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Government Printing Press-18
City set to lose 59-yr-old legacy
Admn hands out ‘option forms’ to staff
GS Paul
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
If the Chandigarh administration has its ways, the 59-year-old landmark of Chandigarh — the Government Printing Press in Sector 18 — is soon going to lose its legacy.

The administration has distributed “option forms” to 420 press employees seeking their willingness to work in other departments of the administration. However, the employees, for whom the press has been more like a second home, are not happy with the proposal.

The forms were to be submitted by June 5 but not even a single filled-out form has been received by the administration so far. Nevertheless, the famous “Press Chowk” will, probably, lose its identity with this move.

Also, the press, which has been known more as a “working museum”, where printing machines from 50s to the latest ones are found in working order, will lose its sheen.

Finance Secretary Sanjay Kumar said the decision was the outcome of changing times and diminishing demand for printing work.

“Plans are there to establish a drug de-addiction centre in one part of the building. Besides, some other administrative wings may be shifted there. Yet all efforts will be made to protect the heritage status of the building,” he added.

Currently, offices of the State Transport Authority, the Excise and Taxation and the enforcement wing are running from the building.

Though the administration has specified that pay, allowances and other service benefits of the employees will be protected, the proposal seems to have been made in haste.

Neither has any technocrat associated with the Government Printing Press been taken into confidence nor has any work study ever been conducted to monitor the core activities of the press.

Ram Lal Paul, deputy controller, Government Press, while showing appreciation letters issued by administration for the performance of the press in the past, retorted: “I have not even been consulted before taking such a move. How can the administration on its own take the decision to shut down the press without going into its technicalities? Still sufficient printing jobs of different wings of the administration, schools, colleges are pending with us. Instead, we are in a dire need of more staff.”

The press caters to all UT government stationery, which includes gazette notifications, file covers, ballot papers, school and college stationery, stationery jobs of High Court, PGI, GMCH-32, GMSH-16, BBMB, CTU tickets, etc. at “very competitive rates”.

“A pack of 100 CTU tickets, which costs Rs 15 in a private press, is being supplied to the CTU for just 92 paise today,” said an employee.

The employees resented that the idea of filling out “option forms” too was “directionless”, as a majority of them were technical hands in printing field only.

“How can we opt for a department, when we hardly know the skill required for any particular job profile,” said Surinder Singh, an employee.

Bhupinder Singh, another employee, said: “All of us, including canteen staff, gardener and peons, besides technical staff have been asked to fill out the forms. Under what logic does the administration want to debar us all,” they question.

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First Person
We don’t care two hoots!
Ramanjit Singh Sidhu
Tribune News Service


Gurmit Singh narrating the incident to policemen; and (inset) ASI Kiran Kumar. Tribune photo: Parvesh Chauhan

Chandigarh, June 16
If one goes by the experience of a robbery victim with the city cops, witnessed “live” by this correspondent, the Chandigarh Police should think of modifying it’s slogan to “We don’t care two hoots”.

I was on my morning walk today at about 5.50 am when I spotted a police gypsy parked on the diving road of Sector 48-49. The crime reporter instinct in me instantly took me there and when I inquired from the police personnel, the “alcohol-reeking” breath of assistant sub-inspector Kiran Kumar was enough to indicate what was in store for semi-clad Gurmit Singh (I learnt the name later), a resident of Sector 66, Mohali.

While Kiran Kumar, whom I knew, tried to brush the incident aside by claiming that nothing had happened, inquiries from Gurmit revealed that he had been waylaid by six people, armed with sharp-edged weapons, who had robbed him of his mobile phone and Rs 500 in the wee hours of today.

“I had got down at Sector 48-49 traffic light point at about 2.45 am on my return from Hemkunt Sahib and was heading home when the miscreants followed me. They hit me with a stick on me head when I reached the deserted stretch between Sector 48-C and 49-D. They then stripped me and tied me with my clothes and snatched away my money and mobile phone,” said Gurmit.

“Not finding enough money, they forced me to give them the phone number of a relative. Scared, I gave them my brother-in-law’s landline number and they used my phone to call him up. They initially told him that I had met with an accident and needed money for my treatment. However, when my brother-in-law, Ranjit Singh, insisted on talking to me, they disconnected the line. However, a couple of minutes later, they again called him and told him that they had kidnapped me and wanted Rs 20,000 as a ransom,” he said.

