C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Hearing resumes with transfer of CBI Special Judge Ritu Tagore
Saurabh Malik
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
Twenty three years after Mohali youth Kulwant Singh, alias Kid, was allegedly abducted by the Punjab Police before being eliminated in an encounter, legal hurdles in hearing the case have been removed with the transfer of CBI Special Judge Ritu Tagore.

She had sought the transfer of the case on the grounds that a High Court Judge, related to her, had passed an order in the case. Dealing with this case on November 4, 2011, the CBI Judge suo motu brought to the notice of the rival parties that a High Court Judge, who had passed an order in this case, was related to her; and asked whether any side had objections in her hearing the case. The next day the statement of accused SS Grewal and his counsel SK Saxena was recorded to the effect that the case may be tried by some other judge. She then observed: “In view of the matter, it is desirable that to uphold the majesty of law and the principle of fairplay and justice, the present case should be tried by other court or judge. It is, thus, prayed that appropriate order may please be passed in this regard, in the larger interest of justice."

Taking up the matter, the UT Sessions Judge asserted: “Reference has been received from the court of Ritu Tagore, Special Judge, CBI, Chandigarh. Perusal of the file shows that the case is at the stage of final arguments and secondly the case is investigated by the CBI…"

“In the present case, the trial has already been commenced and there is no other CBI court, so in these circumstances this court is not competent to transfer the case and, therefore, reference be sent to the High Court for passing appropriate order”.

After dealing with the matter in detail, Justice Ranjit Singh of the High Court observed: “No one has urged or pleaded that the reasons disclosed would have rendered the Judge disqualified to decide the case on the ground as was raised by the Court itself." “Rather, the action may have given some handle to the accused persons to agitate that the Court dealing with the case was not in a fair position to decide the same. The issue should now rest without any debate because of the transfer of the trial Judge”.

Seven Punjab Police personnel, including SP Surjit Singh Grewal, are facing trial for allegedly killing Kid in a fake encounter.

The prosecution had claimed that Kid was killed in an alleged fake encounter in July 1989 by the accused on Tangori Kurda Road under the Sohana police station in Mohali.

It was alleged that Surjeet Singh Grewal and Amarjeet Singh along with some other CIA personnel had raided House Number 1752 in Phase V, SAS Nagar, on July 22, 1989, in search of alleged terrorist.



Elderly in tricity spend twilight years of their life in loneliness, despair
Sanjeev Singh Bariana
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
March 27, 2012: A 94-year-old, Dayawanti, was found dead at her residence in Sector 18. The victim reportedly died of suffocation as she left her cigar burning when she fell asleep. She is survived by two sons and two daughters, all of whom are settled in London.

January 2011: In January last year, a 75-year-old mother of a Panjab University teacher was found dead at her house in Sector 21. Her death came to light more than a week after her death after the body was decomposed beyond recognition.

The two incidents, quoted above, are not specific cases of elderly crying for care in the city or allegations of personal neglect, however, these definitely are reflection on the index of the falling care of the elderly in the tricity.

The Chandigarh Senior Citizens Association puts the figure of senior citizens (above the age of 60) in the city alone, currently, at more than one lakh, out of 11 lakh approximately, which is considerably high going by the limited geographical area of the city. The problem can be better understood in the perspective of the figures given by the US Census Bureau report, 2009, which has projected a 55 per cent increase in the overall population in India by 2050. More importantly, during the same period the population of senior citizens(above 60) is expected to increase by 326 per cent and those above 80 by 700 per cent.

Chandigarh does have old age homes and also government schemes for the elderly under the Social Welfare department, however, a sizable majority of the cases of negligence of the elderly go unreported. “One of the biggest reason is that it is very difficult for the elderly to come out and speak against their kin. Our tradition does not allow it and sometimes the elderly are not in a position physically to do so,” said Dr AS Khera, president of the Seniors Citizens Association, Mohali.

An 80-year-old lady staying alone in a one-kanal house, in Sector 7, said, “Times have changed and so have family structures. Family members of a number of elderly in my category are working outside the city. We are living with a deep sense of loneliness and often feel uncared for.”

She added, rather mildly, “I know certain elders are sitting too rigidly on their property and not allowing any concessions to the young. This problem needed to be looked into from this angle as well.”

A classic example, in this category of the affected elders, is that of a former Chartered Accountant. He is associated with eight different associations in the tricity. Sadly, he himself is staying with his wife in a small rented apartment because the family of his son “has made it impossible to live in my own house”.

The senior citizen associations are filled to the brim with tales of children ill treating their elders or fighting for property. “The problem is aggravated because of the property prices in the tricity touching the sky. My son said I just needed to sell one property to ensure a king’s life him, his wife and kids,” a wailing elderly said.

Daljit Singh Grewal, president of the Chandigarh Senior Citizens Association, showed a letter of an 81-year-old Surjit Kaur, a resident of a four-kanal huge residential property in Sector 28. She has alleged ill treatment by her son and, in fact, has lodged a police case”.

Grewal said, “We have approached the administration for land allowing a housing society for elders. However, there has been no response.”

Khera said, “A housing project coming up for the elderly coming up in Amritsar was worth considering where their daily needs and health will be part of their stay package. The administration here can think of similar projects with necessary alterations.”

