C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Civil Services Exams
Two top 5 positions go to city
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 4
With city residents getting two positions in top five and 10 out of top 100, Chandigarh continues its success tale at the All-India Civil Services Examination.

Continuing with its legacy of producing top rankers year after year, the city’s success gets special as not only Sharanjit Brar and Virender Sharma have secured 2nd and 4th rank (all India), respectively, but even the number of selected candidates has gone up to 22 as compared to 14 last year. Virender, who appeared as a physically challenged candidate, has set an example by opting for Punjabi medium.

If the results of the past few years are any indication, the city has emerged as a hub of aspiring civil servants. Though small, the city is competing with metros like Delhi as far as the success rate in the prestigious examination is concerned.

In 2007, city-based Amit Sainin got the second position while it went to Gurneet Tej in 2005-06. Gaurav Uppal stood third in 2004. While some aspirants make it without coaching, a majority of them join coaching centres. Though most toppers belong to the city, several belong to the neighbouring states and come to the city for preparations.

“Until a few years ago, successful candidates were mostly technocrats and medicos, but now the results show a resurgence of candidates from the humanities group,” says Prof Anil Kumar, director of the IAS Study Circle here.

The reason for most high rankers from the city is preparation at the right time. Most toppers start as early as graduation, says Praveen Bansal of Abhimanu’s IAS Study Group.



Setback to Congress
Panchkula MC chief’s election declared void
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, May 4
Hardly three days ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, the Congress got a major setback when a Panchkula court declared the election of the MC president, Ravinder Rawal, as illegal and void here today.

BJP councillor VK Sood had challenged the election of Rawal in the court through a petition on June 2. He had alleged that the state government had used pressure tactics for the election of a Congress candidate as president of the civic body. They had marked numbers behind the ballot paper, which violated the right of secret voting, he stated.

Observing that the entire procedure of the MC president’s election held during the tenure of the then SDM, Virender Dahiya, lacked secrecy, the court of the Civil Judge (Senior Division)-cum-municipal council tribunal judge Anshu Shukla set aside the election of Rawal, the counsel for the petitioner said.

The judge also said the Panchkula DC and SDO (Civil) were at a liberty to conduct fresh election to the post.

Taking out the voting slip of Kuljit Waraich, a councillor, the court went through the record pertaining to the election proceedings and found that it was clear in whose favour the vote was polled.

Rawal was elected president on May 14 last. On the day of his election, a personal security guard of the Deputy CM, Chander Mohan, fired a shot into the air when the Congress councillors were entering the mini secretariat. Earlier, INLD councillor Gautam Prasad went missing for some days and appeared at the house of Chander Mohan, showing his loyalty for the Congress.

Rawal, the councillor from Ward No. 14, managed to win, securing 13 votes and beating his nearest rival BJP candidate Sood who got 10 votes.



Swine Flu
City gets stock of Tamiflu, finally
Anuja Jaiswal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 4
Two days after Chandigarh Tribune carried the story, “City has no stock of Tamiflu”, the stockpile of drug, said to be the only effective medicine against the virus, has finally arrived in the city.

According to sources, 20,000 doses of Tamiflu have reached the regional centre of the Health and Family Welfare Department here. Anti-malaria officer-cum-state nodal officer, Integrated Disease Surveillance Project, HC Gera, said besides the stock of Tamiflu, which is administered for treating the dreaded H1N1 influenza virus or swine flu, triple layer medical masks and special masks for the use by doctors and paramedic staff had also arrived.

According to officials, the centre has got 11,000 triple layer masks and 1,500 special masks and personal protective equipments, which will be used by field officers during investigating the cases of influenza.

Senior Regional Director of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Chandigarh, Dr Amarjeet Kaur, told Chandigarh Tribune that the drug had been stocked at the regional office and all medical supply would also be available for Punjab and Haryana hospitals.

Meanwhile, the meeting of Directors of the Health Services (DHS) of UTs held in Delhi today to discuss the various technical aspects. According to health officials, they discussed about the surveillance at airports, ports and community. Besides laboratory support, sample collection and transportation, clinical management and risk communication were also discussed at the high-level meeting chaired by the Director General of Health Services (DGHS).

According to UT health officials, no case of swine flu has been reported here and the situation is being monitored. 



