C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S

Injured Yuvraj manhandles Tribune lensman
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 28
Test cricketer Yuvraj Singh, in an unprovoked burst of anger, not only manhandled Tribune lensman Parvesh Chauhan but also snatched his camera to delete pictures taken by him.

It all happened at a Sector 8 MRI and CT Scan Centre where Yuvraj had gone for a magneto resonance imagining (MRI) of his injured knee. Yuvraj’s knee was injured while he was doing warm-up exercises at the PCA Stadium before taking on the nets there today. Visibly upset and unable to control his anger, Yuvraj flared up to see the lensman clicking his photos there. “How dare you take my pictures? With whose permission are you clicking photographs?” shouted Yuvraj at The Tribune photographer while grabbing the lenses of his camera.

The Tribune photographer, shocked at the turn of events, tried to explain to the cricket star his identity and position and told him that he was only doing his professional duty.

Yuvraj, unmoved by the explanation and professional conduct of the cameraman, ordered Parvesh to delete the photos he had taken of him at the scan centre while pushing him around.

Even the staff of the centre, which had earlier welcomed the photojournalist in the hope of getting some publicity, joined the cricketer in manhandling The Tribune photographer.

Expressing shock over the incident, one of the witnesses was overheard saying: “Such aggression and action should be shown on the field by the cricketer than treating people, especially those performing their professional duty, in such a way.”

Even a child taunted the star cricketer for his dismal performances in recent One Day Internationals (ODI) and went to the extent of saying sarcastically “Uncle jaldi theek ho jao aur India ko haraao (Uncle get well soon and get India defeated)”.

Interestingly, injured Yuvraj, with a heavily bandaged knee, was driving the car himself.



Dimpy Gujral, daughter held
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 28
The Chandigarh Police today arrested prominent fashion designer, Dimpy Gujral, and her daughter, Variti Gujral for assaulting the son of a former judge, Mr Darashjit Singh and his wife at their Sector 8 residence on Thursday evening.

A case of assault, rioting and criminal intimidation had been registered against the Gujrals.

The suspects, along with two other persons were arrested from the poultry from the poultry farm of Ms Jyoti Subramanian at Daria.

A police official said on getting a tip off that the suspects were hiding in the house of Jyoti, police raided the place. He said Jyoti, who was helping the suspect in escaping from the poultry farm, was arrested and released on bail.

On last Thursday, a watchman Bhadur, Dimpy, her two daughters, Neha and Variti along with their neighbour Akroop had assaulted Darashjit Singh.

Both the parties had a row over an issue of Dimpy’s dog.

The victims had alleged that Dimpy used to bring her dog in front of their residence and the dog urinated there.

Despite their repeated requests Dimpy did not mend her ways.



Production warrants for Thind in cheque-bounce case
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 28
A day after the ADGP (Law and Order), Himachal Pradesh, Mr B.S. Thind, was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in a bank fraud case, a local court today issued production warrants of the ADGP in a case of cheque bounce. The warrants have been issued for October 31.

After being arrested the cop has been sent to judicial custody by the CBI Special Court, Patiala. The ADGP would be brought to the court of the Judicial Magistrate (First Class), Mrs Hareet Kaur.

Earlier, the court had issued orders to attach the salary of the police officer for not appearing in the court in the case of cheque bounce filed by a Sector 9 resident, Mrs Aninder Kaur Jawanda. The orders to attach the salary are in force till the appearance of the ADGP before the court.

It is learnt that the salary of the cop has already been attached by the Himachal Government. Counsel for Mrs Jawanda said the complainant, Ms Jawanda, had filed a case under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instrument Act after a cheque of Rs 50 lakh issued by the ADGP following a compromise with the complaint. The cop had allegedly prepared fake registration documents of agricultural land in Chappar Chidi, Kharar.

Following the dispute the two parties had entered into a compromise and the ADGP had reportedly agreed to pay Rs 90 lakh to the woman. As part of the agreement, a Rs 50 lakh cheque of State Bank of India (SBI) was issued to Mrs Jawanda. But the cheque bounced.



