Wednesday, June 4, 2003, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S


Advani harps on synergy, leaves out politics
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 3
A visibly elated Deputy Prime Minister L. K. Advani while laying the foundation stone for the third line of Phase 1 between Barakhamba Road and Dwarka, said today, “This is not the occasion of delivering a political lecture but express happiness” as the Metro was spreading its wings into other areas of the national Capital. He attributed the success to ‘synergy’, and said this was the mantra behind the success of Delhi Metro and that it would be taken as a role model in other cities of the country where such prestigious projects would be taken up shortly.

Mr Advani said that the project was an example of co-operation between the Government of Japan and the Government of India as well as between the Centre and the Delhi Government. The guests and others also had a pleasant surprise today when Japanese Ambassador Akira Hayashi began his address in Hindi.

“Mein Japan ke logon ki taraf se aap sab Dilliwasion ko hardik shubhkamnaien deta hun (on behalf of the people of Japan, I extend best wishes to all Delhiites),” thus began Mr Hayashi’s address at the function amidst thunderous applause from the crowd and those present on the dais, including Deputy Prime Minister L K Advani.

Later, Mr Hayashi said that the Government of Japan had extended Rs 3,400-crore soft loan for the Metro Rail project and would continue to do so to make the project a big success. “The project is making rapid progress,” he said.

The gesture of Mr Hayashi did not go unnoticed as the Deputy Prime Minister complimented the ambassador on speaking in Hindi during his address and also termed it as a form of ‘synergy’, required for completing any task.

The 22.8-km stretch will have 22 railway stations of which two will be underground. The project cost for line three of the Phase I of Delhi Metro is Rs 3,000 crore. It would be further extended 6.5 km into Dwarka Subcity at a cost of Rs 320 crore, which would be provided by the DDA. The Ambassador of Japan Akira Hayashi, Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit, Lt-Governor Vijai Kapoor, DMRC Chairman Madal Lal Khurana, Union Urban Development Minister Ananth Kumar and Delhi Power Minister Ajay Maken and many others were present on the occasion.

Delhi Transport Minister Ajay Maken, president of All India Council of Sports and MP V K Malhotra and Union Minister of State for Urban Development and Poverty Alleviation Pon Radhakrishnan were the guests of honour. Mr Maken said his ministry would work on the possibility of keeping the power rates less for Delhi Metro so that its fares were minimum.



Protest against overground Metro
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 3
Even though the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) assured rehabilitation of all persons affected by the project, the Association of Manufacturers, Tilak Nagar, today protested against changing the sites of Metro stations and demanded either it stick to the original plan or construct the stations underground.

They protested at the foundation stone-laying function of the Barakhamba Road–Dwarka Metro line by Deputy Prime Minister L. K. Advani this morning and distributed pamphlets to highlight the problem caused due to the shifting of Metro stations from their original sites. Saying that the original location of Tagore Garden Station, Subhash Nagar Station at Woodland Park and Tilak Nagar Station near the flyover were on vacant land, association president Dinesh Jain said that for unknown reasons and under the pretext of “technical reasons”, they had been shifted near the residential areas invading the privacy and security of residents and depriving them of healthy living.

The original locations would not have affected any residential, commercial or industrial establishment, but the changed sites would cause inconvenience to the people. “Metro in this area should be underground so that no one is permanently affected and West Delhi does not turn into a concrete jungle. One is surprised to know that the Metro track is coming over the Raja Garden flyover instead of underground as planned earlier,” he said and added that the new locations would not be even profitable for Metro’s revenue.

Significantly, only 1.2 km of the 22.8 km-long Barakhamba Road–Dwarka Metro line was underground and the rest was elevated. Of the 22 stations in this stretch, only two were underground at Connaught Place and Barakhamba Road, he said.

“All over the world, Metro means ‘underground rail’ and it should have been constructed underground leaving enough scope for future planning of Delhi. Having so many flyovers, now Metro on the surface/ground of the NCT of Delhi leaves hardly any scope for further planning for the city,” he contended.

