C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Mahatma bewilders PU students
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 8
Bernie Meyer, best described as American Gandhi, when walked through the corridors of Arts Block IV of Panjab University, here, today bewildered all the teachers and students because of his utter resemblance to Mahatma Gandhi. Prof. Manjit Singh, department of sociology, organised this schedule along with YUVSATTA.

Bernie, now 70, who has studied engineering and philosophy, was totally convinced that since the days of Martin Luther King Gandhism is the only anti-dote to the global destruction of earth and nature. Quoting Gandhiji that earth can meet our needs but not greed, he highlighted the dangers of the present form of capitalist development.

“Simplicity, hard work, truthfulness, and achievement of peace and harmony are some of the basic Gandhian values and goals to be nurtured by everyone,” said Bernie, in his address.

In the US, he has gone to jail many a times and registered strong protests even against the American aggression of Iraq.

“Spinning wheel is not simply a tool of spinning thread, it epitomises the entire philosophy of nature friendly living. Gandhian is not an armchair philosophy simply to be believed, it is a philosophy to be practiced in everyday life”, he said.

Giving his own example of kitchen gardening, in order to throw challenge to the market based consumerism, he tried to encourage young students to say good-bye to rash materialism. He particularly criticised capitalism for its massive air and water pollution through emissions and effluents.

In order to prove his point of simple living he walked 700 km within 71 days in the US. He also highlighted the pending dangers of making earth nuclear, both for armaments and power generation. Green House Effect can take our toll beyond imagination.

Later Bernie went to meet students and staff members of Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 32.

The programme started with tree plantation by Bernie, volunteers from 'Be the Cause'- an American NGO and volunteers of Yuvsatta.

Kunwar Babu Singh, founder of Scouts and Guides in Chandigarh welcoming the arrival of Bernie in the school motivated the students to follow Gandhian ideals of simplicity and service before self. He gave them a slogan 'Help ever and hurt never.'

Khuswinder Sharma, DEO, said Gandhiji was a strict disciplinarian and self-discipline and confidence can take students to new heights building a stronger India. She urged the students to follow the golden rule of simple living and high thinking.

Prominent amongst those present on the occasion were Khuswinder Sharma, DEO, Saroj Mittal, director, vocational education, volunteers from an American NGO ‘Be The Cause’ Kristeen and Manuri. 



Prof moves HC over chairman selection
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 8
Less than a fortnight after Professor-cum-former head of Panjab University’s Mass Communication department Sanjay Wadwalkar, served a legal notice on Panjab University in the department chairperson selection matter, he has moved the Punjab and Haryana High Court seeking directions to the varsity and other respondents to consider him for the post.

In his petition, Wadwalkar has contended that he is the only eligible candidate in terms of the rules. Quoting the provisions of the university calendar, he has contended that only a professor can be appointed as the chairperson. His claim for current chairmanship was independent of his previous tenure, when he was a reader in the department. Yet, his claim for the appointment was being ignored in direct violation of provisions contained in university calendar.

Referring to the recommendations regarding the appointment of lecturer Mohanmeet Khosla, he has also raised the issue whether a lecturer was entitled to be designated head of the department, despite availability of a professor. The petition is scheduled to come up for further hearing tomorrow.



Handcuffing of prisoners: Notice to UT home secy
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 8
Taking up a petition filed in public interest for directions to the police in this part of the region against handcuffing prisoners or undertrials, a Division Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court today issued notice to the UT Home Secretary.

The Bench, comprising Chief Justice Vijender Jain and Justice K.S. Ahluwalia, also fixed March 17 as the next date of hearing in the matter on the petition filed by the World Human Rights Protection Council through chairperson Ranjan Lakhanpal.

In the petition against the states of Punjab and Haryana, besides the DGPs of both the states, along with the UT Administration and the SSP, Lakhanpal said the police should be directed against handcuffing the undertrials brought to or taken back from the courts or for any other purpose without obtaining special permission of magistrate concerned.

The petition also said all undertrials, when produced in the court, should be asked whether they were handcuffed. If it is found that they were handcuffed, explanation should be sought from the officials concerned. Appropriate action should also be initiated against the erring officials.

The petitioner said the ‘victim’ should also be adequately compensated and the amount should be recovered from the erring officials.



HC notice of motion to admn on councillor’s plea
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 8
Acting on a petition filed by BJP municipal councillor from ward No. 16 Rajesh Kumar Gupta seeking dismissal of election petition filed against him by his rival losing candidate Harmohinder Singh Lucky, the Punjab and Haryana High Court today issued notice of motion to the UT administration and other respondents.

The election petition is fixed for January for filing rejoinder and for January 16 for framing issues.

In his petition against Lucky, state election commissioner, UT Chandigarh, and others, Gupta also sought the setting aside of election tribunal orders of August 29, 2007, vide which his plea against the entertaining the election petition was rejected. Gupta said his election was challenged on the ground that he had not filed the details of election expenses with the election commissioner.

This allegation was regarding previous election for 2002-2006 term from ward No.11, to which a by-election was held on November 28, 2004, and the petitioner was declared elected on November 30, 2004. The petitioner said the same could not be taken as a ground for impugning the election for the subsequent term of 2007-2011.

