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NEIGHBOURHOOD

Rain plays havoc with ripe wheat crop 
Govt agencies assessing loss
Tribune Reporters

Fatehgarh Sahib/Rajpura/ Khanna/Patiala, April 8
Widespread rains and squall damaged ready-to-harvest and harvested wheat crop in various villages of Fatehgarh Sahib, Rajpura, Khanna and Patiala.

Agriculture department officials say the damage to this extent was reported around 10 years ago.

Most places experienced high to moderate rain before afternoon and some villages also witnessed rains accompanied by high velocity of winds before the evening.

Even as the government agencies were assessing the extent of damage, farmers rued that their ripe wheat crop was completely damaged due to rain, wind and hail.

In Fatehgarh Sahib, the most affected villages were of Amloh, besides various grain markets of Rajpura, Sirhind, Khanna and Machhiwara.

“I have harvested wheat from three acres of land out of seven. Neither the harvested crop could be saved nor the standing crop,” rued Karmjit Singh, a farmer of Machhiwara.

Harvinder Singh of Jangpura village near Rajpura rued that his entire crop in three acres was damaged as he had begin the harvesting yesterday.

Fatehgarh Sahib Chief Agriculture Officer, Sarabjit Singh admitted that untimely rains had played havoc with the ripe wheat crop. The yield per acre has already reduced in Amloh from 20 quintal per acre last year to 17-18 quintals, he said. In some villages, it has even reduced to 12-13 quintals only.

“Yellow rust had damaged the wheat crop a few months back and now the rains have completely damaged the crop,” he added.

In 2007, the wheat yield was 45 quintals per acre and it was the best in 1999 with 51.5 quintal in per acre. “But this is for the first time in this area that so much damage has been done by nature,” said Sukhpal Singh, an agriculturalist.

In Kakrala and Ghagga villages in Patiala, hailstorm has flattened the standing wheat crop. Though harvesting has begun in many parts of the Patiala district, major harvesting will commence only after the Baisakhi festival.

“Though there has been a loss, the situation is still under control. But if the weather remains the same for long, it can cause widespread damage to the crop. Our crops are almost ready to be taken to the mandi and any further delay seems to be risky now,” said Bawa, a farmer from a Khangroli village near Samana.

Punjab which is the largest contributor of the country’s buffer stock of food grains was expecting a bumper crop this year but the unseasoned rain has dampened hopes that it could be a record-setting year.

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Sikh body blocks Rajpura road

Patiala, April 8
The Sikh Students’ Federation (Patiala unit) today staged a dharna and blocked vehicular traffic on the busy Patiala-Rajpura road to protest against the CBI clean chit to Jagdish Tytler in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots. District president of the Federation Mahinderjit Singh Kala said that any person, who would oppose Tytler’s clean chit, would be honoured by the Federation.

Kala appealed to Sikh bodies to honour journalist Jarnail Singh who hurled a shoe at Finance Minister P. Chidambaram as a mark of protest against the injustice being meted out to the anti-Sikh riot victims. — TNS

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College staff strike enters second day
Submits memo to SGPC president 
Tribune News Service

Fatehgarh Sahib, April 8
A large number of faculty and staff members of Baba Banda Singh Bahadur Engineering College went on an indefinite strike after termination of two faculty members allegedly by the principal without citing any reason.

The staff marched up to Jyoti Saroop Chowk and later burnt an effigy in front of the college gate. The agitating staff members said they would continue their dharna in the college premises until their demands were not met by the officials.

The agitating staff alleged that the termination of the professors was done due to personal grudges.

The agitators said the strike would be called off only when headship policy was implemented immediately and the terminated faculty members were reinstated.

The strike entered into the second day today and the agitators submitted a memorandum of demands to SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar.

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7 injured in accident
Tribune News Service

Dera Bassi, April 8
Seven persons were injured in a road mishap on Barwala road at Dera Bassi on Wednesday.

According to the police, the accident took place around 6 am when the victims were on their way back to Rajpura after visiting a religious place, Tarlokpur, near Barwala. Their car rammed into a truck going towards Barwala. The police said the car passengers got severely injured and were rushed to GMCH-32, where their condition was said to be stable.

According to the police, the cause of the accident could not be clear yet and no case had been registered.

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Shooting incident: Accused sent to judicial custody 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 8
A local court today remanded head constable Shamsher Singh, who allegedly shot at his colleague at the Sector 8 residence of the former

Punjab DGP last night, to judicial custody.

The SHO, Sector 3 police Station, inspector Har Sahai Sharma said the condition of constable Balbir Singh, who received bullet injuries, was stated to be stable. He was operated upon in the PGI and the doctors had removed bullets from his body.

