N C R   S T O R I E S


MCD demolition men forced to back off
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 22
The Slum and JJ wing of the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) was today forced to abandon its plan to raze jhuggies on the bank of the Yamuna under its Yamuna Action Plan in the face of stiff, but peaceful, protest by the dwellers.

The demolition squad of the Slum and JJ Wing of the MCD, escorted by a strong contingent of police and para military forces, descended on the left bank of the Yamuna this morning to start demolition and relocation of the jhuggi clusters that have mushroomed along the river and have contributed directly to its pollution.

At least 10 companies of the Delhi Police and a large number of personnel of the Rapid Action Force were deployed to ensure peaceful demolition operation.

The Delhi High Court had directed the authorities concerned to demolish the cluster and rehabilitate them under the Yamuna Action Plan. Following the direction of the court, the union government sanctioned Rs 25 crore to the Slum and the JJ wing for rehabilitation of the jhuggi clusters. Inexplicably, the corporation had reportedly disbursed the amount as salary to the employees.

There was a virtual face-off between the residents and the MCD officials as they squatted in the way of the bulldozers with local councillors and area politicians leading them. The clusters are considered vote banks of the various political parties. Senior MCD officials tried to persuade the residents to move away, but to no avail. Finally, the operation was called off after several hours, when it became apparent that the protestors were not about to budge.

According to MCD sources, residents of the clusters were to be rehabilitated near Madanpur Khadar, Jaitpur Bhalswa. They had to pay the construction cost of the flats in installments. They were directed by the corporation to deposit their first installment and collect allotment slips from the spot. Instead of doing this, they protested against the demolition order of the corporation. They said that they wanted their rehabilitation, but not in remote areas as they would not get jobs there.

The residents of the cluster work as labourers and rickshaw pullers and their women work as domestic help or do other chores in nearby localities. But, in remote areas like Madanpur Khadar and Bhalsawa, they will not get jobs. Moreover, these areas are not developed properly. There are no power, water and sewer facilities. In Madanpur Khadar, jhuggi residents of Kalkji were rehabilitated but there were no civic amenities in the colony. There was no power. They had to walk 3-km from there to Jaitpur bus stop and to Kalindikunj, some of the local leaders claimed.

However, sources in the MCD said that the entire show was stage-managed. The corporation had no intention to demolish the clusters as it does not have money to rehabilitate them. Apart from this, the Lok Sabha elections are approaching and the jhuggi clusters are the Congress vote bank.


Token strike in varsities despite UGC clarification
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 22
The UGC’s clarifications vis-ŕ-vis the proposed Model Act notwithstanding, teachers and students of various Central Universities, including the Delhi University, went on a day’s token strike today. While the UGC is trying hard to convince that the act does not aim at commercialising higher education, the protestors claimed otherwise.

Disturbed by the proposals listed within the act, the teachers pointed out that UGC’s model act, among other things, suggests mobilisation of resources by universities to become self-sufficient, incorporate commercial and corporate culture in universities, paves way for private, virtual and foreign universities and aims to replace class room teaching with distance learning.

Opposing these vehemently, the teachers claim that the Act aimed at stopping Central funding to the universities. The call for the ‘bandh’ had been given by the Federation of Central Universities Teachers Association (FEDCUTA) and supported by a number of bodies and unions of students and non-teaching staff of universities.

The teachers claim provisions of the Act like holding common entrance test for professional courses for all universities would erode the autonomy of these institutions.

Meanwhile, students from different colleges and universities of Delhi affiliated to the All India Students’ Association (AISA) held a protest march at Parliament Street here and burnt the effigy of Union Minister for Human Resource Development, Dr Murli Manohar Joshi.

The activists were shouting anti-NDA government slogans. Addressing them, AISA Delhi state secretary Ravi Rai said the Model Act was a clear attempt by the BJP-led NDA government to create a market for education in India. Once the Act is enforced, only private universities will be able to survive, catering to educational needs of the privileged sections of the society. They accused the Centre of trying to finish the social role of education in compliance with its commitment to the WTO.



