C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Rape Bid 
Prime accused arrested from Ambala
Ramanjit Singh Sidhu
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 30
The police arrested another suspect, Harpreet, alias Dali, from Ambala this evening for his alleged involvement in the abduction and sexual assault on a German tourist.

ASP (central) Madhur Verma told The Tribune that Dali was arrested following the interrogation of Pankaj, who was arrested last night.

Dali, in his early 20s, was the prime suspect. He had flunked in BA-1 and was said to be a drug addict. He also had a criminal background and was involved in two cases of rioting. He, along with Pankaj, had dropped the victim at Sector 20 after committing the crime on Sunday afternoon.

Meanwhile, the police conducted raids throughout the day to nab the other three suspects, Sompal and Manjit, alias Jolly, of Bita village, and Sukhi of Jhandli village. They were known as “loafers” in their villages and three police teams had been dispatched to nab them, a police officer said.

The police said the accused were college and school dropouts and had a shady past. Fake number plates recovered from their vehicle indicated that their arrest could lead to more startling revelations.

Sources said Jolly had driven the vehicle on the way to Ambala. The accused told investigating officials that they had come to the city on Saturday to have some fun. They had visited malls and multiplexes in the city and consumed liquor at a tavern in Kaimbwala village. They also went to Sector 17 before going to Hotel Taj at around 2 am.

Meanwhile, Verma confirmed that the victim had alleged that they tried to rape her, but she fought back. He said since the medical report was awaited, it was not confirmed if she was raped.

The police today clarified that five persons were involved in the crime and the sixth one, Shoba Singh, was not involved in the crime. Only his vehicle was used without his knowledge for dropping the victim at Sector 20.

Sources in the police said the victim in her supplementary statement had said she bit Jolly, Sompal and Sukhi and also scratched them with her nails. The police would also get the Scorpio and Maruti car seized from the accused examined from the Central Forensic Sciences Laboratory along with the victim’s clothes.



Police remand for Pankaj
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 30
A local court today remanded Pankaj (24), allegedly involved in the kidnapping and sexual assault on a German tourist, in three-day police custody.

Pankaj, son of a Haryana police head constable, was arrested from Ambala last night. Seeking a seven-day police remand of the accused, the investigating officer stated: “Pankaj knows the places where the victim was kept during her kidnapping. He had told the police that he prevented his friend Jolly from taking the victim to these places.”

A small-time property dealer, Pankaj, however, claimed before the media that he rescued the victim and she “thanked him” when he dropped her at Sector 20 on Sunday afternoon. He added that she had gone with them willingly and also hugged him before leaving.

Sources said the victim was taken to Jolly’s farm in Samalkha, near Panipat. The police in its application for remand said: “They took the girl to Kardhar Colony near Jagadri road, where the accused had threatened to kill her by putting a ‘datri’ (sickle) on her throat before forcing themselves upon her. They had hidden the weapon somewhere there.”

The police took the accused amid tight security to the district courts in the afternoon. His face was covered and he was not allowed to talk to mediapersons.

Meanwhile, the victim has left for Delhi along with her father. The police said her family had assured cooperation at any stage of the investigation.



Renovation funds only for big houses?
G.S. Paul
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 30
The city administration’s venture to “convert” government houses into “luxury” houses seems to be restricted only for privileged ones.

Officials of the engineering department claim that the paucity of funds delayed the renovation of the houses and a review of the budget has been sought for the purpose. The revision would, however, not be scheduled before January.

But the “biased” attitude of the administration is evident from the fact that during a recent meeting chaired by the adviser, it was learnt that the engineering department had been instructed to give priority to the renovation of 7-type houses and above categories even as 13-type houses in Sector 28 are crying for attention.

Residents said the houses were in a bad shape. One was on the verge of collapse and the balcony of another house was about to fall. Most houses had broken doors or those infested with termite.

“The administration is waiting for a tragedy to happen to wake up. The situation gets worse during the rains when roofs leak. We have written to the engineering department, but in vain,” Hari Chand Thakur, a resident of Sector 28, said.

“The only reply we get is that there is a shortage of funds. Where do funds come for type-7 and above category houses? Is it because most of these houses are being occupied by well-connected officers, junior engineers or their relatives?” B.S. Rawat, another resident, asked.

In a recent communique of the administration, it had been mentioned that all government houses, including those occupied by Class IV employees, would be renovated with tiles in the kitchen and bathrooms.