Meanwhile, DMRC Managing Director E Shreedharan said the shops and residential buildings affected would be relocated and rehabilitated with minimum possible hardship. DMRC Chairman M. L. Khurana said he had met with Lieutenant-Governor Vijai Kapoor to inform him about the problems of the affected people and he had assured to rehabilitate them. 



Domino effect: Meerut girl sends greedy 
groom to jail
Our Correspondent

Meerut, June 3
The domino effect of Noida girl Nisha Sharma’s decision to send her would-be groom to jail is still being felt. This time, the woman of substance was an aspirant for the post of sub-inspector.
The relatives of the bride, Rajeshwari, rounded up the baratis when they allegedly demanded Rs one lakh just before the pheras, gave some of them a thrashing and locked seven of them in a room.

The Circle Officer and the local SHO had to summon the Police Armed Constabulary personnel to secure the release of the seven ‘hostages,’ including the groom, Raj Kumar, son of Sukhbir of Gulasthi. Finally, they were booked under the Anti-Dowry Act and placed in 14 days’ judicial remand.

The drama unfolded on Monday night when the groom, his father and other family members demanded an additional Rs 1 lakh just before the pheras. They allegedly threatened to stop the ceremony if the demand was not met. Livid over their conduct, some family members of the bride forced Raj Kumar, his father Sukhbir, his three brothers and two sisters into a room and locked them up.

All hell broke lose at the marriage venue. Some guests on the groom’s side were allegedly beaten up while the rest scurried to safety. In the melee, someone managed to inform the police at 1 am. The Circle Officer and the local SHO rushed to the spot.

However, the bride’s camp was adamant that the baratis must be taught a lesson. In the end, the Circle Officer had to call in the PAC to secure the release of the hostages.

Both the parties were brought to the Civil Lines police station where Sukhbir filed an FIR against Raj Kumar, his father, and five others under the Anti-Dowry Act.

Rajeshwari is a postgraduate who has cleared the preliminary round for the sub-inspector’s post. She told the NCR Tribune that gritty Nisha Sharma inspired her to send back the barat and inform the police. Her life would have been in danger, if she had consented to marry him in such circumstances. She appealed to other girls to come forward and fight against the dowry menace.

The two sisters of the groom, Ramesh Kumari and Mamta, were in tears when Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate Alka Srivastava passed the order, placing them in judicial remand for 14 days.

Later, the groom’s camp also registered a case against the bride’s relatives for allegedly beating them up and robbing them of Rs 30,000 and some gold ornaments. 



DUSU centres to offer guidance over a cup of coffee
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 3
To assist the admission seekers this year, the Delhi University Students Union (DUSU) will set up centres for providing application forms and guidance over cups of subsidised coffee.

DUSU has announced the setting up of 28 centres across the city to help students procure not just admission forms, but also to answer queries and provide assistance.

“These centres are not just sale centres, they are set up to provide guidance to students who find it difficult to fill forms and seek information about the various admission procedures,” pointed out the DUSU president, Mr Nakul Bhardwaj.

Guidance apart, applicants will also be treated to subsidised coffee thanks to Nescafe. “In association with Nestle, we will provide students cups of hot and cold coffee for Rs 2 and 3 respectively,” said Mr Bhardwaj, who went on to add, “We want to tell the university that unlike some of the restaurants, coffee can be sold at cheaper rates also.”

In addition to the buses that will be run by the Delhi Government to simplify commuting between the two campuses, DUSU has decided to run eight RTVs. “Like Mudrika, these RTVs will ply around non-stop in both the campuses. Two will ply in South campus, four in the North, two between the North and the South campus.”

These RTVs will ply between 9.30 am and 1.30 am in the first half and between 2 pm and 6 pm in the second half. The ABVP has also decided to provide two buses for aiding students.

Another first this year is the decision of the DUSU members to reach out to more students. This will be accomplished by ensuring that the members can be approached easily. “Bulletin boards in all colleges will have the photographs and the mobile numbers of the DUSU members and DUSU will also issue coloured information bulletins, which will have the names and the contact telephone numbers of the members,” said Mr Bhardwaj.

