C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


BMW tries to run over constable
Four youths arrested in attempt-to-murder case; juvenile among accused
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 22
Four youths attacked a constable attached with the security of UT SSP Naunihal Singh last night. Constable Bhim Singh had a miraculous escape as the four tried to run their BMW over him on the road separating Sectors 10 and 16. All the four were later arrested in an attempt to murder case.

The accused include an Australia returned youth and a juvenile. The police has arrested Bhavjeet Singh, Sahil Saini, Vikram Sachdeva and a student of class XII, all residents of Kharar. Bhavjeet’s father Palwinder Singh owns the BMW.

The police said the accused had returned from Australia last week after eight years when his father purchased a BMW here. The incident occurred at around midnight when the constable, along with other police personnel, was returning after escorting the SSP to his residence. On their way back, they spotted some youngsters in a BMW car (registration number CH-039 (T)-1009) teasing some girls near the roundabout of Sectors 9, 17, 16 and 10. The youths speeded up the car on seeing the police, which chased them and intercepted them near the Sector 16/10 dividing road. As constable Bhim Singh stepped out of the police vehicle, Bhavjeet, who was driving the car, tried to run him over, but failed.

The police traced the registration number of the car and arrested the accused from Kharar today. During interrogation, they told the police that they had been following the girls for sometime and tried to intercept them near Sector 9, when the police spotted them.


Traffic policeman thrashed

The incident took place eight hours after a traffic policeman, Mangat Singh, was assaulted by two occupants of a BMW car near Sector 61 on April 21. He was beaten up when he tried to check the documents pertaining to the temporary registration number of the car.


Past incidents

April 6, 2012: Four youths from Ferozepur attacked constable Ashok Kumar at the night food street, Sector 11, following an argument. They tore his uniform.

November 5, 2011: A policeman was thrashed by unidentified assailants at Sector 45.

October 17, 2011: Head Constable Janak Raj, posted at the Sector 11 police station, was abducted and thrashed in a moving car by four youths. The head constable was later thrown from the car in a forest area.

October 21, 2011: Two policemen on night duty were assaulted inside the Sector 11 police station by supporters of students who were arrested for brawl.

October 23, 2011: A traffic police constable was critically injured after two youths on a motorcycle ran him over when he signalled them to stop.



25-year-old youth among three killed in accidents
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 22
Three persons died in separate road accidents in the past 24 hours today.
In the first incident, a 25-year-old youth was killed when his motorcycle was run over by a truck in Hallomajra.

The victim, Hemant Sharma, died on the spot. He was a resident of Sector 20 and was employed with a private company. He was on his way to Zirakpur on a motorcycle when the accident took place. The victim sustained severe head injuries and was declared brought dead at the Government College and Hospital, Sector 32.

The police has arrested the driver, Prabhu Yadav, a resident of Darwa village, for causing death due to negligence under Section 304-A of the IPC. The accused was released on bail.

In another incident, a 57-year-old pedestrian was killed in a road accident. The victim, Babu Lal, a resident of Colony Number 5, was hit by an unidentified vehicle near Burail Jail this morning. The victim was a shoemaker. The police rushed him to hospital where he was declared brought dead.

In yet another accident reported in the evening, a 60-year-old resident of Zirakpur was crushed under the rear wheels of a truck near Fun Republic in Manimajra. The incident took place in the evening when the victim, Umed Singh, was returning home on his Honda Activa.

The driver of the truck has been arrested. 



Panic as rail coach goes ‘missing’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 22
Passengers at the local railway station were subject to utter confusion this morning, when a particular Jan Shatabdi coach, C3, did not arrive at the station.
In the ensuing commotion, a doctor, who did not find his mother on board, pulled the chain and was subsequently roughed up by Railway Protection Force (RPF) personnel.

When the train arrived at 7.30 am, over 20 local passengers on board were ‘missing’, leaving their families anxious. The doctor pulled the chain of the train after shuffling through different compartments in search of his mother and not finding her.

Since the C3 coach was not there, he thought she was adjusted in some other compartment. He could not check all the coaches and the train started, forcing him to pull the chain.

The roughing up incident was confirmed by the railway authorities, but the doctor is said not to have lodged any formal complaint. Relatives of over 20 passengers who had come to pick them up were disturbed when they saw the coach missing.

