Wednesday, August 13, 2003, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S


Counters manned by cops for passport seekers
J. T. Vishnu
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 12
The Delhi Police, in collaboration with the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), have decided to set up two special computerised passport counters at convenient places in Delhi, for the benefit of fresh passport seekers.

The experiment, which is the first of its kind in the country, if successful, will be replicated in other states.

The decision has been taken after several rounds of discussions between the ministry and the Delhi Police officials on the unprecedented rush at the counters and the location of the passport office.

“The specialized counters would be set up at two places — one in Delhi Police Bhawan on Asaf Ali Road and the other in the Trans-Yamuna area near Shakarpur police station in East Delhi. Each counter is expected to have six police officials and an enquiry officer to provide passport related information to the public,,” said a source.

With the streamlining of the system, the public can deposit the duly completed passport forms with the prescribed amount at these counters, which would be processed immediately once the antecedents of the applicant have been checked by the Delhi Police Special Branch.

For this, the police will send the passport forms to the concerned Area Officer for verification. Once the process is completed, the police will ask the passport authorities to issue the document.

“As now the police will immediately get into the verification process, the time lag would be less, said an official.

At present, the applicants have to reach the Regional Passport Offices to deposit their forms and obtain information.

“The new system would solve problems of distance, touts and other delays, caused by the huge number of applicants. Since police officials, who are trained in passport matters, are expected to man these counters, we can expect some respite,” the official said.

“Apart from the distance factor, the applicants will no longer be at the receiving end of touts while applying for passports. Since there were many complaints regarding harassment by touts, this was one of the main agendas during the meetings,” he added.


PM plays big brother to spl kids
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 12
It was a memorable Raksha Bandhan for the special children. Not only did they spend time with the Prime Minister, Mr Atal Behari Vajpayee, but also got an opportunity to tie him a rakhi.

These physically, mentally and visually handicapped students of various schools in Delhi had a date with the Prime Minister at his residence on the occasion of Raksha Bandhan.

In between tying rakhis and feasting on sweets, these children also sang patriotic songs and took the pledge to serve the nation. Flushed with excitement and exuberance, the children revelled in the hospitality and the geniality extended at the Prime Minister’s residence.

The poet Prime Minister charmed the students with his amiability. On being requested to recite a poem, he readily complied by choosing a poem with a patriotic theme. Later, the PM presented a cassette of his poems and sweets to the children.

Among those who got an opportunity to tie Rakhi included students of Lord Jesus Public School, Gurgaon, Sanskriti Public School, New Delhi, Om Prakash Foundation, Rohini, children from the SOS Village and Brahmakumaris.

On the other hand, at Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s residence, MCD school students and children from orphanages had a gala time. They were showered with gifts, fruits, sweets, books etc. Among those present on the occasion were Mr Ahmed Patel, General Secretary of the All India Congress Committee, Mr R.K. Dhawan, Mr Anil Shastri, Mr K. K. Sharma, Major Dalbir Singh, Major Ved Parkash and other office-bearers of the AICC.

Meanwhile, women from all walks of life had gathered on the lawns of the Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee (DPCC) to celebrate Raksha Bandhan.

Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit started the celebrations by tying a Rakhi on DPCC President Prem Singh and others. On the occasion, Ms Dikshit said, “Festivals like Raksha Bandhan bring together people from all walks of life and establish communal amity and social equality.”

Besides Ms Dikshit and Mr Singh, former Union minister Jagdish Tytler, former Member of Parliament Sajjan Kumar, legislator Ms Tajdar Babar, Delhi Mahila Congress president Ms Motia Garg and Chairman of Standing Committee of Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) Ram Babu Sharma were present on the occasion.


Contractors miffed as MCD cheques bounce
Syed Ali Ahmed
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 12
Strange as it may seem, the Municipal Corporation of Delhi has no money in its account in the Oriental Bank of Commerce. Result: The cheques issued by it to the contractors are bouncing. This has caused a flutter among the contractors.

According to sources, the Accounts Department of the corporation issued cheques worth lakhs of rupees in the name of three contractors in March this year for the works carried out by them. The cheques were drawn on the Vishal Enclave branch of the Oriental Bank of Commerce. The bank returned the cheques in July, regretting that the corporation did not have enough money in its account. The corporation had not made any prior arrangement with the bank for making payment to these companies, sources said.

