C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Another scam rocks Panjab University
Amrita Dhaliwal
Tribune News Service

How the bungling happened

Panjab University has three receipts that one has to fill at the time of making payment Most of the payments are made through the SBI branch at the university only. One of the receipts is given to the individual, while the other two are kept with the SBI. Later, an entry is made into the official records and along with a copy of the receipt, these are sent to the accounts department. As each receipt was to be individually filled and there is no duplication with a carbon paper, officials involved would refill the other two receipts with a different amount and pocket the remainder money.

Chandigarh, October 3
After the infamous sports scam that rocked Panjab University a few years ago, a financial bungling has once again been unearthed in the university, which, along with certain departments, also involves the State Bank of India.

The bungling has been done in the cash received and payments made to the university from various outside agencies like students’ fees, book-sellers and shopkeepers. It was found that while the original receipts showed a different amount, the subsequent receipts with the PU showed a different amount.

The amount varies from Rs 1,000 to Rs 40,000 in some cases. The payments were made at the SBI branch in the basement of the administration block of.

The bungling was done between 2001 and 2003 and was detected in 2004 in the stores section from where booksellers collect forms. An inquiry was constituted under the chairmanship of the Registrar and other officials of the account branch of the PU. On submission of the report, another inquiry under the chairmanship of retired Justice K.C. Gupta was constituted.

The report was submitted last month. The report, according to sources, found that other departments were also involved and further inquiry should be initiated. The report is expected to come up at the Syndicate meeting.

It is also subsequent to this inquiry that the PU started printing number-on receipts and introduced a column of writing the amount paid in words from this year. According to the Vice-Chancellor, Prof K.N. Pathak, it was yet not certain as to which departments and officials were involved. “We are pursuing the matter very seriously and have written to the SBI and have its full cooperation,” he said.

According to sources, the initial fraud has been shown to be around Rs 7 lakh, but as the investigations go further, the scam is expected to go into lakhs.



2 injured as bank guard’s gun goes off accidentally
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, October 3
Two passersby sustained minor injuries after the gun of a private security guard with HDFC Bank went off accidentally this morning in Sector 17 here. The incident occurred outside the bank after the guard dropped the gun accidentally, resulting in panic with passersby scurrying for cover.

The guard was later taken into custody on the allegations of carrying the gun without the required permit, besides other offences. Another guard was booked for allegedly not possessing the required permit to carry the gun.

Giving details, police sources said the incident occurred at around 9.15 am when a bank team from Patiala was coming out of the HDFC branch in Sector 17 after withdrawing cash.

As it was loading a trunk containing cash in the van, the gun fell off guard Gurmeet Singh’s shoulder after its sling entangled with the van’s hook. As soon as the gun fell, it went off.

The injured were shifted to the Sector 16 General Hospital and were discharged later in the day. One of the injured, Banarsi Dass of Sector 25 Kumhar Colony, sustained minor injury on his forehead while another security guard, Satpal Singh of Dadu Majra Colony, received injuries on his back.

The sources said it was a .12 bore double barrel gun. “Had it been some other weapon, the injuries could have proved fatal,” they said.

The police arrested both guards Gurmeet Singh and Karamjit Singh. Cases have been registered against them.



Man, 2 others die in mishap; distraught wife commits suicide
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh/Nalagarh, October 3
A woman of Gendu Ki Dhar village in Nalagarh district reportedly killed herself within hours of the death of her husband in a road accident. The couple has left behind an 8-month-old child. Two others were also killed in the road accident.

Gyanchand (24), a resident of the village, had gone with two other persons in a Mahindra pick-up jeep (HP-12-A-2590) this morning to sell tomato produce in a Ludhiana mandi. But the jeep fell into an 800-feet-deep-khud in the hilly Mitiya area of Nalagarh Sub-division. So severe was the accident that the jeep was completely smashed and the three persons, including driver Krishan Kumar (27) also of Gyanchand’s village, died on the spot.

