C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Khushpreet murder: Neighbours did it, 2 held
n Was kept 50 metres from his house n Accused planned for 2 months to kidnap him n Was fed on chips, given sleeping pills to keep him quiet n Strangled on Jan 1 or 2 after he recognised the accused
Aneesha Sareen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 22
The arrest of the accused in the sensational murder and kidnapping case of five-year-old Khushpreet, aka Khushi, of Burail is now official. It was Khushpreet’s neighbour who hatched the entire plan to kidnap the child as he was in dire need of money and was reeling under heavy debt. He killed Khushpreet after the child recognised him as “the uncle who lives nearby” and “who has a big dog”. The accused, along with his brother and a labourer from Uttar Pradesh, kept the child at their residence located barely 50 metres from his house in Burail village for over 12 days. They made him consume sleeping pills to ensure he remained quiet, eventually killed him in the house itself and then dumped the body in a pit in Phase X of Mohali.

The police has booked three persons and arrested two of them - 36-year-old Sukhdev Singh, alias Billa, and 32-year-old Gurvinder Singh, alias Binder - for the murder of Khushpreet. The third accused, Nand Kishore, who was a labourer, is yet to be arrested. The two were produced in court and remanded to eight days’ police custody. The case was cracked by a team led by DSP Vijay Kumar, who incidentally was DSP (South) at the time of the kidnapping and had been transferred to police headquarters after a magisterial inquiry indicted him for lapses leading to Khushpreet’s death.


Accused Sukhdev Singh is employed as a daily wager with the local Water Works Department. He was under debt and owed lakhs of money to others. He then eyed his neighbour Khushpreet's father, Lakhbir Singh, who runs a dairy shop in Burail and hatched a plan to kidnap one of his two minor sons for ransom. "Sukhdev's liabilities and expenses were nailing him down. He was under the impression that Lakhbir had recently won a huge amount in some committee," said the police. It's a different matter that Lakhbir never won any money.

The plan

Sukhdev's wife, who was pregnant at that time, had gone to her native village along with his mother for delivery. Sukhdev then hatched the conspiracy along with his brother Gurvinder Singh and labourer Nand Kishore. The three of them decided to kidnap Khushpreet for ransom and began keeping a close eye on both sons of Lakhbir Singh. They also managed to get some sleeping pills (Alprex tablets) and adhesive tapes to ensure the child stayed quiet.

The kidnapping

Then after waiting for two months, the "opportunity" finally came. On December 21 last year, Sukhdev Singh, popularly known as Billa, noticed Khushpreet walking alone near his house and after putting his hand over his mouth took him inside his house. He then rendered him asleep by giving him pills and also tied his hands and feet. He then called his brother, Gurvinder, who works as a driver, and labourer Nand Kishore and told them to look after the child. Thereafter, he went to make ransom calls from an STD.

Ransom calls and payment

The first ransom call was made from a public call office (PCO) in Kajheri to Khushpreet's uncle, Sukhwinder Singh. After making several ransom calls from different PCOs, a deal was struck for payment of Rs 4 lakh. The accused initially asked the child's uncle to pay him the amount in Morinda (where his in-laws live) and then changed the venue to Desu Majra, near Kharar. The time was fixed in a way that it was dark by the time the uncle came to deliver the amount. Sukhdev reached the spot along with Nand Kishore on a borrowed bike. On making contact with Sukhwinder Singh, Khushpreet's uncle, Sukhdev asked him to place his mobile in the bag containing the money and then after hoodwinking the police who had laid a trap fled towards first Balongi and then Sector 52 from where they returned to Burail. Sukhdev paid some of his debts with the ransom money the next day.

