C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S

Wear your thinking cap
Now on, rote won’t do for CBSE
G. S. Paul
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
Students appearing for Class X and XII exams in March 2008 will see a change in the pattern of question papers. The CBSE has redesigned the question papers in almost all major subjects.

20 pc questions to test “higher order
thinking skills”

  Emphasis on multiple choice options/short answers

  Projects in maths/social sciences to be changed annually

The papers will carry multiple choice options. Twenty per cent questions will be aimed at assessing “higher order thinking skills” (HOTS). Sample papers are available at the CBSE website.

This new changed format has been introduced in subjects like mathematics, social science and science and technology for Class X and accountancy, economics, business studies, chemistry, biology and mathematics for Class XII.

“Not many questions will carry high marks. This has been done to minimise subjectivity and emphasise on short answers. Similarly, not only sub-parts in a question have been reduced, but more internal choices introduced,” said a CBSE official.

“The true ability of the child cannot be assessed on academic grounds alone. So from this session, it will be more of comprehensive evaluation where assessment will be based on determining multiple skills, ” added the official.

Internal assessment would carry 20 per cent marks: for mathematics, science and social science(Class X) there would be10 marks for year-end evaluation, five marks for evaluation of project work and another 5 marks for continuous assessment.

CBSE officials said it had been proposed to change the list of projects every year in mathematics and social science. A manual containing guidelines to teachers and students with sample exercises and procedure for the purpose of internal assessment has been made available to all affiliated schools. 



Speed up, Rodrigues tells engg dept
Slow pace of projects rags administrator
Ajay Banerjee
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
Reasons for the slow pace of various pending development projects in the city were sought by UT Administrator Gen S.F. Rodrigues (Retd) today, who issued instructions to the engineering wing to “speed up,” well-placed sources said.

The General asked the information technology department to tie up with a software company and come up with a computer software that allows monitoring of all projects.

The General was reportedly peeved at the delay in projects, especially the dredging project at the Sukhna Lake.The project has remained on paper despite the centre joining hands with the UT and a sum of Rs 76 crore having been approved for the same.

In the past years, various committees and experts have suggested ways and means to dredge the lake but to no avail. The work should have started by now.

The Administrator also issued instructions that all under-construction projects in Chandigarh will have crèches for children of labourers. Contractors bidding for the projects will have to provide these. Officials have also been asked to look at the option for power generation from bio-mass.The matter of starting a de-addiction centre was also taken up.

Since several prestigious projects are coming up in Sarangpur area (west of the PGI), the administration was asked to speed up services like water and power supply. All entry points to projects like the IT park or the botanical garden are to be beautified.



22-yr-old Kajheri resident killed in accident
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
A 22 years old Kajheri resident was killed after his scooter collided with a cycle on the road dividing Sectors 16 and 17 here, a little after mid-night. The cyclist was also injured seriously in the mishap.

According to the police, the accident took place at around 12:30 am when the scooter hit the cycle from behind. As a result both fell on the road. They were seriously injured and were taken to the PGI. The scooterist, identified as Dev Raj, was declared brought dead while the cyclist, Anuj Kumar of Naya Gaon, who is a sweeper at PGI, suffered injuries. His condition is stated to be critical.

The police said Dev Raj hailed from Mandi district in Himachal Pradesh and was taking computer coaching from a private institute. His identity was established with the help of his mobile phone.

The victim’s family has been informed about the incident and they are expected to reach the city by tomorrow.

The police has registered a case against the scooterist.



Farmhouse caretaker killed by thieves
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 14
Padam (35), caretaker at Talwar Farmhouse on Aasrewali road on Barwala road, was killed by thieves when they broke into the farmhouse to steal fowls last night.

The police has started combing the area.The farmhouse is owned by Talwar Jewellers of Chandigarh.

According to the police, the assailants hit Padam on the face and the neck with sharp-edged weapons, killing him on the spot.