Since Ranjit decided not to come, the miscreants dumped Gurmit in the bushes in a semi-nude state at about 3.30 am. After waiting for about 15 minutes, Gurmit freed himself and managed to reach the Sector 49 BSNL telephone exchange and called Ranjit.

As Gurmit narrated his harrowing experience to ASI Kiran Kumar, instead of helping him, he started browbeating him, saying that the story was cooked up and nothing had happened. Kumar had a strange logic for his inference that the victim had not raised an alarm, thus nothing had happened.

Surprised by his attitude, I called up the SSP, S.S. Shrivastava, and requested him to send some senior police official. While Kumar didn’t do anything, I asked Ranjit, who had reached there by then, to call on Gurmit’s mobile. He talked to the miscreants and even attempted to lure them, though unsuccessfully, to come to the spot, claming that he had brought the money. Even I talked to them, but ASI Kumar didn’t cared two hoots for what was happening.

At the instance of SSP, Sector 31 SHO Bhupinder Singh reached the spot and he too started making strange inquiries from Gurmit. “If you have come from Hemkunt Sahib, where is the prashad,” was the first question that he asked the victim, trying to show that he too didn’t believe his version.

As Gurmit offered to show him the prashad, the SHO changed track and asked his subordinate to record the victim’s statement. He also assured me that ASI Kumar would be medically examined, but as I expected, he was given a clean chit by the evening. Though the police claimed that he was medically examined at Sector 32, they had no independent witnesses to it.

I left the spot at about 6.30 am, thinking how insensitive these policemen are. No wonder, law-abiding residents still fear approaching the cops for help.

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Husband, in-laws held for dowry death
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
The police has arrested the husband of a newly-married woman and his parents in connection with the death of Jagdeep Kaur, who was found dead under mysterious circumstances at Maloya here this evening.

The police received information about a suicide at around 4:30 pm. The police party found the door of the room open and the body of the deceased, in her late twenties, covered with a ‘dupatta’, lying on the bed. Suspecting some foul play, the police sealed the room after taking the body into its custody.

The victim’s brother, Amandeep Singh, on whose complaint the police has registered a case of dowry death under Section 304-B of the IPC, alleged that his sister was being harassed for bringing insufficient dowry. He told the police that he had purchased a second-hand Maruti Zen car in recent past, following which his sister was being forced to bring more money and a car for her husband.

Acting on the complaint, the police arrested the victim’s husband Yadwinder Singh, her father-in-law Jaspinder Singh, mother-in-law Manjit Kaur, while her brother-in-law Paramjit Singh and sister-in-law Harpreet Kaur are still absconding. The victim’s parents alleged that the accused had strangled their daughter and tried to show it as a suicide. They claimed that the fan had no marks and the ‘dupatta’ with which the in-laws claimed she was found hanging, didn’t had creases.

The family also alleged that the accused first told them that Jagdeep had consumed poison, but later said she had hanged herself. SHO, Sector 39 police station, Janak Rana said the room would be examined by the experts from the Central Forensic Sciences Laboratory tomorrow.

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Nari Niketan Rape Case
Cops collect blood samples of nine employees
Anuja Jaiswal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
A day after claiming that the main accused in the Nari Niketan rape case had confessed to their crime, the UT cops went on a blood sample-collection spree today, taking specimens of at least nine male employees, including five from Aashray, the home for mentally challenged children in Sector 47, where the victim is staying presently.

Confirming the move, SSP S.S. Shrivastava said samples of four other employees of Nari Niketan have also been taken. DSP Kulwant Singh, who is heading the SIT formed to investigate the case, said the samples had been collected from five employees of Aashray, including a driver and attendants.

He revealed that they had decided to collect samples of the all the 17 male employees working at Nari Niketan and Aashray. While blood samples from nine were taken today, the remaining eight, who were former employees of Nari Niketan and transferred following the registration of the case, are yet to be traced.

Police officials claimed that since the case was “high profile” and under the scrutiny of the High Court, they were leaving nothing to chance. “We are collecting all the samples and will match them with the DNA of the foetus once the court decides on the MTP of the victim,” they said.

The move seems in contrast to the assertions made by the UT Police regarding the so-called confessions of the accused. It also lends credence to the theory that the police has yet not cracked the case and are depending entirely on the DNA test to catch the culprit.

