Saturday, May 17, 2003, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Gupta’s police remand extended
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, May 16
The suspended District and Sessions Judge of Jalandhar, R.M Gupta, was today further remanded in police custody. In a separate development, a local court has issued a notice to the CBI to file a reply in the case till May 19. The court was acting on an anticipatory bail application moved by suspended UT Judicial Magistrate S.S. Bhardwaj.

The courtroom was jampacked when a team of CBI officials, including DSP R. Upashak, produced Gupta in the court of UT Chief Judicial Magistrate, Mr C.L. Mohal. After hearing the arguments from both sides for about an hour, Mr Mohal remanded Gupta in police custody till May 17.

Alleging that Gupta had taken bribe from number of persons during his tenure, purchased land at various places and saved money in the bank accounts of himself and his family members, the CBI has sought his nine days’ police custody. The CBI stated that Gupta was not cooperating with the investigating agency and hiding various facts during interrogation.

Giving reasons for the police custody of Gupta, the CBI said the statements of Gupta had not been complete due to shortage of time. The CBI counsel further said that during the police custody of Gupta, if had received a number of documents related to the property of the accused at Ludhiana, Solan, Jalandhar and Moradabad. Therefore, the custody of the accused was required to verify the documents in this regard, it said.

Opposing the police custody of Gupta, the defence counsel, Mr A.S. Sukhija, denied the allegations levelled against Gupta by the CBI. He argued that Gupta was falsely implicated in the case, adding that he had been in police remand since May 10 and there was no need of his police custody. He cited a number of cases to support his claim

Claiming that his client Gupta had been harassed by the CBI during police remand, Mr Sukhija added that despite the fact that Gupta was suffering from various diseases, the CBI had tortured him and even got in police custody two slips signed by him.

In his statement before the CJM, Gupta had alleged that CBI had tortured him and got his signatures on two slips having names of several persons. He further claimed before CJM that the CBI had made videotapes of his interrogation. However, Mr Upashak denied the allegations while making a statement before the CJM.

Meanwhile, the UT CBI Special Judge, Mr Balbir Singh, today issued a notice to the CBI on the basis of an anticipatory bail application moved by Mr Bhardwaj. Bhardwaj had pleaded that he had been falsely implicated in the case by complainant Gurvinder Singh with the connivance of CBI officials.

He added that he was out of station on May 9 and 10 and before going out of stations he had taken station leave. He alleged that the CBI had misused its powers by involving him and “planting the recovery.”


Electrocution waiting to happen in Sector 32 colony
Sanjay Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Residents of Sector 32-C Economically Weaker Section group houses are awaiting a possible electrocution like the recent one in Badheri.

In fact, residents of the 640-odd tenement colony seem happy extending encroachment to the level where most of the electricity poles have come under their boundary walls, a Tribune survey today found out.

At couple of places, houses have been extended to include electricity poles right into their front wall.

When asked how electricity poles have been put up only couple of feet away from houses which have now gone multi-storeyed, an official of the Electricity Department said the department a month ago issued notices to over 25 to 30 residents.

Expressing his annoyance at the encroachment, he said the people would realise the danger only when an incident like the one in Badheri happened. Two persons died of electrocution in the village.

Though most of the wires were covered, yet the official said the danger of electrocution was looming large because of the people greed for more land to accommodate growing families.

Notices have been issued and the Administration, the municipal corporation and the Estate office have been informed about the encroachment but no action had been taken despite the notice period having lapsed 15 days ago.

The danger of being too close to the electricity wires has been aggravated as wires are almost at an arm’s length from the buildings on the first and second floors.

Residents of the tenements say that as no incident of electrocution had been reported in the last 21 years, the tendency to encroach has been increasing in the absence of timely actions.

However, a section of residents says the erection of boundary walls was justified to give protection to the people living on the ground floor against theft and filth. They say passing vehicles raise a lot of dust dirtying their houses and cattle too spoil their courtyards.

The encroachment has made the planning of the area go haywire.

The colony, which houses workers of showrooms, cooks at hotels, waiters and mechanics, has witnessed a change in the economic status of the people from jhuggi dwellers to employees with private business.

A resident said as per the original plan only one room was allowed to be built but most of the people had made additional rooms and it had also been allowed.

The encroachment is so apparent that because of this factor, transfer of tenements is legally not possible as the owners do not get no-objection certificates because of this reason.


Naked wire claims one more life

Panchkula, May 16
A three-year-old girl was electrocuted to death after she accidentally came in contact with naked electricity cables on the third floor roof of the house in Railly village in sector 12, here today.

