Sunday, April 27, 2003, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Cop acts high and mighty
Assaults couple, friend
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, April 26
In typical Bollywood fashion, a drunk policeman, having designs on a woman, assaulted her husband and his friend and threatened to implicate them in a case of prostitution. And when the policeman, impersonating as Jaipal, faced protests from the two men, he beat a hasty retreat.

Though the Superintendent of Police, Mr Ranbir Singh Sharma, has instituted an inquiry into the incident, the couple — 28-year-old caretaker of Rotary Bhavan Ranjeet Gupta and his wife Suman Gupta — say that they fear for their safety. “He has threatened to implicate us in some case which will put us behind bars,” they said.

The incident took place around 10 p.m. on the Rotary Bhavan premises in Sector 12-A last night. Ranjeet said he had just got back from work at Budhanpur village along with his friend, Shekhar. Ranjeet runs an electric repair shop at Budhanpur located about 4 km from Sector 12-A. His friend Shekhar had undertaken a masonary assignment in the village. He had offered to drop Ranjeet home on his bicycle and had stayed on for a cup of tea when the policeman came calling.

The policeman, who had earlier identified himself as Jaipal, came with another policeman. While the former was in civil clothes, the latter was in uniform. “He called me and Shekhar to one side and slapped both of us repeatedly. He then took all three of us in our quarter. The other policeman locked the door from outside and drove away. Once inside, he made indecent remarks about my wife and even tried to hold her hand. We both protested and then went to the window and started shouting for help. A passer-by heard us and came inside the Rotary Bhavan premises. He unlocked the door and we all came out,” alleged Ranjeet.

He said the other policeman, alongwith their third accomplice (in police uniform) arrived at the same time. Jaipal rushed to them and said he had not found “any substantial proof of prostitution”. The trio then beat a hasty retreat after threatening to teach them a lesson later.

While Shekhar went away to his house at Railly village, Ranjeet and Suman rushed to the President-elect of the Rotary Club, Panchkula, Mr N. Paul Sabharwal, for help. The couple stayed at Mr Sabharwal’s house for the night and were today taken to the police station by the Rotary president, Mr Mahinder Nandwani, and secretary, Mr Rakesh Singla. It was here that the couple identified Jaipal as being the assailant and were shocked to know that this constable’s real name was Bhagwan Dass.

The couple allege that Constable Bhagwan Dass designs on the woman for the past few weeks. They also allege that he had come calling at their quarter at Rotary Bhavan last month and asked to see her brother, Bunty. He had come in civil clothes and identified himself as Constable Jaipal. On being told that Bunty was away to Ambala, he left, but only to return a fortnight ago.

Suman said: “Luckily, this time, my uncle, Hans Raj, who is an employee at PGI, Chandigarh, had come to visit us. It was at 3 pm and he walked right inside our quarter. He took me aside and told me to send my uncle away. I was offended at this preposition and asked him to leave. I also told him not to come in the absence of my husband.”

Meanwhile, the SP has directed the SHO of Sector 19 police station, Sub-Inspector Mahinder Singh, to investigate the case and verify the facts. The SHO began the probe by recording the statement of the couple late this evening. He assured them that whosoever was found guilty would be punished.


15-year-old girl hangs herself
Tribune News Service

Fourth suicide in three days

April 22 : Neelam (27) jumped into a water tank with her two-year-old girl child, Radha, in Sector 33. Riya took an overdose of proxyvon capsules

April 23:
Raj Bhadhur of Ram Darbar took celphos tablets

April 26:
Nidhi (15) hangs herself at her home.

Chandigarh, April 26
A 15-year-old girl was found hanging at her house in Sector 44 here this evening. The body of the girl, Nidhi, a student of class X in Government Model School, Sector 35, was noticed by her younger brother, Kanu, who rushed to inform his neighbours.

No suicide note was found from the spot. The police said the reason behind the suicide could not be ascertained as the mother of the girl was not in a condition to talk. Ms Anu Sharma, who works as a marketing representative for a company selling kitchenware, was not at home when her daughter committed suicide. The elder sister of the girl, Mini, who is a class XII student in the Sector 35 school, had gone to school, said the neighbours. Enquires revealed that Nidhi and her brother, a class IV student, had not gone to the school today. The father of the victim, who is a contractor, had gone to Shimla.

