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Bansal scores a hat trick
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Aided by the Manmohan Singh factor and riding high on the development plank, Minister of State for Finance Pawan Bansal today scripted a new chapter in the electoral history of the Chandigarh parliamentary seat by scoring a hat trick, trouncing Satya Pal Jain (BJP) by an impressive margin of 58,967 votes.

Bansal, who braved the BSP and the RJD factors in his journey to Parliament, entered the Lok Sabha for the fourth time, having won the seat in 1991, 1999 and 2004.

He secured 1,61,420 votes this time, out of a total of 3,39,410 votes. His nearest rivals, BJP’s Jain and BSP’s Harmohan Dhawan secured 1,02,075 and 61,434 votes, respectively, in the elections which saw the revival of the BSP in the city though it failed to replicate the success of its UP’s social engineering formula in Chandigarh.

The RJD candidate, Hafiz Anwar-ul-Haq, who apparently dented the Congress vote bank by securing 11,549 votes, could not affect the results in a big way as the urban voters voted for Bansal’s slogan of making Chandigarh a world class city.

Bansal took an early lead at all four counting centres. A quick look at the polling trends showed that though the colony vote of about 1.04 lakh was fairly distributed among the Congress, the BJP and the BSP, the Congress had an upper hand in the urban areas and villages.

The Congress’ success is maintly credited to the Manmohan magic in city areas that polled about 1.7 lakh votes (almost 65%), the highest in the electoral history of the city for this segment.

“It is vote for development and Manmohan Singh government’s pro-people development work over the past five years,” a beaming Bansal told mediapersons outside the office of the returning officer.

Pardeep Chhabra, media coordinator for Bansal, termed the victory as “win for the development agenda” of the Congress and Bansal’s impeccable record on the development front.

Accepting people’s mandate, BJP president Kamla Sharma termed Jain’s defeat as part of the “all-India trend”. She added that the party would analyse the results at a meeting here on May 18.

Dhawan on the other hand said the BSP failed to gauge the mood of the urban voters.

Though Bansal had focussed on the development agenda, his rivals, particularly Jain, launched a slander campaign against the minister and his family in the run-up to the elections.

The opposition had made anti-incumbency as a major factor in the campaign, terming Bansal and the UPA government a failure on all fronts.

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Urban voters set the trend
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Contrary to the general perception that colony and village voters have a decisive say in the election of the local MP, the urban voters called the shots in the victory of Pawan Bansal today.

A quick survey of the voting trends showed that urban voters -- 1.7 lakh, who constituted about 50 per cent of the total votes polled -- were a decisive factor in the victory of the Congress candidate.

Estimates showed that about 55 per cent voters voted for the Congress, with the BJP getting about 40 per cent.

The influence of urban voters on the verdict was clearly visible with the BJP leading in two of the 92 booths in the “urbanised” Sector 11 counting centre. “The Congress must have polled over 55 per cent votes in the Sector 11 counter centre,” Pardeep Chhabra, Congress counting centre in charge, told The Tribune.

Meanwhile, the colony vote was divided among all three major players, with the Congress and the BJP and BSP getting around 35 per cent each and the BJP slightly improving its tally by securing about 25 per cent colony votes.

In the last elections, the Congress had led by about 35,698 votes in the colonies alone and it was the major reason for the BJP’s defeat.

Sources said the Congress also had a upper hand in villages with the party polling around 50 per cent votes, leaving behind the BJP and the BSP with 25 per cent vote share each.

In the 2004 Lok Sabha elections, the Congress had secured a lead of only about 2,437 votes in the urban areas, a trend which has been reversed in this election.

In the villages, the Congress had led by 7,138. Though the number of urban voters had come down from 3.05 lakh in 2004 to 2.6 lakh in 2009, a sharp increase in the voting percentage catapulted the urban voters to the driver’s seat.

Though the vote share of all major players had increased from the last general election substantially, the victory margin had been bigger on account of the increase in the total number of votes polled and increase in the number of urban voters exercising their right to franchise.

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Double Blow
Jain’s brother dies of shock
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Fate could not have been more cruel to BJP candidate Satya Pal Jain who suffered twin loss today. The veteran BJP leader not only lost the elections, but also lost his elder brother, who died of cardiac arrest while tracking the election results.

Family sources said Satya Bhushan Jain was following the trends since morning and by 10 am it was clear that Jain had trailed and 62-year-old Bhushan suffered a heart attack.

He ran news and advertisement agencies and was the eldest of the four brothers and was a chronic heart patient. He had undergone two heart surgeries. Bhushan had talked to Jain this morning and wished him luck ahead of the results.

He is survived by his wife, two sons and a daughter.

Bhushan was rushed to a private hospital in Mohali where he was declared brought dead. In the meantime, Jain was contacted at the party office in Sector 33. Jain rushed to the hospital, assuring party workers that he would be back in time to go to the office of the returning officer in Sector 17 to keep track of the results. However, that was not to be as Bhushan died at the hospital.

