C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


RTE: Lottery system in schools unnerves parents
Sumedha Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 4
The UT Administration’s decision to adopt a lottery system for admissions up to class VIII has left parents in the city jittery. With nursery admissions to some prominent city schools about to begin, parents claim that for them seeking admissions for their wards is now no longer a matter of choice but rather a chore of getting them admitted to any school. Period.

“I was planning to apply to only three schools and was certain of getting admission to the one where my elder son is already studying. But with this lottery system kicking in, I am now forced to apply to as many schools as possible to increase the probability of my son being chosen in a draw of lots. What will happen if he ends up getting admission in a mediocre school or nowhere at all? The only option left would be to either wait for a year or get my child admitted to some school in Mohali or Panchkula,” said Arvina Singh, a Sector 27 resident, who wishes to get her son admitted to a school in Sector 26.

In addition, what is also perturbing many parents is the high probability of travelling considerable distances if their children end up studying in distantly located schools.

“Our entire family has studied from the same school. But now because of the lottery system introduced by the education department, my child may not get admission despite qualifying the academic, neighbourhood and sibling

criteria. We can afford quality education in our sector but what if my children ends up getting admission in a school located in Sector 47? Who will drop or pick him up? Why should I pay extra for school transport when I have an option next door?” asked a parent residing in Sector 16.

The UT Administration claims to have implemented the lottery system to arguably uphold the spirit of the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act which bars institutions from subjecting students to any screening procedures.

Parents’ woes

  • Admissions based on luck rather than preference or any qualification or aptitude
  • Infringement on parents’ right to choose in terms of quality of education
  • Siblings study in different schools
  • Students may end up getting admission in distant schools despite having many institutions in the neighbourhood
  • The relevance of neighbourhood education will cease and add to traffic congestion

Delhi says nay

In contrast, the Delhi Government has ruled out a lottery system for nursery admissions this year. Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit maintains that admitting students through a draw of lots is unsustainable for schools and also for parents who will find it difficult to cope with facing a situation wherein their children end up studying in different schools


Parents are saying that the draw of lots will put them to a lot of inconvenience in terms of spending money on forms, time in visiting different institutes and anxious hours in getting an admission. Write your personal experience and comments to [email protected] 



Khushpreet Kidnapping
Two Inspectors sent to Police Lines
Case transferred to Crime Branch
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 4
A fortnight after five-year-old Khushpreet of Burail village was kidnapped, senior UT police officials have finally swung into action.

The Station House Officer (SHO) of the Sector 34 police station, Inspector Udaypal Singh, and Burail police post in charge, Inspector Narinder Singh Patial, were transferred to the Police Lines today and will face a departmental inquiry that will examine their “role” that led to the failure of a police trap when the ransom was being handed over to the kidnappers by the boy’s uncle on December 22.

Also, the investigation of the case has been transferred to the Crime Branch.

Inspector Kirpal Singh has been appointed SHO of the Sector 34 police station while Sub-Inspector Jaspal Singh has been transferred as in charge of the Burail police post.

Both Inspector Udaypal Singh and Inspector Narinder Singh had failed to inform their seniors about the kidnapping of Khushpreet who was picked up from outside his house in Burail on December 21. While Khushpreet was kidnapped at around 2.30 pm, SSP Naunihal Singh was informed about the kidnapping only the following day.

By that time, the family had received umpteen ransom calls from the kidnappers which could not be recorded by the police.

The decision to transfer the two Inspectors came hours after Khushpreet’s family members met the SSP at the police headquarters today. The agitated family members demanded action against the policemen who had been negligent. The two officers were part of the team that had accompanied Khushpreet’s uncle, Sukhwinder Singh, to deliver the ransom of Rs 4 lakh to two kidnappers. The ransom was paid near Mundi Kharar in Mohali.

“The decision to transfer the two officers was taken after it was observed that they had failed to act quickly and had kept senior officers in the dark about the kidnapping,” Naunihal Singh said.



