C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Dr Babita’s husband, sister-in-law
charged with murder

Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, June 9
Almost four months after Dr Babita Kaura, a PGI doctor, died under mysterious circumstances, the police today arrested her husband, Dr Deepak Kaura, and his sister, Ms Deepali Kohli, for allegedly killing the woman doctor.

A case of murder under Section 302 and also under Section 34 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) was registered at the Sector 11 Police Station today. The claim of the police is backed by a report from the experts of the Central Forensic Sciences Laboratory (CFSL).

Dr Babita was working as Assistant Professor at the Department of Immuno-pathology, PGI, and she succumbed to her injuries on January 19 at the PGI before the police could record her dying declaration. A day earlier, on the night of January 18, she was critically injured and was found lying in a pool of blood under her third floor flat in Sector 24.

The arrested Dr Deepak Kaura has a private practice in Sector 15. The couple have two school-going children.

The police said the death had occurred after a fight between the couple. Narrating the sequence of events on January 18 — when Dr Babita was found dead — the police said Dr Deepak Kaura was present in his clinic in Sector 15, on that day when his wife Dr Babita Kaura came there at 7.30 pm. Both of them had a few alcoholic drinks together. At about 9.30 pm they prepared to go home. Dr Babita Kaura had a separate car with her, so Dr Deepak Kaura asked her to return home on her own vehicle while he had to drop a nurse at her hostel.

Dr Babita Kaura left for home and Dr Deepak Kaura took the nurse with him to drop her at the hostel. Dr Deepak Kaura got unreasonably late on the way and reached home after about an hour, which infuriated his wife. When Dr Deepak Kaura reached home, both of them quarrelled over the issue. Dr Deepak Kaura called his sister, Ms Deepali Kohli, over the phone who reached there immediately. Thereafter Dr Babita Kaura fell down from her flat.

Today, while investigating the case, the Crime Branch interrogated Dr Deepak Kaura and his sister, Deepali Kohli. Their interrogation led to the facts which were sufficient to cause their arrest in the case.

The CFSL sent the result of relevant reports to the local police, saying the blood of Dr Babita Kaura contained alcohol to the extent of 436.98 mg. In the spot examination report, the expert opined that the physical examination of the regular exhibits indicated that Dr Babita could have fallen and not jumped.

The post-mortem of the body was conducted at the PGI and viscera along with her clothes were sent to the CFSL for analysis. A team of experts, from CFSL, was also called to examine the place of occurrence and to determine whether the fall was accidental, self-attempted or culpable, which was done by the team.

Earlier the police had conducted proceedings for inquest under Section 174 CrPC.

When Dr Babita died under mysterious circumstances, her family members, including her father and sister, an IAS Officer, had refrained from levelling any allegations and instead asked for a through inquiry into the matter.



Leopard skin seized; one arrested
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, June 9
The Chandi Mandir police today recovered a freshly scraped leopard skin from a Nepalese youth, while he was trying to smuggle it to Nahan for sale. The police investigation so far has revealed that the skin was bought by the smuggler from a person in Parwanoo, and the leopard could have been poached in the Himachal forests.

Ram Lal was nabbed by the police near the Morni t-point naka where he was waiting for a vehicle to reach Nahan. Police say they had received information about a person carrying leopard skin and moving around in the Morni area. A routine check of the man’s belongings yielded the leopard skin, which appeared as if it had been freshly scraped.

The police led by Sub-Inspector Gulab Singh also recovered Rs 70,000 in cash from his possession. Upon questioning, the man conceded that he had bought the skin from a man at Parwanoo, for Rs 29, 500 and was carrying it for sale in Nahan.

The police said the accused had his hideouts in the Bangala Colony at either Pinjore, Nahan, Parwanoo, Baddi and near Dera Bassi. He would buy the skins from the hunters and hide these here till he would find a possible buyer. Preliminary investigation has also revealed that the accused would often take leopard skins to Delhi and sell these off there. 



Police gets leads from Hawara’s interrogation

Chandigarh, June 9
Initial interrogation of terrorist Jagtar Singh Hawara has brought out some crucial information regarding Burail jail-break conspiracy and the Chandigarh police is working on it, senior police officials said .

A team of the Chandigarh police came back from Delhi tonight. Since Chandigarh police is dealing with the case pertaining to the Beant Singh assassination and also the jail- break in January last year, they were allowed preliminary investigation, SSP, Operations, L.S. Sandhu confirmed about some useful information but refused to part with it.

Sources in the police said the IG, Mr Satish Chandra, held a meeting with senior officers to chalk out a plan on how to work on the leads.

