C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


MC goes lax on N-Choe
Snubs GMADA, reluctant to take up cleanliness drive
Kulwinder Sangha

Mohali, August 4
The N-choe passing through various parts of the town, which had made the lives of residents miserable and was cleaned up after The Tribune carried out a campaign, is again sliding towards neglect with neither the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA) nor the municipal council (MC) taking up the responsibility of keeping it clean.

A tussle is on between GMADA and the municipal council over the cleaning of the choe and if the issue is not resolved soon, the efforts to keep it clean will go down the drain.

According to sources, the chief engineer of GMADA, Rajiv Moudgil, had written a letter to the executive officer of the municipal council last week, stating that the cross-sectional area of the choe had got reduced due to wild growth and accumulation of mud and it was feared that the flow of rainwater might get obstructed.

Moudgil said as a special case, GMADA had cleaned the choe on the directions of the government even when the responsibility of maintaining the developed infrastructure lay with the civic body as per Section 35 of the Punjab Regional Town Planning and Development Act, 1995. The cleaning was done on a one-time basis and the council was asked to take care of the choe.

The letter also stated that it had come to the notice of the GMADA authorities that wild growth had sprouted again and the staff concerned should be directed to clean the area as timely work would require less effort and minimum finance.

However, not paying heed to the directions of GMADA, the executive officer of the MC, Vijay Kumar Gupta, shot back a letter to GMADA yesterday, saying that so far the maintenance of the choe had not officially been handed over to the MC. Moreover, the responsibility would be taken up only after GMADA provided a proper concrete lining to the nullah, followed by a joint inspection by the engineering wing of both the agencies to ensure that all the required work had been completed by GMADA.

The proposal would then be presented in the general house and any further move would be initiated only after it was approved. Also, cleaning the choe required additional expenditure, he added.

After the The Tribune had highlighted the filth and muck that flowed through the N-choe, GMADA had started cleaning up the nullah in June. The work was allotted to a contractor after getting clearance from the technical adviser to the Punjab Chief Minister.



Gangrape Case
Victim can’t make up her mind
Says NK Jain innocent
Swati Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
Although the local court has decided to frame charges in a gangrape case against NK Jain, former Home Secretary, along with four others, the victim had approached the Punjab and Haryana High Court a few days ago, claiming that he was innocent.

The case has taken an interesting turn because the girl had originally accused MK Jain, a businessman of Sector 8 in Chandigarh, of raping her. Later she retracted from her statement and accused the Home Secretary of the crime. A few days before the Additional District and Sessions Court decided to frame the charges against the former Home Secretary, she had retracted from her statement and said all the accused were innocent.

The details of the “fight” between the two Jains is intriguing. The chargesheet reads that NK Jain and MK Jain had started a company -- Gur Padam Investment and Finance Co. The company had under its name a residential plot in Sector 8, Chandigarh, and a commercial plot in Sector 10, Panchkula. NK Jain’s wife had invested Rs 6.5 lakh in the company.

The former Home Secretary was arrested by the CBI in a corruption case in 2000. There was a rift between the business partners because of the corruption case. The chargesheet further reads that NK Jain nursed a grudge against MK Jain for allegedly misappropriating a large sum of money of the family invested in the company.

During his stay in jail, NK Jain met Ram Lal through Manoj Godhara and they reportedly conspired to implicate MK Jain in a false case in order to extort money.

Ram Lal introduced NK Jain to head constable Narvir Singh, who was an old acquaintance. Narvir Singh allegedly consented to involve MK Jain in a false case.

After coming out of jail in December 2000, NK Jain remained in touch with Ram Lal and Narvir Singh. He also made Dinesh Kaushal, son of his former private secretary, a director in place of his father-in-law and mother-in-law.

Dinesh Kaushal and MK Jain’s wife, Kiran, through an agreement sold the residential plot in Sector 8. Agitated over this, NK Jain complained to the estate office as he suspected that both directors had misappropriated funds.

Meanwhile, the victim met Ram Lal, who assured to give her lump sum money and a government job in Haryana, if she helped him in framing MK Jain. On August 14, 2002, Surinder Sharma intoxicated her after taking her to a hotel in Panchkula and later they threw her near the Sector 33 petrol station.

The police claimed that the telephone record of all five accused — NK Jain, Ram Lal, Surinder Sharma, Baldev Kumar and Narvir Singh — reveals that they had hatched the conspiracy against MK Jain.



