Saturday, September 6, 2003, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S


BJP to give 50 pc seats in Delhi to youngsters?
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 5
The BJP’s central leadership has decided to field youngsters in 50 per cent of the seats in the forthcoming Assembly polls in Delhi.

Even as opinion in the party veered round to the need for infusing fresh blood, sharp differences surfaced in the Delhi unit over the choice of prospective candidates from among the office-bearers.

The decision to field youngsters had been taken at a meeting of Delhi BJP’s core group, chaired by party’s national president Venkaiah Naidu, at the party headquarters here, sources said.

Party spokesman Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi later told reporters that Delhi unit president Madan Lal Khurana, campaign committee chairman V. K. Malhotra, Pramod Mahajan, Sahib Singh Verma and Vijay Goel were present at the meeting. While Delhi unit president and former chief minister Madan Lal Khurana exuded confidence about the prospects of the party in the coming elections, Mr Naidu is understood to have underscored the need for unity in the party and warned against infighting.

The chairman of the BJP’s Delhi Unit Election Campaign Committee, Vijay Kumar Malhotra, will now hold a meeting with party’s national general secretaries, Pramod Mahajan and M A Naqvi, to make an initial assessment about candidates for the Assembly polls. A decision will also be taken in the meeting on the prospective candidates from among the office-bearers. Besides fine-tuning the poll strategy, the meeting would discuss allocation of election-related responsibilities, the sources said.

Mr Naqvi said they had reviewed the preparations for the elections and discussed how to step up the campaign. The party had undertaken the Parivartan Yatra and was mobilising the cadres, he said. Unlike the last time, the party was taking particular care to project a united front. The meeting, Mr Naqvi added, was a part of the regular review.


Khurana challenges Sheila to file suit
Tribune News Service

Madan Lal Khurana
Madan Lal Khurana

Sheila Dikshit
Sheila Dikshit

New Delhi, September 5
Delhi BJP president Madan Lal Khurana today said that he was willing to contest the defamation notice served on him by Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit and challenged her to file a “suit,” so that he could bring out the “facts”.

Ms Dikshit had yesterday served Mr Khurana with a legal notice, seeking a public apology for levelling allegations of corruption against her.

“I also need an opportunity to place the facts before the people about the large-scale corruption in the handing over of Rs 105 crore to the two private distribution companies, contrary to the rules,” he told mediapersons, and added that he had evidence to prove that.


For all the hype, only half the students turn up in DUSU polls
Tribune News Service

Few takers for electronic voting
Few takers for electronic voting. — Tribune Photo

New Delhi, September 5
Supplications, freebies and promises notwithstanding, elections to the Delhi University’s Students Union recorded a modest turnout of about 45 per cent. Students of 52 colleges affiliated to the DUSU cast their ballots amid intensified security arrangements and last minute wooing.

The voting, which began at 8.30 a.m. in the morning, concluded at 11.30 a.m. for the morning colleges; it resumed at 4 p.m. and concluded at 7 p.m. for the 13 evening colleges. “According to estimates, between 40 to 45 per cent students participated in the polls, which went off peacefully without any complaints of bogus voting and rigging. In some areas of South and Outside Delhi the polling was as high as 60-65 per cent”, said the Chief Election Officer, Prof. Rajiv Khanna.

The West, the South and the outer Delhi regions recorded higher polling compared to the North Campus. The atmosphere in most colleges was an amalgam of anxiety and excitement with candidates putting up a brave front. The day clearly belonged to the voters who were pursued and entreated to provide “support” through the “vote”.

While most colleges witnessed similar scenes, Miranda House was not only much cleaner and quieter, but also tried its hand at electronic voting. “The girls are casting their votes through the ballot paper, but this year we are also trying out electronic voting. We have set up three terminals where the girls can cast their votes, but these votes will not be counted”, pointed out a volunteer. The computers, however, did not seem to go down well with the girls, who seemed happier crossing the coloured ballot sheets. “The girls are not very enthusiastic, only a handful volunteered to try out the process”, said one such student. Entry in all colleges was restricted to bonafide students. A few colleges like Hindu, Hansraj and Vivekanand even barred mediapersons from entering the premises.

The university’s monitoring teams will submit their reports later in the day. The Vice Chancellor, along with the senior officials, also inspected various colleges.

Referring to the interference of political parties in the DUSU polls, the VC, Prof. Deepak Nayar, said it was “unfortunate.”

Students stabbed

Just when the students and the law enforcement agencies had called it a day, reports trickled in of two students of PG DAV College clashing with another group of students near Ashram Chowk. The two students – Rakesh Kumar and Abhishek — were attacked with sharp-edged weapons in the back. They were reportedly supporters of the newly formed Indian National Students Organisation. Taken to AIIMS, they were discharged after being given first aid. A case has been registered and the police is hunting for three assailants.


