Hospital, Sector 32, for emergency treatment.

The blast was so powerful that the main gate of the industrial unit, about 30 metres away from the site, was partially damaged along with the shed of the godown, compressor and window-panes of the building. Solid pieces of the cylinder fell on the V-6 road and adjacent industrial unit. Many persons had a narrow escape.

The DSP (South), S.S. Randhawa, reached the spot followed by SP (City) Baldev Singh. A part of the cylinder has been sent to the Central Forensic Laboratory for examination. Mr Randhawa said Nathu Ram and Muni Ram were employees of Giani Gas Depot, Phase-I, owned by Inderjit Singh. When contacted, Inderjit Singh said they were only suppliers of oxygen cylinders. They got their empty cylinders filled from Bhushan Filling Agency. “We have been supplying gas cylinders to M/s Gurnam Singh and Company for the past 20 years”, he added.

He said Nathu Ram was working with them for the past 18 years, while Muni Ram had been working for the past five years. The police has registered a case under Sctions 304A and 338 of the IPC.

Was it hydraulically tested?

The mishap has raised two important questions. Was the cylinder hydraulically tested? Was the staff employed by Giani Gas Agency trained in handling cylinders?

The knob of the cylinder remained intact even after the blast. Technical experts said normally if the cylinder was perfect and hydraulically tested, the knob should have given vent to the gas filled in it, which could have prevented the tragedy. Regarding the second question, the owners of Giani Gas Agency said the victim was doing this job for the past 18 years with them and was quite experienced. Police sources said it was likely that sub-standard material had been used to make the cylinder.



Minor girl found murdered
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, March 12
A minor girl, Priyanka, was found murdered in her one-room set house at Darua village near the railway station here today. The police did not find any apparent sign of an attempt to outrage the modesty of Priyanka or that of theft in the house.

Even as the family has not pointed the finger of suspicion towards anybody, the police suspects Shrinivas, a cousin of Priyanka, in this regard. he is on the run. The girl had returned home on a bicycle after appearing in her class VI examination at the government school in Sector 26 here.

The police found deep cut marks on the girl’s neck and body, who was found lying in a pool of blood on the bed. A kitchen knife, suspected to be used in crime, has been recovered. The victim’s house is situated among a cluster of houses and interestingly nobody, till the time of the filing of the report, had came forward with any information.

The police suspects that the murder took place sometime between 12.30 p.m. and 1 p.m. The police was informed about the crime at around 1.30 p.m. The girl’s father, Mr Narmada Parshad, works at a local railway sleeper plant and was said to be away on his job at the time of the crime. ‘‘When I have no enemies how can I suspect anybody’’ said the father who had gone hysterical. He kept pleading with the police not to perform any post mortem. It took quite sometime for the police to explain to the father that an autopsy was must for the legal procedures.

A case has been registered under Section 302 of the IPC.


UT to have new DC
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 12
Chandigarh will soon have a new Deputy Commissioner (DC). The Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has reportedly decided on Mr Arun Kumar, a 1989-batch Haryana cadre IAS officer, for the post.

His name will be sent for formal appointment by the Appointments Committee of Cabinet and then for final clearance from the Prime Minister’s Office. This may take three to four weeks. The selection of Mr Arun Kumar was with the knowledge of Deputy Prime Minister L.K. Advani. Being a UT, Chandigarh is directly controlled by the MHA.

The UT Administrator, Lieut-Gen J.F.R. Jacob (retd), had interviewed three IAS officers of the Haryana cadre for the post in the last week of January. The three are Mr Arun Kumar, Mr Abhilaksh Likhi of the 1991 batch and Mr R.K. Rao of the 1991 batch. The panel report, with confidential comments and observations of the Administrator, was sent to the MHA.

Mr M. Ramskehar has been the Deputy Commissioner here for the past four years. The last year of his tenure has been on special request of the Chandigarh Administration.

