C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Electrocution of Youth 
Councillor’s house vandalised
BJP men besiege police station; Cong leader booked
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
Tension prevailed in Ram Darbar today following the electrocution of a 16-year-old youth here late last night.

Kanahiya Lal, a class VIII student, was electrocuted after he came in contact with a live wire. His hand accidentally touched the supporting wire of an electric pole, resulting in the electrocution. The victim was taken to Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32, where the doctors declared him brought dead.

According to sources, the problem started when a group of BJP supporters raised slogans against the Congress. The supporters stated that the Congress was responsible for the death of Kanahiya, as mayor Pradeep Chhabra failed to get mended the supporting wire of the electric pole in which the current was flowing.

Following this, Congress supporters, led by Satish Kainth, allegedly threw stones at the residence of area councillor Ram Lal. The agitated supporters reportedly vandalised the councillor’s residence.

The police which was called to control the situation, ensured the residents that action would be taken against those who were responsible.

The BJP activists led by former MP Satya Pal Jain, president Kamla Sharma and councillors laid siege to the police station demanding the registration of an FIR against the mayor and his supporters.

The councillor said, “Pradeep Chhabra was behind the entire incident. He provoked his supporters to throw stones at my residence”.

The police has registered a case against Satish Kainth and others for rioting, damaging the property and criminal intimidation, while the area in charge of the electricity department was booked on charges of death due to negligence. Satish Kainth had contested the last municipal corporation election against Ram Lal.

Pradeep Chhabra said: “Neither I nor any of my supporters were involved in the incident. I visited the spot on humanitarian grounds.”



Woman electrocuted in Manimajra
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
A woman was electrocuted after she came in contact with an electric wire at her residence in Manimajra, here, this afternoon. The victim has been identified as Prem Lata, a resident of Manimajra.

According to sources, the victim was eight-month pregnant. Her hand accidentally touched the wire, which was hanging from the roof, adjacent to the ceiling fan. Her husband, who was in the other room, came running to help her after hearing her cries. Prem Lata was rushed to the Government Multi-Specialty Hospital, Sector 16, where the doctors declared her brought dead.

The body of the deceased has been shifted to the mortuary for a postmortem.



Now, residents file complaint against NHAI director
Tribune News Service

Panchkula. August 10
Controversies and Lieut Col K P Sharma, project director, NHAI, seem to go together.

After the alleged violation of the Periphery Control Act, Lieutenant Colonel Sharma is again in trouble as more than a dozen residents of Pinjore have lodged a complaint with the police, alleging that he threatened to fire at them when they went to him pleading for repair of the NH 22 recently.

Earlier, Shrama was issued a show-cause notice by the distrct town planner, Panchkula, for violating the Periphery Control Act, 1952, by erecting a two-room structure having unauthorised access to the National Highway 73.

According to the police, more than a dozen Pinjore residents have lodged a complaint against the project director, alleging that when they went to plead with him recently to repair the road in the town, he made derogatory remarks against them. Sharma even asked them not to come to him again, otherwise he would shoot them, alleged the complainants.

The residents of Pinjore have been facing hardship for the last more than six months as the road going through the town was in a shambles and the repair work was being delayed, leading to several problems, including traffic jams and health complications for the locals.

The superintendent of police, Sandip Khirwar, confirmed about the complaint. He, however, said the police was investigating the matter and action would be taken only after the facts were verified.

Sharma, denying the allegations, said the locals had repaired the road themselves and in the process they further damaged the road. When the residents met him, he only advised them to desist from taking up the repair work themselves and wait till the NHAI repaired the road. The discussion was held in a cordial atmosphere only, claimed Sharma.



CBSE to introduce health programme in schools 
G. S. Paul
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
This and many other questions were specifically designed while formulating the Comprehensive School Health Programme to be introduced in schools shortly.

Initiated by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), a course outline has been planned after getting feedback from students' Global School Health Survey (GSHS) held for the first time in India. Around 75 schools were picked up randomly by the World Health Organisation (WHO), Geneva, for the purpose.