The team of the operation cell today met the senior official of the police and apprised them of the information they had gathered. — OC



2 burglars nabbed
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, June 9
With the arrests of two notorious burglars, the local police today claims to have solved four cases of burglaries in the city. The police has recovered stolen jewellery and electronic appliances worth Rs 1.5 lakh from them.

The SHO of Sector 36 police station, Mr Jagbir Singh, said Bhupinder Kumar (25) of Burail village and Dilbagh Singh (23) of Kuldip Colony at Kajheri village were arrested from Sector 43.

During interrogation, Bhupinder and Dilbagh confessed to having committed theft in a house in Sector 43 on June 2 from where they had stolen jewellery and cash. On June 6 and 7 they committed theft in two houses in Electricity Colony in Sector 52. On June 8 they entered a house in Sector 43 and lacamped with electronic appliances and other articles. The owner of the house, Mr Sant Ram, was away for two days.

The SHO further added that both accused were notorious burglars and had been arrested and jailed earlier also. There were five cases of burglaries registered against Dilbagh Singh in the city and seven in Mohali. He was released from jail in January. While Bhupinder Singh has four cases of burglaries registered against him in the city and was released from the jail in 2004 after serving a sentence under the NDPS Act.



Admn not to register sale deeds of small plots
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 9
The Administration will not follow Punjab in allowing registration of sale deeds of small plots below 2 kanals in the periphery area around villages, beyond the lal dora.

This would encourage unuathorised constructions in 3,500 acre in the peripheral areas, apprehend officials.

By allowing the registries under the relevant sections of the Registration Act, 1908, as has been allowed by the Punjab Revenue Department, officials of the administration said the unauthorised construction would eat up the remaining periphery.

It would go against the spirit of a Punjab and Haryana High Court order (vide CWP n.16325 of 1997) in which the authorities concerned of Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh had been asked to take steps to check disobedience of the statutory provisions of the Punjab New Capital Periphery Act, 1952.

Official sources said the authorities were clear on preserving the periphery and at no cost such circumventing of the law would be done. “ In case of Punjab, the registry had been allowed with the hidden motive of allowing construction as it means that the state is allowing division of land which can not be used for agricultural purposes”, said a senior UT officer.

The Administration has also banned the registration of General Power of Attorney (GPA) of up to 2 kanals outside the lal dora in 18 villages of the Union Territory. The move aims at checking the sale of agricultural land for residential and commercial purposes which was in violation of the Punjab New Capital Periphery Act, 1952.

The orders had been issued in light of the directions of Punjab and Haryana High Court. Taking the land out the lal dora as extended ‘abadi’, a number of land transactions were being done in the Union Territory, said the officer.

Earlier, in order by pass the High Court instructions, two separate chunks of land were clubbed for the purpose of registration.

Chandigarh Tribune had recently highlighted that the office of the Financial Commissioner, Revenue, (FCR), Punjab, in a communication to the Ropar administration had allowed registration of sale of land less than 1,000 sq mts in the periphery controlled area.

A senior Union Territory official said the Administration had been trying to jointly work out a strategy to check violations in the periphery by devising a joint strategy. But such move by Punjab could jeopardise the entire effort.

However, the residents of UT villages have urged the administration to follow Punjab in allowing the registries. They said the administration was adopting dual policy when it came to dealing with villages and unauthorised labour colonies. There was no harm if the villages sold their land for sustaining themselves.



Generation Next prefers PG accommodation
Geetanjali Gayatri
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 9
They come from the breed of the unfettered Generation Next which can’t do without its freedom and independence, doesn’t like being tied down by rules and regulations of hostels and can’t have wardens breathing down their necks constantly.

They want to live life on their own terms and that’s what sends them on a house-hunting mission even before they secure a seat in the college and course of their choice. And what better place to look for a house than Sector 15 where PG accommodation, short for paying guest accommodation, abounds.

With the university and two city colleges on two sides of the sector and well-established market to cater to the students’ every need, it is a haven where almost every house has a “room-bathroom set” for hire.

The house owners, too, are on the lookout for “disciplined students” who will pay their rent on time, stay out of the house for the better part of the day and spare them of tantrums of having “family tenants”.

Tanisha, an undergraduate science student studying on the university campus, says:” I left the hostel because it did not allow me to concentrate on my studies. Though it gave me a very big friends circle and provided me company in a city where I hardly know anybody, focussing on studies becomes a problem with somebody or the other walking into the room all the time. Add to that the problem of music blaring from the adjoining rooms irrespective of the time of the day. This prompted me to shift to an accommodation in Sector 16.”