Having lost interest in the contest, Jain and hundreds of party activists thronged Bhushan’s Sector 21 house where a pall of grief descended. As a grief-stricken Jain fought hard to hold back tears at the colossal loss, party workers and well-wishers talked of the “black Saturday” for the Jains.

Bhushan was cremated in the evening.

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Performance won, says Bansal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Basking under the glory of a hat trick win from the Chandigarh parliamentary constituency, Minister of State for Finance Pawan Bansal exuded the confidence of a seasoned parliamentarian after a massive win against Satya Pal Jain of the BJP as he readied for a fourth term in the Lok Sabha.

The suave politician, who successfully dodged negative campaigning of rivals BJP and the BSP and focussed on development as the main plank got candid in an interview to The Tribune after the results were declared here today.

Q: How do you see your massive win from Chandigarh?

A: It is the victory of performance and development by the UPA government under the guidance of PM Manmohan Singh and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi. At another level, it is vote for the unprecedented development in Chandigarh over the past 10 years.

Q: What are the challenges before you?

A: Keeping up the momentum of development works and turning the city into a world class city, of which every Chandigarhian would be proud of, would be some challenges. At the national level, nation-building and taking development initiatives like National Rural Employment Guarantee Programme (NREGA) to urban areas would be the major challenges.

Q: How do you respond to the opposition’s mud-slinging campaign against you and your family?

A: Those making personal allegations, perhaps, forgot that they were seeking votes from educated and enlightened residents of Chandigarh.

Q: Your take on the UPA’s impressive performance at the national level?

A: The results have clearly demonstrated that democracy has strong roots in India and people reward performance and development.

Q: Was Manmohan Singh a factor in Chandigarh?

A: Like elsewhere in the country, Manmohan magic worked in Chandigarh also. Besides local issues, the electorate voted for national issues like stability and development undertaken by the UPA.

Q: Were you expecting such a huge margin?

A: Yes. In fact, I was expecting a little more margin.

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Bansal’s winning streak continues
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Cashing in on the development plank, Minister of State for Finance Pawan Kumar Bansal today continued his winning streak from the Chandigarh parliamentary constituency, defeating his nearest BJP rival Satya Pal Jain by a huge margin of 58,967 votes.

Bansal, who entered the Lok Sabha for the fourth term earlier winning the seat in 1991,1999 and 2004, successfully dodged the anti-incumbency bogey and mud-slinging by the BJP and the BSP candidates in the run-up to the May 13 elections.

While Bansal polled 1,61,042 votes out of a total of 3,39,410 votes, Jain polled 1,02,075 votes in a three-cornered contest which saw BSP candidate and former Union Minister Harmohan Dhawan polling a respectable 61,434 votes. RJD candidate Hafiz Anwar-ul-Haq, who was expected to dent the Congress vote bank, polled 11,549 votes.

With the Opposition making anti-incumbency in the backdrop of the failure of the UPA government and Bansal’s failure on all fronts as the main election issue, Bansal’s huge win seems to have surprised even political pundits who were forecasting a close fight in the prestigious constituency.

Focussing on the positive campaign, Bansal rode on the development wave, cashing in on the name of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who seemed to have cut with intellectual sections of society and substantial Sikh vote in the Union Territory.

“It is victory for the UPA government’s five-year performance and development works undertaken by it under the guidance of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi,” Bansal said.

Details in Chandigarh Tribune

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Victory or defeat they remain unfazed
Smriti Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
They played a crucial role in campaigning and walked besides their husbands for garnering support for them. Yet when the results were out today, the better halves of BSP’s Harmohan Dhawan, RJD’s Hafeez Anwar ul-Haq and BJP’s Satya Pal Jain remained a picture of poise and grace despite their husbands losing out to Congress’s Pawan Kumar Bansal.

While for Satinder Dhawan, Harmohan’s wife, it was back to her routine work of heading the women wing of the BSP.

Unfazed but indeed a little disappointed, she was busy listening to the problems of the women from the wing. On being asked about Dhawan’s loss she said,“ Winning or losing is all part of politics. Our workers tried their best. If at all I am sad, it for them”, she says.

Expressing her satisfaction over the 6,1000 votes polled, she said,“ It’s due to Dhawan’s reputation and people’s love and faith in him, that has got him so many votes.”

On being asked about Bansal’s hat trick, she was quick to respond,“ It was definitely the Manmohan factor that worked for him, as it did for the entire nation.”

For Naina Chaudhary aka Janat Jahan, wife of Anwar ul-Haq, it was an experience of a lifetime more than anything else.“ We were prepared for this. But, I am happy that even being a commoner and a first timer he got more than 10,000 votes. It’s a victory for us”, says Naina referring to her husband’s defeat.