The sources said that one cheque of Rs 8.30 lakh was issued in the name of the M/s Essco Traders, three cheques of Rs 7.62 lakh were for M/s Kay Kay and Company and three cheques of Rs 27.85 lakh in the name of M/s Manish Nayyar. These companies are owned by contractors, who were given tenders for construction work in the Capital. But they have not yet been paid.

The contractors were to be paid from the Plan Budget allocation, which is given by the Delhi Government. This money is spent within a given time. The corporation always issues cheques after it receives money from the Delhi Government. It is a mystery how the Accounts Department happened to issue cheques when the account of the corporation was empty.

Mr Ram Babu Sharma, Chairman of the Standing Committee, which deals with all financial matters, said that this had not happened for the first time. “This type of hangama always occurs before the elections. The corporation is yet to receive Plan money from the Delhi Government. Once it receives the amount, all dues of the contractors will be cleared,” he said.

However, Leader of Opposition in the corporation Subhash Arya said that cheques were always issued after the corporation received the Plan money from the state government. If the Accounts Department had issued the cheques, it meant there was enough money in the bank account. “An inquiry should be ordered to find out that where the money has gone. If it is by mistake, strict action should be taken against the officials concerned,” he said.

He said that the entire corporation had gone bankrupt as not only the contractors but also the teachers and employees of the engineering departments had not been given their salaries. 


Health check-up comes in smart packages in Faridabad
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, August 12
It is an open secret that services in civil hospitals and health centres are nothing to write home about. Result: The patients, rich and poor alike, play into the hands of private clinics and diagnostic centres, which have mushroomed in the city and elsewhere in the district.

Street-smart and business-savvy as they are, these private centres are offering various check-up deals in a bid to entice the hapless and gullible patients. Such centres include some well-known diagnostic laboratories and clinics.

The check-up packages are available for all income groups — from Rs 130 to Rs 3,500 per person. A laboratory in Sector 16-A here has advertised that the check-up for diabetes (total profile) is available for Rs 410. Its ‘executive’ health check-up costs Rs 835 and ‘comprehensive’ health check-up Rs 2,020. Hmm… not bad! Another clinic in the same area has advertised that ‘heart check-up’ is available for Rs 350 “only”.

This competition might be healthy only to the extent it has helped reduce the cost of such packages. But since most of the people flocking to the civil hospitals are poor or ‘neck-above-the-water’ class, these centres are hardly any solace.

The shortage of staff, equipment, medicines and lack of proper care in the civil hospital has led to the mushroom growth of private hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, pathological laboratories and diagnostic centres. Many of these are located in the vicinity of the civil hospital and government health centres.

On Monday, several patients in Badshah Khan Civil Hospital made a beeline for private centres as they were told that there were no X-ray films. The civil hospital receives hundreds of patients, mainly from poor and middle class families, at its OPD daily.

“The state of affairs in the civil hospital has given a fillip to the private hospitals and clinics in the town. Patients are being fleeced by these centres,” said R. K. Gaur, a resident of Sector 15-A here. He said it was the duty of the government to provide basic and important medical services at the civil hospital. However, rampant corruption and inefficiency in the Health Department had led to the mess, he alleged.

He said that there was no proper sitting arrangement or a waiting hall for the patients at the civil hospital. “In the civil hospital here, the OPD has no ceiling fan and the patients have to sweat it out till they are called in.” Mr Gaur said. But this is good news for the private clinics, isn’t it?


Khurana to hit the road with five daily posers

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 12
After Deputy Prime Minister L. K. Advani kicked off Delhi Bharatiya Janata Party’s campaign by addressing the Parivartan Rally over the weekend, it is the turn of Delhi unit President Madan Lal Khurana to undertake the Parivartan Yatra.

BJP spokesman Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi today told mediapersons that Khurana would start constituency-wise campaign from August 17. The yatra would highlight the “misrule” and “corrupt practices” of the Sheila Dikshit ministry and the “criminalisation of politics”.

The yatra will cover all 70 Assembly segments. Union Urban Development Minister B. C. Khanduri and Union Tourism Minister Jagmohan will flag off the yatra from Mangla Puri in the Nasirpur Assembly constituency. The yatra will be undertaken in two rounds and will cover 20-30 km in each Assembly constituency.

