Monday, June 23, 2003, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Sweepers ink pact, call off stir
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
The Sweepers Union of Chandigarh today called off its June 23 strike and 61-day-old relay fast following an agreement reached between the union and officials.
This was jointly announced late this evening by Sweepers Union president Shyam Lal Ghavri and Medical Officer Health G.C. Bansal in the presence of sweepers, Mayor Subhash Chawla, Deputy Mayor Geeta Rani, councillors Pardeep Chhabra, Balraj Singh, Sohan Lal Vaid and Joint Commissioner Arun Shekhri. The agreement was signed between Mr Shekhri and Dr Bansal from the corporation side and Mr Ghavri, Mr Dharampal Gehlot and Mr V.P. Wadhera from the union side.

The Sweepers Union, which staged a couple of protests during the 61 days of agitation against the privatisation of sanitation, did not get much concession. It was agreed that privatisation would not be done for two months from today.

A section of the Sweepers Union led by Mr Zile Singh had yesterday decided against participating in the strike.

Some other demands of the sweepers have already been accepted by the nine-member all party committee of the corporation and the sanitation committee.

The end of the agitation comes as a relief to the city worrying about its cleanliness as well as the beleaguered Mayor whose was criticised in the party for earning the ire of the union.

Mayor’s troubleshooter Pardeep Chhabra, councillors Sohan Lal Vaid and Balraj Singh, Deputy Mayor Geeta Rani and Dr Bansal today held negotiations with the representatives of the sweepers.

When the union wanted Mayor to come formally to break the fast of the agitators tomorrow, he said Deputy Mayor Geeta Rani, Sanitation Committee Chairman Balraj Singh and Joint Commissioner Shekhri would offer juice to the fasting sweepers.

The corporation agreed to reiterate its rejected resolution for seeking 1009 posts of sweeper, saying that it was not in favour of privatisation but there was no option. It also agreed not to privatise sanitation for two more months.

It also formalised an earlier assurance that the sweepers under privatisation would be given the minimum wages, ESI and EPF and crossed cheque payment on the eighth day of each month instead of the tenth day.

The corporation assured the sweepers that it would urge the administration to adopt a circular of the Punjab Government that would give jobs to the kin of those who die in harness. It also said an amendment in the rules would be made to extend the same benefit to jamadars.

The corporation rejected the demand of giving 33 per cent reservation to women in the recruitment of sweepers.

The corporation promised a separate housing scheme for the sweepers, saying that an agenda would be brought before the corporation to provide them plots at no profit, no loss basis.

The corporation assured that rules would be framed to give one-time promotion to sweepers if they qualify for it.

The corporation did not give any assurance on Saturday being a day off to the sweepers as the matter was pending in the court.



Give houses to demolition victims, says Fernandez
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
The All-India Congress Committee (AICC) general secretary (organisation) Oscar Fernandez has asked the local unit of the party to speed up its membership drive and collection of donations from workers apparently to gear up the party machinery for the Lok Sabha elections.

Addressing workers at the District Congress Committee Urban-II conference, Mr Fernandez asked the workers not to wait till the last date of the membership drive on December 31 but sincerely work for the party to install Ms Sonia Gandhi as the Prime Minister of the country.

The AICC general secretary asked the Chandigarh Territorial Congress Committee president B. B. Bahl to speedily collect funds fixed at one per cent of a worker’s income or Rs 100 each.

Mr Fernandez, when asked during a press conference about the alleged brawl between Mayor Subhash Chawla and an advocate, expressed his ignorance about the incident but said if anybody was found guilty, he or she would not be spared.

The Mayor remained conspicuous by his absence from the conference. Mr Fernandez also urged the local leaders to make a contribution to the election campaign in the five states going to the polls in November.

He said he was confident that the party would sweep these poll and that it was prepared for parliamentary elections whenever announced.

The AICC general secretary, however, said the BJP should quit the government immediately for its failure to keep its promises.

Mr Fernandez openly supported those whose houses had recently been demolished saying the party always stood for the poor and there were laws which said a person could not be removed from his house till an alternative arrangement was made for him.