Traffic diversion for Republic Day retreat



Rift in Noida joint action front
Parmindar Singh

Noida, January 22
As per their plan, the Bahujan Samaj Party opened its own front on Gautam Budh Nagar district by organizing a huge rally under the leadership of senior party leader Devraj Bhatti and Veer Singh Jatav at the district collectorate in Surajpur.

A demonstration was also held near Moti pet and Bodaki stations, where slogans against Mulayam Singh Yadav rent the air. Although police was deployed at sensitive points, no senior officer was seen in the area.

In Bulandshahr, there were reports of support pouring in for Mulayam Singh from villages. The villagers said that civic amenities had been denied to them during seven years of Gautam Budh Nagar district. They had to travel to distant places for their work with the police and administration. So, they welcome the inclusion of their area in Bulandshahr district.

The residents of Jahangirpur have also welcomed Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav’s decision to disband GB Nagar district. “We shall start a strong agitation, if there is any rethink on the decision,” the residents have warned.

Meanwhile, the constituents of the Joint Action Committee have blamed the BJP for projecting its image through the Save District Campaign. The joint action committee had been formed under one banner by all political parties, social organizations and RWAs, keen to project a joint front.

The Congress, too, had pulled out of the Awareness Rally yesterday, protesting against use of party banners. The Congress has declared that it will conduct its own campaign.


Nursing orderly held for sexual harassment
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 22
The Crime Branch today claimed to have arrested a nursing orderly in the Maulana Azad Medical College (MAMC), who used to sexually harass and intimidate his fellow staff nurses.

Based on a complaint from the Assistant Nursing Superintendent, Surgery Department, MAMC, Ms Raj Bala, that the accused, Anil Kumar (36), has been sexually harassing and intimidating the staff nurses in the hospital with his rude behaviour, the sleuths apprehended the accused on January 21.

The complainant said that the accused recently tried to misbehave in the surgery department with a lady nurse while on night shift. The nurse had immediately lodged a complaint in the report register, which was swiftly followed by Raj Bala.

Knowing that Raj Bala had forwarded the complaint to the higher authorities, Anil abused her several times on her way home and even went to her house and intimidated her. Anil runs a makeshift gym in the hospital premises and is notorious for his misbehaviour.

Raj Bala, who wanted to put an end to his misbehaviour, approached the Crime Branch and complained to the sleuths about his misbehaviour. Accordingly, a special team was formed and, on January 21, the team reached the hospital and after making inquiries about the accused, they arrested him. Earlier several nurses had also complained to the hospital authorities about the alleged misbehaviour of Anil.



Hospital owner told to pay Rs 3 lakh in damages

Sonepat: The Sonepat District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum has accepted the appeal of a complainant, Mr Sunil Kumar Jindal, of Ganaur mandi, and directed Dr Shashi Sehgal, owner of the Nav Jeevan Hospital, old Rohtak road, Sonepat, to pay a compensation of Rs. 3 lakh, along with interest, for negligence and causing the death of the wife of the complainant.

According to a report, Mr Amrit Kirpal Singh, President of the Forum, has also ordered the respondent to comply with this order within 30 days, failing which the law will take its own course. According to the prosecution, the complainant’s wife was admitted in the respondent’s hospital on August 4, 2000, where she gave birth to a child on the same day. She was discharged in the evening, after being prescribed medicines for one week. However, on August 6, 2000, she complained of pain in the abdomen, gastrotis and fever, and was admitted to a private hospital at Ganaur, where her condition worsened. Thereafter, she was taken to a private hospital at Panipat and, finally, she was referred to Jaipur Golden Hospital at Delhi, where she died on August 15, 2000, leaving behind her husband and two minor children. OC

Expect another wet spell

New Delhi: Delhiites, who braved strong winds and rain yesterday, woke up to a clear, sunny morning today but clouds took over the skies by mid-day, blocking sun for rest of the day. Rains could occur again in the next 24 hours, the weather office said.