“But I feel sorry for those living in slums and colonies. This city cannot be called the City Beautiful till the people residing in slums and colonies get their due. These old timers have done nothing for them,” she says while referring to the BJP, Congress and the BSP candidates.

“My husband has age and energy on his side. Together we are ready to fight the battle again, she says with a smile.

For BJP’s Shashi Bala Jain, perhaps it was husband’s loss in elections combined with brother-in-law’s demise she chose to keep away from media throughout the day. 

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Jain’s defeat deepens rift in BJP
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
The second consecutive defeat of senior BJP leader Satya Pal Jain has not only put a question mark over Jain’s political career, but has also brought the BJP’s “aggressive” poll strategy under a cloud.

The defeat, third in 18 years, is set to spark off a crisis in the faction-ridden BJP with the local party leadership likely to come under fire for its poor show.

Jain virtually “remote-controlled” the party at the local level, a fact vehemently resented by certain sections, including certain youth leaders and old guard of the party.

The nomination of Jain, who wields considerable influence over the party high command, was resented by a section of the party even as five others applied for ticket. Though Jain managed to get it, the campaign was allegedly marred by half-hearted attempts by certain senior leaders.

Jain’s crushing defeat at the hands of his traditional rival Pawan Bansal may fuel rebellion in the party, which already faced difficulties in keeping its flock together ahead of the polls. Several colony BJP chieftains, including Shashi Shankar Tiwari, its colony cell chairman, had switched to the Congress, delivering a severe blow ahead of the elections.

Besides leaving him at the crossroads, Jain’s defeat is also being blamed on the negative and personalised campaign directed at Bansal and his family. The mud-slinging seems to have boomeranged, with the party trailing in urban areas, a senior BJP leader said.

The leader, preferring anonymity, said the party needed a major revamp and an “acceptable face” in the next elections, who could take all factions along with a power-sharing formula as against the dictatorial attitude of the current local leadership.

However, sources close of Jain claimed that the veteran leader was a born fighter and would bounce back at an “appropriate time” as in politics no defeat was permanent. The veteran leader’s contribution to the party set-up could not be ignored and he had done commendable work for the city as MP twice.

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BJP activists beat up RSS man
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
BJP activists in Sector 21 allegedly beat up Surinder Pal Chauhan, convener, RSS, Chandigarh unit, today. Chauhan, after getting himself medically examined from Government Multispeciality Hospital, Sector 16, lodged a complaint against the BJP activists at the Sector- 19 police station.

Chauhan, who along with president of the Chandigarh, Punjab and Himachal Pradesh unit of the RSS Brig Ramesh Chander (retd.), had gone to condole the sudden demise of Satya Bhushan Jain, elder brother of BJP leader Satya Pal Jain.

Chauhan, who had reportedly got advertisements published against Satya Pal Jain’s candidature for the Lok Sabha seat and also campaigned against him, in the leading newspapers, provoked the BJP activists who thrashed him.

Chauhan, who is also happens to be the president of Chandigarh Marla Houses Association, had reportedly told the association members to vote in favour of the Congress. “Actually, my candidature was deliberately rejected by some. Moreover, a few BJP leaders, who were in the fray, were not having clean image. So, I appealed to association members to vote for the Congress”, he added.

Narrating the incident, Chauhan said: “As soon as I along with Brigadier Chander reached the Sector 22 residence of Late Satya Bhushan Jain, at least 15 BJP activists caught hold of me and started beating me up. I could recognise only Mukesh Mittal and Rajesh Kalia out of others”, he added.

Chauhan claimed that the BJP supporters had attacked him earlier also. “ On January 21 and May 12, I was attacked by BJP supporters and I had lodged a complaint then also. If this time, police fails to register an FIR against the guilty, I would protest”, he added.

Meanwhile, Krishan Chand, a BJP activist, has reportedly filed a DDR against Chauhan alleging that he had misbehaved.

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BSP’s theory fails to charm
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
The BSP’s social engineering factor, which helped Mayawati to take a big leap in Uttar Pradesh, has failed to deliver for its city’s candidate Harmohan Dhawan, the results of which were declared today.

The party which had earlier raised slogans like “Tilak, Taraju and Talwar, inko maaro jute chaar (Brahmin, Bania and Thakurs, beat them with shoes) gradually softened its stand towards these groups and took to social engineering. The Brahmins and upper caste candidates played a crucial role in the BSP’s empathetic, victory in the last Assembly elections.

However, Dhawan while accepting the people’s verdict said, “The Sikh factor associated with Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh helped Pawan Kumar Bansal to emerge as a winner. Sikhs amounts to almost 22 per cent of the votes here, he added.

“Just like the national trend, it was the Sikh who voted in favour of the Congress because of Manmohan Singh. Otherwise, the performance graph of Bansal was negligible”, he added.

“Though I respect people’s verdict, but due to these extraneous factors, the state of politics has shrunk. I presume, the people got swayed easily”, he added.

