SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI


THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
D E L H I   A N D   N E I G H B O U R H O O D

Govt told to justify easing of hospital’s lease terms
New Delhi, July 15
The Delhi High Court today directed the Delhi Government to explain the reasons for relaxing the lease conditions for Dharamshila Cancer and Research Hospital, which was allotted land at a throwaway price in East Delhi on the condition that 25 per cent of the beds would be reserved for the poor.

Kanwarias caught in crossfire
New Delhi, July 15
A property dealer reportedly used ‘kanwarias’ to settle his personal scores with his professional rival in Sahibabad in Uttar Pradesh and tried to give a communal turn to the clash.

11-foot-long intruder creates a flutter
New Delhi, July 15
Weighing 20 kg, an 11-foot-long intruder, who seemed to have appeared from nowhere, caused some consternation in Dakshinpuri here today.
A member of an NGO exhibiting the huge python which had appeared from nowhere in Dakshinpuri colony in the Capital on Thursday
A member of an NGO exhibiting the huge python which had appeared from nowhere in Dakshinpuri colony in the Capital on Thursday. — Photo by Rajeev Tyagi



EARLIER STORIES

 

Court condones CBI’s delay in Sajjan case
New Delhi, July 15
The Delhi High Court today condoned the delay on the part of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in filing an appeal against the acquittal of Indian National Congress’ Member of Parliament Sajjan Kumar and nine others in an 1984 anti-Sikh riots case.

Some Haryana villages don’t have even one literate person
Faridabad, July 15
There are still some villages in Haryana which have no literate person and there are hundreds of villages where the sex ratio has been less than 750 against the national average of 937 on the population of every 1,000 residents.

An amazing trip to Japan
New Delhi, July 15
The students of Amity International Schools, along with the Principals, Ms Mohina Dar and Ms Bharti Sharma, and the Chairperson, Dr Amita Chauhan, who were invited to Japan, described their trip as “truly amazing”.

Pirated software worth crores seized, seven held
New Delhi, July 15
The Economic Offences Wing claims to have arrested seven persons and seized 6,006 pirated software packages worth Rs 1.87 crore during raids in Nehru Place, Palika Bazar, Karol Bagh and Green Park markets.

Gang promising Army jobs busted
Meerut, July 15
With the arrest of three persons, the police have busted a gang involved in cheating people by promising them recruitment into the Indian Army.

No system of governance in Delhi: BJP
New Delhi, July 15
Referring to the latest intervention by the Supreme Court in the matter of irregular distribution of electricity in the national Capital, the BJP has said that the judiciary appears to be conducting the business of governance.

Students begin a new chapter of varsity life
New Delhi, July 15
Thousands of students with butterflies in the stomach will set foot in colleges across the city tomorrow morning.

Kidnap-cum-murder case solved, three held
New Delhi, July 15
With the arrest of three persons, the North-West district police claimed to have solved a sensational kidnapping-cum-murder case of an eight-year-old Waseem. The child was kidnapped on July 11 from near his house in Sector 17, Rohini.

President plays host to Deepalaya kids
New Delhi, July 15
This is one day the 50 lucky children of Deepalaya are unlikely to forget: a meeting with the President on the Rashtrapati Bhavan Lawns.



Children from Deepalaya performing a dance in the forecourt after a meeting with the President, Dr A.P.J.Abdul Kalam, on the eve of Deepalaya's Silver Jubilee in the Capital on Thursday. — Tribune photo by Mukesh Aggarwal
Children from Deepalaya performing a dance in the forecourt after a meeting with the President, Dr A.P.J.Abdul Kalam

BJP ‘not consulted’ on Speaker’s election


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Govt told to justify easing of hospital’s lease terms
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 15
The Delhi High Court today directed the Delhi Government to explain the reasons for relaxing the lease conditions for Dharamshila Cancer and Research Hospital, which was allotted land at a throwaway price in East Delhi on the condition that 25 per cent of the beds would be reserved for the poor.