Mr Arun Kumar has served as Deputy Commissioner in Faridabad, Rohtak and Jhajjar districts. During his tenure at Rohtak, he had lodged an FIR against an MLA of the Indian National Lok Dal, leading to his transfer. When he was at Faridabad, he had registered a case of corruption against his personal assistant on the first day. He is presently posted in Chandigarh as Director, Primary Education, Haryana.


Key elements not in UT relief package
Sanjay Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 12
The long fight of victims of terrorism and police action has goaded the Chandigarh Administration to finalise a compensation package on the Punjab pattern. However, the crucial elements of providing a job to the family members of the affected and a committee to assess the damage enunciated in the Punjab policy are missing from the UT government order making the victims feel the battle is only half won.

The compensation policy of the administration, as reflected in a Home Department order issued on February 26, 2003, does not mention the composition of the committee notified in the Punjab policy in May, 1990. Victims, whose number is estimated to be between 26 and 27, feel the absence of the committee will further delay the already procrastinated decision on the compensation.

Another major part of the Punjab policy to give a job to the family members of a victim of terrorism does not find mention in the Home Department’s order, a victim said seeking anonymity.

The Union Home Ministry in a letter had mentioned in 1995 that individual cases could be decided on merit on the Punjab pattern as per a May, 1990 order of the Punjab Government. The Punjab policy had also provided for enhancement of relief with retrospective effect.

The Chandigarh Administration has decided to grant, enhance the ex gratia relief or assistance to the persons adversely affected as a result of terrorist violence or action by security forces in aid of civil power in Union Territory of Chandigarh based on the Punjab pattern. The new UT policy provides for Rs 1 lakh compensation to the next of kin of those killed in either police action or due to terrorism. Hundred per cent incapacitation will attract Rs 50,000 compensation and incapacitation between 25 per cent and less than 100 per cent will attract compensation between Rs 5,000 and Rs 20,000.

Damage to the house and business premises will be compensated to the extent of 50 per cent of the loss as assessed by the committee. A sum of Rs 1 lakh will be the ceiling for compensation in this category. The victims here say though the committee to assess the loss has been mentioned in the order the composition of the committee has not yet been communicated.

A sum of Rs 25,000 can be given as marriage grant for sisters and daughters of a victim. Loss to the merchandise will be compensated at 50 per cent of the loss assessed by the committee subject to a maximum of Rs 1 lakh.

The compensation for a vehicle damaged in these conditions will also be 50 per cent of the one assessed by the committee subject to a maximum of Rs 1 lakh. Dependent parents and widow of a victims will get Rs 2,500 per month subsistence allowance. Children of victims studying in professional courses will get Rs 500 per month like engineering and medicine and those in ITIs will get Rs 300 per month.


FCI team prevented from entering warehouse
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 12
Members of the FCI State Consultative Committee who had gone today to check the FCI stocks at the central warehouse were prevented from entering the premises by officials of the warehouse on the plea that the FCI officials were not accompanying the team. The team had gone there to take samples of foodgrain stocks and to check the movement of stocks. Mr Mohamad Aslam, member of the committee, stated that they were stopped by the Regional Manager from checking the stock, who said the team should be accompanied by a regional manager or his representative. Mr Aslam said though they had planned to make a surprise visit, but Mr T.C. Gupta, Regional Manager, FCI, Haryana, who has been given the additional charge of Punjab, had asked him to visit it on Wednesday.

Later the committee took some samples of the stocks and decided to send a report to the Minister for Food. Mr Aslam was accompanied by Mr N.K. Matto, Mr Shamim Ahmed, Mr Sudesh Kukreja and Jagdish Singh Ranawat. Mr Pawan Bansal, local MP, who is the chairman of the committee, had been asked by the ministry to check the stocks after an enquiry found stocks worth over Rs 3,200 crore missing. The Ministry has already sent Mr V.K. Singh, Regional Manager, FCI, Punjab, on leave. 


