C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S

Big chill: City records 0°C
Coldest day in Chandigarh in past 35 years
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
Freezing conditions gripped the city and the adjoining areas as temperatures continued downward slide today.
Chandigarh, which recorded the coldest day yesterday in the past five years, witnessed more chill today, with the temperature touching zero degree. No wonder the day was the coldest day in the past 35 years. It was seven degree below normal.

There were reports from the city of water freezing in pipes, hampering the drinking water supply. The Municipal Corporation admitted to severe disruption in the drinking water supply due to freezing of water in pipes.

At most places in Punjab, minimum temperature dropped below zero degree, making the cold unbearable. The lowest temperature in the region was recorded at Adampur in Punjab which shivered at minus 3.8 degree Celsius, six degree below normal.

Several places in Himachal continued to experience intense cold with Shimla recording the coldest night of the season at minus 1.4 degree Celsius. Temperatures in the higher altitudes of the state, the Met office said, were between minus 15 and minus 25 degrees.

The night story was, however, different. Recording a consistent fall in minimum temperature for the fourth consecutive day, Ludhiana was the second coldest place in Punjab. The Met Department confirmed the drop, which brought the temperature down to minus 1.4 degrees Celsius — seven degree below normal. With Ludhiana, Amritsar and Patiala also shivered from biting chill which is in no mood to relent. The Met office said winters might only get chillier.

At Patiala were a little better with the temperature falling short of touching the zero degree mark. Patiala recorded 0.2 degree Celsius. Even this was seven degree below normal.

The persisting cold wave ensured most places in Punjab recording the coldest night of the season so far. Places in Haryana also reeled under severe cold with Ambala recording a low of 1.4 degree Celsius — six below normal, Karnal registering 2 degrees Celsius and Narnaul recording 3 degrees Celsius.



Canadian cousin to Picky’s aid
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
A Canada-based maternal cousin of Picky Panwar’s, a cancer patient on deathbed whose Sector-10 house is locked in a bitter battle of possession, has come to the rescue of her sister.

Picky’s cousin Nargis, reached the city this morning and enquired about her sister’s health. She reached Picky’s house and arranged for some eatables and juices.

The controversy started after Picky reportedly willed her house to a trust and later her tenant, an advocate, staked his claim to the house.

Talking to Chandigarh Tribune, Nargis claimed that Picky had been very close to them, especially after the death of her parents, instead of her uncles and paternal cousins.

She said she had just arrived here and was more concerned about providing treatment to her sister than getting involved in any controversy.

“I am not aware of the facts and circumstances that led Picky to will her house. She is not in right mental state. She is unable to recall anything about the will. I want her to be back in good health before I can comment on the issue of will, if there is any,” claimed Nargis.

Meanwhile, Sam Panwar, a paternal cousin of Picky’s, residing in Sector 18, made it clear that nobody from the paternal side had been willing to claim the house.

“Not a single person came to her aid when she was younger. So, I welcome her will,” he said.

He, however, expressed concern on how a tenant could stake his claim to the house when he had stayed there on rent for just three or four years.

Sources also claimed that Picky was closer to her maternal side than paternal. She had been planning to migrate to Canada and had even written to her maternal aunt many a time. But her wish could not materialise.

It has been learned that Nargis has asked the office-bearers of the local chapter of Chinmaya Tapovan Trust, Sidwari, Dharmasala, to hand over the documents of Picky’s property, including a car.

Picky had reportedly willed her house and other assets worth Rs 5 crores to the trust at the office of Sub-Registrar, Chandigarh, on December 4.

A Master of Literature from Miranda House, Delhi, Picky was the only legal heir to her parents’ property. She had been living in the house ever since the death of her parents, when she was just 21.

Picky had been living on the rent payed by her tenant after she rented out a part of her house.



Fraud by cheque: Woman held
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
The local police arrested a woman working as an accountant in a private firm on the charges of duping the firm of over Rs 40 lakh by fraudulently withdrawing money using stolen cheques.

The SHO of Sector 34 police station, Inspector Jagir Singh, said the accused, Jagwant Rana (35) of Naya Gaon, was arrested from Sector 34 after a case of theft, cheating, forgery and criminal conspiracy under various provisions of the IPC was registered against her yesterday.

Her employer, Mr Hera Lal Mahajan, director, Rama Carpets, Sector 34, lodged a complaint against her, alleging that she had defrauded his firm.

Giving details of the case, the SHO said Mr Mahajan, in his complaint, mentioned that he had employed Ms Rana as an accountant about five years ago.