The administration had also announced a proposal for special budget allocation for the project. Officials said the funds allocated for the purpose had already been spent on repairing 11-type, 12-type and 13-type houses in Sectors 16, 19 and 22.

“Limited funds have to be spent on renovation. At the same time, it has to be ensured that proper utilisation is there and higher type houses do not consume most part of the budget, as has been happening in the past,” the then finance secretary, Sanjay Kumar, had observed in a communication to the engineering department.



Commando hangs himself
Tribune News Service

Mohali, September 30
A 35 year-old commando of the Punjab police, Varinder, reportedly committed suicide by hanging himself at his house at the Commando Complex in Phase XI here late last night.

His neighbour informed the higher authorities after he noticed the body.

The victim was posted in 3rd Commandant. His suicide note states that he had been falsely implicated in a case for which his friend, Yogesh Kumar from Ludhiana, was responsible. The note was pasted on the wall of the kitchen.

It also stated that he had written to senior officials and the SSP, Ludhiana, in this regard.

Sources said he had a history of addiction. On the basis of the suicide note, however, the police has registered a case of abetment to suicide against Yogesh Kumar.

A police official said a few months ago, the victim’s wife and their two children had left for her parent’s house at Chada Khurd in Ludhiana.

The Ludhiana, SSP, R.K. Jaiswal, said he was not aware of any application submitted by the victim. “It must have been marked to the officer concerned,” he said.


Realtors pin hopes on UT auction
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 30
Reeling under severe recession, realtors in the city’s periphery are pinning their hopes on the October 23 residential and commercial auction here in a bid to bolster their sagging fortunes.

Since the property prices in the city have a direct bearing on the property prices in the adjoining towns of Zirakpur, Kharar and Dera Bassi, the auction is being keenly watched by the realtors, particularly big realtors, who have come up with mega housing projects in the city's periphery.

At present, the real estate market, particularly the sale of thousands of apartments, is going through a slump or correctional phase as they claim. Given its world class infrastructure, the property prices have been on the upswing in Chandigarh. During the last auction in December 2007, a 1 kanal plot in Sector 11 was sold for Rs 4.02 crore against the reserve price of Rs 1.48 crore.

A 3 kanal plot in Sector 15-C had gone for Rs 8.18 crore while a 5 marla plot in Sector 44 went for Rs 61.5 lakh against the reserve price of Rs 39 lakh.

“Despite the enforcement of the Chandigarh Estate Rules, 2007, under which full payment has to be deposited within 90 days, the auction was expected to receive a good response from bidders this time also,” Tarlochan Singh Bittu, chairman of the Chandigarh, Mohali and Panchkula Property Consultants Association, said here today.

The 35 plots on offer in the auction include dimensions like 4 marla, 5 marla, 7 marla, 10 marla, 1 kanal and 2 kanals and would provide bidders a wide choice and the authorities a chance to earn big money.

The commercial auction would offer booths, SCF and SCOs.

Official sources said the auction would set the benchmark for the revision of the collectorate rate(official rates for the registration of property) and other issues related to the property in the city.

Meanwhile, sources said since a majority of big property consultants had stakes in the periphery, the cartel of property dealers pushing up property prices during the auction could not be ruled out.

While the artificial hike in the prices may bring more revenue for the Chandigarh administration, the realtors in the periphery would ultimately stand to gain as property would go out the reach of the middle and lower middle class people in the city.

"These classes would then naturally hunt for a house from the thousands of apartments being constructed by big builders in Chandigarh's vicinity,” a coloniser having stakes in Zirakpur said.



Manimajra resident alleges police inaction 
Ramanjit Singh Sidhu
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 30
Accusing the Chandigarh police of failing to take action against “erring” doctors of INSCOL Hospital, Sector 34, Manimajra resident J.S. Arora has shot off a letter to UT SSP S.S. Srivastva to look into the matter.

The police had registered a case of criminal conspiracy, fraud, tampering with documents, negligence, inadequate facilities and forgery against five doctors of INSCOL Hospital, including Dr Banerji, Dr Daljit Singh Gujral, director (administration) Nimrat Gujral, resident medical officer Dr Paramjit Singh Mann, nursing superintendent Alveena and consultant physician Dr N.P. Singh, following directions of a local court on June 16.

The complainant, J.S. Arora, alleged that despite his repeated reminders, the police had not taken any action in the case. “The police has not acted even after reminders by the Medical Council of India (MCI). The MCI had sought a status report of the inquiry into the matter in a letter dated September 17,” alleged Arora.