3 school kids go missing
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 4
A fortnight after five-year-old Khushpreet was kidnapped from Burail, three schoolchildren, including two girls, have reportedly gone missing.

Twelve-year-old Abhishek, a class VII student of Government Model School, Sector 45-C, also residing in Burail, failed to return home yesterday. He was last seen with Bappa Rai, a 20-year-old resident of Bengal, who is also missing.

A missing person report has been lodged with the police. The police said Bappa Rai had come to stay with a relative in the area about 20 days ago and had reportedly become friends with Abhishek who was his neighbour. The police suspects that they had disappeared together.

“Abhishek was last seen with him and both are missing. We have launched a hunt for them and a case has been registered,” said DSP Vijay Kumar.

In a separate case, two girl students of Government Model School in Sector 16 failed to return home from their tuition yesterday. Komal Dev of Sector 41 and Gurjeet Kaur of Naya Gaon had gone to attend tuition in Sector 37. Both of them failed to return home after that. A missing person report has been lodged at the Sector 39 police station in this regard.



Woman slapped at PGI parking
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 4
In a shocking incident, a woman in her early thirties was slapped in the PGI’s parking lot today after she objected to the obscene remarks allegedly passed by a young man, reportedly a member of the parking staff on duty. When she raised her voice against the latter’s repugnant comments and lewd gestures he fled from the scene. The incident occurred in broad daylight in front of the OPD building, which is one of the most crowded areas at the hospital.

The woman, a schoolteacher from Jalandhar, arrived in their car at PGI along with her father and two children PGI at around noon. While her father left for the Advanced Eye Centre to visit a doctor, she stayed back along with the kids in the parking lot. Soon a young man appeared on the scene and began mouthing obscene remarks to which she reacted.

However, the youth was not deterred by the woman’s objections and then slapped her following which she raised an alarm. On hearing her shouts the man vanished from the scene. The woman alleged the youth was in fact assisted by other hospital employees to run away. A police team arrived at the scene a little while after the incident and conducted an identification parade of all employees present on the hospital premises. However, the woman failed to identify any one among those lined up. She stated the suspect was not among them but asserted she was certain he was a member of the hospital parking staff on duty.

Era, in charge of the PGI post, said the woman did not identify the suspect. “She has told us clearly she didn’t wish to pursue the case”, he added.

Parking hassles

  • Last week a visitor to PGI was manhandled by the hospital’s parking lot attendants when he objected to overcharging
  • A PGI security staff member said today’s incident was not unusual. “In the past there have been several unreported cases involving misbehaviour and overcharging by the hospital’s parking lot attendants”, he added



Phone lines dead after cable theft
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 4
At least 1,000 landline telephone connections of Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) have gone dead in Sectors 27 and 28 following theft of a portion of the underground cable. Residents today went without phone connectivity for the second consecutive day with no immediate
respite in sight, as was evident from the repair work on ground.

BSNL general manager Naresh Sharma personally visited the area affected to oversee the repair work. He told The Tribune: “We expect to restore connectivity, partially by Wednesday evening and the system should be back to normal by Thursday”.

“A sizable portion of three cables have been stolen. It’s unfortunate petty thieves are frequently digging up telephone cables. I agree this causes unnecessary inconvenience to the public. However, there appears to be no immediate remedy to the problem of cable thefts,” Sharma added.



Minor raped in Panchkula
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 4
A 17-year -old boy was arrested for allegedly raping a 13-year-old girl here today. He injured the victim by hitting her with stone on the head before raping her. The accused was stated to be under the influence of liquor at the time of crime.

According to the police, the victim, a resident of Madrasi colony in Sector 2, was going to fetch milk on Sunday evening when the accused living in her neighbourhood manhandled her and hit her on the head with a stone. The girl was unconscious when he raped her.

