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THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
D E L H I   A N D   N E I G H B O U R H O O D

VRS: Private staff to get pension
New Delhi, July 4
The Delhi High Court has directed private power companies to pay pension and terminal dues to employees who opt for Voluntary Retirement Scheme. "The pension trust and the government of National Capital Territory of Delhi are not liable to make payment towards terminal benefits and residual pension arising to those who opted for VRS/VSS formulated by the discoms," Justice S Ravinder Bhat said delivering the judgement on Monday.

SC refuses relief to polluting factories
New Delhi, July 4
The Supreme Court has refused to give any interim relief to Anand Parbat Industrial Area Society in Central Delhi, which had challenged the Delhi High Court order directing closure of polluting factories till an effluent treatment plant was made operational. A vacation bench comprising Justice Tarun Chatterjee and Justice P K Balasubramayam declined to grant any interim order and posted the matter for hearing after the vacation.

3,000 small units shut down
Noida, July 4
Gautam Budh Nagar and Noida no longer seem to attract small-scale industrial units, over 3,000 of these have been forced to close down. As per the official figure, over 3,100 SSI units have ground to a halt recently. A few years ago, all entrepreneurs were keen to set up small-scale industries as attractive terms and incentives were being offered.



EARLIER STORIES


Delhi Police officials inspect the spot on a Delhi-Noida road where a shootout took place in the Capital
Delhi Police officials inspect the spot on a Delhi-Noida road where a shootout took place in the Capital on Wednesday. A Tribune photograph

Models wait for their turn at an audition for the forthcoming Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week in the Capital
Models wait for their turn at an audition for the forthcoming Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week in the Capital on Wednesday. Tribune photo by Manas Ranjan Bhui

Viral fever grips Noida
Noida, July 4
Danger of dengue and outbreak of viral fevers due to the monsoon rains have been stalking Noida and Greater Noida areas. Noida Authority is planning to change insecticides and pesticides being sprayed in the area for the past three years.

Revised collector rates not to affect builders
Gurgaon, July 4
The decision on revised collector rates announced by the district administration has not received a good feedback from the builders and farmers of the district. As many as 45 registries were done on Wednesday as against about 100 registries that were being done earlier daily.

Notices to mall owners for flouting ad norms
Gurgaon, July 4
The government has issued notices to mall owners and those running retail business in them on putting unauthorised advertisements on the premises. Several big names like the DLF, MGF, Saharhar Group, Uppal Group along with those running retail shops have been issued notices.

City forest project opened
New Delhi, July 4
Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit today inaugurated a city forest project at Rewla Khanpur village near Chhawla. She described the upcoming city forests as new lungs of the Capital city, which has been facing challenge of environmental imbalance due to infrastructural development and urbanisation.

Cool spell continues
New Delhi, July 4
The National Capital Territory of Delhi continued to enjoy the cool spell brought about by intermittent moderate showers for the second day today. The rains and heavy clouds hovering over the skyline caused a drop of five degrees Celsius in today's temperature.

File cases against errant drivers: Vardhan
New Delhi, July 4
The BJP Delhi Pradesh president Harsh Vardhan today said that the Government should itself lodge cases against the errant Blue Line drivers under Section 304 sub-section (2) of the Indian Panel Code.

Check wasteful expenditure: Walia
New Delhi, July 4
Delhi Finance and Planning Minister A. K. Walia has told all the departments of the state government that henceforth no wasteful expenditure would be permissible. Such expenditures are not conducive to a healthy economy, he said.

"Bathroom Singer" on TV
New Delhi, July 4
Filmy, a Hindi movie channel, will air its first reality show, " Bathroom Singer" in August. The show is an hunt for an untrained singer who can entertain .


Bhojpuri superstar Ravi Kishan, singer Shibani Kashyap and TV artiste Gaurav Gera announce the first reality show, ''Bathroom Singer'' on the Filmy channel during a press conference in the Capital on Wednesday. Tribune photo by Mukesh Aggarwal
Bhojpuri superstar Ravi Kishan, singer Shibani Kashyap and TV artiste Gaurav Gera announce the first reality show, ''Bathroom Singer'' on the Filmy channel during a press conference in the Capital

Meter tampering racket busted
New Delhi, July 4
The police today claimed to have exposed an organised racket of selling specialized remotes which stopped domestic electric meters at will to show lower consumption. A local electrician was nabbed following the exposure.

