Sunday, July 6, 2003, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S


Summer life is not all beer and skittles in Panipat!
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Panipat, July 5
The beer lovers in Panipat are getting a raw deal as the mercury soars, and with it, the prices of the softer version of the liquor also soar. The result? The beer buffs are making a beeline for the National Capital where its prices are reported to be half than those in Haryana. In fact, this year had been a bad year for the liquor contractors in the state. The consumption of the beer had drastically come down from 5,000-6,000 bottles to just about half this year causing a huge loss to the liquor shop owners, a liquor contractor told the NCR Tribune.

It may be recalled that a beer bottle is sold at Rs 65 at the 60-odd liquor shops in the district (up Rs 5 from the last year). However, the same brand is sold at Rs 30-35 in Delhi prompting most of the daily commuters to bring their ‘beer quota’ from Delhi.

A diehard beer lover, who travels by train between Panipat and New Delhi daily, told the NCR Tribune that it was much cheaper to get a case (12 bottles) from Delhi. While a case cost above Rs 700 in Panipat, the same could be taken at around the price ranging from Rs 320 to Rs 380 in Delhi. Besides this, the high-end users prefer to get their supply from Delhi.

A senior Rotarian said on Friday night that getting the beer supply in a private car was much easier and cheaper as checking of the car was rare on GT Road particularly if you have the Haryana registration number. He demanded that beer— a common man’s drink in summer— should be much more cheaper in Haryana and the state’s bad experience of the prohibition should be forgotten. And what drives the tipplers and tourists passing through the GT Road towards Delhi is the fact that beer is costly at the Haryana Tourism’s resorts and private hotels. For instance, a bottle of beer costs above Rs 100 at the Nirula’s Hotel here and Rs 90 at the state-run skylark Motel. The high cost of the beer in the hotels in scorching heat forces the tourists to look for cheaper options.

Mr Gurpreet Singh, a resident of Bhopal, said he avoided buying beer in Haryana as it was a costly affair. Not only that, a majority of the violators of the Excise Act go off scot-free in the absence of any action by the authorities.

Meanwhile, it is learnt that the smuggling of liquor, including beer, had been going on in connivance with the Police and Excise departments. And with a large industrial work force here preferring ‘desi’ liquor for the kick, the beer business is in the doldrums.


Monsoon brings glad tidings, but also snuffs out four lives
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 5
Heavy rains lashed the Capital this morning as the monsoon hit the city and the adjoining areas, a week behind schedule, bringing respite from the prolonged sweltering heat conditions.

Photo by Kamal SinghThe heavy showers also led to a wall collapse in North Delhi claiming four lives. Normal life was thrown out of gear in many parts of the city because of intense waterlogging.

Traffic in the morning rush hours was most affected as thousands of motorists were stranded due to the serpentine queues all over the city. The trans-Yamuna area residents were particularly affected as they had to take long detours since some of the key roads were closed down.

It took several hours for the traffic to be restored to normal though its after-effects were felt in the evening as well.

Heavy waterlogging in East, South West and Central Delhi areas belied the claims of the Municipal Corporation of Delhi that desilting of more than 90 per cent of the drains was completed on time. Some of the roads around the busy ITO area and outside the DTC headquarters and the WHO offices, were under knee-deep water.

Delhiites woke up to a cool morning with the rains plummeting the mercury five degrees below normal to 22.8 degrees with a promise of a cool weekend. The city received almost 10 mm rain.

The downpour led to a wall collapse in Roshanara Road killing four persons, including two woman. Six persons were rescued from the rubble. They were rushed to Hindu Rao Hospital where the doctors on duty stated that they were in a serious condition. The victims were residents of a jhuggi cluster adjacent to the railway boundary wall on Roshanara Road. The wall collapsed and the victims who were going to take breakfast were buried under the debris.

Initial report suggested that the wall was adjoining a Metro construction site, but a Delhi Metro Railway Corporation spokesman denied that there was a wall anywhere near the Metro construction site. Metro engineers who had gone to the spot to verify the reports had confirmed that the wall stood in a property owned by the Northern Railway, the spokesman said.

Meanwhile, the Municipal Commissioner, Mr Rakesh Mehta, said that despite the city recording an unprecedented downpour in the first flush of monsoon, the city life was restored to normal in the fastest possible time. The rainfall this morning, he said, was much higher as compared to 164 mm of rainfall experienced by Delhi throughout June. The Commissioner himself was in the field supervising the dewatering operation at the main vulnerable points.

The Municipal Commissioner has also instructed the Zonal Deputy Commissioners, Director-in-chief (Sanitation) and other senior officers to be present in the field during the downpour and supervise the dewatering operations.