HDFC Bank taken for ride, cheated of Rs 35 lakh
Our Correspondent

Noida, September 5
Two cheats hit it on a splendid idea. They set up a housing society, procured housing loans worth Rs. 35 lakh from the HDFC Bank in the society’s name and then disappeared.

The police are now trying to nab the cheats. According to Sector 20 police, Madhukar Sharma of D Block in Sector 26 and Sharad Sinha of J Block in Sector 41, Noida, had both applied for a housing loan from the HDFC Bank branch in Sector 18. The application said that they wanted to buy a house in Alfala Cooperative Society in Ganga Shopping Centre in Sector 29, Noida.

The bank asked them to complete all formalities and the paper work. Madhukar Sharma, the police said, presented himself as the project leader at HCL Compact, who was purportedly drawing a monthly salary of Rs 54,000. He was able to furnish a salary slip, too. Sharad Sinha impersonated a production engineer of Super Cassette Industries. Madhukar had sought a loan of Rs. 20 lakh while Sharad had applied for Rs. 15 lakh. After the loans were approved, the HDFC bank had transferred Rs. 35 lakh in the name of Alfala Cooperative Society on January 24, 2003. Both the cheats had given the HDFC bank post-dated cheques for repayment of loan installments. Both the cheques had bounced later.

When the bank made inquiries, it learnt that there was no office of Alfala Co-operative Society in Ganga Shopping Complex. All the documents were found to be fictitious. When the society’s account was subjected to scrutiny, it was learnt that the account was being operated by Madhukar and Sharad, who had withdrawn the entire loan amount. Realising that they had been conned, the HDFC bank manager, Ajay Saxena, lodged an FIR with Sector 20 police station, Noida. The investigation is on.


Ex-judge gets regular bail on health grounds
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 5
The Delhi High Court on Friday granted regular bail, on health grounds, to former Judge Shameet Mukherjee, who is an accused in the DDA land scam case.

Mukherjee’s interim bail, granted on June 4, was confirmed by Justice SK Agarwal after CBI counsel AK Dutt stated he would not oppose the bail on health grounds.

Mukherjee, the first judge ever to be arrested, was on interim bail on account of his wife’s medical condition. The CBI had filed four FIRs in the scam since March 26 and arrested 15 persons.

The CBI, seeking cancellation of his interim bail, had charged Mukherjee with trying to hamper the investigation in the case besides influencing a prosecution witness.

Investigators alleged that after being released on interim bail on May 12, Mukherjee tried to influence prosecution witness SA Narayanan.

Two advocates, who are close associates of the former judge, allegedly asked Narayanan not to divulge anything against Mukherjee to the CBI. One of the advocates even offered a part-time job to Narayanan, the CBI had claimed.

Saying that the former judge had violated conditions imposed by the High Court at the time of granting him interim bail, the CBI had opposed Mukherjee’s application for regular bail.

There was further likelihood that through his “associations and friends” he may try to influence other witnesses in the case, the agency added.

It also said that the petitioner had been charged with gross criminal misconduct and he had sufficient resources and assistance at his disposal to look after his ailing wife.


Where officers and citizens are monuments of patience
Komal Vijay Singh
Tribune News Service

Badarpur, September 5
Government officials, including law enforcers, are not known to be polite and courteous to the public. In turn, the common man rarely evokes an image of calm, control and discipline. The fact that you cannot pigeonhole people, whether they be the much maligned government servants or the recalcitrant public, is more than apparent at Government Boys Senior Secondary School at Badarpur.

This school is the designated location for South Delhi district, where people can get themselves photographed for their elector’s I-card.

At a glance, it seems there are no fidgety voters in the district: Both villagers and the educated elite can be seen standing in neat arrays like well-disciplined troops. If any odd member gets restive, for which one must blame the sultry weather, the policemen can be seen reassuring them that the wait will soon be over. It is gratifying to watch these men in uniform lending a patient ear to all queries, at times shepherding the diffident ones to the right counter.

Equally pleasant is the conduct of the government officials on duty here. There is no shilly-shallying, chitter-chatter and plain indifference that people have to generally reckon with. Smilingly, the formalities are completed. As the forms are handed over, those sitting at the window explain without fuss how they are to be filled. Two important looking government functionaries can be seen ensuring everything is in order. Without being overbearing, they ask the people standing in the queues to be patient and give directions to speed up the process. Inquiries revealed that the two ubiquitous officers were the SDM/ Electoral Registration Officer, Mr R. K. Meena, and the Assistant Returning Officer, Mr R. P. Kukreti. The prospective voters can be seen filling the forms assiduously. Through with the preliminaries, they take their positions in another queue for depositing the forms. If the forms are in order, the applicants are given a number for the photo session.