JNU denies reports
New Delhi, July 4
The Jawaharlal Nehru University today denied reports that it had overlooked seniority while appointing a chairperson of a centre of study.

CM to start development schemes
Faridabad, July 4
Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda will lay the foundation stones of some of the major development projects worth over Rs 162 crore here on July 6.

BJP objection to NCP flag choice
New Delhi, July 4
The Leader of Opposition in the Delhi Assembly Jagdish Mukhi today demanded that the Indian National Congress Party should be stopped from using Tricolour as its party flag.

5 killed in house collapse
New Delhi, July 4
Five person were killed and 11 others ,including children, injured when a three-storied house in Nehru Vihar of East Delhi collapsed this evening. The injured have been admitted to the GTB Hospital where there condition was described as serious.






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VRS: Private staff to get pension
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 4
The Delhi High Court has directed private power companies to pay pension and terminal dues to employees who opt for Voluntary Retirement Scheme (VRS).

"The pension trust and the government of National Capital Territory of Delhi are not liable to make payment towards terminal benefits and residual pension arising to those who opted for VRS/VSS formulated by the discoms," Justice S Ravinder Bhat said delivering the judgement on Monday.

"The employees of discoms are entitled to get terminal dues like gratuity, provident fund and leave travel concession from the date of their respective severance from employment," Justice Bhat observed.

Directing the discoms to make the payments to the employees within three months, the court asked them to adopt a method to pay pension, gratuity and leave encashment.

In case of any default in payment, the VRS optees concerned shall be entitled to interest at the rate of 8 per cent per annum for the entire amount till the date of payment, the order said and imposed a cost of Rs 50,000 on each of the four companies for the litigation.

The order came on a bunch of petitions filed by the companies seeking the court's direction to NCT government to take the liability to pay the pension and other benefits. The discoms alleged that the liability to pay such pension under the schemes fell on the NCT government through its Delhi Vidyut Board (DVB) employees terminal benefit fund, a trust incorporated under provisions of the Indian Trusts Act.

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SC refuses relief to polluting factories
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 4
The Supreme Court has refused to give any interim relief to Anand Parbat Industrial Area Society in Central Delhi, which had challenged the Delhi High Court order directing closure of polluting factories till an effluent treatment plant was made operational. A vacation bench comprising Justice Tarun Chatterjee and Justice P K Balasubramayam declined to grant any interim order and posted the matter for hearing after the vacation.

The society, representing industry and factory owners, had sought an ex parte stay on the High Court closure order and said it would pose labour problems and cause loss to the state exchequer.

According to its petition, each factory owner had installed a plant to treat waste water and dispose solid waste separately as per the orders of state and environment pollution control authorities. They had also deposited the amount to install a common effluent treatment plant (CETP) in the area. The High Court order was on a petition filed by Confederation of Delhi Industrialists Societies through S K Tandon challenging the 1998 notification of the Centre, asking factory owners to bear half the cost of setting up the effluent treatment plant.

The High Court had also slapped a fine of Rs 2 lakh on a few industrialists and factory owners for filing frivolous petitions to delay the construction of CETP in Anand Parbat. However, in its petition to the apex court, the society said the High Court had acted in haste in dismissing its review petition without giving its members a fair hearing. The society had not authorised the confederation to file any petition on its behalf, it said.

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3,000 small units shut down
Parmindar Singh

Noida, July 4
Gautam Budh Nagar and Noida no longer seem to attract small-scale industrial units, over 3,000 of these have been forced to close down.

As per the official figure, over 3,100 SSI units have ground to a halt recently.

A few years ago, all entrepreneurs were keen to set up small-scale industries as attractive terms and incentives were being offered.

The number of those units had crossed the figure of even 8,800. But due to some restrictions and other negative factors, the number has now come down to about 5,700.

Industrialists, a few years ago, found small-scale industries a very attractive and profitable option due to a number of incentives from the government and non-governmental agencies. But the owners of small units gradually realised that they could not survive in the face of stiff competition from bigger and more prosperous companies. A few industrialists had decided to relocate to other places.

