C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


21 animals found dead in truck
Were being taken to slaughter house; residents indulge in arson
Tribune Reporters

Protesters indulge in arson, demanding action against the guilty.
Protesters indulge in arson, demanding action against the guilty. 
— Tribune photo by Vinay Malik

Chandigarh, August 5
An incident of cruelty to animals, which were being taken to a slaughter house, came to light in Sector 39 here today when the vehicle met with a minor accident.

The incident sent shock waves when 21 animals were found dead and 12 were seen struggling for life. The truck was headed towards a slaughter house in Dera Bassi from Nangal.

Taking cognizance of the matter, the Chandigarh Police registered a case under the provisions of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960, besides Section 429 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

Soon after the accident, the truck driver fled from the scene and efforts were on to nab him. Teams, constituted to trace him, have been sent to Ropar and Yamunanagar, as documents in the truck pointed towards the drivers association with these places. The truck (HR-55-1579) has been impounded.

Voices of residents, rescuing the animals, were choked with emotion as they offloaded 57 buffaloes and calves, some of them dead, from the jam-packed truck. For the purpose of carrying out the rescue operation, the Fire Brigade, police and the Municipal Corporation authorities were called in.

Emotions turned into a rage when residents found that limbs of the cattle were ruthlessly tied up with ropes in an attempt to squeeze in more and more animals. The ropes, tightly wound around the necks of some animals, had resulted in deep gashes.

Inquiries revealed that some of the buffaloes and calves, piled on one another, had died due to pressure and suffocation, as the two-tier truck was closed from all sides. Their protruding tongues provided testimony to their tragic end.

Narrating the sequence of events, an eyewitness said, “The din of roaring engine woke us up at around 4 am. Even before we could realise what was happening, we saw a speeding truck cross the berm near the New Grain Market roundabout in Sector 39 as the driver failed to negotiate the roundabout”.

“The driver tried to pull the vehicle out of the slush but failed, as the wet soil failed to provide a firm ground for the wheels to roll on.”

Within minutes, residents started to gather on the spot. They heard desperate shrieks of animals trapped inside the truck.

Realising that things were not going to be easy for him, the driver silently slipped away from the spot.

The police was informed about the incident at about 8 am. Soon after reaching the spot, it impounded the vehicle before making an attempt to drive it down to a hospital. But the police gave up finding after that the brakes of the truck were not functional.

The gruesome act came to light only after they removed the wooden planks at the vehicle’s rear. The vehicle had to be removed with the help of a recovery van. Giving details, the sources in the local police said 16 out of 28 buffalos and five out of 29 calves had died.

Meanwhile, members of different religious organisations took to stone pelting and demanded the driver’s immediate arrest. They also tried to set the truck on fire by puncturing its diesel tank. Later, they ignited the fuel spilled on the road.

Even kicking an animal is an offence under the provisions of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960. Anyone who “beats, kicks, over-rides, over-drives, overloads, tortures” or otherwise treats any animal in a manner which results in unnecessary pain, commits an offence under the Act.

It further adds that subjecting unnecessary pain or suffering or keeping animals confined in any cage or receptacle which does not measure sufficiently in height, length and breadth to permit the animal a reasonable opportunity for movement, is liable to be punished under the Act.



Food Inspector found murdered
Was in city to attend court case
Tribune Reporters

Chandigarh, August 5
A Jalandhar-based Inspector with Punjab’s Food and Civil Supplies Department — in Chandigarh for attending a court case — was found murdered near Piccadilly Hotel in Sector 22 late last night.

Victim Maskeen Singh, hailing from Khanna, was identified with the help of documents in his motor-bike parked next to his body. Ruling out the possibility of old enmity behind the heinous crime, sources in the local police said in all probability a quarrel between acquaintances lead to the incident.

The victim’s body was discovered by passers-by at about 1.15 am. Preliminary investigation carried out by the Chandigarh Police has revealed that the body was dumped at the spot after being murdered at an isolated place somewhere else.

Giving details of the findings, the sources said even though 45-year-old Maskeen Singh had died due to head injury, blood stains were missing from the spot.

A senior police officer, looking into the incident, said the probe so far had revealed that the victim, after leaving the court premises, met some of his acquaintances in the city. A good part of his time in Chandigarh was, subsequently, spent with them. Rather, Maskeen Singh was “made to have liquor” with them. In all probability, they entered into an argument, resulting in the offence.