The GSHS was administered by specially trained survey administrators, principals of prestigious schools across the country.

The CBSE officials said that the objective of designing such a programme was to form an activity-oriented health education curriculum. "It was a paper-pencil survey. A special questionnaire was prepared which was given to students between 13-15 age group. The students were instructed not to write their names on this survey or answer sheet and their feedback was kept private. Basically, the purpose was to know about children's health behaviour, their experiences and ensuring them a safe school environment".

The DPI (S) SK Setia elaborated further. “The idea is to avoid health-related risk behaviour, ensuring physical fitness activities, sports and also providing nutritious snacks in the school canteens, ensuring access to primary health-care services", told Setia.

The programme has been bifurcated into four volumes-Comprehensive School Health Teachers Activity manual-1; Teachers' Manual for Class I-V, vol II; Teachers' Activity Manual for Classes VI-VIII, vol.III; and Teachers' activity manual for Classes IX-XII . These activities revolve around six different themes- knowing your body, food and nutrition, personal and environmental hygiene, physical fitness, being responsible and safe in school.

The CBSE has also recommended to the schools to set up 'health clubs' where individual health cards would be maintained for each student. The health-related activities like organising poster-making competitions, arranging health talks, fairs, quiz contests related to health issues, etc, would be conducted by the teachers in these clubs. “The activities suggested in the health manuals are very constructive and learner-centered. It will definitely help to empower the students to construct knowledge for themselves in a classroom or even out of the class setting”, 
told Setia.

n Your friend had a bicycle accident. What would you do to help?

n Describe how you may assist your little sister or brother to play more safely?

n Is there a source of clean water at school? What are the three ways in which infectious diseases may spread?

n Is there a place for you to wash your hands before eating at school? How often did you use soap to wash your hands?

n During the past 30 days, how many times per day did you drink carbonated soft drinks like Coke, Pepsi, Limca or Fanta?

n During the past 12 months, how many times did a toothache cause you to miss classes?

n During the past 12 months, how many times did the teacher verbally abuse you and you felt to be unsafe at school or on your way to or from school?



Cop ‘beats up’ fast food owner
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
Amardeep Singh, owner of “Nine Eleven” fast food outlet in Sector 44, has alleged that a UT constable thrashed him and his friend after he refused to give the constable what he ordered late last night.

Harpreet Singh, brother of Amardeep, said, “Two constables who were on duty yesterday night approached my brother and ordered for food. As Amardeep was closing the shop, he refused the constables. One of the constables, who was drunk, thrashed Amardeep and his friend Inderpal with lathi”, said Harpreet.

Amardeep informed the police control room at about 1 am after which Amardeep, along with his friend Inderpal, was taken to the Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32, for medical examination.

Harpreet alleged that doctors did not treat Amardeep and Inderpal, who sustained head injuries. Both in the same condition were taken to the police station, Sector 34, who at about 3 am informed the family about the incident. Charanjit Singh, father of Amardeep, came to the police station and bailed the two out.

The two again went to the hospital for medication. Amardeep received almost 12 stitches on his head.

Meanwhile, the UT police has booked Amardeep and Inderpal on charges of quarreling with Harneek Singh, the constable who was on duty in Sector 44, yesterday night.

Harpreet Singh has written to the UT IGP and SSP about the entire incident and has requested to initiate an inquiry into the matter.



Note This: Fakes in circulation
Aarti Kapur/Mandeep Puri
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
Around 10 days ago, Shravan (22), a resident of Sector 46, withdrew Rs 20,000 from his brother-in-law’s account in Bank of India’s Sector 34 branch. He then went to the SBI branch in Sector 35 to deposit the money in his account and to his shock the cashier told him that two notes of Rs 500 denomination each were fake.

Not knowing what to do, the youth called up his employer who told him to go back to the Bank of India branch and talk to the cashier.