These coloured bulletins will also contain information about various colleges and courses. They will be distributed free along with the admission forms, which will be sold at the DUSU centres.

The DUSU members also pointed out that the drive against eve-teasing on the campus will continue and the Delhi Police have been asked to provide the necessary security. “We have asked the police to help us. On our part, we have supplied a list of names to the authorities of those people who are likely to create trouble,” said Mr Bhardwaj.

Refusing to divulge the names, the DUSU president said that it was mostly touts and other unscrupulous elements who caused problems during the admission process.

To focus on what they address as “achievements of DUSU”, there are almost 2.5 lakh pamphlets that will help students get an insight into the accomplishments of the union. “These pamphlets will also be provided to the students and they will include the achievement of the union as a whole,” pointed out Mr Bhardwaj.

“We made it possible to make the forms for revaluation and rechecking available in the colleges,” said Mr Bhardwaj listing out some of the achievements of the union.



Delhi continues to sizzle
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 3
The heat wave in the Capital showed no signs of relenting today with the mercury crossing the 45 degree Celsius mark to record the hottest day of the season thus far.

According to the Met office, the mercury soared to 45.6 degree Celsius, a good five degrees above the normal while the minimum at 28.8 degree Celsius was also one degree more than the normal for the city.

The NCT of Delhi had recorded 44.2 degrees yesterday. The Met office predicted that the heat wave conditions with hot winds would continue for some more days.

The erratic distribution of electricity added to the woes of the people. Several areas had to go without electricity for one to three hours yesterday. Load-shedding continued this morning.

The worst affected were the residents of Patparganj, Vikas Marg and certain adjoining localities in East Delhi where the distribution was cut on account of maintenance work.



MCD asks people not to buy milk from 
unlicensed dairies
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 3
Mr Rakesh Mehta, Municipal Commissioner, today advised the citizens not to buy and consume milk from unlicensed dairies and cattle owners since it is not hygienic and fit for human consumption. He said that even after boiling milk bought from unlicensed dairies and owners of cattle, the harmful bacteria are not completely destroyed. Such milk exposes users to various diseases.

He said that the people should consume pasteurised milk since, in this process, harmful bacteria are completely eliminated.

The Commissioner also warned all owners of such unlicensed dairies within the jurisdiction of the MCD not to run them since it is dangerous to the health of the citizens on the one hand and cause unsanitary conditions on the other. Moreover, disposal of cattle dung is also the main cause of sewer blockages. In case, any unlicensed dairy is found running, the MCD will initiate immediate action to remove it, the Commissioner added.



Champions of Punjabi will have to 
wait till June-end
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 3
The Union Government has agreed in principle to give second language status to Punjabi and Urdu in the NCT of Delhi. Deputy Prime Minister and Union Home Minister L. K. Advani told this to a delegation of Akali leaders who called on him today. He said that the Official Languages Bill would be sent for Presidential assent by June 6 after its technical clearance from the Union Ministry of Law.

Chairman of the National Commission for Minorities (NCM) Tarlochan Singh and president of the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC) Paramjit Singh Sarna, who were members of the delegation that met Mr Advani, told mediapersons that the Centre had agreed to the proposal by the Government of NCT of Delhi to grant second language status to Urdu and Punjabi and that it would be sent to the Union Ministry of Law for clearance.

Mr Tarlochan Singh said the decision was a result of persistent efforts by the NCM. “The NCM was insisting that since 50 per cent of the population in the Capital speaks Punjabi, it should be granted the second language status,” he told reporters. The delegation included, among others, Members of Parliament from the NCT of Delhi V. K. Malhotra, Madan Lal Khurana and legislators H. S. Balli and Jagdish Mukhi. Today’s decision comes three years after the Delhi Legislative Assembly passed a Bill that granted second official status to these languages in the Capital. The Bill was cleared by the Sheila Dikshit ministry after it was passed by the Assembly in April 2000 and sent for the mandatory approval of the Union Government.

