Friday, August 22, 2003, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S


54,000 fewer voters in Meerut!
Our Correspondent

Meerut, August 21
Senior administrative officials have swung into action following the disclosure that there are 54,000 fewer names in the voters’ lists in Meerut City and Meerut Cantt Assembly constituencies. Kithore and Kharkhauda segments have also registered a dip in the number of voters.

Divisional Commissioner Nepal Singh Ravi has now ordered an inquiry into the matter. He has also ordered a re-examination of the voters’ list in these areas by August 31.

Some religious and political organisations have made a representation to the Divisional Commissioner, voicing fears that the names of voters might have been omitted deliberately.

As per information available in the Election Department here, the amended voters’ list was published in Meerut division on July 30. While the number of voters had increased in the four other constituencies of Meerut district, a perceptible decrease was noticeable in Meerut City and Meerut Cantt. The total number of voters is down by 54,180 in both the constituencies, even though the population has been steadily increasing. Senior administrative officials are in a fix and unable to explain the decline.

Talking to the NCR Tribune, Mr Nepal Singh Ravi said that an intensive review would be undertaken in the four areas where a decrease of more than 4 per cent was recorded. While the City segment recorded a 12.40 per cent decrease in the number of voters, Cantonment showed a 6.70 per cent dip, Kithore 5.10 per cent and Kharkhauda 5.50 per cent.

Mr Ravi has sought detailed reports from the Sub-Divisional Magistrates. Meanwhile, several religious and political outfits have accused the government of deleting the names of voters belonging to their communities or parties. The political parties have threatened to move the court and petition the Election Commission, if the matter was not resolved. 



Rs 1 cr stamp duty evasion in Mother Dairy 
property deal
Parmindar Singh

Ghaziabad, August 21
The district administration has detected stamp duty evasion of over Rs one crore in a property transaction between Mother Dairy and RMI Foods Pvt Ltd. The land in question is located on the Hapur road near Pilkhua in Jain Industrial Estate.

The deal was clinched for Rs 14 crore, but the registry was made only for Rs 3.33 crore. A stamp duty case has now been filed against Mother Dairy in the court of the District Magistrate. However, the Trade Tax Department, which detected the fraud, has estimated the value of the plant, machinery and property at Rs 11 crore only and filed the stamp duty evasion suit accordingly.

RMI Foods had entered into an agreement for buying 30,000 square metre land in Chhijarsi village in Pilkhua from Mother Dairy Food and Vegetables Pvt Ltd, New Delhi, on August 10, 2000. The agreement for the purchase of the property worth Rs 14 crore was initialled on a stamp paper worth Rs 100 only.

According to sources in the District Magistrate’s office, in the sale deed, the value of the property was shown as Rs 3.33 crore. This has resulted in a loss of over Rs 1 crore to the state exchequer.

This was when RMI Foods had shown the amount payable as Rs 11 crore to three different banks from whom it had extracted guarantees.

This is not the first major tax evasion case in the district. In a case of land transaction near Choudhry Mode on the Ambedkar road recently, a stamp duty evasion of Rs 1 crore was detected.

Assistant Commissioner (Stamp) Ajay Kumar Goel had also detected a major stamp duty evasion in a transaction between Growth Techno and the GDA, it is learnt.



Rajasthan cops strike on Haryana turf
Our Correspondent

Rewari, August 21
In a case of alleged high-handedness, a Rajasthan Police team, in search of eight prisoners who had escaped from Behror sub-jail, picked up the president of the youth wing of the Bharatiya Samyukta Loktantrik Party Naresh Yadav and his two associates from NH 8 near Asalwas village.

Despite their protestations, all three of them, along with their Scorpio (HR 61 P HQT 8230) and two licensed rifles, were taken to the Shajehanpur police station of Alwar district, about 30 km from here, and lodged in the lock-up. A case under the Arms Act was registered.

The Rajasthan Police search party, headed by Mr Rajesh Meena, Additional Superintendent of Police (ASP), Bhiwadi, was scouring the area for the prisoners who had reportedly escaped on August 17. The party intercepted Mr Yadav’s Scorpio when he and others were proceeding to Bawal, after a meeting at Shahbazpur village.

At a press conference, Mr Yadav alleged that the ASP snubbed him when he showed him his I-card. He asked the ASP to have his antecedents checked from the nearby Kasaula police station, but the latter instead took them to the Shajehanpur police station in Rajasthan. There, a case under the Arms Act was registered, even though both the rifles were licensed.

