C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Employees in EO to be shifted
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 9
In order to bring in new faces on public dealing posts, a major reshuffle in offices under the Deputy Commissioner is on the cards. The major focus will be on the estate office.

The recent vigilance raids on the estate office as a major reason for the reshuffle can’t be ruled out.

All employees who have completed more than three years of service are being transferred. Either they will be sent to their parent departments or their work within the office will be re-alloted.

Sources do not rule out the recent vigilance raids on the estate office as a major reason for the reshuffle. In the initial phase, 60 employees are expected to be reshuffled. A list of those who have completed three years at a particular place has been sent to the Chandigarh administration. Fresh orders are expected any time, said a senior official.

It had been seen that a number of employees manage to stick to “preferred” posts. Last year 50 employees were reshuffled. Deputy commissioner-cum-estate officer RK Rao confirmed that a reshuffle was on the anvil. In one of the lists, the replacement of SDO (Enforcement) and six JEs has been sought. Section officer Rajeev Tewari has already been transferred out.



UT Sham
Skirting test, two on deputation
G. S. Paul
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 9
What can it be called, obligation or favouritism? The Chandigarh administration has flouted its own rules while appointing teachers on deputation.

Both have not appeared for the scrutiny test which is mandatory for any teacher coming on deputation from the neighbouring states of Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh.

Neelima Sharma, an economics lecturer from GSSS, Pinjore, Haryana, has been posted at GSSS, Dhanas, while Kavita Sharma, from Government Middle School, Nalagarh, is awaiting posting orders.

Both have not appeared for the scrutiny test which is mandatory for any teacher coming on deputation from the neighbouring states of Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh.

DPI (S) SK Setia said: “ Kavita Sharma case was treated special on humanitarian grounds, while Neelima’s orders were passed in March but she joined in April. She has been deputed at GSSS, Dhanas, under the ‘two-year rural belt’ clause.”

It is alleged that two teachers had been uprooted to make space for Neelima. Since there was no vacancy, another economics teacher Satya was made to leave the school.

Reliable sources said the earlier orders were that Neelima was to join at GMSSS- 35. But she expressed her inability to teach in English.Hence, she was posted at Dhanas, which is a Hindi-medium school. The school is also close to her residence.

However, the education department and the principal of GMSSS-35 denied that Neelima was to be posted there.

The affected teacher, Satya, joined the school on April 20, 2007. She too told the principal that she was unable to instruct in English. The matter was brought to the notice of the DPI (Schools).

Now, another problem rose. After 10 days of frantic search, the department found a solution. This time, an economics teacher at Government Senior Secondary School, Sector 45, Prem Dass, was picked ‘to set things right’. He swapped places with Satya on May 1, 2007.

The heads of all three schools in Dhanas refused comment on the issue. “Ask the department. What matters to us is that vacant posts are filled in an orderly manner,” was their refrain.



Freak shot turns joy into grief
Bride’s cousin killed
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 9
At the marriage ceremony of a local girl in Ludhiana last night, joy turned into sorrow when a shot fired in jubilition accidentally hit the cousin of the bride, Hemant Raj. The victim was a resident of Sector 20-A here.

He was rushed to a hospital in Ludhiana, but could not be saved. The bullet reportedly pierced into his eye and head. Hemant was running a shop of mobile phones.The marriage was postponed by the shocked families.

The family left for Sterling Resorts in Ludhiana on Tuesday for the marriage ceremony. The incident took place at midnight when Monika, the bride, was being escorted to the dais by her brothers and cousins.

One of their relatives, Kewal Krishan, tried to fire a shot into the air as a mark of jubilation, but failed. To check what had gone wong, he lowered the weapon and it fired, hitting Hemant. Satpal,

The marriage ceremony was stopped as the girl reportedly said she could not marry until she was told about her cousin’s condition, said the family.

A pall of gloom descended on the family and also in the neighbourhood, following the news about the death of Hemant. The body was brought to the city late in the afternoon after post-mortem.

Holding the photograph of his grandson, Jaswant Rai, who is president of the Sector 20 market, said Hemant was a responsible boy, always ready to help others. His father had died when he three-year-old.

Ruling out foul play, the family said it was an accident. A case of causing death due to negligence has been registered against Kewal Krishan.



Money Wise
Jump in CTU revenue
Akash Ghai 

Chandigarh, May 9
The Chandigarh Transport Undertaking (CTU) hopes a significant jump in its revenue following its agreement with Punjab Roadways.

Under the inter-state agreement, the CTU is likely to get 7,290 km more for plying long-route buses in Punjab.

The distance ratio for roadways and CTU buses will now be 1:2 whereas the previous ratio was 1:1.5

“With the implementation of the new arrangement, we will be able to run CTU in profit,” said Capt P. S. Shergill, director of CTU.

Under the pact, the distance for CTU has been increased to 30,000km while the roadways buses will cover a distance of15,000 km in the UT.

The roadways also wanted Pepsu and private buses permitted to do business under the wings of roadways to run on the UT roads.

