C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Heist goes wrong, robber shot at
Bid to rob salary foiled; three hurt
Tribune News Service

Hazara Singh
Hazara Singh

Surjit Singh
Surjit Singh

Mohali, December 31
Three persons were injured in a shootout following an armed robbery bid at Indian Overseas Bank outside Punjab Tractors Limited (PTL) factory here this morning.

The attempt was foiled by the bank employees and the robber, Rajwinder Singh, a former employee of PTL, was shot at by the bank’s guard, Hazara Singh.

Seriously injured, 35-year-old Rajwinder is now in police custody at the PGI. Bank’s cashier Tirlok Singh and peon Surjit Singh received injuries during an attempt to nab the robber.

The incident took place around 10 am when a team from the bank was preparing to take a trunk containing Rs 36 lakh in cash to the PTL factory premises for salary disbursement.

The trunk had just been loaded on to a jeep in the bank’s driveway and the driver had occupied his seat when an unidentified person wielding a ‘revolver’ and a dagger, accosted Hazara Singh.

“He trained the ‘revolver’ on my neck and shouted at the driver to get off. When the driver got off, he told me to hand him my gun. Before I could position my gun at him, he moved to the other side, occupied the driver’s seat and tried to take off,” related Hazara Singh.
The SP, who visited the scene of the crime along with DSP Mohali Harpreet Singh said the robber had been working with the PTL some years ago. “He was removed from the company and had been involved in various criminal activities since then. The accused is a resident of Doraha Mandi, near Khanna, and many cases of looting, etc. have been registered against him there. Earlier, he was reportedly involved in a murder case here but the matter had ended in a compromise,” he said.

Meanwhile, the two bank employees who had to accompany the cash and were standing at the rear of the jeep realised that a robbery bid was on.

“When the jeep started moving, I pulled out the trunk containing the cash from the rear of the jeep. The jeep had just moved a few meters when the robber realised that the trunk had been removed. He got off the vehicle and challenged us. But when he found that he was surrounded from all sides by bank and PTL employees, he turned around and tried to flee,” said Surjit Singh.

The robber was nabbed by the bank employees. “Surjit clasped him tight and it seemed as if the robber would shoot. It was at this stage that Hazara Singh shot at the robber with his .12 bore gun. The bullet hit the robber in the face and he collapsed on the road. Tirlok Singh who was also holding on to the robber, was hit by the bullet too,” said S.P. Singh, a clerk in the bank who was witness to the incident.

The police was called in and the injured, including the robber, were taken to the PGI. Tirlok Singh received injuries to the right hand and was receiving treatment at the hospital. Surjit Singh was taken to Civil Hospital, Phase VI, Mohali, where he was discharged after first aid to his injuries on the chest.

Rajwinder Singh, whose part of the face was ripped by the gunshot, is in a stable condition.

The police has seized the dagger and the ‘revolver’ used in the crime from scene. The trunk containing Rs 36 lakh has also been taken into police custody.

“The ‘revolver’ used by the robber was later found out to be an pallet pistol,” said a policeman investigating the case.

The police has registered a case under Sections 307, 382, 511, 332 of the IPC and Section 25 of the Arms Act against Rajwinder Singh.

SP Mohali Rakesh Agarwal appreciated the bravery displayed by the bank employees in averting the robbery.

“We would recommend their names for the highest gallantry awards,” he said.



100 revellers stranded at Timber Trail
Ramanjit Singh Sidhu

Chandigarh, December 31
Over 100 persons, who were in a festive mood to celebrate the New Year eve at the Timber Trail Resort near Parwanoo, were stranded in the uphill resort when the cable car service was suddenly stopped because of the high velocity winds.

There were two-to-three-month-old infants among those who are stranded there.

There was an alternative route which takes more than an hour to reach the Timber Trail. The authorities at the resort had arranged for three taxies which carried around 30 persons till 9 pm butstill more than 70 persons were stranded there.