According to Mr Kulwinder, alias Bala the father of the victim, she had gone up to stairs to the terrace on the third floor of the house when she accidentally touched the hanging naked electricity cables. She then rushed to the Sector 6 General Hospital, from where the doctors referred the case to the PGI in Chandigarh. Tanu breathed her last in the PGI. OC


Death in PGI: hope after 2 yrs of wait
Inquiry report to be sought
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
After a wait of over two years, the family of Mohinder Kaur, who died due to the alleged negligence of the PGI doctors, can now hope to get justice.

On the directions of the Union Health Ministry, the Chandigarh police today appointed Ms S.C. Sagar, Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), as the nodal officer to expedite the investigations in the case.

Sources in the police said the police will ask the PGI authorities to produce all relevant case documents, including the report of Dr J.S. Chopra Committee. The police action follows after the issue was taken up in the last Governing-Body meeting of the institute in New Delhi on May 12. The Union Health Ministry had pulled up the PGI authorities for not cooperating with the police.

At the meeting, the PGI Director had pleaded that the inquiry was yet to be completed. The UT Administration has sought the help of the Union Health Ministry to obtain a copy of the PGI inquiry report so as to ascertain the culpability of the doctors in the case.

The sources said, after the patient had died on March 14, 2001, the police had begun investigation in the case on the complaint of her husband, Mr H.S. Tuli. The then Station House Officer (SHO) of the Sector 11 police station had recorded the statements of various doctors of the PGI. The police investigation had held several doctors responsible for the death. However, the police had also recommended that a subcommittee of technical experts be constituted to probe further.

In January 2002, the Finance Secretary of Chandigarh had constituted a committee led by the Medical Superintendent of the Sector 32 hospital, Dr Raj Bhadhur, and the matter had also been taken up the Punjab and Haryana High Court.

The High Court had directed the police to complete its investigations by May 31, 2002, but the police waited for the report of the expert committee and sought a six-month extension.


MC’s help sought on illegal dental clinic
Pratibha Chauhan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh May, 16
In a bid to prevent illegal dental clinics being run in the city by unqualified persons from becoming potential health threat for spread of diseases like AIDS, the UT health authorities have sought the help of the municipal corporation.

It is reliably learnt that a team of health officials have ordered closure of five such dental clinics and issued notices to a few others The Registrar of the Chandigarh Dental Council, Dr G.S. Sandhu, has requested the Mayor, Mr Subhash Chawla, to prepare a list of such unqualified people so that action could be initiated against them .

“With limited staff and resources as its disposal it would take very long for team of doctors to prepare a list of all dental clinics in the city so we have sought the assistance of the MC on this issue,” said Dr Sandhu. He said the Mayor had assured him that he would request the Councillors to prepare the list of dental clinics in their respective wards.

Dr Sandhu, said after a complete list of the people running dental clinics was obtained from the MC, the health department would ask for their degrees and then begin the process of verification. “ While most of these people have no degrees, others have obtained them from unrecognised institutes, “ he informed.

The Director Health Services, Dr C.P. Bansal, said all such people who were practising without degrees would be issued notices if they fail to provide relevant documents. The efforts of the Health Department in seeking the help of the MC two years age, had failed to evoke response from the municipal authorities.

A large number of unqualified people have been running “dental art clinics “ and “ dental labs “ especially in the slum and rehabilitation colonies. A large number of such clinics are located in Badheri Dhanas, Colony Number 5 and Bapu Dham Colony.

Qualified dental surgeons have expressed their concern over such clinics as seeing the unhygienic conditions prevailing here, they feel that patients being treated here were at a high risk of blood borne diseases like AIDS and Hepatitis B.

Even though people running these dental clinics have no medical qualification, they have put doctor before their name. “ I agree that I have not obtained any medical degree, but having worked with a senior dentist for two years, I have learnt everything,” says a confident unqualified dental surgeon at Dhanas.

The public notice issued by the Registrar, Chandigarh Dental Council, had requested all dental practitioners in the city to either get themselves registered or inform about their previous registration and its validity so that a proper record could be maintained.

After getting the list of all dental clinics from the MC, the health authorities are hopeful that they will be able to stop all unqualified people from practising, as they could become centres for potential health risk. 


Three commit suicide
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Two persons committed suicide in the city and one in Panchkula today.

According to information available, 35-year-old Swaran Kaur, a resident of Khuda Lahora, who was admitted to the PGI last evening after she consumed some poisonous substance, died today.

According to the police, the deceased was under treatment for depression. About six months ago, she had attempted suicide by jumping into a well. Swaran Kaur was married to Pal Singh, a farmer, and had two children. The police has initiated inquest proceedings under Section 174 of the CrPC.

In another case, 32-year-old, Shiv Shankar, committed suicide by setting himself ablaze after dousing himself with kerosene. The deceased was a juice vendor in Mauli Jagroan. A police official said the deceased along with his three brothers had drinks at their Mauli Jagroan house. After that he went to the first floor of the house and doused himself with kerosene. He died at the PGI this morning.

