C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


National School Games: Chandigarh team assaults Kerala players during match
Injured admitted to Government Multi-Speciality Hospital in Sector 16; Referee declared the match, in which the Kerala team was leading, a draw
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 10
A semi-final match during the 57th National School Games that was being held at DAV Senior Secondary School in Sector 8 turned violent when 10 players of the Kerala handball team were assaulted by players of the rival Chandigarh team here today.

All players were taken to the Government Multi-Speciality Hospital in Sector 16 only when they informed their community members about the violence. The sports officials acted as mute spectators even as members of the Kerala team were being thrashed with bats, wickets and hockey sticks during the match.

The scuffle began when the Kerala team was leading with four points. The injured players alleged that their team was leading, but the match referee declared the match as draw and said that both teams had secured 13 points each. It was alleged that as the Kerala team players made queries from the referee, players of the Chandigarh team attacked them, resulting in injuries to Kerala players.

The injured included 10 players and two coaches of Kerala School Handball team. The scuffle lasted for some time, following which the team members were sent to their camp residence in Government Model Senior secondary School in Sector 26 in a bus. The manager of the Kerala team Shiabin informed their relatives in Kerala, following which the Kerala Sabha in Chandigarh was informed. It was only then that the police was called and the injured players were taken to the Government Multi-Speciality Hospital, Sector 16. Their X-ray examination was conducted and some of them sustained sprains on their arms and legs.

The injured included Kerala team captain Deljo David, vice-captain Vishnu Prasad and others, besides two coaches Rajiv and Sashi.

The police said the medical examination of the victims was being conducted. UT Home Secretary Anil Kumar also reached the hospital. A case will be registered only after legal opinion.

Officials mute spectators

The injured Kerala players were taken to the Government Multi-Speciality Hospital in Sector 16 only when they informed their community members about the violence. The sports officials acted as mute spectators even as members of the Kerala team were being thrashed with bats, wickets and hockey sticks during the match.

Match today

In a late-night development, the sport authorities announced that the match between the two teams would be played again on Wednesday at 9 am.



Biggest-ever haul of stolen vehicles
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 10
The UT police today made its largest-ever seizure of stolen vehicles by recovering 58 vehicles (mostly Boleros and SUVs) and bikes of different makes from six members of an inter-state gang.

The value of the stolen vehicles is said to be Rs 4 crore. The police has identified only 12 of the recovered cars stolen from the tricity and districts of Haryana and attempts are on to identify the rest and trace their actual owners.

The gang was active in Chandigarh, Delhi, Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan, UP and Uttarakhand over the past many years, with many of its members arrested time and again by the police of various states.

One of the gang members, Bhim Pattan, has over 100 cases registered against him and confessed to the police that he used to target the cars while he was to appear in courts in various cases registered against him.

A team headed by DSP Roshan Lal comprising Inspector Ranjit Singh Dhillon and Sub Inspector Rajdeep Singh got the lead on December 24 with the arrest of one of its members, Amit Kumar, a resident of Rohtak. He was arrested in a case of fake number plates and his sustained interrogation led the police to crack the gang.

The police then arrested four more persons, identified as Bhim Pattan, Dharam Pal, Suresh Kumar, alias Nintu, and Sunil Kumar. The police then arrested gang member Harvinder Singh, alias Laddi, a resident of Kaithal district in Haryana, and a stolen Maruti Zen was recovered from their possession. Their accomplices, Rambir of Haryana and Paresh of Nagaland, are absconding.

Certain cars were recovered from certain sarpanches in Haryana who, in their ignorance, had purchased the stolen cars.

Accused Dharam Pal's daughter Olympic player: The daughter of an accused Dharam Pal participated in the handball competition in the Beijing Olympics, while his second daughter is an airhostess. His son is doing civil engineering. He is involved in crime since 1995 and faced more than 97 cases for this. He has his own gang, with whom he committed the crime whenever Bhim and other accused Sunil were in jail. Out of the other accused, Amit Kumar, is a postgraduate.

