C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Health Dept cancels staff selection exam
Candidates allege paper leak, block traffic
Tribune News Service

Mohali, May 30
Thousands of candidates from across the state were left in lurch following last minute cancellation of a written examination scheduled to be held here today to select contractual staff for the TB control programme of the Department of Health, Punjab.

While the agitated candidates alleged leak of question paper by the health authorities in connivance with political leaders, the State TB Control Officer, Dr Anil Joshi, under whose supervision the examination was to take place, termed the allegations as baseless.

Over a thousand candidates, many of whom had come from far-off places in Punjab to appear for the test this morning found a notice outside the gate of the Phase 3B1 Government Senior Secondary School, stating that the test had been postponed without citing any reason.

The candidates raised anti-government slogans and tried to block traffic outside the school by sitting on a dharna on the road outside the school. The police was called in to control the crowd.

Stating that the government had made a mockery of the selection system, the candidates alleged that the question papers had been leaked to some candidates in advance. However, somehow the leakage which was supposed to be restricted to only those who had to be selected, spread beyond these candidates and the examination had to be postponed, they alleged.

Denying the possibility of paper leakage, Dr Joshi said the test had been cancelled due to administrative reasons. “There are so many things that can go wrong in a system. Moreover, the candidates had been informed through newspapers, television and radio that the examination had been postponed,” he said adding that no decision had been taken regarding a fresh date for the examination.

Sources in the Health Department, however, said the TB Control Society had deviated from the set procedure of holding these examination in a medical college by deciding to hold it in a senior secondary government school, increasing the chances of mismanagement. “How can the school authorities be given responsibility for conducting medical examinations? Last year these tests were held at a medical college using its staff,” said a source.

Agreeing that the complete responsibility for holding the examination had been given to the school authorities, Dr Joshi said the school authorities had to check the papers, too.

Other than this, the candidates spoke against the decision of the society to hold the test at a single centre in Mohali. “We have come from Jalandhar just to realise that there is no paper today. Why cannot the government hold the test simultaneously at many centres across the state?” Dr Mohinder Khaira who had brought his daughter for the test, asked.

The State TB Control Society had on January 30 advertised over a hundred posts under various categories like TB lab supervisor, senior treatment supervisor, lab technicians, TB health visitor, date entry operator, medical officers and ISC officer. Over 1,500 applications for these posts were received and the final selections were to be made on the basis of a written examination that was to be held today.


Govt schools touch extremes in results
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Performance by high schools in periphery

With the exception of a school in Raipur Khurd (around 82 per cent), the pass percentage of other schools varies between 20 per cent and 40 per cent. The schools at Khuda Alisher and Hallomajra have a pass percentage of 17.6 per cent and 33.33 per cent, respectively.

Chandigarh, May 30
Government schools in the city have been the best and worst performers in Class X examinations of the CBSE.

If Government Model Senior Secondary School (GMSSS), Sector 16, has topped among the government schools with 98.84 per cent, Government Girls High School, Sector 25, has scored a pass percentage of around 4. One out of 24 students of the school could clear the examinations.

Though the wide difference in the achievements of a majority of students enrolled in the model schools and those in ordinary schools is known, very few ordinary schools have improved their performance as compared to the previous years.

After the poor performance by the government schools last year, the UT Education Department had cracked a whip on erring schools and the lax teachers.

A detailed probe into the result sheets of the government schools, downloaded from the CBSE websites, reveal that Government High School, Sector 31, could achieve just 10 per cent result. Two of the total of 19 students passed. The school’s pass percentage had been 13.33 per cent (2003) and 20 per cent (2002).

The saving grace for the department has been that the model schools, barring GMSSS, Sector 37 (57.8%) and GMSSS-47 (42.72%), the other model senior secondary schools have a pass percentage above 63. The overall performance of GMSSS, Sector 20, GMSSS, Sector 21, GMSSS, Sector 35, and GMSSS, Sector 37, has fallen compared to last year.

