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Illegal hoardings deface Patiala
Civic body authorities in deep sleep
Umesh Dewan
Tribune News Service

Illegal hoardings dot the length and breadth of Patiala as municipal corporation authorities fail to take action against the violators.
Illegal hoardings dot the length and breadth of Patiala as municipal corporation authorities fail to take action against the violators. Tribune photos: Rajesh Sachar

Patiala, January 17
Illegal hoardings dot almost every nook and cranny of the town, even as the municipal corporation authorities choose to look the other way. Besides flouting the norms laid down by the civic body, these illegal hoardings are causing a huge financial loss to the corporation.

Though the menace is not new to the town, the callousness of the civic authorities has ensured that the the illegal practice thrives in the town.

Hoardings by advertising agencies besides business houses have been put up illegally in Model Town, Bus Station Road, New Rajpura Colony, Lower Mall Road, Upper Mall Road, Bhupindra Road, Passey Road, Gian Colony, Lal Bagh, Sewak Colony, Sant Nagar, Gian Colony and Punjabi Bagh in violation of the civic norms.

According to sources, private companies have put up their hoardings in different areas without paying the mandatory fee to the civic body. The maximum number of illegal hoardings have been put up by corporate groups and politicians.

Criticising the civic officials for not taking any action against the violators, a majority of city residents feel these hoardings have defaced the royal town.

“While most hoardings violate the dimensions specified by the civic body, these also pose a threat to the human lives. In an event of a thunderstorm, these hoardings can come down like a pack of cards and wreak havoc,” feels Rajesh Ahuja, a grocer near the bus station.

To evade action, many advertisers have displayed commercial advertisements in the garb of religious events.

“Hoardings with photographs of politicians can be spotted easily but the civic functionaries care little about taking action against the offenders,” laments Sarita Aggarwal, a housewife.

A majority of illegal hoardings are in violation of the dimension norms specified by the civic body. “Hoardings of multinational companies, especially mobile service providers, are one of the major violators of the norm,” says a shopkeeper near the bus station road.

Hoardings have also been put up on private buildings in contravention of the norms.

“There have been incidents in the past of hoardings falling off rooftops of private buildings,” says Jaswinder Ahluwalia, a resident of Model Town.

The audacity of the advertisement mafia can be gauged from the fact that huge banners, made of flex sheets, have been put up on the sinages installed by the corporation on different roads.

Signages giving road directions have been covered with religious and political banners on the Bus Station Road and Kali Devi Temple Road.

Residents feel it is high time that the civic body takes some concrete steps to ensure that illegal hoardings are removed from the areas falling in the MC’s jurisdiction.


We have decided to act tough with violators. Those who wish to put up hoardings, signboards or banners will have to seek the permission of the civic body, besides depositing the requisite fee. Religious hoardings will be allowed only under the rules and will have to be removed once the programme is over. Advertisers putting up hoardings or advertising material will have to paste a copy of the permission granted by the MC, failing which action will be initiated against the erring advertisers. We have already initiated the process of issuing notices to those who have put up illegal hoardings. — Manjit Singh Narang, MC Commissioner 



Singing contest for Rotarians
Our Correspondent

Dera Bassi, January 17
At least 200 members from different states took part in “Rotary Parivar Milan 2011”, organised by the local unit of the Rotary International, here yesterday.

Besides a cultural programme, competitions in singing were held. Former cricketer and actor Yograj and MLA Jasjit Singh Bunny were present as special guests.

Singing competition results: senior category: 1 Sonu Sethi and 2 Naresh Gautam; girls: 1 Agrima Saini and 2 Rishika Verma; boys: 1 Ishan Kapoor and 2 Mayur. 



Harmanpreet crowned Miss Supermodel
Tribune News Service


Fatehgarh Sahib, January 17
Harmanpreet Kaur, a final year student of BTech at Baba Banda Singh Bahadur Engineering College, won Miss Supermodel Punjab contest. The contest was held at Moga a few days ago. Harmanpreet defeated 11 contestants to grab the title.

While talking to mediapersons here today Harmanpreet said she would continue to participate in beauty contests. She would also try her luck in the national and international modelling events soon. “If I get a chance to act in TV or films, I will surely grab the opportunity,” she added.

“Besides, smiles and congratulatory notes from all quarters, the victory has given me a fresh confidence. Every student should take up cultural activities seriously, as it boosts the morale,” she added.