Class XII students Anchal, Shivangi and Sahara, sharing a room in an accommodation in Sector 15, maintain that staying in the hostel in school was not palatable to them. “The rooms were not neat and clean and we were forever complaining to our parents. Also, in hostels, we were not allowed to go for tuitions which we can’t do without. So, our parents decided to shift us out of the hostels,” they said.

Paridhi and Mayuri, college students, maintain that there are too many restrictions in college hostels and very few outings. “It gets tiring to see the same faces everyday evening. You can’t go out at will and miss out on the fun of college life. It’s more like a jail. Besides, living as PGs teaches us to lead on our own, act responsibly and manage within the resources available,” they hold.

For this freedom, they don’t mind doling out the Rs 2,500 to Rs 3,000 per month rent charged per head in accommodation which houses three to four students at a given time. While Rs 1,500 is charged as rent from the students, Rs 1,500 is charged for the meals. These accommodations provide bedding, fans and coolers to make the stay comfortable.

One such house-owner, Ms Shabman, of Sector 15, says, “I prefer to keep girls since they have fewer friends coming over, are less noisy and adjust better. The only restriction we have put her is that no boys will come to see them and they will be in by 8:30 pm. That’s not asking too much”.

Selections of paying guests are based on personal interviews by the house owners. The idea is to ascertain the background the students come from, check student identity cards and take down contact numbers. This also helps in judging the student’s temperament. Students looking for PG accommodation are already pouring in to check availability of rooms and they mostly come in groups of three or four, making it convenient for the owner as well.

This house hunt is repeated year after year and house owners as well as PGs prefer changing to new accommodation in the subsequent year. The house owners maintain it has only grown in the last few years and will do so as long as the young students cherish freedom.



Courses in foreign languages at PU
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 9
If you are yearning for a chance to brush up your skills in catching up the lingo of widely spoken foreign languages, Panjab University's short term and masters level programmes in some foreign languages may provide the answers.

While one-year certificate and diploma courses in French continues to attract a sizeable chunk of students, along with German and Persian, the same is not true for Chinese and Tibetan languages which find it hard to attract students.

In fact, the Department of Chinese and Tibetan languages, with a meagre number of students enrolled led the university to even consider closing down the department a few months ago. In academic session 2004-05, only one student was enrolled in the certificate course in Tibetan language and around 15 had come for the certificate course in Chinese language.

``We have four research scholars working in the Tibetan studies and more than 15 students were enrolled in the Chinese courses. Since Indians are getting more and more curious about anything related to China these days, the number of students in Chinese languages has shown a steady increase,'' says Dr V.K. Singh, Chairman of the department.

With increasing Indo-Sino trade relations, the department is hoping that the response to Chinese certificate and diploma courses will rise in the coming years.

“There are increasing opportunities in the language as the trade between the two countries is increasing and the language experts will be required to do the translation work,'' adds Dr Singh.

The response of students is, however, encouraging in the department of French and Francophone studies, which offers the certificate, diploma and advanced diploma along with the MA and Ph D.

According to PU's latest annual report, 120 students enrolled for one-year certificate course in 2003-04.

The certificate, diploma and advanced diploma courses in German, too, are attracting students.

The short-term Russian languages courses do find takers but the experts say that the number of students learning Russian has drastically come down over the years.

The department of Urdu offers short term, masters level and Ph D programme in Persian which attract a sizeable number of students especially from the neighbouring countries.

"Students are attracted to those courses which provide them with better employment opportunities. That is why, in PU the response to the short term courses in foreign languages is much better than that in the MA or Ph D level,'' remarks a senior faculty. 

Courses offered at PU:

1. Certificate course, diploma and advanced diploma (duration-one year each) in French, German, Russian, Persian and Chinese and Tibetan languages.

2. Admission in diploma and advanced diploma only after completion of certificate course.

3. MA offered in French, German and Persian languages



Mohali students prefer Chandigarh schools
Chitleen K. Sethi
Tribune News Service

Mohali, June 9
Chandigarh schools remains the first option for Mohali students who have just passed Class X examination and are looking for admissions in various streams for Class XI.

As a result, schools in Mohali have decided to wait till admissions in Chandigarh are over before they bring the curtains down on their own admission processes.

Senior Secondary Schools in Mohali are affiliated to either the Punjab School Education Board or the Central Board of Secondary Education. Yadavindra Public School, Sector 51, and Saint Xavier’s School, Sector 70, offer Classes XI and XII under the ICSE board. “We give provisional admission to students in the first week of April without waiting for the results.

Now we have only four seats left in the commerce stream and eight in the science stream. We do not have arts stream in the school and the admissions close on July 20,” said Dr Harish Dhillon, Principal of Yadvindra Public School.