Though Dhawan was sure of having a good hold over rural votes, he was also optimistic about grabbing the attention urban voters as well but it didn’t work.

“Yes, we could not gauge the mindset of urban voters. The urban vote counts is around 15 per cent in the city. The middle class people were looking for new kind of prosperity and new kind of economic policy, and they apparently, felt themselves safe in the hands of the UPA”, he added.

Calling himself a crusader, Dhawan said: “ Come what may, I would continue to fight for the people’s cause. I am a fighter.”

Raunki Ram, Chairman, Department of Political Science, Panjab University, said Dhawan’s defeat could not be taken as the BSP’s failure. It was for the first time that the BSP was making its presence felt in Chandigarh.” 

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Mohali, Kharar did it for Congress
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Mohali, May 16
Bridging the urban-rural divide, the voters in the Mohali and Kharar assembly segments of the Anandpur Sahib parliamentary constituency gave their unanimous and clear verdict in favour of the Congress with the party candidate, Ravneet Singh Bittu, taking a record lead of 50,122 votes from his nearest rival and SAD candidate Dr Daljit Singh Cheema.

However, Bittu could manage a lead of around 17,000 votes from the remaining seven other assembly segments in the Anandpur Sahib Lok Sabha seat. “Mohali and Khahar segments account for 74.11 per cent share of total winning margin for the Congress,” observed an election official.

The BSP candidate, Kewal Krishan, could manage 14,813 votes with maximum votes from the rural segments.

Riding high on the Manmohan Singh factor, the young candidate proved to be a card of ace for the party. In fact, the party has been able to make a dent in the stronghold of the Akalis.

While the lead from the urban areas was around 10,000, in the rural areas it was 15,000. The Congress took the lead in the counting from the very beginning. The lead continued till the 13th round.

Of the total 20,98,832 votes polled in the two constituencies, Bittu bagged 1,19162 and Cheema got 69,060 votes.

Political analysts point that since the Congress knew that Mohali and Kharar were important for them, the party had been sending one of the other family members of the late Beant Singh’s family to campaign for Bittu. 

Apart from the ground work done by the Kharar MLA, Balbir Singh Sidhu, Tohra loyalist Rajbir Singh Padiala, who recently joined the Congress, is also accountable for mobilising the vote bank in favour of the party.

An analysis of the past winning pattern of the erstwhile Kharar assembly segment reveals that since 1977, candidates of the Congress and the SAD have been bagging the seat on alternative basis. 

New faces have been winning from the erstwhile Kharar assembly segment. In the last two assembly elections, Congress candidates have being winning from the seat.

Poll officials disclose that in Mohali city, it was a direct fight between the SAD and the Congress. In all the 13 rounds, the SAD was trailing the Congress between 100 and 200 votes in each polling station. The trend is a retake of the last two Vidhan Sabha election held in 2002 and 2007, when Congress candidates Bir Devinder and Balbir Singh Sidhu won.

Sidelights

l Otherwise trailing, the BSP was able get the maximum number of 338 votes from Jhanjheri village compared to 230 votes for the Congress and 102 votes for the SAD
l The counting was held amidst tight security arrangements; the police properly secured the venue of the counting centre
l Though having the highest number of voters, the counting for Kharar and Mohali ended by 12 noon and EVM’s were sent back by 1 pm

Scorecard

Communist Party of India (M) candidate Maha Singh (1,670 votes), Lok Jan Shakti - Bachan Lal (729), Samajwadi Party - Balwinder Singh (613), Democratic Bhartiya Samaj Party - Manjit Kaur (258), Akhil Rashtrawadi Party - Mohan Singh (306), Shivsena - Vishwanath (342). Among the independents, Resham Singh managed to get the highest of 1,114 votes.

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Turncoat turns village in Cong’s favour
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Rajbir Singh Padiala celebrates the victory of the Congress candidate in Mohali on Saturday.
Rajbir Singh Padiala celebrates the victory of the Congress candidate in Mohali on Saturday. Tribune photo: Vicky Gharu

Mohali, May 16
Dissidence proved costly for the SAD in the Anandpur Sahib Lok Sabha seat. A turncoat, Rajbir Singh Padiala, who had recently parted ways with the SAD, turned the voters of his native Padiala village in favour of the Congress.

The son of the late Bachitar Singh Padiala, a prominent Akali leader and a Tohra supporter, holds influence in the Kharar Assembly segment. On his home turf, Padiala managed to turn 866 votes of the total 984 votes in favour of the Congress candidate. The SAD managed to get just 84 votes in the once staunch Akali village.

“The entire village has been with me ever since I sought their support to defeat the SAD as it had made false promises to us,” he said while celebrating the victory of his party.

A former senior vice-president of the SAD, Padiala, said despite sacrifices made by him and his family, the Badals had ignored them. “We were not given any representations in nominated bodies. On the contrary, I was removed from the SAD and deliberately ignored,” he added.