Apprehensive that the cashier may deny issuing such notes and in turn accuse him of making false allegations, Shravan reached the bank and the moment he uttered “two notes were fake”, the cashier took him outside and asked him to return the next morning, promising to replace the notes.

Similarly, a Tribune correspondent withdrew Rs 1,600 from SBI’s ATM in Sector 8 on Thursday. Yesterday, when she paid for a friend’s ultrasound at a clinic in Sector 8, the cashier returned a Rs 500 note saying it was fake.

There is no dearth of such cases in the city. Fake currency notes are in circulation in abundance and every day people are getting duped.

The recent recovery of over Rs 1.25 crore in fake Indian currency notes (FICN) from SBI’s Dumariaganj branch, UP, by the RBI team has also contributed to the scare in the city and people, particularly shopkeepers, are reluctant to accept notes of higher denomination.

A grocery shop owner in Sector 36 admits that he had stopped accepting Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes from customers, except regular ones. However, even from regular customers he checks each note and scribbles their names on one corner.

While one can’t blame the common man for accepting a fake note, what is shocking is that city banks are ill-equipped to keep a check on the influx of FICN.

Minister of state for finance Pawan Kumar Bansal said after getting reports of fake currency cases in banks, security features had been changed by the RBI for checking of fake currency.

He said there were reports of smuggling of fake currency from border areas and special checks were being made to prevent it.

An official, on condition of anonymity, stated that as per reports fake currency that was logged was around .0001 per cent only.

He said two master circulars issued by the RBI to keep a check on fake currency and logging complaints against it were sent to banks across the region.

He said district-level forums had been formed in Punjab to conduct training programmes for bank staff to check fake currency.



J&K stir pushes up veg prices
Ruchika M. Khanna
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
The ongoing stir in Jammu and Kashmir and the heavy rains lashing Himachal Pradesh is casting its shadow on the fruit and vegetable supplies to the city, thus leading to an increase in prices.

Though price of the most vegetables that are grown in the neighbouring areas of Punjab have remained stable, those of tomatoes, peas and cauliflower have gone up substantially in the past one week. Traders in the city say that the main reason for this is that the heavy rains in Himachal have cut their supply to the city, leading to a gap in demand and supply. Supply of some vegetables like mushrooms have been seriously hit, which is now selling at Rs 120 a kg (as compared to Rs 100 a kg last week).

Peas and pears, which reach the city markets from Jammu, too, have become expensive. Over the past 10 days their supply has been cut, leading to its price going up drastically.

The price of tomatoes has gone up by Rs 5 a kg, while that of peas has gone up by Rs 8-10 a kg. Last week, tomatoes were available at Rs 20-25 a kg, while this week it has gone up to Rs 25-30 a kg. Peas, which were earlier selling at Rs 35- 40 a kg, are now available at Rs 45-50 a kg. Similarly, the cauliflower price has gone up from Rs 25 a kg last week to Rs 40 a kg now.

Mango, which is on its way out now, is selling at Rs 50 a kg, while pears are selling at Rs 50- 60 a kg. There is some relief for consumers as the price of apples has come down from Rs 80 a kg last week to Rs 40-50 a kg now. 

Vegetables Price (Rs/ kg)

Potato Rs 12

Tomato Rs 25-30

Onion Rs 14

Peas Rs 45-50

Cauliflower Rs 40

Capsicum Rs 30


Mangoes Rs 40-50

Banana Rs 30 a dozen

Apple Rs 40-50

Pear Rs 50-60



Amarnath Row
Shun violence, urge experts
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
Political parties, citizens and media were asked to exercise restraint in dealing with the sensitive issue of Amarnath land row at a seminar on "Shri Amarnath land transfer -implications of revocation" here today.

In his keynote address, Lt Gen S.K. Sinha (retd), former Governor of Jammu and Kashmir, expressed concern at how Kahmiriyat (state's ethos) was being undermined by the fundamentalist forces by spreading canards about various issues.