Among the Government Senior Secondary Schools (GSSS), the GSSS-15, has managed to achieve around 40 per cent result from last year’s 14 per cent. There has been little improvement in the performance of GSSS, Sector 23, GSSS, 27, GSSS, 38 West (DMC) and GSSS, Mani Majra. The GSSS, Maloya, has a pass percentage of around 57.

The performance of Government Model High Schools can give some happy moments to the Education Department. Not a single student in five of the schools has failed in the board examination. It is another thing that the number of compartment are aplenty. With around 90 per cent result, the GMHS, Sector 26, can be defined as the best school in the above stated category.

The GMHS, Sector 20-D, has managed a pass percentage of around 19. Among Government High Schools, the pass percentage of the majority is between 10 per cent and 30 per cent. The GHS, Bapu Dham, located in a slum area, has a pass percentage of 16.6.


Selja: slum-dwellers to be rehabilitated
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, May 30
The Union Government is working on comprehensive employment and poverty alleviation programmes for the masses, the Minister of State for Urban Employment and Poverty Alleviation, Kumari Selja, said today.

Talking to reporters after inaugurating Rawayat, a restaurant, and a health club at The Fort in Ramgarh, near here, Kumari Selja stated that the existing economic policies would be amended to cater to the needs of the poorer sections of society.

Saying that the government was not in favour of indiscriminate disinvestment in the public sector undertakings (PSUs), Kumari Selja informed mediapersons that she would soon hold talks with the management of HMT Limited, Pinjore, to improve its financial health.

Answering a question on local issues, she said rehabilitation of slum-dwellers in Panchkula would be taken up on priority. The people’s verdict against the BJP and the INLD proved these parties’ unpopularity beyond any doubt, the minister said, adding that the Haryana Assembly elections would be held on time.

Earlier, addressing party workers, Kumari Selja, who is also an MP from Ambala, said every effort would be made for the development of the Ambala constituency.

Prominent among those present were Mr Lachman Singh, a former Rajya Sabha MP, Mr Mehar Singh Rathi, HPCC general secretary, and Mr Shashi Sharma, senior vice-president of the District Congress Committee.

Ambala: Minister of State for Urban Employment and Poverty Alleviation Kumari Selja said on Sunday that the Congress was ready for Assembly elections in Haryana.

Talking to mediapersons on her first visit to Ambala after winning from this Lok Sabha constituency, Kumari Selja said the Haryana Chief Minister, Mr Om Prakash Chautala, should resign on moral grounds following the defeat of his party in the Lok Sabha elections.

She said her ministership would benefit the Ambala Lok Sabha constituency. “Also, I will try to get other benefits from different ministries for the people of the Ambala constituency,” she said.

She said sewerage problem was a major concern for the local populace and it needed to be tackled at the earliest. “The schemes of my ministry are being revamped and new schemes for poverty alleviation will be launched,” she said.

Kumari Selja said she would raise the issue of problems of sugarcane farmers of this region. “The Congress is committed to the welfare of farmers. We have always watched the interest of farmers and the common minimum programme (CMP)lays stress on the agriculture sector. We are pursuing reforms with a human face,” she said.

Responding to a query, Kumari Selja said the Congress at its Bangalore session had sought reservation in the private sector.

She said she wanted Mrs Sonia Gandhi to become the Prime Minister and she was disappointed when Mrs Gandhi turned down the Prime Minister’s post.

“The CBI raids in connection with the JBT teachers recruitment scam are not linked to the Congress coming to power at the Centre. It is a coincidence that the raids took place after the Congress-led UPA formed the government,” she said.


71 judicial officers transferred
Our High Court Correspondent

Chandigarh, May 30
As many as 71 judicial officers of Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh have been transferred by the Punjab and Haryana High Court. These also include the 12 newly appointed judicial officers.

Among those transferred are Chandigarh Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) Chaman Lal Mohal and Ms Sangeeta Rai Sachdeva, who has been transferred from Chandigarh to Kurukshetra.