The girl was found lying injured by her parents and was taken to PGI. After the girl gained consciousness she narrated the incident following which the police registered a case of rape and attempt to murder against the accused and arrested him.


Mayoral Poll Row
Congress hits back at Oppn
Challenges it to prove allegations
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 4
Condemning the allegations levelled by the BJP and other opposition parities against union minister and member parliament Pawan Kumar Bansal over mayoral election, senior Congress leaders challenged them to prove these with facts and records here today.

Criticising the BJP, Congress leaders said as the opposition had failed to digest its defeat in the election, they were raising baseless issues.

Talking to mediapersons here, Chandigarh Territorial Congress Committee (CTCC) president BB Bahl said it was unbecoming of the Opposition to use unparliamentary language against the local MP.

He said former MP Satpal Jain won the election once from the city but the history would not repeat itself.

He questioned the failure of the opposition to oppose the use of cell phones during polling in the General House itself if they knew it was against the provisions of the MC Act.

Bahl said BJP councillors were “black sheep” and they were always against the development of the city.

Referring to the mayoral election of 2007, Bahl said the then presiding officer Dr AP Sanwaria had made the wrong announcement of Congress candidate winning the election. However, after a few minutes, he apologised and declared Akali candidate as the Mayor.

He said his party never raised a hue and cry over the issue and accepted the decision gracefully.

Bahl said it was strange that Jagjit Singh Kang had in past four years never felt the need for raising his voice against corruption in the corporation.

Denying the allegation that Bansal had checked the cell phones of Congress councillors after the election, senior leader Subhash Chawla said the Opposition should prove its point.

He said the Congress made a mistake by giving ticket to Jagjit Singh Kang.

Supporting the introduction of open voting in the MC mayoral elections, Chawla said there was need to make amendment to the Municipal Corporation Act by Parliament.



Unmanned parking at ISBT-43
Vehicles prone to theft

Chandigarh, January 4
Hundreds of cars and thousands of two-wheelers parked in the parking lot of the Inter-State Bus Terminus (ISBT), Sector 43, on any given day remain vulnerable to theft, courtesy the absence of a parking lot contractor.

The open parking lot at the bus terminus has been without a parking contractor for over a month.

According to sources, while the contract ended last month, the process to invite fresh tenders was on. As a result, city residents who travel out of the city on a regular basis and park their vehicles at the bus terminus have been left with no option but to park these in the open, thereby increasing the chances of theft.

In fact, ever since the contractor has left, three vehicles have been stolen, including two two-wheelers, besides a car stereo and spare tyres of two-wheelers. The administration had recently mooted a proposal to construct an underground parking lot at Rs 16 crore at the ISBT-43. But the proposal is yet to see the light of the day. — TNS



Community parking in each sector soon
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 4
Each sector will soon have a community parking as the Chandigarh municipal corporation is initiating a survey to earmark vacant land for their construction. The decision was taken at the coordination committee meeting of the UT administration and the municipal corporation held under UT Adviser Pardeep Mehra here today.

Newly elected Mayor Ravinder Pal Singh (Pali) raised the issue at the meeting and said there was a dire need for community parking in each sector as there was acute shortage of parking space in residential areas. He said the situation was grave in older sectors where roads were congested and most open spaces had been converted into small parks.

Mehra asked MC officials to prepare a detailed sector-wise report, with the consent of area councillors, to identify space for the construction of parking lots in their wards.

Pali also pointed out that the corporation was losing lakhs of rupees due to the dearth of marriage venues in the city. Residents, especially during the marriage season, were forced to organise functions in the periphery of the city due to this. The project for the construction of four marriage palaces at Mani Majra, Hallo Majra, Kajheri and Sector 39, with a capacity of 1,000 persons, was approved.

It was also decided that the MC would beautify three V3 roads, including Uttar Marg from lake to Chandigarh Club, Udyan Path from lake to Sector 47 and outer Dakshin Marg from Sector 39 to 31.

