Wednesday, September 10, 2003, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Run-up to PU poll
Rivals enter scuffle at Govt College
Our Correspondent

Girls watch campaigners of rival parties raise slogans at Sarojini Hall Girls Hostel
Girls watch campaigners of rival parties raise slogans at Sarojini Hall Girls Hostel on Panjab University campus on Tuesday. — Tribune photo by Pawan Sharma

Chandigarh, September 9
Tempers are soaring in colleges as elections to the students body draw near. A student clash among different groups at SGGS College yesterday was followed by a ‘‘scuffle’’ among supporters of two parties at Government College, Sector 11, this morning.

The authorities are keeping their fingers crossed against further incidents of election violence.

The Government College’s unit of the Panjab University Students Union (PUSU) today alleged that activists of the Government College Students Union (GCSU) issued threats and attacked their presidential candidate, Mr Karanbir Singh Kaler, outside the centre for filing nominations.

Sources said the altercation occurred between supporters of PUSU and the GCSU over filing of nomination papers at 11 am. The situation was, however, brought under control on the intervention of the college authorities.

The college unit of PUSU has made a written complaint against the activists of GUSU with the police. No case has been registered.

‘‘Kaler was attacked by activists of GCSU near the nomination filing center this morning,’’ alleged Prabhdeep Singh (Prady), president, PUSU, who added: ‘‘They have threatened Kaler against contesting the election.’’

Office-bearers of GCSU could not be contacted for comment.

Principal of the Government College Balwinder Singh, however, said no scuffle took place in the college. ‘‘There might have been some heated arguments among the two groups, but there was no scuffle,’’ he said.

Yesterday, activists of the Khalsa College Students Union (KCSU) and the Chandigarh Students Union (CSU) had clashed and the police had to resort to a lathi charge at SGGS Khalsa College, Sector 26.

The cause behind the clash was said to be an “attack” on Dinesh Bishoi, a member of the KCSU, by activists of the CSU in Sector 22 on Sunday night. The CSU had levelled almost similar allegations against KCSU.

Yesterday, the KCSU members allegedly demanded that hostel rooms of CSU activists be searched.

This led to an altercation between the two parties and the police had to resort to a cane charge.

Later, five students of the college — Kranti, Satnam Singh, Amandeep Singh, Kamal Inder Singh Rana and Shiv Kumar — were arrested under Sections 147, 148, 149, 323 and 506 of the IPC. They were today released on bail by a local court.


No major tie-up for varsity poll likely
Sanjeev S. Bariana
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
There are unlikely to be any major tie-ups for the forthcoming elections to the Panjab University Campus Student Council on Friday, except for organisations of students from Himachal Pradesh.

This is evident from the fact that each student body is filing its individual candidates. The fight is chiefly for the post of the president and almost every organisation, except for the Himachal associations, has announced its nominees. Malwinder Singh Kang (Panjab University Students Union), Khushbaz Singh Jattana (Student Organisation of Panjab University), Saurabh Joshi (Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad), Pawan Singh (Haryana Student Association) and Gurparvez Singh Sandhu (PUSU, Shailey) have filed their papers for the president’s post.

The other candidates of PUSU include Nimrata Punia (psychology) for the post of vice-president, Vijay Karan (English) for the post of general secretary and Sharanjit Singh Bains (mathematics) for the post of joint secretary.

Other candidates of the HSA include Rishwant Kaur (law) for the post of vice president, Parvesh Kumar (mathematics) for the post of secretary and Poonam Shehrawat (political science) for the post of joint secretary.

The list of ABVP candidates features Annapurna (political science) for the post of vice president, Diwakar (physics) for the post of secretary and Dipesh (ancient history) for the post of joint secretary.

The list of candidates of SOPU includes Moshina Manrow (chemistry) contesting as vice-president, Satinder Pal Singh Sidhu (anthropology) as secretary and Narinder Singh Negi as joint secretary.

Chand Singh Madaan, founder-president of the Haryana Student Association said students should be careful before casting their votes for the ABVP. “I do not mind losing in the elections to anyone except the ABVP. It is a student organisation directly supported by the BJP which had communalised education”, he said.

The ABVP was not a vidyarthi parishad but “the Atal Behari Vajpayee’s Party”, he said.

