C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S

College boys stone buses
Tribune News Service

Mohali, November 13
Students of Government College here stoned Punjab roadways buses, injuring a passenger. The students allege the buses do not pick them up and they have to wait for hours for private and CTU buses.

The incident took place after 2 pm. Students waiting at the bus stop near the college signalled a roadways buse to stop but the bus driver did not oblige. Indignant, the students began stoning buses going towards Punjab from Chandigarh. They broke windows that resulted in injuries to Balbir Singh, who was going to Dasuya on the Chandigarh-Hoshairpur bus. He was rushed to the nearby civil hospital.

The police was called and the situation defused. The police rounded up a few students but later released them on the insistence of the college principal, Mrs Roop Aulakh.

This is the third incident of its kind in the past five years. Students of the college have been complaining to the principal that Punjab Roadways buses do not stop to pick them up. Though the college principal could not be contacted for comment, sources in the college said the principal had regularly written to the roadways authorities on the matter.

“ A majority of students have passes but the drivers and conductors prefer paying passengers. We have to wait for hours to travel short distances like Kharar and Kurali. The CTU buses and private buses always stop for us, but Punjab roadways buses speed away,” said a student. A third-year student of the college said this was a chronic problem.

“There are times when we come up to the middle of the road to force the bus to stop. At times we bang at the door,” he said.



Children’s Day
Toast to innocence
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
Universally, Children’s Day is celebrated on November 29 every year. The date was chosen as it marks the anniversary of the day in 1959 when the Declaration of the Rights of the Child was adopted by the UN General Assembly. In 1989, the Convention on the Rights of the Child was signed on the same date, which has been sanctioned by 191 states ever since.

In India this day is celebrated on November 14, the birth anniversary of India’s first Prime Minister, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru. This is so because of his great love for children. Pandit Nehru is also regarded as the country’s special child to have been the first Prime Minister of independent India.

Children’s Day is about innocence, joy, freedom and creativity. It is about giving children the right to enjoy and grow into healthy, educated and conscientious citizens. It is about teaching them the value of sharing. It is also about renewing the bonds between children and the caregivers, be it the teachers, the parents or other members of society which contribute towards their growth and welfare.

City schools have planned outings, picnics and parties for their students on this special day today. 

The significance of celebrating Children’s Day is to make them realise that they are the real heroes in building a strong nation. It is the occasion to let them know about their rights too. We are holding a community lunch to teach them to live in the spirit of togetherness 

DS Bedi, Shivalik Public 

It is the best occasion to celebrate the teacher and taught relationship. The students feel important on this day. We have a wing for special children. On the occasion, we make it a point to come together and understand their vision, hobbies and interests. Tomorrow, we plan a show by teachers to entertain children

Harold Carver, St Stephen’s

This day is celebrated to bring the teachers and students together. This bonding is important for the overall development of the child because we as teachers want to give society a healthy future in the shape of these children. It is imperative that we understand their difficulties and interests 

Madhu Behl, KB DAV-7



CVC team to inspect PGI’s cardiac centre
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
The upcoming Advance Cardiac Care Centre at PGI has come came under the scanner of the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) with a two-member team of civil engineers (CVC), New Delhi, reaching here in the afternoon.

The team, during its four-day stay here, will examine every aspect of the building, including the amount spent on the building and material used in its construction. The CVC officials said it was a ‘routine’ inspection.

Sources at the PGI, however, said the team was here to look into the alleged irregularities while allotting work to the construction company.

The PGI Employees Union, in a complaint to the CBI a few months ago, had alleged that the construction company was allowed to use cheap and inferior quality PVC cables at the Cardiac Care Centre, which had resulted in a loss of Rs 30 lakh to the PGI.



World Diabetes Day
Schoolkids, toddlers among victims
Tribune News Service

Mohali, November 13
An increasing number of schoolgoing children are being detected with diabetes mellitus and this is a worrying sign, says Dr K.P. Singh, senior consultant endocrinologist, Fortis Hospital.

“This is a trend seen all over the region as well as the world, and the reason why the theme of this year's World Diabetes Day (November 14) is ‘Diabetes in Children and Adolescents.’