Claiming that the Congress had not fulfilled any of the promises it had made in its manifesto in 1998, Mr Naqvi said the success of the Parivartan Rally addressed by Mr Advani suggested that “winds of change” were beginning to sweep the NCT of Delhi ahead of the elections later this year.

Mr Naqvi said Mr Khurana would pose five questions everyday to Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit. The contents of the chargesheet prepared by the Delhi BJP would also be highlighted during the campaign. “The problems of the NCT of Delhi have compounded during the past five years without redressal,” Mr Naqvi said at a joint news conference with Mr Khurana.

The party, he said, would hardsell the twin issues of statehood for the NCT of Delhi and the new Master Plan for Delhi 2021 in the run-up to the elections.


Panchayat demands just compensation from HUDA
Ravi S. Singh
Tribune News Service

Gurgaon, August 12
A panchayat of several villages adopted half a dozen resolutions, including one seeking adequate compensation for those whose agricultural land was being acquired by the Haryana Urban Development Authority for setting up New Gurgaon. In one of the resolutions, the panchayat, convened at Harsaru village, demanded a compensation of Rs 25 lakh in the first instalment for those farmers whose land was being acquired for setting up New Gurgaon. The villages in the case of which Section 4 of the Land Acquisition Act has been invoked are Harsaru, Gadoli, Kandsa, Mohammadpur, Narsingpur and Gadhi.

The farmers have complained that the state government has deprived them of adequate compensation in the past. According to them, the government in the National Capital Territory of Delhi was providing a much higher compensation. As Gurgaon is a part of NCR, the disparity in the amounts given by the Haryana Government and the Delhi Government was glaring and unjustified.

Also, a demand was made for the refund of money deducted from the compensation amount under the TDS head. The deductions have been made by the Income Tax Department. The farmers have contended that it is the government which has acquired their agricultural land. In such a situation the deductions by the Income Tax Department were unjustified. The panchayat has addressed this particular resolution to the Centre. The panchayat was also attended by the heads of Harasaru- 45 (Khap), Bhondakhurd-52 (Khap) and also the chief of the Jharsa-360 Sarvakhap.

The assembly also urged that the constructions undertaken in the city or in the villages in Gurgaon district on account of pressure of population must not be demolished. It is pointed out that in the city and in the villages the population had spilled beyond the lal dora limits. As the lal dora concept was conceived in 1880s, the rules needed to be amended to take into account the present developments.



Deficient service: Citibank told to refund money
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 12
A Delhi consumer court has ordered Citibank to refund Rs 12,292 along with interest and also pay the litigation cost of Rs 10,000 to a consumer for wrong cheque encashment.

“The encashment of two cheques obtained by Citibank from the complainant as a part of repayment of the loan is definitely a deficiency in service, especially when the loan was not sanctioned”, New Delhi District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum President L C Jain and members Janak Juneja and R Narayana said in their order. The New Delhi-based complainant, Shelters, had applied for a housing loan of Rs 4,40,000 in March 2002 and in pursuance of the same Citibank had collected from it a total sum of Rs 6,48,711 through cheques.

However, Citibank later turned down the loan application of Shelters without assigning reasons. Thereafter, the complainant asked its bank to stop payment of cheques to Citibank. But Citibank presented two cheques worth Rs 12,292 and got them encashed, Shelters alleged, adding that despite it having requested, the bank did not return the amount.

Shelters then claimed damages of Rs 1.5 lakh for being harassed and also demanded the refund of Rs 12,292. The bank contended that the loan was not sanctioned as the complainant had not fulfilled certain conditions.

The District Forum said presentation of cheques, meant for payment of equal monthly instalments, towards booking charges, particularly when the loan was not disbursed, amounted to deficiency in service.


Shop owner’s assailant lynched
Our Correspondent

Dadri (Noida), August 12
One of the three youths, who were fleeing after shooting at and wounding a medical store owner in broad daylight in Bisohada village in Dadri, was caught by angry villagers and beaten to death. His other two companions succeeded in fleeing.

The incident happened under the Jarcha police station area yesterday. The three youths came to the medical store of Krishna Rathore, originally a resident of Ghaziabad but who has been manning the store in Bisohada village for the past 15 years, at 1.30 pm and abused him. In the presence of neighbours who had assembled at the spot, one of the youths shot at Krishna, injuring him in the shoulder. Krishna soon collapsed in a pool of blood.

