C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


18 villages get new panchayats
ASI among 5 hurt in Kishangarh village clash
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 23
Five persons were hurt at Kishangarh village when supporters of the newly elected sarpanch, Sitaram, were allegedly attacked with batons and pelted with stones by supporters of his rival Dharampal after the declaration of poll results of 17 panchayats.

Mr Mukhram (ASI), an unidentified woman, Suresh Kumar, Nirmal Singh and Bhagwan Singh of the village sustained injuries.

Bhajan Singh, who was leading the attackers, along with Gurmeet Singh, Kulwinder Singh and Banta Singh were arrested and police parties have been sent to arrest three others named in the FIR.

The clash started when the supporters of Sitaram, who were being protected by the police, were threatened by the supporters of Dharampal as they went around the village to thank the residents for their support.

The police said window panes of the house of Hari Singh, a Sitaram supporter, were broken in the clash.

The ASI was hit on his back and head by stones when he tried to intervene, it added.

The police said the winning group had stated that when they entered the village, supporters of Dharampal threatened the supporters of Sitaram with dire consequences if they entered a particular locality. But when one of the supporters of Sitaram was caught by the supporters of Dharampal and beaten up, this led to retaliation.

Meanwhile, the city today got 17 sarpanches for its 18 villages. Raipur Khurd and Makhan Majra villages have a common panchayat.

The counting started around 8.30 a.m. and the crowd began to swell as the day progressed at the four counting stations — Government College for Girls, Sector 42, GCM, Sector 11, Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 23 and Central Polytechnic, Sector 26.

As reports about the likely results began to trickle outside the venues beating of drums could be heard at Kishangarh, Maloya and Sarangpur.

Sweets were distributed and greetings were exchanged at different localities at Darua, Kishangarh, Sarangpur and Kaimbwala villages. “This is not a rally. We just came to thank the voters,” a newly elected panch said.

The closest victory margin for the election of a sarpanch was recorded at Kaimbwala where Mr Harmesh Kumar defeated Mr Ranjit Singh by a margin of only four votes. He bagged only 334 votes.

Of the total, as many as five panchayats were reserved for women sarpanches.

The winners include Mrs Jasbir Kaur (Daria village), Mrs Jai Kaur (Raipur Kalan), Mrs Mohinder Kaur (Behlana), Mrs Kamlesh Sharma (Lahora) and Mrs Swaran Kaur (Khudda Jassu).

Mrs Jasbir Kaur defeated Mrs Jashoda Devi by a margin of 35 votes. Mrs Devi secured 1,082 votes. Mrs Jai Kaur was elected unopposed. Mrs Mohinder Kaur defeated Mrs Praveen Lata by a margin of 214 votes by securing 837 votes.

Mr Sita Ram, who polled 952 votes, defeated Mr Dharam Pal, who polled 651votes, at Kishangarh village. Mr Om Prakash was elected sarpanch of Mauli Jagran village by polling 715 votes against 545 polled by Mr Mahinder Pal. Mr Anand Singh was elected unopposed at Kajheri village.

Mr Jarnail Singh won the election for sarpanch at Raipur Khurd village by polling 511 votes against 408 polled by Mr Laxman Singh. Mr Sadhu Singh polled 599 votes against Mrs Bhupinder Kaur, who polled 322 votes at Sarangpur village. Mr Gurdial Singh secured 942 votes at Khuda Alisher against Mr Raghbir Singh, who polled 805 votes. Mr Tarsem Pal defeated Mr Gurbachan by a margin of 105 votes at Dadu Majra village. Mrs Mohinder Kaur was declared sarpanch of Palsora village. She defeated Mrs Charanjit Kaur by 211 votes. Mrs Surinder Kaur defeated Mrs Surinder Pal Kaur of Dhanas village by 90 votes.

At Maloya village Mr Mam Chand defeated his nearest rival Deepak Kumar by 1,006 votes. Sukhjit Singh, sarpanch, Hallo Majra, polled 2,081 votes against Tejinder Singh, who polled 1,602 votes.

A total of 28,192 votes were polled of the total 39,436 listed. The heaviest voting was recorded at Dhanas village where 1,178 voters cast their ballot of the 1,393 listed voters. The lowest poll was recorded at Hallo Majra where 4,789 exercised their franchise of 8,477.

The following were elected as panches of Khuda Alisher village: Mr Hukum Chand, Mr Suraj Bhan, Mr Jaspal Singh, Mr Malkiat Singh, Mr Mohinder Singh, Mrs Ranbir Kaur, Mr satpal Singh, Mrs Jasbir Kaur and Mrs Labh Kaur.