Event on Jan 20 to ‘sell’ Philadelphia
Tribune News Service

Patiala, January 17
With a view to promoting higher education in the US, the city of Philadelphia will co-host with Drexel University an event “Study Abroad: Philadelphia” in Chandigarh on January 20.
Honorary Ambassador of Philadelphia to India Kanika Choudhary interacts with students at Yadvindra Public School in Patiala on Monday.
Honorary Ambassador of Philadelphia to India Kanika Choudhary interacts with students at Yadvindra Public School in Patiala on Monday. A Tribune photograph 

Stating this, honorary ambassador of Philadelphia to India Kanika Choudhary said the event was designed specifically for school officials, students and their parents.

Talking to mediapersons at Yadvindra Public School here today, Kanika said during the event, participants would learn about the educational opportunities that Philadelphia offered on and off campus. “Schools, including St John’s, St Stephen’s, Yadvindra Public School, DPS and others from the northern region, will participate in the event,” she added.

Asserting that Philadelphia and its universities looked forward to establishing direct contact with India’s leading schools and parents, Kanika said: “Philadelphia and its region have 101 universities and colleges. We have special departments and courses in Sanskrit, Hindi, Gurmukhi, Indian classical music, dance, art, culture and Yoga. Students from Indian as well as other origins can opt for these courses.”

Kanika, who lived in Philadelphia for 12 years, graduated from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

She is currently in India as a representative of Philadelphia and exploring opportunities to promote education, tourism, investment and cultural exchange between Philadelphia and cities and towns in India.



Canada dependent on other countries for engineers, says Dhaliwal
Tribune News Service

Kharar/Ropar, January 17
Canadian MP Sukh Dhaliwal said Canada had made much progress recently in fields of engineering and technology and hotel management and tourism.

At present, Canada is dependent on other countries to fulfill its need of professional manpower. He further said that for fulfilling its demand for next 20 years, Canada would have to look at professionals being produced in institutions in India and China.

Sukh Dhaliwal was on a visit to Chandigarh Group of Colleges, Landran.

Dhaliwal, who was born in a village near Ludhiana, said Punjab Chief Minister had promised to set up NRI police stations, which would help in solving problems being faced by NRIs.

He also welcomed the step taken by the Indian Government to allow NRIs to vote in India.

Dhaliwal also visited Sahibzada Ajit Singh Academy, Ropar, on occasion of Lohri. He shared his experiences with students.



Groom’s family booked for seeking dowry
Tribune News Service

Mohali, January 17
High drama was witnessed during a marriage ceremony at Star Resort on the Chandigarh-Kharar National Highway-21, near here, last night when the bride’s family refused to marry their girl after the groom’s family allegedly sought a dowry of Rs 15 lakh.

The groom’s family along with their guests returned after the marriage did not solemnise.

On the complaint of girl’s brother Rakesh Kumar, a case under Sections 420 and 498A of the IPC has been registered against the family members of the groom.

In a complaint to the police, Rakesh Kumar said the marriage was scheduled for yesterday evening. All rituals were performed but when the final nuptial ceremony was to take place, the mother of the groom demanded Rs 15 lakh in dowry and threatened to take the groom away from the venue before the marriage could be solemnised.

The girl, who is a resident of Industrial Area, Phase II, Chandigarh, was engaged to Sumit Kohli of Phase I, Mohali.

Balongi SHO Palwinder Singh said the girl’s brother told them that they needed the money to send the groom to Australia.

The case has been registered against groom Sumit Kohli and his family

Meanwhile, the boy’s family, during a press conference held today, alleged that the girl’s family had assured of giving the money to settle the couple abroad and not as dowry.



Khushpreet’s Murder
Patil wakes up, finally
Wants case cracked soon
Smriti Sharma Vasudeva
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 17
Twentyseven days after five-year-old Khushpreet Singh was kidnapped from outside his house and 12 days after his body was discovered by a passerby near a garbage dump in Mohali, UT Administrator Shivraj V Patil today finally took “cognisance” of the incident and directed UT officials to get things moving to solve the murder mystery.

Khushpreet was kidnapped from near his house in the thickly populated vicinity of Burail village in Sector 45 and was found dead on January 5. His body was found in a bag, ending all hopes of his family and well wishers to see him alive after he was kidnapped on the fateful afternoon of December 21.

Blame it on his prior commitments or his dual charge as Governor of Punjab and Rajasthan, Patil’s silence, if not indifference, to one of the city’s most gruesome murder in the recent past that had shaken the tricity had most residents criticising both the UT Administration and the police.

