C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Independent candidate Riar wins Chandigarh SGPC seat
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 11
Independent candidate Gurpratap Singh Riar was elected SGPC member from Chandigarh in a tough contest here today. He polled 2775 votes defeating his nearest rival, Mr Amarinder Singh, the official candidate of the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) by 146 votes.

Mr Gurnam Singh Sidhu, candidate of the Panthic Morcha, polled 1782 votes. While a total of 7264 votes were polled during the election, 78 of these were rejected as invalid. The Returning Officer for SGPC elections in the city, Mr Inderjeet Singh Sandhu, compiled the results received from the various booths of the city.

The election process in the city was not entirely free from controversies. Even though the Chief Commissioner of Gurdwara Election, Justice J.S. Sekhon, had instructed the polling staff to allow everyone with their names in the voters list to exercise their franchise, sources said certain electors were denied this right.

They claimed that some women with plucked eyebrows and men with trimmed beards were not allowed to cast their votes at the polling booths in Mani Majra and Sector 20 despite having their names in the voters’ list.

Lack of enthusiasm among the 14, 700 residents who had enrolled themselves as voters was evident as the city recorded only 35 per cent polling during the day.

Earlier, the three candidates in the fray, Mr Gurpratap Singh Riar, official SAD candidate Amarinder Singh, and Gurnam Singh Sidhu of the Panthic Morcha, seemed disillusioned with the poor voter turnout as they went from one booth to another to urge the voters to cast their vote in their favour.

While voters barely trickled in at the 27 polling stations when the polling began at 7 am, their number picked up later during the day. However, the entire process was almost over by noon. Most polling booths wore a deserted look even as the polling staff waited for the clock to strike 5 pm.

Counting of votes at the respective polling stations began an hour later and the result was officially declared at 9 pm though celebrations in the Riar camp began much earlier.

In the 170-member SGPC’s general house, while Punjab has 157 seats, Haryana has 11 seats and Chandigarh and Himachal Pradesh have one seat each.

After being declared elected, Mr Gurpratap Singh Riar, headed straight for the Sector 19 gurdwara to offer prayers. Here, he was greeted by jubilant supporters who garlanded him in the midst of chants of “Jo Bole So Nihal”. After paying obeisance at the Sector 19 gurdwara, he headed for the Sector 15 gurdwara where similar scenes were witnessed.

Reacting to his win and the defeat of Mr Amarinder Singh, an elated Mr Riar said that his work for the Punjabi language and the welfare of the Sikh community had been recognised by the voter.

“Amarinder Singh has not done anything in the last eight years to promote Sikhism and Punjabi. The result has belied all his tall claims,” Mr Riar said. He added that he was still a member of the SAD and would file cases against members of the party who had claimed that he had been expelled from party.

It may be recalled that Mr Riar had filed his papers against the official candidate of SAD after being denied a ticket to contest elections by the party. During the run-up to the elections, members of SAD had sought his expulsion from the party for standing against Mr Amarinder Singh.

AMBALA/PANCHKULA: SGPC elections took place peacefully in Ambala today. No untoward incident was reported . It may be mentioned that Ambala City, Ambala Cantt and Naggal, the assembly segments of Ambala district and Panchkula district fall in Ambala SGPC constituency. The voter turnout was about 60 per cent.

The Additional Deputy Commissioner and Election Officer for the SGPC poll, Mr M.L. Kaushik said the result would be declared officially by tomorrow.

It is to be mentioned that candidates of Akali Dal (Badal), Shiromani Akali Dal Haryana State, Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee and an Independent candidate have contested the elections from Ambala . The supporters of the candidates were seen active throughout the day. Vehicles were also used to carry voters to distant places.

The police had made tight security arrangements on the polling booths. As many as the polling booths . As many as 30 polling booths were set up in Ambala and Panchkula . Around 28,000 voters were registered.

In Panchkula district, five polling booths were set up, and polling was peaceful. In Panchkula, 587 votes were polled, with 379 votes being polled in favour of Akali Dal (Badal) candidate, 104 in favour of SAD (Haryana), 32 in favour of Haryana Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee and 69 votes being polled in favour of the Independent candidate, Mr P.S. Majri.

DERA BASSI: Nearly 40 per cent votes were polled in 66 polling stations in this SGPC constituency.

The local administration had deployed 280 employees from different government departments on election duty.

Mr Deepak Raja Gag, SDM, said the final results would be declared tomorrow.

