C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S

Future shock: Ministry’s no to IIM in UT
Shillong gets the honours
Chitleen K Sethi
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 8
The Ministry of Human Resource Development has refused the setting up of an Indian Institute of Management (IIM) in Chandigarh, leaving the city Administration high and dry. The ministry has decided to set up the seventh IIM of the country in Shillong.

The move comes as a virtual shock to the Chandigarh Administration officials who were hoping that the city would be chosen as the Government of India’s next site for the setting up of the premier management institute. In February last year, the Education Department had forwarded a proposal in this regard to the technical education wing of the ministry for consideration. However, after the passage of almost a year, there has been no response from the ministry.

While the Chandigarh Administration was awaiting a response, its claim had got a shot in the arm on September 27 last year when Union Minister for Human Resource Development Arjun Singh gave a nod to the setting up of IIM in Chandigarh.

The minister was responding to a request made by Union Minister of State and Member Parliament from Chandigarh Pawan Kumar Bansal. Mr Arjun Singh was accompanying Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to the foundation stone laying ceremony of the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research at Mohali.

The minister’s response that “utmost efforts would be made to ensure that Chandigarh gets an IIM” was received with a round of applause.

However, officials in the ministry are now clear on the decision. “The ministry has no immediate plans to increase the number of IIMs beyond seven,” said a senior official of the ministry today when contacted by The Tribune.

The other IIMs are located at Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Calcutta, Indore, Kozikode and Lucknow.

When questioned on the announcement of the minister, the official said the technical wing of the ministry had not received any communication regarding the announcement of the minister. “Neither have we received any information about such a statement having been even attributed to the minister. In case such an announcement was made, the Chandigarh Administration should have forwarded the matter to us,” he said.

Sources in the Administration, however, confirmed that a proposal had been sent in February 2006 and the Education Department was still awaiting an official response from the ministry. However, no fresh proposal had been sent following the minister’s announcement, which was widely reported in all newspapers.

Officials in the ministry added that such announcements are “routine” and are a result of an immediate response to some populist demand. He added that till these announcements reach the files, it is no value.

The proposal for an IIM had focused on the fact that Chandigarh was already home to a university and several colleges, technical institutes and schools. The Chandigarh Administration was, as a result, keen to see the city become home to educational institutions of excellence.

With the need for management personnel being constantly fuelled by an upward- looking economy, the gap between the demand for trained graduates and availability of seats in management schools needed to be bridged.

The Administration had even reserved space for an IIM in the Education City, situated on the Chandigarh-Mullanpur road in Sarangpur.



Nominated get VIP treatment
With mayoral poll near, wooing game on
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 8
With just two days left for the mayoral poll, the chosen nine are being wined and dined at the best places in the city.

Enjoying the spotlight, these nine nominated councillors are not letting this golden opportunity go, accepting all invitations.

According to sources, the nine councillors are yet to reach a consensus on their choice of mayor.

They are not missing any opportunity to listen to various parties’ arguments to vote in their favour.

A dinner was hosted by the Congress at the Khukrain Bhavan, Sector 35, yesterday where Congress candidate Anu Chatrath was present.

Councillors Chandrmukhi Sharma and Pradeep Chabbra were conspicuous by their absence.

Many other Congress councillors chose to stay away from the dinner.

Sources stated that a clear division within the Congress was obvious.

In the opposition alliance, Mr Harmohan Dhawan, known as an excellent host, invited all nominated councillors to dinner at the Hotel Mountview tonight.

The sources stated that nominated councillors were divided over whom to vote for.

They would take a final decision tomorrow afternoon during another lunch.

The sources stated that this time, the lunch would be at a nominated councillor’s house.



Speaking Out
‘Revamp cricket team, management’
Akash Ghai & G.S. Paul

Ravinder Chadha  
    Rakesh Jolly

Chandigarh, January 8
The disastrous show by the ‘Men in Blue’ on the South African soil has raised many a question on the credibility of the team as well as the cricket management. The whitewash in the ODIs and the 2-1 Test series defeat has also put ‘Guru’ Greg and senior players in the line of fire. With the biggest cricketing event World Cup 2007 round the corner, many cricket aficionados as well as cricketers feel that the team and its management need to be revamped to infuse a fresh life into the demoralised team.