The two Akali groupings–led by Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal)’s Avtar Singh Hit and DSGMC president Paramjit Singh Sarna–had launched separate campaigns over the demand. Mr Tarlochan Singh said he had organised today’s meeting of Akalis with Mr Advani and pressed that both Urdu in the Persian script and Punjabi in Gurmukhi, spoken mostly by religious minorities, be accorded official status.

The NCM Chairman said the NCT of Delhi had been part of Punjab till the beginning of the 20th century and that most Punjab laws, especially pertaining to revenue, were still in vogue in the National Capital Region (NCR). Half of the population of the NCT of Delhi, Mr Singh said, spoke Punjabi and most of them had migrated from Lahore and Punjab.



Nod comes a generation too late
Second language status to Punjabi
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 3
The demand for giving second official language status to Punjabi was first raised in 1965 by Akali leader Jathedar Santokh Singh. Chief of the International Council of Punjabis (ICP) Manjit Singh, an aide of former Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal and son of Jathedar Santokh Singh, said the decision to grant official language status to Punjabi had come after “one whole generation of wait and agitation”.

“I can recall how my father, Jathedar Santokh Singh, launched this campaign in 1965. And I feel proud to see the realisation of his dream today,” Mr Manjit Singh told mediapersons here today.

The Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) accorded a designated ranking to Punjabi for the first time in the ’70s, creating new jobs as language teachers in its schools. Later, Punjabi and Urdu academies were set up for the promotion of these two languages.

A former Chief Minister, Mr Madan Lal Khurana, had made a public announcement that Punjabi had been granted a second official language status in the Capital. The Akalis learnt later that the language had only been extended second official language “facilities” and not such a “status”.

Prior to the 1998 Assembly elections, the Sahib Singh Verma ministry had cleared the Language Bill and got it passed in the Assembly in an attempt to make up for the damage his party suffered after Mr Khurana’s remarks.

After the Congress came to power in the NCT of Delhi in 1998, the Sheila Dikshit ministry re-enacted the Official Languages Bill by including Urdu as well and sent it to the Union Government. The two rival Akali factions, one having ties with the BJP and the other having a covert understanding with Mrs Dikshit, then launched separate campaigns for Punjabi to derive political mileage out of the language issue.



MC to take punitive action against those who litter city
Ravi S. Singh
Tribune News Service

Gurgaon, June 3
After having failed in its repeated attempts to improve civic sense among the residents, the local municipality has decided to take punitive measures against persons who dirty the city. Though the municipality’s latest drive, which will be launched shortly, is multi-pronged and directed against one and all, its focus will be on those in commercial activities and against the disposal of polythene bags.

The local body has appealed to the residents and shopkeepers forbidding them from throwing garbage and solid wastes except at the dustbins and collection centres created by it. The wastes also include construction materials. Directives have also been issued to the owners of cattle not to let cow dung fall in city’s sewerage.

The appeal comes with a warning to the defaulters of prosecution and penal action. The penalty for violations of these directives would be a fine of Rs 5,0000 or imprisonment for six months.

The municipality has powers to prosecute defaulters, especially under Section 135 read with Section 158 of the Haryana Municipal Act, 1973 and the central statute, the Non Biodegradable Garbage Act. The municipal authorities allege that in spite of holding a number of joint meetings with the shopkeepers of the main bazars, especially at Old Railway Road, Sadar Bazar and Bura Bazar, to keep the city clean has, the appeals have fallen on deaf ears. Though the shopkeepers had promised of effective measures to stop littering the city, they have not kept the word.

The municipality seems to have woken up now because of the coming monsoon. Many people here attribute cause for the failure of earlier such campaigns at the doorsteps of municipal officials. In the past, the officials had allegedly taken only half measures, indulged in a selective approach.

In spite of the good intentions shown by the municipality this time, the common man remains sceptical on the ultimate outcome. There are many who think that the municipal authorities are again indulging in a publicity stunt only to keep its record and statistics straight. 