A member of the SGPC from the Dera Bassi block, Mr Dhyan Singh Jharmari, and 29 members of his family were surprised to find their names missing from the voters’ list.

Mr Maan Singh, a Congress leader from Lalru, also alleged that five of his family members found their names missing from the list.


Mohali SGPC seat likely for Panthic Morcha
Our Correspondent

Mohali, July 11
Mr Hardip Singh of the Panthic Morcha is likely to be declared elected to the SGPC from Mohali, polling for which was held today. At the end of the counting of votes at the polling booths here this evening, it was unofficially learnt that Mr Hardip Singh had won the seat by a margin of around 2,000 votes. However, the SDM-cum-Returning Officer, Mr M.L. Sharma, said the result would be announced only tomorrow.

The Returning Officer said the polling percentage in Mohali town was below 35 with the overall figure being about 40.

Earlier, in the day, barring incidents of heated arguments and minor protests over alleged bogus voting at certain places, polling in the SGPC elections in Mohali subdivision passed off peacefully.

At most booths polling began on a dull note but picked up later in the day. During the first two hours only eight votes and 14 votes were polled at a booth in the Municipal Council office and another one at Swami Ram Tirath School (Phase IV), respectively.

At a booth located in the old PUDA building in Phase I here, supporters of Mr Mann Singh Sohana, SAD candidate, objected to certain women students of a nursing institute casting their votes.

They alleged that the votes were bogus. However, the poll observer, Mr K.K. Khandelwal, said if their names figured in the voters’ list, the votes could not be declared bogus.

There were also heated arguments among supporters of candidates over a complaint regarding a booth at Swami Ram Tirath School about underage girls allegedly being allowed to cast their votes. There were also objections and protests at polling booths set up at Gian Jyoti Public School in Phase II and Government Senior Secondary School in Phase III BI.

Mr Phulraj Singh, senior vice-president of the Municipal Council, complained that some voters of Phase VII had to go to Phase IV for polling and some living in Phase IV to booths located in Phase III BI.

The final checking and totalling of votes was done amid police security at the old PUDA building this evening.

Traffic on the road from Franco Hotel to the Phase I barrier was stopped by the police as part of the security arrangements.


No extra fee for UT students seeking transfer
Our High Court Correspondent

Chandigarh, July 11
In a decision of far-reaching consequence, the UT Administration has instructed all government, privately managed government-aided schools and recognised private schools not to charge any extra fees or funds from a student who shifts from one school to another after having paid his fees and funds to his original school.

An affidavit to this respect has been filed by Mr D.S. Mangat, DPI (Schools), Chandigarh, as part of his reply in an ongoing PIL on the issue.

In his affidavit, Mr Mangat has stated that Principals and Heads of the schools have been asked not to take any fee or other fund from the student taking admission to the school once the session has started.

The only fee or funds that can the charged from such a student, the DPI has said, will pertain to the period that has not been paid for.

The school from where the student shifts will transfer the money to the new school.

The instruction also says that a second tuition fee should not be levied on the pupil who is so transferred. Tuition fee cannot also be charged for the month during the whole of which the student has been on sick leave.

The instruction says that in case a student shifts from a government to a private recognised school, the fee and other funds paid by the student would be refunded on application, except for the months when the student studied in the school.

Mr P. Saboo, Regional Director of Central Board of Secondary Education, (CBSE) has also filed an affidavit in the matter.

The PIL has been filed by advocate Ravi Badyal, saying that no guidelines or norms exist in UT as far as fee and other funds chargeable from the students are concerned.

The petitioner has pointed out that heavy tuition fee in most cases different for different schools, is being charged from students by the managements of the private institutions. 


Abandoned by sons, he has made car his home
A.S. Prashar
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 11
If blood is thicker than water, it does not seem to be holding true for the 89-year-old Bachan Singh. Abandoned by his four grown-up sons, old and infirm, Bachan Singh has been living in an old Ambassador car, parked by the roadside in Sector 27, for the past four and a half years.

The four-wheeler is no stranger to him. As a driver, he has ridden it for years, covering thousands of kilometres ferrying passengers and luggage to distant destinations. It served him well when he was relatively young. Now it is serving him well as his home in his old age.

A taxi driver by profession, Bachan Singh hails from Jhallianwala village in Ropar district of Punjab. But he spent most of his life in Kolkata where he ran a flourishing taxi business. He owned a fleet of cars before he fell on bad days.

