N C R   S T O R I E S


HC wants donations to Dargah monitored
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 7
The Delhi High Court today directed the Survey Commissioner of Delhi Wakf Board to keep an account of the offerings made to the 700-year-old Dargah of Hazrat Nizamuddin Aulia and the amount spent out of these donations.

A division bench comprising Chief Justice B C Patel and Justice B D Ahmed, in the interest of the public at large, ordered the Survey Commissioner (Wakf) to monitor for the next two weeks the money received by the shrine in all forms and those spent by its Peerzadas.

The purpose, for which the money is spent, would also have to be noted and a report submitted in the court. The judge also asked Delhi Wakf Board Chief Executive Officer to be present to assist the court in the matter.

Earlier today, the court expressed its dissatisfaction with the reply filed on behalf of the Peerzadas, saying it was vague and no accounts had been given of the monies received or the amounts spent.

While the Survey Commissioner’s report had indicated the misuse of funds, large amounts were received by the shrine from offerings and donations and also from allied properties and businesses. The amounts were being distributed among the Peerzadas themselves.

In December last, in his report to the High Court, the Delhi Wakf Board Survey Commissioner had indicated mismanagement in the running of the Dargah and recommended that the affairs be controlled by a management committee constituted by the government.

In the inquiry report, conducted on the directions of the court and submitted to the division bench, it was hinted that all was not well at the shrine and there was need for proper management of the affairs at the Dargah.

The Dargah could be compared to the Dargah at Ajmer Sharif in its importance and stature, and therefore, it needed to be managed on the same pattern as the shrine at Ajmer, the Commissioner suggested.

This, it was pointed out, could be achieved either by legislation of a fresh enactment or by constitution of a proper management committee having government representatives and other eminent personalities.

The committee apart from having representatives of the Peerzadas, who were presently running the show, should also have some external presence for transparency. There should also be an official nominee to ensure that the government was aware of the activities of the shrine, it was added.

It was found that the Peerzadas maintained a website giving news about non-existing programmes and projects to solicit/collect donations from the foreign countries.

On September 28, the High Court had directed the Survey Commissioner, Wakfs to find out how the Dargah was managed and by whom.

The directions came after the judges were informed that all properties under the Wakf Board had been ‘surveyed’ except the said shrine.

The petition claimed that huge donations were offered daily at the Dargah, which was considered second in popularity only to the Hazrat Khawaja Gharib Nawaz shrine at Ajmer, where the income swelled to about Rs 1,00,000 on Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays.

The Dargah Management Committee had, however, refuted the claims of mismanagement and said the shrine was being run in accordance with the Central Wakf Act.

They claimed that income from donations was around Rs 2,000 to Rs 3,000 a day, which went up to Rs 5,000 on Thursdays and Fridays.

Undertrial escapes from court

An undertrial who was brought to the Tees Hazari court in connection with a murder case, escaped after pushing a constable from the court’s Central Hall.

The police said that the undertrial Naveen Kumar Verma (42), resident of Anarkhali, Krishna Nagar was taken to the court of Kaveri Baweja in room no 241 and later to the R K Jain’s court for giving an application, related to a murder case in the Sriniwaspuri.

It was while returning, the accused pushed the constable Biju Thomas and escaped from the Central Hall on the court premises.


Death Trap
One killed, 27 in hospital after gas leak from
cargo godown

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 7
One died and at least 27 persons were hospitalised this morning following the leakage of poisonous aluminium phosphide, from a godown of a private cargo company which caught a massive fire recently.

While the victim has been identified as Aakash (17), resident of Gali Mitranwali, 27 persons, including the local MLA Rakesh Jain were shifted to the Bara Hindu Ram Hospital and kept under observation after the treatment.

The police said that the leakage could have occurred this morning following the fire recently in the Jaipur Golden transport godown in Subzi Mandi. The gas container which was kept in the godown got heated up and could have leaked.

