C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Get polio drops on May 20
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 17
More than 1.31 lakh children up to the age of five will be covered under the Sub-National Immunisation Day round in Chandigarh on May 20.

Seeking people’s support in making the city a model in the field of polio eradication, UT home and health secretary Krishna Mohan said 454 stationary and 93 mobile booths would be set up at locations convenient to people and these would be manned by 2,100 personnel drawn from the departments of health, education, social welfare and police. Besides, NGOs consisting of area supervisors, sector supervisors and vaccinators had also been deployed for this purpose.



Hospital staff to intensify stir
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 17
The Joint Action Committee (JAC) of the General Multi-Speciality Hospital staff has decided to intensify its agitation if the authorities fail to meet their demands.

The JAC was on agitation in support of its demands, including cancellation of transfers of employees, implementation of patient care allowance and abolition of the contract system of employment.

The employees were holding gate meetings for the past few days to mark their protest against the alleged apathetic attitude of the authorities towards their demands.

President of the JAC Karamvir Singh said they were invited by the director, health services, Dr Manjit Singh Bains, for negotiations on the issue but at the eleventh hour they were asked to talk to joint director Usha Bishnoi.

The meeting with the joint director did not reach any conclusion, he said.

The employees had been left with no option but to intensify their stir, he added. 



70 docs attend live workshop

Mohali, May 17
A live demonstration was conducted at the gynaecology department of Government Medical College, Patiala, by specialists from Dr Sodhi's Health Care, Phase 3-B 2, here, in collaboration with The Nabha Obstetrics and Gynae Society.

Basic infertility treatment, including intrauterine insemination, was discussed and demonstrated at the workshop which was presided over by Dr Surjit Kaur Bajwa, head of the department of obstetrics and gynaecology, Government Medical College, Patiala.

About 70 doctors attended the workshop. Dr L.K. Sodhi, infertility specialist, said more such workshops would be conducted across the state to make the technique available to the masses. — OC



  Capt Kanwaljit gives Rs 50,000 grant
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 17
The Punjab Government will work on various plans to develop sports in general and hockey in particular in the state.

This was stated by Capt Kanwaljit Singh, cooperation minister, Punjab, while addressing a gathering of hockey lovers during the 5th Olympian Dharam Singh Memorial Six-a-Six Hockey Tournament at the hockey stadium, Sector 18, yesterday evening.

Appreciating the efforts for the revival of hockey in the state by the Olympian Sardar Dharam Singh Memorial Hockey Association, the minister said more such organisations should come forward to inculcate the true spirit of hockey among budding players to get the lost glory back.

He also announced a grant of Rs 50,000 to the association for the furtherance of the sport.



Rock Rovers edge out CHA
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 17
Riding high on the four goals scored by international player Deepak Thakur, local club Rock Rovers beat Chandigarh Hockey Academy (CHA) by just one goal (9-8) in the ongoing 5th Olympian Dharam Singh Memorial Six-a-Side Hockey Tournament-2007 at the hockey stadium, Sector 18, here today.

Harman of the CHA also netted four goals in a keenly-contested match but his valiant effort went in vain.

The half time score read in favour of the CHA, as the team then led by two goals (4-2).

But Rock Rovers came back strongly in the second half and scored seven goals to set up a mouth-watering finish.

The margin of victory could have been higher, but for the effort of alert CHA goalkeeper Harjit Singh, who made some good saves.

He was declared man of the match.

The second match between Air India (AI) and the CISF saw a goal feast with 25 goals being scored between the two teams. Air India took the match 15-10. The score was 4-4 at half time.

Gaurav of Air India hit the board five times. Prateek of the CISF was not to be left behind as he also drove home five goals.

The man of the match title went to Joga Singh of Air India.

The third match between the RCF, Kapurthala, and Patiala Tigers ended in a draw (6-6).

Yadwinder opened the account for the RCF in the first minute. The lead was extended 2-0 by Amolak in the next minute.

The other two goals came in the fourth and fifth minutes through Yadwinder and Gagan, respectively.

At half time, the score read 4-2 in favour of the RCF.

For the RCF, Amolak and Yadwinder scored two goals each, while Pawan Bassi and Sandeep Sr helped the CISF with two goals each.



Lecturer attends seminar

Chandigarh, May 17
Ravinder Chaudhry, honorary secretary of the Amateur Athletics Association, Chandigarh, and senior lecturer at DAV College, Sector 10, attended a seminar on “Electronic Time Keeping” at the RDC, Jakarta, Indonesia, from May 14 to 16.

The seminar, which was organised by the IAAF RDC, aimed at sharing knowledge on latest equipment used for keeping time at the world level.

Chaudhry has acted as international photo finish judge at various international athletic meets in the past. — TNS



Cricket trials on May 20

Panchkula, May 17
The selection trials for the Haryana thirty overs cricket team for boys will be held on May 20 at 9 am at St Soldier’s Divine Public School, Sector 16, Panchkula. The selected team will participate in the All-India Thirty Overs Cricket Tournament to be held at Hoshiarpur (Punjab) from June 2 to 10.

