C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


City liquor rates to go up
UT’s new Excise Policy brings city liquor prices at par with Mohali
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 3
Chandigarh would no longer be a boozers’ heaven, as in the UT’s new Excise Policy (2012-2013), the liquor prices in the city will be at par with the prices in Mohali.

In a “monopolistic-oriented” policy that is bound to bring tears to many and cheer to a few, the minimum retail price of the Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) and country liquor have been increased by 40 to 50 per cent.

On the contrary, beer prices would remain less than those in Punjab, as the UT has hiked the price of beer by 10 per cent to 13 per cent. But in the case of the IMFL, the excise duty and the assessment fee have been increased up to Rs 60 per proof litre (PL). “If the allotment price of vends goes up, the prices could be more than those in Mohali,” observed a UT Excise official.

Continuing with the existing policy, the licences will be granted by inviting tenders for allotting vends from May 1, 2012, to April 30, 2013, and the maximum number of vends has been kept unchanged at 65 (country vends) and 152 (IMFL vends).

To jack up the revenue, the UT has announced that the minimum reserved price of a liquor vend would be based on the last year’s highest quoted price for the respective vend and further increasing it by 20 per cent. Giving example, officials in the excise department said last year, the liquor vend in Sector 22 (opposite Sector 17 ISBT) went for Rs 2.73 crore. But under the new policy, the minimum bid money for the particular vend would be Rs 3.28 crore.

Further, the slabs from the minimum earnest money have been substantially increased from the previous uniform reserve price of Rs 2.50 lakh. “The policy is particularly aimed at benefiting big players who could monopolise the liquor trade and control the prices,” said sources in the liquor trade.

Now, for an amount of Rs 1 crore, the earnest money would be Rs 10 lakh. For an amount exceeding Rs 1 crore to 1.5 crore, the earnest money would be Rs 13 lakh and for an amount exceeding Rs. 1.5 crore to 2 crore, the earnest money would be Rs 16 lakh. For an amount exceeding, Rs 2 crore, the earnest money would be Rs 20 lakh.

Against the anticipated move of bringing down the liquor quota, the UT Excise Department has kept the annual quota of country liquor unchanged at 27 lakh Proof Litre (PL) and of IMFL at 2 crore PL.

It would not be out of place to mention that in the current policy, a substantial quantity of liquor quota remains yet to be lifted in the current excise policy that ends on April 20, 2012. Still, the UT has not decreased the quota.

Officials said the excise duty on the IMFL has been increased between Rs 30 per PL and Rs 60 PL, depending on the brand. The excise duty on the IMFL is fixed at Rs 30 per PL for cheap, economy, medium, at Rs 35 per PL for Premium and Ultra Premium Brands at Rs 50 per PL for Semi Deluxe, Deluxe & Super Deluxe Brands and Rs 60 per PL for Ultra Deluxe Brands. On the contrary, the excise duty on Beer has been enhanced from Rs. 9 per bottle to Rs. 10 per bottle for light beer and from Rs 15 per bottle to Rs. 17 per bottle for strong beer. Additional license fee at the same rates will be applicable on imported beer. The excise duty on Country Liquor has been enhanced form Rs 7 per PL to Rs 15 per PL.



‘Increase in collector rates to affect real estate business’

Mohali, April 3
Increase in collector rates did not go well with the local property dealers, who maintained that it would adversely affect the real estate business here.

“You see the recession has already hit the real estate business of late. Now the increase in collector rates would lead to aggravation of the situation,” said Surinder Singh Mahant, local real estate agent and former general secretary of Mohali Property Dealers Association.

While Shalinder Anand, proprietor of Anand Property Consultant in Phase VII was of the view that the increase in collector rates would benefit the projects by the private builders where the property was transferable by paying nominal charges.

“Though increase in the collector rates has become a routing thing every year, in my viewpoint the rates should not have revised this year by the administration because of slump in the business,” said Anand.

The hike in the rates would also create problems in the deals which has already struck but the registration of which are yet to take place, added Vikram Mehrok, another local real estate consultant. — TNS



Five policemen suspended in different cases
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 3
Taking stern action against erring policemen, senior police officials suspended five police personnel and initiated departmental inquiries against them.