The police said the bullets and the .38 bore revolver used in shooting the victim along with the bullets recovered form the body would be sent to the Central Forensic Sciences Laboratory for examination.

The police said the forensic experts of the Chandigarh Police examined the spot last night.

The police had registered a case of attempt to murder and under the various provisions of the Arms Act against Shamsher.

The accused had allegedly fired three shots at Balbir Singh which hit him on his hand, biceps and under his chest.

The victim was rushed to the Sector 16 Government Multi-Specialty Hospital from where he was referred to the PGI in the wee hours today. 

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Sector 29 resident duped of mobile phone
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 8
An unidentified motorcyclist duped a Sector 29 resident of his mobile phone on the pretext of making an emergency call.

Isral Ahmed of Sector 29-B reported to the police that he had taken lift from a motorcyclist (HR-35-C-7800) in Sector 34 yesterday. When they reached at Sector 29 and 30 traffic lights point, the motorcyclist told him that he wanted to make an emergency call to a hospital. Isral gave his mobile phone and the motorcyclist who pretended to make a call decamped with the phone around 12:30 pm.

A case of cheating has been registered.

Opium seized

The police arrested Vinod Kumar of Rajasthan from Poultry Farm Chowk last night and seized 500 gm of opium from him. A case under Section 18 of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act has been registered.

Stealing

Dr SP Singh of Sector-38 (West) reported that a woman of Sector 25 was caught stealing iron angles from his residence yesterday. The police arrested the accused after registering a case against her.

Molested

A woman from Sector 38 reported to the police that two miscreants snatched Rs 500 from her and also molested her in Apni Mandi, Maloya village, last night. The police arrested Sonu of Dadu Majra Colony and Jawahar of Kajheri in this regard.

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Deranged man ‘troubles’ family 
Police blamed for reaching late
Ramanjit Singh Sidhu
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 8
The police seems to have failed to live up to its slogan “We care for you”. A case here is self-explanatory as despite repeated calls, the police failed to reach a house in Sector 11 in time, where a reportedly mentally challenged man forcibly tried to gain access. To make the matters worse, the police did not take any statement of the family, which had undergone a harrowing time, and let the man go.

Gurleen Kaur of Sector 11 told TNS today that on Tuesday afternoon, a man in his forties, who was shabbily dressed, entered their house by opening the main gate. The man, who appeared to be under the influence of some drugs, was shivering. Shocked at his behaviour, they asked him to go back and locked the door. The man began hitting the door and refused to go away.

Gurleen further said her mother and sister were all in a state of shock and they called the police control room at 1:56 pm. Meanwhile, the man lied down on the floor and later went out. Their servant latched the main gate, which the man again tried to open. Gurleen said she again called the police on 1:59 pm, but to her utter surprise, policemen did not take her pleas seriously. On being told that no help was arriving and they were in trouble, the policemen said “Yeh to bahut beinsafi hai” (its sheer injustice to you).

Gurleen blamed that the man went away on his own and the police reached there after about 20 minutes. Two policemen on motorcycle came and casually inquired about the incident and when asked about the delay they said they were overburdened.

“We later learned that the police had nabbed the man. But no one had approached us till now to record our statements. Rather we are not aware what action the police had taken against the man”, said Gurleen’s mother.

This is not the isolated incident. A Sector 36 resident said last week furniture was stolen from his lawn and he informed the PCR. When no one had come for hours, he called up the police only to be told that they had already informed the area police, which would come. The area police came at night and termed shortage of the staff as a reason behind the delay.

SHO of the Sector 11 police station Sukhbir Rana said the man had been identified as Ram Bhagat of Hoshiarpur. He was in his mid-forties and was booked for loitering aimlessly under Section 109 of the CrPC. His family came this morning and told the police that Bhagat was mentally upset and had gone away from home without informing anyone. They had lodged a missing person report with the police there. 

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2 booked for kidnapping minor girl
Tribune News Service

Mohali, April 8
The local police yesterday booked two persons for allegedly kidnapping a minor girl from Jagatpura Faida village in Mohali.

The accused have been identified as Dina Nath and Amar Nath, both residents of Faida Colony, Sector 48-C, Mohali.

The complainant, Prem Pal, hailing from UP and presently a resident of Jagatpura Faida, told the police that his sister was working as a maid in houses at Phase X and XI.

He alleged that on March 31, his sister went for work in the houses but did not return.

He alleged that the accused mislead his sister and took her away. A case has been registered. 

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CTU bus runs amok 
Injures six, damages vehicles 
Tribune News Service

Mohali, April 8
At least six persons were seriously injured and vehicles damaged when a callously driven low-floor bus of the Chandigarh Transport Undertaking (CTU) went out of control while negotiating a turn near the PCA stadium in Phase X here this afternoon.