Local options for the elderly

1- Ahluwalia Old-Age Home - Mohali

2- Mansa Devi Ashram -Panchkula

3- Home for the Old and Destitute - Sector 15

4- Sai Seva Samiti Ashram -Sector 30

5- Senior Citizen Home, Sector 43

6- Day Care Centres in Chandigarh

7- Lajpat Rai Bhavan - Sector 15

8- Chandikusht Ashram - Sector 31

help for elderly

n The Chandigarh Police has a toll free Helpline 1090

n UT is providing pension of ~500 per month as Old Age Pension Scheme to 8870 above 60-yr residents

n The UT has an Old Age Home in Sector 15 where 22 senior citizens are residing in this Home. The Sector 43 home for pensioners and well-off people on payment basis also has 22 residents.

open house question

With an increase in the population of the elderly in the tricity, their problems are increasing correspondingly with each passing day. Write to the openhouse@tribunemail. com about any visible aberrations in life of elderly in your neighbourhood along with suggestions for improvement.



Three swine flu cases reported
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
The city has witnessed its first arrival of swine flu cases this year. While two patients, including a 21-year-old girl from Kurukshetra was found suffering from Influenza A-H1N1 virus, a nurse in the PGI has also fallen victim to the infection. The third patient has come from Saharanpur district of Uttar Pradesh.

All patients are admitted in the PGI, Chandigarh. Importantly, all hospitals have been issued a direction to keep a special vigil more possible cases of the flu.

Meanwhile, Dr S Varma, head, internal medicine, PGI, said the patients admitted in the PGI were showing signs of recovery. He said even though there was no need to get panicky over the situation, as a precautionary measure, health staff in hospitals should get themselves vaccinated. He said the public needs to be warned again certain symptoms and in case they showed any of these, they should be brought to hospital.

The health authorities also said that was monitoring the situation and there was no cause for worry. Box

There are different reports of swine flue having struck in different states of the country recently. These include Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan and Karnataka. There have been at least 12 deaths among the total 130 cases, official sources said.


Precautions to be taken

n Cover the mouth and nose with a handkerchief or tissue while coughing and sneezing

n Wash hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and water before and after touching nose, eyes and mouth

n Avoid crowded places

n Keep at least arms distance from people affected with symptoms of influenza like cough, running nose, sneezing and fever

n Sleep well, stay physically active and effectively manage stress

n Drink plenty of water and eat nutritious food 


Swine flu is a viral infection. Most common symptoms are fever, running or blocked nose, nausea, chills, cough, soar throat, body ache, weakness and fatigue. Respiratory problems and diarrhoea need to be watched closely.



Estate office suffers loss of Rs 5 crore
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
The UT Estate Office suffered a loss of Rs 4.95 crore on account of charging less conversion fee. Against the average conversion rate of Rs 50,413 per sq yard, the estate office charged conversion fee at the rate of Rs 29,713 per sq yard.

Pointing out the anomaly, the AG Audit has pointed out that while allowing the conversion of industrial site (no.51, Industrial Area Phase 1) into commercial one during 2010-2011, the conversion fee should have been charged by taking into consideration all auctions held during the last three consecutive auctions. Though the application for conversion was applied in 2007, the case was approved in 2010-2011.

The orders issued by the Chandigarh Administration states that in case of applications received on or after December 2007, the conversion fee applicable would be calculated by taking into consideration all last three auctions.

As per the record of the estate office, though auctions were held in 2004-2005, 2005-2006 and 2007- 2008, no auction was held in 2006-2007. Accordingly, the average price per sq yard worked out to Rs 1.04 lakh (2004-225), Rs 2.10 lakh (2005-2006), Rs 2.90 (2007-2008).

On the basis of the conversion rules, the conversion fee at a rate of 50 per cent of the average auction price worked out to Rs 1 lakh per sq yard. But according to the rule of 50 per cent, further reduction in the conversion fee on the basis of location disadvantages worked out to Rs 50,413 per sq yard. 


Bee Menace Part I
Who’ll save UT from stinging bees? Nobody knows
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Three boys try to save a girl from stinging bees in Chandigarh.
Three boys try to save a girl from stinging bees in Chandigarh. A file photo

Bees hover over two girls in Sector 17, Chandigarh.
Bees hover over two girls in Sector 17, Chandigarh. A file photo

Chandigarh, April 1
For the last one month, a resident of Sector 16, RL Bagga has not allowed his grandchildren to play in front of his house for kids residing in the neighbourhood were attacked by a swarm of bees that have made huge hives on the nearby trees. He lodged a complaint with the Municipal Corporation and requested it to get the hives removed three days ago, but got the standard reply that soon the department concerned will take action. No action has been taken so far.

Similar is the case of a resident of Sector 9, Rajinder, who had complained to the MC authorities on March 5 about the hive hanging on a tree near his residence after bees attacked some children while they were playing in a park. But till date no action has been taken to remove the hive.

In fact, in the last fortnight, two incidents of bee attack had occurred in the centrally located public places near the Punjab police headquarters in Sector 9 and the plaza in Sector 17. Interestingly, the hives have not been removed by the MC staff from these places.

The MC officials justified their stand of not taking any action by saying that they have not received any complaints about these hives.

But surprisingly, Parvan Wadhwa, a resident Sector 43, who wants to lodge a complaint about the hives hanging near his resident, has been running from pillar to post for the last one month just to get the information from the corporation as to which department deals with the removal of hives. In the last one month he had complained to the MC thrice, but the authorities have turned a deaf ear to his plea.