No let-up in dowry death cases in district
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, June 3
Though number of stringent measures have been incorporated in the laws to punish the accused of dowry death cases, but there is hardly any decline in dowry-related cases in the district. Two cases of dowry were registered at police stations on Monday. In one case, on the complaint of one Dinesh, resident of Lal Darwaja colony in the town, the police registered a dowry death case against husband, Mukesh, mother-in-law Roshni and father-in-law, Ramkishan of his daughter, Nikki, who was allegedly murdered on Sunday night when she failed to meet their dowry demands. The police registered a case of dowry death. The alleged accused have reportedly been absconding after the incident.

According to the report, Nikki was married to Mukesh of Jatheri on January 26, 2000, and lot amount was spent on dowry at the time of marriage. But after sometimes, on their demand, he paid Rs 35,000 to Mukesh for opening a grocery shop. But even after that, her in-laws started demanding a motorcycle. But when this demand was not fulfilled, they started torturing her and finally eliminated her on Sunday.

In other case, Dharambir of Mahra village, lodged a complaint in Sadar police station, Gohana, against three in-laws, including the husband of her daughter, Maushmi Devi, for allegedly torturing her for more dowry.

Maushmi was married to Manmohan of Rohtak on December 12, 1994, and since then, her in-laws have been torturing her for more dowry.

According to police, more than two dozens complaints of dowry-related cases had been received at different police stations in the district during last month only.



BKU to hold dharnas against water channel for Delhi
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, June 3
Protesting against the construction of a carrier channel between Munak (Karnal) and Hyderur (Delhi), by the Haryana and Delhi Governments, the Haryana unit of the Bharatiya Kisan Union has decided to hold dharnas and demonstrations at all the district headquarters in the state on June 6.

The union has also threatened to hold a statewide demonstration on June 20 at Chandigarh in case the construction of the carrier channel is not stopped.

A spokesperson of the union told newspersons here today that the union has decided not to allow the construction of this carrier channel till the completion of the SYL canal in the Punjab territory which, he said, was a lifeline for the farmers of Haryana.

Meanwhile, the leaders of the union called on the Deputy Commissioner Mr Balwan Singh, here yesterday and submitted a memorandum listing their demands. The main demands of the union include the stoppage of the construction work of the carrier channel, regular power supply in the villages and payment of the out-standing amount of the sugarcane by the Sonepat co-operative sugar mills. The DC assured the leaders of the union that he would send the memorandum to the state government for taking action in the matter.


NGO submits memo highlighting the issues 
that bother people
Our Correspondent

Gurgaon, June 3
People’s Action, an NGO, has submitted a memorandum to the Deputy Commissioner on behalf of the People’s Action Gurgaon Council (PAGC) outlining the issues that need urgent attention. The memorandum has pointed out various issues, apart from the five decided upon in the meeting of Resident Welfare Associations on May 25, in which more then twenty- five associations participated. It has highlighted issues such as postal network, security, intra-city transportation, fire safety norms, etc. The memorandum is a preliminary to a meeting sought by PAGC to discuss the issues highlighted in the letter with Mr Anurag Rastogi, DC.

In the letter submitted on June 2, the NGO has mentioned that the residents have been facing disruption in power supply, including frequent fluctuations.

Residents find it difficult to use electric gadgets and often are damaged due to poor voltage or fluctuations.

It lamented that the power supply is poor despite the fact that power charges in Haryana are among the highest in the country. In the interim relief, it has suggested to the administration that no new projects should be sanctioned unless arrangements are made for captive power plants for such ventures. It has also demanded that the department should issue load-shedding schedule in advance to the public.

The convenor of People’s Action, Mr Inder Nath, said that the traffic maintenance on the Mehrauli-Gurgaon road is extremely poor. The administration should ensure that parking regulations on the main roads are enforced. The NGO has demanded information on water supply in different areas, including HUDA and new colonies, steps taken to test check the quality of ground water supply in the various colonies and on plans to ease intra-colony transportation. The NGO has demanded that auto-rickshaws, cycle rickshaws, battery buses and RTVs should be operated in the city in large numbers to ease the transportation problem.

