C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Another Healthyway office sealed
‘Career Abroad’ in Sector 44 was being run by director Amit Kakkar’s wife
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 19
The UT police today sealed another education consultancy being run by Healthyway Immigration in Sector 44. Career Abroad, an education consultancy being run by Swati Kakkar, wife of the prime accused Amit Kakkar, was sealed by the police and vital documents were confiscated.

The police said the firm was in the dock for duping scores of complainants on the promise of easy migration abroad.

Swati, who runs the consultancy, is a co-accused in the case. She is yet to be arrested. DSP Ashish Kapoor said they had received similar complaints of fraud against Career Abroad and investigations were on to find out the number of complainants they had duped.

Meanwhile, the police seized 174 passports from the offices of Healthyway Immigration belonging to clients. The police received 14 more complaints from residents of Punjab who had been duped.

Officials of the special investigating team (SIT) today confirmed from the UCO Bank branch in Ferozepur that all the documents pertaining to the accused put before the High Commissions/embassies were fake. As many as 14 banks in Punjab, Haryana and Himachal are under the scanner as Amit Kakkar had opened fake accounts.

Confusion over passports

y A large number of clients of Healthyway Immigration in Sector 42 have been left in the lurch as they had deposited essential documents, including passports and matriculation certificates, with the company. Scores of residents from Punjab today approached the police to get back their passports and other documents. A majority of them are unaware if their passports were sent to the embassy or have been sent back following rejection.

Utter chaos

I have been facing a harrowing time. All my original documents were sent to the embassy three months ago by Healthyway. My application has been rejected but I do not know where my documents are as the embassy is likely to have returned them to the travel agent.
—Manpreet, a resident of Ludhiana

The office has been sealed and we have nowhere to go. I went to the courier company as the Healthyway office was sealed and the documents are likely to be returned. The police should return the documents to their owners.
—Paramjeet, a resident of Ludhiana

The employees of Healthyway even confiscated the receipt of our applications submitted to the embassy. We are feeling harassed and do not know where to go.
—Gaurav, a complainant from Jalandhar

Most papers with embassy: DSP

The case is at the investigation stage and many original documents are with the embassy. Clients should approach the courier company or the embassy if they know that their documents were sent by the company.
—Ashish Kapoor, DSP 



GMADA regularises 29 encroachments on prime land
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Mohali, August 19
Putting an end to a seemingly endless exercise of issuing demolition notices to those who have illegally raised religious structures on public land, the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA) has finally regularised 29 such structures that have encroached on 20 acres of prime land worth over Rs 200 crore.

The structures, which have existed for over a decade, have been regularised in the light of the orders passed on September 16, 2009, by the Supreme Court in response to a civil writ petition. GMADA estate officer Balbir Singh said the structures had been regularised under a one-time policy approved by the state government subject to stringent norms regarding the parking for vehicles and payment of annual lease money. New illegal structures would not be covered under the policy.

The annual lease money for 1,000 sq yard of encroached area has been fixed at Rs 6 per sq yard and Rs 12 for the area above 1,000 sq yards. No action will be taken on the demolition and eviction notices issued to the managements of these institutions. Though the estate office has identified 34 illegal religious structures, 29 have been regularised since the land of the remaining five structures was either under litigation or pending decision at the level of the state government. A five-member committee representing various religious organisations was constituted to resolve the issue. All organisations have been told to create parking lots within their premises. 

A survey carried out by the estate office has revealed that some religious structures had been raised on up to 2 acres of public land. Apart from religious activities, some were found undertaking social services like providing education and healthcare without any government aid.