Then follows another long, patient wait in another queue. Finally, the voter’s card is in hand. As the notice issued in public interest by the Chief Electoral Officer, Delhi, Mr Arun Goyal, proclaims, they are empowered citizens now. And, as he says, “Election cannot be viewed as an isolated event, but is a part of a holistic process for promoting democratic governance.”

This is how things ought to function in a citizen-friendly system. This is what the founding fathers of the largest democracy in the world must have envisioned.


Students, teachers falling prey to heart disease
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 5
Stress and competition are taking a toll on the health of not only students, but also teachers. Doctors point out that students and teachers in the Capital are increasingly falling prey to heart ailments because of stress and cut-throat competition. The World Health Organisation has pointed out that 60 per cent of the population would suffer from heart disease in India in the next ten years, says Dr Harvinder Singh Bedi, Chairman of the Cardiovascular Surgery of the Metro Heart Institute, Noida.

He disclosed that 31 out of 1000 persons were suffering from heart ailments in the Capital. The situation was becoming alarming as more and more young patients, including school students and teachers, were succumbing to heart disease. Incidentally, a greater number of women were also falling prey to heart disease. Dr Bedi said that on the occasion of Teacher’s Day, it should be mandatory in schools to teach children about the need for correct lifestyle. The use of yoga and meditation as a very effective stress buster should be taught to students. Making health education a part of school curriculum would also help students and teachers fight the growing incidence of the disease.


Panel to inquire into all shady Noida deals
Our Correspondent

Noida, September 5
The UP Government has set up an inquiry committee under senior IAS officer, T George Joseph, to inquire into recent scams that have rocked Noida and the Greater Noida authorities.

This has created a flutter panic in the industrial and official circles here.

The new Noida Authority CEO, Mr KM Pandey, has called a meeting of head of departments and ordered them to keep their relevant files ready for inspection by the committee.

The inquiry committee is expected to visit Noida and Greater Noida today or tomorrow, it is gathered.

As a result of the missive sent by the Chief Executive Officer KM Pandey to the Chief Project Engineer, OP Tiwari, some missing files, pertaining to questionable contracts, have been traced. However, there are still a number of important files, which are missing from the authority’s office.

An FIR is likely to be registered against OP Tiwari in case all missing files are not restored.


Truck hijacked on GT Road

Sonepat: Three youths reportedly hijacked a truck from the driver, Sanjay Kumar, and the cleaner, Vinod, on the G T Road, about 15 km from here last night. Both the driver and the cleaner were pushed out of the truck before it was driven away.

The truck driver and the cleaner were on their way to Jatheri village. When they reached the 20th Milestone, a driver of Tata 709 signaled them to stop.

The occupants of the vehicle were later identified by Sanjay as Jagbir of Sehri village, Pale Ram of Khanda village and one Niranjan. The occupants of the Tata 709 boarded the truck and offered Sanjay and Vinod ladoos, which were laced with a sedative. When they became unconscious, they were pushed out of the truck and dumped on the roadside.

During the night, a police party happened to pass that way and found the duo in an unconscious condition. They were admitted to the civil hospital for treatment. OC


CPM, HVP criticise Chautala over university affiliation
Our Correspondent

Rohtak, September 5
The Communist Party (Marxist) has criticised the conduct of the Chautala government for taking recourse to repressive tactics to impose its ill-conceived decision to affiliate colleges in the Jind and Bhiwani districts with the newly setup Ch. Devi Lal University, Sirsa.

The Haryana Vikas Party, too, has criticised the affiliation of the colleges in Jind and Bhiwani districts with the Ch. Devi Lal University, Sirsa, and described this decision as “fanatical”. The party supremo, Mr Bansi Lal, alleged that the government has no concern for the future of the students of these districts.

Besides incurring financial losses, the students would be unable to get admission in any institution of repute on the basis of degrees granted by the newly established Sirsa based university, he said.

The Haryana State Secretariat of the CPM has strongly condemned the police atrocities perpetrated on the peacefully agitating students in Jind today. The party has expressed its anger at the repressive measures taken by the Jind administration to foil the students rally.

The state secretary of CPM, Mr Inderjit Singh, said that there were disturbing reports of lathi charge and arrests. The secretariat, he said, has taken strong notice of the repeated police raids on its Jind district Committee office and intimidating the leadership of the party with obscene remarks and threats. The party has cautioned the administration that such tactics were not going to work.

Govt in a fix: Cong

Claiming that the Haryana Government finds itself in a “fix” over the package of Rs 85 crore offered by the Union Government for cane growers, Prof Virender, president, District Congress Committee (Rural), said that it was not a package but a loan. He said as per the condition laid in the package the state government would not be able to fix the minimum support price for the cane growers in future.