Ragging at PU
Student leaves for Delhi
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
Mukesh Anand, mother of PU student Tejas who alleged ragging, today said that they would appeal to the highest authority in the country to bring the guilty to justice.

An FIR has been lodged under Sections 341, 506 and 34 of the IPC in the case. This include charges of wrongful restraint, criminal intimidation and common intention to commit crime.

Following preliminary investigation in the case, Tejas today left for Delhi along with his parents. His mother, however, said he would resume studies at the UICET.

“I have been under trauma for two days. I am going home for a break. I will be back,” Tejas said.

Talking to The Tribune, his parents said he could not identify seniors who ragged him. “As per the Supreme Court guidelines, ragging is a serious act and we will appeal to the highest authorities in the country,” Mukesh Anand stated.

“Just a day before the incident came to light, a special induction session was held with first year students and seniors in the hostel. The students were cautioned by the hostel warden to refrain from ragging. Examples of consequences faced by certain students in the past were also quoted,” a hostel employee stated.

The DSP (central), Jagbir Singh, said: “An investigation is going on in the case. The boy was not available for questioning today.”



GCG student killed in accident
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
Tanvi, a BCom-II student of Postgraduate Government College for Girls, Sector 11, died while her classmate, Nupur, was seriously injured after their scooter rammed into an electricity pole on the road separating Sectors 14 and 15 here this afternoon.

Tanvi, a resident of Sector 41-A, was driving the Honda Activa scooter and Nupur, a resident of Sector 38, was riding pillion.

They were returning home from college when the mishap occurred around 2 pm. The police said it appeared that the scooter first hit the road divider before ramming into the pole. The handle bar of the scooter was broken with the impact of the collision and pierced her chest. Tanvi also sustained head injuries while Nupur suffered multiple injuries on her head and other parts of the body. Both girls were not wearing helmet. Tanvi’s father had died seven years ago.

The victims were rushed to the PGI where Tanvi died during treatment. 



Double Trouble
This doctor has two government jobs!
Anuja Jaiswal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
In times when getting a job, and that too a government one, is tough, Dr BR Sharma, professor at the forensic department of the Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH), Sector 32, has two jobs if records of the Medical Council of India (MCI) are to be believed.

Dr Sharma is also shown on the rolls of Vir Chandra Singh Garhwal Government Medical Science and Research Institute (VCSGGMS&RI), Srinagar, Pauri Garhwal. The college was founded about three years ago and is awaiting MCI recognition.

Dr Sharma’s name figures on the website of both the GMCH and the VCSGGMS. However, while his seniors at the GMCH confirm that he has been attending office to date and has not resigned, employees of the VCSGGMS insist that he has joined the institute.

Dr Sharma denies that he joined the VCSGGMS, but admits that he had applied for a job there. “I applied for a job, but did not join,” he said, adding that he had quit to take up an assignment in Nepal.

The MCI website, however, shows him as working with the VCSGGMS as professor and head of department, forensic. The website also has details of Dr Sharma’s experience and states that he was “relieved” from the GMCH on January 31, 2010.

The MCI declaration form submitted by the VCSGGMS on June 21, 2010, which is in possession of The Tribune, carries Dr Sharma’s photograph and shows him as HOD of the forensic department of the college. The declaration form is signed by the principal of the college and also bears the signature of the inspectors of the MCI.

“If this is true, his working at the GMCH is untenable and against rules,” officials say.

Terming it as “wrong information”, Dr Sharma feigned ignorance.

While efforts to contact the principal of the VCSGGMS, Dr VS Chopra, proved futile, an employee of the institute, who identified himself as Susheel, claimed that Dr Sharma had joined the college. “Dr Sharma has joined us and besides him, we have Dr PK Aggarwal working with us,” he said, refusing to give the mobile number of Dr Chopra. The director principal of the GMCH, Dr Rajbhadur, was also not available for comments.


46 rounded up from Sec-56 colony
One connected with Neha Ahlawat murder case?
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
The police today rounded up 46 persons from a colony at Sector 56 here during an early morning anti-sabotage operation ahead of the Independence Day. A police team reportedly picked up a youth from the colony on suspicion in connection with the Neha Ahlawat murder case.

Sources said the police conducted the operation with dual purpose of keeping a check on anti-social elements and hoping to lay hands on some suspects, who could provide some breakthrough in the sensational blind murder case.

