C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S

Power board cashier robbed of Rs 18 lakh
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, November 23
In a daring robbery, three miscreants took away Rs 18 lakh at gunpoint from the office of the electricity board in Industrial Area, Phase II, here today.

According to Superintendent of Police Manish Chaudhary, the robbery took place around 5.45 pm when Anil Kumar, cashier of the electricity board, was going towards the office of SDO SK Bali with a bag containing the day’s collection.

He was intercepted by two youths with muffled faces. One of them carrying a pistol snatched the bag and the two escaped in a white Maruti Zen driven by their third accomplice.

No security arrangements were made at the board office. Officials said cash was collected at the office and deposited with the SDO every day. The amount was taken to the bank the next morning.

Today, crusher owners had paid their electricity bills and the amount was a bit more, said an electricity official.

SP Manish Chaudhary, Sector 14 SHO Aman Kumar and CIA in-charge Kulbhushan reached the scene after the incident.

A team of forensic officials took samples and impression of tyres of the escape vehicle used in the crime.

The police suspects it to be the handiwork of a gang that had been active in the area since 2006.

Panchkula has remained a soft target for criminals primarily due to scarcity of adequate police force.

The district, with two national highways passing through and sharing borders with Punjab and Himachal Pradesh besides Chandigarh, has just over 700 police personnel.

A major chunk of the force is engaged in providing security to government officials and installations, in addition to looking after core policing and investigative work.

The newly appointed SP had joined his duty on Friday. Already, four major incidents of crime, including three thefts and one robbery at Kalka, have taken place since his joining.

Trail of Robberies

January 18, 2008: Three unidentified men rob cashier and driver of Berkeley Automobiles of Rs 5.16 lakh

March 7: Four turbaned youths driving a white Zen rob Rs 45,000 snatched from two employees of Vishal Mega Mart

July 27: Car-borne youths rob Rs 7 lakh from two persons near a petrol pump in Sector 4

January 3, 2009: Two youths try to snatch a cash bag from a businessman in Sector 14. His son receives a gunshot

January 4: Robbery bid at post office in Sector 8. Chowkidar found murdered the next day

January 22: Two workers of Amritsar-based jeweller drugged and robbed of jewellery worth Rs 30 lakh

January 27: Five robbers take away jewellery worth Rs 2 crore from PC Jewellers in Sector 14

February 12: Two youths rob Rs 9.57 lakh from State Bank of Patiala in Sector 15

March 28: Three youths try to rob a vendor of Vita booth in Sector 18, injuring shopkeeper Vinod Jain

April 25: Youths attempt to rob the family of Panchkula BJP chief Sham Lal Sachdev

May 15: Rs 11.5 lakh robbed from State Bank of India, Sector 20

June 4: Rs 12.5 lakh and jewellery robbed from advocate’s house in Sector 6.

June 29: Medicines worth Rs 12 robbed from godown in Industrial Area

August 12: Rs 25,000 robbed from a liquor vend in the Mansa Devi Complex area

August 16: Four youths in Maruti Zen rob Rs 2.5 lakh from a petrol station

October 13: Rs 9 lakh robbed from a gun house at Swastik Vihar



Swine flu, Chandigarh Carnival
Admn, schools’ body lock horns
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
The UT Administration and the Independent Schools Association seem to have locked horns over instructions issued by the former to combat the spread of swine flu.

Accusing the administration of double standards, the association has asserted that while the Administration asked them to postpone all their functions which would have got the gathering of only a few thousands, it itself is holding Chandigarh Carnival that will attract lakhs of people.

“The members have meticulously followed instructions but now with the Administration itself planning a big Carnival wherein 2 to 4 lakh people will participate, we are at sea as to what to make of the intent of the Administration. In the last week, so many colleges have had large shows with gatherings of a few thousands and it would seem that the Department of Health has a special immunity programme for college students,” said the association president HS Mamik.

The association members claimed that the present situation is that numerous schools have closed for a week or two, there is large absenteeism, and some children are faking a cough to be sent back from school, hence no serious study is taking place.

