C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Truce with depositors
SC rejects plea of Golden Forests

The Supreme Court today rejected Chandigarh-based defunct firm Golden Forests plea seeking to settle the claims of 13 lakh odd investors.

While refusing to accede to the request, the Bench of Mr Justice Ashok Bhan and Mr Justice Dalveer Bhandari said “We are not reopening the issue which we closed earlier." It also rejected its application challenging the auctioning of its properties by the committee.

The company said it was working out a settlement with its financiers and was ready to deposit Rs 1,000 crore within two months.

The three-member committee, headed by former Punjab and Haryana High Court Judge R.N. Agarwal, appointed to settle the claims said the offer of settlement made by Syals was mala fide and “their only aim and motive appears to be to stall and thwart the proceedings for confirmation of sale of its properties and delay the auction process.”

The committee in its report said in connection with the proposal for settlement moved by Golden Forests (India) Managing Director R.K. Syal and Director Pamela Syal, they were supplied with statements of maturity values calculated as on December, 2006, and June, 2007.

As on June, 2007, the maturity value worked out to be Rs 1,347 crore and Rs 1,42.71 crore when calculated at 9 per cent and 12 per cent rate of interest respectively, it said, adding that these amounts included investors, creditors and distribution/unforeseen expenses. Syals were required to establish their bona fides for their proposal for the settlement by depositing at least Rs 250 crore by way of demand draft, according to the report.

However, they did not deposit the amount and their counsel Anil Sharma, who had sought time for making financial arrangements had not even cared to communicate with the committee ever since January, 2007, the report said.

The report also stated that the panel had already conducted sale by auction of 14 properties of Golden Forest (India) Ltd.

The apex court had earlier asked the panel to explain the steps being taken by it in this regard and evaluate and auction the properties acquired by Golden Forest.— PTI

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College puts students’ future at stake
Smriti Sharma

Chandigarh, February 8
Though academic sessions are coming to an end at colleges, for 70 BCom II students of Government College, Sector 46, here the story is different. There have been no regular classes in company law and auditing since October last year for want of a teacher.

The students had to appear for their December examination without having been taught a large part of the syllabus. Marks of the December tests are counted as internal assessment in the final tally. What is worse, these students (who are in section B) fear that because of administrative callousness, they might have to sit in the final exams in April without having attended the requisite number of lectures.

The UGC lays down a minimum of 180 lectures to be held during an academic session for a course. However, the students allege that the college authorities have neither met the requirement of minimum lectures nor completed the syllabus.

The trouble began in October last year when the teacher concerned was shifted to the new Government College of Business and Commerce, Sector 19. Not even one third of the syllabus was complete when the teacher was transferred, allege the students.

Since then students have been given assurances that a new teacher will be deployed soon and classes will resume. But no one has been recruited so far. Students allege that repeated requests made to the head, Department of Commerce, and the Principal of the college fell on deaf ears till recently when the college authorities asked two other teachers of the college to accommodate these students.

As if making a mockery of the misery of these students, this arrangement of combined classes for the two sections has only added to the inconvenience of students. These classes were started only in the third week of January. Just ahead of the final exams the count of students attending college drops. Moreover, students are well aware of the fact that the internal assessment goes in January and prefer self-study to classes - which is another reason for their low turnout thus making the adjustment a futile effort. These students had to submit a project for the final assessment. Since few lectures were held, the students say they did not know how to complete the project.

College Principal Usha Jindal said ever since Prof Amarpreet Singh got transferred to Government College, Sector 19, many requests had been sent to the DPI, Colleges, for the appointment of a commerce teacher. “An internal arrangement was made for these students. Prof Mukesh Chauhan and Prof Ripan Grover were asked to accommodate these students. These classes were being held regularly and there is no problem at all,” he asserted.

Mr Pahlad Aggarwal, Deputy Director, Public Instructions, however, said no request from the college had come to him for the appointment of a commerce lecturer. “It is impossible that a new commerce teacher has not been appointed in the college,” he added.