According to the neighbours, the girl was a bright student and used to sing hymns at religious congregations. She had also written some hymns. Both brother and sister were watching television, when after some time, Nidhi told her brother that she was going to sleep . She asked him to watch cartoon series and left for her room. After some time when there was a power cut, Kanu came out of his room and saw his sister hanging from the ceiling fan.

A police party from the Sector 34 police station reached the spot on being informed by the neighbours. The girl was declared brought dead at the Sector 32 GMCH. The autopsy of the deceased would be done at the Sector 16 General Hospital tomorrow.



25 chemists’ shops raided
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, April 26
The state health authorities today launched a search and seizure operation against the chemists in the district . At least 25 chemist shops in Panchkula, the surrounding villages and Pinjore were raided by special teams of drug inspectors called in from all over the state.

The operation was spearheaded by the State Drug Controller, Mr S.K. Dua, and six teams comprising 12 drug inspectors and two Assistant Drug Controllors, Mr R.M. Sharma and Mr G.L. Singhal, conducted the search operations in various parts of the district today. At least 50 samples were taken from various shops and one chemist shop — Satyam Medicos in Sector 6 — was sealed. The licence of this shop had been issued under a different name than the name of the shop and even the cash book had a different name printed on it than the name on the licence.

Chemist shops in Sectors 6, 7 ,8 , 9 ,10, 11, 12-A, Majri Chowk, Abheypur and Railly villages and Pinjore were searched for illegal sale of physicians samples, expired medicines, quality of medicines, sales without bills, presence of qualified pharmacists and sale of generic drugs.

The Director-General, Health, Dr B.S. Dahiya, said drug inspectors from all over the state had been called for this operation. He said the operation had been planned last evening and it had been decided to avail the services of drug inspectors from districts other than the ones where the operation was to be carried out.

In today's operation, as many as 40 back-dated blank bills were recovered from Sector 6. These bills were cancelled by the authorities. A rate list, specifying rates of almost 40 surgical items, had been displayed here in contravention of the Drug Price Control Order, said a member of the raiding team.

Generic medicines, which have a high MRP printed on them and which allow a huge commission to doctors who specify these drugs, were also seized from two chemists — one in Sector 12 — A and another in Pinjore. At one of these shops, a doctors prescription for such a drug was also seized.

Qualified pharmacists were reportedly also found absent from atleast two shops in Majri village and Pinjore, it is learnt.


Seniority of Army officers cut
IMA course duration reduced during Kargil conflict
A.S. Prashar
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 26
The reported decision by the Army Headquarters to reduce the service seniority of about 1,500 Army officers by six months has upset many and left them wondering whether there can be a long-term solution to the ongoing problem of shortage of officers in the Army.

Those affected are mostly Lieutenants and Captains who passed out from the two courses of the Indian Military Academy (IMA), Dehra Dun, in 2000 after the duration of the course was curtailed by six months in the wake of the Kargil conflict to overcome the problem of shortage of officers.

The training period for cadets coming to the IMA from the National Defence Academy (NDA) was reduced to six months from the original one year and the direct-entry cadets to the IMA were trained for only a year as against a year and a half originally.

The Army Headquarters has communicated to all formations and officers that while the pay and allowances of the officers would be as per their actual date of passing out, their seniority for promotions would be fixed six months backwards.

The decision to curtail the training period was taken when General V.P. Malik was the Army chief. General Malik has since retired from service and was not available for comments. Sources familiar with his way of thinking say that the decision to reduce the training period by six months was taken because there was no option available to tackle the problem created by the shortage of officers.

The Army is facing shortage of 10,000-12,000 officers and is unable to send officers to the Assam Rifles or raise new units of Rashtriya Rifles. All arms of the Army suffer from the shortage of officers but it is more acute in infantry, artillery and engineers.

The decision to reduce the course duration is not without precedence. In the past too, course durations have been shortened to meet urgent requirements of officers. Course durations were curtailed during World War II, the 1965 war with China and the 1971 Bangladesh war when the Emergency Commission and the Short Service Commission were introduced.

Decisions like ordering a reduction in the duration of the training course cannot be taken by individuals. If the Army Headquarters wanted to eliminate the imbalance which may have crept in due to the induction of officers with shorter training courses, it should have been prompt instead of waiting for two years for correcting the situation. 