Among the CBSE-affiliated schools, Saint Soldiers Convent School, Phase VII, offers all courses in streams. However, only girls are admitted to the arts stream. There are 60 seats in each stream and the admissions start on July 7 and July 15.

Shivalik Public School, Phase VI, offers 40 seats each in the medical and non-medical streams and the admissions would last till July 4.

Gian Jyoti Public School, Phase II offers 200 seats in the medical stream, and 100 in the non-medical stream and 50 in the commerce stream. Here the admissions would close on July 10.

Lawerance Public School, Phase VI, Industrial Area, offers 25 seats each in medical, non-medical, commerce and arts streams. The admissions would close by July 15.

Sant Isher Singh Public School, Phase VII, affiliated to the CBSE, offers 35 seats each in all four streams and the admissions would end by June 15.

Among the schools affiliated to the Punjab School Education Board, Government Senior Secondary School, Phase 3B-I, offers 60 seats each in the medical and commerce streams and over a 100 seats in the non- medical stream. Over 250 students are taken in the arts stream. The school offers five vocational courses in Class XI, but the seats are limited to 30 each. The admissions close on July 15.

Sant Isher Singh Senior Secondary School, Sector 70, affiliated to the Punjab School Education Board, offers 50 seats each in all four streams and the admissions end on June 15.

Girl students are offered unlimited seats in the arts stream by Shastri Model Senior Secondary School, Phase I.

Paragon Senior Secondary School, Sector 70, offers 100 seats each in the medical and non-medical stream and 120 seats in the commerce stream. As many as 250 seats are available in the arts stream. The last date is June 20.



College Call
Govt College to offer BSc in biotechnology
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, June 9
Government College, Sector 11, is all set to introduce three-year B.Sc biotechnology course which is subject to approval of Panjab University.

It is also starting add on courses in journalism, video reporting and editing in the department of English this year. It is subject to approval by Panjab University. A student can only opt for one of these courses. Students studying in first, second and third year of BA, B.Sc and B.Com are eligible.

The college is imparting instructions in humanities, computer application, biotechnology (three years course), science, commerce, business administration and post-graduation in English and information science. In each faculty there is a rich variety of combinations offering honours in 14 disciplines. Information technology programme (C-Toss) has also been started in IT Education in collaboration with SPIC, and IT Department, Chandigarh Administration.

At the post-graduate level, it is offering M.Sc (IT)1st semester and provides 30 seats. There are 60 seats in MA I in English.

The college has been accredited with B++ grade by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC).

The college was established in 1953 and is one of the oldest colleges in the north. It boasts of its spacious buildings, a library, science laboratories, play grounds, swimming pool and a hostel with modern amenities. The college faculty comprises 82 members and as many as 33 members have done their Ph.D.

To harness the creative and artistic skills two youth festivals are organised every year. The spirit of discipline and regularity is developed through NCC and NSS activities. A number of blood donation camps also take place from time to time in collaboration with PGI Blood Bank Society.

The prospectus of the college is available from June 6 and the last date of submission is June 24. 



Prospectus sale picks up in city
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, June 9
The sale of prospectuses has caught up as students from far and wide have started pouring into various city college campuses.

As the four government colleges have a combined prospectus, it will be easy for outsiders to get all information about these colleges at one time. These colleges are Government College, Sector 11, Government College for Girls, Sector 11, Government College for Girls, Sector 42, and Government College, Sector 46. The prospectus is available for Rs 50.

Those intending to apply in more than one college, will have to buy an equal number of prospectuses as they have to apply separately in the absence of centralised admission. 



O-CET results declared
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 9
Panjab University declared the results of the Other than Common Entrance Test (O-CET) today. The test was conducted for admission to various postgraduate courses which were held from June 1 to 5. The results for MSc (Honours) in biochemistry, botany, chemistry, computer science, microbiology, physics and zoology, MSc in environment and human genomics, ME in electronics and communication engineering, M.Tech in microelectronics, M.Tech (Nano sciences and nano technology), M.Tech (instrumentation) and MCom (e-commerce), MCA, LL.M, MA (physical education) and BPEd were declared today.

The gazettes will be available at the Panjab University’s new enquiry tomorrow from at 10 a.m. onwards. These will be available on the website www.puchd.ac.in. after 10 a.m. and also through SMS. The candidate shall go to “write message” on the mobile phone, type subject code , leave a space followed by roll number and finally send the message to 700.

The subject codes for sending SMS are written in brackets against each subject. MSc in biochemistry (BCH), botany (BOT), chemistry (CHM), computer science (CSC), microbiology (MIC), physics (PHY) and zoology (ZOO), MSc in environment and human genomics (ENV), ME in electronics and communication engineering (MEE), M.Tech in microelectronics (MTM), M.Tech in Nano sciences and nano technology (MTN), M.Tech in instrumentation (MTI) and M.Com (e-commerce), MCA (MCA), LL.M (LL.M), MA Physical Education (MAP) and BPEd (BPE).