A frantic search of other coaches followed. Daljit Singh, a shopkeeper, said: “I had come to pick up my grandfather. I kept standing near the entrance gate since he has travelled by this train several times and knew his way. When I saw that a majority of passengers had got off, I was shocked to learn that the C-3 coach was missing.”

Passengers made frantic enquiries at the platform but to no avail. A railways official said: “We had no information about the coach not arriving and so, we did not have any reply.” 



Permanent counter set up at Sec-17 office
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 22
Already running behind schedule and having failed to get the estimated 2.5 lakh families, including below poverty line (BPL), ‘antyodaya anna yojna’ (AAY) and above poverty line (APL) ones, registered during field enrolment camps, the food and civil supplies department has now set up a permanent counter at its Sector-17 office to register the remaining ration cards holders in the city.

At the special counter, the department will capture biometric data and photographs of the beneficiaries before issuing them smart cards. Officials with the department have said 47,000 families have so far been covered during camps held over the last one year.

Of those, 13,000 families have been issued smart cards. For others, the process to issue documents is in progress. There is shortage of smart cards and shortage of staff to process the data. The shortage of staff has had a fallout on the success of the smart card scheme.

In 2010, the smart card scheme had been introduced in Chandigarh as a pilot project by the Government of India, using the biometric system.

Initially, the scheme was to cover approximately 2.5 lakh families in Chandigarh by December, 2010. Chandigarh had taken the lead in implementing the scheme and the department had collected the data of around 1.5 lakh APL families through the distribution of forms at various ‘sampark’ 

Not many persons came forward during camps at colonies as there was confusion over the survey being conducted for ‘aadhaar’ cards. Officials explained that there was no link between smart cards and ‘aadhaar’ cards.

The smart card scheme aimed at streamlining the functioning of the food and civil supplies department and ensuring improvised service delivery by replacing the existing paper-based ration cards with smart cards.

The smart card system envisioned setting up point-of-sale terminals at all fair price shops and kerosene depots in the city.

Each smart card, with a 64-kb capacity, would hold the biometric data of family members of every card holder. The smart card of fair price shop owners and kerosene depot owners would carry details of the beneficiaries attached.

The identity of the beneficiary would be established by means of the biometric impression in the card.

The beneficiary would be able to know the ration allocation made and the balance remaining in the account. 


67 colleges to face action
PU plans to penalise institutions for paying low salaries to teachers
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 22
Panjab University has prepared a list of 67 affiliated colleges for not complying with various norms, particularly for operating without the adequate number of teachers and for paying low salaries to them. The colleges would be given a 15-day deadline and those failing to fulfil the requirements by then could face disaffiliation. The report with the names of the colleges defaulting in fulfilling the norms would be tabled in the forthcoming Syndicate meeting.

The issue of PU-affiliated colleges exploiting teachers by paying them low salaries had cropped-up in the last Syndicate meeting with various members highlighting the cases of various colleges that are functioning without the required strength of teachers from last many years. The Vice-Chancellor during the meeting had directed the Dean College Development Council (DCDC) to prepare list of such colleges against whom action will be taken.

PU officials said that they have identified a list of 67 colleges who have been blatantly flouting the norms by either not appointing the required number of teachers or by paying low salaries to teachers. “Although the colleges have the infrastructure, teachers are heavily underpaid, in violation of the UGC regulations,” said a PU official.

The colleges are supposed to pay a basic salary of Rs 15,600 to the teachers on contract. However, there are colleges that do not pay more than Rs 6,000.

Officials said that as per UGC, the number of contractual teachers in a college should not exceed 10 per cent of the total sanctioned posts. However, a number of colleges are running only on contractual teachers.

The DCDC in his report had recommended that the colleges should be given a 15-day deadline to fulfill all the requirements before they are disaffiliated. The report would be discussed in the Syndicate for its nod, following which the university would start acting against the colleges. 



PGI launches ‘Asha Jyoti’
It is a women’s healthcare mobile outreach programme
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 22
In order to provide healthcare at the doorstep of women in the region, the department of radiodiagnosis at the PGI launched ‘Asha Jyoti’, a women’s healthcare mobile outreach programme, here today.
Union minister Pawan Kumar Bansal and PGI Director YK Chawla interact with the staff of the ‘Asha Jyoti’ women’s healthcare mobile outreach programme at the health institute in Chandigarh on Sunday.
Union minister Pawan Kumar Bansal and PGI Director YK Chawla interact with the staff of the ‘Asha Jyoti’ women’s healthcare mobile outreach programme at the health institute in Chandigarh on Sunday. Tribune Photo: S Chandan

Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Pawan Kumar Bansal flagged off a mobile van equipped with a microdose digital mammography unit for breast evaluation, a DEXA scan for evaluation of bone density and a digital video colposcope for evaluation of the cervix.

