C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


only one-kanal houses to keep paying guests
Parking problem, nuisance in small quarters
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
Only houses of one kanal (500 square yards) and above will be allowed for the paying guest (PG) purpose in the city under the newly proposed rules of the Chandigarh administration.

A decision in this regard was taken at a meeting held recently under the chairmanship of UT Home Secretary Ram Niwas.

The administration observed that the relaxation to use the residential buildings up to 7.5-marla houses for the PG purpose, given in 2007, had been creating problems of parking and disturbance in the tight quarters.

“The biggest problem is parking of vehicles in front of small houses, which have very less space for parking vehicles. When so many students or working people live in a single house and park their vehicles in front of other houses along the road, it causes public nuisance. So it is being proposed that a PG should not be allowed in a residential house having area less than one kanal,” said a senior official of the UT Estate Office.

Notably, in 2006, the administration had made a 10-marla or above house eligible for the PG accommodation in its policy. However, the very next year, the relaxation was given up to 7.5-marla houses.

Now after observing various problems in many parts of the city, the administration has started taking steps to streamline the business here. Police sources admitted that the city had been accommodating thousands of PGs and the number had been increasing every year. Interestingly, only five owners have got permission to operate their residences for the PG purpose so far from the local Estate Office.

The administration also proposed to register case under Section 188 of the Indian Penal Code against those owners or managers who do not get permission from the Estate Office before allowing PGs.



Now, leave your cars in parks at your own risk!
MC puts finishing touches to horticulture bylaws
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
Parking your vehicle in public parks or damaging greenbelts and road berms will now be at your own risk. In fact vandalism in parks and damaged road berms will soon be a thing of the past with the municipal corporation set to get tough on offenders.

For the first time in its history the civic body has put in place a mechanism in the shape of the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation (Horticulture) Bylaws, 2011 to safeguard the city’s parks, greenbelts and road berms from misuse and damage by “antisocial elements” and the public.

The bylaws have already been finalized by the MC’s environment & city beautification committee and would be shortly forwarded to the UT administration after ratification at the next house meeting. “These byelaws would go a long way in safeguarding the city’s greenbelts and parks. In fact the penal provisions in the bylaws would act as a deterrent for offenders,” said Pardeep Chabbra, former city mayor and the committee’s chairman.

The bylaws take a serious view of the damage to public property such as benches, railings, children’s play equipment, lights and fountains and grass and plants. Encroachment of any type, including planting hedges, brick work and opening doors towards the greenbelts, would also attract a stiff penalty.

Playing any kind of game, hanging clothes on park iron railings and benches will also attract strict action against offenders. Parking vehicles and playing games, which is currently rampant in various city parks, will now be a punishable offence.

Prohibited in parks

  • Defecation, spitting and urination
  • Collection or disposal of ‘malba’ and garbage
  • Plucking of flowers, fruits and removal of seedlings
  • Consuming liquor, any other intoxicating substance
  • Roaming with dogs and other pets
  • Parking of vehicles and bicycles
  • Damaging grass, railings and play equipment
  • Use of loudspeakers and holding meetings

Proposed penalties

  • Fine up to Rs 1,000 plus cost of materials damaged
  • In case of repeat offence additional fine up to Rs 100 a day
  • Offender will have to restore equipment to original position
  • In case offender fails to do so he/she will have to pay cost of restoration to be carried out by MC



ATM card fraud scare returns to stalk city
PU technician loses Rs 10,000 at ‘hacked’ OBC machine
Aneesha Sareen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
The scare of ATM card fraud has again rattled city residents with a Panjab University employee losing Rs 10,000 that fraudsters withdrew from his account at a “hacked” cash machine of Oriental Bank of Commerce (OBC) at the NAC market in Manimajra.

Last year the local police received over 20 complaints of fraudulent withdrawals through ATMs of various banks in the city. However, the cops have failed to solve any of the cases or even gather a single clue on the suspects.

Arun Raina, a senior technician in PU’s biotechnology department, is a harried man as his hard earned money was siphoned off through the ATM without his knowledge on May 8. He has a salary account at the State Bank of India branch at PGI, Sector 12 and used the OBC bank ATM on May 8 to withdraw funds.

However, the ATM went out of order the moment he swiped his card and the machine’s screen went blank. The day being a Sunday, the bank branch was closed and there was no guard at the ATM. He came out of the cubicle after waiting for some time.

The next day Raina went to his bank and was shocked to find an amount of Rs 10,000 had been fraudulently withdrawn from the same OBC machine. For more than a month now he has been running from pillar to post and has complained to the bank, but to no avail.

