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THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
D E L H I   A N D   N E I G H B O U R H O O D

HC wants affidavits on closure of illegal farmhouses
New Delhi, March 27
The Delhi High Court today asked the MCD and the DDA to file sworn affidavits in support of their claims that no illegal farmhouses were functioning in the Capital.

Who’s who with passion for environment get together for golf
New Delhi, March 27
This once, the excuse for playing was worth a cheer. As senior bureaucrats and defence personnel, corporate honchos and renowned golfers got together at the Delhi Golf Club, it was not just another game of golf.
Kapil Dev presenting an award to Shruti Khanna, winner of ‘Petronet Golf Challenge 2006’ in the Capital.
Kapil Dev presenting an award to Shruti Khanna, winner of ‘Petronet Golf Challenge 2006’ in the Capital. — Tribune photo by Rajeev Tyagi

Bail denied to accused in CGHS scam
New Delhi, March 27
A city court today rejected the bail plea of an accused nabbed by the CBI in connection with the Rs 4,000 crore Co-opeartive Group Housing Scheme scam.



EARLIER STORIES
 
Dr Karan Singh with artist Dashrath Patel at Confluence, the exhibition on steel sculpture, which is on at the India Habitat Centre in the Capital.
Dr Karan Singh with artist Dashrath Patel at Confluence, the exhibition on steel sculpture, which is on at the India Habitat Centre in the Capital. 

Power theft worth Rs 9 crore detected
New Delhi, March 27
As part of its crackdown on power theft, BSES has been carrying out simultaneous raids across its licensed area.

Security beefed up at Dadri railway station
Greater Noida, March 27
The arson and violence at Dadri railway station on Saturday seem to have given a wake-up call to the authorities. While 41 persons have been arrested, the hunt is on for another 400 for the violence and damage caused to railway property in Dadri.

Jewellery worth Rs 40 lakh looted
Faridabad, March 27
Five armed youths escaped with jewellery worth more than Rs 40 lakh from a showroom located right in the heart of the city this morning.

Feast your eyes on stainless steel sculptures at IHC
New Delhi, March 27
‘Confluence’, an exhibition of steel sculptures by master sculptors, is on at the Visual Arts Gallery, India Habitat Centre. Put up by artd’inox, the lifestyle products division of Jindal Stainless Ltd, the fiesta is open for viewing till March 30.

Seminar on ‘media reporting of armed conflict’
New Delhi, March 27
As society becomes more violent the world over, the need for understanding and studying this phenomenon becomes acute. Violence surrounds us today whether it is in the streets, of social exclusion, radical extremism or of war.

Murderous attack on Samajwadi Party activist
Ghaziabad, March 27
The State secretary of youth wing of Samajwadi Party, Yoginder Yadav and his friend were injured after motorcycle-borne assailants fired at them in Ashok Nagar locality.

Wine guide for beginners and experts alike
New Delhi, March 27
A US and Europe-trained enologist Aakash Singh Rathore has come out with a book, ‘The Complete Indian Wine Guide’. The publishers claim it to be the only book providing a comprehensive exposition of every domestic Indian wine.

Dozens injured in violence over construction of wall
Noida, March 27
A number of persons, including policemen, were injured when residents of Khora colony, Ghaziabad, attacked those constructing a wall between Rajat Vihar in Noida Sector-62 and Khora colony.
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HC wants affidavits on closure of illegal farmhouses
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 27
The Delhi High Court today asked the MCD and the DDA to file sworn affidavits in support of their claims that no illegal farmhouses were functioning in the Capital.

A division bench of Justice Vijender Jain and Justice S N Agarwal granted four weeks to the two agencies to file their affidavits and posted the matter for further hearing to May 8.

Earlier, J Sabharwal, counsel for the DDA, in his submission said that no farmhouse which did not comply with the norm of 60 feet width approach road fixed by the court was allowed to function in the city. The MCD counsel too submitted that the corporation had sealed all the farmhouses which did not conform to the 60 feet width approach road norms.

Upon this, Justice Jain asked the MCD to furnish in the court the list of the farmhouses sealed in the Capital pursuant to the court’s earlier order.

The DDA was asked to file its affidavit that it was not permitting the functioning of any illegal farmhouses in the city.