In another case, Surinder Kaur, resident of Sector 14, Panchkula, who had consumed some poisonous substance, died at the PGI this morning.


Curb sale of property using power of attorney: Verma
Tribune News Service


* Close all openings towards main roads.
* City to have additional 57 public toilets.
* All roundabouts to be beautified.
MC to maintain toilets in slums and Administration to give grant for the same.
Do not lay water supply lines inside slums.

Chandigarh, May 16
Explore the possibility to put a check on transfer of property through power of attorney as it has been done in Himachal Pradesh to prevent the loss of revenue and to plug other malpractices, said the UT Administrator, Justice O.P. Verma, while addressing a meeting of officers of the Chandigarh Administration today.

The Administrator asked his Adviser Virendra Singh to find a way of eliminating power of attorney sales. Justice Verma also asked the Finance Secretary to launch a massive drive throughout the city to close openings on the main roads. He said some people living in jhuggies inside government institutions have punctured the walls indiscriminately putting up small gates towards main roads which should be closed immediately.

It was decided at the meeting to have an additional 57 privately-build public toilets just like those which have been built in Sector 34 along Dakshin Marg. Justice Verma also stressed upon the need for providing public amenities to the general public and taking urgent steps to enhance the green cover of the city and beautifying the roads.

Justice Verma directed that designated points for setting up toilets should be identified immediately in all sectors. Staff of such toilets would also keep a watch on drinking water facilities.

Justice Verma asked the municipal corporation and the Horticulture Department to immediately allot the work of beautifying the remaining eight roundabouts to private companies so that work on their beautification could be started at the earliest.

The Administrator asked the Administration and municipal corporation to launch a massive drive to beautify the dividers on all the roads. He asked the Horticulture Department to identify a variety of bougainvillea for the dividers, which should have less foliage and more flowers.

Regarding the toilets in the slums of the City, Justice Verma said that Municipal Corporation should maintain these toilets and Chandigarh Administration would give them the required grant to maintain them. He asked the Adviser to ensure potable water supply to slums. He said that no water supply line should go to the interior of slums as leakage in these supply lines creates unhygienic conditions and they are often punctured by the slum dwellers leading to the contamination of water.

The Administrator asked the Chief Engineer to expedite the work on cycle tracks in a phased manner. The Chief Engineer informed that tenders for the cycle tracks had been floated and the tracks on four roads would be completed within the next four months. On the remaining five roads, they would be completed in the next five to six months.

Prominent amongst those who were present at the meeting were the Adviser to the Administration, Mr Virendra Singh, Finance Secretary, Mr Karan A. Singh, Commissioner, Municipal Corporation, Mr M.P. Singh and Chief Engineer, Mr Puranjeet Singh.


Rape of foreigner: special notice issued
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
On being approached by the CBI, the Chandigarh Police today issued a special hue and cry notice to an NRI, Maninder Pal Singh Kohli. The NRI is wanted by the Interpol and the Scotland Yard for alleged abduction, rape and murder of 17-year-old British student, Hannah Foster in South Hampton on March 14 this year.

The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) has already given a go-ahead to the CBI to coordinate with the Punjab Police and issued arrest warrants against Kohli (35). The parents of the NRI are currently residing in SAS Nagar .

He is on the run ever, since the body of Hannah Foster was discovered two days after the incident. Kohli had left for India on March 18. He had fled on March 29 after receiving a phone call from his wife who was then residing with her father in Britain.

Kohli became the main suspect in the murder of Hannah after information was received that she had talked to her friends about an Asian man stalking her. The man of Asian appearance was also reported to have spoken to Hannah close to her home on two separate occasions at the end of January and end of February this year. The British police had also revealed that Hannah made a 999 (emergency) phone call but no discernible sounds were heard. The police there are also working on enhancing the sounds of the phone call. 


Police notice for absconding cashier
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
After a month-long search for the absconding head cashier of the Sector 22 branch of Punjab National Bank (PNB), Raj Pal Chandoke, who had “robbed” his bank of Rs 20 lakh, the city police today issued a hue and cry notice for the head cashier.

In the notice, the Airport Authority of India (AAI) and the police of the neighbouring states have been requested to keep a watch on the head cashier. Sources in the police said in the past one month, raids were conducted at different places in the region but without any success.

The head cashier, Raj Pal Singh Chandoke, did not report at the office of the Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) on April 22 and took away the money from his bank. After searching for the cashier, nervous officials of the bank informed the police in the wee hours the next morning. Even the wife of the head cashier, Mrs Tarvinder Kaur, who is employed in a school, had assisted the police in tracing her husband.