Heinous crime against women on the rise
Geetanjali Gayatri
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, October 28
October 24: An unidentified woman found on the Ramgarh-Barwala road in a “drugged” state with little clothing on. Alleges she has been gang-raped.
October 26: A double murder reported from Pinjore in which a husband allegedly murdered his wife and her paramour and fled.

October 28: A labourer found murdered in the Industrial Area, Phase I.

Two women murdered, one “mentally unsound” woman gang-raped in the district in less than a week and a clueless police on the lookout of the accused in all three cases. In times when laws are getting more stringent in favour of women, the fate of these three women speaks volumes of the ground realities.

Today 35-year-old Seema Khan, a mother of four daughters, was found murdered in the Industrial Area, Phase I. First made out as an accident case, she was brought to her home by three persons, including a rickshaw puller, Nanha, who alleged that she had been hurt in an accident on the Zirakhpur-Panchkula road who left her and went away.

When taken to hospital, she was declared “brought dead” by the doctors who found that the neck bore strangulation marks while the stomach bore wounds caused by a sharp-edged weapon after which they informed the police.

Her husband, Imtiaaz Khan, said the woman had been working as a labourer in the Industrial Area for the last over five years. He even managed to locate Nanha and handed him over to the police. “We are proceeding on the lines of this being a murder. Investigations are on and a case has been registered in this regard,” a police official said.

Found in a miserable condition on October 24 on the Ramgarh-Barwala road, an unidentified woman, later identified as Renu, lies in hospital awaiting justice. Having stated that she has been gang-raped and thrown on the highway, she is awaiting a medical examination even five days later.

The doctors maintain that they are not the authorities to conduct a medical examination till the police asks for it. The cops investigating the matter emphasised that in almost all such cases the doctors carry out a medical test and send a report to the police station concerned. Between the two, the patient continues to suffer with no kith or kin to take care of her.

Doctors maintain that the more the medical test is delayed, the lesser likely is the evidence about the alleged rape likely to emerge though a case can still be made out if there is any supportive evidence in the form of marks or wounds elsewhere on the body.

The police justifies its inaction by claiming that the language barrier is a stumbling block. “Our police personnel visit the hospital everyday but we have had no luck so far. We have tried communicating with her in various languages but are still unable to comprehend what she says. Also, doctors have stated that she is unfit to give a statement. So, we have practically reached a dead end in the case. We know for a fact that she was spotted a week back in Ambala and was admitted to the hospital there but nothing more,” a police official says.

In a double-murder in Pinjore, the police is on the lookout for Ganga Ram, the husband of the Chanda Devi, found murdered with her paramour. Again, there are no leads to pursue since the police does not know where he came from and where he went. Again, the inestigations are not leading to anything substantial and the killer husband is at large.

Alleged rape bid foiled by police

While the police is on the receiving end with three unsolved incidents of crime to take care of, it foiled a bid to molest a girl in Raipur Rani block this evening. Police sources said that a forest guard, today, called two women, working as labour on daily wages with the Forest Department, to his house on the pretext of making their payments .

While one woman was given her payment and sent, the unmarried girl was asked to stay back and the door was bolted from inside. An alert neighbour called the police who arrived at the spot immediately. They managed to “rescue” the girl before anything untoward could happen.

However, later, the girl and her family refused to press charges against the guard. Finding itself unable to punish the guard for exploiting the labourer in the absence of a formal complaint, the police has decided to forward a complaint of acting immorally to his seniors in the Forest Department as a deterrent.



In Town

Ustad Asad Ali Khan
Ustad Asad Ali Khan 

Hailed as the old guard of the purity of the Indian classical music traditions, rudra veena maestro Ustad Asad Ali Khan is in the town for a rudra veena recital on an invitation of the Triveni Sangeet Sabha.