The court also assured that it would look into the complaint of Manjit Singh Ahulwalia, counsel for the petitioner organisation Bhrashtachar Virodhi Sanghatan, that banquet hall in residential areas which were ordered to be closed by the bench were now functioning under the cloak of ‘community halls’ and organising social functions. In another matter, the High Court today ordered the Delhi Police Commissioner to take immediate steps to clear the unauthorised structure and presence of some persons who had illegally occupied the grave land of late freedom fighter Maulana Abul Kalam Azad located in the precincts of the historic Jama Masjid.

A special Bench of Justice Vijender Jain and Justice Rekha Sharma also granted four weeks to the various government agencies to put into motion the re-development plan of the Jama Masjid area estimated at a cost of Rs 93 crore.

Asserting that the historic masjid should be restored to its pristine glory, the Bench maintained that the grave of Azad should be developed as the “appropriate resting place” befitting his stature at par with that of Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru.

Najmi Waziri, counsel for the Delhi Wakf Board and other advocates complained to the court that some persons had clandestinely constructed a structure on the grave land of Azad to live there. The counsels recalled that the court had earlier ordered the authorities to develop the samadhi of Azad which was in shambles into a fitting “resting place” for the great leader.

It was complained that though the general public was not allowed access to the samadhi for paying obeisance as allowed in the case of Mahatma Gandhi, Nehru and other leaders, the authorities had allowed some persons to construct structures at the place.

Following the complaints, the Bench asked the Commissioner of Police to initiate steps with the help of Wakf Board officials to clear the persons and encroachments from the place.

The bench, which reviewed the re-development plan of the Jama Masjid jointly formulated by government agencies like NCT, MCD, Archaeolgoical Survey of India, besides the Wakf Board, asked the authorities to seek the necessary financial approval from the Delhi Government so that the execution of the plan could commence within the next few months.

The court also maintained that under the proposed re-development plan, all the unauthorised constructions at the place should be demolished but necessary rehabilitation and relocation measures could be taken in the case of deserving occupants of the place.

The matter was posted for further hearing to May 2.

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Who’s who with passion for environment get together for golf
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 27
This once, the excuse for playing was worth a cheer. As senior bureaucrats and defence personnel, corporate honchos and renowned golfers got together at the Delhi Golf Club, it was not just another game of golf. It became a platform for expressing concern and doing their bit for the environment.

‘Green Passion for a Greener and Cleaner Environment’ was an event that saw the who’s who come together for the Petronet LNG Golf Challenge 2006 that was organised here yesterday by the Delhi Golf Club for promoting a greener and cleaner environment.

Cabinet Secretary B. K. Chaturvedi, who kicked off the tournament, said the informal ambience at such tournaments helped facilitate interaction between officials.

The tournament saw the participation of more than 120 persons, including Civil Aviation Secretary Ajay Prasad, Secretary Industries, Dr Ajay Dua, former TRAI chief, Pradeep Baijal, Shalini Singh and Shruti Khanna, leading names in women’s golf.

The tournament was played as per the stableford format and veteran cricketer and now golf aficionado Kapil Dev distributed the prizes among the winners.

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Bail denied to accused in CGHS scam
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 27
A city court today rejected the bail plea of an accused nabbed by the CBI in connection with the Rs 4,000 crore Co-opeartive Group Housing Scheme (CGHS) scam.

Patiala House Court Special Judge S K Kaushik rejected the bail plea of the accused, builder Ashutosh Pant, on the grounds that “he was allegedly involved in 6-7 other cases in CGHS scam.

The tampering of evidence could not be ruled out if the accused would be given bail”.

Ashutosh, in connivance with others had allegedly revived the Bluebell CGHS, the CBI alleged. There are a total of 135 fake societies that the CBI suspects.

Ashutosh was arrested under sections 120-B (Criminal Conspiracy), 419 (Cheating by Impersonation), 420 (Cheating), 467 (Forgery of Valuable Security), 468 (Forgery for the purpose of Cheating), 471 (Using Forged documents as Genuine) and 13 (2) of the Prevention of Corruption (PC) Act, 1988. The case would come up for hearing on April 5. 

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Power theft worth Rs 9 crore detected
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 27
As part of its crackdown on power theft, BSES has been carrying out simultaneous raids across its licensed area.