He has also directed that special attention should be paid to the waterlogging points. It must be ensured that waterlogging, if any, is cleared in the shortest possible time and the roads and crossings are kept cleared for movement of traffic, the Commissioner instructed the staff.


Wanna have MBBS seat? Pay Rs 25 lakh
Jatinder Sharma

Rohtak, July 5
The sons and daughters of the neo-rich can walk away with an MBBS seat for Rs 25 lakh even in the government-owned medical college of the state, PGIMS. The price is a few lakh less for private colleges, Agroha and Mullana.

The Haryana government’s decision to reserve 25 per cent seats, named as management quota seats, for those who can pay Rs 25 lakh (and they need not belong to Haryana and need not appear in common entrance test) came as a bolt from the blue for the meritorious students and their parents who had come to the PGIMS here for counselling.

This decision of the government which was displayed on the notice board of PGIMS during counselling came under sharp criticism from parents and students who argued that legally no such seats were earmarked in the prospectus and after the prospectus are published and sold, no such quota for the management seats can be earmarked at a later stage.

Haryana is a small state with very limited number of MBBS/BDS seats. Students from the lower and middle class category burn the midnight oil to secure a higher position in the merit list of an entrance test. Some of them make more than one attempts to improve their rank.

However, the decision of the Haryana government making 25 per cent reservation for the rich has sealed the fate of many meritorious students whose merit position fell in this range.

If the government was so keen to accommodate the children of rich people, it should have got the number of seats increased by spending this amount in providing more facilities and infrastructure in medical institutions and admitted them against increased seats rather than snatching the bread from the mouth of poor but meritorious students, said a student who had come from Ambala for counselling.

The government decision to reserve 25 per cent seats for the wards of ‘nouveaux riches’ has other dimensions as well. Medial institutions are supposed to be admitting the best amongst the meritorious students so that they could come out as competent doctors. But if you admit non-serious students for a price, the output is also going to be of the same quality.

As if this decision of the government was not enough, it has also increased steeply the fee structure for students of all categories. A student, including those from the reserved categories, in the Agroha Medical College (which gets 99 per cent grant in recurring expenditure from state government) has to pay about Rs 1.5 lakh per year.

The majority of the parents from the lower and the middle class who had come for counselling, expressed their helplessness in paying such a hefty amount even if they sell their entire property. Even in the PGIMS, the only government-owned medical college in the state, the fee has been increased 10 times, from Rs 1,500 two years ago to Rs 15,000 per annum now.


Teacher shot at in classroom
Parmindar Singh

Noida, July 5
A teacher of junior High School in Madhya was seriously injured when a parent of a student shot at him after a dispute over the admission of his wards in Madhya village under Dankore Police Station area.

The fleeing assailant was overpowered by the villagers and handed over to the police.

Hasrat, the police said, had visited the school for the admission of his son and nephew two days ago.

The headmaster Mahender had told him that the admission of his wards to the school could be considered when he visited again as in the present session, all the seats had been filled up.

When Hasrat visited the school on Thursday, he was informed that the principal was not available. He then met teacher Harish Chander for the purpose. While the teacher was taking a class, Hasrat barged into the classroom and asked him about the admission of his son and nephew. However, the teacher rebuffed him. Feeling slighted, Hasrat took out a countrymade revolver and shot at him.

As the gun went off, the students ran helter-skelter. Hasrat wanted to flee, but was nabbed by the villagers and handed over to the police. Harish Chander was rushed to a local hospital but was later referred to a Bulandshahr hospital.

This is reported to be the first incident where a schoolteacher has been shot at in a classroom.


Caste spat: Houses set on fire
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, July 5
Angered over the brutal murder of a 23-year-old youth of an upper caste allegedly by around half a dozen persons of the Dalit caste in Juan village on Friday evening, more than six dozen youths of the upper caste of the village had set on fire the houses of the alleged accused at night.

It was alleged that a 13-year-old girl of the Dalit caste was teased which led to the murder and its backlash. The body of the youth, Pratap, has been handed over to his family members after conducting a post-mortem in the local civil hospital. It was cremated amid tight police security. The Mohana Police have registered a case of murder against five persons, namely Roop chand, Sushil, Anil, Ran Singh and Pinda of the same village. But no arrest has been made so far.

It is alleged in the FIR that the accused were shouting “Tu Hamari Ladki ko Chhedta hai” (you tease our girl) while attacking Pratap.

The police personnel in large numbers under the command of Gohana DSP Syam Singh Rana are stationed in the village. But the situation in the village is tense. However, the DSP Rana and senior citizens of the village were seen trying to pacify the agitated people, when a team of mediapersons reached the village today.