A perusal of the record of District Industries Centre shows that there were 8,881 small-scale industrial units in G.B. Nagar district. Out of these, only 5,764 are operational now, while 3,117 have closed down. Some 5,500 workers are earning their livelihood from the functional units, but the closure of units has contributed to unemployment in the district.

Surprisingly, even the department does not have statistics about the type of units that were closed down over the years.

According to sources, electronics and steel goods and packaging units were prominent among the SSI units, which have closed down.

The president of Noida Entrepreneur Association, Rakesh Katyal feels the main reason for closure of units is the competition and fluctuation in the market, which a very few small units can withstand. Lack of additional finances and unequal competition offered by larger companies has struck a lethal below to the small-scale industries, the NEA president says.

Some people had decided to relocate their units to other states to avail better facilities and incentives being offered there. The multinational companies had jeopardised the survival of electronics units.

However, Katyal claims, no effort is being made by the authorities in UP to revive the sick units or to offer some incentives to this sector.

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Viral fever grips Noida
Our Correspondent

Noida, July 4
Danger of dengue and outbreak of viral fevers due to the monsoon rains have been stalking Noida and Greater Noida areas. Noida Authority is planning to change insecticides and pesticides being sprayed in the area for the past three years. Orders have been issued for starting spray of anti-larval medicines and fogging in all the sectors.

Dengue has been afflicting Noida during the raining season in the past three years. The health authorities had therefore recommended a change in insecticides and pesticides to be sprayed. In view of the larvae having become immune to the medicines being sprayed, the Noida Authority is understood to have examined the list of these medicines. New medicines for sprays and fogging operations have reportedly been selected.

With the onset of monsoons, the impact of viral fevers is on the increase in Noida and rural areas.

Already most patients who queue up in private hospitals like Sharda Bekson, Navin, Kailash, Prayag hospitals are those who suffer from viral fevers. According to doctors, the number of patients of viral ailments will further increase due to hot days and rains.

Rains and humidity have activated the virus responsible for spread of ailments. The number of patients with throat infections, bad cold, cough and fever is increasing these days.

In every hospital in the town on Wednesday, two to three dozens patients were those suffering from viral ailments. Though viruses of all types are responsible for different ailments, influenza viral is said to the main viral these days.

According to NMC's Dr Ajay Aggarwal and Kailash Hospital's physician Dr Dinesh Tyagi, it is just the beginning of viral ailments. As we get more rains, the impact of viral fevers is bound to increase.

A large number of patients of viral fevers are coming from the rural areas during this weather, say the doctors.

Doctors advise people to protect themselves from getting soaked in rain. Since the virus of those already down with viral fever can hit healthy people, a distance should be kept from them.

Patients should always cover their mouth and nose while coughing and sneezing. "Don't indulge in self-medication, consult your doctor instead," warn the doctors.

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Revised collector rates not to affect builders
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Gurgaon, July 4
The decision on revised collector rates announced by the district administration has not received a good feedback from the builders and farmers of the district. As many as 45 registries were done on Wednesday as against about 100 registries that were being done earlier daily.

Sources in the administration informed that the hike had not affected much the builders as they had already acquired the land for their projects in Gurgaon at the market rates prevailing at that time. The private builders were laying more focus on the completion of their projects within the stipulated period of deadline, sources added.

While commenting on the revised collector rates, Raheja Developer Private Limited, managing director, Naveen M. Raheja said that the intent of the decision taken appeared to have a level-playing factor so that the land prices in and around Gurgaon were as close to market rates as possible.

He further added that the decision was fraught with loopholes as the revision in floor rates in some areas like DLF was not intended with the prevailing market price. Similarly, in residential sectors of HUDA no upward revision had been affected, he added.

Raheja said that real estate developers would not, as a whole, be affected by this move of the administration as they had already acquired the land at the market rates for their projects in Gurgaon.

The collector rates of posh colonies like DLF and Sushant Lok have been increased by about 10 per cent.

However, in HUDA sectors the rates of residential plots have been lowered. In addition to the collector rates, 10 per cent extra stamp duty will be levied on all preferential plots in all HUDA sectors.