His son, Nikhil, in whose name an account was opened at the Sector 9 branch of ICICI Bank, went to the UK for higher studies some time ago.

In order to withdraw money from his account, he (Mr Mahajan) got some blank cheques signed by his son.

Mr Mahajan alleged that Ms Rana stole the cheque book and began withdrawing money from his son’s account.

The matter came to light when he checked the account and came to know that Rs 5 lakh was withdrawn on December 27.

The verification of the account revealed that over Rs 40 lakh had been withdrawn.

Bank officials showed CDs showing Rana operating the account.

Following this, the matter was reported to the police.

Inspector Jagir Singh further asserted that the woman, mother of two sons, was arrested from Sector 34 and a search of her purse led to the recovery of Rs 1 lakh.

The police said she further disclosed during preliminary interrogation that she had hidden Rs 8 lakh in a microwave at her house, which was also recovered by the police.

Her husband is a constable in the Customs and Excise Department in Sector 17.

Ms Rana was produced before a local court today, which remanded her in police custody till January 9.



Noida killings: At last, police to identify missing
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
Struck by the gravity of Noida killings case, the Chandigarh Police has started reopening files of missing children in the city. They also seem to be reacting to the mounting rush of parents of missing children who have been thronging alleged accused Moninder Singh Pandher’s house in Sector 27 in the hope of getting some clues.

The SSP, Chandigarh, Mr Gaurav Yadav, has directed SHOs of respective police stations to prepare a list of missing children in their areas. Today, the police even released photographs of three children, 14-year-old Moninder missing from Colony No. 4 since two months, 16-year-old Bunty of Ram Darbar missing since August 28 last and 13-year-old Vicky Thapa missing from Hallo Majra since August 28, 2005.

Not just those, the parents of missing children from Manimajra are also keeping their fingers crossed. Over the past two years, about six children have gone missing from Shanti Nagar and Mohalla Arorawala in Manimajra, where cases pertaining to missing children have been registered with the police station.

Representing the grieving families of Manimajra is Jeewan Kumar, an unemployed father, whose only son Kewal Kishore has been missing since February 8, 2001.

“Four years is a long time. We have left no stone unturned in locating the child, but no information has been forthcoming. Each one of us in Manimajra believes that our children have become victims of Moninder Singh Pandher and Surinder. I wish I could personally go to Noida to make enquiries. But I have no money,” says Jeewan Kumar, who has been unable to cope with grief.

His family members say he has begun to stammer - an indication of his disturbed mind. With no income and no hope, Jeewan Kumar and his wife have been languishing in their son’s memory. And by what they have seen since December 29, their fears are only growing bigger.

But Pankaj Garg, Kewal Kishore’s cousin still hopes Kewal might be alive. “He was a bit unsound mentally. I still remember that Kewal had left home to take part in a nearby nagar kirtan procession. He never came back. He might have become a victim of Pandher. He might just have escaped, who knows?” asks Pankaj.

Our Ambala correspondent adds: A similar story is being played out in Ambala, where guardians of several missing children are blaming Pandher for their misfortune.

And they have a greater reason to link Pandher with their woes. Alleged accused in the Noida killing case, Pandher had connections in the Ambala city, as his father Sampuran Singh had a transport business and also owned a petrol pump here.

A few years ago, Pandher’s family shifted to Chandigarh. Yet, a few people in Ambala say they had seen him in the city last December.

According to information, around half a dozen children have disappeared from Ambala city, Ambala cantt and nearby areas in the past years.

The police is now preparing a list of children, who have disappeared in the past several months.

It, however, rule out the possibility of a link between the missing children in Ambala and the Noida killings.



Moninder loves kids, can’t be killer: son

Chandigarh, January 6
Even as businessman Moninder Singh Pandher, the prime accused in the Noida serial killings case, has revealed vital information during psychological profiling and tests conducted on him, his Canada-educated son today said his father “loves children and could not be their killer”.

Defending his father, Karandeep Singh (25) said: “Ever since my childhood he has showered me with love and affection. He has even taken care of some of our relatives’ children, who too love him. Tell me which psychopath or paedophile, as my father is being falsely projected, would show such qualities.”

Karandeep, who lives with his mother Davinder Kaur at the family’s Chandigarh house, said his father brought him up like a “king” and always stressed on good education, as that alone and not money would help progress in life.

“My father himself has a brilliant academic record. Not only did he study at prestigious educational institutions like St. Stephens, he even reached the interview stage of IAS examination, but left it to take care of the family business,” he said.