Child’s trauma and the fatal recognition

From December 21 till January 3, when he was ultimately killed, Khushpreet was kept in a dark and dingy room in Burail and fed mostly on chips and biscuits. He was daily forced to consume a sleeping pill so that he didn't make any noise. Sukhdev would always meet him with a covered face and would narrate a fictional story of how he, like Khushpreet, was also trapped in the house. Khushi signed his dead warrant when he abruptly woke up on December 30 to see Sukhdev without his hood. He immediately recognised him as his neighbour who owned a pet dog and uttered the words "doggi wallah uncle". A panicky Sukhdev strangulated him with his "patka" on either January 1 or 2 and dumped the body in a carry bag in a pit in Phase X of Mohali.

Accused has a criminal past

The prime accused, Sukhdev Singh, alias Billa, has a criminal past and was arrested in a murder case in 2001. He was arrested for the murder of Prem Lata, a Sector 32 resident. He was, however, acquitted in the case in 2006.

Lot more to unveil

Police sources said that they suspect the involvement of a fourth person, a woman. The picture is likely to become clear following interrogation of the two arrested. 



We gave shagun to newborn son of accused last month: Mother
Aneesha Sareen/Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 22
As she was told of the arrest of the two accused responsible for the murder of her son, Khushpreet’s mother, Kulwinder Kaur, was simply left aghast. “I knew Sukhdev for years. Our families were never that close, but we always used to greet each other whenever we came face to face since we lived so close by.”

Ironic as it sounds, Sukhdev had a son last month and he met my father-in-law who gave him Rs 101 as shagun. Little did we know then that he was behind devastating our lives,” Kulwinder told this reporter. “It struck me just now that Sukhdev and his family were the only neighbours who never expressed their condolences to us,” she remarked.

“Although we were merely acquaintances, Sukhdev’s wife used to greet me always and my husband knew him as just a neighbour. We could never imagine that they could commit such a gory act,” she said. Sukhdev’s wife returned last month with their new born and it was then that Khushpreet’s grandfather met him and gave a shagun.

“We are satisfied that at least the mystery has been solved and we know who killed our son. I pray that they get the death penalty. They have no right to live. But our Khushpreet will never return now,” she cried while bemoaning that had the police been alert, “my child would have been with me”. “I had passed by Sukhdev’s residence on the day my son went missing. I bought fruits for Khushpreet and the vendor was just opposite that house. If only I had known that my Khushi was inside that house,” she said.



A case of abject police failure
Aneesha Sareen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 22
The fact that Khushpreet was kept in custody by his kidnappers in a house located merely 50 metres away for 12 long days reflects the police’s abject failure and lays bare their tall claims that they conducted numerous searches and raids at various places in Burail ever since the kidnapping of the child came to light.

Speaking volumes of its inefficiency and on the collapse of the police beat system, the police remained oblivious to first the whereabouts and then the murder of the child. Sukhdev, who had been arrested in a murder case in 2001 by the same police station (Sector 34), had managed to easily con the UT police for several days. Had the police kept a tight vigil in the area and kept an eye on those with a criminal background in the area, Khushi’s kidnappers could have been identified and caught in time.

Admitting that they may not have been rigorous in their search operations, UT SSP Naunihal Singh said that they had surveyed the entire area of Burail after the kidnapping and had conducted searches as well. “Perhaps the raids were not that intensive that the accused got overlooked. Also, the house of the kidnappers has a rear entry and they kept it locked from outside. We will look into the reasons and the lapses on this part,” he said.

The recovery of Khushpreet’s body on January 5 had sparked off a major violence in Burail village when infuriated residents went on a rampage and pelted stones at the police. Police sources said that the two accused played a major role in instigating the residents of the area to protest against the police.