Three of the police personnel belong to the Traffic Police, while two were posted with the Chandigarh police control room.

Sub Inspector (SI) Rajinder Singh and ASI Talwinder Singh posted with the Police Control Room were suspended for not taking prompt action against two constables, who had created ruckus outside the residence of SSP (UT) Naunihal Singh on March 11.

The two drunk constables had first come to the Chandigarh Police headquarters in Sector 9 in an inebriated state on March 12 and had then moved to the SSP’s residence, where they fired gun shots.

Senior police officials said that had the two officers acted and stopped the drunk constables at the police headquarters, the firing incident outside the SSP’s residence would have been averted. “Both the SI and the ASI failed to take stock of the situation and let the two drunk constables go free,” said a senior police officer.

The two constables have already been dismissed from service following the incident.

In a separate case, three traffic policemen, including head constable Raja Ram, constables Varinder Singh and Vajinder Singh, were suspended for intercepting the outstation registered vehicles for minor traffic offences near the ISBT-43.

DSP (Traffic) Vijay Kumar said strict instructions were issued for not stopping the outstation registered vehicles for minor traffic violations but these three failed to abide by the instructions.

Meanwhile, sub-inspector (SI) Baldev Kumar, in charge of police post Maloya, was also transferred from the police post to the CID wing on administrative grounds.

Reasons for suspension

SI Rajinder Singh and ASI Talwinder Singh posted with the Police Control Room were suspended for not taking prompt action against two constables, who had created ruckus outside the residence of SSP Naunihal Singh on March 11

In another case, three traffic policemen, including head constable Raja Ram, constables Varinder Singh and Vajinder Singh, were suspended for intercepting outstation registered vehicles for minor traffic offences near the ISBT-43.



Five-year-old girl hit by car, dies
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, April 3
A five-year-old girl, Khushi, was killed after being hit by a rashly driven Tata Indigo car near Madanpura village on the Panchkula-Barwala National Highway-73 here this morning.

The child was going to an aanganwari school situated across the GT road.

The car occupants rushed her to the General Hospital in Sector 6, where doctors declared her brought dead.

Frightened by this, the unidentified car occupants fled from the hospital, leaving behind their car at the hospital parking. An eyewitness Kamal told the police that at the time of the incident, there were four youths in the car and all of them were in the age age group of 20-23.

The Chandimandir police registered a case and impounded the car. The victim’s body was handed over to the family members after the post-mortem examination conducted at the hospital.

The victim’s father, Subai, a native of Uttar Pradesh and presently residing in Madanpura village, said his daughter, along with her elder brother Sachin, was going to the school. While Sachin managed to cross the road, Khushi was hit by the speeding car, resulting in her instant death on the spot.

Notably, the Panchkula police has identified 27 accident-prone points in the district. A majority of these are located on the “killer highways”, National Highway 73 (Panchkula to Naraingarh) and National Highway 22 (Zirakpur to Kalka). There are a number of accident-prone points in the town as well. The police has identified these points after conducting a joint survey with the Road Safety Organisation, an NGO.

The police has already asked the Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA), the municipal corporation and the National Highways Authority of India to take remedial steps to minimise the number of accidents on these points.

In the past two years, 250 persons had died in road accidents in Panchkula district. From 2006 to 2011, 135 persons lost lives in accidents, which were untraceable. In these, the police had no idea about how the accident had taken place.



Salesman held in Hyderabad
Made hoax bomb calls to Infosys on March 30
Aneesha Sareen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 3
With the arrest of a salesman in Hyderabad, the mystery shrouding the series of hoax calls at the Infosys here on March 30 has been solved.

The police arrested a salesman in Hyderabad for allegedly making a series of bomb threat calls to Infosys offices across the country, including the one at the IT Park here.

The police arrested P Appala Naidu, alias Lokesh, of Srikakulam. The police said he wanted to gain popularity by adopting such tactics.

Mani Majra police station SHO Rajesh Shukla said they coordinated with the Hyderabad police and would bring the accused here on production warrants shortly.