Vaisno Mata Mandir, Phase 3 A (0.04 acre); Mazaar, Industrial Area, Phase 3 (0.09 acre); Maha Kali mandir, Phase VI (0.39 acre); Prachin Shiv Mandir, Phase IX (0.18 acre); Gurdwara Sahibzada Ajit Singh, Phase VI (0.2 acre); Jhiri Sahib Gurdwara, Sector 69 (0.34 acre); Arya Samaj Mandir, Phase VI (0.20 acre); Gurdwara Sahib, Phase II (0.22 acre); Gurdwara Bibi Bhani, Phase VII ( 0.25 acre); Gurdwara Mata Sundri, Sector 70 (1.18 acres); Durga Mandir, Phase VI (0.28 acre); Gurdwara Shri Singh Sabha, Sector 70 (0.34 acre); Kuka Shaheed Yadgari Trust, Phase VII (0.50 acre); Hari Mandir Sankirtan Sabha, Phase V (0.48 acre); Smadh Bhagat Aaasha Ram, Sector 77

(0.20 acre); Gaitri Shakti Peeth, Phase 1 (0.39 acre); Pracheen Shiv Mandir, Phase 1 (0.57 acre); Laxmi Naraian Mandir, Phase 3 B2 (0.61 acre); Gurdwara Granth Sahib, Phase 1 (0.38 acre); Laxmi Narain Mandir, Phase XI (0.70 acre); Gurdwara Sukhmani Sahib, Sector 71 (0.64 acre); Vaishno Mata Mandir, Phase 3B1

(0.68 acre); Radha Krishan Mandir, Phase II (1.33 acres); Gurdwara Dhanna Bhagat, Sector 51 (1.31 acres); Sanatam Dharm Mandir, Phase IV (0.91 acre); Gurdwara Ramgarhia, Phase 3B1 (0.87 acre); Gurdwara Singh Sabha, Phase 1 (1.68 acres); Gurdwara Kalgidhar, Phase IV (1.36 acres); and Gurdwara Sacha Dhan, Phase 3B1 (2.55 acres).

Undecided cases

n Institution Encroached area Status

n Gurdwara Singh 5.5 acres Under litigation Shahidan, Sohana

n Gurdwara, Phase 6, 0.1 acre Under litigation Industrial Area

n Gurdwara Guru Teg Bahadur, 1.12 acres Undecided Phase IX

n Sanatam Dharm Mandir, 1.02 acres Undecided Phase IX



VC goes back on his word
Appoints guest lecturers
Sumedha Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 19
In a dramatic U-turn, Panjab University Vice-Chancellor RC Sobti has deputed ad hoc faculty to conduct classes for the evening studies department a fortnight after he had rejected the same appointments saying that the university would only be hiring regular faculty.

The “bold step” by the VC had created ripples in the university circles. He had “dared to reject” a list of 23 guest lecturers which included kin of certain senators and faculty members.

The issue rocked the first PUTA meeting with the Vice-Chancellor today. PUTA members wanted to know “in case the rejected candidates had to be put on the list of the faculty members in the name of makeshift arrangement, what was the need for dramatic announcements for having a regular faculty?”. Teachers are upset that the appointments had been made without seeking mandatory approval of the joint administrative and academic committee of the department. The appointments had come in for criticism from the quarters “which had been ignored”.

At present, the department has 26 regular faculty members and 23 guest faculty members. “The evening studies department had received a communication with regard to the makeshift appointments which were not approved by the committee. It has been pointed out that the department faced a staff crunch because a number of faculty members had been shifted elsewhere. The UGC norms clearly provide that no departments could hire more than 10 per cent of the total strength of the faculty on an ad hoc basis. Despite being told on several occasions, the VC did not seem bothered and cleared all the names,” said a faculty member.

The department of around 1,100 students is struggling with a shortage of 18 regular teachers. The department was in the news recently when the faculty members objected to the increased number of guest faculty.

Temporary arrangement: VC

I have explained it to PUTA members that it is only a temporary arrangement. It takes time to advertise, conduct interviews and hire regular faculty. I am concerned about hundreds of students who have not had classes since weeks for want of teachers. Nobody has been appeased.
RC Sobti, Vice-Chancellor

Not acceptable: PUTA

Such a policy is detrimental to the university. We cannot have a department with half of its faculty having been appointed on an ad hoc basis. Making a declaration of hiring regular faculty and then getting guest teachers is not acceptable..
Akshay Kumar, PUTA president 



40 stalls, booths at HC in legal tangle; face eviction 
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 19
The UT estate office (EO) today initiated eviction proceedings against 40-odd encroachments on the premises of the Punjab and Haryana High Court here.