In a fresh communication to UT SSP S.S. Srivastva on September 22, Arora said that Dr Banerji had gone to Australia and Dr Paramjit Singh Mann was still working with the hospital.

He alleged that the case was pending with the police for the past over eight months which can be seen on the Chandigarh police website as “pending on 10-4-2008 - head assistant crime HAC”.

When contacted, investigating officer in the case sub-inspector Harminderjit Singh said the case was being probed. “The case was registered on the directions of the court without conducting inquiries. As five doctors have been named in the case, it is a lengthy process to procure evidence against them,” he added. 



Ban on polythene from tomorrow 
Traders in a fix over paper bags 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 30
Even as the ban on polythene carry bags will be enforced from Thursday, the traders in the city have made it clear that the customers will have to make arrangements on their own to carry home the commodities purchased from markets.

The shopkeepers in the city are still in a fix over the availability of paper bags as these are not manufactured in the city. While some shopkeepers have stocked the recycled paper bags, others are just leaving it to the customers.

“We cannot do anything when the government has decided to ban poly bags. The people will be asked to bring their own carry bags, else they will have to face problems,” said a grocery dealer in Sector 21.

However, some shopkeepers have decided to act smart by charging the cost of alternative bags from the consumer only.

The worst hit would be the vendors and hawkers, who are not even aware of the ban and are worried about their daily earnings. “Without polythene bags, people would not come to us for buying anything and we don’t know from where to get these paper bags. It’s difficult for us to afford these bags as they are much higher in prices,” said a roadside vendor.

According to traders, they would also have spent three to four times more for purchasing paper bags.

“There is not even a single unit in the city which produces paper bags. Most of the paper bags are brought from Delhi. It would take a long time for the polythene-manufacturing units in the city to start production of paper bags as well,” said J.P.S. Kalra, general secretary, Sector 17 Market Association. 



Training session on ‘Red Ribbon Express’ starts 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, Sept 30
A four-day training workshop on “Red Ribbon Express (RRE)’ started at the at the CYP Asia Centre here today.

The workshop is being organised by Punjab zonal office of the Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan (NYKS) for effective implementation of the comprehensive health campaign on rail about HIV/AIDS. The train will enter Punjab in last week of October.

The workshop was inaugurated by J.S. Kooner, zonal director, NYKS. He exhorted the participants to organise themselves and work for the development of the community and participate in this activity. This can be done by first empowering themselves through education and skill building, he said. After the inauguration Dr Avnish Jolly, facilitator, highlighted the objectives of the consultation and brief on agenda of workshop was also discussed.

The orientation is being held for NYKS field officers, cultural performers, PRI members, youth club members, mediapersons and volunteers.

The participants were told about how to form network in their areas and villages, and how the members could derive the maximum benefit from them. The participants were also sensitized on different health-related issues and different guidelines and home remedies were discussed with them in length to cope-up with stress, maintain their activity of daily life and whom to contact during illness. Different facilitators conducted the technical sessions on the inaugural day.

It’s a national campaign to mainstream the issue of HIV/AIDS through a train that will traverse over 9,000 kilometres during the year, covering about 180 districts/halt stations and hold programmes and activities in 43,200 villages. The concept is a broad based multimedia, multi-sectoral mass mobilization project in the country to make it a holistic and comprehensive campaign to mobilize people’s movement against HIV/AIDS.



Sarai Ke Pattan Bridge
Rs 12-crore budget increase in two years
Megha Mann
Tribune News Service

Nurpur Bedi, September 30
The Sarai Ke Pattan bridge, meant to provide respite to 70 odd villages of the area, is caught grim into the war for political mileage. Since its proposal on inception, the budget of bridge has increased by Rs 12 crore in last two years.

Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal is expected to kick start work on the bridge on October 4. This would be for the second time the bridge’s inaugural ceremony will be conducted.

Earlier, on October 10, 2006, the then CM Captain Amrinder Singh had laid foundation stone of the bridge and promised masses its completion within 18 months. When the SAD-BJP government came to power, it asserted people of completion of the bridge “very soon”.

Badal visited the area twice - once at Bunga Sahib - but the actual project never came up. During the Congress regime, the cost of this project was Rs 42 crore, which has now risen to Rs 54 crore in two years. Singla and Company had been given the task of executing the project, earlier by the Congress government, and now by the SAD-BJP.