Karandeep said the entire family had been “shocked and traumatised” after his father’s name figured as prime suspect in the Nithari killings, which have evoked a nationwide outrage.

“He was and still is a good father. I firmly believe that my father cannot do this heinous crime. I think somebody is behind all this. The confessions are being made under pressure, but I have full faith in the judiciary, which I regard as the best in the world,” he said.

Both suspects - Moninder and his servant Surinder Kohli - had on Friday revealed vital information during their psychological profiling and tests conducted at the Directorate of Forensic Sciences in Gandhinagar.

Asked about the unearthing of skeletons and body parts of children in a nullah in front of their Noida residence, Karandeep said: “My father and servant are not surgeons. Look how cleanly the work was done. In fact, the doctor living next-door should also be brought under the scanner.”

“This (the killings) seems to be the handiwork of some professionals and should be thoroughly investigated. I have stayed in our Noida house on earlier occasions. In fact, my mother too was there on June 5, but had to return to Chandigarh to attend to my ailing grandfather. If something fishy had been going on there, either of us would have got the wind of it,” he said.

Karandeep said life had come to a “standstill” for him and his family. “People don’t want to keep relations with us,” he said.

“Someone is also trying to falsely project that relations between my mother and father are strained, which is not the case. We are firmly behind him in this hour of crisis,” he said.

He said the family had deputed a private investigator to dig out the truth.

“We are going through a trauma. Outside our Chandigarh house, people come and raise slogans. What wrong have we done? Why are they punishing us?” he asked.

He also said political parties should not make this “sensitive issue” a “political propaganda”. — PTI



It’s official: Anu vs Harjinder 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
With suspense finally over, battle lines were drawn today with former mayors Anu Chatrath (for the Congress) and Harjinder Kaur (for the BJP-SAD-CVM alliance) filing their nominations for the post of Mayor.

The elections are slated for January 11. For the Congress, first-timers Ravinder Pal Singh Pali filed his nomination for the post of Senior Deputy Mayor, while Manjeet Singh Chauhan filed nominations for the post of Deputy Mayor.

Representing the alliance were former Mayor Gurcharan Das Kala of the BJP for the post of Senior Deputy Mayor and first-timer Sarita Devi of the CVM for the post of Deputy Mayor.

Candidates of both the Congress and the SAD-BJP-CVM alliance were accompanied by their supporters. Many former councillors were seen standing in support of Ms Chatrath, as she filed her nominations at the office of MC secretary Sarita Malik.

On the other hand, president CVM Harmohan Dhawan, city BJP president Yash Pal Mahajan, former MP Satya Pal Jain, SAD’s Gurpratap Singh Riar and other senior members accompanied Harjinder Kaur to file her nomination.

Interestingly, the race for mayorship is being seen by observers as fight between the Congress and the Akalis, which they feel will directly affect the forthcoming Assembly elections in Punjab. However, with both the alliance and the Congress having 12 councillors each, all eyes are now on the nominated councillors.

According to sources, efforts are being made to woo nominated councillors. The nominated councillors have already made it clear that they will support a councillor with clean image.

Meanwhile, lone BSP councillor in the House Ram Sumer Morya has declared that he will not vote for either the Congress or the BJP, as his party is opposed to both parties.

He said by giving mandate to the BSP, voters had made it clear that they wanted neither the Congress or the BJP and so he would not betray them.



Man charred to death
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
In a freak accident, a 25-year-old truck driver was charred to death this morning at the Railway Station after he came into contact with overhead high tension wires while unloading cement bags from a goods train.
According to the Railway Police, the driver has been identified as Lal Chand of Himachal Pradesh. The incident took place at around 10 am and he died on the spot.

The police said the victim climbed over the train from which the cement was being unloaded. He climbed the top of the train to have a look around when the accident occurred. Police officials, while ruling out any foul play said, in all probability the man was pulled up by the high voltage current passing through the overhead cables. He added that the current could even pull a person from as far as three feet.

Eyewitnesses added that as soon after the victim came in contact with the wires, his body was burnt and in no time the body fell on the roof of the train. The body was badly burnt in the mishap.

Meanwhile the police has initiated inquest proceedings in this regard.



Mohali MC fails to decide on Madanpur’s development
Kulwinder Sangha

Mohali, January 6
The Municipal Council has adopted an indifferent attitude towards the development of Madanpur village here, the rehabilitation scheme of which was approved over five years ago.