They were released on bail by the Judicial Magistrate of Behror on August 18, following which he, along with his supporters, held a demonstration against the Rajasthan Police.

Later, he gave a written complaint to the Station House Officer of Rewari district, seeking registration of a case of kidnapping against the search party, which had forcibly picked him up from an area that fell in the jurisdiction of the Kasaula police station. Mr Yadav said that his political activities were giving anxious moments to the local Congress leaders, who might be behind the action.

He warned that if the “erring” police officials were not dealt with, they would be compelled to resort to direct action. His wife, Om Kala Yadav, has written to the DGP of Haryana, the Chief Justice of the Punjab and Haryana High Court and the Chief Justice of the Rajasthan High Court, urging them to issue a directive to the Rewari district police chief to take cognizance of the matter.



Attack on councillor at Town Hall: BJP seeks action
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 21
Irate BJP members of the MCD today demanded strict action against a senior officer whose henchmen reportedly attacked Vijender Gupta, Leader of Opposition in the Standing Committee, on August 19 at Town Hall, the headquarters of the corporation. The officer is reportedly involved in a corruption case being investigated by the CBI.

The Leader of Opposition in the corporation, Mr Subhash Arya, described the incident as an attack on democratic values. He said that the CBI had registered a corruption case in July 2000 against the officer for possessing disproportionate assets. Since the corporation is an autonomous body, the investigating agency sought permission for prosecution from the MCD for which the matter was brought before the Appointments Committee. On behalf of the BJP, Mr Vijender Gupta contended that permission should be granted to the CBI.

According to Mr Arya, the matter again came before the Appointments Committee with a plea for his exoneration; simultaneously, the Municipal Commissioner, Mr Rakesh Mehta, moved a proposal for his suspension.

The Congress councillors, in the last meeting of the corporation held on August 18, had proposed that both these proposals be referred to the Commissioner but this was opposed by the BJP members.

Mr Arya called for the intervention of the Lt Governor and demanded a thorough investigation into the episode. He also demanded that full security be provided to municipal councillors at the Town Hall. The BJP councillors will meet the Commissioner of Police to demand strict action against the suspects, he said.

Meanwhile, the Union Minister of State for Sports and Culture, Mr Vijay Goel, in a letter addressed to the Lt Governor, has demanded an inquiry into the whole episode, punishment for the culprits and making public the identity of the suspects. The attack was not on a particular person but it was on an institution, he said. If such attacks continued, how would an elected member be able to express his views, he asked.



Pesticide units: Bleak future
Bijendra Ahlawat
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, August 21
Pesticides are in the news again, but not for their presence in soft drinks. Rather, it is the pesticide industry, which is drawing attention to itself owing to the stiff dose of taxes.

According to the president of the Haryana Pesticides Manufacturers Association (HPMA), Mr Nand Kishore Aggarwal, the 30-odd manufacturing units in the state may be forced to wind up, if the state government failed to take note of the recent developments in this sector.

The Punjab Government’s decision to withdraw sales tax on pesticides has rattled the Haryana units, which expect a negative impact on the industry here.

Mr Aggarwal said that in view of the four per cent sales tax, local area development tax and VAT, the pesticides manufactured in Haryana would be priced out of the market. There would be no takers for the pesticides manufactured in the state. This situation, he claimed, would lead to closure of units and loss of thousands of jobs. Besides, the state government would stand to lose Rs 12 crore to Rs 14 crore annually as revenue.

The Laghu Udyog Association chief, Vidur Bhaskar, has supported the demand for scrapping of the 4 per cent sales tax, so that the state could be protected from “spurious pesticides brought or smuggled in” from neighbouring states.

Incidentally, the Madhya Pradesh Government had also abolished the sales tax on pesticides, providing relief to the farmers. It is felt that the sales tax on pesticides is not justified as the government has already withdrawn the ST on fertilisers.

Haryana produces pesticides worth Rs 375 crore annually and products worth Rs 50 crore are consumed in the state itself. The country’s major pesticide units are located in Gujarat, where a sales tax of only two per cent has been levied; also, there is no LADT. Due to the lower production cost, the demand for pesticides made in Gujarat is higher.

The HPMA has also asked the Haryana Government to abolish the tax on bio-compost, so that the organic fertiliser and organic food industry gets a boost. It is felt that the demand for organic foods, which are free of chemicals and pesticides, is rising across the country and abroad. The association has written to the chief minister and senior authorities in this regard.