In another development, the teenaged girl Monika belonging to the families of the alleged accused reportedly jumped from the roof of her house and was injured seriously. She has been referred to PGIMS Rohtak by the doctors of Civil Hospital.

According to the FIR, Pratap was attacked with sharp-edged weapons when he was returning home along with two others on Friday around 8 pm. He was killed on the spot. No sooner, the information of his murder reached the village, a large number of youths of upper caste attacked the houses of the alleged accused and set them on fire. During inquiries in the village, it was revealed that Monika was involved in the case.


Numerological art is Penamal Nehru’s middle name
Smriti Kak
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 5
The stupendous success of Harry Potter is not just the consequence of J K Rowling’s creativity, according to Penamal Sanjeevan Nehru, but also has to do with the numbers in his name. The numbers in the name Harry Potter add up to 41, which sums up to five, a lucky number.

Osama Bin Laden has 13 letters in his name, but the sum of his name adds up to six, a lucky number, which means that even though the man has managed to evade the super powers he will eventually, be destroyed says Nehru.

For an engineer who quit his job with the BHEL for politics, numerology caught his fancy when a certain politician ensured that despite Nehru’s efforts, he was denied a party ticket. “Along with my wife, I worked for a political party near Tirupathi for close to 11 years. The people were happy with my work, they would assure me that if I were to contest elections, the party would win, yet the party never gave me a chance,” recalls Nehru who in his earlier avtaar was P Sankaraiah.

Disillusioned with politics, Nehru took to studying numerology. “I wanted to see what was going wrong and after much research, I reached the conclusion that numerology has the key to happiness and success.”

Having studied astrology, palmistry and the occult sciences, Nehru opted for numerology as, “It provides quick results.” His clientele is a virtual who’s who. From J. Jayalalithaa to film stars, there are numerous people who are ready to swear by numerology, having tasted success by a mere change of spellings.

“My idea is to help people from all strata of life, I want to reach out to the maximum number of people and help the needy, the ailing and the distressed,” says Nehru. Among his achievements besides helping politicians come to power, he recounts curing a cancer patient. “The boy was in the US and was diagnosed for cancer with a few months to live. I asked him to make corrections and today he is leading a happy life.”

Nehru has a solution to offer to the nation as well, “India is a victim number as the alphabets sum up to 12, a victim number. We should change the name to Bharat and see the results.”

In the Capital’s Andhra Bhavan till the 10th of this month, Nehru is hopeful that the government will pay heed to his suggestions. “Spelling India as Bharat and Jammu and Kashmir as Jemmu & Kaashmir will work wonders,” he says.

Emphaising the importance of the spelling, Nehru points out that Russia, Air-India, and Al Qaeda are all examples of having destructive numbers, so the ill luck.

“Veerappan’s name amounts to five, again a lucky number, but Phoolan Devi’s was an ill-luck number, she was killed on the date that amounts to seven an ill-luck number,” he adds.

Claiming that numerology is a mathematical science, Nehru adds, “I am the best example of numerological wonders, my fortune changed within hours of changing my name”.


House of Satish Nambiar robbed
Our Correspondent

Noida, July 5
Robbers gained access into the house of Lt-General Satish Nambiar (retd) in Sector 11 here yesterday and decamped with valuables worth lakhs while the family slept, the police said.

In another incident, robbers had looted garments from a textile showroom in Sector 18.

According to the Station Officer of Sector 24, General Nambiar lives in N Block of Sector 11 with his family. While the family was asleep, thieves decamped with cash, jewellery and other valuables.

The police rushed to the spot on being informed and started investigations. Besides domestic hands, a couple of other suspicious characters are also being interrogated by the police.

The second incident of theft took place in a textile showroom in Sector 18 under the Sector 20 police station. Puneet Jain, a resident of Delhi, has filed a report with the Sector 20 police that thieves stole shirts and some other garments from his showroom in Sector 18. The police are investigating the matter.

Jail inmate does a vanishing act

Meerut: An inmate of the District jail slipped from the custody of jail warden while working in an agriculture farmhouse of jail. The security personnel could not take notice of it for hours. When the guards counted the inmates after they had finished the work outside the jail, it was found that the inmate had escaped.