“We have deliberated on this problem and suggest that if colleges, Administration and others can have their functions, the schools should also be treated similarly. We have requested schools to adhere to the Administration-advised norms after taking into account the guidelines which are only advisory in nature and to take their considered action. We, therefore, feel that the schools should not be targeted and the entire city should be considered when passing directions. It is a pity that actions are being taken in undue haste and without coherent directions. Our earnest request is that the city is treated as a single community and also actions be taken for the entire city. As a matter of fact, the situation now is much different than the time when there were no medicines available to combat the flu,” Mamik added further.

Meanwhile, Home Secretary Ram Niwas rubbished all claims saying, “How can they call all this targeting schools? Swine flu is in Delhi also. Have they postponed trade fair or stopped metro? In schools, there is an element of compulsion. So many times parents force their ill kids to attend all functions, so a guideline was issued. We don’t close schools for us but only when things worsen. We had also shut the PEC, which was a college.”

Carnival to bestudent-free

Given the swine flu scare, the UT Administration has decided to keep Chandigarh Carnival student-free.

It’s the kids up to 16 years who are more vulnerable. So this time, we will not have any student escorts, bands, participants and even stalls. This is being done just to combat the possibility of spread of swine flu, informed Ram Niwas.



10-year jail for raping minor 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
A local court today sentenced a Ram Darbar resident, Suresh, to 10-year imprisonment for raping a minor, who later also gave birth his child.

Additional District and Sessions Judge RS Attri also directed him to pay a compensation of Rs 50,000 to the girl along with a fine of Rs 2,500. However the court acquitted his wife, Pushpa Devi, who was the co-accused in the case.

The incident took place on March 23, 2005, when Suresh noticed that his neighbour’s 17-year-old daughter was alone at home. He offered her ‘samosas’ laced with some intoxicant. When she fell unconscious, he raped her repeatedly. When the girl woke up, he threatened to kill her and her family members if she revealed anything to anyone. The incident came to light after she got pregnant.

When Suresh came to know about her pregnancy, he took his wife, Pushpa, into confidence and told her about the whole incident. They both took the victim to Pratapgarh in UP with an intention to get her foetus aborted.

However, as the pregnancy had reached an advanced stage, the abortion could not be done. They then brought her back to the city and the duo then shifted their residence.

By the time, the girl’s family knew about her pregnancy and they got an FIR lodged with the police. Later, the police arrested Suresh.



Marriage reception venue of Bikram Singh Majithia
GMADA detects illegal structure
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Seonk (Mohali), November 23
As preparations for the marriage reception of Bikramjit Singh Majithia, brother-in-law of Sukhbir Badal, are in full swing, an illegal structure being raised at the venue of the party here has caught the attention of the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA).

The regulatory branch of GMADA has found that the structure is in violation of the Periphery Act. It does not fulfil the criteria spelt out under the Periphery Policy by the Housing and Urban Development Department, Punjab. On the basis of a survey report, this violation has been detected.

Not only the Periphery Act, the construction activity also violates provisions of the Punjab Land Preservation Act, 1900. Forest officials visited the spot to stop levelling of earth, but political pressure prevailed upon them and no notice was issued to the owner of the farmhouse.

For providing adequate parking around the venue of the function, several hillocks have also been levelled.

Inquiry revealed that the owner of the farmhouse had applied for permission to allow a farmhouse. The same was rejected due to the laid-down guidelines. But the owner started raising the structure, attracting attention of GMADA officials.

A few months ago, a notice had been issued to the violator and again a fresh notice was being issued. None of the officials in the regulatory branch was ready to talk on the issue and were tight-lipped on the subject.

Meanwhile, official machinery is giving final touches to the venue where the reception is scheduled for November 25. Apart from repairing the existing link roads, at least two new roads have been built.



Sacred Heart closed for week
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
The management of Sacred Heart Senior Secondary School has decided to close the school till November 30 after a student of class IX was tested positive for swine flu.

In a release issued here today, the school said a few other students were also complaining of cough and cold. The school will remain closed till November 30 as a precautionary measure, the release said. However, the exams of classes X and XII would be conducted as per schedule, said the release.


CHB Sector 49-D Scheme
Allottees rue ‘faulty construction’
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
The Chandigarh Housing Board (CHB) continues to be embroiled in controversies.Close on the heels of allottees of the Sector 49-D crying hoarse over lack of civic amenities, the board has been charged with faulty construction by a section of the allottees.

