C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Despite SC order, RLA goes ahead with HSRPs
HS says the process had been stalled after apex court directives
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 5
Despite receiving a censure from the apex court for not adopting the proper procedure in high security registration plates (HSRPs), the local Registration and Licensing Authority (RLA) continued issuing the HSRP authorisation slips here today.

“The process (issuing of HSRP slips) is on as we have not received any order regarding stopping the work from the higher authorities so far,” said Parshuram Kavle, SDM (South)-cum-RLA here this evening.

On the other hand, UT Home Secretary Ram Niwas, who is also Chandigarh Transport Secretary, when contacted for his version in the afternoon, said he had ordered the RLA officials to stop the work immediately after receiving the copy of the order from the Supreme Court this afternoon.

“We have received the copy of the order and I have issued directions to stop issuing the HSRP authorisation slips to the owners of new vehicles. Now the process would be initiated only after finalising the vendor through tender,” said Ram Niwas.

The tenders would be floated after holding a meeting on the issue very soon, said Ram Niwas.

Meanwhile, a visit to the RLA office in Sector 17, around 12 noon, revealed that the HSRP slips were being issued to the owners of new vehicles and officials of one of the vendors of the HSRPs were also busy in booking the fresh orders.

“We were told to book the orders by our bosses. So far, we have booked 12 new orders for high-security plates,” said an official of Celecx, one of the three companies which has set up their establishments in the city for affixing HSRPs.

Another employee of Shimnit Usch Company, Dharampal, said he was not booking any fresh order despite the fact that the RLA office was issuing new slips today. “When there is confusion following the Supreme Court directions, we have decided to stop booking fresh orders. Undoubtedly, there is utter confusion all around and nobody is clear about the situation,” said Dharampal.

It may be recalled that in its order, issued on August 30, the apex court had directed the administration to finalise the tender process within six weeks.

Earlier, the administration had made its options open for all 18 vendors, approved by the Central Government for the affixation of the HSRPs, to set up their shops here by not adopting the tender system.

So far, three vendors have already begun their functioning here.

Admn in a fix

The administration seemed to be in a fix over the status of those vehicle owners who have been issued the HSRP slips and have already paid the charges to the vendors for preparing the high-security number plates. The number of such vehicle owners is said to be around 400.

On the issue, Ram Niwas said they would legally examine the status of such owners. “The advice of the Legal Remembrancer would be sought in this matter. Only after that I would be able to comment,” said Ram Niwas.

Amarjit Singh, an owner of Shimnit Utsch company (HSRP vendor), said he had been told by the RLA authorities to go ahead with his existing orders. “We were told that we can clear our pending order. So we are preparing the HSRP plates, whose order we have already booked,” said Amarjit Singh.

Worried lot

Confusion prevailed among those vehicle owners who are yet to apply for the registration of their new vehicles and those who are intending to purchase new vehicles of late.

Following the Supreme Court’s order, it was evident that it would take at least one-and-a-half-months to start the procedure of affixing HSRPs. “The temporary registration number of the vehicle is valid for one month. How can we run our vehicle after the end of the period as it is clear that we would not get the HSRP that time,” asked Sanjiv Kumar, who came to the office to get his new car registered.

On the issue, Ram Niwas said this aspect would also be legally examined. 

Panicky vehicle owners

Panic was evident among those vehicle owners who have already paid charges to the vendors to get the HSRP. A big rush of vehicle owners was seen at the Industrial Area and Sector 42 offices of the RLA, who turned up to get the work done as soon as possible. With the parking of new vehicles on the road in front of the RLA office in the Industrial Area, the area witnessed a big traffic jam for more than an hour there. Many owners of new vehicles were seen requesting the vendors to prepare their high-security plates out of turn. “The date of affixation of the HSRP in my vehicle was on Wednesday, but I somehow managed to get it prepared today. Nobody knows what happens tomorrow,” said Davinder Singh, who purchased a new car a fortnight ago.



MC issues parking slips, cops challans
Vehicle owners face harassment in Sector 17 for no fault of theirs
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 5
A drive by the Chandigarh Traffic police challaning motorists in Sector 17 for illegal parking resulted in harassment to a large number of residents today.
They were issued challans despite possessing valid parking slips in the area opposite Hotel Mehfil in one corner and Hot Millions II on the other.

Wronged by whom?

A woman reasons with a police official for issuing her a challan despite being issued a ticket by the parking staff on the bridge road in Sector 17, Chandigarh; and (right) an illegally parked car being towed away by the traffic police on Monday.
A woman reasons with a police official for issuing her a challan despite being issued a ticket by the parking staff on the bridge road in Sector 17, Chandigarh; and (right) an illegally parked car being towed away by the traffic police on Monday. Tribune photos: Manoj Mahajan

The motorists expressed their resentment when the parking slips in their hands were rubbished by the traffic cops. The vehicle owners, instead, were issued the challans.