The officer added that the culprits could have known the victim professionally. As of now, the police was questioning all his acquaintances in the city in an attempt to find out the persons with whom he had spent his last hours.

He said a case of murder and other offences under Section 302 of the Indian Penal Code had been registered against “unknown accused” and further investigations in the matter were on. The post-mortem examination had been conducted, he said.

Even though it was too early to comment, the sources in the police headquarters admitted that the Chandigarh Police could hardly be given the credit of tracking down criminals.

Though it claimed specilisation in investigating cases, they could not lay their hands on the murderer of 23-year-old Simranjit Kaur. Her body was found in her Sector 22 residence on July 17, 2003.

Similarly, the police could not arrest the murderers of Sector 21 resident Sundri Agnihotri. She was killed on December 25 last year. In Mainpal’s case also, the police was still groping in the dark. He was murdered on August 14, 2003.

In the past two years, the police has failed to trace the whereabouts of accused in at least seven murder cases. Besides this, over 54 per cent of the theft cases remained unsolved in 2004 alone. Of the total 1,384 cases registered by the police last year, just 627 could be solved.



SIT tightens noose around Nayagaon gangsters wanted in rape case
Tribune News Service

Mohali, August 5
As the special investigation team of the Punjab police tightens its noose around a group of alleged gangsters wanted in a rape case, over 10 criminal cases ranging from murder, looting, rioting and cheating pending at the various police stations in the area are also likely to be solved.

The investigation team, led by IG (Special Operations) Sumedh Singh Saini, has been asked to investigate a rape case registered in Mohali in 2003, by the Punjab and Haryana High Court. The team has arrested five of the accused in the rape and abduction case, but at least five others, involved directly or indirectly to the case, are still eluding the police.

Informed sources in the investigation team said this group of criminals was headed by Gurdhian Singh and cousin Gurbachan Singh and their arrest would bring to an end a five-year-long chapter of crime and terror, spread in the Karoran-Kansal-Nayagaon belt of Kharar by this gang.

Other than the case of the murder of Pala Singh Nihang of Khuda Ali Sher village in Chandigarh, in which these persons were allegedly involved, Gurdhian Singh is among the five named in the FIR by a minor girl who was allegedly repeatedly raped from the age of 12 by one or all members of this gang.

The minor girl, daughter of a Punjab police constable, complained to the police only when she got pregnant and delivered a child at the PGI on March 5, 2003. Despite the heinousness of the crime, the first arrest in the case was made by the SIT more than two years after the case was registered at Nayagaon on March 7, 2003.

It is on the intervention of a Division Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court that the investigations started into the case. Passing orders on a petition filed by the victim and her parents Balkar Singh and Vidya Devi in 2003, the High Court had on May 31, 2005 observed, “Very serious allegations have been made and till now the accused have been able to frustrate all attempts to get at the truth. Balkar Singh, who we are told is a member of the police force, is being forced by elements who have scant respect for the process of law to beat a retreat from the stand taken by his daughter. His comrades in uniform have apparently forsaken him and his family in their hour of need which to our mind is unfortunate”.

The Division Bench of Mr Justice Amar Dutt and Mr Justice Baldev Singh had in another vital observation pointed out that the courts of law, in their endeavour to enforce the supremacy of the law, would not ordinarily honour “material that indicates a resolution of the points of differences that had precipitated the original confrontation, yet while trying to do so, it would be unjust for the courts of law to ignore the possibility of the weaker party is succumbed to external pressures. If ever such a situation should arise, it becomes the duty of the courts to ensure that human dignity and the fundamental right of life and liberty as enshrined in Article 21 of the Constitution of India are not sacrificed at the altar of the mammon”.

Among those named in the FIR, Kesar Singh, Rinku and Tari, alias Avtar Singh, have been arrested while Ramkesh and Gurdhian are absconding. The investigating team has also been denied police remand of those arrested by a Kharar court.



ASI rams jeep into scooter, injures two
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, August 5
A Punjab Police cop, allegedly in an inebriated condition, rammed his jeep into a scooter, leaving the riders seriously injured before hit hitting a Honda City car parked in Sector 44 this afternoon. Giving details of the accident, the sources in the police said Rajinder Singh, an Assistant Sub-Inspector posted at the wireless wing of the Mohali police, lost control over his Gypsy (PB-12-8249) and hit a scooter.

