C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


PGI’s stern letter to UT
Repatriate Director-Principal, Medical Superintendent of GMCH or no deputations in future
Anuja Jaiswal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
The recent three-month extension given by the UT Administration to the Director-Principal and the inordinate delay in relieving the Medical Superintendent of the Government Medical College and Hospital-32 (GMCH), Prof Raj Bahadur and Dr Vipin Koushal, respectively, is set to snowball into a major confrontation as the PGI authorities have threatened not to entertain any deputations in future if the two are not repatriated immediately.

Taking a serious view of the recent three-month extension to Dr Raj Bahadur (his third since he took over as the Director-Principal on December 1, 2007), the PGI Director, Dr YK Chawla, has shot off a letter to the Home-cum-Health Secretary, Anil Kumar, terming it as “not permissible”.

Dr Chawla has stated that the governing body of the PGI had decided on January 17 last that there would be no extension for those who had completed two years and further deputation period would be restricted to two years only. While Dr Bahadur has been with the GMCH for over four years, Dr Koushal has spent three years, having joined in July 2008.

Dr Chawla’s letter dated January 10 states that as per the decision of the governing body, extensions are not permissible beyond a two-year tenure. Literally threatening to put a ban on any further deputation from the PGI to the UT, the letter says: “Under such a situation, the institute would be in a difficult position to permit any deputation in future.”

Dr Chawla has also made a mention of five earlier letters written by the PGI for repatriation of Dr Koushal. These letters were sent on July 18, August 1, August 17, September 23 and November 4 last year.

The PGI Director has further asked the UT Health Secretary to look into the matter and repatriate the doctors immediately to enable them to join the institute in the interest of patient care.

Health Secretary Anil Kumar refused to comment on the issue on the plea that the details were not available with him.



PU semester exam results unlikely by January 30
Four days past deadline, but 90 per cent teachers still to return answersheets
Sumedha Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
The ambitious plans of the examination branch of Panjab University to declare semester results by January 30 have been marred by an abysmally poor response by the faculty in the evaluation of answersheets.

At least 90 per cent of teachers from the university and affiliated colleges have not returned the answersheets, four days after the deadline of January 15.

The results of history, English, Hindi and Punjabi has led to a delay in the compilation of the overall data.

While controller examination AK Bhandari failed to respond to several calls made to him, a senior official of the branch revealed that teachers would soon be receiving notices for the delay in returning the assigned task within the specified time limit.

“A majority of teachers apparently don’t consider invigilation or evaluation as part of their academic duties. These teachers do not participate even in the evaluation of papers. We know that the result is the sum total of a student’s standing in education when he/she leaves the campus. How can teachers refrain from their basic responsibility? This leads to a delay in the compilation of results every year. It’s time Panjab University Teachers Association (PUTA), which is so vocal about faculty rights, makes them aware of their duties as well,” the official added.

PUTA president Akshay Kumar, however, has held the branch itself responsible for the delay.

“Despite repeated demands of PUTA, the authorities have failed to release a white paper to divulge the names of continuous offenders. It’s their fault. They kept the papers in their lockers during the break and now when the session has commenced, they are throwing the bundles on our doorsteps.”

It is the first time that the university has held semester examination for its postgraduate courses. The branch has been in a tussle with teachers right from the beginning over invigilation and evaluation duties.



24-hr eatery to close at 1 am, for now
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
A week after the murder of a youth outside Aroma’s coffee shop in Sector 22, the 24-hour eatery will now close at 1 am. The hotel management will review the timings after a week on the basis of public response.

“The decision to impose restrictions has been taken in view of the rising incidents of violence. We will reconsider whether to relax or restrict the timings further after observing the situation for a few days. In case people do not show self-discipline, we will be forced to take a strict decision,” said Manmohan Kohli, owner of Aroma hotel.

