C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S



Epidemic Spreads To More Areas
Cholera kills 3 more in Panchkula
Arun Sharma
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, July 18
With three more children dying of cholera in the past 24 hours, the death toll in Panchkula has reached four. At least 18 more confirmed cases of cholera have been reported from the General Hospital and over 400 others are being treated for diarrhoea. The disease, which claimed its first victim in Rajiv Colony, struck at the crusher zone in the Chandimandir area today.

Six-year-old Puja, daughter of a labourer working in the Ghaggar mines, started vomiting this morning and complained of severe stomach ache. Her parents rushed her to hospital, but she was declared brought dead.

“We gave her medicines at home, but when her condition did not improve, we brought her to the hospital,” her father said. He said the family had been consuming water from a well in the vicinity of their dwelling in the crusher zone.

Late last evening, Anjni (15) and Neeraj (1), both residents of Rajiv Colony, succumbed to the disease in the hospital.

Despite the tall claims of the district administration, the situation seems to have gone worse as cases of cholera and diarrhoea are being reported from various parts of the town as well as its adjoining areas.

Since last evening, 27 patients visited a makeshift dispensary set up by the health authorities.

Beds at the emergency and other wards of the General Hospital are full of patients suffering from the disease.

Yogesh Gulati, marketing official of a company from Ambala who was touring the town, was admitted to hospital when he started complaining of severe stomach ache.

Cases of cholera are also reaching the hospital from Raipur Kalan, Phase II, and Sectors 26 and 15.



MC learnt no lesson from deaths in 2007
Kulwinder Sangha

The filth at Madanpur village in Mohali district.
The filth at Madanpur village in Mohali district. Tribune photo: Vicky Gharu

Mohali, July 18
The death of two children in Madanpur village here in July last year, reportedly due to water-borne diseases, has failed to spur the authorities to take steps to ensure that it didn’t happen again.

The claims of the government to make Mohali another Singapore ring hollow when villages like Madanpur continue to have poor sanitation and lack even basic amenities.

Residents continue to live amid garbage and overflowing kutcha drains in the absence of a sewerage. Many still depend on handpumps for drinking water which had been declared unfit by officials of the health department.

The village had lost two children and 10 children suffering from diarrhoea and gastroenteritis were admitted to hospital last year. Even then, GMADA and the MC have not been able to provide clean drinking water to villagers.

District health officer S.P. Surila said here today that four water samples were collected from the handpumps in the village last month, out of which, three samples had failed the test. The MC had been informed about it. He said his department had distributed chlorine tablets in the village.

Rajinder Singh Rana, president of the civic body, said when cases of diarrhoea were reported from the village it was decided to provide clean water by installing four taps. An estimate of Rs 3.85 lakh was sent for approval to the authorities concerned, but the department of local government had rejected it, saying that development work in the village had to be carried out by GMADA.

He said this month also he had met the chief administrator of GMADA to persuade him to do the needful, but the nod was awaited.


PGI to promote telemedicine in SAARC countries
Anuja Jaiswal

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 18
The expertise of the region’s prestigious super-specialty hospital, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), Chandigarh, will no longer be restricted to the patients of north India. Come September and patients in far off countries of Bhutan and Sri Lanka will be able to benefit from the expert advise of the doctors and specialists at the PGI. The institute has been chosen to be a part of India’s prestigious programme to promote telemedicine in the SAARC countries.

Announcing this on the occasion of the 29th convocation of the PGI here today, Union minister for external affairs, Pranab Mukherjee, said that an MoU had been signed and telemedicine services will begin this year, first in Bhutan and then in Sri Lanka. He said with the advances in communication technology, telemedicine had become a reality and its benefits will now be available to the patients of the SAARC countries.

While emphasising on the importance of quality health care amongst the poor, he said, the 11th plan envisaged tripling the allocation to health sector from the existing Rs 42,000 crore. "Since the faculty is amongst the best in India, I urge the doctors to focus their energies on answering the health needs of this country. We need a lot more grass roots research on the epidemiology of our diseases, on infections, nutrition and its interaction with disease processes, on simplified treatment regimens, and so on.”