There was considerable panic in the area as the police and the disaster management teams started cordoning the area. The teams after reaching the spot evacuated at least 300 families and shifted them to the safe area. However, the teams worked till late evening to clear the godown of the poisonous gas.

The police said that the problem started this morning when some of the residents in the nearby areas complained of pungent odour and breathlessness when the cleaning was in the process in the godown.

The police have registered a case under Section 285/337 of IPC and launched the investigation process.


Dog days catch power dept unawares
Our Correspondent

Noida, April 7
The rise in mercury seems to have caught the power department napping once again. For the past few days, the department has started imposing severe cuts in the power supply.

This has led to resentment among the residents who have to prepare themselves for the onslaught of breakdowns, tripping, burnt-out gadgets, and to cap it all– loadshedding.

Akhilesh Sharma, a resident and entrepreneur of the city, said, “The present situation belies the tall claims made by politicians, of Noida being a ‘no power cut zone’, of there being ‘power for all’ and availability of ‘power on demand’.”

The department has been resorting to several cuts each day and night, with each disruption lasting 30 minutes or more.

In some of the areas, the power remains off for about three hours.

The resident of Sector-19 says, “One could easily have an idea of the situation when the demand would be at its peak in May and June.” According to Tarun Deep of Sector-27, “Every year, the power situation seems to worsen instead of getting better.”

The students appearing for their board exams were badly hit by the power cuts.

Alleging that the government and the officials concerned had been misleading the common people over the power supply situation, he claimed that the cuts were proof of how poorly the system worked and what little the authorities had done to meet the growing demand.

Satinder Kaushik of Sector-9 said that while the onslaught of mosquitoes had gone up due to the climatic conditions, the power cuts are intolerable. He wondered if this was meant to promote the sale of inverters and generators.

The Noida authority claims having five of the 10 sub-stations to be under construction and at various stages of completion.

Says Munna Kumar of Sector-71, “The cables and wiring being done in the new sectors being developed by Noida are in a pathetic state and our complaints get lost in the administrative quagmire, as the UP Power Corporation and the Noida Authority play the blame games.”

Kuldeep Rana of Sector-82 says, “The wiring being done and the metre boxes being fixed are of sub-standard material in our houses and will definitely not last even one summer as already we are experiencing breakdowns.”

Deputy General Manager of Uttar Pradesh Power Corporation Limited (UPPCL) B.B. Singh explains, “The load is increasing in the city with a minimum of 10 per cent growth every year in the requirement. Last year, we recorded 705 amperes consumed while our drawing capacity is only 690 amperes”.

On being asked as to why maintenance, upgradation, and repairs are not done before summer, the chief of UPPCL in the city blamed the Noida Authority.


Officials winking at traffic in minor girls: NGO
Bijendra Ahlawat
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, April 7
The trafficking in minor girls brought from other states has become rampant in the state, while the government and the political leaders allegedly turn a blind eye to the curse.

An NGO, Shakti Vahini, based in Faridabad, has reported the scourge of buying and selling minor girls. The Vahini has been taking up the cudgels for the rights of women.

It has played a key role in rescuing many minor girls in the state and the region in the past few years.

According to a survey conducted by the NGO, the number of illegally bought and sold girls only in the Mewat area of the state, could be at least 5,000 in the past few years.

The survey says the majority of the minor girls had been married forcibly to the men much older. There were many who had been sold several times as ‘sex slaves’.

This trend, it says, had also caught up in other parts of the state and the recent reports in the media had indicated that hundreds of girls being married in this manner.

According to Mr Rishi Kant, working in the NGO, the main factor responsible for this could be the declining sex ratio in the state. The poor old men living in the rural and semi-rural belts had been expecting the traffickers to bring girls so that they could marry or satisfy their physical needs.

Mr Kant claimed that there had been no awareness programme for the state government and the police system. Some of the politicians and government officials had been just trivialising the issue.

