C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Centres of learning turn into combat zone
 Peacenik killed by two school students
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 26
In a shocking incident two students of the Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 19, who were accompanied by an unidentified person, brutally stabbed a 24-year-old man to death on Monday morning. The victim, identified as Pushkar Singh, had reportedly intervened to stop a scuffle between two groups of school students.
Sector-19 SHO Sukhbir Rana checks the mobile phone of Pushkar Singh at the Government Medical College and Hospital in Sector 32 of Chandigarh on Monday.
Sector-19 SHO Sukhbir Rana checks the mobile phone of Pushkar Singh at the Government Medical College and Hospital in Sector 32 of Chandigarh on Monday. tribune photo: vinay malik

The incident occurred just outside the school premises in front of the gate and a few metres away from the Sector 19 police station. The victim, whose friend was said to be involved in the fight, was stabbed several times in the chest by the suspects. He was taken to the Government Medical College & Hospital, Sector 32, where he succumbed to his injuries in the evening.

Two of the three attackers, who were minors, were carrying sharp-edged weapons and have been identified as class 11 and 12 students of the school. One of them is the son of a Chandigarh police female constable. The police has arrested two of the suspects, including the constable’s son, while the third is still on the run.

The assault occurred at 10.30 am when Shalender, a class 10 student of the school, was attacked by the three suspects who came on a motorcycle as the former was walking out of the school premises. The attackers, who reportedly turned up to avenge an old issue, were beating up Shalender when he saw his friend Pushkar passing by and called him for help.

Pushkar rushed to save him when the three attackers stabbed him several times and fled leaving him in a pool of blood. The deceased’s brother, Kundan, who is a hotel management student of the Rayat and Bahra group of institutes, said he was sitting in the Sector 19 park along with his friends when he was told his brother was being beaten up.

“I rushed and saw my brother drenched in blood and a PCR vehicle rushed him to the hospital. The assailants even robbed him of his mobile phone and cash. He was stabbed at least seven times in the chest and back and doctors were unable to save him,” he said.

Kundan said Pushkar knew Shalender as their families were neighbours in Uttarakhand. The deceased is survived by his parents and a sister and brother. He was working in a hardware company in Sector 41. A case of murder has been registered.

No response from admn, school officials

Even as two school students turned murderers today neither the education department nor school officials reacted to the situation. When the school authorities were contacted about the incident, they casually pleaded ignorance, saying it happened “outside the campus.” The victim’s brother questioned the fate of various “anti-violence” schemes launched by the administration and appointment of psychological mentors in schools.

Cops accused of delayed action

Relatives of the deceased accused the police of taking delayed action when he was inside the emergency of GMCH, Sector 32. They complained of slow response at the hospital resulting in delay of operation. “We have been running after the police since morning and it has been unable to arrest the suspects. Even after the gruesome crime, they are threatening Shalender by sending SMS on his mobile,” the victim’s brother alleged.



DAV College president assaulted
tribune news service

Chandigarh, September 26
The lull in violence at DAV College, Sector 10, was over with a clash between supporters of SOPU and PUSU in the Sector 37 market, resulting in grievous injuries to college president Hardeep Singh of PUSU.

He was rushed to the Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32. He was at the emergency for over three hours and when he came out, his supporters covered his face with a cloth. He is said to be out of danger. Sources said he had suffered injuries on the head and required stitching.

The sources said the brawl arose out of differences during the recently concluded student elections. A senior SOPU leader at Panjab University, requesting anonymity, said: “A hot argument took place between SOPU members and the PUSU president and his supporters during the recent polls. We had to get back at them. The SOPU presidential candidate avenged his defeat.” Police sources said an attempt to murder case had been registered against certain SOPU members. “We have registered an attempt to murder case after we heard both parties,” a senior officer said. According to the complaint, Hardeep was in the market when at least 10 boys in two cars and armed with swords and rods attacked him.

“There has not been any recent provocation, but they all seemed infuriated at their recent defeat. They were accompanied by their candidate Karan Singh, who was defeated,” claimed Hardip Singh.