300 cops to assist PUDA in demolishing colony
Tribune News Service

Mohali, June 9
The Punjab police will deploy over 300 personnel for demolishing the Guru Nanak Colony in Phase-10 here. This is the largest police deployment for any anti-encroachment drive undertaken by the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) in the state so far.

In a joint meeting of Punjab police officials led by ADGP Mr Chandra Shekhar and the Minister for Housing and Urban Development, Mr Raghunath Sahai Puri, held here today, it was decided that the drive be carried out on June 25 and the Punjab police would assist PUDA’s anti-encroachment staff in this regard.

The Guru Nanak Colony that came up in Phase-10 almost 20 years ago is home to over 3,000 persons who are putting up in 700 hutments and ‘kuccha’ houses. PUDA has been for years trying to demolish the colony and free over 7 acres that has been illegally occupied by residents.

Sources added that the minister had promised to provide an alternative site near Jagatpura village to the slum dwellers and a move to “allot” small pieces of land to each of the ousted families was also being considered.

On May 30, PUDA had postponed its demolition drive as the requisite police force for the operation could not be arranged. The demolition drive was reportedly planned following a note received by PUDA from the Minister of Housing and Urban Planning.

In October 2004, a similar drive was planned but later postponed due to political pressure. Before this, in December 1995 during the Cricket World Cup tournament organised at PCA Stadium, the Estate Office had removed a part of the colony. Sources added that residents of the colony were initially living on the site where the Dara Studio had now been constructed. However, when they were removed from there residents shifted to Phase 10.

Members of the Residents Welfare Association, Phase 10, have been demanding the removal of the colony for the past 20 years. “With just a road dividing our houses from the colony we have been living in a virtual hell since 20 years. If this colony is demolished we would feel more relieved,” said a member of the Residents Welfare Association.

Members of the Citizen’s Welfare Council, Phase 10, in a press note issued today stated that PUDA had been on one pretext or the other postponing the demolition. Council members led by president Naurang Singh have further demanded that while PUDA should be strict regarding the demolition of such colonies it should also provide alternative sites to displaced people.



PUDA decision on colony draws flak
Our Correspondent

Mohali, June 9
The Citizens Welfare Council, Phase X, has flayed the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) for the ninth time.

Mr Naurang Singh, president of the council, said the move to remove the unauthorised colony by PUDA was postponed this time on the pretext that police authorities had failed to provide adequate force for the drive.

Various representatives of the council alleged that political leaders as well as the administration were adopting double standards in the matter of removing unauthorised colonies. On the one hand residents were promised clean living environment, on the other slum dwellers were promised alternative sites.

The president said a large number of police personnel were deployed at the time of cricket matches in the town but police help was denied at the time of removing encroachments. Slums around the town had given rise to criminal activities in the area.



Bansal group dominates CTCC list
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 9
The list of Chandigarh Territorial Congress Committee delegates released by the party high command in New Delhi shows dominance of the group backed by Mr Pawan Kumar Bansal, the local MP.

At least 15 members owing allegiance to the group of Mr Bansal feature on the list. The list is an important reflection on the groupism in the local unit of the party. Prominent groups in the city, besides the one backed by the MP, include those backed by Mr Venod Sharma, a Haryana Minister, Mr B.B. Bahl, president of the local unit of the party and Mr Manish Tewari, a prominent party leader.

Factionalism in the party has featured in front of the party high command, including Mrs Sonia Gandhi, president of the All-India Congress Committee, over the past couple of months. The main issue, besides greater representation in the TCC leadership, is an attempt to remove Mr Bahl as president of the local unit. Mr Bahl, too, has had several sessions in the party power corridors in Delhi.

The group of Mr Bansal has names of Mr Ram Pal Sharma, Mr Pradeeep Chhabra, Mr Subhash Chawla, Mrs Anu Chatrath, Mrs Lalit Joshi, Mr Balraj Singh, Mr H.S.Lucky, Mr D.D. Jindal, Mr Pawan Sharma, Mr Bhupinder Badheri, Mr Sat Pal Gupta, Mr Kamaljit Panchi and Mr Phool Singh.

The names of Mr Sunil Parti, Mr J.N. Shashtri and Mrs Shreshta Mehta feature on the list of Mr Venod Sharmas supporters. The Tewari group has names of Mr Chandermukhi and Mr R.S. Pali while Mr Bahl’s supporters include Mr Surinder Bhatia and Mr Jagat Sharma.

