C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Two run over by train
Tribune News Service

Fatehgarh Sahib, April 21
Two men were crushed under a speeding train in two separate incidents. The bodies of the deceased have been kept in the mortuary of the civil hospital for identification.

GRP officials at the Sirhind railway station said the body of a man was found on Sirhind-Sadhugarh railway lines. They said the deceased appeared to be in their fourties and he seemed to be from other state. In another incident, the body of an unidentified man was found on the railway tracks near the Sirhind railway station. It seemed that he was crushed under a train coming from Mandi Gobindgarh. The officials said inquest proceedings would be initiated in this connection.



It’s one-man show at Fatehgarh Sahib fire station 
Lone officer performs jobs of driver, fire fighter, rescuer
Gurdeep Singh Mann
Tribune News Service

Fatehgarh Sahib, April 21
It may sound bizarre, but it’s true that the district fire office in Fatehgarh Sahib, which is supposed to cater to 82 villages, answers distress calls of only those who are “personally” known to the fire officer.

To a layman, this may seem as if fire tenders are sent to douse flames only on ‘sifarish’, but the truth is that the fire station has no direct telephone line or 101 facility. Only those who have the cell phone number of the fire officer can send him a SOS and hope for help. And for the others, they may have to fend for themselves in times of trouble.

As if this is not enough, the district fire station is a “one-man station”, with a lone officer running the show. There are no permanent drivers or any other staff and when a call comes, albeit on the cell phone, the officer either has to drive the fire tender himself or hire someone for the job.

When he can’t do the both, the caller is politely told to contact the Mandi Gobindgarh fire station, which is nearly 18 kilometers away, even if in that time his entire property is gutted.

The plight of the fire officer, Devinder Singh, can thus well be imagined. “The situation is pathetic as I have no help,” he admits revealing that the station has no basic infrastructure except the two fire tenders. “Whenever I go to a spot, I have to perform all the jobs - of a driver, a fire fighter and a rescuer,” he says, adding that it took him four days to douse a fire in a Shirhind cattle shed recently.

But having no help doesn’t mean that Devinder has no work. VIP duties keep him occupied the entire day. “I have been spending extra time in the VIP duties. I have to be present during the VIP duties along with fire tenders,” he said.

He said two fire tenders were purchased for this fire station in 2006 but no office staff and fire officers were deployed after that. Though the district came into being 17 years ago, nothing has been done to improve the fire station here, he added.

The fire officer said that repeated demands of staff, driver and other basic infrastructure to run the fire station has fallen on deaf ears.

The Municipal Council officials claim that they do not have money to spend on the fire station. The recent visits of Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal wherein he announced crores of rupees for the district have also been of no help.

Sitting on tinderbox

l Fire station has no direct telephone line or 101 facility

l Has no permanent drivers, staff

l Callers have to contact the Mandi Gobindgarh fire station, which is nearly 18 km away

l MC officials say they have money to spend on the fire station

l Recent visits of the CM announcing crores for the district have been of no help



Man commits suicide, 5 booked
Tribune News Service

Rajpura, April 21
The local police had booked five people today after a resident of Rajpura committed suicide by jumping into a river. In her complaint to the police, Usha Rani, wife of the deceased, Satish Kumar, alleged that Jeewan Kumar, Subhash Kumar and three others had been threatening her husband and were not returning the money they had taken from him.

After recovering the suicide note from the house of the deceased and on the statements of Usha, a case in this connection had been registered against all five accused. The police was investigating.



SAD playing with kin’s sentiments: Bhattal
Tribune News Service

Ropar, April 21
The state government had suddenly woken up to woes of families of farmers who had committed suicide. This was a mere poll plank the SAD-BJP government was playing to ensure victory in the forthcoming elections, said Congress leader Rajinder Kaur Bhattal.

She was here to support Congress candidate from Anandpur Sahib Ravneet Singh Bittu. She alleged the SAD-BJP government of using official machinery to vest control over the state during elections.

She added that it had been long since court directed the government to provide relief to families of the suicide victims, but government had felt the need to work on the issue only during the poll time. She also added that the SAD-BJP government was compromising on law and order situation of the state.

“Our workers were stranded far off at different places in the district. They are not being allowed to enter the city where Bittu is to file nominations. When I tried to reason this out with a DSP-level official, he said his job was at stake,” she alleged.