Before fleeing, the assailants took away Rs 3,000 in cash and silver jewellery.The police has sent the body for postmortem examination. 



Manoj Datta is PEC director
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
The name of Manoj Datta, professor at the Indian Institute of Technology, was cleared as director of Punjab Engineering College (PEC) today.

Well-placed sources in the administration said the interview committee had selected Datta and UT Administrator Gen S.F. Rodrigues (Retd) had okayed his name.

PEC is a deemed university. Datta, a doctorate, teaches civil engineering at the IIT, Delhi.

He has special interest in geo-environment, landfills, ash ponds, tailings, ground improvement, slope stability, dams and offshore geo-technology. He has been dean, international affairs, at the IIT in Delhi.

Datta did his schooling from St John’s School here in the seventies. Other than Datta, Subir.K. Satsangi from the IIT in Kharagpur and Prasad Krishna, adviser to the All-India Council of Technical Education (AICTE) were shortlisted for the post.

The interview committee comprised the adviser to the UT Administrator, the UT home secretary, former UT finance secretary S.K. Sandhu, the director of the National Institute of Technology, Kurukshetra, and former Panjab University VC K.N. Pathak. 



Non-compliance with DC’s orders
SDM fails to call MC meeting
Our Correspondent

Mohali, January 14
In what can be termed as disobedience of the deputy commissioner’s orders, the SDM has failed to call the meeting of the municipal council to fill the vacant posts of senior vice-president and vice-president of the civic body.

With nearly half of the one-year term fixed for incumbents of these posts over, there seems to be no signs of early elections.

Rishiv Jain and Harmanpreet Singh were elected senior vice-president and vice-president respectively, after the council elections were held in July, 2006. Their term expired on August 17 last year.

It is learnt that deputy commissioner H.I.S Garewal had sent a letter to SDM Raghbir Kaur Khaira to fix a meeting to get elections conducted after he got a request from the council authorities in this regard more than three months back. He appointed the SDM as the convener for the elections.

Former senior vice-president of the council N.K. Marwaha said the elections were getting delayed because both, the ruling group as well as the opposition group, were not confident that they had the support of the majority of councillors.

He said under Section 25 of the Punjab Municipal Act, 1911, the president of the civic body was duty bound to call the meeting if one-fifth of the members gave a requisition for holding the meeting. But such a requisition had not been given by councillors of any group.

Executive officer of the council J.S. Thind, however, said though one-fifth of the members could give a request for a meeting, it was not so in the case of holding a special meeting for conducting elections. Such meetings were held on the directions of the deputy commissioner.

President of the council Rajinder Singh Rana said elections were being delayed due to political reasons.

Councillors of the opposition group, who are said to have the backing of Punjab cooperation minister Capt Kanwaljit Singh, said the elections were getting delayed because they were busy in breaking away councillors owing allegiance to the ruling group. They were not only interested in getting a senior vice-president from their group but also a president after toppling Rana from his seat. Rana owes allegiance to Congress MLA Balbir Singh Sidhu.

When asked why the SDM was disobeying the orders passed by him for holding the elections, the deputy commissioner said he would take action in the matter.



Ban on smoking goes up in smoke
Mandeep Puri

Chandigarh, January 14
Calling it the first non-smoking city, Chandigarh is still not smoke-free. Smoking is openly carried out in almost all public placed without any check.

Cigarettes and tobacco is sold openly in all sectors. Markets have become a hub for smokers.

The famous Geri route, Sector 10 and Sector 11, the ever-crowded market of Sector 35 are among a few sectors, which are worse affected. Another sector that is being affected is Sector 33, where cigarettes are not only being sold openly but also even the underage are smoking here. Beat box being just a few yards away, still the smoking is being carried out and no action has been taken against the violators.

Chandigarh was officially declared as a smoke-free city, which claimed to be the first with a ban on having a puff in the public places. The ban was implemented under the Central Control Tobacco Act.

