C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


UT challenges St John’s minority status
Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 7
The ongoing tussle for autonomy between officials of St John’s High School, Chandigarh and the UT administration intensified with the latter challenging the minority status granted to the school three years ago before the National Commission for Minority Educational Institutions (NCMEI).

The administration made the move as part of the ongoing proceedings in the case involving obscenity charges against Michaelangelo Francis, an arts teacher at the school. The case has been before NCMEI since November last year. On the last hearing on April 15 the school had refuted allegations made against it and its teacher by the administration after parents of two students accused the school of “promoting cybercrime”.

St John’s High School in turn accused the UT administration of violating article 30 of the Indian constitution by interfering in the affairs of a minority institution. It claimed an independent probe into the allegations by a former chief justice of the Allahabad high court, SS Sodhi (retired), had cleared the teacher of all charges.

In its rebuttal (to the stand taken by St John’s High School on April 15) filed before NCMEI on June 4, the administration cited government guidelines to seek withdrawal of minority educational institution status to the school, holding the school did not fulfill a critical criterion required to be treated as one.

“The complainant school doesn’t fulfill one of the three conditions required to be proved for grant of minority status to an educational institution as per government guidelines for determination of minority status recognition, affiliation and related matters in respect of minority institutions under the constitution. The school’s memorandum of association nowhere mentions among the objectives the welfare or benefit of the minority community. Moreover, the school, by its admission, has reserved only five per cent of seats for the students belonging to the Christian minority and therefore does not deserve to be a minority educational institution. The said status is therefore liable to be withdrawn,” the UT administration stated in its reply (a copy of which is with The Tribune).

The three conditions the administration has referred to include: The institution in question should have been established by a member or members of the religious minority community; the institution should be administered by the minority community; and, the institution should have been established for the benefit of the minority community. It is the last requirement that the UT administration claims St John’s High School does not fulfill.

Although district education officer Chanchal Singh, when contacted by The Tribune today, denied comments on the development, saying the matter was sub judice, counsel for the UT administration Amit Sharma confirmed the same. The latter told TNS that the administration had all the documents required to challenge the minority status that St John’s enjoys.

The next hearing in the case has been fixed for June 9.

With its rebuttal, the administration has attached two documents - the school’s application for minority status certificate where a declaration dated August 28, 2006 says the school has 5 per cent reservation for minority students; and the memorandum of association of the Congregation of Christian Brothers in India, which does not mention the fact that the school was established for the welfare of students of the Christian community.

The memorandum mentions the following objectives for the said society - “the society is established for the promotion of literature, science and fine arts; promotion and spread of education and all other charitable purposes, including establishment and management of schools, colleges, orphanages and technical school and holding in trust the property and money for the use of said objectives”.

“When the society that established the school does not even mention welfare of minorities anywhere among its objectives and the school has just 5 per cent minority students, how can it enjoy minority status? We are seeking withdrawal of that status,” Sharma said. St John’s High School was granted minority status on March 8, 2007.

School principal declines comment

When contacted today, St John’s High School principal Kavita Das said she had no knowledge of the fact that the UT administration had challenged its minority status. “We’re a minority educational institution and I really don’t know on what grounds the administration has challenged our status. We’ll be able to comment on the matter only after we get a copy of the rebuttal that the UT administration has filed before NCMEI,” she told TNS.


MHA seeks all Parsavnath papers
Smriti Sharma Vasudeva
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 7
In a major development, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has sought all documents, factsheets and records pertaining to the MoU signed between realtor Parsavnath and the Chandigarh Housing Board (CHB) for the Prideasia project, which was to be developed at the Rajiv Gandhi Information Technology Park here.

The MHA has sent a questionnaire to the board for the purpose. It has also sought all detailed records of subsequent paper work related to the turn of events following the signing of the MoU.

For this purpose, CHB officials have been burning the midnight oil for the last five days to retrieve and reorganise old records pertaining to the failed deal. The Central Bureau of Investigation had earlier taken away a set of records for scrutiny.