Suggesting a solution to the current imbroglio, Gen Sinha urged the Central Government not to follow the appeasement policy. Besides, agitators in Jammu and Kashmir should shun violence and people of the Kashmir valley should be educated before the transfer of land to the Shri Amarnath Shrine Board again.

Noted comm entator Saeed Naqvi wanted the election commission to determine whether election could be held in such circumstances in Jammu and Kashmir. He wanted the political parties and the media not to play with fire while dealing with such sensitive issues.

P.C. Dogra, president of the Forum on Integrated National Security, which organised the seminar, and noted journalist Tarun Vijay also spoke on the occasion.



Sinha blames PDP, media
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
At the receiving end of a cross section of society for his alleged role in the Amarnath land row, former Jammu and Kashmir Governor S.K. Sinha (Retd), today tried to come clean and blamed PDP’s “anti-national” activities and media’s “irresponsible role” for the current imbroglio in the sensitive border state.

“Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, PDP patron and former Chief Minister, put pre-fabricated structures along the Baltal route and shortened the length of the annual Amarnath pilgrimage to one month from against the wishes of the Shri Amarnath Shrine Board (SASB),” General Sinha claimed at a seminar on ‘Shri Amarnath shrine land transfer -implications of revocation’ organised by the Forum on Integrated National Security here today.

Refuting allegations that the transfer of land to the SASB, of which he was also the chairman, he claimed that it was a state Cabinet decision taken in May. As a Governor I had no other option but to comply with the Cabinet decision, General Sinha said, adding that it were the vested interests and the media which portrayed him as the villain.

The former Governor also came down heavily on Central government’s “overdrive” in revoking the allotment of the land to the SASB in haste. In fact, in the backdrop of the appeasement policy towards the PDP, the Central government sacrificed its government led by a "secular and nationalist” Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad, he added.

Mufti’s stand on the Baglihar project and the dual currently repeatedly demonstrated the “anti-national” and “communal” face of the PDP, General Sinha said, adding that Mufti was against two month period for the Amarnath yatra.

Accusing the media of presenting a distorted picture of the events in the run-up to the revocation of the land transfer, he said the valley media had its own agenda. However, the way the national media misinformed the public was a cause of concern, he added.



Watch out for conjunctivitis 
Anuja Jaiswal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
After heavy rains, the city once again witnessed a drastic change in the weather as a result of which city hospitals got busy treating cases of malaria, viral fever and conjunctivitis.

Ophthalmologists have an advice for city residents "Watch out for your eyes.”

Prof Sunandan Sood, head of eye department, GMCH-32, says infectious conjunctivitis, caused by pathogens (viral or bacterial), has started manifesting in the city. However, haemorrhagic conjunctivitis - where conjunctiva starts bleeding, thus affecting the eyesight - cases have not been reported yet.

“Almost 3-4 cases are being reported every day. As the incubation period is normally three to four days before the disease manifests itself, there may be more coming in," said Dr K.S. Rana of the GMSH-16 eye department.

“As it is an air-borne disease, it may affect others coming in contact with the patients," said Dr Sood, professor and head, ophthalmologist department of GMCH-32.

Symptoms of conjunctivitis are irritation and redness in the eye and inner eyelid. There can be discharge from the eye, too, in infectious conjunctivitis. Antibiotic drops, ointments and artificial tears are prescribed as medicines. Steroids should be avoided.

According to experts, do not touch or rub the infected eye(s). Wash your hands regularly with soap and warm water. Wash any discharge from your eyes twice a day using a fresh cotton ball or paper towel. Discard the cotton ball and wash your hands with soap and warm water.

“Also, wash your bed linen, pillow covers and towels in hot water and detergent and avoid wearing eye makeup.

Do not share eye makeup with others. With lenses one needs to be more hygienic.

Avoid using them for long period and preferably wear disposable contact lenses,” says Dr Rana.


Take antibiotic drops and ointments.

Wash your hands regularly with soap and warm water.

Wash discharge from eyes twice a day.

Wash bed linen, pillow covers and towels in detergent.

Wear disposable contact lenses.


Take steroids.