Modus operandi: They used to steal the vehicles and then punch the new engine number and chassis number on the stolen vehicles. Thereafter, they used to prepare forged registration certificate, insurance certificate or used to get the vehicles registered by preparing forged sale letters. While punching engine number and chassis number on the stolen vehicle, the accused person would always keep in mind the series. Interestingly, the gang members stole the vehicles on the date when they used to appear before courts for hearing of their cases. They used to sell it off to laymen through their middlemen in Nagaland and Nepal. The police has recovered an L-key, ignition sockets, punching kit, fake engine and chassis number plates, maker of fake engine number, chassis number plates, paint spray, blank insurance cover notes and sale letters from their possession.

Recovered vehicles: The recovered vehicles include a number of sports utility vehicles (SUVs) and high-segment cars comprising 21 Boleros, four Tata Trucks, one JCB machine, one Pajero, one Honda Civic, two Toyota Innovas, two Scorpios, two Tata Safaris, one Chevrolet Tavera, six Hyundai Vernas, one Maruti Swift, one Tata Indigo, one Maruti Zen, three Hyundais, two Mahindra Jeep, one Tata Indica, one Hyundai Accent, two Maruti Altos, one Hyundai Getz, one UVA(Chevrolet), one Tata Ace (loading tempo), Kinetic Nova (scooter), Bajaj Pulsar (motorcycle, Kinetic Honda scooter. These vehicles have been recovered from the purchasers of the stolen cars, the police said.

The police is also examining the role of the employees of different registration authorities and some agencies (dealers) into the cases of tampering of chassis and engine numbers.

The registration certificates prepared with forged sale letters, engine and chassis number will be deleted from the record of the registration authorities concerned after proper verification.

Main accused opened Bolero in 90 seconds

The prime accused Bhim Pattan demonstrated to the police the swiftness with which he opened the locks of Bolero jeeps. The entire operation of opening the lock with a scale, an L-key and inserting an ignition socket takes a little over one minute for him. However, cars with central locking and gear locks were not easy to unlock for him and old cars were on his priority list, said the police.

‘Son selected in Delhi Police’

Prime accused Bhim Pattan’s son was selected as a sub-inspector in the Delhi Police recently, but is yet to join, as a writ petition is pending against him owing to his father's criminal past. Pattan's daughter is pursuing LLB at his hometown in Hisar. His second son has cleared state eligibility test for the post of teacher. Bhim Pattan (46) is the kingpin of the vehicle-lifters and is involved in crime since 1991. He has more than 100 cases registered against him so far. He has 70 gang members working under him who are wanted by the police of various states. He used to steal cars while appearing before courts of various states. "Stealing vehicles is a business for him, he has no remorse and still says he will take to the crime again after getting released," said an investigating officer.

Hollywood parallel

Seeing the size of recovery of stolen vehicles, a top cop made a comparison of the catch with a famous Hollywood flick ‘‘Gone in 60 Seconds”, released in 2000, starring Nicholas Cage and Angelina Jolie. Cage, a master car thief, is forced to return to Los Angeles and steal 50 cars in 72 hours for a British boss



MC dismisses 2 employees
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 10
The Municipal Corporation here today dismissed its two employees, Suraj Bhan, senior assistant at the Manimajra tax branch, and Sulakshan Goel, a junior engineer, as they have been convicted in bribery cases. MC Commissioner Prerna Puri issued the orders of their dismissal.

The Supreme Court had recently issued directions to the government that all those employees who were convicted in any case should be removed from their post. Complying with these orders, the MC Commissioner dismissed both employees.

Suraj Bhan was caught red-handed by a vigilance team in 2005, after which a court had convicted and fined him. Sulakshan Goel was also caught taking bribe in 2007 in Maloya, for which a lower court had convicted him. But later both joined their duties in the corporation. After the directions of the apex court, the MC authorities have dismissed them.


Sec-9 filling station raided
All is not well here, says official
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 10
Five days after the Adviser marked a vigilance inquiry into the siphoning off of fuel from the CITCO-run filling station in Sector 9, a team of officials from the vigilance cell, the weights and measures department and Bharat Petroleum swooped down on the premises this afternoon to check the reported pilferage of over 16,000 litres of fuel, both petrol and diesel.

A senior official, requesting anonymity, confirmed that substantial pilferage of petrol and diesel had been detected while checking the accounts there. The official refused to divulge the exact quantity of the fuel that was missing.