The CHB had signed a MoU with Parsavnath for a housing-cum-commercial project near the Information Technology Park in 2006 on 123 acres under a public-private partnership scheme, but it ran into rough weather even before it could be implemented.

The project was supposed to be completed within a three-year timeframe, but neither was it completed, nor was the remaining amount paid by the builders to the CHB.

Consequently, arbitrators were appointed and since January, they had held a series of meetings which, however, failed to yield any resolution.

The CHB had sought a compensation of Rs 2,800 crore from the realtor while the latter had sought a compensation of Rs 1,300 crore.

A few months back, the CHB and the builders had appointed Justice DP Wadhwa and Justice Amar Dutt as their respective arbitrators to sort out the matter. By agreement, the board and Parsavnath had appointed Justice SC Aggarwal as the common arbitrator.

A recent MHA audit report had specifically objected to the provision of this land, comprising 123 acres, to the realtor, which was allotted at near-throwaway prices for this scheme.

Only last month, Arun Ramachandran, a retired IAS officer appointed by the Ministry of Home Affairs, along with DR Bhalla, another retired IAS officer, visited the city in connection with the UT administration’s reply to the MHA audit report pertaining to mega-projects.

They had questioned a host of former UT administration officials, including CHB Chairman Mohanjit Singh, former Adviser Lalit Sharma, former Home Secretary Krishna Mohan and former Information Technology Director Vivek Atray.



Owners stand up for their ‘kids’
Smriti Sharma Vasudeva
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 7
Pet lovers of the city have rubbished the UT administration’s just-issued Chandigarh Registration of Pet Dogs bylaws as a draconian law which curtails their right to live.Claiming that there are more serious issues that the administrations needs to immediately attend to, pet lovers say the administration has instead chosen to harass dog lovers, who take care of and love their pets as their children.

Says Dr NP Pathak, a retired Deputy Director of Punjab’s department of animal husbandry residing in Sector 23, who owns six dogs, “This is the worst-ever decision taken by the administration and reflects a bias against pet lovers. There are nine lakh vehicles for a population of 11 lakh. There is no space to walk and passages have been encroached upon by those who sell wares on the streets. The administration is bothered about pet dogs, which are vaccinated and harmless, but not about thousands of stray dogs, which it has failed to take care of.”

Says Chandigarh Kennel Club secretary and Sector-35 resident HS Aulakh, who owns eight dogs, “These bylaws are useless. The UT administration is only trying to distract public attention from its failure in curbing the menace of increasing stray dogs in the city. What about the increasing population of migrant labourers and the number of four-wheelers per family? Are these not more serious problems to be taken up on a priority basis? We are seeking legal advice on this.”

Says Sangeeta Vardhan of Sector 7, now left with a dog and a cat, “These rules are like Tughlaqi rulings. As far as the defecating part is concerned, it is good that the administration is making the owner more responsible. But what about stray dogs, which can defecate anywhere? We have 26 stray dogs in our lane alone. It will be worth seeing how the UT administration imposes these rules when thousands of stray dogs are roaming freely on the streets.”

What Dog Bylaws Say

l A family can keep upto two dogs

l Lifelong registration for all dogs above four months

l Registration form to submitted to registration authority appointed by MC Commissioner

l Registered dog straying at large to be seized and kept at a place for the purpose

l Breeding for commercial purposes and trading of dogs within MC areas not permitted

l Carcass cannot be thrown in the open or in garbage bins, but has to be buried at places notified

l MC to provide van for disposal at burial grounds and owner to pay for service

l Owner to be fined for violation and dog registration to be cancelled on third offence in year



Science set to get more experimental
Sumedha Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 7
Having woken up to the “over theoretic” nature of the way science subjects are being taught in classes X and XII, the Central Board Of Secondary Education (CBSE) is all set to revamp it.