Notorious murderer nabbed after encounter
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 21
The Crime Branch of the Delhi Police today claimed to have arrested a notorious criminal, Karan Singh, wanted in connection with several murders, following a brief encounter in the Alipur area of North Delhi late last night. The police said that no one was injured in the exchange of fire. Karan was carrying a reward of Rs 25,000 on his head.

A loaded country-made pistol and a motorcycle were seized from him. The suspect is being further interrogated to trace some of his alleged associates.

According to the Crime Branch officers, Karan Singh was intercepted in the Alipur area following specific information. On spotting the police, the suspect whipped out his country-made gun and fired at the detectives.

The sleuths retaliated and finally managed to overpower him.

The police said that Karan Singh was convicted of murdering Surender Singh of Seelampur in 1995 and sentenced to life imprisonment. Subsequently, he appealed to the high court and was released on bail in November last year.

While out on bail, he, along with his associates, reportedly murdered Pappu Pehelwan and Ashok in Shahdara, East Delhi, earlier this year. The police had been looking out for him since then.

The police said that the suspect was also reportedly involved in the murder of one Kale in Sampla in Rohtak district of Haryana last month. The Haryana Police have been informed of his arrest. Further investigations are continuing.



The Mars road show has just begun
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 21
Schoolchildren in the national Capital will have a rare opportunity to gaze at a celestial rendezvous — that occurs once in 1,00,000 years — with sophisticated telescopes.

Arrangements have been made to enable children to view this celestial feat and thereby develop a scientific temper. Telescopes would be perched on top of buildings of select schools, where children will be allowed to view the rare sight.

Beginning tomorrow night, children can view the astronomical event from Saviour Convent School, Paschim Vihar, through the telescopes stationed there. One of these is an eight-inch reflector robotic telescope that automatically tracks the movement of the stars as the Earth rotates on its axis, pointed out a member of the Science Popularisation Association of Communicators and Educators, an NGO, which will help the children observe the event.

Along with their parents and friends, children will be able to witness celestial wonders, including polar ice caps, dust storms and other features of Mars in the eastern sky.

Besides observation of the planet through telescopes, the NGO will also organise a multimedia presentation and exhibition on Mars as part of its ‘Mars Road Show’. The eight-day show, to be held from 7 pm to 10.30 pm daily, will move to the National Bal Bhawan on August 23 for government schools and general public, from where it will move to DLF School, Sahibabad, on August 24.

On August 25, it will be held at Ryan International School, Rohini; then, at Tagore International, Vasant Vihar, on August 26; at British School, Chanakayapuri, on August 27; at Delhi Public School, Mathura Road, on August 29; and at Vasant Valley School, Vasant Kunj, on August 30.

The NGO expects about 100 schools to participate in the show. 



Transformer cable thieves nabbed
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, August 21
With the arrest of three persons, the police claimed to have busted a gang of transformer cable thieves operating in the district for the past few months.
Superintendent of Police Paramjit Singh Ahlawat told mediapersons here today that the arrested persons had been identified as Gautam, Puleen and Bappi, all residents of West Bengal and residing in a rented house at Kabirpur village on the outskirts of the city. The police, he said, also solved about two dozen cases of transformer cable thefts committed by them in various areas of Sonepat, Rai, Murthal and Kundli.

A police party was patrolling the Sonepat-Bahalgarh road when the culprits were found taking transformer cables in a rickshaw. During the course of interrogation, the culprits revealed that they were members of a gang of transformer thieves.

Man commits suicide after stabbing wife, kid: Jhajjar: In a tragic incident, a man committed suicide after killing his wife and two-year-old kid in Malikpur village of the district last night.

According to information, Ramesh (30) was unemployed and running a tutorial institute in Lakhan Majra village. He was reportedly facing extreme financial hardship. According to the police, there might have been an altercation between the couple in the evening. Late in the night, Ramesh stabbed his wife Suman and son Ashish to death in bed and hanged himself from a tree outside the village. He was found hanging when villagers went to the fields in the morning. OC



BJP bid to consolidate hold over poll turf in Haryana 
Our Correspondent

Rewari, August 21
The BJP is all set to consolidate its electoral grip over all 10 parliamentary as well as the 90 assembly constituencies in Haryana.
An action plan in this regard was formulated during a three-day conclave of the top brass of the party held at Kaleshwar Dham, 50 km from Yamuna Nagar, on August 15, 16, and 17.

The meeting, which was presided over by the state BJP chief, Mr Rattan Lal Kataria, was prominently attended among others by Dr Harsh Vardhan, national vice-president of the BJP and in-charge of party affairs in Haryana, Mr Ram Pearey Pandey, state organisational general secretary of the BJP, Mr Krishan Pal Gujjar, leader of the Haryana BJP Legislature Party, all five party MPs of Haryana and other senior party leaders of the state.