Senior Jail Superintendent B P Tripathi suspended three jail guards including the chief warden in this regard, while the hunt was on for the inmate Omvir, son of Rajan of village Narpura. Raids were also conducted at several possible hideouts of the inmate. OC

Burglary bid in Express building

New Delhi: Unidentified youths allegedly tried to burgle the treasury of The Indian Express in Express Building at ITO last evening. Its handle was broken but nothing was found missing from. The treasury was kept in the basement of the building where the printing work of the newspaper is done. A case of attempt to robbery has been registered, police said. TNS


Surplus power in a year: Chautala
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, July 5
The Chief Minister, Mr Om Prakash Chautala, has claimed that Haryana would be able generate surplus power after about a year. Speaking after laying the foundation stone of a new 66 kv substation at Fatehpur Billauch village, about 20 km from here, today, Mr Chautala said work on increasing power generation had been going on at full swing.

Repeating his earlier claims to this effect, he said that generation of power had been highest during his tenure as the CM. The seventh and eighth units of the thermal plant at Panipat had been started by the BHEL. He said three units would start generating about one crore units of power daily from February 2005.

While the work of construction of two 250 mw thermal units at Yamunanagar was likely to start soon. A proposal to set up an additional unit of 432 mw based on gas at Faridabad and two units of 500 mw each also based on gas at Hisar and Yamunanagar was also under consideration, he said.

Mr Chautala announced that power would also be generated from the waste of the sugar mills in the near future. The government had also decided to set up a 360 mw power plant in the complex of the oil refinery at Panipat.

The state government had been working upon the plan of strengthening the power distribution network in the state. For this, he said, 39 new substations had been set up in the past three-and-a-half years and had upgraded about 204 substations. Besides, the work on the construction of about 74 new substations and upgrading of 75 substations was in process. He also claimed that 47 to 55 per cent more electricity had been supplied in the recent past in the rural areas. He said about 26,000 power connections had been released in the past few years.

The chairman of the HVPN, UHBVN and DHBVN, Maj Gen (Retd) B. S. Rathee, said that the main focus of the Power Department was to improve and strengthen distribution and supply and to check line losses.

He said the load on feeders was being reduced with the setting up of new feeders. A battery of officials and ruling party activists were present on the occasion.


Mahila Commission exhorts women to become self-reliant
Our Correspondent

Panipat, July 5
“Despite the Constitution conferring equal rights to women irrespective of caste and creed, due to the social evils and wrong customs, women, particularly those residing in villages, are being tortured in the name of dowry even after 56 years of Independence.”

This was stated by the Chairperson of the Haryana State Mahila Commission, Ms Sheela Bhyan. She was addressing a camp at a community health centre in Samalkha, 16 km from here on Friday, where women narrated the tales of torture.

She said that these types of camps were being organised to get justice for women. If women attain the necessary strength and self-confidence, they could get their proper place in the society. Women had established themselves in all fields these days, she said. The example of Kalpana Chawla, a daughter of Haryana, would be a source of inspiration for centuries for younger generation.

She claimed that she had been pressuring the state government to make Haryana women self-sufficient by giving them technical education so that they could set up their own industries. To achieve this goal, four technical centres, exclusively for women, had been established, she said.

A member of the Mahila Commission, Ms Nirmala Rathi, said that women should be conversant with their rights and responsibilities and had to do their work independently. Elected women sarpanches or panches were still dependent on their husbands or sons to prepare development projects and their ignorance was the main reason behind this dependence, she added. She called upon the women to take a pledge that they would provide higher education to their daughters and avoid giving or accepting dowry.

The SDM, Ms Pankaj Chaudhry, assured the Chairperson of the commission, she as the SDM would solve all problems of women on a priority basis.

The Chairperson listened to the grievances of about 148 tortured women. Bala Devi of Samalkha alleged that her husband tortured her repeatedly for dowry. The Chairperson referred her case to the Deputy Superintendent of Police, Samalkha, for appropriate action.

Rajni of the same village recounted her fate. She has three children and is without any job. Besides, one of her sons is suffering from hernia. The Chairperson directed the Health Department authorities to conduct the operation free of cost.

Similarly, Sarita of Chhaju village said that she had been residing in her parents’ house for the last two years as her husband used to beat her due to one reason or the other. The Chairperson decided to summon both the parties in their Panchkula office to sort out the matter.


Suicide turns out to be cold-blooded murder over love affair
Our Correspondent

Rewari, July 5
Following the evidences collected during investigation, the death of Dinesh Kumar, which had earlier been treated as a case of suicide by the Government Railway Police (GRP), Rewari, has now been converted into a case of murder. The GRP have already arrested the main accused.

The body of Dinesh Kumar, a resident of Shyam Nagar village near Kosli, was found by the GRP from the railway track some distance away from the Kosli station on June 17. Though it had been treated as a case of suicide, the police carried out a probe into the circumstances leading to his death. During investigation, the police came to know that Dinesh had a love affair with a young girl of Shyam Nagar. But when the parents of the girl got the wind of it, they warned Dinesh to keep off her.