The general house of the council has met thrice after September, 2006, when its representatives were asked to take a decision on development, but the issue failed to appear on the agenda of the three meetings.

At the September meeting called by the Additional Chief Administrator of the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA), Mr M.S. Narang, Madanpur residents were also present along with the council representatives. The civic body was asked to take a decision on whether the development would be carried out by the council or GMADA. The then council Executive Officer (EO), Mr Amarjit Singh Sekhon, had said in October that a rough proposal on development had been drawn up which would be presented at a meeting of the civic body soon for approval.

The village, which is located in Sector 54, has become an eyesore with haphazard construction in progress and unhygienic conditions prevailing all over.

The council President, Mr Rajinder Singh Rana, when asked today about the implementation of the over five-year-old rehabilitation plan for the village, said the council had not yet taken a clear stand on the issue. He admitted that the civic body had also not sent any reply to the GMADA authorities in this regard.

Mr Rana, however, said the Deputy Commissioner, who is also the Chief Administrator (CA) of GMADA, had been sent an agenda containing various topics related to the town’s development, including that of Madanpur village. The village issue would be discussed at length with the CA and action be taken as suggested by him.

The rehabilitation scheme of the village had been cleared on June 1, 2001, at a meeting presided over by the then Housing and Urban Development Minister and Chairperson, PUDA, Dr Upinderjeet Kaur. It has now been taken up for implementation by GMADA .

Under the scheme cleared over five years ago a detailed plan for the redevelopment of the village in situ was to be worked out after a survey was carried out by PUDA. The total cost of development was to be apportioned among the land owners in proportion to their land holdings. Apart from this, land owners were to provide land required for widening or rationalising of the road network and open public spaces.

The scheme also provided that no cattle were to be allowed in the village area. Besides, all construction undertaken in future was to be governed by the PUDA rules. No residential plot was to be used for commercial purposes or purpose other than subservient to residential use.



More shopkeepers join protest against barricades
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 6
Joining issue with the businessmen of Sector 7, the market associations of other sectors have also demanded the removal of barricades put up by the police on the entry point between two sectors.

Maintaining that business in the markets is being affected because of the barricades, the shopkeepers have signed a representation seeking the immediate removal of the barricades, which hamper inter-sector movement.

The Panchkula Joint Welfare Associations Forum has sought the removal of the barricades failing which they would hold protest rallies and strikes to lodge their protest.

Earlier, in a meeting, shopkeepers of Sector 7 had strongly condemned the installation of the barricades on the road dividing Sectors 7 and 8. Chaired by the president of the Market Welfare Association, Mr B.B. Kochar, the shopkeepers had stated that since the installation of the barricades their business had fallen by nearly 30 per cent.

“People coming on rickshaws are forced to pay Rs 30 against Rs 10 before the barricades were put up. The customer can't be blamed for avoiding our markets. The police must watch the interest of the traders and remove these blockades,” he maintained.

The police had installed these barricades in an effort to curb rash driving and accidents at busy intersections. Under fire from not only the shopkeepers but also the residents the police plans to place these on all intersections of the city.

These barricades installed on the road dividing Sectors 7 and 8, on the Sectors 17 and 18 roundabout and on the Sector 11 road, between Sectors 2 and 4, 4 and 11, 10 and 11, 11 and 12, 15 and 16 also blocked entry from the roads linking the sectors.

While the barricades are intact despite all protests, the police has even sought the help of the Municipal Council and the Haryana Urban Development Authority to install railings to completely block the passage between two sectors. 



Tension brews between Sec 17 traders, parking contractors
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
Tension is building up between traders and some of the contractors of paid parking in Sector 17. Reason: the contractors, who have taken up the new contractors, are demanding three times more money to issue the monthly parking passes. “Against Rs 55 being charged for a month by the previous contractor, the new contractor of the CMC parking is demanding Rs 150 for a monthly pass”, said the general secretary of the Traders Association of Sector 17.

Pointing out that there was a disparity in parking fees charged by different contractors, the traders said while the contractor was charging Rs 55 for a monthly pass in front of the Empire Store, the contractor at the CMC parking was demanding Rs 150.

Some traders have refused to pay the amount being demanded by the contractors. To express their resentment, the traders are representing to the officials of the Municipal Corporation. 



Generators make Mohali fail pollution test
Our Correspondent

Mohali, January 6
All 16 samples taken by the Punjab Pollution Control Board from two different areas for monitoring noise levels created by the use of generator sets here have failed tests as the noise levels recorded were almost double than the specified limits.