Earlier, Anbumani Ramadoss, Union minister of health and family welfare, in his address, narrated the recent national achievements in the health sector through national rural health mission. National school health programme, national trauma programme, urban health mission and cancer programme were few of the activities in the pipeline to improve the overall health of the urban and rural people, Ramadoss added.

Speaking on the occasion, KK Talwar, director, PGI, said, “In the academic field, postgraduate training programmes have been initiated in the specialty of nuclear medicine, forensic medicine, hospital administration, public health, gastroenterologic surgery and hepatology. M.Sc. courses in medical physics for radiotherapy and nuclear medicine have been started in collaboration with the Panjab University, which have been approved by the Bhaba Atomic Research Centre (BARC).”



Don’t go abroad, minister tells doctors
Tribune News Service

A MATTER OF DEGREE: Students of the PGIMER are all smiles on getting their degree at the 29th convocation on Friday. Tribune photo: Pradeep Tewari

Chandigarh, July 18
The richness of the event was overwhelming, more so for over 287 students dressed up in graceful robes, eagerly awaiting public acknowledgement of their academic achievement. The 29th convocation of the PGI on Friday saw the younger crop of medicos being bestowed with degrees by the union minister of health and family welfare, Dr Anbumani Ramadoss, while the union minister of external affairs, Pranab Mukherjee, awarded gold medals at the glittering ceremony.

The institute's faculty, looking majestic in their red robes, trooped into Bhargava Auditorium to witness future wonders take their first steps into a challenging world. Ramadoss, himself a medical graduate from Chennai, began with an appeal: ‘‘Please stay put in India.'' If it was a lament at last year's convocation that the country was losing its bright talent to greener pastures, Ramadoss urged the students to work for their country and not leave for foreign shores. "All roads lead to India", he said.

The 1,000-strong audience, comprising the faculty, doctors, nurses and other staff of the institute, gave a thunderous applause to those charging up the podium stairs with flushed faces for their much-awaited moment of glory.

During the convocation, 287 students were awarded degrees. These degrees include PhD in various specialities; DM in the medical super-specialities of cardiology, endocrinology, gastroenterology, pulmonary medicine, nephrology, neurology and neonatology, MD in the medical specialities of anaesthesia, community medicine, dermatology, medicine, microbiology, gynaecology, paediatrics, pathology, psychiatry, pharmacology, radio diagnosis, radiotherapy and transfusion medicine; MCh in the surgical super-specialities of cardiovascular and thoracic surgery, neurosurgery, plastic surgery, paediatric surgery, surgical gastroenterology, urology; MS in the surgical specialities of otorhinolaryngology, orthopaedic surgery, ophthalmology surgery; Masters in Hospital Administration; MSc in pharmacology, biochemistry, medical biotechnology, speech and hearing and medical technology and BSc in physical therapies, audiology and speech therapy and medical technology.

Besides, five students were honoured with medals for their meritorious performances. The Major-General Amir Chand Gold Medal was awarded to Dr S.Ventakaseshan in the category of MD/MS/ DM/M.Ch. and Dr Tranum Kaur in the category of PhD for 2007. VK Saini Gold Medal was awarded to Dr Kavitha Kothur for year 2007. The R. Nath Gold Medal in the field of biomedical sciences was awarded to Dr Rohit Sharma for 2007. The Aikat Memorial Gold Medal was awarded to Zeenia for 2007.

General Rodrigues, Administrator, UT, and Governor, Punjab, Dr A.R. Kidwai, Governor of Haryana, Chief Minister of Punjab Parkash Singh Badal, Sukhdev Dhindsa, Preneet Kaur, Prof N.K. Ganguly, adviser to minister of health and family welfare and former director-general, ICMR, former directors, deans, emeritus professors were present on the occasion.

Prof Vinay Sakhuja, dean, PGI, thanked all dignitaries for their gracious presence and congratulated the students on their achievements.



Telecom co. coughs up Rs 20 cr tax
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 18
A leading Mohali-based telecom company today deposited Rs 20 crore with the income tax department after a probe was initiated into its last year’s turnover yesterday.

According to tax officials, the company earned Rs 145 crore in the financial year 2007-08 but the requisite tax, which is supposed to be 35 per cent of the total amount, was not deposited.