He said the figures quoted in the Chandigarh Tribune report were not too much off the mark. A report on the pilferage was carried in these columns on December 5 past year. The raiding team reached the filling station around 11:30 am and the premises remained sealed for more than three hours.

“We have checked the storage of fuel in the tanks and nozzle tests were done to verify whether customers were being cheated. A substantial shortage in both petrol and diesel have been noticed during a check of the accounts,” said the official, adding that customers had not been cheated.

The official said, “I cannot provide financial details. I can only say all is not well here. After checking properly and fixing responsibility, we will submit our report to the Superintendent of Police (Vigilance) within a week.”

On December 5, the Chandigarh Tribune reported pilferage of 8,028.28 litres of unleaded petrol, 135 litres of Speed petrol, 71.27 litres of Hi-speed diesel and 8,019 litres of diesel during the period from April 1 to October 31 past year.

The loss was worked out to be at least Rs 8.91 lakh. UT Administrator Shivraj Patil had directed the authorities concerned to take immediate action as per the law. UT Adviser KK Sharma marked a vigilance inquiry on January 5.

The pilferage followed a similar loss of petrol reported from the filling station at Sector 56 earlier. At least 18,067 litres of unleaded petrol worth Rs 12 lakh had gone missing between April 1 and August 18 past year.



Carcass reaches garbage plant
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 10
The municipal corporation (MC) may have set an example by installing a garbage-processing plant at Dadu Majra, but the failure of the authorities in a policy on the segregation of garbage has tarnished it.

As a result, even after two years, the plant has been receiving carcasses in garbage bins sent to it for processing. A representative of the plant said a carcass was found in a garbage bin sent to the plant this morning.

An official said they complained to MC Additional Commissioner-I Sunil Bhatia today that the plant had been receiving carcasses in routine. Despite a number of complaints, the MC had not taken any effective action, he added.

The Administration had directed the civic body to use bags of a specific colour, other than colours meant for bio-medical waste, for the collection of meat waste and transport it in a separate vehicle to the bio-methanation plant for processing.

Despite the instructions, the plant had still been receiving carcasses and waste from slaughterhouses, hotels and vegetable markets on a daily basis.

The MC had spent crores on the construction of ‘sehaj safai kendras’ so that garbage could be segregated there before it was sent to the plant, but nothing had been done in this regard till date.



650 MC posts still lying vacant
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 10
Fully aware of the staff shortage in the municipal corporation (MC), which has been hampering development works, the UT Administration is not sanctioning the 650 posts which have been lying vacant for a long time.

There are 330 posts vacant in the in public health department, 350 in the building and road department, 431 in the medical health officer’s department, 72 in the fire and emergency service department and 97 in the Mani Majra division.

After directions of UT Administrator Shivraj Patil in April past year to fill vacant posts, the MC authorities had sent a proposal to the Administration for approval. The proposal was yet to be accorded sanction.

Regular vacancies in all departments had been casting a shadow on the pace of development. A senior MC official said a number of reminders had been sent to the Administration, but to no avail.

In coordination committee meetings, assurances had been given. In recent meetings with the MC Commissioner, various department heads had taken up the issue with her.

In the last budget report, the House had been informed that the MC authorities had reduced the budget as they could not spend more than Rs 100 crore a year due to shortage of staff.

The proposal of the fresh recruitment of 4,000 employees in various departments of the MC was also pending with the Administration as it had forwarded it to the Centre for their concurrence.



Kajauli to Sukhna’s rescue
Spare water to lake in winter to curb weed problem
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 10
Chalking out an innovative mode, the UT Administration has proposed bringing water from the Kajauli waterworks to the Sukhna Lake, particularly during winters, to tide over the water crises.

Taking water during winters, when the demand for city residents is naturally less, water supply has been identified to be a strong solution to the suffocating weed that nurtures in lesser watery swampy conditions.

In a recent meeting between officials of the environment and engineering departments, the proposal was discussed in detail, following which the municipal corporation was asked to prepare a detailed report on the possibility of bringing water from the Kajauli waterworks from the UT’s share to the Sukhna Lake.

A senior official said rain was the major source of water to the Sukhna Lake and it had not rained well past year. The lake had not filled to its capacity.

In case the UT got its supply of water from the Kajauli waterworks, it would suffocate the weed that grew in the swamp. The weed would not be able to come above the water level and die.

