C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S

Woman found dead in bathroom
* Murder, say parents
* Husband, in-laws nabbed
Tribune News Service


Panchkula, December 19
A 29-year-old woman was allegedly killed by her husband and in laws here today. The police has arrested the accused Chandan, along with his parents Inder Mohan and Manorama after registering a case against them under Section 302. The deceased has been identified as Ritu Bala.

As soon as the relatives of Ritu, who reached from Ludhiana at mortuary of General Hospital in the afternoon, beat up Chandan who was rescued by policemen deputed on the spot, and later stoned the house of accused in Sector 7.

The husband of Ritu runs an air condition repair shop in the same sector.

The in laws of Ritu took her to General Hospital in Sector 6 in the morning where she was declared brought dead. Ritu went to take a bath at around 8.30 am and when she did not came out even after 30 minutes they knocked at the door, said Chandan.

“When we did not get any reply, the door of bathroom was broken and Ritu was found lying on the floor”, said Chandan. Perhaps she slipped down while taking the bath, he added.

The parents of Ritu, however, alleged that she was killed by in-laws as they were not happy with her as she did not have any son.

“We were not even informed about the death and some neighbour informed us about the incident when she was taken to the hospital,” said Narinder, the mother of Ritu

“My daughter had two daughters after she married Chandan in 1999 and her mother-in-law wanted Ritu to leave Chandan so that he could get remarried,” alleged Avinash Rai Monga, father of the deceased.

“They used to torture her and on December 9 she informed us that her husband thrashed her badly”, said Monga.

The SHO of Sector 5 police station said, no signs of breaking the door was found on the spot.



350 trees axed in IT park
Blame-game begins

Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 19
At least 350 fruit bearing and other trees were chopped off in the Rajiv Gandhi Chandigarh Technology Park, Manimajra, last night.

Though the Administration has passed off the incident as theft of trees by unscrupulous elements, villagers in the area said “theft” of so many trees right under the nose of the authorities was not possible. The land on which the trees were standing has already been acquired by the administration.

No official of the Horticulture Department was available for comments. A visit to the spot revealed that long-standing eucalyptus trees were being chopped off over the past few weeks. The trees have not been cut in one night.

On the spot broken tree shoots were lying scattered. It appears that the trees after being cut had been carried on some vehicle. The site where the trees have been found cut is adjoining a road being constructed by the UT engineering department.

Sources believe that it could be a tactic move to clear the land of the trees for some project. Following the standard practice, an assistant landscaping officer, Horticulture Department, Harjit Singh lodged an FIR at the Manimajra police station about the theft.

Almost three years ago, a similar FIR was lodged at the Manimajra police station regarding cutting of 1000 mango trees. Now again, the trees have been cut in the same fashion and the residents of labour colonies have been accused. Possibility of involvement of government officials cannot be ruled out.

“Cutting so many trees and taking them away requires some time. This means employees of the administration were watching helplessly when the trees were being cut”, said a farmer of the area. The residents have been protesting against the depleting tree cover of the area.



Custodial Death
All CIA staffers sent to police lines
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, December 19
Taking a strong note of the death of a resident of Shahbad Markanda in the illegal custody of local CIA staff, the authorities have sent all staff members to police lines here today.

The cases being handled by the investigating agency will be looked after by detective staff in future. Superintendent of police Sandip Khirwar had already suspended seven police personnel who picked Jogi, the deceased, from his home on December 8.

The police has received the post-mortem report of the case. Khirwar said there were injury marks on the back, hands, legs of Jogi. However the marks, according to the SP, were from old injuries.

Sources, however, said Jogi was tortured brutally by the CIA. The body of the deceased bore black marks as he was given electric shocks, said the sources.



PHL Begins Today
New rules to greet players
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 19
New rules will be enforced for better discipline during the fourth edition of Premier Hockey League, which is all set to roll from tomorrow at Hockey Stadium, Sector 42 here.