In a development that may bring construction by the CHB under cloud, allottees of at least four flats (2850-A, 2850-B, 2849-C and 2864-B), in a written representation to the CHB, alleged poor quality of workmanship, bad quality of tiles and electrical fittings used in construction of the houses.

The representation alleged that as per the technical brochure, the doors and windows should have been sliding, whereas they were not.

Similarly, the vitrified tiles were not on the same plane and were broken, besides reverse sloping of tiles was causing waterlogging in the houses, they allegd.

The plasterwork is broken and repaired with big patches on walls. Rusted iron fittings and call bell, poor quality of switches and electrical fittings are other deficiencies in the construction, they added.

They complained that granite marble skirting was not on the same level in kitchen and tile work had not done in bathrooms behind the drain water pipe. All frames fitted for doors and windows are protruding out of the walls.

Cement tiles are broken and no cement had been put under the tiles in courtyards and in the open space, the representation added.

Demanding an inquiry into the poor quality of work, they alleged that the water connection pipes were leaking and water was not reaching the rooftop.

Reflecting poorly on the workmanship, all reinforcements of slabs are protruding out and have 
not been cut or covered properly.

The complainants alleged that they had been moving from pillar to post get their defects rectified, but to no avail.

The scheme seems to be mired in controversies from the very inception. Kicked off in 2005-06, the possession of flats under the self-financing schemes comprising 464 dwellings units - 208 two bedroom and 256 one bedroom flats - had been delayed.

The official deadline for possession was fixed for June 2008.

The delay in the possession had forced the allottees to move the District Consumer Dispute Redressal Forum, which had penalised the CHB for deficiency in 

Meanwhile, official sources claimed that the construction had been done as per the terms and conditions in the brochure.



Garbage plants a waste
MC fails to segregate garbage; Dadu Majra plant receiving waste from slaughterhouses
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

One of the garbage processing plants
One of the garbage processing plants. A Tribune photograph

Chandigarh, November 23
The Chandigarh administration has not been able to put in place the foolproof action plan for the utilisation of two garbage plants in the city, rendering them ineffective.

As per the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation plans, two plants were installed in the city, including the biomethanation gas plant at the Industrial Area, Phase I, with a capacity to dispose of three tonnes of animal waste per day, and the garbage processing plant at Dadu Majra for the disposal of domestic waste of the city.

Both the plants were set up considering that the MC would segregate the garbage at the level of “sehaj safai Kendras” and transport them to the concerned plants for processing.

The biomethanation gas plant, which was set up at a cost of Rs 44 lakh, was to handle the waste of slaughterhouses, hotels and meat markets. However, no attention was paid to segregate the waste of slaughterhouses, hotels and meat markets and its transportation to the plant. Most of the hotels and slaughterhouses were still sending their waste to the garbage processing plant at Dadu Majra.

The garbage processing plant at Dadu Majra, which was set up to process domestic garbage only, is receiving waste from hotels, vegetable markets and slaughter houses, which in the recent past had created problem of foul smell around the area.

Sources said that due to shortage of space in dumping ground, the authorities wanted to install a system through which they could process the garbage properly and lessen the land requirement. However, in the absence of segregation of garbage, the plant was receiving the garbage that could not be processed there. 



Cop challenges junior's promotion
CAT issues notice to DGP, Home Secy
Smriti Sharma Vasudeva
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
A division bench of the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) headed by Justice V K Bali has issued notice to the UT Home Secretary, the Director General of Police and others for December 22 on a petition filed by a woman sub-inspector of the UT Police, Harjit Kaur, presently on deputation with the CBI.

In the petition, she has sought promotion as inspector over and above her juniors after rectification of her seniority number as in the seniority list of sub-inspectors as circulated by the Home Department in November 2005. The division bench has further ordered that promotion of a junior sub-inspector, Gurmukh Singh, if done, would be subject to the decision of the petition filed by Harjit Kaur.

In her petition, she has contended that when she was appointed as an assistant sub-inspector in 1989 under the direct recruitment process, she was placed senior to her batch mates, Dilsher Singh and Gurmukh Singh, on the basis of their relative merit. While promoting them as sub-inspectors along with others in December 2003, again she was shown senior to Dilsher Singh and Gurmukh Singh.