Prof YK Chawla, PGI Director, and Prof N Khandelwal, head of the department of radiodiagnosis, were also present on the occasion.

It was a population-based screening programme for healthy women in the
age group 45 years to 60 years for the detection of breast cancer, cervical cancer and osteoporosis.

The programme was aimed to detect any of the three diseases before the individual had any signs or symptoms thereof.

The target population would include urban and semi-urban women and would be extended to women at villages in due course of time, Professor Khandelwal said.

In the pilot phase of this project, 500 women would be screened in six months. Between 2,000 and 3,000 women would be screened in one year during the regular operational phase.

This programme was proposed as a model for promoting preventive healthcare for women and providing doorstep screening for the three diseases in a single visit, he added.

This project was a collaboration between the PGI and the RAD-AID International, a non-profit organisation founded by a team of radiologists from the Johns Hopkins Hospital, USA, and supported by the Philips Healthcare, USA.

Need-based screening standards for breast and cervical cancer as well as osteoporosis in North India would be defined, which might help in the formation of national policies for the screening of the three diseases.

Initially the screening programme would be carried out at Sector 38, Indira Colony, Colony No. 5 and rural areas in Chandigarh and Punjab.

Following this, the project was likely to be extended to other urban and rural areas as part of community based radiology services.

The departments that were involved in this collaborative effort included those of radiodiagnosis, cytology, orthopaedics, community medicine, general surgery, obstetrics and gynaecology, histopathology and radiotherapy.



Sanghi FOSWAC chairman again
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 22
PC Sanghi was elected chairman of the Federation of Sector Welfare Association Chandigarh (FOSWAC) for the fifth consecutive term here today. He defeated Hitesh Kumar Puri by 27 votes.

Puri had been holding the post of general secretary in the previous body, which represents 59 resident welfare associations.

MK Verma was elected vice-chairman and Lieut-Col JS Multani (retd) general secretary. The first agenda item would be to maintain unity and seek the cooperation of all members, Sanghi said.

Other office-bearers would be nominated by the chairman in consultation with the vice-chairman and the general secretary.

Sub-committees of members would be set up for issues related to the Chandigarh Administration, the municipal corporation, the Chandigarh Housing Board and the UT police, Sanghi said.



HC Judges celebrate fourth International Mother Earth Day
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 22
Driving home the message of preserving resources and Mother Earth, 27 Judges of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, including three woman Judges, participated in an event today, underlining the message of conserving scant natural resources for future generations.

Underlining the necessity of preserving resources, the Judges also participated in a cyclothon and walkathon organised by the Jurists and Associates International (JAI) and the Eco-Friendly Sports Organisation (EFSO) in association with the New Public School (NPS) to mark the fourth International Mother Earth Day.

A view of the walkathon organised to mark the fourth International Mother Earth Day in Chandigarh on Sunday.
A view of the walkathon organised to mark the fourth International Mother Earth Day in Chandigarh on Sunday. A Tribune Photograph

The walkathon and cyclothon began from the Sukhna Lake and culminated at the NPS in Sector 18. Mr Justice MM Kumar, acting Chief Justice, spoke on the significance of the sensible utilisation of resources, according to a press note.

He also planted a sapling on the school premises to educate students about importance of a green and clean environment. The patron-in-chief, Mr Justice Surya Kant, said if collective social action was not taken to stem the degradation of resources, the loss would be irreversible and unbearable.

Seconding the concern of Judges, Vivek Lakhanpal, Secretary General of the EFSO, highlighted the link between sports and nature.RD Singh, school principal and EFSO president, emphasised the promotion of green and clean living through sports.

Jyoti Kaushal of the DAV Senior Secondary School at Sector 8 won the cyclothon event in the junior girls’ category. Teena of the Government Model Senior Secondary School at Sector 8 was the runner-up. Sanju Narwal won the event in the women’s category.

Sandeep Kumar of the Government Senior Secondary School at Dhanas won the event in the junior boys’ category. Yash Tiwari of the Ashiana Public School at Sector 46 was second. Nandlal was the winner in the men’s category.