Those appointed as Civil Judge are Mr Rajinder Pal Singh (Hisar), Mr Praveen Kumar Lal (Faridabad), Mr Madan Lal (Narnaul), Mr Hem Raj (Jind), Mr Amrit Singh (Kurukhshetra), Mr Devinder Singh (Karnal), Mr Fakhruddin (Rohtak), Mr Hukam Singh (Karnal), Mr Mahesh Kumar (Faridabad), Mr Jarnail Singh (Sirsa), Mr Balwant Singh (Ambala) and Mr Sanjay Kumar (Ambala).

The judicial officers who have been transferred are Civil Judge Vivek Bharti Sharma from Bhiwani to Kurukshetra, Kaithal Civil Judge Baljeet Singh from Rewari, while Rewari Civil Judge Bimlesh Tanwar goes to Kaithal.

Civil Judge Krishan Kumar has been transferred from Kurukshetra to Gurgaon, Mr R.N. Bharti from Fatehabad to Karnal, Mr J.R. Duggal from Gurgaon to Fatehabad.

While Bhiwani CJM Shalini Singh has been transferred to Gurgaon, Jagadhri CJM Anita Dahiya has been sent to Faridabad. Gurgaon CJM Ved Parkash will go to Bhiwani, while Jhajjar CJM Baseshar Singh and Faridabad CJM Jag Bhushan Gupta will go to Jagadhri and Bhiwani, respectively.

Additional Civil Judge Meham Sudhir Jiwan has been transferred to Jhajjar as CJM, Mr Randhir Kumar Dogra from Safidon to Guhla, Ms Alka Yadav from Narwana to Rewari, Mr Arun Kumar Singal from Rewari to Dabwali, Mr Raj Kumar Yadav from Dabwali to Nuh, Mr Mahender Singh from Guhla to Loharu, Mr Gopal Krishan from Nuh to Safidon, Ms Gagandeep Kaur from Jhajjar to Pehowa, Mr Parveen Gupta from Loharu to Narwana and Mr D.N. Bhardwaj from Kurukshetra to Bahadurgarh.

The Civil Judges who have been transferred include Mr Pushpinder Kumar from Panchkula to Faridabad, Ms Shashi Bala from Kaithal to Panchkula, Mr Chander Hass from Sirsa to Mahendragarh, Ms Sunita Grover from Palwal to Narwana, Ms Rachna Gupta from Faridabad to Gurgaon, Mr Ashwani Kumar Mehta from Karnal to Hisar, Ms Bhawna Jain from Jind to Kaithal, Mr Rajesh Sharma from Ambala to Faridabad, Mr Pawan Kumar from Sirsa to Palwal, Mr Kanwar Pal from Karnal to Dadri, Mr Aman Deep Dewan from Faridabad to Palwal, Mr Rajesh Sharma from Gurgaon to Ferozepore Jhirka, Mr Parveen Kumar from Hisar to Fatehabad, Mr Harish Gupta from Hisar to Tohana, Mr Bassruddin from Narnaul to Rewari and Narender from Rohtak to Meham.

In Punjab, Sangrur Civil Judge Gian Chand Garg has been transferred to Ludhiana, while Mr Kishore Kumar has been shifted from Amritsar to Hoshiarpur. Mr Jagjit Singh Chohan has been shifted from Ludhiana to Faridkot, Ms Sunita Kumari from Faridkot to Ferozepore, Ludhiana CJM Arunvir Vashista to Moga, Mr Sanjay Kumar Sachdeva from Nawanshahr to Mansa, Ms Harveen Bhardwaj from Hoshiarpur to Nawanshahr, Sangrur CJM Virender Aggarwal to Amritsar, Ms Neelam Arora from Fatehgarh Sahib to Sangrur, Mansa Civil Judge-cum-CJM Harsh Mehta to Sangrur, Ferozepore CJM Dilbagh Singh Johal to Fatehgarh Sahib, Moga Civil Judge Jai Karan to Ludhiana, Malout Additional Civil Judge Nirmal Singh to Gurdaspur, Tarn Taran Additional Civil Judge Rajinder Aggarwal to Jalandhar as Additional Civil Judge-cum-Special Magistrate for railway cases in Punjab, Malerkotla Additional Civil Judge Rakesh Kumar to Phul, Ms Mandeep Pannu from Jalandhar to Malerkotla as Addl Civil Judge.