Earlier Incidents

n June 22: PUSU and SOPU supporters of DAV College, Sector 10, indulge in a violent brawl near Burail Jail around midnight. No formal complaint is lodged by either side.

n June 26: A scuffle occurs at the Sector-41 market between PUSU and SOPU supporters of DAV College late at night and ends in a compromise.

n June 28: Violence breaks out outside the college and an attempt to murder case is registered.



molestation charge
Victim’s mom thrashes boy
tribune news service

Chandigarh, September 26
Controversy surrounding the alleged molestation of a class VI girl refuses to die at St Stephen’s School, Sector 45, where an ugly spat between Geeta Sharma, the victim’s mother, and parents of two boys left the school authorities fuming and eventually turning out the girl.
Meenu Bedi, the boy’s mother, and Geeta Sharma (below), the girl’s mother, who allegedly assaulted each other at St Stephen’s School in Chandigarh on Monday.
Meenu Bedi, the boy’s mother, and Geeta Sharma (below), the girl’s mother, who allegedly assaulted each other at St Stephen’s School in Chandigarh on Monday.  Tribune photos: Manoj Mahajan
Meenu Bedi, the boy’s mother, and Geeta Sharma (below), the girl’s mother, who allegedly assaulted each other at St Stephen’s School in Chandigarh on Monday.

High drama prevailed outside the school premises today when the girl pointed towards a class X boy leaving the school with his mother Meenu Bedi, claiming that he had also molested her.

Hearing this, Geeta lunged towards him and starting hitting and abusing him. When Meenu tried to intervene, Geeta hit her with her slipper. The situation turned worse when the father of another boy tried to reason out with the girl’s mother, but ended up being thrashed as well. The school authorities summoned the police and teachers submitted a complaint against the girl and her mother.

The girl’s mother maintained that she was innocent and the boy and his mother had misbehaved with her.

“Enough is enough. Every second day, the girl accuses someone new of molesting her and her mother abuses and starts beating up students or their parents. They are a potential threat to decorum and safety. Tomorrow, they will start hitting teachers. We will not tolerate this any longer. The girl has psychological problems and needs treatment,” one of the teachers complained.

Meanwhile, the other parents have threatened to withdraw their students if the girl continued with the “drama”. “Is she the only child with impressionable mind or vulnerable psychology? What about the innocent boys whom she keeps accusing publicly? Has anybody thought about them? More than the girl, it’s her mother who is the culprit and into the habit of creating a ‘tamasha’. We don’t send our children to school to be falsely accused of charges like rape and molestation, which are the fruit of somebody’s sick imagination.” said Meenu.

Spat on Facebook

Several students covered the spat on their mobile phones and within hours, the video was a rage among city school students, many of whom also uploaded it on Facebook.

‘School has had enough’

We have had enough of this. The girl will not step on the premises from tomorrow. She has psychological problems, which has been confirmed by a team of counsellors. We tried to make the girl comfortable. The school starts at 7.30 am, but she reaches at about 9 am, enters the examination room and is given a question paper. Within minutes, she faints and is carried to the art room by our doctor and her mother. She regains her senses within seconds and tries to attempt the paper and faints gain. She has not completed and handed over a single paper and her best performance is copying a complete question paper. Things have now run out of our hands. We cannot allow anybody to create ruckus and embarrass both students and teachers.— Jacob, school principal



58-yr-old dies as CRV rams into tree
tribune news service

Chandigarh, September 26
A 58-year-old man, Bharat Pal Singh, was killed after his speeding Honda CRV rammed into a tree near the Sector 8 gurdwara here today. The incident took place on the road separating Sectors 8 and 9.

The victim was a resident of Sector 8 and is survived by his wife and daughter.

The police had to struggle to extricate the body from the vehicle, which led to a traffic jam.

Eyewitnesses said the car was speeding and the driver lost control while taking a turn towards Sector 9. After hitting the tree, the car caught fire. Fire brigade officials also rushed to the spot. Passersby also assisted the police in removing the body.

The police said the air bag inflated when the vehicle hit the tree, but Bharat Pal Singh suffered head injuries and internal chest injuries. He was rushed to the PGI where he was declared brought dead. The body would be handed over to his family after a postmortem tomorrow. Photo P3



Prime accused among 4 held for attack at Tao
tribune news service

Prime accused among four held for attack at Tao

The four accused in the Tao attack case being taken for a medical examination at the GMSH, Sector 16, Chandigarh, on Monday.
The four accused in the Tao attack case being taken for a medical examination at the GMSH, Sector 16, Chandigarh, on Monday. Tribune photos: Vinay Malik

Chandigarh, September 26
Three days after 15 youths created a ruckus at Tao disco in Sector 26 and injured four persons, the police arrested four accused, including prime accused Amandeep Gill, son of a Mohali builder, here today. The accused have been arrested in an attempt to murder case.