“This year, we have made some alterations in the rules to enforce better discipline. The most significant rule change is that even a green card will mean that the erring player will not be allowed to participate in the game for two minutes. This I am sure will deter players from any rough play,” said Maurits Hendriks, technical consultant of PHL, while talking to mediapersons at Hotel Taj here today.

Hendriks, who is also the National Hockey coach of the Spainish Hockey team, further added that during penalty corners if players break early or anyone blocked the ball with his body instead of stick then the player could be retired by the umpire.

Meanwhile, the Indian Hockey Federation chief KPS Gill announced the list of 21 foreign players (including 10 from the Netherlands, eight players from Pakistan and three players from South Korea), being allocated three each to the seven participating teams.

“For the first time three South Korean players, Chul Kim, Kang Moon Kweon and You Hyo Sik, are participating in the PHL”, said Gill.

Terming the tournament very important prior to the Olympics qualifiers just three months away, Gill was of the view the matches would definitely help in the preparations for the biggest challenge.

Apart from that the league carries total prize money of Rs 76 lakh (Rs 40 lakh to winner, Rs 20 lakh to runners up and the losing semi-finalists share prize money of Rs.5 lakh each).

All matches will be broadcast live on ESPN.



Parking project, a white elephant
Ajay Banerjee
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 19
Does the city need the much-touted multi-level parking in Sector 17. Will it not be like a proverbial white elephant in view of the high cost, about Rs 250 crore, including cost of land, though the project is coming up on a build, operate and transfer basis in which a private party will invest and recover money from people coming to park cars.

As per estimates, the cost of the building alone will be between Rs 50-60 crore. Add to it, the cost of land in the heart of the city, Sector 17- which currently stands at Rs. 2.90 lakh per square yard. Translated into per kanal basis, it means Rs 15 crore per kanal.

The plot size at 6,739 sq yards translates into 13 kanals, that is nearly Rs 190 crore for the plot alone.

Sources in the MC said the area is already being used for parking hence its commercial value should be taken into account.

What’s the number of cars it might cater to -- 1,500-1,600 cars? Yes, a Rs 250 crore investment is being made to provide a facility where 1,500-1,600 cars can be parked.

That makes it about Rs 15 lakh to provide parking space for each car - that is more than the price of most high-end cars which, at Rs 10 per entry of car, should take about years to recover.

The MC has not set up any body that will monitor the parking fee and its collection and profit margins for the company.

Does this not mean that the MC is selling away prime land to build parking spaces for the rich?

And does Sector 17 have that kind of entry and exist points that can handle so many cars during peak hours.

Already underground parking spaces in the city are under-utilised and not preferred by the car owners in Sector 17 and Sector 8.

Why does the Municipal Corporation not think of imposing a “congestion tax” on cars entering high density areas so that people park cars in nearby sectors from where battery operated buses could ferry them in.

The company constructing the parking will be allowed to collect the parking fee for nine years an 11 months. Also the builder will get 9 per cent of the area for commercial use.

That means about 650 yards will go to the builder and about Rs 13- Rs 14 crore concession at today’s prices.

The commercial activities permitted will include shops, kiosks, department stores, retail mall, offices, restaurant, food courts, etc. The multi-level parking will come up behind the power sub-station.

The MC has planned to provide dedicated subways to enter and exit the parking, but what about the roads leading to Sector 17.

The one between Sector 17 and 19 is choked throughout the day and so is the one between Sector 17 and 22.



Preserve heritage sites: Experts
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 19
Focusing on preserving the heritage sites and elaborating on the increasing need to generate ideas to implement the same, Minja Yang, director, New Delhi UNESCO office, said strategies need to be redefined to create emotions insisted by Le Corbusier.

With management of urban historic landscapes as the theme, the experts today discussed approaches to be adopted. “The people here want better living standards, there is huge demand for housing, people move to this city from densely populated cities, all these issues need to be taken into mind for safeguarding urban heritage,” said Minja adding that retaining the master plan of the city is utmost important.

