Wednesday, September 3, 2003, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S


Lethal ‘halwa’ arrives by post, floors
wrestler’s family
Ravi S. Singh
Tribune News Service

Gurgaon, September 2
Little did Dheeraj “Pehalwan”, twice gold medallist in the Commonwealth Games and once in the South Asian Championship, know that he would one day be floored outside the wrestling court by a heady mix of deceit and manipulation.

The wrestler, a native of Jharsa village near here, received a parcel containing ‘halwa’ on last Thursday. The sender was an anonymous “well-wisher”, purportedly from Faridabad. The wrestler’s father, Bhartu, perhaps had some premonition when he cautioned the family members and dissuaded them from eating it.

The ‘halwa’ was tucked away in one corner of the kitchen in the joint family household. When the kids returned home after school in the afternoon, they were famished. Dheeraj’s nephews, Neeraj (13) and Aashis (11), had a spoon each of the enticing halwa. Dheeraj’s wife and his sister-in-law also joined in. Now, even Dheeraj could not resist the temptation and nibbled at it, before leaving for the market.

A few minutes, Dheeraj felt dizzy and vomited. At home, all those who had eaten the halwa also started vomiting. All the family members, including Dheeraj, were rushed to a hospital. While others were discharged after first aid treatment, Dheeraj’s nephews were referred to Batra Hospital in Delhi.

Neeraj, who did not vomit, was the worst-hit; the poison had travelled to the heart. He succumbed en route to Batra Hospital. The condition of Aashis stabilised later.

The police have registered a criminal case under Section 302 and 328 of the IPC. According to the police, the address and phone number given by the sender are fictitious.

Dheeraj, who is employed with the Railways, says that he cannot imagine anyone taking revenge in this manner. His father, Bhartu, says that it is possible that someone was jealous of the growing stature of the family. Preetam Thakran, daughter of Bhartu, is a recipient of the Arjuna Award and is a former captain of the Indian hockey team.

The residents of Jharsa are shocked and outraged at the incident. When this correspondent visited their house this morning, he found the entire village in mourning.



HC sets deadline for amenities in MCD-run schools
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 2
The Delhi High Court today asked the authorities to provide basic amenities in all government and MCD-run schools in the Capital within four months and constituted a five-member committee, headed by the Education Secretary, to ensure compliance of its order.

A Bench, comprising of Chief Justice B. C. Patel and Justice A. K. Sikri, gave this direction on a PIL filed by Social Jurist. The petitioner has alleged that thousands of students studying in MCD and NCR Govt-run schools were being denied basic facilities like buildings, blackboards, playgrounds, drinking water, toilets and electricity.

The other members on the committee are Director (Education) of Delhi Government, MCD Commissioner, Chief Engineer of Public Works Department (PWD) and Chief Executive Officer of Delhi Jal Board (DJB).

The Bench asked the agencies and departments concerned to file their affidavits within a week, giving an undertaking that they would provide physical infrastructure in all state-run schools within four months. It has fixed February 4 for the next hearing.

During the hearing today, the court was informed that 357 state-run schools had pucca buildings and 251 schools semi-pucca buildings while 21 schools were running under tin sheds.

The Bench observed that in the absence of such facilities, studying in these schools would become torturous for children and added that they deserved a better deal, the absence of which led to dropouts.

Citing constitutional provisions, the Bench said it was for the state to provide basic amenities to them, so that they did not drop out of schools.

Claims belied: BJP

The Delhi BJP has said that the tall claims of the Government of NCT of Delhi had been belied by the strictures passed against it by the courts in the matter of deteriorating standard of education.

Referring to the directions issued by the Delhi High Court today, Leader of Opposition in the Delhi Legislative Assembly Jagdish Mukhi said the government had failed to provide basic amenities like rooms, blackboards etc to students.

“This is not the first time such strictures have been issued against the government or the MCD. In the Antyodaya Anna Yojana, the government failed to identify the persons living below poverty line,” he said.



Outstation student can tip the scales
Jatinder Sharma

Rohtak, September 2
The Delhi University Students Union (DUSU) poll fever is not confined to the Capital. It has also gripped other cities in the National Capital Region, in the run-up to the September 5 polls.