Giving details in this regard at a press conference here, Mr Veer Kumar Yadav, state general secretary of the party, said that in the first instance the 2.75 lakh membership target of the party had been raised to six lakh which would be accomplished by September 15. This, he explained, would definitely strengthen the organisational base of the BJP in Haryana.

He further informed that to provide a practical shape to the action plan of brightening the electoral prospects of the party two high-level committees had been constituted. The one headed by Mr. I.D. Swami, Union Minister of State for Home, would comprise Dr Sudha Yadav, MP, Mr Fakir Chand Aggarwal and Mr Nar Dev Sharma. The other, headed by former state BJP chief Ram Bilas Sharma, will include all five MPs and four other senior party functionaries as its members.

He went on to say that the Swami committee would initially compile information regarding total financial assistance provided by the Union Government for various development projects in Haryana while the Sharma committee would chalk out the party’s electoral strategy which would mainly focus on prominent public interest issues.

Mr Yadav also informed that they would soon formally convey it to the Chief Minister that the state BJP wanted immediate withdrawal of the government decision about hike in fees in professional institutes as well as hike in bus fare, withdrawal of the VAT system and abandonment of its resolve to enforce the Casino Bill in public interest.

Besides, the party would organise three divisional-level meetings of prominent party functionaries at Rohtak (August 25), Gurgaon (August 26) and Karnal (August 27) in which guidelines regarding efficacious implementation of the action plan would be highlighted by Mr Veer Kumar Yadav and Mr Ram Pearey Pandey. In response to a specific question regarding poll alliance, Mr Yadav candidly said whether the BJP would contest elections single-handedly in Haryana or whether it would go in for an electoral alliance with any like-minded political party was virtually a matter which would be finally and completely decided by the Central Parliamentary Committee of the party.



Vidrohi seeks white paper on CM’s foreign tours
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, August 21
The president of the Haryana Pradesh Janata Dal (U), Mr Ved Parkash Vidrohi, has urged the Chief Minister, Mr Om Prakash Chautala, to issue a white paper on the expenditure incurred on his foreign tours so that the people could know what the state had achieved from these tours.

In a press statement issued here, Mr Vidrohi contested the claim of the Chief Minister that many multinational companies were inclined to set up units in Haryana. Not a single foreign company had so far set up any big industrial unit of which the state could be proud of, he said.

He alleged that on account of rampant corruption, lack of proper infrastructure and erratic power supply, many industrial units had been shifted out of the state during the past four years or so.

He said that in some cases large number of workers had been rendered jobless and they were struggling hard to earn their livelihood.

Mr Vidrohi also accused the Chief Minister of harassing the industrialists. 



MLA accused of issuing  fake election I-cards
Tribune news Service

New Delhi, August 21
Continuing with his tirade against MLA from Delhi Cantonment and Deputy Speaker of Delhi Legislative Assembly Kiran Chaudhry, a former BJP legislator on Thursday reiterated the allegation that the voters’ list in certain Assembly segments was tampered with and fake election I-cards issued in connivance with certain officials.

According to Karan Singh Tanwar of the BJP, the police arrested seven persons with fake I-cards, which were procured from the election identity card centre in Sadar Bazar. Mr Tanwar claimed that seven youths were known to a Youth Congress worker, who was also a confidant of Ms Chaudhry.

Mr Tanwar sought the intervention of the Election Commission (EC) to prepare a new voters’ list for the Delhi Cantonment Assembly constituency. He claimed that the names of several voters had been deleted from the list allegedly at the behest of Ms Chaudhry.

Seeking an inquiry into the discrepancies in the voters list, Mr Tanwar claimed an official had not only deleted about 500 names but also incorporated the names of about 1,600 bogus voters. He claimed the MLA and officials known to her were colluding to ensure his defeat in the Assembly elections later this year.



Ample power, but cuts galore to ruin one’s day 
Our Correspondent

Rohtak, August 21
Although there is a marginal difference between the availability and requirement of electricity in the district, the unscheduled power cuts have disrupted the normal life of the urban and rural consumers of Uttar Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam (UHBVN). The worst affected are the schoolchildren, office-goers, specially women employees and housewives.

The Chief Engineer, UHBVN, Mr R. K. Gupta, told NCR Tribune the availability of power was no problem. Against the requirement of 37 lakh units per day, the district was getting more than 35 lakh units, a deficit of less than 10 per cent. The Chief Engineer had no convincing reply when asked as to why the consumers were facing prolonged unscheduled power cuts then. He held the overloading of the sub-stations responsible for load-shedding.