Meanwhile, an expert panel of the PGI doctors, formed by the High Court, is yet to finalise its report regarding the MTP of the victim. However, Raj Rahul Garg, member-cum-coordinator of the expert body, in a recent direction to the Director-Principal, GMCH, Sector 32, has categorically stated that the MTP was not to be carried out as of now.

The June 11 directive states: “The expert body is required to answer several vital issues mentioned in the aforesaid order. I believe for answering the question, medical examination, including test of victim have to take place. For the time being her pregnancy is not to be terminated”.

Garg’s directive has handwritten noting in Hindi stating that “garbpat nahin hona hai. Aapne victim ka garbpath nahin karna hai. Apne victim ka garbpath nahin hone dena hain” (abortion is not to be conducted. You do not have to go in for abortion. You are not to allow the abortion).

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Dip In Excise Revenue
Authorities tighten up on liquor flow
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Mohali, June 16
Alarmed over the substantial dip in the sale of liquor in Mohali, particularly the areas bordering the UT, the Punjab Excise Department today cracked a whip against those bringing liquor from Chandigarh.

Since April this year, the vends in Mohali are reporting a loss of around Rs 3 lakh per day on account of liquor bottles being brought by individuals from Chandigarh. Due to a price difference of around Rs 50 per bottle, around 5,000 bottles are daily coming from Chandigarh to Mohali, said an official of the excise department. The department is not taking into account the liquor being smuggled into other parts of Punjab.

To cope with the checking, the district excise department today asked for additional police force and all the vehicles entering Mohali at different points were checked By the evening, a large number of liquor bottles were recovered.

However, a number of commuters complained of harassment. “I was travelling with my family and was asked to get my vehicle checked. Since I don’t drink, I felt harassed,” said Amardeep Sharma, a resident of Phase IX.

One of the liquor contractors Rishav Jain told The Tribune that all the contractors had jointly complained to the Punjab Excise Department about the loss of around Rs 1.5 crore suffered by them in the last two months due to the liquor coming from Chandigarh. Due to less excise duty and minimum retail price of economy, medium, regular and high premium brands, the liquor continues to be cheaper in Chandigarh. The increase in VAT by the UT has not brought down the prices. Different brands of beer are cheaper by around Rs 20 per bottle in Chandigarh.

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COMMUNITY

AIDS Awareness
NGOs fear working with high-risk groups
Chitleen K Sethi
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
The Punjab and Haryana AIDs control societies are reeling under the shortage of NGOs to work with high-risk groups. NGOs work in tandem with the state AIDs control societies to implement targeted intervention projects funded by the National AIDS Control Organisation.

While the NGO crunch is likely to bring down achievement targets set by NACO for these states, dearth of willing workers is also pushing these high-risk groups towards a point of no return.

“Despite the fact that the NGOs are well funded, only a handful of them are coming forward to work with female sex workers (FSWs), intravenous drug users (IDUs) and men having sex with men (MSM) groups, which have been listed as the high-risk groups for contracting HIV,” lamented Dr NM Sharma, additional project director Punjab state AIDS control society.

The main reason behind this is that NGO staff is not willing to work with these groups, which are considered to be on the other side of law and dangerous to work with. Deepika (28) (name changed) worked with an NGO in Haryana as part of an intervention project. Her work involved generating awareness among commercial sex workers about HIV. One day, she was shocked to receive an obscene phone call, wherein a man asked her that on what ‘price’ she would offer her ‘services.’ “The pimp who was also working with the project had given the NGO worker’s number to the client,” said Vinod, deputy director, intervention projects Haryana AIDS control society. Similar cases have been reported from Punjab, including one in which a counsellor working with an MSM group was asked to gratify some members!

“No body wants to go to places where drug addicts hang around. NGO workers are scared of being looted by them,” added Meenu, deputy director intervention projects Punjab AIDS control society.

“In districts like Sangrur, Nawashahar, Muktsar, Faridkot and Barnala, there is no NGO cover. We have been advertising for NGO recruitment several times but there is either no response or there is response from those who are not found suitable. In any case we have very little to choose from,” added Sharma.

“NGOs have no problems working with migrants and truckers which are considered safe to work with,” added Vinod. There are some other reasons too for the shortage of NGOs. “The peer educator is a member of the high-risk group and is embedded in the implementation process. But he is paid a paltry sum of Rs 1,500,” said an NGO director, adding that the AIDs control societies demand a lot of paperwork. “The only way out of such a shortage is train community- based organisations so that they can run their own NGOs,” said Vinod, adding that one such NGO was being run by a group of MSM in Panchkula.