While most of the people ran helter-skelter after the firing, a few others chased the criminals with lathis. While two youths ran away, the villagers were able to corner the one who had shot at Krishna. But he threatened to shoot at the crowd, if they dared to touch him.

By the time, the number of villagers started swelling. One of the villagers threw a brick at the youth and he fell down. After this, it was a free for all. He was beaten with lathis till he died.

The lynched criminal has been identified as Balle, son of Satte Singh of Rajatpur village, while his companions were Bablu and Rakesh of the same village.



HVP aims to storm Congress bastion
Tribune News Service

Rewari, August 12
The Haryana Vikas Party is leaving no stone unturned for the success of its August 25 rally here. The rally is aimed at extending its influence in the traditional stronghold of the Congress party. The preparations for the rally has generated a discernible interest in wide ranging quarters on account of the high profile mass contact programme launched by the HVP’s general-secretary and South Haryana convenor of the party, Mr Anil Rao.

The consequential effect is a spate of political activities launched by the Congress leaders of the area and anxious “wait and watch” policy adopted by the ruling INLD in the state.

The strategy of the HVP appears to be to keep up the hype of its popularity and mass contact programme to galvanise support for the rally in Rewari, Bawal and Jatusana-the three Assembly segments in Rewari district. The mopping up act is to be done by the party’s secretary-general, Mr Surender Singh, from August 18. The HVP’s game plan is to unsettle the Congress’ apple cart. Rewari district is considered to be the cultural and political nerve-centre of Ahirwal belt consisting of Gurgaon, Mahendergarh, parts of Faridabad, Jhajhar, Rohtak and Bhiwani districts. According to observers, the HVP’s focus in South Haryana has another strategic angle. There are about 18 Assembly seats in South Haryana, which also encompasses the Ahirwal belt. This entire belt, especially the Ahirwal areas, has a homogenous voting pattern.

In the past three Assembly elections in the state, the voting pattern has been virtually en masse adoption or rejection of political parties with an exception: it has not shown penchant for INLD. In the 1996 Assembly election, the people of the area gave a ringing mandate for the HVP. It hopes to repeat that performance in the coming Assembly elections.


Fallout of waterlogging: Paddy, jowar
crops wither away
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, August 12
Amid reports of waterlogging in different low-lying areas of the district due to heavy rains during the past one month standing crops of paddy and jowar as well as vegetables have reportedly been destroyed.

The areas included about a dozen villages in Kharkhauda block, half a dozen villages of Kathura block, Dubeta, Bajana and Kailana villages in Ganaur block besides more than half a dozen villages in Gohana and Murlana.

The general complaint of the farmers of these villages has been that like previous years the Irrigation Department had not carried out the cleaning and desilting of the drains which used to carry the excessive rainwater from the low-lying fields.

As a fallout of the heavy rain, water has accumulated in the low-lying areas where the farmers had sown jowar for green fodder and had completed paddy plantation. As the waterlogging was deep for many days and crops remained submerged, it resulted in their withering away.

According to reports, the affected villages in Kharkhauda block include Kakroi, Rohat, Jharontt, Jharonti, Sisana, Rohna, Barona, Saidpur, Gopalpur, Halalpur, Nahra, Nahri, Jhinjholi etc. Major losses were reported in the creeping vegetable plants which get decayed within a few days if they remain submerged.

The sarpanch of Barona village, Mr Ram Phal, and the former sarpanch of Gopalpur, Mr Jagmel, said they would demand compensation from the government for the crop damages.

In Dubeta village also crops in an area of around 400 acres were submerged under two-three feet deep water as the Irrigation Department authorities had not cleaned and desilted the Dubeta drain before rains and rainwater from Bajana Kalan and Bajana Khurd villages had also spread to the low-lying fields in Dubeta, completely destroying the standing crops.

However, as the Chief Minister is scheduled to visit every village of Ganaur block from August 18 to 20 the authorities have reportedly pressed into service the

dewatering machines in the affected villages of the block. The Deputy Commissioner has also directed the Irrigation Department officers to ensure pumping out of the accumulated water in low-lying areas.


Cane growers castigate government for
liberalisation policy
Our Correspondent

Rohtak, August 12
The Sugarcane Growers Action Committee has severely criticised the Vajpayee government for its policy of liberalisation of agriculture which was harming the peasantry in a big way. The committee has urged the Centre to make allocation from the Rs 609 crore package for sugarcane growers to Haryana state also.