The encroachers have raised prefabricated structures. In a communique to the SDM (Central), Assistant Estate Officer Rahul Gupta has sought eviction proceedings against unauthorised occupants under the Public Premises (Eviction of Unauthorised Occupants) Act.

The action was taken following a notice under Section 80 of the Civil Procedure Code by an advocate to the EO. The Estate Officer conducted an inspection which confirmed the existence of illegal structures, including food stalls, a milk booth, stationery shop and an ATM booth. The bar association has reportedly been charging Rs 8,000 a month as rent from these vendors. “We have written to the SDM about the encroachments and asked him to initiate action,” Rahul Gupta said.

A PIL was also filed in this regard in the High Court by Jasbir Singh Chahal, former president of the bar association. The court has asked the UT Administration and the bar association to submit a reply on September 12.


It takes hours to deposit diagnostic test fee at PGI
Staff crunch hits collection counters hard
Anuja Jaiswal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 19
Depositing fee for a diagnostic test at the PGI is a tall order. With only two of the three fee collection counters operational on most of the days during the week, the harrowing time that the 3,000-odd patients spend standing in serpentine queues in the New OPD daily, particularly in this humid and sultry weather, is not hard to imagine.

Hit by staff shortage, the PGI authorities have been unable to make the third fee collection counter, which was opened six months ago, fully operational, leading to immense problems to patients. Though the third counter was opened to meet the rush, the purpose has been defeated as it rarely opens.

According to those manning the counters, they do not have the requisite staff to operate the third counter for fee collection. “We only have two relievers and one of them is on leave so we have no one to sit on the third counter,” said an employee while admitting that such was the situation on most days.

What is surprising is that while these employees claim that “seniors” in the department are aware of the situation and also know that many patients have to make more than one trips to the OPD for depositing the fee, nothing has been done to meet the staff crunch.

A counter employee said patients who had to wait long hours for their turn abused them while leaving the counters. “We are humiliated for no fault of ours,” said the employee, adding that one counter could not deal with more than 500 patients during working hours from 8 am to 3 pm and hence they have to turn back a large number of patients everyday.

Amarjeet Kaur, a resident of Ropar, said: “I came to the PGI at 9 am and got my registration done at 10.30 am. I went to the doctor, who saw me after over an hour and prescribed tests at 12.30 pm. I am still waiting to deposit the fee.”

“I am a daily wage earner and a visit to the PGI costs me my wages for a day,” said Amrit, a resident of Mohali, who had been waiting in the line for two hours.

PGI spokesperson Manju Wadwalkar said the counter had been temporarily closed due to shortage of staff.



Protest takes its toll
3 members of SOPU fall unconscious after over 32 hrs of hunger strike, win girls’ cause
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 19
Three members of the Student Organisation of Panjab University (SOPU) were rushed to GMSH, Sector 16, this evening when they fell unconscious after over 32 hours of hunger strike.

Ranjot Dhillon, Simranjeet Kaur and Harleen Kaur, along with three others proceeded on a hunger strike yesterday afternoon, demanding interlinking of PU girls’ hostels and seeking permission for girl students to roam till the hostel gates till 2 at night.

While university officials tried to persuade them to go off strike, as their demands were “under review”, the students refused to budge from their place. The condition of the trio deteriorated at around 9 pm when Ranjot fell unconscious. The other two followed suit and also “collapsed”.

“This is ridiculous. They are trying to blackmail us. We have told them that we will allow girls to roam till 11 in night. The interlinking of hostels was a major decision and needed clearance at many steps. We are engaged in the exercise and cannot commit any date till any formal decision was taken. The girls, meanwhile, are adamant on their demand without applying their minds. It is, in fact, shameful that the so called educated student leaders were stooping to such a level for mere publicity,” said Dean Student Welfare AS Ahluwalia.

The protesting members called off their strike at 11 pm, claiming that the PU authorities have allowed them to roam till 10.45 pm and they are satisfied with the decision. 