“I don’t let my daughter to go to the market alone as the atmosphere is not conducive. Smoking is being held continuously and I fail to understand why the police not doing anything”, said a lady residing near the market area.

A resident of Sector 19, said, “Sector 33 is the safest place to come and smoke. Though I have to travel a few miles to come here but still the chances of being challaned is minimum in this sector”.

As a matter a fact, the laws though are made but when it comes to the execution, by and large these are not implemented. Smoking is injurious to health and is still on in the city .



CPM protests over decision on buses
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
Members of the CPM held a protest at the local bus stand of Inter-State Bus Terminus, Sector 17, here today.

A. Sawhney, secretary of the CPM said the party opposed the decision of the Administration to shift the inter-state buses from Sector 17 to Sector 43 as it would cause immense inconvenience to the people.

“The shifting of all inter-state buses on the plea of traffic congestion did not seem to be appropriate as even in cities like Delhi, Jalandhar, which are more crowded, have not shifted their the main bus stands. The shifting will cause inconvenience to the daily commuters and be time consuming”, added Sawhney.

Later on, a delegation also met the deputy commissioner of Chandigarh and submitted a memorandum on the issue.



Plan to improve police mindset
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
To hone up policing skills and to improve the mindset of its force, the Chandigarh police today launched an attitudinal change programme at the Police Headquarters in Sector 9, here today.

UT IGP SK Jain inaugurated the programme and said it would help in making the force more responsive and sensitive. The programme will sensitise the police towards the need of the public and inculcate accountability besides enhancing its self-esteem and self-worth. In all 400 policemen will participate in the programme over three days in batches of 40 personnel each.

The programme is being conducted by IL and FS Education and Technology Services Limited, which works in public-private partnership in the field of the social infrastructure. The institution had earlier conducted these programmes for the CRPF, Rajasthan police and Delhi police.

The IGP said the programme would definitely yield results and improve the behaviour and efficiency of the force. He also stated that the yoga programme would also be organised shortly.

SSP (Operations Cell) Dinesh Bhatt, DSP Vijay Kumar, Shabu Ali, Navdeep Gill, Meenu Gulati and Deepti Lamba, consultants of IL and FS Education and Technology Limited, attended the inaugural function.



Foreigners not under watch despite rising crime
Ramanjit Singh Sidhu
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
The Foreigners Act is being flouted with impunity as a large number of foreigners visiting the city go unregistered either due to ignorance of rule in public or lack of police surveillance. The police records shows only those visiting hotels and guest houses are registered while those visiting residents of the city go unnoticed.

Sources in the police said the foreign nationals coming to the city with intention to commit crime never visit hotels and guest houses to avoid registration as their visit come on record. Such nefarious people prefer to stay in private houses of their acquaintances. A perusal of foreign women coming to the city for flesh trade found to be staying at private houses. The police has booked four foreigners under Section 14 of the Foreigners Act for not complying with the provisions of the Act.

Besides this, the police has registered 21 criminal cases against foreigners, including six from drug-peddling. The police arrested an Uzbek woman last year for indulging in to flesh trade. Recently the Panchkula police arrested an Uzbek girl and it was learnt that she was staying in a house in Sector 8, Chandigarh. The Narcotic Control Bureau, Chandigarh, had arrested two Nigerians with huge amounts of heroin last years, besides this an Israeli national was caught with 155 kg of charas in 2005. Such incidents indicated that the foreign criminal are eyeing city as a hub to carry out their activities.

The failure of the police to keep a tab on the movements of foreigners is significant as according to the sources it can pose a threat to security. The sources assert that in the metropolitans, militants from across the border had reportedly been staying in the rented accommodation for long.



Merchant Navy to increase activities in region
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
The Chandigarh chapter of the Merchant Navy Officers’ Association (MNOA) is looking towards expanding its strength and activities in the region. It has drawn up a plan to organise a series of seminars and other events aimed at projecting the merchant navy.