Not only his native village, he has been able to move the voter’s base in the Khahar segment in the favour of Congress.

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On-the-spot power bills in Mohali
Kulwinder Sangha

A consumer collecting the receipt of her electricity bill through a portable bill issuing machine in Mohali.
A consumer collecting the receipt of her electricity bill through a portable bill issuing machine in Mohali. A Tribune photograph

Mohali, May 16
For the first time in Mohali, on-the-spot power billing has been introduced for the benefit of consumers of the Punjab State Electricity Board. Persons working on behalf of the board are already on the job and can be seen visiting consumers’ premises with portable bill issuing machines.

Appropriate software has been fed into the machines and the bill is given to the consumer immediately after the reading of the meter.

“It’s a good system,” said AS Parmar, president of the residents welfare association of Phase X here. “A consumer will be saved from disputes over power consumption readings and subsequent trips to board offices to settle matters,” he said.

At present, 10 meter readers are issuing the bills with six standby machines with the board. Initially, these meter readers were rather slow and only 20 to 30 houses could be covered daily. Now, they are able to go to 70 to 80 houses, with a daily target of 100.

Sources said the new system, which was introduced on April 9, would, apart from eliminating disputes over meter readings, lead to the timely distribution of bills. Consumers would get about 15 days to pay their bills.

The power consumption data of Mohali comsumers was sent to the Regional Computer Centre, Chandigarh, earlier, from where the bills were generated after about 15 days.

Bills at times used to reach consumers late, giving them very short time to clear the dues. The sources said there were about 220 power billing machines in use in various parts of Punjab. The whole state would be covered gradually under the scheme.

There was also a plan to have a scanner in the machines so that the meter reader would have to simply swish the device in front of the meter to get the reading imprint.

The sources said as the system had been introduced only recently, its dependability was under check. Parallel records were, therefore, being maintained at the board’s office as well.

It was possible that at a later stage the meter readers may also be asked to collect cheques for payment at the time of issuing the bills. This would save consumers the trouble of going to the designated locations to pay their bills.

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Panchkula cheers Selja’s win
Tribune News Service

Congress leaders share sweets in Panchkula after Kumari Selja won from the Ambala constituency.
Congress leaders share sweets in Panchkula after Kumari Selja won from the Ambala constituency. A Tribune photograph.

Panchkula, May 16
The slender margin of victory for local Congress candidate Kumari Selja did not dampen the spirit of party workers, as they celebrated the win by distributing sweets and dancing on dhol beats.

The Congress workers, including Panchkula municipal council president Ravinder Rawal, Panchkula Congress president Om Parkash Devi Nagar and senior Congress leader Shashi Sharma danced and celebrated the victory.

At Kalka, a senior Congress leader and son of former minister Lakshman Singh, Bhagat Singh, attributed the win to overall development in the area during the past five years.

Though the contest in the Ambala constituency remained tough for the Congress candidate because of demolitions on the national highway in Kalka and Pinjore, Selja was able to concentrate on the overall development in the region, Bhagat Singh said. The party workers distributed sweets at Pinjore also.

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Kalka’s thumbs down to Congress
Arun Sharma
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, May 16
Even as it would be a big consolation for local Member Parliament Kumari Selja to make it to the Lok Sabha for the second consecutive term from the Ambala Lok Sabha constituency, the results show that the voters from Kalka voted against the Congress candidate.

The historic margin of Selja in 2004, when she got 4,15,264 votes, leading her nearest rival BJP candidate Ratan Lal Kataria by 2,34,934 votes, was narrowed down to only 14,570 votes against the same rival who this time had the support of the INLD also.

Selja, who registered a record margin with a lead of 39,335 votes in the Kalka constituency in 2004, which included Panchkula also till the previous elections, could secure only 59,745 votes from the area this time, trailing by 3,405 votes from Kataria. Kataria got 63,150 votes from the district this time. Last time the Congress secured 72,975 votes from here.

In addition to the Haryana Janhit Congress, floated by erstwhile Congress Chief Minister Bhajan Lal, and strengthening of the Bahujan Samaj Party in the area, the resentment among the Kalka residents over the demolitions seemed to have played a major role in the shrinking of vote bank of the party.

In Kalka segment only, Kataria remained ahead of Selja by 7,304 votes. The lead of Kataria in Kalka, however, was contained by the voters at Panchkula, especially in the town, which polled 33,688 votes in favour of Selja. Here Kataria was polled 29,789 votes.

Panchkula MC president Ravinder Rawal, who was heading the campaign of Selja in the town, said the residents of the town had shown faith in the party and the development of the city during the last five years.

On Kalka, however, he said the party was helpless in protecting their properties due to the involvement of courts and this message could not be conveyed to them effectively.