Interested players should contact Navneet Thapar or Jaya Kapil at 98142-12773. Further information can be obtained by contacting R. Sharan, secretary, Haryana Thirty Overs Cricket Association at 98556-50390. — TNS



Ball badminton team selection
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 17
The Ball Badminton Sports Promotion Association, Chandigarh, will select the team for the 27th National Sub-Junior Ball Badminton Championship to be held at Dehra Dun from June 1 to 4.

Stating this, P.S. Lamba, organising secretary of the association, said the team would be selected during Chandigarh State Ball Badminton Championship on May 19 and 20 at Government Model School, Sector 32, here.

In the national championship at Dehra Dun, over 500 participants are expected to take part across the country.



Manpreet, Radha best upcoming players
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 17
Right-back Manpreet Singh of St Joseph’s Senior Secondary School, Sector 44, and left-back Radha of Government High School, Khudda Lahora, were declared best upcoming players in the boys’ and girls’ sections, respectively, in the 26th Sub-Junior National Ball Badminton Championships held in Bikaner from May 12 to 15.

According to Chandigarh Ball Badminton Association general secretary Baljinder Singh Banwait, the Chandigarh boys’ team finished sixth, while the girls’ team came fifth in the championship.

Kerala topped the boys’ category, while Tamil Nadu took the top honours in the girls’ category, added Banwait.

The results: Boys: 1-Kerala, 2-Andhra Pradesh, 3-Karnataka, 4-Tamil Nadu, 5-Chhattisgarh, 6-Chandigarh, 7-Hyderabad, 8-Rajasthan.

Girls: 1-Tamil Nadu, 2-Andhra Pradesh, 3-Karnataka, 4-Kerala, 5-Chandigarh, 6-Chhattisgarh, 7-Hyderabad and 8-Maharashtra.



To bypass traffic, underpass
Tribune News service

Chandigarh, May 17
The Chandigarh administration plans to construct underpasses at various busy traffic junctions to ease traffic congestion. To begin with, an underpass will be constructed at Press Chowk.

Ironically, slip roads and cycle tracks constructed by the engineering department to ease traffic congestion are yet to fully utilised.

The administration has solicited public opinion before going ahead with the project to built the underpasses. Apart from cutting down the waiting period of motorists at traffic lights, the travelling time will be reduced.

The rotaries, which had been removed, will also be restored as the underpasses will take half of the load of the traffic moving in one direction. The cost of constructing an underpass is almost half of a flyover.

Making a power presentation at the UT secretariat here yesterday, UT secretary (engineering) S.K. Sandhu and chief engineer V.K. Bhardwaj said the affordability and necessity of personalised vehicles in the absence of an ideal transport system had resulted in the city having one of the highest per capita vehicle ownership in the country. There are around 5.64 lakh vehicles in the city.

To start with, the administration plans to construct underpasses at four places at Madhya Marg. Each underpass will be approximately 400 metres long, having a 7.5 metre-wide dual carriageway with 1:30 slope.

A 7.5 metre-wide fast carriageway and a 6 metre-wide slow carriageway along both sides of the underpass on the surface will increase the existing six-lane dual carriageway to an eight-lane carriageway. The estimated cost for construction of each underpass including 
civil, electrical, drainage, landscaping works and shifting of utilities and services is Rs 8 crore.

The secretary (engineering) said due to rapid increase in motor vehicles coupled with marginal increase in road infrastructure, traffic and transportation problems had been growing rapidly. Madhya Marg, Dakshin Marg, Himalaya Marg and Jan Marg were the roads catering to the maximum traffic. The junctions identified as having severe traffic congestion are Press Chowk (Jn 20), Kisan Bhawan Chowk (Jn 38), Picaddily Chowk (Jn 34), Transport Chowk (Jn 43), Tribune Chowk and Matka Chowk.

New statistics

A study conducted by the engineering department has revealed that at Press Chowk 35,420 vehicles (9,600 cycles, 1,600 cycle rickshaws, 11,500 two-wheelers, 12,450 cars, 250 buses/trucks and 20 animal-drawn vehicles) pass during peak hours.

With the construction of the underpass, traffic at the intersection will be reduced by 52 per cent.

Apart from being economical as compared to flyovers (almost half the cost), fuel saving to the tune of Rs.3.08 crore per annum is anticipated with each underpass.



Civic amenities: Dhakoli no exception
Tribune News Service

Zirakpur, May 17
Even as hundreds of multi-storeyed apartments are at various stages of construction in the Dhakoli area, residents of Krishna Enclave in the area continue to be living without basic amenities.

In fact, the provision of the basic amenities seemed to be nowhere on the agenda of the Zirakpur Nagar Panchayat. And in the process, hundreds of residents are denied civic amenities. This was despite the fact that the residents had paid a substantial amount to the authorities concerned by way of development charges and various other taxes.