To avoid scarcity of water in southern sectors, the administration approved digging of six deep-bore tubewells in the area. A meeting of the Home Secretary and the Mayor, to be chaired by the UT Adviser, will be convened next week to clear MC’s pending projects in the UT architect department.

Meanwhile, Federation of Sector Welfare Associations Chandigarh (FOSWAC) president PC Sangi has welcomed the decision on setting up community parking in each sector. He suggested that V6 roads in all sectors should be widened.



Road Safety Week
People exhorted to follow regulations
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 4
As a part of the road safety week celebrations, the Chandigarh traffic police organised a workshop for rickshaw-pullers at the Chandigarh Traffic Park, Sector 23, Chandigarh, to create awareness among them about the road rules and regulations. As many as 200 rickshaw-pullers participated in the workshop.

Around 50 blankets and 300 reflectors were also distributed to them. Besides this, the Chandigarh traffic police also organised a first-aid workshop for officials of police control room (PCR) and traffic police at the Traffic Auditorium, Traffic Police Lines, Sector 29, Chandigarh.

A team headed by Dr Amit Kumar Nagpal, William and Reetima Gautam from Fortis Hospital, Mohali, presented slides on the first aid, besides imparting practical training to policemen. Over 300 policemen from PCR and traffic wing attended the workshop.

A camp was also held at the Passing Ground near petrol pump opposite Kalagram, Mani Majra, today.

Around 200 persons reached there to obtain certificate of fitness of their vehicles. State Transports Authority secretary Mahavir Kaushik also delivered a lecture on different aspects of road safety and advised the people to adhere to the driving rules and regulations.



Use of Internet by Adolescents
Threat to relationship with parents: Study
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 4
The increased use of computers, particularly the Internet, by city adolescents is posing a serious threat to their relationship with their parents.

This was revealed in a study conducted by Panjab University’s Navneet Arora on the topic, “Increased flirtation of adolescents with computers: A threat to family interaction”.

Lack of awareness about the usage of computer at different places by the parents and also their knowledge to use computers are two primary reasons identified in the study for minimal interaction between them and their children.

Statistics indicate that 54 per cent adolescents (average age 16 years) spent their leisure time surfing the Internet. These children were selected from different schools in Chandigarh and were regular users of computers.

The researcher also found that there is hardly any exchange of experiences or discussion among family members due to the excessive use of the Internet.

While certain respondents had computers installed at home, others either went to cyber cafés or at friend’s place to have access to the Internet. The research probed into ways through which adolescents acquired money to use the Internet at the cyber cafés.

Among these, 20.5 per cent pooled their money to use the Internet in the cyber cafés, while only a handful actually told their parents that they needed money to visit cafés.

The study also observed that only 23.5 per cent parents knew about their children’s visit to a friend’s place for using computers.

Indicating a gulf between adolescents and their parents over the computers and Internet, 63 per cent respondents never had any discussion with their parents over computers. Those who discussed computers with their parents disclosed that they talked about the importance and use of computers for the sake of buying it.



DD, MoD ink pact to air programmes for ex-servicemen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 4
The Ministry of Defence and Doordarshan (DD) have joined hands to broadcast programmes aimed at educating Ex-servicemen about the various welfare schemes and benefits introduced by the government from time to time.

According to sources, DD would produce and telecast special programmes and capsules to not only spread awareness about various schemes for the Ex-servicemen and their dependants, but also put, in perspective, their role and potential in national development and interest.

A senior officer in the Department of Sainik Welfare said several schemes existed for the post-retirement rehabilitation and for grant of financial assistance. Many Ex-servicemen, especially those residing in rural or remote areas, were unable to benefit from these due to ignorance.

“The need of the hour is to launch a mass awareness campaign to target the intended audience through regular and periodic telecast of programmes that would open up more options for veterans,” he added.

The strength of Ex-servicemen and their dependents across the nation ran into lakhs but those, below officer rank, found it difficult to get good jobs after they retired. Ex-servicemen form a vast pool of trained, disciplined and versatile manpower, he said.