He said it seemed that the politicians required a brainstorming session so that they could differentiate between a marriage and trafficking in minor and innocent girls.

The Vahini which has been demanding proper implementation of the Juvenile Justice Act and adequate measures to check the sale of girls in the name of ‘marriages’, has asked the state government to take up the matter seriously to check the rot in society.

According to the NGO, there was need to activate the Samaj Kalyan Board and relevant committees to create awareness among the officials and the police staff in handling such sensitive matters.

It has claimed that due to inept handling, many of the traffickers could not be arrested and the victim, despite being rescued from their clutches, had been living either in fear or could not be rehabilitated properly.

The survey says how the authorities or the vested interests could justify these cases as ‘inter-caste marriages’ when the age of the girls was below 18, and to cap it, the marriage was against their wishes.


Man accused of killing SI shot in encounter
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 7
The Delhi Police Special Cell has claimed to have shot dead Vinod, an accused in the murder of a Delhi Police Sub-Inspector attached to the Crime Branch and an informer, in the Sarai Kale Khan area in the wee hours today. Vinod had been absconding after killing Sub-Inspector Satish Dalal and the informer a month ago.

The 45-year-old Dalal, posted in the Anti-Homicide Wing of the Crime Branch, had gone to carry out a raid along with informer Vijay Kumar Swami in connection with a robbery case of Mangolpuri, when they were killed. Their torsos and severed heads were recovered from separate places in Haryana on March 6.

After the brutal murder of the SI and the informer, the North-West district police had arrested four persons, including Vinod’s two brothers and mother in the sensational case. They were identified as Rajinder Singh, alias Jinder, Joginder Singh, alias Danny, Laxmi and Vinod Jatav.

After their arrest, the North-West district police had obtained non-bailable arrest warrants against Vinod. The Delhi Police Commissioner had also announced a reward of Rs 30,000 for his arrest.

Additional Commissioner of Police (Special Cell) Karnal Singh said that the sleuths received a tip-off on April 6 that Vinod would be coming to the ISBT Sarai Kale Khan to meet his contact.

Accordingly, a special team was constituted to track down the movements of Vinod. At around 2 am, the sleuths spotted Vinod. As they approached him for verification, Vinod whipped out a pistol and started firing at them.

However, the sleuths fired back. The accused was killed in an encounter which lasted a few minutes, said Singh.

Vinod was allegedly involved in as many as 18 cases of heinous crimes like murder, attempt to murder, dacoity, robbery and had been arrested earlier under the National Security Act.


MCD employee held for cheating jobless
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 7
The Economic Offences Wing of the Delhi Police today claimed to have arrested an employee of the MCD for duping unemployed youths of lakhs of rupees on the promise of providing them with jobs of peons and inspectors in his department.

Rajesh Kumar Chauhan, 31, was arrested on Monday and remanded in police custody till tomorrow, the Deputy Commissioner of Police (Economic Offences Wing), Mr Dinesh Bhatt, said.

Rajesh, a Class IV employee, posed as an inspector in the corporation and sold job dreams to the unsuspecting youths.

He would demand Rs 80,000 to Rs 1. 5 lakh from his victims, depending on the post. Having being tempted, the youths would pay him money by selling their household jewellery, or mortgaging their houses or taking loans on high interest, Mr Bhatt said. However, the youths were not given jobs. Their money was not returned either.

When the victims demanded their money back, they were threatened with dire consequences, he added.

The police have identified four of Rajesh’s victims. They are Nitin Sharma, duped of Rs 1.10 lakh, Rajiv Kumar of Rs 80,000, Raju of Rs 80,000 and Laxman cheated out of Rs 80,000.


14-year-old raped; two caught by people, beaten up

Modinagar: Two of three young men, accused of raping a 14-year-old girl, were caught by the people and thrashed before being handed over to the police. The third man managed to escape.