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6-year-old girl suffers burns in school
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, February 8
A six-year-old student of Sarthak Government Senior Secondary School, Sector 12 A, here received 35 per cent burns in an accident on the school premises today. While mystery surrounds the cause of the fire, the entire Education Department has decided to keep mum in the matter.

The father of the victim, Mr Parminder Singh, said he got a call from the school around 2 pm that his daughter had been burnt in an accident and that he should reach local General Hospital, Sector 6.

"I was shocked to see my daughter in the hospital. Her face and arms have received the maximum burns. In fact, the teachers there told me that they recognised her from a piece of yellow saree stuck to her skin after they managed to put out the fire. She was excited about going to school this morning because there was a fancy dress contest for which she had dressed in a saree as a teacher,” he said.

The parents tried to enquire of the cause of fire but the school authorities failed to give any reply.

The doctors maintained that the patient was brought by some teachers who said though no fire had broken out, the student had probably stepped on some live wire and could have been burnt due to electrocution.

She was referred to Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32, Chandigarh, and is presently stated to be stable. The doctors attending to her at GH-6 said most of her burns were superficial and that she had been referred to Chandigarh after she developed slight respiratory problems.

“We had told the parents that if she continues to be stable, we will be able to handle her for as long as the treatment continues. However, the doctor realised that the victim was having a slight problem in breathing after which we decided to refer her to GMCH,” he said.

However, with neither the Principal, Ms Madhvi Srivastava, nor the Deputy DEO, Ms Nisha Sharma, and none of the teachers ready to speak into the matter, it is unclear how the child got burnt. They refused to comment on the matter and pleaded ignorance.

A visit to the accident site, however, revealed no clue of how the child was burnt.

Sources said the stage for the fancy dress contest was managed by a staff member and soon after the conclusion, the entire place was left unattended.

It was only after the incident that all arrangements for sound were hurriedly wrapped up. In the evening, a forensic team from the department examined the place to ascertain the cause of the accident.

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Man hangs himself
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 8
Unable to cope with depression, a 42-year-old man hanged himself to death at his residence in Manimajra last night. The incident came to light this morning when his brother saw the body hanging from a girder with a piece of cloth.

The police said deceased Harwinder Singh was a labourer in a timber company. A father of four, Harwinder was alcoholic. His wife was also suffering from some ailment and for the past few days, her condition had worsened.

The police has initiated inquest proceedings under Section 174 of the CPC in this connection. 

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Ryan: HC seeks CBSE views on special permission
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 8
Officials of the Central Board of Secondary Education, New Delhi, today appeared before the Division Bench comprising Mr Justices Jasbir Singh and Baldev Singh of the Panjab and Haryana High Court in a matter regarding affiliation of Ryan International School here today.

The Bench today took up various civil writ petitions filed by parents of students along with the writ petition filed by the school. The Bench verbally directed the CBSE officials to seek instructions from the headquarters for grant of special permission to the students of class X of the school to appear in the approaching matric examination. The next hearing in the case would be on February 15.

Meanwhile, a group 36 more students of the same class have approached the court for relief and the case has been fixed for a preliminary hearing before the same Bench tomorrow.

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Palsora murder accused surrenders
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 8
The third accused of the Palsora murder case, Rakesh Kumar, alias Kaka, surrendered before a local court today. The police said the court had remanded Kaka along with other accused Yashpal in police custody till February 11. Another accused, who is a minor, had been sent to the juvenile home.

The police said it had moved an application requesting for identification parade. As the accused refused to undergo the identification parade, they were sent to the police custody.

The police had arrested two persons, Yashpal and a minor boy, on Wednesday in connection with the killing of Bajinder Singh of Palsora and an attempt on his father Panjab Singh’s life.

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Strict HUDA rules cut banks’ gains
Only 70,000 apply for plots in P’kula, Karnal
Ruchika M. Khanna
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 8
The high rates of interest charged by banks and severe restrictions imposed by HUDA to control speculation in housing schemes have curtailed the income of banks this time.