Besides, it has asked the administration to review the norms regarding the issuing of licenses to auto-rickshaws in the region, emissions norms, plying by meter, overloading and overcharging.

The memorandum has demanded that inter-state connectivity to Delhi through buses should be increased. The convenor of People’s Action has demanded better management of traffic on National Highway no. 8.

The NGO has also shown interest in assessing the quality of fire-safety norms adopted by property developers in Gurgaon.

To develop a healthy relationship between the administration and the residents, it has suggested that no new projects should be sanctioned without the approval of the concerned resident welfare association.



Saket residents upset with kerosene depots around
Priyanka Gupta

New Delhi, June 3
Residents of H-Block in Saket are troubled by ‘unauthorised’ kerosene depots operating from car garages in the area. Though operating kerosene depots from residential premises are not illegal, residents say that it poses threat to their safety. Moreover, even as the residents of the area have written to several authorities for their removal, the authorities have not responded to their plea.

The three oil depots in center of the colony have become a ‘big nuisance’ in the area. Earlier the residents used to take kerosene from these depots, but when the ration cards became limited, the residents have stopped visiting the depots. In the last few years, the residents claimed to have sent several letters to the Chief Fire Officer, the police, the MCD and other authorities concerned.

However, the residents said that they had not received any ‘acknowledgment’ from any of the authorities.

Ved Kumar, secretary, Senior Citizens Welfare Association, Saket, said: “In the backdrop of the Uphaar tragedy, the seriousness of the matter should not be lost sight of. We want the depots closed or relocated. We fear that some day fire may break out here and we want to avoid it.”

The residents claimed that while those living in the colony hardly visited these depots, the jhuggi dwellers from the nearby villages regularly come here to buy kerosene oil.

M P Kohli, another resident of the area, added: “Car garages cannot be used for such purpose. We have pursued the matter with Civil Works Department, but to no avail. Tanker spills oil all around, which poses threat not only to life of the residents, but is also a serious health hazards.

The fact is that none of the residents of the colony buy any oil from these depots and have no antecedents about the people visiting the area. As such, it is also a security problem”.

G C Gandhi, another resident said that the police have sought to escape from their responsibility by saying, “We do not have any judicial power to take action against them.” “Are the authorities waiting for some tragedy to happen?”

When the Chief Fire Officer, Mr R C Sharma, was contacted in this regard, he said: “Any one can operate oil depot upto 50 liters. Anyone can store kerosene at his or her place and for this they need not have to seek any permission or license from us. But in this case, if the storing limit is exceeded and residents are facing problems, then one has to come to us directly after informing the MCD.”

However, even though the residents have approached the MCD and the DDA a number of times in the last few years, the solution to their problem is nowhere in sight.



Adulterated fuel being supplied in Sonepat
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, June 3
Most of the filling stations in Sonepat city and its adjoining areas are allegedly selling adulterated petrol and diesel, mainly due to the failure of the authorities concerned. According to a report, the owners of the filling stations also sell short weight fuel to the customers.

The vehicle owners are thus forced to buy petrol and diesel mixed with solvent, which increases the air pollution in the area. It is alleged that most of the petrol pump owners are involved in this malpractice. It is claimed that tankers loaded with solvent can be seen around the petrol pump stations, particularly at night.

One of these tankers was apprehended by the police at a petrol pump situated on the Sonepat-Meerut inter-state road between Khewra and Bahalgarh villages last month.

Manish Kumar, a resident of this city, complained that the engine of his car had stopped working after he took petrol at one these filling stations.

The vehicle owners of Ganaur, Bahalgarh, Rai, Kharkhauda and Gohana towns have also complained that many of the petrol filling station staff do not issue receipts for petrol.

On the instructions of the Deputy Commissioner, Mr Balwan Singh, the authorities of the Food and Supplies

Department had taken samples of petrol sold at these filling stations and sent them to the laboratories for testing. The owners of the petrol pumps raised a hue and cry over the issue. Under the Essential Commodities Act, samples could be collected and action taken against the owners of the petrol pumps.