Before coming to a halt, the bus (plying on route no. 123 from the PGI to Phase XI) crushed an auto-rickshaw, a scooter and a rickshaw. A pedestrian, Asha Rani, who was standing near the traffic junction, suffered a fracture on lower part of her body.

Driver of a Lancer car, Inderjeet, an eyewitness to the incident, was first one to be hit by the bus. Talking to The Tribune, he said the signal was green when the driver tuned towards his left towards Phase X. While negotiating, the long bus could not negotiate the turn and steered on to the vehicles on the other side of the road.

The driver of the bus, Sidak Raj, was arrested and later bailed out. A case under Sections 279, 337, 338 and 427 of the IPC has been registered against the driver. The injured have been identified as Babu Lal, Babu Ram, Asha Rani, Rakhee, Harpal and Subash. All the injured are said to be out of danger. 

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Golf academy for Mohali 
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Mohali, April 8
Recreational-cum-sports activity in periphery of Chandigarh is all set to get a boost. The greater mohali area development authority (GMADA) has approved city’s first gold academy on nine acres of land in Phase XI here.

Cashing on its strategic location near the upcoming international airport, the authorities feel that the academy, comprising a golf range and a club, would offer a platform for budding golf players. GMADA is expected to start work on the project once the election process is over.

The entire project is expected to cost GMADA around Rs 7 crore and would be completed within two years of starting the work. The club building would include a swimming pool, library, spas, gym, two tennis courts, party hall, a restaurant and bar. The main building would have the administrative offices and video-aided classrooms, conference rooms and driving bays. The outdoor facilities would include practise putting and chipping greens and tennis courts. The length from the hitting bay to end point would be 270 yards.

When contacted, GMADA chief administrator VP Singh said nothing could be done during the election code of conduct. The work on the project would only take off after the code of conduct was over.

Ajay Johal, who has worked on the project, said the golf range had a nullah running across it. It would be turned into a picturesque water body. GMADA is contemplating to follow the pattern of management being followed at golf ranges and courses in Delhi, Gurgaon and Panchkula where a committee that had members only in their ex-officio capacity held the reins of the range.

Though the project had been planned on 14.26 acres of land, the commercial exploitation of the remaining chunk of land has been given up. 

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70 executives for CEO golf tournament
Our Golf Correspondent

Chandigarh, April 8
More than 70 top executives from across the country and representatives from key embassies and consulates will converge on the par 72 greens of the Panchkula Golf Club for the first TiE CEO Golf Tournament on April 11.

Among those pitching in for the 18 hole competition will be senior policy makers from Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh, corporate executives, venture capitalists, investors and representatives from the key embassies and consulates.

To be played over 18 holes with a shotgun start of 18 four balls, the tournament will showcase TiE in the region.

Being held by the Chandigarh Chapter of the Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) with the support of TiE, New Delhi, the Angel Network and the Indian Venture Capital Association, the tournament will be primarily a two-man team event and will be played on the stable ford format.

To be teed off in a gunshot start at 1.30 pm on April 11, the stroke play event will be based on the handicaps derived from Peoria system.

There will be individual prizes for the best stable ford scores of the day using the same Peoria system.

Puneet Vatsayan, president TiE, Chandigarh and Punjab, said the participant with the lowest handicap was Raj Desai from Bangalore, who played with a single digit handicap.

He said besides the region, about 22 entrepreneurs and top executives would be coming from Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore.

The TiE CEO Golf Tournament would be made an annual feature and would be held in Panchkula or Chandigarh every year sometime in February or March. 

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Easy wins for seeded players
Tribune News Service

Mohali, April 8
Seeded players in the boys’ under-12 age category won their respective quarterfinals to enter semifinals of the Total Tennis AITA Talent Series, which will be played at Manav Mangal Smart School. Phase 10, here tomorrow.

Top seed Sumit Pal Singh of J&K had an easy sailing today as he outplayed his unseeded opponent Sunny Khandre of Maharashtra. Sumit conceded just two games before wrapping up the match in his favour 4-1, 4-1. Now he will face Pranav Kumar of Punjab in the semifinal tomorrow.

Earlier today, Pranav had snuffed out a spirited challenge of Santbir Singh of Chandigarh in three well-fought sets lasted for over 90 minutes. The final score was read in Pranav’s favour 5-4 (6), 4-5 (4), 4-1.

In another under-12 match, second seed Param Pun of Chandigarh had to use all his acumen before winning a tough battle against Karandeep Singh of Punjab 1-4, 4-1, 5-4 (5). Param Pun will face Abhijeet Singh of Chandigarh in the semifinals. Abhijeet Singh beat Chirag Prashanth of Karnataka with ease by 4-1, 4-0.