Touch or rub the infected eye(s).

Wear eye make-up.

Share eye make-up with others.

Avoid using contact lenses.



Policing takes backseat while cops go high-tech
Mandeep Puri
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
The Chandigarh police seems to have got its priorities wrong. Even as the police has gone overboard with its modernisation plan, the basic policing has apparently taken a backseat.

Nothing else can explain it better than the sharp rise in petty crimes, including thefts, incidents of assaults, rioting and dacoity.

Senior officials of the Chandigarh police introduced the latest equipment under its modernisation plan. Under its various schemes, the police installed close-circuit TV cameras at all police stations, introduced the global positioning system in PCR vehicles, got various wings computerised, obtained the ISO status for police stations and also paid heavy fees for the same to meet its standards. But in basic policing, it failed miserably to check vehicle thefts, snatchings and other thefts.

The figures showing cases registered by the police till August 6 this year in comparison to last year are a testimony to the fact. This year, as many as 1,243 cases of theft have been registered till date against last year’s 1,160. Likewise, at least 551 cases of vehicle theft have been registered as compared to 351 in 2007. The UT police could recover just 95 vehicles out of total 902 stolen vehicles in the past two years.

Similarly, 51 rioting incidents have been reported and 123 snatching cases have been registered this year compared to last year’s 44 and 101 cases, respectively. In all, 2,469 cases under the Indian Penal Code have been registered till date while 2,347 cases were registered throughout 2007. Cases registered under the categories of miscellaneous, special and local laws, however, have seen a decline as 419 cases have been registered till date against last year’s 449.

The police has also failed to catch any big fish involved in drug-trafficking which goes unabated in the city. Though the police believed that drug-addiction led to breeding of other crimes like snatching and petty thefts, it failed to carry out any sustained campaign against the menace. The police registered only 65 cases under the provisions of the NDPS Act while in 2007.


Open more consulates for better relations: PPP leader
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
Pakistan’s ruling coalition was in favour of adopting permit system in place of issuing visas for Pakistan and Indian nationals travelling between the two countries. This would further strengthen the ties between the two neighbours.

Raising the issue on behalf of Asif Ali Zardari, leader of Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and chairman of World Punjabi Congress Fakhar Zaman said the permit system could be facilitated by opening high commission consulates at Lahore and Karachi in Pakistan and similarly at Amritsar and Mumbai in India.

“Certain vested interests on both sides, like bureaucrats and certain agencies were nullifying the efforts to improve the two neighbours”. In the city to attend a function of Punjabi Lekhak Sabha, former Pakistan union minister of culture Fakhar said it was the duty of the intellectuals, writers and journalists to clear the atmosphere of doubt against each other.

It is not the question of India and Pakistan the economic and geo-political scenario demands that SAARC countries should have single currency and single visa system. The Pakistan government was also concerned on the increasing talibanisation and the threat it posed to the stabilisation of democracy. “The time had come when India, Pakistan and China should get together to form a power that could balance the unilateral world power”, said the chairman of the World Punjabi 

As a confidence building measure, Pakistan had decided to import 38 items from India through the Wagah border. Trade worth five billion involving 7,500 items from India was illegally being done through Dubai due to trade restrictions between the two nations.

On the issue of impeachment of President Pervez Musharraf he said the Pakistan government had 303 votes to proceed with the impeachment.

Talking about initiatives being taken to promote Punjabi language and culture, he said it had been decided to set up Amrita Pritam Chair at the proposed Punjabi University at Lahore. A compulsory paper on Punjabi writing, poetry and drama would be presented every year. Due to the initiatives by the World Punjabi Congress, the Pakistan government was contemplating to make Punjabi language as a medium of instruction.

Efforts were being made to give employment of 10,000 unemployed youth who had done masters in Punjabi language. The year 2009 has been dedicated as the year to promote the Punjabi language.



Reports by Army’s legal cells can be disclosed, rules CIC 
Vijay Mohan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
The Central Information Commission (CIC) has held that advice rendered by the Army’s legal and vigilance departments can be disclosed under the Right to Information Act (RTI).