“The SBI branch where I had an account as well as Oriental Bank of Commerce from whose ATM the money was withdrawn simply washed off their hands and said they couldn’t do anything about the matter,” he said.

Raina added the CCTV camera at the ATM was covered with a black cloth and OBC officials told him they had received similar complaints earlier. “I’ll also file a formal complaint in the matter at the Manimajra police station,” he stated.

Police remains at sea
Arun Raina, the victim
Arun Raina, the victim

More than 20 residents of Chandigarh and 35 of neighbouring Panchkula got the shock of their lives when funds were withdrawn from their bank accounts by fraudsters using cloned ATM cards. The complainants included account holders of State Bank of Patiala and State Bank of India, who reported losses running into lakhs of rupees. Large fraudulent transactions were made from SBI ATMs located in Sectors 37, 36, 47, 22 and 17 of the city. Eventually all the complainants reportedly got their money back after the banking ombudsman asked State Bank of India to compensate the fraud victims. However, both the Chandigarh and Panchkula police are still groping in the dark about the suspects.



Row between Josan, management
Admissions at DAV College yet to begin
Sumedha Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
The ongoing quarrel between the management of DAV College and its administrative principal BC Josan appears to have taken its toll on the admissions process with both locking horns over the issue of printing college prospectuses.

Claiming admissions was his “forte”, Josan had sought the necessary permission as well as funds from the management to get the prospectuses for the 2011-12 academic session printed, but the later turned down his request and instead asked him not to get involved in the matter.

“Admission to the college is a policy decision taken by the management and as such you are refrained from interfering in such decisions. Accordingly, you have not been permitted to get the college prospectuses for the 2011-12 session printed,” read a letter addressed to Josan.

Even as most city colleges including those run by the government have begun selling their prospectuses, DAV College is turning way all applicants and has told them to enquire about them later.

Though the college website claims the prospectus would be available from June 20, Josan pleaded ignorance about the date. “I can’t confirm this date because probably I won’t be participating in the process. It’s members of the college management who do it and they’ll be able to tell you better,” he said.

While ML Aeri, director of colleges in the DAV management, could not be contacted for his comments, a senior management member said: “The college’s admissions process won’t suffer - it’s just that we’ve kept Josan out of it. We are abiding by the court’s orders that clearly mentioned he wasn’t allowed to interfere in any policy matter. We’ll get our prospectus printed in time - he needn’t worry about it.”

According to sources, Josan had initially tried to get funds from the college’s financial principal, Shashi Gupta, but was asked to seek permission from the DAV management.



Fake ID scam
How theft accused helped 11 others procure bail
Aneesha Sareen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
Shocking AS it may sound, an accused in a theft case who himself procured bail from a local court on the basis of fake identity card stood surety for around 11 accused in Chandigarh and Panchkula district courts on a fake name and identification and no one got a clue of it.

The revelation speaks volumes of the brazenness with which the prime accused Varinder Kumar managed to run the fake identity cards racket, with the gang members actively using these IDs while standing as surety for the accused at the time of furnishing bail bonds in courts.

The police, meanwhile, confirmed that the racket of furnishing bail bonds on fake identity cards was going on in district courts for the past 10 to 12 years.

A day after the Crime Branch arrested three persons adept in making fake identity cards which were used to provide surety for accused lodged in jails, further investigations reveal that a thief, identified as Malkhan Singh, got bailed out some time ago as prime accused in the racket. Varinder Kumar stood surety for him on a fake identity card of the Punjab Irrigation Department. After getting out of jail with Varinder’ help, Malkhan Singh joined his gang and got himself a fake identity card made with the fake name of ‘Rampal’, which showed him to be a peon in the Punjab Irrigation Department. On the basis of this card, Malkhan stood surety for more than 11 accused, who then got out on bail similarly.

“Interrogation has revealed that the gang was active for quite some time and investigations are on to arrest the remaining accused,” said Inspector Amanjot Singh, in charge, Crime Branch.

The police is now hunting Malkhan and several other members of the gang who used to provide surety to accused lodged in jails and helped them procure bail by furnishing bail bonds on fake ID cards. Besides, Malkhan Singh, the accused also provided surety for a co-accused in the Pak spy case involving Kashif Ali as prime accused.

During interrogation of the prime accused, it came to light that besides conning several on the basis of forged documents, Varinder was also involved in matrimonial frauds. He married more than six times and his last wife was a Canada-based NRI. His first wife was a teacher with a Government School in Sector 44, the police said.

The police also said that since the courts were closed for summer vacations, they were unable to check the court records and the bail bonds on which various accused got out from jail and thus their investigations have been hampered. The police is also contemplating moving an application in court seeking scrutiny of records.