The impact of the high profile campaigning is being felt in Faridabad, Rohtak, Gurgaon, Bahadurgarh and Sonepat. Posters of candidates are platered on buses and at other vantage points, to draw the attention of the sizeable number of students commuting to various colleges of Delhi University.

The traditional foes, the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) and the National Students Union of India (NSUI), are trying to fend off a serious challenge from the formidable combine of the Students Federation of India (SFI) and the Chhatra Lok Janshakti (CLJ). Also in the fray is the recently formed Indian National Students Organisation (INSO), which enjoys the backing of the INLD.

The predominant feature, however, is the general indifference of the students to an otherwise important elected body. It may be due to the failure of the ABVP and the NSUI in addressing crucial issues, be it academic or otherwise.

Some students can no longer hide their anger. They openly allege that the winning candidates of both the NSUI and the ABVP in the past had been misusing this platform solely to advance their personal political interests rather than working for the redressal of the problems confronting the student community. The SFI-CLJ alliance is training its gun mainly at the ABVP for the commercialisation and saffronisation of education, ushered in by the BJP-led central government. The combine opposes the NSUI for the failure of the Congress in effectively countering the retrograde agenda of the BJP.

SFI’s Akhila Singh, a presidential candidate, says that the combine has successfully transmitted its message of reorienting the DUSU to make it a vibrant student body. This, it hopes to achieve by infusing a genuine democratic content. Rohtak-born Akhila Singh (SFI) and Shiksha (CLJ) had secured a sizeable number of votes in the last elections, even though they had contested separately. The combine has taken recourse to cultural forms of campaigning this time. It has been organising street plays besides reaching the grass-root student by addressing classes.

The students in Delhi are said to be sceptical about the INSO, which mostly comprises defectors from the NSUI. They find it ridiculous that the INLD government, on one hand, is not lifting the ban on student union elections in Haryana while, on the other hand, it is participating in the DUSU elections. Moreover, the credentials of the outfit have come under a cloud as it is openly opposing the anti-fee hike agitation in Haryana. It is also opposing the students’ agitation in Bhiwani and Jind districts, launched against the government’s decision to affiliate the colleges in these two districts with the newly established Ch Devi Lal University, Sirsa. By throwing its hat in the ring, the INLD is ostensibly eyeing the forthcoming Assembly elections in Delhi and the rural vote bank on the periphery of the national capital.



Khurana smells a rat in withdrawal of land allotment
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 2
The Delhi unit of the BJP has demanded an investigation into the “withdrawal” of allotment of land by the Government of NCT of Delhi. The government had yesterday sought re-evaluation of the No Objection Certificates (NOCs) issued to the allottees.

Delhi BJP president Madan Lal Khurana today told mediapersons that he had also written to the Lieutenant Governor for putting on hold the appointments made in the Department of Health. It was a ploy to collect money for the elections, he alleged.

Mr Khurana said the government had recommended the allotments in 291 cases but withdrew them suddenly. “It raises doubts about the entire episode. Why were the allotments withdrawn in haste? Something is fishy somewhere,” he asserted.

He said he would meet with Deputy Prime Minister L. K. Advani and demand an inquiry by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). The entire episode, he alleged, reeked of criminal negligence and demanded the Chief Minister’s resignation on moral grounds.

The Delhi BJP president has also written to the Lieutenant Governor about the 155 appointments cleared by the Department of Health. He claimed that interviews were conducted and candidates selected within 24 hours of inviting the applications.

The letter stated that such appointments in the Department of Health be stopped as they had been made by ignoring the rules and provisions. Also sought was an inquiry into the appointments of Group D employees as they were “meant to raise funds for the elections”. 



Box with Rs 20 lakh vanishes in bank branch
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 2
The Corporation Bank authorities have reported to the police that a cash box containing Rs 20 lakh was missing from its Ajmal Khan Road branch in Karol Bagh in Central district.