The police later said the youth, a resident of Maloya, was brought to the colony for verification of address of a man and was not questioned in the murder case. On the other hand, a police officer present during the search operation said the youth was picked up in the murder case.

The police issued stranger rolls of 46 persons rounded up during the operation. The SHO of the Sector 39 police station, inspector Janak Rana, said details of the persons picked up would be sent to the police stations of their native places for verifying their antecedents.



Jan aushadhi store becomes operational
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
The UT administration has made the first Jan Aushadhi Generic Drug Store operational at GMCH- 32, Chandigarh.

The drug store has been opened as a part of the “Jan Aushadhi campaign” initiated by the Government of India for making quality medicines available to all at affordable prices. The Jan Aushadhi project is an initiative of the department of pharmaceuticals, Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilisers, Government of India, and is being coordinated by the Bureau of Pharma Public Sector Undertakings of India, which would be the main suppliers of the medicines under this project.

At present, the branded medicines are being sold by the drug manufacturers at higher prices as compared to their unbranded generic equivalents, which are as good in therapeutic value. The Jan Aushadhi initiative will ensure access to quality medicines and healthcare to all by making drugs available at affordable prices. For example, the branded Diclofenac tablets, which are available at the average market rate of Rs 36.70 for a pack of 10 tablets would be sold at the Jan Aushadhi at Rs 2.10. A 10-tablet strip of a new generation antibiotic priced around Rs 150 in the retail market would be available at Rs 30, Tablet Cetrizine (10mg) would cost Rs 2.75 at the Jan Aushadhi outlet, whereas the price in the retail market is Rs 20. Over 200 different medicines/surgical items are available at the Jan Aushadhi Generic Drug Store, GMCH, Sector 32, Chandigarh.

The Jan Aushadhi Generic Drug Store at GMCH-32, Chandigarh, has been opened by the Indian Red Cross Society, UT Chandigarh, under the aegis of the Chandigarh administration. The outlet will remain operational from 6 am to 10 pm. The Indian Red Cross Society will be opening another Jan Aushadhi Generic Drug Store in GMSH, Sector 16, Chandigarh, shortly.



Allottees fume over delay in construction of flats
Sanjay Bumbroo
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, August 4
Resentment prevailed among allottees, especially the retired ones, over the 11-month delay in construction of flats by the Haryana Housing Board (HHB).

Allottees will now have to shell out Rs 12,000 per month as rent.

The HHB is constructing about 120 flats in society no 107 and 109 in Sector 20. The construction work, which started in 2007, was to be completed by January last year. After which the flats were likely to be handed over to allottees in April after conducting a draw of lots.

The cost of a flat is Rs 33.90 lakh and allottees have already paid Rs 8.5 lakh, while Rs 5 lakh is to be paid at the time of allotment of flats.

The allottees will have to pay the remaining amount in 120 instalments with the interest rate of 12.75 per cent per annum.

Even though the construction work in both the societies is on the verge of completion, the work on interior roads, parking lots and installation of street lights is yet to be completed. According to some of the allottees, no work has been carried out in both the societies for the past one-and-a-half month.

One of the allottees on condition of anonymity said he retired in February and was hoping to shift to his new flat in April. But due to the delay, he had to take a flat on rent in the same sector for Rs 12,000 per month. He said the delay in the completion of the flats would further enhance the total cost of the flat.

However, executive engineer NK Pruthi said the flats would be allotted to respective owners in November. He said they would submit the zoning report to the Haryana Urban Development Authority.

He said it would take another one year for the HHB to complete the work. He added that the housing board is yet to install elevators in both the societies.



Advisory Council
Action missing
Nine sub-committees were to be formed in June
Smriti Sharma Vasudeva
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
The UT administration’s much-publicised sub-committees under the Administrator’s advisory council, announced to be formed in June, are yet to see the light of the day. Even after two months, the UT administration has been receiving names for the nine sub-committees.

The announcement was made during the first meeting of the Administrator’s advisory council on June 9. A senior official said they had received many names for different sub-committees and we were in the process of finalising the same. The names would be out within a week, he added.

It had been decided that nine sub-committees were to be formed to arrive at a consensus on major issues. These sub-committees would deal with education, traffic management, environment, health, transport, heritage, law and order, overall development and sports.