Earlier, in September last year, the government had asked the Punjab Industrial Development Board (PIDB) to study feasibility of the bridge on build, operate and transfer (BOT) basis. It was found not feasible to build the bridge on BOT basis here as it does not support enough traffic from where companies can recover their money through toll tax.

Area residents have been demanding bridge for the past 26 years. In past 26 years, budget of permanent bridge over the river has swollen from Rs 1.5 crore in 1981 to Rs 54 crore in 2008. Despite persisting demand of these villagers and plethora of problems they face, none of the political parties in power have been able to redress the issue.

This 675 meter-long temporary bridge is closed from the month of July to October every year. It is then reopened in November. In the absence of the bridge, villagers cross the river on boats provided by the PWD department and those using roadways have to scale an extra 25 km distance everyday to reach Anandpur Sahib and further lying areas.



Residents oppose move on Habitat Centre
Tribune News Service

Mohali, September 30
The Citizens Welfare Council has condemned the decision of GMADA to hand over the Habitat Centre in Phase X to the Institute of Nano Science and Technology for its camp office.

The centre constructed for residents has been lying locked for the past several years.

At a meeting of the council here, GMADA has been accused of betraying residents as during the time of the foundation stone laying ceremony by a former housing minister, the late Ragunath Sahaipuri, it had been stated that it would serve as a community centre.

Ripudaman Singh Roop, chairman of the council, said the council had submitted a memorandum to the GMADA chief administrator for opening the centre to the public as it had been lying unused and was in a terrible state even though lakhs had been spent on its construction.



Ex-servicemen threaten stir
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 30
Agitated over anomalies in the recommendations of the Sixth Pay Commission, the ex-servicemen of the northern states today threatened to take to streets and asked all the ex-servicemen to join hands to take on the government.

Addressing mediapersons here today, the members of the various ex-servicemen bodies from Punjab, Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan said the “indifferent” attitude of the Central and state governments and political parties had forced them to come on roads.

The ex-servicemen are demanding one-rank-one-pension as promised by the Congress and the BJP governments, a separate fast track pay commission, order of presidency and jobs on compassionate grounds.

Spokesman of the ex-servicemen Col G.S. Sandhu said that there was a strong resentment among the defence forces against anomalies in pay structure. He said that there was a shortage of 13,000 officers in the defence forces as a large numbers of officers are opting for premature retirement for greener pastures. He said the trend was detrimental for the defence forces. 



IT raid on apple wholesaler 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 30
Income Tax officials have initiated a survey on an apple wholesaler of Sector 26 grain market here today under the supervision of income tax commissioner A.K. Kaushal.

The IT sleuths swooped down on the wholesaler’s shop number 20. The survey started at 2 p.m. and was on till the filing of the report. The officials refused to divulge details.

According to officials, once the department is able to calculate the extent of concealed income by the wholesaler on the basis of information collected during the survey, a report would be prepared and due tax liability raised against the trader.



Murder case solved, three arrested
Tribune News Service

Mohali, September 30
It was the intention of stealing a mobile phone that led to the murder of Davinder Kumar Sahota (20), an employee of Vodafone, last Saturday.

The victim, hailing from Nangal, was returning home with his friend Sandeep Dogra when he was stabbed near a bus queue shelter in Phase V here. The victim was declared brought dead at the Phase VI civil hospital.

Claiming to have solved the case, the police has arrested three youths hailing from Kharar. The assailants were arrested on the basis of phone calls made on the snatched mobile of the victim.

On being questioned, the youths, Davinder alias Lala, Pawan Kumar and Sandeep Singh, all old time friends, confessed of being involved in the incident.

To celebrate their compromise in a recent clash among themselves, the three youth decided to party at Chandigarh.

While going on their bike to Chandigarh they saw Sahota coming along with his friend and decided to snatch his mobile. On the pretext of making a call, the assailants tried to run away with the booty. But one of the assailants was pulled down by the victim.

“The victim started raising an alarm. In order to save themselves, Lala stabbed the victim. They escaped to Kharar on their bike.

The bike had been seized and the sequence of events was established. The assailants have claimed that it was not a planned murder,” said a police official.



Workshop on healthy workplace 
Tribune News service

Chandigarh, September 30
The School of Public Health, PGIMER organised a stakeholder workshop on healthy workplace in collaboration with the Confederation of Indian Industry under the Government of India-WHO collaborative programme at CII headquarters at Sector 31 here today.