According to the police, the head cashier had put the cash in the bag and left the bank premises. After searching, the bank officials had called up the wife of the cashier at her residence in Phase 7 of SAS Nagar. The bank safe was opened in the evening after a duplicate key of the safe was procured from the Sector 9 head office of the bank. The police has registered a case under Sections 409 and 420 of the IPC on a complaint by Senior Manager of the bank, Mr Ashok Kumar Kakkar.


Protesters damage liquor shop
Our Correspondent

SAS Nagar, May 16
Protesters damaged a liquor vend and broke liquor bottles in the Amb Sahib Colony in Phase XI here today. They demanded the removal of the vend from the residential area.

A dharna was staged by residents of the colony who raised slogans against the administration for failing to remove the vend. Women outnumbered men in the protest organised by Mazdoor and Colony Bhalai Sanstha. The protesters broke the wooden khokha from where the vend was running and a number of bottles containing liquor. Employees at the liquor vend fled from the site seeing the anger of the women folk.

Mrs Harjinder Jawanda, convener of the organisation, said that the affected persons had earlier approached the Estate Officer who had got the vend removed from the colony twice. But no permanent solution had been worked out and now the vend had been running in the colony for the past seven months. She said though administration had made no arrangements to provide water in the colony but provision of liquor was very much there. She said that even children had started consuming liquor.

The owner of the liquor vend, on the other hand, has lodged a complaint with the police saying that apart from causing financial damage by breaking the vend and the liquor bottles the protesters also took away Rs 4,000 from the vend as both the employees had fled from there at the time of the protest.

Mr H.S. Bhullar, SP, said that an excise inspector had been called to study the case. Action against the guilty would be taken on the basis of his report.


CHB drive targets 40 flats
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Carrying on with its drive against the illegal occupation of government land, a team of the Chandigarh Housing Board (CHB) removed the illegal openings onto the main roads in Sector 47 this morning. More than 40 flats were targeted under the drive and the CHB team removed the doors of the openings.

Besides the illegal openings, garages under tin sheds built on government land, illegally built rooms and other structures were removed by the CHB team which was accompanied by a team of policemen. The CHB allowed the residents time to close the illegal openings by building a brick wall. Those who build the brick wall by the evening were returned the gates. The rest of the gates were carted away by the CHB.

The residents had been given a of 15 days prior to notice. Some of them had voluntarily removed the gates and controlled brick wall to close the opening. Sources in the CHB said in the next few months all illegal openings onto the main roads will be closed.


Demolition drive in SAS Nagar
Our Correspondent

SAS Nagar, May 16
A demolition drive was carried out by the enforcement wing of PUDA here today. Fifteen jhuggis and about 12 ‘khokhas’ were removed during the operation.

The jhuggis and the khokhas had come up around Phase VI and Mohali village.

The drive which started late in the afternoon first removed khokhas near the Civil Hospital in Phase VI. Later jhuggis that had come up near the Kamla Market in Phase I were removed. The enforcement wing was provided police assistance to avoid any untoward incident. 


Centenarian celebrates 7th year of successful surgery
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Standing outside the first floor balcony of her residence in Sector 4, Panchkula, Kimkee Chaufla gazes at the world outside as it continues to change rapidly. She stands testimony to the phrase “Change is the only constant.” From morse code to mobile phones, from horse carts to Honda VTEC, from Pearl harbour to Sept 11,2001, she has seen it all. This year she turns hundred.

An early riser, she does not need glasses to go through the morning paper. She prefers to live on the first floor and walks up and down the stairs without any help or a walking stick. That’s not all. In order to remain physically active, she washes her clothes and plays with her great grand children. Her agility defies the freckles on her face and her wrinkled hands that have stood the test of time. Alert, active and still anxious to learn more, Kimkee Chaufla does not like to miss the sunrises and the sunsets.

About seven years back in 1996, it was not exactly the same picture. Time had taken its toll on her body and she suffered a terrible back problem. This led to her being bed ridden and she started losing her zest for life. Life for Kimkee had come to a stand still and she had almost given up when someone guided her family to show her at the PGI. Diagnosed in the Department of Orthopaedics, as “fracture neck femur”, she had only one choice: operation.

At 93 and with a weak bone structure, she was more of a challenge for the doctors than a regular patient. It was then that Professor and Head of the Orthopaedics Department, PGI, Dr O.N. Negi, took up this challenge and admitted her for surgery which was scheduled and successfully performed today seven years ago (May 16, 1996).

“It was a while back, but the memory of that operation is still very clear in my mind. It went off as one of the most successful operations although I feel that God has been very kind”, said Dr O.N. Nagi.

Its been seven years now and Kimkee Chaufla, celebrating her century, continues to live a normal life, just the way she always wanted it to be.


NCC motor cycle rally flagged off
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
The National Cadet Corps (NCC) Sadbhavana motor cycle rally was flagged off to Meerut from here, this morning, to spread the message of national integration, spirit of adventure, develop esprit-de-corps and to promote the image of the NCC.