However, Dinesh apparently took it somewhat lightly and continued his secret meetings with the girl, which reportedly infuriated the girl’s father, Vikram Singh, who allegedly conspired to eliminate him in connivance with his associate Shamsher Singh.

It is alleged that the night before the finding of the body, Dinesh was persuaded to be present in Shamsher’s house where he was beaten to death following which his body was thrown on the rail track near the Nathera railway crossing, about 2 km from Shyam Nagar, to make it appear as a suicide.

Following these findings, the GRP arrested Vikram Singh on Wednesday. During interrogation, he reportedly confessed to his as well as Shamsher Singh’s involvement in Dinesh’s murder. The GRP is now making efforts to trace Shamsher Singh.

Medical check-up in primary schools

The district administration has launched a special campaign of conducting medical check-up of children studying in government as well as private recognised primary schools of the district. The campaign, which started on July 1, would last till September 30.

The Deputy Commissioner, Mrs Neerja Shekhar, said that children found suffering from ailments would be provided proper treatment at various levels. Besides, a record of the medical reports of the children would be maintained.

Dr M. B. Sharma has been appointed the district nodal officer, while Dr S. P. Bharadwaj, Dr K. S. Rao, Dr Raghubir Singh, Dr O. P. Beniwal, Dr V. P. Panwar, Dr D. N. Sarraf and Dr H. R. Yadav have been appointed as nodal officers for various blocks of the district for this purpose.

She also urged the teachers as well as guardians to lend their full cooperation to the campaign.


Gurgaon Rotary unit meets target of rice collection
Tribune News Service

Gurgaon, July 5
The Rotarians of Gurgaon city in one stroke has compelled many here to veer round to the view that the positive role of voluntary organisations in national reconstruction and emergencies could be immense, if properly tapped.

The Rotary Club, District 3010 (Gurgaon), has emerged as the front rankers in its contributions of rice to be freely distributed to the bordering state of Rajasthan, which is reeling under a continuous spell of drought.

Gurgaon city chapter of the club is one of those rare chapters in the country to have achieved its target, collection of 1,800 kg of rice on July 1, the first day of the new Rotary year. The Rotary International has launched a programme christened “Combat Hunger” under which foodgrain is being collected throughout India for the benefit of the starving people of Rajasthan.

According to the newly inducted president of the Rotary Club, Gurgaon, Mr Sunil Sabharwal, the district has been affixed a target collection of 100 trucks of rice for the people of Rajasthan. The district unit has already collected 60 trucks of foodgrains.


The loot that wasn’t!
Our Correspondent

Rewari, July 5
The looting of Rs 1,58,391 by two motorcycle-borne youths on Wednesday, as reported to the GRP here by one Manish Kumar, an employee of Jindal Oil and Fats Ltd, Hisar, has turned out to be a hoax.

It is reported that Manish had collected the amount from M/S Sandip Kumar Deepak Kumar, Katla Bazar, Rewari in the morning of July 2 as payment for ghee supplied to them by his company. Manish reached the station to catch the morning train for Hisar with the moneybag. But when he found that the train was late, he moved towards the railway crossing near the station where two motor cycle-borne youths first threw chilly powder in his eyes, snatched the moneybag and sped away.

Soon after the ‘incident’, he went to the police station, which is at a stone’s throw from the place of the incident, and reported the matter to the GRP, who took it with a pinch of salt for obvious reasons. The cops informed the officials of the company at Hisar on phone and its officials arrived at the police station in a few hours. A medical examination of Manish’s eyes also revealed that his report was false. Besides, the cops also inspected the place where the incident took place, which too lent credence to their suspicion that he was trying stage a drama.

When officials of the company confronted Manish with the findings, he reportedly told them he would return a big part of the money if the would not register a criminal case against him. At this, the officials requested the GRP to defer the matter for the time being and took Manish to Hisar.


Pedestrian paths being encroached as agencies look the other way

Sonepat, July 5
Going by the large-scale encroachments on public land along the main roads of the city, it is now clear that the district administration as well as the PWD (B and R) and HUDA authorities have abdicated their basic responsibilities of ensuring planned growth of the city.

It is admitted that the primary duty of the administration and the municipal council is to launch deterrent action against those indulging in land grabbing and encroachments on pavements with impunity. Squatting on pavements along important city roads expose the pedestrians to increasing road hazards. Not only that the official agencies have failed to check the menace, but have also been in a way abetting the illegal activity by conferring ‘tehbazari’ rights to these encroachers.