The police said that two persons — R R Srivastav and G Venkateshwaralu — were in charge of the cash. They took out two boxes from the strong room in the basement; each box contained Rs 20 lakh. Peon Ved Prakash carried the first box containing Rs 20 lakh to the ground floor of the branch. When he returned with the second box, he found the first one missing and immediately informed the bank authorities. The security guard of the bank, Ram Dhari, told the police that no one had carried the box outside the bank; the police suspect the hands of insiders and feel that the missing box is still on the premises. The police also questioned the senior clerk, but could not extract any valuable information. A case of misappropriation has been registered.

Encounter near pump

The Delhi Police Crime Branch today claimed to have arrested two notorious criminals for their alleged involvement in several cases of murder and dacoity after a brief encounter near Indian Oil petrol station in the Narela area of North-West Delhi last night.

The accused, Surender alias Kala (22), resident of Sonepat and a wanted criminal in Haryana, and Ashok Kumar alias Sunny (25), resident of Sampla in Jhajjar, were apprehended by a special team of the Crime Branch.



Anti-corruption drive: Haryana cops bite
more than they can chew
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, September 2
Have the Haryana Police bitten more than they can chew? They have launched Operation Choksi, reportedly to check corruption in public life. As a part of this exercise, one might see cops giving “lectures” on corruption and how to prevent it.

Preventing corruption could be a tall order, considering that cops are themselves perceived to be steeped in it. Even if they aren’t corrupt, do they have the wherewithal to weather the storm — political and official – which such a drive could raise?

Quite unmindful of all these, the Faridabad police have initiated the drive in the areas under their jurisdiction. During the drive, the police will hold meetings, seminars and debates on corruption and plaster the city, at least public places and educational institutions, with posters carrying their message.

The police department has been told to crack the whip on drug traffickers, carriers of illegal arms, bail jumpers and other criminals, besides giving “lectures” to common man on the menace of corruption.

However, there are not too many takers for the theory that the cops could do this job. According to Rajkumar Gaur, general secretary of the Haryana Janata Dal (U), it is ridiculous that the police department, which itself has become a symbol of corruption and inefficiency, should give sermons to the people.

It seems that Haryana Police have a penchant for launching such drives to gain cheap publicity, he says. It is the duty of the police to take action against lawbreakers and arrest criminals, but the efficiency of the cops in checking crime is an open secret, he adds.

He says the law and order situation in Faridabad has worsened; not a single day passes without a robbery, loot, murder or theft being reported. Vehicles are being stolen daily in the town. The police department should think of ways to instill a sense of security among the residents instead of launching worthless drives.

Social activist K. L. Gera says that the police department is making a fool of itself. The policemen should first be trained to deal with the common man. If cops can refurbish their image, then local people would certainly co-operate.

Dr Lal Singh, a physician residing in Sector 16-A here, says no drive would be successful unless the authorities remove the lacunae in the system. The police department has a long way to go before it can launch an anti-corruption campaign, he adds.



DPCC rally for rollback of hike
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 2
The Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee (DPCC) has demanded the rollback of the hike in the prices of petrol and diesel. Supporters of the party on Tuesday held a sit-in and courted arrest near the Parliament Street police station.

DPCC president Prem Singh said the hike was the one of the steepest in recent years. Carrying placards and chanting anti-BJP slogans, the demonstrators demanded the resignation of Union Petroleum Minister Ram Naik.

The Congress activists assembled at Jantar Mantar and proceeded towards Parliament House but were stopped by the police near Parliament Street Police Station. They also courted arrest as a mark of protest.



Gurgaon girl attends American
Presidential Classroom
Abhay Jain

Gurgaon, September 2
Radhika Bedi, a resident of the city, was among the students from all over the world selected to attend the ‘American Presidential Classroom - Future World Leaders Summit’. The summit was held last month in Washington DC.

Students were chosen from a competitive pool of applicants based on their outstanding academic records and leadership skills. Presidential Classroom Scholars have the privilege to examine Washington DC and the American Government beyond the marble building.

During the seven-day programme, they met Washington insiders, including Members of Congress, presidential appointees, senior military officers, top business leaders and journalists. They also got to observe the US Congress in action, visited the renowned sites of the nation’s Capital and the White House (by special invitation).

