C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


PCA rap for former SHO, SI
Recommends suspension for inaction in theft case
Aneesha Sareen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
In the first order passed this year, the Police Complaint Authority (PCA) has recommended the suspension of a former SHO of the Sector 34 police station, Inspector Udey Pal Singh, and a Sub-Inspector (SI)Rohtash Yadav for inaction in a complaint of theft of car keys of a GMCH doctor. The former SHO is also in the dock for preparing a false report while giving a reply to the complainant through the RTI. The police officials have been pulled up for sitting on a complaint, not registering an FIR and brushing off the inquiry.

This is the third order passed against Inspector Udey Pal Singh for negligence by the PCA since its inception in 2010. The order stated that the inquiry was not conducted in a fair manner. “The inquiry was brushed aside on the ground that a counter complaint was filed against him. No FIR was registered and no statements were recorded. The police officer kept sitting on the complaint, doing absolutely nothing for seven months and then quietly filed it. There was no inquiry at all,” it read.

“Dr Jagdish Chander underwent a lot of humiliation and frustration at his official and personal levels due to the inaction on his complaint. Further, the complaint of chain snatching is pending against him for no reason,” said Justice NK Agrawal, chairman of the PCA.

“The SHO, in a hasty, casual and irresponsible manner, conveyed to the Central Public Information Officer that no such entry existed while entries do exist in the register of the police station. Inspector Udey Pal Singh and Sub-Inspector Rohtash Yadav deserve strict punishment and are ordered to be placed under suspension,” the order further states.

Dr Chander had told the police that he had purchased a Honda City car and used to keep its keys on a table in his office. His stenographer, Harpreet Singh, had access to the room.

In September 2010, the doctor found the keys missing. He made enquiries from his staff and doubted the version of the stenographer, who did not come for work the 
next day.

He said he had given adverse remarks in the annual confidential report of the stenographer and he had stolen the keys to harass him. The doctor lodged a report with the Sector 34 police station and also complained to the Director, GMCH. An inquiry was then marked to Sub-Inspector Rohtash Yadav.

The police officials told the doctor that Harpreet Singh had also lodged a complaint against him, alleging that he had snatched Harpreet’s gold chain worth Rs 20,000 in the lift. After three 
weeks, the keys of the car were found hanging from a tree.

Stringent orders

  • Recommended suspension of Inspector Malkiat Singh, SHO, Industrial Area police station, for inaction in a rape case
  • Order against Rajesh Shukla, SHO, Manimajra police station, for harassing a woman by detaining her at the police station at night
  • Recommended action against former SHO Anokh Singh for harassing a complainant in a property dispute case
  • Action against SHO (Sector 31) Jaspal Singh for harassing a complainant
  • Order against the then SHO, Udey Pal Singh, for gross abuse of power. Action also recommended against him for negligence in Khushpreet case

(Orders issued in 2010; inquiries pending with police)



metro project
FS pulls up engg dept, MC for laxity
Wants data of underground services in two weeks flat
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
Pointing out that the exercise on the over a decade-old metro project in the city was null and void in the absence of any comprehensive data for the implementing agency, the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC), Finance Secretary VK Singh today did some hard talking with officials, demanding a single digital map of various underground utilities at the earliest.

Officials of the Administration wings concerned and the Municipal Corporation (MC) were at their wits’ end in explaining the delay in getting the data of underground services to date. VK Singh said no plans could be formulated without data and there was no effective data so far.

It was pointed out that departments of the Administration and the MC were working in different directions and were preparing separate maps for underground services like sewerage lines, water pipes, electricity wires, tertiary water system and telephone cables. The Finance Secretary directed the engineering department and the MC to coordinate and prepare a single digital map to help the DMRC understand the map in a better way.

The various wings had to submit the detailed report in December last year.

Also, a topographical survey for the 33-km route is going on. The report will also be a part of the detailed project report (DPR).

Initially, six corridors were recommended by RITES, a government enterprise that offers consultancy and project management services in the transport infrastructure sector. But later, the DMRC proposed two routes for the project.

The metro will be underground within the sectoral grid of Chandigarh. Outside the grid, it will be elevated. The metro stations will be constructed every 1 km where it will be underground and 1.3 km where it will be elevated.

Tall order

UT Finance Secretary VK Singh has issued directions to the MC to complete the data of underground services and submit a report within two weeks. Sources, however, revealed that the MC did not have a complete record of its underground services and would not be able to supply the data so fast.