In raids conducted over the weekend, BYPL and BRPL Enforcement Teams detected power theft of 6,500 KW worth around Rs 9 crore in penalties.

Complementing the Enforcement Teams for detecting power theft on such a large scale, the new BSES CEO, Mr Lalit Jalan, said “The countdown for the Commonwealth Games in Delhi has begun. At BSES we have decided to initiate with even more determination our drive to eliminate the menace of power theft”.

He appealed to all BSES consumers to help it rid Delhi of its image of being the world’s power theft capital.

Explaining the significance of these recent raids, Mr Jalan explained that the two contractors were stealing power equivalent to the electricity needs of six five star hotels or two large Ansal Plaza like malls or 80 per cent of the total electricity supplied to Vasant Kunj.

The BSES spokesperson said that power theft by these contractors was directly responsible for unscheduled power outages in Laxmi Nagar, Uttam Nagar, Janakpuri, Palam and adjoining areas.

BSES Enforcement teams raided two SPD contractors in Laxmi Nagar area and caught them stealing power to the tune of 3,600 KW. “According to the provisions of the Electricity Act 2003, a cumulative penalty of Rs 7 crore is likely to be imposed on the accused,” said a BSES official.

The two SPD contractors — Mohd Abid and Tapan Sarkar — supplied electricity to over 5000 houses, settlements and factories in the Laxmi Nagar area of East Delhi.

While the SPD contractors had a sanctioned load of around 400 KW each, Mohd Abid was found having a connected load of over 2600 KW and his meter was also found tampered.

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Security beefed up at Dadri railway station
Our Correspondent

Greater Noida, March 27
The arson and violence at Dadri railway station on Saturday seem to have given a wake-up call to the authorities. While 41 persons have been arrested, the hunt is on for another 400 for the violence and damage caused to railway property in Dadri.

A total of Rs 3 crore worth of property and equipment is estimated to have been lost in incidents of violence and arson during the past one year.

The authorities have decided to install closed-circuit cameras at the Dadri railway station. The security at the railway station was also being beefed up, said Additional Divisional Officer Ravinder Gupta in a review meeting with railway and police officers.

The passenger reservation centre was being revived at this station. Mr Gupta said the railways had suffered a huge loss in two incidents of violence and arson at the Dadri station.

He sternly told the officials and employees at the station to ensure that passenger trains were cleared from the station on time so that daily commuters were not put to any inconvenience. Mr Gupta also emphasised the importance of availability of electricity in the station so that anti-social elements could not create trouble during night.

Meanwhile, police teams have started a special campaign for nabbing ticketless passengers on different trains. Trains will be stopped between two stations so that the police and railway staff can arrest the ticketless travellers.

The railways losses were estimated at Rs 2 crore in last year’s violence while the disturbances on Saturday had caused a damage of Rs 1 crore, railway sources said.

This was the second major incident of violence at Dadri railway station within nine months in which railway equipment was damaged, and tickets, furniture, etc torched.

The railway authorities, it seems, had not drawn any lesson from the incident three days ago when daily passengers had squatted on the track and blocked the traffic on main Delhi-Howarh line.

The violence and damage to the railway property and torching of Dadri railway station by a mob of 40,000 passengers on Saturday could have been avoided, railway property worth lakhs saved and inconvenience to the travelling public avoided.

It may be recalled that in June last year, during a magisterial checking, one passenger was so mercilessly beaten up by the police that hundreds of passengers from a local train had attacked the railway station and torched the railway police post. Two persons had died while many RPF personnel were injured in the incident.

There was just nominal presence of GRP at Dadri railway station on Saturday. Some 30 passengers have been arrested, according to Dy. Superintendent, Dadri railway station, Ramesh Meena.

The crowd had set fire to the railway booking office and pelted the EMU train with stones. The train had arrived an hour late at 7.15 pm. Furniture, tickets, passes and other documents were burnt in a bonfire on the railway track.

The railway station did not have been enough police, RPF or GRP, to protect government property. The signals and communication equipment had been damaged. The agitation had continued till late in the night. 

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Jewellery worth Rs 40 lakh looted
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, March 27
Five armed youths escaped with jewellery worth more than Rs 40 lakh from a showroom located right in the heart of the city this morning. The owners and the five employees of the jewellery showroom were locked inside a room by the criminals. The police were informed within minutes of the incident, which created shock and terror among the shopkeepers of the NIT area here.