He said the state government and the farmers would be adversely affected if the government accepted the package. On the other hand, he said, the cooperative sugar mills in the region would suffer and would be unable to clear the long-pending dues of cane growers in case the package was not accepted.


Canal water eludes tail-end fields in Gohana
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, September 5
The persistent shortage of canal water and erratic supply have adversely affected the paddy crop in the villages falling under the jurisdiction of the Gohana Water Service Division. According to a report, the division authorities have failed to ensure regular water supply even during the rotation period.

Many farmers alleged that theft of irrigation water was the main cause of the canal water not reaching their fields situated at the tail end of the distribution system. It is also alleged that a number of farmers, who allegedly enjoy the patronage of ruling party MLAs and other politicians, are indulging in large scale theft of canal water.

Expressing anguish over the inadequate and erratic supply of irrigation water, sarpanches and panches of these village as well as the members of the block samitis and the Sonepat Zila Parishad say that the farmers are ready to pay for their share of water but the government should ensure regular supply.

The maintenance of canals, distributaries and minors continue to remains a major problem despite heavy expenditure incurred on them in Gohana subdivision of this district. Though the state government has spent lakhs of rupees on cleaning operations of canal and distributaries in the subdivision, the position has hardly improved and water does not reach the tail-end fields.

The farmers alleged that the embankments of various canals and distributaries were facing the problem of silt resulting in waterlogging in large areas. Many farmers alleged that some officials were minting money by preparing bogus muster-rolls in the name of cleaning operations and cheating the state government.

Farmers who are supplied water by Israna minor, Butar distributary, Gangesar, Bichpari, Baroda and Busana tails have made a series of complaints to the authorities concerned about the non-supply of canal water but no action has so far been taken.

The affected farmers have demanded an inquiry into the “scandalous” working of the officials of the Gohana Water Service Division and immediate transfer of the Executive Engineers, SDEs and the junior engineers to ensure an independent inquiry.

The district administration has reportedly taken a serious note of the farmers’ complaints and directed the authorities concerned to take positive steps to solve the problem.


Woman’s SOS to HC Chief Justice on illegal confinement
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, September 5
A woman hailing from West Bengal, who is presently residing in village Kabirpur near Sonepat, has sent a written complaint to the Chief Justice of the Punjab and Haryana
High Court alleging that the police have illegally detained her husband and two others since August 15 and were demanding a bribe of Rs 10,000 for their release.

The woman, identified as Sweta, has appealed to the Chief Justice to help her in getting them released from the illegal confinement. Sweta has stated in her complaint that her husband, Pulin, and two others-Bapi and Gautam-were picked up by the Sadar police on false theft charges on August 15.

She alleged that the “Thanedar” demanded a bribe of Rs 10,000 when she went to the police station and pleaded for their release.

Despite her repeated plea that she did not have the money to pay, the “Thanedar” threatened to implicate them in cases of thefts, loot and dacoity.

She has also stated in the letter that she was unaware of the present whereabouts of the arrested persons and the nature of cases filed against them. She alleged that she has been shuttling between the Sadar Police Station and Kundli Police Station, but is unaware about their whereabouts.

She urged the Chief Justice to order an inquiry into the case, as she feared that their lives were in danger in the police custody.


Inquiry begins against MC chairman
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, September 5
As many as seven municipal councillors presented themselves before Mr V S Malik, District Development and Panchayat Officer, who has been told to probe the allegations levelled against Mr Satpal Goel, Chairman of the Sonepat Municipal Council, and other staff of the Sanitation Department.

According to a report, the Inquiry Officer, who was appointed by the Deputy Commissioner, Mr Balwan Singh, had recorded the statements of the municipal councillors yesterday and directed the executive officer and staff of the Sanitation Department to appear before him on September 11.

At least 14 municipal councillors, it may be recalled, had submitted a memorandum to the Deputy Commissioner, levelling serious charges against the chairman and the staff of Sanitation Department and demanding a high-level probe into this issue. The Deputy Commissioner, in turn, had appointed Mr Malik, District Development and

Panchayat Officer, as the inquiry officer and told him to look into the allegations levelled by the municipal councillors.

According to another report, a deputation of the District Bar Association, called on Mr Paramjit Singh Ahlawat, Superintendent of Police, here yesterday and demanded action against the police officials allegedly involved in the case of maltreatment and beating up of a lawyer.

The members of the deputation also named the police officials who were involved in this incident.

2 youths booked under Indian Arms Act

The Rai police have arrested two youths, Devinder of Kheri Asra village and Anand of Katala village, after the alleged recovery of two country-made pistols from their possession. According to a report, cases under the Indian Arms Act have been registered against them.