The day temperature today went up with mercury scaling 20.2 degrees, only one less than normal. Yesterday, there was a fall of six degrees in the maximum temperature, following the rains that were recorded around six mm. The minimum, however, went down to 10.5, three degrees above normal. TNS


BJP to unfold poll strategy in Gohana
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, January 22
The Haryana BJP is holding its State-level rally on February 8 at Gohana, where it is expected to launch the general election campaign.

According to a report, Gohana is a segment of the Sonepat Lok Sabha seat, which is presently held by Mr Kishan Singh Sangwan, Vice-President and the spokesman of the state BJP. Once a supporter of the Chief Minister, Mr Om Parkash Chautala, Mr Sangwan disassociated himself from Mr Chautala when he was refused the party ticket. The BJP seized the opportunity and gave him the ticket from this seat in the 1999 Lok Sabha elections.

Now, the Chief Minister, Om Prakash Chautala, is pressing the BJP High Command to give the Sonepat Lok Sabha seat to his party as he wants to field his son Ajay Chautala from this seat. If Mr Ajay Chautala contests from here, the HVP Secretary General and former MP, Mr Surinder Singh, who is the son of Mr Bansi Lal, is sure to contest from here.

The state BJP leaders are expected to announce their strategy for the Lok Sabha elections at Gohana, that is whether the party will go it alone in the elections or contest it in alliance with INLD. The state BJP leaders and its workers wanted to contest the Lok Sabha and the Vidhan Sabha elections independently, but the party High Command is in league with the Chief Minister, and has assured him that the party would continue its alliance with the INLD and contest the Lok Sabha elections jointly.

The BJP activists are making concerted efforts to make the Gohana rally a success. They are touring the villages for mobilising the people in large numbers for the rally.

Cong unit welcomes Dhawan’s appointment

Meanwhile, the senior Congress leader and former president of Haryana Pradesh Congress Committee, Mr Dharam Pal Singh Malik, said that the voters were fed up with the ‘anti-people’ policies of the INLD government and waiting to teach it a lesson in the Lok Sabha elections.

Talking to mediapersons in the party’s Gannaur office last evening, Mr Malik welcomed the appointment of R K Dhawan as the incharge of party affairs in Haryana and made it clear that the Congress will contest on all the 10 Lok Sabha seats in the state and will win all the seats.

Answering a question, Mr Malik said that it was a compulsion for the BJP and the INLD to keep alliance in Haryana as the BJP in the Centre and the INLD in Haryana have lost all public sympathy due to their wrong policies.

Coming down heavily on the INLD rule in Haryana, the Congress leader accused the Chautala government of letting loose a reign of terror in the state and the murders, dacoities, thefts had become the order of the day.

The state government had totally failed to improve the law and order situation in the state.

“Every section of society is fed up from this government. Farmers are not getting the remunerative prices of their produce. The traders have been heavily taxed and the government employees are being retrenched,” he alleged and added that the Chautala rule in the state was a dictatorship in which even the elected representatives did not have any say.

Refuting the allegations of groupism in the state Congress, Mr Malik said the party was fully united under the leadership of Congress president Sonia Gandhi and all the leaders of the state Congress have been assigned duties for the party and they have been working unitedly.

The secretary of HPCC, Mr Azad Singh Nehra, and other Congress leaders were present on the occasion.


Sonepat-Jind railway line soon
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, January 22
The Planning Commission has approved the construction of Sonepat-Jind via Gohana railway line at a cost of Rs 200 crore and the work would be started from April.

Stating this, Mr Kishan Singh Sangwan, MP and the vice-president and spokesman of the Haryana BJP, told mediapersons at Gohana town, 35 km from here yesterday that the vice-president of the Planning Commission, Mr Sompal Singh informed him of the approval of the scheme.