“We are working out modalities where we as an association can render assistance to Merchant Navy officers who are in professional difficulty, MNOA president, Capt Bhagat Singh said. 



21 vehicles challaned
Our Correspondent

Mohali, January 14
As many as 21 vehicles were challaned by the district transport officer (DTO) here today and fines to the tune of Rs 40,000 were imposed on violators.

DTO Balbir Singh said a checkpoint was set up near Verka chowk at 3.30 pm to check offenders and the drive went on till 5 in the evening. He said vehicles were challaned for overloading, plying without paying special road tax and fixing reflectors, carrying out body alterations and using pressure horns. He said eight vehicles were impounded.

Balbir Singh said a special drive to check the driving licences of those plying school and college buses would be carried out soon as a number of accident cases had been reported.



Registration of Flats
HUDA postpones personal hearing till Jan 21
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 14
The Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) has postponed the date of personal hearing accorded to the cooperative group housing societies regarding implementation of the Haryana Apartment Act, 1983.

The hearing, which was scheduled for today, has been fixed for January 21 as the representatives of the societies could not produce the relevant documents today.

HUDA had accorded a personal hearing to the petitioners in compliance with the orders passed by the Punjab and Haryana High Court on December 10 on a petition filed by the Forum for Common Cause Society.

The petition had sought directions to the authorities concerned against the notices issued to the members of societies as per which they were asked to execute and register a declaration deed under the Haryana Apartment Ownership Act, 1983 of their flats.

HUDA asked the petitioners to bring a list of the names of 35 group-housing societies with the names and full addresses of their presidents and secretaries along with the details whether they had obtained partial occupation certificates or occupation certificates along with the respective dates of obtaining the same at the time of hearing.

Showing their inability to produce the documents, the forum representatives said the letter of hearing was received by them on January 11, due to which, the relevant documents could not be procured in time.

T.C. Gupta, chief administrator, HUDA, conceding this preliminary submission, extended the date of hearing by one week.



Govt offices to have  new buildings
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 14
Many government offices in the city would get new buildings this year as the Haryana government had planned to spend a sum of Rs 52.85 crore for the work. The departments, boards and corporations, which are scheduled to shift to new buildings in the near future include technical education department, Haryana Public Service Commission, Patwar Training School, Haryana State Roads and Bridges Corporation, Haryana Forest Development Corporation, and Haryana State Science and Technology Council.

Disclosing this, Haryana deputy chief minister Chander Mohan said it would help in providing a congenial environment to the employees for enhancing their efficiency.

Referring to the details of the construction works being carried out in the city, the deputy chief minister said in Sector 4, a building for the technical education department was being constructed at the cost of Rs 3.13 crore and the work would be completed by July. Similarly, a building for Haryana Public Service Commission was under construction in the same sector on which Rs 3.74 crore would be spent. A Patwar Training School building was also being constructed at the cost of Rs 80.88 lakh, he said.

Other buildings which were being constructed include Shiksha Sadan, block B by PWD (B&R) department at the cost of Rs 10.64 crore while Shiksha Sadan, block C, was nearing completion, said Chander Mohan.

The office of Haryana State Roads and Bridges Corporation in Sector 14 was being constructed at the cost of Rs 1.46 crore besides three Sahitya Academies at the cost of Rs 1.97 crore, he added.

The deputy CM further said the building of Haryana Forest Development Corporation was being constructed in Sector 4 at the cost of Rs 1.53 crore. Similarly, Haryana State Science and Technology Council building was also being constructed at the cost of Rs 1.48 crore.

In addition to it, Government Girls College, Panchkula, had also been constructed in Sector 14 which cost Rs 11 crore besides an auditorium in the building that cost Rs 1.47 crore.



Poor get credit cards
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
Union minister of state for finance Pawan Kumar Bansal presented credit cards under various schemes to the beneficiaries of economically weaker section here.

It will help meet their business needs and facilitate them to commence small entrepreneurial ventures.