“We were tied up with the PUSU ever since the election process commenced in 1997. We were always promised the president’s post in the next elections. However, PUSU did not take us into confidence while making any student related decisions, so we decided to take the challenge of elections independently this time”.

Official data

Panjab University has a total of 6332 eligible voters for the forthcoming elections to the student council. The university has decided to set up 94 polling booths.

Prof Nirmal Singh, Dean Student Welfare, said the university would witness polling for 75 department representatives in 46 teaching departments. The polling will commence at 10 am on September 12 and continue till 12 noon.

The counting will be done in the departments at 1 pm and the data for the final results will be compiled at the Gymnasium Hall. The university will declare the results by 4 pm likely, Prof Nirmal Singh added.

Lone fighter

Gurparvez Singh Sandhu is the lone fighter from the rival faction of PUSU for elections to the council. The university rejected the paper of Baljit Kaur, it’s candidate for the post of the vice president.

Sandhu said the papers of another candidate was snatched away by a worker of the PUSU (Kang group).

“Violence-free campus”

The ABVP is speaking against violence on the campus in a big way at its campaign rallies. Saurabh Joshi says others are “fighting” elections but we are contesting elections”. He says the rival organisations had a history of violent activities ever since the elections restarted in 1997. The ABVP had not a single violent incident to its credit which was its strong point.

Saurabh Joshi said “the ABVP-HPSU combine was contesting in the name of students’ welfare done by us but they (PUSU and SOPU) are fighting only on one issue with one saying ‘I have been beaten’ and the other saying “I have not beaten’.”

The ABVP in its agenda has highlighted its “dream” of making PU a central university. There is a pointer towards creating a student-teacher forum to express views of the intelligentsia, starting a fortnightly university newsletter, a centralised placement cell and the construction of a university auditorium with seating capacity of more than 5000.

The ABVP has highlighted its aim to work for making the Student Centre free from beggars, ensuring cleanliness of water bodies there and expansion of the parking.

The ABVP has raised the issue of making the system of grace marks uniform, revision of the university syllabus, particularly for MCA, MBA and UIET departments and provision of computer rooms in all departments.

HSA agenda

The Haryana Student Association released an agenda spelling out its charter of action on at least 100 different issues that it would like to take up if voted to power.

The upgradation of facilities in the hostels tops the party agenda. The HSA has pointed out the need to work for restriction of police entry in hostels without permission of the higher authorities, better food control measures and more sanitation facilities.

The HSA mentioned that the outer reading hall in the library needed an extension, there was need for a permanent faculty at the UIET and has sought a better industry-institute interface, better canteen facilities in all departments and effective placement cell.


College candidates file nominations
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
Amidst raising of slogans and accompanied by friends and supporters, candidates for the various posts of the students’ council and class representatives filed their nominations at their respective colleges, here today.

With colourful posters adorning college walls, indicative of the election fever catching on, classes in colleges wore a deserted look today as students got together to file their nominations this morning. Later, they addressed the voters and highlighted the issues they would fight for if given a chance to represent the student community.

In a few colleges candidates are likely to be chosen unopposed to a few posts with no other student in the fray though the post of class representatives attracted a large number of nominations in every college. While Guru Gobind Singh College, Sector 26, is heading for a clear-cut unanimous election for the post of president, vice-president and joint secretary, nobody has come forward for the post of general secretary. At MCM DAV College, Sector 36, too, elections will be held only for the post of joint secretary with three candidates filing nominations today.

With the first hurdle in elections through, students began campaigning inside and outside the campuses. Meanwhile, the election enthusiasm spilled over to the geri route of Sector 10 and 11, where vehicles flashing flouroscent stickers, went up and down the two sectors.

Not missing any opportunity, candidates addressed students in the markets and at the Citco eating joint in Sector 10.

While nominations filed today were scrutinised and objections invited, tomorrow is the last day for the withdrawal of nomination papers after which the final list of candidates would be declared. In case there are no withdrawals for posts where one candidate has filed nominations, he would be declared elected unopposed.

The list of those who filed nominations for the posts of the students’ councils in various colleges is as follows:

MCM DAV College: President: Rupali Setia (BA III); vice president: Shefali Kwaria (BA II); general secretary: Maninder Kaur Thind (BCA I); joint secretary — Preeti Chauhan, Gurpreet Khera and Suanshu (BA I).