Officials carried out a survey at four different set-ups of Synergy Telecommunications. As per information, they have set-ups in Baddi and Nalagarh.

“The survey is still on. Surveys are a routine exercise undertaken by the IT department,” said A.K. Kaushal, IT commissioner, Chandigarh. Officials of the department refused to divulge details of the survey.

According to a senior official, the evasion was detected following the scrutiny of papers.



Parents cry foul over NRI quota
Sandeep Rana

Chandigarh, July 18
The counselling for BDS and MBBS seats that is going on at Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32, here took an ugly turn today when the parents of students and the principal of the college had an altercation over the seats under the NRI quota.

The counselling was stopped at 175th rank. However, the NRI quota in which nine seats were left was converted into general category, according to the rules. But the admission started from rank 1 and not from the 175th where it was stopped. This was unacceptable to some of the parents who had their turn after the 175th rank.

Due to this the candidates whose admission date had already passed came today with a hope to get admission and had a good chance over the ones whose turn was scheduled today. This led to an altercation between the selection committee and the parents.

“The selection is purely on the basis of merit and we abide by that since nine left over NRI seats are converted into general category, so these seats will be filled on merit. The parents for their own personal interest are indulging in unnecessary protest as they knew that on merit basis they were not going to get admission,” said director-principal Raj Bahadur.

But the parents think otherwise. “The admission should have been started from where it was stopped but as the principal wants to fill the remaining seats for his known ones, he is starting the seats from rank 1,” an agitated parent said.

However, the admission that was suspended by the committee at about 1 pm due to the protest of the parents was resumed at 4 pm without letting anyone know even though it was declared that admissions will not be done now.” said Dr Verma, a parent.

Meanwhile, the parents were seen collecting money to file a case in the High Court.



Failure to take back wife costs man Rs 50,000
Saurabh Malik
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 18
An estranged husband’s failure to take back his wife, found to be in a sound mental health in a medical examination, has cost him dear.

Taking up a petition filed by his wife alleging violation of an undertaking furnished by him in this regard, Justice Surya Kant of the Punjab and Haryana High Court has imposed a fine of Rs 50,000.

The husband had undertaken before the “matrimonial court” that he would take his wife back, if medical examination proved she was capable of performing her matrimonial duties.

The amount had to be paid by the husband to his wife within three months, failing which the contempt of court petition would be considered revived.

This is, perhaps, the first time the high court has done justice to a wife by imposing such heavy costs on a husband for going back on his undertaking. Though the court could have ordered “civil imprisonment” in the matter, Justice Surya Kant was of the opinion that sentencing the husband could prove detrimental to any possibility of settlement between the city-based couple.

Seeking the initiation of contempt of court proceedings against her husband, the wife had alleged wilful and deliberate breach of undertaking furnished by him before the matrimonial court.

Going into the background of the matter, she had contended that they had tied knot in February 2001, but her husband had filed a petition under the Hindu Marriage Act for dissolution of marriage on the ground that she was of unsound mind and incapable of performing her matrimonial duties.

During the pendency of the matter, he gave an undertaking before the court in September 2005, that he would take her back in the “matrimonial home”, if after medical examination she was found to be fit.

In terms of the undertaking, a medical board of doctors, under the Head of the Psychiatry Department, Government Medical College and Hospital, was constituted. The board, after examining the wife, concluded of no major mental illness. The wife, in her contempt petition, had alleged that contrary to the undertaking, he refused to take her back.

Taking a serious view of the matter, Justice Kant held that the husband had misled and misdirected the court into constituting a medical board for examining the petitioner by furnishing an undertaking he had no intentions of honouring.

The Judge added that he deemed it appropriate to impose the fine, which was compensatory in nature.



Naya Gaon NAC chief poll on July 22
Tribune News Service

Naya Gaon, July 18
The first-ever president to the Naya Gaon NAC would be elected by its members on July 22. This was announced here this evening. The main contenders for the post include Arjun Singh, former sarpanch of Kansal village, Gurdhian Singh, a resident of Naya Gaon, and Harbant Singh Bajwa.

Sources say Arjun Singh is the strongest candidate among the three. Arjun claims the support of at least five members, including local MLA Ujagar Singh Badali.