The police was informed by residents of a house situated near the accident spot. After rushing to the spot, the police recovered the bodies of the victims from the debris of the jeep and sent these to a nearest Nalagarh hospital.

But the tragedy did not end there. As the news of Gyanchand’s death reached the village by the afternoon, his wife Surendra Devi, unable to bear the shock, jumped into a nearby well and was drowned to death. It took a few hours for the neighbours to realise what she had done. The police was then informed and the body was taken out of the well in the evening.

The couple has an 8-month-old daughter, who is now being looked after by villagers. A pall of gloom has descended on the village which lost three residents in a single day.



UT police to use Reva for patrolling
Saurabh Malik
Tribune News Service

Each car will be equipped with a beacon light, a public address system, a speed-radar, an "alcosensor" and other devices required in day to day policing. The running cost of Reva is expected to be less than 50 paisa per kilometer.

Senior officers insist that traffic police units world over are encouraging the citizens to switch over from heavy fuel guzzling vehicles to environment friendly low maintenance compact electric cars. Quoting examples, they say the Metropolitan Police of London and the City Police Departments of Florida, California and Tennessee in the US have "inducted" electric cars.

Chandigarh, October 3
Macho yellow motorbikes and white Gypsies will soon give way to electric cars in the police force. For, the Chandigarh Police has decided to include them in its fleet for "low speed non-interception patrolling". A decision in this regard was taken during a high-level meeting held recently. Sources in the police headquarters say the Chandigarh Police will "induct" just three "Reva" cars to begin with. "The number will be increased once they are established to be suitable for patrolling purposes," the sources add.

Bringing to the foreground the benefits of having a Reva in the police force, a senior officer in the traffic wing of the Chandigarh Police says, "The car is extremely manoeuverable. There can be no doubt about it. It is just about a foot and a half longer than an Enfield Bullet motorcycle currently used by the men-in-white, extensively".

The officer adds: "Besides this, the car has a small turning radius and is absolutely noiseless. The benefits do not end here. The car is a zero emission vehicle. As such patrolling will not contribute to noise and air pollution levels".

As far as suitability in the police force is concerned, the officer says the electric car is ideal for low speed patrolling, punctuated with frequent stops, as the vehicle's ignition is always at the 'on' position.

The officer adds that the traffic police has already tested the viability of "inducting" the car. In fact, the cops have operated the car bought earlier by the Department of Science and Technology for demonstration purposes.

Giving details, the officer says the car was used extensively in the field for as many as two months. During the period, the car covered over 5000 km and posed no maintenance or operating problem.

He adds that the car's "Eco" model can cover approximately 90 km without going in for a recharge. Describing it as "more than enough", the officer says that the cops have to travel much less in a day as Chandigarh is just a 10 km into 10 km city. In any case, the car is charged through a detachable AC wire which can be plugged into any convenient 220 volt power source.



Scooterist dies in mishap
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, October 3
Vishal Sharma, 27-year-old resident of Sector 22-B, was killed this evening after he lost control over his scooter and hit a roadside electricity post on the Sector 15 and 16 dividing road. He was rushed to the PGI, where he was declared brought dead, said the police.

Sources in the police said the accident occurred when Vishal’s Bajaj Chetak scooter (CH-01-J-8579) suddenly skidded and he lost control over the vehicle. After that the scooter went off the road and hit a roadside post leaving Vishal severely injured. He was rushed to the PGI, but it was too late.

The police, while quoting Mr Raman Sharma, the father of Vishal, said Vishal was planning to go abroad after completing his studies here.

The police has initiated inquest proceedings under Section 174 of the CrPC in this regard.



Passing Thru

Karana Verma
Karana Verma, CEO. Mark Pi, Chinese Food Chain, USA

What are the food trends in India?

The Indian food market is growing at a faster pace. After Indian cuisine it is the Chinese food which is the preferred choice. More and more families are now eating out.

What is the strength of Mark Pi in USA?

At present our company is among five top Chinese fast food chains with a turnover of Rs 500 crore. It has 75 outlets in US alone.

What is the scope of Chinese food In India and your future plans?

