C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S

HUDA, societies lock horns over notification
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, November 23
The recent notification of the Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) asking the flat owners to get their apartments registered under the Apartment Act has kicked up a storm with thousands of cooperative group housing society members up in arms against the "anti-people" decision.

In fact, representatives of various societies under the aegis of the Haryana Group Housing Federation(HGHF) decided to form a joint action committee (JAC) here last night to oppose the notification "tooth and nail".

Setting the tone for discussion, RS Chaudhary, president of the Alaknanda Cooperative Group Housing Society, Gurgaon, condemned the “high-handed” and “oppressive” attitude of HUDA which ran counter to its objective of providing affordable housing to the people.

Recently, HUDA had asked the shareholders of the societies to get their shares registered under the Haryana Apartment Ownership Act, 1983. The decision was reportedly taken with a view to prevent the evasion of stamp duty through the sale and purchase of the apartments in the wake of the boom in the real estate sector in the tricity.

Terming the payment of stamp duty by the members of the cooperative housing societies as "illegal and discriminatory", KLN Rao, president of the PGI Employees Welfare Housing Society, Sector 20, claimed that other people buying plots from HUDA did not make any such payment.

BK Sanghi, president of the HGHF, asserted that the societies had already paid stamp duty for land when getting the conveyance deeds registered.The registration of the apartments under the apartment Act again was tantamount to double payment, Sanghi claimed urging the Haryana Chief Minister to intervene in the stand-off between HUDA and the cooperative societies. Secretary of Shikhar Apartments, Mansa Devi Complex, Sector 5, alleged that provisions of the Act were being arbitrarily imposed after about 17 years of the allotment to the cooperative societies.

Sanjay Suri, secretary of the Kendriya Vihar Apartments Group Housing Society, Sector 14, said as per the Act, the members were only shareholders in the society. They cannot be owners.

Meanwhile, Cooperative Group Housing Society Sangarsh Committee, Sector 20, alleged that the notification had been issued with a view to harass the allottees, who were mostly retired persons.

Official sources, however, claimed that the society members were being asked to register under the Act as there was a widespread evasion of stamp duty in the sale-purchase of the society flats. In the wake of the real estate boom, the premium on the flats ran into several lakhs of rupees. It was common knowledge that a substantial number of coop society members had sold off their flats in the open markets pocketing lakhs of rupees as premium, the sources added.



SI’s Promotion 
Admn told to probe certificate’s authenticity
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
The Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) has asked the Chandigarh administration to inquire into the authenticity of the yoga certificate awarded to sub-inspector Ram Gopal on the basis of which he got a promotion.

The tribunal today dismissed the plea of applicants on the basis of preliminary objection.

A division bench comprising judicial member Jasbir S. Dhaliwal and administrative member G.S. Sahni, observed: “We direct the IG Chandigarh and home secretary to examine this matter minutely to consider if respondent No. 4 (Ram Gopal) has really taken them for a ride on some false representations. If that is answered by their inquiry in the affirmative that promotion was obtained by wrong facts, they shall be duty-bound to take steps for stripping him off such promotion in accordance with law.”

The bench held: “We notice from the order of the home secretary that these aspects have not been covered by him or the IG on genuineness of certificate.”

The bench further added that the yoga competition was held on October 12, 1997, and the issuance of certificate was done by mistake. It was further mentioned in the order that an apology was conveyed for giving such a certificate to Ram Gopal by the organisers.

The 17 applicants, all police personnel, pleaded before the tribunal that the service rules were governed by statutory rules - Punjab Police Rules - which prescribed for reservation of 5 per cent of the posts for outstanding sportspersons for giving effective representation to sportsperson.

They pointed out that Ram Gopal joined the UT police as ASI in March, 1991 against general quota seat and was last in the merit list of seven successful candidates.

He was promoted as sub-inspector on June 11, 1996, as, according to rules, only those with service as ASI could be promoted to inspector rank.

The applicants alleged that in October, 1997, Ram Gopal went to Italy to attend a private yoga competition at his own expense. He was not sponsored by the administration or any other sports organisation.

However, on the basis of such participation he was initially promoted as inspector on ad-hoc basis in 1998 with orders passed on October 29, 1998.

Later, the orders were withdrawn from him vide order on October 30, 2000 by reverting him back to the rank of sub-inspector.

He was again promoted as inspector on ad-hoc basis as local rank without entitlement of any extra pay or allowance.

The applicants stated that they didn’t know about the promotion of applicant.