Rape, murder of 70-yr-old
Life imprisonment for two
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 4
In the sensational murder and rape case of 71-year-old Sarla Devi in Sector 15 here, the court of the District and Sessions Judge, Kewal Krishan Garg, has sentenced Prakash and Mohammad Kadir to life imprisonment.

The Juvenile Justice Board last year directed a 16-year-old boy, who was also booked in the case, to perform kar sewa for two months at a gurdwara. However, he could not perform the kar sewa as he was suffering from tuberculosis.

According to the prosecution, the old woman was murdered on August 29, 2006. The FIR in the case was registered on September 2, two days after the recovery of her body from the two-room house. There were no clothes on the body and it was found lying on a bed. The house was located adjacent to a busy road that leads to the Sector 15-D market.

Injuries were found on the neck and arm of the victim. The police said the two youths, along with the arrested minor boy, had entered the house of the victim from the rear and strangulated her. They then ransacked the house looking for valuables. The accused were in a habit of inhaling some white fluid.



Change in school timings
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 4
Due to scorching heat in the city, the education department has decided to change the school timings from May 6.

The UT spokesperson today said that for single-shift schools, the morning timings had been changed from 8 am to 7.30 am and these would close at 1 pm instead of 2 pm.

For double-shift schools, the morning timings will be 7.15 am to 12.30 pm and the afternoon shift would be from 1.15 pm to 5.30 pm.

All heads of school have been asked to discontinue with the morning assembly until May 31 and restrict outdoor activities and game periods.

Also, the proper functioning of fans and water coolers must be ensured, he said.

The timings for teachers of single-shift schools would be from 7.30 am to 1.30 pm and for teachers of double-shift schools, from 7.15 am to 1.15 pm. 


Roofs of two houses cave in
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 4Roofs of two newly constructed houses in Kishangarh caved in this morning due to the use of low quality cement.

Jasminder Singh, one of the owners of the house, said he had laid the lintel 20 days ago and started using it from yesterday. Even though the contractor had advised him to open it after 10 days, he opened it after 20 days.

He said last night after checking the roof, he had gone to sleep but suddenly in the morning he heard a noise of something falling so he rushed to the place.

He said it was strange that even the roof of his uncle’s house, which is adjoining to his house, also fell. In his uncles house, his son was inside the house but before the incident, he happened to come out of the house.



Mohali residents using parks for parking
Kulwinder Sangha

Mohali, May 4
With the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA) looking the other way, as many as 88 parks in the town are being misused by residents for parking their vehicles.

The indifferent attitude of the GMADA authorities is causing not only damage to the public parks, but also depriving other residents of the use of open spaces for relaxation. Although the problem is prevalent in several sectors, it is particularly acute in Sectors 64 and 65.

Sources said there were 550 parks in the town out of which 88 were being used by residents to park their cars. The worse affected was Sector 64 which had a total of 55 parks out of which 23 were being used for parking cars.

For residents of Sector 65 also parking cars in the parks was more convenient as 21 out of 56 were being used for this purpose. As many as 13 parks out of total of 58 were being used to park vehicles in Sector 58. While four parks each were being misused in Sectors 55 and 60, cars were also parked in three parks each in Sectors 56, 61, 63, 70 and 71. The misuse was the minimum in Sectors 53, 54 and 69 where only one park in each sector was being used to park vehicles.

Sources further said the problem was brought to the notice of the Estate Officer and superintending engineer of GMADA last week by the horticulture wing officials. In the letter written to the authorities concerned it was pointed out that area for parks and green belts was earmarked while planning the town in order to add to the beauty and protect the environment. But people were using these to park cars and the problem could be sorted out despite efforts. As such there was a need to discuss the matter with higher authorities to find a solution.

Rishiv Jain, former senior vice-president of the Municipal Council, who represented Sector 65, said the number of cars in the town was increasing and residents living in small houses had no space to park their vehicles. The roads were also very narrow. If one car was parked on the roadside it proved to be a traffic hazard as another vehicle could not pass from that area. People used parks for parking their cars out of compulsion as they had no other option.



No water, power supply for 6 hours at Mansa Devi Complex
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, May 4
It was harrowing experience for the residents of Mansa Devi Complex who had to go without drinking water as well as electricity supply for more than six hours here today. The officials concerned said the supply had been disrupted after the fault erupted in the transformer, which got feeding by HVPN.