The newly elected panches of Lahora village include Mrs Manju Attri, Mr Avtar Singh, Mrs Santosh Bhargava, Mr Dalbir Singh, Mrs Krishna Devi, Mr Pritpal Singh, Mr Naresh Sharma, Mr Vipan Kumar and Mr Surmukh Singh.

The panches of Khuda Jassu village include Mrs Balbir Kaur, Mr Bhupinder Singh, Mr Harbans Singh, Mrs Tirth Kaur Mahan, Mr Mohinder Pal and Mr Sukhwinder Singh.

The panches of Kaimbwala are Mr Mehar Chand, Mr Pal Ram, Mrs Parmindro, Mr Sher Singh, Mr tarsem Lal, Mrs Veero Devi and Mrs Nacchitro Devi.


HUDA nets Rs 20.86 cr in auction
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, December 23
The Haryana Urban Development Authority today auctioned 39 commercial sites.

Though the previous auction of commercial sites on September 29 was one of the most successful auctions in Panchkula over the past two years, today’s auction fetched Rs 20. 86 crore for HUDA. In September, more than 80 commercial sites were auctioned, which fetched Rs 47 crore for HUDA.

A large number of people from Haryana, Punjab and Chandigarh participated in today’s auction. As many as 212 bidders had deposited money to participate in the auction. A total of 121 commercial sites in Sectors 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9 , 10, 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, 17, 19, 20, 21 and 25, and Sectors 4 and 5 of Mansa Devi Complex and the Industrial Area went under the hammer today. The response was so good that the auction, which began at 10. 30 am, lasted almost nine hours.

If the iron and steel sites in Sector 15 and SCO sites in Sector 14 were the hot favourites, showrooms in Sector 11 continued to be the most sought after and the most expensive. As compared to the earlier auction in September, when showrooms in Sector 11 had fetched Rs 2. 10 crore, these sites went for a whooping Rs 2. 26 crore. The SCO sites in Sector 14 went for almost Rs 30 lakh more than the reserve price. These SCOs fetched between Rs 78 lakh and Rs 83 lakh.

The iron and steel sites in Sector 15 were auctioned between Rs 76 lakh and Rs 85.5 crore. A booth in Sector 2 was auctioned for Rs 8. 16 lakh.


12-yr-old lies unattended at PGI emergency
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 23
Writhing in pain, 12-year-old Deepak is lying unattended on a stretcher in a corner of the PGI emergency for the last three days. His agony has failed to evoke any compassion from doctors, who have not bothered to examine him even once.

Suffering from abnormality of the veins, Deepak, a sixth class student at the Government High School, Mauli Jagran has been under treatment for the last over six months. On December 17, he was admitted to the Advanced Paediatric Centre, PGI, for three days and was discharged on 19. He had to be admitted again to the PGI on December 20, as he complained of acute pain.

According to his father, Kanhaya Lal, a daily wage earner says though his CT scan was done on December 20 but ever since they brought him to the emergency here no doctor has come and examined him. “It is so difficult to see him writhing in pain and whenever we go to call a doctor, they say they cannot admit him as there aren’t any vacant beds,” says Sukh Devi, his grandmother. She says doctor has seen the CT scan report.

Interestingly, though Deepak has an outdoor patient card of the Neurosurgery Department, and is in the emergency for three days, his indoor card has still not been made. “It is understandable that there is no bed, but doctors should at least come and examine him so that treatment can be started,” says Sukh Devi.

“During the last three months, his condition has deteriorated so much that he can't even lift his neck as the pain has started affecting even his back and waist,” says a helpless Sukhi Devi. Because of this he was forced to drop out of the school.

The PGI’s Public Relation Committee when contacted, failed to give any satisfactory reply as to why Deepak was not receiving treatment for the past three days. In fact, the PGI authorities were unable to locate Deepak in the emergency, as his admission card has not been made.

At present, his family is administering him medicines prescribed earlier by a private doctor. “Nobody bothers for poor people like us but you tell me where should I take him as he can't even hold his neck and we do not have money to get his treatment done at a private hospital,” says Sukh Devi.


Suicides, contract killings new phenomena
Sanjay Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 23
Data speaks volumes of the Chandigarh Police curbing heinous crime but yet unheard of contract killing, seizure of 80 kg of drugs, criminal activities of Tota and his gang and extortion being carried out from jail create apprehensions about organised crime knocking at the door in future.

Despite the police having worked out 17 out of 20 murder cases in the year, unsolved killings of Simran, Mainpal in Sector 45 and Gunwant Singh in Sector 36 loom large over the year that is going to end.