The other three accused have been identified as Amandeep Sidhu, a resident of Kotakpura, Yadwinder Singh of Ferozepur and Harmanjeet Singh of Muktsar.

The police said Amandeep Gill had returned after completing his graduation from a London university around seven months ago. Harmanjeet Singh had done his BSc from Landran College of Engineering while Yadwinder had done postgraduation from Panjab University.

The incident occurred on Saturday night when the accused with 12 others injured four persons, including the son of an industrialist. They broke furniture and were asked to leave the venue at 11.20 pm after two girls complained against Gill. They returned at 2.37 am with swords and baseball bats and went on the rampage. The police said the remaining accused had also been identified and raids were being conducted on their places to arrest them.


Residents oppose imposition of enhancement fee
 Sectors 25, 26, 27 and 28 residential plots
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 26
Protesting against the imposition of enhancement fee in Sectors 25, 26, 27 and 28 residential plots, hundreds of allottees staged a dharna in front of the office of Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) here today.

Residents stage a protest outside HUDA’s office in Sector 6, Panchkula, on Monday.
Residents stage a protest outside HUDA’s office in Sector 6, Panchkula, on Monday. Tribune photo: Nitin Mittal

The fee, ranging between Rs 2,000 and Rs 4,500 per square yard, was imposed following a directive of the local sessions court and HUDA has already begun issuing notices to plot holders.

The authority has imposed the enhancement charges for the fifth time in these sectors on thousands of holders of ten, eight, six, four and three 'marla' plots. The fee was earlier levied in August, 2005, September, 2003, May, 2002 and November, 2000.

In a memorandum submitted to HUDA chief administrator DPS Nangal, the allottees said there were several discrepancies that HUDA should have addressed before reaching a conclusion,” said SS Gill, president of the Joint Action Committee.

Moreover, the interest charged was not according to norms, he said.

In 2002, HUDA decided that 15 per cent interest should be charged on enhanced compensation.

He said instead of implementing the same, HUDA was charging interest on a compound basis.

Heamnt Sareen, a resident of Sector 25, said the enhanced compensation was being charged on 402.75 acres. The Comptroller and Auditor General of India in its report for March, 2004, castigated HUDA for acquiring 402.75 acres that fell in Ghaggar river at an expenditure of Rs 23.36 crore. The report stated that “due to acquisition of 402.75 acres falling in Ghaggar river, the entire expenditure incurred on it went down the drain”. “Why should the existing allottees be made to pay for the mistakes of HUDA officials?” he questioned.

“A large chunk of land in these sectors that comes under HUDA has not been allotted for setting up institutions, post office, fire station, police post, sewerage treatment plant, crèche sites and cremation ground,” said PS Malik, general secretary of the action committee.

“How can the enhanced compensation for such sites be forced upon the existing allottees when the land is still owned by HUDA?” asked Malik.

The allottees, however, called off their protest after the chief administrator assured them that a committee would be formed to look into the matter.



5 injured as auto-rickshaw overturns
Tribune Reporters

The damaged auto-rickshaw that overturned on the Chandigarh- Ambala highway in Dera Bassi on Monday.
The damaged auto-rickshaw that overturned on the Chandigarh- Ambala highway in Dera Bassi on Monday. Tribune photo: Nitin Mittal

Panchkula, September 26
Four women passengers and an auto-rickshaw driver were injured when the driver, who was trying to avert an accident, lost control over the vehicle here today. The injured were identified as Renu, Naanu, Rani and her mother Nirmala.

It was at 2 pm that the driver, who was going towards Kharak Mangoli, lost control over the vehicle when a motorcycle suddenly appeared in front of his auto-rickshaw and it overturned. The injured were taken to General Hospital.

1 killed, 12 injured in mishap

Ambala: One person died and 12 sustained injuries after a Haryana Roadways bus coming from Dharamsala collided with a tanker on the Chandigarh-Ambala road, near here.

Mela Ram, an eyewitness, said driver of the oil tanker suddenly applied brakes following which the vehicle rammed into a stationary tanker. Meanwhile, the Haryana Roadways bus, too, collided with the tanker. The injured were rushed to the Civil Hospital, Ambala City.

Omkar, driver of the Haryana Roadways bus, was referred to the PGI, Chandigarh, but he succumbed to his injuries. A case was registered in this connection.