The second day of the workshop was formally inaugurated by home secretary Krishan Mohan who emphasised on the need to preserve architectural work in the city. “The city cannot remain a city of concrete only. It has to develop with time. We are trying to keep pace with the technological advancements, but not on the cost of our culture, architecture and ethos,” he said. He also talked about the tourism potential of the city and said it has grown by leaps and bounds because of its architecture and rich cultural heritage.

The Chandigarh Administration has decided to set up the Museum of Knowledge (MOK) in the Capitol Complex as per the original design of the Governor's Palace building, at the same location as planned by Le Corbusier, said Mohan.

Francesco Bandarin, director of the World Heritage Centre of UNESCO, said at present the world is changing very fast. And to cope with this, strategies would have to be redefined.



Councillors discuss good governance
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 19
A two-day orientation programme for mayors and councillors of municipal corporations in Punjab began at the Centre for Research in Rural and Industrial Research (CRRID) here today. About 40 newly elected officials form various municipal corporations are attending the programme.

The scope of the programme comprises important and essential features of the 74th amendment, recommendations of various finance committees, major policy changes and good governance for improving the quality of life of citizens.

Increasing resources through rationalising water and sewerage charges, alternative measures of taxation, importance of property tax and preparation of budgets and balance sheets also feature in the programme.

In his remarks, honorary director, urban governance and development, CRRID, J.P. Gupta, said urban local bodies were facing serious challenges to meet the requirements of urban infrastructure, provision of basic services, environmental conservation and alleviation of urban poverty.

Stating that urban development projects with private participation hold promise, he added that introduction of e-governance is imperative. He said in many ways the present municipal governance was as multi-dimensional as state governments and urban local bodies have to largely fend for themselves for raising resources.



Rehri Market Fire
Rehabilitation issue brought up in Vidhan Sabha

Tribune News Service

Mohali, December 19
The issue of rehabilitation of shopkeepers who lost their shops in a major fire that gutted the Phase 3B1 rehri market here was brought up in the Vidhan Sabha yesterday.

Kharar MLA Balbir Singh Sidhu highlighted the issue and asked the minister for urban housing and development “what had the government done to rehabilitate the shopkeepers”. Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, who holds the charge of urban housing, said a committee had been constituted by the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA) to rehabilitate these shopkeepers.

As many as 378 shopkeepers of the market had lost everything in the fire that broke out on June 1. The out-of-work shopkeepers today decided to spread out cots and sell their wares.

PUDA had constructed 130 booths next to the market and had promised to build another 248 booths on the land where the rehri market was located. Before fresh booths are constructed, GMADA will hold a draw of lots and allot shops to them. Those who are allotted numbers in the already constructed shops will move in.



Financial help under govt plans
Only 36 pc reap benefit
Our Correspondent

Mohali, December 19
Only 36 per cent beneficiaries have been able to get financial help under various government schemes as the authorities concerned have failed to open bank accounts in the case of others.

This was disclosed by the district social security officer at a monthly meeting held here today which was presided over by deputy commissioner H.I.S.Garewal. He said there were a total of 25,119 beneficiaries in the district and bank accounts had so far been opened in the case of about 8,000 persons only. The deputy commissioner asked CDPOs to speed up the work of opening of bank accounts so that the benefits could be passed on to the beneficiaries.

A sum of Rs 20.40 lakh received by the district under the shagun scheme was distributed to 136 persons. Funds for another 150 persons were being awaited. As many as 315 sportspersons could not avail financial benefits because the district education officer had not sent a list of the students entitled to get scholarships.



Adolescents get trained in life skills
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 19
Keeping in view the transitional phase of adolescent’s life, Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan, under the ministry of youth affairs and sports has implemented a ‘Life Skill Education Training Programme’ in 63 districts of the country, with an objective to meet the urgent need for development and empowerment of adolescents particularly from the economically and socially neglected sections of society to make more focused interventions in the field of adolescent health and development.