The stamp paper scam involving Abdul Karim Telgi came to the light of the country with the Chandigarh Police nabbing a person from Derua village with fake stamp papers. The arrest of Pakistani spy Abid Mehmood early this year in the Rotarians’ peace city sends a signal the city has been under Pakistanis’ eye.

It was not crime alone that was eating into the vitals of the city but a spate of suicides numbering more than 70 from all sections of society and of all ages that makes one believe modernity seemed to have brought a dangerous phenomenon here. Suicides kept the police on its toes.

Roads of the city continue to be increasingly killer with 130 deaths already reported and 431 people getting injured this year. Last year 108 persons were killed in accidents and 482 were injured. The Traffic Police began the harshest punishment, cancelling licences of around 30 people for dangerously driving and habitually violating traffic rules. The Traffic Police did not spare Haryana strongman Abhay Chautala’s car even.

The crime against women has seen over a 30 per cent jump and resolution of marital disputes also increased by the same number creating a record in the country. The unit dealing with crime against women has become the first in the country to have been examined for the ISO 9001 certification.

The police, however, succeeded in bringing down number of murders in year 2002 to 20 but contract killing of manager of Kiran Cinema involving O. P. Saini and Tota gangs shook the city. Murder of a Delhi-based businessman Mandiv Sapra by his doctor wife Swapna Sapra hogged the limelight in the middle of the year.

The city, which has been free from organised crime, shivered when names of Chhota Rajan was linked to the O.P. Saini gang and that of Dawood Ibrahim figured during interrogation of drug peddlers Ajay Malik, Devinder Singh and Lingraj when they were arrested along with 80 kg of contraband in the city. The seizure, followed by another of 96 kg in Lalru, has sent a feeling the city was becoming a major transit route of drugs, which the police denies. Police says the early arrest of criminals having links with mafia will fend the mafia off.

The unravelling of a racket of money-for-answersheet scam in the Central Board of Secondary Education involving 17 students and few others raised questions on fairness of examination in the region.

The unabated activity of the city’s most wanted criminal Anil Kumar alias Tota in the city has been causing worry despite the police having nabbed his harbourers, financiers and gang members save Bhoora and him.

The cricket crazy city could not have missed the headlines at the time of the world cup even it was for a wrong reasons. The Chandigarh Police arrested six bookies betting on the matches of the World Cup. The flesh trade came to light in the city with a large number of arrests of “sex workers” through out the year by the Chandigarh Police.

Visits of President Abdul Kalam, Vice President Bhairon Singh Shekhawat, Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee, Deputy Prime Minister Lal Krishan Advani and the Leader of the Opposition Sonia Gandhi tested the security arrangements of the Chandigarh Police. It was busy through out the year in dealing with dharnas and agitations. The police, however, can boast of positive efforts and some degree of success also.

The trafficking of the 35 city girls to Bangalore to be forced to perform dances in pubs in Bangalore came as a surprise to the City Beautiful. The girls were asked to sign contracts for performing in video albums only to be deceived.

A dimension of white collar crime was unearthed when the Chandigarh Police cracked down on multi-level marketing companies and made several arrests. The alleged cumulative fraud in such cases is being estimated at more than Rs 100 crores. The police also detected two illegal telephone exchanges causing a loss of crores of rupees to telecom companies.

SSP Gaurav Yadav said this year had seen a rise in detection of crime, recovery of property and conviction from 62 per cent last year to 73 per cent this year, which is almost double that of the national average.

He said little credit for the rise in the prices of property should also be apportioned to the police as it was a feeling of safety in the city, compared to other places, that might also have contributed to the rise in the prices of the property in the city.

The Chandigarh Police used “broken window” theory successfully tried by the New York Police in early nineties to taste a success. As per the theory crackdown on gamblers, drug peddlers, illicit liquor mafia could directly reduce heinous crime.

The senior officers applied carrot and stick policy, keeping SHOs and DSPs on this toes while giving lakhs of rupees in awards to the those who did any commendable job and reprimanding whose who showed slow progress on individual cases.

Accountability has been introduced in the policing with senior officers holding monthly meetings, keeping files on individual cases and monitoring progress each case. SHOs now get memos on individual cases registered in their police stations if their progress is found to be unsatisfactory.

The police officers from the SHO level onwards have been having regular public contact meetings or what could be termed as “feed back” sessions to know how the people felt about the police performance.

Training has been initiated to cut the flab of the police personnel with around 1500 of them having been sent for training.