No clue to escape by child prisoner

The police have failed to achieve any breakthrough in the case in which two child prisoners had escaped from the Bal Sudhar Graha here last month. According to a report, 22 of the 150 child prisoners housed in the Bal Sudhar Graha have been involved in crimes such as murder, loot, dacoity, rape and kidnapping.


Chautala blamed for not allowing Ajit’s chopper to land
Our Correspondent

Jhajjar, September 5
Mr Jagdish Rai Kaushik, state secretary of the Rashtriya Lok Dal, has blamed the Chief Minister, Mr Om Prakash Chautala, for not allowing the landing of the helicopter of party supremo Ajit Singh in Mahendragarh on August 25 even when the district administration had granted permission for the same.

The RLD leader alleged that Mr Ajit Singh was arriving in Mahendragarh district in a helicopter to address a party rally on August 25. The party informed the district administration about the arrival and landing of the copter. In response, the Deputy Commissioner sent the permission letter for landing the copter on the basis of the information provided by the chief flying instructor, Aviation Club at Karnal.

Mr Kaushik alleged that, despite prior permission, the district police erected a tent on the helipad and did not allow the landing of the copter. He alleged that the INLD supporters also filled the site of the rally at the Peer Baba ground with garbage to disrupt the rally but the RLD workers removed the heaps of trash during night. The helicopter of Mr Ajit Singh was finally forced to land in Bucholi village, which was 5 km away from the rally ground.

He alleged that the ruling party workers and the district administration harassed them at the instance of the Chief Minister. Condemning such incidents,

Mr Kaushik said that the Chief Minister was aware of all such acts and now he was trying to mislead the people by denying having any information about the rally of Mr Ajit Singh.



Tubewell pumps run on electricity in Haryana are being charged tariff arbitrarily by the Uttar Haryana Bijli Vitaran Nigam (UHBVN) causing hardships to the small farmers.

The tariff of power supplied to the agriculture sector in Haryana consists of two categories. First, supply to run pumps at a monthly flat rate. Second, rates on the basis of metered units of energy used in a month subject to payment of the annual minimum charges. The metered supply is availed generally by small farmers in view of limited requirements of irrigation of their small holdings.


Do you have a grouse against the apathetic attitude of the authorities? Are you fed up with the dilly-dallying tactics of officialdom and the stranglehold of red tapism?

If so, please write to us. We have a full half page every week reserved just for you. The letters should be clearly marked, Speaking out, NCR Tribune, First Floor, Dyal Singh Library Building, 1 Deen Dayal Upadhaya Marg, New Delhi-110002.

But, on contrary to the prescribed procedure of monthly billing of metered supply, the UHBVN, Gohana, instead of charging the cost of the actual units of energy consumed in a month, has been raising the monthly bill of minimum charges routinely. The number of units of energy consumed is calculated arbitrarily without going to the site and recording the reading on the meter. Sometimes, the columns in the bill, ‘new’ and ‘old’ meter reading, are left blank.

This malpractice has led to irregular meter reading and accumulation of backlog. After the lapse of months and years, the arrears once charged are again billed and charged resulting in overlapping and double payment by the small farmers.

To substantiate this anomaly, I cite my own case, which I have taken up with Maj-Gen Bhoop Singh Rathee (retd) , Chairman of Haryana Power Transmission and Distribution Corporation.

We have a small piece of agricultural land at Nagar village in Gohana district, which is irrigated by canal and supplemented by electricity tubewell (bearing number 5/3 A NR). Being a small farmer, we had retained metered supply for a load of 5-HP motor. Ever since the introduction of the two categories of supply to agriculture in 1994, we are being billed every month on the basis of the minimum monthly charges.

The laxity in meter reading encouraged by the faulty and unlawful practice of billing metered supply has caused a vast difference between the actual meter reading and the units shown in the bills.

The meter reading for the month of May 2003 (perhaps after 1996), showed an accumulated balance to the tune of 13,000 units due to the faulty billing system adopted by the UHBVN, Gohana.

Had there been regular meter reading, the arrears would have spread over the respective months and covered by the minimum charges claimed in monthly bills. But we were billed again for 13,000 units in the months of May and June 2003, whereas our monthly consumption works out to about 350 units only.

So, we paid the excess amount of Rs 7,635. In other words, it is an advance payment of two-and-a-half years, as our monthly bill is Rs 250. This is not only cruel but also a mockery of the sympathy for the farmers expressed by the powers that be. It is a very serious case and the farming community strongly opposes the arbitrary and irregular practices of the authorities. Therefore, the authorities concerned should stop the malpractices of the officials dealing with the farmers.