As compared to Rs 1,700 crore financed by private and government banks in the last housing scheme floated by HUDA for 19 urban estates in Haryana, the banks, this year, have barely managed to finance 20 per cent of the amount financed during the last scheme.

Today, being the last date for submission of applications for residential plots in Panchkula and Karnal, the banks have failed to earn crores as interest.

Though the banks maintain that the main reason for the poor response to the housing scheme this time is because of the restrictions on number of applications that can be filed by one applicant, HUDA officials maintain that this time a large number of applicants have decided to put in their own money. Since banks are charging anything between 9.5-11 per cent as interest on financing an applicant, people have preferred to use their own resources to pay the booking amount (10 per cent of the total cost of plot).

So, on the last day of submission of applications, no chaos or long queues were seen in front of various banks in the city, Panchkula or Mohali. Senior officials in the State Bank of India and Allahabad Bank agreed that the number of applications for getting finance for residential plots were substantially less as compared to last year.

Some banks are now taking a flat amount for the plots (almost 10.5 per cent of the booking amount). However, officials in ICICI Bank, said though the applications received for availing the finance scheme was less, it was mainly because of the limit fixed by HUDA for not financing any applicant more than Rs 3.5 lakh for this housing scheme.

Panchkula Central Cooperative Bank officials, which is financing free-hold plots at the lowest rate of interest (9.5 per cent), too, say they have received less applications than expected.

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Piracy on the floor
Gagandeep Arora
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 8
Book vendors selling their merchandise smartly spread on the floor can be spotted in the corridors of the main markets of Sector 17, 22 or 35. Their merchandise includes books of Khushwant Singh, Amartya Sen, Paulo Coelho, Arundhati Roy, Jeffrey Archer, Sidney Sheldon and many others. The books that they put on sale are unauthorised replicated versions of the celebrated authors’ work. No matter what, but these booksellers are the ones who are increasing the reading habits among city residents.

Ms Pooja Arora, an avid reader, says: “These book vendors, undoubtedly, come handy whenever one thinks of buying a work of some famous author. Though it is gross injustice to the author whose works are being pirated, at the same time the book gets more accessible and wide reach as the original ones carry big price tags and the ones offered by these booksellers cost peanuts”.

The most significant feature of these unsheltered bookshops is the low price that they ask for these books.

Obviously, they are only interested in the cost of printing with a bit of margin for themselves and the printer printing these books clandestinely somewhere in Lucknow and Delhi.

These royal printers do not bear the expense of the royalty, the author’s legal as well as moral right. But why would a buyer bother for the author’s share or the fact that he is encouraging piracy, just like his callousness towards the pirated mp3 compact discs and movies that he enjoys. Who cares? Nobody.

How many books do they sell? “Earlier, when I started, the sales were quite less. But today, on an average I sell around 5-10 books a day”, informs a vendor in Sector 7, Panchkula.

Do Municipal Corporation people bother than? “Yes, they do. It is a part and parcel of the street business. But we, like others, try to recognise them before they get hold of us. And at times, when caught we are penalised,” reveals a vendor in Sector 17, Chandigarh.

And why police personnel of the area concerned turn a blind eye to them and let them carry on with their business is anybody’s guess.

The books with these book vendors are mostly the famous ones. The books that have somehow raised a controversy or have been rated as the bestsellers by the newspapers and magazines in their book review columns. It comes cheap to the readers who want to read the current top-rated books but cannot afford to buy the original prints. Moreover, with public libraries opening from 10 am to 5.30 pm during weekdays only, it becomes difficult for the booklovers who are employed to have access to them. Therefore, they purchase from these book vends at almost one-third the price of the original book and at times even lesser, unmindful of the piracy they are encouraging.

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Demolition drive in Panchkula
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, February 8
In a major demolition drive, as many as 30 unauthorised structures at 15 places in the periphery were razed to the ground, here today. The structures included factories, farmhouses, shops and residences which had come up in the past six months or so.