Nehru Yuva Kendra, Chandigarh, is also running this 45 days life skill training programme, in the supervision of V.K. Shukla, zonal director NYKS Punjab and Chandigarh, Sukhdev Singh, regional coordinator NYKS Punjab and Chandigarh in Burail village, Chandigarh, from November 14-December 28.

There are 45 participants in this training who are keen to learn things, which will help them in future. Participants are learning about 10 core life skills, their importance as well as other important issues relating to their daily life and games, yoga and other creative things, with the help of a part time counselor Renu Gandhi, who is an expert in life skill education.



MC tightens noose around parking contractors
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 19
The municipal corporation today tightened its noose around the parking contractors by doubling the penalties imposed on them through challans.

A decision in this regard was taken in the today’s meeting of the Finance and Contract Committee. The parking contractors will be challaned Rs 1,000 for various offences like non-issuance of token, haphazard parking, encroachments in parking lots, not wearing uniform. They will have to pay Rs 2,000, Rs 5,000 and Rs 10,000 in the subsequent challans. “The decision has been taken in view of rising cases of haphazard parking,” said mayor Harjinder Kaur.

The meeting approved the allotment of night shelter in the truck parking of Sec 26 and auction of wholesale shops and booths in the newly constructed air-conditioned fish market in Sec 41.



Tributes paid to Bhagat Singh
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, December 19
The Chandigarh Centre of the Punjab Languages department, both Hindi and Punjabi cells, organised a joint poetic symposium at the Shivalik Public School-41 auditorium here today. The symposium dedicated to the life and ideology of the great martyr, Bhagat Singh, was largely attended and prominent poets read out their verses eulogising the patriotic zeal and supreme sacrifice made by the legendary personality.

The poets and singers who presented their kalaam included Sevi Rayat, Sham Singh, Kewal Manakpuri, Balkar Sidhu, Raj Zakhmi, Tanha Kashmiri, Ajmer Sagar and Babu Ram Deevana who conducted the poetic symposium. Director principal of Shivalik Educational Institutes D.S. Bedi was the chief guest.



Sec-25 crematorium closed for a week
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 19
The municipal corporation has decided to close the electric furnace at the crematorium in Sector 25 for a week with immediate effect due to repair work and installation of new control panel.



Vendors misuse service lanes
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 19
Residents of Sector 10-A have complained that the service lanes, particularly the one between H No. 98 and 100, in their area are being used as thoroughfares by two-wheeler riders and vendors . Not only this, the passers-by do not hesitate to defecate here.

The residents said their meeting with the deputy commissioner on August 30 did not yield any result.



Traffic law enforcement

Law enforcement related to traffic violations need to become mandatory and strict. ‘Pedestrian First’ concept needs to be implemented, wherein the moment a pedestrian steps on a road, the vehicular traffic should pay some attention towards him to avoid accidents and anybody found violating this rule should be dealt with seriously.

Specific zones should be earmarked where horns should be banned.

The parking of vehicles also needs to be looked upon with great concern either on the main roads or the internal lanes. Zebra crossing has been quite often seen ignored. A pedestrian does not find space at all for crossing a red light section resulting in chaos most of the times.

Rickshaws, Auto rickshaws, Rehris are also seen in the lane for cars and two wheelers which convert the entire traffic set up into a jam.

Traffic police should start a drive for about a month before implementing these laws to educate the citizens.

This is my request to the citizens of Chandigarh to take a step forward to keep out city clean, green and safe.

Ajay Sharma, 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



Jalandhar resident held with 10 kg charas
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 19
Sleuths of the Narcotic Control Bureau (NCB) nabbed 49-year-old Navin Kumar Uppal of Jalandhar with 10 kg of charas from near Hotel Sunbeam in Sector 22 here today.

Sources in the NCB said they had laid a trap to nab the accused following an information this morning. Uppal runs a tea stall in Jalandhar and has brought the contraband from Pathankot from a Chamba resident Barkat. He was to deliver it to Gohana resident Rakesh Kumar.