But questions are being raised on the new timings of the eatery since a number of incidents of violence have occurred here between 10 pm and midnight. Twentyeight-year-old Harminder Singh was murdered on the night of January 13 following a brawl around 12.30 am. On December 26 last year, the son of an IFS officer of Punjab cadre had created a ruckus after the police had challaned him. The incident had occurred at 10.30 pm. Bhupinder Sandhu, a resident of Sector 48, said: “What is the point of allowing the eatery to run till 1 am. This is the peak time for rowdy elements to create nuisance, particularly after drinking. More than the restaurant management, the UT Administration needs to take a serious look at the issue and decide. I don’t understand why it is silent on the issue. Is anyone bothered?”


fire safety measures missing
No NOC for TDI mall-cum-multiplex
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
The Chandigarh fire and emergency department has rejected the application of the TDI mall-cum-multiplex in Sector 17 for issuing a no-objection certificate (NOC) for having flouted the National Building Code of India (NBC). The project hangs fire as the management cannot open the multiplex till it gets the NOC.

Sources said the request for issuing an NOC was rejected by the fire department as the management had not allowed free space for fire engines and absence of a fire control room, besides certain other violations.

Sources in the fire department said in October last year, a team had inspected the mall and had submitted a detailed report of fire safety violations. The team had recommended that the NOC should not be issued to the multiplex.

Chief Fire Officer Lalit Siwach said a notice had been issued to the mall management to execute the norms set by the NBC for getting the NOC.

As per the report, major violations include no provision for 6-metre passage around the building for access to fire vehicles. In case of fire, fire engines weighing up to 45 tonnes would not have access to the building due to the non-availability of open space.

The team also pointed out that the fire control room along with the main electric panel was not situated on the ground floor near the main entrance of the building. As per the NBC, it is mandatory for a multiplex to have it located on the ground floor in case of an emergency.

Earlier, the team had inspected the multiplex in September and pointed out the violations. It had asked the mall management to rectify them.


When law-enforcers turn law-breakers
Tribune News Service

Sector-17 police station SHO Ranjodh Singh, ASP (Central) Desraj Singh and Sector-11 police station SHO Gurmukh Singh take part in a bicycle rally to strengthen beat patrolling in Chandigarh on Wednesday.
From left: Sector-17 police station SHO Ranjodh Singh, ASP (Central) Desraj Singh and Sector-11 police station SHO Gurmukh Singh take part in a bicycle rally to strengthen beat patrolling in Chandigarh on Wednesday. Tribune photo: Manoj Mahajan

Chandigarh, January 18
Even as the traffic police is observing the 23rd National Road Safety Week and urging residents to adhere to road rules, its personnel can be seen flouting traffic norms blatantly.

Tribune photographers captured a number of police personnel cocking a snook at traffic rules yesterday and today, right after the safety week was inaugurated.

Policemen of different ranks were captured violating traffic rules. Some were driving without helmet and others without seat belt while certain others were using mobile phones while driving. All these violations invited a heavy fine.

Senior traffic police officials claimed that they had issued challans to police personnel from time to time. A majority of the challans were based on photographs posted by the general public on the Facebook website of the traffic police.

“Traffic violations by police personnel show how serious the police is about road rules. They are setting a poor example for the common man,” said Harman Sidhu, chairman of Arrive Safe, an NGO working for road safety awareness.

“We spare no one when it comes to challans and policemen are no exception. We have challaned a large number of them. If the offences are committed during the safety week, it is a serious matter and will be looked into,” said DSP (Traffic) Vijay Kumar.



Awareness rally on road safety
200 college girls take part
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
On the second day of the Road Safety Week, the Chandigarh traffic police organised a two-wheelers safety helmet rally for girls. DSP (traffic) Vijay Kumar flagged off the rally.

Around 200 girl students from Government College for Girls, Sector 11, and Government College, Sector 42, participated in the rally. The rally took round in markets of Sectors 17, 18, 21, 22 and 23 and concluded at the Sector-17 Plaza.

Vijay Kumar delivered a lecture on road safety and provided safety helmets to the participants.

The girls also displayed slogans on road safety to make the general public aware.

A discussion on road safety was also held at FM Radio 92.7, All-India Radio and FM 94.3 BIG FM.



Zirakpur-Chd Road
Traffic snarls give air passengers harrowing time
Airport authorities for construction of underpass or flyover
Sanjay Bumbroo
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
Air passengers continue to suffer for they are often held up in traffic jams near Hallo Majra and Raipur Khurd traffic light points, sometimes resulting into missing of their flights.

The air commuters, especially those who come from the neighbouring states of Himachal Pradesh, Punjab and Haryana, are held up in traffic jams during morning hours when there is heavy vehicular traffic on the Zirakpur-Chandigarh road. Heavy vehicles and 16-wheeled trawlers parked on the road near Zirakpur lead to traffic snarls near the airport.