GGDSD College: President: Sarvdeep Singh Brar, Amanpal Singh, Nitin Sharma; vice-president: Namita Joon, Ruhi Singh; general secretary: Gaurav Chakravarty, Saransh Sharma; joint secretary: Sirjant Singh Chahal, Manpreet Kaur.

GCG-11: President: Annapurna, Kusum Mehta (BA III), vice president: Nandini Shukla (BA III); general secretary: Meenakshi Yadav, Gangandeep Aulakh (BA II); joint secretary: Surbhi Verma (BA I).

GGS College: President: Madhumeet (BCA III), vice-president: Manmeet (BA III); joint secretary: Navreet (BA I).

DAV College: President: Harpeet Singh, Dilip Singh Virk, Jagdeep; Pankaj Pathak, Raj Kumar; vice president: Kamaljeet Brar, Anup Gupta, Ritesh Bagotra, Gurmeet Cheema; general secretary: Manmohan Jalta; joint secretary: S Sharatchandra Singh; Rachit Bansal.

SGGS College: President: Bikramjit Singh (MA II); Navdeep Singh Batth (B Sc III); Sandeep Verma (BA II); vice-president: Kirti Gupta (B Sc I); Navneet Singh (BCA III); general secretary: Jagmandeep Singh (BA I); Anukriti Sharma (BCA II); joint secretary: Ravi Walia (BA II); Sandeep (BCA III).

GCG-42: President: Gayatri, Nidhi, Tapinder Dev (BA III); vice-president: Amanpreet Kaur (BA III); Navpreet (BA II); Seema (BA III); general secretary: Mandeep (BA III); Neeru and Prerna (BA II); joint secretary: Bharti Rani, Kanika; Kamaldeep (BA II).

GC-11: President: Inderpreet Singh (Happy) (BA III); Chetan Kumar (BA III); Sumit Sood (BA III); Karanbir Singh (BA III), Devinder Jaglan (BA III); vice-president: Lovedeep, Sudhir Singh, Ashsih Sharma (BSc III), Raj Kumar Gill (BA I); general secretary: Achhar Kumar (B Com III); Pankaj Goyal (B Com III); Robin Goyal (BA III), Varun Bansal (BA III), Abhishek Sood (BA III); joint secretary: Ajit Chahal (BA II), Vikas (BA II), Paramvir Singh (BA II), Nitin Sharma (B Com I), Gangandeep Goyal (B Com III).


File IT returns without PAN
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
This year the income tax assessees who are still waiting for the Permanent Account Number (PAN) can file their returns. In a significant decision, the Income Tax Department has decided to accept the income tax returns from the assessees till September 30.

Earlier, the department had stated that no returns would be accepted without PAN. The special provision has, however, been allowed with a rider. It will be applicable to only those assessees who have already applied for PAN, either with the Income Tax Department or with the Unit Trust of India (UTI). All the assessees would have to do is to attach a copy of their application form along with the returns.

Sources in the Income Tax Department, north-west region, said the department was forced to give extension after wide spread reports of delay in issuing of PAN cards by the UTI. Earlier it had been claimed by the officers of the IT Department and the UTI that PAN cards would be provided within 15 days of accepting an application. Though the exact cause for the delay could not be ascertained, the sources said PAN cards could only be issued after a PANs was allotted by the IT Department.

A senior officer in the IT Department said the deadline for accepting the returns without the PAN would remain September 30. Certain applications for PANs filed with the IT department before July 1 were also pending.

"Since the new PAN card would have some security features and would be tamper proof, the existing assessees can not be prevented from going for a superior document,” said a senior officer of the Income Tax Department, North-West Region.

It may be mentioned that after the Union Finance Ministry decided to hand over the work of accepting the applications for PAN and issuing the number to the Unit Trust of India (UTI) from July 1, this year, the Income Tax Department has stopped accepting the applications from the new assessees.

However, a number of existing assesses have been running from pillar to post to get their particulars rectified on PAN cards. There are cases in which the names of the assessees and their dates of birth have been printed wrongly. To get the mistakes corrected, the PAN allottee had to go the Patiala office of the Income Tax Department. The Patiala office of the Directorate ( Systems) was handling the work of preparing PAN cards.