  • December 21, 2010: Khushpreet abducted from outside his house at 1.15 pm; family receives ransom call at 4.30 pm.
  • December 22: Rs 4 lakh as ransom money handed over to kidnappers in Desu Majra near Kharar by Khushpreet’s uncle, Sukwinder Singh; 16-member police team fails to detect or entrap the kidnappers who came on a motorbike.
  • December 24: Police announces Rs 1 lakh reward for arrest of kidnappers.
  • December 25: Burail residents protest in Sector 17.
  • December 27: Police recover missing mobile phone of Sukhwinder Singh taken away by the kidnappers.
  • January 1: False rumours of child having been recovered raise hopes of the distressed family.
  • January 3: Family demands action against erring cops.
  • January 4: SHO of Sector 34 police station Inspector Uday Pal Singh and in-charge of Burail Police Post Inspector Narinder Singh Patial transferred to police lines
  • January 5: Body of Khushpreet recovered in Mohali: Burail residents stage a violent protest.
  • January 20: The then SHO Sector 34 police station Udey Pal Singh, incharge Burail police post Narinder Patial and investigating officer Sub Inspector Balraj Singh suspended for failure to crack the case following a magisterial enquiry report.
  • March 20: Police crack case, round up suspects.
  • March 22: Police arrests two accused neighbours for the murder of Khushpr


UT-Mohali border becomes protesting ground
Section 144 invoked in Sector 62
Tribune News Service

Mohali, March 22
Anticipating trouble for protesting employees of the Punjab panchayat and rural development department, Mohali Deputy Commissioner Parveen Kumar today enforced Section 144 of the CrPC to ban assembly five and more persons in Sector 62 (Phase VIII) here. The ban was applicable within 100 metres radius of gurdwara Amb Sahib, the Punjab School Education Board, Vikas Bhavan, PUDA Complex, Fortis Hospital and the Police Housing Complex.

The orders would remain in force till May 21. The orders were passed after the director, panchayat and rural development, complained to the Deputy Commissioner that yesterday agitating members of the Punjab Rural Veterinary Association barged into his office and locked the employees from outside. To avoid any such incident in future, the prohibitory orders were enforced.

Police officials admitted that after banning of rallies at Chandigarh’s Matka Chowk and shifting the venue to Sector 25 by the Chandigarh administration, striking employees of different offices of Punjab had started converging at the UT-Mohali border in Phase VIII here, causing harassment to the residents of southern sectors.

The protesters have set their eyes on the main road leading to Chandigarh from the YPS Chowk. Be it the week-long rally by the Bhartiya Kisan Union or a rally by Punjab Government employees, the protesters find the road very strategic to catch the attention of the Punjab government and the Chandigarh administration.

The worst sufferers were the residents living in Sectors 52, 61 and several parts of Mohali, who used the road to commute between the two cities.



Retention of govt houses
Admn set to act tough
To issue notices to two former senior officials
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 22
The UT administration has started cracking a whip against bureaucrats and police officials from other states on deputation to the Union Territory, who after de-earmarking official accommodation to themselves have been retaining the same even after repatriation.

Apparently acting under the recent judgement of the Punjab and Haryana High Court government accommodation in the city will now be allotted strictly in accordance with the prevailing rules and on the basis of seniority, the UT administration is set to shot off notices to at least two former senior officials, who earlier worked with the UT administration.

Sources said notices are being issued to RK Rao, former UT Deputy Commissioner, who has since retired, and SK Jain, former UT Inspector-General of Police, who is currently posted as Special Commissioner (Vigilance), Delhi government. Some other officials, including a senior retired Punjab bureaucrat currently on a government assignment, will also be issued notices, sources said.

In an affidavit submitted in the Punjab and Haryana High Court recently, the UT administration had stated that it was “actively considering” disallowing this practice of de-earmarking of houses and retaining them for the lifetime as part of measures “to ensure objectivity and transparency” in the allotment process under the Government Residences (Chandigarh Administration General Pool) Allotment Rules of 1996.

The issuance of notices is part of the exercise to standardise the allotment process and complying with the High Court orders, sources added.



Strike hits passport applicants
Asked to come again to complete formalities
Anuja Jaiswal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 22
Work was severely hit at the Chandigarh passport office this morning as the staff, under the banner of the All India Passport Employees’ Union (AIPEU), struck work in support of their demands for promotions and higher pay scales.