According to sources, the airport authorities had taken up the matter with the UT Administration during a meeting held a few months ago and suggested the construction of an underpass or a flyover at the two traffic light points so that the air passengers are not held up in traffic jams. But the administration is yet to come out with a plan to check traffic snarls on the road leading to the airport, the sources said.

Airport Director HS Toor said he had discussed the matter with the UT Finance Secretary, VK Singh, during a meeting and had suggested initiating steps to remove the two “bottlenecks” so that passengers don’t have to miss their flights.

He said the matter was under consideration and they were looking into the feasibility of constructing a flyover or an underpass on the road. He said they were holding consultations with various departments, including the engineering wing of the MC, in this regard.

It is relevant to mention here that the Haryana and Punjab governments had also demanded the construction of an underpass from Panchkula and Mohali so as to facilitate the arrival of air passengers to the International Airport on the Mohali side. However, the defence authorities rejected the same citing security reasons. The demand was made as the air passengers would have to travel 10 km or 15 km extra to reach the international airport.



Auction without NOC
Parking in front of TDI Mall
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
The left hand does not know what the right is doing. This adage fits the municipal corporation (MC) to a T. It has auctioned the parking site near the TDI Mall, though the fire department has not given its clearance for the issuance of a no-objection certificate (NOC).

In December past year, the fire department had prepared a report on the mall, in which it recommended that the parking lot in front of it was the main obstacle to easy access of fire tenders to the multiplex in case of a fire.

On the basis of the report, the fire department had sent a communique to the parking department not to auction the site. On January 11, the parking department auctioned five parking sites and the site under question was allotted.

Fire department officials claimed that they sent a letter to the parking department in the first week of January. A senior official with the parking department stated that no such communique had been received by the department.



Death due to negligence: Hospital denies compensation

Chandigarh, January 18
The Government Multi-Speciality Hospital, Sector 16, while admitting the negligence on the part of its doctors in transfusing wrong blood to Suman on December 16, 2010, yesterday denied its liability to pay compensation under the Consumer Protection Act.

This has been said in the arguments filed yesterday in the UT State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission, by Sanjay Kaushal, Senior Standing Counsel for the Chandigarh Administration.

The hospital has said it was not covered by the Consumer Act as it was not rendering “paid” service. The arguments say that the three guilty doctors, Dr Kirti Sood, Dr Navdeep and Dr Manpreet, are liable for medical negligence as per the conclusive findings of the inquiry report submitted by the SDM (South) KV Parshuram under orders by the administration.

While opposing the plea, the Counsel for Suman, Pankaj Chandgothia, in his submissions said the hospital had itself shown the category of patient’s treatment as “paid” in its OPD card dated November 10, 2010, and it also charged fees for the blood transfusion from Deshraj, the husband of the complainant. He further contended that the hospital was vicariously liable for the negligent acts of its employee doctors.

Chandgothia had filed a compensation claim of over Rs 98 lakh on behalf of Suman and her family against the GMSH and the three doctors. The Commission, after taking on record the arguments of both sides, adjourned the case to January 31 for final arguments and also gave last opportunity to the counsel for the three guilty doctors to also file their submissions by that date. — TNS



20 HVAC buses on long routes?
Adviser holds meeting on designer CTU vehicles
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
The UT Administration is mulling over moving 20 heating-ventilated and air-conditioned (HVAC) buses, presently plying in the periphery of Chandigarh, to long routes.

On the basis of a report in these columns, highlighting the plying on short routes of buses purchased by the CTU for long routes, incurring losses worth lakhs, UT Adviser KK Sharma held a meeting on the issue today.

The top brass of the Administration attended the meeting, during which the issue of the buses, costing around Rs 30 lakh and being run to and from nearby towns like Ambala, Baddi and Kalka, was discussed.

One such CTU bus was driven to the UT Secretariat on the demand of the Adviser as he wanted to have a look at the bus. The bus was parked outside the Secretariat gate during the meeting.

Official sources said there was a detailed discussion on the issue, after which the Adviser inspected the bus. They added that the Adviser was satisfied that the buses should be run on long routes.

The sources further said the Adviser asked CTU officials to chalk out a plan at their own level to run the buses on long routes. The CTU had purchased the buses over a year back. The plying of the buses on short distances had not only been depriving local residents of comfortable travel to distant places, but also causing losses to the CTU.