Mr Fernandez said after the block-level conferences, a mass contact programme at the districts level was being launched from August 9. He said the programme would highlight the sacrifices made by Congress leaders in the Independence movement.

Mr Fernandez said a popular demand for involving Rahul and Priyanka Gandhi in the activities of the Congress had been surfacing time and again.

He said the Congress would take up the matter of demolitions at the national level.

The All-India Congress Committee secretary, Major Dalbir Singh, and the Chandigarh Territorial Congress Committee president, Mr Bahl, said the party was united on making Ms Sonia Gandhi the Prime Minister of the country. Major Dalbir Singh termed the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh as the killer of the Father of the Nation.

Mr Bahl said the Administrator, Justice O. P. Verma, was demolishing houses of the people to please his master (Home Minister L. K. Advani).

Terming Mr Advani a foreigner, Mr Shyam Lal Gupta, a veteran Congress leader, said if Ms Sonia Gandhi was stopped, Ms Priyanka Gandhi would become the Prime Minister of the country.

Mahila Congress president Lalit Joshi said women of the city were taking signatures in support of the Women’s Reservation Bill as per the directions of the All-India Congress Committee.

The Chandigarh Territorial Youth Congress president H. S. Lucky said the four years of the BJP rule had surpassed the record of the Congress in allegedly taking commission in coffin scam of soldiers, Tehelka expose and land grabbing.

He said the BJP could have got the demolition drive stopped had Mr Satyapal Jain rung up Mr Advani.

Dr Anirudh Joshi termed the Administrator as a rubber stamp of the Union Home Minister. Ms Pushpa Sharma, Chaudhary Sher Singh, Mr M. P. Verma, Riaz Mian and Mr K. K. Kapoor were given away the Priyadarshani and Rajiv Gandhi awards by the party for their dedicated work.



FDO let off with a displeasure note
Sanjeev Singh Bariana
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
After nearly three years of probe following more than 10 charges of financial misappropriation against M.G. Sharma, Finance and Development Officer (FDO) of Panjab University, the university has decided to let him off after showing its displeasure only on one account.

Sources said the assigned committee this time had met to hold an inquiry on three charges only. One, where displeasure has been shown, pertained to the deposit of refund amount involved in the fee of the FDO’s son into his account. The committee was informed that the other two charges including one pertaining to a ‘heavy’ deposit in his provident fund, account was not under the jurisdiction of the university. The university had sought legal opinion on this account. The committee members under the chairmanship of Justice S.K. Jain included Prof S.L. Sharma, Principal A.C. Vaid, Prof R.D. Anand and Mr Anmol Rattan Sidhu.

A senior Fellow said the entire case had not been aptly handled. The original findings accused the officer on 10 accounts and these were compiled under teams led by a former Chief Secretary and a former Justice of the Punjab and Haryana High Court. The findings now had “absolved” the officer under cloud. Several questions were raised against the handling of university finances by the FDO during the tenure of the previous Vice-Chancellor. As many as 32 Fellows of the university Senate had demanded an enquiry.

Earlier, the case was represented by few Fellows to the university Chancellor. Prof K.N. Pathak, Vice-Chancellor, constituted a nine-member fact finding committee under the chairmanship of Mr R.S.Verma, a former Chief Secretary of Haryana. The report of the fact finding committee was forwarded to another committee which had Justice Sehgal and Ms M. Mukherjee, an advocate general . Both these reports had pointed out several financial irregularities. The findings of both the committees were given to a one-man commission under Mr P.H.Vaishnav who agreed to lapses but said the same had been done in interest of the university.

The recommendations of the Vaishnav report were hotly debated in the Senate with many reservations. The university appointed another nine-member committee under the chairmanship of Mr Swaraj Kaushal. The committee was divided in its recommendations following which three points on the financial aspect of the case were referred to the current committee.