“ We have send the matter to the legal remembrance.” the CTU director said.

The issues of exempting school buses from special road tax and plying taxis and auto-rickshaws between the territories of Punjab and the UT are likely to be finalised at the next meeting of the officials. 



Delhi man held with smack
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 9
The local police today arrested a Delhi resident with 100 gm of smack near Kisan Bhavan this afternoon.

He supplied the contraband to one Sanjeev of Dadu Majra Colony. Sanjeev was arrested a couple of days ago with 65 gm of smack. 

Special crime investigation cell inspector Vedpal Malik said 35-year-old Khem Chand of Delhi was arrested as he disembarked a bus. He was searched and the contraband found on his person.

He told the police that he supplied the contraband to one Sanjeev of Dadu Majra Colony. Sanjeev was arrested a couple of days ago with 65 gm of smack. He would visit the city three times in a month. He was into illicit liquor trade in Delhi and had been booked several times by the Delhi police.



BJP leader bereaved

Chandigarh, May 9
Ram Aggarwal, father of Bhimsen Aggarwal, state secretary of BJP Chandigarh, today breathed his last, here this morning. He suffered a massive heart attack. He was 70 years old. The cremation was held this afternoon at the cremation ground of Sector-25. The funeral was attended by a large number of BJP workers and leaders of Chandigarh Pradesh. Prominent among those who attended the cremation included, senior BJP leader Satya Pal Jain, president BJP Chandigarh Yash Pal Mahajan, vice-presidents Purshotam Mahajan and P.D. Mongia. — TNS



Book Sidhu for contempt, says MC vice-chief
Our Correspondent

Mohali, May 9
Condemning the Kharar MLA Balbir Singh Sidhu for holding a protest outside the office of the deputy commissioner along with his supporters, vice-president of the Municipal Council Harman Preet Singh has demanded a case against the MLA for allegedly indulging in contempt of court.

He said he would also complain to the disciplinary committee of the Vidhan Sabha on the issue.

The vice president claimed that Sidhu and his group were aware that Gurnam Bindra Singh would lose the election if a recount of votes was done as the result had been “manipulated” at the time of the elections.

He said Sidhu had held the protest as he was not ready to accept defeat. 



Ammo scam
Col’s GCM begins without defence 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 9
The general court martial(GCM) trying a colonel for alleged misappropriation of ammunition started its proceedings in the absence of defence counsel despite repeated requests by Col Vishal Bhargav to adjourn the proceedings briefly till his counsel, who was engaged in another trial, was available yesterday.

Such a move,defence counsel Col S.K. Aggarwal (retd) contended, amounted to denial of the fundamental right guaranteed by the Constitution to an accused to be defended by a counsel of his choice. A defending officer of choice has also not been made available by the Army.

Deposing before the court, prosecution witness Lt-Col Vipul Singhal said the General Officer Commanding (GOC), 8 Mountain Division, had informed the GOC, 14 Corps, that despite detailed examination of the witnesses and the evidence available to the court of inquiry (COI), it was not possible to pinpoint the responsibility at that stage. None of the units that had served in that sector had reported any deficiency of ammunition and the batch numbers of ammunition showed that it was of old vintage and had been issued to various other units.

He also said that in the first COI, Col Vishal Bhargav, , Col Hemant Saroch and Sub T.B Thapa were not allowed to cross-examine any of the witnesses. He further said that at the second COI, Subedar Thapa was not given any opportunity to cross-examination any of the witnesses.

Meanwhile, in another GCM trying a Major at Tibri on charges of molesting a woman officer of the same unit, a lieutenant- colonel from an artillery brigade in Amritsar has been detailed as the accused’s presiding officer.

The accused, however, objected to this on the grounds that he did not know the officer provided to him for his defence. The court was also told by the prosecution that the defending officer sought by the accused could not be provided as his move sanction had not been accorded by the authorities concerned.



Estate office files get cabinets

Chandigarh, May 9
A sum of Rs 16 lakh has been spent on the renovation of the record room in the estate office here.

Under the project, files have been put in special cabinets on the top floor of the building. The cabinets can be moved on a fixed rail so that enough circulation area was left around these. A senior official in the office said earlier the files were stacked in open racks and were exposed to vagaries of nature.

The threat of the record being damaged in fire was also high. The new cabinets are fire-proof and can be dismantled on short notice.

Also, 32,000 files of the office will be put in cabinets.

Besides, the entrance to the estate is also being renovated and made more user-friendly, as also the reception. — TNS



PGI Wall Row
Admn does some explaining
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 9
The Chandigarh Administration today said a dispute with residents of the Janata Colony over a wall being constructed on UT land, arising from lack of demarcation of boundaries, was resolved at a meeting between the Deputy Commissioners of Chandigarh and Mohali on July 3.

The role of land grabbers in instigating the crowd to violence is under investigation. The administration is determined to take the inquiry to its logical end.

This was done on repeated requests by the PGI authorities.