We plan to make our presence felt in Punjab by having more than 20 franchisee units. We already have one in Ludhiana and a total of six in India.

What else Mark Pi does to attract customers?

At Mark P, we stress on hygiene and taste in authentic Chinese cuisine. We will also provide food court, takeaway, home delivery and kiosks for the benefit of our customers.

— Arvind Katyal



Chandigarh Calling

Painting the town red

Two painters well known for painting the town red and blue, not literally of course, over the years are S. Raj Kumar and R.S. Pathania. Blues were the favourite of Raj who made some eloquent paintings with Sector 17 as the theme. Reds were predominant in the paintings of Baroda-trained painter Pathania. After completing his art course he came to Chandigarh in the late Eighties to teach in a local school and in this phase he made memorable cityscapes of buxom girls eating ice-lollies, watering lawns of the typical city kothis or buying vegetables. Last week he was back in town with a show of his cityscapes. Although he now lives and works in Kurukshetra yet some of his paintings had the peculiar Chandigarh images. The Tribune photographer Vinay Malik clicks at Pathania and his second version of the vegetable seller. It seems the painter his having a great time painting the city red and blue in his memory.

Rock and jog

"Nek Chands" in uniform have created a mini rock garden-cum-park on the campus of 3 BRD Air Force station. In setting up the rock garden, members of the Air Force Wives Welfare Association (AFWWA) have also played an important role. For this, the waste generated in the station was aesthetically used. Established in two phases, the first phase was inaugurated by Nek Chand, creator of Rock Garden, in August. Ms Manjit Virk, a former president of the association, inaugurated the second phase, which is a replica of a village, last week. The village scene constitutes a few huts, a watchtower, a well, a mini railway station, a bullock cart and grazing farm animals. A musical joggers park has also been created near the rock garden. A six-foot-wide and 700-metre-long well-illuminated jogging track is another highlight of the park. "The rock garden will not only improve the aesthetic look of the station but also inspire the defence personnel in being creative," says Air Cmde S.P.S. Virk, a former Air Officer Commanding, 3 BRD, the man behind improving the green cover of the station.

Women’s own

The Canadian Studies Centre, Panjab University, Chandigarh, will organise a two-day international seminar on "Role of NGOs in women's empowerment: Indian and Canadian experiences" in the university from February 23. For this, the International Academic Relations Division, Foreign Affairs, Canada, has provided a grant of Rs 1.49 lakh under the Canadian Studies Development Grant. The grant has been routed through New Delhi-based Shastri Indo-Canadian Institute. The studies centre is set up in the Department of Public Administration. Prof B.S. Ghuman, who is coordinator of the centre, says the objective of the seminar is to draw the attention of policy-makers to improve their response to women's issues.

Pretty name

Ramneek Paintal
Ramneek Paintal

This sassy lady, born in Jalandhar has been at it for nine long years! That is considered a lifetime in the fashion industry, in which model, choreographer, news anchor and compare Ramneek Paintal has made a pretty name for herself. "It is all about reinventing oneself and I intend to keep doing something till I get old and fat and stop getting work," she tinkles sweetly. What she dreams of are her own grooming classes and her advice to wannabes is clear, "Look in the mirror before taking this profession up, do you have that zing in you, for if you do not remember that there are ten other people waiting to do exactly the same job that you are doing." What is her mantra to make it big? "You do not need good looks because make-up can do wonders but what you do need is a confident personality." Smart words from one who has had the spunk and the clear-headedness to survive a decade!

Black verse

When it is the suave Indo-American poet and writer Kamla K. Kapur came all the way here in semi-retirement from teaching writing courses at Grossmont College in San Diego, California, reciting poetry in town one cannot but be there. More so when host Kamal Tewari, Chairperson, Chandigarh Sangeet Natak Akademi, gives a telephone invite and Ram Gopal Bajaj is an added attraction, it is hard to miss event. One knew it was to be serious stuff inspired as it was by the suicide of former American husband. But what it turned out to be was black and not blank verse with smart placards quoting lines of poetry like 'Grief is a door' and 'Grief is a closet'. Kamla dressed in black with her mass of white hair surrounding an intense and pained face showcased the grief. The verses that she chanted were as black as they were blank. The strange sirens from the mike were suitable as sound effects in making the show cathartically eerie.