This is not the story of only these three residents of the city but a majority of them are facing the problem of hives in their areas without knowing where to lodge a complaint.

Reports of the corporation revealed that in 2008 medical health office launched a special campaign to destroy beehives from the gardens because bees had stung former nominated councillor MPS Chawla. But later this initiative remained in the cold storage and no new effort has been made to deal with this problem till date.

Speaking Out

Real struggle that a common man faces is who to approach for lodging complaints about beehives as there is nobody to follow up the complaints in the MC. How the residents can hope that the authorities will take any action when nobody is responsible to deal with this grievance of the public.
— Parvan Wadhwa, resident of Sector 43

It is strange that despite the authorities being aware about the problem and its solution, no action is taken by them for providing relief of the residents of the city. The confusion about the departments have become a nuisance for the residents who are facing the problem of bee attacks in their areas.
— Balbir Singh Saini, Blood Donor Society, Sector 50

A week ago there was a traffic jam-like situation in front of our society and the commuters had to crawl to save themselves from the bees that had come from the beehives hanging on roadside trees. The residents question when the authorities cannot take any action on the complaints received by the complaint centre what is the need for forming that cell
—Satish Kumar Goel, Progressive Society, Sector 50

Whom to approach

Confusion prevails among the residents over whom to approach for the beehive problem. Though the corporation has constituted a special cell to deal with the problem, when called up on the telephone number provided by the MC, the officials clarify that the issue is within the ambit of the horticulture department. On the other hand, when residents make a complaint to the complaint cell of the MC, these are passed on to the pest control cell. The horticulture and pest control cell blame each other for not handling the bee menace

40 complaints in 6 months

In the last six months, the MC has received more than 40 complaints at its complaint centre regarding hives on the roadside trees in residential areas. The records of the corporation reveal that such complaints have been received from every corner of the city like from government ITI for women in Sector 11, Golf Club, Sector 16, 23, 42 and 50, but most of the complaints are lying pending with the department concerned. The maximum number of complaints about the roadside hives have been lying pending for the last more than a month



MC does nothing to clear roads of dry leaves
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
It is strange that even after a decade the municipal corporation has failed to draft an effective mechanism for the disposal of dry leaves lying on roadsides.

Resultantly, in the absence of any work machinery, either the residents or the MC employees burn the leaves.

In the recent General House meeting, a majority of councillors raised the issue and regretted that even after so many years, the medical officer had not developed any mechanism for the disposal of dry leaves.

When asked why the dry leaves were not lifted from the roadsides, the officials of the MoH department had a standard reply that there was shortage of vehicles and staff, alleged the councillors.

However, BJP councillor Arun Sood suggested that the department should hire contractual labourers for two months for lifting the leaves on a regular basis.

As similar problem occurs every year, prior arrangements should be made by the department concerned.

Earlier also a number of suggestions were given by the former councillors, but till date nothing concrete has been done to solve the problem.

In 2002, the then UT Adviser, Neeru Nanda, had initiated a project called Sahaj Safai and Khad Banao Kendras in Sectors 15, 21, 26, 27, 33 and 36. Under the project, the authorities in these sectors had installed infrastructure for decomposing dry leaves through vermin-culture to make fertiliser and further use it in green belts of the city. Sources in the administration said the project did not work as the authorities had failed to manage it.

In 2010, a suggestion was made to construct pucca pits in each sector and dump leaves in it. The practice would have provided quality fertiliser after five to six months for their green belts.



Need to create awareness on waste segregation

Rules only need strict implementation. The public mentality of disposing of all their waste in a common bin cannot change till the time the corporation makes rules and implement them strictly.

This can only be made by random on-the-spot checks and punishment to offenders.

During education classes on segregation of solid waste, residents need to be explained that the fine is not a punishment but only a means to make them habitual in proper disposal of their waste. Sometimes simple lectures and directions are not enough.

I think the resident welfare associations can play a major role in educating the masses about the necessity of waste segregation and the process. As a sizable number population of the city employs maids and safai karamcharis to dispose of their waste, any programme envisaged for public education would be incomplete without involving them.

One of the ways of making a good beginning in waste segregation could be the Municipal Corporation getting reports from the waste collectors about the collection of segregated waste from their respective areas. Offenders could be warned or even fines. So the house can think about the issue and come up with a decent alternative.
— Rajesh Sharma, Sector 38, Chandigarh.

Waste should be lifted daily

Residents of the sectors near the Dadu Majra garbage processing plant are living in stench because of the foul smell emanating from the plant. To help the residents get rid of this stench, the UT Administration should form a committee to ensure a 24-hour monitoring of the plant along with certain important measures. The MC should ensure that open trucks carrying waste are covered with tarpaulin to prevent entry of rain water in solid waste. Municipal waste should be lifted on a daily basis and solid waste be covered after dumping.
— Dr Shruti K. Chawla

Segregate garbage at household level

Waste of each area can be handled within the area itself instead of carrying it over several kilometres to someone else’s neighbourhood. The segregation of garbage into wet and dry should be done at the household level. All the wet waste can be dumped in the lawns and late used as manure. The dry waste can be given either to ‘kabadiwalas’ or garbage collectors. The Municipal Corporation should educate residents regarding the segregation of waste by the means of seminars and paper bills.
— Vineet Kapoor, Panchkula, Haryana

A welcome step

It is good to know that the municipal corporation (MC) is thinking of collecting domestic garbage from homes. This is the only way to solve this grave problem of garbage collection. But the system of segregation must be explained to the residents. How and what is to be separated from the domestic garbage?
— R K Kapoor

Sustainable waste management

With regards to solid waste management in Chandigarh where garbage accumulation exceeds 400 tons each day, the situation is really pathetic. It has hotly pointed out that the situation will worsen with surging population of the city, which is projected to be 19.5 lakh by 2021.