Afraid of the violent temper of his father who was a sepoy in the British Army, Bachan Singh ran away from home to Kolkota. Soon after reaching Kolkota in 1946, things began hotting up on the eve of Partition. “Communal passions began to rise in the locality where I used to reside in Kolkota. I was the only Sikh in a Bengali Hindu mohalla. When it came under attack by a Muslim mob, the Bengali Hindus approached me for protection. After some hesitation, I took out my kirpan and single-handedly forced the mob to beat a hasty retreat.

“Instantly, I became a local hero. People of my locality were so grateful to me that they plied me with all sorts of gifts. Bengali women used to greet me with “Bachan Singh ka joi ho”. They also collected Rs 40,000 and bought me a permit for plying taxis.

“I started plying a taxi and business began to flourish. Soon, I had a fleet of taxis, including Plymouth and Vanguard cars. Before long, I got married and had four sons in just six years. I worked hard to raise my family and educate my kids”. But due to certain adverse circumstances, he was forced to leave Kolkota and return to Punjab in 1970. He decided to settle down in Chandigarh, bought an Ambassador car and began plying it as a taxi. The illness of his wife who was suffering from TB forced him to sell his house and agricultural land in his village. But he could not save her and she died in 1975.

“My four sons are now working as drivers, but none of them is willing to support me. Nor do they ever care to meet me. Only one of them has deigned to give me Rs 300 per month. The Punjab Government gives me Rs 200 per month as an old-age pension. But the mode of payment is erratic. I have not received my monthly pension since September last year”.

Before deciding to turn his car into his residence, Bachan Singh says he tried other alternatives. He stayed in a gurdwara in Sohana for about six months. “I used to object to malpractices whenever I noticed them in the gurdwara which was not liked by the granthi who turned me out.”

“Then I stayed in a gurdwara in Sector 19 where they kept me as a chowkidar for about six months and paid Rs 500 per month. But there also, I used to object to the malpractices whenever I noticed them. So I was turned out from there also.”

“Then I approached another gurdwara in Sector 27 for food and shelter, but they told me that they had no place for me. I also tried the Old Age Home in Sector 15, but they don’t really care about someone who has no one to look after him. All other inmates of the home have their families to back them up. I have none…. So I decided to live in my taxi parked in Sector 27”.

He has been sleeping on the back seat of his old and rusted car. The car’s windows have been covered with old, torn bedsheets which serve as curtains. The roof has a jute mat which keeps it cool in the sweltering heat. On hot and humid nights, he sleeps on the roof of the car.

One day, he fell sick and his son took him to his house, but his wife turned him out saying that she could not look after an old man. “I have never visited them again”, says Bachan Singh.

Moved by his plight, an old woman gave him a kurta-pyjama a few days ago. Another kind person gifted him a folding bed. He has now put up the bed under a tree by the road side and spends his day watching the world go by.

“As I lie by the side of the road, people give me curious looks, but none stops by to ask me: what is the matter, old man?”, Bachan Singh remarks with a wry smile. “I know that there are so many others like me, abandoned in their old age by their families. But this is Kal Yug, isn’t it?”


Tehelka tapes to be produced in GCM
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 11
The original video tapes showing some Army officers allegedly demanding and accepting bribes from fictitious arms dealers are to be produced as evidence in the General Court Martial (GCM) trying one of the accused officers at Chandimandir in the Tehelka scam.

Stating this here, prosecution counsel Arvind Moudgil said all the tapes containing 105 hours of footage will be placed at the disposal of the GCM. At present, the tapes are in the custody of the Phukan Commission and a requisition would be sent through the Defence Ministry for the tapes to be produced as evidence.

Meanwhile, all officers accused in the Tehelka scam have been directed to be present in Delhi from July 12, to be available to depose before the Phukan Commission.

Reacting to counsel K Ramesh’s accusations that the prosecutor is acting as a public relations officer of the court and is briefing mediapersons, Moudgil said on no occasion did the prosecutor, Maj Sanjay Sitanshu issue any statement to the Press or interacted with mediapersons covering the court martial. He added that on being asked, he himself briefed mediapersons on proceedings which took place in the court on a particular day.


Creating awareness on declining sex ratio
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 11
To mark ‘World Population Day’, the Voluntary Health Association, Punjab, in association with the Department of Adult and Continuing Education, Panjab University and Population Foundation of India launched the “campaign against the missing girls” at the Tagore Theatre. The campaign aims at creating awareness about the declining sex ratio.