Fond farewell

Inderjit Gupta
Inderjit Gupta

For the students and teachers of the Chandigarh College of Art there was no thanking God the Friday night. The reason was that one of the most popular teachers, Prof Inderjit Gupta, was retiring after thirty-three years of teaching photography and geometrical drawing. So there were fond farewells by the students and the teachers all day. And the grand finale came in the evening when Prof Inderjit Gupta threw a gala 'meet again' feast for the entire college, students included, and all the art folk of the city. A surprise for the host was when his classmate and buddy, sculptor Avtarjit Dhanjal, who lives in London, gatecrashed with a bouquet of flowers. It is a happy time indeed when old boys meet. So there was much jubilation all around with a lot of old boys and gals there among the new.

Contributed by: Gayatri Rajwade, Vishal Gulati and Nirupama Dutt



Jhuggis dot Panchkula markets
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, October 3
Even as the Enforcement Wing of the Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) chooses to close its eyes to the rampant encroachments, most of the marketplaces here are dotted with jhuggis.

Hutments have cropped up in most of the markets. The vacant spaces near shops in Sectors 10, 11, 12-A, 14, 15, 17 and in the Sector 16 City Centre are the new abodes of migrants. The hutments here are not just an ugly scar on the face of the urbane commercial centres in the township, but the jhuggi dwellers also defecate in the open and spread insanitation.

Shopkeepers in these markets allege that their business is being adversely affected because of jhuggis.

“People avoid coming to these markets, and instead prefer shopping in Chandigarh. We have bought shops and showrooms here at astronomical prices from HUDA, and it is the responsibility of HUDA to ensure that business prospers. But in spite of repeated complaints to the HUDA authorities, these jhuggis have not been removed,” says a shopkeeper in Sector 17.

The shopkeepers say though occasionally drives are launched by the anti-enforcement staff to check encroachments in market corridors, no permanent solution has been found to remove these hutments. On rare occasions when these are razed by HUDA, these crop up the very next day of the drive.

It may be mentioned that because of the inability of the enforcement staff to check encroachments by slumdwellers in Sector 12-A, a big slum colony having hundreds of hutments has now come up in the market.

“We feel the same will happen in most market places, if the authorities fail to come up with a solution to the problem,” says Mr Ram Kishen, a shopkeeper in Sector 15.



All set for Durga Puja celebrations
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 3
Come October 9 and the five-day homecoming welcome of Goddess Durga will start in the city. Preparations for this celebration of life, culture, and traditions are on in full swing. At Kalibari, Sector 47, 40 sets of idols consisting of Goddess Durga, Saraswati, Kartik and Laxmi have been prepared while three sets of idols have been sent to Srinagar through an aircraft. The idols are being painted and decorated with ornaments and clothes on the Kalibari temple premises.

A team of 12 artisans nine of which are from Kolkata, can be seen giving finishing touches to the idols.

Talking to The Tribune, Uday Mandal, an artisan, said the idols were sent to various places, including Rajasthan and Leh. The artisans were employed on contract and were able to make the idols in two months’ time.

In Chandigarh and periphery, the festival was celebrated at Banga Bhavan, Sector 35, Mohali and Panchkula.

Meanwhile, rehearsals are also being held for a cultural programme at Kalibari. As part of the programme, a variety show including dances, folk songs, group items and debate, would be organised. Special programmes for children and women have also been planned. The cultural programme would start from October 8 and would include Antakshri, mime, drama, orchestra and games. Extensive puja preparations are also being held.

Elaborate arrangements are under way at other places as well.