Mr D.P.K. Bedi has been shifted from Phul to Fazilka as Additional Civil Judge, Ms Gurmeet Kaur from Fazilka to Malout as Additional Civil Judge, Ms Dimple B.J. Sharma from Gurdaspur to Abohar as Additional Civil Judge, Mr Gurnam Singh-II from Abohar to Tarn Taran as Addl Civil Judge.

Among the Civil Judges transferred are Ms Gurdarshan Kaur from Mansa to Muktsar, Mr Ajaib Singh from Dasuya to Barnala, Ms Ranjeet Kaur from Amritsar to Mansa, Mr Baljinder Singh-II from Phul to Amritsar, Ms Mandeep Kaur from Abohar to Dasuya, Mr R.K. Gupta from Muktsar to Abohar, Mr Harish Anand from Barnala to Ferozepore and Mr Jaspinder Singh from Gurdaspur to Barnala.


Withdraw helmet order: Bansal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 30
Mr Pawan Kumar Bansal, MP, has called for the withdrawal of the order of the Chandigarh Administration which requires women to wear helmets while riding two-wheelers.

In a statement issued here today, Mr Bansal said such an order promulgated about eight years ago had been resisted by the people and had to be withdrawn since it hurt the religious sentiments of Sikhs.

Mr Bansal said there were certain other steps which were required to check accidents and statistics showed that casualties had not been caused by non-wearing of helmets.

Instead of making wearing helmets mandatory, there was need for generating more awareness about their usefulness, he said.

Mr Bansal said he planned to meet the Governor of Punjab and Administrator of Chandigarh, Justice O.P. Verma, on the issue shortly.

Mr Bansal’s statement came in the wake of a storm following a campaign launched by the UT traffic police to challan all women riding two-wheelers without helmets. Hundreds of women had been challaned in the past few days.


Delegates seek better economic ties
Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 30
For the first time in its history, the World Punjabi Conference endorsed the need of greater economic cooperation between India and Pakistan. Reiterating its commitment to peace, the conference concluded with a demand for free trade between India and Pakistan which need collective strength to fight forces of globalization.

The organisers also announced the formation of Indian and Pakistani committees which will closely work with the respective governments to ensure that demands like visa relaxation within SAARC countries as also between India and Pakistan are met. These committees will list their achievements in the 12th World Punjabi Conference to be held between April 12 and 16 in Lahore. Apart from this, the formation of 12 wings like Writers wing, Journalists wing, Technocrats wing, among others was also announced. These will facilitate exchange between India and Pakistan.

While declaration of the conference was still being adopted, Chairman of World Punjabi Congress Mr Fakhar Zaman made an emotional appeal of renaming Samjhauta Express to Dosti Express. His "friendly" insistence was instantly honoured by being included in the list of resolutions passed during the conference today. A spree of suggestions followed, with the Indian delegates urging Pakistani counterparts to launch a concerted campaign for better preservation of the 10 historic gurdwaras of Pakistan.

Extending a promise to this effect, a Pak guest stated, "During so many years of our existence, we have never allowed harm to come to places of worship. We have no such instance as the Operation Bluestar or the Babri Masjid demolition. Nevertheless, we again commit ourselves to protection of gurdwaras in Pakistan."

Meanwhile, Pak guests urged the governments to consider starting an Amritsar-Lahore Bus, besides appointing Punjabi staff for the bus to Lahore. Apart from emotional concerns, political issues were also discussed. Again stressing the urgency of multipurpose visas to ease movement across borders, the delegates demanded joint projects for students, educationists and researchers from the two regions.

Addressing the critical question of Punjabis' declining popularity; the conference declared steps would be taken to teach Gurmukhi in West Punjab and Shahmukhi in East Punjab. They also demanded better postal liaison between India and Pakistan to facilitate the flow of literature. Prof Satya Pal Gautam, one of the organizers, said the print and electronic media should play a vital role in bringing the people of India and Pakistan together. He said only a mass wakening in two countries could sustain the peace process. "Indo-Pak unity should become an election issue for the political parties in West and East Punjab," he said.