S. K. KAKKAR, Rohtak

Management quota at the cost of poor

The Supreme Court has taken a good decision on capitation fee. And I respect the decision. But the quota of seats for the management and open categories, which is 50:50, is not justified. Why should 50 per cent seats be reserved for the management? The court should re-think about management seats. This way, we are not ensuring that quality students come for the professional courses. As we are talking about admissions on the basis of common entrance test, I would like to bring the attention of the court and the government to the lower and middle-class families, whose wards cannot think of a professional course after the fee hike sparked by this decision.

An engineering seat in a private college in Haryana used to cost approximately Rs 10,000 to Rs 12,000 last year as there was no management quota. In some private colleges in Haryana this year, one has to pay Rs 2 lakh to Rs 3 lakh for an electronics engineering seat. Hence, with 50 per cent management seats, there will be very less number of open seats for the poor man. Only the candidates who have money can study for engineering, medical and management degrees anymore.

PUNEET WADHWA, MBA student, Rohtak

Double standards of netas

This is with reference to the report, ‘Local VIPs skip martyr’s cremation’, by Bijendra Ahlawat (NCR Tribune, August 24).

In the report, it was stated that the body of Naib Subedar Dharmvir Singh of 6 Mahar-Regiment was consigned to the flames in his native village of Mirpur Korali in Hodal subdivision. No local MP, MLA or senior officials of the district were present at the cremation ceremony.

The above instance has exposed the real character of politicians. They have double standards and their attitude towards the society is totally dependent on other own benefits.

During Kargil war, our brave soldiers lost their lives while protecting the country’s pride. The martyrs of Kargil war were cremated with honour and many politicians and senior officials attended the cremation. They addressed the crowd gathered there by praising the martyrs and shouted slogans like Jai Jawan, Jawan Amar Rahai, Bharat Mata Ki Jai. During that time, politicians went out of their way to prove their high regards for the soldiers. However, when the body of Naib Subedar Dharmvir Singh, who laid down his life fighting the terrorists, was cremated none of these leaders, even local MLA and MP was not seen there. This shows their true colour that they would attend such functions only when they get media attention. If we want our nation to be in the bracket of developed countries, we should elect those representatives who are really interested in the service of humanity.

Hats off to them

On August 15, we celebrated our 56th Independence Day. Every year on this day we remember our freedom fighters and brave soldiers who got our motherland freed from the clutches of the British Empire. Indian military is protecting our borders from foreign invaders so that we do not become the victims of colonialism again.

The Indian defence personnel have proved their mettle several times to our enemies but the latter don’t understand the gesture of love and try to invade our territory and disrupt our peaceful life.

Our soldiers have sacrificed their lives for India’s pride. In Indo-China war, 3,250 Indian defence personnel were killed. In Indo-Pak war in 1971, 3,037 were killed. In Kargil war, 527 soldiers were killed and many hundreds were killed in fighting with militants in Kashmir and other parts of the country. Indian jawans have sacrificed their youth, their family and their lives for us. We should be thankful to God for sending these “avtars” for our protection. In lieu of our protection, we must recognise our brave defence personnel. We are here only because of them.

We must keep our jawans in our prayers because they are away from their children, wife and other family members and protecting the borders, whether it is cold or hot. When we are enjoying a life, they all are keeping an eye across the border. So we must say Jai Jawan, Jai Jawan, Jai Jawan.


Spiritual roots

This is with reference to M. P. K. Kutty’s article, ‘Human problems are spiritual at their roots’ (NCR August 24). The writer has rightly stated that the fundamentals of all religions emphasise on the oneness of human family, on brotherhood, equality and on loving one’s neighbour and even enemies.

In this connection, I wish to say that a great thinker has expressed these noble thoughts in this way: “In every great scripture of the world, there are three types of teachings.

“First, there are narrations of eternal truths, which are universally applicable, such as: Truth alone triumphs, not falsehood; Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.

“A second type of teachings concerns about what ought to be done and what should not be done such as: ‘Whatever you give to others, give with love and reverence, do not offer gifts with disdain in your heart, gifts must be given in abundance, with joy, humanity and compassion.

“In the third type of teachings, there are the direct imperatives from the Lord: “Ask and it shall be given to you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.”

In fact, when we grow up spiritually, we won’t miss the pleasures of the world.

O. P. SHARMA, Faridabad

Khurana, talk national

Former Chief Minister of Delhi Madan Lal Khurana must keep it in mind that he is a national leader. He is holding bandhs and protests against shortage of milk, on water shortage, erratic power supply etc. It should be left to the second-rung local leaders of his party.

He should take up the issues, which are of national importance. He should use his influence and get restored the powers the state of NCT of Delhi must have.


