C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Striking doctors release charter of demands
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 21
Adamant on their demand for a rollback of the proposed hike in reservation for OBCs in central institutes, resident doctors of the PGI and Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32 released a charter of demands at a press conference here today.

Senior residents of the PGI, Dr Anand Vinekar, Dr Anindya Banerjee and Dr Subhmohan Singh, said the doctors would continue their protest till the ends of justice were met. Maintaining that the government’s proposal was unfair and divisive, the doctors stated that a committee of representatives from various institutes to represent the northern states in Delhi would be constituted shortly.

As a mark of protest on the completion of two years of the UPA government, the Association of Resident Doctors of the PGI and AIIMS have called for a blackout from 8 pm to 8: 20 pm tomorrow all over the country.

While resident doctors said they would continue to boycott work, parallel OPDs would function as usual. Also, in the interest of the patients the doctors would now be starting special clinics imparting free health check up. The first such clinic would be a free hypertension clinic in front of the new OPD building.

“All through the exercise, patient-interest has been central to our planning. Our fight is not against them. So, in yet another initiative, we have introduced these special clinics. Also, now our effort would be to expand our base because doctors alone can’t sustain the agitation. We have assurances from various quarters but will step up our tirade against reservation by campaigning in various institutions and involving people,” Dr Banerjee stated.

Commenting on eviction notices to doctors and students residing in hostels at AIIMS, Delhi, the senior residents maintained that they were prepared to wage the war. “Any administrative action in Delhi invites a similar action here. We are expecting similar notices in a couple of days but the fight will reach a logical end. We are keeping a close watch on the goings-on and will make back-up arrangements in case there are any indications,” Dr Banerjee remarked.

The charter has sought action against those responsible for police atrocities on protesting doctors, the formation of a non-political committee to explore avenues for the uplift of the weaker sections, a white paper by the Union Government on reservation, the opening of vacancies set aside for reserved categories in government jobs where candidates are found wanting, no action such as service breaks, pay deductions, legal action or termination against doctors on strike.

This charter will be submitted as a memorandum to the President of India, the Prime Minister, the HRD Minister, the Health Minister and Governors of Punjab and Haryana as also the local Member of Parliament.

Meanwhile, doctors from GMCH-32 have decided to burn an effigy of the Union HRD Minister, Mr Arjun Singh, tomorrow besides boycotting work and continuing with their door-to-door campaign. Doctors at the General Hospital, Sector 16, have also decided to remain off work.



Crime branch questions Deputy Mayor’s wife
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 21
Harneet Singh, wife of Deputy Mayor H.S. Lucky, today finally joined investigations in the case of theft of clothes from a Sector 17 garment shop.

Sleuths of the crime branch went to the Sector 8 residence of the Deputy Mayor to question the woman about her alleged involvement in the theft case in light of the evidence collected by the police.

Her questioning, which was recorded on camera, was done in the presence of Mr Lucky and two other lawyers, Mr N.K. Nanda and Mr A.S. Gujral.

Since her interim-bail was ending on May 23, it was appropriate to join police investigations. Sources said various questions on the basis of the questioning of the salesman, Raju, night watchman, Nand Kumar and the owner of the shop, Alok Jain, were posed to Harneet. She reportedly denied any link to the theft case.

It may be mentioned that the police had booked Harneet Singh and Jaspal Kaur Bhattal, an alleged coaccused in the theft case, under Sections 380 and 34 of the IPC. While the Deputy Mayor's wife was on interim bail, the other woman has been evading arrest after warrants were issued against her by a local court.

The two had been booked as the police claims to have sufficient evidence to believe that the two ladies were hand in glove with the salesman of the garment store.



Cycle tracks being used for parking
Naveen S. Garewal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 21
The effort of the Chandigarh Administrations to provide smooth cycle tracks throughout the city have suffered a setback in some sectors, many contractors, small vendors and others have blocked the cycle tracks and are using the public space for other purposes. In many cases, they are earning money by utilising the government land which is meant for decongesting the main roads.