The girl, who had gone to work along with her mother on Tuesday, was dragged by the youths into a house and raped. They are alleged to have tried to strangle the victim with her duppatta. OC


HVP welcomes EC order to transfer DGP
Our Correspondent

Sonepat, April 7
The Haryana Vikas Party has welcomed the decision of the Election Commission to order the transfer of the Haryana Director General of Police (DGP), Mr M. S. Malik, as his wife, Mrs Krishna Malik, is the Lok Sabha candidate of the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) from Sonepat.

In a press statement, the general-secretary of the Haryana Vikas Party, Mr Rajiv Jain, claimed that it was a victory for the Opposition parties, which have been calling for his removal in order to ensure free and fair elections.

He also alleged that Mr Malik had politicised the Police Department and was using plainclothes policemen for campaigning in favour of his wife in the Sonepat Lok Sabha constituency.

He also demanded that Mr Malik should be banned from entering the Sonepat constituency till the end of the polling process as it would put undue pressure on the electorate and the election machinery.

Meanwhile, the representatives of the BJP, the Congress and other political parties have also hailed the decision of the Election Commission on this issue and demanded the resignation of the Chief Minister, Mr Om Parkash Chautala, on moral ground.

In separate statements issued to the mediapersons, they demanded the immediate transfer of the Deputy Commissioner and the Superintendent of Police, who they alleged have been playing into the hands of the ruling party leaders in the state.

They warned that they would meet the Election Commission shortly if they were not transferred immediately.


Poll arena
Cong seeks derecognition of ‘slanderous’ BJP

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 7
The Congress today held a demonstration at Jantar Mantar to protest against the repeated statements made by the BJP about Ms Sonia Gandhi’s foreign origin and sought from the Election Commission (EC) derecognition of that party.

Mr Paramjit Singh Pamma and others, who assembled at Jantar Mantar, burnt effigies and raised slogans against the misleading statements emanating from the BJP camp.

“The BJP,” he said, “does not seem to respect the judiciary.

This slander campaign against Ms Sonia Gandhi and her children must not be allowed to continue”.

BJP clears the air on minorities

The BJP candidate from the South Delhi parliamentary constituency, Mr Vijay Kumar Malhotra, on Wednesday interacted with the minorities and clarified the party’s position on certain issues.

Addressing the All India Saifi Day Sammelan at Jamia Millia Islamia and another gathering in Okhla, Mr Malhotra said that the Congress had tried to instill in the minds of the minorities a fear of the BJP but the record of the BJP-led NDA government at the Centre and the BJP governments in the states told a different story.

“The BJP rule has been almost free from communal riots whereas the records show that at an average there has been a communal riot every third day under Congress rule”, he told the people. Acknowledging that the Gujarat riots were “unfortunate”, Mr Malhotra said that the educated and progressive minorities, especially the youth, had understood the real character of the secular parties and had dumped them for good.


Trauma centres along every 25 km of NH planned
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 7
To check the number of deaths caused because of accidents a plan to set up a trauma centre for every 25-30 km on the national highways in the country is being put forth.

The project would involve selected local hospitals along the highway where facilities for trauma care would be provided, the Chairman of Rotary International’s Trauma Care Programme, Mr Raman Bhatia, told mediapersons during a conference organised to commemorate World Health Day by the World Health Organisation.

Every second trauma centre would have an ambulance equipped with facilities to transport trauma patients, Mr Bhatia said, adding that at every one kilometre of the project communication facilities linked to the trauma centres would be set up.

In the first phase, about 200 such centres would be set up along the Golden Quadrilateral that is being constructed from Delhi to Mumbai to Chennai to Kolkata.

A meeting involving the authorities concerned, including the Ministry of Road Transport, had already taken place in November and the MoUs for the project were likely to be signed after the election process was over.

A MoU for the project would be signed between Rotary International and the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI), Mr Bhatia said.