The campaign has been simultaneously launched in six other states including Himachal Pradesh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Punjab and Rajasthan.

Speaking on the occasion, the SDM (West) Ms Madhavi Kataria, highlighted various schemes and activities being carried out for upliftment of girls.

Mr Manmohan Sharma of the Voluntary Health Association, Punjab, welcomed the guest and Ms Daisy Zatrabi, programme coordinator at the Adult Education Centre in PU spoke on the declining sex ratio in the region. A senior Health Department official, Dr P.C. Gupta, was also present.

An advocate with the human rights legal network, Ms Veena Kumari, spoke about the free helpline for women and children in distress. Commenting on the social scenario these days, Ms Kumari said domestic violence was on the rise with stress on females increasing due to extra-marital affairs and sexual harassment. She also said that her society was running short stay homes for women in stress. She also told the gathering about the free helpline for counselling being run for women, children and the elderly at 2439, Sector 37-C.

Earlier in the day, a run was also organised by the Nehru Yuva Kendra which was flagged off from the cricket stadium, Sector 16 here.


PIL seeks medical vans at nodal points
Our High Court Correspondent

Chandigarh, July 11
A person, whose young son almost lost his life in road mishaps, has filed a public interest litigation (PIL) in the Punjab and Haryana High Court.

He has sought directions to the UT Administration to provide fully equipped mobile medical vans at nodal points in the city in order to ensure that immediate medical assistance is made available to accident victims.

Presenting various studies, including one by a senior PGI doctor, the petitioner, Mr Rakesh Chadha, has said that unless proper arrangements are made by the Administration to provide swift medical help to victims of accidents, the number of people dying due to lack of timely medical assistance will continue to remain high.

In his petition, Mr Chadha has stated that his son, Prashant, almost lost his life in two separate accidents as he did not get proper medical assistance. Prashant, who suffered visual disability of 45 per cent and 65 overall disability, managed to clear the entrance tests of many prestigious institutes, including Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad. But, the petitioner added, not all such accident victims are so fortunate.

Referring to a study by PGI Head of Department of Neurology, Dr V.K. Khosla, in which 276 accident victims were taken into consideration, the petitioner has stated that the study also found that many human lives were being lost due to lack of speedy communication and pre-hospital car within the first golden hour of injury.

During hearing in the PIL before the Division Bench of Chief Justice Mr Justice B.K. Roy and Mr Justice Surya Kant, advocate Ravi Sodhi, counsel for the petitioner, contended that if proper medical care is given within the first hour of the injury and the therapeutic vacuum is avoided, the life of the injured could be saved.

He said that since right to life is enshrined in the Constitution, it was the duty of the UT Administration to ensure that nobody injured in road accident lost his life due to lack of prompt medical care.

In its reply, the UT Administration informed the Bench that 31 police control room (PCR) vans were operational on city roads. It also stated that the Administration also has two fully equipped ambulances for VIP duty.

However, not satisfied by the arrangements present, the Bench gave time till July 28 to the UT Administration counsel to seek further instructions from his client.Back


Rotary adopts orphan girl
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, July 11
Mr Kulbhushan Bhasin was installed as president of the Rotary Club Himalayan Ranges, Chandigarh, at a ceremony last night. Speaking on the occasion, the new president announced that the board of directors of the club had decided to hold a month-long yog chetna (yoga awareness) camp at Arya Samaj Mandir, Sector 9, from July 12. He also announced that through out the year, they would hold seminars on how to decrease the stress in daily life.

Mr Bhasin also announced that the club would adopt a 12-year-old deaf and dumb girl, Dolly. The girl had lost her parents when she was four years old. She was being brought up by her aunt, who brought her to Chandigarh, but the aunt, too, died. Mr Bhasin said the girl would be sent to Shree Jagdamba Mata Andh Vidyalaya, Sri Ganganagar, and the club would bear her monthly expense of Rs 7,000.

He said the club would also host other projects like eye check-up and dental check-up camps, apart from its polio eradication camp. On this occasion, Mr B.R. Chopra, General Manager, Northern Zone, Punjab National Bank and Mr Arvind Kumar, Regional Passport Officer, Chandigarh, were the chief guests.

The other office-bearers who were sworn in were Mr Mohnish Kapila as secretary; Mr Rajesh Bajaj as vice-president; Mr Hitesh Kakkar as treasurer; and Mr Jagdish Rai Gupta as joint secretary. Mr Satish Anand, Mr T.K. Ruby, Mr N.K. Gupta, Mr Rakesh Garg and Mr Bharat Bhushan Gulati were sworn in as directors.