Cramped’ nursing home sites fail to woo docs
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 26
Changing quickly with times has not been the quality of Chandigarh Administration. A latest example is the administration’s policy to auction sites for nursing homes. The covered area in these sites is such that no nursing home can meet the norms of the Bureau of Indian Standards (BSI) to meet the ratio of required beds.

A nursing home lacking a minimum of 15 beds is not recognised by insurance companies for claims of patients. The sites auctioned by the administration do not have the size to accommodate 15 beds, claims the Chandigarh Nursing Home and Private Hospitals Association.

The standards laid down by the BSI say 60 sq mtrs are required to provide care to patients. This space is calculated while factoring all space like open areas, space for machines and other services.

The administration had placed around 10 sites in different sectors for auction as nursing home sites. The size of these sites is between 500 and 750 sq yrds (400-600 sq mtrs) and covered area after calculating all area on all floors is between 400 and 600 sq yrds. This dimension of covered area is adequate for five to 10 beds and not 15 beds, as required by insurance companies.

With increasing cost of medical treatment, more and more people are taking insurance policies. The reimbursement of expenditure on treatment for most of the diseases is given only if the patient gets admitted to a government or private nursing home or hospital. For immediate and personal care, most people prefer going to private nursing homes. But insurance companies recognise only those nursing homes and hospitals that have at least 15 beds. So if a person gets treatment in a nursing home having less than 15 beds, he is not entitled to reimbursement benefit.

The association says unfortunately the upcoming nursing homes in the city will not be able to provide such facility to the residents because of shortsightedness of the administration.

To discourage opening of new nursing homes in residential premises, the administration had notified a comprehensive health policy. It was decided that no new nursing homes would be allowed to be set up in residential areas and sites specific for nursing homes would be auctioned.

Chandigarh is already lagging behind its satellite towns of Panchkula and SAS Nagar in providing super-speciality medical facilities in private healthcare sector. On one hand the administration is inviting multinational companies for setting up an IT park and other mega projects, on the other it has turned a blind eye to the basic requirement of good healthcare infrastructure, claims the association.

The Indian Medical Association, Chandigarh, has already approached the administration in this regard but there has been no response. A few doctors have bought these sites at higher costs as compared to residential sites but the covered area allowed is even less than what is allowed in residential areas.

Sorting out this issue will lead to a better response by doctors to auctions of such sites. At a recent auction, the administration had to withdraw many sites because of poor response from doctors.


PU Syndicate authorised to condone lecture shortage
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 26
Panjab University has restored powers of the Syndicate to condone shortage in attendance of students in genuine cases. The provision, which existed even earlier, was withdrawn in December, 1999. Last year, at least 40 students did not fulfil the attendance conditions and the university had to set up at least four committees on the issue.

Earlier, even the Vice-Chancellor had the power to condone the shortage, which he was not keen to do this time. So the Syndicate decided to take upon itself the task.

Panjab University has decided to defer any decision on discontinuing the Bachelor of Commerce classes in the Department of Evening Studies.

The department was found lacking in several aspects, including conforming to the minimum academic standards pertaining to the teaching hours and other related academic activity in the course, sources said.

The university has agreed to implement the communication from the Ministry of Human Resource Development to give concessions to wards of people displaced from Kashmir in all courses, including professional streams on the campus and affiliated colleges.

It was pointed out by a member that financial assistance be also given to students to make the concession worthwhile for the “troubled students”, which was accepted in principle.

Panjab University has decided not to allow admissions to students who passed their plus two from the Bihar Intermediate Education Council. The case was taken up following a representation of a student seeking review of decision of not admitting them under the existing conditions to any course on the campus and affiliated colleges.

Panjab University will go ahead with various modes of admission to various teaching departments on the campus in the forthcoming academic session.

Admissions to teaching departments in pure sciences stream are based on a Common Entrance Test (CET) and the national-level CAT (Common Admission Test) examination is the basis for admissions to the University Business School. Certain departments go in for individual entrance examination. A majority of the departments in the languages and the humanities streams make admissions on the basis of merit in the qualifying examination.

The university agreed in principle to allow students to take up the law course even in the Hindi medium. However, the details regarding the implementation need to be worked out, it was agreed.

It was decided that the Director, Public Relations would also sit in Syndicate meetings in future to brief the Press.Back


Petrol, diesel prices for city
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, April 26
The prices of petrol and diesel were slashed for the second time in the past fortnight and these will come into force from midnight tonight. Residents will now pay less by about a rupee for both petrol and diesel.