An official further added that the water which would be brought to the Sukhna Lake would not be treated water, meant for drinking. He said Chandigarh got 67 MGD (million gallons per day) from the Kajauli waterworks.

In winter, only 57 MGD was used for the city, he said, adding that the remaining 10 MGD would be brought to the Sukhna Lake on a daily basis for 40 to 50 days in winters.

The official further added that at present, the Sukhna Lake had 13,00 MGD storage capacity. If 10 MGD was brought daily for 40 days, 400 MGD would be stored in the Sukhna Lake, he said.

The original area that the lake spanned had considerably shrunk. In 1958, the lake encompassed 228 hectares. Today, it spanned 148 hectares, down by almost a third.

Former Punjab irrigation department Chief Engineer GS Dhillon said it was technically the right step to save the Sukhna Lake from drying up.

He added that the UT Administration could also instal water pumps in the Sukhna forest area to pump out the groundwater and further use it for the Sukhna Lake.

Experts to analyse water samples

The UT Administration had recently awarded a project to the department of zoology of Panjab University for two years. Under this project, experts would analyse water samples from the lake for physio-chemical characteristics of water. The UT Administration had agreed to pay Rs 10 lakh to the university to conduct the study.



Surgery for Parkinson’s at pgI SOON
Improves quality of life of those not responding to medication
Anuja Jaiswal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 10
The PGI will soon start deep-brain stimulation (DBS) surgery, which is also known as the pacemaker for the brain, for patients with Parkinson’s disease who do not respond to medicines.

According to doctors with the neurosurgery department, financial approval for the purchase of the machine used for the DBS has been received and the procurement process will commence soon.

Dr S Prabhakar, head of the department, said, “We recommend this procedure for cases where a patient with Parkinson’s disease do not respond to normal medication. We get four or five such cases a year and have been recommending them for DBS surgery to the AIIMS in Delhi.”

He further said the department would have to recruit some trained staff before commencing the surgery. He added that the surgery was expensive, costing between Rs 5 lakh and Rs 6 lakh at the AIIMS and almost double at private hospitals.

Dr SK Gupta, professor with the department, said the treatment was a surgical procedure involving the precise stimulation of particular parts of the brain through the implantation of removable electrodes.

Two electrodes were wired to both sides of the brain, which communicated through the pacemaker, with the battery for its operation implanted in the chest, he elaborated.

“We can alter the function of any part of the brain by stimulating it. If stimulated with low frequency electrodes, the area starts getting excited. With high frequency, it blocks the pathway and reduces symptoms,” said a neurologist with the PGI.

While pacemakers for the brain might not cure Parkinson’s disease, neurologists said the therapy had reduced symptoms drastically and improved the quality of life of those who had undergone the surgery.

Unlike earlier procedures to treat Parkinson’s disease, this particular surgery did not damage healthy brain tissues by destroying nerve cells, they further said.

What it is

Parkinson’s disease is a disorder of the nervous system that affects a person’s motor skills. The disease gets worse progressively, causing muscle rigidity of limbs and joints, slowing those down and then stopping movement altogether, along with tremors, impaired balance and lack of coordination.



Notices to 2 hospitals
Tribune News Service

Mohali, January 10
The Special Investigation Team (SIT) of Mohali Police, constituted to probe the kidney scam, today served notices on the two hospitals, Surya Kidney Centre, Sector 69, and Silver Oak Hospital, Sector 64, to produce records of the transplants done till date.

On January 5, Deputy Commissioner Varun Roojam had asked the SIT to verify the authenticity of authorisation documents (from outside the state) on the basis of which the renal transplants had been done.

The inquiry conducted by Civil Surgeon Usha Bansal, while stating that both the hospitals have complied with the rules (the provisions of the Transplantation of Human Organ Act, 1994, the Transplantation of Human Organs Rules, 1995, Punjab Government and various instructions of the Union government and the state government) had recommended verification of the authorisation documents of other states.

Sources said while the Civil Surgeon had gone through the records of renal transplants done in the last two years, the SIT headed by the Superintendent of Police (Detective) had sought total records of the renal transplants done at the two hospitals. The Civil Surgeon had also been asked by the SIT to furnish the original record in possession of the health authorities.