According to Devender Mahajan, president of the Sector 4 residential welfare association, Mansa Devi Complex, the electricity supply was discontinued since 4 pm and Sectors 4, 5 and Swastik Vihar were the worst hit. While the elders and patients faced hardship in the heat, the daily chores also put on halt as water supply was also affected in the region, said Major Gen GS Hundal (retd).

PK Goel, XEN, UHBVN, said the fault was detected and the employees were trying to repair the transformer. The power supply to Swastik Vihar was already restored by the late evening while other sources were being arranged to feed the remaining sectors till the transformer was repaired, he added.



City swimming pools non-functional
Sandeep Rana
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 4
The city swimming enthusiasts will have to wait at least till “mid of May” to enjoy swimming as both the administration-run swimming pools are nonfunctional.

Repair work is underway at Lake Club’s swimming pool while the functioning of the swimming pool in the Government Yoga Centre, Sector 23, has got delayed due to “delaying of funds”.

Rajeev Tuli, general manager of the Lake Club, said, “The depth of pool has increased and to reduce the depth, its bottom is being filled up beside other renovation work. The pool will be all ready in about from 10 to 15 days.”

A senior officer at the Sector 23 centre said, “The opening of the pool has been delayed by a month this year due to delayed funds. Otherwise, we will have been made it ready by now.”

“The pool is expected to be ready in about four days. The cleaning of the pool will be done by tomorrow and from the very next day, we will fill up the pool,” added the officer.

A budding swimmer, requesting anonymity, said, “This is the time of the season when we start practice but it is pity on the part of the administration that it has been delayed for over a month. Had this swimming pool been functional, it could have reduced the rush from other pools and hence it would have given 
a required practice time for a player like me.”



Suicide: Father says it was murder
Ramanjit Singh Sidhu/TNS

Chandigarh, May 4
Lending a twist to the alleged suicide of software engineer Karan Goel, his father today claimed that his son was murdered in a well-planned manner.

With reports of his link-up with a city-based contestant of a reality show, residents of ESIC Colony in Sector 51, where Karan lived, also expressed doubts that it was a suicide.

“Karan had been living with her and had told everyone that they were married. He had an argument with her some days ago as security officials claimed to have seen her leaving the house at midnight in an enraged state,” a resident claimed.

Though his father, Chander Mohan Goel, was silent on the “link-up”, he demanded a fair and prompt probe into his son’s murder. When a Tribune team visited the boutique being run by the woman in Sector 34, it was found closed.

Goel claimed there were several reasons that made him believe that his son was killed and the killers tried to pass it off as suicide. “Though initially I believed that Karan had committed suicide, after discussing the circumstances and the condition of the body with doctors, I was convinced that he was killed.”

He said Karan’s feet touched the floor; his hip rested on a nearby table; and he was wearing spectacles, shoes and socks. The dupatta was tied perfectly, suggesting that it could not have been done so by the victim himself.

His eyes were not bulging and his tongue did not stick out as it happens in cases of death due to hanging. There was a lot of blood on the floor and there were broken bottles and glasses in the house, indicating that a struggle took place.

Also, the door was locked from outside. He said the police should probe who locked the house. Karan’s friend Navdeep had informed him about the incident at 6.38 pm on Sunday. When he reached Karan’s house, he found Navdeep outside and the latch on the main door was broken.

Goel said his son wanted to marry the woman against their wishes, and they did not have any other issue. He had started staying separately some months ago. He used to call them frequently and also visited them. He said he did not want to disclose much at this stage as it might hamper police probe.

The SHO of the Sector 34 police station, Inspector Sudarshan Thakur, ruled out the murder theory, saying that the doctors had said the death was due to hanging. The viscera would be sent for an examination to ascertain the exact cause of death. About the woman, he said she had gone to her native place four-five days ago and they were yet to contact her.

The SHO clarified that Karan would usually ask his friends to lock him from outside to avoid visitors and opened only when he called them. The police, however, has not tried to trace the person who locked the door that day.