In Sector 35, a cycle track in front of the market near the Sectors 34 and 35 dividing road, has completely been blocked by a contractor for parking of cars and other vehicles. This despite the fact that there are clearly marked signboards that say “cycle/rickshaw track”.

In the past, the Administration has faced similar obstacles in Sectors 19, 27, etc where the cycle tracks were encroached upon by small time vendors and even shopkeepers. With increasing traffic on the city roads, there is an urgent need to separate the fast moving traffic from the slower moving cycles, rickshaws and other manually driven vehicles.

The cycle tracks have been often in news with the contractors failing to adhere to prescribed norms. Recently, it was reported in these columns how the carpeting of cycle tracks was being done without preparing the foundation of these tracks. In Sector 20, coal tar was sprinkled on the grass without removing it and preparing the ground. Similarly in other parts of the city, obstacles on the cycle tracks have not been removed before completing the carpeting work. In Sector 28, the electric poles bearing high tension wires and the supporting wire continue to remain in the middle of the road.

The Administration had taken a decision to provide cycle tracks throughout the city, the 2004. This decision was based on the city’s master plan as envisaged by Le Corbusier. The city will have around 106 kilometres of cycle tracks, laid at a cost of around Rs 7 crore by the UT Engineering Department.



18-yr-old girl found murdered
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh , May 21
An 18-year-old girl was found murdered here today. The body of the victim Ranju Rai, a nursing student of a local private medical complex, was found in a gunny sack that was recovered from the Kumbra village pond today.

The girl was allegedly having an affair with her former neighbour, Shankar, who has been booked by the police under Sections 302 and 201 of the IPC on charges of murder.

According to the SP, Mohali, Mr Varinder Pal Singh, the victim had been missing from her Sector 52 residence for the past one week.

The girl’s father, Rajnish Rai, told the police that she had just cleared her class plus two examination and was being trained as a home nurse from a private hospital in Mohali. However, she had not come back home since the past one week and the family had reported her missing at the Kajheri police post.

The father also told the police that they had also inquired about her whereabouts from the hospital where, she had not reported for training during the week. “But since they knew about her involvement with Shankar they did not want to talk openly about her having gone missing,” said Mr Varinder Pal Singh.

The police believe that the girl was murdered some days ago since the body had decayed beyond recognition. The police was able to trace her identity only through a small nurse identification slip recovered from her clothes. After tracing the hospital where she worked, the police managed to reach the girl’s house in Sector 52 where she lived with her parents and four younger sisters.

The girl’s father told the police that Ranju was having an affair with Shankar who was their neighbour in Sector 52 since April 2005 after which he had shifted to somewhere near Kumbra. However, their involvement had continued.

The police are now looking for Shankar, who is said to be a resident of Bihar and is working as a mason here.



US film producer starts Asia’s largest film institute in India
Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 21
Not everyday does a successful producer from Hollywood knock at the Indian doors, raring to change the face of its entertainment industry. But Kurt Inderbitzin has done just that - made himself the promise of leading India into the league of nations that have revolutionised the way people look at films and elements they signify.

And he seeks to do so rather uniquely, by unleashing a whole new world of perspectives to those who dare to think afresh and aloud. At his newly-established Institute of Film, Television, Animation and Media Arts in Film City, Mumbai, Inderbitzin will train Indians in technical and creative sophistication. The man’s vision is to cater to a booming Indian media market, where films are growing at a rate of 18.5 per cent a year; corresponding figures for animation and TV industry being 44 and 24 per cent, respectively.

“As India gets richer, people’s tastes will change. They will spend more on leisure. That is when the country will feel a dearth of content developers for the entertainment industry. We are here to fill those gaps,” reasons Inderbitzin, who is supported by Subhash Ghai’s Mukta Arts.