It was also decided that once the names were finalised, these sub-committees would meet more often and the council would discuss their recommendations. So far, the sub-committee on education had received the maximum names, followed by that on heritage.

It must be mentioned that even the Administrator’s advisory council had been rejigged recently, with 43 members representing different fields and from various walks of life, and had held the first meeting after a gap of four years.

Besides politicians, it was the representation of eminent people from different walks of life which gave this body, constituted to advise the UT administration on development issues and policy matters affecting the city, credibility, compared to the previous body constituted by the former UT Administrator SF Rodrigues, which was selectively represented. The last time the council met was over four years ago, on May 7, 2006.



Sanjay Arora back with MC
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
Sanjay Arora, executive engineer with the engineering wing of the corporation, today joined back after stint with the administration.

The MC had recently repatriated him to the administration, but Mayor Anu Chatrath had objected to it and requested UT Adviser Pardip Mehra to cancel the orders.

Sources said the Mayor had given a plea to the administration that Arora should not be repatriated till the MC got a replacement in his place as it would affect ongoing works.

Overlooking the request of the Mayor, the MC Commissioner had, on a direction from the administration, ordered his repatriation. Arora had also held charge of XEN Bhupinder Singh, who was on leave these days and would retire by the end of next month.



Suicide bid by CRPF jawan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
Nimy Charan Ghui, a CRPF jawan, allegedly fired at himself at the 13 Battalion in Sector 43 here tonight. He was rushed to the PGI with the bullet piercing his abdomen. His condition is stated to be critical.

DSP (South) Vijay Kumar said 27-year-old Ghui was mentally unstable and had been taking treatment for the past several years. He was on medical leave for 170 days and had joined duty, only to again proceed on leave for a month.

He had recently rejoined duty and doctors had advised him to take rest and be deployed on light jobs. The doctors had specifically said he should be kept away from firearms.

About today’s incident, the DSP said Sanjay Singh, a sentry, joined duty in the evening and went to answer the call of nature after removing the magazine from his self-loading rifle (SLR). Ghui was sleeping nearby. Sanjay Singh suddenly heard a gunshot and rushed to the spot, only to find that Ghui had shot himself.

The DSP said they would book Ghui for attempt to suicide and Sanjay Singh for negligence in keeping the weapon in safe custody.

After learning about the incident, the police rushed to the D Company base of 13 Battalion in Sector 43.



Bharti Airtel told to pay Rs 5,000 as relief
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
Holding Bharti Airtel Limited guilty of overcharging, the District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum has directed the company to pay a compensation of Rs 5,000 to the complainant.

The complainant, Jagjit Singh of Sector 50, stated in the complaint that marketing agents of the company had requested him to get an Airtel broadband connection installed. Accepting the request, he had got the Airtel broadband number 4622076 fixed at his residence.

He used the services of the number till the second week of November, 2009, and applied for disconnection on November 12, 2009. He surrendered the equipment to the company on November 13, 2009. Thereafter, he received a bill dated November 18, 2009, for Rs 479.

However, he was surprised to receive another bill for Rs 550 for the period of November 17, 2009, to December 16, 2009. He then approached officials of the telecom company and informed them that the number had already been surrendered.

He again received a bill dated January 18, 2010, for Rs 1,174 and another bill dated February 18, 2010, for Rs 1,699. Jagjit submitted a written complaint to the company, but nothing was done.

In its reply, the company said the complainant had not confirmed disconnection. Pronouncing orders, the forum said, “It is not only surprising but absurd for the telecom company to presume that a person who had already returned the instrument, modem and other equipment would receive a telephonic call from the company to confirm disconnection.”



Work unitedly, MLA tells MC staff
Development work costing Rs 56,628 lakh cleared
Our Correspondent

Mohali, August 4
Congress MLA from Kharar Balbir Singh Sidhu today stated that orders for development works costing Rs 57,628 lakh had been given by the municipal council.

He said employees had been directed to perform their duties with sincerity and in an unbiased manner, failing which strict action would be taken against them.

Sidhu said estimates for another Rs 91,173 lakh were cleared by the general house and these were also approved by the director, local government, Punjab. Tenders for these works were being floated. Out of the approved estimates, an amount of Rs 56,066 lakh was required for strengthening roads, Rs 22, 85 lakh for electricity supply and the remaining for civil works.

He told the employees that he wanted to see a big improvement in sanitation work. The problem of stray animals should also be checked.