“We have received the information and will send a team there to bring the accused here on production warrants,” he said.

On March 30, the accused made a number of bomb threat calls to the Hyderabad, Chennai, Bengaluru, Pune and Chandigarh centres of Infosys and sent bomb threat SMSes to several employees as well.

During interrogation, Naidu told the police that he made several bomb threat calls to Infosys across the country from a PCO at the Western Hills Colony on March 30 and sent the SMS ‘Planted a time bomb in Infosys. Take care’ to the manager (facilities) with Infosys the next day.

The police said Naidu, who completed his intermediate education, had been working as salesman with Reliance and was staying at a house on Road 12 at the Banjara Hills.

In Chandigarh, the call was received at the telephone exchange of Infosys around 6:45 pm. Security guards passed the information to the Chandigarh Police control room. The police cordoned off the area and carried out an extensive search. 



HSRP fixing work from next month
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 3
The work of affixing high-security registration plates (HSRPs) on both old and new vehicles will resume by next month as the Chandigarh Administration has finalised the lowest bidder, Real Amazon, to implement the project. The move follows nod from the Central government after the UT sent an amended project for approval.

Kavle V Parshuram, Registering and Licensing Authority (RLA), said it would take a few more weeks to complete all formalities. The Administration had floated the tender for the HSRPs on the directive of the Supreme Court after the apex court had directed the UT to recall the tenders.

An HSRP would cost less than Rs 200. The project of issuing these plates will be implemented on build, own and operate basis. The bidder implementing the project will assemble, establish, procure technology, design, develop, produce, supply, emboss, affix and distribute the plates on his own.

The vehicle owner must submit his documents at either of the three places (depending on location of residence) - RLA, Sector 17; office of SDM (South), Sector 42, and office of SDM (East), Industrial Area Phase-I.

The owner will get three copies of “HSRNP Authorisation Slip”. RLA officials will paste one in the vehicle registration booklet and return two copies. He will keep one copy and submit the third to the HSRNP vendor.

On procuring HSRNP, the owner must ensure the vendor issues him two copies of HSRNP Delivery Document, one of which he will keep. He will bring a vendor representative to the RLA office for fastening HSRNP and affixing third registration plate (sticker) on his vehicle.



On ‘special’ duty for city VVIPs’ safety
‘Manu’ is posted at UT Secretariat near police headquarters to shoo away monkeys
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 3
‘Manu’, one of the two langurs in the city to manage the monkey menace, has been posted at the UT Secretariat, adjoining the police headquarters, for city VVIPs’ safety and their “special” staff members.

Recently monkeys had attacked a female employee of the UT Administration and an employee posted in the police headquarters. Thereafter, the UT Administration forwarded a letter to the UT forest and wildlife department to deploy a langoor on “special” duty around the UT Secretariat and the police headquarters building.

Sources added that a few days ago, ‘Manu’, along with his trainer, had been posted near the UT Secretariat building to deal with monkey menace. Interestingly, the department has only two langoors to chase away the rampaging monkeys. While ‘Manu’, the male langoor, is posted here in the UT secretariat building, Basanti, the female langoor, is in the forest and wildlife department with her trainer.

Sources further added that the UT forest and wildlife department paid Rs 7,500 each per month to the trainers of both ‘Manu’ and Basanti. In total, the department pays annually Rs 1,80,000 to the trainers of both langoors.

UT Chief Conservator of Forests-cum-Chief Wildlife Warden Santosh Kumar said ‘Manu’ was not only for the UT Secretariat and police headquarters but the department was receiving a number of complaints from Sector 9. Therefore, they had placed ‘Manu’ near the UT Secretariat building.

But sources added that ‘Manu’ was only seen during the Secretariat working hours and only on working days. But on Saturdays and Sundays and on any other holiday, he was not seen near the Secretariat building.

An official said it was not about the langoor’s ‘posting’ near the Secretariat. The langoor’s trainers were just a call away and the department sends them wherever they were required to tackle with monkey menace.