Sources in the administration informed that the agricultural land was being sold by the farmers to the private builders to get high premium for their land. He added that the price offered by the private builders to the farmers is four times higher than the state government. When contacted, Krishi Bhumi Bachao Adolan, president, Bramh Prakesh said that with the increase in the collector rates, the burden on the farmers would increase. He said that the hike would not bring direct benefits to the farmers.

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Notices to mall owners for flouting ad norms
Tribune News Service

Gurgaon, July 4
The government has issued notices to mall owners and those running retail business in them on putting unauthorised advertisements on the premises.

Several big names like the DLF, MGF, Saharhar Group, Uppal Group along with those running retail shops have been issued notices.

They have been directed not to raise unipoles on the mall premises as such an action violated the building plan.

Following the strongly-worded notices, the mall owners have covered the advertisments plaques on the facade of the malls. This has robbed the malls of the look that matters.

The action by the department of town and country planning is a sequel to the advertisement controversy in which the Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda had to intervene.

The private firms who had got authorisations to display advertisements only on facilities like police posts, public toilets, tree guards, dustbins at specified places had complained to the office of the Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda that unauthorised display of advertisement by others, especially owners of malls had adversely affected their business.

The private parties who were authorised to display the advertisements had to create the facilities and use them on the 'build, operate and transfer' basis for five years. After the said period, they were to hand over the facilities to the government.

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City forest project opened
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 4
Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit today inaugurated a city forest project at Rewla Khanpur village near Chhawla. She described the upcoming city forests as new lungs of the Capital city, which has been facing challenge of environmental imbalance due to infrastructural development and urbanisation.

Speaking on the occasion, she called upon children to render constructive cooperation in extending the green cover. A large number of schoolchildren were present at the function to join Dikshit in planting saplings at Rewla Khanpur village. Dikshit appreciated role of schoolchildren who have been instrumental in making eco-clubs successful.

She said that 14 city forests already existed in Delhi. Nine new city forests had been planned to be developed. Out of these, the first new city forest was inaugurated today. Another eight city forests would come up at Issapur on 66.25 hectare, at Kharkhari Jatmal on 50.00 hectare, Sultan Pur Dabas on 24.76 hectare, at Auchandi on 0.5 hectare, at Mungesh Pur on 13.5 hectare, at Qutab Garh on 27.77 hectare, at Hindo Cut Ghazipur on 5.00 hectare and at Harewali on 24.80 hectare.

The Rewla Khanpur city forest, the 15th city forest is being developed under the aegis of the Department of Forests and Wildlife, Govt. of Delhi. It spreads over an area of 26 acres having the tree stocking of 14,000 saplings of different species. The main tree species being planted in the city forest are Kusum, Kadam, Neem, Ficus, Bamboo, Shisham and Jamun.

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Cool spell continues
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 4
The National Capital Territory of Delhi continued to enjoy the cool spell brought about by intermittent moderate showers for the second day today.

The rains and heavy clouds hovering over the skyline caused a drop of five degrees Celsius in today's temperature.

The minimum temperature was recorded at 26.5 degrees, one degree below normal. Even though only about 10 mm of rains was recorded, today's showers, which began at about 1245 hours, brought with them the problems of waterlogging and traffic jams.

Traffic jams and reports of waterlogging were received from many areas like the ITO crossing, Model Town and the walled city.

The rainy spell is expected to continue for the rest of the week and even next week with the weathermen forecasting heavy rainfall in the National Capital Territory of Delhi and the adjoining areas. The fresh spell of rain, which began with light showers yesterday, came following a nearly week-long dry spell of weather, after the first monsoon showers on June 28, a day ahead of their scheduled arrival date.

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File cases against errant drivers: Vardhan
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 4
The BJP Delhi Pradesh president Harsh Vardhan today said that the Government should itself lodge cases against the errant Blue Line drivers under Section 304 sub-section (2) of the Indian Panel Code.

He criticised the Delhi Congress Government for failing to frame any policy to control these buses during the last nine years.