The Chandigarh Municipal Corporation authorities confirmed that the road opposite Mehfil Hotel was an authorised parking lot. Traffic police officials said parking a vehicle on the road was illegal and, therefore, the vehicles, parked there were being impounded. Besides, traffic police officials also said that the parking was meant for two-wheelers, while the contractor of the MC was also issuing slips to four-wheelers. A total of 199 challans were issued by the Chandigarh Traffic police in Sector 17 alone for parking at wrong places.

The challaning spree on the road opposite Hotel Mehfil leading to Hot Millions led to chaos, as scores of motorists gathered and raised a hue and cry on their being challaned despite having a parking slip. Traffic police officials said a number of two-wheelers were also challaned for parking haphazardly.

“I have been parking my two-wheeler here for the past 10 years.

I have purchased a parking slip and it’s sheer harassment by the traffic police that they have issued a challan to me for wrong parking,” said Subhash Kumar Yadav, a Sector 45 resident.

“The Municipal Corporation issued us a parking slip and the traffic police issued a challan for parking at wrong place.

Where should we go?” questioned Sanjeev Kumar, another city resident who was challaned.



Doc extracts wrong tooth, faces probe
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 5
In a case of gross negligence, a dentist at the Government Multi Specialty Hospital (GMSH), Sector 16, Dr Neeta Mahajan, extracted a wrong tooth of a young girl, Suhani, leading to protest by her family here today.

Though a departmental inquiry has been initiated against the doctor, the incident has brought to fore the callousness with which some cases are handled at the hospital.

According to sources, Suhani had gone to the hospital for the extraction of a tooth on the left side of her jaw but the doctor pulled out a tooth from the right side.

Suhani and her parents realised the faux pas only on reaching home when the girl complained of persistent pain on the left side of her jaw. They returned to the hospital and protested against the doctor for her negligence.

Talking to mediapersons, Suhani’s mother said the doctor had advised extraction of a decayed tooth on the left side of her daughter’s jaw but the dentists pulled out a wrong and healthy tooth.

She said after the extraction, they returned home and when Suhani complained of pain on the left side of her jaw, they realised the faux pas. They returned to the hospital, where the dentists removed the decayed tooth.

Dr Mahajan claimed that Suhani had complained of pain on the right side of her jaw. “Since the tooth on the right side had also decayed, I removed it,” she said, adding that the tooth that was “inadvertently” removed was a milk tooth and would not cause any problem.

The hospital administration has marked an inquiry against the doctor. The dental department head will conduct the inquiry.


Hotel stay to get dearer
Admn set to levy 4 pc luxury tax on banquet halls
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 5
Those who intend to stay in hotels or organise functions in banquet halls in the city will have to shell out more money as the Chandigarh administration is all set to levy 4 per cent luxury tax on hotels, banquet halls and marriage palaces. The Central government has approved the tax in principal and the administration is now working in the direction of implementing it.

UT Finance Secretary VK Singh said the tax had been levied on the pattern of Punjab. “After getting the approval from the ministry of home affairs and the local administrator, the tax would be implemented in a week or two.

The Central government had levied 5 per cent additional service tax on hotel rooms in this year’s General Budget.

With the implementation of luxury tax, the rates of rooms will go higher, putting an extra burden on customers besides causing a negative effect on city’s tourism.

The step is being dubbed “unfriendly” for the hotel and tourism industries by hoteliers.

“Already a number of Central and state taxes (VAT-12.5 pc, service tax-10 pc) have been levied on the hotel and restaurant industry. Any additional tax by the administration will further burden customers and discourage tourism in the city,” says Ashok Bansal, general secretary, Hotel Association of Chandigarh.

In its Budget, the Central government had levied 5 per cent tax on hotels. Another tax in such a short span was definitely not a good move, added Bansal.



MC apathy stinks at these fountains
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 5
Fountains that have been a source of pleasure at Sectors 17 and 16 in the past have now become a blur on the character of the two sectors, as most of these are stinking due to the growth of algae.

The main fountain in Rose Garden, Sector 16, is out of operation and is full of garbage and algae. Evening walkers find it difficult to cross the stretch near the fountain due to the stench emanating from it.

An operator on duty says the fountains are in working order but their nozzles — made of brass — are stolen time and again.

He adds that several requests have been made to the MC authorities to ensure the safety of fountains in the garden, but to no avail.

MC’s superintending engineer (public health) RC Diwan says the Rose Garden has recently been handed over to the MC and an estimate has been prepared to fix the technical problems in the fountains there.

Due to the imposition of the code of conduct, the matter could not be tabled in the House during a recent meeting, he adds.