Lieut-Gen JJ Singh visits ECHS Polyclinic at Noida
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 7
Lieut-Gen J. J. Singh, GOC-in-C Western Command, visited the Ex-Servicemen Contributory Health Scheme (ECHS) Polyclinic at Noida.

The ECHS was launched by the Army Chief, General N.C. Vij, at the Base Hospital, Delhi Cantt., last year. The scheme is being constantly monitored under the command of Lt. Gen. Singh.

It is the biggest medical scheme for ex-servicemen where a one- time contribution between Rs 1800-18,000 has to be deposited depending upon their pension scale.

The scheme has taken off successfully in Delhi under the Western Command. There are three polyclinics in the national Capital-Base Hospital, Delhi, Noida and Gurgaon.

Lt.Gen. J. J. Singh said that there is no better welfare than taking care of the medical requirement of serving and retired personnel. The scheme is the brainchild of the Army chief.

A social security with a difference, it is among the best scheme available for ex-servicemen. It is a dream come true, as it would avoid delay and multiple visits by the ex-servicemen.

All the leading hospitals in Delhi have been empanelled under this scheme, ensuring the best treatment to the ex-servicemen.

Smart cards will be issued in next few weeks under this scheme.

The scheme entitles ex-servicemen to avail treatment for cancer and dialysis, apart from psychiatric treatment, which were not available to them earlier.

All leading hospitals, including Apollo and Escorts have been empanelled in the national Capital. As many as 227 polyclinics are planned in the various parts of the country.


Call for reviewing vulnerability of Delhi to quakes
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 7
Experts have warned against assuming that minor tremors reduce the risk of earthquake and have called for reviewing the vulnerability map of the Capital to prevent any major disaster like Gujarat.

The observation of the experts comes in the wake of five tremors in the past three weeks in the Capital.

The Disaster Studies Research Group said that ‘’Delhi lies in Zone IV of seismic zones of India. The magnitude of the probable earthquake will range between 5 to 6 on the Richter scale which could be extremely devastating in the present preparedness in Delhi.’’

Prof R. B. Singh, Group Convener, said the belief that energy release through these tremors reduced the risk of a devastating earthquake was not based on definite proposition.

Professor Singh said ignoring the geographical realities could spell doom for the densely populated Capital which had loopholes in the unsafe physical structures, including buildings, bridges and heritage monuments.

Besides having a trained disaster management team, the research group further called upon the government to develop open spaces for safe shelter in congested areas like Old Delhi, Paharganj and Karol Bagh.

It further called for assessment of land in trans-Yamuna area before allowing any construction. ‘’Flood plains, reclaimed waterlogged areas and geologically weak areas should be avoided for construction purposes.’’

With regard to future plans, the group said while there should be strict implementation of building codes, especially those housing hospitals and schools there should be retrofitting of old buildings.


Devotees attend yajna at Laxmi Birla Mandir
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 7
Hundreds of devotees have been attending the ‘Akanda Mahanam Sankirtan Yajna’ being held at Laxmi Narayan Temple (Birla Mandir).

The Yajna, which began on April 4, is being organised by Jai Guru Sampradaya, founded by Ananta Sri Sri Sitaramdas Onkarnath Devji. Kirtans are being performed by eminent singers from Brindavan and West Bengal. Special arati is organised in the evening daily.

A ‘Nara Narain Seva’ (food to the people) is organised daily in the afternoon.

“We are celebrating this ‘Mahanam Sankirtan Yajna’ in the Capital for the first time,” said Shri Gopal Chaturvedi, president of the Jai Guru Sampradaya.

He was sure that the people would benefit from the yajna in the Capital. He said the chanting of “Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare” would help us attain eternal peace.

A large number of seers and devotees, led by Swami Biraganandaji Maharaj are attending the celebration.