Led by the District Town Planner, Ms Geeta Prakash, a team of police personnel, labourers, two JCBs, Tehsildar Satish Singla and DSP Om Prakash, demolished these structures at 15 different places in the Periphery Controlled Area.

Two factories, one producing curb channels and another producing fly ash bricks, were demolished along the Morni road. The team of officials met resistance from the factory staff who tried to browbeat those present by dropping big names and maintaining that they had not been informed before. However, the team went ahead and demolished the structures.

Similarly, while eight shops were demolished in Moginand village and Kot Billa area, three saw mills, five dhabas and two residences were pulled down by the staff and JCBs in a joint action. Beginning at 10:30 am, the team continued its work till 5 pm, carrying out demolitions at 15 different locations. Two newly built farmhouses which had barely finished construction of a couple of rooms and the boundary wall were demolished.

Official sources said that the demolitions had been initiated after the encroachers had failed to respond to the repeated notices issued by the Department. Following this, the notices had been pasted on the walls and action had been initiated. 

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Pension adalat on Feb 20
Our Correspondent

Mohali, February 8
A pension adalat and pension awareness programme for pensioners and staff of the pension sanctioning authorities will be held on the premises of the Punjab Health Systems Corporation here on February 20.

According to Mr A.S. Khokhar, Deputy Accountant General (Pension), the adalat will be held by Mr Onkar Nath, Accountant General (A & E) Punjab and Chandigarh. Pensioners as well as pension sanctioning authorities of SAS Nagar district are requested to attend the adalat and the awareness programme.

All problems relating to pensions will be addressed in the adalat. Pensioners could make representations in this regard by February 15.

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MC panel recommends multi-level parking
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 8
The Finance and Contract Committee (F&CC) of the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh (MCC) has recommended the construction of the multi-level parking on the BOT basis.

The meeting was held under the chairmanship of the Mayor, Ms Harjinder Kaur. The Commissioner, Mr P.S. Aujla, and the F&CC members - Mr Jatinder Bhatia, Mr Kuldip Singh, Mr Rajesh Gupta, Mr M.P.S. Chawla and Ms Kamlesh - attended the meeting.

The parking will be constructed at the back of the Dr Sahib Singh block. The representatives of the IL&FS Infrastructure Development Corporation today gave a presentation about the background and financial aspects of the project before the committee.

The committee also approved the levy of property tax on the commercial area in the multi-level parking and exempted only the remaining parking area.

Meanwhile, the empowered committee of the Chandigarh Administration is expected to approve several major projects, including the widening of roads in the Industrial Area and provision of extra parking lots.

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Governor visits Palsora, Kajheri
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 8
The UT Administrator, Gen S.F. Rodrigues (retd), today visited Palsora and Kajheri villages to inspect the recently laid underground drains and sewerage connections to all houses with the existing sewerage system.

The work in Kajheri village has been completed at a cost of Rs 66 lakh, while in Palsora the cost of the project was over Rs 30 lakh.

Accompanied by Ms Jean Rodrigues and senior officers of the Chandigarh Administration, including Finance Secretary S.K. Sandhu, Chief Engineer V.K. Bhardwaj, Deputy Commissioner R.K. Rao, the Administrator went round the village and inspected the completed works, streetlights, water-drainage system and other infrastructural support systems.

Responding to the demand of the residents for setting up of community centres in both villages, General Rodrigues asked the officers to broad-base the concept by opening an online business and profit centre, equipped with vocational training facilities in different trades for rural people.

The officers were asked to ensure the enforcement of bylaws in regulating buildings and constructions in the rural areas and ensure that the owners of the houses give minimum basic standard facilities to their tenants for healthy and hygienic living.

He told them to deal sternly with the violators of rules and bylaws. He asked the officers to monitor the progress of different ongoing projects in all villages and complete them in time.