The last date for filing tax deducted at source (TDS) returns has been extended till November 30, as the software which would facilitate e-filing of the returns was still being tested. The software would be provided to an authorised ‘ e-return intermediary’ of his choice with details of income and supporting documents. The intermediary (six banks) would prepare the return of the tax payers and obtain their signatures.


275 Tribune employees donate blood
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
As many as 275 employees of The Tribune group of publications donated blood in two separate camps organised by The Tribune Employees Union today.

One camp was organised at the headquarters here, while the other was held at the Bathinda centre of the publications. This was the 16th camp organised by the union in memory of Sardar Dyal Singh Majithia, founder of The Tribune Trust. A team of doctors from the PGI Blood Bank Society, led by Dr Neelam Marwaha, conducted the camp.

About 90 employees were the ones who have donated blood on more than 10 occasions each. These included Mr Arun Kaushal (58 times), Dr Renuka Nayyar (31), Mr Raman Sharma (31), Mr Rajan Raikhy (30), Mr Satinder Bedi (27), Mr Harish Lakhanpal (26), Mr Sunil Kumar (26), Mr Ashok Kumar (25), Mr Venod Kumar (24), Mr S.S. Pathania (23), Mr Surinder Singh (20) and Mr Anil Gupta (20).

While inaugurating the camp, Prof R.P. Bambah, a trustee, congratulated the union for organising voluntary blood donation camps to provide healthy and disease-free blood for the unknown but needy patients. He said the blood bought from market was not necessarily healthy. Professor Bambah was accompanied by his wife, Dr Saudamani Bambah, who has herself donated blood at least 46 times. He said The Tribune Employees Union had made blood donation a movement.

Mr H.K. Dua, Editor-in-Chief, said high ideals always guided Sardar Majithia. The Tribune employees were also following a great cause by donating blood on the day of his death anniversary. This will save many lives.

Mr R.N. Gupta, General Manager of The Tribune, said: “It is a matter of great pride that this noble activity has been pioneered and is being undertaken voluntarily by the staff of The Tribune Trust.” Mr O.P. Arora, Additional General Manager, also blessed the donors.

Mr Balbir Singh Jandu, president of the union, announced that a similar blood donation camp was organised at the printing centre of The Tribune at Bathinda. The camp there was inaugurated by Mr Jagtar Singh Sidhu, a former president of the union, who went to Bathinda for the camp. The camp will be made an annual feature at Bathinda also.

Mr Jandu said the union had been organising such camps for the welfare of the patients. At the same time, the union had been contributing to help The Tribune publications come with flying colours out of the present competition only on the basis of their better performance. The quality of paper and fair journalism were the main planks of The Tribune publications. The Tribune Trust will continue to respect the feelings of its readers.

Of the total, as many as 40 employees donated blood at the Bathinda centre.


Fleecing in garb of scholarships?
Poonam Batth
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
A few parents of schoolchildren are crying foul about the activities of a private trust which promises to award scholarships to deserving and talented students, while it collects handsome amounts by way of charges for application forms and examination fee from students from all over the country.

The parents grudge that while the trust — Children's Welfare Trust of India (CWTI) — awards scholarships to the tune of Rs 2 lakh to Rs 2.5 lakh, it manages to collect between Rs 20 lakh and Rs 25 lakh in the form of application fee and other sundry charges for appearing in the students' talent promotion examination. However, the trust authorities deny these charges by saying that, besides the scholarships, money is also incurred on conducting the examination.

Mr Amrik Singh Chawla, father of Geet Chawla, a Class V student of St Joseph's School, Jalandhar, said the modus operandi of the trust was to lure students to the scholarship scheme by sending letters at random to a large number of students from Classes III to XII.

Such is the level of enthusiasm generated among these students on being shortlisted as a bright student that his daughter repeatedly told him to submit her application form well in time for the examination, even minutes before she flew to the USA with her mother for a short vacation, he added.

Mr Chawla, who lost no time in reaching Chandigarh, to keep his promise to his daughter, on finding out the modus operandi did not deem it fit to submit the form and get duped. He alleged that the one-man trust, functioning from a small cabin in Sector 35, had evolved a neat system of fleecing the students in the garb of scholarship.