VC relents, claim PU students
‘Accedes’ to most demands
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
The newly elected Panjab University campus students’ council members along with Vikas Rathee, state president, INSO, met the PU vice-chancellor today and claimed that he had accepted many of their demands.

In a press note issued here today, the students’ body claimed that the VC agreed to implement the group insurance policy for students. INSO PU campus president Deepak Hooda in a press statement issued today said the VC had also agreed upon providing a reading room facility for girls at all girls’ hostels.

Scrapping of the internal assessment system in the university would be reviewed by the Senate but the VC agreed to include the president and general secretary of the Students Council in the committee.

The vice-chancellor also agreed for the construction of a subway on UIET and BDS Sector 25 campus. He also agreed to provide hostel facilities for BDS and UIET students on the campus only. Vehicle facility for UIET and BDS students of Sector 25 campus from their respective hostels would also be started.

Proper functioning of computer labs of various departments would be ensured and full-time lab assistants for the labs would be recruited. The VC also agreed for the upgradation of existing laboratory facilities in science departments in terms of instruments and equipment. He announced Rs 20 lakh for the same. Upgradation of department libraries would be done. The VC announced Rs 48 lakh rupees for the same.

PU authorities agreed to pursue demands relating to special buses for morning and evening coming from Panchkula, Mohali, Pinjore, Kharar, Zirakpur, etc. PU will write to UT Administration regarding starting concessional student passes on the pattern of the Delhi government where Rs 26 is charged per month for all bus routes and applicability of these passes in all the buses of CTU, Haryana and Punjab Roadways. 



GGDSD gets Rs 70 lakh grant for research
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
GGDSD College, Sector 32, which has over the years created a niche for itself in the commerce stream, is all set to gain recognition in science and research with the UGC selecting the college for a special grant of Rs 70 lakh under the Basic Scientific Research in Colleges programme. The college was selected from among the top 57 colleges of the country and is the only one in the region to have this distinction.

For this, the UGC had invited proposals by colleges from all over India. The college had sent 14 proposals in all, one for each laboratory, and, surprisingly, every proposal got a nod. “Each lab has been granted Rs 5 lakh and at present eight projects under CSIR, ICSSR, DPT, besides ohers, are already under way at the college.

“After receiving the grant, the college now plans to go ahead with the required improvements in each lab so that students can make optimum use of them”, said Dr AC Vaid, principal of the college.

“There was a time when colleges were considered just small streams of the university. With the improved infrastructure and facilities for students, they have now become big rivers benefiting the students, if not more”, he said.

Interestingly, the college was the only one to have got the status of ‘Potential for Excellence’ college from UGC out of top 57 colleges from across the country last year.

If everything goes right, the college may also be shortlisted among 200 other colleges of India to have ‘Inflib’ under UGC. ‘Inflib’ will enable the college to have the access to all the journals of the world free of cost for the students and the entire cost would be borne by the UGC.



Chemist shop burgled; Rs 8 lakh stolen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
Despite the presence of two guards, a chemist shop in Sector 11 here was burgled last night. Around Rs 8 lakh were stolen from the shop.

Vinod and Pramod Singla of Kumar Brothers chemist shop in Sector 11 found out about the theft when they opened the shutter this morning.

Incidentally, a PCR vehicle was stationed in the shop’s vicinity, said the security guards who were themselves unable to prevent the theft.

The owners of the shop said the cash was put in a drawer and a briefcase at the time of closing down the shop. 

During investigations, the police found an unbroken glass of a window, lying on the stairs on the first floor of the shop. 

As the shop was being guarded by private security, it could be the handiwork of some insider, the police said. 

The police questioned all the staff members and security guards. 

A team of CFSL was also called for investigations. A case of theft has been registered at the Sector 11 police station.



Army chief cautions against non-military threats
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
Terming energy security as the most significant aspect of national security, Chief of the Army Staff, Gen Deepak Kapoor, cautioned against the emergence of non-military threats and the increasing menace of non-state players in the global security environment.

Stating that one of the negative fall-outs of globalisation was that it had also given rise to forces of terror which had the power to unleash destruction, the Army Chief expressed concern over the fact that the attempts of non-state players (terrorist or subversive groups) to acquire weapons of mass destruction were gaining momentum. The situation is further compounded by failed states or those on the verge of collapse being used as safe havens by such elements.

He was delivering the keynote address at a seminar on “Changing Dimensions of Internal Security : Implications for India”, organised by the Centre for Defence and National Security Studies, Panjab University today.