He will perform at the Law Bhavan auditorium on October 29 at 6.30 pm. Coming from a family of illustrious Beenkar exponents, Asad Ali is a strong proponent of guru-shishya tradition. He belongs to the noted Jaipur gharana and plays dhrupad in the ancient style.

Honoured with the National Sangeet Natak Akademi and Tansen awards, he has performed extensively in Afghanistan, Australia, the USA and European countries. 



Watch out


Another local hockey sensation Jaswinder, at present representing Indian Oil Company, Delhi team, will exhibit his stick work against Punjab and Sind Bank team in the 62 nd National Hockey Championship underway at the Olympian Surjit Hockey Stadium at Jalandhar on Sunday.

Jaswinder, a product of the then Sports Wing of Sector 42 Complex, now CHA- 42, was instrumental in enabling his team to clinch gold medal in the International Prime Minister Tournament held at Dhaka in 2002. Since then, he has been participating in many national and international tournaments from time to time and led his team (IOC) to bag medals.



Passing Through

 Dinesh Katoch
Dr Dinesh Katoch, Deputy Adviser Ayurveda, Government of India.

Q: How ayurvedic medicines differ with allopathic medicines?

A: Allopathic medicines fulfil the deficiencies for immediate cure while all features of patients are considered in prescribing ayurvedic medicines.

Q: Why has public started preferring ayurvedic medicines?

A: Health scenario has been changing globally and lifestyle of common man has changed thus ayurvedic medicines are in great demand, now.

Q: Do the ayurvedic medicines have side effects?

A: Yes they do have. But these are much less than those of allopathic medicines.

Q: What is the government doing to promote ayurvedic medicines?

A: The government has been encouraging the farmers to promote the cultivation of medicinal plants on a large scale.

— Bipin Bhardwaj



Bansal, Bahl set to bury the hatchet
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 28
Union Minister of State for Finance Pawan Kumar Bansal and his bete noire in the party set-up, president of the Chandigarh Territorial Congress Committee (CTCC) B.B. Bahl, have decided to bury the hatchet in the run-up to the December elections to the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh (MCC).

A snubbing by the party high command, forthcoming elections to the Punjab Assembly and changing political equations in the wake of the reported merger of the Chandigarh Vikas Manch (CVM) into the BJP, seemed to have forced the two leaders to patch up and put up a united front, party sources said here today.

Both leaders would address a joint press conference here tomorrow to outline their strategy for the crucial civic body poll.

However, political observers felt that given the ego clash between the leaders of two factions, the “truce” between them could prove short-lived. The allotment of the party ticket for the forthcoming elections could have a bearing on it, they added.

Sources said both leaders had been told by the party high command to “mend” their ways and put up a united front for the MCC poll. The party high command also felt that the performance of the party in the civic body elections in the city could have a bearing on the February, 2007, Punjab Assembly elections. That was the reason why the high command was keen on ending factionalism in the party.

The war of words between the two factions had been a routine affair. The friction between the two factions reached a flashpoint with the entry of Mr Devinder Singh Babla, a protege of CVM chief Harmohan Dhawan, into the Congress and his subsequent elevation to the post of the Territorial Congress Committee (TCC) delegate.

Mr Bahl had publicly condemned the appointment of Mr Babla, who is considered close to Mr Bansal.

In fact, it was in the face of stiff opposition from the minister that Mr Bahl was made the CTCC chief. Mr Bahl reportedly had the blessings of Union External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee. Mr Bansal, on the other hand, is considered close to Union Cultural and Tourism Minister Ambika Soni.



Alliance with CVM discussed at BJP meeting
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 28
The alliance of the Chandigarh Vikas Manch (CVM) with the BJP and the seat-sharing with the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) for the forthcoming elections to the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh was discussed at the core committee meeting of the party here today.

The meeting, which was presided over by Mr Arun Jaitley, party in charge of Chandigarh and Punjab affairs, also discussed the strategy to be adopted for the forthcoming elections.The position regarding the seat-sharing with SAD and alliance with the CVM would only be clear after November 3 when the draw of lots for the reserved wards is slated to take place, a senior leader, who attended the meeting said here tonight.