Woman mediator involved

The police is also probing the involvement of a woman, Pinki, who sells stationery items and forms for filling bail bonds in district courts in Sector 17. She acted as a mediator between the accused seeking bail and the gang members willing to stand as surety for accused for an amount on the basis of fake identity cards. The persons charged somewhere between Rs 5,000 to Rs 10,000 and Pinki was paid Rs 200 for providing ‘clients’ to the gang members.

Accused got leave on fake medical certificate

The prime accused in the racket Varinder Kumar joined the Punjab Irrigation Department as a junior engineer in 1979. He proceeded on sick leave from 1994 and rejoined in 2000 when he produced a medical certificate of the Government Multi Speciality Hospital in Sector 16. That certificate was found to be fake and Varinder was chargesheeted for the same. He again took medical leave in 2007. His application for rejoining was rejected in 2010.



Poor show by govt schools in class X PSEB exams
Out of 85 schools, 30 schools have less than 30 pass percentage
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Mohali, June 16
Considering the performance of a majority of the government schools in Class X result, it seems that education is no a big deal here in government schools of Mohali.

Contrary to the concerns of the Punjab Education Minister Sewa Singh Sekhwan, who is working over time to raise the standard of education in government schools, the results clearly shows that the schools have lowered the standard of education.

Interestingly, at least 30 per cent of the total 85, both rural and government schools, have shown a dismal pass percentage of around 30 per cent.

Reversing last year’s trend, none of the government schools in the district could score 100 per cent result and not even a single student could make it to the state level merit-list released by the Punjab School Education Board (PSEB).

The performance of the urban government schools has been equally dismal.

An analysis of the performance of the schools reveal that Government Senior Secondary School, Banur, has achieved a rare distinction of hitting the lowest pass percentage of 6.66 per cent.

Of the total 105 students, only seven could clear the examination. Similarly, government high schools at Devi Nagar (Abrawan) and Mainpur Changer are trailing the Banur School by scoring a pass percentage of 10 per cent and 11 per cent, respectively.

The only silver lining are students of Government High School, Daffarpur, Government Model Senior Secondary School, Kharar, and Government Senior Secondary, Pandwala, that have locked a high pass percentage of 95.65 per cent, Rs 92.20 per cent and 91.66 per cent, respectively.

Mohali district education officer Harbans Singh said the performance of the schools would be analysed once the result was given to the department.

Barring seven schools, 13 schools that have crossed the pass percentage of 70 per cent, a majority of the schools have secured pass percentage varying between 40 per cent and 60 per cent.

Government Girls Senior Secondary School, Mullanpur, has scored a pass percentage of 41.66 per cent compared to 86.48 per cent scored last year. Similarly, Government Senior Secondary School, Mullanpur, has secured 20 per cent compared to 73.33 per cent earned last year.

Worst performing schools’ pass percentage

  • Govt Senior Secondary School, Banur 6.66
  • Govt High School, Devi Nagar 10
  • Govt High School, Mianpur Changer 11

Best performing schools’ pass percentage

  • Govt High School, Daffarpur 95.65
  • Govt Model Sr Sec School, Kharar 92.20
  • Govt Sr Secondary School, Pandwala 91.66


Work on GMSH OPD block runs behind schedule
Rush in corridors aggravates patients’ suffering
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
Patients at Government Multi-speciality Hospital (GMSH), Sector 16, will continue to jostle around in the narrow corridors of the old OPD building for many more months, as the construction of the new OPD block seems to be nowhere near completion despite the deadline set for the work expiring twice.

Even if serious efforts were made to complete the work, only lower three floors can be made operational by the end of this year, said laborers involved in the work at the site. The work of the upper three floors of the six-storeyed building can be completed in the next year only, they said.

“The three floors will be ready to be handed over to the hospital authorities by September and it will take a few months for the hospital administration to set up their gadgets in the building before putting these to use,” said one of the contractors.

The new building, in addition to other facilities, will house out-door patient services of five departments and operation theatres.

The work on the new building started four years ago in 2006 and was supposed to be completed by July 31, 2009. Later its deadline was extended twice.

Meanwhile, the OPD departments in the old OPD building remain overcrowded with patients and their attendants swarming the narrow corridors of the hospital.



Development projects hang fire in Sector 40-D
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
Several development projects in Sector 40-D, the area represented by the Congress rebel Jagjit Singh Kang, have been laying incomplete for several months.

The Resident Welfare Association, Sector 40-D, in a representation to the Mayor of the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh (MCC), alleged that beautification of parks, recarpeting of V-6 roads and cleanliness of parks have been hanging fire for the past several months.

Even as the monsoon is around the corner, the construction of new road gullies in the sector, particularly around the parks, was still incomplete. The representation demanded that the width of V-6 roads should not be increased as drinking water and sewerage pipelines would be damaged and the residents would have to face inconvenience.