The poor visibility due to weather and darkness is causing hindrance in the return of the visitors to their destinations.

Ms Minakshi, a resident of Mandi Gobindgarh, said she came to celebrate the New Year eve with her family at the Timber Trail adding she was on a trip to Shimla and decided to have a brief halt at the resort.

A newly wed couple from Mumbai came to Chandigarh to spend their New Year in the city. But the strong winds spoilt their party in the city with the couple getting stranded at the resort.

The couple had gone to enjoy the trolley ride but the joy was shortlived.

The resort management had to discontinue the trolley ride for the cable car was shaking dangerously as it went up hill.

The passengers aboard the cable car were frightened as the same cable car had, years back, failed mid-way and a massive rescue operation spanning days had to be carried out.

A passenger Sandeep, resident of Sector 38, alleged that the management had ignored weather warnings about the wind velocity and took a risk in taking the people uphill but later on the management realised that the return of the passengers was difficult because of the winds.

The management then pacified the passengers offering them free food and shelter if taxis could not be arranged.

Till late in the night around 60 persons had left the resort through an alternate motorable route. The management arranged free taxis for the passengers.

The DSP of the area, Mr Surinder Verma, said no body from the resort had approached them for help in rescuing the stranded passengers.



IAF response hurts missing sergeant’s kin
Naveen S. Grewal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 31
Sergeant Sukhwinder Singh posted at the 37 Wing Air Force base, Car Nicobar, his wife Manmeet Kaur (30) and their two-year-old son Simarpreet Singh have been reported missing in the tsunami hit. The calls from parents of Sukhwinder and Manmeet get stock reply from the Air Force authorities that their names figure in the “missing list” put up at the rescue control room.

Mr Bhola Singh, father of Manmeet Kaur and a resident of Sector 40-B here told The Tribune that the attitude of the Air Force authorities has been most disappointing. “No Air Force personnel has contacted either us or Sukhwinder’s parents at their village near Jagadhari. In fact all our inquiries have only received cold responses. A call everyday to the control room elicits the same response everyday.”

Posted at Car Nicobar, Sgt Sukhwinder and Manmeet told Bhola Singh on Saturday last that they would be arriving at Chandigarh in January, once their annual leave starts. “Now we do not know what God has in store for us”, a sobbing Bhola Singh said. A relative in the Air Force posted at Delhi is the only source of information for the family. But he too has not been able to gather much about the state of affairs.

Manmeet and Sukhwinder had got married at Chandigarh in October 2001 and were blessed with a son, a year later, says Mr Lakhwinder Singh, Manmeet’s brother. He said that in the absence of any news about their kin, the entire family was passing every minute with great difficulty, keeping their fingers crossed lest their fears come true. Elders in the family like Mrs. Sham Kaur (90), Manmeet’s paternal grandmother fears the worst.

Sgt Sukwinder Singh’s father Mann Singh and mother Surjit Kaur, who live in village Mehlanwali near Jagadhri in Haryana have nobody to be with them in their hour of need as Sukwinder’s only brother lives in Germany and his sister is married at Rajpura.

According to the information gathered by the family of Sgt Sukwinder (service no 735684), out of the 38 affected islands, only three have been reached by rescue and relief operations. The couple they said lived in official accommodation on the seaside. “Six days without any news of my sister has almost killed us with fear. We do not know what to do or whom to contact, repeated phone calls have yielded no results. It is only hope and faith in God that is keeping us going”, he said alleging callousness on part of the Air Force in keeping the family informed.



Pensioners DA hiked by 3 pc
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 31
The Chandigarh Administration has hiked the dearness relief for its pensioners or family pensioners from 11 per cent to 14 per cent with effect from July 1, 2004.

Other provisions governing grant of dearness relief to pensioners shall remain the same. Also the Administration said that the responsibility of calculating the dearness relief will be the responsibility of the pension disbursing authority including nationalised banks. The relief is payable to pensioners who retired after April 1, 1991.