By conferring ‘tehbazari’ rights, the municipal council has in a way legalised what is admittedly an illegal activity. The problem of encroachments, land grabbing and the subsequent sale of government land by unscrupulous colonisers has been raised at high-level meetings. The people have often been assured about the government’s resolve not to allow encroachments on public land and pedestrian paths. But what is happening all over the city proves that the district administration is behaving like mere spectators. OC


Time to go bananas over the ‘king of fruits’
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 5
With the onset of Monsoon in the Capital, the Delhiites have another opportunity to witness more than 500 varieties of mangoes at a two-day exhibition showcasing the culinary delights of the ‘king of fruits’.

Inaugurating the exhibition today, Delhi Minister of Tourism, Transport and Power Ajay Maken said, “At present, nearly Rs 450 crore worth of mangoes and mango products are exported.”

Organised by the Delhi Tourism in association with the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), the National Horticulture Board (NHB) and the Delhi Government, the festival is aimed at providing exposure to the domestic mango industry and exporters. The scientists engaged in the field of mango research will also be felicitated during the festival, which was being organised at the Talkatora Indoor Stadium.

Besides APEDA and NHB, the Central Institute for Subtropical Horticulture, Lucknow, the Department of Horticulture and Food Processing (Uttar Pradesh government) and IARI, Pusa, are expected to participate in the festival this year.

The exhibition will have certain unusual varieties like Sindhu, world’s only seedless mango, Mallika, a hybrid of two of the finest Indian desert mangoes and other fascinating types like Angoor dana and Raja wala, the smallest and the largest sized specimens.

A mango quiz for children and demonstrations by the Indian Culinary Forum on exquisite dishes to be made from the fruit will be the main attractions this year.


Doctor! Listen to your patient first, then heal

Waheeda Rahman, the legendary actress of yesteryears, moved to Mumbai sometime ago mainly because of better medical care facilities. Speaking of her experiences with sickness and doctors, she recently told an interviewer: “I believe that a doctor’s profession is noble. We know nothing about medicine and so we are dependent on them… What I notice these days is that doctors don’t have the time to listen to patients. After listening for a while to what patients have to say, ‘we know: don’t go into details’, they seem to say.

It is important to hear out patients, as each person’s body is different and reacts differently to treatment. I think they should pay more attention but that requires time. The tragedy in India is that there are a small number of good doctors but plenty of sick people. As human beings, they too need some rest and recreation as they are always on call.”

Yes, her stress on “listening” is reflected in the confession of a doctor. Bernie S. Siegel in his excellent book, Love, Medicine & Miracles, writes: “When we play the role of a saint with one-word answers, we don’t help people. We help them when we listen and share our pain. We must live the sermon and not deliver it.” (The book, published by Rupa in Delhi, is a must for doctors.)

A severe staph infection, which once kept him in a hospital for a week, was a crucial part of his education. He found out the difficulties of being in isolation, hooked up to an intravenous line, required to call for help for everything he needed, “when I was used to being responsible and in control”. He found how hard it is to maintain one’s dignity in the skimpy hospital gowns.

Dr Siegel writes that a few days as a patient on a busy ward should be an integral part of every physician’s training. With an IV in one arm and a tube up his nose! Usually one cannot become a healer without first passing through sickness to health.

He says that doctors can do much good to the patient by touching, praying, or simply sharing at an emotional level. Exceptional patients sometimes expect to be educated and made “doctors of their own cases”. They demand of their physician the role of a teacher. Dr Siegel had broadened his role further — to that of a preacher, teacher and healer. When a doctor can instill some measure of hope, the healing process sometime starts even before treatment begins. Hope comes as a result of the patient's confidence and trust in the healer. This bond is forged in many ways. Certain essentials — compassion, acceptance, availability, a willingness to provide information — are obvious.

Today’s physician, he says, must apply the insights of psychology and religion to medicine.

Many colleges in the West are now trying to teach compassion through courses in humanistic medicine. Perhaps, the admission of more women to the profession will gradually do more to end this pathetic bravado. The best physicians are those who can find both the masculine and feminine virtues that exist within human personalities – the ability to make tough decisions and yet remain compassionate and caring. Neither extreme makes a good physician.

Now Waheeda Rahman should be a very clearheaded person to see both sides of an issue. But it does not always happen so with the commoner. In Kerala, where the common citizen is unduly and excessively preoccupied with rights, doctors are often beaten up and manhandled and hospitals ransacked for alleged or imagined negligence on the part of the physicians. And the result is a running debate on the current level of doctor-patient relationship in public fora and on television channels. In these discussions, it turns out that, commercialisation, technicalisation and specialisation are the three main evils that need to be tackled.