We must appreciate that generation and handling of waste in households is not properly done as housewives depend on their maids for managing the kitchen. These maids may not be willing to segregate the waste as it is considered a dirty job. The need of the hour is to evolve a sustainable waste management taking into account the parameters connected with the generation, collection, transportation and processing of the waste.

A garbage processing plant emanates foul smell that is unbearable in a radius of about 2 km. Complaints have been getting louder with none attempting to solve the problems so far.

The move for segregation of waste will mean cleaner disposal of waste as also provide a reprieve to the waste disposal site which has no choice at the moment but to house all kinds of waste at the same place making segregation of reusable items difficult.

Our MP Pawan Kumar Bansal's vision to make the city ‘bin free' by setting up of Sehaj Safai Kendras seems to have lost in the official rigmarole. And the cash-surplus MC has failed to set up Sehaj Safai Kendras in the entire city, leading to the collection of waste from residences in rehris that is chaotic and unscientific.

The Chairman of the sanitation committee of Chandigarh has said on record. “During our inspection, we found that things were not in order at the plant. They are not following the guidelines.” More needs to be done keeping in view the ground realities and the magnitude of the increasing volume of waste being generated in the city.
— Satish Chandra Sharma, Progressive Enclave, Sector 50, Chandigarh

MP Bansal’s advice goes unheard

While the cash-rich MC spent crores in the previous fiscals on the dumping grounds, the purchase of garbage bins and vehicles to lift garbage, it had forgotten to put in place the basic mechanism for collection and segregation of garbage at the household level and at Ssehaj Safai Kendras (SSKs).

This is despite specific directions by the ex-officio member cum Member of Parliament Pawan Kumar Bansal that dustbins of a specific colour should be used for proper segregation of garbage instead of using garbage bins. But the office of the medical officer of the health are the least bothered about his instructions and the sanitation department continued to purchase the usual garbage bins on the basis of the report of the field staff in order to earn money. Putting the infrastructure and manpower in place to implement the scheme is always a challenge for the corporation. The corporation has failed every time in winning residents’ faith and changing their civic sense.

The Municipal Corporation has failed to switch to the new system of garbage collection, segregation and disposal making the scheme a flop. Lack of awareness and of coordination among residents and officials is to blame for the feeble response to the scheme. The residents’ welfare associations, too, have not made any major contribution to it.

To make this scheme a success, an intensive and sustained civic awareness campaign and patient hearing by the Mayor and officers of the corporation on the ground realities is required for which adequate funds have to be allocated and public participation ensured by the corporation.
— Er Sachin Sharma , Member, Citizen Association-21

Need to educate citizens

The need of the hour is to educate citizens of the tricity. The residents welfare associations, schools, colleges and other agencies need to be talking about the issue of garbage disposal big as a part of their daily agenda.

We need to be ensure that stray animals are not allowed to scatter garbage, no public functions should be allowed on the roads, parks and other places, polyethene ban needs to be strictly implemented, open drains need a regular check, examples need to be set for people indulging in burning of garbage and leaves, schools, colleges and welfare association and NGOs should be educated in management of municipal solid waste in a scientific manners under the solid waste management rules.

— Kulbhushan Kanwar, General Secretary, Resident’s Welfare Association, Sector-48, Chandigarh



Garbage, cattle, unkempt greenbelts abound in Phase I
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Garbage scattered at a park in Phase I of Mohali.
Garbage scattered at a park in Phase I of Mohali.

Mohali, April 1
Heaps of garbage, heads of cattle and unkempt greenbelts are features of Phase I.

The area is neglected, with the condition of civic amenities pathetic. Residents of the area are irked at the attitude of officials concerned, saying nobody listens o their grievances.

During a visit to the area, the Chandigarh Tribune team found heaps of garbage lying scattered at places near residential areas.

Even greenbelts had not been spared, with scattered garbage a common sight at many of those. Residents claimed that sweepers only lifted garbage from earmarked dumping sites.

“Nobody bothers to lift garbage from sites which are not earmarked as dumping sites. Many a time, garbage remains there for days together,” said Manpreet Kaur, a local resident.

She said many ‘ill-mannered’ residents were responsible for throwing garbage at public places. Almost all greenbelts were too dirty to sit at or walk in, she added.

With piles of garbage and dry leaves, broken swings and benches, stray cattle and parked vehicles, the greenbelts had been crying for care.



Decline in ornaments offered at Mansa Devi
Sanjay Bumbroo
Tribune News Service

A view of long queues at the shrine on Sunday.
A view of long queues at the shrine on Sunday. Tribune Photos: Nitin Mittal

Panchkula, April 1
The nine-day Navratra fair at Mansa Devi temple had a huge rush of devotees, around 10.5 lakh, with a decline of between 35 per cent and 40 per cent in ornaments offered at the shrine.

The shrine received 65 gold items, weighing 111.850 grams, and 1,088 silver items, weighing about 6 kg, this year compared to 96 gold and 1,460 silver items received during the last Navratra fair.