UT reiterates its demand for more financial powers
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
The UT Administration has again raised its demand of enhancing the financial powers of the Administrator from Rs 10 crore to Rs 50 crore during a meeting with the Parliamentary Committee here today.

UT Finance Secretary VK Singh said the issue was discussed at length with the delegation from the Centre. “Our financial power is very less which results in delay of major projects,” said the Finance Secretary.

The demand has been made on the pattern of other union territories, including Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Daman and Diu, which have financial powers up to Rs 25 crore. The delegation has assured the administration to recommend the issue to the Centre government soon.

Notably, the issue was also raised in high-profile meeting held last month at New Delhi where the Ministry of Home Affairs had reportedly agreed in principal to enhance the financial powers of the Administrator to Rs 25 crore. “The process is on and we are hopeful to get it soon. It would be good if we get the financial power of Rs 50 crore as the city has been emerging in a big way. We have to rush to New Delhi for the sanction of projects worth over Rs 10 crore. Many a time, we have to split project cost into two or three that attracts audit objections,” VK Singh said.

Former UT Administrator Gen SF Rodrigues (retd) also tried to obtain more financial powers for the Administrator.



BJP campaign to expose Cong ‘misrule’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
The local unit of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) today started its “Janjagran Abhiyan” on corruption, scams, price hike and misrule of the Congress.

Party’s national in-charge of the human rights cell and Member of Parliament Avinash Rai Khanna started the campaign.

BJP state president Sanjay Tandon and former Union Minister Harmohan Dhawan were also present.

Addressing the gathering, Khanna said the current Central Government led by the Congress was one of the most corrupt governments in the history of India. Instead of taking stern action against the corrupt, the government was shielding them.

Tandon said local Member of Parliament and Central Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal was indicted in the booth allotment scam by former ADC PS Shergil but instead of facing the allegations and resigning from his ministry, Bansal started levelling allegations against the former ADC. 



Legal system
‘India can benefit from Germany’s experience’

Chandigarh, June 16
Germany and India may be uniquely similar in several ways, but when it comes to the legal profession, the two countries are vastly different, opined young Punjab and Haryana High Court advocate Harpreet Sandhu.

Just as cooperation between the two countries in the industrial, trade and other sectors was proving fruitful, India could pick up ideas and initiatives from Germany to make the justice delivery system more effective, said Sandhu.

He was talking to The Tribune soon after his book “German Indian Law - a Comparative Study” was presented to Punjab Governor and UT Administrator Shivraj Patil at the Punjab Raj Bhawan this morning.

Already released globally by Chief Justice Prasident Klaus Scheuer at his office in Landgericht Regional Courts, Frankfurt am Main, Germany, the book is based on the personal experience gained by Sandhu during his visits to Germany courts to compare the structure there with the Indian legal system. — TNS



consumer courts
Shalimar Estate told to refund Rs 1.7 lakh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
The UT Consumer Dispute Redressal Forum has directed Shalimar Estate to refund the amount deposited by three complainants along with 9 per cent interest for not delivering their plots in the stipulated period.

One of the complainants, Paramvir Singh, a resident of Panchkula, had stated that he had applied for a six-marla plot in Shalimar Estates for Rs 1.21 lakh. An agreement was executed between the parties in March 2002 and he had paid the earnest money of Rs 30,375 at the time of the execution of the agreement.

The complainant stated that he had paid remaining six instalments of Rs 91,112 with interest as per the terms and conditions of the agreement. The possession of the plot was to be given in March 2007 (within five years of the date of allotment).

He stated that even after five years, neither the developer executed the sale deed nor the possession of the plot was given to him. He then urged the developer to return the sale consideration, but the latter failed to respond.

In a written reply, the developer admitted that the possession was to be delivered within five years and it had not been delivered so far and even the internal development work had not been completed.

The developer stated that the government of Haryana had lodged criminal proceedings for developing Shalimar Estate. As the matter is still subjudice and the writ petition has not been decided so far, in these circumstances, the possession could not be delivered in time. So, the complainant is not entitled for refund of deposited amount.

The forum stated that the complainant was entitled for refund of the deposited amount along with interest in view of an undertaking given by the developer vide an advertisement in The Tribune on January 17, 2007, in which the developer had agreed to refund the amount to the persons who were not interested to wait till the decision of the writ petition. Therefore, refusal to refund the amount to complainants amounts to deficiency in service on the part of the developer.

The forum has directed the developer to refund Rs 1.70 lakh along with the interest 9 per cent per annum from the date of respective deposits till actual payment along with litigation cost of Rs 7,000 to the complainant. Other two complainants, including Narinder Kumar and Kuldeep Singh, had also not got the possession of their plots as per the agreement.