Govt ‘must’ give incentives to pvt doctors
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 11
“Its just the 10 per cent of doctors who perhaps indulge in unethical practices but this percentage gets blown up and reflects badly on the entire profession,’’ said one of the country’s leading ophthalmologists, Dr P.N. Nagpal, from the Retina Foundation, Ahmedabad. He was speaking on the sidelights of the national seminar on the FFA at Grewal Eye Institute here today.

Joined in the discussion by Dr Amod Gupta, head of the Department of Ophthalmology, PGI, experts agreed that the cost of equipment, coupled with the technological advancements made in the field of medicine over the last century, had compelled practitioners to charge fees to meet the expenditure. “In our country alone there are several sections of people who belong to different socio-economic groups and have different paying capacity. The infrastructure in the public sector health centres is available at the lowest minimum cost to everyone while in the private set-ups the doors are open for all those who can afford the treatment,’’ said Dr Gupta.

Pointing out the role of the government in drafting policies, Dr Nagpal said the government must think about providing incentives to the group of doctors who invest together to run a clinic. “The government must think about providing some incentives to the doctors in investing in the costly machinery so that the price paid by the patients to avail the facilities is lowered,’’ he said.Back


Pinjore garden set for renovation
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, July 11
Haryana Tourism has asked the Central Government for assistance in restoring the pristine glory of Yadavindra Gardens, Pinjore. A project for Rs 5 crore has been sent to the Central Government for the development of the gardens.

This was stated by the Managing Director of Haryana Tourism, Ms Navraj Sandhu. She said the Mughal garden at Pinjore, which had a top to bottom landscaping and outlay, needed a makeover. The beautification project will include a makeover of the boundary walls of the garden, the pathways and redoing the part, which earlier hosted a zoo.

She said the portion, which earlier housed a zoo, would be converted into a thematic site linking with the Mughal history. A story line, like the tales of Emperor Akbar and Birbal, will be developed and through interactive media, a gallery will be made here. “Sculptures will be avoided in favour of more interactive media. We have hired consultants for the setting of this gallery,” she informed.

The MD, Haryana Tourism, said money would also be spent for the proper maintenance of the historic Bhima Devi temple here. The temple, which was excavated by the State Archaeological Department in 1974, was built between 9th century and 12th century. The architecture found on the stone excavations is quite similar to the Khajuraho Temple in Madhya Pradesh and the Konark Temple in Orissa, bearing carvings of various gods and goddesses, apsaras, etc.

The site museum, which was constructed here some years ago, too, will be developed. The statues and other historical material collected for this site museum over the years, have not been displayed and it remains locked. Ms Sandhu said the museum would be opened shortly, and linked with the Yadavindra Gardens, after a nullah running between the garden and the museum has been beautified.

She said the amusement park here and the fast food joint set up by Haryana Tourism had been attracting a number of tourists.


Mango Mela concludes
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, July 11
It was fun and frolic on the concluding day of the 13th annual Mango Mela at Yadavindra Gardens, Pinjore, today. A number of people from the town and surrounding cities visited the gardens to know more about the king of fruits and take part in the festivities.

Other than the delightful display of mangoes and mango products in the garden, a seminar for the mango growers was organised. Dr V.P. Ahlawat of the Horticulture Department addressed the mango growers and discussed the various diseases in the mango crop, its prevention and cure.

Later in the day, a fancy dress competition, cooking competition with mangoes, mango quiz, and the yummy mango eating competition was organised. Children and adults could also get a mango tattoo, in consonance with the mango festival theme. The elders entertained themselves by playing tambola, or by watching the folk dancers at the venue.

The prize distribution function was held in the evening, and was presided over by Member of Parliament Ajay Chautala. He appreciated the efforts made by the Horticulture and Tourism Department in promoting the mango crop and gave away prizes to over 100 participants in various competitions, organised during the mela.

The grand finale saw a glittering performance by pop star Shankar Sahney, followed by a beautiful display of fireworks, with the Mughal garden in the backdrop. 


Shoeshine boys take a break from heat; make carry bags for a living
Four boutiques place order of 400 carry bags with children
Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 11
Children from the slums of Sector 25 and around have found themselves an alternative, more dignified means of earning a livelihood. Until recently, one would spot them all over the Sector 17 Plaza, trying to accost people who might consider obliging them by getting their shoes polished.