Known as the grandson of the famous Kapuria pehalwan, Arjun is a national-level powerlifter. Arjun is, however, facing many criminal charges and has a host of cases registered against him.

Harbant Singh Bajwa is also a well-known name in the area and wields a lot of power. But according to sources, he has the support of only a few members.

Gurdhian Singh, once a supporter of Jagmohan Singh Kang, is also a well-known name in the area, but more for wrong reasons.

One of the main accused in the infamous Naya Gaon rape case, Gurdhian was later acquitted by the court. He is also involved in many other criminal cases.

He also claims to have the support of four members. He works as a real estate agent in the area.

Sources add that the three candidates were asked to present their supporters at a meeting chaired by Punjab cabinet minister Hira Singh Gabria.

Badali, who has the 16th vote in the 15-member council, was also present at the meeting. District BJP president Khushwant Rai Giga was also present there.

Naya Gaon NAC has seven SAD, two BJP and five Congress members. The support of one Independent candidate, Krishana Devi, is also crucial.

Sources add that in case of a tie between Arjun and Gurdhian, a Congress candidate, Dalbir Singh Puppy, has an outside chance of becoming the president.



Ambala's Urban Estate goes online
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, July 18
All sectors of Ambala Urban Estate have been made online in plot and property management module. User ID and passwords have been issued to all allottees to enable them to see the details as well as the status of their property on the Internet.

Addressing a function here today, Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) administrator, Panchkula, Neelam Pardeep Kashni said with a view to providing speedy and efficient services in a transparent manner, the authority had started a process of computerisation of all jobs related to the allottee in a phased manner.

Earlier, Urban Estate in Panchkula had been made online. She said in the first phase, web-enabled application developed by the TCS had been provided under two modules.

Single window service had also been established to address all queries of allottees.

She added that the application developed at the cost of Rs 97 lakh for Urban Estate, Panchkula, was also been used to monitor the movement of cases, including court cases, by supervising officers.

Three banks had been identified where allottees could deposit their dues. Earlier, only one bank located on the HUDA office premises had been assigned the job.

Principal secretary, town and country planning, D.S. Dhesi, HUDA chief administrator T.C. Gupta, HUDA secretary and Ambala SDM Maheshwar Sharma also spoke.



Reporter's Diary
Believe it or not

Competition can bring out the best even in a government department. If former CITCO managing director JS Bir is to be believed, an elderly couple was so awe-struck by the renovation work at Mountview’s coffee shop that they asked if the hotel had been sold or leased out to a private party. It took quite an effort on the part of CITCO to explain to them that the hotel was, indeed, with the government. Hope CITCO maintains the standard of service it exhibited during the sprucing up of the hotel.

Safety first, says who?

It seems that the Chandigarh administration is not concerned about the safety of the labour it employs for road repairs. No signboards are used to restrict the flow of traffic near the repair sites. The poor labourers, working on main roads like Dakshim Marg and the road between Transport Chowk and the Housing Board lights have only bicycles or simple bars to protect them.

Setia-tised babus halt work

The issue of transfer of DPI (S) SK Setia is hampering work of the education department, if the officials are to be believed. With news that he is being repatriated to his parent state appearing in newspapers every other day, files relating to pending projects have stopped moving. Officials say they have been spared of the “tiring leg work” in certain pockets.

The condom conundrum

The female condom was introduced some years ago, but of the 3,500 sex workers in the city, only a few are aware of it. One of the sex workers from Mani Majra said: “I’ve never heard about it.” As most HIV infections are caused by unprotected sex, there is an urgent need to devise methods and means to promote the use of condoms, including female condoms.

Voters play to his tune

The recently held municipal council elections in Mohali district went a little hi-tech. An influential Independent found a novel way of canvassing support. Besides playing a song on development works pioneered by him in Zirakpur on the local FM Radio, he ensured that the ‘ring tone’ on the cell phones of his supporters carried an appeal for vote in his favour. The idea worked. The candidate won the elections with a huge margin.



Police ‘helps’ tenant trespass
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 18
If allegations of Tara Singh are to be believed, officials of the UT police allegedly helped a tenant to trespass on a commercial plot in Ram Darbar here.