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HC pulls up Admn
Gives last chance to plan no-vehicle zone for Sector 17
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 3
Taking cognisance of the Chandigarh Administration’s inability to meet the April 1 deadline of making Sector 17 a vehicle-free zone, the Punjab and Haryana High Court today thundered, “Do not test our patience.”

The Division Bench, comprising Justice Surya Kant and Justice Ajay Tewari, made this observation while giving the last opportunity to the Administration to work out the modalities and inform the court of its plan to make the downtown a no-vehicle zone.

As the matter came up for hearing, the Bench expressed its dissatisfaction with the failure of the Administration to finalise the plan to de-congest the sector, in accordance with the earlier orders of the court.

At the onset, UT senior standing counsel Sanjay Kaushal expressed his helplessness before the Bench and sought the last opportunity for filing the Administration’s reply on the issue.

Kaushal claimed that various departments of the Administration and the municipal corporation were working closely to finalise the modalities, adding that he was in a difficult situation and was feeling embarrassed while seeking additional time.

He cited the financial-year closing and budget-related issues as the reasons for not working out the modalities and said the architect department and other officials concerned were involved in the decision-making process.

Responding to the assertions, amicus curie APS Shergill said the authorities were shirking their duty, adding that Chandigarh had lost its character due to excessive vehicular load and even greenbelts in sectors were being converted into open-air parking lots.

Fixing April 20 as the next date of hearing, the Bench suggested verbally that the Administration introduce small buses or small vehicles like golf carts to ferry visitors to Sector 17.

The Bench added, “The authorities have no respect for the Bench that they could not even file a two-page affidavit, informing the court about the status of developments at their end.”

The counsel for Sector-17 shop-owners suggested the enhancement in parking fee. He suggested that up to Rs 10 per hour be charged to discourage the flow of vehicles to Sector 17. He also sought the deployment of more police personnel to manage traffic in the area.


Admn to send final house tax reminder to MC
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 3
The UT Administration will send a final reminder to the municipal corporation (MC) on imposing house tax in the city.

In a joint meeting of Administration and MC officials on the civic body budget, UT Administrator Shivraj Patil directed the Administration to send a letter to the MC to impose house tax, failing which the authorities would initiate action on their own.

The Administrator had asked Mayor Raj Bala Malik to prepare a detailed report on house tax and table it in the next General House for approval.

Sources said MC officials gave a presentation on the 2012-13 budget. approved during the General House last month.

In a recent communique, the UT Administrator had asked the MC to give a detailed presentation on the budget and projects mooted for the current financial year.

A senior official with the Administration confirmed that the Administrator approved the budget of the civic body.

The House approved a budget of Rs 481.69 crore under the Plan head, Rs 219.90 crore under the non-Plan head and 141.41 crore from own receipts under various other heads.

During the meeting, Administration officials pointed out that the MC had not taken any action to impose house tax even after a number of reminders.

The officials suggested that final reminder o the imposition of house tax be attached with the budget approved and sent to the MC for execution.

Rejecting the recommendation of Administration officials, the Administrator asked the officials to send both documents separately.

The Administrator said during the meeting that there was no provision of the Administration imposing a tax while approving the MC budget.

Administration officials said councillors had, during the recent general House, rejected the proposal to impose house tax.

They pointed out that this would adversely affect the grant-in-aid received by the Administration from the Centre for various projects.

The Administrator directed the officials during the meeting not to put any development projects sent by the MC on hold.



Mini-hospital not operational yet
Sanjay Bumbroo
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, April 3
The construction of polyclinic at Sector 26, Modern Mini-Hospital, which has been completed about six months ago, is yet to be thrown open for the general public.

The 16-bed hospital would be the first one to be opened in sectors across the river Ghaggar. The construction work of the mini-hospital started in January 2009 and the work was to be completed in 18 months. The estimated cost of the project was Rs 2.57 crore. However, the work was delayed by about one year.

The project was completed about six months ago and the Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) had decided to handover the same to the health authorities. A senior official said that work has already been completed as per the specification and design of the building. He said whatever changes have been advised by the authorities would be made soon.

Civil Surgeon VK Bansal said that he had inspected the hospital building recently and found some shortcomings there. He added that he had already directed the HUDA authorities to remove the same so that the same could be thrown open to the general public.