Schoolgirl slips on stairs, seriously injured
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 19
A high drama prevailed at GMSSS, Sector 18, today when Lakshami, a Class XI student, slipped on stairs from the first floor and was left grievously injured.

The incident happened when Lakshami was coming down for the school assembly and fell. The school authorities immediately called the police and rushed the injured girl to GMSH, Sector 16, from where she was shifted to the PGI. She got twin fractures in her ankle and suffered spinal injury. While the school authorities, police officials and parents panicked initially as it was being rumoured as a suicide bid, but the girl cleared air in her statement to the police.

She clarified that she had come to the school without having breakfast and thus felt dizzy and fell.



Hit by losses, CITCO to buy eggs at current prices
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 19
Having suffered financial losses amounting to lakhs of rupees, the Chandigarh Industrial and Tourism Development Corporation (CITCO) has finally decided to buy poultry goods at current market rates. The department, which was paying about Rs 50,000 extra every month to procure eggs for its various hotels, has finally done away with the earlier poultry contractor and floated a fresh tender on Thursday.

Meanwhile, a makeshift arrangement has been made to meet the hotels’ present poultry requirements under which a local egg seller has been roped in to provide eggs at Rs 2.49 each as compared to the price of Rs 3.50 per egg paid earlier.

The department woke up to this sloppiness following a news report ‘Contractors Making Money Off CITCO’s Laxity’, published on August 5 in these columns, wherein it was highlighted that CITCO was buying eggs at Rs 3.50 per egg against the prevailing market rate of Rs 2.20. Earlier, the corporation had finalized the tender for the whole year to procure the eggs, whereas the prices in summer used to be much less.

Under the makeshift arrangement, the new contractor will supply eggs up to August 31 at the rate of Rs 2.49 per egg while the prices will be increased by 10 paise an egg the next month. The contractor has been asked to supply the eggs till the finalization of a new contractor through e-tendering.

According to an estimate, on an average about 1,500 eggs are consumed every day in CITCO hotels and its other units being run in the city.

Similarly, for procuring sole fillet fish, the department has been paying higher prices for the product as compared to current market rates.



Support for Anna Hazare continues
Tribune News Service

A rally in support of Anna Hazare being taken out at Sector 17 in Chandigarh on Friday.
A rally in support of Anna Hazare being taken out at Sector 17 in Chandigarh on Friday. Tribune photo: Vicky Gharu

Chandigarh, August 19
People from various walks of life kept coming forward to support anti-corruption crusader Anna Hazare on the fourth consecutive day today. A chain fast, a candle-light march and rallies were carried out by different organisations.

Rahul Bhartiya, coordinator of the India Against Corruption, said the chain fast would continue till the agitation in Delhi did not end.

“The purpose of this chain fast is to make people aware about the Janlokpal and to demonstrate the strength of people’s support to Hazare in Chandigarh,” he said.

Members of the organisation continued their protest at the Sector 17-22 roundabout. Later in the evening, they took out a a candle-light march. Under the banner of the Panjab University Teachers’ Association (PUTA), people staged a candle-light march on the PU campus. The march began from the Gandhi Bhawan and ended at Gate No.1.

PUTA president Akshaya Kumar expressed concern at the growing level of corruption and exhorted teachers to join the movement against corruption.

He cautioned that the movement should remain firmly in the hands of civil society activists and should not be exploited for narrow political ends.

Rajiv Godara of the Sampoorn Kranti Manch expressed the hope that the movement launched by of civil society activists would reach its logical conclusion and the government would concede to the demand of an effective Janlokpal.

Continuing their campaign against corruption, volunteers of the NGO Aawaaz got their heads shaved, apart from protesting at the Sector-7 roundabout on Madhya Marg.

Members of Indian National Students Organisation sat on a hunger strike for a day. A ‘nukkad naatak’ was performed by students of the UIET, focusing on scams. In the evening, students organised a candle-light march on the campus. Members of the Panjab University Student Union held a rally on the campus. Students from different departments gathered at the chemistry department and took out a march across the campus.

Information technology professionals working at the IT Park also carried out a candle-light march in support of the anti-corruption campaign lred by Hazare.