Daljit Singh and Gurjit Singh on the scooter were shifted to the GMCH, Sector 32, with multiple injuries. The doctors diagnosed Gurjit Singh with a fractured leg. Both victims are residents of Sector 41. 



Pak porter gave details of surprise attack
1965 war veteran recollects
Vijay Mohan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 5
Had a Pakistani porter, who was denied his wages and maltreated, not strayed across the ceasefire line and come to Baramullah, Indian forces would have had no inkling to the Pakistani buildup and the Kashmir valley could well have been lost to the enemy.

It was on this day 40 years after the porter came into the custody of the Baramullah police, that the Indian establishment got its first clue about an impending Pakistani attack, codenamed Operation Gibraltor, to wrest control of Jammu and Kashmir. The first clash with the infiltrators took place on August 6.

The local Superintendent of Police informed the General Staff Officer (Operations) of 19 Infantry Division, Lieut-Col (later Major-Gen) H S Kler, who happened to be paying him a farewell visit. “Our forward troops had seen some unusual troop movements on the other side which were reported up to the chain of command. However, these had drawn a blank from the higher headquarters,” General Kler said. “On receipt of the information from the police, two patrols were sent to comb the area around Gulmarg,” he added.

General Kler said on August 6, when he was returning from Trangdhar to the division headquarters at Baramullah, he observed a patrol of Sikh soldiers coming down the hill near Nastachun Pass, with a solitary khakhi-clad figure among the olive greens.

On being asked, the patrol leader said they had captured the Pakistani havildar. The Pakistani soldier, however, maintained that he had surrendered voluntarily. He disclosed that he was the intelligence NCO of 16 PoK Battalion and had been visiting his wife who was ill.

“When I questioned him about the presence of a few thousand Pakistani infiltrators in the area, he said there was a much larger force present to the north, tasked for a massive infiltration into Kashmir,” General Kler said. He was privy to the information as he had accompanied his battalion commander to a briefing by the Pakistani Commander.

Commissioned in 1943, General Kler was awarded the Ati Vishishth Seva Medal for his role in the 1965 conflict. He was decorated with the Maha Vir Chakra in the 1971 Indo-Pak war. He had also seen action in Burma during the Second World War, where he was mentioned-in-despatches for gallantry. The 82-year-old General is now writing a book on the 1965 war.

According to assessments, Operation Gibraltor was initiated in April-May 1965 and training of troops for infiltration started in June. The final road-map for large-scale infiltration for finalised in mid-July, when the General Officer Commanding of Pakistan’s 12 Division at Murree, Major-Gen Akthar Hussain briefed his field commanders and battalion commanders. The then President of Pakistan, Ayub Khan, Army chief Mohamad Musa, Director General of Military Operations Major-Gen Gul Hussain and senior military and civilian officers were also said to have been present.

Operation Gibraltor was conceived and executed by a complete surprise to take over Kashmir without getting involved in an all-out war. The plan called for infiltrators to take over strategic areas in Kashmir, including the airfield and the All India Radio station in Srinagar and declare that an independent Kashmir government had taken over.

The Pakistani NCO disclosed that their recce revealed that Indian troops were located in bowls and valleys, leaving the hilltops undefended. Furthermore, bridges and other strategic points were left unguarded.

“This timely, though incidental information was of great help in plugging the weak links. Troops were rushed to take up defences and important points were secured” General Kler said. “But for the JCO coming over and spilling the beans, I don’t know what might have happened,” he added.

After initial clashes with the Pakistani forces and checking them, it was decided to go on the offensive and close the route of infiltration. The offensive was launched on August 24, with strategic objectives like the Haji Pir pass falling into Indian hands.

“Pakistan’s plan was based on the premise that the locals would side with them and support their advance. This never happened and their plan fizzled out,” General Kler said. “It was in response to this that they launched Operation Gland Slam in September and attacked Akhnoor on September 1,” he added. On September 4 an all-out war started.



Passing Thru

Q: What is your USP in the snacks segment?

NV Shah
NV Shah, CEO, McFills Enterprises, Ahmedabad

A: MC Fills has launched non-fried snacks which are low in fat and packaged aesthetically in pyramid packs.

Q: What is the response to your product in this part of the country ?

A: The Chandigarh region is a big market and we have got a tremendous response.

Q: Is there any foreign collaboration in your products?