In what may prove to be a revolutionary step the board is mulling over reducing a large number of theory topics in science papers of CBSE classes in addition to increasing the weightage (proportion of marks) of lab and project work.

The board will not only chop off several bulky chapters but will also reduce the weightage of the theory paper, which is currently valued at 60 out of 100 marks. Instead the number of experiments required to be conducted by students will be increased. From class IX onwards they will compulsorily have to do lab work and related projects for every topic taught.

“Science is a dynamic stream and needs reviewing every now and then. We want more and more students to develop a penchant to do research in the pure sciences. This can only be possible if they move away from learning by rote to knowing the reasons behind each scientific theory through experiments and projects. It’s possible we might go in for fifty-fifty division of marks between theory and lab work”, said Rama Sharma, CBSE spokesperson from Delhi.

Interestingly the decision has been taken after analyzing this year’ s board results, which indicated a large number of students are unable to perform at their optimum level in science and move away from the stream because of faulty orientation.

The board has recently deleted a large number of topics from the class IX and X syllabus. It had even introduced a written test based on lab work to ensure students actually worked in labs.



10,000 forms sold on Day One
Tribune News Service

Mohali, June 7
The day one of the formal launch of Aerocity, a housing project by GMADA, witnessed an overwhelming response with about 10,000 forms being sold by various branches of banks in the tri-city and in other cities. The authority is offering 4,000 residential plots, ranging between 125 sq yard (5 marlas) and 500 sq yard (1 kanal).

Cashing on the strategic location of the housing project in the vicinity of the upcoming international airport, GMADA is eyeing prospective NRIs who wish to own property close to the international airport.

Estate officer Balbir Singh said: “We expect to sell 1 lakh forms. We are receiving queries from not only other cities, but also from people aboard.”

Priced at Rs 200 each, GMADA expects to earn Rs 2 crore from the sale of forms alone. Being described as the largest housing project launched by any government agency in the last decade, Aerocity is set to give the housing projects by private realtors in the area a run for their money. The scheme is scheduled to close on July 6.

The urban estate has been carved out on both sides of a 200-ft wide road that would provide a direct link with the upcoming airport and the Chandigarh-Patiala road at Chatt village.

Under the scheme, plots would be allotted on a freehold basis at Rs 12,000 per sq yard (Rs 3 lakh per marla).

The prevailing market rates range between Rs 20,000 per sq yard and Rs 25,000 per sq yard depending on the location.

Expecting a good response, GMADA has so far got 50,000 application forms published, with a print order for another 30,000 in the pipeline.


Amendment in names of govt colleges
Got no info from PU: Admn
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 7
Even as the common prospectus for all government colleges was released today, it is uncertain whether the final authority to decide the names of government colleges is Panjab University or the UT education department.

While the UT administration claims that it did not receive any communication from the PU regarding any alteration in names during the senate meeting held on April 4, 2010, PU on the other hand has chosen to keep mum about the issue.

“We were not informed about any such alteration in names. The names proposed by the UT administration are also being used by the University Grants Commission in matters concerning the respective colleges,” said Ajoy Sharma, Director Higher Education (DHE), UT administration.

Although PU is the final authority as far as academic issues related to the government colleges are concerned, the UT administration, on the other hand, is accountable for all administrative matters.

After the issue was brought to light, the UT administration claimed that it never sought PU senate’s permission regarding the nomenclature of colleges and instead had informed the university that it had already modified the names by adding a postgraduate tag.

The astonishing fact is that the matter reached the governing body of university, the senate and before that was even passed by the PU Syndicate without any coordination with the UT administration.

When contacted, PU Vice-Chancellor RC Sobti said he had no comments on the issue and the registrar was the one to talk to. Attempts to contact PU registrar SS Bari failed, as he did not answer the calls.