Though Tara Singh, owner of plot number 399, had recently got two portions of his plot vacated after the direction of the court, Kirpal Singh, another tenant, is still in possession of a portion of his plot.

Tara Singh alleged that the police, including Bhupinder Singh, SHO, police station, Sector 31, was shielding Kirpal.

Meanwhile, the SHO, Bhupinder Singh, refuted the allegation and said, “The allegations are baseless. Tara Singh had lodged a police complaint following which an inquiry was held.”



Bank staff protest outsourcing
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 18
A demonstration was held by bank employees in front of the regional office, Bank of Baroda, here today. The Bank of Baroda employees were on strike against outsourcing of bank jobs to outside agencies.

Meanwhile, on the joint call of the All-India Bank Employees Association and the All-India Bank Officers Association, a delegation of the Punjab Bank Employees Federation and AIBOA (Punjab Unit) submitted a memorandum to the Chief Minister, Punjab, against the attempts of the government to privatise banks.



Year gone, no passport

I applied for renewal of passport at the passport collection office in Patiala in October 2006 (File No. CHDZ15477906) . Police verification has been done since, but even after more than a year, no passport has been issued to me. I require the passport to persue higher studies abroad.

JD Jindal, Chandigarh

Senior citizens want I-card

It is a matter of regret that Haryana has not issued any identity card for its senior citizens. Rather a notification vide no 48/4/95-Poll (5P) dated May 25, 2001, has been issued by the chief secretary, stating that “the voter I-card issued to a person is equally valid for identification purposes”.

Identity card is a valid document to help senior citizens avail of various concessions granted by the state and the Centre from time to time.

The matter was brought to the notice of chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda and a meeting arranged by the director of social justice and rights for July 11, 2006, in Chandigarh. But the meeting was cancelled following unexpected transfers.

The matter was recently brought to the notice of Kiran Chaudhary, minister for tourism and chairperson, Panchkula Redressal and Grievances Committee. The DC was asked to take necessary action, but he ended the matter simply quoting the chief secretary’s notification of May 24, 2001.

I would like to bring to your notice that voter cards have not been issued to all citizens. In many cases, if issued they do not always carry correct information.

All states, other than Haryana, have issued I-cards for senior citizens. Chandigarh too has granted the facility to its senior citizens.

S. K. Nayar, Citizens Welfare Assn

Kajheri woes

We live in Kajheri village. The village is surrounded by filth and polluted material.The situation gets worse during the rainy season with rainwater stagnating in vacant plots breeding mosquitoes. We have approached the DC and other authorities concerned on the matter but no action has been taken so far. We urge you to depute your team to highlight our plight.

I am writing on behalf of residents of Deep Nagar.

Balwant Singh, Chandigarh

Unscrupulous chemists

It seems chemists in Chandigarh have formed a cartel and are harassing customers. I was recommended half a tablet of KEFPOD 200 CV twice a day for five days by my doctor. I was astonished when the chemists refused to sell me five tablets and I was forced me to buy the strip of medicine for Rs 270. I wonder if this is case can be considered under the MRTPC.

Shikha Bansal, Chandigarh



Malls harm greenery

Recently, some shocking reports have come that green spaces may now be used as parking lots for the malls as there is a parking problem. This is sure to sacrifice many trees.

Multiplex owners who have yielded pressure on the administration to have relaxation in the floor area ratio and have not cared to provide the parking lots. At Centra Mall in the industrial area, the administration is planning to sacrifice the green spaces along the roads, which would disturb the environment.

In future, the construction work on multiplexes should start only when the project plan of layout is cleared by the administration as per norms of the NCB.

Dilbag Rai, 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



DAV College teachers protest transfer of lecturer
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 18
Transfer of a DAV College lecturer has invited the ire of the teachers’ union. Union members have appealed to the authorities to revert the illegal transfer orders.

An objection was raised regarding the transfer of Meenu Vadhera, a lecturer from DAV College, Abohar, who has joined DAV College-10, Chandigarh, as lecturer in zoology.

The union objected that the seniority of college staff has to be drawn college wise. DAV College, Chandigarh, has a separate governing body from that of DAV College, Abohar, from where the transfer has taken place.