Newborn found abandoned
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, December 31
A new born female baby was found abandoned at the General Hospital, yesterday.

According to the police, a staff nurse of the hospital noticed the baby wrapped in a piece of cloth lying on a bed no 22 in the gynaecology ward. The baby later died last night due to hypothermia. Doctors said the baby was a premature. The matter was reported to the police and a case under Section 317 of the IPC has been registered in the Sector 17 police station.



Outgoing Mayor’s statement stirs up a hornet’s nest
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 31
The statement of outgoing Mayor Ms Kamlesh that the imposition of the property tax on the commercial buildings was one of the successes of the Congress-dominated Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh(MCC) in 2004 has stirred up a hornet’s nest.

A day after Ms Kamlesh made the statement, her deputy termed the statement as “far from facts”. The decision to impose the property tax was taken under compulsion and was forced on the MCC by the Chandigarh Administration, the outgoing Senior Deputy Mayor, Mr Pardeep Chhabra told Chandigarh Tribune here today.

The decision to impose 3 per cent property tax was part of the urban reforms programme of the central government and the local administration forced it on the civic body. If the civic body had not imposed the tax, the grants-in-aid from the administration might had been stopped crippling the development in the city, Mr Chhabra, an associate of local MP, Pawan Bansal, said.

And with that internal infighting in the faction-ridden Congress seemed to have come the fore.The Congress, even in the MCC, seemed to be divided on the issue of the imposition of the tax. Even after the imposition of the property tax, CTCC president, BB Bahl, had supported the decision on the plea that it would generate enough resources for city’s development. However,the Congress manifesto in 2001 MCC poll had promised that no tax would be levied on the residents.

Meanwhile,talking about his one-year tenure in the office, Mr Chhabra claimed that it was only after his efforts that financial powers for the Senior Deputy Mayor and the Deputy Mayor were recommended at a recent meeting of the MCC.

Besides,several development works, including the laying of roads and parking lots, provisions of streetlights and developmental works were undertaken with his initiatives, he claimed.



Good weather for rabi
Sarbjit Dhaliwal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 31
Though the falling temperature and fast blowing chilly winds accompanied by light showers have brought misery in their wake for the poor, but biting cold conditions are considered immensely good for the wheat and other rabi crops in this part of the region.

“We have been waiting for the rain. It has come a little late but it is good for the rabi crops especially wheat”, say agriculture experts. However, it is too scanty at the moment. It would be better if the rain gods become a little more liberal. A moderate spell of rain will be enough for the rabi crops at this stage, add experts.

Though reports of rain have come almost from all parts of the region but at most of the places only light showers have been reported. Met Department officials say the rainfall has been around 1 mm at Ambala, Karnal, Amritsar. It was a little better at Hisar. From nowhere in the region, reports of heavy rainfall have come yet.

However, in Bhuntar belt of Himachal Pradesh, rainfall has been good this morning. As weather continues to be still cloudy, the farming community should not lose hope of a better spell of rainfall in the region.

According to a rough estimate, about 33 lakh hectares of land has been covered under the wheat crop this year. Its sowing has been completed and the crop is in healthy shape in all parts of the state. The state government has fixed a target to produce 148 lakh tonnes of wheat. In fact, this year, the area under wheat crop is less by over one lakh hectares compared to last year, when crop was sown in 34.44 lakh hectares and output was near 145 lakh tonnes.

Mr Balwinder Singh Sidhu, Director, Agriculture, said the cold conditions were suitable for the wheat crop. Wheat was a crop which required high temperature at the of ripening stage and chilly weather conditions at the growing stage.

Besides, wheat, other the major crop is mustard. About 70,000 hectares is covered under this crop. The prevailing weather is also good for this crop. Besides, barley has also been sown in certain pockets.

Earlier, Punjab had a bumper crop of paddy. In fact, all previous records of paddy yield have been broken this time. Agriculture Department says that the paddy yield this year even crossed the 150 lakh tonne mark whereas are under this crop was 26.50 lakh hectares. The current finance year seems to be good for the agricultural economy.