The Deputy Director-General of the NCC Directorate, Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Chandigarh Brigadier D.S. Dhillon flagged off the rally from the Sukhna lake. The creator of Rock Garden, Mr Nek Chand, graced the occasion to encourage the participants.

The rally started off from the Wagah Border (Amritsar) this morning, and reached here in the evening. The participants would cover a distance of 7,450 km from Wagah to Tawang in Arunachal Pradesh and would travel back, finally ending at Jalandhar on June 12, this year. 


British Library celebrates third anniversary
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
The prize distribution function marked the formal third anniversary celebrations of the British Library in Sector 8 this evening. Taking off with the formal opening of two brand new sections covering the Indian writings in English and DVDs on the all-time favourite English films, the ceremony went on to assume an informal tone that continued for well over about one and a half hours of the celebrations.

Mr P. Jayarajan, Head of the Library and Information Services, British Council, India, was the chief guest. After the welcome note by the Manager of the library, Mr Sushant Banerjee, the centrestage was taken over by the students of DAV Public School, Sector 8, who presented a beautiful welcome song in the honour of the library members and the chief guest.

Apart from the formal function that was marked with the elaborate prize distribution ceremony, there were many lighter moments in store for the members, especially with two dynamic British Library members Dr Rana Nayyar and Dr Pallav Ray delighting the guests with their musical and poetic skills.

The winners of various competitions organised by the library were given prizes. Their names are in the order of merit:

Story writing (held on May 9)

Six-year category: Simran from DAV, Sector 8; Akrita Kaur from Vivek High School; and Path Vashishth from DAV, Sector 8.

Seven-year category: Sidhart Prasad from St John’s; Abhinav Kaushal from DAV, Sector 8; and Archit Sharma from Saupin School.

Eight-year category: Aditya Vardhan from DAV, Sector 8; Rishab Sharma from DAV, Sector 8; and Manpreet from DAV, Sector 8.

The event was judged by Dr H.S. Dhillon, principal, YPS, SAS Nagar, Ms Rekha Chandra, Education Adviser to St. Kabir School, Ms Amita Uppal, Coordinator, St Stephen’s, and Dr S. Lavasa.

Painting for kids (held on May 10)

Arshit Sharma from DAV, Sector 8; Aditi from DAV, Sector 7; and Akriti Rawat from Stepping Stones.

Judges for this contest were Ms Anu Kumar, Principal, Stepping Stones, and Ms Mooninder Sandhu from Strawberry Fields.

Debate (held on May 12)

Namrita Arora, Harinder Mohan Singh, Umang Sethi and, Dr Harsh Sharma.

Jury members comprised Mr Dinesh Kumar, Resident Editor, The Times of India, Col. J.M.S. Hattar and Ms K.C. Rambola, Librarian, Central State Library, Sector 17.

Story Writing (held on May 13)

Archana Ohri, Deepa Singh and, Harinder Mohan Singh.

The entries were adjudged by Dr Rana Nayyar, Professor in the Department of English, Panjab University.

Painting (held on May 15)

Sonyl Sareen, and Dr Rajni Lamba.

Flower arrangement (held on May 15)

Mohanjit Kaur and Simmi Malhotra.

Both these events were adjudged by Ms Prabhdeep Brar, NIIFT, SAS Nagar.


Marriage of a poor girl solemnised
Our Correspondent

Kharar, May 16
Marriage of a poor girl of Rangian village was solemnised by the local Rotary Club at Gurdwara Akali Daftar here on Wednesday. The club president, Mr Harpreet Singh Rekhi, said we verified the age of the girl and the boy before initiating the process.

He said apart from others, J.S. Bajwa, MD, Sunny Enclave, Mr Charanjit Singh Walia, MD, Mata Sahib Kaur Nursing Institute, SAS Nagar, municipal council's president Charanjit Singh contributed for the event.

Project chairman, K.S. Mundi said the couple was given a set of double bed, a ceiling fan, two trunks, a set of utensils, beddings, a bicycle, a set of clothes for bride as well as for groom, a set of silver jewellery, two quilts, a sewing machine, chairs and table, juicer and grinder, seven blankets, dressing table etc.

Ms Veena Gupta, president, Innerwheel club, was present on the occasion.


Kharar phone subscribers to pay more
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Residents of Kharar would have to cough up extra money as compared to the residents of Chandigarh, SAS Nagar and Panchkula to call from their landline BSNL phones to the cellular mobile phone numbers.

BSNL today announced the reduction of metering pulse from fixed line to cellular mobile numbers from present 30 seconds to 60 seconds for subscribers of Chandigarh, SAS Nagar and Panchkula only. For the subscribers of the Kharar exchange, the pulse would remain 30 seconds only.

New pulse would change from present 180 seconds to 90 seconds for call to fixed, cellular and Wireless in Local Loop (WLL) phones.