The interiors of the buses had been designed to facilitate long-distance travel, with a separate cabin for the

driver. Non-AC ordinary buses were presently ferrying passengers on long routes.

The sources said the CTU would shortly finalise long routes, including tourist destinations, on which the buses could be operated, helping it earn more revenue.

Past year, the union of CTU employees had demanded the ferrying of buses on long routes, but its demand had been turned down.

It had stated that the buses would earn between Rs 14 and Rs 15 per kilometre on local routes, between Rs 25 and Rs 30 on semi-urban routes and between Rs 40 and Rs 50 on long routes.

Union secretary Ranjit Singh Hans said they met CTU director TPS Phoolka recently and demanded that the buses be run to and from distant places like Manali, Delhi and Amritsar.



Admn finalises model of 86 buses

Chandigarh, January 18
After being delayed for a couple of months, the UT Administration today finalised the model of 86 buses to be added to its current fleet. In a meeting held between UT Adviser KK Sharma and CTU officials, the authorities have decided to purchase 43 low-floor AC and equal number of non-AC buses for the city.

The meeting was called by UT officials to workout on the type of buses that needs to be incorporated in the existing fleet of CTU buses. Based on the population of the city, the CTU had prepared a five-year plan on the basis of which the number of buses required to be purchased was calculated subsequently. A detailed plan was sent by the CTU to the administration with an urgent demand of 96 new buses that was cut down to 86 buses.

Official sources said on the basis of requirement and buses completing their life, the administration would be purchasing the equal number of low-floor AC and non-AC buses that are more in demand. “All buses would be run within the city that would also help the CTU in increasing the frequency of buses on the routes having more demand,” said a CTU official. — TNS



MC Commissioner passes the buck
Ball in court of official at fault
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
Municipal Corporation (MC) Commissioner Prerna Puri has sought comment from Chief Engineer SS Bidda on the vigilance inquiry report on the illegal road cuts and unauthorised laying of fibre cables at Sectors 33 and 34.

Vigilance officer Lalit Siwach submitted the report on November 24. According to the report, the MC Chief Engineer had failed to issue necessary instructions to his subordinates to take action.

Instead of taking action, the MC Commissioner had now asked the Chief Engineer to give his opinion. In the last General House, the then Mayor Ravinder Pal Singh Pali had instructed the MC Commissioner to take action.

Former councillor Chander Mukhi Sharma, who had raised the issue in the House, said asking the official at fault to comment was a mockery of justice.

In May past year, the MC had caught two companies dismantling paver blocks without seeking prior permission. In July, the General House directed the official to inquire.



Video conferencing to take more time
Link between Burail Jail, Sec-17 dist court
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
The video-conferencing facility to link the Burail Jail and the district court complex at Sector 17 will be delayed for between two and three months.

The BSNL has informed the UT Administration that connectivity is still a problem. After the receipt of this response, the Administration has invited other companies for starting the facility.

Yogesh Kumar, Director Information Technology, said officials of the BSNL had informed the Administration about the problem with connectivity and it was now in touch with other companies.

He added that the Punjab and Haryana High Court had given it time and so, it was hopeful that the facility would be started shortly.

A few right-wing activists attacked BKI terrorist Jagtar Singh Hawara on the district court premises here on November 11 past year.

In response to a public interest litigation, the Administration had promised to begin the facility by September 9 past year.



No water supply this afternoon
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
The city will not have afternoon water supply tomorrow from 1 pm to 2 pm. This is due to the urgent repair of delivery head and rising main at the Kajauli water works by the executive engineer, water supply and sanitation division No. 2, SAS Nagar, Mohali, and fixing of flow meter at the Kajauli water works by the executive engineer, MCPH-2, Chandigarh.

However, the water supply would be normal in the morning from 3.30 am to 9 am but water pressure would be low in the evening from 6 pm to 9 pm. An official said the pressure of the water supply would also be low on the morning of January 20. The public is requested to store water as per the requirement well in advance and to bear with the corporation for inconvenience.



Another hookah bar raided in P’kula
Despite ban, these were being served to clients
Tribune News Service

Panhckula, January 18
Despite a ban on hookah bars in the district one such outlet in Sector 8 has been found serving hookas to its clients here today.

