Sunday, August 10, 2003, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S


Sonia kicks off poll campaign no relaxation
to workshy MLAs
Prashant Sood
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 9
Congress president Sonia Gandhi today kicked off the party’s election campaign in the Capital by lauding the work done by the Sheila Dikshit Government in the past four-and-a-half years and hinting at the possibility of denying tickets to the non-performing MLAs.

Addressing a well-attended rally organised to mark the start of the party’s 11-day-long ‘Remembering August Kranti’ programme, Ms Gandhi told the party MLAs to gear up for the November Assembly elections. “No concession will be given to those MLAs and councillors who do not discharge their responsibility properly,” Ms Gandhi said to a loud applause from the crowd.

It was Ms Gandhi’s first rally in East Delhi, which sends over 20 MLAs to the Delhi Assembly and has a largely middle-class profile.

Patting Ms Dikshit, the Congress president said the development works done by the state government in the past four-and-a half years were an example for others. She accused the Centre of being discriminatory towards the Congress governments. The Delhi government, she said, had to often face the discrimination but was doing a lot of good work for people. “I assure you that we will continue to work for your progress. I am confident that we will continue to get your cooperation,” she said.

Ms Dikshit termed the coming Assembly elections as “not ordinary” and said that development would be the main poll issue of the Congress. “Delhi being the Capital, the elections here will have a bearing on the country,” she said.

Hoping that Ms Gandhi would soon have an opportunity to lead the country, Ms Dikshit said the Congress workers wanted India to develop according to the dreams of Rajiv Gandhi.

Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee chief Prem Singh recalled the contribution of Congress leaders to the country’s freedom. Mr Ahmed Patel, political secretary to Congress president, said that the message of Ms Gandhi should be taken to every part of the country.

AICC secretary Anil Shastri said that the sacrifice of freedom fighters was an inspiration to the coming generations.

Ms Gandhi waived the Congress flag to mark the start of the party’s August Kranti remembrance functions which will be held all over the country. She honoured two freedom fighters by presenting them with shawls.

Today’s function started with the rendition of Vande Matram.


Want your phone transferred? Request on hold…
Bijendra Ahlawat

Faridabad, August 9
Getting a phone of the Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) transferred in Faridabad is an uphill task. Even the intervention of the General Manager (GM) may not work and one may keep cursing the department.

The BSNL services seem to be the same as they were before the corporatisation, despite the tall claims being made by the authorities, who have also been spending crores each year for the upgradation of the equipment and the infrastructure.

There are a number of cases of harassment of phone consumers here. This correspondent applied for shifting of his residential phone from Sector-14 to Sector-9 on July 29. It was requested to the department through the formal application that the phone (2222136) be shifted to House No. 93 in Sector-9 by August 1, as the applicant got transferred on August 2. The BSNL employees have failed to do the needful even after nine days.

Many reminders have been given to the officials and even the BSNL brass has been approached to get the phone transferred. However, the irony is the staff have ignored the directions of even the General Manager (GM).

It so happened that the General Manager, Mr Yashpal Kataria, was contacted on August 7, when all other efforts failed.

The GM promised that the phone would be shifted within 24 hours if the OB (official order receipt) had been issued. But this correspondent contacted the GM after 24 hours on August 8, when there was no progress in the case, Mr Kataria replied that phone would get shifted either on Friday itself or by Saturday definitely. However, his orders proved to be an exercise in futility when no one from the BSNL turned up to provide the connection up to 4 pm on Saturday.

It is interesting to note that more than 48 hours have passed after the GM assurance. If the things move in this manner at the BSNL, when the consumer could contact the top authorities, one could judge the functioning in case of a common man.

It may be recalled that the private basic phone service provider has been able to attract more than 40,000 consumers in Faridabad and Gurgaon districts so far, after its launch in January 2001.

It is reported that hundreds of consumers have either switched over to the private phone connection or are planning to do so.