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Those who could not vote

Name  Address

Shakti Tewari 184, Sec 16 , Chd

Dalbirsahi 78, Sec 5

Joginder Singh ,,

Sahi

Anand Jain 3160, Sec 28-D

Leena Anand Jain ,,

Ashish Anand Jain ,,

Sorab Anand Jain ,,

Rajiv Kumar Jindal 142 (G.F.) C.H.B Flats Sec-55

Meenakshi Jindal ,,

Mehak Madaan 3135, Sec 38-D

Satpal Singh 2361, DMC

Dinesh Kumar 244, Sec 37-A

Aggarwal

Jaishree Thakur 36, Sec 8-A

Charanjit Singh 3344, Sec 23-D

Rajiv Mathur 3017, Sec 44-D

Rajender Singh Bedi 300, Sec 38-A

Jaspal Singh Sodhi 2356, Sec 19/C

Paramdip Sandhu 110, Sec 28,-A

Krishan Dev Sharma 23-A, Sec 44-A

Yogeshwari Sharma 556, Sec 8 - B

Janak Raj Dhiman E-23, Sec 14

Beena Dhiman ,,

Monika Dhiman ,,

Viajy Kumar Bansal 1141 GF, Sec 41-B

Prem Lata ,,

Jyotsna Bansal ,,

Kiran 795/1, Sec 43-A

Maj Somdutt 361, Sec 35

Brij Mohindra ,,

Col KK Ahluwalia 336, Sec 35A

Mohini Ahluwalia ,,

HS Sehgal 174, Sec 44-A

GK Sehgal ,,

Ashvinder Singh ,,

Dr Devender Dhawan T-I/17, Sec 25

Sanjiv Kumar Bhanot Flat-330, RCS Punjab Gazetted Officer Society, Sec 48-A

Vaneet Sharma 48-A ,,

Isha Madan 1221, Sector 10, Pkl

Sumit Soni 380, Sec 8

Sumati Sabhlok 1100, Sec 7

Salil Sabhlok ,,

Sahil Sabhlok ,,

PK Khosla 1381, Sec 21

Ranjna Khosla ,,

Prerna Khosla ,,

BD Arora 446, Sec-11

Satnam Arora ,,

Ajay Arora ,,

Aman Arora ,,

Pranob Sen 404, Group Housing

Society No.27, Sec 20

Renu Sen ,,

Chand Puri 565, Sec 9,

Rashmi Puri ,,

Rajesh Sharma 27/2-A, Subhash Nagar, Mani Majra

Amita Sharma ,,

Ram Kumar Rangray 855, Sec 7

Shiv Kumar Sachdeva 62-63

Kesho Ram Colony Burail

Manish Taneja 2677/A, Sec-66, Mohali

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Manmohan’s magic worked for Cong
Smriti Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Like other urban cities, Manmohan’s magic has worked, to say the least, with vengeance in the city as well. Not only the otherwise laid-back urbanites came out in large numbers to vote, they also voted in favour of Congress candidate Pawan Kumar Bansal. 

All this has much to do with what is being termed today as the Manmohan factor. While a large number of urban voters might have voted for Manmohan Singh’s clean image, the Sikh Prime Minister tag, too, seems to have swayed many from the community in his favour.

“After 1984 riots, it was difficult for me to vote for the Congress. Ideologically I don’t agree with BJP’s philosophy. I had been wasting my vote all these years by casting my vote in favour of independents. But things were different this time. The choice was clear and so the decision was easy,” a Sector-11 resident said.

Her comments sum up the feeling of many conservative Sikhs, who, despite their secular credentials, had not been able to come to terms with the events of 1984. “I voted for Manmohan not the Congress,” said S Singh of Sector 10 while admitting that his entire family voted for the Prime Minister this time.

As for the city, while not only the urban votes have gone up, touching an all time high of 65 per cent, in the urban areas particularly among the educated and Sikhs, the Manmohan effect seems to have worked and made the task “easier” for many undecided voters.

Rather his charisma seemed to have swept away young and the old alike.

While many first-time voters in the city chose to vote for him for the simple reason of his association with the academia. For many others, besides his turbaned outlook, it was the stability factor coupled with his economist tag that most of them went ahead with while voting for him.

“He is the Sikh face of the Congress. This was one the reasons that I voted keeping him in mind and not the party or city’s candidates”, says an affluent Sikh businessman from the city.

“Yes I voted for the Congress because of Manmohan Singh,” admitted a college lecturer, adding that the issue of Sikh Prime Minister had indeed made the decision easier for her. “The decision to choose a candidate in every election can be taxing when one is apolitical. But this time the choice was clear for me”, she added.

The Prime Minister’s city connection has also helped the Congress to some extent. He did his matriculation in 1948 from Panjab University and served as a professor here. A university professor had no qualms in admitting that he felt “close” to the Congress because of the “fraternity” links with Manmohan Singh.