Swamiji was confident that kirtan of Lord Krishna would purify the hearts of the devotees in the Capital and give them the necessary peace of mind. Real social welfare can be done only with a sense of service to the mankind, said Swamiji. The celebration would end on April 11, 2004.


Hanuman Jayanti Mahotasava organised
Our Correspondent

New Delhi, April 7
Vivek Vihar-based ‘Shri Hanuman Sewa Sangh’ today organised Hanuman Jayanti Mahotasava at Shri Balaji Medical Center, Bihari Colony, East Delhi. The local MP, Mr Lal Bihari Tewari, inaugurated the function. According to the director of this center, Dr. Sushil Garg, a number of cultural programmes were also organised on the occasion by ‘Anil Art Group’ and ‘Tulsi Maskin and Party’.

A play based on the lilas of Hanuman was staged by the artistes on the occasion. The chairman of the Trans Yamuna Development Board, Dr Narendra Nath, was also present on the occasion.


Legislation must for preserving heritage: INTACH
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 7
The Chairman, Indian National Trust for Art and Culture Heritage (INTACH), today said, “There are many types of sites and monuments that need infrastructure development and careful planning. We should be aware that although restoration preserves a relatively small number of sites regulatory legislation can preserve thousands.” He was speaking at a seminar organised on “Tourism Preservation of Cultural Heritage” at India International Center. The function was presided over by the Union Minister of Tourism and Culture.

Mr Misra further informed, “The Government of India has also framed a modal notification to be enacted for hill stations and modal heritage regulations for all hill stations. This provides a firm base for providing protection to hill stations and other hill settlements.

International Fellowship Foundation of India (IFFI), which organised the programme, has also sponsored research to be conducted by the students of management studies, School of Economics and Applied Social Sciences and Humanity and Kurukshetra University on subjects such as perception of India as a tourist destination.


Cop seriously hurt in mishap on GT Road

Our Correspondent

Sonepat, April 7
A head constable of the Traffic Police sustained injuries when certain unidentified youths travelling in a car hit a police jeep on the GT Road near Samalkha town, about 40 km from here, last evening. The injured policeman, Mohinder, was rushed to the local civil hospital for treatment where his condition is stated to be serious. The police have registered a case and launched a hunt to apprehend the youths. However, they are still absconding, despite the chase by the police.

Wheat burnt in fields at Gamri

A large quantity of wheat was burnt in the fields at Gamri village, about 45 km from here, on Tuesday night.

The fire was caused by a sparking in the transmission lines passing over the fields. The fire was brought under control by the people of the village.

Driver hurt as truck tyre bursts

Truck driver Alijohn and cleaner Narinder sustained injuries when the tyre of a truck burst on the GT Road near Bahalgarh village, about 10 km from here, on Tuesday night.

Both the injured persons were immediately hospitalised and are stated to be out of danger.

Principal pulled up for late arrival

The Civil Judge (Junior Division), Ms Rajni Yadav, took serious note of the late arrival in the court of Dr Shamim Sharma, Principal of the Hindu Girls College, Sonepat, on Tuesday. She pulled her up for arriving late in a case filed against her by a girl student of the college.

The Judge also gave her a day to file her reply in the case. The student, identified as Anju, a BA final year student of the college, has alleged that she had been denied the roll number issued by Maharishi Dayanand University (MDU), Rohtak, for appearing in the annual examination.

The MDU had issued roll no 1,808 to Anju for appearing in the annual examination. However, the college Principal had refused to issue the same to her as she did not fulfil the attendance requirements of the college.


Two flesh trade rackets busted
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 7
With the arrest of three girls, the East district police today claimed to have busted flesh trade rackets. The prostitutes were arrested from different place in the School Block area of Shakarpur.

The police received secret information that prostitution rackets were being run from the School Block area under the guise of a boutique shop and a property dealer’s office. A person as a shadow witness and a decoy customer were sent to deal with the pimp, Ajit Singh. The police raided the premises of Ajit Singh after a deal for Rs 3000 was struck for a prostitute, the police said.