Charges levelled against the officer had pertained to his property, more than justified money transactions in his PF, money withdrawals from the Fund for Higher Education and Research without the permission of the university bodies, amounts from fixed deposits of university deposited to the current account without permission, ‘unjust’ monetary benefits in the salary sought by the officer himself, besides others.



Cable rates to be hiked from July 1
Manoj Kumar
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
Even as the Centre and the pay channels are still trying to build a consensus on the new cable rates and the implementation of the conditional access system (CAS) with effect from July 15 in four metros, most of the cable operators in the city have already increased the cable rates and others have announced to enhance monthly charges from July 1.

A meeting of the Residents Welfare Association of Sector 28-D and the cable operators was held here this evening. After the meeting, Major-Gen Avtar Singh (retd), president of the association, said, ‘‘In view of the introduction of CAS in metros and the advertisements on the television regarding the minimum rates of cable operators to be around Rs 250 per month, the cable operators have asked us to pay Rs 250 with effect from July 1.’’

He said most of the residents welfare associations, which were till recently spearheading an agitation against the increase in the cable charges, have agreed to pay about Rs 250 per month per connection. Interestingly, the cable operators who were charging till recently Rs 150 to Rs 200 per connection in Sectors 18, 19, 15, 34, 35, and other southern sectors have enhanced the rates to Rs 250 to Rs 260 per connection.

One of the cable operators said if the viewers in the metros could pay Rs 250 per month, why should they not ask the same rate here, especially when they were not charging anything in the name of set top boxes, (STBs) and were showing all the channels. He said they could show up to 30 free-to-air channels even for Rs 100 per month provided the customers agreed to watch these channels only.

The viewers alleged that a large number of cable operators in the metros were not disclosing the actual number of cable connections, but with the implementation of CAS, they would have to disclose all connections as well as pay 8 per cent service tax. But in the city, most of the cable operators were neither paying the service tax nor were they disclosing all the connections to the pay channels, so they had no right to increase cable charges.

Inquires made with the Central Excise and Customs Office here revealed that the number of cable operators who were depositing service tax, was almost negligible. According to rough estimates, there are about two lakh cable connections in Chandigarh, Panchkula and SAS Nagar. The government is losing tax revenue worth over Rs 40 lakh per month due to non-payment of service tax.

However, cable operators claimed that if they had to disclose all the cable connections, the customers would have to pay about Rs 375 to pay channels which included Rs 35 for Star and SET, Rs 50 for Star Gold, MAX, Star Movies, HBO, Hallmark, AXN, Rs 60 for ESPN, Star Sports, DD Sports and Rs 55 for the Zee Bouquet besides up to Rs 72 for other channels, 8 per cent service tax, entertainment tax and other costs. The customers were not ready to pay that much amount.

Major-Gen Avtar Singh (retd) agreed that the customers were not bothered about the payment of service tax. What they wanted was quality of picture, number of channels and a reasonable charge, he said. 



Railways charges wrong tariff
Vijay Mohan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
Incorrectly charging military tariff rates from paramilitary forces instead of public tariff has led to the Northern Railway incurring a loss of about Rs 65 lakh. The loss relates to bookings made by paramilitary forces at several railway stations in the region over a six-month period.

This also indicates that the railway authorities have failed to ensure that repeated instructions issued to its staff to charge the correct tariff from government organisations have been effectively implemented.

Information by sources has revealed that rules, rates and conditions for transporting military traffic as stipulated by the railway’s regulations are applicable to the traffic booked by the defence forces and not to the paramilitary forces falling under the purview of the Ministry of Home Affairs.

An official report has stated that despite informing the authorities on several instances, the booking staff continues with the practice which is causing a shortfall in tariff recovery.

The loss of Rs 65 lakh, railway officers say, is from a few stations were the records pertaining to a brief period were scrutinised. Given the size and movement of paramilitary traffic, this is said to be the tip of the iceberg. The total loss entailed by the railways so far on account of such practices, officials estimate, could be several times higher.

The railway administration as well as the Railway Board have reportedly issued instructions to the booking staff twice in the past three years to ensure that the correct freight is levied.