The bench, comprising Chief Justice B C Patel and Justice B D Ahmed, said the Directorate of Health would have to explain why changes were allowed in the lease conditions. It was brought to the court’s notice that the authority in 1993 had reduced the number of reserved beds from 25 to 10 per cent. The land was allotted in 1990.

The Bench also issued a notice to Jaipur Golden hospital in West Delhi for allegedly not obeying the lease condition of providing 25 per cent free treatment.

Meanwhile, Escorts Heart Institute and Research Centre Ltd (EHIRC), which was allotted land on the same condition, reiterated its offer to pay Rs 51 crore to DDA to get rid of the lease condition.

The EHIRC has proposed to pay the difference between the market price of the land prevailing at the time of allotment and the concessional price at which the land was allotted.

However, Social Jurist, a group of lawyers which had filed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) on the issue, objected to the proposal, contending that the land given through a charitable society has to be used for charitable purpose.

The hospital could not wriggle out of the condition of providing free treatment to 25 per cent poor and needy, Social Jurist’s counsel Ashok Agarwal said.

The PIL alleged that several private hospitals in the Capital, which were allotted public land at a throwaway prices on condition of providing free treatment to the poor, were not doing so.

The Rajiv Gandhi Cancer Hospital, which was served with the notice, said that it was complying with the lease condition. The Bench said it was satisfied with the affidavit filed by the hospital.

The court also expressed its satisfaction with the reply furnished by Amar Jyoti Hospital, which has been providing artificial limbs to the poor and needy.

The counsel informed the court that the hospital had been observing more than what was stipulated in the lease condition. Mai Kamlawati Jain Charitable Trust gave an undertaking that it will comply with the condition.

The court had issued notices to nine private hospitals here, which had failed to provide a percentage of beds for free treatment to poor patients despite having agreed to the same at the time of land allotment.

Earlier, on May 20, the DDA had informed the High Court that the land allotment made to VIMHANS was cancelled as the neuro care institute had failed to provide free treatment to 70 per cent poor patients, a condition imposed by the government.

The court had also extracted undertakings from two hospitals, Shanti Mukund Hospital and Laxmiwat Pushpawati Singhania Research Institute, which had agreed to provide 25 per cent of the beds for free treatment to the poor patients.

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Kanwarias caught in crossfire
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 15
A property dealer reportedly used ‘kanwarias’ to settle his personal scores with his professional rival in Sahibabad in Uttar Pradesh and tried to give a communal turn to the clash. The suspected property dealer attacked his rival with the help of kanwarias in which a few kanwarias, policemen and others sustained bullet injuries. The Sahibabad police has arrested one person in connection with the firing on the kanwarias.

The Superintendent of Police (City), Ghaziabad, Mr Umesh Srivastav, said that the local police had arrested Javed (45) in connection with the firing on kanwarias yesterday in which seven of them were injured. The weapon used in the firing had been recovered. At present, the situation is under control,” he said.

Four of the kanwarias were admitted to the G. T. B. Hospital and they were recuperating. The police are keeping a close watch on the situation and monitoring the developments to prevent any untoward incident, the SP said.

It was a ploy to give a personal dispute between two property dealers — Sevaram and Pasha — a communal colour, with Sevaram instigating and involving the kanwarias into the attack on Pasha, the SP added.d.

Sevaram had organised a camp for kanwarias and used the occasion to settle a personal score with Pasha, the police said. His followers attacked Pasha’s group, which led to retaliation from the other side. As some of the kanwarias were also injured in the incident, they had also got involved in the clash. Sevaram had tried to give the feud a religious angle, the SP said.

Six policemen, including an inspector and three sub-inspectors, were also injured in the incident, which led to large-scale stone-pelting, burning of vehicles and exchange of fire, the police added.