“The situation is so alarming that the UN has recognised diabetes as a chronic, debilitating and costly disease and designated World Diabetes Day as United Nations Day every year starting from this year,” he says.

One of the major factors is obesity in children and the lack of early diagnosis, especially in rural areas. It is estimated that 70,000 children under 15 years develop diabetes each year worldwide, which means nearly 200 children everyday.

Diabetes is one of the most common chronic diseases in childhood. It can strike children at any age, including pre-school children and toddlers. Yet Diabetes in children is often diagnosed late, when the child has diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA), or it is misdiagnosed completely.

Those closest to the child - family, school staff, family doctor - may not be aware of the ominous signs. Educating masses about this disease and the benefits of early diagnosis are crucial to reducing complications and saving lives.

“The healthcare community, educators, parents and guardians must join forces to help children living with diabetes, prevent the condition in those at risk, and avoid unnecessary death and disability,” says Dr Singh.

Early signs for Type 1
  • Acute weight loss
  • Increased urination
  • Bouts of unconsciousness
  • General weakness

For Type 2 diabetes (mostly in children)

  • Physical inactivity
  • Obesity
  • Junk food 



Infected Meal
Probe ordered; report in 10 days
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
Taking cognizance of the worm-infested meal served to students of Government Senior Secondary School, Sector 27, under the mid-day scheme yesterday, the UT Administrator, Gen SF Rodrigues (Retd), today ordered an inquiry.

The Administrator has ordered that an inquiry committee be formed and give its report in 10 days. Raji P. Srivastava said: “ It is a serious matter.We will ascertain at what stage the lapse was committed. The guilty will be sternly dealt with”.

Meanwhile, panicky students of GSSSchool-27 refused to eat today’s meal. 



Mohali to house central university
Tribune News Service

Mohali, November 13
Punjab has offered land to the union government in Mohali for setting up of a first central university in the state.

This was announced by Punjab chief secretary Ramesh Inder Singh while inaugurating the transit campus of the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER) here.

“The university would be set up by the ministry of human resource development. Earlier, we were considering a site in Bathinda, but during deliberations with the centre we were told that they preferred an area where there was already sufficient intellectual mass available. Following which it was decided that a site in SAS Nagar district be offered,” he said.

In his speech, the chief secretary said Mohali would soon be the largest and most developed part of the state and Chandigarh and Panchkula would be known as its satellite towns. Listing the projects that were coming up in Mohali, he said other than the 350 acres of ‘Knowledge City’, the National Defence University would also be set up in Mohali.

The IISER campus will be housed in the ‘Knowledge City’ in Sector 81 but till the campus is ready, the IISER will function from the transit campus inaugurated today at the Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Public Administration in Sector 26, Chandigarh.

Giving details of the institute, Dr N. Sathyamurthy, director, IISER, Mohali, said the first batch of students had started attending classes on August 16 this year. The Mohali IISER joins rank with the already existing IISERs in Kolkata and Pune with IISERs at Trivandrum and Bhopal coming up soon.

“The uniqueness of the academic programme at the IISERs is the common core for the first two years of the five-year masters programme. All students learn mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology, computer science, earth sciences and social sciences before specialising in any of the areas,” he said.

When the IISER moves to its new campus in Mohali by July, 2009, it would have as its neighbours the Institute of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology and the National Institute of Biotechnology,

“Funded by the centre and supported by the Punjab government, the Mohali IISER aims to set-up a world-class academic institution with its eyes on possible applications for India in forefront areas of science and technology,” added the director.

KVPY scholars and Olympiad medalists in chemistry, physics, mathematics and biology are eligible for admission to the IISERs. In addition, the IISERs have made arrangements with the IITs to use their merit list and extended merit list for admitting students.

The IISER here plans to admit a limited number of PhD students, starting from January, and is in the process of recruiting a number of scientists to its faculty.



Environment Friendly Drive
PU dons cycle round the campus
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
The entire top brass of the Panjab University participated in an environment friendly drive held on the university campus here today.