Eureka Forbes directed to replace filters of RO system
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
In an ex parte order, the UT Consumer Dispute Redressal Forum has directed Eureka Forbes to change the filters of the reverse osmosis (RO) water system owned by a Mohali resident free of cost as the same was not done even after assurance given by the company. The company was also asked to pay Rs 2,500 as compensation and cost of litigation to the complainant.

In his complaint, Raj Kumar Gupta, a resident of Mohali, stated that he had purchased an RO from Eureka Forbes on May 30, 2008, for Rs 14,500.

The complainant said at the back of the invoice, the company’s employee had given in writing that the filter would be replaced at least once in two years. In February 2010, the complainant urged Eureka Forbes to replace the filters of the RO as per their written undertaking. But nobody came to replace the same.

The complainant was told to contact the same employee who had given him in writing. He came and took the water sample and assured him to replace it after one month. But nobody came for replacement, the complainant said.

The forum stated that the failure to change the filters of the RO system of the complainant amounts to deficiency in service on part of the company in view of the undertaking given by it.



Oriental Insurance Company penalised
Directed to reimburse Rs 1.83 lakh along with litigation cost of Rs 7,000
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
The UT Consumer Dispute Redressal Forum has directed Oriental Insurance Company to reimburse Rs 1.83 lakh to a city resident, Gagan Deep Singh Hora, towards the cost incurred for repair of his damaged vehicle insured by them.

The forum has also directed the company to pay the litigation cost of Rs 7,000 to him.

In his complaint, Hora stated that he had purchased a new Tata Sumo Grand, which was insured with Oriental Insurance Company for one year from March 2008 to March 2009. The vehicle was damaged in an accident and was sent to Hind Motors for repair after informing the insurance company.

The complainant filed the claim of Rs 1.95 lakh with the insurance company but it refused to pay the same. Since the insurance company didn’t release the vehicle due to non-payment, the complainant made the payment himself.

Subsequently, the complainant requested the company to pay the claim. But it repudiated the claim on ground of “not having effective licence to drive the insured vehicle”. The complainant visited the company’s office and showed them his original driving licence but still no payment was released.

In its reply, the company stated that as per the policy, only the amount assessed by the surveyor was payable and the surveyor appointed by company had assessed the claim of Rs 1.83 lakh along with the salvage value of Rs 13,500.

However, this amount was not payable as the licence of the driver was not valid.

The forum observed that the act of the insurance company in disallowing and repudiating the claim of the complainant amounted to deficiency in service and unfair trade practice as the complainant’s licence was found valid.

“The rejection of the claim due to invalid licence of the complainant is not only unjustified but also unacceptable. Therefore, the forum allows the amount assessed by the surveyor of Rs 1.83 lakh with 9 per cent interest annum,” stated in order passed by the forum.



Maxpro to refund Rs 7,200
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
In an ex parte order, the UT Consumer Dispute Redressal Forum has directed Maxpro to refund the cost of RO System, which amounts to Rs 5,200 to a city resident for their failure in rectifying the defect during the warranty period. The forum also directed the company to pay Rs 2,000 as compensation and cost of litigation to him.

In his complaint, BC Kakkar stated that he had purchased a Maxpro Water (RO) with a one-year warranty from Maxpro India for Rs 5,200. But it became defective soon after its purchase. He immediately informed the company but the problem could not be rectified. He then approached the forum.

The forum comprising its president Lakshman Sharma and members, Ashok Raj Bhandari and Madhu Mutneja stated that when a product was purchased, it was expected to give usage to the consumer, and it was for the supplier ensure that the consumer was able to make full and adequate use of the product purchased.

“An RO System is expected to give absolute clean water. Hence the forum deems it proper to allow the complaint in favour of the complainant and direct the Maxpro to refund the invoice price of the RO System to the complainant.



Heart patient needs financial help
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
Gayur, a resident of Mauli Jagran, is waiting for his heart surgery for past 16 years due to poverty.

The delay has further complicated his condition as doctors at the PGI now have advised him for the replacement of two aortic valves as soon as possible. Further delay in surgery can prove fatal for him, says doctors.

Gayur, father of three, runs a barbershop on the roadside near the Police Lines in Sector 29. He was rushed to the PGI in 1995 when he complained of pain in the chest. Doctors informed him that he was suffering from rheumatic heart disease and required replacement of aortic valve. “The surgery was to cost Rs 1 lakh and there was no option for me other than delaying the surgery,” said Gayur. Doctors, however, put me on medication and now they have told me that my another aortic valve also required replacement,” he said.