The prices have been reduced following the reduction in the price of crude oil in the international market and the recent announcement in this regard by the Union Petroleum Minister. The Secretary of the Chandigarh Petroleum Dealers Association, Mr Amanpreet Singh, has welcomed the reduction in the prices of petrol and diesel. 


Reforms key to growth, says Sompal
P.P.S. Gill
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 26
The envisaged gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate target of 8 per cent in the 10th Plan is ambitious given the deceleration of the economy, which is also easily affected by what happens to the economy in the USA.

Despite the slump in the domestic economy, the growth rate of 8 per cent can be achieved provided India follows a large-scale reforms programme. What are these reforms? The answer was provided by Mr Sompal, a member of the Planning Commission of India, in an interview with TNS at the Centre for Research in Rural and Industrial Development (CRRID) here today.

“These reforms are legal (including labour laws and passing of an electricity Bill in Parliament), procedural, institutional, structural, financial and fiscal, besides setting priorities in investment. All this will mean that unnecessary government interference that stifles entrepreneurs’ energy must end. It is precisely with such an objective that the Planning Commission is slowly but surely reinventing itself to act as a “think tank”. It wants all future plan allocations to be leveraged to reforms.

Mr Sompal, also a Member of the 12th Finance Commission, says all that is required is a “political will, not machination; bureaucratic commitment, not nexus and knots between them and the corporate and private sector, which must open its purse strings”.

Also, the government must cut down its revenue expenditure even as it needs to revitalise revenue earnings through “user charges’’ on social and economic services, at least to recover their operation and maintenance costs and also ensure “efficienct” delivery and unpack the capital stock.

Mr Sompal feels concerned over the state of agriculture, which is shackled by unwanted controls that impede diversification, production, processing and value addition. “There has to be unrestricted movement of foodgrains, free trading, exports and processing. It is shocking to learn at the Planning Commission that the Centre has not spent even one rupee on irrigation in the past 14 years, when 60 per cent agriculture in the country is rain-fed with the average production of mere one tonne per hectare against four tonnes per hectare in irrigated tracts.” Nearly 400 ongoing irrigation projects are lagging behind schedule since the Fifth Five-year Plan. Their completion will require Rs 77,000 crore and take five years to eight years for completion.

Unless “non-merit subsidies” are withdrawn on fertilisers and power and investments are made in water harvesting, organic farming and processing, farmers will not benefit. He reveals that the share of agriculture was mere 1.3 per cent of the GDP in the past three Plans though, agriculture gives direct employment to 56.7 per cent as against 9 per cent given by the organised sector and the remaining by service, tourism and trade.

Mr Sompal says focus has to be on “power reforms, rural and urban infrastructure, road and rail connectivity and communication”. This will provide a dynamic push to the economy. 


‘Banned vaccine’ sold to poultry farmers
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, April 26
The National Egg Coordination Committee (NECC) has lashed out at one of the biggest animal vaccine manufacturing units in the country for illegally selling imported live vaccine to poultry farmers, thus leading to the spread of Ranikhet disease in poultry farms of Barwala and parts of Punjab.

In a press release issued here today, Ms Anuradha J. Desai, Chairperson of NECC, has accused the Animal Health Division of Ranbaxy India for selling imported live vaccines to poultry farmers at a discounted price, which is banned by the Government of India. It is alleged that this imported live vaccine is responsible for a 30 to 40 per cent drop in egg production and mortality rate of 8 per cent, in flocks vaccinated by this imported vaccine.

The NECC authorities have also accused Ranbaxy of not following the procedure for sending tissue samples for testing in foreign laboratories. As per the regulations samples for testing at overseas laboratories can be sent only by the Secretary, Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Union Ministry of Agriculture — a procedure not followed by Ranbaxy.

The NECC Chairperson has said that the results of the samples tested at a UK based laboratory , which had identified the disease as Influenza, has created confusion among poultry farmers and lack authenticity. In fact, the viral infection in the poultry farms here has been identified as Ranikhet Disease (RD) by two of the government’s premiere agencies, IVRI, Izzatnagar, and PDRC, Pune.

Ms Desai has also stated that foreign vaccine manufacturing companies have spread false information in order to sell their vaccine and also, hurt the export of of poultry products in India, which is the second largest and cheapest producer of eggs and chicken.