New Mohali STD codes from March 15
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 12
The STD code of SAS Nagar BSNL landline subscribers will change to 0160 with effect from March 15, midnight, besides addition of ‘2’ before the number. The telephone subscribers of Panchkula also would be soon delinked from Chandigarh circle of the Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL), following the suit of SAS Nagar. The STD codes of Panchkula will change within a month, as directed by the BSNL headquarter, said Mr R.C. Vaish, Principal General Manager, BSNL, Chandigarh circle here today.

Addressing a press conference, he said that these numbers would be changed as per the directions of the Department of Telecommunications. All private operators had been given a certain series and level for operating in different circles. The BSNL has to change the number, as per the directions. According to a letter received from the department, a decision about Panchkula would be taken within next few days. A decision regarding putting ‘2’ as prefix to the Chandigarh telephone numbers would be also soon taken, he said.

Allaying aside the fear of some residents, he claimed that there would no impact on call charges, rather the subscribers would be able to make calls to Bathinda, Ferozepore and Amritsar numbers through ‘95’ service. Further, the monthly rental would come down to Rs 180 against Rs 250 charged in Chandigarh SDCA. He said, other operators had also been instructed to separate the Chandigarh numbers from SAS Nagar.

He claimed that as part of its efforts to improve its customer services, the BSNL had set up interactive voice response system (IVRS) in the Chandigarh, under which at the subscribers could call ‘167’ number to get the details of their bills, balance payment and any other information relating to the department. Further, it had also plans to set up a call centre in the city soon to address the problems of cellular subscribers.

He said the BSNL had also plans to launch CDMA WLL services in Chandigarh and SAS Nagar by September-end. The initial capacity, he said, would be 5,000 connections each in Chandigarh and SAS Nagar. The company was installing towers and other infrastructure for this purpose.

He also added the number of BSNL cellular subscribers in Punjab had crossed 1.35 lakh and 25,500 in Chandigarh. The BSNL had also decided to organise camps in SAS Nagar and Panchkula to offer landline phones on demand in the next few days. The applicants would also get a telephone directory, a telephone instrument and an ITC card worth Rs 525 on the spot. These camps would be held at Phase V, Phase VII and Phase X in SAS Nagar and in Sector 7, 9 and 15 in the next few days. These camps would be also held in Chandigarh later, he said. 


Mayor’s surprise check in Sec-35
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 12
The Mayor of Chandigarh Municipal Corporation, Mr Subash Chawla, along with senior officials of the MC made a surprise check of the lane on the rear end of hotels in Sector-35C here late in the evening. The road was found badly damaged, which had resulted in water logging caused by leakage in water tanks of hotels and underground water pipes.

He asked senior officials of the MC, who were accompanying him, to call a meeting of hotel owners within two days and instruct them to stop the leakage of water or face action.

Further, it was found that the hotel owners had constructed water tanks not only on the rooftops but also underground tanks on the roadside (outside their building).

The shop owners and stockists having their shops on the back-lane behind the hotels told their grievances to the Mayor.

The team also found out that a piece of land belonging to the MC along the lane had been encroached upon by a retired DIG of Punjab as his security guards had pitched up a tent along with fence. The Mayor asked the officials of the Enforcement Wing to remove the encroachment by tomorrow evening.


Farmers keen to stall power tariff hike
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 12
Encouraged by the Central Government’s decision to withdraw the hike in the prices of fertilisers, farmers’ unions of Punjab are determined to stall the increase in power tariff in the state with effect from April 1 this year.

Six farmers’ unions, sitting on an indefinite dharna at Matka Chowk since Monday, have given a call to farmers of the state to boycott the payment of electricity bills in protest against the Punjab State Electricity Board’s plea before the Punjab State Electricity Regulatory Commission (PSERC) to increase power tariff.