Cong, SAD intensify activities to woo voters
Our Correspondent

Mohali, May 4
As the elections to the Anandpur Sahib Lok Sabha seat draw closer, political leaders and workers of various political parties are intensifying their activities to woo voters.

While the Congress leaders held a cycle rally in support of Ravneet Singh Bittu, the SAD leaders held a motor cycle rally to garner support for Dr Daljit Singh Cheema here today.

Balraj Singh Gill, general secretary of the kisan and mazdoor cell of the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee, organised the cycle rally with the help of the Congress workers in support of Bittu.

The rally started from Phase X and went through different parts of the town. The speakers highlighted the achievements of the Congress at the Centre and attacked the SAD for its wrong policies.

The motor cycle rally was organised by Harsukhinder Singh Babbi Badal, general secretary of the youth wing of the SAD, to woo the voters for Cheema. The rally started from Phase XI and moved to nearby villages. The speakers spoke about development issues and also criticised the Congress on various fronts.



BJP star campaigners skip city
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 4
Security concerns have thrown a spanner in the BJP’s plan to cash in on the charisma of three BJP star campaigners, Lal Krishan Advani, Hema Malini and Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, with the Central government cancelling all scheduled rallies in the city.

The step comes as a major setback to the party’s plan to get bigwigs, Modi, Sushma Swaraj, Janata Party leader Subramaniam Swamy, Shatrughan Sinha and Lal Krishan Advani, in reaction to the recent rally by Congress president Sonia Gandhi in Chandigarh.

Sources revealed that Advani and Modi have Z plus security, but in view of the intelligence reports, their scheduled rallies in Punjab and Chandigarh have been disallowed.

The sources revealed that Hema Malini’s rally was not only cancelled in Chandigarh but also in Gurdaspur in Punjab. As per the schedule, Hema was to attend BJP candidate Vinod Khanna’s election rally at Gurdaspur this afternoon. Later in the evening, she was to address an election rally at Chandigarh in support of BJP candidate Satpal Jain.

On the basis of the intelligence report, the Union Government cancelled both these rallies.

The sources revealed that Hema Malini addressed an election rally yesterday for BJP candidate Navjot Singh Sidhu at Amritsar, but late night, the BJP party high command got a communiqué from the Centre to cancel all her rallies in Punjab and Chandigarh.

The party has so far got the confirmation of organising rallies of Janata Party leader Subramaniam Swamy on May 6 at Maloya and Sushma Sawraj’s election rally in Sector 25 on May 9. They have yet to get confirmation about Shatrughan Sinha’s rally scheduled for May 8.



Campaign hots up
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh May 4
Questions were raised from both BJP and Congress side from each other during their separate rallies today.

While the BJP asked about the multi-crore losses because of stalling of mega projects proposed for Chandigarh during the Congress regime here, the Congress referred to BJP candidate Satya Pal Jain’s statements calling Chandigarh banks as Swiss banks.

Jain pointed out official lapses during the Congress rule here, which caused multi-crore loss to the exchequer, whereas crores of rupees have been lying unutilised in banks for faulty planning. He was addressing various public rallies and talking to citizens during his padyatra in Sector 27 and the market of 22-D.

On the other hand, Chandigarh Congress Committee president BB Behl, said, “Over Rs 1,400 crore, which Jain claims is lying idle, is not black money but actually the public money converted into fixed deposits for judicious utilising in projects.

Nevertheless, while addressing rallies at Sector 22 and 23, Jain questioned that all four mega projects were under a Vigilance inquiry and their records had been sealed. He said if there had been scams in these projects, then who was responsible for it, the Union Minister of State or the Chandigarh Administrator appointed by the Congress?

Jain took his campaign to Buterla, Kajheri, Dadumajra and Dhanas villages. In the afternoon, he addressed employees in Sector 17.

Meanwhile, the traditional BJP supporting party Shiv Sena (Bal Thakeray) today came out in full support to Jain. Addressing a press conference here, Virender Bajaj, president of the Chandigarh unit of the Shiv Sena, said both parties were bound by the nationalistic ideology and their alliance was unbreakable.

Apart from this, hundreds of members of the Shia Muslim community and members of the Yuva Shakti Welfare Association joined the BJP.

Meanwhile, accompanied by former Senior Deputy Mayor Shayma Negi, Satinder Dhawan, wife of BSP candidate Harmohan Dhawan, and her family members attended corner meetings and public gathering at various places in Chandigarh.