A senior official said on the condition of the anonymity that the main reason for this was the ongoing strike by jewellers in the region as people offered newly purchased ornaments to the deity.

About 77,000 persons paid obeisance on the ninth and concluding day of the Navratra fair today. The shrine received around Rs 17 lakh as offerings, but no foreign currency was received today.

This year, the shrine became richer by around Rs 1.58 crore during the nine days. The maximum amount received on a single day was Rs 22.5 lakh, offered on the eighth day yesterday.

The maximum amount received on a single day during the last fair was Rs 19.45 lakh. The shrine board had been receiving between Rs 6 crore and Rs 7 crore annually.

The board did not receive any donation during the first six days. The online donation facility introduced by the board last year led to the donation of about $1,031, $145 (Australian), $230 (Canadian) and £10 from NRIs.



Those with UT tag on key posts
Prabhjot Singh/TNS

Chandigarh, April 1
Elected governments no more follow the seniority list in making key appointments. Personal likes and dislikes and loyalty are perhaps the factors that determine postings and transfers as and when the new political masters assume office.

Though the ruling SAD-BJP alliance has created history by forming government twice in a row, the administrative reshuffle set in motion with the appointment of new Chief Secretary and DGP continues with changes in various departments and district administrations.

Interestingly, the only link in the latest reshuffle is the Chandigarh connection. The new Chief Secretary, Rakesh Singh, DGP Sumedh Singh Saini, Principal Secretary to CM SK Sandhu and Principal Secretary to Deputy CM Paramjit Singh Aujla have all served the Chandigarh Administration in the past. While both Rakesh Singh and Sandhu worked as Finance Secretary, Sumedh Saini remained SSP. Similarly, the new Chief Director of the Vigilance Bureau, Suresh Arora, had a stint as SSP, Chandigarh. Paramjit Singh Aujla had terms as SDM and as MC Commissioner. Others holding key positions in the new administrative setup, including Ashok Gupta, had also served the UT Administration. Others in the Deputy CM’s secretariat are Manvesh Singh Sidhu as Special Principal Secretary, Ashwani Kumar Sharma as Additional Principal Secretary and Moneesh Kumar as OSD.



Doc dispels myth about snoring
Arun Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
That snoring is a symptom of sound sleep is a myth and on the contrary persons who snore suffer from sleeping disorders which further lead to health complications, including obesity, hypertension and diabetes. This was stated by Dr AK Janmeja, Head, Department of Pulmonary Medicine, Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32, here yesterday.

Talking to the Chandigarh Tribune regarding Sleepcon-2012, a national conference on sleep disorders starting on April 6, Dr Janmeja said consequences of Obstructive Sleeping Apnea (OSA), sleep and neurology, insomnia, sleep in special situations would be discussed on the occasion. He said around 4 per cent of male and 2 per cent female adult population suffered from the OSA problem. However, the awareness for such a common problem is lacking both in the public and physicians. Through this conference, we intend to fill this gap also, added Dr Janmeja.

People, who snore, in fact, suffer from OSA and face multiple breaks in their sleep. Such persons feel suffocation wile sleeping and get up suddenly at least 10 or 15 times during night, resulting in inadequate sleep. This make them lousy, irritative and prone to health and accidental risks, said Dr Janmeja.

Quiet often these patients land up at the door of a physician or psychiatrist. And under such circumstances, it was imperative that physicians and other medical experts have awareness about the sleeping disorders, said Dr Janmeja while explaining the need of such conferences. 



Experts reveal diet secrets
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
Every individual has specific nutritional requirements, thus the need for individual diet keeping in mind his ideal body weight. This was stated by Dr Sanjay Bhadada, Associate Professor, Endocrinology, PGI, here yesterday. Dr Bhadada was speaking at a CME on ‘Nutrition and Current Health Challenges’

Diet should not be planned according to just the calories but also keeping in mind a proper ratio of calories from carbohydrates, proteins and fats, he said. Most of the endocrine disorders like obesity and type-2 diabetes and juvenile diabetes type-2 are due to an imbalance in nutrient intake and lifestyle pattern of the modern world. Pre and post-menopausal problems are also related to dietary irregularities to a large extent, osteoporosis being one of them, he added.

The guest speaker for the second session, Prof BR Thapa, Head of the Paediatric Gastroenterology, PGI, said the requirements for macro and micro nutrients were two of three times more in children compared to adults. The role of breast milk as well as supplementary feeding was emphasised. Dr Thapa stated that 50 per cent of the children suffered from feeding difficulties resulting in poor weight gain and growth retardation. Parents’ counselling is very important to ensure adequate intake and with regards to nutrition in the form of junk foods leading to childhood obesity. The average nutrition awareness of the general public being very poor, nutrition education is very important, he added. He stressed the importance of a sound nutritional foundation right from childhood to prevent the increasing incidence of non-communicable diseases which not long ago were considered “adult onset”. 



PGI college fest concludes
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
The annual cultural extravaganza of a premier medical institute of the country, the PGIMER, called “Spring intermedical college festival”, concluded here today. The Association of Resident Doctors (ARD) organised the festival. Padma Vibhushan awardee Nek Chand Saini, founder and director of the Rock Garden, was the chief guest for the closing ceremony.

The day started with the finals of various sports competitions. An A2B biking stunt show was performed at the new OPD. A musical concert was performed by Prof Pallab Ray, Prof Vinay Sakhuja, Prof Savita Malhotra, Dr Dheeraj Khurana, Dr Biman Saikia and Dr Gagandeep Singh, who enthralled the audience throughout.