Mr Gupta said the tie-line, connecting the 132 KV sub-station at Khokrakot with 33 KV sub-stations in Model Town and Sector-I, got overloaded as the transformers at these sub-stations were of low capacity. The issue of upgrading these transformers had been taken up with the nigam authorities.

The power supply was switched off invariably at 6 in the morning in the posh Sector-I for about an hour. This is the time when school children and teachers have to be ready for school. The load-shedding does not end there. From then onwards the consumers have to face unscheduled power cuts ranging from five to eight hours in a day.

Surprisingly, the power is switched off almost daily at dinner time and again at 10.30 pm and even around midnight. There are areas in the city where the residents have never faced a power cut. But the residents of Babra Mohalla, according to Mr Shanti Parsad Jain, have to face power cut for half an hour after every hour.

The situation is not different in the rural areas. The 94 villages in the district have been divided into two groups by the UHBVN for supply of electricity. Both the groups are supplied power on alternate days in the day and night. Against a requirement of 4.25 lakh units per day, the rural areas get 4 lakh units per day. But local constraints have adversely affected the power supply, says the Executive Engineer (Suburban), Mr A. D. Vashisht.

Describing the power supply in rural areas as inadequate, Mr Hans Raj Bajaj of Gugaheri village said people had to face the onslaught of mosquitoes during the night for want of electricity. Power is rarely available in the night with the cut stretching till 6 in the morning. The students have to use kerosene lamps for study at home. Kerosene, he said, was available in plenty in the fair-price shops in the rural areas.

The Chief Engineer, Mr R. K. Gupta, however, assured the situation would improve after the commissioning of the new 132 kv sub-stations being installed at Meham, Sampla and Maharshi Dayanand University. While the sub-station at Meham was likely to be commissioned in November next, the other two would become operational in December this year.



Thanks to proximity to Capital, crime 
thriving in Sonepat
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, August 21
Sonepat district is one of the most sensitive districts in Haryana as crimes like murder, smuggling of arms, liquor and loot have become commonplace because of its proximity to Delhi and UP. A report says there has been an all-round increase in criminal activities during the past one decade or so but the state government has utterly failed to increase the number of policemen in the district.

The total population of this district has crossed over 12 lakh and according to an estimate one police constable is guarding 1,050 persons. There are 13 police stations, 19 police posts and 14 police barriers in the district at present where the policemen are performing duty for 20 hours at a stretch. As many as 48 policemen are posted in the Police Lines. Moreover, at least 50 policemen have been put on VIP duty and for the security of the judicial and civil courts. Besides, several policemen have also been put on duty for smooth flow of the traffic in the urban areas as well as on the National Highway 1 and other state highways passing through the district.

There is one post of SP, one of Additional SP, three of DSP, 10 of inspector, 50 of sub-inspector, 150 ASIs, 176 head constables, 142 UGC and 171 police constables. However, the posts of an additional SP, nine Sub-Inspectors, one ASI, nine head constables and 87 police constables have been lying vacant for the past few years. Still the law and order and crime situation was fully under control in this city and other parts of the district.

The police authorities are keeping a strict watch on the activities of anti-social and anti-national elements in the district.


Assault by cops: Scribes threaten to launch stir
Vipin Sharma

Rohtak, August 21
Journalists in the district have warned the police administration that they would launch an agitation if a case of manhandling and threatening to kill was not registered against an Inspector and an ASI, who beat up two journalists during the elections of the Maharshi Dayanand University Non-teaching Employees Association here last evening.

According to information, Mr Radhey Shyam Sharma, Ms Raj Bala Sangwan and Mr Balraj Singh ‘Balloo’ were contending the election for the post of president. The polling process had been completed at around 4 pm and Mr Radhey Shyam Sharma was leading by 700 votes. Ms Raj Bala Sangwan was on the second position and Mr Balraj Singh, president of the association at present, was lagging behind on third place.

According to certain eyewitnesses, a candidate for the post of president, smelling his defeat, hatched a plan to get the election cancelled. He allegedly snatched the bundles of ballot papers from the election employees and threw them out of the window. Following the directions, his supporters started tearing them off. Soon a scuffle ensued between the supporters of different panels when they resisted the evil attempt.