Agreeing to the contention, Mr Fakhar Zaman added that the forthcoming conferences would have a broader base. "After meeting in Europe in August, we will arrange a conference in Lahore next year. The Lahore conference will, for the first time, feature Punjabi scholars from countries like Russia, Thailand, China, Poland, which have Punjabi chairs in their seats of education."

The occasion also saw the release of three books - K.L. Zakir's "Samundari Hawaon ka Mausam" by K.L. Zakir, Rashid Kidwai's "Sonia" and Shaista Habib's "Mai, Kapa aur Chanani."


Pak delegates fail to visit birthplaces
Sarbjit Dhaliwal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 30
When Lahore-based Punjabi writer Farkhanda Lodhi was blessed with a daughter, a few years ago she named her as Sarita. Many eyebrows were raised over a Hindu name given to a child by a Muslim mother.

Sarita a grown-up girl, is here with her parents to attend the World Punjabi Conference. Her nick name is Ritu, again a Hindu name.

Why a Hindu name for a Muslim daughter? Lodhi said: “I wanted to remain attached to my roots in Hoshiarpur by naming Sarita as such. I was nine at the time Partition and my parents used to live in Vakeela Mohala, near a mosque in Hoshiarpur. “Eh naam mainu sohna lagda si, mainu mere pichokad the yadh devonda si,” she said.

Farkhanda, however, was dejected today away as she was, along with her daughter, from their ancestral home. “We wanted to visit Hoshiarpur but did not have a visa for that town. We will return to Pakistan tomorrow or the day after without seeing our ancestral house,” she adds.

There are several others, who will return to Pakistan without visiting their ancestral places.

Shafqat Munir, a journalist, wanted to visit Judala Primary School, near Kaithal, where his “mamu” once studied. He wanted to give some money for the library of the school. “But my ‘mamu’s’ wish will not be fulfilled as there is no visa for that place,” he added.

Ahmad Salim, another big name in Pakistan’s literary world, wanted to visit Samrala to meet his soulmate, Lal Singh Dill, a Punjabi poet. He looked dejected as he too did not have the permission to go to Samrala.

Another journalist, Imran, News Editor of Dawn, a popular paper of Lahore, wanted to visit Mona and Balara villages, near Hoshiarpur. His mother is from Mona village and father from Balara village. And his in-laws are from Patti. He is sad for not having fulfilled the wish of his mother to visit “nanake”.

Prof Arif Anjum is keen to visit Sangra Balarwal, near Amritsar, the village of his grandparents. “It will not be possible this time,” he says.

Many delegates had a desire to visit Agra, Shimla and Ajmer.


Punjab heart of Indo-Pak amity
A. S. Prashar
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 30
The route to Indo-Pak amity lies through two Punjabs which are politically important in both the countries, says veteran Pakistani journalist Mr Aziz Mazhar.

"In Pakistan, the importance of Punjab cannot be over emphasised. It is not only the biggest province of the country but also the most influential politically", said Mr Mazhar, who has had a long association with a host of Pakistani newspapers and is a keen observer of the political scene in the two countries, in a talk with TNS here today.

"And in India, as chance would have it, a son of Punjab has become the Prime Minister in the person of Dr Manmohan Singh. All this augers well for the long and tortuous road that lies ahead for talks to normalise ties between the two neighbours. Let Lahore, capital of Pakistani Punjab and Chandigarh, capital of Indian Punjab, be the base for peace between two countries," he says.

Mr Mazhar is in the city as a part of a large contingent of Pakistani journalists who have come here to attend the World Punjabi Conference. The journalists also visited the Chandigarh Press Club and interacted with the local journalists. Mr Mazhar was also presented with a club memento by the founder president of the Chandigarh Press Club, Mr B. K. Chum. Later, a joint meeting of senior journalists from Pakistan and the Chandigarh Press Club adopted a resolution calling upon the governments of India and Pakistan to “lift ban on the flow newspapers and periodicals into each other’s country. Such a step will help better undertstanding and peace betwen the two countries”.

