C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Sukhna on way to revival, weeds almost cleared
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

The lake as it looks now, with the de-weeding process drawing to a close in Chandigarh.
The lake as it looks now, with the de-weeding process drawing to a close in Chandigarh.

Chandigarh, August 31
There is some good news for Sukhna aficionados. The lake, which had virtually been dying, has been almost cleared of the weeds and undergrowth that were choking it. Until a month ago weeds had covered almost 70 per cent of its surface, posing a threat to marine life.

The credit of saving the lake goes to a group of illiterate but skilled workers hailing from Raja Ka Tajpur, a remote village in Uttar Pradesh.

“Clearing weeds from water bodies has been the family vocation for generations and the skill has been passed down by our elders,” said Shamsheed Ahmad, who heads the group. He also claimed they had cleared the lake around the Jal Mahal in Jaipur, Jaisamand lake in Udaipur and Dorrala in Kurukshetra, besides many ponds and reservoirs in Haryana, Punjab and UP.

However, clearing Sukhna Lake presented a different challenge. “The weeds here were unique and of the kind we hadn’t seen before. Not only were they thorny but also caused allergy and skin infections. Many of our workers received cuts and bruises while pulling out the wild growth,” Bahar Alam, a worker in the group, quipped.

The weed with which the lake was infected is commonly known as ‘chara’ or musk grass, which is generally found in Brazil.

According to UT administration officials, the work to clear the lake of weeds and undergrowth has been contracted at a rate of Rs 6.25 per square feet. The cost of transporting and dumping the extracted vegetation is extra. Given the area to be cleared the workers expect to earn several lakhs of rupees in the exercise. The administration had hired the group about six months ago for this difficult task.

Shamsheed said special nets were used to pull out the weeds from the water.

“Hundreds of quintals of weeds have been removed from the lake so far. About 80 workers have been toiling daily, removing 50 to 60 trolley loads every day. It took around four months to clear the lake, though some work still remains,” remarked Shahid Khan, another worker.

Only a few weeks before the lake waters virtually resembled a lush green playground because of the presence of weeds on the surface.

With the lake cleared to a large extent, rowers are also back in the waters for their practice sessions. For the past few months they had been unable to cast their sails for fear of running aground in dangerously shallow waters or getting entangled in weeds.

“Now we find hardly any weeds in the lake during our practice sessions,” said some budding rowers and canoeists who are now honing their skills for participating in various competitions.

Shamsheed said he and other members of his group would remain here till the weeds were completely removed from the water body. “We’re also checking whether the weeds are growing again or not,” he added.



Masseur Fraud Case
Victims lost Rs 1.6 lakh to gang
Tribune News Service

Mohali, August 31
While unpleasant stories of more men who had fallen prey to the “female masseur” gang unfolded on Tuesday, police investigators learnt the goons had held the victims captive for long hours so that they could be robbed of their money and ATM cards without raising any suspicion.

Most of the girls who posed as masseuses were putting up at paying guest (PG) accommodations in and around Mohali. The PG cover enabled them to carry on with their sordid activities without anyone suspecting their activities.

While on the move after snaring their prey, the suspects used the ATM cards of their victims to make fraudulent transactions in different cities. To withdraw the maximum amount of money the ATM cards were used at regular intervals within a span of 12 hours to 16 hours

The suspects threatened the victims their pictures in uncompromising positions would be sent to their family members if they dared to speak to anyone about the encounters.

The oldest victim of the “female masseurs” gang has been found to be a Mohali-based 60-year-old man who had called a “masseuse” to his home. The moment the victim settled down for the “massage”, the girl gave a missed call on her mobile to her male counterparts.

While threatening the victim the thugs, while talking to each other, used to address Faqir Chand, a wireless operator in the Fatehgarh police, as ‘thanedar sahib’ and Gurmit as ‘inspector Sharmaji’. The old man was let off after taking Rs 50,000 from him.

In another incident that took place at a hotel in Sector 70 here few days ago, a Sirsa-based man was cheated of Rs 1.5 lakh. The money was withdrawn through his ATM card that was fraudulently used in Mohali and then in Patiala.