The event was sponsored by B.C.M. Foundation, which gave away 15 brand new cycles to the university to promote cycling and healthy habits amongst the campus fraternity as part of the diamond jubilee celebrations.

Led by Dr R.C. Sobti, vice-chancellor, the entire administration including DUI, registrar and senior officers and faculty members went round cycling the campus.

Dr Sobti thanked B.C.M Foundation and Suresh C. Munjal, managing director (marketing), Hero Cycles Limited, Ludhiana, for their support and reiterated his appeal to everyone to make cycling or walking, a way of life.

“This will not only improve health and vitality but will also result in pollution free environment and lot of savings”, he said.



‘Parivartan’ begins on rowdy note
Tribune News Service

Mohali, November 13
Students of Chandigarh Engineering College, Landran, organised a roadshow to mark the beginning of a two-day festival, ‘Parivartan’.

Satnam Singh Sandhu, chairman, Chandigarh Group of Colleges, and Rashpal Singh Dhaliwal, president, CGC, flagged off a rally of a large number of students on bikes, cars, buses, jeeps and trucks from the college campus.

Sandhu said both education and entertainment were equally important for personality development and this was one such effort.

The main attraction of the event was Harbhajan Mann’s performance. The rally passed through various locations in Mohali and Chandigarh, including the PCL roundabout, MCM College, Panjab University and GCG -11.

What was supposed to be an awareness rally by the students of the college turned out to be a hooligan’s show on the city’s busiest roads. Rowdy students were hanging out of the windows of moving cars, those who were riding two-wheelers were without helmets and some were seated atop bonnets and bumpers of jeeps.

Other than waving and hooting at passers-by, the students caused traffic jams. Throwing rules and regulations to the winds, these students flouted every possible traffic rule.

Interestingly, the police remained a mute spectator. 



Illegal occupation of parking space
MC challans four banks
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
The municipal corporation today challaned four banks for occupying parking space in the Bank Square.

The challans, issued by the enforcement wing of the corporation, have come following the corporation’s initiative to streamline parking in various parking lots of the city.

Nominated councillor M.P.S. Chawla said the finance and contract meeting last month had decided that he along with the area councillor and MC officials would check parking lots of the city to ensure that the problem being faced by residents was addressed.

“We visited the Bank Square after asking the parking contractor to streamline the process. The contractor, however, pointed out that he was helpless in controlling the chaos as banks had cordoned off areas, otherwise meant for two-wheeler parking, with chains for parking of their vehicles.”

As the councillors conducted a survey, a brief altercation broke out between a senior bank functionary and the parking staff, who refused his vehicle’s entry as the parking was full.

The councillors said the senior official manhandled the staff and asserted that he had a fixed parking space and could not be refused.

“We called the enforcement staff to take action against banks as the common man was facing problem due to the area being cordoned off by banks,” added Chawla.

Area councillor Pardeep Chabbra said the parking area fell under the corporation and banks had occupied area meant for two-wheelers.

“Our aim is to improve the system. We spent two and half hours there and issued them challans. We removed chains used to cordon off the area.”

The councillors further stated that the banks needed to get permission from the MC to earmark parking space for their office.

However, a senior functionary of Punjab and Sind Bank said the area was earmarked due to security reasons, as transactions of large amounts of money was done daily and the bank needed specified parking area.

“We should have been informed in advance of such action. This is high-handedness on part of the MC,” he added.



Deeper introspection needed to combat bio-disaster
Vijay Mohan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
The role of law enforcement agencies and public health authorities, their proactive coordination and surveillance vis-a-vis defence against bio-terrorism at the state and national level requires a deeper introspection in order to prevent or combat a high intensity bio-disaster.

Stating this a paper on bio-terrorism, bio-weapons and bio-defence preparedness has cautioned that the present-day laws and regulatory framework in India would further need to be strengthened to deal effectively with any instance of bio-terrorism.

The paper, authored by a senior Indian Police Service officer and published recently by the Bureau of Police Research and Development, contends that there is always a possibility that motivated individuals or terrorist groups or even inimical states may cause a bio-attack in India. This could lead to a bio-disaster resulting in a massive disruption and chaos.