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City rejects Independent candidates once again
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Ten Independent candidates, who were in race for the lone Lok Sabha seat of Chandigarh, have once again failed to put an impressive show with only 7,457 votes cast in their favour. Barring one of the candidates Col SK Suri, who got 2,776 votes not a single candidate managed to touch even a four-digit figure. Darshan Singh, an Independent, could manage only 292 votes. 

NRI-turned politician Ajay Goyal, who was contesting the poll on Obama’s slogan of change, managed to muster only 465 votes in his kitty. Whereas Maya Devi, who strayed into politics by default on account the rejection of her husband’s nomination papers, managed to get 927 votes. 

As per the Election Commission’s records Chandigarh has the history of rejecting Independent candidates in the general elections. In 1980, 39 Independent candidates were in the fray for the Lok Sabha elections who managed to get 32.9 per cent of the total votes cast.

After that, till this election, the percentage of votes cast for the Independent candidates ranged between 3 to 4 per cent only. In 1999, nine Independent candidates were in the race and they got only 1.57 per cent votes.

Maya Devi, who managed to get 900 votes, said, “It looks that people want want me to continue in politics.” Kafil Ahmed, another Independent candidate, who got only 321 votes, said Chandigarhians believe in voting only for the main parties. “ I will form a party and contest election on it,” he added.

Des Raj, who polled 491 votes, said: “ Being a first timer I wan’t expecting more than three digit votes.”

Year Voting percentage Candidate

2009 2.17 10

2004 3.44 10

1999 — — 1998 1.57 9

1996 3.14 1

1989 3.25 19

1984 4.8 30

1980 32.9 35

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Parking lot turns dump yard for govt vehicles
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Government officials continue to flout the municipal corporation’s rules with a few cars mainly Ambassadors parked in various parking lots for over a year. A contractor of Sector-22 parking lot has for over a year been complaining about not receiving any payment for these vehicles which have occupied fairly large area.

“We have, on numerous occasions, asked them to vacate the place but they refused to budge on the pretext that these are government vehicles and we can’t pay for them,” the contractor alleged.

Davinder, superintendent, Khadi Department, said: “These vehicles are to be sold in a weeks time, we will vacate the place after that.” On being asked whether monthly charges are being paid to the contractor, he said: “There is no question of paying as these are government vehicles.”

On the contrary, another Punjab government office in Sector 17 has been paying Rs 400 monthly for the past one year. “This car is to be sold and we are paying Rs 400 per month to the parking lot contractor,” said Mohan Lal, administrative officer, Punjab Scheduled Caste Land Development and Finance Corporation.

But according to municipal officials there is no such provision. “Vehicles can be parked from 8 am to 12 am. But, a few vehicles have been parked in the lot for almost a year and are occupying a lot of space. We will take the issue with the department concerned,” Vinod Vyas, paid-parking SDO, said. 

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Swine Flu
Eight of family kept in isolation
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
A 30-year-old city resident (identity withheld on request) has been quarantined at her home by the UT health authorities after an alert was sounded by the WHO about a few Indian passengers coming in contact with a confirmed H1N1 (swine flu) patient aboard a San Francisco-Hong Kong flight earlier this week.

While only one person reportedly hails from the city, two each from Haryana and Punjab were also on the same flight. Some other passengers were from Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh.

Health department’s Nodal Officer HC Gera said the entire family that includes four women and three children had been quarantined for a week in their Sector-30 house and their health profile was being constantly monitored. He said none of them had any symptoms of H1N1 (swine flu) infection.

"We have a team of doctors and paramedics who will examine these people daily and send the reports to the Health Ministry,” Gera said.

Meanwhile, sources in the health department reveal that the youth, who works as a project manager in a IT firm, had gone on an official trip to the USA in February and had returned on May 12 night.

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Senior Bindra referred to PGI
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Olympic gold medallist Abhinav Bindra’s father AS Bindra, who was hospitalised to GMCH-32 on Thursday after he complained of uneasiness and chest pain immediately after his arrest, was referred to the PGI today.

“He was kept under a 36-hour observation in the cardiac care unit of GMCH-32 after he reported the symptoms of tachy cardia but was referred to the PGI today due to constant complaint of discomfort and chest pain,” Dr Vipin Kaushal, medical superintendent, GMCH-32, said.

According to PGI doctors, he had been admitted to the hospital. His condition had shown no improvement hitherto.

“He is under observation of the cardiac department,” a doctor said.

Bindra was arrested after the metropolitan magistrate, Patiala House, Delhi, issued a non-bailable warrant against him, who was accused of cheating Apple Finance to the tune of Rs 4.31 crore and IndusInd Bank worth Rs 5 crore. The industrialist had defaulted in repaying loans and his cheques had bounced.

He is expected to be produced in Delhi’s Patiala House Court on Sunday before the 
expiry of transit remand.

The court has granted him transit remand till May 17. 

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Hry police to induct more men, patrol vehicles
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, May 16
Waking up to the unabated robberies in the town, the Haryana police has finally decided to strengthen its force by providing at least two companies of police force with patrol vehicles.