After repeatedly crying foul over the shoddy investigation by the UT police, it was only when Khushpreet’s family refused to agree to a postmortem saying that they wanted the Administration to book the policemen responsible for the mess up, did the Administration order a magisterial probe into the incident.

The inquiry, being undertaken by the officiating SDM (Central), ML Sharma, was supposed to be completed today. The inquiry officer, however, has sought some more days to submit the report.

Home Secretary Ram Niwas said: “The UT Administrator has directed the officials concerned to crack the case as soon as possible.” Once the inquiry report fixed lapses, nobody would be spared, Niwas said.

Report likely this week

The magisterial inquiry by the officiating SDM (Central), ML Sharma, ordered by the UT Administration, is now expected to be completed later this week. Sources said the submission of the report was delayed because Sharma had been unable to record the statements of all police officers concerned



How much jewellery was...
Police team to be felicitated

Lauding the efforts made by the team in cracking the heist within two days, the UT SSP said all police officers involved in investigating the case would be rewarded.

Long arm of law

Bhura Tomar being produced at the district courts in Chandigarh on Monday
Bhura Tomar being produced at the district courts in Chandigarh on Monday. A Tribune photograph

Plan hatched two months ago

Manav Soni, brother of Paras Soni, suffered a loss of Rs 2.5 lakh in the garment business. He hatched a conspiracy along with other accomplices two months ago to strike at the showroom in Manimajra. Paras Soni said for a successful dacoity, they needed at least 12 to 15 persons. They bought police uniforms from Azadpur in New Delhi and purchased four country-made pistols from UP.

Modus operandi

Seven of the accused started from UP at about 1 pm in a Tata 407 (HR 55 A 3196) which belongs to Paras Soni. They reached Chandigarh at 8.30 pm and surveyed the area for almost an hour on foot. They then went to a dhaba near the motor market for dinner. At midnight, Paras Soni, Bura Tomar, Manav Soni, Nadeem, Sonu and Umar Draz wore police uniforms and tried in vain to gain entry from the rear of the showroom. They then decided to break in from the front door. They cooked a story that a shot had been fired at the rear of the showroom, drugged the security guards, and decamped with the jewellery. 

Background of the accused

Paras Soni: Working as a tempo operator at Sahidabad, UP, he used to run an artificial jewellery shop. He was involved in a murder case in 2007. He had shot a man over some financial dispute. It was then that he came in contact with Shahjad, Ali Raja and Naushad, the co-accused in the case.

Manav Soni: Younger brother of Paras, he started a garment business and suffered huge losses before he joined the transport business of his elder brother.

Anuj Kumar: A Class XII passout, he was jobless and would remain frustrated owing to this.

Ajay Singh: The 24-year-old is a yoga teacher

Upender Singh: Student of RR Inter-College at Pilkhua (UP) and is studying in Class XI.

Bhura Tomar: Student of Class XI at Chandi Vidyalya Inter-College at Pilkhua (UP).

Sonu Raghav: Worked as a gas cutter at a steel rolling mill in Ghaziabad for a year. At present, he was working as a conductor.

Bhura Qureshi: Studied up to Class V and was lodged in jail in an attempt to murder case. In jail, he came in contact with Ali Raja who introduced him to the prime accused, Paras Soni.

Permission to handcuff accused

Considering the gravity of the crime committed by the accused, the police has obtained permission to handcuff them. The prime accused, Paras Soni, had tried to flee and also manhandled some policemen in Ghaziabad on Saturday.



petroleum inter-unit Athletics Meet
Devender dazzles with gold in 400m
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 17
Oil and Natural Gas Corporation’s athlete Devender Singh won gold medal in 400m race in the Petroleum Sports Promotion Board (PSPB) Inter-Unit Athletics Meet at the Tau Devi Lal Sports Complex, Sector 3, here today.

Sandeep of Hindustan Petroleum secured second spot, while Parvin Kumar finished third in the event.

Earlier, the three-day meet, being organised by Hindustan Petroleum Corporation, was inaugurated by Dr V Vizia Saradhi, director (HR) of HPCL today. A total of 120 participants from PSPB, ONGC, Indian Oil Corporation, Indian Oil Corporation (Assam oil division), Engineers India, Oil India, GAIL (India), Numaligarh Refinery and the host HPCL are participating in the meet.