The investigating official said the charas was of superior quality. The accused was produced before a local court, which remanded him to the judicial custody. During the preliminary interrogation, he admitted before that he had smuggled the contraband twice without being caught. He was to be given Rs 5,000 for this consignment.

This is the NCB’s third trap in this month. Earlier, on December 1, the NCB had arrested an African national and a Jalandhar resident from near Grain Market, Sector 39, with 10 kg heroin and on December 10, the NCB nabbed a Ludhiana-based father-son duo and a Nigerian national from the Sectors 43 and 44 rotary on the charges of carrying 8 kg of heroin.



3 more cars, 5 laptops recovered from ‘judge’
Ramanjit Singh Sidhu
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 19
The police has recovered three cars, five laptops, a mobile phone and other articles following the sustained interrogation of Inderjit Singh of Lalru, who was arrested for posing as a civil judge junior division-cum-judicial magistrate with a stolen car sporting a red beacon on December 15.

The investigating officials have also recovered school uniforms and clothes of children besides other articles from Inderjit. Earlier, the police had recovered eight mobile phones from him. Sources in the operation cell of the Chandigarh Police said the investigating officials were excepting more recoveries.

The accused told officials that he used to lay his hands on whatever he could from parked cars. He used to strike his targets in posh areas.

A police officer said Inderjit, who was involved in several cases of thefts in Chandigarh, Mohali and Panchkula, had stolen a Hyundai Elantra from the Sukhana Lake parking, a Maruti Alto from Punjab Engineering College (PEC) and a Hyundai Santro from Sector 15. The accused said he had stolen the laptops from Panjab University and PEC as no one ever suspected him to be a thief because he always used a car sporting red beacon.

The investigating officials today produced Inderjit before a local court to seek extension in his police remand. The court has extended his police remand by two days.

Inderjit is married and has two children. He is an illiterate and his parents have disowned him because of his ‘nefarious’ activities. Earlier, he was arrested from Sector 36 in 2006 when he was posing as the personal security officer-cum-driver of the director, Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), and was driving a gypsy sporting a red beacon bearing a plate which read ‘CBI director’. At that time, the police had recovered six laptops from him besides other expensive electronic appliances. He was released on bail in December last year.



Duplicate medicines worth Rs 21 lakh seized
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, December 19
The Haryana state drug control department seized duplicate medicines worth more than Rs 21 lakh from Kalka near here today. The medicines were recovered during raids on residential premises.

The medicines were packed bearing the names of well-known pharmacuetical brands including Cadila, Glaxo Smithkline and Novartis.

Manoj, a resident of Kalupur chungi, Sonepat, along with two residents of Kalka including Ravi and Vijay alias Vikki, allegedly rented a house for a monthly rent of Rs 3,900 and issued blank cheques in advance to the landlord. During the raid, tablets of Atorva worth Rs 10 lakh were recovered. Similarly, Ceftum tablets worth Rs 6 lakh and Voveron SR 100 mg of more than Rs 5 lakh were seized. A batch coding machine, packing material and ink were also seized from the spot.

A team of Haryana state drug control department, led by Dr G.L. Singhal, additional drug controller, Haryana, raided house number 176 in the Housing Board Colony. The security director of Novartis, a multinational medicines company, also accompanied the team. Williams Rawlins, a Novartis official, confirmed that the medicines bearing the name of the company were not manufactured by the company.

The accused said they used to get material from Agra and after packing the medicines in fake reputed brand names, they were sent back to Agra. Singhal, however, suspected that the accused were working for a person who was manufacturing duplicate medicines at a nearby place. They were trying to mislead the authorities, he said. There was no logic for packing duplicate medicines for a manufacturer in Agra, he opined. There was every possibility that the manufacturer was based locally and the medicines were distributed in the region also, added Dr Singhal.



Women hurt in clash
Tribune News Service

Nayagaon, December 19
At least three persons, including two women, were injured in a clash here today. The clash took place when a girl, standing outside her house, asked farmer Sucha Singh to pick up the fodder that he had dropped in front of her house.