While Dhawan was busy wooing colony residents at Sector 52, Sector 51, colony no. 5, Sector 24 and Darua, the Rashtriya Janata Dal candidate Hafiz Anwar Ul Haq went to see shopkeepers as well. He, along with his supporters, visited Sector 19 and 17 markets.

Hafiz Anwar Ul covered Sector 25, Sector 26, Bapu Dham Colony, Gobind Pura, Chaman Colony, Aman Colony, Milk Colony Dhanas, Sector 46, Manimajra, etc, besides Sector 19 and Sector 17 markets, through door-to-door campaigning and various rallies.



‘Vote for change’ enters next phase
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 4
Surely the exams cannot dampen the spirit of the youth election brigade of Panjab University. The students of different departments of the university, who have gathered for the “Vote for change” campaign, have proudly announced the next phase of the drive.

After the initial round of door-to-door campaigning in hostels and putting up posters across the city to make people aware of their voting power, the campaign has now 
stepped into direct mail communication phase.

Spending a few hours per day to send informative emails and SMS’s even during the exam days is doing the trick for these youngsters.

“We have been collecting important data, sending mails containing crux of election manifestoes of various parties and making the youngsters aware of the actual realities of the country,” said Natasha Garg, the youngest one of the lot.

The campaign that had started with the aim of encouraging citizens to wake up to the realities of the country had united the students of various departments of the university, including bio-chemistry, physics, University Institute of Engineering and Technology, law department, among others.

“Firstly, the elections have come at a time when the upper-middle class persons will prefer to sit back at home rather than to go out and vote in scorching heat, even as these are the intelligent voters. In addition to this, any government should return to power only if it gets a huge majority. The shift of power at the Centre is healthy for the democracy, as it exposes the loopholes of the previous government,” said Ramnik Bansal, an IIT-IIM pass out and founder of the campaign.

Stating the main issue to be a decisive government at the Centre for the better future of the country, he added, “The security of the country is a major issue and it can be solved only by the government that has the political will to decide. ”The students were in favour that the party president should not be influential than the Prime Minister, said Nami Mehta, a student.

The youth brigade was of the opinion that the welfare of the country should be kept above all issues, be it caste politics or minority pleasing policies.



Glare on Sukhna, traffic blues 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 4
Chandigarh is a proud city. Cleanliness is one thing we clearly boast off. We must support that the candidate who promises to take the city to the world map. The increasing traffic problem is the main issue of the city. The most persons spend maximum time travelling and if the situation here becomes like Delhi or Mumbai, what is the point?

The desilting of Sukhna is another issue. It is shocking that in all these years nothing has been done about it. Another issues are the biases on bases of caste, creed religion which should be done away with.

— Dr Zora Singh

Vote responsibly

Everyone should vote, see carefully whom you are voting and only then make a choice. Only the lower economical strata comes forward to vote because they are bribed or emotionally pressurised. If the educated lot comes forward to vote, it will be great for the society and the city. “Jago” and vote that is my logo. The people in power should fulfil the promises they make. The educational qualification of the candidate is most important. The way out is to do something for the society. And don’t vote because your friend is voting, vote out of responsibility.

— Tajinder Kaur

Slums must vanish

With an increase in population, health facilities should get better. The city people should be preferred when it comes to health services, since it is their money, which is being utilised for making these facilities, and it comes from the budget of Chandigarh. Fast-track and rapid transport system is another major issue for city people keeping in view the congestion.

I also wish that slums must vanish from the city as they are responsible for increased crime and deteriorated hygienic conditions.

— Raj Bahadur



First Time Voters
Read manifesto, then vote
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 4
I am voting for the first time and I strongly believe that people should read the election manifesto of the parties, especially the one they want to vote for. It is time that we face the truth that the country is being divided in the name of reservations. Can religion ever be a basis of reservation? I am shocked at the state of affairs in the country. The whole issue of favouring a minority only because of vote bank politics is so awkward.

— Smriti Thakur

Change in society must

I am sure that if the present circumstances continue, the state of conditions will get worse in the country. On the name of reservations, the country is being divided. I am voting for the first time, and I want to see a change by exercising my right to vote. I want to see a change in the society and the country and for that I believe I have to take the initiative.