Though the strike was called off around 2 pm after negotiations with senior officials of the passport department, nearly 700 applicants who had appointments for processing of their papers at the Passport Seva Kendra (PSK) in Industrial Area had a harrowing time as their work was not completed. The applicants will now have to make another trip to the passport office for completion of their documentation.

The 700-odd applicants who came this morning could only complete the ‘A’ stage (i.e. scanning and online saving of their documents) of the processing formalities since employees of Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) handle this work. The next two levels - “B” (verification) and “C” (grant) - could not be undertaken due to the strike. The applicants have been asked to come again to complete the formalities.

A visibly upset Manjeet Kaur of Patiala said she wasn’t aware of the strike and she would have come again next week for completing the formalities.

Work was also hit at the Sector 34 passport office where request for urgent processing of passports are undertaken. Prabhdeep, a student of Kripal Sagar Academy, Nawanshahar, said she had got a fresh appointment for April 4 while she was scheduled to go to Hong Kong on April 8 for a Karate practice session. She said her today’s appointment was cancelled as the person concerned was not available due to the strike.

Talking to The Tribune, general secretary of the AIPEU Venugopal said they had gone on strike as their attempts to draw the attention of the higher authorities had failed. “We realise that our decision has caused inconvenience to applicants, but we had no option,” he said adding that the strike was called off after the chief passport officer, who is also the joint secretary of the Passport Seva Project, assured to fulfil their demands.

The demands of the association include filling of promotional posts and upgrade of pay scales of assistants and superintendents of the passport organisation. He said around 100 employees of the department were on strike today.

Regretting that they had no information about the strike, employees of the TCS said had they known, they wouldn’t have issued appointments for today.



Jat Agitation
Harrowing time for rail passengers
Anil Jerath/TNS

Chandigarh, March 22
Hundreds of rail passengers had a harrowing time at the city’s railway station this morning with the Railways cancelling four trains, including the morning Shatabdi Express (12006) following agitating Jats threatening to block the Ambala-Delhi rail route.

Other trains cancelled are the Chandigarh-Allahabad Unchahar Express, Himalayan Queen and Chandigarh-Jaipur Garib Rath in the wake of the Jat agitation. The station wore a deserted look today as the Railways had already deputed its staff members to guide passengers about the cancellation of the trains at the main entrance of the railway station.

Haryana police cops were also deployed in numbers, as there was word that some agitating Jat activists might create nuisance at the station and resort to “Delhi chalo” move from the city railway station.

Rahul Verma, a resident of Nasik in Maharashtra, said, “I had to go to Delhi on the Shatabdi Express. I had some important work to attend to and this agitation has caused problems,” he said. His train was ultimately cancelled.

Sakshat Seth, who came from Mohali with her family, had a tough time as their Delhi-bound train was cancelled. Holding an 11-month-old baby in her arms, she said: "We have to get to Bhopal for my brother-in-law's reception and we've been trying to get some other alternate mode to reach Delhi and it will cost us twice as much," she said. Her mother-in-law Sakshi added: "This is pure harassment. We were told only at 6.30 am when we reached the station that our morning Shatabdi was cancelled." Foreigners Ila and Susan from Canada had a tough time too. “We arrived here from Amritsar to catch the Shatabdi Express to go to Delhi. We had no clue about the ‘no-train’ situation,” said Ila.

“I have been told that some agitating people had some demands and were resorting to blockade of tracks,” said Ila. She said the Indian government should play a part in ensuring smooth movement of trains, which are the lifeline for a huge number of people of India who cannot afford air travel and if necessary strong action should be taken against those who resort to blockade of railway tracks.

Meanwhile, the city railway station in the Ambala division refunded more than Rs 35,000 to the passengers by this afternoon on account of cancellation of tickets, railway sources said. A number of goods trains, too, were held up at several places in the division, added the sources.