Bhupinder Senior, National Selector, says the failure at South Africa made everyone disheartened, but it is all part of the game. Our team combination was not proper. Instead of injured Munaf, Harbhajan should have been given chance in the last Test. Though Sehwag is passing through a lean patch, he is still regarded as a threat by rival teams. The only topic for discussion in the dressing rooms of the various opponent teams is always Sehwag. Being a selector, I can say that Sehwag will be a vital cog in the World Cup campaign. He should play in the domestic circuit to gain his form. We should also show our faith in Greg Chappell.

Vivek Atray, cricket administrator and Director Tourism and Public Relations, Chandigarh Administration, says losing two consecutive Tests even after winning the first one was really a matter of concern. The defeats exposed the negative mindset of the team. Instead of taking on the field in the second Test at Durban with a killer instinct, the attitude of our players reflected as if they had no faith in themselves and were playing just for a draw. The selectors should also stop chasing big names. The non-performers like Virender Sehwag should be shunted out and the place should go to new talent.”

R.P.Singla, former Ranji player, chairman of the Junior Selection Committee, PCA, said, for the disaster too many factors were responsible. Firstly, the management should stop useless experiments. Secondly, the participation of every player (national) should be made mandatory in the domestic cricket for at least two months. The BCCI should also make some strict rules regarding the film and advertisements’ shooting schedules of the players to discourage them (the players) from such activities at the cost of domestic cricket or training camps. Non- performers and foreign coaches are no more required in the team. New talent should be tried to strengthen the team power.

Ravinder Talwar, Vice-President, Chandigarh Cricket Association, Secretary General, Chandigarh Olympic, says it is the dictatorial attitude of Greg Chappell, for which the Indian cricket has been paying a heavy price. We all are unable to understand his strategies. Instead of appointing foreign coaches, the preference should be given to Indian coaches. The reason is Indian coaches know all conditions prevailing here. They can understand the players’ game styles and potential better than any foreigner. The failure in South Africa is really a matter of concern. Rahul Dravid is equally responsible for the slide. Despite conceding defeat in the first Test, Grame Smith seemed more confident than Dravid in the remaining two Tests.

Dr Ravinder Chaddha, former national selector and physiotherapist of Team India, says that no doubt Sehwag has been struggling to get back in rhythm for a long time, but we should not forget one thing that he is a match-winner. As no one could come up with remarkable performance during the tour, Sehwag should not be singled out for the disaster. Even Dravid and Chappell could not be held responsible for collapse. Their work is to make plans, but it is the duty of all players to make strategies successful. There is a need to work on opening slot and other batting orders. Following the Chinese pattern of banning the players from working in advertisements or modeling assignments till Olympics 2008, our Board should also restrict players from such activities till the World Cup.

Rakesh Jolly, former North Zone and Ranji Trophy player, says that the batting line-up, Greg Chappell, skipper Rahul Dravid and strategies of both (Dravid and Chappell) have been proving a big flop. Except Saurav and VVS Laxman, no one delivered in South Africa. If Munaf was injured, why was he allowed to play in the last Test? It is a very crucial time as the World Cup 2007 is near. Instead of imbibing confidence in the team, Chappell has been making it weaker with his policies. In my suggestion, we should stop spending money on Greg Chappell and use that on preparing new players. Kapil Dev or Sunil Gavaskar are better options. Players should also analyse themselves and work hard to overcome their weaknesses.

Varinder Chopra, former Haryana Ranji and North Zone Vizzy Trophy player, says it was really disappointing to see the lacklustre performance of the Indian team. It was all because of unnecessary experiments and reshuffling of batting order by Greg Chappell. Remove Greg and appoint two coaches separately for bowling and batting. Sehwag should be shown the door. Gambhir should be given the chance to open with Tendulkar in ODIs. I feel the Indian team has no chance in forthcoming World Cup.