In Haryana, 32 intervention projects are going on with no NGO cover in Sirsa. “We have been given 15 more projects,” said Vinod. In Punjab, 24 intervention projects are being implemented by 20 NGOs. Another six projects have been added this year.

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CITCO likely to open new hotel
GS Paul
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
The Chandigarh Industrial and Tourism Development Corporation (CITCO) is all set to open a new chapter in the hospitality sector in the city. With the administration approving an alternative site for shifting of CITCO's iron and steel store on two-acre plot on the Chandigarh-Ambala road in the Industrial Area here, the CITCO seems to have set the ball rolling for a new hotel.

This decision, among others, was taken in the board of directors’ meeting held here yesterday.

While confirming this, Home Secretary-cum- CITCO chairman, Ram Niwas, said the modalities were being finalised for the upcoming hotel. “It is yet to decide what kind of hotel would it be and under what policy matter it should be established. We are engaging a consultant for finalising the modalities.”

The administration has mooted a proposal recently to build a five-star hotel on the prime location and talks were on with major hotel chains, which included Hilton, ITC, Marriott and Radisson to explore the possibility of the private-public partnership for the project.

Nevertheless, the administration seems reluctant to unveil its strategy on this new project. “No decision has been taken hitherto about whether it would be a five-star hotel or a budget hotel under the PPP policy. It would be decided after weighing all pros and cons,” said Ram Niwas.

On the other hand, sources said the CITCO top brass had already held preliminary talks with major hotel chains for the project.

Besides, the entry of the Multi Naional Companies in Chandigarh was another factor for the major hospitality players evincing keen interest in the city.

“Given its strategic location on the Ambala-Chandigarh Highway, the private sector would definitely show interest in the proposal because of its proximity of the airport and railway station, an official said.

The DLF is constructing a five-star hotel in the IT Park while the Uppals are coming up with a five-star hotel in Sector 35 here.

In yet another decision, the directors approved the proposal of renovating Hotel Shivalikview at an estimated cost of Rs 875 lakh. In the proposed plan, besides creating a multi-purpose hall on the ground floor, a provision for creating three additional F and B outlets was also approved in addition to a health club, swimming pool and night club.

The board also approved the proposal for renovating two restaurants Rustle and Magic Wok in Hotel Mountview.

Meanwhile, in a damage control exercise, the CITCO management decided to defer the implementation of draft rules for recruitment and promotion policy, keeping in view the prevailing resentment among its employees. The newly framed draft rules, apparently, were beneficial for new appointees while overlooking the interests of the older employees.

The decision to implement new pay commission rules, too, has been put off because of financial implications.

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Welfare schemes for poor
Admn, commission officials discuss modalities
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
A meeting for laying ground for welfare schemes for economically backward classes of the UT was held between officials of the National Commission for Economically Backward Classes and the Chandigarh administration at the UT state guest house today.

The meeting was chaired by commission chairman SR Sinho. Sinho asked UT officials to submit a report incorporating all schemes undertaken by the administration, including centrally-sponsored schemes implemented, and their suggestions for any modifications.

He also mentioned that the report should have a set parameter for identifying economically backward classes (EBCs), reservation for EBCs in government jobs and educational institutes (higher/lower/technical levels), welfare measures and legal implications for the UT.

Giving presentation to the commission, Adviser to UT Administrator Pradip Mehra suggested that the system of providing subsidies in form of giving commodities like kerosene, food items should be terminated as only 10-20 per cent of the same reached the target and most of it is misused by middlemen. He suggested that the progress of the schemes should be scanned at regular intervals (monthly/weekly) in order to extend the benefits to the target group.

He added that there should be more programmes for skill upgrade of EBCs and self-help groups should be set up for marketing of goods manufactured by EBCs, so as to minimise their exploitation by middlemen.

Mehra further impressed that nationalised banks should provide easy loans to small entrepreneurs with low-cost of borrowing and reasonable rates of interest.

Home Secretary Ram Niwas elaborated the welfare schemes both initiated by the Chandigarh administration and those sponsored by the Centre in fields ranging from education, health, housing, pension to rehabilitation, etc. for the EBCs in the UT.

Finance Secretary Sanjay Kumar deliberated on the need for modifying the economic criteria laid for identifying EBCs in the UT.