Delving upon what he termed as “fourth-generation warfare”, the Army Chief cautioned against asymmetric threats like cyber war, which could be used to target the industry, command and control centres and institutions of national importance like nuclear power plants and space centres. Manipulation of the stock exchange, propaganda to subvert mindsets and illicit narcotic trade to generate resources are other forms of this warfare, he added.

Socio-economic disparities, he said, continue to exist, and this had become a cause for discontent and alienation, leading to ethnic, communal fault lines and intra-state conflicts. Migration of population and demographic pressures, economic and human security, environmental issues and the threat of epidemic are other aspects of comprehensive security, said General Kapoor.

Calling for restructuring and right-sizing the Army to meet future challenges, General Kapoor said it was important for the country to have military power so that its role as an emerging global player cannot be challenged. The armed forces also require adequate budgetary support along with the development of human resources with optimum integration of technology.

In his inaugural address, Deputy National Security Adviser, Shekhar Dutt said the country continues to be divided on class and caste lines, where large segments of the population are still illiterate and without proper nutrition.

He said man-made causes have resulted in massive disasters which have taken a heavy toll on the country and the defence forces are invariably entrusted with the task of disaster management. While dealing with recent floods in Mumbai, for example, equipment had to be airlifted from places like Patna, Jodhpur and Jhansi.

In his talk on “Politics and Dynamics of Nuclear Power in India”, former chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission, Dr M.R Srinivasan said with depleting carbon fuels, it is imperative that alternate means of energy be explored. He said nuclear power was one of the answers to solving the energy crisis and if India misses the bus now, it would be in a difficult situation.

The situation in the neighbourhood, the role of China in regional and global affairs, non-military threats and defence exports were among other topics discussed by experts during the proceedings today.



Event organiser, caterer exchange blows at PCA
Tribune News Service

Mohali, November 23
The Punjab Cricket Stadium here became the venue for a different kind of a match this afternoon. The owner of an event management company Gursimran Bhullar and the owner of the catering company at PCA Munish Sehgal exchanged blows, abusing one another while their employees watched.

Both Sehgal and Bhullar, who claimed to have been injured in the bout, alleged later that it was the other who had started the fight.

The incident took place at around 1.30 pm when according to Bhullar, he along with his employees, was making arrangements for a theme party to be held tonight.

“Munish Sehgal was abusing my employees while they were working and was rude to me. After a while, I objected to his behaviour and he started pushing me around. Then he hit me on the head. When I retaliated, he became violent and picked up a brick and threw at me. The employees who had gathered restrained him then,” he said.

Sehgal on the other hand said Bhullar’s employees and a lady friend were throwing their weight around and behaving rudely with his employees.

“I asked them to behave and they got angry. Then they called Bhullar to the PCA who started beating me up. I got injured and the police got my medical done too,” he said.

The police noted the complaints given by the two but a case is yet to be registered.



Andhra delegates on two-day visit to Punjab
Tribune News Service
Andhra Pradesh team, led by medical and health secretary Dr Vijay Kumar, interacts with health secretaries of Punjab R. Sarangal and Dr Roshan Sunkaria in Mohali on Friday
Andhra Pradesh team, led by medical and health secretary Dr Vijay Kumar, interacts with health secretaries of Punjab R. Sarangal and Dr Roshan Sunkaria in Mohali on Friday.—A Tribune photograph

Mohali, November 23
A high-level team from the Government of Andhra Pradesh reached here for a two-day visit to study the health care delivery system as well as the organisational structure and functioning of the medical and health departments in Punjab.

The five-member team, led by Dr Vijay Kumar, secretary to the Government of Andhra Pradesh, department of medical and health, reached the State Health Institute Mohali, today. The team interacted with the officers of the health department of Punjab.

The Punjab Government officers gave a detailed presentation on administrative structure of the department, functioning of Health Systems Corporation, service providers (doctors) and primary health care set up. The top functionaries of the health department, Punjab, were present during the interactive session.

Secretary health-cum-mission director, National Rural Health Mission, Dr Roshan Sunkaria, secretary health-cum-managing director, Punjab Health Systems Corporation, Dr Sukhdev Singh, director, health services, Dr S.K. Bansal, director, PHSC, Vipin Sharma, general manager, PHSC were also present. 



SBoP staff distribute uniforms
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
As part of its golden jubilee celebrations, the All-India State Bank of Patiala Employees Federation today distributed uniforms among destitute children adopted by the Aruna Asaf Ali Foundation.