The aim of the workshop was to develop sustainable model needed to initiate a healthy workplace for prevention and control of non-communicable diseases (NCD) in industries with limited resources. Experts from PGI said that they were developing a healthy workplace model for Chandigarh.

The emphasis of the workshop was shifting from programmes designed to change individual’s attitudes and behaviour to more comprehensive interventions that target health risks in the physical, social and psychological work environment.

According to experts, healthy workplace assumes more relevance in today’s scenario where people have a booming economy and youngsters are spending more hours at their workplaces than at home, the overgrowing competition is continuously adding to the stress level and lifestyle lead non communicable diseases.

The workshop brought all the stakeholders - industry, health sector, government, academia and media of coming together for a strategic and focused intervention for current and future prospects of healthy and productive workforce.

Meanwhile, an exhibition was also held showcasing IEC material-based on non-communicable diseases which was inaugurated by Dr Manjit Singh Bains, director, health services, Chandigarh.

Man Mohan Singh, convener, CSR panel, CII, Chandigarh Council, Rajesh Kumar, head, School of Public Health, PGIMER, welcomed the gathering.

Dr J. S Thakur, associate professor, School of Public Health, PGIMER, explained the PGI initiative on healthy workplaces for NCD Control and key issues. 



March for voluntary blood donation
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 30
On the eve of National Voluntary Blood Donation Day, Blood Bank Society, Chandigarh, organised the candlelight march in collaboration with the State Aids Control Society and Blood Transfusion Council here today.

Adviser to the UT Administrator Pradip Mehra flagged off the march from UT state guest house, Sector 6. The objective of the march was to encourage general public for voluntary blood donation. People of all age groups enthusiastically took part in the march.

Around 25 institutions, including colleges, schools, social institutions and NGOs took part in the march. The participants were from Government College, Sector 46, and Government College for Girls, Sector 11, Shri Guru Gobind Singh College of Pharmacy, B.Ed College of Education, St Stephen’s School, St John’s School, St Anne’s School, Rotaract, Government Medical Specialty Hospital, Sector 16, and volunteers from different walks of life. 



Veterans back service chiefs
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 30
Supporting the actions of the three service chiefs in their endeavour to remove the anomalies brought about by the implementation of the Sixth Pay Commission, a section of ex-servicemen rejected the three-member panel of cabinet ministers set up to look into the matter.

“Setting up the committee comprising the defence, finance and external affairs ministers is a delay tactic since these very ministers have already been associated in the decision making in this case,” Maj-Gen Satbir Singh, vice-chairman of the Indian Ex-servicemen Movement said. “Once again they have not included any member from the armed forces in the committee,” he added.



Short stories by Kulbir Kaur out
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, September 30
An anthology of short stories in Punjabi “Zindagi da Theatre” by Dr Kulbir Kaur was released at a function organised by Punjabi Lekhak Sabha at the Press club here today.

A prolific Punjabi poetess and author of four books, Dr Kulbir, has maintained her tradition of excellence in her new venture of sculpting short stories. All the eleven short stories depict the life in its varied manifestations with its manifold bounties and struggles illustrated through characters from various segments of society.

The Sabha president, Dr Labh Singh Kheeva, welcomed the chief guest, Shilromani Sahitkar Sidhu Damadmi, editor Punjabi Tribune, who while releasing the book opined that the reflection of author’s poetic potential was perceptible in her short stories also.



Installation ceremony of Lions Club
Tribune News Service

Zirakpur, September 30
More than 700 delegates from 166 clubs of District 321-F attended the installation ceremony of the district cabinet of governor Lion Kishore Verma. International director of Lions Clubs International, Bishnu Bajoria, was the chief guest.

Past international director A.P. Singh administered the oath of office to the cabinet members. Lion Kishore Verma said District 321-F had undertaken several projects, including eye transplantation, blood donation camps and sapling plantation.

Sangeeta Jatia from Kolkata delivered the keynote address and emphasised the need for sustained membership growth and more financial resources to accomplish objectives.

The chief guest honoured cabinet secretary Anil Sharma, cabinet treasurer Mohan Jindal, region chairperson Ravinder Sagger, Sanjeev Sud, Harish Dua, membership chairman Rajiv Arora and zone chairman Krishan Garg.



Hundreds throng Mansa Devi temple
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 30
Hundreds of devotees from far-flung places converged at Mata Mansa Devi Shrine here on the first day of the Navratras today.