A: The technology has been patented from Torbed, UK, with the state-of-the-art Torbed 1000 series processor.

Q: How is your product different from other ready fried snacks available in the market?

A: It is free from MSG (Mono Sodium Glutamate), which is responsible for causing high blood pressure, unlike other products sold in the market.

— Arvind Katyal



Chaos at draw of lots
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 5
With allegations and counter-allegations flying high, a chaos prevailed at the draw of lots for the Sector-21 Universal Cooperative House Building Society in Sector 48 here today.

In the wake of opposition by 122 substituted members, the draw for the 186- member society could not be held. In fact, the management and officials of the Registrar of Cooperative Societies (RCS) came in for severe criticism at the hands of substitute members for failure to include their names in the draw of lots.

At the General body meeting on July 18, it was unanimously decided that all substituted members be considered as permanent members and their names be included in today’s draw of lots.

But the process was stalled on the instructions of the officials of RCS, who objected to holding the draw for all 186 members as they had orders to hold the draw for 65 original members alone.

Recently, tired of the delaying tactics of the Joint Registrar of Cooperative Societies (JRCS) in granting permission for holding the draw of lots for all members, the substitute members had moved the Punjab and Haryana High Court. The case is slated for August 29.

Members alleged that even though 122 substitute members out of the 186 members had paid dues, yet the administration was fighting shy of recognising them as members of the society.

And this was despite the fact that even banks and financial institutions had advanced them loans for being “genuine and irrevocable” members.

The list of members was sent to the RCS in 2003. The administration was aware of the substitution of members and the deposit of the cost of land to the Chandigarh Housing Board (CHB) by them, they argued. In May this year, the JRCS had postponed the draw of lot of dwelling units scheduled to be held on May 28 on the issue of inclusion of substitute members.

In response to a newspaper advertisement in January 2003 inviting substitute members, 122 persons, who form almost two-thirds of the membership, had applied. After fulfilling formalities and payment of dues, the members were issued share certificates. Since a majority of members had raised loans from banks to pay the installments, they were put to financial hardship.



Bansal-Bahl truce may be short-lived
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 5
The truce between the local MP, Mr Pawan Bansal, and the newly appointed president of the Chandigarh Territorial Congress Committee (CTCC), Mr B.B. Bahl, brokered by the party high command is likely to prove short-lived.

In fact, Mr Bahl tasted the first “non-cooperation” attempt at the Tribune Chowk today when the Bansal faction ignored his welcome ceremony. It is another matter that hundreds of Congress workers, including councillors of the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh (MCC), were present to greet Mr Bahl on his return from Delhi.

Mr Bahl’s re-election is largely seen as part of a “compromise formula” worked between the two leaders by the high command. Under the “formula”, while Mr Bahl retains the post of CTCC chief, Mr Bansal has been promised a ministerial berth in the next Union Council of Ministers expansion.

The recent inclusion of Mr Devinder Singh Babla in the Territorial Congress Committee (TCC), whose re-entry into the Congress fold led to the break between the two leaders, is also seen as a concession to Mr Bansal.

Mr Bahl, it seems, has reconciled to Mr Babla’s entry into the TCC. The Bansal faction had managed to get a majority in the TCC appointed by the high command.

The re-appointment of Mr Bahl, a loyalist of the Defence Minister, Mr Pranab Mukherjee,assumes significance in the wake of the elections to the MCC next year.With the working of the Congress-dominated continuing to be lacklustre on the developmental front, the going will be tough for Mr Bahl.

And to top it all, the local organisational set-up is dominated by Bansal loyalists. Moreover, it is alleged that Mr Bahl is “inaccessible” to the common party worker and the high command has failed to appoint a grassroots leader to the top post.

On the flip side, Mr Bahl has demonstrated his ability to lead the party even in the wake of strong opposition from local leaders. And the Manish Tewari and Venod Sharma factions of the CTCC also do not have any problem working with him. 



‘Contemporary Vibes’ has regional flavour
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 5
A literary magazine with a difference, for this has been creatively conceived to incorporate the texture and the flavours of regional literature in English. ‘Contemporary Vibes’, a non-profit, literary venture by lawyer Anil K. Sharma was launched at the Press Club today by Lieut-Gen B.K.N. Chhibber (retd), former Governor of Punjab.

General Chhibber said it was commendable that the magazine “would be a pure representation and production of pleasurable literature as there is very little output reaching the masses in the form of good literary works.”