The MLA urged the employees to rise above party politics and work in an unbiased manner for the development of the town. He said if he failed to get the desired response, he would be taking action against them at his own level and would also ask the council’s president to initiate departmental action against them.



Pay Rs 50,000 as relief to retiree, PF body told
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
The District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum has directed the Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) to pay Rs 50,000 as compensation for delay in releasing the pension of a complainant.

The complainant, Om Parkash Chugh, who was a senior citizen, stated in the complaint that when he was in service, he became a member of the Employees Pension Scheme, 1995, under the Provident Fund and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1952.

He retired from the Food Corporation of India (FCI) after attaining the age of superannuation and became eligible for monthly pension under the scheme, effective from September 20, 2006.

Chugh stated that he submitted all mandatory forms along with all relevant papers on August 4, 2007, for fixation of pension, which were forwarded to the Assistant General Manager, FCI, with a letter dated August 10, 2007.

But still, the monthly pension was not fixed despite reminders dated February 11, 2009, and August 17, 2009, as well as a notice dated January 24, 2010.

The FCI authorities stated that they had been requesting the EPFO to depute adequate staff to process cases of employees.



Reduce power tax: Consumers Protection Federation
Our Correspondent

Mohali, August 4
The local Consumers Protection Federation has urged the government to reduce power tax, which was far higher as compared to other states and was burdening the common man, who was already hard pressed by exorbitant increase in the prices of essential commodities.

In a letter to the finance minister, Punjab, PS Virdi, president of the federation, said the Punjab State Electricity Board (PSEB) had to be dissolved because of poor performance and was replaced by power corporations so that people of the state could be provided with a better power supply. The electricity board was facing distribution and transmission losses, which were shown as highest in the country.

He said some months ago, the Punjab government had imposed power tax at the rate of 60 paise per unit, which was unjustified. Residents were also being forced to pay octroi on power even when octroi had been abolished in the state. He said Balram Ji Dass Tandon, former minister, had pointed out that Punjab was charging tax at the rate of 60 paise per unit even when it was 30 paise per unit in Himachal Pradesh, 10 paise per unit in Haryana and 9 paise per unit in Uttar Pradesh.

Condemning the government for an increase in tax rate, the federation demanded that it should be reduced and kept at par with other states.

Virdi also demanded that the octroi on power should not be charged as the octroi was abolished by the government in the state and power consumers should be saved from the additional financial burden. He also demanded that the Punjab State Electricity Board Regulatory Commission should be dissolved as it had failed to protect the interests of the public and responsibility given to it could be shifted to the power corporations so that crores of rupees being spent on it could be used for the welfare of the people of the state.



‘Govt mum on compensation to flood victims’
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, August 4
The Haryana government is mum on compensation to flood victims, claims INLD youth leader Ajay Singh Chautala. People in the state have suffered a loss of Rs 4,400 crore in recent floods.

Chautala said the party submitted a memorandum to the Governor of Haryana and he sought a detailed report into the matter from the respective Deputy Commissioners of flood-affected districts.

He said he had forced the state government to prepare a comprehensive report regarding the losses suffered by people.

He said more than 42 cusecs of water was released by Punjab into the SYL canal, which led to the breaches in Fatehabad and Sirsa districts.

He alleged that even after visiting flood-affected areas in a chopper, the Chief Minister did not bother to pay compensation to people who had suffered huge losses.

He further alleged that despite having a provision of Rs 10 lakh per annum for the maintenance of SYL canal, the state government was not doing much to tide over the problem.

He reiterated his demand to have a special session of Haryana Vidhan Sabha to recommend amendments in the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955.

He said the state government had failed on the law and order front and murders, dacoities, snatchings and vehicle thefts were daily reported from every city of the state. He said people had lost faith in the police as it had failed to nab perpetrators.

Earlier, he addressed members of the youth wing of the INLD at Aggarwal Bhawan in Sector 16. He said people in the state were falling prey to corruption. He said the youth should to launch a campaign to fight the dictatorial attitude of the Congress leaders.



Crime surges as police grapples with staff crunch
At present, 1,020 police personnel provide round-the-clock security to residents of the district, including Kalka, Pinjore, Raipur Rani and Barwala
Sanjay Bumbroo
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, August 4
Shortage of police personnel has made Panchkula an easy target for criminals. All efforts of the police to curb crime in the town seem futile.