— Ranjeet

Youth should take part

I think it is a matter of concern that the youth had not been coming forward to take part in active politics. The least you can do is go and vote. Be it scorching heat or non-performing candidates, nothing should dampen the spirits of the 
people. Especially, the youth should be the torch-bearers now. The time has come to take action and do something for the nation rather than sitting back at home this summer.

— Harsimran Singh Brar



Signature campaign for vote today
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 4
Yet another awareness drive, “Please Cast you vote”, will be organised by the Chandigarh Citizen’s Council at the Plaza, Sector 17, from 6 pm tomorrow.

According to organisers, a huge banner is likely to be displayed for this signature campaign in which all contesting candidates, student leaders, members of the Beopar Mandal Industrial Association and the Resident Welfare Associations have been invited to sign.

The campaign is a testimony to vote by those participating and to motivate urban voters to exercise their right for the better governance.

“The aim of the campaign is to send across the message that the citizens must vote. The first-time voters should come,” said MPS Chawla, chairman of the council. The council has also planned to organise the campaign on Sukhna Lake on May 10.



Police vigilance keeps drug peddlers off the streets
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 4
Election time has surely proved a boon for residents of Ram Darbar, thanks to the constant police patrolling that has proved instrumental in keeping drug peddlers off the streets, at least for sometime now.

With regular police flag marches, constables deputed at each corner and special police patrolling, the area looks like a high alert zone.

The recent outbreak of violence between Phase I and Phase II youth of Ram Darbar coupled with the nearing election time have been cited as reasons for the tight security.

“The peddlers who used to sit here openly are not coming out from sometime now because of the police presence,” said a fruit seller.

“We are so much relieved now. The situation here was so bad, as our children were being caught in the trap of these agents selling addictive medicines,” said Shakuntala, a resident.

The police has arrested suspicious elements from the area who are likely to cause hindrance in smooth and violence-free elections.

SHO Bhupinder Singh, Sector 31 police station, said, “We are regularly taking out flag marches and are on constant alert. We also raid houses of suspicious elements. If any untoward movement is observed from their side, we immediately get into action. Nearly 24 persons have been arrested from the area, who are likely to create mischief.”

“The entire force is sent here in the morning for proper checks and then later during the day we are sent to our respective beats, especially after the recent fight here among the boys, the police is on a high alert,” added a woman constable. 



Tricity police joins hands 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 4
Even as the Central government has not provided eight companies of the paramilitary forces to Chandigarh for the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections, the UT police is joining hands with its Mohali and Panchkula counterparts for the security arrangements.

Sources in the police said the police was yet to get any reply from the Union government about the paramilitray forces. But senior officials were hopeful that they would get the force by May 7 or 8, though they had also started making their own arrangements.

SSP SS Srivastva of the city today held a meeting with SSP Mohali

and Panchkula, SP (city) Mohali and DSP Dera Bassi to discuss the security arrangements for the elections. Both Panchkula and Zirakpur are going to polls on May 7. The police from the tricity would act jointly.

Similarly, May 13 is fixed for polls in Chandigarh and the Panchkula and Mohali police would assist the police.

The police has taken into its custody as many as 341 weapons and firearms in the wake of the security arrangements made for the elections. The police said the weapons would be given back to their owners after the election results were out on May 16. 



Exhibition on modern kitchen concepts ends
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 4
Kitchen and Beyond 2009, a CII’s exclusive exhibition on modern kitchen concepts, concluded today at the Himachal Bhavan. The exhibition got a great response.

The annual show on the kitchen equipment and accessories featuring varied options for attractive and user-friendly kitchens showcased a varied product portfolio catering to the needs of contemporary lifestyles.

The four-day fair also showcased convenient and time saving gadgets aimed at making cooking a pleasure.

While the sleek kitchen modules attracted those refurnishing or redesigning their homes, homemakers found a wide range of accessories to refresh their kitchens.

Major CS Bachhar, director and head, Tradefairs, said, “Despite a new venue and recession clouds, Kitchen and Beyond 2009 generated great response.”



Diploma engineers stage protest
Our Correspondent

Mohali, May 4
The Council of Diploma Engineers staged a protest against the recommendations of the 5th Pay Commission outside the office of the Deputy Commissioner here today.

