C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Music week celebrations at Strawberry
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 20
“Come September” by Karen Carpenter acquires a new meaning, when you see what the playful Peter Pans and the Little Bo Peeps have put together as part of their bi-annual music week celebrations at the Strawberry Fields Kindergarten, which began today.

The intimacy of the library seems perfect as students of Lower Kindergarten put forward their versions of traditional poems, improvised songs and prayers, blending Victorian English with contemporary Indianness to an audience comprising emotional, misty-eyed parents.

Visitors are greeted with the sights and sounds of nature as they enter the gate, letting the sounds of music guide them to the venue of the singing fiesta. The backdrop done by the teachers helps them to associate the concepts introduced in the songs.

Every year new songs are introduced and class activities are altered to enable students use music, dance, rhythm and movement as an aid to the learning process. Curtains are unveiled at the musical morning with the “Pussy Cat”. “Apne Chote haath” helps them learn about the different parts of the body and the functions they perform in a language which they identify with. “In and out of the window”,” Fuzzy fuzzy caterpillar”,” Ate a peanut”,” Don’t bother me”,” I am a clown” and “Everybody says” are simple poems with uncomplicated lyrics touching upon routine matters of daily existence.

Mrs Aditi Dua, wife of Mr HK Dua, presided over the informal function. She congratulated parents for sending their children to “an oasis, a place where joyful learning was quietly taking place.”

According to the Director of the school, Mr Atul Khanna, “our musical weeks have a freshness and novelty, because every year, the children are different. On our part we try to ensure that music be the catalyst via which the students learn new things, increase their vocabulary, better their pronunciation and most importantly, weave in moral science messages in a playful interactive way.”



7-day remand for 3 accused
Industrialist’s kidnapping and murder
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 20
The kidnapping and murder of industrialist Rajan Bhuchar would have remained untraced had it not been for the prompt action by the police. Within two hours of being informed of the kidnapping, and engaging the accused in conversation for over 15 minutes while he made a call demanding ransom of Rs 25 lakh, a police team traced and prime accused Mohinder Singh to the PCO from where he was making the call.

All three accused were produced before the Judicial Magistrate, Mr Ajay Aggarwal, and remanded in seven-day police custody. The prosecution sought their remand on the pretext that they needed to recover the Esteem car, the rope and Rajan’s mobile phone. The car had been given by Mohinder to one of his friends, who had taken it to Lucknow. A police team would be sent to bring the car back. A team of forensic experts led by Dr G.R. Jain, also visited the factory in Industrial Area and gathered evidence from the scene of crime.

The police was informed of the kidnapping only around 9.30 am yesterday. Rajan Bhuchar had reportedly gone to a factory in Industrial Area on September 18 and had later gone missing. The victim’s father, Mr Joginder Pal Bhuchar, received three calls from the kidnappers on the evening of September 18 at his residence. Since a caller’s ID was installed at the phone, they continued to trace the accused on their own. They found that the calls were made from different PCO’s in Baltana and Zirakpur. The Bhuchars negotiated the ransom amount with the kidnappers and agreed to pay them Rs 10 lakh.

The next day the Bhuchars approached the police for help as they suspected the hand of a former domestic help in the kidnapping. This servant had murdered the mother of Rajan Bhuchar 14 years ago at their residence and decamped with cash and jewellery. The servant was later arrested and sentenced to 10 years of rigorous imprisonment. SP Mamta Singh swung into action and four special teams were formed. While one team each was sent to the Bhuchars house and telephone exchange, two teams were despatched to the PCOs in Zirakpur from where the calls were made.

Accused Mohinder Singh, a factory employee, made a fourth call for ransom at around 11 am yesterday, which was attended by Sub-Inspector Gulab Singh who pretended to be a member of the victim’s family. He engaged the accused in a conversation for about 15 minutes, which helped another police team at the telephone exchange to trace the call to a PCO near the Zirakpur naka. A third team led by DSP Deshbandhu and Sub-Inspector Varinder, which was stationed at Zirakpur, rushed to the PCO and nabbed Mohinder, while he was paying the bill for the call.

“He confessed to abducting Rajan with the help of Bhoj Bahadur and Tej Bahadur. Initially, he alleged that the owners of the factory were involved in the crime, and he was to get only Rs 1 lakh while Rs 50,000 each was to be given to the two watchmen. Later, he told the police that he was the mastermind and the owners had no role. We are still investigating this aspect,” says SP Mamta Singh.