1500m: 1st Ghamanda Ram, 2nd Suresh Kumar and 3rd C Manvadar

High Jump: 1st K Goutham, 2nd Sabha Bhagat and 3rd Ranjan Sharma

Javelin throw: 1st Samarjit Singh, 2nd P Baishya and 3rd Jetender Singh

Triple Jump: 1st Arpinder Singh, 2nd Shamsher Singh and 3rd Navjot Singh

Discuss throw: 1st Kripal Singh, 2nd Jagjit Singh and 3rd Pakinder Singh

400m hurdle: 1st Kuldev Singh, 2nd P Shankar and 3rd Kuldeep Singh


200m: 1st Mandeep Singh, 2nd Chitra Soman and 3rd Nirmala Gonsalves



Inter-School Cricket
Amritsar school enter quarterfinals
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 17
With his 37-run knock off 34 ball, Harmandeep steered Hind Sabha School, Amritsar, to the quarterfinal round by registering a three-wicket win over local Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 35, in the ongoing Cremica Cup 2011 Inter-School Under-19 Cricket Tournament at Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 26 grounds, here today.

Batting first, the government school team were bowled out for 111 in 19.4 overs. In reply, the Amritsar team overhauled the target of 112 runs losing seven wickets in 19.3 overs.

Brief scores: Govt School-35: 111 all out in 19.4 overs (Kaljinder Singh 46, Utkarsh 19, Aseem 18; Rahul 3 for 41, Loven Gill 3 for 18, Shiv Love 1 for 10).

Hind School, Amrtisar: 112 in 19.3 overs (Harmandeep 37, Sapandeep 22; Amrinder 1 for 11, Kuljinder 1 for 18, Rahul Singh 1 for 24).

In the second match, YPS, Patiala, lost to Guru Nanak Public School, Sector 36, by nine wickets.

Batting first, YPS team scored 117 for seven in 20 overs but their rivals took just 15.1 overs to achieve the target. They scored 118 for one in the process.

Jaskaran Singh (51) and Simranpret Singh (49) played a vital role in the win.

Brief scores: YPS, Patiala: 117 for 7 wickets in 20 overs (Rajeshver 44 n.o, Vinay Guraba 31, Karan Kaila 19; Shubham 3 for 15, Simranpreet 2 for 30, Kshitij 1 for 29).

GNPS-36: 118 in 15.1 overs (Jaskaran Singh 51, Simranpreet 49).



Commonwealth Tae kWon Do
City girl eyes top honours
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Jasween Kaur
Jasween Kaur

Chandigarh, January 17
It was celebration time for local martial artist Jasween Kaur when she got selected to represent the country in the fifth Commonwealth Tae Kwon Do Championship -2011. But now this 16-year-old do player is all set to win top honours at the international event, starting from January 28 in Chennai.

Bagging bronze medal in the 30th National Junior Boys’ and Girls’ Tae Kwon Do Championship, held last month in Rajasthan, provided a chance to Jasween to see her dream come true.

“I know the forthcoming challenge is big, but I am determined to bring laurels to the country,” said Jasween.

Jasween was attracted towards the sport when she was five. There was no looking back after that. In 2008, she was declared as “best fighter of Chandigarh”.

She also won gold medals in senior category in the Chandigarh State Championships in 2009 and 2010.

Besides, Jaween has also clinched top honours three times in KV Nationals.

Jasween, a Class X student of Kendriya Vidyalya, Sector 47, is now being trained by Davinder Singh at local Velocity Tae Kwon Do Academy.



Hard-fought win for Mithlesh in tennis
Tribune News Service

Mohali, January 17
Mithlesh won men’s singles championship after beating Prabhsimran Singh Bal 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 in a keenly contested match in the Manav Mangal Total Tennis Tournament at Manav Mangal Smart School, Phase X, here today.

After losing the first set 4-6, Prabhsimran returned strongly in the second set to win by 6-3.

But in decider, Mithlesh did not give Prabhsimran any chance and took the lead of 5-0. Showing some reluctance, Prabhsimran again bounced to win the next three games before Mithlesh broke his serve and triumphed 6-4, 3-6, 6-3.

The final match lasted over 90 minutes.

In men’s doubles category, the duo of Arsh Aulakh and Prabhsimran Bal defeated the team, including Shyam Jagat and Ajay Yashpal 6-4, 7-6 (7-2).

Shyam Jagat and his partner took the lead of 4-2 earlier in the first set, but Arsh and Prabhsimran put up extra ordinary game to win the first set by 6-4. In the second set, both the teams had a tough fight. In the tie-breaker Arsh and Prabhsimran dominated the proceedings to lift the trophy.


Boys’ U-10: Asav Kumar beat Manveer 4-1, 4-0.

U-12: Rishabh Sharda beat Sabrang Sandal 5-4 (7-2), 4-0.