Mr Prakash Chand, a resident of Sector-19 here said that he had got two connections of the private phone company in the past few months and had no complaint of any kind so far.


Brick kiln workers crying for their wages
Our Correspondent

Rohtak, August 9
The travails of the migrant workers and their children at a brick kiln at Hassangarh, near here, do not seem to be over even with the season coming to an end. Shunted out by the brick kiln owners, several migrant families of the brick kiln workers find it hard to have two square meals.

They are running from pillar to post not for dearness allowance or bonus, but for the payment of the season’s labour that they have put in.

Three such ill-fated families comprising 31 members had come all the way from Gopalpur village in Aligarh district (UP) to Haryana in search of a job with a brick kiln at Hassangarh village in the hope that they would get remuneration at the end of the season. All their hopes were dashed when the brick kiln owner allegedly gave them the boot without giving them their dues.

It was thanks to the generosity of the locals of Sampla village that these families could hold on for more than two months; living just on the flour and lassi provided by the villagers. The hapless families have lived in fear of the owners’ henchmen.

They went to the office of the Lal Jhanda Bhatta Mazdoor Union yesterday to seek their help. The union leaders, Mr Om Parkash and Mr Maan Singh, took them to the City Magistrate, Mrs Ranjit Kaur, with the hope that the district administration would intervene in getting these labourers their dues. Moved by the passionate hearing given by Mrs Ranjit Kaur, the labourers, particularly the women among them, poured out their heart and revealed their plight with tears rolling down their eyes.

The lady officer may be the last hope of these families for getting their dues but a cursory look at the issue reveals there is much more to it than meets the eye. It appears to be more than just another routine matter of non-payment of wages.

Going by the age profile, 17 out of a total of 31 fall in the age group of 4-17 years. A bitter truth stares at these children in the face of the child labour laws and judgements delivered by the apex court on various occasions.


Three held for child’s murder
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 9
With the arrest of three persons, the West district police today claimed to have solved the brutal murder of nine-year-old Sukhminder, alias Gulli, who was kidnapped from his house in the Tilak Nagar area and later killed at Dharuhera in Haryana. The accused, Navinder Singh, alias Vicky (22), resident of Tilak Nagar; Sat Prakash (24), resident of Uttam Nagar; and Vijay, alias Brijesh (24), resident of Tilak Vihar, kidnapped the victim from his house on the pretext of buying him kites on July 25 and took him to Uttam Nagar.

Since the victim was a neighbour, the accused got scared that Sukhminder might disclose their identity to his family if escaped from their clutches. As they could not make arrangements for the accommodation of the child, they took Sukhminder to a deserted area in Dharuhera the same night and strangled him. They also smashed his chest and face with a stone.

The victim’s father, Amarjeet Singh, lodged a complaint on July 26 with the police, stating that his son had been missing since July 25. On the evening of August 3, the kidnappers made two blank calls to the victim’s family and on August 4, they demanded Rs 5 lakh for the release of the child.

When the accused told their fourth accomplice Jaswinder Singh, alias Lucky, that they had killed the child, the four again demanded the ransom as the victim’s family had no idea about the ghastly murder. But the police, after mounting surveillance on them, finally apprehended them. The accused told the police that they were in dire need of money as they had to pay back heavy loans. Even though they knew that the victim’s father was employed at a furniture showroom in Greater Kailash and was incapable of paying the ransom, they kidnapped the child and murdered him, said the Deputy Commissioner of Police (West), Mr Satish Golcha. The police have now launched a hunt for the other accomplice, Vicky.

Two murder convicts escape from jail

Sonepat: Two inmates of local Bal Sudhar Grah (Bostel jail) have escaped from the jail by cutting the iron rods of the window of their barrack in the wee hours between 1 am and 4 am.

On the complaint of the Bal Grah Superintendent, Ms Asha Kumari Hasija, a case has been registered in local civil lines police station. Both of them, identified as Deepak of Nisar village in Uttar Pradesh and Manoj of Rajpur village in Sonepat district, were convicted of heinous crimes like murder, dacoity and loot and lodged in the Bostel jail.