The largest film institute to open in South Asia, Inderbitzin’s Whistle Woods International is spread over 150,000 sq foot and is fitted with world class state-of-the-art equipment to train students in eight specialisations. These include acting, cinematography, direction, editing, business of films and TV, screenwriting, sound recording and design and animation.

At the heart of the full-time two-year residential programme will be excellence, to be inspired by Naseeruddin Shah as head of the school’s acting department, Ashish Kulkarni in charge of animation and Shyam Benegal head of the academic council. Designed to train Indians in developing edgy content for film and TV world, the course will also facilitate profile building by providing students with linkages across the world.

For an American, the job of nursing a dream on Indian soil would not be easy, but Inderbitzin looks assured, thanks to the help he is getting from people like Shekhar Kapur, Shabana Azmi and Mita Vashishta. When asked why he chose India to set up his school, he said: “As an American you can’t be in touch with India. It is a vibrant democracy; it’s exciting and growing at a whopping 8.5 per cent a year.

“I am here to inspire a legacy. The country’s film industry is desperate for screenwriters; films keep going over budget because there are no scripts for directors to follow; the animation market is wanting in story telling; the soap operas make little sense. We wish to change all of that, and bring India on a par with the world’s best film industries, where making a film or TV production is all about telling compelling stories that make the viewers sit up and think.”

Having promoted the course at education fairs across India, Inderbitzin has advanced the date for receipt of applications to June 10. Further information can be downloaded from www.whistlewoods.net. The first session starts from July 15 this year.



Passing thru

Mr Katsuhiro Takahashi, head, overseas, Kuraray Chemicals, Japan
Mr Katsuhiro Takahashi, head, overseas, Kuraray Chemi- cals, Japan

What brings you to the city?

I am here to promote the technology devised by our company for making carbon molecular seives (CMS) used in pressure swing absorption technology for nitrogen gas plants. We will be promoting this technology of making CMS for pharmaceutical companies, steel, electronic and packaged food industries in this region.

Is Kuraray Chemicals planning to expand its facilities in India? Yes, Kuraray Chemicals in association with Veecon-IPA Gastechnik (an Indo-German joint venture), will set up a plant in Kerala for manufacturing CMS. The plant will be set up with an investment of $ 5 million and will have a capacity of producing 3,000 tonnes of CMS a year. As of now, Kuraray has its manufacturing facility in Japan (38,000 tonnes per annum capacity) and in China (1,000 tonnes per annum capacity).

What is the advantage of the CMS over the traditional method of using nitrogen filled cylinders?

The Indian market requires 200 tonnes of CMS per annum for meeting its nitrogen requirements. The CMS is convenient to use, is cost effective and has 30 per cent higher efficiency than the traditional nitrogen supplied in cylinders. As compared to a cost of Rs 10 per m cube for cylinder nitrogen, the CMS would cost just Rs 3 per m cube.

— Ruchika M. Khanna



Monkey menace spreads
Sanjeev Singh Bariana
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 21
Hundreds of monkeys can be seen loitering around houses, streets and markets of Sectors 7, 8 and 26, besides certain other areas in the same belt. They have shifted base from the PGI and Panjab University compounds where the Forest Department had “used the services of langurs” to take care of the problem.

A school boy was bit by a monkey while he was returning from school in Sector 7 on May 16. The boy was taken to the government hospital in Sector 32 where he was administered a tetanus injection.

Mr Ishwar Singh, Deputy Conservator of Forests, said the problem was more pronounced in the areas adjoining Sector 7 because the simian population had shifted its base from the PGI and Panjab University. “We have two trained langurs in our reserves. The monkeys are scared of langurs and it has helped to check the menace there.”

Mr Ishwar Singh said: “We cannot harm the monkeys under the law of the land. We either sterilise the trapped monkeys or we leave them in forests of Kansal or Nepli. Monkeys of the city find it difficult to stay in jungles and vice versa. Even if we leave them in forests, the simian population soon returns.”