Sugarcane growers had on Monday staged a dharna at the Meham Co-operative Sugar Mills, Meham, to demand immediate payment of the sugarcane supplied to the mills during the season. The inordinate delay in payments to farmers has caused deep resentment in Haryana.

The dharna held on a call given by the committee was addressed by leaders of various political parties apart from office-bearers of the Kisan Sabha. Those who addressed the large gathering included former minister and Congress leader Anand Singh Dangi, CPM state secretary Inderjit Singh, district secretary Surender Malik, Lok Janshakti Party president Capt Shamsher Singh Malik, former MLA Harpal Singh and Mr Pradeep Singh of Kisan Sabha. The speakers condemned the state government for doing little to make payments to the farmers facing deep financial hardships.

The action committee has threatened to launch a massive march from Meham to the sugar mills’ gate on August 21 if the management failed to pay outstanding dues.


Stray cattle the biggest hazard on Sonepat roads
B. S. Malik

Sonepat, August 12
The biggest terror on the city roads these days are stray cattle that suddenly appear in the middle in the midst of speeding vehicles. A large number of cows and buffaloes, which should have been confined to the sheds in dairy colonies, are unleashed to roam about the streets or graze on the lush lawns of the parks and public gardens in various residential colonies. They urinate and defecate on the roads.

Besides these, the city’s roads have been invaded by donkeys and pigs, posing not just a traffic hazard but a serious health hazard as well. It is common sight to see cows, donkeys and pigs on the main roads. Insanitary conditions apart, the malodour is overpowering so much so that at times motorists stuck in traffic jams are seen rolling up their car windowpanes.

The residential colonies have not been spared either. Cattle squatting in narrow, unkempt and filthy lanes and bylanes in colonies create insanitary conditions as well as posing a problem for the vehicle drivers negotiating the lanes.

Dairy owners are seen in every street of the city and they keep their animals in violation of the municipal bylaws. Half-hearted efforts by the municipal council to catch stray cattle, ridiculously low penalty for getting an impounded animal free and lack of political will in ordering cattle owners out of residential colonies are the prime reasons for the continuing menace.

The number of stray cattle on the roads has increased considerably and the herds of stray cattle have made the roads their home during day and night. The employees of the municipal council are handicapped without the vehicles needed to impound the cattle. Similarly, the menace of pigs has assumed an alarming proportion, thanks to the failure of the authorities concerned to catch them.

Meanwhile, unauthorised hawkers and vendors have become a public nuisance as they create insanitary and slum-like conditions, traffic chaos and social hazards. It is necessary to evolve a clear-cut policy regarding the hawkers and their licensing.

In Ashok Nagar (kutcha quarters), a thickly populated area of the city, not a single squatter has been paying any licence fee to the municipal council and the staff do not dare to challan them. Similarly, a large number of stalls have come up along the boundary walls of the godown of the Food and Supplies Department in Model Town and the PWD (B and R) rest house. The condition outside the general bus stand is the worst, as the stalls and rehris are posing traffic hazards where the pedestrians cannot move freely.


PFA welcomes Bill banning cow slaughter
Our Correspondent

Gurgaon, August 12
The Haryana chapter of the People for Animals has welcomed the decision of the Cabinet committee that has decided to put up legislation for banning the slaughter of cows throughout the country.

The state unit has also demanded that the central government declare the cow as the national animal.

Mr Naresh Kumar Kadyan, Chairman of the state unit of the NGO, which is working for the welfare of the animals, said that the new Bill, the Cows Prevention of Cruelty Bill 2003, would soon be tabled in Parliament. It was matter of great satisfaction that almost all political parties had shown their inclination for passing the Bill.

After passing the Bill, the slaughter of cows would be held illegal and the export of beef would be banned. The decision of the Cabinet committee has been widely appreciated because the Hindu community considers the cow a holy animal and most members of the community worship the animal.

Mr Kadyan informed that the central government had already sought the views of the Attorney-General of the country for outright banning of cow slaughter in the country. It was expected that no problem would come up in the implementation of the rule, said the Chairman. He further added that the Centre had considered drafting a law as model legislation which the state government would have the option of following it.