Businessman adopts 125 ragpickers
Ruchika M. Khanna
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, October 3
Tamasoma Jyotirgamaya, Asatoma Satgamaya... this Vedic chant has always had a deep impact on Mr Anil Jain. With an aim to bring young lives out of darkness of ignorance, Mr Jain has adopted 125 ragpickers and child beggars, to provide them with free education.

The philanthropist will now pay the school fees of 125 children studying in a school being run by Jeevan Mukt Nishulk Vidyalaya, at Andale Public School, Sector 9. As many as 750 child beggars, ragpickers and child labourers have been adopted by Jeevan Mukt Nishulk Vidyalaya. These are picked up from outside temples (where they beg for alms), or from the slum colonies and provided education in ten open schools, and in a branch being run in a portion of Andale Public School.

Mr Anil Jain today visited the school and distributed fruits and biscuits to these children. “I had thought of setting up a trust for providing education to poor children in the memory of my parents. Then Mr Mansa Ram Ahuja from Jeevan Mukt Nishulk Vidyalaya approached me and I decided to adopt these children,” he says.

“I always believed that education was the key to be enlightened souls. The best way to deal with child beggars is to educate them and teach them self respect. I strongly believe that they should not be given alms, because we are encouraging them not to work, or uplift their socio- economic status,” he says.

Mr Jain says that he will not only be adopting these children, but will now be mobilising people to provide financial, as well as other kind of help. “There is no dearth of people who will give donations for this noble cause. What we now need is people, who can help and teach these children in the schools being run by Jeevan Mukt Vidyalaya,” he says.

Mr Mansa Ram Ahuja says that they are now looking for someone who can provide them with some land, so that they can set up a residential school for these children. “ We want to remove these children from their environment and provide a more conducive atmosphere for them to learn and mature into responsible persons,” he says.



Fauji Beat
Why this discrimination against soldiers?

ON assuming office as Prime Minister in 1989, Mr V.P. Singh said in his TV address to the nation that his government stood committed “to one rank, one person” demand. The then President, Mr R. Venkataraman, had also made a similar commitment in his TV address in December 1989. What followed thereafter was the appointment of “Jaffa Committee”, which gave a bureaucrat burial to this demand.

The former Defence Minister, Mr George Fernandes, again revived the hope of ex-servicemen on April 10, 1999, by saying at Anandpur Sahib: “One rank, one pension demand has been accepted in principle and its implementation is a matter of only a few days”.

The government issued a notification in the third week of December 1998 to say that “all the Central Government pensioners, irrespective of their date of retirement, will get 50 per cent of the minimum pay introduced from January 1, 1996, as pension for the post held by them last”. The cruel joke played on defence pensioners is that a majority of them do not get even 50 per cent of their last pay drawn as pension. For the reason that the jawans and most of the JCOs do not complete 33 years of qualifying service to earn 50 per cent of their pay as pension due to their early retirement. Why should the 33 years service rule be enforced on the defence personnel when the government retires them early for keeping the Army in young profile?

ECHS newsletter

The first Ex-servicemen Contributory Health Scheme (ECHS) newsletter signed by the Army Chief, Gen J.J. Singh, has been issued by the Central Organisation ECHS, Adjutant General’s Branch, Army Headquarters, New Delhi. Gen J.J. Singh has said in this letter that there were 17 lakh pensioners when the scheme was launched on April 1, 2003. Of them, he says, only one lakh have joined the scheme so far. “Practical problems are experienced at various places due to the initial teething troubles. The implementation of the scheme is being constantly fine tuned so as to make it as member-friendly as possible”, says Gen J.J. Singh. The Army Chief also exhorts the pensioners who have not become members of this scheme to join it because of the medicare facilities that it offers.

There cannot be two opinions on the subject that this is the best health scheme that the defence pensioners could have ever got. There is no doubt that the ECHS Central Organisation is making all-out efforts to make this scheme a great success.

Health scheme becoming unpopular

What has been seen over the past few months is that not many pensioners are opting for the ECHS scheme. This is because the scheme is gathering unpopularity for three reasons.