The petition added that the election petition filed by Lucky was not maintainable in the tribunal as it did not disclose any cause of action. The counsel added that the petition had not been filed under the correct provision of law i.e. the Punjab Municipal Corporation Act, 1976 as extended to the Union Territory of Chandigarh. The elections to the municipal corporation for 2007-2011 were held on December 20, 2006, and the result was declared on December 22, 2006.

The petitioner was declared elected from ward No. 16, defeating his sole opponent - Lucky.

Aggrieved by the mandate going in favour of the petitioner, Lucky filed an election petition before the UT election tribunal praying for declaring the election of Gupta void and seeking directions that Lucky should be declared elected from the ward.



Mani Majra Brawl
Six students acquitted
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 8
Additional district and sessions judge S.K. Aggarwal today acquitted six students involved in a brawl in Mani Majra after the witnesses failed to identify the accused.

The UT police on March 3, 2005, had booked Harman Dev Singh, Vikramjeet Singh, Suneet Inderpal Singh, Sartaj Preet Singh and Arvinder Singh for allegedly assaulting five youths outside Fun Republic following a minor altercation.

The accused had allegedly beaten up Varun, Adarash, Naveen and Dharamvir in a brawl outside Fun Republic, where they had gone to watch a movie. But the prosecution’s case fell flat after the five witnesses expressed their inability to identify the accused.



ICICI Prudential penalised
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 8
The District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum-II has directed ICICI Prudential, Sector 9, to pay Rs 55,155 as surrender value to a Panchkula resident. The forum has also asked the insurance firm to pay a compensation of Rs 5,000 along with Rs 1,500 as cost of litigation.

The petitioner, Sudhir Kumar, stated that he took loan from the ICICI Prudential Forever Life Policy for an assured sum of Rs 2.19 lakh by paying an annual premium of Rs 10,037 for a term of 20 years in January 2002.

According to the petitioner, after paying five annual premiums, he decided to surrender the policy documents and requested the firm to confirm the cash value of the surrendered policy. As per the documents, the surrender value would be Rs 56,360.

Through a letter dated May 23, 2007, the firm intimated Sudhir that the surrender value was Rs 23,681, which according to the complainant, was arrived by some low fraction value to guaranteed additions.

Earlier, the petitioner had filed a complaint with the insurance ombudsman, Chandigarh, regarding the value of fraction.

In reply, the firm took preliminary objection that the complaint had been filed with ulterior motive and mala fide intention. It further stated that if the entire guaranteed addition was to be paid at any given point of time before maturity, then the term “cash value before guaranteed additions” would not have been incorporated in the policy clause.

The forum stated: “It is clear that the claim of the complainant is primarily based on the document supplied to him at the time of taking the policy.

The firm has not been able to set up its case against the complainant for denial of the aforesaid benefit to him on surrendering the policy as per their rules and thus the claim of the complainant stands fully vindicated and established even on the basis of non-disclosure of all important and relevant information to the complainant which amounts to unfair practice on the part of the insurance firm.”



Comedy reality show to hit the screen soon 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 8
Had enough of the same old faces trying to make you laugh? How about a gang of young people instead? Bindass, a UTV venture, announced the ‘Idea presents Hass Le India Comedy Gang War’ auditions to begin from January 14. To be conducted in six cities across the country, the auditions will be conducted in Chandigarh on January 17.

The gang who wins the comedy gang war will get a role in a UTV Motion Pictures movie.

At the auditions, the comedy gang will have to perform a humorous skit of three minutes for the jury. Followed by a preliminary and a final round, one gang will be selected from each audition city and thus, five teams will compete further.

Idea Hass Le India Comedy Gang War begins from 31st Jan 08 and will be judged by the Bindass duo, Shekar Suman and Makarand Deshpande.

While talking to mediapersons Roshan Abbas said the wide popularity of reality shows prompted them to come up with this unique concept.



‘Journey through nature’ a visual treat
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 8
Delve into the evergreen beauty of the nature through a rich display of paintings at Government Museum and Art Gallery-10. Inaugurated today, the exhibition, ‘Journey through nature’, offers a visual treat to the onlookers taking them to a trip into the nature’s lap.

The exhibition by Anu Singh, a graduate in psychology, was inaugurated by Capt Kanwaljeet Singh, Minister of Co-operation and Defence Services Welfare, Punjab today.

Priced between Rs 10,000 to Rs, Rs 25,000, the paintings are also put on sale.

The paintings in acrylic, depict varies hues of nature such as view of mountains with river flowing underneath, dancing leaves, the red roof, picture of a bird looking for nest as well as of a peacock emerging from the grass is sure to marvel one and all.

With a perfect blend of creativity and art, the paintings promise to enhance the beauty of your home with its theme. Says Anu, whose hobby to paint made her look beyond nature’s surface, "The paintings capture moods of nature with a blend of creativity added to it."

Economy of colour and well-defined strokes by this artist has resulted in a series of picturesque showcases which bears titles, ‘My dreams of nature’, ‘Night glory’, ‘Looking for nest’ and so on.

The exhibition is on for a week.



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