Mr Kadyan has thanked Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee, Congress president Sonia Gandhi, Deputy Prime Minister Lal Krishan Advani, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Digvijay Singh, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati, Chairperson of People for Animals Maneka Gandhi and other political leaders who had raised the voice in favour of the Bill and supported the cause for banning the slaughtering of cows.

The state unit of the People for Animals has also suggested to the political leaders to declare the cow as the national animal as the cow is a much worshipped animal by a majority of the people living in the country.

He has also appealed to the masses, particularly the Hindu community, to come forward to help different organisations which were providing shelter and food for the abandoned cows.


She laboured for 32 yrs to keep her husband’s
memory alive
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, August 12
“My husband became a martyr in the 1971 Indo-Pak war and in his memory I have got a room constructed in the village girls’ school.” These are the words of Arootri Devi of Nangal Kalan village in Sonepat district whose husband Munshi Jatsi sacrificed his life in the Indo-Pak war of 1971. The occasion was the inauguration ceremony of the room by a social reformer, Mr Karan Singh Chauhan, of Atterna village at Nangal Kalan yesterday.

She narrated that just five years after her marriage her husband became a martyr in the war. After his death she returned to her parental village, Nangal Kalan, and started living with her father Majir Ahmad. At that time she took a pledge that she would construct a room in the village girls’ school.

“I worked as a labourer day and night, lived in rented accommodation, did not remarry because I wanted to fulfil the promise made at the time of my husband’s death. But it took me 32 years to save around Rs 60,000 for the construction of the room”, she said.

A cultural programme was also organised on the occasion. Everyone praised her for her sacrifices, commitment and dedication in realising her dream of constructing a room in her husband’s memory.


Jains to gather at Talkatora for ‘parivar parichay’
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 12
The All India Khandelwal Digambar Jain Mahasabha is organising the first ever All India Parivar Parichay Sammelan and Parivar Sneh Milan (family familiarisation programme) here on Friday, August 15, at Talkatora Stadium. Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit along with Union Minister of State Vijay Goel have consented to grace the occasion and extend their support to this grand social event.

“This Parivar Parichay Sammelan of such a large magnitude, happening for the first time in India, is being organised with the distinct dual objective of facilitating the selection of most appropriate and likeable grooms and brides and also to facilitate interaction among the Jains from all over the country by bringing them together on one platform on this auspicious occasion of Independence Day”, said Mr Santosh Sethi, working President, All India Khandelwal Digambar Jain Mahasabha.

This event will witness the coming together of over 4,000 most influential and affluent families belonging to the Jain Samaj from all across the nation lending their support to Parivar Parichay Sammelan and Parivar Sneh Milan.

The special highlight the sammelan is a live performance by Vandana Vadhera and a dance performance by Zenith, India’s number one dance troupe.

Special arrangements have been made at the venue for arranging private meetings between interested families. There will be more than six special conference rooms which will be allocated to the families for closed door meetings.

A donation stall will also be put up to enable the volunteers to donate money for various social activities undertaken by the Khandelwal Digambar Jain Mahasabha from time to time.


Licence for GK godown, drugs stored in Noida

Noida: The Noida police have confiscated a large quantity of medicines in a raid on a godown here, where they were stored illegally, and arrested the licence-holder. The licence was for a godown in Greater Kailash in New Delhi but dealer Rakesh Jain had stored these medicines in a factory here, violating the norms. The police had received reports that a number of boards, including those of Sakshi Poly Tube Co, Fauji-Jain Distributors and Kotikya India Pvt Ltd, were displayed on the premises of Plot No. A-35, Sector 8, and a large quantity of drugs were stored there illegally, SP City Vijay Bhushan said.

The Special Operations Group of the police was asked to inquire into the matter. The SOG under Sunil Pichori reported that there was something fishy.

When the police raided the premises, it was found that the licence was for a medical godown in Greater Kailash in New Delhi and that Rakesh Jain had stored these medicines here illegally. It also came to light that Rakesh Jain was the distributor of 16 medicines. He had been a manufacturer of medicines till 2002 but later obtained a dealership. OC


Body of 3 kids fished out from pond
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, August 12
The police have recovered the bodies of three children, aged between 10 to 12 years, who had drowned in the historic Surdass Park pond near Sector-8 here. These boys had gone for swimming in the pond on Saturday last and were untraceable since then.