Donors open hearts and wallets for tsunami victims
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 31
Donations for tsunami victims continued to pour in. Leading the donars today was UK-based Vedanta/Sterlite group. They will donate Rs 1 crore to the Prime Minister’s Relief Fund and another Rs 51 lakh to the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister’s Relief Fund. The employees of the company will also donate one day’s salary.

The Youth Technical Training Society, a local NGO headed by former Chief Secretary Punjab P.H. Vaishnav, has offered a boat to the people of Cuddalore in Tamil Nadu.

The boat costing Rs 80,000 will be purchased under the direct supervision of Deputy Collector of Cuddalore, Gagandeep Singh Bedi. The YTSS wants the boat to the christened “The city of Chandigarh”.

Meanwhile, the Chairman of the Federation of Sector Welfare Associations (FOSWAC), Mr P.C. Sanghi, appealed to all residents’ welfare associations to donate for the Prime Minister’s Relief Fund.

The Chandigarh Citizens Association today collected Rs 50,000 and it was felt that a target of Rs 2 lakh from members was achievable. The first instalment of the relief money would be handed over to the UT Administrator, who is also the Chief patron of the Association, before the end of next week.

Donors were requested to write on the reverse their name and address and the legend “For Tsunami Relief” to get 100 per cent deduction under Section 80G of the Income Tax Act.

Employees of the Punjab State Human Rights Commission decided to contribute one day’ s salary to the Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund for the tsunami victims. The Chairperson and the Members of the Commission will contribute Rs 5,000 each to the fund.

The employees of the Employees State Insurance Corporation will also contribute one day’s salary, according to a press note.



Tsunami shadow over celebrations
Swarleen Kaur

Chandigarh, December 31
Yielding to the triumphant spirit of hope, party revellers in the city welcomed the New Year with traditional warmth and gusto. But a sizeable chunk of residents called off their merry-making plans due to the tsunami tragedy.

However, youngsters found it difficult to stay away from dance floor. The gala atmosphere at the party organised by hotels and discotheques was at its peak. Business executives, their families, young boys and girls were keen to lap up the fun-filled moments.

The red, blue and green colours of lights and reverberating drumbeats all ensured that those gathered there had their ‘rightful’ share of enjoyment.

As the clock pulsed towards 12, participants got rolling. For youngsters, it was dancing till the wee hours.

As all live performances for the parties were cancelled in major hotels. It were only private hotels and the Restaurants who carried out celebrations. Because of the cancellation, the crowd thronged Sector 35 discotheques. Since many hotels and discotheques did not allow single entry, young boys were left high and dry. It was delicious food and snacks with cocktails, mocktails craving for the revellers’ attention.

While tsunami wave sobered up many, some chose to debunk the somber spirit. Crystallizing their plan, they knew that extending help to the tragedy-struck and grieving for the loss was important. But celebrating the arrival of the new held equal significance for them.

Many city residents, shelved their celebration to a more suitable occasion. Confined to their homes it was small well-knit gatherings for many. Watching New Year programmes on TV with family members was the other worthy option.

The subdued celebrations provided a glimpse of the citizens’ mature response to the catastrophe.

The donation box put up at some hotels to collect the fund for the tsunami victims, pricked the conscience of many visitors. A small number of them chose to drop “help” into these boxes, while keeping their date with the planned festivities.



Lt-Gen S. Pattabhiraman to be W. Command Goc-in-Chief
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 31
Lt-Gen S. Pattabhiraman will be the next General Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Western Command. He will take over the command from Lt-Gen J.J Singh on his assuming the appointment of the Chief of the Army Staff on February 1, 2005.

Presently, General Pattabhiraman is holding the appointment of the Director-General, Information Systems at the Army Headquarters, besides being the Colonel Commandant of the Bombay Sappers.