Superintendent of Police Amitabh Dhillon said the two companies of the police force comprising of 150 police personnel would be helpful for the police, which was facing staff crunch.

The police, however, was clueless about the dacoity at the State Bank of India in Sector 20 yesterday when four armed youths looted over Rs 11 lakh. We were working out on the CCTV grabs, as faces of some of them were visible, said DSP Varinder Singh.

SHO Karamvir said it was suspected that the accused were from Punjab. Their way of talking also left an impression that it was the work of some educated youths, he added. It was also revealed that the robbers had cut the wires of hooter from outside before entering the bank.

Meanwhile, the police has recovered a part of booty that was looted from PC Jewellers in January.

Manju, sister of Sunil, one of the members of the Badri gang who was involved in PC Jeweller’s robbery case, was also arrested, said the SP.

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Workshop on neonatal ventilation
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Experts yesterday stressed on the need for focused hands on workshops on neonatal ventilation, which formed an integral part of the intensive care of neonates at a four-day neonatal ventilation workshop, organised by the department of pediatrics, GMCH-32, in collaboration with AIIMS, New Delhi, and PGI, Chandigarh.

“It offers partial or complete mechanical support to neonates who cannot breathe effectively,” said Prof Raj Bahadur, director principal, GMCH-32, who inaugurated the workshop.

Prof Ashok Deorari from AIIMS introduced the delegates to the concept of neonatal ventilation.

Dr Praveen Kumar of PGI explained the basic facts about newborn ventilation. Prof Sushma Nangia from Lady Harding Medical College, New Delhi, explained the mechanism of transport of oxygen and carbon dioxide in the blood and dwelt on the interpretation of blood gas investigation.

Special topic of the day was continuous positive airway pressure, a method of supporting ventilation of neonates.

Resident doctors, teaching faculty and practitioners from all over the country, attended the workshop.

The four-day sessions will include participatory learning in mini-workshops, case discussions and demonstrations with emphasis on group work and problem solving.

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115 examined at eye check-up camp
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
A free eye check-up camp was organised for students of Government Primary School, Bapu Dham Colony, in collaboration with S Inderjit Singh Charitable Hospital here today.

Eye specialist Reena Sharma along with the team examined about 115 children. The doctors found that the children were suffering from seasonal infection (dryness), eye allergy, and colour deficiency. They were also administered free medicines.

An NRI medical practitioner, Dr BS Makkar, said majority of the children had low vision due to malnourishment. Dr Makkar stressed upon healthy diet and asked the children to take Vitamins A, C, and E on a daily basis. 

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Fake Certificate
Ludhiana girl likely to be debarred for 3 yrs
Sumedha Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
The Ludhiana-based girl, who was found guilty of producing a fake certificate in Panjab University around two months ago, may finally be debarred from the university for three years.

The matter on which PU dragged its feet for almost two months is all set to be taken up in the coming Syndicate meeting.

The matter came to light when the PU authorities detected a discrepancy in the marks certificate attached with the examination form submitted by the girl who was pursuing BA from the PU through distance learning.

While the certificate declared her pass in the first year according to PU records, she had not only failed to clear her main exams, but also failed in the reappear exams.

According to officials, the girl, who is believed to be a relative of a high-profile media professional, confessed of having procured the forged certificate from a computer centre for Rs 5,500.

Though at that time AK Bhandari, controller examination, PU, claimed to have done the needful by suspending the girl, in reality the authorities did 
not lodge an FIR and formed a committee once the matter was reported in the media.

It was after the filling of a delayed FIR that the committee is believed to have referred the matter to the Vice-Chancellor, who according to sources, decided to debar her for three years.

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GMCH notified as PGDMT study centre
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH), Sector 32, has been notified as a study centre for Postgraduate Diploma in Disability Management for Medical Practitioner (PGDMT).

According to information, the institute has been recognised as a centre to conduct this diploma course after ascertaining the availability of infrastructure and academic expertise for providing support services to the learners of the PGDMT.

Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) has recognised only 17 institutions for the course in the country. The diploma will be awarded by IGNOU and GMCH principal Prof Raj Bahadur will be in charge of this programme at Chandigarh. 

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Fancy dress contest at Mt. Carmel
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 16
Mount Carmel School, Sector 47-B, Chandigarh, organised an inter-house fancy dress competition today. The deputy general manager of Fortis Hospital, Mohali, Sunil Ganjoo, was the chief guest on the occasion.

The school principal administered an oath to the members of the cabinet. The members then sang the school anthem, ‘We are the mount Carmelites, we march on to greater heights ’.

Students from kindergarten onwards masqueraded as a press reporter, butterfly, spiderman, soldier, milk man, Bhagat Singh, Subhash Chander Bose, Rani of Jhansi, Mother Teresa, Shiv ji, Krishan ji and Gandhiji in the fancy dress competition. 

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