It is recalled that in August 2002 also, six inmates of this jail had escaped. OC


Disputed land allotted to Kargil martyr’s mother
Our Correspondent

Ghaziabad, August 9
Champa Devi, mother of Kargil martyr Surinder Pal of Murana village, has complained to the District Magistrate, Babu Lal Meena, that the land allotted to her for the petrol pump, the sanction for which had been given by the Central government, is a disputed and controversial land. She met the DM after knocking at the doors of several officers.

Champa Devi was awarded a petrol pump by the Central government on June 6, 2000. She was allotted the government land bearing Khasra Number 350 in Asalat Nagar village in Modi Nagar tehsil for setting up the pump.

However, she found to her shock that a case had been registered against this land in a Meerut court. A petrol pump cannot, therefore, be set up there, she pleaded.

The DM assured her that he would look into the matter and help her out.

People in western UP are angry that the government makes tall claims about helping the families of Kargil war martyrs, but most of the relatives of the martyrs do not get the promised facilities.


Blanket industry in a bind; faces harsh winter ahead 
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Panipat, August 9
Come winter, the cheap Panipat blanket is set to be out of the reach of the lower classes. The heavy doses of excise duties on the shoddy and blanket industries in the recent Budget have put these industries in a bind. As a result, a substantial price hike awaits the common man.

Entrepreneurs at the local blanket market, considered to be the largest in Asia, rued the fact that the Union Government had virtually forced them to hike the prices. Though the blanket manufacturers are yet to announce the raise, the prices are likely to go up between 20 and 40 per cent.

A blanket manufacturer, Mr Chuni Lal Tuteja, informed that with the recession ruling the roost, the Rs 50 blanket was likely to cost anything above Rs 70. The Union Government, which had imposed hefty excise duty, was largely to blame for the steep hike and to stay in the business, they had to hike the price, added Mr Tuteja.

Picking holes in the double standards adopted by the Union Finance Ministry, Mr Ashok Khurana, another entrepreneur, claimed that the big mills using fresh fibre for the manufacture of the superior quality of blanket had been given certain concessions by the ministry. He averred that it seemed the government, which prided itself as the champion of the small sector, was bent upon destroying the labour-intensive blanket industry.

It may be mentioned here that the industry makes shoddy yarn from the old and pre-mutilated rags largely imported from foreign countries, which have problems in dumping them.

The yarn is then woven on power looms to manufacture cheap blankets for the masses and the Army. Due to the favourable industrial climate at present, 90 per cent of the shoddy industry was concentrated in Panipat, 9 per cent in Ludhiana and Amritsar and the rest in other parts of the country.

Analysts felt that now the price of the blanket would go up for sure, adding to the woes of the relief agencies and the common man. Currently, Panipat caters to about 99 per cent blanket needs of the international and national relief agencies. Besides, almost 100 per cent supplies of the Army are routed through the local manufacturers.


Farmhouse tourism to be introduced in NCR
B. S. Malik

Sonepat, August 9
After suffering losses reportedly for the last several years, the Haryana Tourism Corporation has decided to launch farmhouse tourism in the districts of the NCR region. The state government has also given a green signal to this new concept of tourism in the state.

Under the project, the farm house owners of Sonepat, Panipat, Rohtak, Gurgaon, Faridabad, Rewari and Jhajjar will be provided professional guidance and liaisoning services by the corporation and other arrangements of boarding, lodging and food etc will be arranged by the farm owners themselves.

According to official sources of the corporation, the project is aimed to attract foreign tourists with the concept of village, villager, culture and agriculture of Haryana society and create additional sources of income for the farmers.

The corporation has demanded applications from the farm house owners and around 45 owners applied for it. However, the corporation has so far found only 12 farmhouses suitable for this project.

To encourage farmhouse tourism, the corporation will prepare some special packages and on the basis of these packages, will finalise the contract with the owners. The owners will be required to arrange clean rooms, lawns, nutritive and good quality food for the tourists.