Visually challenged students from the Institute for the Blind participated in a nature workshop held on ‘Mobilise the earth: Reconnectig with nature’. The event was organised by Deeksha, a local NGO, in association with the department of environment. Nearly 250 students from other schools also attended the workshop.

Tiny tots of the AKSIPS at Sector 25 celebrated Earth Day by planting seedlings named after them. The Gulmohar Club of St Kabir School organised a two-day programme on the Earth Day, which aimed at sensitising students about their responsibility towards the earth.

Mount Carmel School at Sector 47 organised an interactive session on ‘Ethics- in all spheres’. Manisha Sahni, director of the Simply Health Plus, delivered a talk on moral values, following ethics in general life and helping students decide what was right and wrong for them.



Drive on collection of e-waste remains a non-starter
Launched by UT Administration and NGOs, electronic waste bins in city lying empty
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 22
The e-waste collection drive, launched by the UT Administration with the support of NGOs in the city with the objective to promote a greener environment, has failed to bear fruit, with electronic waste bins lying empty in the city.
Eight especially designed e-waste collection bins have been placed at strategic locations in the city, but the residents’ participation is very poor.

Due to lack of awareness, residents are still dumping e-waste in the open. In a few locations where these bins are placed, people have started throwing empty chips packets and plastic bags therein.

On November 30 last, the Administration started its e-waste drive and placed specially designed e-waste collection bins at the UT Secretariat, Sector 9; the EDC Centre, IT Park; the plaza, Sector 17; the DC office, Sector 17; the CII, Sector 31; the Government School, Sector 36; the MCMDAV College, Sector 36; and the PEC, Sector 12.

This project was launched by the CII’s Young Indians Tricity Chandigarh Chapter and the environment department of the Chandigarh Administration in association with Attero Recycling Private Limited.

The Administration had also provided the toll-free number 18004193283 for the collection of e-waste large in size. But sources revealed that not many residents of the city were dialling the toll-free number for e-waste collection.

The toll-free number was being operated by the Attero Recycling’s Roorkee-based unit for the collection and disposal of electronic waste.

On calling up this number, residents would be provided the facility for collection and healthy disposal of e-waste in a time-bound manner.

Kamal Singh Koranga, a software professional, said the Administration should hold camps and tie up with residents’ welfare associations to spread awareness about the project.

Otherwise people would continue to prefer to throw e-waste in dustbins rather than in e-waste collection bins, he added.

When contacted Santosh Kumar, Director (Environment), UT Administration, said he was aware that there was a cold response to the drive, but they would soon place additional bins in all e-sampark centers of the city.

As a large number of people came to e-sampark centres, the Administration was hopeful that the participation of the people would improve, he added.

He further said residents should come forward and start dumping personal e-waste in e-waste bins as the waste was dangerous, not only to the environment, but also to the health of human beings.

Was removed,would be back

The e-waste collection bin placed at the Sector-17 plaza was removed a few days after the launch of the project. Sources added that an e-waste collection bin was placed near the Sector-17 police post, but the police had told the Administration that it would not be responsible for the security of the e-waste collection bin. It had now been decided that the bin would be placed near the police post and would be chained.

New e-waste collection bins

There were some faults in the earlier e-waste collection bins. The Administration would now place new bins, which would be like postboxes, and there would be a place to put e-waste inside. There were complaints in connection with the earlier e-waste collection bins that water entered the bins during rain.



Heavy traffic to be diverted
Will have to use newly constructedr road in Mohali district
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Mohali, April 22
The district administration has decided to divert the route for heavy traffic entering and leaving the town from the Punjab side.

From now on, the newly constructed 200-foot-wide Gurdwara Singh Shaeedan road will be used for buses and other heavy vehicles. The step has been taken to decongest the route which is being used at present, passing through Phase VII and Sector 70, Phase IIIB2 and Sector 71 and Phase V and Industrial Area to Balongi village.

Deputy Commissioner Varun Roojam told the Chandigarh Tribune that he had issued directions to the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA) recently for the route diversion.“Boards on route diversion will shortly be put up at the Mohali entry point near Balongi village. After that the transport authority will be told to divert the route for buses,” he said.

According to the new plan, heavy traffic entering the town from Balongi village would be diverted to the right, to the newly constructed road.