PU senate has resolved to alter the names of Government College for Girls, Sector 11 and Sector 42, and Government College, Sector 46, to Government Post Graduate College for Girls, Sector 11 and 42, and Government Post Graduate College, Sector 46, respectively. The names proposed by the UT administration had “postgraduate” as a prefix and the same was carried in the prospectus released today.

Meanwhile, DHE, UT administration, said, “We will discuss the issue with the Panjab University authorities and sort out the matter,” said Sharma. 



Special PU panel on traffic chaos
In hostel, may have to forget vehicle
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 7
A special committee, constituted to suggest ways to regulate vehicular traffic on the Panjab University campus, has suggested that students residing in hostels should not be allowed to bring their vehicles on the campus.

The committee, which was headed by Panjab University Teachers Union (PUTA) president Manjit Singh, has mentioned in its report that the university prospectus must possess information regarding the same.

The suggestions, made in a meeting held on May 25, 2010, have now been forwarded to PU Vice-Chancellor RC Sobti who will take a final call on the matter. Notably, none of the student representatives attended the meeting, although their names were recommended in the committee formed by the authorities.

In addition, the committee also recommended that the university teachers and non-teaching employees residing on the campus should follow the suggestion and set an example.

The committee, in its report, stated that a separate parking must be earmarked for outsiders and they must be charged a parking fee as well.

Additionally, the committee said the university must start a free shuttle service between Sector 14 and Sector 25.

It was recommended that a multi-level parking must be considered as a long-term proposal and the unused parking lots of the university must be identified and used. The committee also argued for separate parking lots for teaching and non-teaching staff of the university. 



Preference list of students applying for admissions
Common prospectus

UT Higher education department released a joint common prospectus for all city government colleges and Regional Institute of English, Sector 32, today. The cost of prospectus is Rs 80, which includes two forms for new students. The old students need not buy the entire prospectus but have to pay Rs 5 for one loose form. The form can also be downloaded from the UT administration’s website www.chandigarh.gov.in <http://www.chandigarh.gov.in> and websites of the respective institutions. Centralised admission to BCom will be held as per the Panjab University admission notification and that for BBA and BCA would be done by the department of higher education (details yet to be advertised). For the first time, content and job prospects have been included in the prospectus which will help students decide the subjects they want to choose. All other details concerning number of seats available for various subjects, number of hostel seats, last date of form submission, etc are available in the prospectus. 

Girls GCG, Sector 11

MCM DAV, Sector 36

SD, Sector 32

PGC, Sector 46

DAV, Sector 10

SGGS for Girls, Sector 26

Dev Samaj College

PGC Sector 42


PGC, Sector 11

DAV, Sector10

SD, Sector 32

PGC, Sector 46

SGGS, Sector 26

Admission schedule

Admission with principal’s permission (with late fee Rs 300) - July 16-29

Admission with VC’s permission (with late fee Rs. 1500) - July 30 to August 31.

Cost of prospectus for all government colleges- Rs 80 (with two forms)

For old students -Rs 5 per form.

Fee: Subject to Panjab University’s approval 

Private vs Government

A huge difference between the fee structure of government and private colleges has educed resentment among students. While the UT had issued a directive for school admissions asking schools to keep admission forms within the range of Rs 100, it was caught unprepared in case of colleges. “We were supposed to make the same declaration, but the colleges failed to apprise us of the schedule. We will be taking the matter seriously now,” said Ajoy Sharma, Director, Higher Education.

Common prospectus for government colleges-Rs 80

GGDSD, Sector 32- Rs 300; DAV, Sector 10 -Rs 450; MCM DAV, Sector 36-Rs 450; SGGS Khalsa, Sector 26- Rs 400

Government College for Girls, Sector 11. Courses and cut-offs

Stream Last Year Cut-off Seats

BA 55% 850

BSc(non-med) 70% 140

Bsc (medical) 65% 180

PostGraduate Government College, Sector 11, Courses seats and cut-offs

Stream Last Year Cut-off Seats

BA 50% 800

BCA 74% 80 

Cut-off DAV 10

Stream Last Year Cut-off Seats

BA Open 7 00

BCA 66% 120

BBA 72% 160


(Med, Non-Med, First come 500 Computer Sc., first serve Biotechnonlogy)