Traffic helpline on the cards
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 26
To cope with the ever-increasing problem of traffic management on the city roads, the Chandigarh Police is starting a traffic helpline. The helpline will also cater to distress calls of traffic blockades and wrong parking of vehicles in the parking slots.

After studying the facilities being run by different state police departments, the city police has decided to spare a dedicated telephone number for the traffic helpline on the lines of telephone No. 100 of the Police Control Room (PCR) and telephone No. 101 for fire calls.

Sources in the police said for the helpline, telephone No. 1073 had been identified. The facility, to be set up at the traffic police lines in Sector 29, would work as a mini-control room. Arrangements had already been made to permanently depute personnel to attend to the calls. An official said the personnel would also be listening to suggestions from the callers.

The Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Mr Rajesh Kumar, said the decision had been taken to help the motorists and tackle the problem of increasing road accidents.

To strengthen the facility, the traffic helpline would have, in addition, field officers and Gypsies in three different zones — east, central and south. The distribution of the field staff would be on the pattern of the three subdivisions of the city police. Mobile parties would rush to the spot on receiving a call. Though the staff on PCR Gypsies rushed to an accident spot, the traffic mobile parties would also be going to the accident spots.

Another advantage of the mobile traffic staff would be managing traffic blockades at busy unmanned junctions. An official said only some of the 28-odd traffic junctions were manned by traffic policemen from 9 am to 6 pm. “Whenever there is a call about a wrongly parked vehicle coming in way of traffic movement, a person can call on the helpline. A mobile team, led by a tow vehicle, would be sent to the spot to remove the vehicle”, said a police official.

By receiving calls on the helpline, the traffic related problems could be managed without the deployment of traffic policemen at every point in the city.

Telephone No. 1073 of the traffic helpline will be toll free

According to a BSNL official, the Department of Telecom has decided to allow a toll-free line on the pattern of telephone Nos 100 and 101. In other states, the new line would be used for highway traffic patrolling. Sources in the Telecom Department said the decision had been taken after the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh took up the issue with the government.


Rain normal for this time of year
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 26
A thunderstorm lashed the city and its surrounding areas this evening bringing down temperatures and providing a much-needed relief from the heat and rising temperatures.

The day had started off with residents bracing themselves for a hot afternoon and by 2.30 p.m. the temperature had touched the 38.5° C mark. In contrast to the expected heat, dark clouds were swept in by the breeze by 3 p.m. and residents hoped for some rain. It was around 5 p.m. that the first drops of rain relieved the city of its heat and dust.

Several youths could be seen enjoying the rain driving around on two-wheelers.

The Director of the local MET office, Mr S.C. Bhan, said the rain had been caused due to an upper air cyclonic circulation over north Rajasthan. This was not likely to continue tomorrow. However, it may be on a smaller scale tomorrow afternoon. The rain was very much normal for this time of the year.

Speaking on daytime temperatures being on the higher side, Mr Bhan said this was part of the normal variation in temperatures. Three years ago, April had started off with the mercury hitting the 40°C mark. This year the highest daytime temperature was 39.8° C a few days ago.

By the evening, the skies had cleared up partially and hundreds of city residents thronged places of tourist interest like the Sukhna Lake for a stroll. Residents were out on drives and being a weekend it further added to the atmosphere as almost all clubs in the city organise tambola on Saturday.

Meanwhile, power engineers felt relaxed as the demand for power dropped. In the city, water got accumulated at a few places. In Sector 27 -D, a resident, Puneet, complained of water logging near his house.


Computer-savvy thieves one up on cops
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 26
Computer-savvy thieves seem to be one step ahead of the snooping policemen of the Chandigarh Police if increasing incidents of theft of computer parts and related accessories is any indication. Interestingly, cases of theft of computers hardware from government offices are also being reported.

The Senior Superintendent of Police has directed the field staff to keep a watch on the centres dealing in repairs of computers.

In the past over three months, computer hardware and electronic gadgets worth lakhs of rupees have been reported stolen from business establishments in 13 different cases. Special teams constituted by senior police officials to track down the organised gangs behind the thefts are still groping in the dark. Investigations reveal that during last year at least 30 cases of thefts of computer hardware were reported at different police stations and most of the cases are either under investigation or remain unsolved

Sources in the police said a theft recently of some computers from the Central Scientific Instruments Organisation (CSIO) worth around Rs 1 lakh was yet another case in the list of such thefts from government offices. During last year, at least four cases of theft of computer parts were reported from different offices in the Punjab Civil Secretariat. Involvement of government officials in the theft from the high-security Civil Secretariat is not ruled out by the police.