Radhika Bedi told the NCR Tribune that “one of the most exiting benefits was that we worked and debated key issues with other young leaders from the US and other parts of the world”. However, there is one big regret for her. “I was supposed to be having breakfast with US President George W. Bush but in the last moment, he had to suddenly leave for Africa and I missed this wonderful lifetime opportunity for which I was waiting for. Anyway, there is always a tomorrow and I’ll work hard to get what I missed,” she said.

The `Future World leaders Summit’ programme brings together student leaders from around the world to explore issues in international relations, diplomacy, political influence and the changing world economy. In the past few years, there have been a few students from India who attended the summit and returned to India as Future World Leaders. Radhika spoke on Indian President Dr A. P. J. Abdul Kalam for three minutes at the summit.

Founded in 1969, Presidential Classroom is a nonprofit, civic education organisation. Its mission is to bring outstanding senior high school students to Washington DC, to see US domestic and international policy made in front of their eyes. Presidential Classroom prides itself in providing its participants direct access to policy-makers and Washington insiders in the highest levels of the public and private sectors.

There were a total of 125 students from all over the world, of which 12 students were from India. They came from schools in Mumbai, Delhi, Ahmedabad and Ootty. Radhika was the only girl from Ryan International School, Delhi.



Cong all set to corner govt in Assembly
Our Correspondent

Rohtak, September 2
Mr Bhupinder Singh Hooda, leader of the Opposition in the Haryana Assembly, has announced that the party would introduce adjournment motions on at least five major issues in the Assembly session to be held from September 9.

Addressing his first press conference after the mishap at Hardwar yesterday, Mr Hooda said the Congress would raise the issues of “hollow” package for sugarcane growers recently announced by the central government, farmers’ dues pending with the co-operative sugar mills, police atrocities against scribes in Rohtak, excessive fee hike in colleges and universities and the “deteriorating” law and order situation in the region. He said a meeting of Congress legislators had been convened on September 3 to finalise the party’s strategy during the Assembly session.

Referring to ‘Jal Yudh’ (fight for water), Mr Hooda said rallies had been held at Jhajjar and Kaithal in this connection and the next rally would be held at Rewari on September 23. He denied that there were differences within the party on the issue of the ‘Jal Yudh’ and the SYL canal.

Commenting on the hike in prices of petroleum products, he said every section of the society would be adversely affected by the hike. He alleged that the power supply position, especially in rural areas, was miserable and the villagers had been getting power only for nearly four hours in a day.

He said the recent statement of the Union Disinvestment Minister, Mr Arun Shourie, regarding the amount invested by foreign investors in Haryana during the past two years had exposed the false claims made by Haryana Chief Minister Om Prakash Chautala.

The Congress leader also expressed gratitude to the people for their best wishes which, he said, protected him from the tragedy at Hardwar and helped him recover soon.



Greenpeace gets assurance on bio-safety norms
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 2
Greenpeace activists surprised Dr Manju Sharma, Secretary, Department of Bio-Technology (DBT), with a house-call this morning, bearing baskets of indigenous potatoes and a banner stating “GM potatoes no solution to malnutrition”. Dr Sharma refused to accept the 100 kgs of desi (local) kufri variety of potatoes but did commit to follow the stipulated procedures for bio-safety assessments before the GM potato is considered for approval.

Greenpeace has been questioning the need to develop risk-laden Genetically Modified (GM)-variety of potato to “meet the protein requirements of schoolchildren”, (as Dr Sharma had claimed) when existing indigenous potatoes varieties like the kufri have far higher levels of protein, as do other traditional sources of protein such as pulses, soya etc. Dr Sharma has been publicly promoting the GM Potato, proposing that it be served as part of the mid-day meal scheme to schoolchildren, allegedly to solve the problem of their malnutrition. But as Greenpeace activists pointed out, GM Potato contains only 1.6 per cent protein, while Indian potato varieties contain between 2.0 and 2.6 per cent protein. (Almost 100 per cent more than the GM Potato) Other foods such as Wheat, Rice, Maize and Soya bean contain far more protein and other nutrients.