Notings and advice rendered by the Judge Advocate General’s (JAG) Department or the Discipline and Vigilance (DV) branch would not fall under the exemption of provisions of Section 8 of the Act which provides that information held under fiduciary capacity need not be disclosed, the CIC has ruled.

Disposing off a petition filed by ex-Capt Dr Harsh Uppal, who had sought information pertaining to his case which is 30 years old, the CIC held that the JAG and DV authorities have to act in a transparent and analytical manner while dealing with quasi-judicial and administrative proceedings. Hence any reasoning or noting on how a particular case has been dealt with need not be held back.

Dr Uppal had sought the reports of the JAG and DV departments and the remarks of the Army chief, if any, on a petition seeking a pardon on his conviction by a court martial in the aftermath of the 1971 Bangladesh campaign. The Army had responded saying that the reports could not be shared with him as they were provided in a fiduciary relationship and were exempted under RTI provisions.

The CIC observed that proceedings before the court martial and the consequential application for pardon under Section 179 of the Army Act were matters which, although administrative in substance, were quasi-judicial in nature. In such a case, the authorities deciding the matter do decide in accordance with the law and in accordance with principles of natural justice.

In proceedings like this, an authority has a duty to act in a transparent manner and cannot withhold its reasoning only on the ground that there is a fiduciary relationship between him and the government. Such cases are decided in an analytical manner and reasons need to be recorded by the authority. It will be at the very least, inappropriate if the exemption under Section 8(1) (e) is extended to such a situation, the CIC ruled.



Getting leave a problem for his wife
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
A Pakistani peace activist and a staunch supporter of better Indo-Pak ties, Fakhar Zaman, today alleged that the principal of a Delhi-based college, where her wife was employed as an assistant professor, was not granting her leave to visit him in Pakistan.

During a press conference on Indo-Pak ties, he mentioned that his wife, Dr Fatima who was an assistant professor at Bharti College, was being denied her casual leave.

“While I am fighting for strengthening of the Indo-Pak ties, I am facing such type of hostility”, he added.

College principal Pramodni Verma denied the allegations. She claimed that Dr Fatima had proceeded on leave on two occasions without informing the college authorities. As a government employee one has to inform while going on leave outside the country.

“On one occasion, she went to Pakistan without informing the college authorities”, she added.



Nokia team wins corporate quiz
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
STEPS, under the aegis of Chandigarh tourism, in association with Anaahat Naad Productions, organised the Chandigarh Corporate Quiz 2008 here today.

Dr J.G. Jolly, leading expert in blood transfusion medicine and founder of the Blood Bank Society, was the chief guest and inaugurated the event.

The corporate quiz was won by Nokia team comprising Vijay Anand Menon and Lalit Talwar. Dell team of Venita and Javed was the first runners-up and The Indian Express team comprising Rakesh Chopra and Nitin Sharma were second runners-up. The team from Net Solutions - Guneet Kaur and Anjali Danipuri, Panjab University team of K.P.S. Shante and Rakesh and Uni Lever team comprising Mohit Madan and Aman Arora bagged third, fourth and fifth positions.



200 saplings planted
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
The Uttarakhand Yuva Manch organised a tree plantation drive on its 16th foundation day at the ESIC Society, the PSIEC Employees Coop Society and the Central Ground Water Board Employees Coop House Building Society, Sector 51-B, here today.

Dr S.K. Sharma, chairman, Environmental Society of India, inaugurated the camp. He appreciated the efforts of the manch in creating awareness among the masses about environment. In total, 200 saplings of various varities were planted. S.S. Bhardwaj, chairman, Chandigarh Social Welfare Council, addressed the function. 



Residents protest police inaction
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
Demanding immediate arrest of suspects, booked for allegedly assaulting Raju Kali, a resident of Vikas Nagar, residents of the area staged a protest near the railway track in Vikas Nagar here this evening. The residents have accused the police of “shielding” the suspects.