The police says that Mohinder Singh had entered into a business partnership with Rajan recently and had been planning to kidnap him for ransom. They were aware that Bhuchars had sold off their factory at Chandigarh for Rs 1.65 crore. “The three accused have confessed that when Rajan reached the factory, Bhoj Bahadur and Tej Bahadur pounced on him from behind and threw him on the floor. Mohinder strangulated him with a rope. They then bundled him in his Esteem, and drove towards Nahan. They dumped his body at a secluded spot,” says the SP.

Meanwhile, the victim’s body was brought from Nahan after a post-mortem and was cremated in the evening. He is survived by his father, four-year-old son and wife who is expecting their second child. 



Case against Kohli’s brother adjourned
Tribune News Service

Mohali, September 20
Proceedings on the plea to discharge Amritpal Singh, brother of Maninderpal Singh Kohli, the suspect in the alleged rape and murder of British school girl Hannah Foster in March, last year, in Britain, was adjourned for September 22 by a local court as the investigating officer (IO) could not be examined. Subdivisional Judicial Magistrate Poonam Ratti adjourned proceedings as the IO did not turn up in the court.

Kohli was booked in the case on the charge of trying to get an Indian passport on the basis of allegedly forged documents during his stay in Mohali as a fugitive from Britain.

Amritpal Singh was released from police custody on July 31, while Kohli’s second brother, Ishtpreet Singh, is out on bail granted by a Ropar court recently.



Do not imitate West, says Aurobindo scholar

IT was time that universities in the country focused on socially meaningful research. Scholars must adopt a multi-disciplinary approach, which has ingredients of cultural, social and religious content, said Mr Sachidananda Mohanty, a Professor of English at University of Hyderabad and follower of Sri Aurobindo.

He was in the town to deliver lectures on relevance of Sri Aurobindo teachings in today’s context at Department of English, Panjab University and at Aurobindo School, Sector 27 here.

Talking to The Tribune, he said younger generation was losing touch with cultural roots due to western influence. Delivering a lecture at Panjab University, he said he had advocated greater interaction between the students and faculty of different languages departments. This would ensure that all departments were energised.

“Due to lack of multi-disciplinary approach, the universities were contributing nothing to the masses. The research at the university level should help the younger generation to correlate themselves with other cultures and societies”, he said.

He cautioned the citizens against imitating the western way of life. “ One can negotiate with other cultures and communities on a same platform if one had some understanding of one’s own culture and traditions”.

Prof Mohanty has written several books on the issue with the latest being ‘ Cultural Exchange for the India Fulbright Commission. — TNS



Assma band in city

THE four young pop stars of the music band ‘Assma’, Sangeet Haldipur, Neeti Mohan, Jimmy Felix and Vasudha Sharma, are in the city in connection with auditions for the Samsung (V) Super Singer Contest.

Neeti says behind the glamorous world a lot of hard work is hidden. People don’t see the hard work involved in these shows.

It is the music which keeps them together all the time. They recall the time when for the first time they performed live in front of 45,000 people. They have not forgotten the concert of Bryan Adams in Bangalore. Jimmy says when we sang “Chandu ke Chacha ne” the whole crowd cheered and I guess Bryan Adman was also impressed.

Their next album will soon be released and one can see a track of the album on TV.

While talking about each other’s plus points, Vasudha says I think it is Jimmy who outshines us.

He wins everyone’s heart with his dimpled smile. Jimmy is a fitness and fashion freak. He is very choosy while selecting clothes.

Vasudha is a versatile singer. She received formal training in Hindustani classical music. Neeti is a philosophy graduate. Sangeet comes from a family of musicians. — OC



A beauty with brains

“I wanted to be on television when I was just 3 feet tall,” says new Veejay of Channel V Sarah-Jane. She was in the city today in connection with Samsung (V) super singer contest.

Born in Mumbai, she did her schooling from Oman and then returned to India for her graduation. An adventure freak, she thrives on travelling. Food and cleanliness are her biggest obsessions, while music is her passion.

A beauty endowed with brains, she can talk for hours.

The black-eyed beauty won her first beauty contest held in Oman at the age of 15. She has done a few advertisement campaigns also.

A graduate in sociology, she says her entry into Channel V happened by chance. She also wanted to pursue a course in hotel management.

She believes in creating her own style but she has a lot of admiration for VJs Gaurav, Purab, Yudi and Anushka.

She has no big plans right now but wants to make her foundation strong in anchoring. She says a big no to item numbers. “ I don’t feel the need to take too many projects at one time”.

“To beat my negative emotions, I just dance. I have no regrets in life till now and I enjoy every moment of it”, she said. — OC


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