Zirakpur: A candle-light march was organised by the Joint Coordination Committee of Colonies of Zirakpur in support of Anna Hazare’s movement against corruption on Thursday night. About 200 persons participated in the procession, which started from the community centre at Phase II of Saini Vihar at Baltana. Shopkeepers at Baltana started an indefinite fast in support of the movement on Friday.



Action against four CITCO employees
Akash Ghai
tribune news service

Chandigarh, August 19
Taking action on the “uniform issue”, the Chandigarh Industrial and Tourism Development Corporation (CITCO) authorities have chargesheeted two of its employees while two others have been served with a show-cause notice.

While manager (commercial) Rajpal Panwar and senior assistant Devi Chand have been chargesheeted, the notices were served on senior housekeepers Sauvina Chaudhary at Hotel Mountview in Sector 10 and Neerja Malhotra at Hotel Shivalikview in Sector 17.

The manager was reportedly one of the main officials to have finalised the contractor through e-tendering and also worked out all details with the contractor. The other persons in the dock were said to be responsible for ensuring quality checks.

CITCO Managing Director DK Tiwari said a committee had also been formed to verify if the cloth used for uniforms was as per the samples. “The committee will also look into other details related to the complaints of employees in this connection,” he said.

There were complaints by the staff that the uniforms, which were recently procured from a Noida-based company at a cost of Rs 32 lakh, were tight, oversized or varying in colour. The quality of the cloth was also questionable. Over 175 employees had complained.

While part of the payment had been released to the contractor earlier, the balance payment has been put on hold, said Tiwari. 



CBI opposes bail to DSP Ghirra
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 19
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) today opposed the bail application filed by DSP Raka Ghirra in a graft case, stating that if court granted regular bail to her, there were chances that she could tamper with evidence.

The CBI, in its reply submitted through CBI public prosecutor PK Dogra, stated that allegations against Ghirra were serious in nature and bail to the accused at this stage of investigation would hamper the probe.

The court reserved its order on the bail application. In a case registered under the Arms Act, the counsel for Ghirra withdrew the bail application.

In her bail plea in the graft case, DSP Ghirra, presently lodged in Burail jail, stated that she had filed her income tax return from 2000, in which she had mentioned her jewellery, cash and property.

She added that the CBI failed to recover any illegal property document from her Sector-15 residence. She pleaded that she had cooperated with the investigating agency.

She said it was after the completion of her police remand that the CBI demanded her judicial custody.

She pleaded that as the investigation would take more time and there was nothing to recover from her, the court should grant her regular bail.



‘Need for better civil, military coordination’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 19
Punjab Governor and UT Administrator Shivraj V Patil while presiding over a high-level civil and military liaison conference at Chandi Mandir today underlined the need for better civil-military coordination to face the challenges before the country. Addressing a galaxy of senior officers of defence and civilian officials, Patil said if wars occurred we should ensure that they were won within a short span and with minimum damages to properties and lives of people.

He said the most important thing that was expected to achieve was to create an ambience of understanding among members of security forces, civil services and people. Responding to various issues raised by the Army authorities, Patil assured that the administrative machinery would be responsive to resolve their problems. He asked officials concerned of the UT Administration to expedite ongoing works and complete them in a stipulated time and chalk out a comprehensive plan to redress new issues raised by the defence authorities.



Posh area? Have a look at surroundings
Arun Sharma
Tribune News Service

The locked gate of a park at Sector 4 in Panchkula.
The locked gate of a park at Sector 4 in Panchkula.

Waste scattered outside a park. tribune photos: nitin mittal
Waste scattered outside a park. tribune photos: nitin mittal

Panchkula, August 19
Strange as it may sound, but residents of posh bungalows at Sector 4 have been living virtually surrounded with heaps of garbage and cow dung.

While every nook and corner of the sector is dotted with heaps of garbage in the absence of proper sanitation arrangements, stray cattle and proximity to Haripur village have added to their woes.

“We have brought it to the notice of the authorities as well as the area councillor several times, but to no avail,” said Sanjay, a local resident. Even the parks were not spared of litter.

