C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Setback to right to education?
Admn to wrap up all 199 AIE centres
Sumedha Sharma/TNS

Chandigarh, November 13
The dreams of education for about 15,000 students is all set to be shattered with the UT Administration’s education department deciding to shut down all 199 Alternate Innovative Education centres (AIE) next year. Of these, 7,500 students are currently enrolled with AIE centres while the remaining are registered under the “out of school” category and were identified as a target group for the AIE.


Deprived of education

Over 6,000 children aged between five and 13 years are not receiving any formal education. Although the figure has declined somewhat compared to 8,700 last year, there are still around 3,200 boys and 3,000 girls who continue to remain deprived of education. While 67 per cent of them are engaged in different vocations, the remaining prefer to simply loiter around.

The 199 centres are being run under the Sarv Shiksha Abhiyaan (SSA) to facilitate the inclusion of school dropouts and the “out-of-school” children into mainstream education.

Explained an SSA officer: “The AIE centres were probably the most successful project of the UT education department to date. These students cannot be directly inducted into regular education without a bridge course. You cannot admit a 10-year-old ‘out-of-school’ child in nursery. Neither can he/she be directly enrolled in Class V. AIE centres bridged this gap in addition to motivating underprivileged students. With government schools struggling with staff crunch and a high student-teacher ratio, how can special attention be given to these children?”

UT’s DPI (Schools) PK Sharma said: “Since the Right to Education (RTE) is being implemented in the UT, all children will henceforth have access to regular schooling. There is nothing to worry as schools will address the issues of these children,” he added.

Although the closure comes in the wake of the implementation of the RTE, observers point out that the move may prove suicidal to the ongoing plans to educate underprivileged children in the absence of an implementation policy.



Long wait for LPG cylinders
Tribune News Service

Mohali, November 13
There is an acute shortage of domestic LPG cylinders in the city and its peripheral rural areas going by the backlog at various agencies in the district. Consumers are complaining about the waiting period ranging from 10 to 15 days in the urban areas. The district administration has directed the IOC, HPCL and BPCL to restore the supplies at the earliest.

During a meeting by the Additional Deputy Commissioner, Mohali district food and supplies inspector Sarabjit Singh said the area representative of the companies were told to make up for the shortage.

A harried consumer of Phase IX said there was a waiting period of seven days. The worst affected were adjoining rural areas as long queues can be seen in front of LPG agencies.

In Mullanpur and Naya Gaon, the waiting period at a gas agency near Majri was over 20 days.

Enquiries revealed that the shortage was due to maintenance and upgradation at the IOC’s Panipat refinery. Officials of oil companies said the situation had started improving and by the end of November, it would be normal.

Manoj Mangia, joint secretary of the All India LPG Distributors Federation North West Region, said: “The problem was due to maintenance work at the Panipat refinery. In rural areas, the waiting period was about 10 days,” he added.

The association said the use of LPG in houses for geysers and running automobiles, besides using domestic cylinders for commercial purposes were the other reasons for the shortage.



Man fires at father-in-law
Narrow escape for victim
Tribune News Service

The accused, Hardeep Singh, in police custody in Chandigarh on Saturday. A Tribune photograph

Chandigarh, November 13
Hardip Singh Grewal, a Mohali resident, fired at his father-in-law, Gurcharan Singh, in a fit of rage at the latter’s residence in Sector 36 here this evening. Hardip Singh was reportedly in an inebriated state when he fired a shot from his .32 bore revolver at Gurcharan Singh in the drawing room. The bullet missed the target by a few inches and hit the wall.

The reason behind the incident is said to be marital dispute between the accused and the victim’s daughter. The victim’s daughter, Anmol Grewal, had left her husband’s house along with her two sons on Wednesday. Hardip, in his early 40s, is a real estate agent and lives in Sector 71, Mohali, while the victim runs a sari shop in Sector 17.

The police said Hardip Singh came to his father-in-law’s house in the evening and insisted on taking back his wife and sons. “When Gurcharan Singh pleaded ignorance about the whereabouts of Anmol, Hardeep took out his revolver and fired at him,” said Anokh Singh, SHO of the Sector 36 police station.