Commissioned into the 102 Engineer regiment in December 1966, the general officer has had the distinction of commanding this Regiment of Victoria Cross fame as well as the 411 ( I) Para Field Coy. He was awarded the Sena Medal while commanding this regiment in Arunachal Pradesh in 1990. He was also honoured with the Vishisht Seva Medal while he was the Commander of a Mountain Brigade in the counter surgency operation in the Rajouri sector of J and K from 1998-2000.

General Pattabhiraman has held various staff, command and instructional appointments during his illustrious career spanning over 38 years. These include Instructor in the IMA and Army War College, GSO 1 in Military Operations Directorate and Commander of an Infantry Division and the Vajra Corps. He has also served as the Defence Attache of India in Ankara ( Turkey). He was awarded the Ati Vishisht Seva Medal for his contribution to the Military Operations Directorate where he was holding the post of Additional Director-General.



Punjabi Tribune Assistant Editor retires
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 31
A warm farewell was given to Mr Karamjit Singh, Assistant Editor, Punjabi Tribune, who attained superannuation after serving the institution for 26 years here today.

He joined Punjabi Tribune as Sub-Editor in 1978 and worked in various capacities before reaching the level of Assistant Editor and often wrote about important current issues, especially those relating to state politics and national affairs.

A special farewell function was held at the Chandigarh Press Club where his long association with the newspaper and his professional work was appreciated among others by Mr HK Dua, Mr Shinghara Singh Bhullar and Mr Dalbir Singh , Editor-in-Chief, The Tribune group of newspapers, Editor and Deputy Editor of the Punjabi Tribune, respectively.

Mr O.P. Arora, Additional General Manager, Mr Naresh Kaushal, officiating Editor, Dainik Tribune, and Mr Surjeet Singh, a former News Editor, Punjabi Tribune, were also present at the farewell function.



Police recommends suspension of 10 driver’s licences
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, December 31
The Chandigarh Traffic police has recommended the suspension of driver’s licence of 10 habitual offenders under Section 19 of Motor Vehicle Act, 1988, for a period of one to six months from January 1, 2005.

The traffic police has released a list of 10 such offenders who were booked for various violations.

Rajiv Kumar of Sector 34 was challaned as many as 17 times from April 20, 1999 to June 15, 2002; Vishal Gupta of Sector 19-A was issued 10 challans from January 17, 1997 to July 18, 2003; Krishan Kumar of Sector 18 was issued 17 challans from July 7, 1998 to April 25, 2001; Kanwarjit Singh of Sector 18-C was penalised seven times between May 19, 1997 and February 14, 2003; Ashwani Rajput of Sector 22-C 12 times between September 17, 1998 and July 31, 2003; and Parminder Singh of Sector 26 18 times from August 24, 1997 to November 20, 2002.

They have been disqualified from holding driver’s licence for a period of six months.

Hardeep Singh of Sector 20, who was issued seven challans from December 24, 2000 to August 13, 2004, and Raja Singh of Sector 37, who was issued eight challans from January 16, 2001 to August 1, 2004, have been disqualified from holding a licence for a period of two months.

Similarly, Khem Raj of Kishangarh village, who was issued as many as seven challans from February, 2000 to August 27, 2003, and Nikhil Mahajan of Sector 21 D, who was issued five challans from May 19, 2001 to April 25, 2004, have been disqualified from holding a licence for one month.

The traffic police has so far recommended 140 cases for action to the Licensing Authority out of which action has been taken against 97 offenders.



Electricity duty hike decried
Tribune News Service

Mohali, December 31
Members of the Mohali Industries Association here today expressed shock and anguish over the Punjab Government’s decision to double electricity duty from 5 per cent to 10 per cent.

According to the Association’s president Gurmeet Singh, this decision of the state government was misplaced as only in October this year the Punjab State Electricity Regulatory Authority had reduced the power tariff from 7 per cent to 12 per cent.

This decision would have disastrous consequences especially when the industry was already reeling from severe impact of recession, onslaught of globalisation, WTO etc.