He illustrated that the administration has been able to cater to the needs of various income groups residing in the city. He apprised the commission of provision of sewage lines, metalled roads, power supply and drinking water along with requisite education and public health services to all UT villages.

The other members of the commission present during the meeting were Narendra Kumar, member, Mahendra Singh, member-secretary, AK Shrivastava, joint secretary, MP Aggarwal, consultant, and PN Ram, senior resident officer.

Meanwhile, the commission members also called on UT Administrator SF Rodrigues.

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Swine Flu
Health dept steps up surveillance
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
In the wake of detection of H1N1 influenza cases in Punjab among students who recently visited the US, the UT health department has increased surveillance to counter any possible threat.

According to UT health officials, senior medical officers of all hospitals and dispensaries have been alerted to strengthen surveillance activity, especially on those who have recently returned from affected countries.

Fever screening of students was being done on a priority basis, said officials of health department.

In a communication, the UT health department has requested the DPI (schools) to provide a list of schools and students who have been sent abroad on educational tour or under educational exchange programme.

“There is no need to panic as sufficient anti-viral drugs are available with the department and isolation wards of the PGI, the GMCH-32 and the GMSH-16 are fully equipped with PPE, masks and other equipment to treat patients,” said Dr Manjit Singh Bains, director, health and family welfare, UT.

He added: “Instructions have been issued to the para-medical staff working in the field to keep a close watch on the symptoms of flu-like illness and bring such cases to the notice of the nearby dispensary. The situation is being reviewed and monitored constantly and steps are being taken accordingly.”

To create awareness among public, IEC materials about the symptoms of H1N1 influenza, in the form of posters were being supplied at all dispensaries and hospitals, Dr Bains said.

“Public is also advised to inform each and every case having symptoms of H1N1 or influenza to the notice of the health authorities at the nearby health facility so that timely and appropriate action is taken accordingly,” said Dr Bains.

For detailed information one can contact Nos. 102, 0172-2782457, (influenza cell) and 0172-2740408.

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Swine flu rumours at Zirakpur school
Tribune News Service

Zirakpur, June 16
A day after seven students of a Jalandhar-based school, who returned from the US, were tested positive for swine flu, there were rumours that five students of Dikshant International Public School, Zirakpur, who were also part of the NASA educational trip, had shown symptoms of the disease.

However, the school authorities categorically denied the reports, stating that the students were fine and none of them had the flu symptoms.

Dismissing the reports appearing on the certain TV channels, Mitul Dikshit, a senior official of the school, told The Tribune that the students were in Noida and would return by tomorrow evening. He said they were asked to fill a form and students were not in any hospital.

Five students of the school, three from Zirakpur and two from Panchkula, were part of the team. All students were of Class X, he added. 

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Tribune Impact
Jhuggis on govt land
Antecedents verified, 3 rounded up
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
Taking cognizance of a news report, “50 jhuggis come up on govt land”, published in these columns today, the Chandigarh administration swung into action and got rounded up three persons who were illegally occupying the government land in Sector 25.

A team led by Deputy Commissioner RK Rao scrutinised the credentials of all those who were building jhuggis on the government land adjacent to Bhaskar Colony.

Rao issued arrest warrants for further investigation after three persons were not found in administration records.

Those arrested have been identified as Satish Kumar, Dharam Pal and Amar Pal.

Rao said: “It was a serious issue. No one can do such a thing. We scrutinised the biometric survey list and those whose names were not there have been rounded up to ascertain how they attempted to indulge in the unlawful act.”

On illegal occupation of land by others, Rao clarified that though they had not sought the permission from the administration before building jhuggis there, they were in the biometric records.

“They shifted to that place on their own, which was wrong. However, their names are in the records,” he added.

After conducting biometric survey at the uprooted Kumhar Colony, Sector 25, the administration had established Bhaskar Colony with over 4,000 plots to accommodate them.

The plot owners had to pay back the cost of plot in shape of Rs 254 per month as installment for a period of 20 years.

Sources in the administration said the leftover Kumhar Colony residents occupied the land adjoining Bhaskar Colony with a view to be included in the rehabilitation scheme in the next phase.

It was found that in the garb of the make-shift arrangement, some unscrupulous elements had encroached upon the government land and started building jhuggis.

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Resentment within BJP
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
The local unit of the BJP is going the national way with resentment brewing among the party rank and file against the party leadership in the backdrop of the defeat of party candidate Satya Pal Jain in the recent Parliamentary elections.