Activists demand probe into ‘scandalous’ purchases
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, June 3
Representatives of various political parties, social and voluntary organisations and trade unions urged the state government to order a high-level probe into the scandalous purchases of insecticide by the Food and Supplies Department in this district and elsewhere in the state.

According to a report, such a probe is likely to expose the irregularities and malpractices of the officials who had gone to other states for making such purchases.

They also demanded the immediate transfers of all officials involved in the purchases to ensure an impartial probe. They further demanded stern action against those officials found guilty of the irregularities and malpractices in the purchases.

These representatives also alleged that all the offices of the Food and Supplies Department had become ‘dens of corruption’. 



Maha Panchayat resolves to fight social ills 
Our Correspondent

Noida (Dadri), June 3
The Maha Panchayat called on the initiative of Bir Singh Engineer in Dadri has passed a resolution to launch a struggle against social ills like dowry that is widely prevalent in the Gujjar society.

The Maha Panchayat has called upon the people to give more importance to the education of children by using the money spent on dowry. It has also asked the people to contribute to the construction of school buildings in the area. The resolution said these steps would go a long way in the upliftment of the society and weeding out social ills from which the Gujjar Samaj (society) suffers.

The committee was set up under the former Rajya Sabha MP, Mr Ram Chander Vikal, to stop the practice of dowry in the society.

The committee included State Prison Minister Vedram Bhatti, Narinder Bhatti, Summer Bhatti, Sukhbir Arya, B P Haggar and Munshi Trilok Chand.

Ram Chander Vikal urged the people to wage ‘a united and prolonged struggle’ to end this evil practice so that the future generations can live in peace.

Hundreds of social workers from the neighbouring villages had assembled for the Maha Panchayat in Meher Inter College in Dadri.

The speakers highlighted the fact that the prevalent dowry system had killed young innocent girls and housewives and had even forced them to commit suicide.

A campaign has been launched in Haryana, Delhi, UP, HP, Rajasthan and other states to fight this menace.



36 more post offices to collect telephone bills
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, June 3
As many as 16 post offices in rural areas and 20 in urban areas have been notified for taking telephone bills of the subscribers. According to a report, this step has been taken to tackle the problem of over-crowding at the counter of the Head Post Office in the city. This also comes as a relief to the rural subscribers who have been facing great hardships in depositing their telephone bills at other places.

The postal department has also introduced `Drop Box Facility’ in the Head Post office and the Model Town post office where the subscribers can drop their cheques in these boxes, thus relieving them of standing in long queues in front of the ocuters. Such subscribers would not have to stand in queues in front of the identified villages are Bichpari, Baroda, Butana, Bhainswal Kalan, Farmana, Bhatgaon, Juan, Kharkhauda, Rohat, Khanda, EC Murthal, Murthal village, Bahalgarh, Rai,Kundli, Nahri and Jakhauli. Identified post-offices in the city are Him Nagar, Gohana Road, industrial area, Atlas post office, Sujan Singh Park, Model Town, Sector 14, Housing Board Colony, Ganj Bazar, Ram Nagar and Sonepat mandi.

Tipsy man falls to his death

Dr Ram Mehar fell down from the roof of his house and died on the spot at Mundlana village, about 40 km from here, on Monday night.

According to a report, the victim had consumer liquor with his friends at night and went to asleep later on. When he woke up at night around midnight, he fell down from the roof of his house and died on the spot.

Road block

Jhajjar: Resident of Mohammad Pur Majra village blocked Jhajjar-Dadri Road demanding the construction of a speed-breaker in their village. The villagers were protesting against death of a buffalo, which was hit by a speeding dumper near the village today morning. However, district officials including DDPO and SHO, Beri reached the village and assured to fulfill their demand on which villagers lifted the blocked.



ACYP leaders meet Delhi Mayor
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 3
A delegation of American Council for Young Political Leaders, comprising Republican and Democrats, today called upon Mayor of Delhi Ashok Kumar Jain. The delegation was escorted by Brett Franklin, Mayor, City of Santa Ana, California.