Kali reported to the police that Sonu, Monu, Gaurav, Jaggi and Jagtar had threatened and assaulted her at her home, this morning.

The residents had blocked the internal road leading to Panchkula. The traffic on the road was brought to a standstill for over an hour. The situation was brought under control only when the SHO reached the spot and assured the residents that strict action would be taken against the suspects.

The suspects, along with their accomplice, were arrested earlier for allegedly thrashing another resident of Vikas Nagar.

SHO Hari Kumar claimed that police teams had been raiding the hideouts of the suspects, but none of them could be arrested.



Bansal clarifies remarks
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
With reference to an interview, “I am powerless”, that appeared in these columns today, Union Minister of State for Finance and local MP Pawan Kumar Bansal has clarified that he had only stated that so far as the Chandigarh administration was concerned, all the powers had been delegated to the UT Administrator and he had little role in the 
city’s governance.

“As a minister, I exercise my power regarding Budget allocations. Like other states, I am also approached by UT officials regarding matters of finance,” he added.

He said in his capacity as an MP, it was his duty and responsibility to raise the issues troubling the city residents. “If anyone has objection to my raising the issues, it does not bother me. I will keep on raising such issues,” he added.



Malls won’t make city famous

This is with reference to the news item that appeared in Chandigarh Tribune about the Centre's questioning of the UT on the issue of bringing mega projects to the city.

On the one hand, the UT is claiming the inclusion in the world heritage list on the basis that the original character of the city as conceptualised by Le Corbusier is still intact, on the other hand contrary to Le Corbusier's vision, the administration is taking pride in wooing malls and multiplexes.

This is sad. It's reminiscent of the lines from Bob Dylan's song: “The truth is far from you, so you know you got to lie. Then you're all the time defending what you can never justify".

If the city's progress comes at a price, it's residents who will eventually have to pay the price of progress. The administration is recongnising the opening of multiplexes and shops of international brands but won't help popularise the city among foreign tourists, nor will it make Chandigarh an ideal destination.

Rajesh Krishan, 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



Scrutiny of papers begins
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
Today all nomination papers for various positions in PUTA election 2008 were opened up for scrutiny. Almost the entire team of PUTA executive members, proposed by the group led by Manjit Singh, has no contest in their respective category.

All four members for executive from the science group proposed by Manjit group - Yogesh Kumar Rawal (zoology), C.N. Kumar (physics), P. Venugopalan (chemistry) and Govind Kumar Malik (botany) have no contest. Similarly, in professional courses, all three members proposed by Manjit group - Bhupinder Singh Bhoop (UIPS), Gurmeet Singh (physical education) and D.N. Jauhar (laws) also have no contesting candidate.

From the department of evening studies, Anil Monga and Mahesh Sharma are two candidates for one position in the executive. However, Jatinder Grover proposed by Manjit group, too, has no contesting candidate from the DCS. In social sciences group, there are five candidates for four positions - Madhukar Arya (Urdu), Ameer Sultana (women studies), V.T. Sebastian (philosophy), Yog Raj Angrish (punjabi) and V.K. Singh (Chinese and Tibetan Studies), out of which the latter four have been proposed by Manjit group.

It is worth mentioning here that Madhukar Arya has filed his papers for three positions - president, vice-president and executive group I.

At the moment there are three candidates for the post of president namely Manjit Singh from the department of sociology, Ronki Ram from the department of political science and Madhukar Arya from the department of Urdu.

Similarly, for the post of secretary, there is a contest between Surbhi Goel (English) and Ashwani Koul (bio-physics), for vice-president there are two nominations D.K. Dhawan (bio-physics) proposed by Manjit group and Madhukar Arya (Urdu).

Two office-bearers Arvind Kumar (UIET) for joint secretary and Ashok Kumar (Hindi) for the post of treasurer proposed by Manjit group have no candidate to contest against. 