Municipal Council wants land acquisition de-notified
Rajiv Bhatia

Zirakpur, September 26
The Zirakpur Municipal Council (MC) will write to the Punjab government to de-notify land acquisition of Singhpura and Ramgarh Bhuda villages by PUDA in 2004. MC president Narinder Kumar Sharma stated this at the council meeting held here.

The council has also planned to adopt self-certification and notice of completion scheme.

Other agendas included installation of five tubewells for water supply, Rs 12 crore for roads and increased salaries of council staff. The council budget i.e. Rs 36 crore (approx) was passed by the government.

During the meeting, NK Sharma stated that residents, farmers and stakeholders of Singhpura and Ramgarh Bhuda villages had approached the council to de-notify the land of their respective villages that was acquired by PUDA in 2004.

In their application to the council, residents told PUDA’s move to acquire the land was widely opposed by them. They said the land of Singhpura and Ramgarh Bhuda villages were later merged within the limits of Zirakpur Municipal Council and as per law, the development of the entire land now has to be initiated by the council.

They said after merging in the MC limits, GMADA did not have any stake to interfere with the working of the council.

They requested the council to start development of their villages and pursue their matter with the Punjab government not to allow GMADA to interfere. Sharma said the council would write to the state government to de-notify the acquisition.

Talking about self-certification scheme, Sharma stated that the state government had directed the council through a letter to adopt self-certification and notice of completion scheme. He said promoters would get self-certification and notice of completion by a registered architect.

The government had also asked for suggestions and objections from residents about the scheme, he added.

The council also handed over the land in Singhpura to sewerage board for setting up of a sewerage treatment plant.

Five tubewells will be installed by MC for water supply in Gurjivan Vihar, Guru Gobind Singh Nagar, Bhuda village, Gill colony in ward no 1 and ward no 15.

Sharma also asked sanitary inspector Santosh Kumari to visit areas regularly to check cleanliness in the town.

The council also rejected the installation of mobile tower in the residential area, he added.



All set for Navratra Fair
 Special bus service for devotees launched
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 26
Elaborate arrangements have been made by the Haryana police for the smooth conduct of Navratra Mela to be held at Shri Mata Mansa Devi Shrine complex from September 28 to October 5. Along with four Deputy Superintendents of Police and six police inspectors, over 1,000 police personnel, 50 commandos and 50 personnel of Home Guards will remain deputed to ensure peace during the mela.This was stated by Magistrate Vandna Disodia here today.

Shri Mata Mansa Devi temple being spruced up ahead of Navratra Fair.
Shri Mata Mansa Devi temple being spruced up ahead of Navratra Fair. Tribune photo: Nitin Mittal

Besides, 13 Duty Magistrates, 12 inspecting officers and 15 protocol officers have been deputed. A special bus service has also been started for the convenience of devotees. Special buses of Haryana Roadways and CTU will be plied from the Chandigarh railway station, ISBT, Sectors 17 and 43 of Chandigarh, Sector 5 bus stand, Panchkula, Kalka, Barwala and Naraingarh to ferry devotees.

She said the health department would provide round-the-clock medicare to people during the mela. Two ambulances have been pressed into service and a dispensary having a facility of six beds has also been set up.

The use of polybags is prohibited and a committee has been constituted for conducting regular checks. Strict action would be taken against violators, she added.

Shri Mata Mansa Devi Shrine Board has set up 112 temporary shops so that devotees get quality 'parsad'. As many as 42 CCTV cameras have also been installed.



No takers for Jan Aushadhi store 
Kulwinder Sangha

Mohali, September 26
There are no takers for the Jan Aushadhi store, which has been lying closed for the past more than eight months on the premises of Civil Hospital, but efforts of the hospital authorities are still on to make the drug store functional for the convenience of patients.

As many as 15 pharmacists were interviewed by the authorities of the Civil Hospital on August 8 to run the Jan Aushadhi store. A merit list was prepared and the top three pharmacists were selected to run the drug store. However, none of them showed interest in taking up the job. The hospital authorities then intimated the next three applicants on the merit list, but failed to get any response. The process of inviting all applicants, who were interviewed, is still on but the response is not good.

SMO in charge of the hospital Dr Rajeev Bhalla said interviews in this regard were even held about three to four months ago when 22 pharmacists had applied for the job. But later none of them joined. He said the applicants at that time were under the impression that the drug store was a part of the hospital, but when they got to know that it was only located on the hospital premises they lost interest. This time it had been made very clear to the applicants that the drug store was not part of the hospital.