The PNB has extended support to 53 beneficiaries from amongst those below poverty line families and other economically marginalised people of the city by approving loans worth Rs 50,000 under various categories to each beneficiary.

The loan will facilitate the beneficiary to enhance their infrastructure-production units, retail outlets and improve business volumes and economies of sale and also increase efficiency of services and larger geographical footprint for their respective businesses in diverse areas.

Mayor Pardeep Chabbra advised them to use the loan granted judiciously and ensure timely return of the bank’s advance.

Bansal expressed satisfaction that the poor were readily coming forward to get themselves enrolled under the financial inclusion drive of various nationalised banks and also that nationalised banks were helping their cause by extending “hassle-free loans”, making credit both easier and accessible to the poorer lot.

The poor must make efforts to keep their credit ratings high so that in future the banks had no reservations in extending them loans.



Village cries for medical help

Ram Karan, son of sarpanch Rattan Lal of Nadha village, died a few days back. I was shocked to know that the village has no dispensary or doctor deployed by the Punjab government. There is only a veterinary dispensary in the village. Ram Karan died without getting medical help. I request the government to look into the matter.

R.C. Rana, 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



Couple assaulted; accused at large
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
The police booked a group of persons of Sector 25 on the charges of rioting and causing hurt for allegedly assaulting their neighbours this morning.

The police said Kala of Sector 25 colony reported, alleging that Rinku, Saroj and Ravi along with others, hurled a brick at him last night and assaulted him. He let the matter go and decided to report the matter in the morning. Today he went to the residence of the accused along with his wife to inquire the matter when the accused assaulted them. He and his wife sustained injuries and the matter was reported to the police.

The police admitted them to the Sector 16 Government Multi Speciality Hospital. The police registered a case of rioting, causing hurt, criminal intimidation and trespassing against the accused, who are still at large.

Maninder Singh said the medical reports are awaited and sections would be included subsequently into the case depending upon the gravity of the injuries.

Motorcycle stolen

Atul Kumar Pandey of Modern Housing Complex, Manimajra, lodged a complaint with the police alleging that his Hero Honda motorcycle (CH-03-S-6934) was stolen from his residence last night. A case of theft has been registered.



Milk prices to remain stable
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
Prices of milk and dairy products had stabilised in the past six months and will remain so, said H.S. Garewal, general manager, Verka Milk plant, Mohali.

Price List

VerkaMilk Rs 21 per litre

Curd Rs 35 per kg

Cheese Rs 130 per kg

The statement dispelled all earlier rumours, which said the price of Verka milk would increase by Re 1 from Tuesday, as reported by a section of vernacular media yesterday. With the milk plant at Jalandhar increasing their prices, as per reports, there was a wide speculation that the prices of milk and other dairy products will increase in Chandigarh and adjoining areas, too. However, a survey by The Tribune found that the price of Verka milk would remain constant at Rs 21 per litre and none of the shopkeepers has received any intimation to raise the price.

Verka booths apart, the private dairy owners, too, said they had no plans to increase the price of milk and would do so only if Verka raised the price. “We, too, heard the rumours and many people have been asking us since morning whether prices will increase, but we have no such plans,” said the owner of Baba Dairy in Sector 21.

Private vendors price one kilogram paneer at Rs 120 while the price of milk is Rs 20 per litre. Curd is priced at Rs 30 per kg while butter is available at Rs 140 per kg. 



Andhra Bank net rises by 11pc
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
For the year ended September, 2007, Andhra Bank has shown all-round improvement in business, profitability and other growth parameters. Total business is up by 33.53 per cent at Rs.74,928 crore. Deposits up by 36.66 per cent at Rs. 44,434 crore. Loans and advances up by 29.21 per cent at Rs.30,494 crore.

Operating profit up by 15.79 per cent at Rs 455.54.crore. Net profit up by 11.20 per cent at Rs 292.30 crore. Net NPA’s stand at 0.19 per cent and is one of the lowest in the industry.



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