Directorate General Resettlement, Kendriya Sainik Board, the Centre and state governments regularly come out with schemes or tie-ups with commercial establishments that offer job opportunities in the public and private sector for self-employment.



Spiritual fervour comes alive
SD Sharma

Chandigarh, January 4
A cohesive and colourful Odissi dance spectacle with audio-visual effects and soothing musical renditions by the Toronto-based Menaka Thakkar Dance Company enraptured audience at the Tagore Theatre here today.

The memorable event brought to the city by the Indian Council of Cultural Relations (ICCR) was a complete Odissi interpretation of the famous epic “Geet Govindam” in Sanskrit, authored by the 12th century saint poet, Jayadeva.

The instant production “Gita Govinda” draws inspiration from Kangra paintings and staged over 100 times by classical dance director Menaka Thakkar is a tribute to her guru Padmavibhushan Kelucharan Mahopatra, a doyen of Odissi dance tradition.

The programme commenced with a composite composition “Dasa Avtar”, wherein dancers delineated 10 incarnations of Lord Krishna and all mudras executed with perfection bringing alive the spiritual fervour.

Sujata Mahopatra, the foremost disciple and daughter-in-law of legendary guru Kelucharan Mahopatra was at her best portraying the lead role of Radha, as also Rajib Bhattacharya as Lord Krishna.

Supported by the audio-visual effects, which really augmented the level of production, Sujata depicted various moods of divine consort “Radha” such as the celestial joys and anguish when Krishna is in the company of Gopikas. Other disciples displayed nimble footwork, body gestures and emotional expression to lent meaning to the lyrics scripted in Sanskrit making it self-explanatory.

ICCR regional official Nalini Singhal welcomed chief guest Samir Mathur, Home Secretary, Haryana, who honoured the artistes.



Nine police officials transferred
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 4
Senior police officials today transferred nine police officers, including three inspectors and six sub-inspectors with immediate effect.

Sub-inspector Rajiv has been transferred as police post in-charge, Sector 22, while SI Usha Rani has been transferred to the Sector 11 police station. SI Pargat Singh has been transferred to the Dhanas police post, while SI Ranjit Singh has been transferred as Mauli Jagra police post in-charge.

SI Ajay Kumar has been transferred to the police control room, while SI Karan Singh has been transferred as Pulsora police post in-charge.



Chill continues to bite
Shimla still warmer than city
Anil Jerath
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 4
Bone-chilling conditions caused by the prevailing cold wave hit normal life in the city, disrupting air and rail traffic today. Shimla continued to be warmer than the city and its adjoining areas.

For residents, who have been reeling under cold wave conditions for the past fortnight, the week began on a harsh note, as they experienced a drastic dip in the maximum temperature at 11.1 °C on Sunday.

The city’s maximum temperature dipped to 12.9 °C today, from yesterday’s 13.2 °C, while the minimum temperature also went down marginally to 7.4 °C as against 8.7 °C on Monday.

Cloudy conditions prevailed almost throughout the day, with the sun failing to penetrate the veil of fog. The sun did appear around 2.30 pm but was seen only for around half an hour.

The dip in the maximum temperature wreaked havoc as it fell as many as 8 °C from its normal to settle at 12.9 °C, as per the Met department.

As per the weather forecast made by the IMD, Chandigarh, the sky is expected to stay partially cloudy with mist/fog in some pockets in the region in the next 24 hours.

Temperatures are likely to hover between 5 and 15 °C on Wednesday.

Flights cancelled, train delayed

The cloudy conditions caused cancellation of Jet Airways’ two flights and one flight of Kingfisher Airlines today. Similarly, the Deluxe Express running between Bandra and Chandigarh arrived late by nearly 22 hours. The train was to reach the Chandigarh railway station at 4 pm on Monday but arrived at 2.30 pm today. It will depart at 7 am on Wednesday.