A team led by Panchkula drug control officer Pooja Chaudhary collected samples of the material, including ash and packets of molasses from the bar, running in the name of Mocha, An UrbanCafe.

As many as 12 youths were found having a puff when officials raided the outlet at 4 pm. This was the second time that a hookah bar was found running in the town despite a ban imposed on them on November 30, last year. On January 9, Rings, a hookah bar in Sector 16, was found serving sheesha to their clients. The samples seized from there even mentioned nicotine as one of the ingredients.

Today, we have seized the samples of used and packed material from the outlet, said Chaudhary. The action against them will be decided after a report in this regard is received from the laboratory, she said.

On November 30, the Deputy Commissioner of Police, Maneesh Chaudhary, invoking Section 144 of the CrPC, had banned the hookah bars in the district. Hookah bars were serving tobacco molasses containing nicotine, which was injurious to health, especially of college students and the youth, said the order.

The report of chemical analysis of samples lifted from hookah bars had confirmed that these tobacco molasses contained nicotine. No record of sale and purchase was maintained by the outlets’ managements.



Godown of Johnson and Johnson sealed
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, Janaury 18
The Panchkula drug control department has sealed a godown of a renowned company manufacturing cosmetics and drugs for storing goods in bulk without a valid permission. An imprisonment between 3 and 5 years can be awarded to the offenders under the Drugs and Cosmetic Act, said Pooja Chaudhary, Panchkula drug control officer.

A team of the department raided a godown at a plot on Phase II of the Industrial area and found that drugs worth crores were stocked there. The godwon was found to be a C&F of Johnson and Johnson and was being used to supply the drugs in the state, she said.

On scrutiny it was found that the godown was in operation for the past 10 months and the authorities had not even applied for a valid licence required for such a purpose, added the official.



Returning officer issues notice to govt official, SAD leader
Our Correspondent

Mohali, January 18
The returning officer of the Mohali Assembly constituency today issued notice to a government official and the district president of SAD asking them to explain the purpose of their visit to Government Senior Secondary School in Phase III B 1.

According to an official at the office of the returning officer, the notice was issued to Harbans Singh , District Education Officer (secondary) and Jaswant Singh Bhullar, president of the district unit of SAD. The notice was issued following a complaint by the Congress of an alleged poll code violation.

Congress candidate Balbir Singh Sidhu alleged that the DEO and Bhullar had held a meeting with teachers on the school premises.

A surveillance team seizes liquor bottles near the road separating Phase III-A and II in Mohali on Wednesday.
A surveillance team seizes liquor bottles near the road separating Phase III-A and II in Mohali on Wednesday. Tribune photo: Vicky Gharu

Liqour seized

As many as 50 bottles of liquor were seized by the police at a naka put up near the Phase II - III traffic light point. The bottles of different brands were being transported in a car allegedly in violation of the poll code.

NRI jathas to arrive

SAD candidate Balwant Singh Ramoowalia, who also campaigned in villages, sought votes in the name of development by the SAD-BJP Government.

He said that three NRI jathas of Punjabis would reach Mohali in the next two days and campaign for the SAD-BJP combine. Harbhajan Mann, singer, sought votes for Ramoowalia. He said the Centre had been discriminating against Punjab in the matter of development.

Campaign goes on

Bir Devinder Singh, PPP candidate, campaigned in around two 24 villages. He criticised both the Congress candidate Balbir Singh Sidhu and SAD candidate Balwant Singh Ramoowalia. He alleged that Sidhu was a businessman for whom politics was merely a business. As far as Ramoowalia was concerned, Bir Devinder said, he was like a migratory Siberian bird who would not be seen in the constituency after the elections.

Visiting villages to woo voters

Congress candidate Balbir Singh Sidhu toured several rural areas, including Manak Majra, Bhago Majra, Baironpur, Maujpur, Raipur Kalan, Shampur and Gobindgarh in a bid to woo villagers. He said that injustice had been done to farmers in the matter of land compensation given to them by the government. He had recommended Rs 1.21 crore per acre as compensation but GMADA had offered lower rates.



Driver of SAD candidate injured as gun goes off
Our Correspondent

Mohali, January 18
The driver of SAD candidate Balwant Singh Ramoowalia was injured here today when the gun of a security personnel allegedly went off accidentally.