“We brought these potatoes to Dr Sharma’s doorstep to make it evident to her that malnutrition exists due to mismanaged distribution and lack of purchasing power, not because of inadequate quantities produced. Protein-rich foods have existed for years and yet our children are undernourished. What is even more outrageous is that the scientist responsible for cultivating the GM potato, Prof Asis Datta, is also a member of the DBT, which means this expedited approval process smacks of nepotism besides scientifically unsound practice,” says Divya Raghunandan, GE campaigner, Greenpeace India.

“They’ve been hoping to force-feed us GM potatoes, and we are here to exercise our right to say no to GMOs”.

Greenpeace is also questioning the lack of transparency surrounding the approval process. “According to bio-safety regulations, every GM crop must undergo small-scale field trials conducted by the Review Committee on Genetic Modification, after which, if successful, it shall undergo large-scale field trials before the GEAC even considers approval,” says Divya Raghunandan. “Dr Sharma’s previous statement was that the GM potato would be marketed in six months, indicating that they had not taken into account the time GEAC requires to complete its bio-safety assessments. Now she has assured the media that they will follow due process, and that field trial data will be made public. We will wait for her to make good on these promises”.



PHDCCI stresses need for special economic zones
Tribune News Service

Gurgaon, September 2
The president of the PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PHDCCI), Mr P. K. Jain, underlined the importance of special economic zones and free trade zones to make the industry cost competitive in the present environment the world over.

Speaking at a seminar here organised by the Gurgaon Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) on the “Hamriya Free Zone” (HFZ) located in Sharjah, Mr Jain pointed out that China, with a long-term perspective, has put in a lot of money for infrastructure development, particularly in their SEZs and high-tech parks. The availability of world class infrastructure is one of the main reasons for China attracting Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), he added.

Several members from Sharjah related to the HFZ, including its Director-General, spoke on the occasion highlighting the virtues of the specific zone promoted by the kingdom in Sharjah. The HFZ is a specified zone for the entrepreneurs to set up their base or branch office.

Mr Jain, who also has his business base here, said that the economic zones would have in place infrastructure facilities like power, roads, water and sewerage so that the industry did not face any problem. This was critical for the success of any zone anywhere in the world.

Realising the urgent need for providing world class infrastructure for exports to meet this target, the Centre had also come up with various schemes. The policy on SEZs, announced in 2000, projected that attention was being given by the Centre to promote the concept and development of SEZs in India. This was indeed essential, as these zones had significantly contributed to the export efforts of several countries, he added.

Mr Jain, who was the main speaker, said that in recent times, the changes in industrial capacities and capabilities of some developing countries like India had led to the emergence of a new dynamic force in the promotion of South-South trade and economic co-operation.

Indian industry was increasingly looking outwards for growth and investments and was now more confident of expanding its horizons and stepping into the international arena. Increasingly, Indian companies were investing abroad and setting up manufacturing facilities all over the world, he added. The members of the delegation from Sharjah said India was fast emerging as an industrial hub.



Motorists go through hell on Sonepat roads
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, September 2
It is the same old story. The pathetic condition of the Sonepat’s roads continues to cause nightmares to the people of the city.

According to a report, the biggest culprit for the abominable condition of the roads is the drainage system. The road dividers have also become dangerous for the motorcyclists and pedestrians due to lack of blinkers. Most dividers are death-traps for small vehicles. This is basically because of lack of coordination between the engineering wings of the official agencies like Sonepat municipal council, the PWD (B&R), the Huda and the Public Health Department.

The official agencies, on the other hand, blow their own trumpet. They claim that the city roads have a high degree of riding quality and some of them are the best-maintained roads in the state. The bad condition of the roads, particularly during the monsoons, does not deter these agencies from making such hollow claims.

Most of the roads are rough and structurally weak. The depression bumps and uneven surface, which the city roads have become synonymous with and are notorious for, have another lethal addition—open manholes..

Sonepat continues to carry the burden of dubious distinction of recording the highest number of road fatalities among the cities of the state. The number of vehicles plying on the Sonepat’s road has risen manifold.

The fast growing population of vehicles along with the burgeoning industrial goods traffic, has taken a heavy toll on the road development.

During the past one year, a number of official measures had been taken to expedite the development of roads and highways in and around Sonepat. However, in reality less money was spent on the maintenance and construction of roads than had actually been sanctioned—compromise being made on the quality of material and thickness..