The residents are a peeved lot because the monkeys jump over the walls and enter their compounds. Mr Rajesh Prasad, a resident of Sector 7, said: “I was having lunch with my family last week when a group of monkeys descended on our lawns and snatched all our food. We could not do anything. Luckily, nobody was hurt.”

There are several cases when the monkeys slip through the iron grills and enter the kitchens. A number of them have mastered the art of opening the fridge and having a delightful treat! Residents complain about the security of their children once they return from school and want to go to parks in the evenings.

Mr N.K. Jhingan, secretary of the KSKA Sudhar Kalyan Sabha, Sector 7, said: “The monkey menace in the area has assumed dangerous proportions. There have been certain cases of bites.”

Mr Jhingan said it was dangerous for children, and even the elderly, to take a walk outside the premises of their homes. The monkeys even entered the houses to dig into eatables, even in refrigerators.

Mr Rakesh Sharma, a student, said: “Monkey often descend on our compounds and can be seen playing with water taps. When they are in our compounds, I lock the door and stay indoors for fear of being bitten.”



Rise in crime worries Panchkula residents
Bipin Bhardwaj

Tribune News Service

Panchkula, May 21
On May 4, a gang of masked robbers struck at Kharag Mangoli, a slum colony, in Old Panchkula and injured six persons of two families, four of them seriously, by attacking them with batons indiscriminately. They decamped with cash and valuables worth thousands of rupees.

On May 19, Mr Vikas Garg, a Sector 9 trader, was shot at from the point blank range by two unidentified motorcycle-borne youths while he along with his wife Sonia and a close friend, Poonam, was going to his residence in Sector 4 late that night.

The victim is the owner of a department store. He had sustained bullet injuries in the lower part of his abdomen. He had collapsed on the spot. The assailants snatched a bag before speeding away.

Two major crimes in a fortnight, besides thefts and other petty crimes have rocked the city. The deteriorating law and order situation has created an atmosphere of insecurity among the residents. Losing faith in the police, the scared residents have started chalking out alternate security plans on their own.

The police has failed to make any headway in these incidents.

However, Mr Balbir Singh, SP, claimed to have received some information about the involvement of a gang in the Kharag Mangoli robbery. He said Mr Vikas Garg had been receiving threatening calls from a woman on his mobile. He also claimed to have identified the phone numbers and rounded up some suspects in the Sector 4 shooting case.

Meanwhile, members of the Residents Welfare Association, Sector 4, today held a meeting and decided to erect gates at 10 entry and exit points of the sector. In a press note, Mr Sushil Kaushal, president of the association, informed that the association had already sought permission in writing from HUDA and the police for erecting gates in the sector.

The association also demanded the immediate arrest of the culprits involved in the crimes.



Dental college staff hold rally
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, May 21
In protest against the management, members of the BRS Dental College and Hospital Employees Union, organised a rally throughout the surrounding villages and raised anti-management slogans here today.

The irate employees claimed that even after 15 years of the establishment of the college, they had been barred from benefits like PF, ISI and salaries as per the wage board. The college management had not been implementing the labour laws. The employees were being victimised by the college management, the union leaders alleged.

Raising slogans, the protesters marched through Barwala, Multanpur, Jaloli and a couple of other villages today. They also alleged that two scavengers — Ram Rattan and Raj Rani — who fell victim to some poisonous liquid while cleaning a floor in the hospital, were still struggling for life in the Sector 6 General Hospital. The college management was reluctant to compensate them, alleged Mr Hari Singh, president of the union.

The union leaders have also threatened to intensify the strike if their demands were not accepted in due course of time.



Mahapanchayat submits memorandum to Bansal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 21
The mahapanchayat of 18 UT villages and different political parties have stepped up their pressure on the Chandigarh Administration for regularising structures outside the “lal dora” by exempting the inhabited areas or by extending the “lal dora” of the villages.