At present there is no dispensary or hospital in the sectors across river Ghaggar and in case of an emergency, the residents of Sector 23 to 28 have to visit General Hospital, Sector 6, or to any other private practitioners in the town.

The two-storey building of the hospital has covered area of 12,000 square feet on the ground floor while the first floor has 10,000 square feet. The hospital would also have the specialist doctors including the cardiologist and urologist and other trained medical staff. The hospital would have all the necessary equipments including the X-ray, ultrasound, machines and other required infrastructure to provide treatment to the patients.



Restoration centre for heritage items in offing deck
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 3
The UT Administration has decided to set up a restoration centre to store and repair heritage items of the city in order to preserve those.

In a meeting between Central and UT Administration officials in New Delhi today, points regarding preservation of heritage items were discussed and it was decided that a place be identified in Chandigarh where a restoration centre could be set up.

UT Adviser KK Sharma said the Administration was serious about the preservation of heritage items, adding that those would be stored and repaired at the restoration centre.

If the items could be reused, according to the advice of experts, items like furniture would be used, he said, adding that a few items would be displayed at the museum.

Sources said the Administration sought the permission of the Union ministry to include more experts in the heritage conservation committee.

A senior official with the Administration said besides local experts, those from the Archaeological Survey of India would help the Administration preserve heritage items.

The Union Ministry of Home Affairs recently approved the heritage report of the Administration. The Administration would now start the process of framing bylaws and regulations.

The sources added that the Administration would shortly issue a notification on the formation of a committee, headed by the Adviser to the Administrator, to frame conservation bylaws and regulations and the action plan.

The Chandigarh heritage conservation committee would also prepare detailed project reports on important heritage buildings in the city and ensure proper conservation and maintenance.

Le Corbusier’s office in grade I

In the heritage report, architectural landmarks at the Capitol Complex, including the Secretariat, the high court and the Open Hand monument, along with prominent precincts of Le Corbusier’s original office at Sector 19, the Government Press building at Sector 18 and the Chandigarh College of Architecture at Sector 12, had been placed under grade I for heritage status while four private houses, three at Sector 5 and one at Sector 4, had been placed under grade II.




acid attack
All four victims discharged
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 3
Jatin, Sahil, Lalit and Amit, the four youths who were referred to the Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) at Sector 32 here yesterday with serious burn injuries, were discharged after being given medical aid today.

When contacted, Amit said all four of them were discharged and asked to come tomorrow for routine check-up. He said Jatin and Lalit were still complaining of blurred vision as there was swelling on their eyes.

In an incident at Ambala yesterday, two persons threw acid on them after a brawl. Four of the eight injured were referred to the GMCH for medical care.

Sahil, Jatin, Sandeep, Lalit, Sonu, Gurcharan, Rajender and Amit went to Ajay’s residence for taking their money back. Ajay used to run a monthly committee.

Some of the youths who were members of the committee were allegedly not paid the amount due. There was a scuffle and later, two persons threw acid on the youths.



chandigarh scan
Road closed

Due to re-carpeting of V-3 road between Sectors 48 and 49, the vehicular traffic will remain closed till April 10. The UT Administration has requested commuters to follow another route for their convenience.


UT Adviser KK Sharma inaugurated the community care centre and flagged off mobile ICTC van at Khuda Ali Sher on Tuesday. KK Sharma appreciated the initiative of the Chandigarh State AIDS Control Society in collaboration with Child Survival India and Chandigarh Network of People Living with HIV/AIDS.

Mid-day meal project

Mid-day meal kitchen pilot project was inaugurated at Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 10, on Tuesday. The first-of-its-kind kitchen in the city was inaugurated by Sandeep Hans, (DPI) schools. Covered under the midday meal scheme, students can now eat food freshly cooked in the school’s kitchen. The UT Administration has launched this unique “midday meal pilot project” initially on an experimental basis in the school.