The Industry was also facing the impact of frequent power cuts, peak load hour restrictions, said the president.

“No doubt setting up of the Dedicated Social Security Fund was a good step, but the state government should find some other avenues for generating funds for this purpose instead of killing the industry which was already having problems of survival” he said.

The Mohali Industries Association appealed to the government to reconsider the hike in electricity duty.



Road Safety Week to commence from Jan 3
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, December 31
In order to raise awareness regarding the road safety norms, the Chandigarh Traffic Police is going to organise the 16th Road safety Week between January 3 and 9.

On January 3, the inaugural day, the traffic police would launch a website of the Chandigarh Traffic Police and also release an educational compact disc at the Children Traffic Park in Sector 23 at 11 am.

A blood donation camp, a painting competition and cultural programme will be the highlights of the inaugural day.

A week-long exhibition on road safety and road rules test will be held at the Plaza in Sector 17.

A scooter rally of girl students to promote wearing of helmets will be organised on January 4.

The rally will start from Children Traffic Park at 11 am and will culminate in Sector 17 Plaza.

Three workshops on road safety for the auto rickshaw drivers will be conducted at the PGI, the ISBT in Sector 17 and at the railway station, separately, on January 5 from 11 am onwards.

On January 6, a first-aid workshop for the PCR/Traffic Police personnel at the Traffic Auditorium in Sector 29-B and another workshop for cycle-rickshaw pullers in the Children Traffic Park will be held.

A workshop for bus drivers at the Administration Block of CTU in Phase I, Industrial Area and another one for truck drivers at the Transport Area will be organised on January 7.

A drivers' training workshop on road safety measures at the Children Traffic Park and a conference on the road safety and school area traffic management for school principals would be held at the Traffic Auditorium in Sector 29-B on January 8.

The closing ceremony of the Road Safety Week will be held at the Traffic Auditorium on January 9 at 4 pm. 



Improvement in sanitation claimed
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 31
The sanitation issue was brought to the centrestage during 2004 with several innovative steps being taken by the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh(MCC) to ameliorate insanitary conditions in the city, the outgoing Chairman of the Sanitation Committee, Mr Chander Mukhi Sharma, said here today.

Mr Sharma claimed that surprise checks on sweepers during the year were appreciated with the result that sanitary conditions in several areas improved.

Giving details, he said 4,427 stray cattle were impounded and 2,228 were released during the year fine and feeding charges amounting to Rs 13,24,890 were recovered from the general public.As many as 111 cattle were auctioned during the year.

Similarly, outsourcing of certain works in the two zones of the city, single shift for the sweepers, proposed purchase of two special machines for the crushing of dry leaves were some of achievements of the committee, he added.



Search Within
Let God guide us to new horizons

A new study by researchers of Iowa University (US), covering 550 adults over the age of 65, found that people who believe in God live longer than people who don’t. People who go to the religious services are 35 per cent more likely to live longer than those who never attended church. Faith in God not only keeps us healthy but also helps us to live our lives meaningfully.

We must enter the New Year, anchored in Him. Faith may prolong our days, More than that, faith will make our lives purposeful. What will the New Year be like? When we enter into the unknown, we are likely to be anxious, afraid. But when the Lord of all creation is there to guide us, we shall fear no more.

The New Year: it is an unspoilt page in your book of time. It is your next chance to practice the art of living you have learnt. How will you meet the unexpected challenges and changes?

Do not look forward to the changes and chances of this life with fear. Rather look to them with the full hope that as they arise, God will deliver you out of them. The God who cared for you hitherto will look after all your tomorrows. Either He will shield you from your suffering or He will give you strength to bear it.

Joy and peace are the things we normally wish for. But experience teaches us to look for unexpected turns. If by any chance, one experiences pain, it is good to remember the rewards of pain: it forces you to look to God; to lean on Him and learn as to where you went astray. Pain forces you to long for God’s presence and healing.