While buses would be diverted to the left from the gurdwara traffic light point to reach the bus stand at Phase VIII, other heavy vehicles would be directed straight to Phase XI. “This way, inner phases of the town will be decongested of heavy vehicular traffic,” he further said. 



CM inaugurates spinal injury centre, announces Rs 2-cr grant
Tribune News Service

A patient in jubilant mood at the inauguration of the RSIC, Sector 70, in Mohali on Sunday.
A patient in jubilant mood at the inauguration of the RSIC, Sector 70, in Mohali on Sunday. tribune photo: Vicky Gharu

Mohali, April 22
To make Punjab numero uno in medical and education fields was one of the main targets of the state government, announced Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal here today.

Badal visited the town to inaugurate Regional Spinal Injury Centre (RSIC) at Sector 70 this afternoon.

Badal said during his last five-year tenure the government had uplifted the medical infrastructure in the state by spending about Rs 325 crore.

“The next five years would witness the state emerging as a front runner in terms of having the best facilities in health care and education. We are determined for the cause,” said Badal while addressing a gathering after the inauguration ceremony.

The RSIC, which was constructed with an earlier objective of making it as referral center to Indian Spinal Injury Centre, New Delhi, has now converted into a full-fledged centre which would cater to the patients not only from Punjab but also from Chandigarh, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan and Jammu and Kashmir.

The chief minister has also announced a grant of Rs 2 crore today for the centre with which a private ward would be constructed on the first floor of the second wing of the centre. The centre has four wings.

The state government has already spent Rs 7 crore on the centre while a grant of Rs 3 crore was also received from the Central government. To ensure smooth functioning of the RSIC, Badal also announced to create a dedicated fund in terms of corpus to make this institute economically viable and financially sustainable.

Speaking on the occasion, Badal also called upon the people of the state to fight against the drug menace.

“We would soon evolve a time-bound action plan to tackle the problem. A high-profile meeting on the issue would take place today only,” said Badal.

Earlier, Health, Family Welfare and Social Security Minister Madan Mohan Mittal, said the RSIC was the first centre which had been made functional besides three others set up in country at Jabalpur, Cuttak and Raibraile, were still non functional.

Dr Raj Bahdur, director of the RSIC, said the 25-bed centre was well equipped and has done 80 major surgeries and dealt 15 paraplegic cases successfully so far. Around 53,000 patients have been checked up here so far.

Dr Raj Bahadur urged Badal to take up the matter with Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India for signing a MoU with Punjab government to give technical guidance and support to RSIC through PGIMER.



Sector 11 home to scary stray dogs

Dogs outside the municipal corporation office, Sector 17, Chandigarh.
Dogs outside the municipal corporation office, Sector 17, Chandigarh. Tribune photo: Pradeep Tewari

Sector 11 is home to an increasing population of unpredictable stray dogs that chase motorists and randomly harass pedestrians. Even a short walk to the nearby milk vend has become a hazard these days. It is more dangerous, especially after dark, since one cannot see the dogs lurking.

My wife had to change her evening walk route to avoid dog-infested areas. My son cannot take our dog for a walk after dark due to the menace of street dogs ganging up. The park near the community centre and the temple near the park are areas where packs roam more freely than we and our pets.

Some residents are also unwittingly adding to the problem. Dogs that attack us are regularly fed by others. “You were wearing a long coat, that was why they attacked. Otherwise they are friendly,” one resident of Sector 11 told me when a dog from a pack attacked me and bit my leg. Several aspects of our lives are now governed by what the street dogs will not object to.

I found no indication of which department was responsible to contain this menace and how to contact it on the municipal corporation site. Calls to some general numbers listed went unanswered. I hope that the authorities wake up and do their duty diligently and fast before more harm is done to the hapless residents.

Sastry Tumuluri

Nothing done so far

I am a resident of Sector 35 and am facing a great problem regarding stray dogs. Most of the population is at blocks C and D. The elderly cannot even pay their visit to holy places and parks because of the fear of the stray dogs. Recently, our ward councillor Harjinder Kaur was under the attack of stray dogs. Still, nothing has been done so far.

Dog-bite cases cannot be taken lightly as it is poisonous and may even lead to death. Medicines and injection fees are high, which the poor cannot afford. These dogs enter houses and litter garbage all around, which is unhygenic. It will be better if these dogs are lifted in government trucks and left at safer places, out of the city.