Addressing the farmers, Mr Pishora Singh, President, Bhartiya Kisan Union (Ekta), said: “Though we welcome the Central Government’s decision to withdraw price hike of fertilisers, the state government should also ensure that there is no increase in power tariff as demanded by the board. Rather, the farmers should be exempted from the payment of electricity bills, as the Central Government has already declined to increase the MSP of different crops.”

He said six unions — Bhartiya Kisan Union (Ekta), Kirti Kisan Union, Democratic Farmers Sabha, All-Hind Kirti Kisan Sabha, Agricultural and Farmers Development Front and Punjab Kisan Sabha — have made it clear that they would continue their protest in the coming days till the state government came forward to meet their demands.

The demands include withdrawal of 4 per cent tax on fertilisers and payment of arrears of sugar cane.

The association also supported the agitation of farmers in Haryana and passed a resolution seeking a judicial inquiry into police firing on farmers in Tarn Taran. Later, they met the Chairman of the PSERC to lodge their protest against the proposed tariff hike. 


Bir Devinder takes up cudgels for Mohali residents
Our Correspondent

SAS Nagar, March 12
The Kharar MLA, Mr Bir Devinder Singh, today called for a stay on the decision to introduce a new STD code for the town and demanded that the matter should be reconsidered.

Bharat Sanchar Nigam (BSNL) has decided to change the STD code of SAS Nagar from March 15 and link up the town with the Kharar circle. The new STD code for SAS Nagar will be 0160 instead of 0172.

Mr Bir Devinder Singh, who was addressing a press conference here, said residents were aggrieved at the decision of the Department of Telecommunications to delink SAS Nagar from the Chandigarh telecom services.

He said the decision taken by the Central Government authority was one-sided as the state government, the MP or the MLA of the area, had not been taken into confidence.

He said Chandigarh was considered as a part of Punjab and even the Punjab Governor had been appointed as the Chandigarh Administrator. He said important institutes were operating in the town and delinking would lead to communication problems.

Mr Kiranbir Singh Kang, senior vice-president of Shiromani Akali Dal, said the postal zone of Chandigarh covered SAS Nagar and all facilities available for quick collection and delivery of post at Chandigarh were extended to SAS Nagar. But now discrimination was being done by the Department of Telecommunications against the town by changing the telephone code. He said a delegation had gone to Delhi to take up the issue with the higher authorities.

Mr B.S. Baidwan, president of Mohali Industries Association, said the master plan of Chandigarh indicated the lay out of the city up to 73 sectors and the present sectors of SAS Nagar were part of that plan and were in continuation with those in Chandigarh. This fact had been kept in mind while providing various services to the town. SAS Nagar was a part of the postal and telecom services of Chandigarh and allocated the same PIN code and telephone code. The planning of mobile telecom services had also been done on the same lines.

He said SAS Nagar had created a name at the national and international levels. 


Raising Day celebrations end
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 12
The two-day 36th Raising Day celebrations of the 102 Infantry Battalion of the Territorial Army concluded at Kalka, near here, today.

A ‘sainik sammelan’ was held on the occasion, which was addressed by the CO. The battalion is commanded by Colonel P.C Kanwar, VSM. The battalion was raised on March 11, 1968.

A large number of senior serving and retired officers of the regular Army and the Territorial Army, civilians and bureaucrats attended the celebrations. The battalion has taken part in all major operations since its raising and has taken part in Army Day and Republic Day parades of 2001.


IT camp held
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 12
As part of its efforts to bring more and more people in the income tax net, the Income Tax Department has launched a door-to-door survey in the city. Today, a team of department officials led by Ms Pushpa Sharma, ITO, visited the Bajwara Rehri Market of Sector 22, to mobilise the shopkeepers to file their returns.

According to Ms Pushpa Sharma, the officials, with the help of market association leaders, called upon the shopkeepers, and encouraged 68 shopkeepers to file returns, after checking their sales records. She said such camps would be held in other market as well. The department team would hold a camp at Shastri Nagar Market, Sector 22 on March 14 and 15, she added.