Art exhibition

An exhibition “Raj Rewal-The art of architecture” organised by the Chandigarh College of Architecture in collaboration with the Government Museum and Art Gallery was inaugurated by UT Adviser KK Sharma here on Tuesday. The work of eminent architect Raj Rewal, who has to his credit the privilege of designing many prestigious projects like the Olympics Village Paris, Asian Olympics Village New Delhi, Lisbon Ismali Centre Portugal (to name just a few) will be on display till April 17.

mohali scan

The Quest Group of Institutions, faculty of engineering and technology, has been awarded the “best engineering college in Punjab” by Brands Academy in Education Excellence Awards 2012 on the basis of its recognition of leadership in education, industry interface, research and development. — Tribune Reporters



Education first priority, says Minister Malooka
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Mohali, April 3
“It would take two years to put the things in order as far as the education scenario is concerned in the state,” claimed Sikandar Singh Malooka, the state Education Minister at Punjab School Education Board (PSEB) here today.

Malooka, who came to meet the office bearers of Adhyapak Dal here, assured them that up to mark infrastructure would be provided in all the schools in the state very soon.

“The first priority of the government was to provide up to mark infrastructure in all the government schools and appropriate number of teachers there. Very soon a board for teachers recruitment would also be constituted which would look after all the recruitments in the state,” said Malooka.

Those teachers, who work in various offices on deputation, would be called back very soon to teach in the schools. This way, the scarcity of the teachers would reduce to some extent, he added.

On question of availability of funds, Malooka said that it would not be problem. “ Parkash Singh Badal is very keen to upgrade the education scenario in Punjab so the funds would surely no problem. Besides, other alternatives would also be worked out for the purpose,” said Malooka adding that the teachers should also come forward to make the education scenario better.

Malooka also assured that the effective implementation of the ‘Right to Education’ in the state. “The affiliation of those private schools, which do not comply with the laid conditions, would be cancelled. As education to all children here is also our main motive, so we would also ensure effective implementation is our duty,” he said.

Meanwhile, the teachers also apprised the minister of the problems being faced by them. A demand letter was also given to Malooka. The main demands included timely promotions in different categories, to fill vacant posts in the BPEO and issuance of appointment letter to as many as 7,200 teachers, who had passed Teachers Eligibility Test.



Labourer falls off lift, injured
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 3
A 30-year-old labourer, identified as Babulal, sustained injuries as he fell off a lift at the site for a house under construction at Phase I of the Industrial Area here this evening.

He was immediately rushed to the Government Medical College and Hospital at Sector 32, where his condition was stated to be stable.

According to information available, the rope which was being used to run the lift broke, due to which he fell down and was injured.



Flying Squad
Teachers turn down PU’s offer
Protest against approval given to Guru Nanak College, Ferozepur, as exam centre
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 3
Although Panjab University (PU) had approved Guru Nanak College, Ferozepur, as the examination centre at the last moment where over 150 copying cases were made and a flying squad was attacked last year, the fellows, this year, in protest of approving the college as an examination centre have turned down PU’s offer to visit as the flying squad.

HS Gosal, a fellow who was asked by PU to visit the college tomorrow as a flying, refused to visit the college. “We are surprised as how PU approved the college as the examination centre even after cases of mass copying were reported from the college last year. Even I had made over 35 copy cases in the college,” Gosal said.

Kuldip Singh, another fellow also refused to accept the university’s offer, to visit the college as the flying. “I was verbally asked by the PU Registrar-cum-controller examination for visiting the college during examinations, however, I refused to accept the offer,” Singh said.

Singh further said he had visited the college as flying last year after which he had submitted a report to the university stating that the situation in the college was worst and the examination centre should be changed immediately.

The university’s decision to make Guru Nanak College as the examination centre was also opposed by SS Sangha, another fellow, during the Senate meeting held recently. “I had denied that I won’t visit the college this year as a member of the flying squad, as there is threat to life of the teachers visiting as flying,” Sangha said.

Another Senate member, Tarlok Bandhu, who had also visited the college as a member of the flying team last year has given a report demanding that PU should intervene in the matter, as the situation had worsened. “With a large number of copy cases reported from the college, I had mentioned that it was a mockery of examinations,” he said.