Plea to authorities

Sector 33-A has become the favourite breeding area for stray dogs. Despite approaching the municipal corporation authorities a number of times, no action has been initiated. Dogs of various ages, colours, breeds and sizes can be spotted on internal roads, chasing and barking at those riding two-wheelers and four-wheelers, besides pedestrians, increasing the risk of accidents.

There has been a high number of dog-bite cases in the recent past. Residents are spending sleepless nights as dogs keep barking through the night. Sometimes, the sound is extra disturbing because of fights between different groups of the canine population. I am making this representation on behalf of residents of houses 165 to 225, urging the authorities to look into the matter seriously for an early solution.

Rupinder Kaur

Vans came, went empty

I am staying at the Nirwana Apartments in Sector 49. The residential society has an alarming stray dog menace. Residents are responsible for the conditions as they are creating shelters for stray dogs in the car parking area and feeding those with milk and food. Diseased dogs are spread on each floor of the building, creating a menace for children and women.

These dogs not only stink, but are a potential hazard for rabies. The municipal corporation had sent vans twice to pick puppies and dogs, but the workers started playing with puppies and went back empty handed.

They reasoned that they were not supposed to pick puppies and would send bigger stray dogs back after sterilisation. They argued that there was no reason to pick stray dogs in the first place. The problem continues and any hope of getting help from municipal corporation workers is fruitless.

Sanjay Arora

Authorities insensitive

Dog is a very faithful and useful animal. Though there are already bylaws for the registration of dogs, those are hardly implemented because of the apathy of the enforcement authorities. In the absence of any check, residents keep dogs without registration and vaccination, which is illegal.

Since there is no serious check on stray dogs, their population is increasing by leaps and bounds, which is a nuisance for residents. As per a report on the stray dog population, there are about 6,000 dogs in the city. By another estimate, dogs in the city are more than three times this figure.

There is always the fear of being bitten, especially in case of children. Sometimes, people have become victims of stray dogs. Not only do stray dogs bite, but create nuisance by littering and defecation in public places. Those also cause accidents by standing in the middle of roads, especially at night.

There is a great need to check the stray dog menace. Though the municipal corporation framed bylaws in 2007, those remained only on paper. If such serious bylaws are not being implemented, what else can we expect from the MC?

A dog pound which may be a temporary shelter for furious, potentially rabid and critically sick dogs also remained a topic of correspondence between the municipal corporation and the Administration. Since it is a serious menace, serious action is needed to check it.

After catching stray dogs, those should be kept under protection in separate animal houses. It is a good proposal that nobody be allowed to take a dog out without a leash. Bylaws are a must and should be framed and implemented.

Animal-rights activists have long advocated the sterilisation of stray dogs so that thr population stays under control. Neutering is prescribed by the Animal Birth Control (Dog) Rules, issued in 2001 under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960. It is the only legal method of keeping their number under check.

There are clear guidelines issued by the Supreme Court, which maintain that a dog should be killed only if it is rabid, mortally wounded or incurably ill. There are proper procedures for euthanasia in case of dogs and those must be observed.

SK Khosla

Sterilisation ineffective

Sterilisation is a good measure to curb the stray dog menace. The step will provide no immediate relief. Stray dogs on streets will continue to pose a threat to human beings. Pedestrians continue to face the threat on streets. Everyday, newspapers, more in the recent past, contain reports on dog-bite cases in the tricity.

It is amusing to read that the municipal corporation authorities have done nothing effective on the ground despite a former Mayor having been a victim in the recent past. The increasing number of dogs on the streets in the tricity, along with fresh puppies, is a clearly indicator that sterilisation has not been carried out effectively.

Since the migration of dogs cannot be checked from the periphery or adjoining townships, there is no immediate respite in sight. I suggest that the city needs to have an effective dog pound at the earliest or transport the dogs a good distance out of the city.

Upinder Gill

Delhi’s monkey scheme

The stray dog menace is not a new phenomenon. This is prevalent in all cities all over the country. The problem, undoubtedly, is a fear factor for residents as they fear rabies. After the dog-bite incident in which SAD councillor Harjinder Kaur was the victim, the issue echoed in the House of the municipal corporation.

It was said the city did not have a proper set-up to check the menace. A former mayor, Pradeep Chhabra, lamented that a dog pound was proposed during his term, but no initiative was taken on the proposal. Ever since, no policy decision had been in the offing.