Rlys suspend 10 trains for two days

Ambala, March 22
The Northern Railways today cancelled 10 up and down trains on the Ambala section in view of the ongoing Jat agitation.

The cancelled trains include Kalka to Delhi -Shatabdi (up and down), Kalka to Sairala -Himalayan Queen (up and down), Intercity Express - Ganganagar to Bathinda (up and down), Unchahar Express - Chandigarh to Allahabad (up and down) and Intercity Express -Bathinda to New Delhi (up and down).

MS Meena, station superintendent of railway station, Ambala Cantt, said the trains had to be cancelled since the Jat protesters had today blocked the rail track at Kurukshetra. He said the said 10 trains would remain suspended for two days. Meena said his office had got instructions from the railway headquarters in New Delhi.— TNS

A special counter has been set up at railway station of Ambala Cantt to refund the money against tickets already booked for the two days

— MS Meena, station superintendent of railway station, Ambala Cantt



Wrong stacking of notes in slots
ATM turns ‘magnanimous’
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Mohali, March 22
A few days back it was raining currency notes at an HDFC Bank automated teller machine installed in the premises of a BPO firm here, thanks to the oversight of the officials entrusted with the job of stacking cash in the ATM.

After the incident, reported to the local police last week, bank officials panicked when the ATM at the Intelnet office in Industrial Area in phase 8 here recorded a withdrawal of about ` 80,000 for only one day against much lesser transactions made by ATM card users during that period.

Phase 1 police station SHO Manjit Singh said it was a “technical snag” and details of those who had withdrawn the cash was with the bank. “The matter has now been resolved”, he added.

Enquiries reveal the officials tasked with stacking currency notes of various denominations in different slots in the machines carelessly placed banknotes of ` 500 denomination in the slot meant for ` 100 notes.

Giving an example while explaining the process, sources said an ATM card user sending a request for withdrawing five ` 100 currency notes instead got five notes of ` 500 denomination each, meaning he got ` 25,000 instead of ` 500.

After approaching the police company officials also scanned the CCTV footage to find out who had overdrawn cash from the ATM. However, before it could file a formal complaint with the cops, the bank prevailed upon ATM users to voluntarily return the excess cash they had taken out. A guard at the ATM said some of the users had complied with the bank’s request.



ITBP mulls change in uniform of female paramedics
Vijay Mohan/TNS

Chandigarh, March 22
Keeping in tune with the contemporary working ethos of medical staff in modern hospitals, the Indo-Tibetan Border Police Force (ITBP) is considering a change in the working dress of female paramedical staff to make it more functional and purposeful.

At present, the prescribed uniform for female paramedical staff is a khaki saree or salwar-kameez with dupatta. It is widely felt that the present attire is not well-suited to service conditions, especially in field areas. As the attire has no pockets to carry papers, medication or instruments, it is not practical even for staff working in laboratories and wards. Add to this the need to constantly manage the flapping edges of sarees and dupattas.

There are an estimated 1,000-plus paramedical staff. These include nurses, nursing assistants, pharmacists and midwives. Besides hospitals and clinics, they are also deployed in field areas and forward locations. The issue was discussed at the ITBP annual medical officers’ conference held here recently.

Sources said the force’s medical directorate had been asked to submit a detailed report on the proposed changes to the provisioning directorate for approval by the competent authority.

“In most hospitals, including, many government ones, the dress code for female paramedical staff is a tunic or safari suit type attire and sport shoes, with colour codes for different ranks and streams,” a senior officer said. “Uniforms and dress codes of female staff in also needs redefining,” he added.

In fact, a few years ago, the Army had also changed the uniform of officers in the Military Nursing Service (MNS), which had resulted in a considerable controversy within the force. The white tunics and stockings of the MNS were replaced with olive green shirts and trousers as worn by the regular Army.