Two new hostels for PU
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
Panjab University’s hostel crunch seems to be getting sorted out with the university authorities deciding to construct two new hostels by May next year.

At a meeting held here yesterday, the building committee decided to construct two new hostels, one for boys and one for girls at a cost of 2.5 crores.

It was decided that both the hostels would be six-storied each and would house nearly 600 students. Both the proposed hostels would come up in the south campus of the university in Sector 25.

The south campus of the university has three professional colleges, including UIET (University Institute of engineering and Technology), Dr H S Judge Dental Institute and newly started UIAMS (University Institute of Applied Management Sciences).

The need to have more hostels becomes all the more important especially in the light of yet to be introduced OBC quota. With the introduction of the OBC quota, which would be implemented by August 31, there will be an overall increase of 54 per cent seats in all the  courses.

Recently, the vice-chancellor had announced that given the present situation, extra floors would be added in all the existing hostels or if the foundations were weak, annexes would be added to accommodate more students. For this purpose, a separate budget of Rs 2 crore 90 lakhs has also been allocated.



Lessons on leadership skills
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 10
Students learnt team skills, shared ideas and experienced an enlightening session on leadership under ‘Empower’, a platform provided by AIESEC, Chandigarh.

There were around 15 foreign students from all regions of the world who had come to Chandigarh for an AIESEC Internship, who facilitated the event and communicated with over 400 students present at the venue.

“Empower is a national initiative of AIESEC India being run in all the 15 chapters across different cities. The objective is encouraging diversity, bringing people from different backgrounds together and inducing in them the idea of positive leadership and team spirit,” said Sugandha, vice-president of AIESEC, Chandigarh.

The day kicked off with an introductory presentation by Manveer Grewal, president, AIESEC, Chandigarh. All the students were divided into groups, which were on the name of continents, which again were divided into sub-groups on the name of countries.

One of the activities was stock market simulation, where the teams had to simulate trading as done in a stock market.

Staff Development

Chandigarh based Aryans Business School (ABS) organised a staff development programme (SDP) on the college campus. Prof S.P. Singh, former chairman and dean, UBS, Panjab University, was the key-note speaker. Anshu Kataria, chairman, Aryans Group, presided over the function.

Dr Rakesh Kumar Gupta, professor and advisor (finance), Panjab University, Dr K.K. Mangla, former chairman and dean, UBS, Panjab University, Dr Parveen Kataria, director, ABS, also addressed the SDP. The faculty members of various management institutes of Aryans Group attended the SDP.



From Schools
Xpressions ‘08 a big draw
Tribune News Service

Mohali, August 10
On the second day of Xpressions ’08, annual exhibition of Manav Mangal Smart School, visitors arrived in large numbers to watch the creative talent of students and the staff of the school.

Set up in 26 rooms, the exhibition showcased talent, creativity and innovativeness working hand in hand.

A photo gallery with pictures and collages was created in one room while in another room a scene of the most famous novel of Sherlock Holmes “The Hounds of Baskervilles” was put up. The high point of the exhibition was the confidence and panache with which the students were explaining the models to the visitors.

Pratap House Day

Shivalik Public School, Mohali, celebrated Pratap House Day in the school auditorium today. The function commenced with the school shabad. D.S. Bedi, director-principal of the school,

garlanded the portrait of Maharana Pratap. Ankita of Class X gave an impressive speech and Kiratleen recited a poem. The main attraction of the event was the power-point presentation on the life history of Maharana Pratap, which captivated the audience. The celebrations concluded with Bedi’s motivational speech on the sacrifices made by the great patriot. 



Training certificates given
Tribune News Service

Mohali, August 10
A certificate distribution function was organised by Jan Shikshan Sansthan, Mohali, at its field office in village Radiala, district Mohali, for the students who had successfully completed a course in beauty culture and healthcare. More than 50 persons, including students and villagers, participated in the function.

Dildar Khan, director of the Sansthan, highlighted the importance of vocational education and development of entrepreneurship among youths. He said many opportunities of employment exist for those who possess vocational skills. 



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