Prasad shops wore a festive look and devotional music reverberated all along the road leading to the temple.

Vendors vied with one another to attract devotees who began queuing up to offer prayers since 4 am. Later they partook of bhandara organised by the Mahamai Mansa Devi Charitable Bhandara Committee.



Remarks unkind

This was disappointing to see unkind comments made by foreigners about people of the city in the news item ‘City's Shame’, published on September 30.

Foreigners visiting India for the first time need to be aware that this is a diverse country in many ways, and is full of challenges. Travelling alone in India, like any other country, can be a great experience if you approach it with right information and with a degree of preparation. If you don't, it can be a cruel and stressful experience.

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



PU set to join big league
Applies for ‘Universities with Potential for Excellence’ 
Smriti Sharma
Tribune News service

Chandigarh, September 30
Panjab University (PU) may soon find its place in the league of top universities of the country, which can match global standards, for the university has applied for the Universities with Potential for Excellence (UPE) scheme of the University Grants Commission (UGC) under the XIth five-year plan.

As per the UGC guidelines, “any university applying for the support of the UGC under the UPE scheme has to set higher achievement goals and strive for achieving them. The university has to analyse its processes on the basis of some parameters and indicators”.

The UGC, during the IX and X plan periods, adopted strategy to identify universities, which had the potential to achieve excellence in teaching and research activities. This initiative is being continued during the XIth plan period to identify few more universities.

The UGC initiated this programme to provide substantial support to selected universities with potential for excellence. The aim was to make these universities comparable to world-class universities by enabling them to adopt modern methods of teaching and learning, developing learner-friendly lecture materials, changing their evaluation methods and striving for excellence to sustain them in this competitive world.

During the IX plan, five universities were selected under this scheme including JNU, Delhi, Hyderabad University, Jadavpur University, Pune University and Madras University. During the Xth plan, those earmarked were Mumbai University, NEHU, Madurai Kamraj University and Calcutta University. In the present XI th plan, six universities have to be selected.

If PUgets selected among the six universities under the UPE scheme, it can get a maximum of Rs 50 crore for a period of five years as part of the financial assistance. The scheme can get extended up to a period of ten years after subject to the review of the committee each year at the end.

When contacted, vice-chancellor, Prof R.C. Sobti said, “We are trying to present ourselves in the best possible way. Last time also we had applied but were not selected. This time we are hopeful.”



PU syndicate renames Ludhiana centre as UBS
Smriti Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 30
The issue regarding the name of the business school of Panjab University at regional centre, Ludhiana, reigned supreme at the Panjab University Syndicate meeting held here today.

After yesterday’s meeting of the management students and the committee constituted by the vice-chancellor in this regard, the syndics discussed the issue at length. There was a lot of hue and cry over the renaming of the institute and it could not be ascertained that whether the name was changed to University Business School, (Regional Centre Ludhiana), according to the students demands. However, later the vice-chancellor, Prof R.C. Sobti later confirmed that the syndicate has approved the name for Ludhiana centre same as that of Chandigarh campus b-school. Now both the institutes will be UBS.

The syndics also approved the appointments of Vikram Nayyar, finance and development officer; Dr C.S. Grewal as the university director of physical education and Dr Amar Partap Singh, director-professor for Swami Sarvanand Giri PU regional centre, Bajwara. The syndics also approved that professor Ashwani Bhandari, department of mathematics and adviser (examinations) be given full charge of the post of controller of examinations.

It may be mentioned here that the university after many years has finally found suitable candidates and the three posts.

The syndics also approved the execution of MoU with PGIMER for enrolment/ registration of candidates for pursuing PhD research and University of Western Australia for activities like exchange of staff joint research activities, joint conferences, academic meetings, exchange of academic material, etc.

Also, during the meeting, syndics Ashok Goyal and Dr Keshav Malhotra proposed that those whose names have already been cleared for the professorship should not suffer anymore due to the inordinate delay in the appointments in professorship.



SOPU president’s admission cleared
Smriti Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 30
Finally relief came to the self-styled “kingmaker” and SOPU president, Brinder Dhillon, after the Panjab University syndicate at its meeting today cleared his admission to the three-year department of Laws.

Dhillon’s admission had been hanging in balance after he was suspended from three-year law, as his name figured in the stabbing incident wherein, a five-year law student at UILS was attacked inside the examination centre, by a group of students in May 2008.