2 killed in road mishap
Tribune News Service

Lalru, January 8
Two youths were killed and two injured when an oil tanker rammed into a Sumo on the Chandigarh-Ambala highway here last night.

The accident occurred when the driver of the oil tanker, on its way from Chandigarh to Ambala, lost control and hit the Sumo. Two victims, Ashok Sharma and Shamsher Singh, were declared brought dead at Civil Hospital, Dera Bassi.



Passing Thru

How did you take to the sport?

Tennis courts and their environment had always attracted me a lot whenever I saw matches, whether live or on television. That attraction pulled me to the courts at the age of nine to play the game.

What are your strong points?

My speed and forehand strokes are my main weapons. I am very emotional and in my viewpoint, that is my plus point.

Who is your favourite player?

I like Steffi Graf, Justin Henin-Hardenne and Kim Clijsters. I try to strengthen my game by watching theirs on television.

How do you assess the standard of tennis infrastructure of Chandigarh?

Playing an ITF tournament in the city is great fun. Here courts, turf and facilities are fine. The people are very good. For sportspersons, such tournaments not only provide us with exposure and experience, but help us win new friends.

— Akash Ghai



SAD to change land acquisition policy: Capt Kanwaljit
Our Correspondent

Mohali, January 8
The SAD general secretary, Capt Kanwaljit Singh, today said his party would change the land acquisition policy to protect the interests of farmers if voted to power in Punjab.

Capt Kanwaljit Singh, who was addressing a rally organised by the Kissan Hit Bachao Committee at Sohana, said under the new policy, consent of farmers would be taken before acquiring their land and its rate would be decided by a committee that would comprise local MP, MLA, Deputy Commissioner and sarpanch of the area.

He said the Congress government had done nothing for the welfare of farmers.

Instead of waiving off Rs 25,000 crore worth of loan of farmers, they were being compelled to give away their land to the government at throwaway prices.

He said around 75 per cent of farmers had landholding below five acres. If such farmers were not given the market price for their land their families would not be able to survive the rising unemployment and prices.

The convener of the committee, Mr D.P. Singh Baidwan, said farmers of the area had not allowed the Congress government to acquire their land forcibly.

“Protests had been held from time to time and a dharna organised in this regard had entered its 965th day today,” he said.

He said the committee was grateful to the SAD for extending help to protect the interests of farmers.

The committee also extended support to the SAD candidate from Kharar constituency, Mr Jasjit Singh.

The committee general secretary, Mr B.S. Baidwan, said the main demand of the farmers was the implementation of land pooling scheme, under which farmers be given 1,125 sq yd plot in the residential area and another plot measuring 121 sq yd in the commercial area for each acre of land acquired.

He said farmers were aware of the various developments taking place and were rising above factionalism.

Meanwhile, the Punjab State Karamchari Dal has extended support to Mr Jasjit Singh in the forthcoming Assembly elections in the state.



I will contest only from Kharar: Bir Devinder Singh
Our Correspondent

Mohali, January 8
“I will contest the forthcoming Assembly elections only from Kharar constituency and not from any other place,” said Mr Bir Devinder Singh, MLA, Kharar, here today.

He said many speculations were in the air that he might be pitted against Capt Kanwlajit Singh, SAD general secretary, from the Banur constituency.

He said some local partymen were trying to conspire against him, but he would not allow them to succeed in their motive. He said all such speculations were wrong as he would only contest from Kharar because he had promised people of his constituency that he would be serving them. Moreover, he had worked very hard for the development of the area and had not left his constituency even for a day.

He said his claim to the Kharar seat was the topmost. He also said he had won the elections in 2002 despite certain partymen conspiring against him. Party indiscipline should be strictly dealt with, he added.

The MLA further said he could not be forced to contest from an area where he had not worked at all and he had already conveyed his viewpoint to the party high command. The party would have taken his consent in case he was to be shifted to some other constituency. He said some political conspiracies were going on and he was well aware of all developments. The decision as to who would contest from the Kharar constituency was to be taken by the party high command as it had been done.