Other Results:

Boys’ U-14 quarterfinals:

1. Abhijeet Singh (Chd) bt Ishan Kakkar (Pb) 1-4, 4-1, 4-1

2. Ankit Parasrampuria (Raj) bt Ayush Joshi (Del) 4-2, 4-0

3. Sachin Kumar (Chd) bt Yash Gupta (Raj) 4-2, 4-0

4. Pranav Suri (Chd) bt Param Pun (Chd) 4-0, 4-2

Boys’ U-14 doubles first round:

1. Akash Goyal and Ayush Joshi bt Sagar Bains and Rishabh Sharda 6-0

2. Ishan Kakkar and Rahul Seth bt Sunny Khandre and Azad Singh 6-1

3. Akshat Agarwal and Pranav Kumar bt Kirat Sodhi and Viren 
Sibbal 6-1

Girls’ U-12 quarterfinals:

1. Vanshika Sawhney (Chd) bt Aishwariya Arora (Chd) 6-0, 6-0

2. Shrishti Dhanda (Hr) bt Sarita (Hr) 4-6, 6-1, 6-0

3. Anjali Bakliwal (Raj) bt Arsiya Arora (Chd) 6-0, 6-0

4. Nandini Sharma (Chd) bt Prinkle Singh (JK) 6-2, 6-0

Girls’ U-14 quarterfinals:

1. Nikita Bisnoi (Chd) bt Hasan Dhanoa (Pb) 6-2, 3-6, 6-4;

2. Charvi Saxena (Chd) bt Vanshika Sawhney (Chd) 6-7 (7), 6-3, 7-5

3. Harman Kaur (Pb) bt Aashna Agarwal (Chd) 6-1, 6-2

4. Sonali Bansal (Chd) bt Nandini Sharma (Chd) 6-3, 6-1.

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U-15 cricket trials on April 11
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, April 8
The Cricket Federation of Haryana will conduct under-15 Cricket Trials on April 11 at 3 pm at Tau Devi Lal Cricket Stadium, Sector 3, to select probables for the 2nd All-India Under-15 National 20-20 Federation Cup to be held in Chennai from April 24 to 27. The championship is being organised by the Cricket Federation of Tamilnadu (Regd.).

According to Chanchal Bose, president of the Cricket Federation of Haryana, players born on or after Jan 1,1994, are eligible to take part in the trials. From these trials probables will be selected for the camp. The final team will be selected on the basis of performance in the camp. Players should report with their Date of Birth certificate.

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Jeev to pair with Tiger in Augusta Masters
Our Golf Correspondent

Chandigarh, April 8
Jeev Milkha Singh will play alongside world number one and four-time Masters champion Tiger Woods when he tees off for the Augusta Masters Tournament in Georgia tomorrow.

The dream draw, which was handed over to Jeev on Tuesday, will see the two pairing in the opening two rounds.

“I am excited and looking forward to it. It will be great to have the opportunity to play with Tiger and it will be interesting too. I will be a little nervous but I will try to make the most of it and enjoy it. It is a pleasant surprise,” said Singh, who has played with Woods previously in Asia.

The reigning Asian Tour number one has enjoyed practice rounds with Greg Normal and Padraig Harrington and exchanged pleasantries with golf legend Arnold Palmer at the Augusta National Golf Club.

With his sights set on winning a major this year, the Chandigarh golf icon said, "I am happy with the game. I am playing well and we will see what happens."

"My next goal will be to win a major. I think I've got the game to win a major. I feel it all depends on the mindset. I feel I do have the game and hopefully before my golfing career is over I will have a major under my belt," said Jeev, who is determined to record a win on the US soil having tasted six victories on the Asian Tour, four triumphs in Japan and two wins on European soil.

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Night cricket from April 20
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 8
A day and night cricket tournament will be organised at Punjab Engineering College, Sector 12, from April 20.

The matches during the preliminary rounds will be played on a league basis. All matches will begin 5.30 pm onwards. In total, 32 team can participate in the tournament.

This tournament is open to all age group from children to retired personnel. Cash prize for winner is Rs 21,000 with trophy while runner-up will be awarded with a cash prize of Rs 11,000 with trophy. For entries, interested teams may contact Sandeep Sodhi at 9872999971.

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Kickboxing championship from today
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 8
As many as 500 players from across India will be participating in the Kickboxing National Championship being organised by the Amateur Chandigarh Kickboxing National Championship (ACKBA) from April 9 to 12 in the Sector 10 skating rink.

According to president Kuldip Singh, the ACKBA, this type of event is being organised for the first time in the city. He said winners of the sub-junior, junior and senior teams would be awarded by the Kickboxing Federation of India.

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