Dr Sandeep Patel, president, ARD, said: “A rocking performance by White Harvest Rock Band entertained the audience a lot”. Dr Kiran Kumar, Cultural Secretary, ARD, said: “The fashion team from the GMCH-32 got a cash prize of Rs 20,000 for standing first in the competition. The GMCH emerged winner in the finals of cricket and basketball. The PGI team won both the singles and doubles titles in badminton while the team from Dhanvantri college was winner in volleyball.

Dr Ashutosh Sarwa, General Secretary, ARD, said our association would try to organise this kind of interactive activities for medical colleges at a larger scale in the future”.



Vegetable prices ease a bit
Arun Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
While the arrival of new crops of green vegetables has led to a decline in the prices of a few vegetables, the soaring prices of pulses, condiments and refined oils have put a burden on the budget of households.

The prices of kidney beans (rajma) have touched as high as Rs 90 a kg in the retail market. This was available at a price of Rs 60 per kg two months ago only. Similarly, the prices of black gram and its daal form have reached up to Rs 56 a kg while it was being sold around Rs 40 a kg a few months ago.

The other commodity which affects the consumer’s budget is refined vegetable oil and mustard oil.

Soyabean oil is being sold at a price of Rs 90 a litre and above even as its price was hovering around Rs 75 a litre in February. Groundnut refined oil has also registered a jump of Rs 30 a litre. Its price has touched the Rs-135 mark while it was available at Rs 105 per litre in the beginning of February.

Among the condiments, the black pepper has registered an increase of 100 per cent. Its price has risen from Rs 30 per 100 grams to Rs 60 per 100 grams.

The mustard oil has also witnessed an increase of 25 per cent in its prices. A bottle of one litre, which had been sold at Rs 80 during January, is now being sold at Rs 100.

However, the arrival of new crops of green vegetables has provided a little relief to the common man after the prices of some of the vegetables started declining this week.

Brinjal, which was being priced at Rs 50 a kg last week only, can be purchased for Rs 20 only. Long gourd (ghia) has also slipped to Rs 20 a kg from Rs 40 a kg. Even the prices of French bean has come down to half as it was available for Rs 30 a kg against its earlier price of Rs 60 a kg. 



FOSWAC poll on April 22
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
The present chairman of the Federation of Sectors Welfare Association, Chandigarh, (FOSWAC), PC Sanghi will face Hitesh Puri for the top post in the forthcoming elections to be held on April 22. Puri is holding the post of general secretary in the present body of residents which represents 59 resident welfare associations.

At a meeting of FOSWAC held at Metro Hotel in Sector 35, it was decided that the biennial election to the federation will be held on April 22. Sanghi on the occasion declared that he will contest the election for the top post. Immediately after this, Puri said he will also vie for the chairmanship of FOSWAC. Gurdev Singh Ahluwalia, the present incumbent, will again contest for the post of vice-chairman from his group, he said. GS Sathi will be in the fray for the post of general secretary from his panel, he added. 



No community centre at six sectors
Sanjay Bumbroo
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, April 1
In the absence of any community centre at about half a dozen sectors in the town, residents are being forced to organise functions at Zirakpur in Punjab.

Though sites have been earmarked at various sectors, including 12-A and 2, the authorities have failed to construct community centres despite several reminders to the Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA). No site has b earmarked at Sectors 6, 8, 14, 16, 17 and 18.

Subhash Papneja, general secretary of the Sector-16 Residents Welfare Association, said a site had been earmarked in the area, but a building had come up there.

He said the authorities had failed to earmark another site despite availability. He added that there were space constraints at community centres as the size of the main hall was small.

He further said a hotel site was available in the area, which should be converted to a banquet hall on the pattern of Chandigarh, where the Administration was constructing marriage palaces which could accommodate large gatherings.

He said one had to shell out only between Rs 5,000 and Rs 5,700 for booking a community centre or a park while a banquet hall at Zirakpur was available for between Rs 1.5 lakh and Rs 3 lakh.

The case of sectors across the Ghaggar was the same. There was no community centre at Sectors 23, 24 and 28.

Though HUDA had started the construction of a community centre at Sector 28 a few years ago, it had been hanging fire due to the paucity of funds. The construction was started two-and-a-half years ago and the ground and first floors of the building had been completed.

The complex was covered with wild growth, including Congress grass. Residents Welfare Association president Vijay Arora said he had raised the issue with HUDA several times, but nothing had been done in this regard so far.

According to sources, work on the project was stopped after a senior official raised some objection on the design of the centre.

The official wanted some major changes in the building, which would have resulted in an increase in the construction cost of the project, the sources added.



Play on communal forces staged
SD Sharma

Chandigarh, April 1
In the marathon series of 101 Punjabi plays, being presented by the Adakar Manch, Mohali, as a part of the ongoing Gursharan Singh Mahanaat Utsav at the Punjab Kala Bhavan Auditorium a poignant play ‘Munshi Khan’ was staged today under the direction of Dr Sahib Singh.

As the legendary playwright, director, Gursharan Singh, had sculpted very popular plays of socio-cultural relevance close to the pulse and heartbeat of pastoral Punjab Munshi touched the communal chord of 1947 partition days.