U-14: Cheerag Bajwa beat Rohit Dhiman 3-5, 5-3, 4-2.

Men’s singles: Mithlesh beat Prabhsimran Bal 6-4, 3-6, 6-3.

Girls’ U-12: Tanya Batra beat Harleen 4-2, 4-0.

Girls’ open: Aarushi Kakkar beat Naemat Aulakh 4-1, 4-2.

Men’s doubles: Arsh and Prabhsimran beat Shyam Jagat and Ajay Yashpal 6-4, 7-6 (7-2).

Livewire drub DAV-8

Hosts Divya Livewire Coaching Centre-46 (DLCC) defeated DAV Public School, Sector 8, by eight wickets in the final match of the Tennis Ball Cricket Tournament for Divya Livewire Trophy.

DAV team batted first and hit 73 all out in 21.1 overs.

Chasing the target, DLCC team made 74 for two in 16.1 overs to win the top honours.



North Zone 
U-19 squad announced

Chandigarh, January 17
Punjab’s Anil Sihag will lead the North Zone team, selected for the U-19 Inter-Zonal Tournament this year. The recently introduced tournament by the BCCI will be played in Mumbai from January 27 to February 2.

The team was selected by the junior selection committee of the North Zone. In the 16-member squad, seven are from Punjab, while four players are from the Delhi District Cricket Association.

The team has three players of Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association whereas Haryana Cricket Association and Jammu and Kashmir Cricket Association have one player each in the team.

The team

Anil Sihag, Manan Vohra, Pargat Singh, Kamal Passi, Sandeep Sharma, Gurinder Singh and Mohit Handa (all from Punjab), U Chand, Mohit Sharma, Nitesh Rana and Manoj Chawla ( all from DDCA), Abimanyu Rana, Nawab Singh and Nikhil Gangta (all from HPCA), Rahul Dalal (Haryana), U N Ahmed (JKCA). — TNS



Golf meet for kids on Jan 24
Our Golf Correspondent

Chandigarh, January 17
The fourth Chandigarh Junior Golf Championship will be held at the Chandigarh Golf Club on January 24 as part of the club's Junior Golf Mission, 2016.

This will be the fourth tournament for juniors of the tricity in its mission to tap talent. As per the Junior Golf Mission, 2016 the CGC will hold five junior tournaments every year with an eye on the 2016 Olympic Games when golf will be introduced as a medal sport.

Capt GS Ghuman said: “The first tournament was conducted on September 27. This was followed by the second tournament on October 25. The third tournament of the series was conducted on December 20.”

The stage is now set for the fourth tournament to be held on January 24. The junior tournament is open to junior golfers in the 6-18 age group.

Competition will be held in the following four categories: D category- below 10 years, C category- 11 to 12 years, B category- 13 to 15 years, A category- 16 to 18 years.

Chandigarh Golf Club president BS Gill said: “The aim is to encourage the enjoyment and involvement of juniors in the game of golf by organising a series of tournaments as well as EGTF junior golf coaching programmes. By introducing this series of junior golf tournaments our goal is to produce a champion golfer for the 2016 Olympics from our club.”

According to EGTF coach Ajay Gujral, joint director of the Chandigarh Golf Club Academy: “Junior golf tournaments are a great way to promote junior golf, along with the fun and exposure that they bring. It’s important that our young golfers have the ability to experience competition.”



Golf tourism workshop on January 21
Our Golf Correspondent

Chandigarh, January 17
To explore India's growing golf tourism potential, the Union Ministry of Tourism has invited stakeholders and opinion leaders from the golf industry to a one-day workshop on golf tourism to be held in Delhi on January 21.

The workshop comes in the wake of the recently held Chandigarh Golfing Tour hosted by the Chandigarh Golf Association in which more than 100 NRIs from 12 countries participated.

The brainwave of the Chandigarh Golf Association and supported by the Tourism departments of Chandigarh and Haryana, the tournament held last month was the sixth in the series of tournaments organised by the CGA to promote the region as a golf tourism destination.

These tournaments are being organised regularly twice a year for domestic and international golf tourists. The tournaments are held at the golf courses in Chandigarh, Panchkula and Chandi Mandir to expose the golf potential of the region.

The sixth tournament turned out to be a success. A number of NRI golfers had come with their families.

Chandigarh Golf Association president JS Cheema has also been invited to the workshop to share his experience.

Stakeholders and opinion leaders from the golf industry will give their views on how to explore the potential that India has to offer as a golf destination, both for domestic and international golf tourism.



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