A senior party leader said certain names in the list of Mr Bansal have shown a stand in favour of other groups on many occasions. However, there is no denying the fact that Mr Bansal had a clear majority in the TCC.

The party high command is still undecided on results of two wards. One of the wards features the name of Mr Devinder Babla. Mr Babla is a diehard Bansal supporter and Mr Bahl wants him out. He is said to have engaged in anti-party activities in the past that were unpardonable.



Manch objects to ‘anti-Dalit’ statements
Tribune News Service

Mohali, June 9
Members of the Dalit Chetna Manch have objected to the statements given by members of the General Category Employees Federation regarding recruitment of Dalits to various posts in Ropar district.

In a press note issued by Mr Shamsher Purkhalvi, president of the Dalit Chetna Manch, Punjab, members of the manch have alleged that the federation was trying to jeopardise their rights by pressurising the government to take anti-Dalit decisions. The march has appealed to various employees; unions not to believe statements not based on facts and also desist from issuing statements that can lead to an imbalance in society.



ESPL employees’ protest continues
Our Correspondent

Mohali, June 9
Employees of the ESPL continued their protest outside the factory here today against the lockout and alleged illegal retrenchment of employees.

Representatives from various employees organisations, including Trade Union Council and Punjab Subordinate Services Commission, condemned the move of the management to lockout the factory and illegal retrenchment of employees.

A rally will be organised by various union leaders of the town in support of ESPL employees tomorrow.



Residents claim diarrhoea death in colony
Our Correspondent

Mohali, June 9
One person died in Amb Sahib Colony here today. While members of his family claimed that he died due to diarrhoea, a doctor who visited the colony said diarrhoea was not the cause of his death. Ram Charan had come here from Uttar Pradesh to visit his son’s place in the colony.

Ms Shanti, president of the colony, said the man had died due to diarrhoea. There were a number of children suffering from the same disease in the colony.

Some residents of the colony said Ram Charan was suffering from a heart disease and had come here to get treatment.

A three-member team of the Health Department today visited the colony and examined a number of residents and distributed medicines.

Dr Mukesh Bhatia, who led the team, told Chandigarh Tribune that Ram Charan had not died due to diarrhoea. His body did not show any of signs of dehydration. He said only three or four persons in the colony were suffering from minor diarrhoea. He said they had been asked to shift to the local Civil Hospital.

Dr Bhatia said the colony fell in the Chandigarh territory and it was not clear whether doctors from Chandigarh or Mohali had to take care of its residents.

Later, residents of the colony staged a protest against the power board and blocked traffic on the road coming from Chandigarh towards Mohali. They raised slogans against the board and demanded that power meters be installed in the colony and not by the contractor as he was charging exorbitant rates. The blockade was lifted after about 15 minutes when the police intervened.



Disabled, but less by no means
Gayatri Rajwade
Tribune News Service

Three of the eight hearing and speech impaired children at the Jai Durga Deaf and Handicapped Children Welfare Centre, Sector 27, who recently passed their Class X Punjab School Education Board examination.
Three of the eight hearing and speech impaired children at the Jai Durga Deaf and Handicapped Children Welfare Centre, Sector 27, who recently passed their Class X Punjab School Education Board examination. — Tribune photo by Manoj Mahajan

Chandigarh, June 9
They listen and speak through their eyes and their will to succeed goes far beyond maudlin words as their achievement has proved that they have that special spark to shine bright.

Eight young boys and girls, hearing and speech impaired, from the Jai Durga Deaf and Handicapped Children Welfare Centre, Sector 27, have passed with first and second divisions in their Class X Punjab School Education Board examination this year.

Centre topper Paramjeet Kaur is a charming 17-year-old who has scored a creditable 68 per cent.

She wants no help in interpreting her signs. “I can explain myself,” indicates this determined girl.

Her father is a farmer but this little bundle of talent, who is considered a whiz in embroidery at the centre, wants to be an artist someday.

Twenty-year-old Vijay Kumar and 23-year-old Parveen Kumar want to be experts in computer.

These youngsters love movies and their favourite film is, of course, “Black”. Amitabh Bachchan and Rani Mukherjee are “wonderful” they indicate with a thumbs-up. However, they believe Sanjeev Kumar’s “Koshish” has a more realistic appeal.

Movies, proficiency in English and self-reliance are the keynotes.

Founder P.D. Gautam feels: “They do not want your sympathy. All they want is guidance to take them to their dreams.”

Doctors, actors, artistes — the dreams are all real. These children have a determination that has beaten several odds for they come from poor or underprivileged families where the means and will to deal with special physical or mental disabilities are not always a priority or considered a necessity.