Sale of tickets
Field day for black marketeers
Deepankar Sharda

Chandigarh, March 22
The Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) might have set the rates of the tickets keeping in mind the public interest towards the game, but it seems that black marketers have set their ticket rates keeping in mind the public’s craze for the match.

Interestingly, the tickets for the ICC-Cricket World Cup semifinal match to be held at the PCA Stadium on March 30 are not available at any outlet and the PCA, but are available with the black marketers.

One can witness several black marketers selling tickets around the stadium.

On the second day of selling of tickets, while the authorities declared that all tickets were sold out, the black marketers were seen making good profit by selling the tickets at almost triple the original price.

“I came to buy tickets for my family but after two days of my effort, I failed to get even a single ticket. The tickets in black are costlier than the original price even now and I wonder what will it cost on the day of the match,” said Virender while showing concern over the situation at the PCA.

“This time there is a craze among masses for the semifinal and we bought as many tickets as we can of the student block and chair block from our sources present at all outlets and stadium, as these stands are more in demand for it suits public’s pocket,” said a black marketer on the condition of anonymity.

Adding further, “We have kept some tickets to be sold on the day of the match as it will earn us more profit.”

When asked whether the police caught them or not, he just smiled and said, “Sir, ap match ke din ana, apko khud hi pata chal jayega” (Sir, you visit here on the day of the match, you will see it yourself).



Post of Commissioner
MHA rejects panel
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 22
The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has rejected the panel for the post of Commissioner of the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh.

According to sources, the panel comprising three IAS officers, SR Ladher (1991), Samir Kumar (1992) and VP Singh (1996), which was forwarded by the UT Administration to the MHA recently, has been rejected on “technical grounds”.

A fresh panel is being sought from the Punjab Government, the sources added.



BSNL asks DoT to probe long-distance call racket
Anuja Jaiswal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 22
The Punjab circle of Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd has sought an investigation by the department of telecommunications (DoT) into what the former called the “enticing” but “balance draining” long distance calls being received by its subscribers from the little known Democratic Republic of São Tomé and Príncipe, a Portuguese-speaking island nation located in the Gulf of Guinea off the coast of central Africa.

The state-owned service provider has also warned its subscribers not to return calls received from numbers beginning 23928 as they could cost them heavy.

According to sources, a request for an investigation was made after several BSNL cellular subscribers reported their balances on their prepaid connections had been depleted drastically after they responded to “missed” calls ostensibly originating from São Tomé. The sources added unsuspecting subscribers who dialled back on the number were engaged into an “enticing sexual conversation” from an IVR (interactive voice response) system and were charged exorbitantly for the same.

Confirming a request for an investigation had been made, BSNL general manager (mobile) DR Paul told The Tribune the company had received complaints in this regard. Refusing to divulge any further details, he added: “We’ve sent SMSes to all BSNL mobile subscribers stating, ‘BEWARE of missed calls from international numbers like 23928XXXXX. Do not dial back such numbers, you may end up with huge balance deduction’”.

Though premium calls, where a caller pays a higher pulse rate, are very much in vogue in India too, with many TV shows cashing in on them, BSNL officials claimed they had not entered into any agreement of the sort with any foreign company.

A senior telecom expert revealed on condition of anonymity that, like all other mobile operators, BSNL too had an agreement with international long distance service providers (ILDPs) for revenue sharing on overseas calls. “So, it’s possible the ILDPs had entered into some revenue sharing agreement with a São Tomé firm, which in turn was fleecing unsuspecting BSNL subscribers”, he added.

The telecom expert said though the international code for São Tomé is 239 it was not necessary the calls were originating from there. “With various VOIP (Voice-Over-Internet Protocol) companies selling incoming international call numbers, this illegal business could well be running from India itself”, he went on to add.



Miraculous escape for family as car catches fire
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, March 22
At least four passengers of a car had a miraculous escape when the car they were travelling in caught fire in Sector 8, near the Shakti Bhawan Chowk, here this afternoon. The cause of the fire could not be ascertained.