Taking dyslexia seriously
Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December, 22
Over the past, India has started taking the lesser known realm of learning disabilities like dyslexia more seriously. The need to understand this realm arises from the complicated nature of the learning difficulty in question and also from the fact that 10 to 12 per cent kids attending normal schools are dyslexic, from mild to severe degree. Dyslexia is a syndrome in which a child faces hardship in conveying what he knows or feels. He often ends up becoming hostile towards society, which fails to facilitate him. An American study points out that 60 per cent of delinquent kids suffer from learning difficulties.

Incidentally, these kids, suffering from dyslexia in which they face difficulties in comprehending the language or numbers — otherwise possess an above average intelligence. So even while they cannot express what they know through the written or the spoken word, they can actually excel in some other field of life. Little would anyone believe that Bill Gates, the computer wizard, is a Havard dropout and mildly dyslexic. Likewise, from Winston Churchill to Albert Einstein, many geniuses have suffered from dyslexia, a learning difficulty which poses challenges at calculation, reading, writing, and even swallowing, in extreme cases.

Grave as the issue is, an understanding of the mechanics and treatment becomes critical. Whereas the West long diverted attention to this medically untouched area, India is still rising to the problem. Among the few experts our country has, Ms Shaila P. Vora, a speech and language therapist from Mumbai, is working extensively in this field, setting up her own school for such special kids in Mumbai, besides assisting reputed schools like DPS in setting up dyslexia centres.

Of late she has designed a special degree course to train aspirants in dealing with dyslexic kids. Created with international standards in mind, this course has not been designed from holistic point of view. The learner is trained to objectively assess a dyslexic, who suffers from 10 to 15 symptoms at the same time.

In the city recently to work out the possibilities of introducing this special course at Panjab University, Chandigarh, Ms Vora spoke to The Tribune about dyslexia kids, who can seldom be spotted in the sea of normal children. “They are perfectly normal on the surface. In fact, they have an above average IQ. They suffer from thinking, writing and judgment difficulties. A dyslexic kids often has language comprehension problems. So even if he knows the answer to a particular problem, he cannot write it because he does not know the vocabulary. Sometimes he cannot read properly. He will jump lines, being unable to connect sentences. But that does not mean he is dumb. In another area, he may well excel. It is for the school and the parents to discover his area of interest,” informed the expert.

Explaining the need to introduce courses to train talent that can set up research rooms for dyslexic kids in schools, Ms Vora said that such a child constantly felt penalised and frustrated. He has to battle guilt, anxiety and hostility because no one understands his perspective. All he wants to say is “I cannot learn the way you teach me. Can you teach the way I want?” She recommends the use of tactile senses to treat a dyslexic child, as she says.


Towards heat resistant structures
A.S. Prashar
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 23
An American scientist of Indian origin has suggested that the impact of the 9/11 terrorist strike on the World Trade Center in New York could have been reduced had some of the technological innovations offered by nanotechnology been used during the construction of the twin towers.

The twin towers collapsed killing thousands trapped inside, not because of the impact of the planes which hit them, but because of the uncontrollable fires which raged subsequently. These fires melted the massive steel guilders supporting the towers, leading to their rather quick collapse.

“It is the strength of the steel guilders which holds the key to the strength of the whole structure of the building”, says Prof Ajay P. Malshe, Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Arkansas. “Had the steel guilders been treated with nanoparticles to make them more heat resistant, they would not have collapsed the way they did. Nanoparticles offered both high heat resistance and high heat stability”.

Maharashtra-born Prof Malshe was in town to attend the two-day Conference on Nanotechnology organised by Indian National Academy of Engineering at the CSIO. In an interview with TNS here today he explained how ceramic nanoparticles remained stable even at very high temperatures. Therefore, a thin coating of ceramic nanoparticles could tremendously improve the heat resistance of any substance.

Referring to the present nanotechnological scene in India, Prof Malshe said it seemed that India was still to make up its mind as to the direction it wanted the research and development in this sunrise field to take. “Whatever happens, use of nanotechnology in India must be application-driven. There were a mind boggling variety of ways in which nanotechnology could be used to benefit the common man.

Prof Malshe said work was already in the western countries for the development of smart clothes. These dresses are coated with polymers and offer a variety of uses. These lightweight clothes can be worn by soldiers even in very cold and difficult terrains. Such clothing also helped soldiers to remain in touch with their base camp all the times.


Vigyan Rail showcases scientific progress
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 23
Platform No 3 at the Chandigarh Railway Station is seeing a lot of young visitors these days. The Vigyan Rail, which showcases the achievements of the country in different fields of science and technology, is attracting a large number of people.