Strangely, the candidate for the post of president easily escaped after throwing the ballot papers out and no policeman dared to check him. However, the cops on duty cane charged the people gathered there. Two newsmen, Mr Ashok Kaushik and Mr Shehnaj Sheoran, among a candidate for the post of vice-president in Radhey Shyam Sharma panel, sustained injuries and were rushed to the PGIMS. In a written complaint to the Registrar, Dr A. K. Rajan, several candidates for different posts in various panels demanded registration of a case against the erring candidate.

The manhandling with the journalists by the cops infuriated the journalists community, who held a meeting at Canal Rest House here. It was resolved at the meeting that the SSP, Mr Alok Rai, would be given 24-hour ultimatum to register a case against the erring police officials and suspend them. It was unanimously resolved at the meeting that all the government programmes and the official press statements would be boycotted till concrete action was taken in this regard by the police administration. Another meeting of the journalists to chalk out a strategy would be held here on August 23.

The president of Haryana Union of Journalists Virender Singh Chauhan, Mr Sanjiv Saini, district president, Haryana Patrakar Sangh, Mr Jagjit Singh, district president, Shramjivi Patrakar Sangh, among others attended the meeting. The meeting was chaired by Som Nath Sharma.



Delhi Book Fair to open a vast panorama for children
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 21
The Ninth Delhi Book Fair, which begins on August 23, will offer a wide range of books for children. To attract the youngsters are not just books from all over, but also free entry to the exhibition grounds.

As many as 280 leading publishers from Asian countries, including China and SAARC nations, will display their books, with 500 titles for children, in the fair which assumes special significance as UNESCO has declared New Delhi as the World Book Capital this year.

The focus on young readers is aimed at promoting reading culture among children in the face of television and Internet invasion, India Trade Promotion Organisation (ITPO) Chairman J Vasudevan said while addressing the mediapersons here today.

Adequate attention has been given to the regional languages so that the totality of Indian literary experience is conveyed to visitors hailing from different parts of the country.

The fair will offer books on fiction, non-fiction, academic and technical subjects, textbooks, reference books, classics, dictionaries, encyclopaedias and religious literature, it was pointed out.

Mr Vasudevan said that besides China and SAARC countries, publishers from Korea, Philippines, Iran and Saudi Arabia will also participate in the fair that will be a treat for the children.

President of the Indian Federation of Publishers Anand Bushan, Mr Bhushan, who was also present on the occasion said the Forum of the Asia Pacific Publishers Association (APPA) will also present the award of best children’s book published in SAARC countries on this occasion.

There will be 10 per cent discount on all the books, he said. Mr D N Malhotra said his Federation wants books to reach more and more people as they were the most inexpensive tool to empower citizens.

This year’s focus on children’s book was based on the belief, ‘Catch them young’, as books can mould the life at an early age.

Mr Vasudevan said that besides books, a wide range of stationary and decoration items was also being displayed by 70 participants in the fair. He announced that a permanent book pavilion would be set up in the Pragati Maidan complex to display and sell books in various Indian languages.



A new look awaits Pragati Maidan 
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 21
A new look awaits the Capital’s hub for holding fairs and exhibitions, Pragati Maidan. The place that hosts national and international events will soon acquire a 21st century look.

A Rs 480 crore project has been envisaged for reconstruction of the complex which will be done in two phases, the India Trade Promotion Organisation Chairman (ITPO), Mr J. Vasudevan, told mediapersons here today.

He said that under the project a number of halls would be demolished and new ones with modern facilities constructed in their place, including a new convention hall. A few old halls would be retained but retrofitted, he added.

The complex would also have an underground parking. The project would be implemented in two phases, with the first phase starting next year, said Mr Vasudevan. He said an architect had been contacted to draw up a preliminary construction plan and more architects would be involved in the project at later stages.

The 31-year-old complex came into being to hold the country’s first Asian Trade Fair, ‘Asiad 72’. Since then it has been among the most sought after and well-known venues for holding big events, mostly international trade fairs.



National War Museum is still a dream
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 21
Conceived long back in 1960, the National War Museum is still a dream with the selection of the site and allotment of land for the purpose hanging fire for past four decades.

The land allotted near Dhaula Kuan in Delhi was not cleared from the environmental angle and another piece of land offered for the museum in the Capital was rejected as it was insufficient by the Service Headquarters, Defence Minister informed the Lok Sabha today in a written reply. The land is to be allotted by the Ministry of Urban Development and Poverty Alleviation. The Defence Ministry has already sent a proposal to it for a suitable plot. Efforts are afoot to finalise the issue of land and proceeding with the construction of the museum, which will also be a War Memorial.