The driver, constable Jaswant Singh, was admitted to a private hospital where his condition was stated to be stable.

Darshan Singh Mannm DSP ( City II )m said the constable attached to the SAD candidate had returned early in the morning and was asleep at the time of the incident. He said that security personnel Harvinder Singh was cleaning his carbine when it went off. The bullet entered the thigh of the driver and was lodged there.

Mann further said that according to doctors, the constable was not in a position to give any statement at present. The statement will be recorded tomorrow and action initiated accordingly.

Dr Vinod of Ivy Hospital who was attending on the patient said that the recovery would take two or three weeks. “We are planning not to remove the bullet as it was not causing damage to any vital organ”, he added.



New option available for damaged shoulder
Tribune news service

Mohali, January 18
Gone are the days when one didn't have options for severe damage of shoulder or in cases where one had arthritis combined with rotator cuff tear (muscles which help position and power the shoulder joint).

Dr. Manuj Wadhwa, MS, MCh Ortho (UK), Ranawat Joint Replacement fellow (USA) director and head, Department of Orthopedics and Joint Replacement, Fortis Hospital, Mohali, has introduced reverse shoulder arthroplasty in the city.

The procedure was detailed at the international workshop on reverse shoulder replacement and shoulder arthroscopy (latest technology for shoulder arthritis) which concluded here today at Fortis Hospital, Mohali.

The guest was Dr. Andrew Ekelund from Stockholm and leading surgeons from across India. Wadhwa said that chronic shoulder pain could be disturbing and debilitating for people suffering from it on a regular basis. The pain makes it difficult to sleep, eat, work and rest; or even to carry out daily tasks and, generally enjoy life to the fullest.

Whatever the cause of the pain, a doctor will suggest surgery only when conservative treatment fails to offer improvement. When the surgery is believed to be appropriate, a minimally-invasive surgery called arthroscopic surgery is the first option. In advanced conditions, partial shoulder replacement and total shoulder replacement are the available treatments, he added.

Earlier, for total shoulder replacement one didn’t have options for severe damage or in cases where one had arthritis combined with rotator cuff tear (muscles which help position and power the shoulder joint), but now there is a successful option available i.e. reverse shoulder arthroplasty.



booth scam
Four get notice
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
The UT estate office today served show-cause notices on Jugal Kishore, Naresh Kumar, Veena Jain and Ramesh Jain, four of the 88 beneficiaries under the scanner in the booth scam.

The allotment of booths to these beneficiaries had been challenged primarily on the allegations that it had been managed by the undeserving and had been secure by submitting false affidavits.

Jugal Kishore was called to explain as the site allotted to him was found to have been sublet during inspection while he was found running his business from another shop. “The other three have submitted false documents,” said a senior official with the estate office. The beneficiaries were given a 15-day notice, added the official. “Five more notices are ready, which will be sent tomorrow,” said the official.



Kavle pays Rs 65,000
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
Finally, SDM (South) Parshuram Kavle today deposited his outstanding dues, about Rs 65,000, for his continuous stay for over 14 months at the UT Guest House here.

“Today Kavle settled his outstanding dues by depositing the amount in cash,” confirmed an official with the guest house.

A news report on Kavle staying at the guest house for the past 14 months without paying a penny was published in these columns on January 12.

Past week, the Administration had sent him a letter, reminding him of the dues.

A senior official with the Administration admitted that rules allowed only a 10-day stay at a stretch.

Kavle, an AGMUT-cadre IAS officer, moved in on October 27, 2010, immediately after joining the Administration.

Since then, he had been staying at room 321. Sources said the officer had never made a payment ever since.



No end to cold wave yet
Mercury to dip further in 2-3 days
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
Cold wave conditions will persist in the tricity and temperatures will fall further in the next two or three days in view of heavy snowfall in hilly areas of Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir.

The weather office has predicted a mainly clear sky, with fog or mist during morning and evening hours. There will be a significant fall in temperatures in the next two or three days.

The maximum temperature will hover around 17 degree Celsius and the minimum temperature around 9 degree Celsius. The maximum temperature on Tuesday was 15.1 degree Celsius, four degrees below normal.

The minimum temperature was 10 degree Celsius, four degrees above normal. The maximum relative humidity was 93 per and while the minimum 66 per cent.