Leaders of the mahapanchayat submitted a memorandum to the Union Minister of State for Finance, Mr Pawan Kumar Bansal. Mr Angrej Singh Badheri, President of the Pind Bachao Committee and Mr Didar Singh, Chairman of the Panchayat Samiti, said their demand was supported by the fundamental right provided under the Constitution.

They pointed out that the indefinite fast by residents of Deep Complex, Hallomajra, had entered its 237th day. The residents of Deep Complex have demanded regulrisation of the structures outside the “lal dora” of the village as had been done in case of the Darshni Bagh area of Manimajra.

In support of the demand of Hallomajra residents, leaders of the Chandigarh district council of the Communist Party of India (CPI) today observed a 12- hour-long fast.

The leaders who observed fast included Mr Devi Dayal Sharma, and Mr R.S. Sandhu, secretary and president, respectively, of the Trade Union Council.



Transformer catches fire at BSNL office
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 21
A fire broke out in one of the four transformers kept on the ground floor of the BSNL office in sector 17 around 4 pm today. The transformers are used to supply electricity to the BSNL office and other buildings in Sector 17.

No loss of life was reported. The cause of fire was yet to be ascertained. According to eyewitnesses, some repair work was being carried out on the transformers in the morning and the fire night have been caused during it.

The electricity supply to the BSNL building and other areas of Sector 17 was immediately cut off, while two fire engines were rushed to the spot along with water tanks. However, the situation was soon brought under control. A few people working in the BSNL building where some construction was being carried out were the first to react to the situation. Being a Sunday, a major fire incident was averted as the people present there acted quickly.

BSNL officials alleged that the transformers were the responsibility of the Electricity department of the UT Administration and they were thus not responsible for the incident. They could, however, not explain why most of the fire safety equipment present in the building were out of order. Except for one fire extinguisher on the ground floor the rest had out lived their expiry date. While others were being used to hold letter boxes in the building.



Tributes paid to Rajiv Gandhi
Tribune Reporters

Chandigarh, May 21
A prayer was organised by the Rajiv Memorial Society at Rajiv Bhavan in Sector 35 here on the death anniversary of Rajiv Gandhi.

Floral tributes were paid to the departed leader on the occasion. Those who spoke on the occasion were Mr Raj Nagpal, Mr R.S. Rathore and Mr S.R. Nagar.

The Chandigarh unit of the All-India Anti-Terrorist Front today observed Anti-Terrorism Day and paid tributes to late Rajiv Gandhi on his death anniversary at a meeting held today at the state party office.

Rajesh Sharma, president of the Chandigarh unit, paid tribute to the late leader. He also condemned the terrorist attack at the Youth Congress rally organised in memory of Rajiv Gandhi at Srinagar today.

Panchkula: Congress workers today paid tributes to former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi on his death anniversary and observed the day as Anti-Terrorism Day here today.

They also distributed fruits and copies among the orphan students at Bal Bhawan and asked them to follow the path of Mr Gandhi.

Apart from the local residents and children, those who paid their tributes included Mr Pawan Jain, Mr Krishan Aggarwal, a former City Congress chief, Mr Ashok Khanna, Mr Verinder Chopra and some other prominent personalities.

Parwanoo: The local Congress Committee observed the 15th martyrdom day of Rajiv Gandhi here today. The local Congressmen led by local Congress MLA Raghu Raj paid floral tributes to the departed leader. Mr Amarnath, pradhan of nearby panchayat, announced to join the Congress. Earlier, he was an activist of the BJP.



Human rights group alleges torture in Burail jail
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 21
The Lawyers for Human Rights International (LHRI) have complained to the National Human Rights Commission against the Inspector General of Police (IGP) and Deputy Superintendent, Burail Jail, for allegedly torturing inmates of the jail.