The play revolves around a muslim character, Munshi Khan, who became Sajjan Singh as he was forced by communal forces if he wanted to live in India. But at the end of his life, he wished that his body should be buried, not burnt ensuing a conflict but the play finally endorsed the fundamental right of human being to live and die according to his wish. Vinod Kumar, Dr Sahib Singh, Mandeep, Rajinder Rozy, Sukhvinder and Surinder Singh acted in the play. Besides, short plays Tamasha-e-Hindustan, planned directed by Sangeeta Gupta and Dr Sahib Singh were staged. While Tamasha bared the trauma faced by common man due ire of government officials the planning was a powerful satire on fake government promises and planning.

Earlier, the large weekend crowd was treated to a meaningful theatre with the staging of two Punjabi plays Ghumangheri directed by Dr Sahib Singh and Seonk depicted by Vinod Kumar yesterday. Plays were critical of the prevailing systems in the governance designed only to benefit the rich and affluent. While Ghumangheri depicts the sordid story of a poor but devoted elder brother unable to fulfill the needs of his family “Seonk” brings into focus the rampant corruption in all spheres of life. Unemployed youth cheated repeatedly turns insane and lashes out at the interview board to bare their unethical motifs before pledging to do way with the corrupt systems. Dr. Sahib Singh, Rajinder Rozy, Mallika Singh, Sukh Pal Sarthak Narula, Vinod Kumar, Mandeep, Surinder Sarvesh and Navdeep formed the cast of two plays.

Rabindranath Tagore’ s Classic Mukatdhara Staged by TFT Ensemble at Randhawa Auditorium.

The Theatre for Theatre ensemble, supported by the NZCC and Central ministry of Culture paid tribute to Gurudev RN Tagore by staging a Punjabi adaptation of his classic play “ Mukatdhara” at the Randhawa auditorium yesterday. The most moving and well-knit play of Tagore packed with meaning expressed Tagore’s political convictions.

Despite certain loopholes the play presented a picture of the struggle of people against the tyranny of a foreigner ruler under the direction of thespian Parvesh Sethi. Pitted against policy of king Ranjit of Uttrakut state who by constructing a dam stopped the flow of water of mountain stream Mukat dhara to the planes of state Shivtarai, headed by prince Yuvraj.

Leading by the example, the prince resorts to self-immolation for the sake of his subjects. Harvinder Shanti shined through the presentation.



Free medical camp organised
Tribune News Service

Mohali, April 1
The United Culture Social Welfare Association organised a free medical camp to mark the martyrdom anniversary of Bhagat Singh at Phase VII here today.

A large number of persons residing in the area, particularly the elderly, turned up for check-up during the camp.

According to office-bearers of the association, Dr Ajay Gandhi, Dr Navpreet Gill, Dr Harbir Hundal, Dr Charnajit Chatterjee, Dr Apina Sharma and Dr Niraj Singla provided their services to visitors free of cost.

The camp was inaugurated by DSP (City) Sharanjit Singh. “In this period of high inflation, medical treatment has become expensive. Such free camps are needed to benefit members of society at large,” he said.

Free eye check-up camp conducted

Panchkula: More than 500 persons were examined at the sixth free eye check-up camp organised by Ashwani Gupta Memorial Trust at the Aggarwal Bhavan in Sector 16 here today. Dr JP Singh, Dr Rajeev Mirchia, Dr Monika Jain and Dr Abha Wadhwa examined patients during the camp, which was inaugurated by Justice NK Sanghi of the Punjab and Haryana High Court. Civil Surgeon VK Bansal was present.

Trust chairman Gian Chand Gupta said medicines and spectacles were provided free to needy patients, adding that patients suffering from cataract and other eye ailments would be operated upon free of cost.



Book on terrorism released
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
Dr Sudhir Hindwan, a faculty member at the postgraduate department of political science at Post Graduate Government College for Girls, Sector 42, has authored a book on ‘Encountering Terrorism’ that was released recently.

The book has received an overwhelming response from academia across the globe and probably may suggest blueprints for encountering strategists and policy makers.

The book analyses the trans-national threat of increasing tentacles of terrorism and brings forward suggestions about new strategies for combating the menace.

Dr Hindwan, who has 14 years teaching experience and over 100 publications to his credit, is also 
working on his new assignments one ‘On Naxalism’ and ‘Role of Police’ 
and on ‘Caste and Class Violence.’



Chandigarh Scan
Road to remain closed

Due to re-carpeting of V-3 road between Sector 48 and 49 the vehicular traffic will remain closed till April 10. Commuters are asked to follow alternate routes.

Banks holidays

The Chandigarh Administration has declared April 2 and September 29 as Public Holidays (for the banks) instead of April 1 and September 30, respectively, under the meaning of section 25 of Negotiable Instruments Act, 1881.

Blood donation camp

As many as 37 persons donated blood in a camp organised by the Sri Ram Sharnam here at its Ashram near PGI, on Sunday. As many as 37 persons donated blood. The camp was organised in commemoration of the birth anniversary of Swami Satyanand, the founder of Sri Ram Sharnam. The team was headed by Dr Usha Rao of the Blood Bank of the PGI.


The following have been elected office-bearers to the Sri Guru Ravi Dass Gurudwara: president-DR Summan; vice-president-KK Sondhi and general secretary-GR Chowdhry.