The samples were taken by board officials at various intervals and with different parameters after complaints were received from Phases I and VII regarding noise pollution. Complaints were received from residential as well as commercial areas.

According to sources, samples taken for monitoring recorded noise levels varied between 92 and 113 decibels. The specified limits laid down during daytime is 55 decibels in residential areas and 65 decibels in commercial areas.

It is learnt that after conducting the tests, pollution board officials requested the Deputy Commissioner, Mr Tejveer Singh, to direct the authorities concerned to ask the offenders to shift their generator sets from residential areas which certain shopkeepers were using in the service lanes in Phase I.

The Deputy Commissioner was also requested to issue an order to shopkeepers to use a canopy while using generator sets so that the noise levels could remain within the specified limits.

Sources said that complaints were received from the House Owners Welfare Association, Phase I, and from certain shopkeepers from the Phase VII market that the generator sets used in these areas had become a source of nuisance because of the noise they generated.



Residents body threatens stir
Our Correspondent

Mohali, January 6
Members of the Plot Allotment Sangarsh Committee, Sectors 76-80, have demanded that they should be given possession of plots allotted to them at the earliest failing which they would be compelled to launch an agitation against the Congress party from January 14.

The members held a meeting at the Rose Garden in Phase III B 1 here today and later staged a protest.

They raised slogans against the government. Mr Sucha Singh Kalour, president of the committee, said that they had been allotted plots about five years ago by PUDA but the possession of these had not been given to them so far.

He said that the court had granted stay only in connection with 102 plots but the remaining 1200 acres of land was under the possession of PUDA, now GMADA.

He said that if the possession was not given to them immediately, they would be compelled to burn effigies as a mark of protest from January 14. The first such protest would be held outside the PUDA office in Phase VIII.



E-Sampark Centre inaugurated
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
The UT Administrator, Gen S.F.Rodrigues (retd), inaugurated the e-Sampark Centre in Sector 40, here on Thursday.
He also launched the sale of stamp papers in all the nine sampark centres located in different parts of the city. Another new service-the receipt of deposits of the Chandigarh Housing Board(CHB) has also been introduced in the sampark centres.

The e-Sampark centre provides various other public utility services as well, including payment of taxes, issue of bus passes, issue of senior citizen cards, issue of disability identity card, disbursement of pension for old persons, widows and disabled persons, payment of electricity bills, issue of birth and death certificates, payment of water and sewerage bills, community hall bookings, tenant registration, domestic servant verification and deposit of telephone bills.

It was informed that since the launching of the sampark centres in September 2004, Rs 536 crore has been collected as revenue with 23.84 lakh transactions having taken place.



Washermen oppose  demolition of ‘dhobi ghat’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
The work to modernise the existing ‘dhobi ghats’ began today among much opposition by the washermen of the old Dhobi Ghat. High drama was witnessed which lasted for more than three hours when the Municipal Corporation staff went to Sector 15 to demolish the old ghat.

The washermen resisted the demolition with the plea that they have not been issued any notices. A compromise was, however, later reached after the officials of the MC assured the members of the Dhobi Maha Sabha that they will be given first preference during the allotment of the new ghat.

Mr O.P. Popli, Additional Commissioner, MCC and other officials of the MCC, who were present at the spot, said that the decision has been taken by the general house to modernise the ‘dhobi ghat’ of the city. He said it was a pilot project and the construction would be accomplished within three months.

Mr Popli said that after the completion of the structure a committee would be constituted in which a member of the MC, Chandigarh Administration and the representative of the Dhobi association would be included to further chalk out the requirements and management of the ghat in a proper manner.

A letter was also issued to the secretary of the association by the Additional Commissioner later in the day, which clearly stated that while considering the operation and maintenance of the new ‘dhobi ghat’ preference will be given to the cooperative society of dhobis to be constituted by the working washermen.

Members of the Dhobi Maha Sabha Association stated that they had been asked by the MC authorities to form a cooperative society to represent their cause in the committee to be constituted by the MC authorities for studying the feasibility of installation of machinery and infrastructure. He informed that there were 16 allottees in this old ‘dhobi ghat’ in Sector 15.



Air Commodore Sud AOC, 12 Wing
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
Air Commodore M. Sud took over as Air Officer Commanding (AOC), 12 Wing, here yesterday. The outgoing AOC, Air Cmde T.K. Venugopal handed over the charge to him at an impressive parade held at the Air Force Station.

The parade, which was attended by officers and air warriors of the station, was commanded by the Chief Operations Officer (COO), Group Capt J. Chandrasekhar.