Although there are no Yashwant Sinhas and Jaswant Singhs at the local level, who could call a spade a spade, voices of discontent are getting louder in the party set-up. However, the establishment seems to be resisting every attempt at the change of guard. Surprisingly, there had been no brainstorming about the reasons leading to Jain’s defeat, the second successive defeat, by a margin of nearly 59,000 at the hands of Union Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Pawan Bansal.

Whereas, various face-saving methods are reportedly being devised by the current party leadership. Among them is the creation of the post of the working president, which the leadership thinks, could infuse a new life in the party.

Insiders said various meetings, including one addressed by the Balbir Punj, BJP secretary and in charge of Chandigarh and Punjab affairs, have failed to pinpoint the reasons for party’s eroding mass base. In the normal course, heads would have rolled following the second successive defeat of the party candidate in the Lok Sabha elections. However, the party leadership seems to have perfected the art of sweeping the matter under the carpet. A senior leader said a revamp of the party was the need of the hour.

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24 in ‘Voice of Chandigarh’ final
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
For the celebrations on the eve of “World Music Day”, the Society for Tourism and Entertainment Promotion in Chandigarh, under the aegis of Chandigarh tourism department, held the auditions for “Voice of Chandigarh” competition at Government Museum and Art Gallery at Sector 10.

The audition got a good response from the residents as 75 candidates participated in the age categories of 10-18 years, 19-25 years and 26 years onwards.

In the preliminary round held today, 24 candidates were shortlisted for the semi-final round, to be held on June 18. The final selection of the candidates in the respective age-groups will be done at Sector 17 Plaza on the eve of World Music Day (June 20), where they will give live performance. The “Voice of Chandigarh” will be declared from them.

The panel of judges included music director Kanwar Iqbal Singh, Rani Balbir Kaur, Prof Reeta Gangadhar, head of music department, Home Science College, SD Sharma, art critic, The Tribune, and Geoff, from St. Stephens School, Sector 45.

The audition for the Chandigarh Orchestra/Band will be held on June 18 at Museum and Art Gallery. The top three bands will give live performance at the Sector 17 Plaza and the best band would be titled as “Chandigarh Band”.

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Mercury dips to 33.2 °C after rain
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
After receiving unscheduled rain, city residents enjoyed a pleasant weather today as the temperature dipped by six notches below normal to touch 33.2 °C.

According to the Met office, the minimum temperature also touched 20.2 °C, which was also below normal. The city received 9.8 mm of rain this morning. In many areas, the electricity was affected after the heavy rain.

The temperature remained below the 40 degrees mark for the third consecutive day today. The maximum temperature yesterday was 36.2 °C.

The Met department has forecasted partly cloudy weather with possibility of rains or thundershowers accompanied by thunder squall at some places tomorrow. The maximum temperature is expected to hover around 36 °C, while the minimum temperature will be 21 °C.

According to the Met director Chattar Singh, today’s rain was unscheduled and there was no indication of an early monsoon in the city this season. He said in the coming days, there would be further increase in temperature in the city.

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Contractual teachers stage protest
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
Around 252 contractual teachers of Chandigarh, who are working in various government schools, staged a protest against the Chandigarh administration policy of recruiting teachers.

They agitated that the department is appointing fresh teachers on regular basis rather than considering regularisation of the contractual employees.

The employees demanded that they should be regularised against the sanctioned posts of 536, which have been advertised. They also demanded release of enhanced salary of the contractual teachers along with the arrears.

Professor emeritus nominated

The management of Aryans Business School (ABS) has nominated Prof BB Tandon, a renowned economist and management expert, as professor emeritus.

This was announced today by chairman Anshu Kataria, Aryans Group, while interacting with the media. Prof BB Tandon said it gave him immense pleasure and pride to be a part of Aryans Group, which had done a commendable job of providing quality management education during the past two years.

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Rly Ticket Cost Share
Catering body seeks 20 pc hike
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
If the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) has its way, the Railway Ministry may have a tough time dividing the shares of the ticket fares between the railway authorities and IRCTC in the new Rail budget.

Reportedly, the IRCTC has suggested 20 per cent hike in its share in the ticket cost in Shatabdi, Rajdhani and other trains whose food and catering cost includes in the ticket charges itself.

Initially the share of IRCTC in the ticket fare was one-fourth, which means that if a passenger fare was Rs 400, the share of IRCTC for its catering service was earlier Rs 100.