BSc (hons) 75% 30 bioinformatics

BSc (hons) 82% 30


* Add on courses: Industrial chemistry, electronic hardware and maintenance, translation (English to Hindi), journalism, counselling and guidance

GGDSD, Sector 32

Stream Last Year Cut-off Seats

BA Open

BA 75%

Vocational Courses

BCA 82% 120

BBA 86% 120

BSc med 1st Div 150

BSc non-med 150

BSc (hons) 85%


Sri Guru Gobind Singh Khalsa

Col lege, Sector 26

Stream Seats

BA (pass & honours) Open

BSc med & non-med 4

BCA 120 

MCM DAV College for Women,Sector 36

Stream Last Year Cut-off Seats

BA 65% 800

BCom 83% 210 BCA 80% 80

BSc med 250


BSc computer science 40

BSc food science 30

BSc MFT 30

*Add on courses MCM

Web designing and multimedia

Interior design and decoration

Cosmetology and beauty care

Communicative English

Video reporting 

PostGraduate Government College, Sector 46

Stream Last Year Cut-off Seats

BA Open 700

BA 75%

Vocational Courses

BCA 65% UT pool 40

72.4% Gen


BSc (med, non-med)

BSc (hons) bioinformatics

BSc (hons) biotechnology



MC’s Vacancies
Deputation in, promotion out
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 7
Getting deputationists is the first preference of the municipal corporation (MC) in filling key posts lying vacant in its departments rather than promoting its eligible employees.Interestingly, 11 eligible employees in the road wing have been awaiting promotion for the last 22 years. Importantly, 25 per cent of the posts to be filled by deputationists are never vacant.

MC Commissioner Roshan Sunkaria, during a special House meeting last year on the status report of projects, had stated that preference would be given to promoting department employees, if available, rather than calling deputationists from other states.

Going by records in the last three years, there had been no promotion in the road wing of the corporation even as employees in the department were eligible.

Of the 30 posts of junior engineer (JE), five had been filled by deputationists from the Chandigarh administration, Punjab and Himachal Pradesh and five from direct recruitment while rest had been lying vacant.

Of the 11 employees fulfilling all criteria for promotion to JE, four had obtained National Trade Certification, mandatory for promotion to the post.

As per promotion and recruitment rules, notified in 1988, any employee having 12 years of experience would be considered diploma holder and would be eligible for promotion.

All 11 employees had completed almost 20 years, but their case was yet to be taken up by the department.

Records showed that the MC had called in two mortar mates from the administration, three JEs from Himachal Pradesh and one from Punjab to fill posts of JE in the road wing.

Violating its own norms for deputationists, the corporation had promoted two employees of the administration from mortar mate to JE and allowed them to continue in service after the expiry of their deputation period without extension from the administration.

As per norms, any employee on deputation in any department could not be promoted in this manner and had to report back to the parent department on completion of the deputation period.



Desilting commuters’ nightmare
Arun Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 7
How much Sukhna gets benefited by the desilting drive will be known later, but it is certainly proving to be a nightmare for commuters at the IT park. Since hundreds of trucks transport the silt to the area for dumping in low-lying areas, there is usually a cloud of dust along the road leading to the IT park.

Also, it has reduced visibility and two-wheeler riders are the worst hit. The road on either side has turned into a muddy patch. “The IT park is a landmark in the development of Chandigarh and it is a place where industrialists from various parts of the country as well as abroad have set shop. The condition of the road reflects poorly on the administration,” a resident, Sanjay Sahni, stated.

“It is an example of the callousness of the authorities,” Rajesh Singh, an employee at a mall there, said.