Chandigarh meteorological department director Surinder Pal said the sky was cloudy as the fog had lifted. He said such conditions would prevail for the next two or three days and the night temperature would fall.

In view of dry weather in the region, Punjab and Haryana would witness dense fog early in the morning and late at night, reducing visibility to 200 metres, with days remaining mainly sunny, the department added.



Checking crime
Survey of tenants, domestic help begins
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 18
In order to keep a check on the crime, the district police has started survey of tenants and domestic help in the residential areas. While the residents have already been asked to submit the details of their tenants and domestic help, the police officials at all the police stations have been directed to conduct a door-to-door survey in this regard.

It was recently that son a maid had burgled into the house of an army officer in Chandimandir area and took away cash and jewellery worth Rs 10 lakh. Before this, on August 20, a domestic help had killed a 65-year-old woman and left three of her family members critically injured in Sector 12, Panchkula.

Interestingly the family neither had the address of the assailant nor they did they have any of his photograph.

The availability of the photograph and permanent address of domestic help not only prove a deterrent against such crimes, this exercise helps in nabbing those who flee after committing crimes, said Panchkula deputy commissioner of police Manish Chaudhary.

The record of domestic help and tenants is maintained at respective police stations and even their antecedents are sent to the police of their native place for verification, said the DCP. This also helps in getting the information about the criminal past of such persons, he added.



tricity scan
Chandigarh scan

The executive body of Chandigarh Beopar Mandal organised it’s meeting in Sector 17 o Tuesday where in more than 100, out of 118 members of the executive body participated. Four councillors, namely MP Kohli, Satpal Bansal, Sat Perkash Aggarwal and Rajesh Gupta, were honoured by the mandal.

85 challaned

A special anti-encroachment drive was carried out on Wednesday by the enforcement wing of the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation at Burail village. During the drive, tables, counters, rehries, scooter chassis, 10 three-wheelers, which were used for loading the construction material, four cars windows, tandoors, etc., were removed and issued challans to 85 violators. Five trucks were loaded with the seized material.

Review meeting

Chandigarh Municipal Corporation Mayor Raj Bala Malik took stock of the development work at Valley of Animal Garden and construction of community centre at Sector 49 on Wednesday evening. She was accompanied by Mukesh Anand, superintending engineer, B&R circle; and Vishal Gupta, executive engineer, roads-1; Krishan Pal Singh, SDE, horticulture, and other officials concerned of the roads and horticulture wings. The SE, B&R, informed the Mayor that there were four biomes in the Valley of Animal Garden i.e. temperate, green grassland, desert and forest.

mohali scan
Tech Fest

Top techies of the region are all set to showcase their innovations at the upcoming two-day “Tech Fest-2012”, which is slated to take off on January 20 at the Chandigarh Group of Colleges, Gharuan campus, in which nearly 15,000 students from the premiere institutes like IIT, NITs, UBS, government and private universities, UIET, CCCET, CGC and leading colleges of the region will be participating. Robots prepared by the students will fight the battle of Waterloo while software whizkids will launch virtual wars on the campus through their skills. Students’ mean machines will be revving up for the “Track-O-Mania” event, while ultra robots will be negotiating the “Highway to Hell”. — Tribune Reporters



DAV-10 in trouble again
Release of government’s share towards salary of a teacher whose appointment has not been approved by Panjab University
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
Information sought under the Right to Information Act by an RTI activist has disclosed as to how both Registrar, Colleges, UT, and the principal of DAV College, are trying to evade transparency and accountability on release of 95 per cent government’s share towards the salary of a teacher whose appointment has not been approved by Panjab University.

RTI activist Dr Rajinder K Singla sought information on the selection and appointment of Dr Sonali Guleria as lecturer in Botany at DAV College. She had joined the college in mid-December 2009, under the grant-in-aid from the government. The PU calendar Volume III, 2009, expressly specifies that an appointment of a teacher in an affiliated college should be reported to the Registrar within two weeks for approval.

Contrary to that, college officiating principal Dr AK Nanda has admitted in his reply of December 29, last year that till date, appointment of Sonali has not been approved by Panjab University. Then how come the DAV College has been managing government grants for her salary if her appointment stands unapproved by PU.

Singla further said that the DAV principal said that Sonali’s earlier appointment in the college in the academic session 2007-08 was without any public advertisement.