According to information, local residents informed the police and their parents, resident of Subhash colony of Ballabgarh. The victims have been identified as Manjeet (12), Deepender (10) and Shakti (10). Their bodies were fished out of the pond this morning and sent for the postmortem examination.

Minister charges officials with callousness

Noida: The UP State Irrigation Minister, Mr Nawab Singh Nagar, accused the officials of the Noida Authority with “callousness” in regard to village ‘Abadi’ land and acquisition of land for development purpose.

It is learnt the officials of the Noida Authority failed to furnish complete replies to the minister’s inquiries pertaining to the ‘Abadi’ land and other land acquired in about a dozen villages recently.

In a meeting with the officials of the Noida Authority here yesterday, Mr Nagar reprimanded the Noida officials for their ‘apathy’ towards the basic issues troubling the farmers of the area. He directed them to attended to these issues with utmost care and responsibility.

It was learnt that the officials were unable to provide complete information regarding the land acquired and compensation paid, along with similar other problems bothering the farming community. Mr Nagar has asked the Noida Authority to provide him with complete data on these points by August 14. OC

Separate lane for rickshaw-pullers sought

Rickshaw-pullers in Noida took out a rally demanding a separate lane to be exclusively used by the Rickshaw-pullers. The rally started from ESI Hospital at Chaura village and culminated at the Sector 9 chowk. They claimed that due to the massive increase in traffic in Noida, they often become victims of rash and negligent driving.

Even as a number of schemes are prepared for the benefit of other segments of the society, nothing has been done for them, the rickshaw-pullers claimed. They demanded that separate lane should be constructed in the Noida immediately. The rally was lead by the chairman of ‘Lokyan Society’, Mr Rajinder Ravi. TNS

Woman crushed

Muradnagar (Ghaziabad): The wife of a PAC jawan was crushed to death near Hapur octori post when the scooter on which he was taking his wife and his children to the bus stand was hit by a bus. The jawan identified as Chandermani Sharma, and his two children were seriously injured and were rushed to the district hospital.

Chandermani is employed as a wireless operator in the 47 Bn of PAC in Govindpuram, Ghaziabad.

Another person lost his life when he fell from a moving tractor yesterday. OC


Sanitation drive to commemorate 
August Kranti Divas
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 12
The Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) has launched a sanitation-cum-cleanliness drive in the Capital to commemorate the August Kranti Divas. Giving this information, the Mayor, Mr Ashok Kumar Jain, said the drive has been launched in each of the 12 zones of the corporation so that the Capital could be given an aesthetic look. This drive was formally launched on August 10 from the historic Red Fort. It was launched at Shahdara North and South Zones yesterday.

He has also requested the citizens to extend full cooperation to the municipal employees and help in the endeavour to keep the Capital clean.

He said the Education Department is organising sports tournaments at zonal level so as to promote sports activities and ensure the all-round development of children studying in primary schools.

Meanwhile, the Leader of Opposition in the corporation, Mr Subhash Arya, said that the sanitation drive launched by the MCD from the historic Red Fort was inaugurated by the general- secretary of the Congress party, Mr Ahmed Patel, which was “unethical”.

Musical evening

The ‘Rashtriya Ekta Sangh’ will organise ‘Aie Watan Tere Liye’, an evening with film stars in the memory of martyrs at Talkatora Stadium on August 14. Cine star Aman Verma will present the programme. The other artists include Sangeeta Ghosh, Raju Srivastava, Arun Bakshi, Santosh Anand and Shankar Sahni.

The chairman of the ‘Rashtriya Ekta Sangh’ said that the organisation would also felicitate singers Mahender Kapoor, Narender Chanchal and Hans Raj Hans along with cricketers Virender Sehwag and Aashish Nehra and heart specialist Dr H.S. Rism.

Herbal medicine for cancer

A team of doctors from different systems of medicine including the Chinese medicine under the guidance of Dr. S. P. Kaushal of Vedic Cancer Centre has explored the role of herbal medicine in treating cancer, especially for those patients who become resistant to chemotherapy and for those who are not fit to receive chemotherapy and radiotherapy due to old age or weakness.

This team of doctors has identified various anti-cancer herbs and prepared formulations from their extracts. The herbal formulations are designed to attack cancerous cells without harming the body. The preparations can be taken along with chemotherapy and radiotherapy.