Mr Gautam and his wife Gayatri Devi, who run the place without any grant or assistance from the government or private bodies, believe their work is cut out for them.

The centre has been offering vocational and educational modules since 1982 and looks after physically handicapped, mentally challenged and multi-disabled children between the ages of three and 20 years, some of them even abandoned by their parents as “unfit”.

As the Principal and a certified teacher for the deaf, Gayatri Devi personally trains her teaching staff, all of whom are qualified and dedicated.

“Independence is the key. We ensure our children have the confidence to feel they have the means to compete with the best and come out on top.”

The teaching module is modified for the hearing and speech impaired at the centre and the entire course is taught in sign language with speech therapy and lip movements being used to develop words and ideas.

The heartening aspect of this accomplishment is that on a level playing field, these children have done their teachers proud and really there can be no better reward than the comment that Vijay writes down before he goes off for the day: “I am the Best” and they have truly proved this.



Applications invited for child award
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 9
The Department of Woman and Child Development under the Union Ministry of Human Resource Development has invited applications for the National Child Award for exceptional achievement for the year 2005. 



Fire in shop
Our Correspondent

Mohali, June 9
Fire broke out in a stationery shop in Phase X here late last night.

It was noticed by a chowkidar of the area who then informed the owner of the shop. Fire brigade was immediately called.

The fire was probably caused by a short circuit.



Four hurt in mishaps
Tribune News Service

Mohali, June 9
Four persons were critically injured in two separate accidents that took place in Kharar and Mullanpur Garibdass in the past 24 hours. While a father and his son duo were grievously injured when their scooter was hit by a speeding car in Kharar, late last night, a mother and her daughter duo were injured when they were hit by a scooterist while they were walking down to the Mullanpur Garibdass bus stand today.

The victims, Mr Bhag Singh and his son, Gurinder Singh, both residents of Chajjumajra village, were returning to their village on the scooter when a car hit them from behind and sped away after the accident. The two were first rushed to Civil Hospital, Kharar, from where they were referred to the Government Medical College and Hospital, Chandigarh, in a serious condition.

Mrs Jaswant Kaur, a 55 year old resident of Chandigarh, and her 19-year-old daughter, Rajwinder Kaur, were walking towards the Mullanpur Garibdass bus stand when they were hit by a scooterist. The two have been admitted to the PGI.



Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 9
The ad hoc body of Shirdi Sai Samaj Temple, Sector 29-A, Chandigarh, held its election as per the constitution of the Samaj and the following office-bearers were elected and administered the oath yesterday: president, Mr Ramesh Kalia; vice-president, Mr Bimal Rai; general secretary, Mr Anil Khurana; cashier, Mr S. K. Jan; joint secretary, Mr Manoj Goyal.



Readers Write
Make selling blood cognizable offence

Reference your news item “Making a living by donating blood, stealing mobile phones” in Chandigarh Tribune of June 6, 2005. I was shocked to learn that even in Chandigarh, which is known as the Mecca of voluntary blood donation, there are unscrupulous criminals selling blood for a handful of rupees. This terrible practice has to be stopped immediately.

I may inform you that the Voluntary Blood Donation Movement was started in Chandigarh in the year 1964 when the Blood Bank Society, Chandigarh (BBS for short), was created. Slowly the movement spread all over the country. In fact large hospitals like the PGI have relied on voluntary blood donors for the supply of safe blood. As professional blood banks were being run in other parts of India and threatened to enter even Chandigarh, the BBS approached Mr H.D. Shourie of Common Cause to file a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the Supreme Court of India. The PIL filed in 1992 was decided by the Supreme Court on 4.1.1996 (see AIR 1996 SC 929) banning the buying and selling of blood w.e.f. 1st January, 1998. Under the 18 Supreme Court directions, the rules framed under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940, have been amended but there is still a huge vacuum in dealing with persons — as in the present case — caught selling blood for a fistful of coins. One cannot rush to the Supreme Court by way of a contempt petition. The only remedy open is to file a criminal case for violating the provisions of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act and the rules framed there under.

This problem came to the notice of the BBS a few years ago and repeated efforts have been made and letters written to successive Union Law Ministers and Union Health Ministers of the Government of India to amend the law but to no avail. In the last annual conference of the Indian Society of Blood Transfusion and Immunohaematology (ISBTI) held in Chennai in September, 2004, a resolution was passed and forwarded to the present Union Health Minister, Dr Anbumanu Ramadoss, for taking suitable steps in this direction. Though Dr Ramadoss inaugurated the Rotary and Blood Bank Society Resource Centre in Sector-37, Chandigarh, on November 29, 2004, the necessary amendment in the legal framework has not yet been carried out. I take this opportunity to request the Union Health Minister and the Union Law Minister, Dr H.R. Bhardwaj, who are both personally aware of the wonderful work voluntary organisations are doing in the field of safe blood in Chandigarh, to immediately take steps to fill the gaps in the legal framework and make selling of blood a cognizable offence for which the police can immediately take action.