Meanwhile, Mr Balbir Singh Sidhu, president of the Mohali district unit of the Congress, and Mrs Lakhwinder Kaur Garcha, OSD to the Punjab Chief Minister, have also staked their claim to the Kharar seat.



BJP rally today for dismissal of MC president
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 8
The BJP will organise a protest rally tomorrow to seek the dismissal of the municipal council president, Ms Manvir Gill. A rally and a dharna will be organised at the district secretariat from 11 a.m. by the BJP workers, led by the district president, Mr Ravinder Sehgal.

This was stated by Mr Sehgal at a press conference here today. He added that the BJP would also demand a CBI inquiry into the charges of horse-trading by the president's husband as also her dismissal as president of the Council.

At the conference, the district president also announced the 57 members of the BJP district executive. Mr Devinder Dhawan has been made the president of the Panchkula mandal and the district president has authorised him to make his own executive. The executive of the Kalka, Pinjore, Raipur Rani and Morni mandals have also been appointed.



Kamboj community flays SAD
Tribune News Service

Zirakpur, January 8
The alleged step-motherly treatment meted out to the Kamboj community by the Shiromani Akali Dal(SAD) in the distribution of tickets for the Punjab elections brought severe criticism at an emergency meeting of the Chandigarh unit of the All-India Kamboj Mahasabha, here today.

The meeting, presided over by Mr Nanak Chand Kamboj and Mr Amarjit Singh Thind, alleged that though the community had a population of about 30 lakh in Punjab, yet no representation has been given to it.

If the community is not given representation by the political parties, it will field its own candidates in the elections, the meeting decided.



Rodrigues unfolds action plan for Industrial Area
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 8
The UT Administrator, Gen S.F. Rodrigues (retd), today unfolded an action plan for changing the face of the Industrial Area and accelerating the pace of industrial growth.

Presiding over a joint meeting of senior officials of the Chandigarh Administration and representatives of industry here, General Rodrigues constituted an empowered committee with senior officials and representatives of the industry to ensure the implementation of the action plan. He also constituted sub-committees to suggest methodologies to be adopted for the development of Phase III of the Industrial Area, allotment of 121 vacant industrial plots and the implementation of the conversion policy.

He asked the Architecture Department to submit the project plans for different components within 10 days and adhere to the schedule of planning processes and implementation.

The Administrator asked the Chief Engineer to evolve an effective mechanism for ensuring quality uninterrupted power and water supply to industry besides improving infrastructure network of sewerage, sanitation, roads, streetlights, slum clearance and beautification of the area.



Colony residents cry for basic amenities
Tribune News Service

Zirakpur, January 8
Residents of Ravindra Enclave in Baltana are a harassed lot. Over three years after the colony was carved out by a private coloniser, the residents are still waiting for basic amenities.

In fact, the colony is a classic example of the promised amenities not being provided despite repeated representations to the Zirakpur Nagar Panchayat, residents alleged.

Mr Chandan Suri, a resident, alleged that the colony had no roads worth the name. In the absence of roads, it was difficult to pass on the "kutcha" streets particularly during the rainy season.

Similarly, with the civic body allegedly not supplying potable water, the residents were facing a lot difficulty and sometimes muddy water was supplied, Mr Suri alleged.

Sewerage is another problem, a resident alleged adding that only certain portions of the colony had sewerage facility.

However, official sources claimed that the administration was making concerted efforts to provide civic amenities to all colonies. Since the number of approved colonies was increasing with each passing day, providing basic amenities required huge financial resources.

The left over colonies were being taken up in a phased manner depending upon the resources at the disposal of the civic body and the demands of the residents.



Fauji Beat
Pay panels shouldn’t exceed their brief

Never has the service in the armed forces been so unattractive as it is today, thanks to the successive pay commissions, which have not given them a fair deal. Leave alone convening a separate pay commission for them, the government has not even agreed to appoint a member from the armed forces on the Central Pay Commission.