The Minister of State for Railways, Mr Bandaru Dattatraya, told the Lok Sabha that the Delhi Police recently detected a case of fake tickets in Delhi, in which four outside persons were arrested and prosecuted. He added a few isolated cases of fake rail tickets have been detected and suitable action has been taken under relevant provisions of law. Regular surprise checks are conducted by ticket checking staff and the vigilance department in association with the Police to check the sale of fake tickets.



Buildings affected by Metro project to be repaired
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 21
To counter the stress, which over 3,000 buildings are likely to undergo because of the Delhi Metro project, the Central Building Research Institute (CBRI) has been asked to help repair and retrofit the structures near the central line of the underground Metro tunnels and also in the vicinity of the stations.

The work would involve study of distress in such buildings, mainly in the Hauj Qazi area, besides suggestions on repairs to ensure stability during the tunnelling and de-watering process, a report in ‘CSIR News’, a newsletter of Council of Industrial and Scientific Research said.

The International Metro Civil Contractor (IMCC) will pay Rs 2.654 million to the Roorkee based CBRI for scientific inputs, it said.

CBRI will also assist IMCC in preparing a contingency plan to deal with an emergency during the course of the underground activity, which was expected to cause extensive stress to the old buildings, it added.

The report said the job is complex and a variety of construction materials like bricks, stones, planks and rolled steel sections are seen as one goes from ground to the upper floors with least concern about the structural safety aspect.



Scholarships worth Rs 6.12 lakh sanctioned 
for 1700 students
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, August 21
The Education Department has sanctioned yearly scholarship of Rs 6.12 lakh to 1,700 students in the state who have figured in the merit lists of urban and rural areas in the examination results of 2002-2003 academic year of middle and high school classes.

According to information, the merit list issued by the department included 850 boys and 850 girls from schools in urban and rural areas.

Out of the 128 in the merit list from Sonepat district, 38 boys and 30 girls are from the rural areas. Similarly, 53 out of 104 in Ambala district, 21 out of 34 in Panchkula, 40 out of 106 in Bhiwani, 34 out of 116 in Faridabad, 96 out of 136 in Gurgaon districts, 35 out of 72 in Hissar, 30 out of 88 in Jind, 52 out of 96 in Karnal district, 44 out of 94 in Kurukshetra, 20 out of 42 in Kaithal, 35 out of 72 in Fatehabad, 50 out of 95 in Jhajjar, 40 out of 98 in Mahendragarh district, 50 out of 95 in Rohtak district, 42 out of 84 in Rewari district, 32 out of 60 in Sirsa district, 46 out of 88 in Panipat district and 54 out of 92 in Yamunanagar district are from the rural areas.

Phones on the blink: Following a technical fault in the telephone sub-exchange at Palri village for the past three months, thousands of telephones in Khewra and other surrounding villages are repeatedly being rendered out of order. Despite several complaints to the BSNL authorities, the fault has so far not been rectified and moreover the situation has worsened during the past one month.

According to Pramod and Sanjay Kumar of Khewra village, the subscribers have recorded their complaints on the computers of Ambala and Sonepat telephone exchanges but without any progress. “Even the local BSNL employees admit some technical fault in the exchange but they do not rectify it,” they said and informed that the villagers had planned to lodge their protest with the General Manager at Sonepat.



Boy run over by car
Tribune news Service

Faridabad, August 21
Three persons, including a minor boy, have been killed in separate incidents since yesterday. A six-year-old boy identified as Bhisma was run over by a speeding car in the DLF area here yesterday. The victim died in the hospital. Two other deaths were due to electrocution.

In another incident, a labourer, Briyesa, died due to electric current in Telpat Colony. One Satvir of Neemka also got electrocuted. While he was trying to check a fault in the power line at Neemka village.

Traffic held up for 3 hours

Sonepat: Traffic was held up for more than three hours on the Sonepat-Meerut inter-state road, after a loaded vehicle overturned near Palra village, about 15 km from here, yesterday.

According to a report, a large number of vehicles remained stranded till the normalisation of the traffic.

The affected areas were Palra, Garh Meerakhpur, Basodi, Baroli, Khewra, Jajal, Jhundpur and Jagdishpur.

On receiving the information, the police arrived on the spot and diverted the traffic to other routes.

It is learnt that the driver of the overturned vehicle had tried to evade official checking. He lost control over the vehicle, when he was trying to take it back, resulting in overturning. The police have registered a case.