It was important not only to produce a magazine, “but also to cultivate an audience; to motivate people to come forward and read”, he added.

The quarterly, whose catchphrase is ‘a vortex of emotions’ is an endeavour to bring together various forms of inspired writings — literature, poems and anecdotes, “to enable people to look up and think,” according to its honorary editor Sharma. He hopes to encourage even young aspiring writers to come forward and contribute.

The inaugural issue includes an interview with poet and novelist Kashmiri Lal Zakir, who was also the guest of honour at the inaugural function today.

The magazine is the brainchild of Sharma who had wanted to start something similar since his college days. He became a lawyer, but had never abandoned the dream of starting a journal for 25 years. “I kept the flame alive and I hope to carry that flame with me into society and light it with this effort,” avers Sharma

‘Contemporary Vibes’ is Sharma’s crusade to highlight the real India and help bring about a awareness of equality. “We plan to feature issues that people discuss amongst themselves, highlight the strength of femininity and woman power and also acquaint readers with Punjabi, Hindi and English literary figures who have changed the face of Indian literature.”

The magazine was planned as a multi-lingual venture but Sharma was advised against it for fear of diluting the impact of the magazine. Justifying his stance at publishing it in a language that is not used by the masses of the country, Sharma said: “It is the English speaking middle classes in our country who will bring about the changes in society. I want to penetrate the middle class through regional literature represented in English.”

Stressing the fact that this was in no way a commercial venture, Sharma said the magazine, though published in Chandigarh, is meant for the whole country and that he would be willing to bear the cost of spreading it all across.

“My intention is not to make money from this venture rather it is to cater to the creativity all of us crave.”



Few show up at HUDA open darbar
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, August 5
An open darbar organised by Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) today to redress public grievances came a cropper. There were more HUDA employees at the darbar than the complainants.

HUDA had recently decided to hold open darbars in various sectors in order to redress public grievances. Today’s meeting was held under the chairmanship of Estate Officer, Mr S.P. Arora. But only three complaints were received. The fact that the holding of these darbars was not properly advertised was the reason for the poor show of public.

Today, residents of Sector 1 and 2 and old Panchkula were invited to come forward with their complaints. The members of Resident Welfare Association, Sector 2, alleged that there was congress grass all over the sector. Another resident, Col. D.P. Thapar, too, alleged that congress grass and wild growth in a vacant plots had become a breeding ground for snakes, posing a risk.

Mr Arora assured them that he would issue necessary instructions to the horticulture wing, and the congress grass would be cleared soon.

Mr Pawan Mittal, Councillor from Sector 2, complained that a guest house was being operated illegally from residential premises. Mr Arora assured that necessary proceedings would be initiated against the house owner.



Cong man is Pinjore MC chief
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, August 5
The new mantra for gaining control in all local bodies for the various Congress factions seems to lie in a tie-up with arch rivals from the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD).

Repeating the experiment already successful in the Zila Parishad and the Panchkula Municipal Council, the Congress today gained control over the Pinjore Municipal Committee by striking a power-sharing formula with the INLD. As in the Panchkula MC, the president of the committee in Pinjore, Mr Kuldip Singh Kikka, is a Congress supporter, while the vice-president, Ms Krishna Lakra, is an INLD supporter.

The elections were held today amid high drama, when six councillors owing allegiance to the local MLA, Mr Chander Mohan’s faction, and one councillor owing allegiance to the INLD, decided to boycott the election process. There are 15 councillors in the Pinjore MC, and the local MLA, Mr Chander Mohan, and the Member of Parliament, Ms Selja Kumari, too, are allowed to vote.

Only eight councillors — Mr Kuldip Singh Kikka and Ms Suman Mandhar — Congress supporters of the Selja Kumari faction, Ms Krishna Lakra, Mr Dharam Pal Singla, Mr Ravinder Arora, Mr Arwinder Dhiman, Mr Jeet Singh, all INLD supporters, and Mr Harbans were present at the meeting. The election was unanimous, claimed the Returning Officer and SDM, Kalka, Mr Maheshwar Sharma. 



e-governance plan for UT villages, says Governor
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 5
Villages of Chandigarh have higher living standards than rural areas in other parts of the country. This was said by Gen S.F. Rodrigues (retd), Governor of Punjab and UT Administrator, while participating at a meeting of the Council of State Ministers on Panchayati Raj at Kochi (Kerala) today, an official press note said.