“Since there is no common cadre of employees between the two colleges, there cannot be any appointment of staff by way of transfer. Even Prof B.C. Josan, present principal of the college, came to Chandigarh from Abohar after following the proper procedure,” said union president Anil Sarwal.

Prof Avanindra Chopra, staff secretary said, “In the present case, none of the fixed criteria has been followed. The appointment has been done without any advertisement; without the permission of the Employment Exchange or the education department, Chandigarh, and not by the duly constituted selection committee (s) of Panjab University, Chandigarh, to which the DPI (C) or VC or their nominees were invited or by the governing body of the college.”

“It is the governing body that is the ‘appointing authority’ of staff in the college which is affiliated to Panjab University and is to follow the rules/ regulations of the university,” said the agitating members.



PU cuts fee hike for NRI students
Smriti Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 18
After weeks of deliberations, Panjab University has finally spared a thought for NRI students studying in various courses on the campus. The university authorities that had earlier hiked the fees of existing and new NRI students by 10 per cent in all the courses, has now decreased the hike by 5 per cent.

The decision to increase the fees was taken in the senate meeting held on March 29 this year.

But recently, there was displeasure among the students regarding the hike. Though the hike was across the board in all the courses with NRI candidates, NRI-sponsored and industry-sponsored categories (the last two categories though have been scrapped off now), students of UIET had protested on June 27 against the hike, terming it as unjustified for students already studying.

The students were of the view that since at the time of admission the prospectus clearly mentioned the fee structure for the above-mentioned categories and there was no mention of any such hike in between the session, it is incorrect on the part of the university to increase it now.

The vice-chancellor constituted a committee to look into the matter and the committee recommended to decrease the hike from 10 per cent to 5 per cent much to the relief of the students.

According to sources, earlier the fee was $5,000, which was hiked to about $5,600.

Nevertheless, the recommendations have been well timed and have come at a time when the admission process is on.

“Finally we have been heard and the hike has at least been decreased if not rolled back,” said Rahul, an affected student.

When contacted, vice-chancellor Prof R.C. Sobti said, “The fee was hiked given the fact that these categories of students are in a capacity to pay. Since we did not increase the fee for general category students this year at all and given the shortage of funds in the university, after many discussions by a former committee we increased the fee. But we are for the students and we have decreased it in their interest.”



Draft ready for UT education board
G.S. Paul
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 18
The Chandigarh education department has drafted a plan for its own education board. The Chandigarh school education board would encompass the elementary level (Class VIII) in the beginning.

After getting a nod from the UT administrator, the plan would be submitted to the central government.

At present, Chandigarh follows the Punjab education code. This move is being initiated under Section 87 of the Punjab Reorganisation Act.

With the formation of the board, educational procedures like curriculum, textbooks, examination pattern, fee structure and even teachers’ recruitment would be regulated by the Chandigarh administration.

The DPI (S), S.K. Setia, said: “We have finalised the concept. Our aim is to bring holistic personality development of children up to the elementary level. It would be extended to secondary and senior secondary sections later.”

The need for a board was felt because private school authorities were taking “undue advantage” of the lacunae in the system. In the absence of Clause No 14, which rests with the state education board, it was hard to enforce the implementation of the reservation quota or monitor the fee structure.

He said modalities were being chalked out and “the target is certainly for the next session”.

“Since the CBSE does not hold examinations up to the middle standard, we can frame our own policy. But we want secondary and senior secondary levels also within our ambit and so we will have to get the approval of the study course from the CBSE,” he said.

The administration is planning to meet certain mandatory conditions before getting approval from the government which include provision for a board building, appointment norms for chairman, secretary and members and panel of subject experts.

For secondary and senior secondary classes, private schools will have the choice to be affiliated to either the CBSE or the ICSE. But these schools will have to seek an NOC from the administration.



CHB offers parking space to MIG allottees
Recognises their power to buy cars
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 18
The Chandigarh Housing Board (CHB) has finally recognised the power of the middle-income group(MIG) to buy cars. In a departure from the past, when the two-room flat (MIG) owners were allotted scooter garages, the board is offering underground car-parking space to these allottees in its upcoming housing scheme in Sector 63 here.