Food court to come up at PGI
Anuja Jaiswal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
Perhaps taking a cue from the swank “five-star” private hospitals in various metros, the region’s premier tertiary care hospital, the PGI is all set to establish a food court to provide an array of quality eatables.

While most big private hospitals in Delhi and Mumbai have small food courts, with popular restaurant chains like Café Coffee Day and Subway operational in their reception areas, the PGI, to start with, has invited proposals only from public sector undertakings, CITCO and Indian Railways Catering Tourism Corporation (IRCTC). If the food court is a success, the hospital authorities may also invite private restaurant operators to open shop.

According to officials privy to the proposal, the idea is to provide quality and variety in food. All types of cuisines, including South Indian, Chinese and Indian will be available. “We would like to have a setup similar to the one at Sukhna Lake. Later, we can even have multi-national chains and Hot Millions,” said an official. However, he said the hospital would not promote junk food.

Sources said both CITCO and IRCTC had submitted their proposals and after necessary approval, the food court may be functional within a month. It would be opened at the Trauma Centre as adequate space was available there, the sources said.

At present, the PGI has six canteens, including two exclusively for the faculty. Of these, three are being run on contract basis at the New OPD, the Advanced Paediatric Centre and the Advanced Cardiac Centre.



kidney scam
Lucknow police seizes hospital records
Tribune News Service

Mohali, January 6
Investigations in the human organ trafficking case busted by the Lucknow police has revealed that members of the gang were active at renal transplant centres of different government hospitals in the north, including the PGI, while looking for gullible patients suffering from renal failure. At the same time, addicts and those in need for money were lured to donate their kidneys.

Four persons — Harishankar Maurya, Dilip Nigam, Vinod Dubey and Harish Prajapati — are already in police custody for luring innocent people and bringing them to private hospitals to sell their kidneys.

To carry forward the investigation, a five-member team of the Lucknow police led by DSP Sanjay Kumar today took in its custody the renal transplant record of Surya Kidney Centre, Sector 69, here. It could not be confirmed if the team visited Silver Oaks Hospital.

While the DSP refused to comment, sources said the team had brought two of the accused along with it to verify their confessional statements. The DIG, Lucknow, DK Thakur, said the team had been sent to verify certain documents. “It would be premature to comment at this stage. When required, we will take the help of the Mohali police,” he said.

Meanwhile, the police is still going through the contents of the inquiry report submitted by the Civil Surgeon. The Civil Surgeon has recommended verification of the authorisation documents of other states. While the SIT constituted by the Mohali police is still to make a headway in the case, the special team of the Lucknow police visited Mohali for the second time to collect certain documents, but did not inform its Mohali counterpart.

It commented that as far the record was concerned, the Civil Surgeon had pointed out that both the hospitals had complied with the provisions of the Transplantation of Human Organ Act, 1994; Transplantation of Human Organs Rules, 1995; and various instructions of the Union and state governments.


Higher senior grade for 16 PGI profs
Committee to meet on Jan 24; those selected not to gain much
Anuja Jaiswal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
After a gap of four years, 16 professors with the PGI will be promoted to the higher senior grade. Approval is likely to be accorded at the standing selection committee meeting, scheduled for January 24.

According to sources, the decision is an implementation of the recommendation of the Sixth Pay Commission, which has prescribed that 40 per cent professors be in the grade of senior scale.

At present, there are 13 professors in this category. After approval for 16 more, the number will go up to 29. Professors will be selected on the basis of seniority and achievements, both in academics and research.

According to sources, the pay scale of a professor is from Rs 37,400 to Rs 67,000, along with grade pay of Rs 10,500. For a professor in senior scale, the pay scale is from Rs 67,000 to Rs 79,000, but without grade pay.

A senior faculty member, also getting the senior scale, said those who would selected would not benefit much as most of them had already reached that scale.

He said, “Our maximum scale is Rs 85,000 and we can not exceed it as it is the secretary level scale. Most of the professors have already reached the senior scale as they have been getting increments annually.”

The PGI authorities had taken approval from the Election Commission to go ahead with the proposal of promoting 16 professors to the higher grade.

The standing selection committee was also likely conduct interviews for the posts of systems analyst, library information officer and nursing superintendent.



Hailstorm hits Panchkula
Chilly winds replace fog in tricity
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
While fog started subsiding in the tricity by this evening, chilly winds sweeping the region forced many residents to stay indoors.

Strong winds, accompanied by hail, was reported from parts of Panchkula in the evening. Weathermen predicted the conditions to continue till tomorrow.