Scribes condemn police action
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
The Chandigarh-Punjab Union of Journalists has taken a serious view of the incident of misbehaviour with journalists covering the Frontier Mail tragedy.

Condemning the incidence, the union said it was highly disturbing that police personnel present at the scene not only pushed and abused mediapersons, but also beaten them up. The whole incident happened in the presence of the Union Railway Minister, Mr Nitish Kumar, and the Higher Education Minister of Punjab, Mr Harnam Das Johar. The union has demanded immediate action against the police personnel, responsible for the act.


Fungus in Coke bottle

SAS Nagar, May 16
A shopkeeper here has complained that foreign matter was found in a bottle of a soft drink which he supplied to a customer.

The proprietor of H.S. Departmental Store in Phase V, Mr Harjinder Singh, said he had supplied bottles of soft drink to a customer for a function. The customer later returned those bottles which appeared to contain impurities, including those bearing the Coca Cola trademark. He said it appeared that there was some fungus in a bottle with the Coca Cola mark on it. OC


Funeral van given
Our Correspondent

Panchkula, May 16
The Additional Deputy Commissioner, Panchkula, Mr S.K.Goyal, dedicated a van ‘Moksh Dham Vahini’, vehicle to carry bodies of the dead to cremation ground, here today.

This was the second vehicle that has been purchased by the Mata Mansa Devi Sewak Dal Dharmarth Evm Bhandara Committee.

Mr Goyal appreciated the selfless services being rendered by Mansa Devi Sewak Dal to the society.


Tribune employee bereaved
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Puran Chand, father of Tribune camera operator Subhash Chand, died after a brief illness at the Sector 32 Government Medical College and Hospital here today. He was cremated at the Mani Majra cremation ground. Puran Chand hailed from Alampur village in Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh. 


J.S. Rahi is Lions Club’s zonal chairman
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, May 16
The president of the Lions Club, SAS Nagar, Mr J.S. Rahi, has been appointed zone Chairman of the Lions Club International District 321-F for 2003-04.

The District Governor, Mr R.K.Mehta, made the announcement. Mr Rahi, as president of the club, got a shed constructed at cremation ground in SAS Nagar. He organised four medical, three blood donation and two eye check-up camps.


Save Sukhna Debate

The Tribune will organise an interactive session on measures to conserve the Sukhna lake. All those who have participated in the Save Sukhna debate published in these columns, are invited to attend the session which will be held at Nepli Forest Inspection Hut in Sukhna Wildlife Sanctuary, near Suketri village, on Sunday, May 18, 2003, at 10 a.m.

The session will be attended by Mr Ishwar Singh, Deputy Conservator of Forests-cum-Chief Wildlife Warden, UT, Chandigarh, who will give details of the conservation and afforestation measures taken by the Administration in the catchment areas of Sukhna lake.



Case for indexing rents

MR SAPANDEEP SHARMA has hit the proverbial nail on the head when he says (Chandigarh Tribune, May 6, 2003) that to checkmate delaying tactics by briefless lawyers, the tenants should be made to choose between ejectment and market rent on the first date itself. Lest the landlords exploit this provision, he rightly suggests that the market rent can be worked out on the basis of consumer price index for urban non-manual employees.

There is no way otherwise how the courts can drastically reduce the ever-increasing number of rent cases. We need to have built-in provisions for summary trials and special courts and a beginning can be made with senior citizens, widows, Army personnel, etc who have neither the stamina nor the time to pursue long-drawn cases. There are press reports that Judges are bearing six times the normal load. In the Punjab and Haryana High Court, for example, there are two lakh pending cases. Many times the cases are decided after the death of the litigant. Sometimes his grandchildren face the judgement.

What to say of an increase in the sanctioned strength of Judges, even sanctioned posts are seldom filled. There are just 28 Judges against the sanctioned strength of 40 in the Punjab and Haryana High Court. Similarly more than one-third of the posts of subordinate judges are lying vacant in Punjab and Haryana.

Prof Harbinder Mahajan

MC worsens matters

After the Municipal Committee came into being in Panchkula, things have worsened. Actually MCs are not for public utility but just to rehabilitate the heirs of politicians, a lucrative job opportunity leading to greater corruption. In fact this city was better off without the municipal committee, which collects crores of rupees in the name of house tax, fire tax and what not without rendering any valuable service worth the name.

The latest example of the “efficiency” of the Municipal Council is that the house tax notices dated 28.3.2003, to be paid within 30 days of issue, have been put in letter-boxes on 25.4.2003, and not delivered personally.