Other victims have given similar accounts to the cops. A senior police official said some of the victims have agreed to testify before the police.

The gang has been active in Mohali for the past few months and its attempts to fleece people were getting bolder with each passing day.

In a statement issued today, the Mohali police said Gurmit and Ruby, who are in police remand after being arrested on Sunday evening, hade admitted to being involved in at least five incidents. The total money extracted by the gang has been pegged at Rs 1.62 lakh.

Sources said Faqir Chand was likely to be arrested soon. Most of the victims who fell in the trap were wealthy men who responded to advertisements offering the services of “masseuses”.

Mohali SSP GPS Bhullar said all the suspects in the case would be arrested soon.



Fiza booked for trespass
Tribune News Service

Mohali, August 31
The Mohali police has booked Fiza, alias Anuradha Bali, the estranged wife of Chander Mohan, for allegedly tresspassing into house of a neighbour and breaking a window glass pane and flower pots. The occupant of house number 218, Sector 48-C, Ram Krishan, who lives in the rear lane of Fiza’s house, complained to the police that on Sunday, she came over to her house and broke the window pane and flower pots. She reportedly objected to Ram Krishan’s maid washing clothes in the rear courtyard of their house.

Fiza on the other hand alleged that the neighbour threw stones at her house and threatened her of dire consequence. She said after the death of her mother, her relatives had come to her home and one of her relatives, Tarun, also got injured due to the stone pelting. She said despite her complaint the police was not taking any action.

Ram Krishan, who is a senior citizen, lives in the house along with his wife. When the incident took place, Ram Krishan’s children were away.

After the incident, a team of the Mohali police, led by SP (City) SS Gill, DSP (City-I) Rakha Ghira and SHO, Phase XI Sukhwinder Singh visited the house and also talked to other persons in the locality. A number of residents complained to the police about the behaviour of Fiza. The police officials also visited the house of Fiza.

The case has been registered after seeking legal opinion.



PGI reverses decision on OPD patients
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 31
Finding themselves on the wrong foot over the sudden decision to limit the number of patients at the medical OPD, the PGI authorities have decided to revert to the old system for now. All 320 patients who reached the OPD today were examined by doctors.

Yesterday, hundreds of patients were asked to return from the hospital, saying that only 200 patients would be examined at the OPD in a day. The decision was apparently taken in haste as they were sent back with the impression that first-come first-served system would be implemented at the OPD.

No prior information was given to the public in this regard and patients were not given any appointment for future.

A PGI administrative official on the other hand claimed that patients were returned as quality treatment could not be provided to large numbers of patients.

Today a committee constituted under the chairmanship of Prof Vinay Sakhuja, dean, PGI, held a meeting to suggest measures to manage overcrowded OPDs. The PGI spokesperson said the committee had not decided anything on the issue and the file had been sent to the PGI director, Dr KK Talwar, for perusal.

Sources, however, said the committee had suggested that in order to provide quality healthcare to patients at the PGI, a restriction on the number of patients was imperative. Or the infrastructure should be strengthened to cope with the increasing crowds at the hospital, the sources said.

Meanwhile, a lawyer has lodged a complaint with the National Human Rights Commission against the PGI for asking the patients to return without providing them with treatment.



Bookings in discotheques cancelled
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Freshers’ party of law students at a discotheque was mired in a controversy.
Freshers’ party of law students at a discotheque was mired in a controversy. Tribune photo: Pradeep Tewari

Chandigarh, August 31
With just 48 hours left for the election to Panjab University Campus Student Council (PUCSC), major student organisations active on the campus have today cancelled their bookings in top discothèques in the city. The discotheques in Sectors 26, 9 and 8 are being visited by SHOs of the UT Police and managers have been questioned about any bookings by the student organisations of PU or colleges.

Despite a denial by the student organisations of violating the election code of conduct, the Students Organisation of India (SOI) was today accused by rival parties on campus of organising an outing for students of the University Institute of Chemical Engineering and Technology (UICET) to Fun City.

Nearly 10 vehicles carrying 20 students each was spotted taking away the students to Fun City.

In yet another incident today, the freshers’ party organised by the law students at Aerizona in Sector 9 was caught in a controversy. While the Panjab University Student Union (PUSU) accused the Student Organisation of Panjab University (SOPU) of organising the party, the latter denied and instead accused PUSU of doing so.

Speaking to Chandigarh Tribune team, manager of a discotheque said, “We had bookings by both SOPU and PUSU till two days back, but now all of them have cancelled their bookings not just here but at all other discotheques in the city out of fear.”

“The cops have been constantly inquiring about any bookings made by any student organisation. The strictness this year is more related to parties and night outs,” he added.

Meanwhile, on the issue of organising a trip to Fun City, members of SOI denied any involvement in the case. “We have no clue about what the opponents are alleging. We did not organise any such trip,” clarified Rajpal Gill, department representative of UICET and SOI leader.

Students of UICET being taken to Fun City on Tuesday by a student organisation.
Students of UICET being taken to Fun City on Tuesday by a student organisation. Tribune photo: Manoj Mahajan

Trip to Fun City

A trip of nearly 200 students was organised today to Fun City. Close to 10 vehicles were taken for the trip, which was reportedly organised by a student organisation.

Political controversy

The freshers’ party of law students at a discotheque in Sector 9 was today caught in a political controversy. While PUSU accused SOPU of organising the trip, the latter denied the allegations.



ATM Fraud
Forgery case filed on SBI complaint
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 31
The police today registered a case of forgery and cheating against unidentified people after State Bank of India lodged a complaint regarding fraudulent cash withdrawals through ATM cards that the bank suspects were cloned.

According to sources a case under sections 420, 467, 468 and 471 of the Indian Penal Code was filed at the Sector 17 police station. The bank had lodged a complaint on Friday at the ‘public window’ of the Chandigarh police headquarters, Sector 9, and it translated into a case today after passing through various channels.

The sources said in its complaint the bank stated 11 of its account holders had been defrauded through cloned ATM cards and their funds were withdrawn from SBI ATMs in Sectors 30, 32, 22, 37 and 49. The bank added an overall amount of Rs 5.5 lakh had been fraudulently withdrawn from its ATMs.

The sources said investigators have been scrutinising details of the ATM transactions and other information provided by SBI, besides questioning employees of a private firm hired by the bank for loading cash into the ATMs.



No uniformity in CITCO policy
Suits for GMs, nothing for junior staff
Smriti Sharma Vasudeva
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 31
Strange are the ways of the Chandigarh Tourism and Industrial Development Corporation (CITCO), the hospitality wing of the UT Administration. While the junior staff of CITCO-run hotels are forced to wear worn-out uniforms since there is no provision for uniforms for the past two years, the general managers at the corporate office are soon going to get incentives for uniforms.

The kitchen and front office staff do not have provision for uniforms, but the management has sanctioned Rs 9,000 for three suits for the year 2009-10 to general managers as incentive.

The move to grant the incentive to corporate general managers has left the workers resentful of the decision. They said it was an example of red tape in the corporation.

Recently, The Tribune had reported that the staff members of CITCO were left with no option, but to welcome guests in worn-out uniforms.

Sources claim that a contract was given to a Manimajra tailor for 451 uniforms. A tender was allotted and the tailor was expected to complete the job in six months. Incidentally, the tender was allotted for a specific fabric for suit lengths. However for some reason, the company discontinued the fabric which was available for Rs 280 a metre. A similar fabric was later available at a revised rate of Rs 310 a metre. The tailor sent a letter to the authorities asking for a renewed contract in the wake of the revised rate. However, nothing came of his repeated reminders even though he had purchased cloth for Rs 1.5 lakh for shirts.

Sources claim that following this debacle, a fresh contract was assigned to a Delhi tailor, but later it was discovered that the company had been blacklisted a few years ago. The contract was again cancelled.

The sources said certain officials were once again trying to rope in a Delhi firm for the uniforms of the staff after allegedly ignoring tenders by certain other companies.

CITCO is supposed to give winter and summer uniforms to its over 1,000 employees every year depending on their rank.


Tension grips UIET
Supporters give ‘cold stares’ to one another
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 31
Tension continued to prevail at University Institute of Engineering and Technology (UIET) during the first half of the day, even as two major alliances, PUSU-INSO and SOPU-ABVP, campaigned fervently at the south campus.

Presence of a vigilant UT Police team and university security at the spot averted an untoward incident.

Supporters of SOPU and PUSU were found giving each other “cold stares” and challenging each other to enter a fight. A minor tiff was also reported at the UIET canteen, where supporters of PUSU-INSO alliance were addressing the gathering during interval. Later, PUSU campaigned at one corner of the canteen and SOPU occupied the other end to address the students.

The police, who was quick to react to the “cold response” of the students towards each other, continued to stroll around till the campaigning lasted in the department. As PUSU supporters headed towards the department to join party president Udey Wirring, a separate team of police marched from the north campus to the south campus.

In yet another incident at UIET today, supporters of PUSU were found using pictures of SOPU presidential candidate Mohit Taneja culled from his Facebook account to seek vote.

Meanwhile, two major alliances were found campaigning from one classroom to another in the department and continued to hamper studies by entering classrooms at odd timings.

With three, out of a total of six final presidential candidates hailing from UIET, the department is now a hub of student poll activity on campus. 



SOPU, ABVP enter alliance
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 31
With the Student Organisation of Panjab University (SOPU) entering into an alliance with the Akhil Bhartiya Vidhyarthi Parishad (ABVP) at 2 am today, the midnight alliance syndrome appears to have become common at PU campus this election.

Both major alliances for the forthcoming student election on PU campus were formed during the post-midnight hours at the respective help desks of the parties. Meeting of the student leaders have been taking place in high “confidentiality” to keep controversies at bay.

Before ABVP and SOPU entered into an alliance, talks were rife on campus about SOPU approaching SOI and ABVP for an alliance since Monday.

“Student leaders have been spotted interacting with each other during late night hours and post-evening time is more crucial for the police, as important events take place at this time,” said a policeman on duty at PU campus.

Meanwhile, when questioned about the alliance, ABVP leader Dinesh Chauhan said, “We entered into an alliance with SOPU at 2 am today. Before this, talks were on, but we had to reach at a middle way.”

The four contestants fielded by SOPU and ABVP are Mohit Taneja, Bhavika Sharma, Akhil Bansal and Jagjot Singh. 

Whose candidate is it?

Even as SOPU-ABVP entered into a formal alliance today, talks are rife on campus on whether the candidates of ABVP actually belong to the party or hail from SOPU and have been named as ABVP candidates. When questioned about the issue, ABVP leader Dinesh Chauhan said, “The candidates belong to both parties equally and there are no dummy candidates.”



SOI releases manifesto
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 31
The Students Organisation of India (SOI) today announced its panel and assured students of regular checks on food in hostel mess and canteen as a part of their election manifesto.

Among the promises made to the students, SOI said it would ensure inclusion of the students in decision-making committees. Members of the organisation said they would take up the cause of daily allowance of sportspersons. Other issues included 24-hour WiFi facility on campus, participation of PU in more inter-university, inter-regional tournaments and organising job fests and other important events.

SOI also enlisted the promises accepted by the PU authorities, which are under process as a part of its election manifesto. These included 24 hours canteen facility in all girls’ hostels and provision of basic infrastructure and bathroom facilities in all departments and hostels.

UIET is also on the priority list of the party since it promised 24-hour facility of UIET library and better quality food in the UIET canteen at cheap rates.


President: Bhupinderbir Singh Randhawa

Vice-president: Simrat Kaur Dhillon

Joint secretary: Gagandeep Singh


l Introduction of CGPA system

l Recruitment of adequate number of teachers, particularly in departments like BDS, pharmacy, UIET, law, MCA, etc.

l Constitution of planning committee of university be headed by DSW with two students as members

lRegular meetings of planning committee

lMore national and international level conferences be organised

l Check on performance of department placement cells

l Increase scholarships

l Organisation of job fests, sports fairs, technology fairs, management fairs, pharmacy, media fairs on campus

lInviting public sector companies for placements

lUnblocking certain useful websites



‘Open house integral part of PU poll’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 31
On the confusion prevailing in Panjab University on whether or not it would host an open house this year, former council presidents and student leaders of Panjab University are of the opinion that the ritual must continue. PU officials, however, are yet to decide the fate of the open house. The formal announcement regarding the open house would be done tomorrow, says returning officer.

“An open house is the conclusion of election on PU campus and students eagerly wait for it each year. It is an integral part of the election and must be continued. Voters get to know their leaders more and it builds confidence among the students. It is an important and glamorous part of the PUCSC election. If PU is not organising it, it means it is not confident of hosting it. Tomorrow there would be more restrictions imposed on students,” said Malvinder Kang, former PUSU and PUCSC president and PU Senate member.

“Open house is a single platform to voice opinion. There has to be an open platform and the students must know the viewpoint of the leaders. Lyngdoh committee nowhere says that the open house cannot be held. Open house must not be stopped. It is a good trend and it should be continued,” said DP Randhawa, former SOPU leader and PUCSC president and PU Senate member.

“Open house is a good platform for students and must be hosted by PU. Upcoming leaders interact with students through an open house only. Agendas are put forth to them and students must know who is their representative. An interaction is must between students and their leaders. All students wish to cheer their leaders and they wait for the open house with curiosity every year,” said Bhupinder Singh Boora, former PUSU leader and PUCSC president.

“We will take a decision on the matter tomorrow after seeking a legal opinion said DSW and returning officer for election Naval Kishore.


l Founders’ day of Student Organisation of Panjab University (SOPU) today. It was formed on August 31, 1997

l NSUI takes out massive rally led by party president Randeep Singh Khaira

l SOPU-ABVP enters into an alliance today, pose challenge to PUSU-INSO alliance

l Three, out of five, presidential candidates from UIET

l UICET students taken out to Fun City by a student organisation, allege parties

lComplaint lodged by SOPU to returning officer against PUSU for maligning image of their presidential candidate

l Only two, out of a total of 15 candidates for PUCSC, are from arts discipline this year



Election Round-up

Final candidates: President

Gurindervir Singh Aulakh (UIET): PUSU-INSO

Mohit Taneja ‘Monty’ (UIET): SOPU-ABVP

Rajesh Punia (UBS): NSUI

Pawan Bansal (UIET): HSA

Bhupinderbir Singh (Law): SOI

Avinash Goyal (Law)

Girls fielded for vice-president

All three candidates for the post of vice-president (PUCSC) are girls this year. Yet again, the student organisations on the campus were hesitant to field a girl candidate for the post of president. Instead, the girls were fielded for the post of vice-president, which has been virtually a non-existent identity in the council in the past.

Bhavika Sharma (DEVS): SOPU-ABVP

Simrat Kaur Dhillon (English): SOI

Vibha (Botany): PUSU-INSO


Akhil Bansal: SOPU-ABVP

Dharmender: PUSU-INSO

Shantanu: HSA

Joint secretary

Jagjot Singh (SOPU): SOPU-ABVP

Subhash Chander: PUSU-INSO

Gangandeep Singh (Psychology)

Peppy nicknames

Right from “Jipsi bhai” to “Monty”, “Lota” and “Bakra”, humorous names adorned by the student leaders are now being talked about in the PU campus. Fondly called by these names, the student leaders have left an impression on the minds of voters through these hilarious nicknames.



Candidates’ lists out, not on voters’ fingertips
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 31
It’s just three days to go for the D-day but college students are still not aware of the names of all presidential candidates.With final nominations being declared in various colleges today, the student organisations, who have been campaigning for almost a week now have got their faces or official “rubber stamps”.

These candidates though full of promises are yet to find any recognition among voters, who are so far being wooed with the names and reputation of student organisations and their leaders of yesteryears.

Going by the final list, around 70 per cent of the candidates have withdrawn their nominations in almost all colleges, leaving it a battle of three or four.

In DAV College, Sector 10, out of a total of 12 nominations filed yesterday, seven have withdrawn their nominations. Similarly, in the case of SD College, Sector 32, out of the yesterday’s five nominations, only two have decided to move further. One candidate, out of a total of four, has opted out in PGGC, Sector 11.

The feature though is being claimed to be annual ever since implementation of the Lyngdoh committee recommendations.

“For a safe side, we get two to three candidates to file the nominations. In case any nomination gets cancelled because of Lyngdoh recommendations or conspiracy of other group, we have a back up,” claimed a senior student leader of DAV-10.

When questioned about insufficient time of bonding between candidates and voters, he asserted, “It’s not that big a deal. All students know what each student organisation has done and it’s the organisations that they vote for not for any candidate.”

Presidential candidates


Harpreet Singh Grewal

Mayank Malik

Prince Garg

Sehaj Pal Singh

Visharad Kuneja

SD College ,Presidential candidates

Anmol Tendon

Prabjot Singh


Nitin Mehta HS A

Manpreet Singh

Pradeep Sheron

Khalsa Co-ed-26

Kiranjeet Kaur

Sanjay Singh



Hostellers central in college election
Sumedha Sharma
Tribune news Service

Chandigarh, August 31
While every year the university campus has a fresh set of issues underlining the battle of student organisations, the colleges are yet to move forward from the usual hostel politics.

Yet another year and the student groups have pivoted their promises and campaigning around ages old “good hostel infrastructure”. The student groups though may be bearing different names but are handing out good old dish of comfortable rooms, power back-up and 24-hour water supply in hostels.

Interestingly, it’s not just the agenda but even the campaigning where hostellers are getting a major chunk of attention as compared to day scholars. All student organisations are focusing their resources and time on late night hostel campaigning where everything from free excursions to liquor bottles are being distributed right under the nose of officials.

Things are no different in girl colleges where campaigning though somber is based on a promise of extension of out timings and leniency in night outs. The candidates have promised to ensure hostel parties currently banned in various colleges.

“If you see the voting trend, you will understand that it’s the hostellers who form 85 per cent of the voters. They stay in college day and night and are thus the most affected of any anomaly in functioning or infrastructure of the college. When we know where does our voters lie then obviously everything would be pivoted around them,” said a senior leader of PUSU in one of the colleges.

Revive colleges’ student council

The functions and importance of student council need to be enhanced in the colleges. Ever since our times, student representations have gained importance every year in the university but it has stagnated in colleges. The sole importance of student leaders is restricted to getting hostel rooms and it has hampered both new crop of leaders and colleges. We need to strive for a fair and wide representation to revive dying student council of colleges.

— DPS Randhawa, former student council president, Panjab University



Not murder, says CBI
Closure report submitted in court
Swati Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 31
Giving a clean chit to four police personnel, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) today submitted the closure report in the case of murder of head constable Manmohan Singh, stating that no offence of murder had been made out.

Submitting the report in the court of Chief Judicial Magistrate JS Sidhu, the CBI mentioned that it had come on record during investigation that Manmohan had been under depression for a few months prior to his death since his father had sold his ancestral house and he had a difference of opinion with his father.

The CBI said Manmohan, who was desperate to get his property back, had taken a loan and purchased the property, but was under depression as he was not able to repay the loan amount.

The case was registered on the basis of orders passed by the Supreme Court on a special leave petition filed by the UT through the Home Secretary in December, 2009.

Earlier, the complainant, Manmohan’s widow Paramjit Kaur, filed a case in the Punjab and Haryana High Court on July 25, 2006, seeking orders to the CBI to investigate the case.

It was alleged that Manmohan was murdered by sub-inspector Sukhdeep, head constable Balbir Singh, constable Rajinder Singh and munshi Des Raj of the CIA staff and Narinder Singh of Mohali.

As per the allegations, Manmohan had received information about the smuggling of liquor from Himachal Pradesh and passed it on to his seniors.

Subsequently, a raid had been conducted by the Panchkula police, that led to the recovery of 245 boxes of liquor and the arrest of two persons on August 24, 2005, from the house of an IAS officer at Sector 6, Panchkula.

It was alleged that since many employees of the CIA staff were connected with the accused involved in the smuggling of liquor, they had started threatening Manmohan, who had apprised a senior officer of the threat.

It was further stated that around 11 am on September 3, 2005, Manmohan left his home to give cards for his mother’s ‘bhog’, scheduled for September 11, to his friends Balvinder Bittu, Jasbir and Manjit and colleagues of the CID branch.

He was supposed to return home around 2 pm, but committed suicide by jumping off the top floor after consuming excessive liquor. The police had not registered an FIR in this connection.



Doctor acquitted of graft charge
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, August 31
Dr Prabhat Sood, a psychiatrist at General Hospital, Sector 6, who was caught by the Haryana Vigilance Bureau (VB) for allegedly accepting bribe from his patients, has been acquitted of all charges.

Recently, the state health department had dropped all allegations against Dr Sood following which the VB had filed an FIR cancellation report in the local court.

It is worth mentioning here that VB sleuths on July 11, 2006, caught Dr Sood ‘red-handed’ while allegedly accepting bribe of Rs 800 from patients at his Sector 10 residence. The patients, Gian Chand Sharma and his brother Ajay Dutt, residents of Zirakpur, had complained to the VB about the bribe.

The VB sleuths had maintained that the doctor had been harassing the patients, before finally demanding Rs 2,000 for the treatment. The patients reportedly initially paid him Rs 1,000 but the harassment continued.

The health department in its recently passed orders, stated, “Since vigilance department has submitted cancellation report in the district courts, therefore there is no justification in continuing the case.”

It further reads, “The Governor of Haryana is pleased to drop the charge sheet against Dr Prabhat Sood and simultaneously his suspension period is treated as duty period for all intents and purposes.”



500 persons turn up for health camp
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 31
The Chandigarh State AIDS Control Society organised a health check-up camp at the rural polyclinic in Attawa here today, in which at least 500 persons, including women and children, turned up for availing themselves of STD/RTI, HIV/AIDS, paediatric and ENT-related facilities.

A makeshift ICTC centre was put up, wherein counsellors and laboratory technicians were deputed by the society for free HIV/AIDS counselling and testing. Around 118 blood samples were taken for free HIV/AIDS testing. With the help of counselling, women were encouraged to talk about STD/RTI, HIV/AIDS and adolescent health issues.

Dr Kavita Chavan, officiating project director of the society, stated that the society had adopted two villages in Chandigarh recently for the generation of an HIV/AIDS awareness message and attaining a 100 per cent awareness level.

The camp was part of a project foundation programme under the National Rural Health Mission.



Hunger strike by insurance staff
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 31
A large number of employees of four public-sector general insurance companies, National Insurance, Oriental Insurance, United India Insurance and New India Assurance, participated in a one-day hunger strike in response to a call given by the All-India Association of General Insurance Employees here today.

The employees protested against the ‘undemocratic and irresponsible’ attitude of the managements of the four companies and the implementation of the transfer and mobility policy. They questioned the corporate vision of the managements and demanded the early settlement of increase in wages and dialogue for cordial relations between employees and managements.

According to Harimal Thakur, president of the north zone unit of the association, the employees vowed to participate in an all-India general strike on September 7.



Man pays price for chivalry
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, August 31
The police does not distinguishes between right and wrong and believes in dealing everyone with a stern hand.Vikram, a resident of Sector 10, in his complaint submitted to the Superintendent of Police, Maneesh Chaudhary, today said he and his friend, while returning from Gymkhana Club after swimming, saw two youths beating up a girl near Sector 10 market.

He said the accused fled from the site after he and his friend intervened to save the girl. He said after this they had taken the girl to report the matter to the Sector 10 police station.

The SP directed DSP Varinder Singh to inquire into the matter. Vikram, a native of Panipat, alleged that the policeman present there started beating him up instead of searching for the accused. He said despite his repeated requests that he had tried to save the girl the cop continued to abuse and thrash him, which resulted in injuries to his ear and left jaw.

Even the girl told the cop that Vikram was innocent and had brought her to the police station after saving her from two youths. The cop made him to sign a blank paper besides presenting himself in the police station every morning, he alleged.



24-hour essential dengue medicine facility is here
Measures to check spread of water-borne diseases reviewed at meeting
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 31
A meeting was called by municipal corporation (MC) Commissioner Roshan Sunkaria today to review various ongoing measures being taken to check the spread of water-borne diseases and dengue in Chandigarh.

Instructions was given to the Assistant Director (Malaria), office of Director Health Services, Dr GC Bansal, to strengthen and monitor all vector-control measures in the city.

It was also decided to depute teams to check water coolers, overhead tanks and discarded tins, tyres and pots holding water, which could breed mosquitoes in residential areas.

A special facility would be set up for investigating patients reporting with suspected dengue. Laboratory investigation, blood bank services and essential medicines would be ensured for 24 hours.

Directions would be issued to the MC’s public health division to seal all water leakage points and ensure that accumulated water was drained out in order to make the area free from mosquito breeding.

The Medical Officer Health would accelerate sanitation campaigns with special emphasis on urban slums, colonies and villages. The removal of solid waste would be ensured on a daily basis. The garbage points would be treated with lime dusting.

The meeting was attended by SS Bida, Chief Engineer, RK Goyal, Superintendent Engineer, Public Health, and Dr G Dewan, Medical Officer Health, municipal corporation.



Youth touches high-tension cable, dies
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 31
Twentytwo-year-old Sunny of Sector 25 was electrocuted when he came in contact with a high-tension cable at his residence here this morning. He was found lying dead on the spot.

The police said he came in contact with the cable while he was putting clothes on a string for drying. He was rushed to the PGI, where he was pronounced dead on arrival.

Son of a labourer, Sunny was unemployed. The police initiated inquest proceedings under Section 174 of the Criminal Procedure Code.



Tribune employees retire

Chandigarh, August 31
Parmod Malhotra, Assistant Manager, MIS Department, retired today after putting in 33 years of service. He joined The Tribune in July, 1977, and worked in various departments. At a farewell party organized by the staff, Vinay Verma, Additional General Manager and Mr Rajeshwar Chopra, AGM circulation, lauded his services. 

Jai Prakash, a senior foreman of the Punjabi Tribune, retired after 32 years of service today. He was given a warm send-off by his colleagues. Deputy Press Manager SK Sinha, who was the chief guest on the occasion, lauded Jai Prakash’s services. LK Chaturvedi and Munish Kalia also spoke on the occasion. — TNS



Date for late admissions extended

Chandigarh, August 31
Panjab University Syndicate has extended the last date for late admissions to university and colleges (with permission of Vice-Chancellor) from August 31 to September 15 at a meeting held today.

The Syndicate also approved that five professors be designated as professor emeritus. These include SP Vij, botany; ML Sharma, botany; Nirmal Singh, physics; HS Shergill, economics; and DS Gill, chemistry.

Vice-Chancellor RC Sobti informed the House that the north zone Vice-Chancellor’s meet would be held at PU campus on September 4 and 5. He also informed that PU is to host the Indian Economic Association conference in December.

The Syndicate approved the recommendation of a committee formed earlier regarding reviewing the policy for the institution endowments and scholarships. Rajan Gaur, department of anthropology, PU, has been appointed as the honorary director, Centre for IAS.

It was also decided that those students, who have cleared their compartment at class XII level and seek admission to such courses as BA, BSc and BCom-I in the colleges affiliated to Panjab University will be allowed to apply for admission to the above-mentioned courses till September 15, subject to the availability of seats and with the permission of the VC. — TNS



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