With the improvement in weather conditions, a majority of flights took off after 1 pm. Most trains were also running on schedule. The Howrah-Kalka Express, late by five hours, arrived at 8 am.

The Lucknow-Chandigarh Express, which was delayed by two hours due to fog, reached the city at 12 noon. The Delhi-Kal ka Himalayan Queen, late by 25 minutes, arrived at 10:50 am.



Kidnapper did it alone
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 6
Ravinder Singh Gill of Kansal village, the alleged kidnapper of three children Jiya, Arnav and Mehak is believed to have planned and committed all three crimes on his own.

Gill was arrested on December 30.

Sources in the Panchkula police said first of all, the accused used to steal a car to recce the targeted area. After changing the number plate of the car, he used to look for children belonging to affluent families. After finding his target, he used to get the phone number of neighbours through the BSNL inquiry so that the ransom call could be made to the family through 
that number.

As he was alone, he never kept his captives for long, which is why Jiya and Arnav, who were kidnapped on October 20, 2009, and October 6, 2010, from outside their house in Panchkula were released by him on the very next day after receiving the ransom. Similarly, Mehak, kidnapped on February 24 last year from Mohali, was also released on February 25.

The strategy of receiving the ransom was also chalked out subtly, said the sources.

Gill would call the victim’s relatives on a road and ask them to move further and cover some more distance. Then he would ask them to take a U-turn to ensure that they were not accompanied by the police.

He would then ask them to keep the money along the road and later after collecting it he would flee.



Suspension of three policemen revoked

Chandigarh, January 6
The suspension of three UT police’s sub-inspectors, in charge of police posts was revoked today after they tendered a written apology to UT SSP Naunihal Singh. The three were then let off with a warning.

The three were suspended yesterday after they were found absent from their respective locations during a drive to check police vigilance in the wake of rising cases of snatching and theft here today. Senior police officials had suspended them during a surprise check. Inspector Jaswinder Kaur, in charge of the Sector 43 police post, Sub-Inspector Jaspal, in charge of the Sector 61 police post, and Sub-Inspector Jaiveer, in charge of the Bapu Dham post, were suspended and transferred to the police lines. They were summoned to the police headquarters today for a hearing when they admitted their mistake and apologised in writing. — TNS



Louis Braille day
‘Physically challenged must be made self-reliant’
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 6
The Haryana government will spare no efforts in providing an honourable place in the society to all physically challenged persons. This was stated by Jaivir, Singh Chief Parliamentary Secretary, Social Justice and Empowerment, here today. He was addressing the 203rd birth anniversary celebrations of Louise Braille organised by the National Handicapped Welfare Council, Haryana.

It will be our endeavour to implement the Disablity Act.1995, in which physically challenged persons should be included in different boards, corporations and committees.

President of the council, Keshav Chander Wadhawan, disclosed that physically challenged persons were being trained at the National Institute for the Disabled, Panchkula, to become self-reliant.



Posters of SAD candidates seized

Mohali, January 6
A flying squad team of Mohali today seized hundreds of posters of SAD candidates from Mohali, Balwant Singh Ramoowlai and SAD candidate from Kharar, Ujagar Singh Wadali being published at Jagdeep Publishing House in the Industrial Area here.

The posters were being published more than the prescribed limit by the Election Commission and were in violation of the Election Commission guidelines. —TNS



Drug Menace
No govt-run rehabilitation centre for drug addicts
This has led to a large number of relapse cases
Kulwinder Sangha

Mohali, January 6
How serious the state government is about tackling the rising drug menace is evident from the fact that there is not a single government-run rehabilitation centre for patients in the district leading to a large number of relapse cases.

According to health officials, at present there are seven private licensed drug rehabilitation centres in the district. Another one is being run by the Red Cross Society at Kharar. But the officials say these have not been able to provide proper rehabilitation facilities to patients.

All this has turned the battle against the drug problem in the district still more difficult, as the efforts of the Substance Use Disorder Treatment Centre set up at the local Civil Hospital are going in vain. Nearly 70 per cent of those undergoing treatment at this centre suffer relapse, as they go back to the same environment in the absence of adequate family support and a proper rehabilitation centre.

Patients treated at the hospital are generally discharged in about a month’s time. The treatment centre goes in for a detoxification regime and controls the withdrawal symptoms. This period is inadequate for the patient’s recovery, as at least six to nine months are needed, including a stay at a well-equipped rehabilitation centre, for the patient to join the social mainstream.