A similar loss of about Rs 67 lakh in different railway regions, including Northern Railway, had also been revealed during audit about a year ago. According to railway officials, Rs 7 lakh pertaining to the Northern Railway has been recovered, while action to recover the remaining Rs 52 lakh is reported to be under way.



Amandeep leads in Mohali
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, June 22
Amandeep Kaur Sandhu, a student of Gem Public School, Phase 3B1, here has topped in the township in the Class X Punjab School Education Board examination. The results were declared here today.

Local students have performed well with nine students from Gem Public School and Paragon Senior Secondary School, Phase X, here among the top 20 positions in Ropar district.

The district topper is Paramjit Kaur, a student of DAV Senior Secondary School, Takhtgarh, Ropar, who has secured 595 marks out of 650. She is placed 37th in the state merit list.

Amandeep Kaur of Paragon Senior Secondary School is second in the township, followed by Amarjit Kaur Bhamra of Gem Public School at third place. Priyanka Sharma and Damneet Kaur, both of Gem Public School are fourth and fifth, respectively. Anoop Kiran and Gagandeep Kaur of Paragon School have secured the next two positions in the township followed by Gagandeep Singh and Akshi Sagar of Gem Public School.



2 granthis held with pistol
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
The Chandigarh police this evening arrested two granthis and seized an illegal pistol from them to be used to allegedly kill a person who used to tease the sister of one of them.

Pipliwala town gurdwara granthi Parmod Singh and his accomplice Mangal Singh from Kuhni Sahib gurdwara, both hailing from Hardwar district, failed to execute their murder plan in the city today when they lost track of Kushal Singh, who allegedly used to tease Parmod Singh’s sister.

A .315 bore country-made pistol and two cartridges were seized from the hostel of Guru Granth Sahib Vidyalaya in Sector 28 where a relative of one of the granthis was staying, a police spokesman said tonight. They were arrested from Mani Majra after the school administration called the police on finding the weapon.

They were allegedly chasing Kushal Singh on a bike, but lost track of the target near the Sector 17 bus stand.

The two granthis then hid the arms in the hostel. The Uttaranchal police in Hardwar has been contacted.




THE railway authorities are losing thousands of rupees at the local railway station daily, simply because they fail to provide platform tickets at a separate counter. For instance, whenever the relatives or friends of a person travelling by train reach the railway station, they find it difficult to buy platform tickets, because these are sold on the same counter where the current tickets are being sold.

Of course, there is a heavy rush. Consequently, the persons who want to buy a platform ticket enter the platform without platform ticket. Passengers say that platform tickets could be sold through enquiry counter or through a vending machine.

End of pager era

One may be surprised that the BSNL was till recently working through pagers to provide customer care services to the fixed line and cellular subscribers. But now the field staff here has decided to surrender their pagers to the corporation as a mark of protest. They say they are unable to provide customer care services to the subscribers with this ‘obsolete’ medium of communication. They had been demanding for a long time that like the marketing and service division employees of the private companies, they should be provided with WLL or mobile phones. In a letter written to the Chief General Manager, they have warned that they should not be held responsible for the lack of customer care services if the telecom giant failed to provide phones to them.

What’s the link?

This photo has been sent by reader Ramesh Varma of Panchkula. A number of such signboards are in the city. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare must know this novel method to reduce the population of India.

Foreign connection

The top leaders of both the Congress and the BJP are abroad, leaving the politics to their juniors.

While Congress MP Pawan Bansal is in Pakistan as part of a Parliamentary delegation, former BJP MP Satya Pal Jain is also said to be abroad.

The foreign visit of the two leaders comes at a time when the Chandigarh Administration has taken up the demolition of one of the biggest slum areas of the city, Shaheed Bhagat Singh Colony.

Both top leaders also share a common feature that both of them have been to Pakistan. Mr Jain went to Lahore along with Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. Mr Bansal has become part of a track II diplomacy effort for strengthening the people-to-people contact between the two feuding neighbours.