B.K. Verma

Ban mental stress

Apropos the articles in Education Tribune (April 29, 2003) regarding corporal punishments and the fear at the hands of those who are supposed to be care-givers (teachers), I wish to draw the attention to the mental trauma of parents as well as students for the burden of homework. New age teachers are only meant for reading chapters in the class. All left is meant for the parents to do and get the child ranked high in the teachers’ remarks. The focus is not on the child but the prestige that the name of the institution he/she goes to carries. In an age where we talk about the rights of pets, we should have banned the mental stress besides corporal punishments, which is doing as much damage to the child’s psyche if not more.

Chitra Chopra

Be kind to animals

It is really heart-breaking to learn how trainee doctors at veterinary hospitals in Himachal Pradesh inject hapless cows repeatedly in the rectum. It shows the height of cruelty, insensitivity and apathetic attitude of the management towards animals. Even attendants often adopt inhuman methods towards sick and dying animals. One should not forget that animals are part and parcel of human life and these are, now, considered as wealth of the nation.

It is not out of place to mention here the experience of a famine that occurred in the state of Orrisa in 1956, where poor farmers died out of hunger along with their cattle. But even the idea — as suggested by the foreign media — never struck in their mind to take the flesh of cows and cattle just to save themselves from starvation. The events were telecast in major parts of European countries and the people were amazed and surprised at the kind and human attitude of Indian farmers.

The trainee doctors should, therefore, refuse to undertake such experiments on live animals, particularly cows, as it gives them severe pain, suffering and ultimately death.

Nirmal Kaur

Revive camping site

This is with reference to a news item in Chandigarh Tribune dated April 19, 2003, under the heading ‘More facilities at Lake Club’. No efforts have been made either by CITCO or by the Tourism Department of Chandigarh Administration to revive the camping site near the lake. Several years ago, a camping site was earmarked near the lake, and in the Chandigarh map there is a mention of this, too. Chandigarh Industrial Tourism Development Corporation several years ago started a camping site near the lake and tents were put up there by CITCO and tourists stayed there. After about two years, this camping site was taken up the Central Reserve Police Force and they erected structures there. Several letters were written by me to the higher authorities of the Chandigarh Administration for getting this camping site vacated by the police force. More than two years ago this site was vacated. I request the new Administrator of Chandigarh, Justice (retd) O.P. Verma, to get the camping site revived.

Narinder Singh “International”

Penny wise pound foolish

The silent majority strongly appreciates your editorial “Can’t recover? Write off”. It shows that the inefficient and corrupt working of our administration. What action does the Finance Ministry proposes against those who were required to recover Rs 92,000 crore as tax arrears but could not recover there? Our financial experts are penny wise and pound foolish. They will find ways and means to tax the common man — increase service tax from 5 per cent to 8 per cent, and also raise the basic telephone tariffs — but they have turned a blind eye to the wasteful expenditure of the tax payer’s money. When a king honours tax evaders, an honest tax payer feels cheated. I must share my practical experience with you. When I insist on paying more tax, many persons counter me with the observation that all this shall be wasted by the leaders with a single stroke of their pen. True and practically, the Income Tax Department does not take any action against those who do not file their returns but it definitely doubts the ones who file returns diligently.

Om Datt Sharma


One held for abducting girl
Our Correspondent

Panchkula, May 16
The police has arrested Brijesh, a resident of CRPF Colony, Pinjore, on the charge of abducting a minor girl from Himshikha colony of the same locality. The girl was also recovered from him today. Two other suspects in the case are still at large.

The boy and the girl were arrested by the police from Sector 4 market this afternoon.

According to the police, mother of the girl, Surinder Kaur, had filed a complaint with the Pinjore police station alleging that Brijesh in connivance with Darshan and one another person had abducted her daughter after luring her on May 12.

A case under Sections 363, 366 and 120-B of the Indian Penal Code has been registered against them with Pinjore police station.

NARROW ESCAPE: Two van occupants had a narrow escape in an accident involving four vehicles on the busy Kalka-Ambala highway near Chandimandir, here today.

A Vagon-R Van (HR-14A-0700) rammed into a stationary vehicle on the highway after being hit by a truck (HR-38A-2587) from behind which further was hit by another truck (HR-37A-0930) from behind.

A car occupant Dr Yash, sustained minor injuries in the accident.

The drivers of the accidental vehicles are said to have fled from the scene after the accident.

A case has been registered with the Chandimandir police station in this regard.

FOUND DEAD: A former Haryana Red Cross Society driver — Mr Shamsher Singh — was found dead adjacent to the Sector 6 General Hospital under mysterious circumstances, here today.

According to the police, Shamsher Singh was a former driver with the government hospital and was also dishonoured by his parents from their property sometime back. Later he was shifted to the Red Cross Society and was later sacked.

His wife and a daughter (7) was living with his mother in Sector 30 in Chandigarh for a long time.

After taking the body into its possession, the police has started inquest proceeding in this regard.