If you walk into any outpatient department of any overcrowded and stinking government hospital in any large city, you will find frowning doctors with frayed tempers and they are in a haste to clear the long queues of ‘cases’. They are overwhelmed by the magnitude of the work, exhausted by the demands on their time and also depressed a bit by listening to tales of unending pains and aches and their own helplessness. “A doctor who acts out of love does not burn out. He or she may get tired physically but not emotionally,” points out Dr Siegel.

To such a one, these thoughts of Mother Teresa penned on the walls of a children’s home presents an alternative:

“Dearest Lord, may I see you today and everyday in the person of your sick and while nursing them minister unto you.”

Though you hide yourself behind the unattractive disguise of the irritable, the exacting, the unreasonable, may I still recognise you and say: “Jesus, my patient, how sweet it is to serve you.”

“Lord, give me this seeing faith, then my work will never be monotonous. I will ever find joy in humouring the fancies and gratifying the wishes of all poor sufferers.”

O beloved sick, how double dear you are to me, when you personify Christ; and what a privilege of mine to be allowed to tend you.”

Sweetest Lord, make me appreciative of the dignity of my high vocation and its many responsibilities. Never permit me to disgrace it by giving way to coldness, unkindness or impatience.”

And O God, while you are Jesus, my patient, deign also to be to me, a patient Jesus, bearing with my faults, looking only to my intention which is to love and serve you in the person of each of your sick.”

Lord increase my faith, bless my efforts and work, now and for ever more.”

Doctor’s Day is celebrated on July 1 every year to commemorate the birth anniversary as also the date of demise of the great patriot and eminent physician Dr B. C. Roy. In 1991, the central government declared that July 1 of every year be observed as Doctor’s Day. The Dr B. C. Roy national award fund management committee also thought it fit to announce the Dr B. C. Roy national awards and other awards on Doctor’s Day every year. Since 1993, these awards have been given to the winners by the President at functions held at Rashtrapati Bhavan.

M. P. K. Kutty



DPYC chief gives call to expose misdeeds of NDA govt
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 5
Keeping an eye on the Assembly elections in the NCT of Delhi, Delhi Pradesh Youth Congress (DPYC) today asked its members to devote themselves to bring the party in power for the second consecutive term. “It is your responsibility to take the message of all developmental activities of the Sheila Dikshit ministry to the people and expose the misdeeds of the NDA government,” DPYC president Rajesh Lilothia said at a training programme of Youth Congress activists here. “It is the youth who can change the society and bring prosperity to the nation,” he said. Criticising the alleged misrule of the NDA government, Mr Lilothia said, “The leaders of the NDA government are not at all interested in the development of the country. They are busy only in retaining power.”

On the occasion, former Delhi Mayor Jayashree Pawar alleged all developmental activities and welfare programmes had been stopped during the rule of the NDA government and the present situation could be changed only by a Congress government at the Centre.

Bomb hoax calls at cinemas

The West and South West district police went into a tizzy when the police control room received calls that bombs had been planted at Satyam Cinema near the Shadipur bus depot as well as PVR Cinema near Naraina in the Capital. The local police, the bomb disposal squad and sniffer dogs reached both the cinema halls and made a search for more than two hours and declared the calls as hoax as no explosive material was recovered from the cinema halls, the police said.

Guru Hargobind remembered

The Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC) arranged a huge congregation today in the memory of Sahib Sri Guru Hargobind Ji who is known as the founder of “Miri Piri”. The congregation was attended by the president of the DSGMC, Mr Paramjit Singh Sarna, the general secretary, Mr Bhajan Singh Walia, the senior vice-president, Mr Shamsher Singh Sandhu, Jathedar Gurcharan Sijngh Gatka Master, the vice-president, Prof Harmohinder Singh, and a few others. All prominent lectures on the occasion revived the memory of devotees present in the huge congregation about the life and achievements of Sahib Sri Guru Hargobind Ji.


Man shot dead by three assailants
Our Correspondents

Jhajjar, July 5
One person was shot dead by three unknown assailants in the MIE area at Bahadurgarh last night.

The police said today that Kuldeep, resident of Kair village in Delhi, was sitting near a wine shop with two of his friends when three persons arrived there and shot at Kuldeep. He tried to escape but succumbed to the bullet injuries.

The police have registered a case on the complaint of Nasib Singh and started investigations.

Two cases of suspected murder

Faridabad: Two cases of suspected murder have surfaced in Ballabgarh town of the district.

According to reports, the police have recovered the body of a 20-year-old youth, identified as Sanjay, from Dayalpur village. He hailed from Bahabalpur village and had been missing for the past 20 days. In another incident, the police booked a case of murder after the recovery of the body of one Sundar of Seekri village.