A high ranking official of the corporation office at Chandigarh explained that the corporation would make every effort to ensure that the foreign tourists or the visitors from Delhi and other states have the glimpses of social, cultural life of the people of Haryana, particularly villagers.

Under the project a minimum share of the profit will go to the corporation.

Before starting farmhouse tourism, the corporation will write letters to the deputy commissioners and superintendents of police of all the districts of the NCR so that the foreign tourists do not face security related problems, said the managing director of the Haryana Tourism Corporation, Ms Navraj Sandhu.


Don’t send Coop Societies Bill to President: Gupta
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 9
The BJP councillor, Mr Vijender Gupta, today demanded that the Cooperative Group Housing Societies Bill, passed in the current Assembly session, should not be forwarded to the President, unless its various shortcomings are removed.

The Bill is harsh and anti-people in its various provisions for the attorney holders who have been crying hoarse for the last more than one decade. Clause 91 of the Bill deals with regularisation of occupancy right of persons who have been issued power of attorney or agreement for sale. Instead of giving relief the clause asked that each member has to pay Rs 10, 000 or more to the society management just for getting membership.

The Bill further explains that the failure to comply with the provisions within 360 days involves imprisonment upto seven years or penalty of Rs 50, 000 or both.

He said that senior citizens, working women (single), premature retirees (VRS) and loanees etc who have spent their hard earned savings just to get a dwelling unit of their own, are being penalised by the government through the demand of additional membership fee.

This clause (91) needs to be modified, and mandatory and penalty aspects need to be deleted forthwith and replaced by better motivating provisions, he demanded.

Clause 92 (1) says that the committee is required to take welfare and common services. The committee would be represented by the management only, which has been subject of great controversies in the past for their failure to tackle the problems, necessitating the involvement of RWAs. It also tends to distinguish between members and residents in welfare measures. Thus the role of RWA in a group housing society has been left unexplained and undefined.

The Delhi Government has been propagating the role of the RWA under Bhagidari scheme all these years, which is nowhere discernible in the Bill. Thus it is imperative to involve the RWA fully in welfare and common services in the interest of residents as well as co-operative societies, he said. He said that sub-clause two, of clause eight, deals with maintenance of essential services in co-operative housing societies.

The maintenance of the essential services is done by the management committee of the housing societies. The management committee, as per experience gained, assumes arbitrary powers and functions in an authoritarian style, not conducive to the welfare and interest of the society. Some Appellant Authority should be there to listen to the grievances of the members, he said.


President’s Medal awardee to get railway compensation
Our Correspondent

Bhiwani, August 9
The District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum has directed the Northern Railway authorities to pay Rs 500 as compensation and subsequently another Rs 500 as fine to a teacher who had been awarded the President’s Medal for not allowing him 50 per cent concession in the fare.

The teacher had sued the Station Superintendent and the booking clerk at Bhiwani railway junction. The decision was delivered jointly by Forum Chairman Pradeep Mehta and members Prem Singh Ola and Shakuntla Sheoran. 


Minorities must contribute to nation’s progress’
Our Correspondent

Ghaziabad, August 9
India’s development will virtually mean progress of all its minorities. All minority communities should live in peace and harmony and contribute towards the nation’s progress. That is the only safe way for all the people living in this country, said Minority Commission Chairman Tarlochan Singh addressing a seminar on Uniform Civil Code organised by the Rashtriya Sikh Sangat here.

He said that Sikhs, a minority community, were known for their valor, sacrifices and contribution in the freedom struggle as well as in all the other spheres of nation building.

He felt that there was no need for minorities to have political parties. Rather, their parties should work for the social, cultural, linguistic and educational upliftment of their community.

If religious leaders come together, they can amiably solve all the problems of the country as all the disputes are created by the politicians for their vote bank, he said.