Later its share was reduced by 25 per cent, which was Rs 75 to IRCTC and Rs 325 to the railway authorities.

This further caused the IRCTC to suggest the reversal of earlier decision and in addition to this they had reportedly demanded 20 per cent more hike in its share.

Meanwhile, officials are tightlipped on the issue. CRM Aneet Dulat has also refused to comment.

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Cancer camps from June 21
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
The Sahayta Cancer Sehyog, an NGO devoted to fighting cancer, will be organising free screening and mammography camps in the tricity from June 21 to 26 to coincide with the birth anniversary of the social activist and Sehyog’s founder president, Neelu Tulli.

The experts warned that urgent steps were required to check the rapid growth of the disease that threatened to assume epidemic proportions in the country, especially in southern district of Punjab during the next 15 years.

Media adviser to Punjab Chief Minister Harcharan Bains will be the chief guest on the opening day of the campaign.

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Office-bearers elected
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
The following have been elected as office-bearers of Guru Nanak Labour Welfare Committee, Sector 29-B. President-Ajaib Singh; vice-president-Wassan Singh; general secretary-Omkar Singh; vice general secretary-Darshan Lal; organising secretary-Harbans Singh and cashier-Gurpal Singh.

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EDUCATION
 

Promotion of Teachers
Education department bypasses norms
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
If the claims of the Coordination Committee of Teachers is anything to go by, then the UT education department has gone out of its way to promote the Sanskrit and Hindi teachers, thereby ignoring other categories belonging to the same-scale cadre.

As per the notifications issued by UT administration in 1989, though the teachers belonging to categories of Hindi, Sanskrit, Punjabi, art and craft and vocational ones, like librarians and tabla instructors, were re-designated as masters, but the lack of requisite BA and BEd degrees prohibited them from rising to the posts of headmasters.

However, according to sources, the department has handpicked a couple of teachers for promotion without framing a proper policy or amending rules for the categories of the same grade.

According to Harbir Singh Anand, convenor, Co-ordination Committee of Teachers, the act is nothing, but a clear extension of favours to some of the teachers.

“As per our information, many of the people being considered for promotions are not BEd. Can we have them as principals? If the department really wishes to work for the benefit of the teachers of this cadre, then it should make proper amendments and consider those who are more qualified and senior. Moreover, when we go by Punjab service rules, then any such amendment for a specific category is not acceptable,” he said.

“We all belong to same TGT grade, so if any amendment is made in rule, it should be made for everybody. If the department really wants to promote us, then why not those, who have in due course of time generated, requisite qualifications for the post of principal. They should frame a seniority list and then do it. They are just favouring a handful of them,” added one of the teachers.

Meanwhile, Samwartak Singh, DPI(S) could not be contacted for his comments.

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Class XI Admissions
Students face difficulty downloading forms
6,300 forms sold at 5 school centres
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
The students seeking admission in Class XI in government schools of Chandigarh are in a fix as how to apply for the admissions because as per the prospectus, the students could apply for admission by downloading the forms from the education department’s website. This is not easy for the students, who would like to download admission forms of Class XI from the Chandigarh education department website to apply for admissions in government schools. The forms are only available in a specific software, without which the students would not be able to download it from the website.

Students are complaining that when they try to download the form from the website, they are not able to open it as it is a very lengthy process and a specific software is needed for this. They said it would be better to get a hard copy from one of the schools rather than getting a soft copy downloaded from the website.

Meanwhile, on the first day, as many as 6,300 forms were sold at five centres of various schools. Some of the schools have even made arrangements for the counsellors to help the students to choose their streams.

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Govt College for Girls, Sector 42
College Admissions-2009
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
When all colleges are set to embrace new students, Government College for Girls, Sector 42, which embarked its journey in 1982, is constantly making an endeavour to impart quality education to fresh minds.

The college, which has courses ranging from humanities to science, also offers job-oriented subjects like Functional English, Functional Hindi, principal and practices of insurance.

Postgraduate diploma in Translation was introduced by the college in 2005-2006. C-TOSS, an information technology programme, in collaboration with SPIC Chandigarh and IT department is also on the list of courses.

With the commencement of academic session 2009-2010, courses like tourism and travel, environment auditing, bio-informatics and B Sc microbiology elective are slated to begin in the college.

The college says that well-equipped laboratories, computerised library and sprawling playgrounds can be congenial to the overall development of students.

Courses offered at Bachelors’ level

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