Mr Mazhar is all praise for the role being played by the World Punjabi Conference in general and Mr Fakhar Zaman, its chairman, in particular, in raising public awareness about the need to promote people-to-people contact and bringing down barriers between the two countries. "What Mr Zaman has done in Pakistan in recent months is wonderful. He has had to work in very difficult circumstances. But he has succeeded in waking up the whole of Punjab and people there have come to believe that Indo-Pak amity is not only possible but also achievable. There is no problem which cannot be solved through talks and negotiations. And just look at the tremendous response the World Punjabi Conference has evoked among people in two Punjabs. Once the public opinion is firmly in favour of friendly ties between the two countries, the political leadership too would be forced to translate that desire into reality because people's will is the will of God".

Mr Mazhar believes that a thaw between India and Pakistan will impact not only the countries in the Indian subcontinent but also the whole of Central Asia and West Asia. "It will be a great development", he adds.

Mr Mazhar says that there is some apprehension and uncertainty in Pakistan over the policy the new government, which has taken over in Delhi, will want to adopt vis-a-vis Pakistan but he is hopeful that the new government too would continue to pursue the course of normalising ties between the two countries.

Mr Mazhar has visited India several times during the past years but this is the first time he has come to Chandigarh. "I am so happy to be in Chandigarh. I have liked whatever I have seen of the city from my car. I cannot walk through its gardens and lanes because of my old age. And the love and affection I have received from the people is overwhelming".


This Pak journalist loves Chandigarh
Tribune News Service

Gaity Ara
Gaity Ara

Chandigarh, May 30
Problems of women journalists are not dissimilar be it Lahore or Chandigarh, says Ms Gaity Ara, the sole woman member of the large contingent of Pakistani journalists who are in the city, to attend the World Punjabi Conference.

“The problems include odd-working hours, strenuous work and, above all, constraints of functioning in a conservative society,” she said in an interaction with local mediapersons at the Chandigarh Press Club. “I am sure women journalists here also face same problems”, she added.

Ms Ara is a reporter with a private TV channel, “Geo”, based in Lahore. This is her first visit to India and she is very happy to be in Chandigarh. “It is just like back home and I find that Chandigarh is very organised and peaceful,” she says.


On way to becoming a model village
Geetanjali Gayatri
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 30
Kaimbwala village is on the road to progress. From poorly lit potholed kutcha streets to pucca roads with solar lights, the makeover, an initiative of the UT Administration, has made a difference to the village.

While the various departments of the UT Administration carry out the work of laying roads, covering open drains, constructing bus queue shelters and removing the filth dotting the open areas of the village, the Science and Technology Department has a plan of its own for this village.

Identified for being transformed into a model village, Kaimbwala may find itself on the map of a solar energy revolution by the time the Administration puts in place everything lined up for its development.

What began as an experiment with the installation of 80-odd streetlights in the inner lanes of the village might end up with solar energy devices entering every home, given the ambitious plan of the Science and Technology Department.

Under a special scheme for the uplift of the rural people, the department will offer energy saving devices at subsidised rates. A special discount, more than what is being offered in urban areas, will be extended to the villagers as incentive to popularise solar energy devices.

The Project Director of the Department of Science and Technology, Mr G.S. Bains, said an exhibition would be organised by the department shortly to educate the people about the benefits of using these devices.

“We will have solar cookers, compact fluorescent lamps, low wattage tubelights and water-heating systems on display. All these will be at highly subsidised rates. Against the rate of Rs 950 for a solar cooker, we will sell it at Rs 750 while the solar water heater will be sold at a discount of 35 per cent. Similarly, prices of other items will be reduced,” he said.

The idea of the exhibition is to, essentially, highlight the benefits of the use of solar energy devices and the saving thereof to the consumer. “Most people of the village are not aware of the uses and benefits of solar energy. Our aim is to reach out to them, dispel any doubts they have about the working of these devices and, in the process, take the devices to every home,” Mr Bains added.