The treatment centre at the hospital is itself handicapped as it lacks trained staff members for round-the-clock duty and a counsellor. At present, the centre has two designated staff nurses for morning and evening duties with pharmacists coming on a rotation basis for night duty.

The centre had nine inmates on January 6 . Normally, there are eight to 12 inmates, mostly belonging to urban slums and villages. Sometimes, the patients at the centre include police personnel sent from battalions for treatment.

Dr Satish Thapar, programme officer, Mental Health, Punjab, said that education of the patient, community and the vulnerable group comprising adolescents and unemployed persons was very important. “We have to admit that we are facing an enormous problem in which parents and society can play a major role,” he added.

Thapar said that 23 counsellors were being employed by the government in the state. Applications had been called in this regard but the process would be completed after the code of conduct enforced in connection with the Assembly elections in Punjab was lifted. Eighty more nurses will also be employed for running such centres. After the new appointments are made the local treatment centre will be given a counsellor, four staff nurses, two safai sewaks and security guards.



Suffering for no fault of theirs
No regular principal for eight govt colleges since 2002
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
Of the nine government colleges in the city, only the Postgraduate Government College, Sector 11, has a regular principal.

The other eight are being run by the seniormost professors there, officiating as principals, since 2002.

These are Postgraduate Government College for Girls, Sector 11; Postgraduate Government College for Girls, Sector 42; Government College, Sector 46; Government College of Education, Sector 20; Government Home Science College, Sector 10; Government College of Yoga Education and Health, Sector 23; Government College of Arts, Sector 10; and Government College of Commerce and Business Administration, Sector 42.

A senior college professor said a direct repercussion was that colleges could not apply for Potential for Excellence status from the University Grants Commission or for innovative courses.

“Principals cannot be a part of the academic body of the university Senate. Seats are reserved in the principals’ constituency. With no regular principal, they cannot contest Senate elections,” the professor said.

A senior Administration official said a stay on appointments had been ordered by the high court.

“A recent Supreme Court judgement on the appointment of regular principals is being considered by the Administration. Based on it, the process of appointments is expected to start soon,” the official said.



Stray cattle menace
Plan of MC to shift dairies hits roadblock
File on land acquisition sent back
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 6
The stray cattle menace in the city is likely to continue for some more time as the plan of the Muncipal Corporation to shift dairies from the town has hit a roadblock.

A file sent by the authorities here for the notification on acquiring land in a nearby village for the purpose has been sent back by the Department of Local Urban Bodies for few clarifications.

Now with this, the plan of the Municipal Corporation to make the town stray cattle free is bound to get delayed further.

The plan to shift the dairies from the town to the nearby Kaami village in fact was old as in 2006 when then local MLA and Deputy Chief Minister Chander Mohan took initiative to rehabilitate the dairy owners at a suitable place outside the town. A total of 54 acre of land was earmarked at Kaami village and a request in this regard was sent to the Department Of Local Urban Bodies. The scheme, however, got delayed for one reason or another and could not be fulfilled.

It was again in November last that following the directions from the local court for the local authorities to take effective measures to tackle stay cattle menace, a proposal was sent to acquire the land for setting up of dairies. A Panchkula-based couple, Pankaj and Sangeeta Chandgothia, had filed an application in the local court submitting that stray cattle were often found sitting or moving in the middle of busy roads, leading to accidents.

Municipal Corporation executive official KK Jain when contacted confirmed that a proposal in this regard sent to the department of local urban authorities had been sent back to him for some clarifications.

All the queries had been answered and the file was again presented before the department after which it would be sent to the state government for consideration, he added.



Tricity scan

Test for learner’s driver’s licence

The computerised test for learner’s driver’s licence will be conducted only at the office of the Registering and Licensing Authority in Sector 17 from Saturday. It will be held from 9 am to 1 pm on weekdays and from 10 am to 1 pm on Saturdays. Applicants will be required to attempt 20 questions and those who get at least 16 correct will be declared successful. The time limit for each question will be one minute.

Managing stress

Swami Asimanand Lingam delivered a lecture on stress management at the State Institute of Education, Sector 32, on Friday. He said relaxation responses and stress management techniques were inbuilt response systems of the body, like stress reactions. He also said knotted nerves, tightened muscles and an exhausted mind craved for a loosener.