Ex-servicemen join dharna seeking Ahir regiment
Tribune News Service

Gurgaon, August 9
A large number of ex-service personnel from the Ahirwal belt of Haryana today extended their support to the Haryana Yadav Mahasabha’s demand to create a separate Ahir regiment in the Indian Army.

Former defence personnel, who belong to Ahir/Yadav caste, were responding to the call of the mahasabha to take part in a dharna outside the office of the Commissioner, Gurgaon Division, to press for the demand. Social organisations relating to Ahirs, including the Gramin Vikas Mahapanchayat, also lent their support to the demand.

The agitation was chosen to coincide with the “Quit India” call made by Mahatma Gandhi to oust the British from the country on this date in 1942.

The mahasabha, led by Mr K. S. Yadav, a retired IAS officer, submitted a memorandum to the Governor through the office of the Commissioner, Gurgaon Division, demanding the creation of a separate Ahir regiment in the Army. Today’s action by the Haryana Yadav Mahasabha was part of a call for a national campaign given by the All-India Yadav Mahasabha.

In the memorandum, the mahasabha pointed out that the Ahirs (Yadavas) numbered the most as a single community in the country. They had been rated as the “bravest of the brave” by military experts. It lamented that several castes, which have less of their members in numbers, have separate regiments in the Army.

Falling back on the contributions made by the Ahirs in the defence of the country, the memorandum cited the Indo-Pak wars, Indo-Chinese war and other military actions. In the Kargil war, over 110 soldiers of the Ahir community laid down their lives. Sepoy Yogender Singh Yadav, a young boy, earned the title of ‘Hero of the Tiger Hill’. He is the youngest recipient of the highest gallantry award, the Param Veer Chakra.

The memorandum also highlighted the supreme sacrifice made by Jagadish Yadav to save Parliament, parliamentarians and the honour of the country from Pakistan-inspired terrorist attack. He was awarded Ashok Chakra for this act of bravery.

NSG commando Suresh Yadav also sacrificed his life to save the innocent devotees visiting the Akshardham Temple (Gujarat) from terrorist attack for which he was awarded Ashok Chakra posthumously by the President.

Second-rung politicians cutting across party lines and hailing from the community participated in the dharna. The only political leader from other than from the Ahir caste was secretary of the Haryana Pradesh Congress Committee Khazan Singh.


Students boycott classes against fee hike
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, August 9
Students of various colleges boycotted classes yesterday and took out a procession in protest against the hike in fees and the state government’s refusal to accept their other demands.

According to a report, the students of technical institutions did not take part in the strike. However, students of other colleges, carrying placards and raising anti-government slogans, marched through the main bazars of the city and reached the mini secretariat where they sat on a dharna in front of the Deputy Commissioner’s office. The student leaders also presented a memorandum to the DC to be forwarded to Chief Minister Om Prakash Chautala. The memorandum demanded the immediate withdrawal of the hike in tuition fee and other “anti-student” policies.

A rally was held and was addressed by leaders of the striking students and other organisations. They warned that if the demands of the striking students were not fulfilled, the students would soon launch an agitation throughout the state.

Machinery gutted: Goods and machinery worth about Rs 60 lakh were gutted in a devastating fire that broke out in a factory near the Haryana-Delhi border at Kundli village, about 25 km from here, yesterday.

According to a report, the fire brigades from Sonepat, Narela, Ganaur and Gohana rushed to the site and brought the fire under control after about 10 hours. The roofs of the factory building and the iron machines were damaged. However, no loss of life was reported. The police are still investigating into the causes of the fire.

Youths robbed: Three motorcycle-borne armed youths are reported to have robbed a youth of Chulkana village, Rajesh, and his friend Rambir near Rajlu Garhi village, about 10 km from here of cash, gold rings and chains last evening. 


The grand deception and lifestyle diseases

Elementary schools in villages, in the days gone by, used to have on their walls great maxims, proverbs and wise sayings written in large letters as part of the effort to inspire young minds. Such inscriptions stick to one’s memory for long.