Things are no different in Sector 17, where the fountain opposite Hot Millions is in bad shape.

Shopkeepers’ complain that the contractor’s employees have not cleaned the fountain for the past two months on the plea that the contractor has not provided them with material for cleaning.

Diwan says he is not aware of the condition of other fountains.



Bajaj Allianz directed to refund Rs 1.5 lakh, fined
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 5
Issuing a life insurance policy in the name of a son of an NRI proposer has cost Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance Company dearly with the Chandigarh Consumer Forum directing the company to refund a sum of Rs 1.5 lakh and pay Rs 50,000 in compensation to the complainant for causing mental agony and harassment.

Bhupinder Singh, a UK NRI originally hailing from Sector 49-A, had filed a complaint stating that in May last year Sanjay Kumar, business development manager of the company, along with Varun Sharma, an agent, approached him and solicited him to pay a consolidated amount of Rs 1.5 lakh and assured that he would receive 18 per cent interest along with an insurance life cover benefit of Rs 7.5 lakh.

It was further assured that the complainant could withdraw the premium with interest at any time. On his visit to India in December, 2010, for four weeks, Sanjay Kumar delivered him a copy of the policy.

The policy, however, was issued in the name of NRI’s son Jai Teging Singh, who never visited India.

According to Bhupinder Singh, the signatures of his son on the proposal form as well as on the notice of assignment had been forged.

He requested the company to cancel the policy that they had fraudulently issued in the name of his son, but to no avail, alleged Bhupinder Singh in his complaint.

While the company filed its reply, the business development manager and the agent concerned failed to appear before the forum.

The company claimed that they could be held liable for any act or conduct of agents as the latter were licenced by a statutory body — Insurance Regulatory Development Authority.

The Chandigarh Consumer Forum comprising its president Lakshman Sharma and member Jaswidner Singh Sidhu observed that as Jai Teging Singh never visited India, the signatures on the proposal form had been forged and the policy in question had been issued on the basis of the forged signatures on the proposal form.

The complainant was thus entitled to a refund of the premium i.e. Rs 1.5 lakh along with 9 per cent per annum interest.

Also, the complainant was entitled to a compensation for mental agony and physical harassment, assessed at Rs 50,000, apart from Rs 7,000 as cost of litigation, the forum said.



Rs 50,000 fine slapped on Taneja Developers
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 5
The Chandigarh Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum has directed Taneja Developers & Infrastructure Ltd to refund Rs 5,77,500 to a complainant along with an interest of 12 per cent per annum, besides paying a fine of Rs 50,000 for harassing and causing mental agony to the complainant.

The complainant, Pravin Kumar, a resident of Sector 24, had deposited Rs 5,77,000 with Taneja Developers & Infrastructure Ltd against the allotment of a two bedroom flat in the Group Housing Project (Triple Storey), Mohali.

It was further pleaded that under the terms and conditions of the letter, the flat was to be of 1,000-1,100 sq ft in dimension, costing Rs 1,650 per sq feet. However, the complainant was asked to deposit a sum of Rs 2,20,085 after the area of the flat was increased.

The complainant made a representation against this but could not elicit any response from the developer.

According to the complainant, the “bhoomi poojan” had been carried out at the construction site in 2008 but not even a single brick had been laid at the site since then.

In its reply, the developer admitted that the rate was earlier settled at Rs 1,650 per sq ft but thereafter a demand for Rs 2,20,085 was raised on account of an increase in the area of the flat to 1,185 sq ft.

The complainant was never assured of delivery of possession of the flat in 2008, claimed the developer.

The forum, comprising its president Lakshman Sharma, and members Madhu Mutneja and Jaswinder Singh Sidhu, said: “There is nothing on record to prove that the flats have actually been constructed and are ready for delivery. In these circumstances, to our mind, the complainant cannot be made to wait for an indefinite period. So, in such circumstances, the complainant has a right to demand for the refund of the amount paid by him.”



Irregularities in firemen’s promotions alleged
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 5
Anti-Corruption Society president Jaspal Singh today alleged out-of-turn promotion to ineligible candidates in the municipal corporation’s fire and emergency department.

Addressing mediapersons, he alleged that the MC authorities had been ignoring the orders passed by the Punjab and Haryana High Court on the issue of promotion of fire department employees.

In 1994, 26 employees of the fire wing of the Notified Area Committee, Mani Majra, had merged with the fire department. In 1995, fire brigade employees of the UT administration were transferred. In 1999, the fire wing employees of market committee were shifted to the MC, he said.

Ignoring the seniority of the Mani Majra fire employees, the authorities preferred to promote UT administration employees who had joined the fire wing in 1995, he said.

He criticised the authorities for adopting a pick-and-choose policy for promoting employees in the fire wing. There were different conditions for promotion of ministerial and non-ministerial staff of the MC, he added.