Two youths entered Om Jewar Palace located near the NH-I and NH-II chowk in the NIT area this morning around 11 am and asked the owner to show some gold chains. After about 10 minutes had elapsed, one of the accused got a call on his mobile phone. He invited some others to join him and the other youth in selecting the chain. Three more youths joined after some time in two batches and started the pretence of selecting the chain. But within minutes, they all got up and took out countrymade revolvers. They were wearing masks on their faces and asked the employees to get assembled at one spot.

While two of the accused pushed the staff of the showroom, which included three girls, into the strong room, the others started gathering all jewellery in a bag brought by them.

The mobile phones of the staff were taken away by the accused before they were locked in the room. Manoj Kumar, owner of the showroom, told the police that the cost of looted jewelry could be between Rs 40 and Rs 43 lakh. Senior police officials reached the spot after some time.

The owner suspects the involvement of a youth who had visited the showroom on Saturday to see some jewellery items but had gone without making any purchase.

The police have no clue about the mode of transport used by the accused in fleeing after the crime. 

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Feast your eyes on stainless steel sculptures at IHC
Komal Vijay Singh
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 27
‘Confluence’, an exhibition of steel sculptures by master sculptors, is on at the Visual Arts Gallery, India Habitat Centre. Put up by artd’inox, the lifestyle products division of Jindal Stainless Ltd, the fiesta is open for viewing till March 30.

The exhibition was inaugurated by Dr Karan Singh in the presence of distinguished guests and personalities.

‘Confluence’, as the name suggests, is an amalgamation of contemporary art and the traditional metal, steel. The exhibition is an idea to showcase how steel has evolved from an item of utility to being a connoisseur’s delight.

Eminent artists Dashrath Patel, Pinakin Patel, Rolf Kluenter, Vibhor Sogani, Ariya Kitticharoenwiwat, Kaaru design house owners Sanjib Chatterjee and Anjali Wakankar and a team from artd’inox have given shape to their ideas in stainless steel. A premium and exclusive range of limited edition products, ranging from wall accessories, installations to furniture, is on display.

Ms Deepika Jindal, Chairman, artd’inox, said, “Confluence is our endeavor to showcase how steel can be drawn to create contemporary designs and art and what better way of getting it in the form of a signature artefact by the a celebrated artist. This is a first-of-its-kind exhibition, which builds up an association between art and artd’inox.”

The exhibition attempts to showcase works of art which also have utility value. Functional art gets integrated into one’s day-to-day existence instead of just adorning wall spaces. An artist’s creativity, fantasy and imagination bring about this transformation of art into function and vice versa.

The utilitarian aspect of these art pieces does not diminish their artistic worth. It only contributes towards reducing the gap between works of art and everyday life. art d’inox has also explored the synergy between stainless steel and various materials like ceramic, wood, glass, creating products where both materials compliment each other.

A part of the proceeds of the exhibition will go to charity.

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Seminar on ‘media reporting of armed conflict’
Charu Singh
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 27
As society becomes more violent the world over, the need for understanding and studying this phenomenon becomes acute. Violence surrounds us today whether it is in the streets, of social exclusion, radical extremism or of war.

As such, one of the most immediate responses to violence is made by the media; wherever an incident occurs, someone reaches to report it. Recognizing the sway of violence in society today and in a bid to deal better with it, Jamia Millia Islamia, the Press Institute of India and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) are holding an international seminar on March 28-29 titled ‘Reporting Armed Conflict: The Media Debates its Role.’

This seminar is a rare event as it would be attended by editors from leading newspapers from 15 countries, including Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bhutan and the Maldives. At the seminar, the editors will make presentations and conduct panel discussions on issues related to the nature of modern conflict, international law, state responses to terrorism, media objectivity and media role and responsibilities.

Former TV journalist Surinder Oberoi, who is one of the organizers on behalf of the ICRC, says “The seminar is an opportunity for some public self-analysis by the region’s most important profession in terms of mass communication.

The media do not just report the news, they form opinion, which in turn influences or shapes events. We want to see the media recognize the positive role that they can play, and we want them to use their substantial influence to limit the consequences of armed conflict.”