Mrs Vijay Lakshmi

Mrs Vijay Lakshmi, Principal, Government College for Girls, Sector 42, has been nominated member of the Regional Direct Taxes Advisory Committee (RDTAC), Chandigarh, for a period of two years. A communication to this regard has been issued by the Additional Commissioner of Income Tax, Department of Revenue in the Ministry of Finance.

The committee would be an advisory and deal with matters relating to income tax, wealth tax, estate duty, gift tax and expenditure tax in addition to encouraging mutual understanding and cooperation between tax-payers and the Income Tax Department and suggest measures for removing procedural problems of general nature.

Principal Vijay Lakshmi has put in more than 30 years in teaching, is the Dean of Fine Arts Faculty, Panjab University, and has been the recipient of the Balraj Sahni national award for her contribution in the field of education.

Underhand dealings

One of the officials of a public sector general insurance company was at a loss recently when the managing director of a public sector company declined to accept their quotation of Rs 60 lakh for the insurance cover and rather took insurance cover for Rs 64 lakh from a private company in the name of “better service.” Later, what came out, he said, was astonishing. The official said,‘‘ As per the IRDA guidelines we had even offered 5 per cent discount in the premium to that public sector unit. But he accepted the offer of the private company at higher price as he got “personal benefit” under the table, paid from the account of brokerage commission. This caused loss of Rs 4 lakh to the company and state government.’’ How could we compete with them, he asked.


Prof Shankerji Jha, Department of Sanskrit, Panjab University, has been invited to participate in the 12th World Sanskrit Conference to be held in Helsinki (Finland) from July 13 to 18. Professor Jha will present his papers on ‘Grammatical Principles based on Conventions or Social Practices’ and ‘Bhavadvaita: A distinct school of Advaita Vedanta’.

Vacation month

June is the month when most of the officials from peon to bureaucrats chalk out their programme for visiting various tourists places/destinations, specially on LTC/LFC. This is the month when almost all educational institutions are closed and children are free to travel with parents.

It is estimated that around 30 to 40 per cent officials remain on leave. In banks and other public sector undertakings officials encash their one-month leave also.

While employees enjoy maximum holidays during April and October, during the month of June it is paid holidays or government financed holidays. Even doctors working in the PGI and Medical College and Hospital also enjoy their summer vacations during the month of June. Besides the High Court also closes during the month of June.

A loyal reader

Prof Sudarshan Dhingra, former Head of the Postgraduate Department of Political Science at DAV College, Abohar, happens to be one of the oldest readers and contributors of The Tribune. His association with the newspaper spans nearly five decades. He started contributing to “Letters to the Editor” columns at the age of 17 in 1957,” he says in a letter to the editor.

Besides a dozen book reviews in The Tribune, “Laloo’s Panga Rally” (May 6, 2003) was his 500th letter in “Editor’s Mail”. Hundreds of his students are well placed in the Indian Administrative, police, judicial and state services. “I retain in me, therefore, a sense of contentment. I have been honoured by a number of social and cultural organisations of the district for being an “acclaimed teacher, social worker, notable speaker, voracious reader and prolific writer. The Tribune is my life-line, my breath”, he says.

Forget it!

The filmi tune of the mobile of a top Chandigarh politician keeps reminding him to forget the controversy he landed in.

“Raat baki baat baki” comes on the ringer of the mobile of the politician who was embroiled in a controversy in the Chandigarh club.

The tension of the night brawl in the club has been haunting the politician due to the position he is holding.

— Sentinel



Randhawa innocent, says wife
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, June 22
Even as the arrest of Mr B.S. Randhawa, one of the eight trustees of the Institute of Engineering and Technology, Bhaddal, is being considered as a major breakthrough in the investigations of the murder of Gurcharan Singh, Chairman of the institute, the wife of Mr Randhawa, Mrs Hardev Kaur, herself a trustee of the institute, has stated that her husband is innocent.

The police said Mr Randhawa was picked up by the Mohali police at the Wagah border while he was returning from Pakistan with his family.