Giving details, he said all the applicants were required to first pay Rs 38 for procuring the prospectus containing the application form and then pay Rs 150 as examination fee, besides another Rs 110 for a set of books containing the kind of questions asked in the examination. The students are also forced to shell out another Rs 100 spent on getting a draft made and sending the same through courier or post, etc. A visit to the office by this correspondent revealed that they just have a clerk to distribute the prospectus and books and collect payments.

The director of the trust, Mr Bhupinder Pal, when contacted, said the trust, which was established under the Indian Trusts Act, 1882, in 1998, has been conducting the examination for the past seven years at an all-India level and distributing scholarships regularly. Nearly 150 scholarships are given annually.

“We do not force students to appear for the examination. Even the payment of Rs 110 for a set of books of general knowledge and general science is optional. We simply advertise about the examination in newspapers and shortlist students of various schools on the basis of surveys conducted by our marketing executives,” he said.

However, he was neither able to produce any balance sheets of the trust indicating the amount collected from the applicants and distributed as scholarships nor give any information about the infrastructure available with them to conduct the examination.

According to the prospectus, while the topper in each of these groups gets Rs 7,200 spread over three years, the second position holder gets Rs 5,400, while those who secure ranks three to five get Rs 3,600 each. Besides, consolation scholarships worth Rs 700 are also awarded to students securing ranks six to 30.

Another parent alleged that if 10,000 applicants from across the country paid about Rs 250 to Rs 300 each to apply for the scholarship, the authorities got to make anything between Rs 25 lakh and Rs 30 lakh, but the total amount of scholarships under all categories put together would not exceed Rs 1 lakh per year and hence the rest of the amount was pocketed by the trust.

Parents have also alleged that the trust by way of its name and emblem gives the impression of being a government set-up associated with a noble cause of providing scholarships to deserving and meritorious students.


Making music for the soul
Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
There is something very heartwarming about practitioners of pure music. They lift the sagging spirits with admirable ease and transform the ambience almost effortlessly. So when the moods suddenly became upbeat this afternoon and music seemed to fill every dull corner of hotel Park Inn in Sector 35, one knew someone intensely musical was in attendance.

The assumption did not take long to be confirmed, for here was the man, draped humbly as ever — in his patent black turban and white kurta. You just can't miss the charms which Uttam Singh weaves with his essentially musical dealing, which begins with fond reminiscences of masters like Khayyam, Naushad and Shankar-Jaikishen.

Trained in music by legends, Uttam Singh could not but make classic scores that inspire films like Gadar and Dil to pagal hai with ever fresh life. His prowess is clear from the fact that the music of Yash Chopra's Dil to pagal hai remains unparalleled not only in terms of the melody, but also in terms of market considerations.

With the past refusing to let him down and the future beckoning him with glorious assignments like Pinjar, based on Amrita Pritam's novel, Uttam Singh can only be content.

During his visit to the city for the announcement of Punjabi film Lakeeran, Uttam Singh admitted, "Ever since I began my romance with music in 1965, working along side Naushad and Khayyam saheb, all I cared for is good music. I learnt to be true to notes. That's how I could arrange music for Maine pyaar kiya and Hum aapke hain kaun. However, throughout my journey I never compromised on quality because I always felt compelled to offer the best under my name. Also, the mechanics of success never bothered me. As a child, I was told to see work as religion. I continue to be a child in that sense."

Also the man behind the music of Dushman and Farz, Uttam Singh lamented that songs were no more being heard. They were being viewed. "Today music stems from crude considerations of commerce. That's why it is bereft of soul. I believe in creating simple music by using the rhythms behind words. These days, most tunes are created before the lyrics are made. But I am comfortable the other way round. I loved Anand Bakshi;s lyrics. Gulzar saheb is also very intense. He is writing the songs of Pinjar."

A firm believer in the power of folk music, Uttam Singh used it to perfection in the Gadar song, "Ud jaa kale kaavaan...". He explained, "The challenge lies in using folk tunes without emulating them. When I created this song, everyone kept wondering where the folk touch came from. I had simply recalled nostalgic melodies and placed them together in a fresh mould. It took me a month to make this song, which even caught the attention of Naushad saheb. He complemented me, saying, "This is the our music. Work little, but work to promote this kind of music."

Uttam Singh continues to do that by being selective about films. In Pinjar, being directed by Dr Chandra Prakash Dwivedi, he has used the Sufiana qalaam of Wadali brothers. His only regret is that he could not be a violinist he wanted to be. But he adds, "Now that I am a music maker, I try to infuse life into whatever I make. The base of my music is electronic, but it's all about roots, which everyone is abandoning. Punjab was so rich with its Patiala tradition. It seems history now."