Filthy surroundings, encroachments
Situation no better in phase V
Kulwinder Sangha

Wild growth at the rear of the Phase V market in Mohali.
Wild growth at the rear of the Phase V market in Mohali. Tribune photos: Vicky Gharu

Mohali, September 5
Filth at the rear of shops and encroachments in verandas in the main market, potholed roads, badly maintained road gullies, parks and unsatisfactory sanitation have given Phase V here an uninviting look and drawn flak from residents.

As the authorities concerned look the other way, the back lane of the main market presents a picture of ugliness with power generators and filthy water from business premises, especially sweet shops and restaurants, dotting the long stretch of road from one end of the phase to the other.
 Shopkeepers have encroached upon the land at the rear of their shops
Shopkeepers have encroached upon the land at the rear of their shops

Blatant encroachments by shopkeepers on market verandas, especially in the block near the HM houses and the block opposite the telephone exchange building, have aggravated the woes of residents.

The encroachments on verandas in the market block opposite the telephone exchange include those by sweet shops which use these for cooking purposes and cycle shops, ignoring the convenience of residents and other shopkeepers in the area. In the other market block near the HM houses, the blockage of verandas makes it almost impossible for shoppers to move freely and in comfort during summer and rainy season.

Albel Singh Shyan, president of the House Owners Welfare Society, said waterlogging was a common feature in parks. Green belts were in a state of neglect. Residents had complained that safaikamramchais did not clean the area on a regular basis.

An unkempt park; and broken pillars.
An unkempt park; and broken pillars. Tribune photos: Vicky Gharu


General secretary of the Kanal Houses Residents Welfare Association Sukhjeet Singh Lehal said parks in his area were maintained by the association itself and funds in this regard were provided by GMADA. But residents faced problems as those staying in paying guest accommodations roamed around in green belts at night and some of them even slept on the benches in parks causing inconvenience to others. 



744 challans issued in one month
Of which, 242 violators were fined for wrong parking
Rajiv Bhatia
Traffic cops try to stop youths riding motorcycles without helmets in Zirakpur on Monday.
Traffic cops try to stop youths riding motorcycles without helmets in Zirakpur on Monday. Tribune photos: Nitin Mittal

Zirakpur, September 5
With 242 challans being issued to offenders in August, wrong parking has emerged as one of the most prevailing traffic offences in Zirkapur.
Around 744 challans were issued for various traffic violations. A police official stated that traffic cops had carried out special drives in which they had challaned those who had parked vehicles in “no parking” zones.

Challans were issued for riding two-wheelers without a helmet, for triple riding and jumping traffic lights.

Other offences included drunk driving and driving without wearing seat belts.

Sources said around 128 persons were challaned for not wearing headgears, 242 challans were issued for wrong parking, 24 for overloading, 27 for triple riding, 16 for using pressure horns, 25 for not fastening seat belts and 15 fort driving without a licence and using a blue beacon atop.

A traffic cop said those who violated rules were either close to bureaucrats or relatives of politicians. Zirakpur traffic in charge Devinder Singh stated that they had put up boards in no parking zones, still violations occurred.

“We have told shopkeepers and commuters not to park vehicles on roadsides.” More drives would be carried out in the coming days,” he added.



A first: Food court at Mansa Devi temple
To offer food to devotees during festival
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune news service

Panchkula, September 5
For the first time, the Shri Mata Mansa Devi Shrine Board will set up a food court for the Navratra fair, starting September 28. The board has invited the expression of interest from interested parties in this regard.

Besides providing snacks, sweets, lunch and dinner to devotees visiting the temple, the shrine board authorities will offer “Satvik food”, eaten during religious fast, at the food court.

Shrine board CEO DP Dattana said during a recent meeting of the board, the members had discussed the absence of a proper facility to provide food to devotees, besides the “bhadaras” organised on the temple premises.

To overcome this, the shrine board decided to set up a food court, he added.

He said they would soon finalise the menu and the number of shops to be set up at the food court. The modalities would be finalised only after seeing the response from the interested parties, he added.

He said during a meeting with Panchkula Deputy Commissioner Ashima Brar, it was decided that the transport department would make arrangements for operating buses from Panchkula and its surrounding areas to the temple during the fair.

The Panchkula police and security guards of the shrine board would be deployed on the temple premises during the fair.

Temple of faith

Located on the foothills of Shivalik, the Mata Mansa Devi shrine is an epitome of the age-old tradition of Shakti worship in North India. The temple witnesses heavy rush during the Navratras in March and September when lakhs of devotees visit the temple to pay their obeisance. The main temple was established in 1815. The shrine board organises two Navratra fairs in the months of Aswin (Shardiya) — Winter Navratra — and Chaitra — Spring Navratra — every year.