Burglars took away Rs 400 from the collection box of Sector 23 Mandir in the wee hours of this morning. According to the information, a night chowkidar found that two youths were trying to break the second collection box in the mandir premises. He raised the alarm and the youths escaped from the spot.

The President of the mandir association lamented that the police had not bothered to provide security at the mandir despite repeated requests.

FATAL MISHAP: Navdeep Singh, a resident of Chandigarh, died when his car was hit by a truck near Zirakpur here this evening. According to the information, the deceased along with his friends, Subash Bhardwaj, Kamaljeet and Rajesh Kumar, were going towards Rajpura when the accident took place. The other occupants were discharged from the GMCH after the first aid. The driver of the truck fled from the spot.

The Lalru police has arrested two persons while carrying 51 kg poppy husk from two separate places.

According to Mr Balwinder Singh, DSP, Karnail Singh of Bhauni village in Ropar district was arrested by the police at a naka in Basaoli village. He was carrying 26 kg of poppy husk.

In Kurli village, Mr Karan Sher Singh, SHO, Lalru, nabbed Baldev Singh of Hoshiarpur village while he was carrying 26 kg of poppy husk.

After registering case against the two, the police produced them before a court in Rajpura where they were remanded in police custody for five days.


SCL, PTU sign MoU
Our Correspondent

SAS Nagar, May 16
Synergising each others experience and expertise in their respective areas of operation, Semiconductor Complex Limited here (SCL) and Punjab Technical University (PTU), Jalandhar, have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) that interalia envisages working together to introduce degree/diploma courses in the area of VLSI design, embedded systems or any other areas of mutual interest at various affiliated colleges of PTU.

In a press note released here on Wednesday Mr S.K. Ambardar, Deputy General Manager, Strategic Planning and Coordination, said that as part of the MoU, SCL had agreed to extend its facilities for imparting industrial training to students pursuing microelectronics course in various technical institutes while PTU would consider recognition of the VLSI courses being offered by SCL.

He said another area identified for cooperation was the ‘Distance Education’ in print and electronics media which SCL would offer with the help of PTU. PTU and its affiliated colleges would be nodal points for SCL to conduct these courses. Both had also agreed to jointly take up projects in design and fabrication of VLSI circuits, electronic systems, embedded systems, business process re-engineering, e-governance and management consultancy.


Chitkara Institute gets ISO certification
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
The Chitkara Institute of Engineering and Technology founded by the Chitkara Educational Trust has received the ISO 9001:2000 global quality certification from ICL Limited, a certifying body with JAS-ANZ, a joint accreditation system of Australia and New Zealand.

Duly approved by the AICTE and the Punjab Government, this ISO certification accredits the education system followed at Chitkara Institute. TATA Infotech education services division was the consulting body for developing and implementing the quality management systems at the CIET. Senior consultant, Mr A. Chauhan, said it was a commendable feat, as the institute had achieved this coveted certification in the very first year of its inception. This achievement comes within a week of the declaration of the PTU results for the first semester. Students of the Chitkara Institute bagged the first three positions overall. 


‘Chabi ghumao Wagon R pao’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Maruti will organise “Chabi ghumao, Wagon R pao” event in Chandigarh, Ludhiana and Jalandhar. The venue is Sector 17 plaza in Chandigarh where it was held today and will be held again tomorrow, Sarabha Nagar Market in Ludhiana and opposite King’s Hotel in Jalandhar on May 17 and 18.

Maxima’s gold collection

Maxima has introduced a rare collection of gold watches with over 75 variants priced in range of Rs 450 to Rs 1080. The gold-plated watches are creatively designed to compliment the whole dressing of the wearer, claims the company. The new promotional campaign for this collection features the likes of actor Saif Ali Khan and model Yana Gupta.

Red Tape

Mirz Tanners the manufacturers of Red Tape, has launched its latest signature line of “outdoor collection”. The “outdoor collection”, is a range of semi-formal and casual shoes. This new range is a blend of good quality leather, innovative styling and craftsmanship.

Bajaj Auto

Bajaj Auto today launched their new goods carrier, GC 1000. Speaking on the occasion, Mr C.KJ. Rao, General Manager, Bajaj three-wheelers, said the vehicle was powered by a 416 cc, 8.5 bhp fuel-efficient diesel engine.


Home loans’ exhibition
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, May 16
“Apna Ghar Utsav” — an exhibition by ICICI Bank — is offering on the spot home loans. Inaugurated at a sector 22 hotel, the programme will continue till May 18. Residents can avail themselves of a special scratch card which can make them eligible for loan at equal-monthly instalments of Rs 884, per lakh.

The customers can get their loan within 72 hours of applying with free personal accident insurance policy. Builders and developers in Chandigarh, including New Generation, Model Enclave, Dee Ess and Shivalik Enclave, have displayed models of properties in the exhibition.

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