Stop the toxic meal

Apropos ‘MCD School students take ill after toxic treat’ (NCR Tribune, August 30). It is a painful incident due to human apathy and callousness of all those concerned in the affair. Unfortunately, mid-day meal related incidents are becoming frequent. Every time we hear about some inquiry being instituted, but we have never heard of anyone being punished. Let us hope it is different this time.

Midday meal programme was intended to give nourishing food to the children and thus some relief to the parents. But, instead of it, we are giving poison to the children and extra worry and tension to the parents.

Since the programme is giving negative results, it should be recalled and some other ways should be thought of achieving the desired results, like giving raw materials to the parents to give cooked meal to the children when they leave for school.


Science sans practicals

Science students in government schools in Haryana pass their senior secondary examinations without having done any practical experiment in the laboratories in their science subjects - physics, chemistry and biology. They even find it difficult to see the common lab apparatuses or specimen, like vernier callipers, screw gauge, burette, pipette and pitcher plant (insectivorous plant) etc. Heads of institutions and teachers are quite reluctant and negligent in this regard.

The authorities are more concerned about their own benefits while purchasing lab equipment. And sometime such equipment are purchased only in papers.

This selfishness and ‘sab chalta hai’ attitude will mar the future of students who dream of becoming doctors and engineers. Science sans practical experiments seems incredible. But it is true.



Palwal, Hathin residents stage protest against govt ‘failures’
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, September 5
A large number of residents of Palwal, Hodal and Hathin subdivisions of the district came out on the roads of Palwal town today in protest against the alleged failure of the state government and local administration in addressing various issues. The demonstrators led by the MLA from Palwal, Mr Karan Dalal, took out a procession and submitted a memorandum to the SDM, addressed to the Governor.

The memorandum alleges that the Chautala government has been `ignoring’ the area in the matter of development. As a result, even the basic amenities including drinking water supply, power supply and proper roads are not being provided.

It mentions that while Faridabad district has been paying the maximum amount as power bills, the department concerned has failed to provide adequate supply, as promised before the elections.

Addressing the gathering, Mr Karan Dalal criticised the state government for not releasing the payment of sugarcane growers in the district. He said an amount of Rs 9 crore had been withheld by the state government, which claimed to be pro-farmer. He alleged that the funds received form the Union Government for development works in Palwal and adjoining areas were either held back or diverted for other schemes purely due to political reasons.


Chetna march reaches Sis Ganj Gurdwara

New Delhi: On the occasion of Prakash Utsav of Shahid Baba Jiwan Singh, the fourth ‘Chetna March’ led by ‘Panj Piyaras’ reached Gurdwara Sis Ganj Sahib, Chandni Chowk, today. Welcoming the march, Bibi Arvinder Kaur, president of the Punjabi Sikh Sangat, congratulated all participants and called for unity among all Sikhs.

Mr Harnam Singh Toofan, president of Gurdwara Sis Ganj, Mr Paramjeet Singh Sarna, Jathedar Surjeet Singh, and other members honoured the “Panj Piyaras” by presenting them with siropas.

A Maha Kirtan was organised by the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Board on this occasion. Schoolchildren participated in the `kirtan’. Jathedar Raja Singh Sethi, president of the All India Shiromani Gurdwara Sewadar Committee, also congratulated the marchers from Amritsar on behalf of all Sangat members of Delhi and presented them with siropas. TNS


Modalities for battery-operated buses discussed
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 5
The Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) on Friday discussed the modalities of introducing battery-operated buses in the Walled City with the Union Minister of State for Sports, Mr Vijay Goel Mr Goel told the Transport Minister in the Government of NCT of Delhi, Mr Ajay Maken, that Rs 30 lakh had been sanctioned from his Member of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS) for plying 10 such buses. He said the installation of high-voltage direct supply system in the Walled City would be discussed with officials of Bombay Suburban Electric Supply (BSES) Power Limited.

Mashelkar honoured

Dr R. A. Mashelkar, Director General, Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), has won the Lal Bahadur Shastri National Award for Excellence in Public Administration and Management Sciences for the year 2002. The previous award winners were: C.K. Prahalad (1999) and Sam Pitroda (2000), both from USA, and Narayan Murthy (2001).

The award, which carried Rs one lakh in cash, a citation and a plaque, has been traditionally presented by the President of India on the birth anniversary of the late Prime Minister, Lal Bahadur Shastri. The members of the jury included Najma Heptulla, Shivraj Patil, Justice Ranganath Mishra, B.G. Deshmukh, Anand Mahindra among others.

The award is given each year to an individual who is an exceptionally outstanding and distinguished business leader, management practitioner/educator or institution builder.

Loadshedding announced

The North Delhi Power Limited (NDPL) today announced loadshedding in different areas on September 6 due to the installation of the new Ring Main Units (RMUs) at Shalimar Bagh, district and civil maintenance work at a sub-station in Model town and Moti Nagar district.