Garbage pickers dumped garbage on the rear of the small park near government offices. Though a wall was constrcucted to separate the village from the rest of the urban area, the wall had been damaged by anti-social elements.

As stray cattle used to enter the park and spoil it, the park maintenance committee locked the main gate. This caused inconvenience to women bringing kids in prams as they had to move around on busy roads, said Nisha of the locality.

While the problems of garbage heaps has been improving after a contract has been awarded for sanitation, I will try to sort out the issue of the lock on the gate of the park. Cow dung is a problem due to the proximity of Sector 4 to a village.

— Jagjit Soi, local councillor

We have been living in total insantiary conditions. While the rear of houses is full of wild growth, leading to foul smell and risk of theft, nobody bothers to give us a hearing to us.

— Shanti Devi, local resident

We feel helpless as problems have not been solved after repeated requests to the authorities.

— CL Salan, local resident

There is a lack of will among the authorities in taking an initiative to get rid of small problems being faced by residents.

— JS Shangari, nominated councillor



Haryana Police seeks security for prime witness
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 19
After the prime witness in the accident case involving sub-inspector Jaspal Singh Bhullar as accused failed to appear before the Special Investigating Team (SIT) of the Haryana Police, the investigating agency decided to provide proper security to the witness.

The decision was taken after the police took a strong note of the allegations that the witness was being pressurised by the accused cops to withdraw from the case.

Prime witness Mandeep Singh alleged he was being pressurised by the younger brother of Bhullar and Gursevak Singh, sarpanch of a village in Moga district, to not to appear before the agency.

DIG Rajpal today sent a letter to the SSP (Moga) to ensure security to and the presence of Mandeep before the agency and a letter was sent to the IG (UT), mentioning the allegation of Balwinder that the witness was being pressurised.

SIT sources said documents included statements of Bhullar, which were recorded by the Chandigarh Police, and the cancellation report would be procured from the Chandigarh Police.

Mandeep was riding pillion with motorcyclist Gagandeep when the accident took place. Two more eyewitnesses, Sukha and Parambir Singh, also failed to appear before the SIT.



Roundabout to ease traffic congestion
To come up near entry to Zirakpur; two sites selected for bus stops
Rajiv Bhatia

A traffic jam near the Zirakpur flyover.
A traffic jam near the Zirakpur flyover. Tribune photo: Nitin Mittal

Zirakpur, August 19
Taking a serious view of traffic jams on the Chandigarh-Ambala highway, the local administration has decided to construct a roundabout near the Zirakpur-Chandigarh border to regulate traffic. According to sources, the local administration plans to construct the roundabout near the entry to Zirakpur.

The municipal council (MC) has selected two sites for the construction of temporary bus stops on either side of the highway. An MC official said they were working out estimates for temporary bus stops and a proposal would soon be sent to the local administration.

The proposal was mooted after the Mohali administration realised that the problem of traffic jams was continuing even after the construction of a flyover. The problem worsened during weekends and shopping festivals at a local mall.

Mohali Deputy Commissioner Varoon Roojam discussed issues related to traffic jams with the Dera Bassi SDM, the SP(D), the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) director, the XEN PWD, the Zirakpur SHO, the Zirakpur traffic in charge, the MC president and the MC executive officer during a meeting at the MC office today.

An official said, “It will be beneficial to commuters moving towards the Panchkula side. To avoid traffic jams at two intersections, commuters coming from the Ambala side can use the flyover and take a turn from the roundabout to move towards the Panchkula side.”

The official said the Zirakpur traffic in charge had drafted a rough route map. As per the map, visitors from the Panchkula side would have to go towards Chandigarh, move around the roundabout and drive back to enter the mall.

He added that the traffic police would instal barricades on the Zirakpur-Kalka highway to prevent wrong entry to the mall. Those coming out of the mall would have to move towards Baltana and then change lane as per their destination.

The official said the administration would send a proposal to the PWD. A PWD official said they would send the proposal to the ministry and work would be started after getting approval. The officials also asked mall owners to shift the exit point of the mall.