Talking to TNS, Mrs Hardev Kaur said her husband did have differences with the Chairman but not to that extent that these would lead to his murder. ‘‘They were friends and continued to be. In fact my husband has not visited the institute even once in the past six months, ’’she said. Mr Randhawa is one of the sleeping partners in the institute and, according to his wife, had invested over Rs 30 lakh in the institute. ‘‘But there was no problem regarding money with the Chairman,’’ she pointed out.

“We had no idea in Pakistan that Gurcharan Singh had been murdered. We were taken by surprise when men in plainclothes took away my husband from the border. My brother, too, was picked up from SAS Nagar yesterday by the police. This is most unfair,’’ she said. 



Hydraulic truck to lift vehicles
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
Two wheelers getting damaged during the course of being towed away by the traffic police will now be a thing of past. To minimise the damage to the impounded two-wheelers during handling, the Chandigarh traffic police will now be using a truck with a hydraulic lift.

However, no extra towing charges would be levied on the motorists. A police official said as per the existing practice, the two-wheelers which were found wrongly parked or were impounded had to be lifted on to a truck, thereby damaging the vehicle.

As a stop-gap arrangement, a manually operated pulley had been mounted on a tow truck by the traffic police. After pulling up a vehicle, it was pushed ahead to secure it, said a police official, adding that even then there was chance of vehicle getting damaged. Presently two tow trucks in the inventory of the traffic police were used to tow four-wheelers. 



Spark causes burns to boy
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
A 10-year-old boy received about 100 per cent burns from a spark on a high tension line passing near Kajehri village here this evening. The victim was referred to the PGI from the Sector 16 General Hospital in the evening.

Mr Raj, an uncle of the victim, said there was no electricity supply in their colony in the afternoon and they were sitting under a tree outside their house. The victim, Sanjay, had gone home to have his lunch. He was bringing his food when suddenly there was a spark in a line under which he was passing. The spark was followed by a blast. The spark fell on the boy and he fell unconscious. The boy was rushed to the hospital and was still under observation. Doctors attending on the boy said his condition was serious.

The family members of the victim alleged that the incident had taken place due to negligence of the Electricity Department.



Illegal routing of calls: HFCL asked to give details
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
In the case of illegal routing of international calls to customers in the country through the Internet lease lines, the police has written to the HFCL to provide details of the calls received through its lines.

It may be mentioned that Mr Rakesh Sharma, who was running the business from a Sector 9 SCO, was using a 19-line mini-exchange to route the incoming international calls.

A senior police official said after receiving the details of the calls from the HFCL, the Videsh Sanchar Nigam Ltd (VSNL) would be asked convert the time period of the calls in to the revenue loss. The loss would be recovered from the suspect when the challan of the case was put in the court, said the official.

The loss is expected to run in lakhs, the official said.



Check wastage

Water is indispensable and sustains life on earth. With growing population and shrinking water reserves, we are faced with a crisis which needs immediate redressal.

When we bathe, wash and clean we hardly think that a time will come when there will be no water. The wastage which goes unnoticed today will make water dearer tomorrow.

On account of the growing population the consumption of water has increased but not its reserves. So it becomes our duty to act now and save this “blue gold” for our coming generations. We must take a pledge today that we will make all possible efforts to save water.

There is immediate need to curb the tendency of washing corridors, terraces and drive ways with hoses. These can be substituted with mops instead. Leaking pipes and dripping taps should be rectified and trees should be planted under afforestation drives which should be undertaken regularly.

Vivek Mishra, Class XI, SD Public School



Lalru SAD chief dead

Lalru, June 22
Basheshar Singh Bachhal, president of the Lalru circle of the Shiromani Akali Dal, died due of a heart attack in his native Malikpur village, late last night.

Retired from the Indian Air Force, the 75-year-old man, complained of chest pain last night and was rushed to the Command Hospital, Chandi Mandir, where the doctors declared him brought dead.