By applying the civil services’ yardstick to the defence forces, with little variation here and there, the pay commissions have not been able to do justice to them. Besides, they have often exceeded their brief and made laughable recommendations. For example, the Fifth Pay Commission had recommended that Rashtriya Rifles (RR) should be disbanded and the CRPF should take over their duties. Imagine what would have happened if this recommendation was implemented.

The Sixth Pay Commission has already started exhibiting its “babuism” by questioning the employment of uniformed personnel as batmen and on ceremonial duties. What the pay commission needs to know is that all armies of the world have soldiers as batmen who have their specific duties to perform. As for the ceremonial duties such as ceremonial guards and guards of honour, no army is complete without them.

The pay commission has also put a question mark on the huge residential bungalows sprawling over several acres with a large number of servant quarters. The pay commission ought to know that these old bungalows were built in the cantonments during the British regime. Having already outlived their life, they are in the process of being demolished. These questions clearly indicate that the pay commission members are bereft of any knowledge about the Army. It would not be late even now to co-opt a member from the defence forces on the pay panel.

From horse to armour

The golden jubilee celebrations of 63 Cavalry, which was raised on January 2, 1957, takes one back to the days when man and horse fought together. But they had to part company when the tank took over from the charger.

The East India Company raised its first regular cavalry unit known as Governor’s Troop of Mughals in 1773. After passing through different phases of history, it is now known as the President’s Body Guard and performs ceremonial duties for the President of India.

In February 1938, the first two regiments i.e. 13th Bombay Lancers and 14th PWO Scinde Horse began mechanising as armoured regiments. During World War II, it was planned to mechanise all 18 Cavalry regiments and also raise an equal number of new regiments. But the shortage of armoured vehicles came in the way. Mechanisation of the cavalry regiments was completed only towards the closing stages of the war and that too with the British and American equipment, which was being discarded by them.

Thus came the parting between the sowar and the horse. That their association continues to kindle memories is evident from the fact that the words like “Cavalry”, “Horse” and “Lancers” are still retained with the name of these regiments.

The Infantry Mess

The Infantry School, Mhow, with its insignia as “Bayonet”, is the oldest training institution of the Indian Army. It started functioning from Mhow in 1948.

The mess building of the Infantry School was constructed in 1926 to accommodate Non-Commissioned Officers (NCOs) of two infantry battalions, which were then located at Mhow.

When the College of Combat (now War College) was part of the Infantry School, this building was turned into the Directing Staffs’ Mess. On the College of Combat being carved out of the Infantry School in 1971, the mess was renamed as the Infantry Mess.

Monthly allowance

It is clarified that each bar to the Sena/Nao Sena/Vayu Sena Medal award for gallantry will entitle the awardee to the same monetary allowance as is admissible for the original award.

— Pritam Bhullar



Stray sambhar dies
Our Correspondent

Mohali, January 8
An injured sambhar, which had strayed into the town this evening succumbed to its injuries despite the efforts made by officials of the Wild Life Department to save the wild guest.

The sambhar was moving about in the town when a police control room (PCR) vehicle spotted the animal and informed the department.

Mr Parveen Kumar, District Forest Officer, said the animal must have been hit by a vehicle. It was spotted in Phase III-B 2 running towards Phase V. As the sambhar was in a critical condition, it died before it could be taken to a hospital.

There were reports that the animal had died as it was being caught by some residents who were not aware how to use the rope to catch the animal when it had entered a dustbin.

However, Mr Parveen Kumar said the animal had not died due to any negligence.

He said a postmortem was done and according to the report the animal had died due to grievous injury.



Fire in Sector 15 house
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 8
Fire broke out in a Sector-15 house here today, damaging electrical gadgets and resulting in loss of property to the tune of Rs 1 lakh.

The landlord, B.S. Khanna, was away when the incident took place.

Around 10.50 am, Mr Khanna’s brother noticed smoke emanating from the house after he locked the house following routine check.

By the time fire engines reached the scene, the fire had destroyed all wooden fittings, a computer, a television and some books.