The first one is that the existing ECHS members are disappointed because of the continuing shortage of medicines. Take the example of Gurdaspur district in Punjab, where the members have been told that there were no funds to procure medicines. There is no dearth of funds in the ECHS budget. Then why are the managers of this scheme making a wrong propaganda?

The second reason is that workload of military hospitals does not leave any time with their staff for this scheme. The scheme should, therefore, be taken off from the Armed Forces Medical Services. (AFMS) and made self-sustaining by recruiting ECHS staff at all stations. The third reason is that the patients admitted to empanelled hospitals have to go through a lot of difficulties when their stay is extended beyond the packed number of days. Though the ECHS authorities do not place any such any such restriction on the patients, it is a local restriction imposed by the medical authorities. There are only 4 per cent patients who have to be kept in hospitals beyond the number of days fixed by the local authorities. Such cases should be taken up by the empanelled hospitals with the Senior Executive Medical Officer (SEMO) and an appropriate decision taken according to the medical ethics, rather than asking the patients to obtain sanction from the SEMO.

— Pritam Bhullar



Rajasthan bank staff hold protest
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 3
In a response to a call given by the All India Bank of Rajasthan Employees Federation (AIBOREF), Rajasthan Bank Employees Union (Haryana, Punjab and Chandigarh), a massive dharna was held in front of the regional office of the bank at Chandigarh.

The employees were protesting against violation of agreements with the federation, outsourcing of the bank’s work and indiscriminate transfers of the employees. They were demanding appointments on compassionate grounds of the dependents of deceased employees, promotions from sub-staff to clerical staff and recruitment of 55 clerical/sub-staff as per agreement with the federation.

Over 30 delegates from Haryana, Chandigarh, Punjab led by Mr Kamal Kant, secretary, AIBOREF, sat on the dharna. Mr Harji Singh, general secretary, said that this agitation was necessary as the bank management was turning down their justified demands and working unilaterally.

Employees from various branches of the Bank of Rajasthan and other banks like State Bank of Patiala, Oriental Bank of Commerce, Punjab National Bank, Bank of Maharashtra, Andhra Bank, Canara Bank etc took part in the demonstration.

Mr Harji Singh said that in the first phase of the agitational programme employees from all-over India had urged the bank management to accept their demands. The federation would launch the second phase of agitational programme in which complete strike would be observed.



SCF owners allege discrimination by Admin
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 3
Owners of shop-cum-flats (SCFs) in different areas of the city are alleging discrimination by the administration by not allowing them full coverage of the second floors.

The owners are reacting to the permission for full coverage of second floors on marla houses but ignoring the right of full coverage to second floors of SCFs. Interestingly, the administration has allowed full coverage of second floor for conversion of SCFs into shop-cum-offices on the official records.

The Market Shopkeepers Association, Sector 18 C, has forwarded a communication of their grievance to the UT Administrator and other senior officials of the administration.

The representation pointed out that the size of families of the SCF owners had expanded and they, too, needed additional space. “There is no logic in ignoring the benefit of full coverage of the second floor to the SCF owners”, the representation read.



Consumer forum writes to PSEB on electronic meters
Our Correspondent

Mohali, October 3
The Consumers Protection Forum has demanded that the Punjab State Electricity Board should stop installing electronic meters in place of mechanical ones.

In a letter sent to the Chairman of the board, Mr Y.S. Ratra, the forum said that consumers were not satisfied with electronic meters as these were running fast and an additional burden was being put on the residents by the board. The meters had been replaced without taking consumers into confidence.

The forum further said that electronic meters could be installed in houses in which all gadgets were based on electronic techniques.



Driver missing with truck, booked
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 3
A city resident died while waiting for his turn to get medicine from a counter at the Sector 16 General Hospital while a man was injured after a car rammed into his scooter.

Meanwhile, a driver, transporting apples from Shimla, was booked for taking away the truck to an unknown place. Two mobile phones were also stolen from different parts of the city. Three persons were, meanwhile, booked for carrying liquor illegally.