A large number of persons attended the cremation of the leader this evening. OC



Arrested for raping daughter
Tribune Reporters

Panchkula, June 22
The police has arrested Ramjit Singh, a resident of Indira Colony, for raping his own daughter. A case under Sections 376 and 506, IPC, has been registered against him on the complaint of the victim. According to the police, the man established illicit relations with his 12-year-old daughter about a fortnight and committed the crime repeatedly despite objections by the victim and her mother.

Two arrested: For their alleged involvement in immoral trafficking, the police arrested two residents of Ramgarh, Sanjeev Kumar and Sanjeev Kumar, here this afternoon.

According to the police, a raid was conducted on a house in Sector 9 last night and three women, including two teenager girls, were caught. The police said that a middle-aged woman was running the trade with the help of the men from the house for some time.

The police claimed that the lady pimp had procured the girls from Ludhiana and Amritsar with the help of her male partners. The women were remanded in judicial custody by a Panchkula court today.

Thief caught redhanded: A burglar has been allegedly caught redhanded while stealing four copper utensils and a bottle of mustard oil from Guga Mari Mandir in Sector 19.

According to information, an alert priest at the mandir caught Sunil Kumar Sector 37 redhanded while stealing the items. During the course of investigations, four more copper plates and an amplifier stolen from Arya Samaj Mandir, Sector 18, have been recovered from him and more recoveries are expected. The accused was today remanded in police custody till June 25.

Dead: A rickhshaw-puller, who was injured after being hit by a Maruti car (CH-03-D-6646) succumbed to his injuries at the PGI here today. The unidentified victim was yesterday rushed to the PGI after being hit by the car near the Talwa diary. A case has been registered .

Theft: Mr Khalil Ahmed, a resident of the Industrial Area, (Phase II), reported that copper wire, a cooler lead and Rs 400 were stolen from his industrial unit on the night of June 20. A case has been registered.



HHB employee crushed to death
Our Correspondent

Panchkula, June 22
A Haryana Housing Board (HHB) employee, Ashok Kumar Gupta (50), was crushed to death by a private bus near the Sector 4 general bus stand here this morning.
According to family members, Ashok Kumar was riding his scooter (CH-01-R-6155) on his way back to home from Town Park in Sector 5 after attending a sankirtan held by ISKCON when the bus (HR-68-0024) hit the scooter.

The bus reportedly dragged the scooterist for a distance, leaving Ashok Kumar dead on the spot.

Some ISKCON devotees assembled on the spot and rushed him to the Sector 6 General Hospital. He was declared brought dead by the doctors there.

Ashok Kumar was serving as an accounts officer with the board and is survived by his wife Suman and two sons.

Meanwhile, the police has impounded the vehicles and a case has been registered against the bus driver who fled after the incident. The body was cremated in the evening.



Will Chinese palate relish Indian dishes?
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 22
If Chinese noodles and manchurian can be popular in the rural and semi-urban towns of India, why can’t the Indian food-processing companies make an attempt to sell Indian dishes in China — the largest food market of the world. Some of the enthusiasts from the region’s food processing industry will soon explore the Chinese market to sell dishes like curried beans, spiced lentils, curried spinach cheese and brinjal during the Prime Minister’s visit.

A delegation of industrialists from the country will accompany the Prime Minister, Mr Atal Bihari Vajpayee, on the five-day China tour, beginning June 23. Among others, Dr A.S.Bindra, chairman, Hi-Tech Group, will accompany him as business delegate of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI). Other companies from the region include Winsome Yarns Limited (Chandigarh) and PI Industries (Gurgaon). The Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) and the Associated Chambers of Commerce & Industry of India will also go along with the joint delegation.

Talking to the Chandigarh Tribune, Dr Bindra claimed that the Indian companies were not afraid of Chinese competition. Now some of them were ready even to invest in China to get benefits from cheap labour, lower tax rates and excellent infrastructure.

He said, “We are now ready to explore business opportunities in China. Our group has decided to find some Chinese partners who can try to sell some Punjabi dishes like processed rajmah, peas, daals and paneer. There is also a plan to export mangoes, aromatic herbs and joint ventures are being planned in the field of IT sector.”


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