Newly appointed PPCC chief Lal Singh claimed that the matter would be brought to the notice of the Election Commission. Union minister Ambika Soni said the SAD manifesto did not carry any agenda that was people friendly. “We have to wrest control over all 13 Lok Sabha seats and bring Captain Amrinder Singh back to power,” she said while addressing the rally.

Prominent among others included in charge of campaigning committee of Anandpur Sahib constituency and MLA Rana KP Singh, and PPCC general secretary Parminder Singh. A host of Akali leaders announced their switch to Congress along with their supporters. These included Jasbir Singh Padiala, Pakhar Singh Nimana, Master Dalip Chand and Malkit Singh Bhamra.



HC directs registry to furnish details
Saurabh Malik
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 21
The Punjab and Haryana High Court wants proactive approach to be adopted while dealing with cases involving the interests of minor- maintenance and property sale matters included.

Justice SD Anand of the high court has also asked the registry to obtain full information on the matter from the states of Punjab and Haryana, along with the Union Territory of Chandigarh. The information has to be furnished by April 27.

Taking up a petition filed under the Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, Justice Anand asserted: The long pendency of a case of such like category is not appropriate. In fact, there are a number of other categories of such like cases, which require noticeable priority. These cases shall include the matters wherein there is an application for the permission of the court to sell certain immovable property in the name of the minor”.

In his detailed order, Justice Anand elaborated the information would include, cases in which the leave of the court to sell the minor’s property were pending. “The information to be furnished shall include the date of institution and also the stage at which those proceedings are pending”.

The directives are a part of the high court’s endeavour to safeguard the interest of the minors. Earlier this month, Justice Anand had made it clear to the subordinate judiciary that the high court adoption of a proactive approach in child custody cases was for aborting “unwarranted delays”. Justice Anand had asserted all child custody cases were to be accorded top priority. Data of all such cases was also called for to ensure systematic and expeditious disposal.

“The registry is directed to obtain from all the courts concerned the details about pendency of such matters, including all the relevant particulars, that is the date on which the petition came to be instituted, and also the present status”. Delay in handing over the custody, more often than not, leaves the child of a disturbed family “divided”. It is believed the lingering sense of uncertainty also slams shut the chapter of academic excellence.



HC issues notice to Haryana
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 21
Taking up a petition on the sale of gold coins and pendants by Shri Mata Mansa Devi Shrine Board, Justices Jagdish Singh Khehar and Uma Nath Singh of the Punjab and Haryana High Court issued notice of motion for July 13 to the State of Haryana and other respondents.

The counsel for petitioner R.K. Garg, a rights activist, submitted that under a specially devised scheme in 2003, the Board minted gold ornaments into four grams gold coins and eight grams pendants and priced the same at Rs 5,100 and Rs 2,600, respectively.

The shrine board decided to sell these coins and pendants at fixed prices, irrespective of the market prices of gold going up or down. As a result, in December 2005 and January 2006, when there was spurt in gold prices, the employees of the board sold away all the coins and the pendants in a bulk, which caused huge loss to the shrine board. The petitioner has sought a vigilance inquiry into this.

The petitioner also sought directions to the state to forthwith nominate nine public persons /devotees, including two women, as members in line with the provisions of Section 4 of the Board Act, 1991.

In this context, the counsel said even after a lapse of 18 years of the constitution of the Board, no non-official member has been appointed, while the quorum requirement of five members was also not met in strict sense of the term, as the official members would associate some officers as special invitees.



Man gets 10-yr RI for possessing charas
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 21
Additional District and Sessions Judge R.S. Attri has sentenced a Jalandhar resident, Navin Kumar Uppal, to 10-year rigorous imprisonment (RI) for possessing charas.

The court has also imposed a fine of Rs 1 lakh on Uppal, who was arrested by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) sleuths on December 18, 2007, with 10 kg of charas from near Hotel Sunbeam in Sector 22, Chandigarh.

As per the prosecution, the NCB had laid a trap to nab the accused following a tip-off. The NCB officials maintained that Uppal, who used to run a tea stall in Jalandhar, had bought the contraband from a Chamba resident in Pathankot. He was supposed to deliver it to a Gohana resident, Rakesh Kumar, when he was nabbed.



One killed, 4 injured in road mishaps
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 21
Shiv Raj Vohra, a 61-year-old Panchkula resident, was crushed to death by an unidentified speeding vehicle near Kalagram, here this morning. Besides, four two-wheeler riders were injured in the past 48 hours in different road accidents.