And with the summer season peaking, unscheduled power cuts have been making the lives of the residents miserable. However, what irks the residents most is the fact that repeated complaints to the electricity department fail to evoke any response.

The situation on the water supply front is no better as the tubewell supply is linked to power supply. In fact, the supply lines are yet to be laid in the area, alleges area councillor Ajaib Singh.

A visit to the area can be a nightmarish experience. There are virtually no roads visible in the colony. With potholes doting the colony at regular intervals and most of the streetlights nonfunctional, the area had become accident prone.

While conceding that basic amenities needed much to be desired, official sources, however, claimed that concerted efforts were being made to provide amenities to the residents.

An official said with the township bursting at seams with construction activity, the provision of the civic amenities had failed to keep pace with growing population. However, the development of the infrastructure was being undertaken in a phased manner depending upon the available resources and need of a particular area, he added.



Admn hikes minimum wages
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 17
The Chandigarh administration has increased the basic daily and monthly rates of minimum wages for daily and monthly-rated employees as per the consumer price index number of Chandigarh centre for the half year ending March 2007.

The monthly minimum wages for unskilled workers have been increased from Rs 3,311.50 to Rs 3,426.50 from April 1, 2007. For semi-skilled-II, it has been increased from Rs 3,461.50 to Rs 3,576.50. For semi-skilled-I, the minimum monthly wages have been hiked from Rs 3,561.50 to Rs 3,676.50

For skilled-II, the wages have being increased from Rs 3,761.50 to Rs 3,876.50 and for skilled-I from Rs 3,986.50 to Rs 4,101.50, and for highly-skilled from Rs 4,386.50 to Rs 4,501.50. Similarly, for class III staff, the minimum monthly wages have been increased from Rs 3,586.50 to Rs 3,701.50, for class-II staff from Rs 3,736.50 to Rs 3,851.50 and for class I staff from Rs 4,097.50 to Rs 4,212.50, according to official sources.

In the same way, the daily minimum wages for unskilled workers have been increased from Rs 127 to Rs 131.37. For semi-skilled-II, it has been increased from Rs 132.80 to Rs 137.17 for the same period.

For semi-skilled-I, the minimum daily wages have been hiked from Rs 136.60 to Rs 140.97. Similarly, for skilled-II, the wages have been hiked from Rs 144.30 to Rs. 148.67, for skilled-I from Rs 153 to Rs 157.37 and for highly skilled from Rs 168.40 to Rs 172.77.

Similarly, for class III staff, the minimum daily wages have been increased from Rs 137 to Rs 141.37, for class-II staff from Rs 143.40 to Rs 147.77 and for class I staff, from Rs 156.80 to Rs 161.17.

Besides, rates of minimum wages have been revised for workers employed with hotels, restaurants, tea stalls and halwais. The minimum monthly wages without food and lodging for unskilled workers have been revised from Rs 3,311.50 to Rs 3,426.50.

The minimum wages without food and lodging for semi-skilled-II have been increased from Rs 3,461.50 to Rs 3,576.50, for semi-skilled-I from Rs 3,561.50 to Rs 3,676.50, for skilled-II from Rs 3,761.50 to Rs 3,876.50, for skilled-I from Rs 3,986.50 to Rs 4,101.50, for highly skilled from Rs 4,386.50 to Rs 4,501.50, for class III staff from Rs 3,586.50 to Rs 3,701.50, for class II staff from Rs 3,736.50 to Rs 3,851.50 and for class I staff from Rs 4,097.50 to Rs 4,212.50.

In the same way, the rate for food and lodging being given to all kinds of workers has been increased from Rs 404.50 to Rs 419.

The average of the half-yearly cost of living index numbers of Chandigarh centre (base 2001=100) for industrial workers, issued by the labour bureau as on March 31 is 678.

The previous average cost of living index numbers was 655 points for the half year ending September 30, 2006. The minimum rates of wages are payable for daily and monthly-rated employees for the period starting from April 1, 2007, to September 30, 2007(both days inclusive), the sources added.



Drinking in cars: Cops to get tough

Chandigarh, May 17
The Chandigarh Administration today decided to strictly check drinking in vehicles parked outside vends, restaurants and eating joints following a number of complaints.

The police and the excise department have been directed to enforce the closure timings of all discotheques, check driving under the influence of liquor and sale of liquor to those already intoxicated. The police has been directed to carry out a regular and systematic check at all public places.

The licencees have been asked to ensure that liquor was consumed only in taverns and other authorised places.

The decision was taken at a meeting chaired by the Adviser to the Administrator to review the excise policy for the year 2007-08.

As per the policy, the number of vends to be allotted are 150 of IMFL (L-2) and 65 of country liquor (L-14A).

Since 149 IMFL (L-2) vends and 59 country liquor (L-14A) vends have been allotted, a meeting was called today to take stock of the working of the excise policy. — TNS



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