“All that glitters is not gold!” is perhaps one of the popular slogans of a bygone era. Advertising and publicity have changed all that. Now the children are told that appearances are important; they must create a first impression. The emphasis has shifted from contents to the shape and colour of the package!

The current controversy about the purity and safety of some of the popular soft drinks provide an excellent illustration. Often youngsters buy these bottled stuff not to quench their thirst but to show off as it is considered part of all partying, “having a good time!” It has even become a costly habit that obviously eats into middle class pockets.

The news that these soft drinks, polluted with other chemicals, could have a harmful impact on health must have jolted many.

But the proverb, “all that glitters is not gold”, is not intended to warn youngsters against spending money on soft drinks. It has a deeper application today.

Among teenagers, particularly belonging to high society, the social taboo against consuming alcohol, does not seem to work any longer. In a “pleasure driven” environment, they are easily lured to imitate their elders. What began as an experiment soon becomes a habit. If someone warns them against becoming a slave to the bottle, they are quick to retort: “Oh, there is nothing wrong with me; I can quit any time I want to.”

In an environment where peer pressure determines habits, such ways of seeking pleasure spreads fast. Youngsters love speed, the bottle and whatever else is glamorous.

It is the same way unthinking young men get hooked to drugs. By the time they recognise that use of cocaine or smoking marijuana to experience mind-blowing sensations is not cool, it is late.

A couple of days ago, there were reports of the Chennai police raiding some cyber café in the city and arresting owners as well as customers. The allegations were that besides undesirable activities, pornography was being peddled. Psychologists say that those who get involved in pornography can become lost just as easily as people who lose themselves in alcohol and drugs. Pornography is the devil’s domain and his grip tightens on the victims as tragically as in the case of drugs.

There are in the market these days any number of publications, which promote a lifestyle that is harmful in the long run, though attractive for the young minds in the short run. They teach the youths to go in for the sensational and indulge without restraint. This is the new kind of “freedom” that is being subtly promoted. This pampering later proves costly for the parents.

Self-discipline is not a favourite theme with youngsters. Teachers and parents who insist on moral behaviour cannot be very popular. They are dubbed as awkward, backward and old fashioned. They find themselves in a minority in a society that worships power, plenty and pleasure.

But then without discipline even a good child can be led by its desires in paths of ruin. It is harsh to listen to the realities of life as expressed in this piece of scriptural verse: “After desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full grown, gives birth to death.” (James 1: 15)

Listen to another verse from a Buddhist scripture: “The noble truth of the origin of suffering is this: It is craving that leads back to birth, bound up with passionate greed. It finds fresh delight now here and now there, namely, craving for sense pleasures…’’ Listen again to the Koran: “Have you seen him who makes his desire his god, and God sends him astray purposely, and seals up his hearing and heart, and sets on his sight a covering? Who, then, will lead him after God? Will you not then heed?’’

Many of the sinful pleasures of the world come in attractive packages. The novice looks at the wine, which sparkles in the cup and relishes its red colour. It goes down smoothly! In the end it bites like a snake and poisons like a viper. Many sinful passions have attractive beginnings but tragic consequences.

Heart diseases, blood pressure and diabetes are these days given a better title—they are called “lifestyle” diseases. But the renaming does not make them any less fatal or changes in the lifestyle any less urgent. The gluttonous individual who throws all cautions to the wind and indulges in his passion while young pays a heavy price for his indulgence, may be much later.

An ordinary frog, when faced with sudden danger will try to escape. Researchers have conducted experiments to prove that when it is not aware of the danger, it makes no effort to escape. They put a frog in an open pot and began to heat it slowly. It made no effort to jump out. It died a slow death in the pot. Some of the sins and indulgences, apparently harmless, could in the end become a grand deception. While the propagandists of modern lifestyles spent fortunes teaching new ways of making life more pleasurable, teachers and parents should be telling the youth that life is subject to certain rules; there is the important principle that a man reaps what he sows. He must not be carried away by the glitter of things.