According to the police, the victim, a retired Army officer from Sector 11, Panchkula, was on his way to Chandigarh on his Honda Activa scooter when the mishap took place. The eyewitnesses said two vehicles were moving side by side and it was not confirmed which vehicle hit the victim. He was severely hurt after being crushed under the vehicle.

The eyewitnesses added that the body kept on lying on the spot for over an hour as the police was busy completing its formalities. The police initially faced difficulties in identifying the victim as his driving license carried the address of Sector 16, where the police was told that no one with this name lived there.

The SHO said the victim was identified later in the day and the postmortem would be conducted tomorrow. Meanwhile, a case of causing death due to rash and negligent driving had been registered in this regard.

About other accidents, the police said a scooterist, Rupinder Singh of Sector 37, was injured after being hit by a car (CH-03-W-6426) in Sector 37 yesterday. The police had arrested car driver Harnish Kumar in this connection. In another incident, a motorcyclist, Harminder Singh of Sector 44-C, suffered injuries after being knocked down by an unidentified Ford Ikon car near Sectors 18, 19, 20 and 21 rotary on Sunday. Harminder Singh’s daughter Simranpreet, who was riding pillion on the motorcycle, was also injured in the accident and they were admitted to the Fortis Hospital in Mohali. The police had registered a case against an unidentified driver.

In a separate incident, a scooterist, Ganesh Bains of Sector 23-C, was wounded after a Tata Indica collided with it on the road dividing Sectors 17 and 22 yesterday. The police arrested the car driver Sanjiv Mittal of Sector 32-D in this connection.



Woman hangs herself to death
Tribune News Service

Mohali, April 21
A 30-year-old married woman allegedly committed suicide by hanging herself in her house in Sector 69 here today. The deceased, Pooja Sandhu, was found hanging from the ceiling fan by her hudband, Vipin Sandhu.

Though family members of the girl have expressed suspicion in the suicide, a police official said further action would be taken on the basis of a post-mortem report and any written complaint forwarded by the girl’s family.

The deceased, her husband and their four-year-old daughter had come from a marriage party late last night and reportedly had a tiff before going to sleep.

In the morning when Pooja did not open the door, the husband had to break open the door and found her hanging from the ceiling fan.

Inquest proceedings under Section 174 of the CrPC have been initiated in the case. 



Woman accuses kin of stealing car
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 21
Savita Rani, a resident of Sector 10, alleged that her brother-in-law Manjinder Singh forcibly took away her Honda City car (CH-03-N 5731) today.

In a complaint lodged to the police, Savita alleged that the car was taken away by her brother-in-law from outside the parking of Sector 38. 



NPS outclass Baptist school
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 21
Host New Public School (NPS), Sector 18, cagers outclassed Chandigarh Baptist School by 31-17 in the girls’ section on the second day of the Youth State Basketball Championship being held on their premises, here today.

The main scorers in the girls’ category from New Public team were Varsha 11 points, Karamjit six points and Neha four points.

For losers, Nimisha scored 12 points while Davinder contributed four points.

In the boys’ category, St Xavier’s School, Sector 44, registered an equally emphatic win against Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya-25 team.

The chief contributors for the winners were Vishavdeep 12 points, Mohabbat 10 points and Sanamdeep four points.

For the losers, Manohar six points, Beeruram five points and Sherbahadur three points were the scorers.

In another tie, DAVPS-8 team defeated GNPS-36 team by 54-31.

The main scorers for the winner were Digvijay 11 points, Yogesh 10 points and Himanshu 15 points.

For losers, it was Tijeshwar and Nishant who scored 14 and nine points, respectively. 



Kappv fashions MCA win
Tribune News Service

Mohali, April 21
A fine unbeaten knock of 54 runs and magnificent bowling of Kappv (five for 58) enabled MCA team to beat APJ team by seven wickets during the CCA Under-13 Cup 30 overs A-side Tournament held at MCA ground here today.

The APJ Cricket Academy won the toss and elected to bat first. The whole team was all-out on 110 in 24 overs. The main scorers were Aryan (25) and Simran (17). From the MCA side, Kappv claimed five wickets at the cost of 58 runs and Shubjam took one wicket for 18 runs.

On the other hand, MCA chased the target easily in 21.4 overs by losing just three wickets.

Besides Ramandeep, Amrinder and Shubham too scored valuable 26 and 22 runs, respectively.

From APJ, Sahil Sharma and Jaswinder took one wicket each for 26 and 22 runs, respectively. 



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