In May 2004, she proceeded to Kosovo for her assignment at the UN Peace Keeping Mission and remained there till May 2005. In the meantime, in July 2004, the Chandigarh Police issued a tentative seniority list of sub-inspectors showing her junior to Dilsher and Gurmukh. However, the same was never conveyed to her since she was out of the country.

A final seniority list was prepared and circulated in November 2005 conveying the flawed seniority vis-à-vis her juniors. She had also given a representation for rectification of her seniority in the list on November 5, but it was turned down by the Director General of Police, UT.

On November 4, orders were passed to promote sub-inspector Dilsher Singh as inspector. Following this, Harjit Kaur has also contended that the post of inspector, falling vacant following retirement of inspector Sher Singh on November 30, 2009, should not filled by promoting her junior, Gurmukh Singh. 



Babla alleges victimisation 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
Congress councillor Devinder Singh Babla has raised an objection as to why the Chandigarh administration was not cancelling the allotments of mandi sheds if irregularities were found in them.

In a release issued here today, Babla said as the chairman of the market committee, he had no executive powers and he could only make his recommendations to the joint secretary, who further forwards them to the secretary and senior officers for final approval of the agenda.

He expressed surprise as to why no action was taken against officials till date for the wrong allotment of the sheds.

Objecting to the plea of the complainant, Suraj Prakash Ahuja, Babla stated after taking over as the chairman of the board, he had found that Ahuja was violating the norms that state that the licensee could not hold one common licence in the name of two shops, whereas Suraj Prakash held one common licence for shops no. 9 and 10.

He said when he made a complaint about it to the higher authorities, nobody cared to consider it and now he had become the compliant in the case.

Babla also objected to his being considering as absconding because he voluntary went to local police to join the investigation many times, but no one responded to his pleas.

He said it was strange that the administration had cancelled his arms licence, which he was holding for the past 23 years, without inquiring into the matter or serving him any notice.

Regarding his expulsion from the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation, he said he had already sought exemption from the house meeting under the Punjab Municipal Corporation Act. 



Market  associations to get awards
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
With a view to encourage the market welfare associations, the Chandigarh Beopar Mandal (CBM) has decided to institute certain awards for this festival season.

According to a press note, the awards would be given in the category of the best market award for outstanding maintenance of the upkeep and cleanliness of the market, including landscaping, market award for maintenance of systematic parking of vehicles in the market and the best market award for the maintenance of hassle-free and smooth pedestrian traffic in the market.

Besides, the CBM has decided to give away the award for excellence in trade to the traders on the basis of their performance in their respective fields.

TC Gupta, former IAS officer, and Krishanjit Singh, former UT chief engineer, have been appointed chairmen of different committees to decide the winners of the awards.

The award ceremony would be held at Hotel Taj on December 4. 



Botanical garden faces utter neglect
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
A garden set up two decades ago for the preservation of the city’s rich flora today lies in a state of utter neglect.Inaugurated in 1988, Smriti Upavana garden is located at the back of the Lake Club, near Sukhna lake. Its entrance bears the inscription “Vanaspatic Garden (Botanical Garden), UT”, but its condition presents a contrasting story.

The foundation panel, laid to mark the birth centenary celebrations of Pt Jawahar Lal Nehru, has been worn out that it cannot be read.

An adjoining tank, which has a beautiful fish-mouth sculpture, too lies in shambles, with villagers using the exterior of the garden space for easing themselves.

Ever since the garden was inaugurated by then Governor of Punjab S.S. Ray, who planted the first sapling of a banyan tree here, its condition has gone from bad to worse.

In 1991, the 200-acre land, upon which the garden stands, was declared a reserve forest and brought under the Wildlife Protection Act, 1962.

But today this garden is all about thorns, wild grass, damaged tiles and a smudged foundation panel that bears unsavoury remarks inscribed by love loons. 



First Decision
AFT directs revision of Brigadier’s pension
Vijay Mohan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
Within a week of being established, the Chandigarh Bench of the Armed Forces Tribunal (AFT) today disposed of the first case that came up before it, with directions to the government for revising the pension of a Brigadier in accordance with new scales.

The petitioner, Brig Raghu Kapoor, was getting pension at old rates that already stood abolished. Consequently, according to him, his retrial benefits amounting to over Rs 20 lakh were held up.