Though the cost of surgery has come down than what it used to be in 1995, but it is still out of my reach, he added. Doctors have asked me to arrange Rs 1.25 lakh the surgery, but I could only manage Rs 50,000 and that also with the help from my relatives and friends. Now my hope lies with the donors in the city before it is too late.

Donors can contact Gayur on his mobile phone no. 09915215848 or deposit the donation in his State Bank of India branch at Mani Majra account number 30726061591.



IT City
admn Nod to Rs 1.7 cr per acre compensation for acquisition
Integrated 1,500-acre park to offer plots of varying sizes
Tribune News Service

Mohali, June 16
After Aerocity, the Mohali district administration has approved a land compensation of ~ 1.70 crore per acre for the 1,500 acres of land being acquired for the IT City, near Mohali, by the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA).

To acquire land for the project, GMADA has already issued Section 4 of the Land Acquisition Act and the process to issue Section 6 is under way.

Sources said on the basis of the land deals registered in the area, the district-level fixation committee has recommended ~ 1.70 crore per acre in compensation.

Unlike Phases I and II of the Rajiv Gandhi Chandigarh Technology Park (RGCTP) of the Chandigarh administration that offered around 350 acres, the integrated IT City in Mohali will offer plots of varying sizes over 1,500 acres.

The project will come up perpendicular to Aerocity. Anticipating a good response from entrepreneurs due to the coming up of the international airport, the state government has decided to allow commercial activity on both sides of a 200-ft road that will link the international airport with the Kharar-Banur highway, crisscrossing Aerocity.

“We will soon start the acquisition process. The area has been chosen for expansion to the southeastern edge of the town,” said VP Singh, Chief Administrator of GMADA.

Apart from the IT component, the city will offer limited residential and commercial components. Depending on the requirements, plots measuring up to 100 acres and smaller will be offered.

Compared to Aerocity, for which 800 acres of land was acquired, the IT City is a bigger project spread over six sectors.

Apart from offering the land pooling scheme, GMADA proposes to raise loans from financial institutions to fund the land acquisition.

Officials said the IT City had been planned to take advantage of the expansion of the airport and development in its proximity. The airport would act as a catalyst for the IT industry, they stated.



Traffic hit as tractor-trailer flips over
Tribune News Service

Zirakpur, June 16
Traffic on the Zirakpur-Ambala highway moved at a snail’s pace this morning after a tractor-trailer laden with fodder overturned near the Singpura T-point, causing inconvenience to motorists moving towards Ambala for over nine hours.

The movement of traffic was also affected in the evening as vehicles moved slowly on the highway to watch the shooting of a Punjabi film near a dhaba.

The road remained blocked after the tractor-trailer overturned in the middle of the road and the fodder could not be removed till afternoon. Motorists said things could have really been unpleasant had the tractor-trailer overturned during the night, as there was no facility of streetlights on the highway.

According to sources, the tractor-trailer laden with fodder overturned around 5.30 am. The driver of the tractor fled the scene. A traffic policeman said they got the information about the incident from a GMR official.

A team of traffic police arrived at the scene and blocked the road for vehicles. Meanwhile, the traffic was diverted from another side. The traffic officials said a crane was brought in to remove the fodder from the highway.

Area residents alleged that the administration had failed to curb traffic violations, especially of overloaded vehicles.

They urged the police to challan the violators and impound their vehicles.

Tractor-trailers can often be seen parked on the Zirakpur-Patiala highway, obstructing the flow of traffic.

Talking to the TNS, Mohali DSP (traffic) Darshan Singh Mann said most overloaded vehicles plied at night. He would ask the police official concerned to check the violation and challan the violators, the DSP added.



Revenue @ house tax excites MC
Sanjay Bumbroo
tribune news service

Panchkula, June 16
The imposition of house tax on self-occupied houses is being opposed by residents, who are demanding the tax to be charged on the pattern of Chandigarh, where the tax is being changed only on buildings rented out.

While the state government is all set to bring house tax back, the move has ruffled a few feathers among councillors, who are calling it an unnecessary burden. The civic body is excited about the new development, which means more revenue.

Residents feel that that the revival of house tax on self-occupied property will put an unnecessary burden on the middle class, which forms a major part of the town’s population. Not willing to agree that it will make the MC richer by a few lakhs, they feel that the civic body has enough revenue to keep its cash registers ringing.

MC president Ravinder Rawal, welcoming the move of the state government, said though the government was yet to notify rates, he hoped that it would be nominal compared to earlier ones, where one had to pay between Rs 1,300 and Rs 1,500 as tax annually.

He said around 80 per cent of the houses in the town had a covered area of up to 250 sq yards.