The Planning Commission, he said, has also approved the construction of two flyovers and three-ft over-bridge to be constructed in Sonepat Parliamentary constituency.

Mr Sangwan also disclosed that the tenders for the construction of flyover bridges at Ganaur and Sonepat will be called shortly.

Similarly, the footover bridges would be constructed at Gohana, Bahadurgarh and Sonepat.

These will facilitate the people of these towns in the wake of closure of the railway crossings.

He further disclosed that the Union Railway Ministry had already conducted the survey twice for laying the railway track, but in the first survey, this route was declared harmful as there was no industrial area lying on this track.

According to Mr Sangwan, the second survey was taken by the Union Railway Ministry on the intervention of the Prime Minister, Mr Atal Bihari Vajpayee, and now it has given a green signal for this railway track.

He also said that Gohana is connected with the rail link from Rohtak and Panipat side.

The new railway track will connect Gohana town with Sonepat and Delhi.


‘Substandard’ material used in construction works
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, January 22
A team of the urban development department from Chandigarh carried out inspection of the ongoing development works in the town and lifted half a dozen samples of the construction material being used in the works. The team’s action has created a panic among the contractors and local civic authorities.

The team led by the executive engineer, Mr K C Jain, also visited a pond located in Sunder Sanwari basti of the town with the proposal to develop it into a park after removing all encroachments.

It is pointed out that some people of the town had lodged complaints with the director of the urban development department, alleging that substandard material was being used in the construction of streets. The director deputed the team for an on-the-spot inspection of the work and the team inspected all the construction works being completed in various localities of the town.

The team also held a meeting with the officials of the municipal council and held detailed discussions on various development works of the town.

Mr Jain also cautioned the officials as well contractor against the use of substandard material and made it clear that the sample would be sent for laboratory testing and action would be taken if any sample was found substandard.

It is also pointed out that Sunder Sanwari pond which used to be very deep and wide, has been encroached from all sides and more than a hundred houses had been constructed on the encroached land. The Chief Minister, Mr Om Prakash Chautala, during his visit to panchayat bhawan last year had announced to develop this pond into a park.

But after conducting the survey of the area, the municipal authorities reportedly wrote to the director urban development stating that the pond had lost its religious importance as it was being used now for dumping dead animals. And it was not possible to convert it into a park after demolishing hundreds of houses.


Inter-state criminal held for murder, robbery
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 22
The Crime Branch today claimed to have arrested an inter-state criminal who was involved in at least nine cases of murder, kidnapping, robbery and burglary in East Delhi.

The accused Anish Khan, alias Kha Sahab, alias Rahis, (50), resident of Loni, Ghaziabad is also a Proclaimed Offender (PO) in at least five cases committed in Moradabad.

He was also involved in a murder case of one taxi driver in 2002. The accused along with other associates, including a woman, hired a Toyota Qualis from Shahdara for Aligarh. When they reached near Aligarh, they killed the driver and disposed of his body in the nearby jungles. The police later found the naked body of the driver.

The crime branch sleuths received a secret information that the accused involved in the murder is setting up his base in Ghaziabad and planning to commit crimes in East and North-East Delhi.

The sleuths immediately rushed to the Loni border and intercepted him in the Gokulpuri area. Anish told the sleuths that he and the woman Shabana approached the Triveni Travels in Shahdara and hired a Toyota Qaulis and later strangulated him with his associates Zakir and Shakeel, alias Mullaji. He also disclosed to the sleuths that he had sold the vehicle in Nepal.

Hotel bash bungle: Duo granted bail

The Delhi High Court has granted bail to two accused Sagar and Vikas Vishnoi in the Ashok Hotel New Year bash fiasco.

Mr Justice O. P. Dwivedi granted them bail after recording the contentions that the duo who ran a company ‘Dream Star’ were not the organisers of the show, in which pop singer Jassi had been invited, but only arranged for sponsors so no charge of cheating could be brought against them.

One Mr Suresh Sharma had alleged that he was cheated by the organisers of the event, where more tickets—at Rs 4,000 a person—were sold than the capacity of the venue.