Rs 47.54 crore spent on development works

Sonepat, August 12
The Haryana Government has spent Rs 47.54 crore on the execution of development works in connection with the ‘Sarkar Aap Ke Dwar’ programme in Sonepat district. Stating this, the Deputy Commissioner, Mr Balwan Singh, told mediapersons here today that the district administration had completed as many as 994 development works and works on 389 others were in progress in the district.

Moreover, steps are being taken to execute another 720 development works under this programme in the district. During the first phase of ‘Sarkar Aap Ke Dwar’ programme, a sum of Rs 24.41 crore had been spent on the development works. OC



Four nabbed for duping businessmen
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 12
With the arrest of four persons including an advocate, the Economic Offences Wing today claimed to have smashed an organised gang, which used to dupe businessmen. The gang had duped several businessmen saying that their money could be doubled by using scientific methods.

The accused — Balkishan Saini (35), an advocate and a resident of Haryana, Chandan Singh (49), Vijay Pal Singh (19) and Sujan Singh (34), all residents of Bharatput – were nabbed based on a complaint from one such businessman.

The complainant, Pawan Kumar, told the police that he had given Rs 3 lakh to the key accused, Balkishan, for helping him in the allotment of a petrol pump.

Since the accused did not fulfil his promise, the complainant insisted on getting his money back but the accused delayed the payment by citing some reasons.

He later told Pawan that he knew some people who could double Rs 100, Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 by using scientific methods. Pawan reached near the Deer Park in Hauz Kaus to meet the said persons. When he reached the spot to hand over the money, the accused raised the alarm about police presence and ran away with the money.

Cell snatcher arrested

The West district police have arrested a person who used to snatch mobile phones from women. The accused, Ashok Kumar (19), a resident of Raghubir Nagar, was arrested while riding a motorcycle (DL-8S-9429) near Janak cinema last evening. One spring-actuated knife, one Yamaha motorcycle and two stolen mobile phones were recovered from his possession.

Train rams van, two hurt

Two persons were injured when 306 Ambala-Delhi passenger train rammed into a Maruti van at a level crossing between Guldhar and Ghaziabad stations on the Meerut-Ghaziabad section today afternoon.

The incident occurred at around 1.20 pm. The injured persons have been rushed to a nearby hospital and are reported to be out of danger.



Man murdered by unidentified criminals
Our Correspondent

Muradnagar (Ghaziabad), August 12
A person, identified as Meherdin of Abupur village, was strangled to death. Meherdin had taken his cattle to the jungle for grazing near the Jalalapur road. The culprit has not been identified. The body was sent for the post-mortem examination.

The murder has shocked the people in the area, who assembled at the police station and demanded the arrest of the killer.

Rashid, a brother of Meherdin, said the victim had no enmity with anybody and was a law-abiding person. The SO in charge of the police station assured the villagers that the culprit would be apprehended soon.


Present credit scenario not conducive to growth
of SSIs: Sikdar
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 12
The Union Minister of State for Small Scale Industries, Mr Tapan Sikdar, said that the present credit scenario was not conducive to the growth of small-scale industries. Mr Sikdar, who was inaugurating a national seminar on “Finance and Credit Needs of Small Scale Industries Sector” conducted by the All India Manufacturers Organisation (AIMO), said “employment for 4.4 million people cannot be achieved unless small-scale sector gets timely and adequate credit.”

Mr Sikdar said that in order to improve the flow of credit to this sector, the government has raised the limit of collateral free loans from Rs 1 lakh to Rs 5 lakh (upto Rs 15 lakh in deserving cases), raised the limit of composite loan from Rs 10 lakh to Rs 25 lakh, raised the limit of projects from Rs 25 lakh to Rs 50 lakh under National Equity Fund Scheme, opening 417 specialised bank branches in the country.

The minister further said that the RBI and the ministry had directed the banks and state governments to prepare ‘State Credit Plans’ for 60 identified (industrial) clusters for focused development. The banks have agreed to enhance composite loan limit from Rs 25 lakh to Rs 50 lakh, he added.

He said that Indian Banks’ Association had advised its member banks to adopt the interest band of 2 per cent above and below their PLRs for secured loans. Mr Sikdar emphasised the need for technological up-gradation in small- scale industries.

The Government has been implementing a credit linked capital subsidy scheme for technology up gradation under which 12 per cent capital subsidy is provided on loans advanced to the small scale sector by scheduled commercial banks in selected sectors, he said.


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