Devinder Singh and NK Gaur, president and general secretary, distributed the uniforms at a function organised at the Aruna Asaf Ali Bhavan in Sector 44 in the presence of PH Vaishnav, chief patron of the trust.



Fire at newspaper office
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
A major tragedy was averted at the Sector-8 office of an English daily, Times of India, after an electricity meter on the ground floor of the building triggered a minor fire at around 3.37 pm this afternoon.

Over 90 persons were inside the building at the time of the incident. While 50 of these were at the newspaper’s office, 40 others were on the first floor of a beauty salon. The electrical wiring was damaged in the fire.

Three fire tenders — one each from Sector 17, Industrial Area and Mani Majra — were pressed into service.



Prabhjot Bali passes away
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, November 23
‘Hamko samjhe hain na samjhenge zamane waale, ham hain andhi mein charaghon ko jalaane waale’, a couplet by Prabhjot Bali aptly introduces him as a prolific poet, music composer, performer, vocal culture expert and an ardent proponent of literary singing.

Bali died today after he suffered a heart attack at his Mohali residence at around 4 pm. Born in 1947 at Rawalpindi, he graduated in mechanical engineering from Delhi and partnered with a friend to establish a metallurgical unit at Jalandhar. Notwithstanding the lucrative jobs or business, the artiste in him revolted to pursue the aesthetic passions. During his concerts abroad, Bali immortalised the soulful verses of Shiv Batalvi, Amrita Pritam and others, which won him the Punajb State Award in 1995.

These days, he was helping aspirant vocalists for embellishing human voice with stability and strength at his institute Swar Sangam. After two Gurbani albums, he was currently working on another music project with singer Agam Nigam, father of star singer Sonu Nigam. Bali is survived by wife Mohini Bali, daughter Renu and son Chetan Bir Singh.



Ban polythene bags

The recent Chhat celebrations at Sukhna has done a lot of damage to the lake. It is not the first time when this has taken place. It happens almost every year.

The administration has come up with a ban on rituals at the lake just at the right time. A similar ban on polythene bags should also be imposed as these harm atmosphere and create pollution. All those who try to pollute the city should be severely dealt with.

G.K.Chopra, Chandigarh

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Gang of robbers busted
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
The police has busted an inter-state gang of robbers, involved in committing the crime during religious congregations, with the arrest of three persons.

The group used to mingle with devotees at religious processions and rob them by taking away money and valuables besides picking pockets.

The police arrested three persons around 7 pm yesterday near Government Model Senor Secondary School, Sector 23, from a nagar kirtan being taken out on the eve of Gurpurab.

According to Kulwant Singh Pannu, SHO, police station-17, five persons in their 20s followed the procession in a car. “On finding a Sector 23 resident, Devinder Singh, lagging behind, three persons took him forcibly towards a school and robbed him of his purse containing Rs 4,500 in cash, one gold ring and mobile phone at knife-point.”

The victim raised the alarm following which people along with the police nabbed three — identified as Avtar Singh, Gurmeet Singh and Gurmeet Singh, all from Delhi.

Taking advantage of the commotion, the two others managed to flee in the vehicle.

“The accused were hard-core criminals and had earlier been arrested by the Delhi police in cases of theft and extortion,” said Pannu.

Meanwhile, a police team has been sent to Delhi in search of the other members of the gang. A case under Section 395, IPC, has been registered at the police station-17.



4 accused denied bail
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
The bail plea of ICICI Bank four recovery agents accused of forcibly taking away a car was dismissed by judicial magistrate Atul Marya.

Dismissing the bail, the court observed: “Circumstances and complaint reveal that the guidelines of Supreme Court and the RBI are being violated. If in this case bail is granted it will lead to increase of tendency leading to violation of rules and regulations issued from time to time regarding re-possession of vehicles.”

Arguing in the court, the defence counsel said: “No injury or force has been used by bank officials during the recovery. Till where the ownership of vehicle is concerned both the borrower of money and financier are owners of the vehicle.”

The defence lawyer pleaded that those who have been arrested are not criminals and if they are not granted bail their future employment would affected.

The defence lawyer also placed on record the copy of instructions issued by the Chandigarh SSP, which lays down the procedure through which recovery of vehicle is to be done.

The police had arrested four recovery agents of the bank on the charges of forcibly taking away an SUV of a Panchkula resident on November 21.



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