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11-foot-long intruder creates a flutter
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 15
Weighing 20 kg, an 11-foot-long intruder, who seemed to have appeared from nowhere, caused some consternation in Dakshinpuri here today. The residents woke up in the wee hours to find an unwelcome python coiled in their locality.

The python, spotted near Virat Cinema, became the cynosure of all eyes. While most were curious onlookers, a few spit venom and demanded that the reptile be killed immediately.

The police, who were called, summoned the reptile rescue team of the NGO, Wildlife SOS, and asked it to remove the python from the site. In all the excitement, the python, which was cooped up in the same spot, bit an onlooker who made a daring attempt to cover it. By the time the rescue team reached the spot, the python had been covered by the residents, to prevent it from wandering around. The rescue team members pointed out that since the python was a non-venomous snake, the injured man had escaped with only a bite, which they clarified could be “ very painful”.

The drama ended at 7:30 am when the python, identified as belonging to the species Indian Rock Python (Python Molurus), was captured. The Wildlife Department has been informed and the reptile will be sent to either Rajaji or Corbett National Park.

The rescue team disclosed that python are mostly found in forests and are a Schedule One animal under the Wildlife Protection Act. Wildlife SOS suspects that the snake either came from the adjourning forest area or belonged to a snake charmer or a trader.

“The snake we rescued today is a healthy specimen and it is the second time in last two years we have rescued such a huge python from residential areas. This snake will be released in a suitable habitat at the earliest. We also appreciate the efforts of the police and the residents who ensured the safety of the snake and helped us to rescue it in time,” said Jose Louise of Wildlife SOS.

Association appeals to L-G

The Sadar Bazar Welfare Association members today appealed the Lt-Governor of Delhi, Mr. B. L. Joshi, to intervene with the direction of the MCD in which it asked its district officers to remove the mechanic shops and garages as they cause traffic jam on roads.

They said that thousands of people are attached with these works and if their shops are closed they will come on road. They said that business and industries are backbone of the country and if they closed the government will bankrupt. 

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Court condones CBI’s delay in Sajjan case
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 15
The Delhi High Court today condoned the delay on the part of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in filing an appeal against the acquittal of Indian National Congress’ Member of Parliament Sajjan Kumar and nine others in an 1984 anti-Sikh riots case.

Condoning the nine-day delay in challenging the acquittals, a Division Bench of justices BA Khan and Jaspal Singh fixed September 13 for further hearing.

Mr Sajjan Kumar and others of the Indian National Congress were tried for allegedly leading a mob that killed and looted Sikhs in NCT of Delhi after the assassination of the then Prime Minister, Ms Indira Gandhi, on October 31, 1984. A sessions court had on December 23, 2002, acquitted Kumar in the case on the ground that the CBI failed to prove the charge that he actually led the mob which killed about 50 Sikhs in NCT of Delhi.

The CBI has challenged his acquittal on the ground that the trial court had erred in acquitting the accused as it had considered the statements of prosecution witnesses before various Inquiry Commissions. Statements given before Inquiry Commissions were not admissible as evidence in a criminal case, the agency claimed.

The High Court has already summoned trial court records.

Eight riot victims and the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) have also filed separate appeals against the acquittals and the court has to decide whether it should entertain private appeals when the state has also preferred an appeal in the matter.

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Some Haryana villages don’t have even one literate person
Bijendra Ahlawat
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, July 15
There are still some villages in Haryana which have no literate person and there are hundreds of villages where the sex ratio has been less than 750 against the national average of 937 on the population of every 1,000 residents.

This has been revealed in the Primary Census Abstract released by the census department recently.