It may be recalled that the CVM supremo, Mr Harmohan Dhawan, had already met Mr Jaitley in New Delhi. While the BJP party high command reportedly wanted the merger of the CVM with the party, a section of local leadership had ‘‘reservations’’ about the merger and wanted only alliance for the MCC poll.

Besides this, the party had another worry on its mind with SAD demanding more seats in the wake of an increase in the number of wards from 20 to 26.



UT depts told to formulate action plan on funds
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 28
Different departments of the Chandigarh Administration have been asked to formulate an action plan to spend the funds in the plan and non-plan Budget.
The instructions were issued at a meeting of the heads of departments held yesterday. The progress would be then discussed in the next senior officers’ conference to be held soon.

In the last meeting of senior officials, the UT’s Finance Department has observed slow progress of the expenditure under various heads.

A review of the revenue receipts and recoveries till August, 2006, have revealed that under the head of Plan Expenditure, no expenditure was incurred under the scheme “Replacement of over aged buses”. It has also been stressed to preserve the timing and punctuality, besides increasing the efficiency of old buses for the success of grid system.

Under the capital head, it has been pointed out that a sum of Rs 2 crore had been diverted to CTU for the purchase of six AC Volvo buses. A high-powered committee has decided to appoint a consultant to examine the purchase of AC buses.

The Finance Secretary has observed that only a negligible part of the allocation of Rs 85 lakh had been spent up to August 31, 2006, under the scheme “Setting up of Cheshire Home”. It was informed that the grant of administrative approval was pending with the standing committee in respect of works relating to training-cum-production centre.

The slow progress of expenditure on capital side under rural roads and horticulture heads has also been pointed out. The Chief Engineer informed that adequate number of administrative approvals had not been received by them.

Under the revenue side, the plan expenditure was 28 per cent. It was short by 11 per cent as compared to that previous year.

Under the scheme for GMCH, it has been observed that only 31 per cent of the total allocation had been spent up to August 31. A serious note was taken of the unsatisfactory progress.

Under the funds for Sarv Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), it was observed that allocation of Rs 3.5 crore had not been released. Only a negligible part of the allocation was spent under special education, university and higher education. The funds of Rs 80 lakh under NPAG scheme could not be utilised by the Social Welfare Department due to the non-availability of sufficient beneficiaries. Only Rs 20 lakh could be utilised under the NPAG scheme.

No expenditure was incurred under major upgradation of Industrial Training Institute (ITI) and Chandigarh Crafts Institute (CCI). Only 17 per cent of the total allocation of Rs 23 lakh under revenue head was incurred in respect of the Chandigarh College of Architecture.



New dharna site may invite controversy
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 28
The selection of the new dharna site for rallies in Sector 25 may stir the hornet’s nest. Two petrol stations of Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) and Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL) are located just few metres away from the five-acre strip being developed by the Administration for holding rallies.

After the Administration decided to shift the dharna site to Sector 25 from Matka Chowk in Sector 17, the Engineering Department is busy levelling the land and making arrangements for drinking water there. Provision for public toilets has also been made at the site.

Sources in the oil industry said locating a dharna site near the oil depots was hazardous. The oil depots were vital installations and certain safe distance should be maintained. It is learnt that oil companies would be taking up the issue with the Administration.

At present, rallies are held at Matka Chowk. These lead to blocking of the road leading to the Secretariat and many important educational institutions in the city, much to the inconvenience of the public. Around 350 rallies were held there in 2005 alone.

At one point of time, the Administration was working on shifting the dharna site to Rajindra Park adjoining the Secretariat, but it was objected to by the Punjab Chief Minister’s security staff. A site in Sector 34 adjoining the market was also considered for being designated as dharna site. Certain objections were raised to the proposal fearing inconvenience to those coming to the shopping area and the office-goers. The Administration then decided in favour of the site in Sector 25.