For his part, Uttam Singh is making "music" which, he says, "is capable of washing away from soul the dust of everyday life."


Now pay power bills at POs
Our Correspondent

SAS Nagar, September 9
In a move to provide better services to its consumers, the Punjab State Electricity Board (PSEB) has started accepting payment of power bills at post offices in the town. All eight post offices in different parts of the town will be accepting payments.

Mr S.C. Aggarwal, Superintending Engineer, Operation Circle, SAS Nagar, told mediapersons at a press conference here today that residents of Phases I and II could make payment for their power bills at the post office located in Phase I while residents of Phase III and IV would be making payment at the post office located in Phase III.

Similarly, residents of Phase V, VI and VII would make payments in the post offices in those phases. Residents of Phase VIII and IX would deposit the bills in the post office in Phase VIII. Residents of Phase X and XI would make payments in the post office in Phase XI and residents of Sectors 70 and 71 would deposit bills at the Sector 71 post office.

Mr Aggarwal said the facility would be applicable for domestic, non-residential, agricultural and small sector power categories.

The consumers could deposit bills up to Rs 5,000 in cash. In addition to this facility, power bills could also be deposited at the State Bank of Patiala branch in Phase VII for Rs 500 and above through local cheques. drafts and bankers’ cheques.

He said the consumers earlier faced problems because of shortage of bill collection points and as such had to stand in queues for a long time.

He said the facility was only for residents of the town which would be extended to other areas in the near future.

The SE said PSEB authorities used to receive complaints relating to power from Sectors 70 and 71.

In order to provide uninterrupted power supply to these areas, two separate 11-kv lines were made operational from the substations. Two different breakers were got installed for feeding these two sectors.

He said the board was making efforts to bring the town on a par with Chandigarh in the matter of power supply. Long-term as well as short-term planning had been done to achieve results.

All transformers from where complaints of voltage fluctuation were received would be upgraded.

Bigger conductors would be provided and new feeders installed wherever required.

He said a drive for detecting power theft in various jhuggi colonies, residential and industrial areas of the town was on. Kundi connections from jhuggi colonies had been removed.

He said a kundi connection was also removed from a house in Phase X where a person with influence lived.

The PSEB plans to spend Rs 50 crore-Rs 60 crore on better power supply arrangements in the town in the coming two or three years.

A new 66-kv grid substation in the industrial Area Phase VIII-B is likely to be commissioned during the current financial year. A 220-kv substation would also be commissioned in Jhanjeri village.


Economic growth encouraging: expert
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
“Despite the slow pace of implementation of economic reforms and various political compulsions, the performance of the Indian economy under reforms presents a mixed picture of notable achievements and weaknesses”, said Dr Charan D. Wadhva in his presentation on “Economic Reforms in India in Retrospect and Prospect’’ here today.

Dr Wadhva, the President and chief executive of the Centre for Policy Research, New Delhi, who was here to deliver a lecture as part of the P.N. Haksar Memorial Lecture series at the Centre for Research in Rural and Industrial Development (CRRID), recalled his association with Haksar.

He said the attainment of sustained high economic growth was necessary — but not sufficient — condition for improving the national security and the quality of life.

Dr Wadhva said the average annual growth rate of 5.8 per cent achieved by the Indian economy during the past 11 year of economic reforms (1992-93 to 2002-2003) was encouraging. Currently, after China, India is among the fastest growing countries in Asia.


Nine LPG godowns to be shifted to villages
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
The long pending issue of providing alternative sites to gas agencies for godowns has been resolved to an extent as some of the gas agencies have agreed to shift their godowns outside the city limits. An agreement between nine gas agencies and the Sarpanch on behalf of Mauli Jagran Gram Panchayat has been signed. The village is located between Chandigarh and Panchkula.

The agreement was signed a few days ago in the presence of the Land Acquisition Officer, the Block Development and Panchayat Officer (BDPO) and the coordinating representative of the oil companies to re-locate the gas godowns on gram panchayat land in Mauli Jagran. Nine gas godowns with 1000 square yard each will be located in the village lands. The agencies will get the space at Rs 3 per square yard a month. With this consistent income, the gram panchayat can undertake some development works. Lease deeds has been signed for 10 years which shall be extended with mutual consent.