“Documents disclose that no appointment order was issued by the college. She was accepted as a lecturer solely on the basis of her joining report forwarded by Dr RG Garg, the then head of the department, and released salaries from the college exchequer to the tune of Rs. 67,097”, Singla said.

He further claimed that Nanda had falsely stated under the RTI that the HoD recommended her case, whereas, the document supplied shows that her joining report was simply forwarded by the HoD, but never recommended.

“The truth is that she had appeared before the Selection Committee in the DAV College Managing Committee office at New Delhi on August 6, 2007, and was rejected”, Singla said.

To the query seeking recommendations of the selection committee, which had selected and recommended Sonali for appointment as a lecturer in the College in 2007, Nanda states “NA (Not Applicable)”. According to Nanda, requirement of approval of Panjab University also did not apply in her case.

Singla, today filed an appeal before the director, Higher Education, against Arjun Dev, Registrar (colleges), and the DAV-10 principal.

When contacted, Nanda, said that the particular appointment was made before he took over the charge and had to review the case only then he could comment on the appointment issue.



Schools to open at 8.30 am till Jan 20
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
The UT Administration today submitted its reply in connection with the winter vacations of the city schools and their timings before the district court here and informed that the schools will open at 8.30 in the morning till January 20. However, it is maintained that the further decision, regarding timings, will be made after scrutinising weather conditions.

The reply reads: “The opening time of the schools was at 7.30 am, then it was changed to 8 am, but finally it was settled at 8.30 am.”

Global Human Rights Council (GHRC) chairman Advocate Arvind Thakur had filed a PIL in which the court had directed the DEO and director, public instructions (schools), to pass an order regarding the school timings till January 14. The PIL stated that due to the fall in temperature, the schools should change the timings.



PU Alumni Association
No honour without money
Give Rs 1,000 for lifetime membership
Sumedha Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
If you think that an illustrious academic career and renowned name can earn you an honour at the Panjab University (PU) alumni meet then you need to think again.

Going by the latest policy decision of the Panjab University Alumni Association (PUAA), the pre-requisite to be honoured at the meet is getting a lifetime membership worth Rs 1,000 or become a patron member by paying Rs 11,000.

When questioned about the decision, which was made public on January 16, dean alumni relations, Dr Grover refused to talk, saying DPRO Mohanmeet Khosla was the right person to contact for this. It has, meanwhile, left both faculty members and alumni shocked.

“Is it a simplified way of saying that Rs 1,000 is the minimum fee to be recognised by my alma mater? I am an alumnus of the biology department and a renowned scientist. I got a call from a senior professor a week ago saying he would like to suggest my name for honour but was then asked by him to become a lifetime member as it is a pre-requisite. I can’t expect paying money to get honoured,” said a PU alumnus from Bangalore.

“It is, too, surprising, as it colours event for being a money collection issue. I don’t know what inspired this but honour is never paid for. Are our alumni who are conferred with honorary doctorates ever asked to donate or become a member of any society then why this?” questioned PUTA president Akshay Kumar.



MBA admission sessions from today
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
To reduce the admission pangs of MBA aspirants, more than 20 MBA colleges of the country are going to hold admission sessions at GGDSD College, Sector 32, tomorrow and on January 20. MAT colleges will be holding on-the-spot group discussions and interviews, which would benefit the students by getting admission without visiting various cities.

Hirdesh Madan, head-north, Bulls Eye, said they had been working hard from the last few months to bring all MAT colleges to the city and convince them to waive their application fee.

The students cannot only attend group discussions and interviews for these institutes but also attend value-added sessions and seminars on the occasion.

Anoop Ohri, an IIM Lucknow pass-out, said, “The event is a great platform for the students and faculty alike to interact with each other. With all content and general knowledge sessions on offer, the students are bound to benefit.”



mess workers
PU announces track suits as official uniform
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 18
Out to “smarten up” its mess workers, Panjab University (PU) has decided to introduce track suits as the official uniform of mess workers, replacing shirts and trousers.

According to university officials, the suits, which have been finalised by a three-member committee, aim to increase the convenience of workers and even maintain hygiene.

“The trek suits will go a long way in changing the current facet of mess, as workers will not only undergo smart makeover but the dress will make working more convenient and hygienic. We had discussed it with the workers earlier and got a nod from them,” revealed a senior official.



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