Calling for a complete review of available indigenous resources, capabilities and legal requirements to enhance preparedness to deal with and neutralise a bio-attack, the paper states that a very focused and coordinated efforts are required at the international level to check the “omnipresent” threat of bio-terrorism.

Maintaining that bio-terrorism poses an emerging threat on the country’s security horizon, the paper adds that bio-terrorism covers not only human beings as targets, but also the use of bio-agents to wage economic warfare by destroying animals and plant population important to the populace. The use of genetic engineering and biotechnology has given a fillip to the production of newer and lethal bio-weapons.

The paper points out that the High Profile Committee on Disaster Management had earlier pointed out the serious lack of public health infrastructure in India to deal with a bio-disaster. The need of the hour to combat lethal bio-agents are modern diagnostic equipment, anti-microbial agents, trained professionals and high containment laboratory facilities.

The paper suggests that apart from the IPC and the CrPC, which may be put into use for prevention or investigation of a crime involving bio-agents, it would be more expedient and advantageous if a specific criminal legislation dealing with such incidents were enacted.

Stating that here may further be a need to set up a surveillance mechanism on all such institutions or laboratories which are closely related to or are dealing with bio-agents, the paper also states that intelligence agencies also need to pay adequate attention on collection of information related to import, export, manufacture, storage and sale of dangerous pathogens.



Ex-mayors to form council
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
Former mayors of the municipal corporation today decided to form Chandigarh Mayors Council. The decision was taken at a meeting of former mayors and the current mayor.

The council will work for the welfare of city residents and strengthening the democracy. The former mayors would come together on one platform and meet once a month.



Upgrade trauma facilities, Rodrigues to hospitals
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
Punjab Governor and UT administrator Gen S.F. Rodrigues (retd) has asked the three premier government health facilities - PGI, Government Medial College and Hospital, Sector 32, and Government Multi-Speciality Hospital, Sector 16 - to restructure their trauma services to provide quality service to patients.

At a meeting attended by special secretary health Raji P. Shrivastava, director health services Manjit Singh Bains and senior doctors from the PGI and the GMCH at the Punjab Raj Bhavan, General Rodrigues asked them to initiate firm steps within a week to ensure that their response to emergency situations was rapid and coordinated.

The aim was to provide immediate access to trauma patients for specialised services in all medical disciplines.

The administrator asked doctors to rationalise the streamlining of emergency services, right from the site of accident to the time till the victim was brought to the hospital, especially in case of poor patients who lacked the wherewithal to obtain the best possible treatment.

The GMCH-32 and the GMSH-16 will take measures to ensure that the full range of emergency treatment was made available to each patient on arrival.

Better treatment techniques will be introduced to bring world-class facilities to the city.



Youth commits suicide
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, November 13
A 25-year-old youth, hailing from Himachal Pradesh, today committed suicide by jumping in front of a train near Chandimandir. The incident took place at about 5:30 pm. According to eye witnesses, Sanjeev Kumar jumped in front of the Himalayan Queen. He died instantly. A suicide note was recovered from the youth.

According to the police, the suicide note stated that he was fed up by his illness and was thus ending his life.

Sanjeev had come to visit his brother Ajay Kumar, an army personnel, a few day back. Ajay reached the site of the incident but refused to speak to anyone about it. The police has started inquest proceedings in the case.



’84 Riots
5 held for holding protest at Sector 17 plaza
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
The police today arrested five members of the Panthak Vichar Manch (PVM), Chandigarh, including its president, after they tried to stage a protest at the Sector 17 plaza.

They were demanding the UT administration to implement the Prime Minister’s relief package announced for the ’84 anti-Sikh riot victims.

The police said the protesters were arrested for violating prohibitory order issued by the administration that bars holding of rally at the plaza.

Earlier, PVM president Baljit Singh Khalsa alleged that the police had kept him under detention at his PCO situated at the gurdwara in Sector 40 to prevent him from staging a protest.

The police came to his PCO in the morning and detained him at his PCO, he alleged.