SSP, Mohali, GPS Bhullar said the SIT has been given 45 days to probe the matter. “We are already working on the case. It would not be appropriate to discuss the investigation at this stage,” he said.

On the other hand, the Lucknow Police on a recent visit to the city had sought records from the Civil Surgeon, pertaining to ten renal transplants done at one of the hospitals. The Lucknow Police was probing whether the donor shown on the papers had actually donated their kidneys. 

Two held in Lucknow

The Lucknow police on Tuesday arrested AK Pandey, an employee with the Commissioner office, Lucknow, and Mahboob Ali, an employee with the radiology department of the PGI, Lucknow, in connection with the kidney scam being probed by the police.x



Pvt vehicles banned in Chhatbir Zoo
Tribune News Service

Zirakpur, January 10
The Chhatbir Zoo authorities have banned the entry of all petrol and diesel vehicles to the premises of the zoo from January, 2012, and only battery-operated ferries would be allowed.

Confirming the development, zoo field director Basant Raj stated that they got the orders from the Chief Wildlife Warden about banning private vehicles inside the zoo in January. He said after getting the orders, the zoo authorities had not allowed any private vehicles to enter the zoo premises.

He added the battery-operated ferries were already running in the zoo for the visitors’ convenience. Earlier, the authorities had banned entry of buses and other diesel vehicles inside the zoo, he said.

He said to make the Chhatbir Zoo pollution free, the preventive steps had been initiated. The heavy rush of vehicles during weekends had created the situation of traffic chaos in the zoo. “Noise pollution and air pollution could be harmful for animals during heavy rush of vehicles,” he added. Last year, the Chhatbir zoo authorities sent a proposal for banning heavy vehicles, including buses, inside the zoo to the government for approval. The zoo officials had held the meetings with the authorities concerned regarding this matter, the official added.

Sources in the zoo revealed that there were four battery-operated ferries which were introduced in 2010 and the contractor had spent Rs 8.5 lakh on the purchase of each ferry, besides depositing Rs 4 lakh as contract amount with the authorities. 



Threat to Panchkula ZP chief’s post
Sanjay Bumbroo
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 10
The seven members of the Zila Parishad, who are likely to bring a “no-confidence motion” against Panchkula Zila Parishad Chairman Rajesh Kona, are still underground even as only six days are left for the next meeting of the parishad to be held on January 16.

According to sources, all the seven members, who had gone underground recently, are in touch with their families despite their mobile phones are switched off.

Even though Kona has claimed that all the seven members are in touch with him, he has failed to give their exact location. He alleged a political conspiracy was being hatched against him by a Congress member and added that he would soon expose the brain behind the hiding of the members. He said out of the seven members, the Congress and the Indian National Lok Dal have three members each while one of the members is an independent, who, he claimed, was also in his favour.

According to the sources, four Congress members have opened a front against Kona and under an agreement three INLD members have offered their support to them. If the move is successful the INLD would be able to grab the seat of Vice-Chairman. 



Kang richer by Rs 5.65 cr since last poll
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Mohali/Dera Bassi, January 10
One of the prominent realtors of the region, NK Sharma, who is the SAD candidate from the Dera Bassi assembly segment, has assets worth Rs 6 crore (including the assets of his wife) and surprisingly does not own a single car compared to the veteran politician and former Cabinet minister Jagmohan Singh Kang, the Congress candidate from Kharar, who has assets worth over Rs 17 crore (including the assets of his wife).

Both the candidates filed their nomination papers at Dera Bassi and Kharar, respectively, today. While Sharma is contesting the assembly elections for the first time, Jagmohan Singh Kang has become richer by around Rs 5.65 crore since the 2007 Assembly elections when he lost to the SAD candidate Ujagar Singh Wadali. Interestingly, the cash in hand of the former minister has grown from Rs 35,000 (2007) to Rs 50,000 (2012).

According to the affidavit filed by Kang, he continues to own an Optra car (CH 03 R 0011) since the 2007 elections. Contrary to the growth of the immovable assets, the former Morinda MLA has just added 10 tolas of gold jewellery in the past five years. His wife Ravinder Kaur has added 16 tolas of gold jewellery to her possession during the same period. In the affidavit filed today, the total value of Kang’s movable assets have been put at Rs 30.32 lakh and that of his wife at Rs 38.34 lakh. The value of immovable assets has been put at Rs 11.82 crore and that of his wife at Rs 6.30 crore.