Sometimes changes could be devastating. For instance huge tidal waves in the wake of the Sumatran quake had washed away all earthly possessions of thousands in the southern states of this country. They have to make a new beginning. Perhaps they can take heart from an old example.

On a cold December night, Thomas A. Edison’s famous plant in New Jersey lay in ruins after a sensational blaze. Everything the 67-year-old inventor had worked for had gone up in flames. Next morning he looked at the ruins of his factory and said: “ There is value in disaster. All our mistakes are burned up. Thank God, we can start anew.”

Devastation can take many forms: a business failure, divorce, a criminal record, a personal dream gone sour or break up of a relationship. Whether these things destroy an individual depends on the attitude he or she takes toward them.

Many of us might have reasons to feel unhappy over losses or disappointments or unfulfilled ambitions of the past. But then the past is history; the present is too precious to be wasted by living in the past. We must resolve not to relive yesterday for good or ill. Neither should we be fearful of the future: perhaps most of the things we fear may not happen in reality.

“Look not mournfully into the past. It comes not back again. Wisely improve the present. It is thine. Go forth to meet the shadowy future, without fear, and with a manly heart,” advices Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.

Buddha stated that the secret of health for both body and mind is not to mourn for the past, worry about the future or anticipate troubles, but to live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.

A spirit of thankfulness for God and fellow beings should mark our lives. “One of life’s gifts is that each of us, no matter how tired and downtrodden, finds reasons for thankfulness: for the crops carried in from the fields and the grapes from the vineyard.”

Are you carrying a backlog of resentments and bitterness from life’s experiences.? In the arena of life, we often get hurt and hurt others. Resentments and an unforgiving spirit that turn them into hatred set in. We have got to get free of them. So we need to forgive and seek forgiveness from those whom we might have hurt.

This will set right all human relationships, a source of great joy. And remember: we win by tenderness; we conquer by forgiveness. Also forgiveness is the most beautiful aspect of love.

Every Day is a new birth in time, holding out new beginnings, new possibilities, new achievements. The ages have witnessed the stars in their orbits, but this day hath no age witnessed. It is a new appearance, a new reality. It heralds a new life, a new order, a new society, a new age.

It holds out new hopes, new opportunities to all men. In it you can become a new man, a new woman. For you it can be a day of regeneration, renewal, rebirth. From the past with its mistakes and failures, and sorrows, you can rise a new being endued with power and purpose and radiant with the inspiration of a new ideal.” — M.P.K. Kutty



MP meets minister on Punwire’s revival
Tribune News Service

Mohali, December 31
Member of Parliament and General Secretary, All- India Forward Bloc, Debabratta Biswas today met Labour Minister Government of India, Chander Shekhar Rao at Delhi today to discuss problem of Punwire employees here.

According to a press note by Mr Shahid Ahmed the president of the Punwire Employees Union, Mr Biswas pleaded with the Labour Minister case of Punwire employees. The meeting was also attended by Mr Sahni, Secretary, Department of Labour, also all aspects of the revival of Punwire were discussed. The Labour Minister assured Mr Biswas that all efforts would be made to revive Punwire.



250 blankets given to poor
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 31
The President of the Mata Mansa Devi Sewak Dal Dhamartha and Bhandara Committee, Mr Sat Paul Garg, said that 250 blankets were distributed among needy persons at the PGI, Sector 16 General Hospital and GMCH, Sector 32. The committee also organised langar at Mansa Devi Complex.

The UT Red Cross Society has distributed blankets among the poor pavement dwellers and rickshaw pullers. Ms Padmini Singla, SDM (East)-cum-Secretary, Red Cross, visited the Sector 7, PGI Rotary Serai, Sector 37, 38 (west), 39 Badheri, Sector 22, 35 and Grain market. As many as 100 blankets were distributed by the Secretary.



ISBT foundation stone
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 31
UT Administrator S.F. Rodrigues will lay the foundation stone of the second Inter-State Bus Terminus (ISBT) in Sector 43 on Monday.