The Rogi Kalyan Samiti, which will run the drug store, had offered Rs 6,500 per month last time which has now been increased to Rs 7,500 per month.

Patients belonging to economically weaker sections were hit by the closure of a Jan Aushadhi store. The closure was ordered by senior officials of the health department after patients had complained of some alleged irregularities in the functioning of the set-up.

A round- the-clock Jan Aushadhi store was inaugurated by Ram Vilas Paswan, Union Minister for Chemicals, Fertilisers and Steel at the Civil Hospital here on February 23, 2009. The prime objective of opening such a set-up was to promote the sale of quality generic drugs that were available at far more cheaper rates as compared to branded medicines.



Anti-encroachment  drive
Cong leader comes out in support of slum-dwellers
Rajiv Bhatia

Zirakpur, September 26
Giving a political colour to the anti-encroachment drive that was carried out in Zirakpur yesterday, local Congress leader and PPCC member Deepinder Singh Dhillon today came in support of the displaced slum-dwellers and shopkeepers.

Hundreds of slum-dwellers and shopkeepers today met the Zirakpur Executive Officer and demanded that they be allotted another site to earn their livelihood. They also asked the council official to return their goods that were confiscated during the drive.

The shopkeepers alleged that the administration had conducted the drive early morning and they were not even given time to remove their goods.

Deepinder Singh Dhillon said the slum-dwellers and shopkeepers had been residing there for the past 20 years and they should be rehabilitated. The administration should initiate the process soon, he added.

Executive Officer Paraminder Singh Sarao stated that he had asked the shopkeepers and slum-dwellers to submit their application regarding the allotment of sites to him. He added that he would forward their request to the higher authorities.



Fresh survey of BPL card holders begins
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 26
A fresh survey of below poverty line (BPL) card holders has been started in the district. A total of 13,514 families possess BPL cards in rural areas of Pinjore, Morni, Barwala and Raipur Rani blocks of the district, while 13,181 BPL card holders are living in urban areas of Panchkula, Kalka and Pinjore. For having a BPL card in a rural area one should not own a pucca house or automobiles. Those living in urban areas should not have income more than Rs 443.63 per head every month.

The survey was started in rural areas on September 16 under the supervision of cluster supervisors and block supervisors. The survey in urban areas, however, is to be started on September 29 which is likely to be completed by next month.



sectors 76 to 80
Draw of lots put off
Tribune News Service

Mohali, September 26
The Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA) has postponed the draw of lots for the oustees of Sectors 76 to 80 to legal encumbrances.

Estate Officer Balbir Singh said the draw scheduled for September 27 had been postponed and the last date to apply had also been extended till October 31, 2011. The draw had been cancelled in light of an interim order passed by the Supreme Court wherein GMADA and the state government had been asked to examine a representation given by land owners of 102 acres in Sectors 76 to 80. The oustees have been demanding that the state government should return 75 per cent of their land after imposing the development charges as had been done in case of the Judges society in Sector 77.



Safai karamcharis vent ire 
Tribune News Service

Zirakpur, September 26
Employees engaged in door-to-door garbage collection complained to the Zirakpur municipal council that the garbage collection point was allegedly encroached upon by the jeep union.

Employees alleged that they had asked the union members to remove their vehicles from the site but they did not do so and started abusing them.

They left their rehris loaded with garbage on the spot and immediately informed the matter to the council officials.

The executive officer directed officials to inspect the site.



‘Back to work’, lobby is Josan’s office
Sumedha Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 26
Undeterred by the management filing a police complaint against him for trespass, BC Josan reached the DAV College at Sector 10 here yet again today.

He discharged his duties as principal from the lobby outside the principal’s office, locked by the management committee.

Claiming to have taken his first step towards ‘a thousand-mile journey’, he spent the day meeting students and of officials who, according to him, came to welcome him back.

His ‘return’ made the college environs tense as both the staff and students were caught between the management, which refused to accept the revocation of his suspension and Josan, who claimed to have returned as principal.

The moment Josan reached the college, the staff either retreated to their offices or classrooms.

Barring a few students and some non-teaching staff, they avoided visiting the administrative block, lest they be seen with Josan.

“It is we teachers who have endured the worst in this episode. We do not know where to pitch our loyalties,” said a senior teacher.