During interrogation, the police said, it was disclosed that Ajit Singh had purchased a house one year ago. He has three daughters. He opened a property dealer’s office in his house. There was no benefit in the business as he was new to the locality and nobody knew him. He came in contact with one prostitute, who reportedly insisted upon him to start the business by saying that there was much benefit in this trade. As he had no other source of income, he started the prostitution business from his own house by calling other girls on demand of his customers.

In the second place, a deal was fixed for Rs 500 for one girl. Soon after the deal was fixed, the police arrested the prostitute. During interrogation the police came to know that in this case the pimp was a 50-year-old widow. Her husband had expired about 15 years ago. She has two sons who are married and residing separately. The prostitute, who was arrested from her place, was a divorcee. The pimp was absconding, the police said.

Blood donation camp today

Sonepat: The Sonepat Jan Milan, in coordination with the District Red Cross Society, is organising a one-day blood donation camp on Thursday, April 8, on the premises of the BM Institute of Engineering and Technology, Sonepat.

The students, both boys and girls, would donate blood voluntarily in this camp. Mr Rajiv Jain, Chairman of the institute, and other office-bearers of the managing committee will be present on this occasion. OC

SDM talks tough on complaints

The Sub-Divisional Magistrate of Ganaur, Mr Ashok Bishnoi, on Wednesday directed the heads of departments to dispose of public complaints on a priority basis.

Mr Bishnoi also took serious note of the lapses made by certain heads of departments and warned that stern action would be taken against them if they failed to redress the grievances of the people on time.


Held for cheating on sale of mortgaged shop
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 7
The Fraud and Cheating Section of the Economic Offences Wing of the Delhi Police today arrested Ravinder Kumar on the charge of cheating a man on the pretext of sale of second hand cars and properties which were either sold earlier or mortgaged with financial institutions.

The victim, Akbar Ali, has alleged that he had been cheated by Ravinder Kumar who had executed an agreement with him for the sale of a shop in Panchsheel Park at a consideration of Rs 40 lakh. Initially, an amount of Rs 4 lakh was given to Ravinder Kumar as financial assistance. Later on, a Maruti Esteem car of the victim was also sold by the suspect for a consideration of Rs 2 lakh. Post-dated cheques worth Rs 6 lakh were issued by Ravinder Kumar in favour of the victim.

When Akbar Ali demanded his money back Ravinder Kumar assured that he would sell his shop to the victim for Rs 40 lakh provided Rs 6.50 lakh were further given to him by the victim. A memorandum of understanding (MoU) was executed between them to this effect. At the time of executing the MoU it was not disclosed to the victim that the shop was already lying mortgaged with the Punjab National Bank, Ashram Chowk branch.

The police said that Ravinder Kumar accepted Rs 7 lakh from the victim by inducement on the pretext of getting the title cleared from the bank. To give fake assurances to the victim, seven postdated cheques of Rs 1lakh each were also given by the suspect. When the victim visited the shop for getting the MoU executed the suspect did not turn up. The seven cheques given by the suspect were also dishonoured when presented at the bank with the remarks that the account had already been closed. Later, the suspect sold the shop to some other party without informing the victim. In this way the victim was cheated to the tune of Rs 19.50 lakh, the police said.

Excise staff to go on fast unto death

Faridabad: Employees of the Excise and Sales Tax Department are an unhappy and dissatisfied lot. Angered over the alleged unfavourable attitude of the authorities regarding their demand for removal of disparity in promotion and related schemes, the association had now decided to go for a fast unto death agitation from next month. The demonstration will be staged outside the department headquarters at Chandigarh from May 19 onwards.

A spokesman of the Excise and Taxation Ministerial Staff Association said here today that they had waited for too long on the issue but claimed that despite all efforts to solve it through proper process and dialogue the department authorities had failed to pay heed and remove the grievance.

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