The Vigyan Rail — envisaged by the Vigyan Prasar Society a year ago — arrived here from Delhi yesterday. This science exhibition on wheels was inaugurated by the Prime Minister, Mr Atal Bihari Vajpayee, in Delhi on December 16. This three-day exhibition will hold the city residents in awe till December 24 before it moves on to the Ambala Railway Station.

This project of having a science exhibition on wheels has been conceived, formulated and implemented by Vigyan Prasar, with the Ministry of Railways and Department of Science and Technology. As many as 12 coaches of the train have been converted into an exhibition gallery, showcasing the achievements of 18 government departments, which have worked to make India a scientific power. Mr Gaurav Jain, a spokesman from Vigyan Prasar, says that since the Indian Railways has played an important role in the social and economic development of the country, and is also the most important network of travel and transportation, Vigyan Rail is the perfect way for spreading scientific awareness.

It may be mentioned that the inspiration for the project came from “Exhibition on Wheels” train of the Ministry of Railways, which had an eight-month run from August 15, 2002, to April 15, 2003, in order to mark the 150 years celebrations of the Indian Railways. In fact, the same train has been used as Vigyan Rail, and will move the entire length and breadth of the country for eight months.

Using exhibits, models, charts, and virtual reality, the exhibition begins by showing the scientific heritage of the country. The achievements and history of great Indian scientists — J.C. Bose, Vikram Sarabhai, P.C. Rai, S.N. Saha etc take the visitor to the glorious era of Indian science. This is followed by a coach dedicated to environmental concerns like problems of pesticides, diversity of grasses, and other global concerns for environment conservation. The Department of Telecommunication showed the telecom revolution by way of which each part of the country is now connected; water resources and ocean development was shown with the help of charts of graphs by the Ministry of Water Resources and Department of Ocean Development.

The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research has shown achieving the patent rights of turmeric as one of its main achievements, while the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has exhibited models of various missiles like Brahmos, Prithvi, Nag and Agni, Arjun tanks and Tejas aircraft. The Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) showed how they had made the country self-sufficient in agricultural produce; the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) caught everyone’s attention.

The Vigyan Rail will also touch Ferozepore, Amritsar, Pathankot, Jalandhar and Kurukshetra in the last leg of its run from July, 2004, to August, 2004, after visiting 48 other stations all over the country.


Students board Vigyan Rail
Tribune News Service

Children look at the gear designed by the DRDO for defence personnel, being shown in Vigyan Rail in Chandigarh
Children look at the gear designed by the DRDO for defence personnel, being shown in Vigyan Rail in Chandigarh. — A Tribune photograph

Panchkula, December 23
Did you know that certain drugs are generated from the sea, or about the ocean policy of the country? Or that the new health hazards are malaria, hepatitis, Japanese encephalitis and dengue?

If not, then the Vigyan Rail — Science Exhibition on Wheels, which is being held at the Chandigarh railway station could quell your doubts about scientific heritage, achievements and future strategies in the fields of science and technology. The train had arrived here yesterday and the exhibition is on till tomorrow evening.

As many as 18 government departments are displaying their achievements. From agricultural to atomic research, defence research to energy conservation — the exhibition is attracting visitors. Mr Gaurav Jain, a spokesman of Vigyan Prasar, which had envisaged the exhibition, said the response was very encouraging.

A number of schools brought their students to visit the exhibition. Children from the neighbouring area of Mauli Jagran also came to see the exhibition.

Twelve-year-old Suresh, student of Government School, Mauli Jagran, said it was a learning experience for him.

The coach showcasing the achievements of the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and the Indian Council of Medical Research drew a lot of interest.

Mrs Shivani Gupta, a resident of Sector 27, Chandigarh, had got her seven-year-old daughter Swati to watch the exhibition. She stated that the exhibition was not just a learning experience for the kids but also for adults.


Mohali to showcase soul of Punjab
Rs 2-cr landscape project ready to preserve culture
Kulwinder Sangha

Mohali, December 23
The Municipal Council has drawn up an ambitious landscaping project estimated to cost nearly Rs 2 crore aimed at preserving the cultural heritage of Punjab.

The plan, which had been cleared by the council president and is to be presented at the next general house meeting of the civic body, envisages a colourful display of the rich heritage of the state which is threatened by the onslaught of modernisation.

The whole stretch of the centre verge of the road from the entry point to the town adjoining Yadavindra Public School in Phase VIII to the turning near Sohana village will come alive with a sculptural display of different facets of the cultural heritage, including folk crafts, folk musical instruments and the depiction of scenes from the tales of Heer-Ranjha, Sassi-Punnu, Mirza Sahiban, Sohni-Mahiwal and Puran Bhagat.