The residents of colony adjoining the proposed site said since it was located along one of the roads leading to the cremation ground the road would remain blocked most of the time. “The Administration needs to ponder over an alternative venue,” said Mr Satbir Singh, a resident of Kumhar Colony.

Meanwhile, employees unions have protested against the change of dharna site. They lament it was a step to quell their democratic voice. Mr Makhan Singh, an employee leader, said if rallies could be held at Boat Club in Delhi, the Administration could also allow rallies at Parade Ground or some other location.



Sec 26 sabzi mandi is nobody’s baby
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 28
The vegetable and fruit market in Sector 26 here is proving to be a blot on the face of City Beautiful.
Even as the Chandigarh Administration claims to have launched a campaign against dengue and other water-borne diseases, the market seems to be nobody’s baby. In fact, a visit to the market can be a harrowing experience as a visit by a Tribune team revealed.

Scattered rotten fruits and vegetables greeted the team. In fact, the team had to wade through the slush to reach the middle of the sabzi mandi. With the drainage system ineffective at certain places, the threat of the outbreak of diseases was always looming large, Mr Satish Kumar, a government employee, alleged.

In fact, a major portion of the market seems to have become encroachers’ paradise. Scores of encroachers, comprising mostly vegetable and fruit sellers, squat on the open ground making the movement of the visitors difficult. Buying vegetables and fruits is nothing short of an ordeal here, alleged Mr Nirmal Singh, a senior citizen, a regular visitor to the market.

An unbearable smell emanated from the leftovers of the fruits and vegetables. It seems that there is no effective way of disposing off the rotten fruits and vegetables. The flies and the piled-up garbage provided an ideal breeding ground for flies and mosquitoes, alleged another visitor.

Commission agents alleged that despite repeated representations to the authorities concerned no action had been taken to clean the area and provide basic amenities. This was despite the fact that the commission agents paid a hefty amount to the Administration by way of taxes.

Meanwhile, an official conceded that sanitation needed much to be desired in the market. However, he claimed that anti-encroachment drives were conducted at the market at regular intervals to check encroachments. Besides, efforts were on to spruce up the market and provide basic amenities.



Voter cards from Nov 8
Our Correspondent

Mohali, October 28
The work of preparing photo identity cards for the forthcoming Assembly elections for the Kharar constituency will commence on November 8 for a period of one month.

The Deputy Commissioner -cum-District Election Officer, Mr Tejveer Singh, has urged all electors and representatives of political parties to join hands in the special campaign launched to have identity cards for the elections. He said the Chief Election Commissioner of India had declared that photo identity cards would be made mandatory in the Assembly elections.

Mr Tejveer Singh held a meeting with SDMs-cum-EROs , additional EROs and representatives of Hartron to review election-related work going on in the district. He said 24,000 new 10-cards had been prepared till date in the Morinda constituency and about 45,000 in the Banur constituency.

The Deputy Commissioner stated that the work on summary revision of electoral rolls had started in the district on October 23 with the publication of draft rolls in various constituencies. The last date for filing claims and objections was November 10 and the final publication would be done by January 3, 2007. He said bulk applications would not be accepted and incomplete forms would be rejected.



UT-Centre pact on drinking water
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 28
The Chandigarh Administration and the Centre have entered into an agreement to augment the quality of drinking water and to enhance the carrying capacity of tertiary water. As much as 8 per cent of the project cost of Rs 57.94 crore would be funded by the Union Government.

The agreement was signed by the Finance Secretary, Mr S.K. Sandhu and Commissioner, Municipal Corporation, Mr P.S. Aujla on behalf of Chandigarh Administration and Mr M. Rajamani, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Urban Development represented the Government of India.

The Chandigarh Municipal Corporation has sought financial assistance from the Ministry of Urban Development under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission for the implementation of developmental projects in the city. The Ministry of Urban Development will be releasing 25 per cent of the total central assistance admissible for these projects next week to the state level nodal agency constituted under the Chairmanship of Adviser to the Administrator.



Tribals highlight govt atrocities
Amrita Dhaliwal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 28
It is now one year since the Government of Chhattisgarh launched ‘salwa judum’ against the tribals of Bastar in Chhattisgarh, allege tribals of Bastar.Trying to counter a mass campaign at the all-India level against the ‘salwa judum,’ which literally translates into collective hunting, the tribals were in town today to bring to light the alleged atrocities by the Chhattisgarh Government.

A movement initiated under committee for the assistance of tribals affected by Salwa Judum (CATAS) saw seven members of the Adivasi Kala Manch, Chhattisgarh, singing their tribal song, tried to bring to light the plight of the tribals.

The tribals allege that Chhattisgarh is strategically important as it contains a lot of minerals and forest wealth, including high-grade iron ore, limestone, dolomite and diamonds etc. The government, they allege, is very keen to allow MNCs and Indian mining companies to operate from here. They allege that the government has drawn up a plan to oust them from their land and to make way for investments from the big companies. They allege that in May, 2005, the ‘salwa judum’ was launched by the government of Chhattisgarh and it was within this year that the Chief Minister went and signed an agreement with a US power company, Texas Power Cooperation. In June, 2005, an MoU was signed with the Tatas for iron ore mining in Dantewada. They allege that the government finds it difficult to implement these agreements as long as Maoists have their presence over there. They allege that people who were at one point of time punished by the Naxal movement have been appointed as special police officers after being trained and are sent to the tribal area as to hunt down the Adivasis in the name of eliminating the Maoists.

The tribals have already toured 12 states in the past two and a half months to generate awareness about their alleged plight and also to demand support from the people to not only denounce the ‘salwa judum’ but to also ask for help by giving monetary support, medicines and clothing etc.

“We are hopeful, and for us awareness for the issue is more important,” states Satnam, an author. He has visited the Bastar area twice and is a supporter of the movement.

In town today with the tribals who are part of the Adivasi Kala Manch, he highlighted their grievances. “The only crime of the tribals is that they have lent support to the Naxalites who have now spent 25 years amongst them. It is a state sponsored terror campaign.”

The tribals have visited Kerala, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Orissa, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, West Bengal, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Uttranchal, Punjab, Haryana and now Punjab so far. They would also soon be going to New Delhi and submitting a memorandum to the President regarding the same. However, no support has come so far. 



Another prestigious award conferred on Zakir
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, October 28
Yet another prestigious honour of ‘Shiromani Urdu Sahitkar Puraskar’ bestowed on the city based eminent litterateur Padmashri Dr K.L. Zakir by the Punjab Languages Department is an authentic recognition of his unique contribution to the promotion and propagation of literature in general and Urdu in particular.

The coveted award carrying a citation, memento and a cash prize will be presented to the recipients in this category, among others by the Punjab Chief Minister at a special ceremony to be held on the first of November at Patiala. Credited with over 110 literary creations in different languages and on diverse subjects of social relevance, the octogenarian Zakir is still not complacent but continuing his 65 years of triumphant literary voyage with unflinching zeal and commitment.

Born at Bega Benian in Pakistani Punjab in April, 1919, Kashmiri Lal Zakir had his education in Srinagar and Jammu before he took to teaching after a brief stint in journalism. Endowed with the intuitive wisdom and sensibility of a poet and a prolific writer, Zakir had penned novels, short stories, dramas, pen portraits of 70 creative writers or artists and books on his travelogues to the USA, European and African countries. His proficiency in writing encompasses in Urdu, Hindi and Punjabi with equal consummate ease. The myriad minded prolific author, Zakir has a following in alien lands, especially in Pakistan where his novels are a craze.

Earlier Dr Zakir was conferred the ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ at World Punjabi conference in Pakistan, besides the prestigious ‘Nuqoosh’ award. 



Youngsters get tips on facing interviews
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 28
British Library, Sector 8, Chandigarh organised a ‘Self-Development workshop on ‘Preparing and facing an Interview’ today for more than 50 young adult members. This workshop, while focusing on improving overall personality stressed on grooming young individuals for competitive corporate world.

According to the Manager, Mr Bipin Kumar, Manager, of the library is committed to holding a series of workshops for members on self development/improvement as they also increased involvement and interaction with members giving the library a chance to find out what the members wanted from them.

This workshop, designed to teach the correct approach to go through an interview dealt with techniques to structure answers to tough questions and how to give appropriate answers as well, was conducted by Gaurav Bhatli who is a Post Graduate in Applied Psychology and is working as Senior Area Manager, Training at DELL, Mohali.

British Library also used the occasion to announce the reopening of membership from January 7, next year, on a first-come-first-serve basis.



Rainwater harvesting key to stem water shortage
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 28
The rainwater harvesting is the only answer to meet the increasing demand of water in future, Dr V.N. Sharda, Director of the Central Soil and Water Conservation Research and Training Institute, Dehra dun, said here yesterday.

Deliversing the inaugural address at a seminar on “research and development issues in the rainwater harvesting”, organised by the Society for Promotion and Conservation of Environ-ment (SPACE), Dr Sharda said rainwater harvesting played a major role in stabilising crop production in the rain-fed areas, ground- water recharge, flood moderation and rehabilitation of the degraded eco system.

`Dr D.R. Bhumbla, former Director-General of the Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR), said that Sukhomajri project near Chandigarh laid the foundation of community participation in watershed management projects. The SPACE president, Dr S.S. Grewal, claimed that the rainwater harvesting and its utilisation could prove to be a panacea for the socio-economic development of the region.



Stress laid on consumer awareness
Our Correspondent

Mohali, October 28
As it was difficult for a consumer to fight with the big corporates, there is a need to get united and be aware. This was stated by Mr A.S Miglani, Additional Deputy Commissioner, at a consumer awareness camp organised by the Consumer Protection and Grievances Redressal Forum at Government College here.

He said ‘‘consumerism trends make us purchase many things that are not really needed by us but were merely linked to status in the society. Mr Miglani further said the corporate world was spending about Rs 10 lakh crore on advertisements and consumers got misled by these’’.

Mr Prabhakar Rai, Director, Bureau of Indian Standards, laid stress that Hallmark jewellery should be purchased. 



Charu wins rangoli-making contest
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 28
City resident Charu Midha bagged first position in a rangoli-making competition organised by YES Bank at its Sector 9 office. The second prize was won by Neha Sondhi, while Simranjeet Kaur was adjudged third.

In all, 45 entries were received by the bank during the three-day rangoli festival which concluded here today. Social activist, Ms Aditi Dua, was the judge-cum-chief guest.

The contest was eco-friendly as the participants were allowed to use only natural dyes and colours provided by the bank for tracing the patterns.

The bank’s branch head, Mr Rakesh Tandon, said the aim of behind holding the contest, as a part of the Diwali celebrations, was to encourage youngsters to take more interest in the traditional art of rangoli-making. 



Admn magazine ‘The Open Hand’ launched
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 28
The Adviser to UT Administrator, Mr Lalit Sharma, yesterday launched ‘The Open Hand’, a quarterly magazine of the Chandigarh Administration.
While addressing the gathering, Mr Sharma stressed upon the need for openness and transparency in the Administrative set up. The Administration has been publicising the policies under consideration, before taking final decision as this helps in providing good governance.

He said public scrutiny and openness were necessary elements of good governance. He called upon the officials to be open and to benefit from constructive criticism. 