Meanwhile, the erratic power supply has led to the indiscriminate use of high power generators by shopkeepers, traders and bankers as well as the owners of the commercial establishments all over the city, aggravating the twin problem of chemical and noise pollution. And the government which spends crores on popularising the need to save the environment remains insensitive to the menace.



Man faces the music for duping Gaushala
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, September 2
The executive committee of the Dharmarth Gaushala of Sisana village has reportedly penalised a person of collecting donations in the name of Gaushala by issuing fake receipts.

The committee has imposed a fine of Rs 51,000 on him. He has to clean the Gaushala for a week. His face would be blackened and then he has to seek pardon from the panchayat.

According to information, one Anoop got a receipt book printed in the name of Rashtriya Janata Dhararth Gaushala, Sisana and started collecting donations.

An emergency meeting of the executive committee of the representatives of 56 villages was then convened on Monday. It was presided over by the Dahiya Khap Pradhan, Ram Phal Dahiya and Gaushala president, Tika Ram.

In the meeting, Anoop was reportedly found guilty of collecting donations on fake receipts.

After day-long deliberations, the committee asked the accused to pay a fine of Rs 51,000 within 10 days and clean the village Gaushala for one week.

Though a decision was also taken that the face of the alleged accused would be blackened and he would be taken around the village on donkey, the idea was dropped.

The committee said that if anyone was found guilty of indulging in such practices, he would be fined Rs 1 lakh and ex-communicated from the society.

The committee also resolved that if anyone was interested to open a new Gaushala, he has to take prior permission of the general body of 56 villages.

The committee cautioned the villagers that many anti-social elements have been found indulging in collecting donations in the names of Gaushalas and the people should bring such malpractice in the notice of the committee.



Three mowed down in sleep
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 2
A trailor, whose driver lost control of the vehicle, ran over five persons sleeping on the pavement of Ring Road in Kirti Nagar in West Delhi, killing three of them on the spot and injuring two others last night.

The incident occurred while the trailor was heading towards Mayapuri. The driver lost control soon after crossing the Raja Garden flyover. It ran over the victims sleeping on the pavements at Ring Road, Kirti Nagar.

The police said that one of the victims has been identified as Mangru (32) while two injured, who were admitted to Deen Dayal Upadhyay Hospital, have been identified as Vijay Kumar and Lal Chand, all belonging to Uttar Pradesh.

The driver of the truck, bearing registration number HR-15-11320, is absconding and a case of rash and negligent driving has been registered against him.



Plot to loot liquor vend, five held
Our Correspondents

Sonepat, September 2
The Civil Lines police arrested five youths while they were planning to loot a liquor vend near the ITI here last night.

According to a report, the youths were identified as Sonu of Kalupur village, Raj Kumar and Bijender of Balia (UP), now living in Gian Nagar, Rambir of Bandepur village and Rajoo, alias Mustafa, of Eight-Marla Colony of Sonepat.

The police also recovered some arms from their possession.

Kidnapped girl rescued

The Ganaur police have recovered a girl allegedly kidnapped by two youths on July 18 from Ghasauli village in this district.

According to a report, the police have also arrested the youths in this connection. The girl was medically examined by a doctor of the local civil hospital.

The police have registered the case against the youths on the complaint lodged by the father of the girl. Further investigations were in progress.

Probe into sarpanch’s deeds sought

Residents of Shahpur Turk village held a demonstration in front of the Deputy Commissioner’s office here yesterday demanding a high-level probe into the irregularities and malpractices of the sarpanch of the village in the execution of development works. They also submitted a memorandum to the DC in this regard.

Meanwhile, residents of Mohalla Kot called on the Deputy Superintendent of Police (HQ) here yesterday and demanded a probe by a higher official into the case of dowry harassment registered against the husband and other members of the in-laws family by a married woman.

The residents alleged that the parents of the woman had got several thousands of rupees by blackmailing the husband and other members of his family. The DSP assured the agitating residents that he would look into the case.

‘Stop issuing permits to autorickshaw owners’

Rohtak: The Haryana Pradesh Autorickshaw Kalyan Sangh has appealed to the district administration to stop issuing new permits to the autorickshaw owners to check the problems of traffic congestion and pollution in the town.