Weather keeps air passengers on tenterhooks
Anil Jerath
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 4
Passengers are in a fix on whether to opt for air travel, go by train or hire a taxi, as flights continue to get delayed due to bad weather and foggy conditions in the region.

Information gathered reveals that on an average, flights are getting delayed by a couple of hours at the Chandigarh airport if, at all, these are not cancelled.

The passengers who have to take connecting flights from Delhi sometimes run the risk of missing them.

At the same time, some passengers feel it is better to opt for trains like the Shatabdi Express, which takes three and half hours to reach Delhi.

Even private transport like taxi takes a little more time than that. And when a flight is delayed by a couple of hours, it takes the same time to reach Delhi as road or rail transport.

Pranav Mishra, an engineer, had a bitter experience recently. His flight got delayed by two hours. With the result, he missed the connecting flight from Delhi. He had to ultimately cancel the trip.

He says airlines usually try to accommodate late passengers in the next available flights.

Since the flights from Delhi are also getting cancelled, there is a heavy rush of passengers and practically no seats available in alternative flights.

The story has been the same during winter at the Chandigarh airport for the past several years.

Frequent travellers now opt either for train or taxi as the time taken by road or train can be worked out in advance.

Dinesh Garg, a chartered accountant, says he never travels by air during January. “Whenever I have travel around this time, I take the road and not even the train, as even these get delayed due to fog,” he says, adding that delayed or cancelled flights during winter is commonplace at the Chandigarh airport.

The passengers maintain that it is better to travel for a longer duration in train or a car than wait with lot of uncertainty at the airport.

Four flights operate from the Chandigarh airport — Kingfisher, GoAir, Jet Airways and Indian Airlines.

safe bet

Some passengers feel it is better to opt for trains like the Shatabdi Express, which takes three and half hours to reach Delhi. Even private transport like taxi takes a little more time than that. And when a flight is delayed by a couple of hours, it takes the same time to reach Delhi as road or rail transport



Assembly Elections
Basic amenities to encroachers promised
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Mohali, January 4
Punjab Chief Minister’s decision to provide basic amenities to people residing in illegal settlements which have dotted the city’s periphery has resulted in expansion of these settlements. With the blessing of political leaders, new shanties are coming up with a hope that all structures will be regularised.

Electorate at eight illegal colonies-Guru Nanak Colony, Jhujjar Nagar Colony, Bar Majra Colony, Rajiv Colony, Shiv Colony, Bajigar Colony and Guru Nanak Colony stand to benefit from the announcement of the Chief Minister.

“In a way it is a political card played by the CM to woo hundreds of residents who are otherwise encroachers in the eye of the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA),” said a political analyst.

GMADA sources revealed that for the past many years, the regulatory branch had been demolishing illegal structures and several cases had been registered against violators. But GMADA could not stop the encroachments due to political patronage.

Following the CM’s orders, a team of officials comprising chairman of the District Planning Board NK Sharma, Deputy Commissioner Parveen Kumar, GMADA chief administrator VP Singh, additional chief administrator Balwinder Singh Multani and district town planner Gurpreet Singh visited the area to get first hand information about the problems faced by inhabitants.

NK Sharma said a survey of all areas would be completed within a week. “The survey report, along with the blue print of improving the amenities, will be presented before the Chief Minister within a week. An interim report will be submitted tomorrow to the Chief Minister,” he added.



High drama at SDM’s office
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 4
High drama prevailed at the office of Panchkula Sub-divisional Magistrate (SDM) KL Kalson when a Sector 12 resident alleged that he was beaten up by the SDM at his office.

Sonu Dahia, a resident of Sector 12, alleged that he had gone to the SDM’s office to get his sister’s vehicle registered, but Kalson started beating him up.

Kalson, however, denied the allegations. He said Sonu was involved in illegal activities and he had just warned him to stay away from his office.

