SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI
JALANDHAR

Every Tuesday & Friday

Jhajjar cracks whip on encroachers
Bahadurgarh, December 27
After the failure of the local bodies in removing encroachments along the National Highway No. 10 passing through this industrial town, the police authorities have now decided to come forward to get encroachments cleared for the smooth flow of traffic on the highway here.
Policemen during an anti-encroachment drive along the NH-10 at Bahadurgarh in Jhajjar district. Policemen during an anti-encroachment drive along the NH-10 at Bahadurgarh in Jhajjar district. Photo by the writer

Ambala repeats warnings
Ambala, December 27
It seems that local shopkeepers are not paying any heed to the warnings issued to them for removing encroachments in the main bazaars of the cantonment.



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TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS


Unaware of the risk involved, a woman jumps over railway tracks on a foggy morning at the Karnal railway station.
RISKING LIFE: Unaware of the risk involved, a woman jumps over railway tracks on a foggy morning at the Karnal railway station. Tribune photo: Ravi Kumar

New Year revellers beware!
Gurgaon police forms squads to check drunken driving
Gurgaon, December 27
Resdients of the millennium city who plan to celebrate the New Year by zipping through the city in “high spirits” beware! The Gurgaon police authorities have other plans that may not fit into such scheme of things.

Reservation
Jats plan ‘balidaan’ rallies
Hisar, December 27
The relaunching of reservation stir by Gujjars in Rajasthan has given a fillip to the protagonists of reservation for Jats in government jobs in Haryana although it remains to be seen whether it will significantly impact the pro-reservation stir in the state.

Now, power consumers can lodge, track complaints online
Hisar, December 27
Power consumers in the area of Dakshin Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam (DHBVN) can now lodge their complaints regarding billing and metering on its website www.dhbvn.com.

After tragedy, Ruchi’s life takes another hue
Ruchi Grover fills colours in one of her creations in her house in Panipat.Panipat, December 27
It has been a fight against all odds for 28-year-old Ruchi Grover, an undaunted girl, who lost her arms in a freak incident when she was 11, to crave out a life for her own.





Ruchi Grover fills colours in one of her creations in her house in Panipat. Tribune photo

Judges visit senior citizens’ home
District and Sessions Judge Shiva Sharma and CJM Naresh Singhal distribute fruits among inmates of Kasturba Gandhi Vridhashram.Sirsa, December 27
Judges of the local district courts recently reached Kasturba Gandhi Vridhashram, a home for senior citizens, and enquired about the well-being of its residents. Shiva Sharma, District and Sessions Judge, and Naresh Singhal, Chief Judicial Magistrate, recently visited the Vridhashram and distributed fruits among inmates.

District and Sessions Judge Shiva Sharma and CJM Naresh Singhal distribute fruits among inmates of Kasturba Gandhi Vridhashram. Tribune photo

Implement sixth pay panel report, say principals
Kurukshetra, December 27
Resentment prevails among state school principals as the state government has not yet implemented the Sixth Pay Commission report for them.

Agarwal Vaish Samaj to celebrate foundation day
Rewari, December 27
In a run-up to the first anniversary of the foundation day of the Agarwal Vaish Samaj (AVS), a prominent socio-political organisation of the Vaish Samaj, to be held in Sirsa on January 16, a regional AVS conference was held at Jind recently.

Ambala poet felicitated at festival
Ambala, December 27
Dalip Khetarpal, a former HOD of Government Polytechnic, Ambala, participated in an international poetry festival organised at Guntur in Andhra Pradesh recently. One of his poems was included in the book ‘Poets Paradise’ in which poems of 240 poets of various countries have been included.

Seminar on road safety held
Sultan Singh, SP, Kurukshetra, addresses members of the Road Safety Organisation, Kurukshetra, at Police Lines in Kurukshetra.Kurukshetra, December 27
Keeping in view the road safety, the Road Safety Organisation (RSO), Kurukshetra, organised a seminar at the premises of the District Police Lines here recently. District police chief Sultan Singh presided over the seminar.

Sultan Singh, SP, Kurukshetra, addresses members of the Road Safety Organisation, Kurukshetra, at Police Lines in Kurukshetra. Photo: D.R. Vij

Insurance cover for pilgrims
Deputy commissioner Pankaj Aggarwal (extreme right) addresses officers at mini-secretariat in Kurukshetra.Kurukshetra, December 27
All pilgrims visiting Kurukshetra to take a holy dip on the occasion of the ensuing solar eclipse falling on January 4 will be given insurance cover by the Solar Eclipse Fair Administration. This was stated by deputy commissioner Pankaj Aggarwal while addressing officers in the conference hall of the mini-secretariat here recently.

Deputy commissioner Pankaj Aggarwal (extreme right) addresses officers at mini-secretariat in Kurukshetra.

PR dept headless in Rohtak
DPRO post vacant for five weeks
Rohtak, December 27
The Public Relations Department, known as an image-maker of the government and its machinery, has turned blunt in the home district of the chief minister in view of no full-time head of the office for the past few weeks.

Villagers allege bungling by sarpanch
Rewari, December 27
A scandal pertaining to the misappropriation of over Rs 25,000 from the monthly pension of 51 beneficiaries of old-age pension allegedly by village sarpanch Raj Singh and panch Ram Niwas in Usmapur village of the Kosli subdivision of the district has come to light.