An MC official stated that it would submit Rs 6 crore to the NHAI for widening of the road between the Zirakpur-Patiala and Zirakpur-Kalka intersections and the service road near the mall. The council would get rights of advertising after submitting the proposal as per NHAI rules.



Corporal punishment for 7-year-old class III private school student
Tribune News Service

Priyanka at the Phase-6 Civil Hospital in Mohali on Friday.
Priyanka at the Phase-6 Civil Hospital in Mohali on Friday. Tribune photo: Vicky Gharu

Mohali, August 19
A seven-year-old student of a private school at Mohali was allegedly subjected to corporal punishment by a teacher for not answering his questions.

Class-III student Priyanka was allegedly made to do a number of push-ups, following which her legs developed a problem and she had to be admitted to the Phase-6 Civil Hospital.

The father of the girl, Raj Kumar, said a complaint was not lodged with the police as the school authorities took action against the teacher and agreed to pay the expenses for treatment.

The police said a complaint had not been received. The principal of the school concerned, Khalsa School, was not available for comment.

Housing fraud

The Mohali police booked members of a Mullanpur-based house building society for committing a fraud to the tune of Rs 1.91 crore on the pretext of allotting houses to its members.

In a case registered on a complaint by Registrar Cooperative Societies, it was pointed out that the committeee members of the Nectar Cooperative House Building Society collected Rs 1,91,65,000 from its members to carve out plots and flats for them.

The plots were to be allotted at Sector 74. The Registrar said the society collected money in an illegal manner. The investigating officer, inspector Devinder Singh, said a case under Sections 406 and 420 of the IPC was registered.

He said Sandeep Singh of Sector 34, Raj Kumar Goel of Sector 49, Kulwinder Kaur, Arun Dhawan and Victor Singh were named in the FIR.



CBI official files reply in HMT fraud case

Panchkula, August 19
A day after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) filed closure report in connection with the alleged embezzlement of crores in the purchase of tyres by the HMT at Pinjore, the then ASP of the CBI, Armandeep Singh, submitted his reply in the special CBI court at Panchkula today.

Armandeep Singh, in its reply, stated that he was satisfied with the investigation by the investigating officer. After his reply, special CBI judge AS Narang deferred the case for August 25 for the consideration of the closure report. In the closure report, the CBI had given a clean chit to Prakash Sharan, the then executive director of HMT, Pinjore. — TNS



Truck overturns, hits autorickshaw
Tribune news service

Panchkula, August 19
Three people sustained injuries when a truck coming from Chandigarh to Panchkula turned over on an autorickshaw near a dargah on the Chandigarh-Panchkula barrier. The accident also resulted in traffic jam on the Chandigarh-Panchkula road.

Police said that truck driver lost his control over the truck and it turned over on the auto that was travelling parallel to truck.

Truck driver fled from the spot. Meanwhile police with the help of people rescued the auto driver and two other passengers.

Police added that autorickshaw driver Varinder was admitted to PGI whereas two passengers were discharged after fist-aid.



BRO medical officers to get monthly allowance
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 19
Medical officers serving in the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) will now be entitled to receive a monthly allowance depending upon their qualification.

According to a circular received by the BRO establishments recently from the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, a postgraduate allowance of Rs 1,000 per month has been sanctioned for medical officers possessing postgraduate degrees recognised by the Indian Medical Council, while those with recognised postgraduate diplomas would be entitled to allowance of Rs 600 per month.

These allowances are applicable only to BRO officers up to the level of Chief Medical Officer (CMO) and the eligibility criteria would be the same as specified by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare for other Central government medical officers.

This includes the condition that the said allowances would not be paid to those who have pursued the postgraduate courses without the sanction of study leave, extraordinary leave or prior permission from the competent authority. 



Tricity Scan

77 donate blood

As many as 77 students came forward and donated blood in a blood donation camp organised by the Lions Club Chandigarh Nightingale in collaboration with the NSS wing of the college at Post Graduate Government College, Sector 46, Chandigarh. Preet Kanwal Singh, Governor, Lions Club International, inaugurated the camp and also donated blood for the 45th time.