Phones in coma

A large number of telephones remained out of order in the Subzimandi and Old Housing Board Colony. Subscribers said that despite several complaints, the authorities had not repaired the faults, existing for over a fortnight now.

Yoga camp at MDU

Rohtak: “Yoga is not only a form of physical exercise, it is a school of thought which is a part of our ancient culture.” This was stated by Mr MS Deswal, a senior yoga trainer in the department of psychology, Maharshi Dayanand University, after inaugurating a 10-day camp for yoga training today. He said that a person could exercise total control over mind and behaviour by yoga.

Kuchipudi show

The DAV Public School and Spic Macay jointly hosted a performance by renowned classical dancer Guru Jai Ram Rao Vanshree, who performed Kuchipudi dance, here today. The danseuse began by explaining the culture and tradition behind the dance. She demonstrated various dance expressions to the students. Rhythm, expressions and actions go hand in hand, she said.



Consumer-friendly power bills

New Delhi: The North Delhi Power Limited (NDPL) on Thursday introduced “consumer-friendly” billing, which will enable a consumer to glean from the bill key information like break-up of consumption and energy charges as per tariff.

Chief Executive Officer of NDPL Anil Sardana told media persons a consumer would be able to understand and calculate his exact energy charges as per different slabs. “The new bill will also give the energy consumption pattern for the last six months in a tabular format to help consumers compare their power consumption pattern,” he said. TNS



DTC hits Blueline: Head Constable killed
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 21
A Delhi Police Head Constable was killed after a DTC bus, in which he was travelling last night, hit a Blueline, near Andrews Ganj bus stand in South district.
The victim, Gope Kumar, in his early forties, was posted at the District lines in the South district. The police said that he was sitting on the rear side when the DTC Mudrika bus (no DL-1PA 7969) hit a stationary blue line bus.

Kumar, who was thrown out of the bus, was immediately rushed to the AIIMS where he was declared brought dead.

The driver, Mahipal, resident of Sangam Vihar, was arrested and a case of causing death due to rash and negligent driving has been registered against him.

Man robbed of Rs 2 lakh: Unidentified assailants in a Maruti today robbed a person of Rs two lakh, while he was on his way to his office from the bank on a scooter, in the Vasant Kunj area of South-West district.

The police said that the victim Gurmeet, an employee of Fashion Times in Okhla, after withdrawing money from the Punjab National Bank, near the airport, was returning back when the incident had occurred. The assailants, who were in a Maruti car, hit the victim’s scooter from the side and snatched the bag with Rs two lakh.

The police have registered a case of robbery and have launched efforts to trace the whereabouts of the absconding persons.

Bus dacoity foiled: With the arrest of five persons the NorthEast district police today claimed to have foiled a bus dacoity bid by a gang on Wednesday. The police also claimed to have recovered a country made pistol, one live cartridge and four knives from their possession.

The accused, Nafis alias Sagar (23), resident of Dilshad Colony, Imran alias Chand (21), resident of Brahampuri, Aslam alias Miraj (24), resident of Sudama Puri Chowk, Sarfraj (21), resident of New Seelam Pur and Naim (22), resident of Brahampuri, were arrested when they assembled behind the Red Cross hospital for planning the dacoity.

Auto thief nabbed: A notorious auto-thief was arrested by the West district police. Nine vehicles, seven Maruti Cars, one Mahindra jeep and one Maruti van, were recovered from his possession.

The police, during a routine check, asked the accused to stop the car he was driving. But the accused tried to speed up the car and was soon apprehended by the police.

He was identified as Uma Shanker (36), resident of Hari Nagar, and involved in more than 17 cases of autolifting in Delhi and Rajasthan with his associates Rahul, Naresh and Bobby.



Trader dupes handloom manufacturers
Our Correspondent

Panipat, August 21
A trader has allegedly duped several handloom manufacturers of Panipat and has escaped without making payments to the tune of several lakh rupees.
The manufacturers have now decided to lodge a complaint against Khem Chand, who, they alleged, escaped without making payments for handloom products borrowed from them.

The manufacturers said that he had taken a show room in the local Bhim Gauda market and was residing in a rented accommodation for the last about 12 years, when he had started trading with the handloom manufacturers of the town. However, on one night, he packed his luggage and disappeared.

On inquiring, they found that the show room was empty and he has left his residence also.

The manufacturers then conducted a meeting here, on Tuesday, and decided to inform the police about the matter. 


Home | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Editorial |
Business | Sport | World | Mailbag | Chandigarh Tribune | Ludhiana Tribune
50 years of Independence | Tercentenary Celebrations |
123 Years of Trust | Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |