C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S

Chit fund company defrauds residents of lakhs
Irate investors ransack firm's showroom
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 2
Scores of residents of Dera Bassi and the surrounding villages were taken for a ride by a chit fund company which closed its operations in the wee hours of today, defrauding them of lakhs of rupees.

The promoters of Pooja Home Needs on the Gulabgarh road, which promised people consumer durables and household items at 15% to 30% of the original price, allegedly fled from the township around 3 a.m. today, leaving the residents in the lurch. In fact the greed of the investors to own consumer durables at heavy discount cost them dear.

Explaining the modus operandi of the promoters, the investors informed that they were promised consumer durables, including TVs, refrigerators, washing machines and sofa sets at discounted prices. The people were asked to make advance cash payments and the delivery was assured in 15 days' time. In fact to win the confidence of the investors the promoters delivered the promised items to a number of investors, including certain influential persons, in a bid to woo more customers.

As the word spread that Tamil Nadu-based promoters had run away, the irate investors, who had deposited advance payment running into several lakhs of rupees, made a beeline for the showroom since morning. High drama was witnessed on the spot with the investors breaking open and ransacking the showroom. A police team, which reached the spot only around 10 a.m., remained a mute spectator.

The scramble for taking away the leftover household items, including TV, refrigerator and sofa sets, turned nasty with the investors coming to virtual blows. Fisticuffs were exchanged and the women could be seen pulling each other's hair.

In the meantime, the investors narrated their tale of woes. Ms Mamta, an investor, rued the moment she deposited an amount of Rs 40,000 with the unscrupulous promoters. Mr Tarsem Singh, who invested Rs 22,000 for getting a double bed, sofa set and TV, wanted the administration to take a strict action against the swindlers. "If the promoters were checked in time by the administration, the swindling amounting to lakhs of rupees could have been checked", he asserted.

The story of Ms Reena was no different, who had deposited Rs 19,970 for household items for her daughter's marriage. ''I was promised the delivery of items by December 12 but now everything seems to have finished,'' Ms Reena added.

Resentment prevailed among the investors as they alleged that the company operated right under the nose of the local administration and the police. The official sources, on the other hand, blamed people's greed for thriving on such business ventures.

Meanwhile, the SDM, Mr Narinder Sangha, said an inquiry would be conducted into the affairs of the company, particularly the issuance of fake PAN and sales tax numbers.

The Dera Bassi SHO, Mr Navdeep Singh, said a case was being registered against the promoters of the company. Moreover, a list of the defrauded persons would also be compiled by the police for the registration of cases against the promoters.



MC Poll
Objections against 2 ex-mayors filed
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 2
The BJP today filed objections against ex-Mayors Anu Chatrath and Lalit Joshi of the Congress for allegedly holding office of profits. Objections were also filed against Alka Chatrath, who is the covering candidate for Ms Anu Chatrath, with the respective returning officers.

While the objection against Ms Joshi was dismissed late in the evening, Ms Chatarth was asked to file a reply to the objection. A final decision will be taken on Monday on the issue.

Meanwhile, the candidatures of around 33 persons were rejected after scrutiny today. Seven out of the rejected candidatures are from the Congress, nine from the BJP, while the others are from other parties and independent candidates.

Ms Anu Chatrath had filed her nomination from ward no. 2 while Ms Lalit Joshi had filed her nomination from ward no. 20. The objections have been filed on the behalf of BJP candidates from these wards.

The objections state that according to Section 12 of the MC Act applicable to Chandigarh, any person holding an office of profit should be disqualified from being a member of the MC.

Addressing a press conference, Mr Satya Pal Jain alleged that Ms Joshi was the chairman of the Chandigarh Social Welfare Advisory Board, an appointment made by the Central Government, while Ms Anu Chatrath was a Panjab University senator and also on the panel of lawyers of PU. He further alleged that Ms Alka Chatrath too was on the panel of lawyers and should be disqualified.

Today was the day for the scrutiny of nominations filed by candidates yesterday. As many as 228 nominations were filed yesterday.

Meanwhile, canvassing has started in full swing by all parties. Candidates have started door-to-door canvassing. Meetings were held earlier today to decide the course of action by the various parties. Party manifestoes are expected to be released in the coming week.

The Rashtriya Janta Dal and the CPM have decided to jointly contest the MC elections. They will contest from eight wards and their candidates are: Manjit Kaur — Ward No-14, Vidya Singh — Ward No-12, Manovar — Ward No-11, Om Prakash Saini — Ward No-23, Surinder Kumar —Ward No-13, Sumitra Geeta Ram — Ward No-5, Anita Lohit — Ward No-20 and Ram Ashre — Ward No-24.



Residents allege neglect of parks, SSF Kendras
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 2
Ward 9 consists of Sectors 34, 35 and 44 (before delimitation). Here, Sector 35 has come up as a major market hub over the past few years, making it one of the happening places of Chandigarh, with the maximum number of eating joints present in this sector.

Area Councillor Harjinder Kaur of the Akalis will be contesting the MC elections for the third time and she hopes to win this time too! The ward, after delimitation has also been reserved for a woman (general) candidate.

Residents of Sector 34 are unhappy with the fact that they don’t have a Sehaj Safai Kendra and a community centre. Major D.S. Sandhu (retd.), general secretary of the Chandigarh Defence Colony Welfare Association, said that the area councillor only works for about two months before the elections. “Not much work has been done and internal parks were neglected. The SSF Kendras stink, as the sewage pipe gets frequently choked.”

Residents alleged that the monkey menace was not yet solved and they had to pay from their funds to get things done. The ward has about 36,000 votes.

Councilorspeak: Harjinder Kaur

It is my commitment to work for this ward. I have spent the entire amount of Rs 80 lakh of my ward development equally in all sectors in this ward. Sehaj Safai Kendras have been provided in Sector 44-C and D. The process is on in Sectors 44-A and B. The monkey menace, dominant in Sector 35, and re-carpeting of roads have been taken care of. Two tubewells have been installed and the problem of scarcity of water has been tackled even in peak summers. Pedestrian pathways have been constructed, and the Sector 35 community centre has got a new library. I was the one who took up the matter of cycle tracks in the city with the Administration. The issue of parking problems is a clear indication of the failure of the Congress. Paid parking should be done in an organised manner.



Depressed, PGI doc’s wife ends life
Another woman commits suicide at Colony No 5
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 2
Two women, including the wife of a Junior Resident with the PGIMER, today allegedly ended their lives.

The doctor’s wife, who was employed with a private bank in Bangalore, held no one responsible for her death in her suicide note.

The police, quoting the acquaintances of the couple, said she was depressed as she failed to get herself transferred from Bangalore to Chandigarh.

About the other woman, a resident of Colony Number 5, the police said she was mentally upset.

Sources in the Sector-11 police station said the 28-year-old, Sanjukta Dikshit, wife of Mr Beomkesh Dikshit, a Junior Resident with the Department of Medicine, PGIMER, allegedly ended her life by consuming some poisonous substance at their residence in the Old Doctor's Hostel, PGIMER, this morning.

The incident came to light when she reportedly called up her husband, who was on duty in the morning, and told him that she was not feeling well.

When he reached home, he found her lying listless. He also noticed vomit on the floor and some insecticide lying there.

Dr Dikshit rushed her to the hospital where she remained unconscious and later breathed her last at around 1:30 pm.

The police was informed about the incident soon after she was brought to the hospital, but her statement could not be recorded as doctors declared her not to be fit enough, said Inspector Puran Chand, the SHO of the Sector -1 police station.

Meanwhile, the police informed her brother, who is in Orissa, about the incident.

The SHO said the deceased, in her suicide note, had held no one responsible for her death and said no one should be harassed for her death. The couple had married seven months ago and she had come to meet her husband about a week ago.

Sources in the police said the acquaintances of the couple informed that she was trying to get herself transferred to Chandigarh and was quite depressed over the issue.

She was working as a Junior Economist with the Canara Bank in Bangalore.

The police said the post-mortem examination would be conducted after her family reached the city.

About the other incident, sources in the Sector 34 police station said Asha, 37-year-old, was found hanging by her son at their residence in Colony Number-5 this morning. Her family said she was mentally upset for the past few days and was also not going to work.

Asha is survived by her husband, Jawala Prashad, a home guard with the Chandigarh Police, a son and two daughters.

All of them were at work when the incident happened. Her son found her hanging when he reached home at around 11 am. The matter was reported to the police, which shifted the body to the GH-16.

The police said no one in the family suspected any foul play behind the death and the body was handed over to them after the post-mortem examination.



Ghaggar bridge’s repair starts

Dera Bassi, December 2
The Ghaggar bridge at Bhankharpur village, near here, on the Chandigarh-Ambala highway was closed to traffic from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. today on account of repairs.

According to sources, the repair work of the span no 5 was started today. The Project Director of the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI), Lieut-Col K.P. Sharma (retd), and the project head of the GMR Expressways, Col Sanjiv Puri (retd), were prominent among those present.

Meanwhile, commuters bound for Dera Bassi and the adjoining areas were inconvenienced on account of the closure of the bridge. The commuters had to use the Dera Bassi-Ramgarh road. Certain persons were seen travelling through the Ghaggar river while others preferred to walk over the bridge.

In fact, the tractor-trailer owners, who ferried the commuters through the Ghaggar, were delighted as they charged an amount of Rs 10 per person. Meanwhile, by 5 p.m. the bridge was opened for light vehicular traffic.

The spans of the bridge, which has outlived its utility, are needed to be “lifted up” with the help of jacks. The bridge would be closed to traffic on the days the repair work for the “rehabilitation” of the bridge was in progress, sources added. — TNS



Students’ drowning: families in dilemma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 2
The families of two boys, Davinder Sharma and Gurwinder Singh, who had gone missing from Marina Beach, Chennai, on November 23 during a trip to the city, are still in a dilemma about the fate of their children.

Much to their disappointment, the coach Raman Kumar, who accompanied the 37-member group to participate in a national-level yoga competition there, did not give any reply to the calls made by the members of the families nor did he try to contact them. “The group returned to the city this morning and the coach did not bother to contact the families.

When we called him up on his phone, he did not pick up the phone. Later, we were told that he (Raman) would be available after 10 p m. It seemed that he was evading all phone calls,” said Mr Satpal Sharma, maternal uncle of Davinder Sharma. “Even the group members were not giving the clear picture for reasons not known to us,” said Mr Satpal.

Mr Satpal rued that another official Ravinder Singh, who accompanied the group to Chennai, was reluctant to talk on the issue.

Surprisingly, when TNS called him (Ravinder Singh) up to get information about the incident, he refused to speak on the issue. He even did not tell in which capacity he accompanied the group. “I have given the details to the families. Now I don’t want to talk to anybody” was the reply from this person.

Denying the claims of Ravinder, Mr Satpal said, “No official has contacted us so far. We are confused as we are getting different statements from the group members, which are quite contradictory”.

All attempts made by TNS to contact Raman proved futile, as he did not pick up his phone.

However, the families are still hopeful about the safety of the boys. The family of Davinder has organised ‘Gita Path’ at their residence at Bathonia village.



Watch out

Mr Akshat Mehta, Junior Research Fellow, University Grants Commission, Department of Public Administration, Panjab University, Chandigarh, has been invited to present his doctoral proposal entitled “Regulatory Governance in the Deregulated Telecom Sector: An Assessment of the Role of Telecom Regulatory Authority of India” in the Network of Asia-Pacific Schools and Institutes of Public Administration and Governance (NAPSIPAG) Doctoral Colloquium to be held at Wesley College, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia tomorrow. He is among the 21 participants from the Asia-Pacific countries who have been invited to present their doctoral proposals in the Colloquium.



In Town

Hailing from Ludhiana, now settled in Mumbai, Arun Bakshi is an actor, singer and music director. His interest in theatre took him all the way to Bollywood, and he shot to fame with Punjabi song “Bol mitti de bawaya”.

He is visiting Chandigarh on a tour for promoting Nagma-Raj Babbar starrer Punjabi movie “Ek Jind Ek Jaan”. Though he is playing the role of Nagma’s father in the movie, he has crooned a song for the hero in the movie. The song’s music has also been directed by him.



Passing Through

What brings you to the city?

I have come to the city for the second time to participate in Agro Tech 2006. I hope to learn from the advanced agri-technology here and try and implement it in Pakistan.

What has impressed you the most in this agri fair?

I am truly impressed with the success of BT cotton in India. Although we have introduced BT cotton in Pakistan, it is presently sown on a small area. We would like to replicate India’s success in our country. The contribution of international companies in the success of the Indian agriculture, too, is a learning lesson for us.

How has the Indian potato seed been accepted in Pakistan?

This has really enthused farmers and 10,000 bags of this seed have been exported there. I only hope that political will is there to create cold chain transportation between India and Pakistan, so that the food exports could see a major increase.

 — By Ruchika M. Khanna



British planned jail for ‘lesser-tainted’ on banks of Ghaggar
Sanjeev Singh Bariana
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 2
During the times when the British transported the politically damned and hardcore criminals penalised for heinous crimes to Andaman and Nicobar islands, there was a parallel move to rehabilitate the lesser-tainted ones in ‘Star Jail’ on the banks of the Ghaggar adjoining Chandigarh.

Besides engaging them in quarrying, prisoners would have enjoyed the benefits of education, recreation and other sports. The draft proposal of the Quarry Camp Jail was etched on the paper by Lt-Col F.A. Barker, Inspector-General of Prisons, Punjab, in August 1938. The 350- prisoners jail would have been erected by a team of 100 convicts. After the completion of the Jail term, the inmates would have engaged in quarrying to make the project a self-sufficient venture.

The Tribune is in possession of letters exchanged between the Inspector-General of Prisons, Punjab, and the Deputy Secretary, Punjab, in 1938.

“The prisoners would be carefully selected and would have to make a solemn promise that no one tries to escape. As soon as their day’s manual labour is done, they would have access to primary education, lectures, radio, sports and singing. I would also not object to their being given cigarettes after the evening meals,” the official communication said.

The sites under consideration were the military camping grounds, on either side of the railway station, cultivated ground along side the railway station along the Ambala-Kalka road, and old bed of the Ghaggar from where the stone is evacuated. The river bed along the Ghaggar was thought to be the best area because it was on a government land and also could be used as an effective workplace.

Mr V.B. Stainton, Deputy Secretary, Punjab, replied” should this scheme work, it may provide necessary relief to overcrowding at present existing in Punjab jails”. Certain apprehensions, however, were expressed regarding financing.

Colonel Barker, in his reply, underlined the “significance for establishing the proposed camp jail, which will be the first of its kind in India and, in consequence termed ‘Star Jail’. It is to provide approximately 350 young adults casuals with a good form of hard labour in the open air accompanied with other reformative aspects, such as education, rural upliftment lectures, wireless, recreation, etc”.



Agro Tech fails to enthuse small and medium farmers
Ruchika M. Khanna
Tribune News Service

K.S. Gill
K.S. Gill

Kuldeep Singh
Kuldeep Singh

Joginder Singh
Joginder Singh

Ajmer Singh
Ajmer Singh

Chandigarh, December 2
The sophisticated and ultra-modern farm machinery on display at Agro Tech 2006, has failed to enthuse farmers from Punjab and Haryana. With fragmented land holdings and indebtedness amongst the already over- mechanised farming community, farmers visiting the fair felt that the agri-exposition had little to offer them.

The fair, which began yesterday, has turned out to be more of an agri-business event, with very few farmers coming in to participate. But even those farmers who visited the fair - courtesy sponsored trips by Agriculture departments and certain NGOs roped in by the organisers- felt that farm machinery and tractors on display, were meant only for those landlords with huge land holdings.

With an annual average increase in cost of inputs of over 17 per cent, and production having reached a plateau, small farmers visiting the fair, felt that the agri-industry had failed to address their issues. Mr Kapoor Singh Gill, a progressive farmer from Garibnagri villagers in Ludhiana, said farm mechanisation suggested by various international companies participating in the fair, would require an additional cost of Rs 15- 20 lakh. “No small or medium farmer in Punjab can afford to spend this money on buying new machinery. Also, the machinery on display can be used only on huge land holdings,” he rued.

Though some tractor manufacturers have displayed small tractors ( with 50 HP and 35 HP), these manufacturers have launched larger variants of tractors with four wheel drives, which small and medium farmers cannot afford to buy. Joginder Singh, who has a six acre land in village Badsoi near Kaithal, said the price of the farm machinery on display were very steep and only meant for those farmers with over 30 acres of land. “The tractor industry in North India has been showing a negative growth. The farmers here only need small tractors. The exposition could have offered more of agri-extension services than the emphasis on farm machinery and implements,” he said.

There were others like Ajmer Singh of village Thathibhai near Moga, who said they were here to see farm machinery and buy it, not only for use in their own farms, but to rent it out to others. “The average land holding in our village is 15 acre and no one can afford to buy combine harvesters, because most of the farmers are already under debt. I am here to buy a harvester, so that I can earn money by harvesting other farmers’ fields and earn additional money,” he said.

But not everybody was complaining. Farmers with larger agricultural lands, like Kuldeep Singh of Kanakwal village in Mansa, said that the fair was a perfect opportunity to update oneself about the latest in farm technology. “Also, small agricultural implements and hybrid seeds and cattle and poultry feed exposition have a lot to offer,” he added.



Farmers ask questions, get answers
Maneesh Chhibber

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 2
Farmers, want to know about future trading, commodity exchanges, using the Internet to fetch a better price for your products? If the answer is yes, then the place to be is the Agri Services section of the Agro Tech 2006.

Being held at the Circus Ground, the Agri Services section is one event which is drawing the most number of farmers, more than even the main venue.

The reason being that this is one place where farmers are receiving information about the latest trends in the farming sector. Experts from Punjab Agricultural University (PAU), Ludhiana, and various companies associated with the agriculture sector are there to help them.

Narinder Singh, a farmer from Nakodar, whom a non-government organisation had brought to the event, wanted to know if he could get a better price for his crop if he went to an agent or should he himself try to negotiate a price on the Internet through his IT-savvy son? Another farmer asked, if the big companies entering the farm sector can be trusted not to play with the interests of the farmers? After short question-answer sessions, which witnessed diverse comments, and suggestions and observations by many of the farmers, the group broke up, but not before their queries had been answered.

While the main event - Agro Tech 2006 is the place where business activity is taking place, it is at the Agri Services venue that one gets to see how little a small and marginal farmer actually knows about the latest in the business.

While subjects such as rainwater harvesting, micro irrigation and soil management about which also information is being spread are old subjects, the experts at the venue were being asked a number of questions related to cash crops and contract farming. When a number of farmers expressed the opinion that there had been many instances of big companies taking farmers for a ride in the name of contract farming, the experts and some knowledgeable farmers, talked of the need for a regulatory mechanism to check such aberrations.

Incidentally, kisan ghostis are again a major attraction at the venue.



Chinese delegates visit Agro Tech
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 2
A delegation from China led by Mr Cheng Jingshun, Assistant President of Hebei University, Academy of Agriculture and Forestry Science, visited Agro Tech 2006.

The delegates were here to establish an Indo - Sino cooperation in crop variety exchanges and scientific exchanges in agriculture.

Mr Cheng Jingshun said that the Chinese Government was keeping a control so that the area under agriculture was not lost to rapid industrialisation. “Science and technology is being used to develop more high-yielding varieties of food crops,” he said.

BT cotton pangs

Farmers from Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan and some parts of Uttar Pradesh were seen queuing up at the Bt cotton stalls in the Biotechnology hall. The farmers were seen complaining about the huge sale of spurious Bt Cotton seeds and the poor yield. They were also seen making inquiries about agents near their hometowns to buy seeds.

Pak farmers’ delegation

A delegation of the Farmers Association, Pakistan, led by Mr Afaq Tewana, was awed by the great technological advancements in Indian agriculture. They said that though agriculture in Pakistan contributed 28 per cent to the country’s GDP, they were at least 10 years behind in research and development and in attracting international companies in agri industry.

Seminars held

The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) today held an international conference on “Policy Planning and Infrastructure Development in the Dairy Industry”. The conference focussed on a number of areas including the training of the unorganised sector, impetus to research and extension for livestock development and improving productivity of milch animals.

Mr P. Steinkamp, Factory Manager, Nestle India, shared the inside story of the biggest processor of milk in the world and said that the livestock contribution to the GDP can increase through qualitative improvement in the breed.

Dr G.R. Patil, Joint Director (Academic), National Dairy Research Institute, said, “Globalisation can lead to an increased trade in dairy products.”

Another seminar was organised on contract farming, where it was felt that contract farming can help in introduction of new cultivars and varieties, new and improved agronomic practices and change in cropping patterns. Mr Hardeep Singh, Chairman, Cargill India, stated that there should be consistency and consolidation of produce with predictable prices.



Civilised in a tizzy as ‘wild guest’ comes calling
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, December 2
A female sambar strayed into a Sector-7 house here today, leaving the family shocked at having an “unwanted guest”.

The family informed the police control room about the ‘visitor’, asking them to come and take her away.

While a PCR reached the spot almost immediately, the Haryana Wildlife Department was also informed about the presence of the sambar in Sector 7.

Their team arrived on the spot and thus began the chase to catch her.

Being the daytime, the sambar, on her part, seemed to enjoy the chase and was not scared at all since there were no bright lights shining around in darkness.

In fact, she seemed to relish her morning in the city, prancing around in a wild mood and annoying the chasers to the most.

She took a quick tour of the entire sector before finally getting “shot” by the team, thoroughly exasperated by her wild ways and temper.

The police and the wildlife personnel managed to tranquilise the sambar after one hour of running around.

“We tranquilised her and took her to where she belonged. She was left to recover in the adjoining jungle,” an official of the Wildlife Department said.

The home, the sambar chose to visit, decided to keep mum about the details , maintaining a we-are-not-interested attitude.

Last night too, a male sambar had strayed into the city but was rescued before landing in any kind of trouble.

He was caught by the Wildlife Department’s team after he had raced through Sectors 6 and 5 into Vatika. He, too, was safely sent back to the jungle.

An official said that it wasn't unusual for a young sambar to stray into the city during their mating season which is presently on.

“The young sambars are usually scared away by the senior sambars in the jungle and they then stray into the city.

“Petrified by glaring lights and loud sounds, they invariably end up dead in road accidents.

“We are glad the two sambars have returned safely to their habitat,” the official added.