MC removes hoardings from highways
Tribune News Service

Employees of the municipal council remove hoardings from the Zirakpur-Patiala highway on Monday
Employees of the municipal council remove hoardings from the Zirakpur-Patiala highway on Monday. A Tribune photograph

Zirakpur, September 5
Reacting to the news report “Hoardings stay despite HC order” published in these columns on September 4, the Zirakpur municipal council today removed all hoardings from the highways.

Hoardings and banners were put up along the highways in violation of the directions of Punjab and Haryana High Court.

A council official stated that the drive had been conducted on the directions of the Mohali Deputy Commissioner. Around 100 hoardings were removed. He said the drive would continue. 



Residents stage protest
Irregular water supply in Shivalik Vihar
Tribune News Service

Zirakpur, September 5
Residents of Shivalik Vihar today lamented that the water supply to the area had been irregular for the past many months.
They broke earthen pots in front of the MC’s office. They handed over a memorandum to the civic body officials.

Hundreds of protesters said they had filed complaints a number of times, but nothing had happened so far. Irked over the apathetic attitude of the authorities, they took out a protest march.

An MC official stated that a new tubewell would be installed in the colony soon.

He said the residents’ problems would be solved at the earliest. 



Coaches owe it to their teachers
Deepankar Sharda
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 5
They make players sweat hard on field; they are the ones who tell them about their strengths and weaknesses. They teach to overcome the hurdles and also inculcate the true spirit of sportsmanship.

Coaches, who guide a player and help in making their dreams bloom, have an indispensable role in a player’s life. The city has a number of renowned coaches, who have produced the best talent for the nation. A few of them are as follows:

Harjinder Singh

A football coach and former captain of the Indian football team has played an immense role in producing the best players. At present, about 11 players are playing for the nation in various age groups after undergoing his guidance.

“It feels good to be a master of the field. My teachers played an important role in my life. Our profession is not only to teach but also to guide one on the right path. I am happy to share my experience with the future of India.”

Rajinder Singh

A hockey coach, former Olympian, a recipient of the Arjuna Award and Dronacharya Award is presently providing his services to the Chandigarh Hockey Academy for Girls. He was also the former coach of the Indian men’s hockey team and at present his five players are representing the nation at the junior level.

“With the passage of time, there is a decline in an individual’s effort. These days, players do not give their cent percent as compared to early days. Coaching a player is not an easy task, it all depends on how one brings out the best.”

Ajay Shastri

An archery coach and the former international archer player had also won a bronze medal at the Asian Championship. His two students, Anil Kumar and Kapil, also represented the nation, where Anil Kumar brought laurels after winning the medal. “My guru, Mahinder Singh Sardar, has played an important role in my career. Being a teacher now, I also try to impart all the knowledge I had to my players to ensure that they cross all hindrances.”

Kawaljeet Singh

Tennis coach, former tennis player from Punjab and director of Coaches’ Education of India, has organised and officiated a number of assignments in the field of tennis, He has been nominated twice for the lifetime achievement Dilip Bose Award. One of his students, Sunil Kumar, became the third youngest player to win the men’s singles title at the age 16 in 1999. Sunil now plays at the professional circuit, including various international tournaments.

“It feels good to be a part of the system due to which I have achieved such a great height. My guide showed me the right path and now I got the opportunity to spread the knowledge further and I am proud of it. It feels good to see pupils happy.”

Harish Sharma

The ace cricket coach is providing his services at the Cricket Stadium, Sector 16. Many international-level players, including Dinesh Mongia, VRV Singh, Yuvraj Singh, are his students and he is proud of them.

“A real guru is the one that guides a student on the right path. The main role of a teacher is to make a student efficient in choosing between the right and wrong. A real teacher always stands for his students.”

Surinder Mahajan

The badminton coach was presently appointed at the SAI extension centre of Panjab University (PU), as he has produced many players at the international front. He also initiated various international camps, including the recently held World University Games camp of boys and girls. Players have also won various inter-university tournaments under his supervision.

“We used to have blind faith on our coaches, but today’s generation is smart. My students are obedient. Coaches not only give coaching but also polish one’s skills both mentally and physically.”

Lt Col JS Dhillon

Shooting coach and former ace shooter had brought laurels in the sports and bagged several medals. His most precious gift to the country is Abhinav Bindra, who bagged the only gold medal in the 2008 Olympics. The shooting guru is known for his vast knowledge and best technique in his field.

“I started my shooting career after participating in the rifle event when I was in the Army. There was no one to guide me. It is still a mystery that whether it is the natural talent or physical fitness, but it strikes me well. Training the future talent is one of the toughest tasks and I am happy that one of my students made me proud. I always stand for shooting and players.”