20 cattle impounded

A drive to check the menace of stray cattle was conducted by cattle catching cell of the municipal corporation. During the drive, 20 stray cattle were impounded from Madhya Marg, Dadu Majra and Kajheri village.

Talent hunt

The MCM DAV College for Women, Chandigarh, organised a talent hunt to harness and celebrate creativity nurtured by the institution. Dr Renu Vig, UIET director, PU, was the chief guest.

Sadhbhavna Diwas

Municipal Corporation Mayor Ravinder Pal Singh, Additional Commissioner Lalit Siwach, officials and employees took a pledge on the Sadhbhavna Diwas for maintaining harmony and integrity of the nation. They committed that they will work for the oneness of people of India regardless of caste, creed, region, religion or language. They will work unstintingly for eradication of corruption in all spheres of life and will remain vigilant and work towards the growth and reputation of the organisation.

Resentment shown

A special meeting of office-bearers of the Ramgarhia Vishwakarma Front, Punjab, was held under Shri Mata Ram Dhiman in which ignoring the Ramgarhia community in the list of SGPC candidates by the Shiromani Akali Dal was condemned. The Ramgarhia Vishwakarma Front, Punjab, is considering boycott of these elections. A lot of resentment is being observed among the Ramgarhia community. — Tribune Reporters



CITY Colleges witness dampened spirits
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 19
Blame it on fresh restriction on student leaders to attend 75 per cent classes before student elections or more holidays during this campaigning season, city colleges are witnessing dampened spirits in a run-up to student elections in September this year.

To tighten the noose on student leaders, most colleges, this year, have put up a condition of cancelling nomination of candidates who fail to meet the minimum attendance criteria till the date of student council poll.

Incidentally, even in colleges that have been a hub of student activities in the past during the student elections, the impetus of campaigning is lesser this time.

“There is a certain difference in the atmosphere in the past and this year. Our college has issued clear instructions that candidates who fail to meet the criteria of 75 per cent attendance will not be permitted to file nominations for the student council elections,” said Dr HS Sohi, principal, SGGS College, Sector 26.

Similar atmosphere is being witnessed in other colleges as well this year.

“Students are responsible. We have put up notices in the college about not pasting any publicity material and even stickers on books, etc, are discouraged. The atmosphere on the college premises is completely peaceful,” said Dr Meena Prabhakar, officiating principal, GGDSD College, Sector 32.

College student leaders, on the other hand, blame the reduced interest of students in elections and increased number of holidays this year at the peak campaigning time responsible for the lesser enthusiasm of elections in the colleges.

What has further reduced the student elections fervour in the colleges is the support for anti-corruption campaign led by social activist Anna Hazare. Students are spotted joining local NGO’s in candlelit marches and car rallies to express their support with Anna.

“This year, there have been a lot of holidays during the peak campaigning time. Due to more festivals and occasions close to weekends, hostel students go back home and there is lesser chance of campaigning even after college hours in hostels. Hostels have always been a primary target of campaigning in the past. Moreover, students are not as interested in the student council elections as earlier,” said Manoj Lubana, former president, College Student Union, SGGS College, Sector 26. 



From Colleges
Talk on radio compering

The department of English of Post Graduate Government College, Sector 46, organised a talk on “Radio and TV compering” for its students here on Friday. Dr Yashpal Kaur, the college vice-principal, told students about journalism and TV compering as a career option. Suparana Saraswati Puri, a lecturer in PGGC-42, Chandigarh, who was the resource person, told students about the role of radio and TV journalists in spreading awareness on social causes, disseminating information from far flung, riot stricken and other unapproachable areas and changing the outlook of people.

ABVP declares panel

The organising secretary of the Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), Chandigarh unit, Dinesh Chauhan and party convener Mehakveer Sandhu on Friday declared the party panel in SGGS College, Sector 26. ABVP members resolved to nominate a girl candidate, Vasudha Sharma for the post of president. Sharma, a student of BSc final year, said she would work for the improvement of hostel. Hardeep Singh, a student of BA final year, will represent ABVP for the post of vice-president. The ABVP also declared party president Bhupinder Singh, who will coordinate the party’s working in the college. — TNS



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