On April 2, the engineering department, had started the removal of silt from the lake bed. From April 2 to April 30, 5 lakh cft of silt was be removed; and between May 1 and May 31, 10 lakh cft of silt had to be cleared.

In Phase II, beginning from September 1 to December 15, 10 lakh cft silt has to be removed.

“More than three dozen tipper drivers, administrative staff, and labourers are being deputed at the site for more than a month continuously without any weekly holiday. Everybody is working for 12 hours a day,” a driver said on the condition of anonymity.

Finance Secretary Sanjay Kumar said he had visited the area and dumping in the IT park area was going to be stopped. “I work till 9 pm and do not get anything extra for it,” he replied when asked about more remuneration for extra work by employees.



Nominated councillors feel like rubber stamps
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 7
The municipal corporation (MC) is not utilising the expertise of nine nominated councillors who have been with it for the past four years. Most of the nominated councillors stated this at a meeting with the Mayor, Anu Chatrath, here today.

Objecting to the treatment meted out to them on the floor of the house, they said they were being used as a rubber stamp by both the ruling and opposition parties. The councillors further stated that they were more into the politics of parties rather than part of any serious policy making or framing programme for improving civic amenities in the city.

Nominated councillor AP Sanwaria said he was a specialist in medicine and health, but he was not a member of the sanitation committee where he could contribute more.

They suggested to the Mayor that a deadline should be fixed for the completion of any development project as even a petty project kept in the cold store for long resulted in the enhancement of its cost of construction. They also stated that the MC should have a common complaint centre with a three digit number like emergency services.

The Mayor asked nominated councillor MPS Chawla to ensure that the MC got the number for the complaint centre.

Another nominated councillor, Arshad Khan, was asked to handle the malba problem.

Some councillors were asked to take up civic issues like the collection of garbage and parking problems in their respective sectors. 



Illegal godowns at Daria back

Chandigarh, June 7
Illegal godowns demolished by the Chandigarh administration in Daria village have bounced back into business.A visit by The Tribune team near the railway station here today showed that besides the three or four-odd structures which were already ready, there were certain others nearing completion.

Trucks carrying products of multi-national companies could be seen transported out of the godowns. A godown owner, requesting anonymity, said: “I know the godowns here have run into trouble with the administration. We are only trying to make some earnings. There are hundreds of houses in the vicinity of the area, which are illegal. The administration should first regularise the houses before taking action against us.” — TNS



Sizzling? Chill!
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 7
If you are planning to visit a hill station to get relief from the scorching June heat, stay back as the met department has good news for residents.There will be pleasant weather and a spell of rain in the city for a few days this week.

As per the met department, the maximum temperature recorded today was 30.0 degree Celsius and the minimum 25.8 degree Celsius, which was nine degrees below normal.

Cloudy weather since the morning made the skies dark and reduced visibility while a mild drizzle in the evening brought relief from the heat.

There was bright sunshine in the morning, but as the day progressed, there was a cloud cover, leading to rain in the evening.

Met officials predicted that the temperature would decline in the next three days and people would get relief from the heat wave.

Officials forecast a generally cloudy sky, a spell of rain and thundershowers tomorrow and a decline in temperature in the next three days due to rain.

They said as pre-monsoon showers were on time in the region, it was expected that the monsoon would be arrive on time, the first week of July.

According to records of the department, the monsoon arrived on June 13 in 2008, much before the average, June 29.

The officials stated that there was no indication of an early arrival of monsoon on June 8 last year.



Include native language in Census: Religious bodies
Tribune News Service

Members of various Sikh bodies protest in front of the Mohali Deputy Commissioner’s office on Monday
Members of various Sikh bodies protest in front of the Mohali Deputy Commissioner’s office on Monday. A Tribune photograph

Mohali, June 7
Demanding inclusion of religion and mother tongue in the Census, various Sikh bodies today held a protest in front of Mohali Deputy Commissioner’s office here.The protesters alleged that it was a deliberate attempt by the Central government to hide facts about the population based on religion and language. Led by Hardeep Singh, member, SGPC, representatives of various bodies, including Global Sikh Brotherhood, Sikh Missionary College, Guru Gobind Singh Study Circle, Akhand Kirtani Jatha, Shiromani Sikh Samaj, and gurdwara committees also urged the SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar to intervene.