According to the details available, there were at least nine villages in the state in 2001, where the literacy rate had been zero. While the majority of the total 6,768 villages had an average literacy rate, varying between 60 and 80 per cent, the department found at least 373 villages where the literacy rate had been below 40 per cent. There were only 183 villages in the state where the average population of literate was between 80 and 100 per cent. The all-important sex ratio which tells the population of females in comparison to males has put a very dismal picture. According to experts, if the sex ratio in Haryana continues to decline at this pace, it could soon create a serious social problem. It is claimed that the issue of girl trafficking which has already assumed serious dimensions in the state had been a fallout of the declining sex ratio. The males of the poor families, especially those residing in the rural areas, had not been getting brides and some of the families had already started buying girls from the states like Assam, Bihar, West Bengal and Jharkhand.

According to the figures, the average sex ratio had been recorded at 839 in 2001 census. But taking into account the population of the state between the age group of 0 and 6 years, it had further slipped to just 850 from 884 in 1991.

Going villagewise, it has been found out that there were as many as 933 villages where the sex ratio had been less than 750. About 4,409 villages had this ratio between 750 and 900. Only in 1962 villages, it was between 901 and 1,000.

As regards Faridabad district, it has been revealed that the literacy rate had been 70 per cent, but the sex ratio had been hovering around 846. The Faridabad tehsil had the lowest sex ratio at only 822.

In this district, about 27.8 per cent of the total population of about 21.94 lakh have been identified as workers, while about 64 per cent categorised as non-workers. The total number of households in the district has been put at 3,91,426.

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An amazing trip to Japan
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 15
The students of Amity International Schools, along with the Principals, Ms Mohina Dar and Ms Bharti Sharma, and the Chairperson, Dr Amita Chauhan, who were invited to Japan, described their trip as “truly amazing”.

They were invited Japan by the International Vaolunteer Group, pioneered by Ms Mikano Kuno. The group visited Okasaki, Toyota City and Tokyo.

The group also visited Eta Elementary School in Okasaki, where they met their counterparts. The students from the Eta Elementary have been visiting Amity Schools for the last five years under the cultural exchange programmes.

Warmth and hospitality of the Japanese hosts left a mark on the visitors from Amity. Having come back from the splendid vacation, the Amitians are full of praise for the agility and the tremendous sportsmanship of the Japanese.

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Pirated software worth crores seized, seven held
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 15
The Economic Offences Wing claims to have arrested seven persons and seized 6,006 pirated software packages worth Rs 1.87 crore during raids in Nehru Place, Palika Bazar, Karol Bagh and Green Park markets.

Acting on a tip-off that pirated software was being sold in these places, the sleuths nabbed Hari Om, Sunil Kumar, Virender Kumar, Yashpal Manocha, Maneet Nagia, Rakesh Kanth and Anil Kumar Madan in four different places. The sleuths also registered three cases under the Copyright Act.

Autolifters arrested

With the arrest of four persons, the Central district police claims to have solved three cases of vehicle theft and 31 cases of stereo theft in the district. The police also recovered three stolen vehicles and 12 stereos from them.

Acting on a tip-off, the police nabbed the autolifters from Kamla Market. They were identified as Raj Kumar, alias Raja, a resident of Ghaziabad, Pradeep Kumar, alias Babbu, a resident of Anand Parbat and Sanjay, alias Sonu, a resident of Prasad Nagar, and Hajari Khan, a resident of Ghaziabad.

The investigation is on to nab the other accused, the police said.

In another case, the Central District police have arrested five autolifters and recovered a stolen Maruti Zen car from their possession.

The accused have been identified as Mohammad Amir (22), Shailender Sharma (22), Dinesh Lingayat (22), Deepak Sharma (21) and Mohit Porwal (18), a resident of Noida.

Desperadoes held

With the arrest of four persons, the East district police claims to have busted a gang of desperate robbers and recovered one country-made weapon and two button-actuated knives from their possession.

Acting on a tip-off that four persons with criminal records would be coming to New Ashok Nagar, the police nabbed Vijay (26), Rajbir (35), Deepak (26) and Suraj (24), residents of Patparganj.

The accused disclosed that they were planning to rob the cashier of Ruchika Petrol Pump in Mayur Vihar Phase – III.