“It may not be official, but Josan is an offender, according to the management. No teacher can afford to be seen with him. We avoided the administrative block,” the teacher added.

While none from the management was willing to comment, sources said teachers had been directed not to get official work done from Josan and follow the procedure of principal Shashi Gupta before proceeding on medical leave.

The Panjab University registrar, in exercise of his powers, directed the management the previous Saturday to revoke Josan’s extended suspension as the departmental enquiry might take time.

Even before the management received the order, Josan reached the college and submitted a joining letter.

Following this, the management lodged a complaint, accusing him of trespass, and locked the principal’s office, forcing him to stay in the lobby today.

Legal notice in offing

Sources say the management plans to serve a legal notice on Josan, claiming his joining to be illegal. They add that the directive to revoke his suspension will only be taken during a general body meeting, which will take at least 10 days.



6 HUDA showrooms, 23 cars attached
 Failure to pay compensation to Ramgarh, Madanpur landowners
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 26
Dilly-dallying by the Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) over the payment of compensation to landowners has cost the authority dearly, as a Panchkula court today ordered for the attachment of six HUDA showrooms and 23 official cars.

The order came on a petition filed by residents of Ramgarh and Madanpur, whose land had been acquired by HUDA for developing new sectors across the Ghaggar.

According to information, petitioners Ratan Singh and others had alleged that in 1992, HUDA had acquired their land to develop new sectors — 23 to 28 — but failed to pay them full compensation.

To seek compensation, they had approached the Punjab and Haryana High Court. The High Court had sent back the case to the Panchkula district court.

On February 10, the Panchkula court decided Rs 250 per sq yd along with 30 per cent as compensation to the landowners.

Besides, the court also directed HUDA to pay 9 per cent interest to the petitioners from 1992 to 2011.

However, in spite of the orders, HUDA failed to pay the compensation. The petitioners again moved court, which today passed orders to attach showrooms and cars of HUDA.

Sources said most cars attached by the court were of senior officials of HUDA.

In August, 2010, too, a court had put the HUDA headquarters in Sector 6 on sale and directed to freeze its fixed deposits lying in nine banks, besides attaching 17 official cars. However, the HUDA authorities paid the amount to escape the penalty.



Season’s first dengue case reported in tricity
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 26
The first dengue case of the season was reported in tricity today with 35-year-old Vikas of Sector 15, Panchkula, being admitted to the GMCH-32 with symptoms of the disease. While a private lab report has confirmed him to be suffering from dengue, results of the tests conducted on him at the GMCH are awaited, even though doctors say the symptoms of the disease are evident.

Dr Vipin Kaushal, medical superintendent of the hospital, said they were awaiting the serological test (diagnosis of dengue virus) report from their lab. Till then, he is under treatment.

Doctors of GMCH-32 claimed that he was showing symptoms of high fever and low platelet count and had been given platelets.

He was admitted to the hospital last night and his condition was stable. Dr Naresh, UT anti-malaria officer, said he had alerted the Panchkula health department.



market committee elections
Jolt to Bansal ahead of MC poll
 Strongman Babla, DCC chief lose; BJP emerges winner
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 26
In a setback to Union Minister for Parliamentary Affairs and Water Resources Pawan Bansal ahead of the MC elections in December, his close confidants - former Market Committee chief Devinder Singh Babla and president of the District Congress Committee (rural) Devinder Singh Lobana - lost the Market Committee elections held here today.

In fact, it was a morale booster to the BJP in the run-up to the MC elections, as the party won a majority of seats in the elections. A senior BJP leader, Des Raj Gupta, however, lost the election.

Of the nine directors elected today, six - Ramvir Bhatti, Bhajan Singh, Kulwinder Singh Kala, Dinesh Kumar Mahajan, Jujhar Singh and Subhash Chand - owe their allegiance to the saffron party, while Anand Singh and Bhin Sen have Congress affiliations. Gubaksh Singh is seen an Independent candidate.

The grain market, with a budget of crores of rupees, is an influential body and political parties try hard to control it by getting their candidate elected as its chairman.

An impressive show in the market committee elections can prove to be a morale booster for the party cadre ahead of the MC elections, said observers.

While five members are elected from the producers’ category, one is elected from the “paledars”. Also, cooperative societies elect one director, while two directors are elected from the “arhtiyas”.

Though the elections are not held on party lines, senior leaders of various political parties contest the election with a view to controlling the powerful body - which wields considerable influence on the decision making of all political parties.