Brinder’s name also figured in the alleged assailants list.

Some syndics were agitated over the fact that how could Dhillon was denied admission when the syndicate had earlier cleared his name? Some members of the syndicate also argued that Dhillon’s suspension was not justified, as his name did not figure in the FIR registered after the stabbing.

The department had justified denial of admission to Dhillon, citing decision of the PU authorities, whereby, any student named in the wake of the stabbing in Law department.

Though Brinder was arrested by the police along with Govind Khatra another student of PU following investigations into the stabbing case and was later released on bail. Dhillon was thus denied admission to the third-semester by the department.

An elated Dhillon said, “My name was never there in the FIR and there was no ground to deny me the right to education.”

It is pertinent to mention here that Govind Khatra who was similarly placed under suspension has already been granted admission by the university in the five-year law institute, UILS.



Refused donation, school ‘tears off’ NRI student’s answersheet
Chitleen K. Sethi
Tribune News Service

Mohali, September 30
An NRI student of Punjab Technical University (PTU) appearing for her semester examinations has alleged that her answersheet was torn up by employees of a private school here and replaced it with a blank answersheet when she refused to give donation to the school.

Deepti, a student of MSc IT, studying in PTU’s centre in Phase X, appeared for her third semester examinations from the Anees School in Sector 69. The matter came to light when employees at the PTU regional office in Chandigarh discovered that the bundle of answersheets that came from the school on the last day of the examinations contained a torn, but fully attempted answersheet and a blank answersheet of the same student.

“I finished my exam and got a call today from my study centre. I came to know that my original answersheet had been torn and a blank answersheet sent for evaluation. However, somehow the torn answersheet had also come with the bundle of answersheets to the PTU Regional Centre. The director of the centre showed me both the answersheets. My original answersheet was torn and a blank sheet with my name and forged signatures was added to the bundle. The blank sheet was, however, not stamped,” she said.

In a written complaint to the commissioner, NRI affairs, Punjab, Deepti demanded action against the school. She has alleged that school director Aneet Goel and principal Navdeep Verma had been demanding a donation from her father for the past many days and her father had been unable to give the amount, following which they had tried to get her “failed”.

The school director and principal, however, allege that Deepti was caught cheating and now she was making up this story to save herself. “Deepti had books and slips of papers and we caught her a few minutes before the exam was to end. Her original answersheet was torn and we gave her a new answersheet to attempt the paper again,” said Verma.

He added that the invigilator decided against booking Deepti in an unfair means case (UMC) as she started crying and looked as if she would faint. “Moreover we did not want to spoil her career,” said Goel.

Denying any such thing, Deepti is awaiting an action on her complaint. The NRI commission has forwarded the complaint to the SAS Nagar SSP for inquiry and action. “The complaint has been received and we are looking into it. An action taken report would be sent to the commission,” said SSP Jatinder Aulakh.

In her complaint, Deepti stated that she was called by the school. “The school director knew that my husband is in the merchant navy and requested me to sponsor a poor student of the school which would cost about Rs 1 lakh. I told them that though I would not be able to bring so much money, my father S.P. Singh is a film producer and director and can help the school spread its message.”

Goel allegedly met S.P. Singh and the latter said he could only arrange to give Rs 10,000 for the cause. “The school principal banged the phone down after I told him that I have not been able to arrange the money, but would do so soon,” said S.P. Singh.

Verma, however, alleged that S.P. Singh had in fact asked him to “help” his daughter in her examinations by allowing her to cheat. “He said that it was essential for her to pass the exam so that she could join her husband on the ship,” said Verma.



Students enact scenes from Ramayana
Tribune New Service

Chandigarh, September 30
The students of Kailash Bahl DAV Senior Secondary Public School-7B, Chandigarh, performed a stage show today depicting the epics from Ramayana. The show was supported by high-tech light and sound effects.

Major General Rajesh Pant was the chief guest of the day. Guests participating in the 3rd International Peace festival from Pakistan, Nepal and Iran in the school were also present at the occasion.

“Dramatisation of such timeless epics at school level can inculcate an unleashing power in the hearts and minds of these young students to become obedient and content citizens of the world,” said Madhu Bahl, principal of the school.

Students playing the roles of the characters in Ramayana said it was a lifetime experience for them. “This is a big opportunity given to me at this age and I am at my best to reveal the role which I feel is the most powerful one,” said Mohit, a Class XI student, who played the role of Ravana.



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