M P K Kutty


Successive govts have meted out step-motherly treatment to South Haryana: JD (U)
Our Correspondent

Rewari, August 9
The Haryana Janata Dal (U) president, Mr Ved Prakash Vidrohi, has flayed the present Chautala government as well as the previous state governments led by Mr Bhajan Lal and Mr Bansi Lal for allegedly meting out step- motherly treatment to the people of South Haryana. People in this region were deprived of equitable distribution of canal water, adequate power supply, higher education, government jobs and all other developmental works.

Vidrohi also condemned the legislators and MPs of South Haryana, who remained glued to ministerial berths in the successive governments during the last 25 years, for the sorry state of affairs in South Haryana.

Addressing a district level conference of party activists here today Mr Vidrohi said that it was a fact known to all that how dishonestly the 1.8 MAF water of the Beas, which was received in 1976, and was primarily meant for South Haryana, was diverted to Sirsa and other parts of the state. He said the continued apathy shown by the successive rulers of the state, towards South Haryana’s legitimate demand, of equitable distribution of available canal water, was now being faced by the masses.

He also said that it was a matter of regret that the opening of a long-sanctioned Sainik School at Pali Gothra village had been hanging in the balance for the last two decades and the Post Graduate Regional Centre of Rewari had been running in rented accommodation for the past 15 years.

Mr Vidrohi said that if the rulers practiced discrimination against South Haryana in all such matters, its legislators and MPs were equally to be blamed for this sordid state of affairs as they failed to voice the sentiments of the aggrieved residents.

He exhorted JD (U) activists to work towards the upliftment of the area.

Shiksha Rattan Award to SITM chairman

Dr Vijay Somany, chairman of the governing body of the Somany Institute of Technology and Management (SITM), Rewari, has been given the prestigious ‘ Shiksha Rattan’ award, for his outstanding contribution in the domains of technical education in the Rewari region of Haryana, by the Institute of Economic Studies (IES), New Delhi.

The award was presented by Dr Bhishma Narain Singh, former governor of Tamil Nadu and Assam, at a function held under the auspices of the IES at New Delhi recently.

SITM, the first engineering college in Rewari region, has now completed two years.

37,821 schoolchildren undergo health check-up

As many as 37,821 children of 425 primary schools in the district were medically examined in July, under a special schoolchildren’s health check-up campaign, according to the Deputy Commissioner Ms Neerja Shekhar.

She said that 11,544 children were found suffering from anemia, dental and visionary ailments. Of these, 7,345 children were provided treatment immediately after the check-up, whereas 4,199 children were referred to the civil hospital, Rewari, and various other community health centers and primary health centers in the district.

Ms Shanker said the campaign will continue till September 30, 2003, and the health check up of the remaining school children will be done in August and September.

NCC cadets plant 100 saplings

The NCC cadets planted 100 saplings in the Govt Senior Secondary School (boys) premises here under a tree plantation drive recently.

Addressing the cadets, Mr Virender Singh Yadav, NCC officer of the school, said that mere plantation of saplings wouldn’t suffice, they would also have to put in strenuous efforts for their survival as well as growth.


Man, woman killed in mishap
Our Correspondents

Sonepat, August 9
As many as four persons, including a woman, died in different incidents in the past 20 hours in the district.

According to information, one Ajai Sharma and a woman who were going to Delhi from Panipat in a Santro car were killed after an unknown vehicle hit their car on G T Road near Larsoli around midnight. The bodies have been brought to the civil hospital here for post-mortem examination.

A lineman of the bijli nigam, Jai Karan, was electrocuted when he was trying to repair a fault in a transformer at Bajana Khurd village today around noon. He was posted at Tewri village.

In another incident, one Pradeep of Tihar Khurd village reportedly committed suicide in the morning today. The body has been brought to the civil hospital for post-mortem examination. According to a report, he was alone in the house when he took the extreme step.

