C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Vigilance cracks 3-year-old case
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 18
The UT Vigilance Department today cracked a three-year-old case of former Excise and Taxation Department Inspector, S.U. Khan, who got a fake graduation degree from Magadh University, Bihar.

A head typist of Magadh University, Arun Singh, who had fudged the records to supply the fake degree, was today produced before the Duty Magistrate, Mr R.K. Sharma. He was arrested from the university by a team of Vigilance officials led by SI Shree Prakash.

Investigations by the police reveal that Excise Inspector, who retired while being suspended in a case of corruption registered by the CBI, had managed to get the fake degree against a genuine candidate.

The Vigilance Department had registered a case under Sections 420, 467, 468, 471, 511 and 120 B of the IPC in 2003, after the matter was referred to it by the Excise and Taxation Department.

Earlier, a department inquiry had been opened against the Inspector in the case. But he allegedly in connivance with some officials of the UT Excise Department had managed to show that the degree was genuine and a verification certificate was procured from the university with the help of Arun Singh. On the basis of the verification report, the Inspector had managed to get an anticipatory bail from the Punjab and Haryana High Court.

A through probe by the Vigilance team revealed that the verification report had been faked by the head typist. Against the name of S.U. Khan, the name of Sanahulla was found in the records of the university. The tabulator register, registration number and other related documents were found in the name of another candidate, Naveen Kumar. The roll numbers for BA Part-I and II were also found to be fake as the same had been issued to a regular candidate and there was provision for private candidates.

The retired Inspector is expected to be arrested soon on the basis of the fresh evidence.

Sources in the Vigilance Department said while probing the case, they found an official of the Excise Department had gone to the university to probe the genuineness of the graduation degree.

It also came to light that certain local lawyers had managed to get such a degree from the Magadh University. 



SI Sunita case: Complainant turns hostile
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February18
In a significant development in the corruption case against SI Sunita Bakshi, the main complainant in the case, Zakir Hussain, a Mauli Jagran resident today turned hostile.

While deposing before the CBI Special Judge, the complainant retracted from the earlier statement he had given against constable Husan Lal that the latter taken money from him. However, he stuck to his earlier statement made against SI Bakshi.

The complainant now said he handed over the money to Husan lal, who refused to take the money and when the constable was giving back the money, the CBI officials reached the spot.

However, the shadow witness, Dildar Singh, stuck to his earlier statement. The SI was arrested in 2005 for allegedly demanding money from Zakir Hussain to settle his matrimonial dispute. Earlier, the judge had dismissed an application moved by the CBI for the cancellation of bail of the SI.

Charges framed: The Additional District and Session Judge, Mr B.K. Mehta, today framed charges in the Chandani suicide case whose body was found floating in Sukhna Lake in June 2005. Rohit Rohela, the boy friend of the girl was arrested in the case. 



Human Development Report invites criticism
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 18
The two-day UNDP-sponsored dissemination workshop on Punjab Human Development Report 2004 organised by Panjab University concluded at ICSSR Complex, PU campus, here, today.

The valedictory session began with the presentation of the reports on each technical session. Prof. S.S. Johal, Vice-Chairman, State Planning Board, Punjab, lamented the fact that 80 per cent of people lack access to good education, the problem was more acute in the rural areas.

He said there was no incentive to the farmer for crop diversification. For this, conducive environment in the form of providing remunerative prices was required. According to him, the situation of agriculture in Punjab was alarming because of the higher indebtedness and increasing number of suicides.

In his presidential remarks, Prof K.N. Pathak, Vice-Chancellor, Panjab University, said a total educational revolution was needed, which would make revolutions in the areas of agriculture, economy and industry a success. He lamented that energy and environment had not been adequately dwelt upon in the report. According to him, the western models could not be adapted to Indian conditions.

Dr Ritu Mathur from the UNDP and Mr R.L. Mehta, Special Secretary, Department of Planning, Punjab, were the guests of honour. Mr Mehta stated that personally to him the report was a historical document, which put many problems in black and white.

He welcomed the healthy criticism of the report by the scholars.

Speaking on gender disparity, Prof Pam Rajput questioned the biased approach of the present day development paradigm. The session was chaired by Prof G.S. Gosal, Prof Emeritus, Department of Geography.



Fertile land turned into wasteland
Jagmeet Y. Ghuman

Parwanoo, February 18
Brushwood lantana has turned the fertile land into a wasteland here on a large scale. The area under Goyala, Chandi, Gadsi, Patta, Badhalag, Dakirana, Banasar, Kabakalan, Neri Kalan, Bohali and Bhojnagar panchayats were among the worst hit.

Due to the lack of knowledge of scientific method to arrest its growth, the helpless farmers have been fast losing their valuable agricultural land.

The origin of the bush is associated with Dr Carlton, who came here in 1837 with an American missionary.

He had been credited with the introduction of perennially flowering, thorny bush, lantana, which of late has become the despair of the farmers. Though the weed was brought in for the sole purpose of creating beautiful fences around the mission properties, this bush, which neither provided food nor fodder and did not permit any other plant to flourish alongside, started spreading unexpectedly all around and has since reduced vast tracts of once fertile fields into wastelands.

The affected villagers here blamed the nonchalance attitude of the authorities concerned to arrest the spreading of lantana.



Forensic experts examine shootout site
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 18
Experts of the Central Forensics Science Laboratory (CFSL) today picked traces of evidence in the case of a shootout near the light point of Sectors 22 and 23 last night.

