C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S

Liquor vend owner, staff booked
Man shot at over bill dispute
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 18
Owner of a liquor vend allegedly shot at a Kansal resident following a dispute over payment of bill in Kaimbwala village late Tuesday night.

The bullet pierced through the victim’s right thigh and hit the left thigh. He has been admitted to the Sector 16 General Hospital.

Twentyfive-year-old Sat Parkash, a private taxi driver, told TNS that he and his friend Sandeep went to the vend at around 8 pm. They had beer and took two plates of chilli cheese and ice cube packs.

In the meantime, three or four unidentified persons came to the vend, had drinks at a nearby table and left the place. When he and his friend asked for their bill, they were handed over a bill of Rs 398. This was much more than expected. Sat Parkash took up the matter with the owner of the ahata, who told him that the bill included snacks ordered by those sitting next to him.

“I tried to convince him that they did not come with me, but he refused to budge. In the end, I agreed to pay Rs 250 that I had with me. However, the ahata owner asked for the ‘full’ amount. My friend gave him a note of Rs 100, to which I objected. I snatched the note from the owner, which made him furious.”

“Soon people gathered there and the employees of the ahata began thrashing me. I ran to save myself but was fired at. I kept running and hid in the wild growth nearby and fell unconscious,” said Parkash.

He said the owner of the liquor vend deflated the tyres of his car and kept Sandeep in forced custody. Parkash regained consciousness at 12 am and rang up his father, who reached there along with neighbours. They found him in the bushes bleeding profusely.

“We picked up Parkash and tried to take him in his my car, but found the tyres deflated. We called for another vehicle. On the way, a policeman stopped us who began asking all sorts of questions, but did not offer help,” alleged Jatinder, a friend of Prakash.

Parkash would be operated upon tomorrow. The police came to them to record statement at around 3:30 am.

Owner of the liquor vend Hem Raj, owner of the ahata Anil Kumar and his two employees Mohan Lal and Gopal have been arrested for attempt to murder.



Private schools under watch
G. S. Paul
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 18
The administration has formed a special monitoring committee comprising a representative each from the local fire office, estate office, architect department and the DPI (S) office. The team will observe and streamline the functioning of private education institutions in terms of providing safe, hygienic environs to students, implementing 15 per cent reservation for the underprivileged strata, interviews of parents at the time of admission etc.


  Safe buildings
15 pc quota
Fair interviews
Staff qualification

Any school that does not adhere to these directions would be liable to disaffiliation.

Now, parents will have a respite from the practice of appearing for interviews along with their tiny tots for nursery admission.

“The sole objective of these schools was to determine the economic status of parents for the purpose of donations. We will have a strict check on it because it breeds corruption ,” said a senior officer.

The estate office and the architect department would monitor that there was no building violations or misuse of space.

“In Bhavan Vidyalaya-27, they are running jyotish classes at the basement of the building without permission. They were served notice on May 8 and May 20 last year, but till date they have not bothered to pay any heed,” said the officer.

Whereas the administration is facing difficulty accommodating displaced students on account of closedown of schools in residential areas, there are schools with unutilised surplus land.

“It has come to our notice that certain schools have not utilised the space allotted to them. This is sheer violation of the conditions laid down by the administration We will also check whether the teachers are adequately qualified or not.”



Another ‘rape’ on promise of marriage
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 18
In yet another case, the local police today arrested a Khudda Lahora resident on the allegation of raping a 22-year-old girl after giving her false assurances of marriage.

In charge of the woman and child support unit (WACSU) of the Chandigarh police Hari Kumar said the victim, a clerk in the office of SDM (south), lodged a complaint against 25-year-old Manroop Singh alleging that he had raped her over a period of time on the pretext of marrying her.

She had lodged a complaint with the UT senior superintendent of police (operations) Dinesh Bhatt in January this year and a case had been registered following repeated counselling sessions in which both parties failed to reach a consensus.

A case of cheating and rape under Sections 420 and 376 of the IPC had been registered.

The victim, a resident of Sector 39, had alleged that she had come in contact with Manroop in 2005, who was then working with a private telecom company.