A spokesman for the Chandigarh police said a man with an infested leg collapsed while standing in the queue. He was declared dead by doctors on duty. Efforts were on to establish the identity of the victim, who was in his mid-40s.

A driver, Suresh Kumar, was booked for cheating and criminal breech of trust under Sections 406 and 420, IPC, on the complaint of a Shimla resident, Shiv Dass.

In his complaint to the police, Shiv Dass said the driver with a truckload of apple reached the Grain Market in Sector 26 from Shimla but disappeared from there along with the truck.

Another complainant, Jai Pal of Kishangarh, claimed that his mobile phone was stolen from his house, while Gautam Lal of Sector 21 said two motorcycle-borne persons snatched his mobile phone from Sector 21. The police has registered cases.

A Sector 40 resident, Ravinder Singh, was rushed to the Sector 16 General Hospital after a car rammed into his scooter near the rotary of Sectors 24, 25, 37, and 38. A case has been registered.

The spokesman said Ram Dhari of Kajheri, Raja Gandhi of Sector 20 and Mohammad Nabi of Uttar Pradesh were arrested from different parts of the city. Cases under the provisions of the Excise Act had been registered against them.

The police had registered a case on the complaint of a married woman and resident of Sector 18. She had accused her in-laws and other relatives of demanding dowry, besides misappropriation of gifted articles, and physical and mental harassment.



1 booked for murder
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, October 3
The Kalka police has booked one person for murder. The accused, Vikram Bakshi, was arrested by the police on charges of killing Brij Mohan, and remanded in police custody.

The police said Vikram had a fight with the victim, Brij Mohan, yesterday. During the scuffle, Vikram pushed Brij Mohan, who fell and was crushed under a truck.

The victim’s mother, Bhagwati, alleged that Vikram would often have a fight with Brij Mohan over the latter parking his rehri on the Kalka- Shimla Highway. Yesterday, too, he asked Brij Mohan to remove his rehri, which led to the scuffle.

The victim died on the spot. A large number of people blockled the highway for almost two hours, demanding that a case of murder be registered against Vikram.

One arrested

The police has arrested Ajay Sethi from Sector 4 on charges of making bidis and selling these under popular brand names of Shiv and Akash Bidi. The police said he was violating the Copy right Act by selling his bidis under popular brand names. A large number of bidi packets were also recovered from his possession. His brother, a co- accused, managed to give the police the slip.



Bid to burn education board records
Our Correspondent

Mohali, October 3
An attempt was made by a person to set on fire some important records related to various inquiries at the Punjab School Education Board here.

According to information available, the person allegedly broke a windowpane of the inquiry cell to gain entry into the room. It is alleged that kerosene was then poured on the records in order to set it on fire. The attempt, however, remained unsuccessful. Cans in which kerosene was brought and match sticks were recovered from the room by officials concerned.

The inquiry cell, which is housed on the fourth floor of the board building, contains record related to various cases linked with employees.



5 rounded up, released
Our Correspondent

Mohali, October 3
The police allegedly picked up some residents of Madanpur village here today for questioning in connection with cases of crime.

According to information available, five persons were rounded up by the police who were reportedly later let off in the evening. The police had laid nakas early in the morning at Madanpur Chowk. Senior officials of the town were reportedly present at the nakas.

The police has, however, failed to give any information in connection with the rounding up of residents.



SBI launches ATM cards for farmers
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 3
As part of the State Bank of India’s effort to provide hi-tech products and services to customers even in rural areas, the bank today introduced Kisan ATM Cards. These were launched by Ms Umesh Nanda, Commissioner and Secretary, Institutional Finance and Credit Control, Haryana.

The card will be given to those farmers who enjoy credit limits from the bank under the Kisan Credit Card facility. A farmer can withdraw cash to the extent of balance available in his credit card account with this card from any ATM of bank.

This facility is absolutely free and saves the farmer from visiting the bank for withdrawing cash. A cardholder can withdraw a minimum of Rs 100 to a maximum of Rs 15,000 in a day. This facility will be extended to the existing as well as new literate KCC borrowers all over the country.


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