Sources said the rate had been fixed keeping in mind the public utility of LPG supply. The remaining eight gas agencies are interested in locating their godowns in Maloya village. The lease agreement for this gram panchayat land is under process and is likely to be signed in the next week.


PGI employee picked up despite stay?
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, September 9
Ravinder Singh, a telephone operator with the PGI, who was booked in 1995 during an agitation of PGI employees was today allegedly picked by the police but later let off after the former produced the Punjab and Haryana High Court’s stay order in the matter.

However, the police said he was never arrested and was only called at the SP (operations) office for verification this morning.

The PGI Nurses Welfare Association and the PGI Employees Union alleged Ravinder Singh was picked up by the police in connection with FIR No. 230, which was registered against him in 1995, in the wee hours today and taken to the SP’s office in Sector 9.

It is being alleged that when the police reached Ravinder’s residence in the morning, he told the police about the stay orders, but it did not spare him.

He was later let off around 11 am when the relevant documents were produced before the police.

A senior police official said Ravinder Singh was a “proclaimed offender” and was called for verification by the Crime Stopper wing of the police. “He was never arrested”, claimed the official.


Inspector reverted to post of SI

Chandigarh, September 9
The in charge of the women and child support unit of the Chandigarh Police, Inspector Jaswinder Kaur, was today reverted back to the post of Sub Inspector after Sub Inspector Kewal Krishan posted in the Sector 36 police station, was promoted in her place.

Ms Jaswinder Kaur was promoted as Inspector in the reserved category on June 18 this year. According to sources, six sub-inspectors, who were senior to her were not considered for promotion due to inquiries pending against all of them.

On June 19, Mr Kewal Krishan had made a representation to the IGP that he had been given a clean chit in two inquiries against him and he should be given promotion. Later, an enquiry into the matter was marked to SSP Gaurav Yadav. After the SSP’s report, Mr Kewal Krishan was today promoted to the post of Inspector. OC


Laying of sewerage begins
Our Correspondent

Zirakpur, September 9
Residents of various colonies and villages within the limits of the Zirakpur Nagar Panchayat heaved a sigh of relief when the civic body authorities started laying sewerage pipes and water lines from Bartana village today.

The project worth Rs 10 crore will be taken up phasewise. The nagar panchayat authorities have decided to lay main pipes of the sewerage system and the water supply lines in the first phase. A sum of over Rs 60 lakh will be spent on laying of the lines in Bartana and Dhakauli villages alone.

In the second phase, Bhabhat and Bishanpura villages, will be included and the sewerage system and water pipes will be laid by the nagar panchayat by spending its own funds.

The Zirakpur Nagar Panchayat has got a loan of Rs 8 crores from HUDCO while the rest amount, has been generated by the civic body from its own resources.

Mr Narinder Sharma, president of the Zirakpur Nagar Panchayat, inaugurated the laying of the sewerage system by digging earth in Bartana village. Besides residents of the area, municipal councillors and officers of the civic body were also present on the occasion.


Panchkula Diary
Jan Adalat for disabled held
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 9
A Jan Adalat for physically challenged persons was held under the Chairmanship of Mr Mohan Singh Ahluwalia, Commissioner, Animal Welfare Board, at Raipur Rani today.

As many as 100 physically challenged persons attended this adalat. Mr Ahluwalia said a multi-purpose camp would be again organised at Raipur Rani next month and other departments will also be involved in this programme. Today forms for giving scholarships to physically challenged persons and pension forms were filled up at Raipur Rani.

Pulse polio drive

A meeting was held last evening under the Chairmanship of the Deputy Commissioner, Ms Satwanti Ahlawat, for discussing preparations for sub-national round of pulse polio to be held on September 14.

The Deputy Commissioner said as many as 69,400 children between the age group of 0-5 years would be administered polio drops in various parts of the district.

Bhajan contest

A bhajan sandhya competition was organised by the Sri Mata Mansa Devi Shrine Board, as part of its 13th annual day celebrations. Mr Subhash Goyal, State Minister for Urban Development, will be the chief guest.

Bus concessions

The state government has decided to grant concessional travelling facility in Haryana Roadways buses to Class III and Class IV employees of the Police Department, on the pattern of executive police officials.