Noisy scenes mar F&CC meeting
 Revocation of ban on tainted firm allegedly involved in cement scam
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 26
Heated exchanges were witnessed during today’s finance and contracts committee (F&CC) meeting of the municipal corporation on the issue of revoking the ban on a tainted company allegedly involved in the cement scam last year.

Accusing the MC Chief Engineer of misleading committee members, nominated councillor Dr AP Sanwaria said during the last F&CC meeting, the Chief Engineer had informed the committee members that the company, AK Sood Engineers, had been debarred from taking part in the tendering process of the corporation for one year and that the period expired in April. Whereas, in March, 2010, the House had unanimously decided that AK Sood Engineers and Sarvpriya Construction would be debarred from participating in the tendering process for the next five years, for their alleged involvement in the cement scam.

Congress councillor Chander Muhki Sharma questioned if the information had been tabled in the House after changing the time period of debarring the company.

Accepting the fact, MC Commissioner Prerna Puri said the information was not tabled in the House and the decision was taken at former MC Commissioner level.

The committee members demanded that the decision should have been tabled in the House for members’ opinion on whether the company’s ban should be revoked within one year or not.

While the committee had approved the reserve price of Rs 12.50 lakh for auctioning of the the exhibition ground of Sector 34, the authorities again proposed the reserve price of Rs 10 lakh fixed last year.

Dr Sanwaria objected to this and asked the authorities to raise the price.

Besides, the committee approved the development of green belt at Kajheri
village and Sector 52; laying paver blocks in front of houses in Sector 30 A; setting up a mini bus stand at Maloya village; and annual maintenance contract for hydraulic platform-cum-turntable ladders stationed at the fire stations at Mani Majra and Sector 17.



CAT notice to Centre, admn
 Denial of promotion to 1,000 cops
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 26
The alleged denial of promotions to over 1,000 constables of the Chandigarh Police on the pretext of their inability to clear the rigorous B-1 test today came under the scanner of the Chandigarh Bench of the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT).

Taking cognizance of an application filed by lawyer Arvind Thakur, challenging “outdated” provision in the Punjab Police Rules, 1934, as extended to Chandigarh holding up the promotions of the constables for several years now, CAT issued notice to the Central government and the UT administration for October 13.

Under Rule 13.7, the constables currently in the age group of 45-50 years are expected to clear the B-1 test. This, despite the fact that the central as well as the Punjab and Haryana governments have not made these tests mandatory for promotion of police personnel.

In his application, Thakur demanded CAT’s intervention so that deserving constables could be promoted without undergoing the promotion tests, under Rule 13.7 of the Punjab Police Rules, 1934.

Even a communication from the Ministry of Home Affairs to the Adviser to the UT Administrator on April 8, had said: “The UT administration has, in the past, exercising powers conferred by sub-section (3) of Section 46 of the Police Act, 1861, and sub-section (1) of Section 80 of the Punjab Police Act, 2007, issued amendments to the Punjab Police Rules, 1934. Accordingly, the Chandigarh administration may take appropriate action at their end under relevant rules/Acts.”

Earlier, in an application under the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993, and Articles 20 and 21 of the Constitution to the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), Global Human Rights Council (GHRC) demanded commission’s intervention so that deserving constables could be promoted without undergoing promotion tests, under Rule 13.7 of the Punjab Police Rules, 1934.



CSIR’s 49th foundation day observed 

Chandigarh, September 26
The Central Scientific Instruments Organisation (CSIO) commemorated the 49th foundation day of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) here today.

Speaking on the occasion, KP Singh, additional general manager, Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, Bangalore, highlighted the design and developments of many advanced technologies related to strategic sector, particularly the contribution made by the CSIR laboratories in diverse areas. Emphasising upon the significance of the head-up display developed by the CSIO for the Light Combat Aircraft and HJT trainer as compared to the imported technology, he elaborated on the next generation technologies related to fighter aircrafts.

Suresh N, general manager, Bharat Electronics Limited, Panchkula, delved upon the development and production of the head-up display and the scope of this system for being integrated in various combat aircrafts. He also said a new version of the head-up display was being developed that incorporated many advanced features.