Mr Vijay Khanna, Chief Commissioner, IT, said from now onwards streetwise survey would be held.


A hit joint for vegetarians
Harvinder Khetal
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, March 12
Hungry Hunter. The name flashes images of a cowboy. A Sam from the West. Well, it is literally so. Mr Onkar Singh, an NRI from California, has brought the name from the US of A and tried to replicate his experience in Mohali. Begun as a restaurant over two years ago, in SCO 30, Phase VII market, Hungry Hunter has built a clientele of quite a few regulars. It has also expanded into a lodge, with some rooms being made available on the upper floors of the building.

Mr Onkar Singh says that he returned to India basically to keep his children attached to their roots and culture. And opening an eatery was the natural choice after having run Hungry Hunter in the USA.

So, what’s the difference between two Hungry Hunters? The original one is a non-vegetarian joint The Mohali eatery offers only vegetarian stuff. This ensures a decent family atmosphere, with no scope of roudy behaviour or slipping in of the bottle. And feedback from the guests shows that a majority of them would prefer not to be served meat. On other fronts, too, Hungry Hunter seems to generally have the thumbs up from the foodies: cleanliness, presentation, portion, temperature of food and overall taste.

Dazzled by the lights and glow signs that he saw back in Disneyland, Mr Onkar Singh specially imported the neon lights that now sparkle in the restaurant area.

The restaurant offers healthy (less oil and spices) delicacies from Indian, Chinese and Continental cuisines. The veg items span a range of soups, salads, snacks, main course, thalis and beverages. If you don’t have the inclination to go through the menu to decide your order, try their special thali. You get a tummyful of a feast of a paneer dish, dal makhni, seasonal veg, raita, zira rice, 4 rotis or one plain naan, vinegar onion, pickle and kheer for Rs 46.

If you dig for Chinese, the thali comprises special noodles, manchurian and fried rice (Rs 55) while the South Indian thali of two puris, aloo sabzi, utthapam, sambar, chutney, rice, raita and 200 ml Pepsi is yours for Rs 59.

In fact, “family atmosphere” is all too evident at the joint with some neighbours meeting up at adjoining tables (by chance) and some guests chatting up with the restaurateur on a first-name basis. Probably, a plus point of a small town.

With both youngsters and the elderly, accompanied by kids savouring the goodies, and returning to their favourite haunt, Hungry Hunter had to recently increase its covers to 70 by dismantling its juice counter in the hall. Now, on further demand, they are planning to open a bakery outlet.

Meanwhile, you can also order for home/office delivery at 390314 or 267348.

Far East food fest

You have till March 15 to try the exotic Oriental fare of the Far East. The Sector 17 Hotel Shivalikview chefs have cooked up an exciting range of starters, songs, poultry and seafood, rice and noodles and desserts as preferred in Indonesia, Thailand, Philippines and Japan. Creating the right ambience for your gastric juices to want to experiment with the delicacies are the two hostesses and waiters. Dressed in traditional Japanese attire, reminiscent of sayonara’ culture, hostesses welcome you at the top floor Yangste Chinese restaurant.

The delectables (though you have to be prepared for developing a taste for them) come in the price range of Rs 50 to Rs 300. Mr Jagan Chaudhary, manager, F&B, says the response to Thai cuisine has been encouraging during this fest and they might put it on the menu permanently. The pieces of veggies and meats mixed into red, yellow or green curries seem to curry favour with the Chandigarhians, specially the younger lot.

You have gourmet meals prepared from the exotic shrimps, pomfrets, prawns, broccoli, tofu garnished with such tempting ingredients, herbs and spices as sesame, peanut sauce, plum sauce, bean curd, pepper, ginger etc.

The ingredients are stir-fried, grilled, baked or boiled to produce the desired results.