Meanwhile, the villagers are excited about the changes taking place in Kaimbwala. They claim that streetlighting has never been this good, come storm or rain. “The lights are always on, even when electricity goes off during a storm. This is especially important for us since we are practically cut off from the city in bad weather,” a villager maintains.

However, their main concern, now, is that of bringing water to a pit the Administration has dug up on the outskirts of the village. The Administration says the villagers should fill it up with water while the villagers want them to do the job.

“If summer goes in this tussle, there is no point of having this water body in the village. We need water now. This must be resolved at the earliest,” another villager asserts.


MC allowed to create symbol
Tribune News Service

Mohali, May 30
After considerable uncertainty over the issue, the Department of Local Bodies, Punjab, has given a go ahead to the Municipal Council, Mohali, to create its own symbol. According to the local MLA, Mr Bir Devinder Singh, the Minister for Local Bodies, Chaudhry Jagjit Singh had assured him that the council could go ahead with the process of giving Mohali a symbol. He added that Chaudhry Jagjit Singh had overruled the decision of the Director, Local bodies Punjab, disallowing the council on creating a city symbol.

A resolution to this effect was passed by the council during its monthly meeting on March 24 but the resolution when sent to the Directorate Local Bodies was rejected on the grounds that since the move was unprecedented it could not be allowed.

The MLA said a fresh proposal to this effect would be brought up during the May 31 meeting of the council. A brainchild of the MLA, the proposed symbol would be displayed outside the new office of the MC and would stand as a logo of the township. A heterogenous committee would be formed that would undertake the responsibility of finding a suitable symbol for the township.

The Deputy Speaker of the Vidhan Sabha and MLA of Kharar, Mr Bir Devinder Singh, yesterday recommended to the SSP of Ropar to suspend the police control room operators in Mohali who had failed to act on a phone call informing the police about a theft.

He said yesterday that he was pained to know that a municipal councillor’s house had been burgled in broad daylight. And even when the MC had come to know about the burglary at 2 p.m., no policeman reached the spot before 4 p.m. ‘‘The policemen insisted that a written complaint be first given at the police station only after which they will come to the spot,’’said Mr Bir Devinder Singh.


District assembly by Rotary Shivalik
Tribune News Service

Mohali, May 30
The district assembly, Sankalpa, of the Rotary International District 3080 was held at Shivalik Public School here today. The assembly was organised by Rotary Shivalik under the presidentship of Mr Bachitter Singh. As many as 500 delegates from over 50 clubs across Punjab Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Chandigarh and Uttaranchal attended the assembly that was inaugurated by the former Chief of Army Staff, General V.P. Malik.

Mr Pramod Vij, district governor elect, highlighted the plans for the year 2004-2005 which included literacy and health programmes, eradication of polio and contribution to the Rotary Foundation. He stressed on membership growth and inter-continental medical projects.

Past Rotary International President R.K. Saboo in his address emphasised the object of Rotary and was of the view that integrity ethics and conduct in one’s personal life were of paramount importance as a Rotarian. He added that Rotary centennial year should be celebrated by undertaking projects in villages with focus on the poor and the destitute.

General Malik in his inaugural address appreciated the work done by Rotary and compared its functioning with working in the Army. He mentioned that the Rotary motto of ‘service above self’ was similar to that of the National Defence Academy ‘service before self’. The General spoke about the qualities that every person must inculcate and abide by in order to live a satisfying life. ‘‘Whatever we do, we should be able to sleep well at night,’’he said adding that qualities like citizenship, accountability, respect for elders, moral courage, moderate lifestyle and honesty were values that should be kept alive.

In the concluding session, district trainer Ranjit Bhatia, past district governor compared the working of the Rotary Club to a cricket match. Both require concentration, team building, hard work, positive attitude and delegation of responsibility, he said.


Maharana Pratap’s jayanti celebrated
A Correspondent

Chandigarh, May 30
The 465th jayanti of Maharana Pratap was celebrated by the local unit of the All India Rajput Students’ Aid Society at Maharana Pratap Hostel, Sector 25, today.