General Rodrigues said an action plan for each of the 18 villages was being prepared and the exercise was a partnership between the villages and the Administration. Sub-committees consisting of representatives from the rural sector, educated people and experts in different fields had been constituted to draft an action plan.

With a view to providing e-governance in rural areas, General Rodrigues said the Administration had chalked out plans to use information and communication technology (ICT) for the benefit of the rural masses.

He said this innovative programme envisage providing the services of the government on the doorstep, facilitating the training of students in the use of ICT to equip them for employment in the fast expanding ICT market and to create knowledge centres in each village, to provide useful public-related information to the people living in the villages. 



‘Bike Messengers’ on a mission

Chandigarh, August 5
An eight-member team of “Bike Messengers” today reached Chandigarh on their way from Kanyakumari to New Delhi. Their main aim is to spread the message of national integration, peace and harmony.

At a function at the Chandigarh Press Club here, Muniappan Raju, the team leader of the delegation, said, “Our objective is to help inculcate the spirit of national integration, peace and harmony, especially among the youth.”

On their motorcycles, the “Bike Messengers” started their mission from Kanyakumari on June 6 this year and have covered over 10, 500 km till now. They have also created a world record of reaching Khardungla Top, the world’s highest motorable road.

The “Bike Messengers” will reach their final destination, Delhi, through Haryana and Uttaranchal Pradesh in the next three to four days. TNS



Goyal installed Rotary chief
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, August 5
The installation ceremony of the office-bearers of the Rotary Club of Chandigarh Midtown was held at the CII, Sector 31 today. Mr R.K. Goyal was installed as the new President of the club.

The other office-bearers of the governing council are vice-president- Saroj Jhawar; president elect-Dr V.J.S. Vohra; secretary- Mr G S Deep; joint secretary-Dr Jawahar Luthra; treasurer - RTPS Tulsi; directors-Mr R.S. Sachdeva, Mr R.K. Luther, Mr Tajinder Singh and R.K. Khattar; sergent-at-arms past president - Dr Ms Vanita Gupta; and immediate past president, Mr Pallav Mukherjee.

Mr H K Dua, Editor-in-Chief, The Tribune group of newspapers, was the chief guest. Addressing the gathering, he lauded the efforts of the club and the services it rendered to the needy. He said that Rotary had now become a movement which helped in making people’s lives better. Though the country had progressed since 1947, but a lot needed to be done on the development front.

“Though India is emerging as an economic power, but there are many issues like unemployment, illiteracy and healthcare which demand immediate attention”, he said.

Mr Dua was made honorary member of the club.

President R K Goyal said the club had many projects on the anvil and the focus area would be education this year.



Low water pressure

Chandigarh, August 5
The water supply in the city will be at low pressure on August 8 and 9.

According to a press note issued here today, there will also be no supply in the afternoon on these two days. This will be done due to a shutdown for making connection of a suction head on the Augmentation of Water Supply Scheme(Phase III and IV), it added. TNS



Prison authorities say no to Kharar police

Mohali, August 5
The Kharar police today could not bring Babbar Khalsa International chief Jagtar Singh Hawara on production warrants to the Kharar court.

The BKI chief is currently lodged in the Burail jail, Chandigarh.

The prison authorities declined permission on the that since Section 268 of the CrPC was in force, Hawara could not be taken out the jail premises. TNS



Programme on water conservation
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 5
A mass awareness programme on water conservation was organised by the Central Ground water Board at Government Polytechnic College, Khunni Majra, Ropar. The topic of the programmee was ‘Rainwater Management for Ground Water Recharge’ .

Speaking on the occasion, Mr R.N.Singh, Regional Director of the Central Ground Water Board, North West Region (NWR), presented an overview of the ground water scenario in Punjab.

He said Punjab was facing the dual phenomena of rising as well as falling watertable in various blocks.

The ADC, Ropar, Mr Surjit Singh, and the SDM, Kharar, Mr Darshan Singh, were also present on the occasion.



6th burglary in fortnight at Army flats
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, August 5
A sixth burglary in a fortnight was reported in the Army flats, Mansa Devi Complex, today. Residents allege that in spite of the tall promises made by the police to control burglaries and thefts, the spate of such crimes in the flats is continuing.