In case of Sharma, the total cash in hand has been put at Rs 83,069 and the value of total movable assets has been put at Rs 2.13 crore and that of his wife at Rs 9.58 lakh. His total immovable assets are worth Rs 3.53 crore and that of his wife Rs 2.85 lakh.

Nomination papers filed

With just two days left for the last date for nominations, three candidates filed their nominations in three constituencies. While Col Gurparkash Singh filed his papers from Mohali as an independent candidate, Man Singh (independent) filed their nomination papers from Dera Bassi. In Kharar, Jagmohan Singh kang filed his nomination papers.

Dera Bassi: The SAD candidate from the Dera Bassi constituency Narinder Kumar Sharma filed his nomination papers with the returning officer hereon Tuesday. His wife Babita Sharma filed the papers as a covering candidate. On this occasion, MLA Jasjit Singh Bunny was also present. He appealed to the people to vote in favour of the SAD candidate. Meanwhile, talking to mediapersons later, Sharma said the SAD-BJP would sweep the elections. The Congress was a house divided in the area and it was a one-sided contest. On the other hand, the other candidates have intensified their campaign. Manpreet Kaur Dolly, daughter of the late Capt Kanwaljit Singh, started her campaign by holding meetings in different villages. She said she would file her nomination papers on January 11.



‘Akalis misleading people’
Tribune News Service

Mohali, January 10
Congress candidate from Mohali and MLA Balbir Singh Sidhu continued to hold meetings in different sectors of the city. He said the Akalis were misleading the people and actually they had done nothing in favour of Mohali. Although he was in the Opposition, he managed to spend 3.5 crore on the progress of Mohali and welfare of its residents. Efforts made by him are vital and the residents themselves have witnessed it also, he said.

Commenting on SAD candidate Balwant Singh Ramoowalia, he said even he didn’t know where exactly was Balongi situated. So he said if he wanted to progress then he should come up and see where all the things were going wrong. People of Mohali knew very well that the Akalis were always ignoring Mohali.

Although the Akalis were bragging about the progress of Mohali, even the roads of the city are constructed under the central scheme. Owing to antipathy of the Akalis, many industries have migrated to the neighbouring states, he said.

He added that the Akalis had only worked to promote drug addiction in the state, but also increased quota of whisky from 32 lakh bottles to 38 lakh bottles and this information could be verified from the Excise Department.



Voice recordings to be used against kidnapper
Sanjay Bumbroo
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 10
To strengthen the case against Ravinder Singh Gill, who was involved in three cases of kidnapping in Chandigarh, Panchkula and Mohali, the local police would soon match his voice with earlier voice recordings which were made during the kidnappings.

According to sources, the police had been successful in recording Gill’s voice when he demanded ransom money to release one-and-a-half-year-old Arnav and two-year-old Jiya on the phone in 2010 and 2009, respectively. The police had sought three days’ extension in his police remand to record his voice so as to strengthen the case against him.

The sources said the accused had only Rs 500 in his bank account when he came to the city to plan another kidnapping in the tricity region. During the checking of the savings accounts of the accused it was found that he used to deposit large amounts in his savings accounts in Mumbai on the next day of the kidnappings.

Gill, who had taken Rs 33 lakh as ransom for releasing Jiya and Aranav, had shifted to Gurgaon along with his wife, Harvinder Kaur, a resident of Sector 4 here, after selling his porperty in Mumbai.

Deputy Commissioner of Police Maneesh Chaudhary said during the investigation in Mumbai, his police team found that the accused had Rs 50 or little more in his savings account. He said the accused deposited large amounts ranging from Rs 50,000 to Rs 1.5 lakh on the next day of the kidnappings. During the investigation, the accused had told the police that he used to plan the kidnappings after his funds dried up, he added.



Safai sewaks urged to work properly
Our Correspondent

Mohali, January 10
The Administrator of the local Municipal Council, JC Sabharwal, has urged the safai sewaks of the civic body to clean the area assigned to them in a proper manner so that no complaints are received in connection with the state of sanitation.