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Sub-Inspectors fight over kids’ spat
Ramanjit Singh Sidhu
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 8
Two Sub-Inspectors (SI) have locked horns with each other over a spat involving their minor school-going children. And the cause of conflict is nothing, but a minor altercation between their wards.

Sources in the police said it all started when SI Poonam Dilawari’s son along with two other boys hit SI Gurmukh Singh’s son in a school bus following an altercation yesterday. Poonam’s son, who is in Class VII, allegedly hit Gurmukh Singh’s son, who is half his size and in Class V.

Gurmukh’s son went home crying and narrated the incident to his parents. At this, Gurmukh Singh and his wife had a verbal duel with Poonam Dilawari and her husband. The matter did not end here. This morning Gurmukh Singh went to the school Headmaster, Mr A.B. Singh Sidhu, and lodged a complaint against Poonam’s son.

He told the Headmaster that his son was about to fall out of the bus when he was being pushed and beaten.

As it was a serious issue, the matter was taken up with the school authorities. The Headmaster held an inquiry and said “having satisfied myself that the elder boy was in the wrong I subjected him to corporal punishment. As the head of the school, I reserve the right to punish a student to set an example that such behaviour will not be tolerated.” He added that he administered two slaps on the child’s buttocks.

However, sources added that Mr Krishan Gopal, husband of SI Poonam Dilawari, lodged a complaint with Sector 34 Police Station alleging that his son was “beaten up” by Mr A.B. Singh Sidhu, following a complaint made by parents of another student.

Mr Gopal alleged that his son was thrashed by the Headmaster resulting in injuries to his nose, back and thighs.

The child was taken to the Sector 32 Government Medical College and Hospital, from where he was discharged. The police has recorded a daily diary report of the episode and said further action would be taken after the medical reports were received.

Denying allegations of severe bashing, Mr Sidhu said the father of the elder boy did come to meet him following the incident. “He was not perturbed about the punishment but was angry that the school authorities had not called him to know their son’s side of the story,” said Mr Sidhu.

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Free phone service at Old Age Home
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 8
Getting connected to friends, relatives as well as to emergency services became easier for the residents of Old Age Home, Sector 15, here as Airtel installed a free fixed wireless phone at the home today. Extending another special gesture to them, the company also provided bed sheets and wall clocks as a part of its fifth anniversary celebrations.

According to Dr BS Aggarwal, Chairperson, Old Age Home, “we are happy that a company like this has come forward to help us senior citizens to stay in touch with our loved ones. We really value this gesture.”

Speaking on the occasion, Mr Rajiv Jaitley, CEO (Mobile Services), Bharti Airtel, Punjab Circle, said: “Our senior citizens are the foundation of our society and we are glad to have got this opportunity to be of service to them. We are also looking at making similar contributions to old age homes across Chandigarh and Punjab in the coming months.”

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Car crash: Police says reaction was prompt
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 8
Two days after the high speed car crash in which three youths were killed, the Chandigarh police yesterday claimed that the police reaction was prompt and immediate. The police said all the six victims were shifted to hospitals in less than one-and-a-half hour after the incident was reported to them.

The reaction came after the family of one of the victims, Karam Singh Sekhon, alleged that their son survived the crash but died due to delay in shifting the victims to hospital.

In a press release issued by the Chandigarh police, it was claimed that the police received information about the mishap at around 3:20 am on Tuesday and the Police Control room (PCR) vehicles reached the spot within five minutes. The police team, that reached the spot, flashed another massage to the traffic police for requisitioning the recovery van at around 3:25 am. The police also called the fire brigade, which, with special equipments, reached the spot and picked up the up-turned damaged car.

Stating that the rescue work was started without any delay, the SHO of the Sector 3 police station, reached the spot within 30 minutes. The first injured was taken to the Sector 16 Hospital (GH) at 3:26 am and, the second injured person was sent to the GH at 3:30 am while the third victim was rushed to the hospital at 3:39 am.