Global Network of Volunteers’

Volunteers of Yuvsatta, on Sunday, announced the formation of a ‘Global Network of Volunteers’ at a function at Botanical Garden. Around 50 young volunteers of Yuvsatta, office-bearers of the Students’ Associations of Afghanistan, Bhutan and that of Iran were present on the occasion. SK Setia, an HCS, presided over the event. Giving information about the initiative Pramod Sharma, Coordinator of Yuvsatta explained that Global Network of Volunteers (GNV) will be a youth-driven, global, grass-roots network of youth focused organisations, giving voice to their campaigns internationally to break the barriers of race, religion, race, color, gender and nationality.

Ten-day camp

As many as 50 children of the age group 6 to 15 years participated in a 10 day-long fun camp called “Ten Days Off”, that was held at The British School, Sector 44, a press release said here on Sunday. The highlights of the finale were enjoyable and singers made foot-tapping performances.

Awareness programme

The annual orientation-cum-awareness programme was conducted at Saupin’s-32 to update the parents relating to the introduction of various advanced and interactive session to be launched in the new academic year 2012-13. The clubs already in function (namely aero modelling, electronics, baking, robotics, pottery, mechanics) showcased through a powerpoint presentation and a demo session the working of their activities.

Book release

Governor of Punjab and the UT Administrator, Shivraj V Patil released the book “Stress: Kill it before it kills you” at Punjab Raj Bhawan, a press release said here on Sunday. DS Cheema (retd), author was presented the author Col (retd) DS Cheema to presented his book to the Governor.

Blind students function

As many as 200 students of the Institute for the Blind were also given away uniforms, shoes and other commodities besides being given souvenirs by Bharat Manthan Trust. The chief guest MP Singh, secretary to the Punjab Governor, founder trustee prof Shashi Malhotra, trustee AK Puri and NS Kalsi distributed shoes and uniform to the children. Chandigarh Mayor, Raj Bala Malik, inaugurated the camp.

Jewellers meet party leader

A delegation of the Chandigarh Jewellers Association and representatives of goldsmith led by Anil Talwar met Bharatiya Janata Party president, Sanjay Tandon, at party headquarter ‘Kamlam’ Sector 33, and sought party’s help in their agitation. Party general secretary and councillor, Satinder Singh, national executive member of Traders Cell Kailash Chand Jain, office secretary, Prem Kaushik and Gajendra Sharma were also present on the occasion.

250 patients examined

The Sahidzada Ajit Singh (SAS) Free Poly Clinic Trust today organised a free health check-up camp with the help of the ENT Department of PGI, Chandigarh, at Gurdwara of Majra village on the Siswan-Kurali road. Maj Gen M S Kandal (retd), chairman SAS Free Poly Clinic Trust, said as many as 250 patients were examined during the camp by a team of doctors led by Dr NK Panda and Dr Dharamvir.

Cultural fest

The students of Gurukul Vidyapeeth Institute of Engineering and Technology celebrated their annual technical fest. Punjabi Singer, Jelly, performed on the occasion. — TNS



Notice to Admn, education dept
Shifting of DEO’s office from Sec 9
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
A local court here yesterday issued a notice to the UT Administration and the education department on a public interest litigation urging them not to shift the DEO’s office out of the Sector-9 Additional Deluxe Building.

In the civil suit filed under the category of action against public nuisance under Section 91 of the CPC, advocate Pankaj had contended that the unnecessary shifting of the DEO’s office to Sector 19, would amount to public nuisance and was against the public interest as it would result in wastage of time, fuel and money.

The office has been functioning from its present address for the past 30 years. The DEO is the local authority under the RTE Act and the main functionary, in whose name all matters relating to school education in the UT of Chandigarh, are carried out.

These include guidance, issuing of circulars, enforcement of rules, etc with which all schools, staff, students and their parents are directly concerned. In this manner, lakhs of people are 
concerned with the work of the DEO’s office on a daily basis.

In the petition, the Chandigarh Administration, through its education secretary, the DPI (Director, Public Instructions) (Schools), the Deputy Director, Public Instructions (Schools) and the District Education Officer (DEO), were made as respondents. 



Back for 3 years
Retired PU teachers need no favour to return

Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 1
The re-employed teachers, who are employed after their retirement, at Panjab University (PU) will no more be at the mercy of the department chairpersons, as they would be re-employed for three years in one-go.

Earlier, the teachers had to seek extension after every year.

Bringing a relief to the re-employed teachers, who often complained that they had to request their department heads, for the extension of their tenure, the Senate has decided that the teachers will be not have to seek extensions repeatedly. Earlier, Panjab University Teachers Association (PUTA) had raised the issue about the same.

The Vice-Chancellor RC Sobti agreeing to the demand of the teachers said that although the teachers would be re-employed for a period of three years yet they would have to submit a progress report to the university every year.

PUTA president, Akshay Kumar, said that the decision will not only save the senior teachers from unnecessary harassment but also cut-down the lengthy process.

Initially, at the end of every year the case of teacher was forwarded to PU Syndicate by the chairperson, which after approval was further sent to Senate for the final approval.

Raising the issue of the self-financed BEd colleges affiliated to PU, Tarlok Bandhu, a fellow at the Senate meeting, demanded that the decision for three-year re-employment should also be extended to the self financed colleges.

“There is a shortage of principals in the BEd colleges, who have to get re-employed every-year, it is a very lengthy process as before the Syndicate and Senate giving its approval a panel from university visits the colleges for approving the re-employment that also adds to financial burden,” Bandhu said.



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