Some passers-by helped the four passengers in coming out of the car and also informed the police control room. A fire tender also reached the site and doused the fire within minutes. No one had made any complaint to the police regarding the incident.

Santosh, a resident of Mauli Jagran, and an employee at the Manchanda Book Store at Sector 19, Chandigarh, while talking to the media, said he was returning to his home along with his family members after the General Hospital, Sector 6, authorities discharged his wife. He said he had borrowed the Tata Indigo car from his employers to bring back his wife, who had delivered a baby two days ago, from the hospital.

He said when he crossed the Shakti Bhawan Chowk he saw smoke coming out of the bonnet of the car. He said he immediately stopped the car and asked the other members of the family to come out of the vehicle. Soon the whole engine was engulfed in fire and got completely damaged.



PU law students disrupt classes again
Demand change in exam datesheet
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 22
Pandemonium prevailed at Panjab University’s department of laws on Tuesday after students, who went on a strike to get their datesheet for the forthcoming examinations changed, forcibly got the first lecture suspended. Although classes resumed about two hours after the students went on a flash strike, the issues that led to the disruption are yet to be resolved.

The protest by law students was the second such incident in the last one week. Blocking the entry to the department building, nearly 100 students shut the gates and shouted slogans against the law faculty members and other officials. They were objecting to the clash of dates of the reappear and regular examinations scheduled for April-May.

Exactly a week ago students of the same department went on strike against the delay in declaration of their results. Incidentally, the results, which were held up for four months, were announced within a day after the students staged a protest and disrupted classes. After the same protest, PU officials had also cautioned administrative block employees against showing results to students unofficially before the controller of examinations formally declared them.

“The last semester results announced by the university were so late that students hardly got any time to prepare for subjects in which they had to reappear. We’ve demanded the reappear exams be conducted separately, like they were done last year,” said Ranjot, laws department student representative.

While the students objected to the department holding two examinations on one day, which included a reappear and a regular exam, department officials however had a different opinion.

“Unlike other departments we’ve several subjects, exams for which have to be conducted in only 20 days, which is the allotted period to conduct the exams,” said an official.

Despite resumption of classes after the arrival of PU dean of students welfare Naval Kishore, students continued to convince their batchmates not to attend classes and continue the protest. Later, a minor brawl between two students of the same department also took place outside the department head’s room. The students were waiting outside for a decision by the department and university officials, who held a meeting in the head’s room.

PU takes up students’ proposal

University officials are considering the exam datesheet proposed by the students. The matter will be resolved shortly.

Nishtha Jaiswal, head of PU department of laws



PU Dental College
Classes resume for second-year batch
Blueprint announced to tackle disciplinary, academic issues
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 22
Classes resumed for the second year batch at Dr Harvansh Singh Judge Institute of Dental Sciences today, which had been suspended after students were found playing Holi inside the classroom on Saturday.

The seven-member committee headed by dean university instructions (DUI) BS Brar today announced a blueprint to tackle disciplinary and academic issues of the institute. The committee members held separate interactive sessions with students, teachers and non-teachers in the institute today. The members of the committee have been designated the task of assisting the DUI in ensuring smooth functioning of the dental college.

According to the blueprint prepared, two members of the committee would visit the dental college every day till the institute has a permanent director-principal.

On Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday every week, dean (sciences) AS Ahluwalia and University Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences (UIPS) faculty member OP Katare would visit the institute to address the academic issues.

DUI Brar would visit the dental college on Monday at 9 am and the chief medical officer and his deputy would also visit the institute on Wednesday and Friday to address the hospital-related problems of doctors and students.

“We will ensure that there is constant interaction with the staff and students of the institute so that there is no misunderstanding. The students and staff members were addressed today and classes have resumed,” said Brar. “The students and teachers were made to understand that the reputation of the institute was supreme, particularly in wake of the recent atmosphere of unrest. The university has also pooled resources in building up this institute and its reputation has to be quickly restored,” he added.