Be it jewellery shops or banks, robbers have left no place safe and there have been kidnapping cases, too, in the 898 sq km area that shares its boundary with Punjab, Himachal Pradesh and Chandigarh.

In a recent incident, robbers took away around Rs 80,000 at gunpoint from the cashier of a power distribution agency on July 29. Earlier, on July 16 and eight-member gang, in a daring robbery, had decamped with cash and jewellery worth Rs15 lakh from a house at Sector 10 after keeping the 13 members of the family as hostages.

According to sources, the police has urged the DGP to provide an additional company of the Haryana Armed Police to maintain law and order in the city.

Currently, there are 1,020 police personnel in the district providing round-the-clock security to residents here, including towns like Kalka, Pinjore, Raipur Rani and Barwala.

Superintendent of Police Maneesh Chaudhary said they were trying to beef up security in the district with whatever force they had. He said, earlier, there were 18 PCR vans, which had been increased to 29 by using other vehicles of the department.

He added that his men were making round-the-clock surveillance in the city to check anti-social elements.

Chaudhary said they had also urged businessmen to avail of security services provided by them. Various resident welfare associations have also been asked to install security gates at the main entry points of each sector to thwart the designs of anti-social elements.

Former BJP councillor BB Singal said recent robberies showed failure of the local police on the law and order front. He added that it was high time for the Haryana government to provide additional police force for the town with latest infrastructure to meet with any eventuality.



Residents block highway
Demand water connections
Tribune News Service

Residents of Deep Complex, Hallo Majra, hold a protest
Residents of Deep Complex, Hallo Majra, hold a protest on Wednesday. Tribune photo: Nitin Mittal

Chandigarh, August 4
Residents of Deep Complex, Hallo Majra, blocked the highway traffic for an hour in their protest against the Chandigarh municipal corporation for failing to provide water connections.

To register their anger, women dug out a road near the water pipeline installed by the MC to get illegal water supply to their houses.

The residents alleged that for the past five years, there was confusion in the administration over the notification of the society.

Due to the confusion, the residents could not get water connections till date and to meet the water needs of residents, water tankers were sent by the corporation.

They complained that water tankers were not sufficient to meet their needs and every day there were quarrels among the residents .

The MC public health officials reached the spot and impounded pipes through which residents were trying to get illegal water connections. The police had to intervene to get the highway cleared.



BJP wants judges to retire at 65
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
The BJP will support the enhancement in age of judges from 62 to 65 years in Parliament. This was stated by BJP legal cell convener Satya Pal Jain during a press conference here yesterday.

Accompanied by another BJP leader, Harmohan Dhawan, besides others, Jain further said going by the pendency of cases, new posts should be created in the judiciary and present vacancies should be filled immediately.

Coming down heavily on the deteriorating law and order situation in the city, Jain alleged the present insecurity among residents of the city pointed a finger at those at the helm of affairs.

Referring to the recent Neha Ahlawat murder case, he said if the UT police worked honestly, it could solve the murder case speedily.

He minced no words in alleging that the police had been working under the pressure of the ruling party and that was the reason BJP workers were unnecessary being dragged into police cases while Congress men were being let off.

Jain also pointed out towards the pending unsolved inter-state disputes between Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh and suggested that the Prime Minister intervene to find an amicable solution to the issues, including water royalty, territorial disputes and industrial packages.

“The Chief Ministers of these states should be called together and matters should be discussed and sorted out,” he suggested.



Lakhinder Nakai no more
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
Lakhinder Nakai, wife of late Lt Gen Jagdishwar Singh Nakai, passed away here today. The 78-year-old had been ailing for some time.

An alumnus of Shimla’s Convent of Jesus and Mary, Lakhinder Nakai had been active socially and was known for her work for the welfare of jawans and their families. She had also worked with Mother Teresa to set up a home at Lucknow while Lt Gen Nakai was serving as the Army Commander there. After his retirement, the family settled down in Chandigarh.

She is survived by her son Robin Nakai, daughter-in-law Amrita, and grandchildren Vir and Kismet.



Schoolteacher slapped
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
In yet another glaring incident of lawlessness in the city schools, an outsider slapped a schoolteacher on the school premises at Government High School (GHS), Karsan, here today. Following a complaint by the teacher, an FIR was lodged at the Sector 31 police station.