The police asserted that subsequently, after cutting the car, the other injured persons were taken out and shifted to the PGI at 4:44 and 4:48 am to the GH. Numerous vehicles of PCR and local police were engaged in the operation, which kept on ferrying the victims to the hospital.

The police said expert help of the fire staff was taken to extricate the injured persons from the mangled car.

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Rejuvenate education institutions, Governor tells experts
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 8
Strongly advocating the need for intensive use of knowledge-based services to empower the citizens, the Punjab Governor and Administrator, Chandigarh, Gen S.F. Rodrigues (Retd.), today called upon academicians, librarians and intellectuals to rejuvenate education institutions and broadbase their role. Besides imparting academic knowledge, these should disseminate universal values with the focus on reminding the students of their responsibilities to the nation and society at large.

Inaugurating an International Convention on automation of Libraries in Education and Research Institutions (International Caliber-2007) on the theme Information and Knowledge Management in Networked World at Panjab University here today, General Rodrigues said “Please help us by focusing your endeavour in our students to increase their knowledge, sharing information with others and utilising it for building a new and prosperous society”. The Governor released Conference volume and souvenir on this occasion.

Earlier, welcoming the chief guest and other delegates, Prof R.C. Sobti, Vice-Chancellor, Panjab University, said the newly created field called "Information Science" is the symbiosis of librarianship and information technology which needed such gatherings to provide researchers and scientists a solution for accessing the latest information through sophisticated means.

Thanking the Inblibnet for its major role in providing 4,000 on-line full-text journals valuing about Rs 70 crore, Dr Sobti said this was the best example of resource sharing and concept of consortia.

Giving details about the three-day conference, convener Prem Chand, scientist Inflibnet, said the present conference aimed at promoting excellence, knowledge and experience between the library professionals.

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Dhariwal new chief of city bridge panel
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 8
Mr H.S. Dhariwal and Mr Gur Iqbal Singh have been elected president and general secretary of the Chandigarh Bridge Association, affiliated to the Bridge Federation of India. The decision was taken at the annual general meeting of the association held here. The other office-bearers are -- vice-presidents: Mr J.S. Sama, Col Govinder Singh, Col Amrik Singh, Mr M.L. Panghotra and Mr Rakesh Goyal; joint secretary: Mrs Sunanda Jain. 

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Welfare society

Chandigarh, February 8
The election of the Welfare Society Sector 45-B, Chandigarh, was held under the supervision of Election Observers A.C.Dhawan, P.R. Singhania, S.C. Kalia and Rajinder Bhatia. The following have been elected office-bearers : president — S.S. Oberoi; vice-president — V.J. Dhar; general secretary — Gurnam Singh; joint secretary — Harbhajan Singh; treasurer — S.K. Mittal. — TNS

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Solar Eclipse Utsav Mela on Feb 18

Panchkula, February 8
The local chapter of Sri Gita Prachar Samiti will take part in the celebrations of Solar Eclipse Utsav Mela-2007 to be held on February 18 at Brahamsarovar, Kurukshetra, according to Mr Ravi Gulati, secretary of the samiti.

In order to propagate the sacred message of Srimadbhagvadgita, the samiti will organise “Gita Pustak Mela”, besides Bhakti Ras Bhajan Sandhya by music maestro Vinod Aggarwal, “Ek Sham Sri Partha-Sarathi Ke Naam”, a colourful spiritual evening, on the occasion. — TNS

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Parking lot employee held
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 8
The local police arrested an employee of a parking lot on the allegation of taking away a motorcycle parked in the lot.

The police said Mr Rohit Bhardwaj of Hostel No 4, Panjab University, lodged a complaint alleging that Vijay Kumar of Khuda Lahora village had taken away his motorcycle (HR-26-N-3383) parked in the lot on February 3.

Acting on the complaint the police arrested the accused. A case under Section 406 of the IPC has been registered.

Motorcycles stolen

Mr Ashu Kumar of Sector 47 reported to the police that his motorcycle (CH-03-H-8634) was stolen from Sector 31 on Wednesday.