“India is a multi-religion and multi-lingual country and the concept of "unity in diversity" should not be ignored while collecting data for Census,” pointed out Hardeep, while submitting a memorandum to Deputy Commissioner.

He said all policies to be made for the benefit of the minorities, promotion of regional languages and ethnic communities would be nullified in case the information was not collected.

Hardeep also pointed out that the form containing the column regarding caste should be made optional because all religions, including Sikhism, Christianity and Islam reject caste system.



Security gates await guards
Our Correspondent

Mohali, June 7
The Defence Accounts Pensioners Welfare Association has urged the authorities concerned to protect the life and property of senior citizens and remove bottlenecks for the provision of watchmen at security gates installed in various parts of the town.

The association said around 39 gates were installed with the approval of the director, local government, and on the recommendation of the then SSP.

But the contractor had failed to provide watchmen at these gates defeating the very purpose for which these were put up. The Deputy Commissioner and the SSP were approached by the association in this regard but to no avail. The matter demanded intervention in the interest of the public in general and senior citizens in particular.

Meanwhile, it also said the government was not taking strict action against adulteration as far as eatable items were concerned. A Ludhiana-based NGO had got seven samples of packaged milk of leading brands tested from a Swiss-based company in Gurgaon and the milk was allegedly found unfit for human consumption. 



Shifting of Guru Granth Sahib from Ravidas temple
SGPC leader submits memo to DC
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, June 7
Resentment is brewing among the Sikh community over the ‘biased’ inquiry conducted by the Sub-Divisional Magistrate over the alleged shifting of Guru Granth Sahib from Ravidas temple situated on the Pinjore-Nalagarh road and the subsequent registration of cases against five former committee members of the temple.

About 200 residents of Pinjore, led by Gurdeep Singh Bhanukheri, member of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC), today submitted a memorandum to Deputy Commissioner Ashima Garg, urging her to order an inquiry into the whole episode. They also sought cancellation of the FIR registered against the five persons. Later, the delegation met SP Maneesh Chaudhary in this regard.

Bhanukheri said if the matter was not resolved soon it could lead to communal violence in the area for which the district administration and the police would be responsible.

Urging the delegation to maintain calm, Garg assured them that efforts would be made to resolve the contentious issue peacefully. She said decision would be taken keeping in view the public interest and urged them not to take law in their own hands.

Giving details to media here, Bhanukheri said the “Parkash” of Guru Granth Sahib was being held at the temple for the past 15 years as was being conducted in all Ravidas temples situated in Haryana and Punjab. He alleged that present committee members, headed by Shyam Lal, had first taken away the “Bir” of the holy scripture from the temple, but after the protest from the devotees Shyam Lal brought it back and kept it in a separate room.

He said the devotees complained to the SDM for holding a probe into the matter. However, he sided with the accused and asked the SHO concerned to register cases against former committee members of the temple.

He said he had also taken up issue with the SGPC chief, Avtar Singh Makkar, who had constituted a sub-committee to inquire into the matter. He warned that if the matter was not resolved it could lead to law and order problem as witnessed in certain towns of Punjab, for which the district administration would be responsible.



Grant of recognition: HOA serves contempt notice on IOA 
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, June 7
The Haryana Olympic Association (HOA), while serving contempt notice on office bearers of the IOA, today urged it to implement the high court orders by granting recognition to the governing body of the HOA, headed by its president PV Rathee.

Contempt notices were served on Suresh Kalmadi and Randhir Singh, president and secretary general of IOA, respectively, besides RK Anand, chairman, Dispute and Affiliation Commission, for not entering the names of HOA office bearers in its website.