According to the police, the girl, Madhu, alleged that she saw Sucha Singh bringing fodder in a trolley. Some of the fodder fell on the ground opposite her house and she asked him to pick it up. She alleged that instead of picking up the fodder, Sucha Singh called some other men who beat her up and tore her clothes. Her mother Raj Rani tried to help her but was also bashed up. The family further alleged that her brother Dev Bahadur was locked up in a room and beaten up.

The police added that Sucha Singh alleged that the family had cooked up the entire story. He was picking up the fodder that had fallen when the family called other men to bash him up.

The police booked Sucha Singh and some others under Sections 354, 323, 506, 34, 356 of the IPC. “Investigations are on. We are also looking at the allegations made by Sucha Singh.” said Gurjeet Singh, SHO of Nayagaon.



Engineer held for stealing computer parts
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 19
The police arrested three Khanna residents on the charges of cheating and criminal conspiracy for decamping with computer spare parts from a shop in Sector 22, last night.

The police said the accused had a wad of papers wrapped in a newspaper with them only to give impression that they were carrying a 
big amount.

The police said the alert shopkeeper managed to nab one of the miscreants, who later led to arrest of his accomplices. The accused have been identified as 28-year-old Pardeep, 24-year-old Raju and 23-year-old Sanjiv, all residents of Khanna. Pardeep is a diploma holder in mechanicals engineering.

A police officer said the accused came to the shop and ordered spare parts of computers worth Rs 70,000. While one of them, Raju, remained seated at the shop, the other two went outside and helped the shop employees to load the parts in their car. They gave a call to Raju on his mobile phone and started their vehicle and waited for Raju to come. Raju rushed toward the car and judging something wrong the shopkeeper nabbed him. The shopkeeper, Deepak Bhardwaj, reported the matter to the police and handed over Raju.

The police arrested Raju and following his information the other two accused, Snjiv and Pardeep were also arrested.

A case of cheating and criminal conspiracy under Sections 420 and 120-B of the Indian Penal Code has been registered. The police recovered the stolen articles from their possession. They were produced before a local court, which remanded them to one day of police remand.



16-year old run over by train
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 19
Ram Nivas, a 16-year-old boy, was crushed to death by a train on an elevated track in Ram Darbar, here, this morning.

The victim was a resident of Phase II of Ram Darbar. He was a painter by profession and was going to work when the accident took place. The police said the victim was hit by the train while crossing the track. The train dragged him to a distance of about 20 meters. He died on the spot.

Soon, a large number of people gathered there and the victim’s family was informed about the mishap. The victim’s father told the police that he used to accompany his son to work, but today he got late.

Ram Nivas was the elder son of the family. He had a younger brother and sister. The police handed over the body to the family after the postmortem and initiated inquest proceedings under Section 174 of the Criminal Procedure Code.



10 crates of milk stolen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 19
Thieves decamped with 10 crates of milk packets after breaking in a booth in Sector 22. Avinash Kumar of Sector 30 reported to the police that 10 crates of milk packets were stolen form his Verka Booth located in Sector 22-A in between 4 am to 7 am, this morning. A case has been registered in the Sector 17 Police Station.

Vehicle stolen

Sandeep Verma of Sector 37 reported that Tata Safari (PB-10-C-448 (T)) was stolen form his residence, last night. In another incident, Sunil Tiwari of Sector 37-C filed a complaint with the police alleging that his Maruti car (CH-01-L-9183) was stolen from his residence, last night. Two separate cases of thefts have been registered.


In a hit-and-run case, a car driver sped away after knocking down a pedestrian in Sector 37, this afternoon. The victim’s sister, Anju of Sector 37, lodged a complaint alleging that the car (CH-03-C-1905) sped away leaving her brother Dhruv injured. The victim was admitted to the Sector 16 Government Medical College and Hospital. A case has been registered.



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