Sabharwal, who met fewer than 100 safai sewaks in the industrial area, said he had committed to residents that the area would be kept as clean as Chandigarh and as such appealed to the employees to work accordingly. The problems faced by the safai sewaks were also heard and some of these were disposed of on the spot, he added.

He said he had listened to them patiently but would be taking strict action in case the safai sewaks failed to work in a satisfactory manner.



Ward committees
Give names by Jan 13: MC
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 10
The municipal corporation (MC) has asked all elected councillors to submit the proposed list of members for ward committees by January 13. In a communication sent by the MC Secretary to all elected councillors, it asked them to list 10 names each from their respective ward which they want to be considered for the ward committee.

A senior official said the list would be sent to the UT Administration for approval. The final decision on ward committees would be taken by the Administrator.



Nights to be colder: Met
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 10
The cold wave continued today, forcing residents to remain indoors during morning and evening hours. There was no change in day and night temperatures.

The weather office predicted that the night temperature would decrease further, resulting in more chill in the region, but there would be no change in day temperature.

The minimum temperature was 4.2 degree Celsius and the maximum 17 degree Celsius, which was three degrees below normal.



Nursery Admissions
High drama at St Anne’s
Parents accuse school authorities of not putting their chits in draw
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 10
Having “managed” to maintain their poise till now, parents whose wards could not make to the fourth and last city convent school, St Anne’s, Sector 32, ended up creating a high drama accusing the school authorities of not having putting their chits in the draw.
A mother in a jubilant mood (on phone) with her sister as her son got admission, while others were sad as their wards fail to make it at St Anne’s School in Chandigarh
A mother in a jubilant mood (on phone) with her sister as her son got admission, while others were sad as their wards fail to make it at St Anne’s School in Chandigarh on Tuesday. Tribune photo: Parvesh CHauhan

While an inquiry committee constituted at the spot resolved the matter to everybody’s satisfaction, the incident brought to fore the frustration brewing amongst parents of general students who have lost a majority of their seats to the RTE or school’s self devised sibling, alumni and faculty criteria.

In case of St Anne’s, out of total 200 seats, 80 were set for general students, while 50 for students belonging to the economically weaker sections. A total of 48 seats were reserved for the sibling category, while the remaining for alumni and faculty children.

The situation at the school was a replica of that at Carmel Convent, Sector 9, where parents were left shocked over getting only 25 seats, out of 120. Though some did resent, but the school shrugged it saying they were well informed about it.

“It is sheer mockery of the admissions, first they decide to give seats on the basis of lottery system and then ended reserving more than 75 per cent of the seats. My daughter is a topper of her play way, but she cannot go to a convent because she is a single child and is not poor and I am not a teacher in the school?” said an agitated mother.

With the UT having given a free hand to schools for “categorisation” in the admission process, sibling, alumni and EWS seem to have become the qualifying criteria, as over 3,000 have gone without seats in their preferred schools in admissions conducted so far.

UT should have issued admission criteria

The RTE bans screening of students but screening has to be defined by the local authorities. Just like Delhi, the UT should have given detailed admission criteria to schools restricting the extent of reservation under sibling or alumni criteria to aid parents. What can we say if local authorities give free hand to schools. — A senior official of MHRD



PGCG-42 gets new IT block
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 10
KK Sharma, Adviser to the Administrator, inaugurated the new information technology block at the Postgraduate Government College for Girls, Sector 42 (PGCG-42), that has come with a cost of Rs 3.34 crore.

The IT block has four computer laboratories, which are equipped with latest technology, “Nebero” Internet software management solution, a conference room, a video studio, a skill development laboratory, a multi-purpose hall, a placement and career unit and 12 teaching rooms.

KK Sharma also inaugurated the smart room.

According to Dr Dalip Kumar, coordinator academic programmes, who has been involved with the project right from its inception, said the college would initiate academic endeavour for the introduction of various courses as per the demand of the global market in the area of cyber crime, animation, web designing, information technology, e-governance, e-learning, e-business, as these courses have great potential of employability in Indian and global academic market.

College principal Mani Bedi said the infrastructure would be put to different modern technical use like video conferencing, innovative approach in computer labs, face-to-face interaction and placement services.

“The college is likely to usher in an era of not only making the college technology savvy but will also encourage tie up with related industries, institutions of higher learning at the national and international level in various manifestations with the help of the facilities available in the IT block,” Bedi added.