The seminar focuses specifically on armed conflict as most participating countries are facing this problem. For instance, Mike O’Brien, member of ICRC regional delegation in Delhi, feels that, “Of the countries whose editors are participating in the event, all except Bhutan and the Maldives currently experience regular levels of internal violence or internal conflict in part of their territory and though not everyone is a direct victim of the violence, many people feel its effects.

By accurately reporting the effects of conflict or internal violence, the media can draw attention to issues which require resolution at the highest level”.

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Murderous attack on Samajwadi Party activist
Our Correspondent

Ghaziabad, March 27
The State secretary of youth wing of Samajwadi Party, Yoginder Yadav and his friend were injured after motorcycle-borne assailants fired at them in Ashok Nagar locality.

Even though Yoginder Yadav escaped without any serious injury, his friend, Subash Singh, was seriously wounded.

Yoginder Yadav and his friends were rushed to a private hospital in Gandhi Nagar where they are under treatment.

Subash Singh was wounded in the left foot. Even though the police had ordered checking in various localities, they have failed to get any clue about the assailants.

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Wine guide for beginners and experts alike
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 27
A US and Europe-trained enologist Aakash Singh Rathore has come out with a book, ‘The Complete Indian Wine Guide’. The publishers claim it to be the only book providing a comprehensive exposition of every domestic Indian wine.

The pocket-sized information-packed book can be carried along as a reference guide. The author has visited every functioning winery in India, searching for the best wines, even from among the little-known and fledgling producers. Every single wine made in India as well as international wines are tasted, described and scored which enables the Indian consumer to select the best wines possible.

The Wine Guide provides everything you need to know about the wine basics: how to properly enjoy a wine, that is, following the three steps of wine-evaluation — eye, nose, and taste; it irreverently exposes all the myths of wine etiquette, for example, about the need for special wine glasses or for decanting wine which tend to scare people away from wine. Instead, you learn how to select, order, serve and enjoy wine whether choosing from a wine-list at a restaurant or casually among friends..

The book concentrates intensively on the Indian conditions, explaining how wine should be served and stored here.

It provides an interesting sketch of the history of wine-making and drinking in India, from ancient times till now.

Additionally, there is a concise overview of wines from France, Germany, Spain, the USA, Chile, etc., helping you to distinguish, for example Bordeaux from Beaujolais or Prosecco from Sekt. There is information on how to decipher foreign labels, various classification systems, and of course specific details about wine types, regions, and styles. By the time you have finished this book, you will not just know your Dry from Sweet, but even your Cabernet Sauvignon from Sauvignon Blanc. The wine guide has numerous user-friendly features for the beginners and experts alike. For the beginner, there is an extensive glossary of common wine terms along with a helpful pronunciation guide. For all consumers, there are several handy appendixes: There is a chart listing India’s best Red, White, Rosé, and Sparkling wines. There is a chart summarising the best wines for each grape-variety. There is also a comparative chart giving the best value-for-money wines available on the market.

Ms Devyani Rathore, a diplomat and wife of the author, says the book aims to contribute to the wider awareness of high-quality Indian wines, even as it guides the Indian consumer through all the wines – domestic and imported – on the Indian market.

As the author argues, Indian wine, if properly supported and urged on, has a glorious future ahead.

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Dozens injured in violence over construction of wall
Our Correspondent

Noida, March 27
A number of persons, including policemen, were injured when residents of Khora colony, Ghaziabad, attacked those constructing a wall between Rajat Vihar in Noida Sector-62 and Khora colony.

The Noida police, which had to resort to lathi-charge and later even firing in the air, arrested over a dozen people for hampering the construction of the wall and attacking the police.

Among those injured in the stone pelting included the Circle Officer (DSP) S.R. Yadav. Moreover, four vehicles were also damaged by the crowd.

It may be pointed out that the wall was being constructed as per the orders of the High Court, as the resident of Rajat Vihar felt “insecure” by the unruly behaviour of people living in Khora colony.

While the people living in Khora colony felt the wall will shut them out, the residents of Rajat Vihar alleged that they indulged in criminal activities in Rajat Vihar, including thefts and car-jacking.

According to eyewitnesses, women and children were also among those injured.

SSP Piyush Mordia said the wall will now be constructed only after mutual agreement between the parties.

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