The construction of the boundary wall was planned for May 3. Ankur Garg, SDM (Central), along with DSP S. S. Randhawa were deputed for law and order. Intimation about the drive was also sent to the Mohali police.

As the work on constructing the wall started, a crowd of 2,000 persons gathered on the other side and pelted stones on the government officials. When the crowd started advancing, it was pushed back using minimum force.

The role of land grabbers in instigating the crowd to violence was under investigation. The administration was determined to take the inquiry to its logical end and expose the nexus, a press note said.



Shatabdi delayed

Chandigarh, May 9
The Kalka-New Delhi Shatabdi Express was today delayed for about 50 minutes in the morning. According to senior railway officials, the departure of the train was delayed as the power supply to the overhead electric wires was suspended.

The train, which was supposed to leave for Delhi at 6.50 am, could not depart till 7.40 am. — TNS



Fake Passes
CTU to use hologram
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 9
A three-member delegation of the CTU will go to Delhi to finalise the hologram to be used on bus passes. This follows the unearthing of a fake bus pass racket by the CTU officials.

“To avoid such incidents from happening in the future, we have decided to fix a hologram on our passes. Our delegation will go to Delhi in a day or two to finalise a deal with a security press there,” said CTU director Capt P.S. Shergill.

Of the total 28 passes confiscated by the officials yesterday, 18 were issued in the name of students, while the others were made for the employees of government and private organisations.

The signature of principal of school or college concerned is mandatory on the bus pass form for a bus pass to be issued to a student.

Besides, applicant’s residential proof (voter’s card, ration card, PAN card or passport) has to be attached with the form.

According to sources, the local police is investigating the matter and keeping in line with this, a police officer visited the sampark centre in Sector 18 today.



Streetlights need repair

Most of the streetlights in Chandigarh are defective. As a result, accidents in the city are on the rise. Mercury vapour lights on the main roads dividing Sectors 20 and 30, 32 and 33 and 45 and 46 need repair at the earliest. At night, it is very difficult to walk or drive on these roads.

I think concerned officials will act promptly to do the needful.


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Two cars stolen

Mohali, May 9
Two cars have been stolen from Phases V and X of Mohali.

According to the police, Kamaldeep Singh, a resident of Phase X, had complained that he had parked his Indica car outside his house at night and the vehicle was found missing in the morning.

Similarly, Gurpreet Singh of Phase V, told the police that someone had stolen his Maruti car which was parked outside his house.

The police is investigating the matter and cases under Section 379 of the IPC have been registered in this regard.



Gold chain, purse snatched
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, May 9
An incident of chain snatching took place in Sector 17 while a theft was reported from Sector 12, here, today.

Madhu, a resident of Sector 17, today, complained to the police that she was on her way to market from her house when two motorcycle-borne youths snatched her chain and fled away. The also took her purse which contained a mobile phone, Rs 4,000, PAN card and other important papers.

In Sector 12, While Joginder Singh along with his family was away to his native village in Abohar for the last one week, the lock to the front door was found broken by his tenant Mukesh Kumar. The loss will be ascertained only after he returns. 



Truck driver caught selling booty

Chandigarh, May 9
A truck driver, who had allegedly driven away with 18 tons of iron sheets from a local factory in Industrial Area last month using a fake registration number on his truck, was caught yesterday when he revisited the city to sell his booty.

Giving details, SHO of the police station, Industrial Area, said the truck driver, 40-year-old Prem Parkash of Ludhiana, was arrested red-handed while trying to sell the stolen goods. The police recovered four tons of iron sheets from him.

The SHO said the accused had come from Ludhiana to take a consignment of iron sheets from Bhushan Factory in Industrial Area on April 13.

He used a fake registration number (HR 38 A 2547) on his truck.

The matter was reported to the police after the consignment did not reach its destination and the truck’s whereabouts could not be ascertained.

A case of breach of trust under Sections 407 and 34 of the Indian Penal Code was registered against the driver of the truck.

The police said during interrogation, Prakash admitted to having sold 14 tons of iron, worth around Rs 4 lakh, in Delhi.

He drove into the city the second time with the original registration number (HR 26 GA 0856) on the truck, when the police was alerted, which finally nabbed him in the act.

The accused reportedly told the police that he was in dire need of money for his son’s marriage. — TNS



Purse snatching shortlived

Chandigarh, May 9
The local police arrested a youngster minutes after he snatched a purse from a woman on the road separating Sector 16 and 17 late last night.

Sources in the police said the incident happened around 1.15 am today, when three youngsters riding a motor cycle snatched the purse of the woman. The three were intercepted near Aroma Hotel and the complainant identified one of the accused. He was later arrested.

Rupali Kathpal of Sector 9, Panchkula, reported to the police that she was on her way from the cricket stadium, Sector 16, to Matka chowk on a scooter with her sister and brother-in-law when the three youths, riding a black Pulsar motor cycle, came near their scooter and one of them snatched her purse. The accused has been identified as Aman of Abohar. He is staying as paying guest in Sector 21 and working with a private finance company. — TNS




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