In their complaint, the LHRI has alleged that jail authorities were torturing the inmates against the guidelines of the Supreme Court in the D.K. Basu case. They stated that numerous complaints had been filed before the commission but no action was taken.

They further stated that the Sikh undertrials were specifically being subjected to torture. The case of Kamaljeet Singh, who was allegedly beaten and forced to change his counsels, has been highlighted by the LHRI.



Stress laid on Internet security
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 21
Communication technology, whether it is computers, mobile telephony or Internet, has brought a revolution in the way we live, think and work. With this, the pace of social and economic development has become dramatic.

This was stated by Cdr. (Dr) H S Sharma, former president of the Institution of Electronics and Telecommunication Engineers (IETE). He was in town to deliver a keynote address on “Promoting Global Cyber Security”, during the 38th World Telecommunication Day celebrations .

Earlier, Prof P. Prabhakar, Wg Cdr (retd). Chairman IETE, Chandigarh Centre, spoke on the issue of Internet security and dealt with various aspects involved and future challenges. Ms D S Pathania, vice- chairman, IETE, Chandigarh Centre, highlighted the importance of the day and expressed the need for evolving techniques for cyber security.



Punjabi ‘ignored’ in pulse polio campaign
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 21
The Chandigarh Administration has been accused of giving “step-motherly” treatment to the Punjabi language.

Even as the Central Government prints publicity material in Punjabi, the administration seems to have completely ignored Punjabi, which is reportedly spoken and understood by about 80 per cent of the local population.

A social worker, Mr Narinder Singh “International”, alleged here today that while the Ministry of Human Resources Development had released its publicity material in Punjabi the local administration had given a go by to the language during the pulse polio campaign in the city today. The pulse polio banners and posters were released only in Hindi, he alleged.



Lab technician ends life
Contradictory suicide notes recovered
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, May 21
A 33-year-old lab technician allegedly ended his life by hanging himself at his Shubash Nagar residence in Manimajra in the wee hours today. The police recovered two suicide notes from near the body. In one of the notes he held no one responsible for his death; however, in another he said he was ending his life as a local doctor was not providing work to him.

Sources in Manimajra police station said, “The victim, who had a clinical lab in Manimajra, in one of his suicide note wrote that he was facing hardships in life as a local doctor had stopped giving him work.

Making the case a complex one, in another suicide note the victim said that he was ending his life on his own and no one was responsible for it. While one suicide note is written in Hindi the other is written in English”.

The police said the victim, Sandeep Kumar, came back home during the wee hours today. He went to his room while his wife was sleeping along with her two children in another room.

His death came to light when a family member woke up and noticed Sandeep’s body hanging from a hook in the ceiling. The room was locked from inside.

They informed the police about the incident, which recovered the body. The body was sent to the Sector 16 General Hospital.

The DSP (East), Mr Vijay Pal Singh, said, “The matter is still under investigation.

We will take legal opinion on this issue before proceeding on this matter. The post-mortem of the body was performed”.

A police officer in Manimajra police station said, “It will be difficult to say anything with certainty at this stage.

We are recording the statements of the family as well as neighbours to corroborate them. Besides, it will also be verified whether both suicide notes were written by the same person”.



Motor cycles stolen
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, May 21
Two motor cycles were stolen from the city. In another incident, thieves decamped with 840 kg of fencing wire from Sector 25. Elsewhere, a house in Sector 41 was burgled. The local police also held one person on charges of carrying five grams of smack.

Mr Baldev Raj Verma of Milk Colony Dhanas reported to the police that his Bajaj Pulsar motor cycle (CH-03-L-3907) was stolen from near Sector 34 parking lot on Saturday. In another incident, Mr Balwinder Singh of Hussainpur village in Ropar district lodged a complaint alleging that his Hero Honda motor cycle (PB-27-A-2660) was stolen from near the DPI Office, Sector 17, on Friday.