The employees will pay Rs 70 a month, and the amount so collected will be deposited every month with the Transport Department. The facility will be permitted on the basis of identity cards.


Petrol price: BJP men meets Verma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
The local unit of the BJP and a social organisation, the Chandigarh Nagrik Sabha, has criticised the move of the Chandigarh Administration to increase the price of petrol and diesel to bring it on a par with the rates prevailing in neighbouring Punjab.

A delegation of the BJP-led by Mr Yash Pal Mahajan, president, Chandigarh BJP, today met the UT Administrator, Justice Om Parkash Verma (Retd), in connection with the reported hike in the fuel cost by increasing sales tax. The BJP delegation comprised Mr B.K. Kapoor and Mr Parshotam Mahajan, both general secretaries of the party, and Mrs Kamla Sharma, leader of the Opposition in the Municipal Corporation, Chandigarh.


Illegal structures removed
Our Correspondent

Zirakpur, September 9
More than 20 unauthorised structures that have come up on government land behind the police post in Lohgarh village were removed by the Zirakpur Nagar Panchayat today.

A team of the enforcement wing of the civic body removed encroachments that included jhuggis and pucca structures. The authorities with the help of over six employees, one earth mover and one tractor-trailer cleared the site. The enforcement staff was also assisted by a company of police personnel deployed to avoid any untoward incident.

Mr Narinder Sharma, president of the Zirakpur Nagar Panchayat, said the encroachments had come up on the government land in the last four years. After the formation of the elected body, the Zirakpur Nagar Panchayat had launched a drive to removed encroachments from the government land.


IT raids on shop
Our Correspondent

SAS Nagar, September 9
Officials of the Department of Income Tax conducted a raid on a shop dealing in paints and hardware items here today.

The 18-member team of officials included a Joint Commissioner and an Additional Commissioner of the department. It closed the shutters at the premises of the shop in the Phase III B2 market and checked the records and goods. Customers were asked to leave.


Sardool undergoes angioplasty
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 9
Famous Punjabi folk singer Sardool Sikander, who had reported at the Fortis Heart Care Institute, SAS Nagar, yesterday, complaining of angina, was today cured after a successful angioplasty.

The operation was performed by famous cardiologist Dr R.K. Jaswal, who confirmed that Sardool Sikander was in good shape after the operation.


Jains perform pujan
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, September 9
Amidst chants, devotees went round the Jain Digambar Temple in Sector 27, carrying the idol of Lord Mahavira. Pujan of Lord Mahavira was performed at the temple. With this, “Das lakshan dharm”, which started on August 31, today concluded.

Earlier during the day, the devotees washed Lord Mahavira’s idol with water before taking a parikrama of the temple thrice. About 500 devotees were present during the pujan.


Family escapes unhurt in roof collapse
Our Correspondent

SAS Nagar, September 9
A police inspector and his family had a providential escape when a portion of the roof in their house collapsed in Kumbra village last night. Mr Amrit Singh, in charge of the local police control room, was sleeping in the room along with his son Sandeep, when the roof of the room caved in.


One held for kidnapping youth
Our Correspondent

SAS Nagar, September 9
The police has arrested one person in connection with a case of kidnapping of a teenager from Phase VI here yesterday.

According to the police, Gurpreet Singh, a resident of Phase VI, was arrested on the charge of kidnapping Rajbir from near Government Primary School in the area. The police said five more youths involved in the crime were at large.

Six youths kidnapped Rajbir and took him to Daon village, near here, where he was beaten up. After being kept in custody for a few hours, he was released.


Gang busted, 3 held
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, September 9
The police today claimed to have arrested three persons of an inter-state gang, who allegedly committed theft in a Sector 35 house here yesterday, and recovered stolen items from their possession. One of the accused, Aminudin, had earlier been lodged in Tihar Jail.

According to the police, the trio, Altab (22), Aminudin (30) and Feroz Khan (30), broke in to the house of Mr Sudhir Chaddha yesterday. While Aminudin and Feroz Khan took away a TV, a VCR and a mobile phone from the house, Altab stayed in the house in search of ‘‘more valuables’’.

In the meantime, Mr Chaddha returned home for lunch and caught Altab and handed him over to the police. Later, the police arrested his two accomplice.

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