Lions Club meeting today

Chandigarh, October 28
The second cabinet meeting of the Lions Clubs International District 321F will be held at Hotel Shagun, Panchkula, at 10.30 am tomorrow.
Around 400 delegates representing 135 clubs from all over Punjab and Chandigarh will attend the meeting. The work done during the past four months and the projects to be undertaken in the coming months would be discussed at the meeting. The district PRO, Ms Bali, said district 321F of the Lions International would celebrate Children’s Day on November 13 and 14 under the slogan “Build future, build India”. The clubs would adopt schools and conduct medical, eye and dental check-up camps on the occasion. TNS



Residents air grievances

Mohali, October 28
The first official-public interface was held at Nayagaon today to redress the grievances of the people of the area after the formation of the nagar panchayat.
The meeting was presided over by Mr Jagmohan Singh Kang, Minister for Animal Husbandry, Punjab. It was held basically to assess the problems being faced by the people of the different villages that fall in the new civic body and to make development plans, based on the feed back received from the residents. The officers of different departments were present. OC



Five boys assault bus conductor 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 28
CTU conductor Surmukh Singh was seriously injured in the head when five boys reportedly assaulted him on being asked to buy tickets. The incident took place on Bus no.11, when the assailants boarded the bus and refused to buy tickets.

Infuriated at being asked to buy tickets, the boys attacked the conductor with rods. The victim, who is admitted to the Sector 16 General Hospital told the police that the boys nursed an old grudge as they had to buy tickets on a previous occasion.

While fleeing from the spot, note books of two boys, Rajan Kang and Navpreet fell down. The SHO, Sector 19, Mr S.S. Bhullar said the notebooks did not contain the address of the boys.

Efforts are being made to locate the assailants. A case under Sections 323, 353 and 34 of the IPC has been registered.



Gold ornaments snatched
Our Correspondent

Mohali, October 28
Two incidents of snatching gold ornaments took place in a pocket of Phase XI yesterday.
Last night earrings of Mrs Mohinder Kaur were snatched by a youth who came from behind and escaped with his accomplice who was waiting on a scooter nearby. It is reported that one ear of Ms Mohinder Kaur, who was returning home after purchasing milk, was injured by the snatcher.

The police has registered a case under Sections 356 and 34 of the IPC in this regard.

In another incident, which took place in broad daylight, a gold chain and pendant were snatched today.

Ms Manjeet Kaur, the victim, said she was sitting in a vacant land adjoining her house with a relative at about 3 p.m. when a salesman who was selling some household items came to them. In the meantime a youth approached and inquired what the salesman was selling. He then walked a few steps away but returned and snatched her chain and pendant. He immediately sprinted to a point where another youth was waiting for him on a motor cycle and the two fled.

Intruder flees: An intruder, suspected to be a thief, fled after he was spotted by a security guard in Sector 71 here last night.

According to information available, the person left behind a country made pistol and tools needed to break locks etc.These were later handed over to the police.

Mr Mohinder Singh Mavi, general secretary, People’s Welfare Association, Sector 71, said the association had deployed private security guards in the area. Last night a guard on duty spotted a man sitting on the stairs of a house that was locked. When he put some light on the man with his torch the intruder hurriedly climbed the stairs. The security guard chased the person who was carrying a country made pistol and other tools. The thief even tried to fire a shot at the security guard .

Mr Mavi said in the meantime another security guard , who was on duty in another pocket, came and saw the person running away. He tried to chase the intruder who managed to escape in the darkness.

Mr Mavi said residents of Sector 71 felt insecure as the area was on the outer limits of the town. He demanded that the police should set a permanent beat especially for the safety of working women who returned after late night duties from the adjoining industrial area.



Missing boy: mother suspects employer
Our Correspondent

Mohali, October 28
Mother of a teenaged boy has alleged that her son has been illegally detained by his employer.
Ms Jamna, mother of Pawan who lives in Kajehri village, has complained to the police here today that her son was missing since yesterday and she suspected his employer in this.

According to information available, Pawan was working with a resident of Phase X for the past about two months. It is alleged that a sum of Rs 3 lakh was stolen from the house in which Pawan worked and his employer suspected that the servant must be involved in the theft. He, however, told Jamna that Pawan had left for his home yesterday and he was not aware where he had gone. A complaint about the theft has also been made to the police which is investigating the matter. 



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