It is alleged that a person, identified as Surender, had killed him.

Kids’ enrolment drive launched

Sonepat: The Haryana Education Department has launched a special campaign to enrol children between the age of four and 14 years in this district.

According to a report, the District Primary Education Officer, Mrs Shanti Dahiya, is conducting an extensive tour of the villages everyday and monitoring the campaign to make it a complete success.

Mrs Dahiya has ordered the transfers of six teachers who were found surplus in their schools during the visit.


Irate villagers demand arrests in dowry case

Sonepat, July 5
A large number of residents of Banwasa village held a massive demonstration in front of the office of the Deputy Commissioner and the Superintendent of Police here yesterday. They were demanding a probe into the failure to arrest the persons named in the FIR relating to a dowry death case in the village. According to a report, the residents reached here in tractor-trailers. Staging a demonstration, they shouted slogans against the police. They also submitted a memorandum to the DC and SP demanding the immediate arrests of the culprits involved in the case. According to another report, a group of women of Mohan Nagar area held a demonstration in front of the Deputy Commissioner’s office here yesterday in protest against the erratic supply of drinking water. They also raised anti-government slogans and submitted a memorandum to the DC demanding regular water supply in the colony.

Suicide bid by youth

A youth, Rajbir, was reported to have made an attempt to commit suicide by taking insecticide tablets in his house in Janata Colony here on Saturday evening. According to a report, when his condition worsened he was taken to the local Civil Hospital for treatment by his parents. The condition of the youth was stated to be normal. The police are still investigating into the case.

Welcome showers for kharif crop

Sonepat city and its surrounding areas were lashed by mild showers for about an hour on Saturday. According to a report, the rain has brought down the temperature considerably and the people had some respite from the heat wave.

The showers are considered beneficial for the sowing of the kharif crops. OC


Boy crushed under oil tanker’s wheels
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 5
A 13-year-old boy was crushed to death last night when he came under the wheels of an oil tanker on the Chhatri Wala Marg in the Palam area. The police said the incident occurred when the victim Mithilesh, resident of Palam, was returning home last night. The driver of the tanker, Shawinder Yadav, hailing from Azamgarh, has been arrested and a case of causing death due to rash and negligent driving has been registered against him. In another incident in the Mayur Vihar area in East Delhi last night a motorcyclist died after he was hit by an unknown vehicle at the Mayur Vihar traffic signal.

The police said the victim, in his early 30s, might have been hit by a heavy vehicle. A case has been registered and the police are investigating the case.

Robbery bid at wine shop foiled

The North-East district police on Saturday claimed to have arrested three robbers and foiled their robbery bid at a wine shop. One countrymade weapon, two knives and two live cartridges were seized from their possession. The accused, Rishu (21), Sachin (19) and Anuj, alias Hitler (23), all residents of Muzaffar Nagar, were arrested when they were planning to loot a wine shop in the New Usmanpur area.


Two cheats nabbed, goods worth lakhs recovered

Ghaziabad: The Vijay Nagar police arrested two notorious cheats and recovered goods worth several lakhs from them last night.

The cheats, Rajat Kumar and Shrichand, had made heavy purchases from an electronics shop by presenting forged bank drafts. The cheats had purchased goods with those forged drafts.

The SP (City), Mr Ganeshwar Tiwari, said at the Medical trijunction in Vijay Nagar two criminals were nabbed with a huge quantity of electronic goods by Sub-Inspector Narender Kumar Yadav and his patrol party.

The goods seized included two ACs, two Internet batteries, a BPL TV, luggage bags, costly clothes etc. Rajat Kumar and Shrichand of Delhi, during questioning, blurted out the whole story to the police. The SI said both the detained persons were notorious cheats who had got forged bank drafts from Bank of India for Rs 37,000 in the name of Sai Electronics, Link Road, Vijay Nagar. They had made the purchases on the basis of these drafts. They were waiting for a customer near the bypass last night when they were apprehended by the police party. They had struck a deal to sell the entire quantity of goods for Rs 70,000.

The police have arrested both of them, seized the goods and are making further investigations. OC


5 peacocks poisoned to death

Greater Noida: The wanton hunting and smuggling of the peacock, which abounds in the Bisarakh area of Gautam Budh Nagar, by poachers is likely to decimate the species soon as the police are wont to turn their head the other way while the crime is being committed unabated.

Some poachers near Baidpura under the Bisarakh police station are reported to have killed five peacocks by feeding them some poisonous substance while another three have been taken away by them.

The police are reported to have taken possession of another two peacocks later. This is not an isolated case. Even in a garden at close proximity to the Bisarakh police station a large number of peacocks can be seen. OC

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