The incident, however, sparked a protest by the INLD workers who shouted slogans against the state government and district administration.

Sonu in his complaint to the Panchkula Deputy Commissioner alleged that he went to the SDM’s office for getting his sister’s vehicle registered.

“ I wanted a particular number for which I went to Kalson, who turned down my request and said the number had already been allotted,” said Sonu. The SDM had reserved the new series (101-1000) for VIPs and the number 841 was still to be allotted, claimed Sonu.

He alleged that he had approached the SDM again, but the latter slapped and abused him.



Dharna by child welfare staff
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 4
On a call given by the Indian Council for Child Welfare Employees Union, staff of various affiliated crèches, Prayas Institute and Bal Bhavan today staged a “dharna” outside Bal Bhavan, Sector 23, here.

Bihari Lal, general secretary of the union, protested against the apathetic attitude of the authorities towards their long-pending demands. The employees demanded that they be paid salary on the pattern of UT employees; maternity leave be given to female employees working on a contractual basis; release of gratuity amount and leave encashment.



Mohali Municipal Corporation
Residents to pay more taxes
Tribune News Service

Mohali, January 4
Development of the city will come at a cost. With formal notification of the Mohali municipal corporation expected this week, residents of the city will have to pay a price in the form of additional taxes that will be automatically levied by the civic body.

Presently, residents are not burdened by house tax or property tax. Officials of the civic body said after the notification, various taxes like house tax, service tax, building fee, tax on sale of property and additional excise duty would be levied. Against a budget of around Rs 42 crore, the budget of the corporation would be four times more, said the officials.

The municipal council has been demanding share in building and composition fee from the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA) for all new building plans and revised building plans approved within the limits of the civic body for long. The civic body has also been demanding tax on debris dumped on roadsides.

But with the formation of the corporation, the taxes will be collected by the civic body. The officials said tax would also be levied on property transactions.

Not only this, an eight-month-old order of the Secretary Housing and Urban Development, Punjab, notifying the MC commissioners and regional deputy directors of the department of the local government as the competent authorities under the Punjab Apartment and Property Regulation Act, 1995 (PAPRA), would also be applicable in the Mohali municipal corporation.

The yet-to-be appointed Commissioner of the corporation will grant licenses to colonies under the Act. However, power to grant the change of land use still vests with the state chief town planner. During the past few years, the civic bodies have extended their limits, thereby bringing in more colonies within their areas.

To regulate the colonies, the housing and urban development department has sought amendment under the Punjab Apartment and Property Regulation Act, 1995, by including group housing apartments (approved by the department of the local bodies) in the definition of “colonies”.



CBSE to extend CCE system to Classes VI-VIII
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 4
The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) is all set to extend its Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluation (CCE) system to Classes VI, VII and VIII.

The move will ensure that co-scholastic skills of the students become an integral part of the school, right from the formative years or upper-primary classes.

The evaluation system shall lay special stress on development of life skills in particular to make education more fruitful in day-to-day lives.

The board has devised a special life skill training programme targeted at adolescents between the age group of 10 to 18 years. The board has come out with a set of guidelines to help teachers in imparting the life skill education in a manual titled “Life Skill Education and CCE.”

According to the manual, the life skill education for adolescents is crucial for developing psychosocial competencies and interpersonal skills and helps them in making informed decisions, problem solving, critical thinking, effective communication, building healthy relationships and managing their lives in a healthy and productive manner.

The manual sets down four basic components for imparting life skill training through participatory learning; practical activities, feedback and reflections, consolidation and reinforcement and practical application to day-to-day life challenges.

It suggests peer educators approach, in which a group of student representatives are first trained in life skills through a series of training workshops, who will later impart it to their peers at the school.

Teaching techniques like class discussions, brainstorming sessions, role plays, educational games and simulations, case studies, story telling, debates, decision mapping and audio and visual activities like arts and theatre are to be used for the purpose.



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