Counsel for the two, Manish Bishnoi said even otherwise there was no cheating as the event was actually held. It, however, could not go and had to be cancelled due to the mismanagement of the number of guests and food and drinks which were to be served to them, he added. The show was jointly managed by the five star hotel and Moksha Events.

The judge granted the bail conditional to Sagar and Vikas each producing Rs 20,000 personal bond and a surety of the like amount.


Man gets life term for murder
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, January 22
The District and Sessions Judge of Sonepat, Mr B L Singal, yesterday convicted an accused Daya Kishan of Jagsi village under Section 302 and 149 IPC and sentenced him to imprisonment for life with a fine of Rs 3,000 or in default to undergo further two years’ rigorous imprisonment for shooting down one Rajesh of the same village on November 30, 1998.

According to a report, the judge also convicted the accused under Section 307 and 149 IPC and sentenced him to seven years’ rigorous imprisonment with a fine of Rs 2,000 or in default to undergo further one year rigorous imprisonment.

The judge also convicted the accused under Section 323 and 149 IPC and sentenced him to two years’ rigorous imprisonment.

All the sentences will run concurrently, the judge ordered. The judge, however, acquitted three accused Krishan, Raja and Ajmer involved in this case on lack of evidence.

Farmers penalised

The authorities of the irrigation department have adopted a novel way to penalise the farmers of Chidana and Shamri villages in Gohana subdivision of the district and deny them their share of irrigation water as they had refused the desilting of the Bijewa minor in accordance with the orders.

According to a report, the farmers of these villages had called on the Chief Minister, Mr Om Prakash Chautala, at Chandigarh and made a complaint against the Executive Engineer, the SDO and the junior engineer of the Israna minor, Panipat Water Service Division under which their villages fall in this regard.

On their return, the farmers told this correspondent that the Chief Minister has taken a serious note of the complaint and directed the authorities concerned to ensure the supply of water to the farmers of the above-mentioned villages at all costs otherwise they would be dealt with sternly.


Armymen to get discount at Appu Ghar
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 22
Appu Ghar, an amusement park is celebrating the Defence Personnel Week from January 24 to February 1. During this time, the families of the defence personnel will get heavy discount on tickets to the amusement park.

The park authorities pointed out that they “are doing their bit for the defence personnel” by organising the week.

The family members of the defence personnel both in service as well as retired are eligible for discount in Oysters Ice Park and rides.

These specially priced tickets can be obtained on furnishing the identity cards. Appu Ghar will also organise various fun events and contests during the period.


Ncr briefs
Brother shot dead over money
Our Correspondents

Ghaziabad, January 22
A brother shot dead his elder brother in a hail of bullets early in the morning on Wednesday in village Dina Nathpur under Mussori police station.

Acting swiftly, police arrested the murderer Manoj Yadav along with a local pistol and cartridges. A minor money dispute is said to be the cause of the murder.

Vjainder Yadav lived in the village with his family. He used to run a tea stall along with his eldest son. His other four sons were engaged in the farming in the village. Vijainder Yadav was asleep when his younger brother Manoj came and fired a hail of bullets from his revolver on Vijainder. By the time other family members could do anything, Manoj had fled from the scene. Excessively bleeding Vijainder was rushed to the hospital where he died. So Mussori police station R.S. Pandya said that immediately on getting information, the police nabbed the culprit, Manoj Yadav from the village. The revolver used in the crime and cartridges have also been seized from the assailant.

SO R.S. Pandya said both the brothers had a clash over money.

Rally for saving Gautam Budh Nagar Dist

Noida: An awareness rally was taken out by the action committee of ‘Save Gautam Budh Nagar District’ on Wednesday.

The rally, taken out from the main entrance of Noida at 11 a.m., went through various sectors of Noida, . Baraula, Salarpur, Banghel, Phase-II, Surajpur Trijunction, Greater Noida, Kasna, Dadri and came back via G.T. Road, Patvari Ka Bagh, and Chhapraula to Noida in the evening.