However, the parking space will be limited to the three-bedroom and two-bedroom allottees and the one-bedroom and economically weaker section(EWS) allottees will have to be content with scooter garages only.

With Chandigarh having the largest vehicular density in India, parking cars had been an uphill task for the over 45,000 allottees of the CHB under its various schemes in different parts of the city. In the absence of any specified place for car parking, public parks have been encroached upon by the allottees to park their vehicles, leading to traffic snarls.

However, all this is going to be a thing of the past. The parking space for one car per family in the Sector 63 housing will at least solve the parking problems of the residents to a certain extent.

"Though coming too late in the day, the CHB decision to have underground parking lot is the need of the hour. Haphazard parking of cars outside the houses in the CHB complexes gave a shabby look to the area besides creating bad blood among the neighbours," said ML Sharma, a resident.

Sources said since Sector 63 had limited space, underground parking was the only option left with the CHB to create the parking facility for the general public.

Underground parking will give more place to the board to plant trees in the complex, the sources added.



UBS yet to fill sports category
Smriti Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 18
Controversies refuse to die down in admissions pertaining to sports category students. After the protest by students and parents over admission under sports category during AIEEE counselling, the controversy has now shifted to University Business School, PU.

UBS has not yet made admissions for students under sports category even though first-year session has already begun. To top it all, as mentioned in the prospectus, the shortlisted candidates have not been sent call letters for group discussions and personal interviews sending the applicants and their parents in a tizzy.

The session for the first-year students in UBS began two days back but it seems no one is bothered about the eight seats in sports category, which are yet to be filled.

Officially, for eight seats, the department was supposed to shortlist 64 candidates (eight times the number of seats), but in the absence of enough eligible candidates, the department of sports could only select 53 candidates for the purpose of group discussion and personal interviews.

“This is ridiculous. How can the university ignore such an important category when the classes have already started? Who will be responsible for the loss of studies of those who will get admission later?” questioned an agitated parent.

“If the delay is for some logical reason, the university must conduct separate classes for us. Already sessions have started in other B-schools, we have nowhere to go now, other than UBS,” said a hopeful candidate.

However, sources confirm that the delay was on the part of the sports authorities as grading of certificates of the students was done around three days back.

Also, many students are known to use their influence and get admissions on the basis of bogus certificates as well thus, misusing the category.

When contacted, the vice-chancellor admitted and said, “There were some technical problems in this category. Nevertheless, we want to be completely sure of sports candidates than to land in controversies. It will be done soon,” he assured.



Class XI Admission
Few turn up for sports category counselling
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 18
Miscalculation on part of the Chandigarh education department led to a thin rush at the counselling session for the ongoing admissions to Class XI at Government Model Senior Secondary School-10, here, today.

Students seeking admission under the sports category did not turn up today at the counselling spot as they failed to get the sports gradation certificates in time.

Sports officials disclosed that procuring gradation certificates is a 15-day process and the education department should have kept the admission schedule accordingly.

Today was the day reserved for remaining and special category students. Just four-five students were admitted under different reserved categories.

The department officials did not disclose the date for the next admission session for sports category students.



From Schools & Colleges
Advanced course in IT at BGS institute

Tribune News Service

Mohali, July 18
BGS Institute of Science and Management, Mohali, today announced the introduction of GAC (global access certification) in Information Technology and business management streams.

These advanced qualifications — ACIT (advanced certificate in Information Technology) and ACBM (advanced certificate in business management) — have received recognition from leading colleges and universities in the US, Australia and New Zealand.

Student excels

Vibhu Pathak of Swami Ram Tirtha Public High School, Phase IV, has brought laurels by being awarded the certificate of brilliance along with cash award in All-India Talent Search Examination held by Children Education Trust.

He is the only child in the district to top the examination.

Placement drive

As many as 25 BEd students of Chandigarh College of Education, Landran, have been placed in a drive organised by the college. Some of these selected students have got an opportunity to work as teacher in government schools while others have been placed in noted private schools in and around Chandigarh.

With this drive, the college has become the first one in the northern region to have an active training and placement cell.



PU to host inter-varsity youth fest
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 18
Panjab University is all set to play a perfect host for the first time to North Zone Inter-Varsity Youth Festival.