He had visited her residence to install a telephone, following which they developed a relationship. They decided to get married and their parents agreed to it.

On December 3, 2005, Manroop got physically involved with her without her consent, she had alleged.

She reported the matter to her parents, who took up the issue with Manroop’s parents. Manroop’s parents assured them of marrying their son with their daughter.

To win over their trust, Manroop performed symbolic marriage rituals. After this, she did not file a complaint against him. However, Manroop began avoiding her and ultimately backtracked from his promise of marrying her.

She later reported the matter to the police.



Storm uproots trees; power supply hit
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 18
The unexpected storm and rainfall last night came as a respite to city residents from the scorching sun today. The storm left a trail of destruction, with trees damaged or uprooted at several places and electricity and telephone services severely hit.

The Madhya Marg as well as other main roads in the city were strewn with branches of trees hit by last night’s storm, which had a fierce wind velocity. Met recorded a wind speed of 70 km per hour at 11.45 pm last night. The speed further rose to 83 km per hour by 3 am on April 18, the highest-ever wind speed recorded during this part of the year.

The damage caused extended right up to Ramgarh. Mohali areas saw long power cuts. In Phase III B2, there was a 16-hour cut. Panchkula and parts of Sectors 34, 35, 18 and 19 in Chandigarh had to go without power too.

The day temperature fell by 7.2 degree compared to yesterday. It settled at 30.8 degrees today as against 38 degrees yesterday, the highest day temperature in the month of April so far.

The night temperature came down by 5.6 degree. Patiala recorded 4 mm of rainfall. Ambala recorded 0.5 mm.



Dual control
Panel on power transfer
Manish Sirhindi
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 18
UT Administrator S. F. Rodrigues today constituted a high-powered committee to decide on the transfer of power to the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh.

Mayor Harjinder Kaur said a core group comprising eight chairpersons of various committees and four review committees held a meeting with the UT Administrator who said appropriate measures would be taken to ensure that no development work was affected in the city.

The delegation apprised him about the problems being faced by the MCC due to “uneven” distribution of powers between the MCC and the administration.

The delegation discussed constituting a coordination committee for development projects of the MCC and administration.

It was put forth before the Administrator that the Mayor had no or negligible powers. The delegation demanded that the dual control be abolished and the 74th Amendment of the Constitution implemented. The delegation pleaded that the tenure of the officers of the MCC be changed as per the CVC guidelines.

The Administrator talked of making municipal governance more responsive, accountable and transparent and for setting up a system for speedy redressal of grievances. He said there was the major task of removal of encroachments and rehabilitation of slum dwellers, by providing them basic amenities.

Laying stress on the need for instituting a system of performance audit and validation of projects, General Rodrigues said such an arrangement would help identify shortcomings in the system.

He said he was pained to see the large number of people attending healthcare camps which indicated inadequacies in our regular healthcare programmes. The meeting was attended by senior officers.



Day 2: Low pressure

Chandigarh, April 17
Due to repair work being undertaken at waterworks-II, Mani Majra, water supply will be available at low pressure tomorrow evening in Modern Housing Complex, according to a press note issued by the municipal corporation. — TNS



Women force closure of liquor vend
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, April 18
Residents of Maheshpur, especially women, forced the closure of a liquor vend in the commercial belt of Sector 21 here today. They alleged that the vend owner had opened an ahata without any permission.

Nearly 50-odd women, who gathered at the vend, said the area had become particularly unsafe for them since people would sit in the open and drink. “The vend owner has converted the entire open area into an ahata. We have our houses here and it has become difficult to go out once the sun goes down,” said Vimla Kumari, one of the protesters.

Other women accompanying her said though they had accepted the setting up of a vend, they would not allow this ahata to function because it would bring in more misery for them.

Following the protest, the vend was closed down for sometime in an effort to placate the public.

Meanwhile, owner of the vend V.K. Garg said he had bought three showrooms and was in the process of converting a part of these into an ahata. He had approval of the excise and taxation department in that connection.