According to BJP’s ex-UP Minister Nawab Singh Naggar whenever the rally, comprising about 300 vehicles passed through a village or town, it got enthusiastic welcome. People raised slogans like “Hamare Zila Vapas Karo”, “Mulayam Singh Murdabad” and burnt the effigies of the Chief Minister.

Birender Singh as UP Cong chief

Bhiwani: A senior Congress leader Shiv Shankar Bhardwaj has thanked the party president Sonia Gandhi for nominating state leader Birender Singh as general secretary and incharge of Uttar Pradesh and described it a right step at the right time. Addressing a press conference here today, he said that Birender Singh was a grassroot leader and the party would be strengthened under his dynamic leadership in Uttar Pradesh. He claimed that the party would win maximum seats in Uttar Pradesh.

Tata Indica collides with truck

Seven persons, including two women and a child were hurt when their Tata Indica car collided with a truck near Kharak village, 18 km from here on Wednesday. The injured were going to Sui village to attend the last rites of someone. The injured identified as Lakhi, Satish, Shiela, Bala, Satish, Deepak and driver Krishan have been admitted to civil hospital. The condition of two has been stated as serious.

Policeman’s bike stolen

A motorcycle of a police constable was reportedly stolen outside SP office in the mini-secretariat here on Wednesday. Constable Jaiveer said that he had parked his motorcycle outside the office but when he returned, it was not there.

Sonepat remains without power

Sonepat: Sonepat city with a population of more than two lakh and a district headquarters of Haryana remained powerless for most of the day on Wednesday paralysing the normal life and business activity.

According to a report, a major fault in the power sub-station was the cause of disruption in the power supply system. Thousands of residents felt inconvenience as a result of the non-supply of power to the domestic sector. The day-long intermittent rains also added to the problems.


Traffic advisory today
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 22
The Traffic Police advised the motorists to avoid the Republic Day Parade Full Dress Rehearsal to be held tomorrow from Vijay Chowk to Red Fort Ground. The parade route is Vijay Chowk, Rajpath, India Gate, Tilak Marg, W Point, BSZ Marg, A point, BSZ Marg, Subhash Marg, Red Fort Chowk and it will be culminated at Red Fort Ground. The traffic is restricted on the parade route from 6 am to 1 pm.

Kathak artistes to spread awareness about cancer

Well-known Kathak dancers will show their talent to the Indian Cancer Society, Delhi, at a concert on January 23, 2004. The performance is at the India Habitat Center Auditorium and will start at 7 pm.

The concert is the latest in the series, when the well-known musicians and dancers have joined hands with the Indian Cancer Society under the banner—Artistes against Cancer. This is an effort to bring the cause of cancer awareness and education before the discerning public and enlist their participation to fight cancer. In the past, noted artistes such as Ms Shubha Mudgal, Ms Rama Vaidyanathan, Dr Shanno Khurana, Ms Shovana Narayan, Ms Madhumita Raut, Ms Kavita Seth and Ms Nehi Chaudhury have participated in these annual concert series..

Today’s show will present a varied programme, from classical Moghul court dance to the modern interpretations in Loha.

The Indian Cancer Society, Delhi celebrates over 20 years of dedicated service to Delhi. It lays emphasis on social health. It is estimated that regular annual screening can prevent 70 per cent of the trauma of cancer. Despite the incidence of cancer rising steadily over the years, there is no national cancer screening programme. Medical examination today is nothing more than a test of heart-lung function.

It is time to understand that cancer screening is an essential part of preventive health measures that every sensible person should undertake.


The NDPL today announced that electricity would not be available tomorrow in part of Alipur, Budhpur, part of Nangli, AIR Nangli from 10 am to 3 pm and MIG and LIG flats, C 3 Block and Lawrence Road from 11 am to 5 pm due to maintenance work in substations in Narela district.

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