Play highlights environmental problems
Smriti Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 2
“Khuli Hawa ki Talaash Mein”, a street play by Sangeet Natak Akademi award-winner and noted theatre artiste Gurcharan Singh Chani and members of the CEVA Drama Repertory Company, was staged today at the Sector 17 plaza.

The play raised questions regarding development, modernisation and subsequent environmental degradation. Its focus was on “Tarakki”-development. It depicted how consumerism has given rise to enormous environmental problems, playing havoc with the lives of the masses.

Lot of props were used, such as garbage, plastic cans, bottles, tetra packs and polythene to create the desired effect. The play, within minutes of its opening, had a large gathering of audience encircling the artistes, leaving them little space to perform. Throughout the presentation, one could feel the energy levels of the actors, who were singing Bollywood numbers along with the dialogues to lessen the seriousness and add humorous punch to the play.

The play had some interesting characters like the conceited ‘Pollution King’ trying hard to spread his supremacy, ‘polythene’, ‘tetra packs’ and plastic — the trio trying by all means to establish their immortality and ‘Zindagi’, the life, trying hard to survive in the suffocated and polluted environment.

About the play, Chani said, “The model of development that we have chosen is bound to bring along with it thousands of problems pertaining to corruption, social issues and environmental hazards”.

The play, whose 50 shows have been done, would be staged at National Theatre Festival to be held in Kolkata by the end of this month.



Woman scribe complains against neighbour
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 2
A woman journalist with a local Hindi daily today lodged a complaint with the police alleging that her neighbour threw acid on her scooter at her Sector 45 residence, last night.

Ms Usha Kumari, in her complaint alleged that her neighbour, Swaran Singh, who lived on the ground floor of the house, had thrown acid on her scooter following a minor altercation on Friday night.

Narrating the incident, she told the police that she came back home at around 9:30 pm after meeting her friend. Swaran Singh argued with her telling her to park her scooter somewhere else. During the argument, he threw something on her scooter and in the morning she found her scooter partially burnt.

The SHO of the Sector 34 Police Station, Jagir Singh, said the police was verifying the complaint. The scooter would be examined by experts from the CFSL and further action would be initiated as per the finding of the report.



Sathya Sai Seva conference opened
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, December 2
The two-day state conference of Sri Sathya Sai Seva Organisation, Haryana, Chandigarh and Punjab, was inaugurated by Mr V. Srinivasan, All-India president of the organisation, in DC Model School, Sector 7, this evening.

Mr Rajinder Singh, state president, Haryana, Chandigarh, accorded a warm welcome to the All- India president and delegates from different areas of the states of Haryana, Chandigarh and Punjab.

The important aspect of holding the conference is to spread the message of Bhagvan Sri Sathya Sai Baba of “Love All -Serve All and Help Ever - Hurt Never” which imparts the realisation of developing minds of members of society with love and respect for the great Indian culture and traditions so that everybody grows up as self-confident and self respecting citizen of our country.



Patient needs financial aid

Chandigarh, December 2
Krishan Kumar, a 20-year-old resident of Nangla village in Tohana tehsil of Fatehabad in Haryana, has been suffering from renal failure for the past two years. He has been struggling for life at the Rotary Sarai of the PGI here for the past three months.

Though his mother, Ms Vidya Devi (40) has decided to donate a kidney, the doctors at PGI have asked the family to arrange Rs 3.5 lakh for renal transplant.

The patient, his mother and elder brother, who is handicapped, have been staying in the Rotary Sarai in the PGI and have been feeding themselves on the langar there.

Donors could contact Mr Krishan Kumar at bed no. 23-24 at the sarai. — TNS



Central traffic panel formed
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 2
The Chandigarh police has constituted a central traffic advisory committee to make suggestions regarding regulating heavy vehicle flow on the city roads which was deteriorating day by day. The rush was more pronounced on a number of roads and road junctions.

The first meeting of the committee will be held on Monday. The committee includes prominent citizens from different walks of life, besides senior officials.