Davinder Singh Kohli

The ace kabaddi coach is coaching budding players at the Sports Complex, Sector 42. “With the change of time, respect given to teachers has also changed. We used to obey and respect our teachers and are also afraid of them, but the young generation is quite open and smart. A player should always understand the intentions behind the teacher’s gestures. My teachers are my role model and I owe a lot to them.”



Healthcare clinic at Golf Club
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 5
A healthcare clinic was inaugurated at the Chandigarh Golf Club (CGC) here yesterday.
CGC president Raja Malvinder Singh inaugurated the clinic, which will provide paramedical staff for first aid and resuscitation to the players.

The clinic will organise a monthly check-up camp for members and also provide facilities for diagnostic tests, including ECG, Echo and mammography.

A regular health check-up of caddies, staff members, including catering and kitchen employees, will also be done. It will also train staff on first aid to take care of any emergencies.



Who will get it repaired?
Road separating Sectors 52, 61
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Mohali, September 5
September 5 (Monday): Time 8 am: Gurvinder Sabharwal, a Phase III-B2 resident, was speeding his Ford Fiesta car to drop his son at YPS when he almost lost control over his vehicle after one of its wheels hit a gaping pothole at the traffic junction of the road separating Sectors 52 and 61. Gurvinder had to take his vehicle to the car garage to get the suspension of his vehicle repaired.

It is an everyday experience for hundreds of drivers using the road to Mohali, touted as ‘Punjab’s Paris’ by the ruling Akali Dal. However, the Mohali municipal corporation has not been able to get the road repaired, despite receiving a number of complaints. The civic body officials stated that since the road fell in the UT, they could not get it repaired. The Chandigarh municipal corporation officials claimed that a portion of the damaged road fell in Mohali.

“It has turned out to be no man’s land. No one is ready to own the patch of road despite hundreds of residents of Chandigarh and Mohali commuting on it everyday,” said a resident of Phase VII, Sobha Singh, who has been seeing the potholes for the past many months. The worst-affected spot is right in front of the traffic lights at the road junction of Sectors 51,52, 57 and 61, where a large pothole has not only become an eyesore, but has also led to a number of accidents. A tea vendor near the traffic lights, Suresh, said everyday he witnessed two-wheeler drivers losing balance due to the pothole.

Parveen Thind, Additional Commissioner, municipal corporation, Mohali, said they had recently held a meeting with the Commissioner and officials of the civic body regarding the repair of the road falling in the UT. “We have been writing letters to the Chandigarh administration and municipal corporation to get the road repaired,” he added.

Incidentally, the Mohali municipal corporation has erected traffic lights on the disputed spot and Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA) is erecting a new road signage at the spot. The ACA said he would look into the matter. 



Tricity Scan
Emphasis laid on riot-control drill

A three-week special training programme of the IRB conducted by 51 Battalion of the CRPF at Hallo Majra concluded on Monday. The ceremony was presided over by JS Gill, IGP NWS. Gill, IGP, spoke on different aspects of training with special emphasis on riot-control drill, foot drill, obstacle, operational and administrative matters. Among others present included Taj Mohamad, DIGP, RDS Sahi, DIGP and MP Bahuguna, Comdt 51 Bn.

General secy appointed

Chairman of the Lav-Kush Sewadal Ashwani Bagahnia has been appointed general secretary of the SC cell of Chandigarh Territorial Congress Committee.

Rally by pensioners

The Punjab Government Pensioners Welfare Association (regd) will organise a “Protest Rally” tomorrow in Sector 37-C against the callous and non-cooperative attitude of the Punjab government towards their demands. In a joint statement by SK Khosla, president of the association, and KS Naga, general secretary of the association, stated that pensioners were forced to take to streets. Their demands include payment of arrear of pensions in one instalment, reimbursement of leave travelling concession, increase in medical allowance from Rs 500 to Rs 1,000 and also free treatment of pensioners in every hospital either private or government. The rally will be addressed by leaders of the Panjab Joint Front of Pensioners.

Meeting cancelled

The Haryana branch of Indian Red Cross Society has cancelled the annual meeting of the management board scheduled for September 15 at the residence of Haryana Governor, an official press release stated. Dr Gian Prakash Taneja, state secretary of the Red Cross, said the meeting was supposed to be attended by the Haryana Chief Minister and secretaries of the Red Cross. The next date would be announced subsequently, the release stated.

Students honoured

Four students were honoured by the Sarv Shiksha Sudhar Samiti at a special function here on Monday. Bahadur Singh Gosal, chairman of the samiti, and Tarlochan Singh, president, conducted the function.

The students, who were honoured, were Anjum, an international shooter; Parmjot Kaur, a national-level hockey player, Kiranpreet Kaur, a national athlete, and Arunesh Moudgil, a body builder.