House burgled: Mt Tara Sigh of Sector 41 reported that two gold rings, a video camera, a DVD player, a bank locker key and Rs 20,000 were stolen from his house. He told the police that he was out of station between May 7 and 20. A case has been registered in the Sector 36 police station.

Wire stolen: Mr R.S. Sahota, in charge Side West Processing Plant in Sector 25, lodged a complaint alleging that 26 bundles of barbed wire weighing 840 kg were stolen from the plant, on Friday night. A case of theft has been registered in the Sector 11 police station.

Smack seized: The Crime Branch of the Chandigarh Police arrested Romi Garg of Shanti Nagar in Manimajra on Saturday and recovered five grams of smack from his possession. A case under Section 21 of the NDPS Act has been registered in the Manimajra police station.



Punjab cop booked

Zirakpur, May 21
The local police today booked Balkar Singh, a Punjab policeman, for allegedly firing in the air in Baltana here late last night.

According to sources, Balkar was booked after a complaint by certain residents of the Saini Vihar, Baltana, who alleged that he fired in the air to scare the residents late last night. Earlier, the residents thronged the police post here demanding the registration of a case and arrest of the police personnel. From Zirakpur, they marched to Dera Bassi police station following which a case was registered on the intervention of the SHO.

The policeman has absconded. TNS



India, Pak businessmen meet face-to-face to increase trade
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 21
To promote long term durable relationship between Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) of India and Pakistan, a two-day interactive session of business matchmaking involving face-to-face meetings between the businessmen of the two countries began here today.

About 20 delegates from Pakistan, including those from the dairy and agriculture sector and the food processing industry and 30 delegates from India are participating in the event, being organised jointly by the Centre for Research in Rural and Industrial Development here and the Rawalpindi-based Women Empowerment Literacy and Development Organisation (WELDO).

"The getting together of the SMEs of Pakistan and India in an interactive session of face-to-face meetings will help establish durable business relationship between the entrepreneurs from both sides", Sijal Aziz, a representative of WELDO told media persons.

In her address, Lila Poonawala, Chairperson of the Food Processing, Dairy and Fruits and Vegetables Task Force under the central government's Technology Information Forecasting and Assessment Council (TIFAC), highlighted the advances in dairy farming and the considerable scopes that exist for benefiting from the experience of each country in dairy farming leading to business activities by SMEs in this sector.

This is the first event of its type, which aims to enhance the transfer of business skills and knowledge through interactive business relationship and all endeavours to increase bilateral trade.

According to Dr S K Mangal, senior adviser at CRRID, this will serve as a catalyst in providing a platform for establishing sustained and profitable business relations on a long term basis by having direct negotiations between participants from India and Pakistan.

Agriculture and food processing, dairy and dairy products and information technology are the sectors being focused upon as these sectors form a large chunk of the economies and technical manpower in both countries.



Post office to provide financial services
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 21
After months of planning, Punjab Circle of the Postal Department, will be offering financial services in the city from tomorrow.

Christened as 'Postal Finance Mart', the new service will be available at the Sector 27 post office from tomorrow. Later, it would also be provided at the Sector 16 post office, said an official of the Postal Department.

Under the project, two post offices in the city and three in Punjab are being converted into Postal Finance Marts to deal exclusively in a wide range of financial services.

Services like selling postal stamps and booking registered letters would be dealt at the Sector 19 post office. In order to attract customers, the Sector 27 post office has been given a complete makeover at Rs 4 lakh. "The traditional appearance of post offices has been done away with," said the official.

One post office each in Amritsar, Jalandhar and Ludhiana are being converted into finance marts. These post offices would now play a more active role in the financial market and augment the revenue earning.

The financial services at the marts would include saving bank, saving certificates, IMTS, IPO, MO, investment guidance on postal schemes and marketing of schemes, in collaboration with other organisations like UTI mutual funds, non-life insurance products of Oriental Insurance and personal loans of GE Countrywide.


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