In another incident, Mr Vishal Verma of Sector 69, Mohali, reported to the police that his motorcycle (HP-13-A-0344) was stolen from Sector 11 during the intervening night of February 3 and 4.

Cases have been registered.

Theft

Mr Sohan Lal Verma of Mari Wala Town, Mani Majra, reported to the police that a pair of gold earrings and a gold ring were stolen from his residence on Wednesday.

A case has been registered.

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Monica’s death still shrouded in mystery
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 8
Mystery continues to shroud the death of 27-year-old Monica Cheema. Her decomposed body was found in a nullah, near Dhanas, on Tuesday. The doctors have reserved their opinion on the cause of her death. Her family has told the police that they don’t suspect anyone.

Though the post-mortem report has been submitted to the police, the doctors have stated that they would be able to pin-point the cause of death only after receiving the viscera report. As there were no injury marks on the body, the police has not been able to find the cause of her death. Moreover, there are no witnesses or information about her whereabouts since she disappeared on February 2.

The deceased’s relatives said they do not suspect anyone for the death of Monica. They demanded that the police should investigate the cause of her death. 

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Couple held for possessing liquor
Our Correspondent

Mohali, February 8
The police has arrested a couple on the charge of possessing liquor in violation of the law and recovered 35 boxes in this regard.

The SSP, Mr Gurinder Singh Dhillon, told mediapersons that the police got specific information that a truck had been parked at the residence of Mr Ajaib Singh in Kurali and liquor boxes were being unloaded. Reacting swiftly, the police impounded the truck and also seized boxes of liquor.

He said the police arrested Ajaib Singh and his wife, Rajinder Kaur. The driver of the vehicle, Ajeet Singh, is absconding.

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‘Commercial growing of GE rice to spell disaster’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 8
Considering the health hazards and environmental damage caused by genetically engineered (GE) rice, there has been a worldwide tide of opposition.

This opposition is contained in the new rice market’s report released by Greenpeace at Chandigarh yesterday. The global release of the report was held in Amsterdam yesterday. The report ‘The rice industry in crisis’ carries extracts of company statements covering Asia, Europe, Australia, North and South America, including a statement of concern from the All-India Rice Exporters Association (AIREA).

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Biz Clips

Chandigarh
Simple tariffs:
Hutch today announced simplified tariffs for international roamers. This new tariff model classifies countries into eight zones. All calls made or received will be charged at 60 seconds pulse and GPRS usage will be charged at 10 kb pulse. — TNS

HDFC OFFER: On the occasion of Valentine's Day, HDFC Bank is offering a new variant of Gold Bar - an attractively priced 2.5 gm heart-shaped gold bars. HDFC Bank credit card holders will enjoy 1 per cent cash back on every 2.5 gm heart-shaped Gold Bar, bought by swiping their credit card. It is priced at Rs 2,800. — TNS

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Sector 17 A, B not developed: Traders
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 8
Traders of Sector 17 A and B have expressed resentment over the step- motherly treatment being given to them by the Chandigarh Administration.

At a meeting of the traders chaired by Mr Kamaljit Singh Panchhi here, the shopkeepers said the administration spoke of giving a facelift to the commercial sector and promised to improve public amenities. But there was no development plans for the area falling under Sector 17 A and B, irrespective of the fact that Hotel Taj, TDI Multiplex and new places of attraction were coming up in the area.

The traders recollected that the Deputy Commissioner, Mr R.K.Rao, had held a meeting on “revitalisation and development of Sector 17” in May 2006. The DC had visited and surveyed the entire Sector 17 and promised to develop Sector 17 A and B on a priority basis.

There is no public toilet though it is mentioned in the original master plan. Road gullies are missing, there was no provision of street lights.

On the other hand, Sector 17 C, D and E are inter-connected with corridors, lights, pucca passage.

Mr Panchhi had urged the Administrator, General S.F. Rodrigues (Retd) to visit this area and see the condition of the area.

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