Acting upon the petition (OA-1 of 2009), the AFT Bench comprising Justice Ghanshyam Prashad and Lieut-Gen NS Brar directed the Central Government as well as the Principal Controller of Defence Accounts (Pensions) to undertake the necessary revisions within three months. The Bench also directed that a compliance report be forwarded to it for its information.

Brigadier Kapoor had contended that at the time of his retirement, he was drawing emoluments in accordance with the scales laid down by the Sixth Pay Commission. His pension, however, was fixed as per the old Fifth Pay Commission rates. According to the petition, he was supposed to draw a basic pension of Rs 34,000 per month, but was getting just Rs 16,000. This has also affected his gratuity, pension arrears and commutation value.

He said though about a year had lapsed since the new scales were brought into effect and he had retired a few months after the said notification was issued, his pension was fixed incorrectly. He had taken up the matter with the authorities concerned, both personally and through the Department of Sainik Welfare, Punjab, but no action was taken.

In fact, armed forces personnel who had retired during the period when the Fifth Pay Commission rates were in vogue have already been placed on the Sixth Pay Commission rates. 



Dance spectacle by differently abled
SD Sharma

Chandigarh, November 23
“Shaakhon se tuut jayen, voh patte nahin hein ham; aandhi se koyee kehde, ke aukaat mein rhe….” Such indomitable spirit, resolute resolve and volcanic courage found its true reflection in all eight dancing marvels on wheelchairs presented by 17 differently abled young artistes at the Tagore Theatre here today.

The audience burst into lofty applause for every aesthetic statement they made on the stage much to the wonder and delight of the audience. The presence of their mentor, guru and director-choreographer Syed Sallauddin Pasha was discernible at every movement in the programme tiled, “Limitless Potential”, a production of the Ability Unlimited, New Delhi, presented under the aegis of Educomp Smart Class.

The programme commenced with Durga, the Goddess of power engaged in a fight and killing demon Mahishasur, in which the dancers used the delicately nuance masked dance form of Purulia chhau.

The romantic fervour filled the stage as the accomplished dancers, including four hearing impaired female artistes, bringing alive the grandeur of Bharatnatyam in complex mudras. The next Bhagwat Gita saw Lord Krishna giving the divine sermon to Arjuna.

The audience relished “Yoga on wheels”, as dancers demonstrated yoga aasans with consummate ease. Each item that followed amazed the audience, especially the martial arts on wheels, in which the dancers indulged in fight with swords in an electrifying speed.

The action packed thrill was transformed into the Sufi dance on wheels to AR Rehman spiritual classic “Kwaja mere Khwaja” submerging the audience in devotion.

Yet again AR Rehman’s, “Jai ho”, inspired the dancers and audience to revel in the patriotic fervour, which got augmented with the concluding “Vande Matram” evoking love for motherland. The intrusive audience gave standing ovation to director Pasha and his artistes.



100 attend national integration camp
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
Punjab and Haryana High Court Justice Iqbal Singh said the youth constituted the foundation of nation and their energy must be used for productive purposes.

While inaugurating the seven-day national integration camp organised by the Chandigarh Yuvak Kendra here today, he appreciated the work done by the kendra in providing opportunities to the youth by way of cultural exchanges and offering them new avenues of learning.

The camp is being attended by about 100 participants from seven states of Haryana, Punjab, Karnataka, Rajasthan, Jharkhand, Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and the Union Territory of Chandigarh.



HUDA to repair two key roads
Tribune News Service

Potholes dot the road separating Sectors 9 and 19 in Panchkula.
Potholes dot the road separating Sectors 9 and 19 in Panchkula. Tribune photo: Nitin Mittal

Panchkula, November 23
Residents can expect a little respite from bumpy ride with the Haryana Urban Development Authority deciding to repair two major roads in the town.

The work on road from Housing Board chowk going through Sectors 8/17, 9/16/10/15, 11/14 12/12A and one dividing Sectors 14 and 15 would be started this week.

The two roads had been dotted with potholes and had been witness to several accidents involving two-wheelers owing to potholes.

Many resident welfare associations had submitted several representations to HUDA as well the district administration seeking repair of the roads.

Senior Citizen Welfare Association president SK Nayyar, a resident of Sector 15, said the two roads were a bane of motorists as it was an ordeal for them to take the roads.