Vardhan reminded that former transport minister Ajay Maken had said that a transport policy would be framed for Delhi. Now Transport Minister Haroon Yusuf has also said that a committee for Blue Line buses will announce the policy.

The Chief Minister has announced the removal of these buses from the roads. But it will not solve the problem, rather it will result in unemployment.

The need is to frame such a policy which will make roads free from accidents, Vardhan said.

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Check wasteful expenditure: Walia
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 4
Delhi Finance and Planning Minister A. K. Walia has told all the departments of the state government that henceforth no wasteful expenditure would be permissible. Such expenditures are not conducive to a healthy economy, he said.

At a meeting to review the status of schemes sanctioned by the Expenditure Finance Committee, during the last eight years, Walia said that he would discuss every scheme with reference to its sanctioned expenditure, date of sanction, actual expenditure, date of completion, cost escalation and reasons thereof along with lapse on part of the officer concerned.

Walia instructed the senior officers to avoid sanctioning of unreasonable amount and making unwarranted commitment.

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"Bathroom Singer" on TV
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 4
Filmy, a Hindi movie channel, will air its first reality show, " Bathroom Singer" in August.

The show is an hunt for an untrained singer who can entertain.

The ground auditions will start on July 24 in Ahmedabad; July 28 Delhi; August 1 Kolkata and August 5 in Mumbai. A combination of jury and viewer voting will decide the winner, who will walk away with a cash prize of Rs 25 lakh.

The jury will comprise Bhojpuri superstar Ravi Kishan and singer -composer Shibani Kashyap. Gaurav Gera of "Jassi Jaisa Koi Nahin" fame will anchor the show.

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Meter tampering racket busted
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 4
The police today claimed to have exposed an organised racket of selling specialized remotes which stopped domestic electric meters at will to show lower consumption. A local electrician was nabbed following the exposure.

The police said that Girwar, 55, was arrested in Maurice Nagar yesterday and several remotes were recovered from him. He is being interrogated.

Preliminary enquiries have revealed that the suspect had fabricated the remotes and sold them to the customers who wanted to reduce their electricity bill despite using all the gadgets. The remote device had the ability of stopping the meter installed on the premises.

The erstwhile, Delhi Vidyut Board and the present private power distribution companies have complained of large-scale power theft. BSES has raised several squads comprising technicians and personnel of the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) to conduct surprise raids.

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JNU denies reports
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 4
The Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) today denied reports that it had overlooked seniority while appointing a chairperson of a centre of study.

A release issued by JNU today said that the Statute 18(2) © (I) reads "Each Centre/Department shall have a Chairperson who shall be appointed by the Executive Council from amongst the Professors/Senior Fellows for a period of two years. Provided that where in any Centre/ Department, there is only one Professor/Senior Fellow, the Executive Council may also appoint one of the Associate Professors/Fellows as the Chairman of the Centre/Department."

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CM to start development schemes
Tribune News Service

Faridabad, July 4
Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda will lay the foundation stones of some of the major development projects worth over Rs 162 crore here on July 6.

Two of the projects will be carried out by the Municipal Corporation Faridabad (MCF) under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission Scheme (JNURM), a joint venture of the Union and the state government to upgrade the civic infrastructure in the city. The largest project whose foundation stone will be laid by the Chief Minister is the 'Revamping of the sewerage system, sewerage treatment and drainage-related development works' in Old Faridabad zone.

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BJP objection to NCP flag choice
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 4
The Leader of Opposition in the Delhi Assembly Jagdish Mukhi today demanded that the Indian National Congress Party (INCP) should be stopped from using Tricolour as its party flag.

"The Tricolour became the national property after independence. No political party can be allowed to use the Tricolour as its party flag. But the INCP is illegally using the national flag," Mukhi said.

Many of the illiterate voters were being misguided by the party by using the influence of the Tricolour, he alleged.

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5 killed in house collapse
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 4
Five person were killed and 11 others ,including children, injured when a three-storied house in Nehru Vihar of East Delhi collapsed this evening.

The injured have been admitted to the GTB Hospital where there condition was described as serious. Police and fire service personnel were clearing the debris to rescue suspected trapped three children. Senior police and fire brigade official were supervising the rescue operation. The police said a case has been registered and further investigation were continuing.

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