Other household goods were damaged by the water used to control the fire.

It took around 30 minutes to put out the fire, sources in the Fire Department said.



PUDA staff hold protest
Our Correspondent

Mohali, January 8
Employees of the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority today held a protest outside the office here against the government move to set up development authorities for various towns of Punjab.

They raised slogans against the government and demanded the safeguarding of interest of PUDA employees.

They said if development authorities of various towns were set up, the existence of PUDA would be adversely affected.

PUDA employees were being sent to other development authorities on deputation, thus affecting their interest.

SAD general secretary Capt Kanwaljit Singh met the protesters and assured them of acceding to their demands if his party came to power in the state.



Woman claims ornaments worth Rs 25 lakh stolen from house
Ramanjit Singh Sidhu
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 8
A day after being discharged from hospital, Sector 23 resident Bhupinder Kaur, who was drugged by her servant, today claimed that valuables worth over Rs 25 lakh had been stolen from her residence.

Mrs Bhupinder Kaur was discharged on Sunday evening from the Sector 16 General Hospital after being treated for the drug administered to her by her servant. Accompanied by her son Amarinder Singh, she told TNS at her residence that they had employed Puran Bahadur, a Nepalese, about a month ago. He, due to his “hard work,” won their trust so much in a matter of days that they used to leave him alone at home. As her son had been rendered partially incapacitated by a road accident a few months ago, she had to take him for physiotherapy sessions during the day.

Talking to Chandigarh Tribune, Amarinder said that Puran was accompanied by another man, who was carrying a sword in his hand. After they drugged his mother, Puran started picking up things while the other unidentified man threatened him of dire consequences in case he (Amarinder) raised the alarm. Amarinder added that to save himself, he pretended to fall asleep. Later when they left the house, he tried to follow them, but on being noticed by them he went inside, as they again threatened to kill him.

Mrs Bhupinder Kaur, who has still not fully recovered, stated that they had withdrawn jewellery from bank lockers for the marriage of their niece. She said that though the exact loss was yet to be ascertained, articles worth about Rs 25 lakh had gone missing. Counting the jewellery sets, she said four expensive gold sets, including two of diamond, eight pendent, a heavy gold bangle weighing around 10 tolas, five gold rings, three diamond rings and various other articles were missing. She, however, pointed out that the accused had left all the artificial jewellery lying in the house, indicating that he carried out his plan meticulously.

They further added that Puran had unbolted a window in their room, before retiring to his room after serving them meals (laced with sedatives). Late in the night, he entered their room after opening the door through the open window and also used a heavy crow bar to break open the door of another room. The police had registered a case Sections 328 and 381 of the Indian Penal Code in this connection on Saturday.

In charge of the Sector 22 police post, Mr Charanjit Singh, said they have not been given details about the registration of the case. He added that efforts were on to trace the servant through the mobile phone he had stolen. “We have sent a message on the mobile phone in order to trace its location. The phone was being used, as the message has been delivered. Hopefully we will be able to locate him soon. Meanwhile, we have sounded an alert on the Nepal border”, he added.



Man held on robbery charge
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 8
The Chandigarh police today arrested Rajesh Kumar, a bakery shop owner in Sector 39 here, on the allegation of robbing a woman in Sector 11 in November last.

The police said Rajesh, who was travelling in his Tata Indigo car (CH-03-Q-6925), was arrested from Dhanas this evening.

Rajesh had been associated with Santosh and Lalit, arrested on the night of Tuesday last for allegedly robbing a Sector 16 resident of Rs 35,000.

The police said Rajesh, along with his associates, intercepted Shweta, travelling in her Alto car, in Sector 11 here on November 13 last. Travelling in Rajesh’s car, they broke the panes of Shweta’s car and robbed her of her mobile phone and money.

The police said Shweta today identified Rajesh as the accused involved in the crime. Rajesh would be produced in a local court for police remand.



UP resident held for receiving stolen property
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 8
The police today arrested a resident of Uttar Pradesh on the allegations of receiving stolen property. The police had so far managed to recover a mobile phone from him.