Mr K.L. Dua and his wife were reportedly away to Mumbai. When they reached here this evening, they found that their maion door was locked from inside. An inspection from the flat rear side of the flat revealed that the windows were broken.

Once they accessed their flat, they found that Rs 3,000 and valuables worth a few thousands were missing. The couple was out of station for the past 20 days.

Another burglary took place at the house of Colonel Rajput yesterday, and cash and goods worth thousands were found missing. Residents allege that the police has not questioned workers in the colony and servants who come here, which could have helped solve the crime.

Chain snatched: Two scooter-borne youths snatched gold chain from a woman in Sector 17 on Friday morning. The victim, Ms Suman, had gone to drop her child for the school bus, when the incident took place.

Arms seized: The CIA staff on Friday claimed to have busted a gang involved in arms smuggling, and seized imported and Indian firearms from them. Two members — Vijay Dutt and Vipin — were arrested from near Amartex Industries, after the police received a tip-off that they were carrying firearms in a Cielo car.



Cop nabbed taking bribe from taxi driver
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, August 5
The UT vigilance wing today nabbed a head constable of the Chandigarh police when he was accepting a bribe of Rs 200 from a taxi driver.

Sources in the vigilance wing said Budh Singh was nabbed following a complaint by the taxi driver. The driver told the vigilance officials that Budh Singh stopped him for traffic violation for not wearing a seatbelt and for having a wrong number plate. The head constable reportedly told the driver that he would let him go if he paid him half the money of the fines in the shape of bribe.

The driver reportedly made negotiations and the deal was settled for Rs 200. The driver told Budh Singh that he did not have the money ready with him. The accused asked him to get the money and kept his driving license.

The driver then went to an acquaintance of his in Sector 22 and discussed the matter. Thereafter, they informed the vigilance wing and a trap was laid to nab the accused.

Officials recovered the marked currency notes from the possession of the accused, which were given by the driver.

The officials also recovered three more driving licenses from his possession. The sources said they were examining the licenses. 



Man jumps from third floor after rape bid

Chandigarh, August 5
In a desperate attempt to save himself from the ire of parents of the girl whom he allegedly tried to molest a 32-year-old Mani Majra resident allegedly jumped from the third floor of his rented accommodation last night and landed in the PGI with a broken leg.

Kahsmiri Lal, asked the minor girl aged 7 years, living in the same house as the accused on rent with her parents, to fetch him cigarettes from the market. When the girl followed the accused to get money for the purchase, he allegedly dragged her to the top floor of the house and tried to outrage her modesty.

The victim raised an alarm and her family rushed to her help. At this, the accused ran for his life. He was seen hanging from on parapet but fell from the top floor of the building.

Kashmiri Lal, an unmarried man, was shifted to the PGI. With a fractured leg beside other injuries.

The police has registered a case of attempt to commit suicide and outraging the modesty of a minor on a complaint by the mother of the victim. OC



Housewife kidnapped, dropped back
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 5
A 20-year-old housewife, studying in Sector 46 Government College, was allegedly pushed into a car by two youngsters in Sector 29. She was subsequently dropped at the spot “without being harmed”.

The Chandigarh police registered a case of kidnapping and criminal intimidation against the two “unidentified” youngsters under Sections 366 and 506 of the Indian Penal Code.

Sources in the police said the victim was returning home from the college at about 3 pm when the culprits in a silver car pushed her inside the vehicle. After taking a round of The Tribune Chowk, they dropped her back.

A senior officer of the Chandigarh Police said massive combing operations had been launched to nab the accused on the basis of description given by the victim. 



Industrialists meet Finance Secy
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 5
A delegation of local industrialists met Mr S.K.Sandhu,Finance Secretary, today and asked for revision of conversion rates in the industrial area, reliable sources said here today.

The UT Administration has decided on a rate of Rs 18000 per square yard which is said to be “too high” by the industrialists. Industrialist are demanding permission for constructing banquet halls in one acre instead of the current permission for four acres.

They are demanding a floor area ratio of two. The industrialists have demanded that they be allowed to pay the conversion charges in five years at a rate of 20 per cent each year.

The delegation included Mr M.S.Chadha, Mr H.S.Mamik, Mr Pankaj Khanna, Mr Pankaj Seghal and Mr Mahinder Singh, besides others.

The Finance Secretary is learnt to have assured the delegation that the matter would be examined and need be forwarded to the Governor for further action.


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