An organised gang which had been active in the city in the past few months in stealing computer hardware accessories worth lakhs of rupee from shops selling computer hardware products in different sectors is still at large. The modus operandi and the targets of the “organised gang” had been found to be same. As in the past incidents, the favourite pick with the burglars appears to be portable and expensive computer hardware accessories.

The sources said seeing the past trend, the Senior Superintendent of Police has directed the field officials to make people aware about the modus operandi of the thieves who pose as hardware professionals to strike on commercial, government and residential premises. The police has been asked to keep a watch on the centres where computers are repaired. The beat staff has been directed to make people aware about the steps required to check thefts of computer parts.


IAF gets overhauled copters
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 26
The country’s largest helicopter maintenance establishment, No.3 Base Repair Depot (BRD) here, achieved an important milestone today when it rolled out the 450th Soviet-origin helicopter, Mi-8, overhauled by it for the Indian Air Force (IAF). The 100th Mi-17 helicopter to be overhauled here was also rolled out.

Both helicopters were handed over to the respective commanding officers of two operational helicopter units equipped with the Mi-8 and Mi-17 helicopters by the Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Maintenance Command, Air Marshal D.C. Nigam, at a function organised here. The Assistant Chief of Air Staff (Operations) at Air Headquarters, Air-Vice Marshal P.P. Rajkumar, was also present on the occasion.

Speaking to mediapersons, Air Marshal Nigam said about 90 per cent of the task of indigenising aircraft spares had been accomplished. He said the break-up of the Soviet Union had caused a lot of problems for the IAF, but the situation was now stable. He said the supply of spare parts from Russia had resumed and the indigenisation effort had resulted in the IAF becoming self-reliant in matters of aero-spares.

On the issue of spate of air crashes in the IAF, the maintenance command chief said that each and every accident is thoroughly investigated and there are different reasons for accidents. If required, certain modifications are also carried out keeping the flight safety aspect in mind, which are implemented across the fleet, he added.

Stating that the maintenance of aircraft and training of pilots were two different aspects of flight safety, Air Marshal Nigam said the procurement of an advanced jet trainer (AJT) would give a quantum jump to the class of pilots being produced by the IAF.

Addressing officers and airmen of the base, Air Marshal Nigam said that air power is an important element in deciding the fate of war. Maintenance was a constant effort and there was no room for complacency. He stressed that during the overhaul and maintenance process, personnel must go down to the most minute details.

A presentation on the activities of the depot and status of ongoing projects was given to the visiting brass-hats by the Air Officer Commanding, 3 BRD, Air Commodore S.B. Prashar. An interaction with airmen over high tea and a cultural programme were also organised.


MC workers hold awareness rallies
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 26
The Chandigarh Municipal Corporation Public Health Workers' Union and Municipal Corporation Mechanical Workers' Union here yesterday held rallies to create awareness to make the May 7 strike successful.

While the public health workers organised their rally at the pump house in Sector 32, the mechanical workers held the rally in the Industrial Area.

The demands of the employees include treating MC employees on deputation, abolition of contract system, recruitment on compassionate ground, grant of technical scales to field workers, including non-technical workers, regularisation of daily wagers and work charge workers and local travel allowance for class-III employees.

Leaders of the unions, Ramesh Kant, convener of the coordination committee, Darshan Singh, Jagvir Singh, Jasmer Singh, Ramlal, Shamsher Singh, Satpal Sabarwal, Amrik Singh, Kamal Singh, Kamal Kalyan, Jagdish Singh, Pritam Singh, Malkit Singh and Rajinder Katoch condemned the administration and the Central Government for not implementing the demands of the workers.Back



MC releases 68 animals
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 26
The Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh has today released 68 animals, after dairy owners deposited the fines imposed on them for illegally keeping the cattle inside the MC limits of the city.

A spokesperson of the MC revealed to TNS here this evening that the animals were captured by officials of the MC yesterday.

As per the details available, a fine of Rs. 1000 per animal was imposed on the dairy owners but under “political pressure”, the fine was reduced to at least one-third of the actual fine during negotiations with the dairy owners.