2 acquitted in impersonation case

Bhiwani: The Chief Judicial Magistrate acquitted two persons accused of impersonation. The incident took place during a local examination.

When the police was informed of the incident, the two accused, identified as Arun and Sushil, were arrested.

A case was registered against them under Sections 419 and 420 of the Indian Penal Code. However, the Judge acquitted them when the four witnesses turned hostile.

Cars stolen

Faridabad: Two cars have been stolen in the town in the past 36 hours. According to reports, a car belonging to Kanwal Preet Singh of Sector 16 was stolen from the parking area of Sector 15 here on Thursday evening.

Another car (HR-51K-1711) was also stolen from NH 5 in the NIT area. Meanwhile, the police have arrested a person identified as Mahesh Verma on the charge of possessing an illegal firearm. TNS


Toxic soft drinks: INLD asks Centre to speed up probe
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 9
The Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) has urged the Union Government to speed up investigation into the reports that pesticides and insecticides were found in soft drinks of popular brands.

The president of the Youth Wing of the INLD and MP, Mr Ajay Singh Chautala, said here today that the general public was shocked by the startling allegations and confusion prevailing in the air and this needed to be clarified by the central government as it related to the health of every citizen. He said that it was high time the government evolved a policy on this vital issue. He said that by doing so, no new controversy and confusion would emerge.

Mr Chautala said prima facie, the allegations of the CSE seems to be serious. “Nobody can take Indian masses for granted and international standards should be strictly adhered to by all companies,” he further said.

ITV in Media Expo 2003

The stall of Hathway Cable and Datacom (P) Ltd of Raja Raheja Group, a joint venture of Star TV, the largest MSO in the country, WIN, CCI and ITV, demonstrated their unique channel ITV, which was main attraction centre of the visitors. According to the distributors, Rajesh Arora and Dimple Kapoor, this is the only channel in the country, which gives its viewers the choice of selecting what they want to watch. Now people don’t have to wait for hours to watch their favourite songs on music channels.

Traffic advisory

The Delhi BJP is organising a ‘parivartan’ rally at Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium tomorrow at 11 am. Motorists are advised to avoid the roads leading to the Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium from 9 am to 4 pm. Commuters are also requested to follow the diversion routes as directed by the traffic police. 


Disruption in power supply hits essential services

Sonepat: The ongoing power crisis in this city and its suburbs has worsened following the unscheduled power cuts enforced by the Uttar Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam (UHBVN). The essential services, including the drinking water supply and medical services were hit. According to a report, the long spells of power cuts have not only paralysed the normal life of the people but adversely affected the industrial activities in the area. The residents are critical of political parties, particularly the ruling INLD for having failed to raise these issues. OC


Three nabbed while fleeing after robbing doctor
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 9
The New Delhi district police arrested three youths when they tried to flee after robbing an Orthopedic surgeon, Dr Brijender Singh, near H-Block, Outer Circle, Connaught Place last evening.

The victim works at Divyaprasth Hospital and Research Centre, Palam Colony. He was stopped by four youths while passing through Outer Circle in Connaught Place on his way to New Delhi Railway Station. One of them caught him by the collar of his shirt and others started beating him up. Later they robbed him of his mobile phone, wristwatch, a purse containing Rs 200, an identity card etc.

While fleeing, one of the suspects took out a knife to stab him but the doctor raised the alarm, alerting two constables who were on night patrol duty nearby. The cops chased the suspects and arrested three of them.

The suspects were identified as Manoj, Deepak, Ajay Tiwari and Vijay. The other managed to escape. During interrogation, they disclosed that they used to gather at New Delhi Railway Station and follow persons going alone on foot. On reaching any lonely place, they used to beat and threaten the victim and rob him.

Man knocked down

An unidentified pedestrian died when he was hit by an unknown vehicle near the CGO complex T-point on Lodhi Road this morning. The victim was around 75 years old. The Lodhi Colony police have registered a case of rash and negligent driving and are looking for the erring driver and the vehicle.

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