SDO Huda Ram Singh said the roads were repaired by the municipal council five years ago and it was for the first time that HUDA would carry out repairs on the roads after their transfer to it recently.

The work on the roads would start this week and it would take at least four months to finish the job. A sum of Rs 9 crore would be spent on the repair work, he added.



Rollback in hike sought
Our Correspondent

Mohali, November 23
The Consumers Protection Federation has appealed to the Punjab Chief Minister to fulfil the commitment made by him regarding power tariff and order a refund of extra amount collected from consumers.

President PS Virdi welcomed the statement of former minister Balramji Dass Tandon through which he had asked Parkash Singh Badal to fulfil the promise made on September 20 of reversing the decision on power tariff hike.

He said the common man was finding it difficult to make both ends meet as the prices of essential commodities had drastically gone up and hike in power tariff would put an additional burden on them.

Virdi condemned the working of the electricity regulatory commission, which was proving to be anti-consumer.

He demanded that the commission should be scrapped so that lakhs of rupees being wasted on it could be saved.



Forum celebrates raising day

Zirakpur, November 23
The Senior Citizens’ Forum organised its second raising day on the campus of GS Memorial Senior Secondary School yesterday.

MLA Jasjit Singh Bunny was the chief guest. MC Paramjit Kaur Sodhi and Jagtar Singh Sodhi were also present. The chief guest released a directory of the forum members. — TNS



Zirakpur traffic lights in disrepair
Rajiv Bhatia

Vehicles stranded in a traffic jam owing to non-functional traffic lights at an intersection in Zirakpur
Vehicles stranded in a traffic jam owing to non-functional traffic lights at an intersection in Zirakpur. Tribune photo: Nitin Mittal

Zirakpur, November 23
Traffic lights installed at various intersections here have been out of order for some time, causing long traffic jams on the highways.Traffic lights at all three traffic intersections here have not been working, leading to inconvenience to motorists.

In the absence of traffic lights, motorists have to face difficulty crossing the intersection. Daily commuters said the authorities concerned should take the matter seriously and ensure the repair of the traffic lights on a priority basis.

Amardeep Singh, a resident of Dera Bassi, said: “Traffic snarl-ups are commonplace at the intersections due to the non-functional traffic lights.”

“In spite of paying toll on the highway, the authorities concerned have failed to give facilities to motorists,” he said.

Another commuter asserted that policemen present at the intersections were often seen talking on their mobile phones and failed to carry out their duty properly.

The DSP (traffic) said: “We have written to the NHAI officials many a time to ensure proper working of the lights but nothing had been done so far.”

On the other hand, NHAI officials claimed the the traffic lights would be made functional in a couple of days.



Martyrdom Day of Guru Tegh Bahadur today
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
Gurdwara Sri Mukatsar Sahib on Panjab University campus here will observe the Martyrdom Day of Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur on November 24 with religious fervour.

According to a press release, Prof AS Aahluwalia, president of Gurdwara Sahib, said Bhai Harinderpal Singh would recite gurbani kirtan while Bhai Amarjit Singh would deliver a discourse on the teachings of Guru Tegh Bahadur. Langar would also be served during the day, he added.



Fashion show to raise charity
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
The Rotract Club of MCM DAV College for Women, Sector 36, organised a fashion show, the Rotract princess contest.The motive behind holding the show was collecting funds for cure of cancer patients and for treatment of the differently abled children of SOREM, Sector 36, an institute for autistic and mentally challenged children.

Keshari Anand Arora, Financial Commissioner and Principal Secretary, Haryana, was the chief guest.

Coordinator of Rotract Club, Alka Kansara, along with MCM Rotract president Astha Sharma handed over the donation cheques of Rs 40,000 and Rs 10,000 to SOREM and Sahayta Cancer Sahyog, respectively.

Apart from the modelling rounds for the Rotract princess, the club volunteers also put up a dance performance based on patriotic numbers and bhangra.



Listed criminals involved in organised crimes
Ramanjit Singh Sidhu
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
A majority of the listed criminals in the city are involved in organised crimes like drug-peddling, liquor-trafficking, gambling, thefts and burglaries. The Chandigarh police has 137 criminals, including 13 women, who are facing several criminals cases and are known as bad characters in police jargon.