While the live band playing lively music serves as an atmosphere enhancer, the hotel offers Chinese tea on the house. HK



Couple killed in mishap
Tribune Reporters

Raipur Rani (Panchkula), March 12
A couple died on the spot while their four children sustained injuries when the car in which they were travelling was hit by an unidentified vehicle at Golpura village on the Panchkula-Naraingarh road, near here, last night.

According to the police, Ramesh Kumar and his wife Sita Devi, residents of Mani Majra in Chandigarh, and their children, were on their way back home in a car (CH-01-0936) after attending a ‘jagran’ at Dera Nagaur village. The police registered a case under Sections 279 and 304-A of the IPC.

9 women booked

The police booked nine women of Rajiv Colony on Wednesday in a trespass and assault case. The police said Mr Ramesh Kumar of the same locality reported that the wives of Dipti, Raju, Anoop, Sonu, Kala, Andit, Rambir, Ravi and Raju thrashed him and his uncle Zile Singh after trespassing his house on March 11. A case under Sections 148, 149, 323, 452 and 506 of the IPC was registered.

Construction case

Two persons, Kashmiri of Sector 37, Chandigarh, and Jasprit Singh of Abdullahpur, Pinjore, were booked on Wednesday for unauthorised construction. The District Town Planner alleged that Kashmiri had started constructing his house at Pinjore without prior approval while Jasprit Singh had sold the land in violation of norms.


3 thefts reported

The police registered three cases of theft in the past 24 hours. Mr Mehar Singh of Sector 55 reported that an amount of Rs 53,514 was stolen from the dickey of his scooter, which was parked in Sector 22 here on Tuesday.

Mr Rajat Khurana of Sector 49 reported that his servant Lalit Singh Negi stole gold and diamond ornaments, besides Rs 6,000, from his house on Tuesday. Mr Amarjit Singh of Sector 7 reported that his LML Vespa scooter (CH-03-F-7799) was stolen from near the International Hostel, Sector 15, on Sunday.

2 hurt in mishaps

Mr Surinder Singh of Ropar district was injured when the scooter he was riding was hit by a car near the PGI on Saturday. Mr Ravinder Kumar of Sector 20-A was injured when a scooter hit him near the traffic lights between Sectors 20 and 21 on Sunday. Cases under Sections 279 and 337 of the IPC were registered.

Three arrested

The police arrested Kamaljit Singh of Sector 41 from the Panjab University campus here on Tuesday on the charge of ‘satta’ gambling at a public place. Two persons — Parminder Singh and Dalip Kumar, were arrested on Tuesday for carrying liquor in an unauthorised manner.

Bid to steal car

An attempt was made on Tuesday night to steal the car (CHK-1585) of Mr Kirti Anand of Sector 47-C, Army Flats. It was parked in front of his house. The police was informed.


Three booked for abduction
Our Correspondent

Kharar, March 12
The police has booked Lali of Landran village, Dalbaro of Chuhad Majra village and Nirpal Singh of Majat village on the charge of abducting and inducing a married woman, Gurvinder Kaur, to remarry.

The FIR was lodged on the basis of the complaint of Mr Narata Singh of Bibipur village under the Bassi Pathana police station.

He reported that his daughter had been married to Sewa Singh of Chuhad Majra village about 10 years ago. He added that his son-in-law had gone abroad about six years back. He informed the police that his daughter had relations with Lali.

He alleged that his daughter left her house on January 10 and nothing was known about her whereabouts till now.

He suspected that she had gone with Lali. The police arrested Dalbaro and she was remanded in one-day police custody by a Kharar court.


Where wholesalers, retailers offer you the best deal
Sanjay Sharma
Tribune News Service

It claims to offer the best deal if you think of dressing yourself up.

Whether it is the price or variety in cloth, the market is confident of competing with Sectors 17 and 22.

Out of around 80 shops in the market, 54 of them are wholesellers and retailers of cloth. The market claims it gets 100 per cent buyers and mere visitors are almost negligible.