Honesty still prevails
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 26
Col G.S. Sekhon, works manager with the Pasco Automobiles, has informed that one of his technicians, Mr Pramodh Kumar, showed utmost honesty by returning a sum of Rs 50,000 to the owner of a car who had left the money in the car that he had brought for servicing.

According to Mr Sekhon, after making the job card and handing over the belongings to the customer, the car was taken inside the workshop.

Mr Pramodh Kumar, who was working on the car, found the money under the rubber pad as he tried to take out the spare tyre.

Showing honesty, he informed the supervisor, Mr Ranjit Singh, and returned the money to the customer who was sitting in the waiting room. Back


Move against dairy owners criticised
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 26
The local unit of the BJP has criticised the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh for its inhuman, cruel and humiliating behaviour against the people of Burail, by forcibly driving out their cattle from the city limits.

In a statement issued here today, Mr Ram Vir Bhatti, secretary of the Chandigarh unit of the BJP demanded a thorough inquiry and stern action against the Mayor and MC authorities responsible for ruining the livelihood of hundreds of dairy owners.

The BJP has sought the intervention of Lieut-Gen J.F.R. Jacob (retd), Administrator of Chandigarh, in this matter.


Satsang on yoga
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, April 26
City residents reached the CII auditorium this evening to “experience the yogic states of a living master’s own expanded consciousness” during the “experimental satsang” by Yogiraj Satgurunath.

As the entry was strictly by invitation, a large number of residents could be seen waiting outside the auditorium. The satsang was organised by the Hamsa Yoga Sangh, an international non-profit organisation, with centres in India, Switzerland, Germany, the USA and Italy. The sangh’s founder Yogiraj Satgurunath, in the city for four days since Friday, will be interacting with his disciples, besides delivering more lectures.


Man ‘detained’ in hotel illegally
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 26
The Director and the General Manager of Baba Frozen Food Private Ltd in Sector 21 was allegedly detained in a room of a Sector 35 hotel here this evening. According to information, the victim, Mr Sukhpal Singh, had gone to Regency Hotel for recovery of payment.

The owner of the hotel was not available for comments despite repeated attempts. An official at the hotel promised that the General Manager of the hotel would call back on the issue. However, no call was received till the filing of this report.

In a complaint at the Sector 36 police station, Mr Sukhpal Singh stated that he was supplying milk products and ice cream to Regency Hotel on credit basis. An amount of around Rs 2.50 lakh was pending against the owners of the hotel. An ASI from the Sector 36 police station, Mrs Paramjit Sekhon, went to the hotel.

Mr Sukhpal Singh, in his complaint, alleged that he was detained in a room of the hotel for more than two hours. He alleged that the owners of the hotel illegally detained him in the hotel. A case under Sections 323, 345 and 506 of the IPC was registered against Surjit Rekhi and Tejinder Rekhi, owners of the hotel.Back


Succumbs to injuries

A scooterist, Royal Masih, a resident of Sector 15-A, who was admitted to the PGI after being injured by a Maruti car at the Sectors 36 and 37 dividing road on Friday night, succumbed to his injuries. According to information, the car was being driven by Mr Surinder Pal, a lecturer in Guru Gobind Singh Khalsa College, Sector 26. The car driver, who was also injured in the road accident, was also admitted to the PGI.

Modesty outraged: Manju Dua, a resident of Sector 22, who is employed as a librarian in Government Senior Secondary School, Sector 27, reported that Ram Yadav and Surjit Kaur, both employed as peons in the school, tried to outrage her modesty when she was closing the library. A case under Sections 354 and 506 of the IPC has been registered at the Sector 26 police station.

Pocket picked: Jagat Kumar, a resident of Sulanpur, has complained that Opinder, a resident of Bhagwanpur in Bihar, was caught stealing Rs 1,060 from the complainant’s pocket.


Woman hurt: A young woman was seriously injured when she was hit by a scooter on the road dividing Sectors 9 and 16 last evening. The victim, Nazreen, was reportedly crossing the road when the scooter (HR-03-8410) hit her. The victim received injuries on the head and was taken to the PGI, Chandigarh.

Purse snatched: An unknown scooter-borne youth snatched a purse from an old woman near Sector 4 post office yesterday. The woman, Mrs Gyan Roshi, had withdrawn some money from the post office and was returning home when the incident took place. The purse contained Rs 1,100 in cash and a post office passbook. The police has registered a case.

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