In a statement here today, Mr Tasvir Singh Tank, president of the sangh held the district authorities responsible for the problems of traffic congestion and pollution by issuing new permits to the autorickshaw owners.

He cautioned the district authorities that it would be difficult for the residents of the town to drive on the roads if the authorities continued issuing new permits. He said the number of autorickshaws in the town had increased manifold during the past few years aggravating the sufferings of the residents.

Rally against ‘misrule’ of Chautala govt on Sept 4

Faridabad: Residents of Palwal subdivision of the district have decided to stage a demonstration on September 4 in protest against the ‘misrule’ of the state government and the local administration.

Stating this, the MLA from Palwal and a former minister of Haryana, Mr Karan Singh Dalal, told the ‘NCR Tribune’ today that the it would be a massive demonstration and would be led by him. A memorandum would be also submitted to the Deputy Commissioner.

He said the Chautala government had failed and people had been fed up of ineffective policies and the misrule.



Info kiosks at DDA offices
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 2
To reach the consumers more effectively, the DDA has decided to put up information kiosks at Vikas Sadan and Vikas Minar. The kiosks will help create the facility for dissemination of information available in the DDA datebase, including allotment status and payment schemes.

While six of the eight kiosks will be installed at the Reception Hall in Vikas Sadan, two will be installed in Vikas Minar. Through these kiosks, the public will have access to the desired information.

The kiosks will have touch screens, where users can access information by touching the pictures on the screens. The screens will not have accessories like a mouse or a keyboard.

Book on vibrant India

Dealing with the issue of decline of ethics and morality in various aspects of our polity, Mr M M Luther’s book, ‘Building a Vibrant India’ was recently released by the Vice-President, Mr Bhairon Singh Shekhawat.

Speaking at the book release, the Vice-President said there is a need to infuse a sense of values and ethics in our body politic. The need is for promoting awareness among the people and ensure greater transparency in the governance, he added.

The book has contributions from the people who have achieved excellence and eminence through their intellectual honesty and transparent integrity, these include Mr Shivraj Patil, Mr P A Sangma, Justice P B Sawant and Mr N N Vohra among others.

Dense carpeting work

The All India general secretary and Deputy Leader of Opposition in the MCD, Mr Onkar Singh Thapar, inaugurated the dense carpeting work on road number six, seven and 10 in Virender Nagar from his councillor fund. The work was begun in the presence of Rachhpal Singh Pheruman, representatives of Virender Nagar Vikas Parishad and other BJP-Akali workers.

The president of Virender Nagar Vikas Parishad, Mr Jagdish Rai Gaba and general secretary, Loveley Kohli and other prominent persons of the area welcomed Mr Onkar Singh Thapar’ for the dense carpeting work of road.

Traffic awareness camps

Namrata Education trust, Basti Vikas Kendra, near JNU Campus today organised road safety awareness camps at various schools of this area with the help of the transport department of Delhi.

According to the secretary of this trust, Mrs Namrata Singh, ‘nukkar natak’ was the main attraction of these camps. Through these nataks, the students were educated on the sense of traffic discipline. Students were also awarded on the occasion for their outstanding performances. This trust has been engaged in such activities for more than 7 years. Besides, it is involved for the all-round development of women and children. OC



Cleanest city a ‘joke’

New Delhi, September 2
Chandni Chowk MP and Union Minister of State Vijay Goel said that felicitation of the Delhi Government with the cleanest Capital Award is a joke on the people of the Capital.

During the rule of the Congress Government, the Capital is turning into a slum and filth mounds. Mounds of filth are collected at many places due to which people are disturbed. The level of improvement of cleanliness is not at all visible any where, he said.



Kidnapping foiled, five held
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 2
With the arrest of five accused, the North West district police today claimed to have averted a kidnapping. The suspects were identified as Sanjay Sigroha, Amit alias Sonu Khati, Rajesh Kandera, Sonu alias Anand Dabas and Ramesh. The police recovered a loaded country-made pistol, three knives, a rod and a few medicines in the shape of vials of fortwin, phenergan and nitrazepam tablets with syringes.