The All-India University Association organises this zonal inter-varsity festival annually. This year it will be organised in PU around December in which almost 50 north zone universities will participate.

According to official sources, teams of 40 students each will participate and more than 3,000 students are expected to participate. The winners of this youth fest will participate in the All-India Youth Festival. The university teams will participate under four categories, including theatre, dance, fine arts and literary items. PU vice-chancellor Prof R.C. Sobti said, “We are very excited about the festival and have started preparing for the same. This is the first time we have got a change to host the festival and are working towards making the event a memorable one.”



DAV principal is regional director of 11 schools
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 18
Madhu Bahl, principal, Kailash Bahl DAV Senior Secondary Public School, Sector 7B, Chandigarh, in addition to her existing duties, has been appointed regional director of 11 DAV management-run schools in Punjab and Haryana state.

Apart from being the regional director of 11 schools, Bahl is also working as manager of six schools of other DAV institutions around Chandigarh.

She has received the prestigious National Award for Teachers by President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam for her meritorious services in the field of education and social services in 2005-2006.

She was recently honoured with Punjab Rattan Award by the Governor of Haryana.



From Schools & Colleges
Father’s Day at EuroKids
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 18
EuroKids in Sectors 18 and 37, Chandigarh, and Sector 9, Panchkula, organised Father’s Day today. Fathers had put everything on hold for spending some precious moments with their kids. Both had a field day taking part in a plethora of fun-filled activities and games like story telling, colouring and singing. According to Mona Verma, principal, fathers are now spending more time with their children. Children were enthused to see fathers actively taking part in school activities. At the end, cakes were also cut.

DISCUSSION: A group discussion on the topic teacher-student relationship was organised at Government College-46, here, today. Dr K.S. Saluja, principal of the college, initiated the discussion by telling the students that healthy relation between ‘guru’ and ‘shishya’ is maintainable only when they have selfless love and respect for each other.



Mandal to open schools for poor
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, July 18
Sarv Hindu Shiv Mandal has decided to open schools and colleges to impart free education to poor at grassroots level in villages, perform marriages of poor girls, provide clean drinking water, organise free medical camps in village.

Sarv Hindu Shiv Maha Mandal headquarter at Poaat in Punjab is working as a trust. Mahant Bhangu Swami, chairman, Sarv Hindu Shiv Maha Mandal, was speaking at a press conference.



Niharika Rai is MD, CITCO
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 18
The “officer crunch” with the Chandigarh administration is proving a blessing in disguise for low-rung IAS officers. With the repatriation of the secretary, tourism, and MD, CITCO, JS Bir, a Punjab-cadre IAS officer, the Chandigarh administration today handed over the charge of MD, CITCO, to a junior-level UT-cadre IAS officer, Niharika Rai. At present she is SDM (East) and Registering and Licensing Authority (RLA), Chandigarh.

The administration has preferred to hand over the charge to the junior-most officer though there were four senior-level IAS officers available to the administration. “ Either it proves to be a blessing in disguise for the officer or a bane for the administration, as it involves crucial decisions,” observed a bureaucrat.

“We want to give the young faces an opportunity to handle important portfolios. The other senior- level officers are already preoccupied with work,” said another official while justifying the appointment of UT-cadre officer as CITCO MD.

With the repatriation of Bir, the portfolio of secretary, tourism, and secretary, printing and stationery, has gone back to the finance secretary-cum-home secretary, Sanjay Kumar. Sources said it would be another few months for the process of inviting and selecting a new Punjab IAS officer for the post of MD, CITCO.

The UT is doing without the home secretary for the past 109 days. This is despite the fact that decks have been cleared for the appointment of Ram Niwas as the next home secretary with a formal nod of the Prime Minister's Office (PMO).

Meanwhile, the UT Administrator has cleared the name of HCS officer Samvartak Singh and intimation has been sent to the Haryana government. “The moment clearance comes from Haryana, at least one of the HCS officers, whose term has expired, will be repatriated to Haryana. It could be DPI (School) SK Setia or secretary, CHB, Kamlesh.

Highlighting the issue, RK Garg, a social activist, said in the given circumstances, the administration was left with just one officer on some days. “One can imagine the manner in which the functioning of the administration is crippled”, he added.



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