The exhibits on the stretch will include folk instruments like the dhol, the dholki, the chimta, the algoza, the been, the sarangi and the gagar. The focus will also be on clay toys, pottery, phulkari, wood carvings and mud walls. Folk games like the cart race, tug of war and kabaddi will also be represented sculpturally. Appropriate lights will be used to enhance the effect of the exhibits.

Mr Yashinder Bahga, a private architect based in Chandigarh who has prepared the project, told Chandigarh Tribune that at one point near YPS he would like to create a village scene with the “thara” as the focus of important activities in the village. On the “thara”, under a tree, will be placed charpois on which the sculptures of the sarpanch and panches will be placed.

He felt that the chullah was also a significant aspect of life in a village home. A chullah scene would also find place in the landscaping project with a woman making rotis on a chullah and members of the family having a meal sitting near her.

The 8000-foot-long centre verge with breaks at YPS Chowk, Ambwala Chowk and Kumbhra Chowk, with an average width of 22 ft will be covered in four phases under the project. The first phase will involve an expenditure of about Rs 56 lakh.

A zig-zag and undulating wall with a height varying from 1 ft 6 inches to about 5 ft will also be made. This will give a visual effect of movement to those passing by in vehicles. The wall will also create pockets for the sculptural exhibits and reduce or enhance the effect of trees already growing on the centre verge.

Mr Kulwant Singh, President of the council, said Mohali was a newly developed town and the new generation was hardly aware of the state’s culture as it did not go to villages. By landscaping the central verge in such a way we would be able to give the new generation a glimpse into the Punjab’s rich heritage, apart from beautifying the town.


Ready Built Space at technology park
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 23
The bhoomi pujan ceremony for Ready Built Space at Chandigarh Technology Park (CTP) was held today at the park site near Kishangarh, here, by the Adviser to the UT Administrator, Mr Lalit Sharma. Ready Built Space is to be constructed by a joint-venture company, DLF Info City Developers. The agreement for this was signed by the administration with DLF after a process of short-listing and financial bids involving some of the leading developers of the country.

The project at CTP would comprise about 7,00,000 sq ft of built-up space and would house technology companies, which are increasingly showing interest in the city. Ready Built Space will be part of the overall technology park, which is a 111-acre site in which technology companies are also being allotted campus sites. Ready Built Space would accommodate a number of IT and IT-enabled services companies.

A joint venture company (JVC) is being set up as a result of this agreement. The JVC will construct, manage and lease out the space. The administration and DLF will be the partners in the JVC.

According to an official spokesman, Chandigarh has generated enormous interest in the recent past among leading technology companies for setting up facilities here. The administration has appointed Jones Lang LaSalle as consultants for the project.

The Urban Planning Department has notified the park and detailed rules for allotment of land in it have also been notified. Only high-quality, large companies are to be allotted land, whereas space in the Entrepreneur Development Centre and Ready Built Space would be allotted to all kinds of technology companies.

The Engineering Department is providing the basic infrastructural facilities for CTP, like roads, power supply, sewerage, and stormwater drains. Software Technology Parks of India (STPI), BSNL and other organisations are providing the connectivity and telecom facilities. An agreement has been signed with Infosys Technologies to make them the anchor for the technology park. They are being allotted 20 acres of land for setting up a software development centre.

Incubation facilities are being provided at Punjab Engineering College, where eight companies have been accommodated. Connectivity at the centre has been provided by STPI, a Government of India body, which is also helping the department in promotional activities. Another incubation facility is being set up in collaboration with Panjab University.

The Chandigarh Administration announced in January this year a special Information Technology-Enabled Services Policy, which contains relevant incentives for the industry. These include 24/7 operations and provision of women’s working at night subject to certain regulations. Upgrade of human resources in the city is also part of the policy.


Application of nanotechnology stressed
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 23
India needs to focus on application of nanotechnology to develop new products and upgrade the existing products to improve the quality of life in the country.

This was one of the recommendations of a panel at the end of the two-day Conference on Nanotechnology (ICON-2003) organised by the Indian National Academy of Engineering at the CSIO, Chandigarh. The panel comprised Prof Ajay P. Malshe, MRL, Arkansas, USA; Dr N. Kumar of the Defence Lab, Jodhpur; Prof B.N. Dev of the Institute of Physics, Bhubaneswar; Dr J.V. Yakhmi of the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Mumbai, and Dr D.N. Singh, SCL.