Senior Advocate



Laptop robber nabbed
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, June 9
The local police arrested an man minutes after he stole a laptop computer from a car while in a separate case one person was arrested with 20 grams of smack, according to police sources here today.

Mr Punit Modgil, a resident of Sector 70, Mohali, lodged a complaint against Maryapa, a resident of Guntoor village in Andhra Pradesh alleging that he had stolen his laptop computer from his car (CH-O1-N-5759), which was parked in the market place of Sector 27, last evening. Soon after he reported the incident to the police Maryapa, the accused was arrested from Sector 27. A case has been registered in this regard.

Smack seized

Sukhbir, alias Rinku, a resident of Burail village, was today arrested with 20 grams of smack from Sector 43. A case under the NDPS Act has been registered in this regard.

Held for stealing mobile phone

The local police arrested Saleem Khan and Hashish Khan, both residents of Nazibabad village in Bunaur district in Uttar Pradesh, who were caught red-handed while stealing a mobile phone from a house in Burail village during the night of June 7. Mr Amit Sharma had reported to the police that the accused were caught when they were stealing the mobile phone from his residence. A case has been registered in this regard and both the accused were later remanded to judicial custody by a local court.

Car stolen

Mr Kamaljit Singh of Sector 39-B reported to the police that his Maruti car (CH-03-R-4834) was stolen from his residence during the night of June 7. A case of theft has been registered in this regard.



2 drug addicts held, confess to thefts
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, June 9
local police has arrested two drug addicts allegedly involved in three cases of vehicle thefts and also recovered a stolen mobile phone from their possession.

The SHO of Sector 34 police station, Mr Ajaib Singh Somal, said here today that acting on a tip-off, Amit Kumar (24), a resident of Kharar, was arrested from Sector 34 on June 7. During preliminary interrogation Amit named his aide, Jagbir Singh Sandhu (28), a resident of Sector 27. The police conducted a raid and arrested Jagbir from his residence last night.

The SHO further added that when both the accused were subjected to further interrogation, they confessed to having stolen a Maruti car (CH-01-J-6333) from Sector 46 on May 12. They admitted that they had stolen a scooter (CH-01-S-5395) from Panjab University campus on June 5, while another scooter (CH-03-P-2019) was stolen from Mohali. However, they told the police that they did not remember the place in Mohali from where they had stolen the second scooter as they were under the influence of intoxicants. One mobile phone was also recovered from them.

Mr Somal said Amit Kumar was given a job on compassionate grounds in BSNL in Kharar after the death of his father. He has been undergoing suspension after a case of cheating to the tune of Rs 1.5 lakh was registered against him by the Kharar police. Jagbir Singh Sandhu was working in a private company in Chandigarh.



Flesh trade racket busted
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, June 9
Three women and the kingpin of a flesh trade racket being run in Mani Majra were today arrested by the local police, here.

The police arrested Akshay, the kingpin, along with three women following a tip off about their activities. Two women arrested are from Jalandhar district while the other one is a resident of Kapurthala district.

According to the police, following secret information from a source, a police team consisting of SHO of Mani Majra police station along with the DSP Crime Branch, Mr Om Parkash and Inspector KIP Singh was constituted. Acting on the information a trap was laid through a decoy customer to fix a deal near traffic light point in Shashtri Nagar in Mani Majra. The customer gave Rs 5000 to Akshay for a deal and at the same time signalled the policemen waiting there. After getting the signal, the police party conducted a raid and arrested Akshay and the three women. 



Vice-Chairperson of Puncom takes over
Our Correspondent

Mohali, June 9
Ms Sonia Deepak Arora of the Congress joined as the Vice-Chairperson of the Punjab Communication Limited (Puncom) here today.

According to a press note of the company, Ms Arora was made the Vice-Chairperson of Puncom by the Punjab Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, and Member of Parliament, Ms Preneet Kaur.

Ms Arora assumed charge in the presence of Chaudhary Jagjit Singh, Minister for Local Government, Punjab, and Mr Sukhdev Wadhera, Chairman, Puncom. Among others present on the occasion were Mr Narinderjeet Singh Koharia, Vice-Chairman, PRTC, Mr K.K. Sharma, Chairman, Improvement Trust, Patiala, Mr Anil Mehta, member of the S.S. Board and Mr Sham Singh Maghror, Chairman, District Council, Sangrur.


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