Lauding the dedication of IAF personnel, Air Cmde Venugopal, in his farewell speech, said that 12 Wing had risen to the occasion each time it was required to do so, whether it was for providing assistance during natural calamities or providing air support to other forces during exercises like Sanghe Shakti or Gagan Shakti.

Air Cmde Sud comes here after completing his National Defence College Course at New Delhi. An alumnus of the 44th National Defence Academy course, he was commissioned into the IAF as a fighter pilot but later changed over to the transport stream.

A qualified flying instructor, his appointments include COO, Air Force Station, Palam, Commanding officer of No. 11 Squadron and the Communications Squadron and AOC Air Force Station, Jorhat. He has been decorated with the Vayu Sena Medal.

Meanwhile, Ms Sangeeta Sud took over as the president of the Air Force Wives Welfare Association (Local).



6,500 liquor bottles  emptied near Ghaggar
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 6
The District Excise and Taxation Department, today, destroyed confiscated liquor recovered during its various drives. As many as 6500 bottles were first emptied near the Ghaggar river and then broken to pieces in the "stock clearance" drive of the department.

Carried out in the presence of the District Excise and Taxation Officer, Mr J.S. Chahal, Naib tehsildar, Chander Mohan, AETO, Joginder Rana and Inspectors, S.D. Sharma, Nawab Singh, Brij Mohan Sharma, the drive lasted nearly five hours.

The stock was intercepted in the city by the excise officer and the local police and was either on its way from Chandigarh or was coming from Himachal Pradesh. Six labourers carried out the task of emptying the bottles of Aristocrat, Royal Stag, Bony Scot among others, before breaking the bottles at a vacant plot in Sector 25 near the Ghaggar. 



Woman hurt in fall from first floor
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
A 27-year-old woman was seriously hurt after having allegedly fallen from the first floor of her Sector 20 residence here, this morning. According to the police, the woman might have hurt herself by accident. However, her statement is yet to be recorded.

The SHO of the Sector 19 police station, Inspector Sukhdev Singh Bhullar, said the victim, Tina, was rushed to the hospital, where she was declared unfit to record her statement. No visible injury was found on her body and she might have sustained some internal injuries on her back.

Her parents, who stay in the same Sector, did not doubt any foul play in the incident. Her husband is a peon in a government office.

The SHO said that action would only be initiated after recording the victim’s statement. 



Date for expenditure return extended
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
Candidates, who contested the recent Municipal Corporation elections, can file their expenditure return till January 8.
Today was the last date for the candidates to file their returns. Officials stated that since today was a holiday, they had extended the date till Monday. According to the rules, the candidates have to file the details of their election expenditure within fifteen days of the declaration of the results.

According to the election observers, only about 50 per cent of the candidates have filed their returns. Many candidates have submitted that their expenditure was between Rs 70,000 to Rs 80,000. The candidates have an expenditure budget of up to Rs 1 lakh.



Orchestra group involved in flesh trade busted
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
With the arrest of three girls and two men, the local police today claimed to have busted a flesh trade racket being run under the garb of music and orchestra group from a shop-cum-office in Sector 22.

Giving details, the in charge of the Operations Cell of the Chandigarh Police, Inspector Vijay Kumar, said the pimps, Kawaljit Singh Kohli (45) of Nangal, who at present lives in Sector 20, and Sunil Kumar (26) of Kalka, were arrested along with the call girls aged between 19 to 22 years from their office in cabin number 206 in SCO 1013-12 in Sector 22. Kohli also provided lodging at his residence and used to lure his customers by claiming that he could also provide foreign girls, including Russian.

The police said the flesh trade racket was being run in the city for over past 10 months. The accused had also opened a marriage bureau to cover up their misdeeds. The police got information about the racket and a team was constituted under the supervision of Mr Mohan Lal Verma, DSP (Operations Cell).

The police sent a decoy customer to the accused, who demanded Rs 10,000 for a night to provide a girl. The deal was ultimately fixed for Rs 7,000 a night and the customer gave Rs 3,500 in advance. As soon as the marked currency notes were taken by the pimps, the police team swooped down on them.

The girl, who belonged to the low income strata, told the investigating officials that they hailed from Mani Majra, Bathinda and Nangal. This girl from Mani Majra earlier used to work in dance bars in Bangalore and Mumbai.

Kohli used to run a flesh trade racket in Nangal before coming to the city. He had come to the city about 10 months ago. A case has been registered in this regard. 



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