Ambala school celebrates annual function
Students of PKR Jain Public School, Ambala City, present a folk dance on its annual function.Ambala, December 27
PKR Jain Public School, Ambala City, celebrated its annual function on the school premises. Mukesh Jain, director, AK Industries, was the chief guest on the occasion. The function began with the lighting of the traditional lamp.



Students of PKR Jain Public School, Ambala City, present a folk dance on its annual function. Tribune photo

Hooda pays tributes to journalist
Kurukshetra, December 27
Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda said Dr Keshwanand Mamgai was an eminent writer, laureate and fearless journalist who served the literature and journalism more than 50 years during the span of his life.

7,114 take UGC-NET
Kurukshetra, December 27
As many as 7,114 candidates took the University Grants Commission National Eligibility Test (UGC-NET) at 34 examination centres set up by Kurukshetra University here yesterday.

Hooda orders road repairs from Feb 1
Chandigarh, December 27
Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda has directed the PWD (Building and Roads) officials that the repair of patchwork and potholes on roads should again be continued from February 1, 2011, when the winter is over and weather is favourable for bituminous works.

INLD wing holds yuva sammelan
A yuva sammelan of the INLD youth wing in progress in Rewari.Rewari, December 27
The youth wing of the INLD has been making efforts for the inclusion of youth activists into the party fold. In pursuance of a directive of party supremo Om Prakash Chautala, a district-level yuva sammelan was held here recently.

A yuva sammelan of the INLD youth wing in progress in Rewari.

Yet another robbery but cops clueless
Faridabad, December 27
On the intervening night of Tuesday and Wednesday, three criminals broke into the house of a realtor in Green Field Colony on the Surajkund road, overpowered the family head, Ram Miglani, and fled after looting cash and jewellery.

Hi-tech police need of the hour: DGP
Ranjiv Dalal, DGP, inaugurates a software training centre at Police Lines complex in Bhiwani.Bhiwani, December 27
The state police is all set to don a new avtaar as its personnel would be skilled with latest techniques which would help them combat criminals using hi-tech gadgets.


Ranjiv Dalal, DGP, inaugurates a software training centre at Police Lines complex in Bhiwani.

Work on identifying ineligible BPL families stalled
Sirsa, December 27
Owing to the alleged lackadaisical attitude of the Food and Supplies authorities, the work on identification of ineligible families included in BPL lists in urban areas of the district has been stalled for now.


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Jhajjar cracks whip on encroachers
Ravinder Saini

Bahadurgarh, December 27
After the failure of the local bodies in removing encroachments along the National Highway No. 10 passing through this industrial town, the police authorities have now decided to come forward to get encroachments cleared for the smooth flow of traffic on the highway here.

As per the decision, the police, led by Jhajjar SP Sourabh Singh, has kicked off an anti-encroachment drive here following the directives of V. Kamaraja, IGP, Rohtak Range, covering five districts - Rohtak, Jhajjar, Sonepat, Panipat and Karnal.

Taking seriously the traffic chaos that is causing inconvenience to road users here, the IGP, who was on a surprise visit to check the working of the Bahadurgarh police, had some days ago directed the SP to launch a special drive to remove encroachments from the NH so as to ensure the smooth movement of traffic.

“Shopkeepers and vendors, who have encroached on the NH, are being challaned besides seizing their articles kept on the road. The Jhajjar SP has been asked to visit Bahadurgarh daily to supervise the campaign so that it could achieve its aim of removing encroachments from the highway,” said Kamaraja, adding that persistent stringent action against encroachers was required to prevent them to do so in the future as well.

The SP had also been directed to rope in officials of the local bodies in the drive so that they could also initiate separate action as per the rule against the encroachers, informed the IGP.

“Being located on the border of Delhi and Haryana, Bahadurgarh welcomes commuters who enter the state from Delhi through the NH-10. They have a bad experience after being stuck in traffic snarl. In this situation, firm action needs to be initiated to ease out the traffic congestion for giving respite to road users,” said Kamaraja, adding that he was also supervising the drive by visiting Bahadurgarh on alternate days.

He informed that hoardings inviting people to help the police in easing out the traffic congestion would be placed at different places of the town so that public support could also be taken to make the drive successful.

Notably, the local bodies have carried out anti-encroachment drives so many times to ease out the traffic congestion here, but the exercise proved just an eyewash every time. Whenever the local bodies launched the drive, it fizzled out within a couple of days following the non-seriousness of officials concerned and intervention of politicians. Most of the shopkeepers have covered 3-4 ft portion of the road, which has made the movement of vehicles difficult.

The situation is aggravated by scores of vendors who keep moving on the road. This leads to a perpetual traffic jam during the rush hours. A few years ago, a pavement for shoppers was constructed after removing encroachments on both sides of the road, but it did not work for long.

Even as the police has started its campaign of removing encroachment on the NH, it is yet to be seen whether the police succeeds in its planning or meet the same fate.

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Ambala repeats warnings
Attar Singh
Tribune News Service

Encroachments galore in Ambala Cantt’s Gur Mandi.
Encroachments galore in Ambala Cantt’s Gur Mandi. Photo: Dev Dutt Sharma

Ambala, December 27
It seems that local shopkeepers are not paying any heed to the warnings issued to them for removing encroachments in the main bazaars of the cantonment.

Sameer Pal Srow, Ambala deputy commissioner, in his order under Section 72 of the Haryana Police Act, had asked shopkeepers and roadside vendors to remove encroachments in main markets and bazaars, including Sadar Bazar, Rai Market, Sarafa Bazar, Sabzi Mandi and Nicholson Road.

However, the warning hardly had any effect on the encroachers. The police has been repeatedly saying that these shopkeepers and vendors are not a major problem for them as they would not take much time in clearing the encroachments. But it is yet to announce the date for launching the anti-encroachment drive and initiating stern action against erring shopkeepers and vendors.

Shashank Anand, SP, also held a meeting with shopkeepers and businessmen and asked them to remove encroachments by October 12 after which the police action would be taken against the violators.

Talking to The Tribune, Sameer Pal Srow stated that the administration had stepped up on this front and were making all efforts to improve the situation. A few days ago, he had directed the committee staff to get the roads in main bazaars and around the bus stand cleared of all encroachments. The police had also launched an anti-encroachment drive in main bazaars and took action against shopkeepers for violating traffic rules.

A spokesman for the municipal corporation said it was important to take action against shop owners in Gur Mandi and other markets since they were continuing to block public walkways with tables by exceeding the limitations.

In the absence of stringent action, shopkeepers and residents alike are contributing to the problem. While the district administration is making efforts to improve the situation, residents are apparently not supporting them, he added.

Shopkeepers say the markets constantly remain crowded and streets encroached due to wrong parking of vehicles and roadside vendors discouraged customers from entering the markets.

The residents of Sabzi Mandi road said encroachments in the area had become a regular feature. Everyone seemed to notice this menace, but the authorities were apparently dragging their feet so far as action against violators was concerned, they added.

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New Year revellers beware!
Gurgaon police forms squads to check drunken driving
Sunit Dhawan
Tribune News Service

SS Deswal
SS Deswal Police Commissioner 

Gurgaon, December 27
Resdients of the millennium city who plan to celebrate the New Year by zipping through the city in “high spirits” beware! The Gurgaon police authorities have other plans that may not fit into such scheme of things.

“In order to check drunken driving, we will deploy special squads equipped with interceptors and breath-analysers at several strategic points across the city,” said Gurgaon Police Commissioner SS Deswal, adding that such squads would also be stationed near pubs and hotels.

Talking to The Tribune, Deswal pointed out that the incidence of drunken driving was observed to go up as part of New Year celebrations due to which such measures were necessitated.

“While special squads will target the inebriated, over-speeding and rash drivers over the weekend, the first week of the New Year will be observed as National Road Safety Week with focus on educative and enforcement initiatives,” he maintained.

Pointing out that assaults on traffic policemen had also gone up lately, the Police Commissioner asserted that many VIP brats and youngsters belonging to affluent families were found to be involved in such incidents.

“It is rather curious to note that most of the persons responsible for offences like rash and irresponsible driving, over-speeding and disobeying traffic rules come from the so-called educated class,” Deswal observed, citing relevant figures.

He further stated that untrained and underage drivers were also a major factor contributing to the rise in number of road accidents, adding that driving tests conducted by the licensing authorities were also inadequate.

Deswal said on their part, they had challaned hundreds of underage drivers in the recent past and cancelled the driving licences of habitual offenders. He said they had also been seeking the support of parents and the school authorities in discouraging underage driving.

The Police Commissioner pointed out that as per the latest figures, nearly eight lakh road accidents took place in the country every year, of which 1.5 lakh were fatal. Even in many of the non-fatal ones, a large number of persons were permanently disabled or crippled for life. “The road accidents, thus, cause great loss of life as well as property and all out and participative efforts are required to bring down such mishaps,” he added.

Seeking proactive participation of the people in traffic management, Deswal appealed to the residents to come forward and help the police in regulating vehicular traffic on the busy city roads.

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Reservation
Jats plan ‘balidaan’ rallies
Raman Mohan
Tribune News Service

Hisar, December 27
The relaunching of reservation stir by Gujjars in Rajasthan has given a fillip to the protagonists of reservation for Jats in government jobs in Haryana although it remains to be seen whether it will significantly impact the pro-reservation stir in the state.

The pro-reservation Jat Aarakshan Sangharsh Samiti has been quick to offer its support to the agitating Gujjars of Rajasthan even though in practical terms this support amounts to nothing more than just tactical and moral endorsement of the Gujjar stand on the issue.

As part of its ongoing campaign for reservation for Jats, the samiti has already announced the dates for its ‘balidaan’ rallies to be organised all over Haryana from January 9 next year and culminating in a state-level rally here on March 6. The samiti leadership hopes that the Gujjar community in Haryana and other states will extend reciprocal support to its stir.

This is the first time that the samiti has extended support to the Gujjar stir in Rajasthan. Traditionally, Gujjars and Jats in Rajasthan have been political rivals. However, ever since Col Kirori Singh Bainsla spearheaded the Gujjar stir in the neighbouring state, attempts have been made by both Gujjars and Jats in various states to come together on this issue.

In September a frontal organisation of the Scheduled Tribe Gujjars of J&K had written an open letter to Jat leaders in other states offering support to their demand for inclusion of the community in the OBC category provided they extended similar support to Gujjars in Rajasthan and other states.

The Tribal Research and Cultural Foundation, a frontal organisation of Gujjars in J&K, had asked the Jat community to come forward and launch a joint Gujjar-Jat struggle over the issues pertaining to both communities residing in 12 states of India.

The letter said historically, culturally and socially Gujjars and Jats had many similarities and the need of the hour was that members of the two communities joined hands for a joint struggle. The Gujjars and Jats together could force a radical change in the social scenario of India, it had added.

However, despite this, the two communities failed to come together at the national level mainly because of conflicting political interests in different states.

The samiti’s weakest point continues to be complete lack of credible leaders. It is mainly led by second-rung aspiring Jat politicians struggling to find a foothold in the slippery marchlands of Haryana’s politics. Even these leaders are being, in turn, led by similarly placed Jats from western UP who do not have any following worth the name in their home state.

The Hooda government will have to tread cautiously as the samiti’s earlier stir had led to widespread violence in Mayyar village of this district which had claimed the life of a youth in police firing.

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Now, power consumers can lodge, track complaints online
Tribune News Service

Hisar, December 27
Power consumers in the area of Dakshin Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam (DHBVN) can now lodge their complaints regarding billing and metering on its website www.dhbvn.com.

Sudhir Rajpal, managing director, DHBVN, said to register a complaint the consumer had to go to the consumer section on the home page of the website and download the complaint form by clicking on “customer care services”. The consumer has to email the form duly filled up to dhbvncomplaint@gmail.com. The consumer will receive a complaint number in response to the complaint.

For effective monitoring, the complaint will be received at the head office and then forwarded to the subdivision concerned and action taken report will be obtained to give feedback to the consumer through e-mail.

Rajpal said the facility of online registration of electricity complaints was already available in Gurgaon, Faridabad, Rewari and Hisar. Over 1,000 consumers had registered their complaints relating to power supply, metering and billing. All these complaints were redressed without having to visit the offices of the DHBVN.

He said for online payment of bills, the consumer had to go to consumer section and click the link “online payment and billing details of subdivisions”.

The customer is then required to enter his “K” number or account number to register his complaint. On the registration of complaint, the customer will get a unique request ID on the printable acknowledgement slip. With the help of the unique request ID, generated at the time of registration of complaint, the customer can also track the status of the complaint or application on the website.

The MD said with the computerisation of subdivisions, their working had completely changed for the better. An information counter had been provided at each subdivision where an official equipped with computer would provide all necessary information and forms to the consumers.

In case of non-availability of forms, the consumer can be provided printouts. Status of a complaint can also be known at this section as it maintains the flow of inward and outward applications in the system and enter details of grievance. The official at the information counter receives the complaints and applications and diverts these to consumer help desk for registration and resolution.

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After tragedy, Ruchi’s life takes another hue
Manish Sirhindi
Tribune News Service

Panipat, December 27
It has been a fight against all odds for 28-year-old Ruchi Grover, an undaunted girl, who lost her arms in a freak incident when she was 11, to crave out a life for her own.

Ruchi also lost her mother and brother on that fateful day when a high-tension wire fell on her mother while she was removing clothes from the terrace of their house. Her brother, who rushed to save their mother, also got electrocuted and died on the spot. Unaware of the consequences, the little girl also hurried towards the two only to be thrown away by the electric cable. Ruchi fell unconscious and was rushed to Safdarjung hospital in New Delhi where the doctors had to amputate both her arms.

A few years after the incident, Ruchi’s father remarried and the girl was left with no option but to move out of her house.

But not letting the handicap come in her way, Ruchi learned to paint with her legs by holding the brush in her toes and also to use a sewing machine to stitch clothes and earn a livelihood.

Setting an example for those who decide to give up on their lives after facing such an experience, Ruchi is today leading a normal life of being a painter and a tailor. Though her paintings have not yet been recognised in the upper art circles, these do get her the money that she requires to make both ends meet. “May be one day I am able to sell my masterpieces for a bounty,” beams an optimistic Ruchi.

Overwhelmed by the grit shown by the girl, a city-based doctor, Vandana Pahuja, came to her aid and helped her stabilise her life.

Speaking her heart out, Ruchi said even as life had been quite tough with her, it also gave her valuable lessons including that determination and will to survive coupled with positive approach could do wonders for anyone, including those with whom life had been a little unjust.

Dr Pahuja said she was quite touched with what the girl had gone through in her life, but when she saw Ruchi’s determination, she decided that she would help her lead a normal life.

Today, Ruchi is filled with a sense of worth and earns enough money from her paintings and stitched clothes to lead a good life. She said one day she would like to start an NGO of her own to assist the less-fortunate people to get on their feet and live a life of self worth. 

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Judges visit senior citizens’ home
Tribune News Service

Sirsa, December 27
Judges of the local district courts recently reached Kasturba Gandhi Vridhashram, a home for senior citizens, and enquired about the well-being of its residents. Shiva Sharma, District and Sessions Judge, and Naresh Singhal, Chief Judicial Magistrate, recently visited the Vridhashram and distributed fruits among inmates.

Sharma directed the civil surgeon to send his team of doctors once in a week to examine senior citizens living there and provide treatment to those who needed it. The judges spoke to all inmates and assured them all help.

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Implement sixth pay panel report, say principals
Our Correspondent

Kurukshetra, December 27
Resentment prevails among state school principals as the state government has not yet implemented the Sixth Pay Commission report for them.

Stating this here recently, Haryana School Education Officers Association (HSEOA) state president Mohinder Singh Chauhan said the pay revision committee in the state had done great injustice with the school principals and district education officers by not granting them the Sixth Pay Commission scales.

“In the hierarchy of the education department, the officers, who hold key posts in the department, have been denied their due pay scales as per their status. The distinguished tag which shows their relative status has become insignificant in terms of pay scales with their counterparts in neighboring states,” he added.

The Sixth Pay Commission report gave the school principals and higher officers a pay scale of Rs 12,000-16,500 with grade pay of Rs 7,600 and class-I status. Even the government of Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Delhi and all central schools of Navodya Vidalya situated in all states of India have granted their principals a grade pay of Rs 7,600 and class-I status. The states of Punjab and Himachal Pradesh, which have devised and implemented their own pay scales, have given their principals a class-I status.

However, the state government had given the school principals the pay scale of Rs 10,000-13,900 with grade pay of Rs 6,000 and class-II status, he added.

Chauhan further said the school principals had been struggling for the past two years to get the central pay scale.

They have talked to the Chief Minister, Finance Minister, Education Minister and the chairman of the Pay Anomalies Committee many times, but to no avail.

Chauhan demanded that a hike of 3 per cent of basic pay should be given at each step of higher responsibility as per provisions made in the report of the Sixth Pay Commission.

A separate pay scale of Rs 14,300-18,300 pre-revised in PB-4 of Rs 37,400-67,000 along with a grade pay of Rs 8,700 should be given to the joint director (academic), Chauhan added.

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Agarwal Vaish Samaj to celebrate foundation day
Our Correspondent

Rewari, December 27
In a run-up to the first anniversary of the foundation day of the Agarwal Vaish Samaj (AVS), a prominent socio-political organisation of the Vaish Samaj, to be held in Sirsa on January 16, a regional AVS conference was held at Jind recently.

Besides AVS chief Ashok Buwaniwala, numerous other AVS activists - Tara Chand Jindal, Roshan Lal Goyal, Arun Jain, Ram Prakash Kahnoria, KC Gupta, Sanjeev Tayal, Rakesh Singla and MP Goyal - participated in its proceedings.

At the outset, a compendium of publicity material pertaining to the foundation day festival was formally released by Ashok Buwaniwala and Tara Chand Goyal.

Stating that with a comprehensive review of AVS accomplishments of the past one year, prospective strategies and programmes would also be chalked out at the festival, Buwaniwala pleaded for a massive participation of the activists in the festival to ensure an all-purpose ascendancy of the Samaj in the state and elsewhere.

Enumerating AVS achievements on the social-cum-political fronts during the past one year, Buwaniwala hoped that with their full-fledged cooperation, the AVS would be instrumental in initiating certain monumental projects for holistic progress of the Samaj in 2011-12.

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Ambala poet felicitated at festival
Our Correspondent

Dalip Khetarpal being honoured during a poetry fest at Guntur in AP.
Dalip Khetarpal being honoured during a poetry fest at Guntur in AP. Tribune photo

Ambala, December 27
Dalip Khetarpal, a former HOD of Government Polytechnic, Ambala, participated in an international poetry festival organised at Guntur in Andhra Pradesh recently. One of his poems was included in the book ‘Poets Paradise’ in which poems of 240 poets of various countries have been included.

Nagasuseela, chief guest of the festival, felicitated him for his spiritual poetry ‘Loss of Individuality’. He was offered a shawl and appreciation certificate on the occasion.

Khetarpal said poetry should highlight the deepest and the truest truths hidden in a man. 

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Seminar on road safety held
Our Correspondent

Kurukshetra, December 27
Keeping in view the road safety, the Road Safety Organisation (RSO), Kurukshetra, organised a seminar at the premises of the District Police Lines here recently. District police chief Sultan Singh presided over the seminar.

While addressing the seminar, Sultan said on the orders of the state government and under the guidance of DGP RS Dalal, an RSO had been constituted by the district police, Kurukshetra, and Lakhwinder Singh Grewal was its president. The RSO, which had been working as a link between the police and the public, had also been rendering its helping hand in propagating road safety measures as well as making public aware of the Motor Vehicle Act by organising lectures on it from time to time.

Sultan informed that while the UNO had announced to celebrate 2011 as the Road Safety Year, Haryana police had decided to celebrate the first week of 2011 as the Road Safety Week.

Appealing to the people, Sultan said they should wear helmet, use seat belt, avoid use of cellphone while driving, reflector must be fixed on the rear of vehicles and neither overtake the vehicles nor drive after consuming alcohol. In case of any mishap, control room telephone numbers 1033; 1073 or 100 can be contacted, he added.

Meanwhile, it was also announced that anybody desirous to be a member of the RSO can contact Grewal at his cellphone number 94160-25009 or the SHO, traffic, cellphone number 97299-90417. Inspector Pradhan Singh, the SHO, Traffic, and RSO members were also present on the occasion.

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Insurance cover for pilgrims
D.R. Vij

Kurukshetra, December 27
All pilgrims visiting Kurukshetra to take a holy dip on the occasion of the ensuing solar eclipse falling on January 4 will be given insurance cover by the Solar Eclipse Fair Administration. This was stated by deputy commissioner Pankaj Aggarwal while addressing officers in the conference hall of the mini-secretariat here recently.

Aggarwal said this time the solar eclipse would be partial and the district administration was expecting about three lakh pilgrims to reach here on the occasion. He said the mela area would be divided into 10 sectors and each sector would be looked after by a magistrate. The Public Health Department authorities would supply chlorinated drinking water, while Uttar Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam officers would initiate steps to ensure regular supply of electricity.

The Information and Public Relations Department would establish the local information and broadcasting station near Gulzari Lal Nanda Memorial situated on the northern banks of the Brahmasarovar. Instructions of the mela administration as well as information regarding lost or found would be broadcast from this centre.

He directed the Kurukshetra Development Board and the Municipal Council authorities to catch stray cattle and send them to ‘gaushalas’. The conveyance required for this purpose would be rendered by the Animal Husbandry Department.

Aggarwal also asked the Health Department as well as the Public Health Department authorities to take samples of drinking water from all dharamshalas and send the same to laboratories for checking. In addition to this, the Health Department had been directed to arrange for anti-larva fogging in the mela area to check the spread of diseases.

The Civil Supply Department had also been asked to ensure the supply of essential commodities and cooking gas cylinders to the free kitchen organisers. The Revenue and the Disaster Management Departments would arrange eight engine-run boats, life jackets and divers during the mela days.

The Haryana Roadways Department would arrange four cranes for the smooth run of traffic while the Public Works Department would erect barricades near Gulzari Lal Nanda Memorial and the VIP Ghat.

Similarly, minimum eight fire brigades would be deployed at different places, while special parking zones would be earmarked in the mela area. The Police Department would make elaborate arrangements for security as well as traffic, he added.

District police chief Sultan Singh, additional deputy commissioner Sumedha Kataria, district development and panchayat officer Surender Kumar and district revenue officer Ashok Malik were among others who attended the meeting.

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PR dept headless in Rohtak
DPRO post vacant for five weeks
Bijendra Ahlawat
Tribune News Service

Rohtak, December 27
The Public Relations Department, known as an image-maker of the government and its machinery, has turned blunt in the home district of the chief minister in view of no full-time head of the office for the past few weeks.

Both posts of district public relations officer (DPRO) and radio and publicity liaison officer (RPLO), held by an official of deputy or joint director, have been lying vacant for the past one month resulting in adverse affect on the routine work of the office.

“Since the district has the camp office of Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, the work of the PR Department becomes more important, besides the regular job of disseminating the information and publicity material of various programmes and policies of the government machinery at the district level, but there has been an unusual delay in the appointment of DPRO,” claimed sources in the department.

The post of DPRO here got vacant after the death of its previous incumbent in a road accident on November 10. Though the authorities were expected to depute another official soon, they have not done so which has lead to several problems, said a department official on the condition of anonymity.

The post of the RPLO too fell vacant after the retirement of the last incumbent about six months ago. The charge of this office, having over 10 employees, has been held temporarily by a junior employee who perhaps has inadequate knowledge or no proper authority. “It is due to the fact that the work here is more challenging and none of the official posted elsewhere, including Chandigarh head office, was interested to join here. A recent move the authorities to transfer another official also got thumped due to similar reasons,” said the sources.

“Though the officiating charge of DPRO has been given to the DPRO of Jhajjar district, but it was also not proving fruitful in various aspects which include no interaction with the media for the past some time,” claimed a local journalist.

Meanwhile, Rajiv Sharma, commissioner, Rohtak division, has claimed that the matter has not been brought to his notice, but he will take up the matter with the DPR.

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Villagers allege bungling by sarpanch
Our Correspondent

Rewari, December 27
A scandal pertaining to the misappropriation of over Rs 25,000 from the monthly pension of 51 beneficiaries of old-age pension allegedly by village sarpanch Raj Singh and panch Ram Niwas in Usmapur village of the Kosli subdivision of the district has come to light.

Aggrieved pensioners Dhoop Singh, Shradha Nand and others informed that old-age pension of Rs 500 per month per head of 51 beneficiaries for a period of six months from April 2010 to September 2010 was released by the state government in November 2010. They alleged that Raj Singh and Ram Niwas pocketed one month’s pension from each of the beneficiaries while they were given Rs 2,500 each which came to five months’ pension of each one of them.

They further alleged that while their signatures and thumb impressions were obtained for Rs 3,000 each, it was made known to them that the government had dispatched Rs 2,500 per head.

Smitten by such fraudulence on part of the village sarpanch, 22 beneficiaries sent a written complaint, along with their affidavits, to the Chief Minister and others on November 26, following which district social welfare officer Amit Sharma visited Usmapur village on December 9 for on-the-spot enquiry. It was, however, reportedly scuttled by the sarpanch’s offensive interference.

Subsequently, in response to the pensioners’ demand, the district social welfare officer, in the presence of police personnel, again on December 22 conducted an enquiry during which Ram Niwas reportedly admitted his wrongdoing.

Thereafter, the pensioners also made a written representation to MP Deepender Singh Hooda during his recent visit to Kosli and sought speedy refund of their defrauded amount as well as removal of the tainted sarpanch and the panch of the village.

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Ambala school celebrates annual function
Suman Bhatnagar

Ambala, December 27
PKR Jain Public School, Ambala City, celebrated its annual function on the school premises. Mukesh Jain, director, AK Industries, was the chief guest on the occasion. The function began with the lighting of the traditional lamp.

Students displaced their skills and talent in rhythmic and colourful display of folk dances like gidda and bhangra. Western dances were also presented by the students. A skit was also presented on the theme of Jain philosophy which left the audience spellbound.

Mukesh, while addressing the students, said Jain Saints had shown the path of non-violence and truth. He asked the student to follow the teaching of Jain Saints. He suggested the students to take active part in sports and cultural activities besides their regular studies.

He said they should pay respect to their teachers and elders if they wanted to be a successful student.

The president of the School Management Committee, Ratan Jain, and vice president, Arun Kumar Jain, also addressed the students. The chief guest gave away prizes to the participants. The principal of the school, Jiyotsna Sachdeva, while briefing the achievements of the school, said during a short tenure, the school had become one of the premier institutions in the district. She said the school had made every arrangement for the all-round development of the students.

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Hooda pays tributes to journalist
D.R. VIJ

Kurukshetra, December 27
Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda said Dr Keshwanand Mamgai was an eminent writer, laureate and fearless journalist who served the literature and journalism more than 50 years during the span of his life.

These views were expressed by the Chief Minister recently in the condolence meeting organised here to pay homage to Dr Mamgai who passed away on December 12.

The Chief Minister said Dr Mamgai had made a great contribution to enrich the literature and had written a number of books, essays, short stories, epics, radio talks and interviews during his life. Dr Mamgai was the first researcher who made significant contribution in the literature of Haryana, he added.

Hooda said Dr Mamgai had also got the Babu Bal Mukund Award in recognition of his services for his contribution in the field of literature. He was of the opinion that the literature of Dr Mamgai would also motivate the younger generation. He was an embodiment of simplicity, who was committed to the moral values and this was evident from this fact that he was an unmatched writer, who had never compromised with the principles in the life, he added.

Paying tributes to the late Dr Mamgai, political advisor to the Chief Minister, Prof. Virender Singh, said his contribution to society and literary world could not be forgotten in the years to come. Prof Virender also visited the house of late Karan Singh, president of the Kurukshetra University Non-Teaching Employee Association, who passed away on December 22 at Kurukshetra.

Additional principal secretary to the Chief Minister and financial commissioner and principal secretary, Information and Public Relations, Dr KK Khandelwal, in a message, said Dr Mamgai was dedicated towards the literature and he had written various types of books and created history in the field of journalism. He further said he had always maintained the dignity of journalism while serving as sub-editor in Jansatta.

In another message, the additional principal secretary to the Chief Minister and director, Information, Public Relations and Cultural Affairs, Shiv Raman Gaur, maintained that although Dr Mamgai was born in Uttrakhand, he served Haryana and enriched the literature during his life. He said he had left an indelible imprint on the mind of the people. The president of the Haryana Patrakar Kalyan Manch, Pawan Ashri, announced to set up an award after the name of Dr Mamgai on behalf of the manch.

Representatives of a number of religious and social organisations, politicians and journalists’ organisations paid floral tributes to the departed soul, which included vice-chancellor of Guru Jambeshwar University, Hisar, Dr ML Ranga, former Haryana Transport Minister and Indian National Lok Dal state president, Ashok Arora, former MLAs Ramesh Gupta and Sahab Singh Saini, wife of Dr Mamgai Sushila Devi, younger brother of Dr Mamgai Prakash Chander and sons Dr Shailender Shalley, Subhash and Raj Kumar, India News editor Balwant Takshak, Jansatta editor Mukesh Bhardwaj, ACUT Yash Garg, SDM Ashok Bansal, district president of the Congress DD Sharma, Kurukshetra Gurukul Acharya Dr Devarat, Acharya Sukhdev and a large number of journalists.

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7,114 take UGC-NET
Our Correspondent

Kurukshetra, December 27
As many as 7,114 candidates took the University Grants Commission National Eligibility Test (UGC-NET) at 34 examination centres set up by Kurukshetra University here yesterday.

Lt-Gen DDS Sandhu, KU Vice-Chancellor, and Prof Raghuvendra Tanwar, Registrar KU, visited all exam centres and ensured the smooth conduct of the exam.
According to KU spokesperson, “Proper arrangements were made to provide directions of exam centres to students by creating two information centres at the two entry gates of the university. As many as 34 observers appointed by the UGC and 510 invigilators ensured the smooth and fair conduct of the test. Proper security arrangements were made with the help of the district police.

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Hooda orders road repairs from Feb 1
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 27
Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda has directed the PWD (Building and Roads) officials that the repair of patchwork and potholes on roads should again be continued from February 1, 2011, when the winter is over and weather is favourable for bituminous works.

Hooda was presiding over a meeting of the PWD (B&R) Department here. Engineer-in-Chief, PWD (B&R) Mahesh Kumar apprised the Chief Minister that all mining and quarrying works in Haryana had been closed with effect from March 1, 2010. There was large-scale damage to Haryana highways infrastructure owing to heavy rains and floods in the state. As soon as the monsoon season was over, the department took steps for repair of patchwork and potholes on a war footing throughout the state.

He said it was also a challenging job that there was an acute shortage of mines and road material. As against the target fixed for repair of 8955-km long highways, the PWD (B&R) had achieved the target of 8100 km. This campaign was launched for PWD roads, Prime Minister Grameen Sadak Yojna (PMGSY) roads, national highways and highways under the defect liability period. All Deputy Commissioners were intimated about the programme and there was no adverse report from any of the districts.

Earlier, the Engineer-in-Chief made a presentation through photographs and video clips to show works done throughout the state. Those present in the meeting included PWD Minister Randeep Singh Surjewala and Chief Parliamentary Secretary Prahlad Singh Gillankhera. 

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INLD wing holds yuva sammelan
Nawal Kishore Rastogi

Rewari, December 27
The youth wing of the INLD has been making efforts for the inclusion of youth activists into the party fold. In pursuance of a directive of party supremo Om Prakash Chautala, a district-level yuva sammelan was held here recently.

Addressing the sammelan, Umed Singh Lohan, state chairman of the INLD youth wing, asserted that youth, who constituted over 50 per cent of the state’s electorate, were a crucial force as far as electoral politics was concerned.

Stating that they had already covered 20 districts of the state and the response in almost all district-level youth conferences was quite encouraging, Lohan explained that a group comprising 10 dedicated youth activists in each of the 6,700 villages of the state, would now constitute an integral part of the organisational set-up of the INLD to ensure its supremacy for all intents and purposes.

Flaying the Hooda regime for its “Rohtak-centric” approach, the youth leader alleged that the Chief Minister, who was mainly focused on the development of the Rohtak region alone, was acting like a village sarpanch.

He alleged that with the distribution of government jobs for consideration other than merit, the Hooda government had virtually pushed the youths towards addiction and crime.

Simultaneously, sounding a note of optimism, Lohan asserted that while disenchantment of the masses from the Hooda regime was on the increase, the INLD was gaining momentum.

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Yet another robbery but cops clueless
Ravi S Singh/TNS

Faridabad, December 27
On the intervening night of Tuesday and Wednesday, three criminals broke into the house of a realtor in Green Field Colony on the Surajkund road, overpowered the family head, Ram Miglani, and fled after looting cash and jewellery.

They ransacked the house for about two hours, injuring Miglani critically when he resisted them.

The police remains clueless about the criminals who had their faces covered. The incident comes on the heels of a robbery at a jewellery shop in old Faridabad market. Two criminals wearing monkey caps and posing as customers tried to steal some jewelley items. When the owner raised the alarm, they brandished a country-made gun, tied him up and dumped him in a corner and fled with jewellery.

No breakthrough has been made in this case either. Thw two incidents has created fear among the business community. Early this week, a scooterist was robbed of Rs 5 lakh as he parked his vehicle near the Banke Bihari temple in NIT area.The police has proved repeatedly inefficient. A case in point is the recent burning of a police vehicle by a rampaging mob in Ballabgarh. The mob also set on fire the office of the Congress MLA from Ballabgarh, Sharda Rathore.

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Hi-tech police need of the hour: DGP
Shiv Sharma

Bhiwani, December 27
The state police is all set to don a new avtaar as its personnel would be skilled with latest techniques which would help them combat criminals using hi-tech gadgets. This was stated by Ranjeev Dalal, Director General of Police, while addressing a gathering of senior citizens, police personnel and other officers after inaugurating the general integrated police system (GIPS) at local Civil Lines police station here recently.

He said telecom technique would have a great role in the police working and for it, the state police had already started preparation for which new software like GPS, CCTNS, CIPA etc were being launched in the police network. “Now, the police does not require to rub pages in writing FIRs or roznamcha at police stations as they can register all kinds of reports on computer,” said Dalal and called upon police officials to learn computers.

“Since criminals are making use of latest technology, changes are being made in the functioning of the police. Our next target is to make the police empowered with modern communication system by 2011 and to get police stations ISO standard,” the DGP. In Bhiwani district, Bond and Tosham police stations had already got ISO certification, he added.

Dalal exhorted the police personnel to remain dedicated towards their duties through hard work. “Policemen should feel proud on their department and duties”.

Earlier, he inaugurated a training centre for CCTNS software, required for online record of criminals, at Police Lines complex.

Anant Kumar Dhul, IG, Hisar range; and Ashwin Shainvi, SP, Bhiwani; welcomed the DGP while Nazneen Bhasin, Additional Superintendent of Police, presented the vote of thanks.

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Work on identifying ineligible BPL families stalled
Sushil Manav
Tribune News Service

Sirsa, December 27
Owing to the alleged lackadaisical attitude of the Food and Supplies authorities, the work on identification of ineligible families included in BPL lists in urban areas of the district has been stalled for now.

The office of the District Urban Development Authority (DUDA) is still waiting for any response from the District Food and Supplies Controller (DFSC) on 6,227 families, who are suspected to have got their names included in the BPL list fraudulently.

The DUDA had given the list of BPL families amended in 2009 to the DFSC on August 27, 2009, for issuance of ration cards based on that.

However, even after passage of 15 months the office of the DFSC could not issue cards to 6,227 out of 17,307 families giving rise to suspicion that these families had been included fraudulently in the lists.

In a letter written last month, Additional Deputy Commissioner Pankaj Chaudhary, who heads the DUDA, brought the DFSC’s attention to her previous letters written in February 2009 and June 2009 where she had asked him to send names of families listed in the BPL lists that had not been issued any card by his department.

However, in his reply to the ADC in July 2009 the DFSC had written, “The field staff has not been providing information despite repeated reminders. Hence, it is requested to communicate with the Director, Food and Supplies, Chandigarh, in the regard”.

Taking exception to the reply, the ADC had asked the DFSC to recommend action against the erring officials with a report to the ADC within one week.

However, nothing changed and the matter is still hanging in balance.In Sirsa district, 31,773 families out of the total 60,000 families living in urban areas of the district have got themselves registered in the BPL lists.

Several entries in the lists are fake which is evident from the fact that they have so far not approached the Food and Supplies Department for issuance of BPL ration cards.

After a large number of objections and claims received by the authorities, a committee headed by Deputy Commissioner CG Rajini Kaanthan was constituted in the district to redress these grievances. However, owning to the delay in providing details of such families by the DFSC office, the work of identification and deletion of fake names from the BPL lists has been delayed.

Sirsa DFSC Dharamvir Goyat added that many names had appeared twice or thrice in the lists and several others were not traceable at the addresses quoted by them.

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