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Gang promising Army jobs busted
Our Correspondent

Meerut, July 15
With the arrest of three persons, the police have busted a gang involved in cheating people by promising them recruitment into the Indian Army.

The “recruitment contract” was unearthed here in the Sadar area of Meerut cantonment. A gang of nine persons, including two women, had cheated lakhs of rupees out of at least 37 youths by promising them recruitment into the Army.

The special operation group arrested the three cheats on the direction of the Inspector General of Police, Meerut Range. The arrested persons were identified as Raju, alias Rajendra Sharma, (son of Lal Chand Sharma), his brother Gadeep Sharma and one Rinku. Six of their associates, identified as Babloo Tyagi, Pawan Sharma, Geeta, Janak Ravi, Kaluram Sharma and Sanjay were absconding.

According to the police sources, Mani Ram, son of Takri of village Naugaza Shadab, Bijnore, made a complaint to the DIG, Meerut Range, that 37 youths of Bijnore had been cheated of over Rs 35 lakh after being promised recruitment into the Army.

Meanwhile, Mani Ram further told mediapersons that Pradeep Sharma, posing as a Lt-Colonel, offered to recruit him into the Army after a payment of Rs 62,000.

Dr Kunal, a retired Army Captain, conducted his medical examination at Roorkee. Later, he was also issued an appointment letter. Mani Ram alleged that the accused kept him in confinement somewhere near Roorkee while his family members were informed that he was undergoing training.

When his parents pressed them for a meeting with his son, the accused dressed him up like an Army officer and brought him in an Indica car.

He was not allowed to talk to his parents and constantly threatened with a pistol. Later, he was taken away and put in confinement again.

A sum of Rs 5,000 per month was also sent to his house as part of his salary.

Based on this ‘drama’, the accused was able to fool a number of youths of the surrounding areas. In this way, the gang collected over Rs 35 lakh for ‘recruitment’ to the Army.

The arrested persons used to pose themselves as Army official posted at Roorkee.

Rescued girl sent to Mahila Ashram

Faridabad: The 15-year-old tribal girl from Assam, who was rescued from the traffickers a couple of days back, has been lodged at the Mahila Ashram at Karnal till the authorities are able to get in touch with her parents. This decision was taken after the victim was produced before the District Juvenile Committee headed by the Deputy Commissioner today.

The district authorities and the NGO, which had taken up the matter with the officials concerned, have announced a cash award of Rs 1,100 each to those involved in the rescue of the girl. —TNS

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No system of governance in Delhi: BJP
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 15
Referring to the latest intervention by the Supreme Court in the matter of irregular distribution of electricity in the national Capital, the BJP has said that the judiciary appears to be conducting the business of governance.

The system of governance has collapsed in NCT of Delhi and that repeated interventions of the judiciary had become the order of the day, said Delhi Pradesh BJP president Harshvardhan in a statement released to the media.

It is a pity, he said, that the judiciary has to intervene in such matters as are totally within the purview of the government.

He said that the courts intervene only after taking suo motu cognizance of a matter or after a PIL has been filed and since an individual seeks legal remedy only when he finds that the government is not fulfilling its responsibilities, it reflects poorly on the working of the government.

Free eye camp in Shahdara

A free eye camp is being organised at Vishwas Nagar, Shahdara by Tarun Mitra Parishad, a well-known social service organisation of Delhi jointly with Mitra Sangam-Delhi.

According to Ashok Jain, president of Tarun Mitra Parishad, this 36th eye camp will be held on July 17, 2004 at 9.00 am at Vivekanand International School, Gali No. 4, Vishwas Nagar, Shahdara. In this camp, the medical team of St. Stephen’s Hospital will examine the patients and select them for free cataract operations in their hospital.

According to Manoj Jain, general secretary of the Parishad, these patients will be taken to the hospital where they will get board and lodging, medicines, meals and also lenses free of charge.