But in the near future, these children might well divest their “indifferent” customers of any such option, for they now have a better vocation at hand. Over the past week, they have been utilising their free time in the evening to learn the art of making carry bags out of waste paper.

Guided in this venture by a city based voluntary worker Ms Saroj Gulati from the Samarpan Society, the children have nearly perfected the art. And that they have chosen to tread the right path is clear by the bulk order of carry bags, which awaits completion. Owners of four city boutiques have placed a collective order of 400 carry bags with these children, leaving them excited about the new job they have taken up. We caught the kids in action this morning.

Comfortably seated in a classroom of Government High School, Sector 24, about 25 of them were engaged in converting newspapers into carry bags. Itching to outdo one another, they worked hard on getting perfect and neat folds. One of the boys, Abhimanyu took pride in admitting, “Ours is an environment friendly job, and it brings good money also. If this works well, we may not have to slog it out in the scorching sun. Moreover, this work involves creativity and keeps us focused.”

Deepak, Sahil, Chhavi, Geeta, Sandeep and Gautam were the others who nodded at Abhimanyu’s remark. They also talked of the economics of their new job. “We will sell each such bag for Rs 5, and 400 bags would directly fetch us Rs 20,000. The profit margin is also good. Moreover, the work does not require as much labour as skill. We can invest more time in evening studies.”

By engaging the adolescents in something creative, this job is preventing their attention from being diverted towards unhealthy ways. UT’s Land Acquisition Officer, who came to the school to see how children were faring, has even asked them to prepare a play that could highlight the hazards of polythene.

Meanwhile, the children kept busy living their new found joy. As Deepak said, “This is for the first time we have dabbled with something different from shoe shining. We don’t know how we will fare, but it seems we could do well. Right at the outset we have a huge order. This job seems lucrative and we are thankful to our mentor Zulfiqar Khan, who showed us this way of self employment.”

For his part, Zulfiqar is busy motivating these children, psychologically so accustomed to strain. “For the first few days they found the work too light to handle. But now they realize it fetches money and involves little labour. If all goes well and the orders keep pouring, these children may choose this as their main profession.”Back


Death of Darbara Singh’s son mourned
Tribune News Service

Mohali, July 11
The executive committee of the Mohali Industries Association has deeply mourned the untimely death of Mr Surjit Singh Johal, son of the late Darbara Singh, former Chief Minister of Punjab.

Mr Johal died following a massive heart attack on Friday at Dhanbad in Bihar where he was running a five-star hotel and was one of the noted businessmen of the hotel industry.


Altercation costs man, wife dear
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh , July 11
A couple received serious burns here today in Sector 52 following an altercation when the wife objected to drinking liquor by her husband. Amarchand (40) and his wife Madhuri (35) were referred to the PGI from the General Hospital, Sector 16, with 95 per cent and 75 per cent burns, respectively.

According to the police, the woman objected to her husband coming home at 3 am. Amarchand was allegedly a little high when he reached home.

When Madhuri objected to his coming late, he entered into an altercation with her.

At the heat of the moment, Madhuri, mother of four, poured kerosene and set herself ablaze in front of Amarchand, a labourer in the marble market. He tried to douse the fire and in the process, got entangled in the sari of his wife.

Both of them are fighting for life in the PGI.

Amarchand hails from Pratapgarh district in Uttar Pradesh.

He has two daughters and two sons and had been married for 10 years.

While Amarchand was not in a position to give his statement to the police, his wife told a magistrate that she sought to end her life because of the alleged harassment perpetrated by her husband who was a habitual drinker and an ill-tempered person. She also alleged that her husband had been quarrelling with her whenever he came home drunk.

On the basis of the statement, the Sector 36 police station has booked Amarchand under Section 306, IPC.


R-world free usage facility extended
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 11
Reliance Infocomm has announced to offer its R-world suite of applications free for another three months. The Java-based R-World suite of Reliance IndiaMobile (RIM) applications offers a wide range of applications including hour-to-hour news updates, high quality video streaming, downloadable multilingual ring tones, seasonal updates, including festival specials, City and TV guides, exam results, astrology, auctions, mobile banking, railway reservation PNRs and stock prices, fashion and lifestyle content, etc.

Every RIM handset (other than one low-end prepaid model) comes with the pre-configured R-world button to launch the almost 120 R world applications in a single flick.

The company originally announced the R-world to be free on all Reliance phones till March 2004, but subsequently extended it till June.

This is the second time the company has extended free usage.

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