Former PUSU secretary Yadvinder Singh has yesterday complained to the police that Ranjit Singh, alias Jeeta, had fire at him. Four other youths were also travelling with Yadvinder, who was returning home to Khanna from Panjab University.

He had alleged that in the shootout the windowpane of his car was damaged. The assailants had come in an Indica car.

The police said both groups had also clashed in the past. A case had already been registered against Yadvinder in the city. Yesterday, the police had doubts about the authenticity of the complaint.

The experts had been called to ascertain whether the shot was fired. 



Need to promote rural transformation by involving youth: minister
Payal Pruthi
Tribune News Service

Mani Shanker Aiyer
Mani Shanker Aiyer

Chandigarh, February 18
In view of a greater need to promote rural transformation and enterprise, through the involvement of youth between age groups of 21 to 35 years, Panchayati Raj Minister Mani Shanker Aiyer on his visit to Commonwealth Youth Programme, Asia Centre, today envisaged the setting up of a task force under the leadership of Rashpal Malhotra, Director, CRRID.

Interacting with officials at the CYP Asia Centre, the minister suggested that a small group of experts on Panchayati Raj Institutions may be formed in association with CYP Asia Centre which will assist in conducting of special programmes in order to provide a forum for interaction to the 1 million young elected representatives to Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs).

In order to further strengthen such initiatives, the Union Minister said an MoU with Pakistan on how both the countries could exchange the experiences and expertise on Panchayati Raj would soon be signed.

Known as Nazim, in Pakistan, the institutions not only maintain the local law and order but have also far excelled the PRIs in India, said the minister.

He further reiterated that the young elected representatives should be made to interact in the presence of scholars in the field of local government and a body of people comprising representatives from NGO sector, media and academics should be formed.

He added that the national schemes like the Sarv Shiksha Abhiyan should be completely entrusted with the panchayats because it was at the grassroots level that the need of elementary education was the greatest.

To this end Mr Aiyer stressed that the CYP Asia Centre should come forward with a methodology and build up a faculty to promote the initiative in the region. PRIs in India have led to the empowerment of women and this equally applies to the youth as well, said the minister. He also suggested that at the forthcoming Commonwealth Youth Ministers' Meeting in Bahamas, the idea to provide a platform to the elected youth at the panchayat level should be taken up.

According to him, India at present is witnessing a `silent revolution' in the form of various developments taking place under the Panchayati Raj System.



One more held in hawker murder case
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 18
In connection with the blind murder case in which a 65-year-old newspaper hawker, Hari Singh, was strangled to death in his Sector 30-B residence in April 2004, the police today arrested another suspect, Ashok.

The police has already arrested two persons who had gone to the victim’s residence intending to commit a theft, but killed him instead. The police has recovered jewellery worth Rs 1 lakh and Rs 10,000 from their possession.

Smack recovered: The police today arrested Madan Lal allegedly for carrying 25 g of smack from Sector 39 here today.

False implication: Group Captain S.S. Sandhu (retd), who was yesterday arrested on the charges of outraging the modesty of his employee, today claimed that he had been falsely implicated.

The 21-year-old girl in her complaint had alleged that the retired officer of Defence Autos in Industrial Area, Phase I, had outraged her modesty on Tuesday. The Group Captain alleged that since he had chucked out the girl, she was blackmailing her.

A case under Section 354 of the IPC has been registered against the Group Captain. He was later released on bail.



Biz Clips
Allahabad Bank customers’ meet
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 18
Allahabad Bank yesterday organised meetings with its customers in the small and medium enterprises sector (SME) at Panchkula and Chandigarh. Mr V. K. Chawla, Assistant General Manager, Chandigarh Zone, presided.

Mr Chawla said that the Bank was committed to extending all sorts of assistance to this sector, targeting a growth of 20 per cent per annum, so that outstanding loan to the SME Sector was doubled in five years.

Spice music: Spice Telecom yesterday launched a value added service that allows the user to listen to background music while they talk. Mr Mukul Khanna, Assitant Vice President — Marketing, Spice Telecom said, that subscribers just need to dial 143 to choose the background music. The IVR calling at 143 is at Re. 1 per minute, and subscription charges are Rs 20 per month and charges for selecting a song are Rs 15 per song dialogue.

Canara Bank meet: To encourage SSI units to maintain quality standards, the Chandigarh circle of the Canara Bank today organised a meet for small and medium scale entrepreneurs. The bank had extended a cash award of Rs 25000 for the units certified under ISO. Six such SSI units were given the awards during the meet.

The meet was organised to highlight bank's endeavour in promoting small and medium entrepreneurs in tune with Central Government's policy to double the outstanding credit to these units in the next 5 years.The bank presently supports 79,562 units with an outstanding portfolio of Rs 11,366 crores.



Maruti mega show

Chandigarh, February 18
The two-day “Maruti Suzuki Weekend Auto Blast” got off to a flying start at Circus Grounds, here today.
Organised by Maruti Suzuki, the largest car manufacturer in India, the mega show features all Maruti cars.

On a common platform, Maruti will showcase its breakthroughs in aesthetics, performance, efficiency and environment friendliness, Mr H. S. Brar, Regional Manager, said. As part of its car care initiative, a free check-up camp is being organised on both days in which customers can have their cars checked. — TNS


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