Poets’ meeting

Eminent poets from the region attended a special meeting of the Kavita Kendra here on Monday. Some of the prominent names included Shingara Singh Bhullar, Joginder Singh Rainkh, Joginder Singh Jogi Talwandiwala, Karam Singh Vakil, Janak Raj Singh, Sri Ram Arsh and Dr BK Pannu.

Traders’ meeting

A meeting of the Traders Association, Sector 17, Chandigarh, was held under the presidentship of Kamaljit Singh Panchhi to discuss the issue of service tax on commercial properties. The Chandigarh administration has started charging service tax from owners of all commercial establishments which are on leasehold in the city. Panchhi said the tax came as an extra burden on all such establishments who were already paying lease rent and property tax. LC Arora, Mandeep Singh, Raman Mahajan, Anil Sharma, Arvind Pandey and Jodh Singh were present.


The exhibition on nutritious food will conclude on Tuesday at Fortis Hospital. The exhibition received a good response. Health products like skimmed milk/food for weight management at Nestle Nutrition, wheat free products at Abbot Nutrition and Tanmay Foods, balanced nutrition formula specifically for different ailments at Hexagon Nutrition, Ricella refined oil, Ranbaxy Global Healthcare, Yakult .milk, soya nuts/protein powder at Allegro Nutritigro and healthy breakfast foods were put on display.

Protest by Akali Dal activists

To protest against the alleged interference of the UPA government in the forthcoming SGPC elections, the youth wing of Akali Dal today staged a protest and burnt an effigy of the UPA government. General secretary of SAD, Mohali unit, Raja Kanwar Jot Singh said it was wrong on the part of the Congress to indulge in the unhealthy practice. He alleged that advocate Harbgawan Singh was close to PPCC president Capt Amarinder Singh. The Akali Dal activists raised slogans against the Congress.

Function to mark Engineer’s Day

A state-level function to celebrate the 44th Engineers Day, which falls on September 15, will be held in Ludhiana this year. This was stated by R P Singh, Engineer-in-Chief, Punjab PWD (B&R). Engineers from various departments in Punjab are expected to participate. An exhibition will also be held. — TNS

Programme for girls

Yuvsatta, an NGO, organised a special programme at Aanganwari Centre in Mauli Jargan Colony, in which at least 150 girls undergoing vocational courses in tailoring, fashion designing, yoga and dance participated. Lalit Joshi, chairperson, Chandigarh Social Welfare Board, was the chief guest.





A Salute to teaching spirit
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 5
Riding high on the wave of UT schools commendable performance in all board examinations this year, the UT education department today saluted the spirit of their teachers by awarding them with state awards and commendation certificates.

With a majority of honours being bagged by teachers of government schools, the awards have been dubbed as a tribute to their efforts, which have defeated hassles like average infrastructure, staff crunch and student’s behavioural problems.

“A teacher defines financial, social, political and even cultural flavour of any city or nation. The UT is rated amongst the top 10 cities when it comes to quality of education and the credit goes to its teachers. They shoulder the biggest responsibility and that is to get values and ideals embedded in students during their formative years. The city government schools have left a mark in the board exams in the last two years and proven that a good teacher is still more vital to education than hi-fi infrastructure and tall claims,” said education secretary VK Singh while awarding these teachers.

‘Catch them young’

Praneet Pratima KaurBeing a nursery teacher is probably the most difficult and demanding role in the school education, as you have to be their mothers for about six hours, gain their trust and shape them up for future. These children are like blank blackboards and you have to be cautious of what you write. My mantra of playing my part as a teacher is to catch them young and instill values, as they tend to be permanent.

Praneet Pratima Kaur, nursery teacher, GMHS-36

Jaskanwaljit Kaur‘Let the imagination flow’

As a teacher, one trait that I nurture in all my students is imagination because that is what takes them out of the confined specific syllabi to true education. Education is not confined to books. Unfortunately, a majority of parents ignore it and I strive to get arts its due place in education.

Jaskanwaljit Kaur, fine arts mistress, GMSSS-19

Key to physical wellness

Gone are the days when sports was just a leisure activity or to many a rival of good grades. Today, it forms an essential part of school education. The role of sports teacher has been vital to education, as he helps in building the attributes like concentration, discipline and focus for better studies.

Jasmine JoshCounsellor: A true guide

When I came to SIE and started counselling students, it was shocking to find that they were confused over many things, including choosing right stream in class XI or drooping a few subjects and even being termed as D-grader and then I realised that in the army of teachers, it’s a guide and a counsellor which has got lost. Lack of counsellors has aggravated problems in students and I try to play my part by attending to as many as possible.

Jasmine Josh, lecturer, SIE-32

GP Pal,Tajinder Singh Badwal, DPE, GMSSS-37

Proud to give city its sports stars
As a teacher, I have always strived to nurture good sportsmen. While numerous teachers toil to create 90 per centers, we, the sports teachers, sweat to get India its next Sachin or Sania. When a student trained by you come to say thanks, we feel proud to have chosen the education without books.