In 2009, a dog-bite case was reported. The victim, district judge KK Garg, was praying at a temple when the incident occurred. The dog was overpowered by municipal corporation employees. It died soon after and it was feared that the animal was rabid.

There had been a flurry of writs, newspaper reports and public uproar to ensure the control of the stray dog population. A writ was filed by four lawyers, praying for an injunction on the issue. The UT Adviser, the Home Secretary and the Deputy Commissioner were the respondents. Residents did not get relief in terms of a policy by the Administration.

Southern sectors, in particular, are plagued by the menace. Residents have yet to know about the effective measures taken either by the Administration or the municipal corporation. The indiscriminate elimination of the stray animals has not been a perfect solution and has attracted the ire of animal-lovers.

The buck seems to have been passed on to NGOs. Those have to sterilise and immunise dogs, but the efforts fail due to paucity of funds. The figures of stray dogs population in the city is put at approximately 7,500. Citing rules, it has been observed that stray dogs can only be sterilised and immunised to check their multiplication.

The municipal corporation authorities will have to ensure that they sterilise the canines at the place from where those are picked. Around 35,000 cases of rabies are reported every year in the country, making it the highest figure in the world.

The scheme of immunisation, birth control, medical screening and treatment of tuberculosis of monkeys, as adopted in Delhi, can be the basis for tackling the problem here. Sustainable efforts need to be made to control the population of stray dogs. The sterilisation-cum-immunisation drive should be conducted on the basis of areas and proper records should be maintained.

Satish Chandra Sharma



Mango rates begin to fall
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 22
With an increase in the supply of mango, the prices of the fruit have started to go down in the Sector 26 fruit and vegetable market this week. The ‘safeda’ variety, which was being sold at Rs 100/kg a week ago, is available at Rs 60/kg now. It is being supplied from Secundrabad in Andhra Pradesh. In the coming week, the supply is expected to further increase.

While ‘sinduri’, another variety, has started reaching the local markets at Rs 120/kg, the supply of ‘parry’ mango from Andhra Pradesh has slowed down.

Similarly, the prices of musk melon, which is being supplied from Rajasthan, has declined to Rs 60/kg against Rs 80 at the beginning of the month. Its prices, however, are likely to remain on the higher side in comparison to last year as a major portion of crops in Punjab has been damaged due to the recent rain. 



957 vote, results today
Chandigarh Golf Club members vote for president's position
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 22
The annual election of the Chandigarh Golf Club was held here today.
A total of 957 members turned out for voting whereas most of the VIP members skipped the voting. A total of four candidates, including GS Sandhu, Simran Singh, Harpreet Singh and Col JS Panag, are vying for the president’s chair. The result will be declared tomorrow after the vote counting scheduled to start at 9am.

Sources said this year the club witness a low turnout in comparison with last years. Raja Malvinder Singh, brother of Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee President Captain Amarinder Singh, is the out going president of the club.

“On an average around 1,000 members come to exercise their vote every year but this year only 957 members have contributed. The election will witness a tough fight and the result will be announced tomorrow. However, no prominent personality turned up to cast their vote,” said Dr GS Sandhu.



Chandigarh scan
Baisakhi celebrated

Residents Welfare Association, Sector 46, celebrated the festival of Baisakhi by organising a cultural evening here on Sunday. Mayor Raj Bala Malik, Senior Deputy Mayor Darshan Lal Garg and local Councillor Hira Negi were the special guests at the function.
Girls participate in Baisakhi celebrations organised by the Residents Welfare Association, Sector 46, Chandigarh, on Sunday.
Girls participate in Baisakhi celebrations organised by the Residents Welfare Association, Sector 46, Chandigarh, on Sunday. Tribune photo: Parvesh Chauhan

Principals of different schools of the area also graced the occasion. The office bearers spoke about the problems being faced by the Sector residents which include water shortage, lack of sanitation and greenery, lop sided and faulty installation of paver blocks.

Investiture ceremony

An investiture ceremony for the session 2012-2013 was held at Saint Soldier International School, Sector 28. It was a proud moment for the newly elected members of the student council as they marched while the school band played on the ceremonial tune. Director S Jagwinder Pal Singh Hayer decorated the head boy Gaurav Ahlawat with the colour and sash and manager Sukhreet Kaur Sandhu awarded the head girl Supreet Kaur the badge of honour and sash amidst as the students cheered on. Simranjeet Singh, Anshu Barak, Anmol and Shivani Rawat were elected as school prefects. Principal Vijaya Sidhu administrated the oath of office to the office bearers who took the pledge to perform their duties with sincerity.