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Students begin a new chapter of varsity life
Tribune New Service

New Delhi, July 15
Thousands of students with butterflies in the stomach will set foot in colleges across the city tomorrow morning.

From the ‘restricted’ world of schools to a ‘carefree’ college environs, these students will juggle excitement with anxiety as the Delhi University begins its academic session.

While senior students have been warned against ragging in no uncertain terms, the first day of college for most of these ‘facchas’ will begin with the orientation programmes in most colleges.

Help will be at hand in the form of proctorial teams, anti-ragging squads, formed both by the authorities as well as the students’ themselves, besides the Delhi Police, which is geared up to check eve-teasing and untoward incidents.

The monotonous school uniforms having become a memory, the campus will witness a parade of fashionistas, who have been religiously scanning markets and updating themselves on the haute couture.

As the D-day approaches, the university is all set to welcome the newest set of its members. The logistics to make it a smooth sailing are already in place. This includes a Joint Control Room in both the North as well as the South Campus.

Freshmen who wish to report any cases of ragging or harassment can drop in a complaint in any of the drop boxes installed in colleges or call the Joint Control Room.

In North Campus, the students can get help at 27667221 and in the South Campus the number is 24019832.

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Kidnap-cum-murder case solved, three held
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 15
With the arrest of three persons, the North-West district police claimed to have solved a sensational kidnapping-cum-murder case of an eight-year-old Waseem. The child was kidnapped on July 11 from near his house in Sector 17, Rohini.

The kidnappers who initially demanded Rs 25 lakh as ransom, agreed for Rs 5 lakh from the victim’s businessman father Mohammad Younus, a scrap dealer.

The accused have been identified as Harbhajan Singh (24), Joginder Singh (24), residents of Rohini and Ashok Kumar (26), resident of Jaipur.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (North-West) Sanjay Singh said that the police after receiving a complaint from the victim’s father, mounted surveillance and also tapped his phone to identify the caller. In the meantime on July 13, a ransom call was received by Younus. He was asked to reach Rithala Metro station and then wait for further instructions.

Accordingly, Younus reached the station. Policemen in plainclothes were also deployed in the station. The kidnappers again changed the venue and Younus could not reach the place immediately and there was no communication after that.

Since the victim was a class II student in Sachdeva Public School, the police started verifying the list of drivers and other known persons to the victim’s family. It was during this drive, the police came across two persons Bhajan Singh and Joginder, both drivers and relatives of the victim.

During interrogation, the accused confessed to crime.

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President plays host to Deepalaya kids
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 15
This is one day the 50 lucky children of Deepalaya are unlikely to forget: a meeting with the President on the Rashtrapati Bhavan Lawns.

These children are from slums across the city and are being given an opportunity to live a more meaningful life at Deepalaya. Celebrating the 25 years of Deepalaya’s existence and its endeavour to provide a better life to the marginalised and the vulnerable, these children were invited for a rendezvous with Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Azad.

With excitement writ large over their exuberant faces, these children presented a cultural programme, showcasing the dances from six Indian states, including Tamil Nadu, Goa, West Bengal and Rajasthan.

The President put questions to the children and also enthralled them with an interesting story while he sportingly answered many of their posers.

Paintings done by the children were presented to Dr Kalam, who was full of appreciation for the mettle exhibited by the children.

Deepalaya, a Delhi-based NGO, which is celebrating its Silver Jubilee, has over the last 25 years had an impact on the lives of more than 40,000 children and their families living in slums, streets and remote villages.

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BJP ‘not consulted’ on Speaker’s election

New Delhi, July 15
The Leader of Opposition in the Delhi Legislative Assembly, Mr Jagdish Mukhi, has said that the Government of NCT of Delhi has not had discussions with his party to forge a consensus on the election of Speaker and Deputy Speaker. The election of Speaker will take place on July 20. —TNS


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