“People need a place to eat and drink. There will be only one entry to the new ahata. Also, we have paid the licence fee for the same and our application was moved over a week ago,” he claimed.



Spreading message of friendship
Tribune News Service

Mohali, April 18
Twentyfive students of YPS today met and felicitated five Pakistani children at Fortis Hospital, here, today. The Pakistani children with life-threatening ailments had been admitted to the hospital under the aegis of the Fortis-Rotary collaborative project for underprivileged children. The children were given free treatment and stay by the hospital and free of cost high-end cardiac surgeries were performed on some of them by Dr T.S. Mahant, executive director, cardio thoracic surgery, Fortis Hospital, Mohali.

According to Dr H.S. Dhillon, principal, YPS, “After a 10-day stay at Fortis for their cardiac surgeries, the Pakistani children had a chance to interact with the students of YPS. Our students were full of love, cheer and enthusiasm for the patients and gave a lively song and dance performance with the message of love and peace.”

The morning was made musical with a dance to commemorate the festival of Baisakhi.” Vibrant greeting cards made by the students with their photographs, addresses, e-mail IDs and phone numbers were presented to the guests. The children promised to stay in touch with each other and make the bond stronger.

The children were from the Sind area in Pakistan and included three-year-old Abdul Wasi, nine-year-old Mohd Saleem, 16-year-old Mehnaz, 10-months-old Mohammad Hassan and 11-year-old Asadulla. Habibullah, father of Asadullah said “Right from our homes in Pakistan till coming to Mohali, we neither saw nor felt any borders. It was as if we never left our country. The love and affection showered on us is something we will carry in our hearts forever.”

The Rotary Heartline Project is a sequel to the Gift of Life project of the Rotary Club of Chandigarh which was conceived in 1999 by the former world president of Rotary International Rajendra K. Saboo.



Gymkhana Club members demand elected body
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, April 18
Dissatisfied with the running of the Gymkhana Club, members, today, demanded an elected body to run the club. Led by Steering Committee Convenor R.R. Bhardwaj, the members said an "urgent meeting" of the members of the general house would be held on April 22 at Aggarwal Bhavan, Sector 16.

Alleging that the interest of the members was not being watched by the Haryana Urban Development Authority which was running the entire show since the club's inception, Bhardwaj said most of the members were critical about the non-functional administration.

"The catering service is in a very poor state and the caterers are basically serving the interest of the officers. The members have absolutely no rights and the club is running according to the whims and fancies of the authorities," he said.

"An elected president is answerable to the members and can be voted out for non-performance. We are holding the meeting to get views of all the members and to get their signatures on the memorandum," Bhardwaj said.

Replying to a question about finances in case a body from among the members does get elected, Bhardwaj said HUDA was anyways not giving any funds to the club. "In fact the membership money is being used to maintain not only the club, but the area around it as well," Bhardwaj alleged.

Further, supported by others members, Bhardwaj went on to say the club remained functional way past closure time and had become a gambling den which was unacceptable to them. "We will take this up at the April 22 meeting and are hoping the members will be equally forthcoming in their support to us," he concluded.



Land acquisition
Shastri Nagar residents call off stir

Chandigarh, April 18
After a long dharna over the acquisition of their land for the IT park, residents of Shastri Nagar unexpectedly ended their agitation here this evening. The residents were offered juice by tehsildar H.R. Nagra.

Sources said the residents had been meeting the deputy commissioner in support of their demands lately.

They had reportedly said that their case was separate from that of landowners of Kishangarh village. “None of the residents here has a house above 5 marla”, said a resident.

The Shastri Nagar residents have been demanding relocation on the pattern of exemption given to residents in different pockets in Mani Majra.

The administration has powers to exempt the land from acquisition under Section 48 of the Land Acquisition Act.

In the past, the administration has exempted around 4.5 acres of land in pocket No. 8 (Darshani Bagh) from acquisition in 2003.