Local MP Pawan Kumar Bansal paid tributes to Rana Pratap and talked about the significance of the Rajput history. He assured the audience that efforts were on to establish a Maharana Pratap Chair at Panjab University.

Speaking on the occasion, the Minister for Irrigation and Public Health, Himachal Pradesh, Mr Thakur Kaul Singh, extolled the patriotic fervour and self-sacrificing spirit of Maharana Pratap. He stressed that the youth of the country needed to imbibe the spirit of the Mewar ruler.

Mr Bashir Hussain Bhatti, Dullah Bhatti Academy, Lahore, Pakistan, in his speech praised the sterling qualities of Maharana Pratap. He was of the opinion that by following the ideas of Maharana Pratap, relations between India and Pakistan could improve greatly.

Earlier, president in chief of the Rajput Students’ Aid society explained the work of the society. The executive president the society, Mr R.S. Chauhan, was also present on the occasion. Others who spoke on the occasion were Mr H.S. Rana, Mr Satwinder Singh Rana, Ms Pushpa Sharma, MC Councillor Shyma Negi and former Chief Town Planner (Haryana), Mr R.P. Singh, and Professor of History Department, Kurukshetra University, Professor R.K. Sharma.


Return books to Golden Temple, says Padiala
Our Correspondent

Mohali, May 30
The Prime Minister, Mr Manmohan Singh, should take interest and get the library books of Shri Harmandir Sahib returned to the holy shrine.

This was stated by Mr Rajbir Singh Padiala, Vice-President, SAD, while talking to mediapersons here on Friday. He said the books were in the possession of the government since 1984.

The historical books were taken away after the raid.

He said Mr Manmohan Singh is an honest person and we hoped that he would bring about development in Punjab. So far Congress leaders, who held high positions at the Centre had done nothing for the state.

He said while Giani Zail Singh remained the President of India, Mr Buta Singh was the Home Minister but nothing had been done by them for the welfare of Punjab.

He said both Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra and Mr Parkash Singh Badal wanted to rout out the Congress from the state.

He said in the Kharar segment voters even rejected the temptations given by certain Congress leaders during electioneering. He said liquor was allegedly distributed among voters by some leaders in order to woo them. All this amounted to cheap politics, added Mr Padiala.

Tribune employee dead

Chandigarh, May 30
Mr Anoop Puri, Section Head, Accounts Department, The Tribune, died here today at the GMCH, Sector 32. His funeral procession will start from House No. 3063, Tribune Colony, Sector 29-D, at 11 am.



Youth booked for abduction
Our Correspondent

Zirakpur, May 30
A youth from Bihar was booked by the police for abducting a minor girl from Preet Nagar colony in Zirakpur yesterday. The suspect, Sanjay Phool, was booked under Sections 323, 324, 506, 148 and 149 of the IPC by the Dera Bassi police on the complaint of girl’s father Rajpal Singh.

In his complaint to the police, Mr Rajpal Singh alleged that Sanjay Phool, who was staying as a tenant in a neighbouring house, lured his daughter on May 11 and since then they were absconding.

He also claimed that his daughter, who was working with a private hospital at Dera Bassi as a staff nurse, had gone to the hospital on May 11 but did not return.


Youth killed as tractor overturns
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, May 30
Twentyfive-year-old Ravinder Singh of Tira village, Kharar, died when a tractor-trailer loaded with sand, which he was driving overturned near Dadu Majra here this morning. A co-passenger, Krishan of Togan village, also sustained injuries in the accident. However, some labourers sitting on the trailer escaped unhurt.

According to police sources, a front wheel of the tractor-trailer came out and the vehicle deviated off the road and overturn, Ravinder fell off and died. Krishna was rushed to the PGI with serious injuries. The accident took place around 7.30 a.m.

Confusion prevailed as the Chandigarh police and its Ropar counterpart kept arguing over the accident area being in the city or Ropar district. The confusion was later cleared after it was established that the accident took place in Chandigarh.

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