The areas affected would include: BN (Poorvi), BM (Poorvi) and AO Block from 10 am to 6 pm.

Model Town sub-station: Raishav Nagari area-R, M & K Block from 10 am to 4 pm; Moti Nagar and Naraina Vihar from 11 am to 6 pm.


Rs 25 lakh power theft in five Noida factories
Our Correspondent

Noida, September 5
A vigilance team of UP Power Corporation has detected power theft worth Rs. 25 lakhs during raids in five factories. All the factories are reported to be card board manufacturers in Sectors 8 and 10, Noida.

The raiding teams have unearthed power theft by jamming the meters by remote. The corporation officials have calculated that power theft worth Rs. 25 lakh had been detected in these factories.

The UPPCL Dy General Manager, Mr BB Singh, has ordered raids in all cardboard manufacturing units and installation of TBM meters on their premises.

A vigilance team led by Dy GM BB Singh, Executive Engineers S C Sharma, BPS Chauhan and others raided Saviti Style in B-9, Sector-10. The UPPCL chief in Noida disclosed that Saiviti Style had tampered with the meter with the aid of a remote. Result: Though power was being consumed in the factory, the electric motor was jammed, thus giving an erroneous meter reading.

Regional Mathematical Olympiad

Rohtak :The Mathematics Department of Maharshi Dayanand University will conduct the first round of ‘Regional Mathematical Olympiad-2003’ on October 12 from 2 pm to 5 pm. The test is open to all students of Class XI and XII.

Some meritorious students of Class X may also appear in the test, the university said. The interested students should apply to the Head, Department of Mathematics, by October 9 along with a fee of Rs 75 in cash or money order.

The Institute of Management Studies and Research (IMSAR) of the university will hold counselling /interview for admission to vacant seats in 2-year MBA and 5-year integrated MBA Programme (session 2003-04) on September 10. Interested candidates, who took the entrance test conducted by the university, can apply to the director, IMSAR, up to September 8.


Dadri businessman looted for the third time
Our Correspondent

Noida, September 5
Three armed miscreants looted Rs 30,000 from a grain merchant in the Dadri grain market in broad daylight and sped away in a Honda City car. Later, they snatched a motorcycle from a youth and sped away when the car broke down. The incident has created a panic among the merchants in Dadri.

The same grain merchant had been looted twice in the recent past. The merchant, Vinod, was sitting in the shop in the old grain market along with his brother, Gopal, and a friend, Jatinder, when three persons arrived in a Honda City car.

Two of them entered the shop, pointed country-made revolvers, and asked them to hand over the cash bag. After snapping the telephone wires, the criminals snatched the bag containing the money and left towards Jarcha, threatening to kill them if they raised an alarm or informed the police.

When the police were informed of the incident, the Superintendent of Police (Rural), Mr Umesh Srivastava, ordered a combing operation in the area, while DSP Pradeep Gupta and police station incharge of Dadri, Ajay Kumar, inspected the spot.

The Honda City car had been stolen from Sadabad Aligarh, the police said.


Gang planning dacoity at jewellery shop busted
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 5
The East district police today claimed to have busted a gang of dacoits belonging to the Soun-Pandit gang while they had assembled to plan a dacoity in a jewellery shop.

Two loaded country-made pistols, two live cartridges and four knives were recovered from their possession.

Based on a secret information that five desperate criminals would be assembling in Jhilmil Colony to commit dacoity in a jewellery shop, the police planned the operation and nabbed Indresh (22), resident of Raghunathpur, Sahil (21), resident of West Bengal, Mohammad Azad Bharti (21), resident of Bihar, Shan Mohammad (19) and Habibul (19), both residents of Shantivan Pushta. During interrogation the gang confessed to have been involved in several such cases.

Two auto-lifters arrested

With the arrest of two auto-lifters, the North-East district police today claimed to have worked out five cases. Two motorcycles have been recovered from their possession. Based on a secret tip-off, the police laid a trap near the Deer Park in Dilshad Garden and apprehended Kuldeep alias Vikram (21), resident of Mandoli Extension and Gopal (25), resident of Meerut.

The accused used to steal motorcycles in Delhi and sell them through their contacts in Meerut.

2.5 kg heroin seized, 3 held

The Narcotics Cell of the Delhi Police has seized 2.5 kilograms of heroin and arrested five persons in two different cases. The seized heroin is worth Rs 2 crore in the international market.

The accused, Sunil Kumar alias Ganje, resident of Raghubir Nagar, Nazim and Moshin, residents of Kasganj, Seva Ram and Sadhna, both residents of Sultan Puri have been arrested.

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