He said house owners would now have to make a self-assessment of their houses and deposit it at the MC office.

“There is no need to levy house tax on residents, already finding it difficult to make both ends meet in view of the rising prices of essential commodities. It takes a lifetime to build houses and then a part of the income is spent paying house tax,” said BB Singhal, MC vice-president.

“We had observed that it was not of much of relevance to the MC. We had prepared a representation in 2009 and sent it to the government. There was logic behind abolishing it,” he added.

Notably the house tax was imposed in the year 2007-08 in the rented out accommodations in the town but the about 7,816 houses built on about 100 square yard were exempted from the same. The Municipal Council had collected Rs 26.41 lakh was collected as tax on about 5248 houses having an area of 100 to 150 Sq yards. Rs 25.10 lakh was collected from houses having an area 150 to 200 sq yard while tax collected on 4180 houses with 200 to 250 sq yard was around Rs 19.24 lakh.

Similarly, the MC had collected Rs 13.11 lakh as tax from 2678 houses with 250 to 300 sq yard area whereas the about 7,256 house owners with 350 sq yard area had to pay Rs 64.99 lakh as tax.



Protest over corruption, price rise
Tribune News Service

Mohali, June 16
Hundreds of SAD-BJP alliance leaders and party workers of the district staged a dharna in front of the Deputy Commissioner’s office against widespread corruption by the Congress-led UPA government and its failure to tackle price rise here today.

Addressing the gathering, Banur MLA Jasjeet Singh Bunny condemned the UPA government for its failure to stem the hike in prices of essential commodities, which had hit the common man hard.

Another SAD leader NK Sharma alleged that the rise in costs of fuel prices had hit the people especially belonging to poor families.

He alleged that during the rule of the UPA government, the country had witnessed major scams. They later handed over a memorandum to Deputy Commissioner Varun Roozam addressed to the President of India.



Residents seek basic amenities
Tribune News Service

Zirakpur, June 16
Residents of Bishanpura village have criticised the Zirakpur municipal council for failing to provide them with basic amenities for the past several years. They have demanded resolution of their problems on a priority basis.

Raising slogans against the council here today, the village residents said roads were in bad shape and heaps of garbage along roadsides caused inconvenience to the residents.

In the absence of proper drinking water, the residents were forced to drink contaminated water, they alleged.

They also threatened to start an agitation against the civic body officials if their demands were not met soon. No MC official was available for comments.



tricity scan


A camp on preparing unique identity cards (UID) was organised by the Industries Association of Chandigarh in Industrial Area, Phase II, on Thursday. YK Mahajan, office-bearer of the association, said the camp would continue till June 18.


On an invitation, extended by the Joint Action Committee for Development of Sectors 50, 51 and 63, officials of the municipal corporation, including superintending engineer Mukesh Anand and XEN Vikas Gupta visited the sectors and listened to grievances of residents.

Their complaints included delay in widening and carpeting of V-6 road and pending work on the dug up trenches. Rakesh Chopra, press secretary, said residents demanded a green belt in Sector 50.

Musical bonanza

The 14th edition of annual sur-sangam musical bonanza will be presented under the aegis of sur-sangam society at Tagore Theatre here. Society president Dr Pardeep Bhardwaj said 10 doctors (medical professionals) from the tricity would present film songs, while eight budding singers, who were selected by the society, would share the stage with amateur doctor singers of the region. — OC


UT employees under the banner of UT and MC Sangharsh Committee on Thursday staged a demonstration opposite the office of the municipal corporation on Thursday. They were demanding allotment of flats to unsuccessful employees under the UT employees self-financing scheme-2008; implementation of complete Punjab government rules on UT employees; offer of appointment to next of kin of deceased employees; regularisation of daily wagers and filling of vacant posts.


Around 22 doctors have filed their nomination for elections to 10 posts of the Punjab Medical Council. Out of which, 10 doctors have already withdrawn their nomination leaving 12 in the fray. Attempts are being made to secure unanimity in the elections.


The local chapter of Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Northern Region, is organising the 11th HRM Summit 2011 on June 22 at its headquarters in Sector 31. “To ride the next wave of growth successfully, India needs not only many more leaders, but leaders who are more creative, insightful, culturally agile and able to succeed in first time situations; therefore, the theme for this year is “Leading the Next Wave of Growth in India,” a press release stated.

Minor changes in UT

VK Singh will take over as the secretary, Rural Development and Panchayats, in addition to his own charge as the Finance Secretary.

Amandeep Kaur, chief general manager, CITCO, Chandigarh, will take over the charge of director, Cultural Affairs, in addition to her own charge.