A general body meeting of the HOA was held at Red Bishop here in which the members unanimously passed two resolutions condemning the illegal recommendations issued by RK Anand. It also resolved to urge the IOA to grant recognition to the governing body by entering the names of office bearers in its website.

Addressing the media, Rathee said both Abhey Chautala and Dr MS Malik were trying to create confusion among the sportspersons in the state besides taking political mileage.

He said if they were not satisfied with high court decision they could have moved the apex court in this regard. He added that despite clear legal position, the IOA failed to enter their names in the website which further perplexed the sportspersons.

Rathee also criticised Anand for deliberately going ahead in asserting that it was the HOA headed by Abhey Chautala, which was the real group and hence entitled for recognition. He said a perusal of the report of Anand revealed that the operations of sports organisations were not subject to judgments of the court or legislative enactments.

He said the HOA led by him has been trying to promote the sports in a big way. He added that recently they had launched sports talent hunt programme in which more than 80,000 budding players had taken part.

About 1,600 players had qualified as per the international standards and the association was considering lowering the standards so that more players could participate in competitions at the national and international level, he added.



Smart-card-based PDS’ trial run begins
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 7
The trial run of the smart-card-based public distribution system (PDS) for the union territory commenced today at Arihant Provision Store and Mool Chand Jagdish Rai Store, fair price shops at Sector 25.

The system aimed at streamlining the functioning of the food and supplies department and ensuring better service delivery by replacing existing paper-based ration cards with smart cards.

The system envisioned setting up point of sale terminals at all fair price shops and kerosene depots in the city, according to a press note.

The card, with a 64-kb capacity, would hold biometric data of family members of the card holder.

The card of the owner and the kerosene depot owner would carry details of the beneficiaries attached to the shop or depot.

The identities of beneficiaries would be established by means of biometric impression on inserting the card in the point of sale terminal.

The beneficiary would be able to know the ration allocation made so far and the balance remaining in the account.

The biometrics of three members of the family above the age of 12 were stored on smart cards of beneficiaries, the press note said.

The administration had selected HCL/Virgo as system integrator for the implementation of the project. The software application had been developed by the National Informatics Centre.

Its management information system would provide online access to allocation, distribution, stock and balance of the fair price shop holders and enable proper monitoring of the PDS by the department.

Camps for enrolment of beneficiaries had been organised at Sectors 25, Bapu Dham and Palsora. The data digitisation of ration card forms was on.

The scheme would cover approximately 2.5 lakh families, including BPL, AAY and APL ones, in Chandigarh.

The department had collected data for around 1.5 lakh APL families through distribution of forms at various sampark centres.

The department would organise camps for enrolment for beneficiaries across the city soon, for which a detailed schedule was being worked out.



Experts dwell on diagnosis of fungal infections

Chandigarh, June 7
A six-day national training course on diagnosis of fungal infections was inaugurated by Prof Meera Sharma, head, department of medical microbiology, at PGIMER, here today. She highlighted the importance of medical mycology in the present day’s scenario of large number immuno-suppressed patients in tertiary care centres.

Prof Arunaloke Chakrabarti, chief resource person of the workshop, introduced the course to the participants.

He stressed on the need of urgent development of good diagnostic mycology laboratories in the country.

Large numbers of patients remain undiagnosed for systemic fungal diseases and succumb to their illness due to lack of timely intervention with anti-fungal regimens.

On the first day of the workshop, Prof A Chakrabarti gave an overview of fungal diseases in India and the relevant diagnostic techniques.

Dr Kapil Goyal spoke on “Conidiation”, an important method for identification of the fungus, and Dr Gagandeep on “Media and stains used in mycology”.

Prof BM Hemashettar from Belgaum, Karnataka, delivered a lecture on “Superficial fungal infections”. He, along with Dr Shivaprkash, deliberated upon various fungi causing superficial and sub-cutaneous fungal diseases. — TNS



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