Earlier, Dr Pawan Kapur, Director, CSIO, highlighted the aims and goals of the CSIR and its contribution in the field of science and technology. He also talked about various incentives and awards schemes of the CSIR for young scientists and schoolchildren. Kapur also gave an overview of the ongoing projects and future plans of the laboratory. A quiz competition for the CSIO staff and competitions for children were also organised. — TNS



Chandigarh scan
Enrolment camp

Smart ration card enrolment camp will end on September 30. Remaining registered APL/BPL/AAY beneficiaries, whose names are mentioned in the lists, have been asked to get enroll before September 30. The enrolment list is available at the fair price shops and at venues also. The head of the family and at least two members from each family, who are above 12 years of age, shall be present at the smart card enrolment camp. The names of the remaining members, who do not turn up at the camp, will not be deleted. During the camp, the biometrics and photographs of the family members will be captured.


CK Jerath has unanimously been elected president and Harjinder Pal Singh honorary secretary of the Chandigarh Amateur Boxing Association for a four-year term.

Founder’s day

Children of St Xavier’s School rocked with music and dance on the founder’s day celebrations, a press release said here on Monday. Students of classes XI and XII brought forward the enigma and charm of India through their dances of different states. Chairman Andrew J Gosain and principal Mervin West lauded the efforts put in by teachers and students, specially their innovations.

Student congress

The Chandigarh-Panchkula Chapter of ICWAI organised the student congress-2011 at Bhartiya Vidya Bhawan, Sector 27, a press release said here on Monday. At least 160 students of ICWAI of the Chandigarh Chapter took part and gave their presentation on various topics related to cost accountancy. Rakesh Bhalla, vice-chairman, Northern Regional Council of ICWAI, Delhi, inaugurated the congress. Students who cleared their ICWAI exams in first attempt were awarded cash prizes by the chapter.

March for drug-free city

Students of various schools, colleges and university participated in a “march for drug-free Chandigarh”, organised on Sunday to raise their voices against the menace of drug abuse.

Food fest

CITCO has organised a special South Indian food festival with an array of South Indian dishes at reasonable rates coinciding with the World Tourism Week celebrations from September 25 to October 1. Tourists and visitors shall also be enthralled with entertainment and cultural activities from 6 pm onwards during the weeklong celebrations.

Alumni meet

The seventh alumni meet of Sacred Heart Ex-Students Club was held on September 24. Around 75 alumni, most of them holding distinguished key positions today, gathered to participate in the event titled “Rendezvous”.

2,100 examined at medical camp

A free medical check-up camp was organised in the Central Park, Phase 3B1, by Harman Preet Singh Prince, former senior vice-president of MC. As many as 2,100 patients were examined by doctors from the field of allopathy, homoeopathy, ayurvedic and alternative therapies, including consultation by skin specialists, heart specialists, eye specialists, gynaecology specialists. Free medicines were also given to patients. NK Sharma, chairman district planning board, was the chief guest.

Blueprint finalised

The Punjab Public Library Act committee finalised a blueprint of the Act at a meeting held under the chairmanship of Dr Dalbir Singh Dhillon here on Monday. Dr Dhillon said sanctity of the word was to be restored in Punjab so that it might rise to the glory it enjoyed since times immemorial. — Tribune Reporters



Education notes
Fresher’s party

Students of the University Institute of Hotel Management and Tourism organised a cultural programme to welcome freshers. Prof Deepak Kapoor, dean, faculty of business management and commerce, was chief guest. Abhishek Makkar of BSc (HHA) was declared Mr Fresher, Balpreet Bajwa of BSc (tourism) Miss Fresher, Supreet of BSc (HHA) Miss Elegant and Manraj Bali Mr Charming.

Talent hunt

A talent hunt was organised at the Desh Bhagat College of Education. The function was hosted by the fresh batch of BEd students. The function started with “Saraswati Vandana”, which was followed by items like skit, play, dance, songs and speeches. The results were in rangoli, Savita, Jyoti and Charanpreet Kaur bagged top three positions; in mehandi, Ramandeep Kaur, Nidhi and Nikita won laurels; in embroidery, Rani, Kamaljit and Satveer Kaur hogged the limelight; in essay writing, Ravinder Kaur, Satwinder Kaur and Bimal Kaur secured first three positions, while in printing, Preetpal Kaur and Bikramjit Kaur came first and second, respectively.

Session begins

The academic session began at the Aryans College of Education at Nepra village, Banur, Chandigarh- Patiala highway. Dr Anshu Kataria, chairman Aryans Group of Colleges, inaugurated the second academic session. Special orientation programme was organised. — TNS



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