Kawal Mehta's Art is organising an exhibition at Shivalik Hotel, Sector 17. Over 70 paintings on an array of subjects, including abstract /contemporary art, realistic art, and religious art in oils or acrylic on canvas will be displayed.


Allottees of Sectors 76 to 80 Plot Allotment Sangharsh Committee, Mohali, staged a demonstration outside GMADA’s office at PUDA Bhawan in support of their demands. They were demanding allotment of remaining plots and development of the area. Sucha Singh Kalour, president, Raghbir Singh Sandhu, patron, and Parmdeep Singh Bhabat, media in charge, said anyone playing with the emotions of allottees would not be spared. Balbir Singh Dhol, estate officer, GMADA, assured the allottees that the draw of lots of the remaining plots was scheduled for July 20 and the development work would be started after the allotment of all plots.

Musical tributes paid

The Punjab Sangeet Natak Akademy (PSNA) paid musical tributes to Surinder Kaur at Randhawa auditorium here today. Prominent vocalist Sharanjit Neelam Parmar, a singer inspired by the legend’s style, presented soulful songs immortalised by Surinder Kaur. Neelam commenced the programme with an invocatory shabad before doling out songs like Mehram dilan de, Meinu Heere here aakhey, Ikk meri akh kasni, Birhada, Kala doria, Lathe di chadar and Madaania. A documentary by Mukesh Guatam on the life of Surinder Kaur was screened and highly appreciated. Academy secretary Dr Kuldip Kaur welcomed chief guest Dr Sukhwinder Singh and Harjinder Kaur, PAC chairperson.

Drive against polybags

Members of Eco Club of Emax Group of Institutions initiated a drive against the use of polybags here today. — TNS



edu dept Fails to meet demand
Prints only 4,000 prospectuses
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
Despite of having ordered 16,000 admission prospectuses, the UT education department has been able to get only 4,000 prospectuses printed so far, leaving hundreds of parents and students hassled even on the second day of the sale of admission forms at postgraduate government colleges in Sectors 11, including postgraduate government colleges in Sectors 42 and 46, along with the Regional Institute of Education in Sector 32 and Government College of Commerce and Business Administration in Sector 42.

With just 500 and 1,500 prospectuses reaching colleges on the first and second day of the sales, respectively, things worsened today with only 1,600 forms making it to colleges as compared to expected 3,000 forms, which were sold out by noon and hundreds of parents were left complaining. “It’s height of inefficiency. Which organisation gets prospectus printed at the eleventh hour? The admission dates were decided in advance, so why this chaos? I took leave from my office today to get my daughter’s admission done, but at 1 pm I was told that prospectuses were sold out. Why are they harassing parents this way,” questioned Mohanjeet Singh Kukereja, a resident of Morinda, who had come to get a prospectus from Postgraduate Government College, Sector 11.



Applications invited for BSc, MSc
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 16
Panjab University has invited applications for BSc (Hons) and MSc (Hons) in physics and electronics (23+3 NRI seats in each course) for 2011-12.

Admission to both the courses will be on merit-basis.

Applications, along with detailed marks sheet, should reach the department of physics by July 11 for BSc (Hons) and by July 8 for MSc (Hons).

Application forms are available at PU or can be downloaded from the university website www.puchd.ac.in <http://www.puchd.ac.in>.

Geography department at Panjab University announced the admission schedule of its various courses today.

In case of MA (geography) where the department has seven seats for foreign/NRI students, the department has called upon students having 50 per cent aggregate marks in BA/BSc and 45 per cent marks in geography for admission test to be held on July 8 at 11 am in the department of geography.

The admission is based on admission test (40 per cent) and academic merit (60 per cent). Candidates must secure at least 45 per cent marks in the admission test.

Those who qualify the admission test will be invited to appear for an interview and verification of certificates.

Similarly, for master’s in disaster management, students having 50 per cent (aggregate) marks in graduation in any discipline are eligible for the test to be held on July 7 at 10 am.

For master’s in remote sensing and GIS, students with an aggregate of 50 per cent in BA/BSc with 45 per cent in geography will be eligible for admission test on July 7. Forms for all these tests can be downloaded from the PU website <http://forms.puchd.ac.in>.

A handbook of information and rules for admission can be obtained for Rs 500 from post offices in Chandigarh (Sectors- 14, 15, 17, 20, 36 and 47); Hoshiarpur: near district court; Ludhiana: Bharat Nagar Chowk; Muktsar: head post office; Mani Majra: SCO 294-95, motor market; Mohali: Sector 55; and Panchkula: Sector 8 and by post (Rs 600) from the manager, publication bureau, PU, Chandigarh - 160014 against account payee bank draft drawn in favour of the registrar, Panjab University, payable at Chandigarh.



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