The PU Syndicate last year decided to debar the college from being an examination centre for at least a year. However, surprisingly the university has changed its decision, which raised many eyebrows.

When contacted, AK Bhandari, Registrar-cum-controller examination, said although a few fellows had denied to visit the college as flying, they will ask others to visit the college as the flying squad.



GGSSS-18 result
DEO initiates inquiry

Chandigarh, April 3
A day after the parents of around 30 students of Class XI of Government Girls’ Senior Secondary School, Sector 18 (GGSSS-18), staged a protest against the school principal, the district education officer (DEO) has initiated an inquiry in the same.

The parents met DEO Ram Kumar today and submitted a memorandum of their demands. The parents stated that out of 56 students in the class, 26 students have failed that depicts poor delivery of education. The parents claimed that this was the case with other classes as well where a large number of students have failed.

The parents alleged that the school has not even conducted any parent-teacher meet to inform them about the progress of their wards. They had also demanded a re-evaluation of those who have failed or else the exams should be conducted again. — TNS



Promoting cycling for healthy living habits
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 3
Although the World Health Day is celebrated every year on April 7, the Centre for Social Works is going to celebrate it in a different way. The students and faculty have pledged to pedal down to the university from their home for one week to promote cycling and healthy living habits.

Taking the lead, the students and faculty who had arrived on the bicycles today drove across the campus spreading the message for others to ride a bicycle and stay fit.

Assistant professor Gaurav Gaur said as a part of the campaign, everyone would pedal from their house and spread awareness about the need to stay fit among the students. “The campaign will also involve promoting healthy eating habits and different ways to stay fit even during a busy schedule,” he said.

As the part of the campaign, “Zindagi Plus”, the students have also planned to visit all teaching departments and distribute medicinal plants.

Gaur said promoting cycling would not only help the students and faculty members to stay fit but also help in lessening traffic congestion on the campus.

“We are requesting all PU officials to start cycling and materialise the proposal of declaring one day as the no-vehicle day in the campus,” Gaur said.



Students demand improvement chance for UIET students
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 3
Students of Panjab University (PU) today staged a protest outside the Vice-Chancellor’s office against their long pending demands, including beautification of the campus and improvement chance for the students of University Institute of Engineering and Technology (UIET).

Student Organisation of Panjab University (SOPU) president Manoj Lubana said they had demanded that the students of UIET should also get improvement chance like others, on which the Vice-Chancellor assured that the matter would be taken to the Senate.

Lubana further said as the admissions in the university would be starting soon and thousands of newcomers would be visiting the campus, they had demanded that guide maps of the campus should be placed at all three gates.

SOPU leader has also demanded that floodlights should be installed at all girls’ hostels in view of the security of students and the student centre should be beautified.

The protest lasted for over two hours with the students raising slogans against the PU authorities. At last, the VC arrived at the scene to pacify the students and assured them of meeting their demands.

The students even complained that WiFi system in the girls’ hostels, mainly in hostel numbers 1, 2 and 4, is non-functional since 10 days.

Hunger strike

NSUI leader Sandeep Boora today sat on an indefinite hunger strike demanding appointment of regular teachers in the university. Boora claimed that he would continue the hunger strike till the university starts the appointment process.



PU exams
Sending questions by SMS, new trend
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 3
It’s not just fake question papers that are giving Panjab University sleepless nights but the authorities have also come across the new trend of SMS being circulated among the students with the questions claiming it to be from the question paper set by PU.

Meanwhile, the rumours of question papers for the next exam leaked kept the PU examination branch on its toes.

Dealing with the rumours of question papers, the university’s examination branch has come across the SMSes being sent with questions.

PU controller examination AK Bhandari said someone was now circulating the SMS that seemed to be a guess question paper to fool the students.

“The SMS seems to be more like a guess paper that is misleading the students and creating confusion,” Bhandari said.

Bhandari further said there were talks that English exam, which is to be held tomorrow, is being sold in the market, however, these are all rumours to cheat the students.

Officials said there was some information also of the question papers being sold in parts of Punjab.

The university has given strict instructions to all examination centre superintendents that the question papers should be opened on the day of examination to avoid any kind of paper leak.



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