He also alleged that policemen from the police station-39 picked him up last evening and kept him at the police station for three hours, where he was told not to hold the protest.

In the afternoon, Khalsa and some members of the manch moved from the gurdwara, informing the police that they were going to Nadha Sahib gurdwara.

Instead of going there, they went to Sector 17, where the police prevented them from assembling.

They tried to unfurl their banners, but the police resisted their attempts.

They did not leave the place in spite of being repeatedly asked to do so, following which police station-17 SHO Kulwant Singh Pannu reached the scene and placed them under arrest.

Khalsa alleged that the administration had not only failed to give the relief package but also crushed their right to speak.

Sources in the police said the administration had rejected permission for holding the protest.

They did not follow the direction and were thus arrested for violating the prohibitory orders.

They were produced before the magistrate and were released after they gave an undertaking not to carry out any such activity without seeking prior permission from authorities.

SHO of police station-39 Rajesh Shukla said Khalsa had not been detained as alleged by him and that policemen outside the gurdwara were on beat duty.



Faulty architecture

The architecture of newly constructed Randhawa Auditorium at Punjab Kala Bhawan, Sector 16, is faulty.

The curved railing obstructs the view of the first-row viewers. As a result a lot of space is wasted. This indicates apathy of the bhawan authorities who have wasted the public money on a shoddy job.

In the city, which is known for its architecture, such glaring mistake cannot be excused.

Dr Jayanti Roy, 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



Youths snatch woman’s chain
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
Two unidentified motorcyclists snatched a gold chain of a woman in Sector 29 this afternoon.

The complainant, Kulwant Kaur, reported to the police that she was on her way home around 4.15 pm when two unidentified youths approached her on a motor cycle. She tried to take evasive action by concealing the chain under dupatta but to no avail. The miscreants managed to snatch her chain.

A case has been registered.

Purse stolen

Seema Handa of Sector 32 reported to the police alleging that her purse containing Rs 5,000 in cash, an ATM card, a pass book and duplicate keys to her car was stolen from her Maruti Alto car (CH 03 9135), which was parked at the cremation ground in Sector 25, on Monday afternoon.

A case of theft has been registered at the police station-11.


Sham Bihari of Mauli Complex, Mani Majra, lodged a complaint with the police alleging that Girbar, Vijay, Mehar Singh, Vinod, Kali Chander, all residents of Mauli Complex, assaulted and threatened him near his residence on Saturday night. He sustained injuries in the attack.

The police has registered a case of rioting, criminal intimidation and causing hurt under various provisions of the IPC at the police station, Mani Majra.



Drug Peddling
Accused’s fiancée seeks probe by independent agency
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
Accusing Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) officials of being corrupt, Lada Svobodova, fiancée of Israeli national Lior Avi Ben Moyal who is facing trail on charges of possessing contraband, today asked for re-investigation into the case by an independent agency.

Among the seven narcotics cases pending at the district courts here, four involve foreign nationals. Of these, the maximum quantity of contraband — 155.5 kg charas — was seized from Lior, along with his accomplice Jiri Andrew and Kulu resident Narender Kumar.

Lada claimed that Lior was kidnapped from Sonepat on February 9, 2005, while the case filed by the NCB stated that he was arrested from a furniture factory in Industrial Area, Phase-I, Chandigarh, the same day.

She alleged that the investigating officer in the case, Ravi Kant Pawar, had asked for a bribe of Rs 3 crore to provide the evidence that would prove Lior’s innocence.

Pawar had allegedly offered to sell his mobile number through which his whereabouts on the day of Lior’s arrest could be traced.

Lada has so far changed five lawyers in three years in this case. Counsel for Lior Ranjan Lakhanpal said: “She has already moved an application to President, Chief Justice, Prime Minister, home minister and others officials, alleging that NCB officials are corrupt.”

The NDPS Act gave a lot of powers to the investigating officer, as they could falsely frame anyone in a case.

Commenting on the allegations, counsel for NCB Kailash Chander said: “These are mere allegations as nothing on record has been produced in the court.”



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