Professor Malshe was of the view that Nanotechnology could be applied in India effectively to solve problems of environmental pollution, medical disorders like diabetes by engineering smart drugs and for addressing the problem of power scarcity, which was one of the biggest hurdles to industrial development in the country. Dr N. Kumar said nanomaterials could be used for making low-density insulation materials like light-weight bullet-proof jackets and for equipment protection.

Professor Dev was of the view that India should intensify its efforts in nanoscience research and ensure that nanoscience and nanotechnology were properly utilised.

Dr Yakhmi said since nanotechnology cut across various disciplines of science such as physics, biology and chemistry and the country had adequate manpower in these fields, there was need to attract and channel the manpower in the nanotechnology endeavour of the country.

Dr D.N. Singh said the scientific manpower available in the country should work together for a bottom-up approach in nanotechnology. Similarly, the facilities available in the country could be exploited to produce nanodevices, adopting a top-down approach.

Expressing optimism about the future of nanotechnology in the country, Dr M.J. Zarabi, CMD, SCL, said there was enough potential to achieve a breakthrough in this revolutionary technology. He said a right beginning had been made and hoped that it will pick up the desired momentum.

The conference was inaugurated yesterday by Prof V.S. Ramamurthy, Secretary, Department of Science and Technology. The conference provided a platform for scientists, researchers and technologists from the country and abroad to share their views and thoughts in various fields relating to nanotechnology. About 50 papers, 13 contributory papers and 30 poster papers were presented during the conference.


Panchkula Diary
Safai karamcharis threaten stir
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, December 23
Safai karamcharis have again threatened to go on strike from tomorrow on the issue of payment of minimum notified daily wages.

The karamcharis have alleged that they were called by contractors in Sector 29, Chandigarh, and forced to sign documents, promising to take only Rs 1,400 as monthly wages. They alleged that since tenders of sanitation contractors had already been approved by the Local Bodies Department, they be given their dues.

Christmas celebrations: Children of Shishu Niketan Public School today celebrated Christmas at the school. The school was decorated with bright red and green festoons, bells, caps and stockings. Santa Claus distributed sweets among the children.

Underprivileged children from Rajiv Colony also joined the celebrations and were given presents and sweets. The schoolchildren had specially brought in presents for the visitors.

Workshop: The local chapter of the Family Planning Association of India conducted a workshop for parents and teachers on “Coping with Adolescent Problems” at Youth Hostel today. The workshop was attended by principals and teachers of government schools of Panchkula, in addition to parents, teachers and peer educators.

Burning issues like poor nutrition, generation gap, lack of time spent with parents and invasion of electronic media in homes were discussed. Ms Pushpa Khanna, president of FPAI, and Ms Adarsh Kohli, Department of Psychiatry, PGI, Chandigarh, delivered lectures.

Workshop for kids: A five-day workshop for children, organised by Ms Manjula Sand, began at Wah Dilli restaurant in Sector 5 today. As many as 30 children have registered themselves for the art and craft workshop.

The children will be taught flower making, making of Christmas festoons, rangoli, marble and thread paintings, making envelopes and wrapping sheets during the workshop.


619 ITBP recruits join as Himveers
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 23
Six hundred and nineteen recruits of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), today formally joined as Himveers after an impressive oath-taking ceremony and passing-out parade. Mr K.J. Singh, Additional Director General , CRPF, reviewed the parade and took the salute of the marching contingents in the colourfully decorated parade ground. A large number of officials from Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh and CRPF and the ITBP personnel from neighbouring units were present.

Mr N. Thangaiyan, DIG, Basic Training Centre, in his welcome address highlighted the achievements of ITBP personnel.

The parade was commanded by Cadet Sewa Nand. The chief guest gave away the best trainee awards of various disciplines to Constable General Duty, Mohammad Israel, 7th Bn (best in drill), Cadet, General Duty, R. Nayak, 10th Bn (best in physical training), Cadet General Duty Jandel Singh (best in weapon training) and overall best training to Cadet, General Duty, Sewa Nand of 4th Bn. He congratulated the trainers and advised them to keep up the tradition of the force where he also served as the Additional Director-General.

An impressive dog show was organised by the dog squad of the ITBP. Mr H.S. Goraya, Commandant, Basic Training Centre, conveyed the vote of thanks to the chief guest.


Readers Write
A dream-turned-nightmare

A few years ago, the then administrator of the HUDA, Panchkula, had cherished a dream of transforming the town into “Paris of the East”. A great dream it was and it has remained a dream till today. Panchkula, with its many parks and well-planned roads, has the basic ingredients to be a model city. But poor maintenance and lack of interest shown by the local administration has rendered this township into a grazing ground for stray cattle, feeding on the overgrown green areas and neglected parks. Recently, the cattle menace claimed many lives in Chandigarh and Panchkula, yet no concrete action has so far been taken to eliminate it.