Primary objective of the delegation was to study local governance and functioning of democracy at grass root level. The members of the delegation exchanged views on political and executive set up in the MCD and in their respective cities with Mayor, Deputy Mayor, Mrs Varyam Kaur; Chairman of the Standing Committee, Ram Babu Sharma; Leader of Opposition Subhash Arya; Municipal Commissioner Rakesh Mehta and other senior officers of the corporation.

Scheme for retired MCD employees: Additional Commissioner (Health) of the MCD has advised all retired employees of the corporation and their dependants to get their identity cards issued from the drawing and disbursing officers of the department from where they were retired to avail the benefit of new medical scheme approved by the corporation. The last date for getting the identity cards issued is June 30, 2003.

The candidates have to submit two copies of passport size family photographs of self and eligible family members, duly filled option form in duplicate. Besides, they will have to submit documentary proof of dependency in duplicate. They can consult with the Deputy Commissioners of the zone concerned in case they have any difficulty in getting the identity cards, the Additional Commissioner said.

Tribute to Maharana Pratap: Tribute was paid to Maharana Pratap on the occasion of his birth anniversary today by garlanding his statue situated at Qudsia Bagh in front of ISBT. Mayor Ashok Kumar Jain said that he was a great warrior, who waged a long battle with Mughal Empire and exhibited outstanding courage in fighting the enemies. He invented Gurilla tactics of war, the Mayor said.

Loadshedding announced: The North Delhi Power Limited (NDPL) today announced loadshedding tomorrow due to urgent maintenance works on 33 KV Azadpur and Rampura circuit number 2 Line on a rotational basis. The affected areas will be Trinagar, parts of Lawrence Road and adjoining areas, a press release said. 



Vet employee in vigilance net for bribe
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, June 3
A veterinary surgeon of Animal Husbandry Department, working at Grahi Jhijjhara Veterinary Hospital, was caught red-handed on Monday evening by the vigilance team, while accepting bribe of Rs 2,500 from a class-IV employee of the hospital for getting the transfer orders of the employee cancelled.

According to official information, the employee lodged a complaint against the surgeon with the vigilance alleging that the surgeon has demanded Rs 2,500 for cancelling his transfer from Garhi Jhijjhara to Agwanpur Dispensary. The vigilance sought the permission of the Deputy Commissioner for conducting surprise raid and the DC deputed the District revenue officer, Shyam Lal Tanwar as Duty Magistrate, for conducting the raid.

On Monday afternoon, the vigilance team reached at the vet hospital at Garhi Jhijjhara and according to plan, caught the surgeon Satpal red-handed and recovered the amount, which he has taken from the employee, Anoop. The surgeon has been taken into custody and a case has been registered against him.

Interestingly, a complaint was lodged by the people of village Garhi Jhijjhara that the vet employee was demanding bribe from them for getting their names included in the list of the below poverty line (BPL) families by the vet surgeon, who was deputed as supervisory officer during the recently concluded survey.

On the basis of the complaint and subsequent inquiry, the DC reportedly directed the deputy director, Animal Husbandry department at Sonepat for transfer of the employee and the vet surgeon ordered transfer of the employee to Agwanpur Dispensary.

On the other hand, the employee had reported the vet authorities that Satpal had asked him to demand money from the villagers for inclusion of their names in BPL list.



Parents held for bid to marry off minor

Noida: The Jahangirpur Police arrested the priest and the parents of a minor girl who was being married off for Rs 40,000. A member of the marriage party has also been arrested though the bridegroom and others are absconding. Madan, a resident of Kasna village under Jahangirpur police station, had finalised the wedding of his 10-year-old daughter, Aarti for Rs 40,000 with Vikram, a resident of Satol Aarti Balam Garh. Vikram had reached Kasna village along with 12 persons. When the ceremony was about to begin, somebody tipped off the police. Somehow the groom also got a wind of the police raid. He along with other baratis escaped.

The police then arrested Thakur Madan, father of the bride Aarti, and her mother Bala, priest Duli Chand and a ‘barati’ Rati Ram. OC


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