Cleanliness drive

A cleanliness drive and awareness campaign were organised by the sanitation wing of the municipal corporation at Colony No. 4 on Friday. Twenty additional ‘safai karamcharis’ were deployed in small groups under the supervision of the senior inspectorate staff for getting public places and open spaces swept.

New official takes charge

Gulab Singh took charge as legal remembrancer of the UT Administration on Friday, replacing Sant Prakash, who had recently been transferred to Hisar.

Jerseys given

The Desh Bhagat Group of Institutes distributed woollen jerseys among 113 needy and poor students of the government high and elementary schools at Jayanti Majri on Friday.

‘Nanhi Chhaan’

Saplings were displayed at the ‘Nanhi Chhaan’ counter of the Fortis Hospital’s outpatient department on Friday. These saplings were given to patients and attendants having girl children. Senior doctors and administrative staff planted saplings.

— Tribune reporters



non-rte seats
Schools free to carve own admission criteria, says UT Admn
Sibling and alumni quota to get share in majority of schools
Sumedha Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
Following an year-long insistence on a draw of lots for random selection of students for 75 per cent non-RTE-reserved seats in schools, the UT Administration has finally woken up to schools’ autonomy in deciding admission criteria. Ending the confusion over nursery admissions, UT Education Secretary VK Singh has given the green signal to transparent and justified categorisation of seats.

“MHRD guidelines allow schools to have their own criteria and exercise categorisation, if required. We have followed these guidelines, but schools have ensured that they will be justified in categorisation and general students will get optimum opportunities. They will also adhere to a common schedule of declaration of results and submission of fee,” he said.

The decision facilitated many schools to set seats aside for alumni’s, teachers’ and single parents’ children and current students’ siblings in the point system. These schools would conduct admission after January 15 and declare results and collect fee in the last week of January.

“There is nothing new in it. We have been having these categories since inception. We are maintaining the spirit of the RTE. We will go ahead with our respective criteria, doing justice to all applicants,” said HS Mamik, president of the Independent School Association.

The MHRD guidelines were sent to the UT Administration in 2010. Since then, the education department had used these to dub categorisation as screening, barred under the RTE.

It had asked schools to use a draw of lots for admission to both RTE and non-RTE seats. The new interpretation left one wondering about the need for the controversy and stalling admissions, causing anxiety to hundreds of parents.

Draw of lots on Jan 9

The draw of lots for convent schools will be conducted on January 9. ST. John’s School, Sector 26, and Carmel Convent, Sector 9, have declared a a holiday on January 9 and 10 on account of bad weather. The draw of lots will commence as per the schedule.



graft case
CBI files chargesheet against two PU officials
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
After obtaining the prosecution sanction from Panjab University, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) today filed a detailed chargesheet against two Panjab University officials in a corruption case, which dates back to July 2010.

Sleuths of the CBI filed a chargesheet in the special CBI court against former Executive Engineer Satish Padam and sub-divisional officer Nand Lal Kaushal.

Inquiries revealed that after the arrest of both accused, PU was sitting over the prosecution sanction since July 2010. It was at a recent Senate meeting in December when the PU granted prosecution sanction to the CBI.

A team of the anti-corruption branch of the CBI had raided the engineer’s office on the PU campus and had caught him accepting a bribe of Rs 32,000 from Pardeep Kumar, a private contractor, for clearing his future bills. Padam’s accomplice Nand Lal Kaushal was also booked in the case, registered under the Prevention of Corruption Act.

Pardeep Kumar in his complaint to the CBI had alleged that the duo had demanded illegal gratification from him for the payment he had already made. He had been carrying out some civil work at the university.

He had already received a payment of Rs 16 lakh from the university recently. The CBI team had set up a trap on receipt of the complaint and later arrested the accused.



New academic session begins at PGI today
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 6
Dr N Sathyamurthy, director, Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER), Mohali (Punjab), will inaugurate the new academic session at Bhargava Auditorium, PGI, tomorrow.

He will speak on “Dedicating Yourself to a Cause: A Chemist’s Perspective”.

The Institute’s academic session begins on January 7, with 104 students joining MD/MS course in anaesthesia, medicine, nuclear medicine, gynaecology, pediatrics, psychiatry, orthosurgery, radio-diagnosis, general surgery, microbiology and pathology.

Forty-seven students have joined the DM/Mch in cardiology, gastroenterology, nephrology, neurology and cardiovascular surgery, neurosurgery, paediatric surgery, plastic surgery, urology and surgical gastroenterology. Fifteen students will begin their PhD, four students have joined house job, five MSc MLT and one MHA.



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