Gurcharan Singh had already hired a bouncer at his house. Hearing the shot, the bouncer stormed inside the house and overpowered Hardip Singh. The police was also informed.

The victim’s daughter had submitted a complaint to the police after leaving her husband’s house that she had come to her parent’s house on her own, citing marital discord as reason. She also specified that no action should be taken against her parents if her husband made any complaint. The police has registered a case of attempt to murder.



Killer stretch claims another life
Sanjay Bumbroo
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, November 13
Killer stretch National Highway-22 claimed another life as a motorcycle hit a rehri near the traffic police office at Chandimandir near Panchkula in the wee hours of this morning.

The unidentified body has been kept in the mortuary of General Hospital, Sector 6, for the postmortem to be conducted after the arrival of the family members of the victim. The police said it was not known whether the victim was the motorcyclist or the owner of rehri as the victim was not wearing helmet.

Absence of streetlights has been pointed out as the main reason for the mishap. Even though the process of four-laning of the national highway is in progress, the road was blocked at various places on the 13 km stretch on the Zirakpur-Pinjore road due to darkness.

More than 70 lives were lost in various accidents on the two “killer stretches” — Pinjore-Zirakpur (National Highway-22) and Panchkula-Barwala (National Highway-73) — in the past two years.

As the construction of four-laning was in process, the authorities were yet install streetlights at various strategic points, including blind curves or the link roads joining the national highway at various points.

The police department had taken up the issue of putting up road dividers at strategic points on the 36-km Panchkula-Barwala road with the engineering wing of the district administration so that the number of accidents could be brought down.

A senior police official attributed the main causes of accidents to rash driving and driving under the influence of liquor.

He said about 40 Home Guard jawans had been posted at various strategic points on the national highway to check rash driving and traffic violations.



Slice of city in Corbusier’s hometown
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
An entire wall in Café du Coin, a bar at Le Corbusier’s hometown in Switzerland has a gigantic picture of the UT secretariat. Such is the importance attached to Chandigarh in Switzerland (where he was born) that even a 10 Swiss Franc currency has a visual of the Punjab and Haryana Secretariat and the trademark ramp of the Punjab and Haryana High Court.

A visit to La Chaux-de-fonds, Corbusier’s hometown, was much more than “a breathtaking experience” for senior advocate and former advocate-general of Haryana, Manmohan Sarin.

Sarin was invited to deliver a presentation on Chandigarh at a conference on “Utopia and the reality of urbanism in the 20th century”. The association that presently manages Maison Blanche, which is the first house Corbusier designed for his parents in La Chaux-de-fonds, had organised the conference from October 29-31.

The event was dedicated to Charles Edouard Jenneret (Le-Corbusier’s original name) and focused on three cities of Brasilia (capital of Brazil), Chandigarh and his hometown, La Chaux-de-fonds.

Recounting his experience, Sarin said: “I was surprised to see how a bar in Corbusier’s hometown had a huge image of Chandigarh’s secretariat. The changes that I have witnessed in Chandigarh from January 1, 1955, including traffic problems, were discussed at the conference. Not only did the emphasis and concern about city beautiful deeply gratify me, I was also touched by the hospitality of the organisers, who manage Corbusier’ home.”

Among the conclusions he had put forth at the conference included his observation that the experiment of Chandigarh had been a grand success. The success of this test had resulted in a huge escalation of real estate prices in and around Chandigarh and that the realistic spurt in real estate prices had an unimaginable impact on the social fibre of society leading to unnecessary litigation among families.



Zirakpur MC plans to spend Rs 80 lakh on sanitation
Rajiv Bhatia

A heap of garbage on the Dhakoli road in Zirakpur. A Tribune photograph

Zirakpur, November 13
The Zirakpur Municipal Council has decided to spend Rs 80 lakh for sprucing up the town. The work to make the town ‘garbage-free’ will be divided in two phases before giving it on contract for another year (December 1, 2010 to November 30, 2011)

According to MC officials, in the absence of permanent sanitation employees in the council, the work will be allotted to contractors on official rates. The first phase of the cleanliness work would consist of collecting and dumping of garbage by sanitation employees at collection points. In the second phase, workers will collect the garbage from collection points and disposed it of at the selected dumping ground, officials added.

The council has proposed to spend around Rs 62.28 lakh on cleanliness and Rs 17.28 lakh would be spent on dumping of garbage from the collection points.

The wards have been divided into six zones. The first zone consists of ward numbers 1, 2, 3 and 12. Around 20 sanitation workers would be deployed and Rs 73,840 would be spent. In second zone, 30 sanitation workers would be deployed for ward numbers 4, 5, 6 and 10 and Rs 11,0760 would be spent. Rs 88,608 would be spent on zone three comprising Ambala road, Patiala road, Chandigarh road, Pabhat road and Kalka road and 24 workers would be positioned. Eighteen workers will be deployed in ward numbers 7, 8 and 9 and 18 workers would be deployed, while for ward numbers 13, 14 and 15 Rs 66,456 will be spent and 18 workers will carry out the sanitation work.

Officials said for cutting of Congress grass along the road, Rs 65,000 would be spent. A tractor-trailer and a team of 15 sanitation workers will be deployed for the work, said officials.

MC officials said in second part of the work, a JCB machine, four tractor-trolleys and 20 sanitation workers will dispose of the garbage at the selected place assigned by the sanitary inspector after collecting from the 15 wards of the town. Official said Rs 17.28 lakh would be spent on this process.

However, residents rue that heaps of garbage, dry leaves, and other household waste can be seen lying in open areas. They said most of the sanitation workers do not perform their duties. Garbage lying along the main road next to the Punjab Sewerage and Water Supply office was a common sight, they alleged.

However, Municipal Council president NK Sharma said the council has proposed to spend around Rs 80 lakh on sanitation. The proposal would be discussed in the coming council meeting and would be implemented after getting the approval from the councillors, he added.



No celebrations for these parents on Children’s Day
11-yr-old Aishley Kapoor missing since April 24, 2009
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
Even as the nation celebrates Children’s Day, 11-year-old Aishley Kapoor remains missing since April 24, 2009. It was alleged by child’s parents, Deepak and Jyoti Kapoor, before the Punjab and Haryana High Court that Aishley’s aunt Seema Kapoor removed their minor daughter from the jurisdiction of the high court by misusing its order of November 3, 2006, after she was directed on July 14, 2008, to produce the child on October 20, 2008.

Seema Kapoor allegedly disobeyed the order and did not produce the minor. On April 24, 2008, advocate Anil Malhotra was appointed as amicus curiae to assist the court, as the dispute involved cross-border transportation of the minor.

Seema reportedly had fled with Aishley to the UK on a false passport. The amicus curiae was authorised by the high court on December 5, 2008, to receive custody of the minor so as to ensure her safe return to India and restoration of her custody to the high court, after Seema Kapoor and the minor were apprehended and arrested in England on December 2, 2008.

Upon Seema Kapoor claiming asylum in England, the matter was heard by the High Court of Justice, Family Division, London. Acting upon a report by the amicus curiae March 21, 2009, seeking the return of Aishley Kapoor to India, the high court at London on April 3, 2009, directed it would be in the best interest of Aishley to return to the jurisdiction of the Punjab and Haryana High Court.

But the minor could not return to India. On April 24, 2009, Aishley was again abducted from her school in Greenford, UK, and she has been missing till date. The high court directed the Punjab Police to register a case and two FIRs were registered at the Dasuya police station.

On December 17, 2009, the high court transferred the investigation to the CBI. But Aishley could not be traced. It is believed that the British police has exhausted all lines of inquiry in the UK, short of offering a reward for information.

As the matter came up on November 10, Justice Rajive Bhalla asserted: “It is surprising that despite the lapse of more than one year, the child who has spirited away to England, in violation of court orders, has not been traced or recovered. The investigating officer is directed to be present in person on the next date of hearing and file an affidavit disclosing steps taken to recover the child.”



Methane sparks fire at dumping ground
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
Panic gripped Dadu Majra colony after fire broke out at the dumping ground, choking the colony and its surroundings with methane. Two fire tenders were rushed to the spot after the department was informed about the incident by residents of the area.

It took several hours to control the blaze. The residents lamented that the fire authorities failed to take timely measures to control the fire. The water tender sent to the spot first had some technical fault, due to which there was a delay in starting fire-control operations.

The fire department stated that five trees in the vicinity of the dumping ground also caught fire.

The department stated that the cause of the fire was methane, emanating from garbage heaps, which was highly combustible.

An official said the incident took place as an equal proportion of loose earth, mandatory as per garbage management norms, was not dumped along with the garbage to stop the generation of methane.

Said Narender Chaudhary, general secretary of the Dadu Majra Residents Welfare Association, “The poisonous gas emanating from the site is dangerous. Women and children in the colony are complaining of several health problems, including nausea and vomitting.”


MC’s project not functional yet
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
Set up at a cost of more than Rs 3 crore, the pilot project of the Centre to channelise methane into wells at the dumping ground in Dadu Majra still remains non-functional. The ambitious project of the municipal corporation (MC) had envisaged supply of gas even to residential premises. Non-channelisation of gas was being cited as the biggest reason for frequent fires at the dumping ground.

In 2005, the MC submitted the project to the Centre and it was approved in 2007. The Rs 10-crore budget sought for the dumping ground included Rs 3 crore for laying methane gas pipeline and wells.

The gas was to be supplied to houses in the neighbourhood. The report had underlined the relevance of the project in avoiding fires.

Experts opined that if gas wells were functional, incidents of fire could never occur at the dumping ground. It was a matter of concern that this time, fire broke out when summer was well past its peak, which was unusual, they said.

Cooking, too!

Sources disclosed that in 2003, when the project had not been installed, gas from the dumping ground was utilised by the gurdwara nearby for cooking. Certain residents of areas adjoining Dadu Majra village laid pipes and used the gas for cooking.



Midday Meal Scheme
Plea to run kitchen in school dismissed
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
A petition filed by Swami Shivananda Memorial Institute of Fine Arts and Crafts for direction to the UT Education Department to allow it to run a kitchen at a government school for supplying the midday meals has failed to find favour with the Punjab and Haryana High Court.

The Bench of Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel and Justice Ajay Kumar Mittal has dismissed its plea. In its petition, the institute had sought direction to withdraw a tender notice dated September 15 to run kitchen at the government school and to allow it to continue running till June 30.

The Bench observed: “The case of the petitioner is that in accordance with the scheme for the midday meals in primary schools. The petitioner was allowed to use space in the government school for supplying the midday meals vide letter dated June 12, 2008. The supply of midday meals started from July 1, 2008. The letter stipulated that memorandum of understanding containing terms and conditions were required to be signed.”

“Though the MoU was never signed, the petitioner employed 45 women as self-help group and started supply of meals at rate orally settled. Under the draft agreement, the contract was to be for three years up to June 2011, but before the expiry of the period, the impugned tender notice has been issued,” the Bench observed.

“According to the petitioner, the issuance of tender notice amounted to termination of arrangement under which the petitioner was supplying the meals for the last more than two years. The petitioner made representation, dated September 14, seeking resolution of pending disputes and stating the rate of meal fixed by the administration was not acceptable to it. Vide letter dated October 1, proposal of the petitioner for increasing the rate of Rs. 3.33 per meal to Rs. 4.80 per meal was rejected. Thereafter, impugned tender notice has been issued,” the Bench observed.

The Bench added: “We have heard counsel for the petitioner. It is undisputed that no MoU was signed between the parties, nor any rate was settled for any particular period. There is unsettled dispute as to rate at which food is to be supplied. In such circumstances, working of the petitioner was adhoc under oral understanding and not for any particular period. Duration of working proposed as per draft MoU was never finalised. Thus, no direction can be issued to allow the petitioner to continue to work for three years or to direct withdrawal of impugned tender. Accordingly, the writ petition is dismissed.”



For Shabnam, life is all questions, no answers
The 10-year-old girl has been collecting garbage for the past seven years
Swati Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
Children’s Day on November 14 has no “meaning” for 10-year-old Shabnam. Dressed in tattered clothes, Shabnam is mostly seen collecting garbage at the Motor Market in Sector 28. She has been following this routine for the past seven years, along with her elder sister.

While school going children, of her age, will be celebrating Chacha Nehru’s birthday, Shabnam will be celebrating the day with rags.

A resident of Bapu Dham Colony, she was a little apprehensive about talking to this correspondent.


Children’S Day? what’s that?
(Clockwise from top): Thirteen-year-old Harikesh repairs a car at the Sector 28 motor market; a boy cleans a road; 12-year-old Dinesh washes glasses near the DC office in Sector 17; 10-year-old Shabnam collects rags while children her age play in a ground on the eve of Children’s Day on Saturday; and a child caddy at the service of a young golfer at the Chandigarh Golf Club on Saturday. Tribune photos: Pradeep Tewari and S Chandan

When the correspondent asked her name, she turned her away saying “ja yaha se…..mein nahi bataungi” (go away I won’t disclose my name). Also, hesitant in disclosing her father’s name and residential address, she claimed that she was scared of talking to the correspondent. While picking up plastic pipes and garbage with her swollen left wrist, she finally relented to the correspondent’s long cajoling “I am Shabnam and am scared of you.” When enquired about the boil on her wrist that led to the swelling, she said, “This is a skin infection. It pains slightly, but I have to work to earn my bread.”

While Shabnam from the past fortnight has not consulted a doctor, she was hesitating over whether to tell the truth, so her elder sister Shabana joined her. Shabana’s case is not a sole one.

There are dozens working in the Motor Market and in several other markets in the city, besides private residences. The stories of children are different, but the fact that children working as labourers at the time when they should be going to school or having fun stares into our faces, all over the city.



City records 10.2°C, month’s lowest so far
Anil Jerath
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
Early morning chilly winds blowing from Himachal Pradesh and the Kashmir valley brought down the mercury in the city today to the season’s lowest of 10.2 degree Celsius, forcing people to take out woollens. Today’s minimum temperature was 2.6 degree Celsius lower than yesterday’s 12.8 degree Celsius and the lowest for the month of November in the past three years.

The weatherman attributed the dip in temperature to snowfall in higher reaches of Himachal Pradesh and the Kashmir valley.

The maximum and minimum temperatures were likely to hover around 28 degree Celsius and 12 degree Celsius, respectively, tomorrow.

During last week, the temperature in the city had mostly been oscillating between 12-plus degree Celsius and 30 degree Celsius.

Winds from the hills, which recently witnessed snowfall, led to chill in the air, particularly affecting the north-eastern parts of the region.

The sudden drop in night temperatures took people by surprise. The low temperature led to speculation of early arrival of winter this year.

Met director Surender Paul said the drop in temperatures was due to snowfall in the hilly region, the impact of which would continue at least till the month-end.

There were possibilities of cloud cover across the region between November 20 and 24. The mercury would be back to normal if snowfall stopped in the hills.

Winter had been erratic in the city in the last four years. In 2006-2007 and 2007-2008, winter was warmer, with no fog at all, while 2008-2009 and 2009-2010 saw intense cold, along with fog in the first week of January.

By and large, the temperatures remained above normal. This year, the Met department predicted a normal winter, which meant chilly nights, foggy mornings and bright sun during the day. The department forecast a clear sky and cloudy conditions in the afternoon, with the possibility of light rain in the region.



It runs in the family
After granddaughter, octogenarian donates body
Arun Sharma/TNS

Chandigarh, November 13
Inspired by his granddaughter, an octogenarian residing in Sector 49 here, Gurditt Singh, today donated his body to the PGI for organ transplant and research. Memories of his 15-year-old granddaughter Harmanpreet, who had donated her body before she died four years ago, had a strong imprint on his heart, said family members.

He was not the only one to take this path. Her parents and brother had pledged while her uncle Manmohan Singh was preparing to do so.

“My father-in-law was inspired by what Harmanpreet did. She died on September 7, 2006,” said Harjit Singh Juneja, her father.

A student of Class X at Sirhind Public School, Sirhind, she had been suffering from thalassaemia. For survival, thalassaemic children needed blood transfusion every second or third week.

“My daughter was touched by the gesture. She wanted to return what society did for her and hence, decided to donate her body,” said Harjit.

“My father-in-law, indisposed for quite some time, wished to donate his body. His body was handed over to the anatomy department of the PGI today,” he added.

“After my daughter’s death, my wife Bhupinder, our son Rajpreet and I pledged our bodies. My brother-in-law Manmohan is ready to pledge his body,” he stated.

Contact Fast

The body, along with death certificate or declaration of death certificate, should be transported within five hours of the person’s death to the department of anatomy, PGI, Chandigarh, or any other medical college or institute nearby. Helpline numbers are 0172-2755201 and 0172-2755202 (9 am to 5 pm); 0172-2706478, 9914208201 and 9914208202 (after 5 pm); 0172-2746018 and 0172-2756565 (24 hours).



PGI ward boon for thyroid cancer patients
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
The radioiodine therapy ward at the PGI here has turned out to be big relief to patients of thyroid cancer in the region. A total of 45 people have already been treated since May, when the therapy was started by department of nuclear medicine.

The treatment appears to be a safe, simple and reliably effective one. Because of this, it is considered by most thyroid specialists in the US to be the treatment of choice.

The thyroid is removed through surgery. In the advanced stage of the disease, cancerous cells spread to other body organs.

Under such circumstances, radioactive iodine procured from the Bhabha Atomic Research Council is given orally to the patient after surgery.

This is done so that it is absorbed from the bowel, enters the thyroid cells from the bloodstream and gradually destroys those.

The radioactivity from this treatment is largely dissipated to the rest of the body within a few days. This technique has become easy and more effective.

Patients can avoid going through chemotherapy, a treatment with grave side effects, said Dr Anish Bhattacharya, associate professor, nuclear medicine. Till now, such patients had to go to New Delhi for the radioiodine therapy, he added.



On a mission to make town slum-free
Sanjay Bumbroo
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, November 13
Irked over the resurfacing of shanties in various sectors of Panchkula, Sarthak, an NGO, has urged the district administration to remove the same.

The NGO had taken up the task to remove encroachments and make the town shanties-free so as to give it a clean and beautiful look.

Nipun Kapur, president of the NGO, told The Tribune that they had approached the Chief Administrator of HUDA on August 26 for removing more than 250 shanties in Sectors 11 and 14. She said they had removed shanties with the support of the enforcement wing of HUDA, but the same have started coming up again.

Kapur said after counselling, more than 80 per cent inhabitants had agreed to shift to other areas by taking rooms on rent, while 20 per cent had returned to their native towns. She said they had also tried to enroll the wards of these migrants in government schools.

“The NGO was not against the migrant labourers as they play an important role in the development of the city. But they have to be counselled properly for leading a better life. We are also in contact with other social organisations that are active in providing education to the children of slum dwellers,” said Kapur. 



Sai Baba rath yatra today
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, November 13
"Charan Paduka" from Shirdi in Maharashtra will be the main attraction of the Sai Baba rath yatra to be organised by the Shirdi Sai Sewa Samaj (SSSS) here tomorrow. Tableaux depicting various facets of Shirdi Sai Baba will be part of the rath yatra.

“Sab Ka Malik Ek” depicting communal harmony will also be part of the yatra, which will pass through sectors 10, 11, 15 14, 18, 7, 8 and 9 and culminate in Sector 4. KK Sethi and BS Kochar, president and general secretary of the SSSS, said a large number of devotees from the tricity and surrounding areas will take part in the yatra.

An Army band will lead the yatra while five different bands, including a “shehnai” group, will also be part of the day-long celebrations. A community kitchen will be organised for the devotees in Sector 4.



Air traffic congestion
Flights delayed by 2-4 hours
Anil Jerath
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
All flights to and from the city to Delhi, Mumbai, Jammu and Hyderabad were delayed today by two to four hours due to rain in Delhi and air traffic congestion there, sources said. The Jet Airways Delhi-Chandigarh flight, which landed here at 10.30 am, could take off at 12.30 pm.

The Indian Airlines flight reached here two hours behind its scheduled arrival time of 4.30 pm.

Similarly, the GoAir Mumbai-Delhi-Chandigarh flight, which had the scheduled arrival time of of 12.10 pm, landed at 4.30 pm.

The Kingfisher Delhi-Chandigarh flight reached here at 5.30 pm, two hours after its scheduled arrival time of 3.30 pm.

Inclement weather at Delhi also delayed the Kingfisher Chandigarh-Jammu flight by over two hours. The Jet Chandigarh flight departed two hours and 45 minutes late.

The Jet Chandigarh-Hyderabad flight, which had the scheduled departure time of 5.25 pm, took off at 6.30 pm. Train services remained normal throughout the day, railway official said.



Trends in online business discussed

Mohali, November 13
Gian Jyoti Institute of Management and Technology, Mohali, organised the sixth national conference on “Emerging Trends in Online Business: Challenges and Opportunities” here today.

JS Bedi, chairman, Gian Jyoti Institute of Management and Technology, was the chief guest on the occasion. In his key note address, the chief guest said in the era of globalisation, e-marketing had become a potent tool to promote business at micro and macro levels and it was need of the hour to use e-marketing in rural areas to promote small and big business. Ajay Pal Singh, technical architect, Care Fusion, who was the key speaker, said even the online business at present was at an initial stage. Saeid Jorfi, University of Technology, Malaysia, presented a paper on “Communication Effectiveness Mediates Relationship between IT Agility and Strategic Alignment ” — TNS



Encroachments by slum dwellers
GMADA to carve out plots on vacant land

Mohali, November 13
To check encroachments by slum dwellers who are squatting on the Mohali-Chandigarh border at different points, the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority has decided to carve out residential and commercial plots on vacant chunks of land.

Various chunks of land in sectors 57, 60 and 61, along the border with Chandigarh, are laying vacant. It has been observed that slum dwellers were using the vacant land for parking their vehicles and littering.

Now, GMADA has decided to carve out commercial plots in sectors 57 and 60 and residential plots in Sector 61. Over the years, GMADA has been taking up the issue of encroachments by slum dwellers with the Chandigarh Administration.

It has already been decided to allot sites to motor mechanics in Sector 57. — TNS



PGI Scam
'Mastermind' files bail petition
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 13
An anticipatory bail application was filed by Gaurav Shalin, the alleged mastermind in PGI doctor admission scam, in the CBI special court here today. It was slated to come up for hearing on Monday.

According to the CBI, Shalin had secured admission for Dr Amit Musale to MD in pharmacology and Dr Sujay Sonawane to MD in paediatrics at the PGI by using persons to impersonate them in the entrance examination.

Amit and Sujay used to convince aspiring candidates about the genuineness of the admission process being used by Shalin, the CBI had submitted in court during proceedings. It had been unsuccessful in arresting Shalin.

Attempts had been made to contact Shalin at his address, Kandivali in Mumbai, but he was not there. A notice had also been sent to him through his brother-in-law and wife.



Sood Milan Mela today
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, November 13
The 48th Sood Milan Mela would be organised by Sood Sabha, Chandigarh, at Sood Bhawan in Sector 10, here, tomorrow. The spokesman of the Sabha said here yesterday that MP from Rajya Sabha Bimla Kashyap Sood would be the chief guest during the function in which hundreds of Sood families from Chandigarh, Panchkula and neighbouring states of Himachal Pradesh and Punjab would participate.

He said the daylong function would include cultural programmes by children, fancy dress competition and other social activities like awareness about eye donation. Free blood sugar test would also be held for general public, he added.



From Schools
Chacha Nehru remembered

Chandigarh: Delhi Public School celebrated Children’s Day with a great fervour. A sports meet was organised for students of preparatory classes. Various events like sprint race, froggi race, jacket race, combo race and throw ball were organised. To make it more entertaining, teachers also joined tiny tots in the “Tug of War”. Class parties were also organised for students of primary wing. Students of the senior wing participated in various competitions organised by the UT education department. Members of the Interact Club visited the Paediatric Centre, PGIMER, to cheer and bring a smile on the faces of children undergoing treatment there.

PML SD school: Children’s Day was celebrated with great zeal at PML SD Public School, Sector 32, today . Tiny tots participated in various races and winners were awarded trophies.

Swami Ram Tirtha school: Various activities were carried out in Swami Ram Tirtha Public School, Mohali, to celebrate “Children's Week” . There was a gamut of challenging inter-house competitions for students of the senior and junior wings. Little angels presented an extravaganza of colours as they celebrated the day. The theme “colour” came alive with stunningly beautiful ambience submerged in different hues of colours. Football and kho-kho matches were held. Director Sujata Sharma lauded the students’ efforts and presented trophies to the winning team.

Guru Nanak school: Children’s Day was celebrated with great fervour at Guru Nanak Khalsa Senior Secondary School, Sector 30-B. Students conveyed Nehru’s message through songs, poems and dances. Chairman of the school Sardar Avtar Singh congratulated children and distributed sweets among them.

Sherwood Convent School: Sherwood Convent School celebrated Children’s Day with fervour. More than 200 school students participated in skit, songs and mono-acting. Principal of the school advised students to follow in the footsteps of Pt Nehru.

Bhavan Vidyalaya: Bhavan Vidyalaya, Panchkula, organised a magic show for school students to mark Children’s Day. Magician V Samrat mesmerised students. His tricks of tricoloured ribbons and colourful flowers not only enthralled children, but also conveyed the message of unity in diversity. Teachers also conducted a special assembly to commemorate the special occasion. It was the day for students to see the teachers playing the role of students on the stage. Teachers presented a programme.

Golden Bells: Students of Golden Bells Public School, Sector 77, Mohali, celebrated Children’s Day with great enthusiasm and exuberance. To commemorate the birth anniversary of great leader Pt Jawahar Lal Nehru, students delivered inspiring speeches, sang songs and recited poems. Tiny tots of the school enjoyed fun games. Students of classes I to XII participated in fun races.

Sharda Sarvhitkair: Sharda Sarvhitkair Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 40, organised various activities to mark Children’s Day. Students from classes I to II participated in poem recitation, while students from classes III to V took part in a paper-reading contest. Students of Class VI were given a project on Maharaja Agarsen and Chacha Nehru. Students from classes IX to X made posters and participated in a quiz on the Commonwealth Games. Creative writing was encouraged on various topics. — TNS



DAV Public School emerges winner
SD Sharma

Chandigarh, November 13
Around 15 teams from various schools and colleges of the tricity participated in the 22nd edition of Sambhang Theatre Festival “Natyotsav-2010” at Government College-11 auditorium here today.

The event, organised by the Sambhang Theatre, a cultural wing of Swami Ram Tirath Educational and Cultural Society, was dedicated to Parbhat Gupta, a young brilliant theatre artiste, who sacrificed his life while saving a child. Parbhat was a gold medallist and alumnus of Panjab University. Student artistes displayed their aesthetic skills in their plays on diverse themes of socio-cultural relevance like dowry, honour killings, female foeticide and politico-economic issues.


Primary category: DAV Public School (I) was awarded running trophy.

Best actors: Rudrath Rudrax-DAV Public (I); best actress: Arooz Sekhon. Senior secondary category: Mount Carmel -47 finished as runners-up. Paragon Senior Secondary School-69, Mohali (II), Shivalik Public School (III).

Best actor: Nishant Chatwal-Mount Carmel (I) Sunita-Carmel Convent (II) Pritpal Singh-Paragon (III); best actress: Ankita-Mount Carmel (I), Jasmine Kaur-Paragon School (II). College category: Dev Samaj College for Women- 45 bagged the running trophy and GCG- 42 finished as runners-up. Best actor: Manjit Kaur ( I ) GCG-42, Sunita-Dev Samaj- 45 (II) (for portraying male characters). Best actress: Garima-Dev Samaj-45 (I), histrionics: Tamanna Chawla-MCM DAV- 36 (I), Meghna Dev Samaj College-45 (II).



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