During interrogation, they confessed that they were plotting a car jacking in Narela to kidnap the son of a businessman, police said.

In another case, the police arrested Sonu alias Bonda and Vijay Kumar and worked out eight cases of car stereo thefts and have recovered property worth more than Rs 1 lakh including six stereos, five amplifiers, CD player, TV screen and speakers etc. They were arrested from sector five, Rohini, the police said.



Liquor vend death: Cops under fire

Sonepat: A large number of people from Mahavati, Hassanpur, Chirashmi and Rajlu Garhi villages held a demonstration in front of the office of the Superintendent of Police here yesterday to register their protest against the alleged police move to convert the death of a youth, Naresh, in a liquor shop on August 28 into a case of suicide. The demonstrators shouted slogans against the police. OC



Atlas Cycle gearing up to meet future challenges
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, September 2
Detailing the increase in the sale of bicycles in the past few years, Mr Vikram Kapur, the newly appointed president of the Atlas Cycle Industries Limited, told mediapersons here today that new ventures had been set up in Tanzania, Zambia and Iran.

He said the products of the company, which was set up in 1951, were extremely popular in these countries. He also claimed that the company had been exporting its products to other foreign countries such as the USA and the UK.

He also said the company has developed 15 new models in the past three months in order to keep pace with the changing demands of the customers.

The company, he said, was contemplating the manufacture of new models, which would suit the needs of the poor customers. Mr Kapur further disclosed that the company had been spending crores of rupees every year on advertisements so as to boost the sale of its bicycles in the market.

Referring to the increase in the cost of bicycles, he pointed towards the massive increase in steel prices in the market. It was unprofitable for the company, he said, to use the highly expensive substitute material in the manufacturing process. If such material is used the prices of the bicycles would rise automatically, and would hit the sale of the bicycles. Mr Kapur also rejected the suggestion to use plastic instead of steel in the manufacturing process, as it would reduce the strength of the bicycles.

Emphasising the need to invest in research and development, he said the company planed to go ahead with the manufacture of new models in order to attract new customers.

He also claimed that the export of the bicycles had gone up during the past four decades.

Referring to the programmes for the welfare of the people, Mr Kapur said that a trust has been set up for carrying out the welfare programmes in Sonepat and Delhi. He said that a school and a hospital were functioning in this city, which have attracted large number of students and patients. He said that the company would take further steps for the expansion of the school and the hospital in the near future. Mr Ved Singh Malik, a former Haryana minister and Mr P. N. Sinha, chief general manager of Atlas Cycles were among those who were present during the press conference.

Meanwhile, the Atlas group of industries has undergone a major restructuring process. Amongst the new set-up, the charge of its mother plant has been taken over by Mr Vikram Kapur (president), Mr Rajiv Kapur (joint president) and Mr Angad Kapur (vice-president). Mr Kapur informed that all efforts were being made to meet the new challenges and sought the cooperation of the employees.



40th Indian Oil Day observed

Noida, September 2
The 40th IndianOil Day was observed at the Pipelines Division Head Office at Noida on September 1, 2003.

Mr A M Uplenchwar, Director (Pipelines) addressed the employees of Pipelines Division on the occasion.

He stated that strengthening the presence of Indian Oil in the field of pipeline network across the country, improving operational parameters, the quest for efficiency and cost control to improve the bottomline are some of the works taken up with vigour.

IndianOil has reached this year a momentous milestone of 40 years of existence (1964-2003) with unprecedented growth that few could have foreseen. India as a country and IndianOil as a company have been synonymous for strength and stature and IndianOil set a brisk pace of progress that helped India achieve impressive growth.

It has a proven ability to stay as the lone Indian Company for nearly 10 years continuously in the Fortune’s Global list of 500 reputed companies worldwide. This year IndianOil has become one among the top 200 companies in the world by improving our listing at 191. Indian Oil Corporation was formed by the merging of IndianOil Company Ltd. and Indian Refineries Ltd. on September 1, 1964.

Maj. S C Agarwal, Executive Director (Projects) administrated the IndianOil pledge to create value for shareholders and commitment of employees to respond to all customers within and outside the organisation with promptness and courtesy. TNS


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