Opium smuggling racket busted
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 31
The Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) here today claimed to have unearthed a decade-old opium smuggling racket spread in Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh.

In a raid on a palatial house of the alleged drug mafia don in village Chhaina, Devigarh, district Patiala, last night, a team of the bureau led by its Zonal Director Shrikant Jadhav arrested the kingpin’s son Bhupinder Kumar Sharma and seized Rs 14 lakh in cash and 1.7 kg of opium. The kingpin and Bhupinder Sharma’s father Jagdish Raj Sharma, who is suspected to have amassed crores, however, gave NCB sleuths a slip. Bhupinder Sharma was today presented before a court and was remanded in judicial custody for interrogation. The opium was hidden in a specially-created cavity on the lower side of a tabletop.

Jagdish Raj Sharma, has been involved in illicit contraband trade for the past decade. He used to buy opium from Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh at between Rs 10,000 and Rs 12,000 per kg and sell it at Rs 35,000 in Punjab and Haryana.

The NCB has sounded the Income Tax Department, financial institutions and local administration to trace his slash money. The bureau is identifying his associates.

The bureau got a wind of Sharma’s wealth after it seized documents of his property and bank accounts.



Two held for theft, goods recovered
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, December 31
The Crime Branch of the Chandigarh Police has arrested two youths allegedly involved in vehicular theft and burglaries. The police also recovered stolen property worth Rs 82,000 from the possession of the two.

According to the police, Manoj Kumar of Kushi Nagar district in Uttar Pradesh was arrested at a picket point at the Sector 31-47 bend on 
December 27.

The police caught the accused after it laid a trap following a tip-off. Manoj was caught with a stolen motor cycle bearing an tampered number plate.

After investigation, the police found out that the original number of the motor cycle was PB-49-5666.

Manoj later admitted to stealing the motor cycle from Colony No. 5. He was produced before a local court and the court remanded him in police custody till December 31.

During the police remand, he disclosed the name of his accomplice, Anil Kumar of Una district.

The police arrested Anil Kumar and recovered two VCD players, two cycles, 22 SIM cards of mobile phones, around 200 gm of silver jewellery, one registration certificate and an insurance policy of a vehicle (CH-03-L-4058) from his possession.

According to the police, Manoj Kumar was a seasoned thief and had been active in the southern sectors of the city.

The police also claimed to solving three cases of theft with his arrest.

During the interrogation, Manoj divulged information about his associates involved in the incidents of thefts.

He also admitted to stealing four vehicles, including a car and a jeep, during the year, which he later abandoned after use.



Theft by servant
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, December 31
Mr Ajay Kundri of Sector 37-A reported to the police that his servant, Rajesh Rana, has stolen cash a sum of Rs 1.20 lakh from his office in Sector 38-C on December 29. A case has been registered.

Car stolen

Mr Jagshir Singh of Tarkhana Wala village in Mukatsar district filed a complaint that his car (MP-04-V-4380) was stolen from near Dhillon Theatre in Mani Majra. A case of theft has been registered in the Mani Majra, police station.

Liquor seized

The police arrested Ram Bilas Kumar of Nehru Colony and Gulab Singh, Sector 52 from the Kajheri turn, last night. The police seized 50 nips of XXX rum and 200 nips of country wine from a three wheeler.

A case under Sections 61, 1 and 14 of the Excise Act has been registered. They were later released on bail.



Body found
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, December 31
The body of an unidentified rickshaw puller aged about 25 year was found near Sarswati School in Darua village this morning.

He was fou nd lying dead near a rickshaw. An empty bottle of liquor was also found near the body, the police said.

There were no injury marks on the body. The police has initiated inquest proceedings under Section 174 of the CrPC in the Industrial Area police station.




New hotel: Hotel Orange — a venture of Orange Inn began operations in Sector 35 on Thursday. The hotel has 14 rooms. It also has an exclusive restaurant and bar. — TNS


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