Women criminals are mostly involved in drug-trafficking, bootlegging and burglaries. One of the listed criminals Shanti of Sector 22-C has been facing six cases under provisions of the Excise Act.

A perusal of the record of history-sheeters obtained by The Tribune reveals that the Sector 39 police station has 35 criminals listed as bad characters, while the Sector 19 police station has only one. The colonies in Maloya, Dadu Majra Colony and Palsora, under the jurisdiction of the Sector 39 police station, are inhabited by drug-peddlers and liquor-traffickers, said a police official.

As per police record, a large number of notorious criminals are involved in the illegal sale of liquor. The practice is very much common in slums of the city, where bootleggers sell liquor in small quantities to make money.

There are 38 persons in the police record, who are involved in liquor-trafficking, 33 in thefts, 22 in burglaries, 16 in gambling, 14 in drug-peddling and six persons in robberies.

Explaining the system, a senior polcie official said a person who is booked in at least three criminal cases is listed as “bad character” in the register number 10 of the police. There are three categories of the listed criminals A, B and C. Those involved in serious activities are included in bundle A. After they show improvement in their behaviour, they are shifted to bundle B and then to C. The listed criminals are directed by the station house officer of the police station concerned to present himself before the police at regular intervals.

Out of the 137 criminals, 107 are put in category A and only 30 are in B category. As per the police record, 79 criminals were present or lodged in jails, while 19 criminals are shown as absent. Some of the police stations had not given the status of their listed criminals.

Surprisingly though the police has arrested several persons who were reportedly involved in snatchings, which is a very “routine” crime in the city, the police has only one history-sheeter, Rishi Deep of Sector 52.

The police said it is the responsibility of the police station concerned of the area to take the history-sheeter under its surveillance and keep a tab on his activities.



Class X Exams
Board for open school system
Our Correspondent

Mohali, November 23
As the Punjab School Education Board has decided to adopt a new model of education based on the CBSE pattern in order to make its system more appreciable, students appearing in the board examinations will be facing a tough time once the new system gets introduced from the next academic session.

Thousands of students who appeared in the matriculation and senior secondary examinations privately will have to appear in the two examinations through open school system or will have to opt distant education after the education board introduced semester system from the coming session.

While addressing a press conference here today, Dr Dalbir Singh Dhillon, chairman of the board, said the board was aiming at strengthening the distance education system on the lines of national open school system.

Divulging the future plan of the board, Dhillon said for the development of Punjabi, the syllabi was being modernised and a meeting of top academicians and literary personalities was being held to discuss changes.

He said mathematics, science and English had been made compulsory to equip the Class X students with all-round knowledge. 



Syndicate to discuss extension to PU Registrar, DUI
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 23
After taking on the powers of Vice-Chancellor in his absence and signing three contentious files, questions are being raised regarding the extension to Dean University Instructions (DUI), SC Vaidya.

The resentment expressed by the who’s who of the university on the issue hints that the issue of extensions to both the DUI and Registrar is expected to be cancelled in the Syndicate meeting on November 30.

When asked about the over stepping of powers of VC by the DUI, the syndicate members said it was a “serious lapse”.

“The matter should have been brought to Vice-Chancellor’s notice when he returned. The matter was also raised in the last Syndicate meeting. It is an irregularity,” said GK Chathrath, a syndicate member.

A Syndicate member Prabhjeet Singh, who was also a part of the probe committee in the controversial case of exemption been given to a PhD candidate, opined: “It is Vice-Chancellor’s responsibility to bring the matter in writing to the Syndicate. It is a serious lapse on part of the university. If one important functionary is on leave, it does not mean someone else will exercise the powers,” he added.

Meanwhile, when asked by the president of Panjab University Teachers Association, Prof Manjit Singh, about the PUTA’s stand, he said it was evident from such cases that the administration needed to be re-vamped.

“The DUI has overstepped Vice-Chancellor’s authority,” said Gurdeep Sharma, a Syndicate member.

“There is no excuse why the cases should not have followed the proper route. The matter should have been brought to the Vice-Chancellor’s notice,” said Kuldeep Singh.

“Unless the matter is brought to us in writing or some findings of any committee is placed before the Syndicate, it may not be appropriate to make any comment,” said Ashok Goyal.



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