It is a pity to see garbage strewn all over and overgrowth on sidewalks. Trees along the sidewalks are not pruned regularly and it is rare to walk on these unpaved sidewalks and not bump into stray cattle and overgrown tree branches. The garbage is being dumped on the sidewalks and burnt regardless of its ill effects on the environment.

I wonder why such gross negligence goes unnoticed by the high and mighty of the HUDA, the Municipal Council and the District Collector, who have shut themselves in their air-conditioned cabins, oblivious to the filth surrounding their own offices. It is high time that they wake up. Their immediate action should be to relieve all Class IV employees from unauthorised private domestic duties in their residences and re-deploy them on the maintenance work.

Brig W.S. Choudary (Retd), Panchkula

South-end experience

Apropos Ms Sugandha’s “Southern sectors given step-motherly treatment” in your Reader’s Write column on November 27. I wish to recounts my own experiences on the issue.

I commute almost daily to Sector 32, specifically to GGD SD College. The sector has several other important institutes like the Institute of English, St Anne’s School and the Government Medical College and Hospital.

Travelling in these parts, the shockers of my vehicle got damaged. Due to bumps on roads, I also dislocated a disc in my cervical spine. Now I have changed my route, but for reaching the college, I still have to suffer in same way. May God let the authorities do something in reducing at least problems of the people going to and coming from the Sector 32 institutes.

Dr Harish Khanna, Panchkula

‘Postal’ blues

Recently, I had the misfortune of having to visit a post office in response to a notice dropped in my letter box, intimating me that a registered VPP had been received and I should retrieve it from the post office. I went there at 2.30 pm thinking the lunch time would have been over by then. I was told that I should come in the morning. On pleading that I had to attend the office in the morning and, therefore, I should be given the letter there and then, I was told that the cash had already been deposited and I should come four days later, as next two days were holidays.

However, I went there the next day at 2 pm. who ever I approached directed me to somebody else. Ultimately, I was directed to a terrace, where some employees were gossiping and playing cards. I was asked to wait as if I was in a police station for an interrogation.

May be they want their palms to be greased or it was a routine behaviour due to an inferiority complex. I wish there are frequent refresher courses for all employees on courtesy and good manners.

Kashish Khanna, Panchkula

Smooth operators

Most of cable TV operators have increased the monthly subscription charges in Chandigarh and Mohali, but the quality of service has deteriorated. Some channels, out of only 40-42 they show, are blocked.

Residents of some areas in Chandigarh have unanimously decided to surrender their connections in protest against the arbitrary hike in the cable TV charges. This is a welcome and praiseworthy step. Not being able to see the cable TV for a month or two will not only give the people more time to spend with their children but also force the operators not to charge as per their whims and fancies.

There should be a proper authority or a controlling cell to protect the rights of the cable TV subscribers.

Bhupinder Singh ‘Happy’, SAS Nagar

Honesty rewarded

I am all praise for the Punjab State Electricity Board for re-employing Mr Padamjit Singh, Chief Engineer (Systems Operation), as Adviser soon after his retirement.

By doing so, it has not only fulfilled the wishes of its 1 lakh employees but also recognised and rewarded his honesty, competence and devotion. The debt-ridden and fund-starved PSEB needs employees like him.

Mehnga Ram, Patiala


Goods destroyed in fire
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, December 23
Goods worth thousands of rupees were destroyed in a fire at a catering unit workshop in Industrial Area, Phase II, at about 1 a.m. today.

It is learnt that a short circuit in the unit, a workshop of Parco Caterers which runs Wah Dilli in Sector 5, had led to the fire.

The gateman, Ram Prasad, was alone at the unit. He noticed smoke coming out of one of the sheds and immediately raised an alarm.

The fire station was called and a fire engine was rushed to the spot. It took almost an hour to extinguish the fire.


SAD reinducts Harjinder Kaur
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 23
Mrs Harjinder Kaur, a former Mayor of UT, today was reinducted as member of the Shiromani Akali Dal(SAD).

This was stated by Mr Gurpratap Singh Riar, president of the local party unit, following a communication from Mr Parkash Singh Badal, president of SAD.

She was ousted from the party following differences with the local unit president on party matters.



Mrs Iqbal Kaur is the wife of the late Dr M.S. Randhawa and not as reported in an item under the heading “M.S. Randhawa yadgari mela begins” published in the edition dated December 21. The error is regretted.

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