‘Teacher-taught relation is three dimensional’

Being a teacher for decades now, I have seen the evolution of teacher-taught relationship. From the era where a teacher was synonymous to God to today where many students consider teachers as paid servant, things underwent sea change. But every time I see students on the first day of their nursery class, the way they leave their parents behind and hold hands of teachers keeps me optimistic that this bond of trust if nurtured well makes it the most beautiful relationship of the world.

Sr Sebestina, principal, Sacred Heart School

I think teacher-taught relationship is three dimensional now, as parents also play an important role in it. Things have surely gone downhill to some extent, as many parents, who are busy with their career, give unquestioned freedom to their children, who then see disciplinarian teachers as their enemies. A child spends 8 to 10 hours of the day with a teacher and is bound to have a bonding, which today is being affected by advent of technology and parents’ judgmental attitude, but still I think sincerity and selflessness of teachers is equipped to beat all adversities.

Kavita Das, principal, St John’s School

The teacher-taught relationship has to be nurtured by both sides. The recent incidents of teachers being thrashed have surely raised questions on the most pious relationship.

I think it is high time that parents play their part in getting students realise the importance of respecting teachers.

Anujit Kaur, principal, GMSSS-16

Every time you meet an older student, the respect in his eyes appears to be the best gift you can get in this profession. We can proudly say that we are the kingmakers. Things have surely changed, but I think that by adapting ourselves to the new technology, we can win the students over.

Madhu Bahal, KBDAV-7



Teachers honoured

Principal of DAV School, Sector 15, get flowers from the students in Chandigarh on Monday.
Principal of DAV School, Sector 15, get flowers from the students in Chandigarh on Monday. Tribune photo: Pradeep Tewari

Panchkula: Twenty-one teachers of different government and private schools of the district were awarded by the Lions Club, Panchkula, for their significant contribution in the field of education.

Haryana Chief Electoral Officer (CEO)-cum-Commissioner and Secretary Sumita Mishra awarded Krit Serai, Anjali Marriya, Kulbir Singh Rana, Mahesh Gopal Singh Sidhu, Chetna Sukhija, Sonia Pabby, Suman Lata, Anju Verma, Seema Gandhi, Mohit Gupta, Sushila Khokhar, Anil Agrawal, Sunil Kaushal, Shalini Kapoor, Neelam Sharma, Sudershan Rana, Promila Bindal, Rekha Bakshi, Jai Parkash Narain, Kapil Joshi and Indu Sachdeva of Hindu Girls High School, Kalka.



‘Give teachers their due’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 5
In a unique initiative, members of the Punjab Federation of University and College Teachers’ Organisations (PFUTO) observed Teacher’s Day as a demand day today.
Organising a rally at Sector 25, the teachers maintained that they could not shoulder the responsibility of building the nation when they were dissatisfied.

Among the demands put forth were an immediate release of the UGC pay scale arrears, pension scheme for staff of aided colleges as per the Act of 1999, full pension on completion of 20 years of service, enhancement of retirement age to 65 years, filling up of vacancies in all universities and colleges, greater funding for teaching and research, filling up of key posts on regular basis, adoption of UGC letter on extension of date for completion of refresher courses and better service conditions for staff of unaided colleges.

The key highlight was the arrival of Prof Asok Barman, general secretary, All-India Federation of University and College Teachers’ Organisation (AIFUCTO), from Kolkata to participate in the rally. Addressing the rally, Prof Asok Barman shared developments at the all-India level on various issues concerning education and educational institutions.

Addressing the rally, Prof Harmeet Kingra flayed the attitude of the Punjab government towards funding of higher education and research. Dr Jagwant Singh, general secretary, PFUCTO, stated that failure of the Punjab government to fill up vacancies in the university system and ban on recruitment imposed in July 2005 has seriously damaged the edifices of higher education.



‘Erosion of moral values among students’

Krit Sera The education system has completely changed with the passage of time, says Krit Serai, principal of Sutlej Public School, Panchkula, who has been awarded the CBSE award. While “guru-shishya parampara” had been practiced for centuries in the country, now a teacher is like a facilitator, he said. The teacher imparts education and students receive it. It is now more like a counseling method and teachers are more students’ friendly, he added.


Indu Bala DahiyaFor Indu Bala Dahiya, principal of Saarthak Government Integrated Model Senior Secondary School, Panchkula, there is more need of understanding between teachers and students. Dahiya has been awarded the national award this year.

There is a great pressure of competition on the students, so there is more need of novel methods to cope with it, she suggests. Though the students respect the teachers, there had been erosion of moral values among the students. 



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