Spotting four boys strolling on the campus during the school hours, Manu Rani, a Hindi teacher in GHS, Karsan, questioned them and asked for their identification. Instead of replying, one of them promptly slapped her.

Ravi, a resident of Ram Darbar, who was one of the accused, has been arrested by the police, said education department sources.

According to the complainant, the boys entered the school campus by jumping the boundary wall and after one of them slapped her, they fled through the same route.

“Medical examination of the teacher has been done. We are investigating the case further,” said Bakshish Singh, SHO, Sector 31.

“It is unfortunate that such an incident has occurred. We are concerned about the security of the teachers. An FIR has been lodged by the police,” said DEO Chanchal Singh.



Saplings planted
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
The department of social welfare, UT administration, today celebrated vanamahotsava at the Juvenile Justice Home, Sector 25, during which sapling plantation ceremony was organised at the venue.

Justice Ranjit Singh of Punjab and Haryana High Court planted a sapling on the premises of Juvenile Justice Home. Director social welfare, Samwartak Singh and members of Juvenile Justice Board were also present on the occasion.

Justice Ranjit Singh also inaugurated the computer software and mobile repair courses at the home for the benefit of delinquent juveniles.

Speaking on the occasion, Samwartak Singh emphasised on providing quality vocational training to the inmates and stressed upon the all-round grooming of these children.



Green campaign to sensitise students
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
Government Model High School, Sector 26, today launched a unique initiative to sensitise students to conserve environment by giving them saplings to plant them in their neighbourhood.

In a colourful event marked by skits, group songs and poetry recitation, the “green campaign” was launched in the presence of SSP headquarters Alok Kumar, who planted saplings on the school premises.

Around 100 saplings were given to the students for plantation in their respective neighbourhood.



Stress on need to reform laws
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
In order to sensitise citizens about the significance of judicial activism, the department of laws and University Institute of Legal Studies (UILS), Panjab University, organised a debate on “Reforms in judicial system” in the moot court of the department of laws at PU campus here yesterday.

Delivering the inaugural address, Vice-Chancellor RC Sobti said, “There is an urgent need to overhaul some of the laws inherited from the time of British rule because of which the process of judicial reforms is slow in India. Keeping in view these outdated laws, there is a need to make some reforms.”

Sobti appreciated the initiatives taken by the department in this direction and said it was “timely in order to make the common man conversant with the recent issues in society”. He further said the society “depends on transparency and accountability”.

PS Jaswal, chairperson, department of laws, in his introductory remarks said society functioned on the basis of different systems and one of them was judicial system, which was the corner stone of democracy.

Speakers presented their views on “Corruption in judicial system” and “Delay in justice”, due to which the citizens are suffering. The judicial system in India is expensive and, on the other hand, judiciary takes a long time in delivering justice. In this programme, the students from different departments of the university participated. During the programme, senior professors from law department such as Shashi K Sharma, Nishta Jaswal, dean student welfare (women), MS Bains were present as panelists and jury in the court. The students also presented their papers. Pranab’s presentation was adjudged the best and Nanidta and Naminyu’s paper adjudged the second.



Integrate research with education: Patil
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 4
Delivering the inaugural address at a seminar on “Education reforms: Building strong foundations” organised by the PHD Chamber at PHD House, Shivraj Patil, UT Administrator, said education should strengthen a student’s capability to sustain himself. “To achieve this, we need stress to on educating students in science and technology,” he said.

The difference in developed and developing countries, he said, “lies in the difference in knowledge of science and technology which developed and developing countries have.”

He said research and development should be made part of education and the government should encourage foreign investment in education. But at the same time, he warned the education industry against limiting education to mere market activity. He said the electronic media should have airtime especially for education.

Rajneesh Arora, Vice-Chancellor, Punjab Technical University, said students should be imparted with vocational education right from class VI and by class IX, there should be full-fledged courses in vocational education. He said drawing should be taken seriously at the school level to make good engineers. Communication skills should not be limited to just speaking English well, but students should be able to communicate effectively.

Stressing that the education system should be transparent and effective, Vikram Sahgal, chairman of the Chandigarh Committee, PHD Chamber, said: “Expansion, inclusion and excellence are the three underlying principles for educational reforms.” Accountability has to be the norm, he added.

Dr KM Rastogi, head of the Curriculum Development Centre, NITTTR, spoke on the need for effective vocational education. 



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