“The teachers have been told that the students seeking admission to this institute are also teenagers. Hence, they need to be tackled in a more sensitive way. Students, on the other hand, were cautioned of not repeating any act of indiscipline. Any such act of indiscipline would lead to strict disciplinary action in future,” said the DUI.



Admissions under EWS category
Dept postpones date of receipt of applications
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 22
The UT education department has yet again postponed the last day of receipt of application for admissions to the city schools under the economically weaker sections (EWS) category to March 26.

This is the second time that the UT has postponed the date, while initially it was due to the lukewarm response, this time it is because of the delay in issue of income certificates.

Initially, it was postponed from March 15 to March 23, as there were hardly any takers for admissions under the EWS reservation category. After receiving a directive from the court, the education department issued a public notice advertising over 450 seats. This was followed by a vigorous awareness campaign. Though the department claims to be getting good response, it has been forced to defer admissions because of delay in the issue of income certificates.

“We got calls from many parents and even institution heads, who informed us that it taking an average of two to three days for an applicant to get requisite income certificate from the SDM office. The problem is justified as the office concerned is struggling with staff crunch and the number of applicants for the EWS certificates has increased since March 19,” said a senior official.



Affiliation Issue
PUSU members stage protest
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 22
Representatives of the Panjab University Student Union (PUSU) today staged a protest to highlight the problems of BA-BEd students.

Jajwinder Singh Sidhu said BA-BEd course has been going on for the last four years without any affiliation thus causing a huge risk to the future of the students who will pass out this year.

Sidhu said if the university authorities did not address the affiliation issue of the course even now, it would be like playing with the future of the students.

“The dean student welfare arrived on the spot and had pacified the students. He assured us that the issue would be solved soon,” said Sidhu.



316 degrees conferred
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 22
The Postgraduate Guru Gobind Singh College for Women, Sector 26, organised its annual convocation function on the college premises here.

Prof RC Sobti, Vice-Chancellor, Panjab University, and Dr Naval Kishore, dean, college development council, Panjab University, was the guest of honour.

S Gurdev Singh Brar, president, Sikh Educational Society, and S Kulbir Singh, vice-president, Sikh Educational Society, welcomed the chief guest, while college principal, Dr Charanjeet Kaur Sohi presented the annual report of the college highlighting the achievements and activities of the college, faculty and students.

A total of 316 degrees were conferred on the students. Harsha Dua and Chatali Nandy of BPEd were honoured with cash prizes of Rs 8,000 and Rs 5,000, respectively, for holding the second and third position in Panjab University annual examinations.



CSIR programme to inculcate scientific spirit in youth
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 22
CSIR Programme on Youth for Leadership in Science (CPYLS) for attracting the young and brilliant minds into the science stream was inaugurated at the Central Scientific Instruments Organisation (CSIO) here today. Students from Haryana, who got distinction in the matriculation examination, are attending the two-day event.

In his inaugural address, Principal Secretary (Public Works Department), Haryana, said although there was a lure of high salaries offered by multi-national companies, students should continue their quest for innovative research. He said the private sector shied away from funding research but the government had always taken an interest in the field.

He also called upon the students to improve their overall knowledge and said just as call centres had been outsourced to India, soon the research work could also be outsourced here that would open up new opportunities.

CSIO director Pawan Kapur said the basic purpose of CPYLS was to motivate and attract young minds to leadership in science. Elaborating upon the possibilities offered by the stream, he emphasised upon the need to opt for a career in science that provided umpteen opportunities for self-growth and contribution to the society.

The students also attended an interactive sessions with CSIO scientists and discussed about their research, technologies and the upcoming scientific trends. A multimedia science quiz, lectures and visit to CSIO laboratories are also on the programme’s agenda.

The basic purpose of the seminar is to motivate and attract young minds to leadership in science

Pawan Kapur, CSIO director



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