Boasting of a turnover of Rs 12 to 15 crore per annum, market employs more than 1000 persons due to the presence of a large number of offices on upper floors of the shop-cum-offices.

The only wholesale cloth market is now changing its character and is also coming to be known as the computer market with a large number of vendors setting up their shops here.

An estimated 25 to 30 of computer vendors, mostly in Sector 20 C Dakshin Marg, are doing business from here. A majority of the computer vendors are those selling assembled products. IBM, Compaq and HCL are also operating from here.

All 54 cloth wholesellers were allotted land in 1987 but it took few of them to build SCOs and start functioning from April 1992. The cloth wholesellers were shifted from Sector 22.

Amongst them was Mr Tilak Raj Duggal, who claims to be the first cloth wholeseller of the city and who started bringing fabrics from Surat, Mumbai, Ahmedabad and Bhilwara in 1961.

Mr Duggal followed Batra Selections in setting up shop in the market. Batra Selections was the first shop to be operating from the market. Mr Inder Lal Batra became the president of the Chandigarh Beopar Mandal and continued in the position for around 12 years before he died.

Mr Duggal, who is into both wholesale and retail business, has New D. K. Textiles, Surat Trading Corporation and Duggal Emporium under his belt. He is the president of the market association.

Most of the cloth merchants here are dealing with Himachal which they consider as better in terms of promptness in payment.

The Himachal market is highly price sensitive, shopkeepers here say.

Once exclusively made for the wholesellers of cloth, the market has now other types of shops also which were auctioned later after it had developed with the settling of cloth merchants.

The market, which had supported the Chandigarh Beopar Mandal’s call for the bandh of the city against the withdrawal of the Rent Control Act, has largely landlords.

This all-landlord phenomenon makes shopkeepers here confident of offering lower prices than competing markets of Sectors 17 and 22.

Mr Duggal says as cloth wholesellers here do not have to pay a hefty rent, they can operate on a lower margin than those who are forced to consider a pricing to recover rent apart from earning a profit. He, however, said the shoppers in Sectors 17 and 22 do not go to those market keeping in mind the price barrier.

He said when they moved from Sector 22, the wholesellers had to visit their retailers in Himachal and other places to inform them that their business was at a new place not known for any market.

There are few utility shops in the market to fulfil routine needs, but it does not have a toilet.

Apart from Mr Duggal and Mr Batra’s business, Gurjari, Chhabra Sons, S. R. Textiles, Luthra Sons, Krishna Textiles, Sheila Collections, Shiva Furnishing and Inner Furnishing have earned a name for themselves in the city.

Chhabra Sons has modelled itself on the pattern of Amartex to provide the people with an inexpensive clothing option.

The presence of computer vends of Fair Brothers, Ramington, Compaq, Diksha and Triveni Enterprises is noticeable in the market.

The market has been witnessing an unusual game of authorities which had even dumped material for laying a road in the rear side only to lift it back.

There is a bonhomie amongst cloth merchants despite facing competition from each other in the market. It is divided in sub-sectors C and D with the C sub-sector having a concentration of computer vendors and D largely having cloth merchants. The Sector 20 gurdwara is the landmark for the division of C and D parts of the market.


* The market has been losing customers as there is only inlet for parking and no outlet.

* The parking lot is crowded as the authorities have not been able to develop a vacant space behind the shops for parking.

* The road at the back side has not yet been laid despite the market having come up in 1992.

* Paving in front of the shops has never been done. Shopkeepers themselves got it done.

* Market does not have a public toilet despite a court having ordered the construction of one.

* The market turns into a pool of water during the rainy days as it does not have any drainage system.

* The carpeting area has patches.

* Congress Grass has been growing unchecked in the rear part of the shops.

* When the masons and unskilled labourers were working from the chowk adjoining the market, the verandah in front of shops had become a habitat for them.

* None of the street lights is functioning in the market and darkness is aggravated as the cloth merchants have to switch off lights from the main as a preventive measure for fire safety.

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