Members of the council said there was a lot of resentment among diploma engineers because the commission had recommended their pay scales lower than that of JBT, EET and vocational teachers. The interests of engineers had allegedly not been protected by the commission.

The protesters led by Amar Singh Randhawa, chairman of the Federation of Diploma Engineers, Punjab, HP, and Chandigarh, presented a memorandum to the Deputy Commissioner in connection with their demands.



Office-bearers elected
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 4
Sumedh Singh Saini, Inspector-General of Police (Vigilance), Punjab, and Darshan Lal were unanimously re-elected as the president and general secretary of the Chandigarh UT Wrestling Association, respectively, at the general body meeting held at the Sector 10 Skating Rink here yesterday.

Association general secretary Darshan Lal disclosed that authorised representatives of all 15 affiliated units attended the meeting, which was presided over by Sumedh Saini.

The house approved the 2009 sports calendar and activities to promote wrestling in UT.

Special attention will be given to the sport and to train the budding wrestlers from the Chandigarh villages.

The officials elected were:

Vice-presidents Rajesh Sharma and Arjun Singh Safri Lal; joint secretary Ajay Pathak; Pana Lal, Surinder Singh, Raj Singh, Jasbir Singh and Kulwinder Singh.



Unique success stories
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 4
The city today scripted two success stories in the All-India Civil Services examination and both are unique in their own way. While Sharanjit Kaur Brar, who stood second (all-India), has done her father, a farmer, proud in her third attempt, Virender Sharma who came fourth, appeared as a physically challenged candidate and was the only one to take his papers in Punjabi medium.

Bound by determination, both have their own dream story. “I always wanted to join the IAS. I did not sit easy even after selection to the accounts services. I knew I would make it and by God’s grace, I have done it. The feeling is unique as I have chased this dream for years,” an elated Sharanjit said over the phone from Kulu.

She belongs to a family of farmers in Bathinda village. After her schooling at St Joseph School in Bathinda, she shifted to Chandigarh for graduation and further studies. She did MA in psychology from Panjab University and is undergoing training after her selection to the All-India Audit and Accounts Services at Shimla.

Virender, who is serving as a PCS officer in the UT food and supplies department, hails from Sangrur and not only chose Punjabi literature as his major option, but also opted for Punjabi medium. The success, which he also credits to Punjabi Tribune, is being seen as a milestone in language revival.

“I belong to a humble rural background and it was the fascination for a white Ambassador and decision-taking powers that made me realise my dream. I had cleared the PCS, but IAS was what I wanted. My disability could never dampen my spirits and I am proud to have triumphed,” Virender, an alumnus of PEC, added.

Ruby Jaspreet scored 35th rank in the UPSC exams.

ASI Kuldeep Singh in the UT police has secured the 82nd rank. His success has elated the entire khaki brigade even as he coyly maintains that this was his ultimate dream and the police only a stopover.

AMBALA: Isha Kumar, daughter of the commissioner, Ambala Division, Mohinder Kumar, has been ranked 275 in the civil services exams. Isha has done her class XII from Convent of Jesus and Mary.

PANCHKULA: A Panchkula resident Dr Asim Vohra also secured 185th rank. Vohra staying in house No 849, Sector 12, is employed as medical officer with the Haryana health department at Karnal.

Patiala: Rahul Sharma, who has done Punjab proud by securing the 88th rank in the IAS 2008 mains test, attributes his success to his father Vinod Sharma and mother Meena Sharma and has resolved to fight corruption at every possible level as an IAS officer.

His father is running an IAS study centre here.

His studious nature has been inculcated by his parents, who have worked hard to see their ward joining the elite service. Rahul has been following his father’s guidelines since the days of his Class XII at SDSE Higher Secondary School. He did his matriculation from Lady Fatima School.

“My father is my guide. It was his long-cherished dream to have his son in the list of successful IAS candidates, and I burnt midnight oil to get his dream realised. My family is so happy that they can hardly control their joyful tears,” said Rahul while talking to The Tribune.

“Rahul has been following his father like a good pupil and it is just an outcome of his dedication and faith on his father,” said one of Rahul’s uncles, who had landed at his residence to greet the family.



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