Pollution Prevention Day observed

Chandigarh, December 2
Megha Sharma emerged winner in the painting competition, which was part of the Pollution Prevention Day observed by the Gulmohar Eco Club of Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 47 D, in the school premises today. Seema and Jai Kishan came second and third, respectively.

Nitin Kumar won the essay writing competition followed by Vandana and Nilesh who came second and third, respectively. — TNS



Jat federation to hold seminar
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 2
The executive of the Jat Sikh Welfare Federation at a meeting here today decided to organise a seminar on December 17 at Law Bhavan, Sector 37.

The seminar will deliberate on problems of the community in the 21st century. Prominent personalities, scholars and academicians will discuss the possible redressal courses to different problems.



BJP youth wing applies for “atta loan”
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 2
In a spoof on the rising prices, the youth wing of the BJP today applied for “atta loan” from a nationalised bank.

Youth wing leaders, led by All India BJP youth wing executive member, Vineet Joshi today applied for a personal loan to purchase atta by filling the loan requirement form at the Sector 22 branch of Bank of Baroda. Mr Joshi, who along with other BJP youth wing members went to bank, applied for the said loan by “completing” all formalities.

However, Mr Joshi lamented the fact that he had to apply for atta loan in the category of personal loans. “ I wish people could apply for the loan under some special category which can actually alleviate their hardships due to spiraling prices of atta, dals and other commodities. The UPA government had beaten all price rise records making common man’s life miserable, he added.



Muslims’ demand for ticket worries VHP
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 2
The local unit of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) today expressed concern over the demand of certain Muslim leaders for ticket in the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh (MCC) elections on the basis of community.

According to a press note issued here today, demanding ticket on the basis of community was an alarming signal. They also said the creation of the United Progressive Muslim Front for political gains by these so-called Muslim leaders was dangerous for the unity of country.

These so-called Muslim leaders were raising a hue and cry for their personal gains only and had no concern for the welfare of the countrymen.




Chandigarh, December 2
Mr G.C. Geylong is the Chief Regional Manager of the Oriental Insurance Company and not of Oriental Bank of Commerce, as was inadvertently mentioned in these columns yesterday.

He has now been transferred to Delhi. Mr J.P. Nahar has now taken over as the Chief Regional Manager, Oriental Insurance Company. — TNS



3 booked for duping Sector 48 resident
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 2
The police booked the managing director Rakesh Aggarwal, chairman-cum-CEO Kulwant Singh and central head Kulwant Singh of the Frankfinn Institute in Sector 34 here on the allegations of duping Mr Sandeep Singh, a resident of Sector 48, of Rs 1 lakh on the pretext of getting him a job.

According to the police, a case of cheating, misappropriation, criminal intimidation and criminal conspiracy under Sections 420, 406, 506 and 120-B of the Indian Penal Code has been registered.

The amount was paid in July, but the accused did not fulfill their promise. Fed up with their attitude, Sandeep Singh had moved an application in a local court seeking action against the trio.

Smack seized

The police arrested Dabbu of Burail village on Friday from Dadu Majra colony and seized 16 gms of smack from him. A case under Section 21 of the NDPS Act has been registered.


A pedestrian, Dashrath Singh of colony number 5, was hurt after being hit by a car (CH-03-F-7109) at the Sectors 44 and 45 dividing road on Friday. He was admitted to the GMCH, Sector 32, here. The car driver, Kuldip Singh of Baltana village, was arrested on the allegation of causing hurt due to rash and negligent driving.

Vehicle stolen

Mr Ankur Beri of Sector 38-A, has lodged a complaint with the police alleging that his Santro car (HR-12-H-3140) was stolen from his residence on Thursday night. In another incident, Mr Jaswant Singh of Fatehgarh Sahib District reported to the police alleging that his Bajaj Calibre motorcycle (PB-52-7688) was stolen from the PGI parking lot on November 29. Two separate cases of theft have been registered.



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