Sources in the crime branch of the Chandigarh Police said Vinod Kumar of Baghpat district was arrested from the city following a secret information. A stolen mobile phone was recovered from him. He had a shop named Rohila Electronics in Baghpat.

The accused used to buy stolen mobile phones from Ravinder Singh, alias Dolly, and his brother Harpreet Singh, alias Happy. Both brothers, involved in various incidents of mobile phone shops burglaries, had been arrested by the police last month.

The police said so far, 1,527 stolen mobile phones worth Rs 25 lakh had been recovered from the duo. The police had earlier arrested Himanshu Dang of Delhi and Sunny Arora of Kurukshetra for allegedly receiving stolen property. Vinod will be produced before a local court on Tuesday for police remand.

Mobile snatched

Mr Vijay Kumar of Sector 40 reported to the police that Birbal Singh of Mohali district had snatched his mobile phone from near Shahpur Chowk on Sunday. The accused was handed over to the police. A case has been registered in this regard.



Travel agent held for illegal railway ticket sale
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 8
A team of the Railway Protection Force (RPF) arrested a Sector 22-based travel agent for allegedly selling railway tickets on the black market from the Inter-State Bus Terminus (ISBT), Sector 17, this afternoon.

Acting on a tip-off, the team laid a trap and arrested Ajay Kumar of RK Travellers, Sector 22, red-handed while selling six tickets on the black market.

The team seized five more tickets from his office.

According to RPF officials, Ajay along with his accomplice Santosh Kumar had been purchasing tickets from the counter of the railway booking office located on the first floor of the ISBT and selling these to passengers at much higher rates.

A case under Section 143 of the Railway Act has been registered against Ajay Kumar, while Santosh Kumar is at large.

The RPF is working on the theory of involvement of some railway employees in the illegal sale of tickets.



Machine parts, gun stolen
Our Correspondent

Mohali, January 8
Machine parts from an industrial unit in Phase VII and a gun from a house in Phase V were stolen here last night.

The theft came to the notice when factory workers reported for work. They informed the owner that parts of the main machine had been stolen and the work had come to a standstill.

Meanwhile, Mr Jaswant Singh of Phase V complained to the police that a double barrel gun and other items had been stolen from his house when the family was out of station.

The police has registered a case under Sections 457 and 380 of the IPC.



Investors get relief
Ruchika M. Khanna
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 8
The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has allowed a 21-day relaxation to investors for applying for a Mutual Fund Identification Number (MIN number).

As per the new guidelines, those investing more than Rs 50,000 in any scheme, need not apply for a MIN number simultaneously when they invest money. Investors can apply for the MIN number 21 days after they invest the money in any Mutual Fund scheme. The offer is valid to till January 31.

It may be noted that the SEBI had made it compulsory for the equity investors to have an identification number in case their investment exceeded Rs 50,000. In order to get this number, one has to submit his PAN, photograph and a proof of residential address. The identification number is issued within 10 days of applying for the same.

As a result, most of the investors had started investing less than Rs 50,000 in order to evade getting a MIN number. Brokers across the city had earlier complained that investors in the tri-city were wary of getting a MIN number. However, after thousands of demat accounts in the city were frozen last week there had been a heavy rush for investors applying for MIN numbers.

Mr R.K. Ranga, Chief Manager, UTI Finance Centre, informed the TNS that everyday they were getting over 200 applications for getting a MIN number. “For both our schemes floated now - Long Term Advantage Fund and Capital Protection Fund - the investors can invest now, but apply for a MIN number within 21 days,” he said.

Mr T. Shiva Ganum, Branch Head of Canbank Mutual Funds, said the investors for their Can Multicap Mutual Funds, would also benefit from this direction. The fund had closed today and about Rs 1 crore had been invested from the city, while Rs 300 crore was the investment received throughout the country.

Since this is the fag end of the financial year, most people invest in mutual fund schemes as they are tax-saving schemes. With the relaxation of 21 days on the MIN number, these people stand to benefit.



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