On the pattern of the Darshni Bagh case, around 200 families of Shastri Nagar had been demanding relocation. Around 5 acres of land was required to relocate them, said an official. — TNS



Mohali areas powerless for 12 hrs
Our Correspondent

Mohali, April 18
Some areas of the town had remained without power for almost 12 hours, thanks to strong winds that swept the region last night.

Power supply got disrupted around 11.30 pm in Phases III A and IV and in parts of Phases II, III B 1 and was restored only after 11 am today.

Officials of the PSEB said a big tree fell on the power cables near the mango garden, adjoining Phase I, disrupting the power supply. It took more than five hours to set the system in order.

Power failure was also faced by residents of other areas.

Power board officials said the authorities concerned were neither pruning big trees themselves nor allowing the board to do the job.



240 motorists challaned
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 18
The Chandigarh traffic police today challaned around 240 motorists for violation of traffic rules and regulations in various parts of the city.

Sources in the police said special checkpoints were set up on roads separating Sectors 16 and 10; 30 and 32; near Kalagram and on internal roads in Sector 7 and 8.

The police booked 88 violators for overspeed, 49 for riding without wearing safety helmet, 11 for having tinted glasses, one for using mobile phone besides 91 challans for miscellaneous offences.



More campaigns needed

It is owing to the Chandigarh Tribune campaign against tobacco vendors near school gates that the Chandigarh police has challaned several schools. The paper has once again proved that it is committed to social causes. Kuddos to your team of investigators.

Me and my friends expect more such campaigns from your paper. Lately , frivolous issues like fashion shows have been getting more coverage by the media than issues of common concern. The trend must be stopped, if the media is to be seen as the fourth pillar of democracy and not just another business venture driven by market forces.

Surjit Kaur Sandhu, Chandigarh

Readers are invited to write to us. Send your mail, in not more than 200 words, at news@tribuneindia.com or, write in, at: Letters, Chandigarh Tribune, Sector 29, Chandigarh – 160 030



15 held in Mohali
Our Correspondent

Mohali, April 18
The police arrested 15 persons who were allegedly indulging in illegal activities in the town today. On a complaint of head constable Harpal Singh, Gautam of Punjab Engineering College, Chandigarh, was booked on the charge of playing satta at a T-point near Choti Karor. Kalu, Sunil, Vashisht, Ravi and Deepak Kumar, all residents of Sector 41, Chandigarh, were allegedly issuing slips of satta under the cover of Punjab State Lottery in Phase I here.

A resident of Phase I, Dalip Kumar, was booked on the charge of issuing satta slips in Phase I. The police arrested him with satta slips and seized his computer. Dilawar Khan and Kamal Bhatt were also arrested on a similar charge.

Jabbar Singh, a resident of Shahimajra, Subash Singh, resident of Palsora, Neeraj, resident of Phase I, and Deepak Arora, resident on Dadumajra, were booked on the charge of playing cards near Dara Studio.

A resident of Phase I, Kasab Kumar, and Sarup were also arrested on the charge of issuing satta slips.



Man, son booked for fraud

Chandigarh, April 18
The local police has booked a Sector-49 resident and his son for duping a Kajheri resident on the pretext of sending him abroad.

Sources in the economic offences wing (EOW) of the Chandigarh police said Sawinder Singh of Deep Nagar, Kajheri, lodged a complaint alleging that Jatinder Singh of Sector 49 and his father Jaspal Singh had taken Rs 2.5 lakh from him promising to send him abroad. But they neither sent him abroad nor return his money.

A case of cheating and criminal conspiracy under Sections 420 and 120-B of the IPC has been registered. — TNS



MC nets Rs 3.02 cr in parking auction
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 18
The Chandigarh municipal corporation today auctioned 15 paid parking lots, earning a revenue of over Rs 3.02 crore.

The idle truck parking in Sector 26 fetched the highest bid at Rs 60 lakh, while another public parking at Sector 35 C along Himalaya Marg went for Rs 44 lakh.

Around forty bidders presented their claims during the auction. Those who successfully bade for paid parking lots deposited 25 per cent of their bid amount as earnest money, which totalled around Rs 75 lakh.

The auctions were held in the committee room of the municipal corporation building.



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