4 computer labs

y The IT block has four computer laboratories, which are equipped with latest technology, “Nebero” Internet software management solution, a conference room, a video studio, a skill development laboratory, a multi-purpose hall, a placement and career unit and 12 teaching rooms.



Winter Vacations
Notice served on DEO, DPI
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 10
A local court here today issued notice to the district education officer (DEO) and director public instructions (DPI), Chandigarh, on a public interest litigation (PIL) regarding the winter vacations of the city schools and their timings.

Global Human Rights Council (GHRC) chairman Advocate Arvind Thakur in the PIL had alleged that these days the minimum temperature is around four to five degrees Celsius, whereas appropriate temperature for children to go out is at least 12 degrees.

Petitioners have also submitted the data of Chandigarh hospitals where a number of children have gone with the complaints of cough, cold and bad throat.

In Chandigarh, there are nearly 110 government schools and around 65 private schools. The government schools got opened on January 2 and private schools opening between January 9 and 15.

Court has now deferred the hearing for January 12.



Blow to PU’s self-professed image
Scores least in terms of academic standards, research, student, staff quality
Sumedha Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 10
In what is bound to exaggerate its misery of having lost on the status of potential for excellence and UGC grant of Rs 50 crore, is the fact that Panjab University (PU) scored the least in terms of academic standards, research, examination system, students and staff quality.

Giving a serious blow to its self-professed image of a premier institution of higher learning, Panjab University has been left behind by nine universities, as it has managed to scramble a score of 513, out of 1,000, while Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, got 630 and Osmania University topped the chart with 794.

“Every committee has its own perception. No other university has as many academic acclaims as we have. This score cannot define PU’s image and achievements as it reflects the evaluation committee’s perception,” said Vice-Chancellor RC Sobti.

While PU officials blame it on the perception of evaluation committee, ironically the score has been awarded on the basis of records submitted by the varsity, enlisting standards and achievements in various parameters.

“The score actually reflects the inference of documentary evidence and the university’s own perception about itself. The university sent its proposal enlisting all details, which were objectively calculated. PU may be way ahead than many but it showed nowhere in records submitted by them,” revealed a UGC official.

As far as the committee’s inspection is concerned, PU has failed to leave a mark there also, as it shares sixth position with Karnataka University with a score of 76, out of 100, while GNDU got 90.

Banaras Hindu University

Total score: 83.37/100 Score awarded for data supplied: 760/1,000 Scores awarded by expert evaluation committee: 96/100 Score awarded to presentation by VC: 14.57/20

Osmania University

Total score 79.87/100 Score awarded for data supplied: 794/1,000 Scores awarded by expert evaluation committee: 86/100 Score awarded to presentation by VC: 13.71/20


Total Score 74.07/100 Score awarded for data supplied: 630/1,000 Scores awarded by expert evaluation committee: 90/100 Score awarded to presentation by VC: 12.87/20

Mysore University

Total score: 69.26/100 Score awarded for data supplied: 601/1,000 Scores awarded by expert evaluation committee: 77/100 Score awarded to presentation by VC: 14.42/20

Rajasthan University

Total score: 67.37/20 Score awarded for data supplied: 595/1,000 Scores awarded by expert evaluation committee: 85/100 Score awarded to presentation by VC: 9.57/20

Karnataka University

Total score: 66.25/100 Score awarded for data supplied: 587/1,000 Scores awarded by expert evaluation committee: 76/100 Score awarded to presentation by VC: 12.37/20

Panjab University

Total score: 63.92/100 Score awarded for data supplied: 513/1,000 Scores awarded by expert evaluation committee: 76/100 Score awarded to presentation by VC: 13/20

Bangalore University

Total score: 63.57/100 Score awarded for data supplied: 648/1,000 Scores awarded by expert evaluation committee: 71/100 Score awarded to presentation by VC: 9.25/20

Punjabi University

Total score: 62.60/100 Score awarded for data supplied: 560/1,000 Scores awarded by expert evaluation committee: 73/100 Score awarded to presentation by VC: 11/20

Andhra University

Total score: 60.95/100 Score awarded for data supplied: 611/1,000 Scores awarded by expert evaluation committee: 67/100 Score awarded to presentation by VC: 9.71/20



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