Cancer awareness campaign

Satya Pal Jain, ex-city MP and national incharge of the Legal & Legislative Cell of the BJP has stressed the need of a large scale awareness campaign about cancer in our society for curtailing this highly catastrophic disease. Jain said that if a patient comes to know of the disease at an initial stage, he or she can be completely cured, and therefore it is necessary to ensure widespread awareness of cancer symptoms. Jain was speaking as the chief guest in a seminar on “Cancer Awareness” organised by the Press Information Society of India at the Chandigarh Press Club last evening.

Seminar for engineering aspirants

NIIT University created a distinctive platform for engineering aspirants by organising a seminar on ‘Careers in Engineering’ in Chandigarh today. Enthusiastic students got the opportunity to interact with prof Sanjay Gupta, eminent researcher and visiting faculty at NU, on the various aspects of careers in engineering. During the seminar, prof Sanjay Gupta guided students on the different fields of engineering, choosing the right field based on their interest and aptitude, and the plethora of career opportunities

available to engineering graduates. He also answered questions related to the industry and the concerns raised by the aspiring engineers and their parents during the question-answer session.

mohali scan
College group felicitated

Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal honoured the Aryans Group of Colleges in the Press Club, Mohali, today. Dr Anshu Kataria, chairman of the group, said that Aryan Business School (ABS) had been ranked 48th in country by a media house earlier and has again recently been adjudged as the ‘Best Upcoming B-School of North India’ by a renowned magazine.

-Tribune Reporters



School organises prize distribution

Mohali, April 22
Guru Gobind Singh Vidya Mandir Senior Secondary School, Ratwara Sahib, celebrated its annual prize distribution function ‘Aks 2012’ with great fervour and enthusiasm. The function started with the lamp lighting ceremony by Director Education Kulwant Singh Gill, S Manjit Singh Gill, (vice-president, Ratwara Sahib Trust), Baba Harpal Singh, and principal Ritu Oberoi.

Cabinet Minister Madan Mohan Mittal was the chief guest. The function commenced with a cultural item, starting with Shabad. A performance on ‘Save Girl Child’ was also held during the function. S Kulwant Singh Gill in his speech applauded the efforts of the principal and assured that the school will reach great heights in the coming years. — TNS




Over 100 biology teachers participate in annual conference
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 22
The Association of Biology Teachers (Colleges) organised its 15th annual conference at the Postgraduate College for Girls, Sector 42, here today. More than 100 delegates from different parts of the country participated in the deliberations of the conference.
A speaker addresses a gathering at the annual conference of the Association of Biology Teachers (Colleges) at the Postgraduate College for Girls, Sector 42, Chandigarh, on Sunday.
A speaker addresses a gathering at the annual conference of the Association of Biology Teachers (Colleges) at the Postgraduate College for Girls, Sector 42, Chandigarh, on Sunday. A Tribune photograph

Speaking on the occasion, chief guest Baba Balbir Singh Seechewal said that human beings need water just like they need air to breathe. “A wave has started from Punjab's Kali Bein rivulet and we want it to spread not only across India but also across the world. However, polluted water can bring prosperity if we treat it and use it for irrigation. We have proved this in the Seechewal village and other nearby villages,” he said. Seechewal also said that they have purified the polluted water and directed it to the fields through motor pumps.

He also released the official journal ‘Biospectrum’ and inaugurated the exhibition organised by the college society ‘Best Out of Waste’. Saplings were also planted to commemorate the world Earth Day.

Dr Dalip Kumar, president of the association, highlighted their achievements. He elaborated that the association collaborated with the UGC and DST for academic activities of national importance. The association also felicitated Seechewal with the Life Time Achievement Award for his committed, invaluable and incessant services in anti-river pollution campaign. 



Educational institutes emphasise on need to protect environment

Panchkula, April 22
Scholars Public School, Mouli Chowk, Barwala, celebrated ‘Earth Day’ with great zeal. The school marked the occasion by initiating a ‘Go Green Drive’. In this drive, the students of kindergarten block planted saplings in the school.

The tiny tots will also look after the saplings. The initiative aims at developing a sense of belonging and responsibility in them.

The students of kindergarten block participated in a poster-colouring competition.

A poetry recitation competition was also held on the theme ‘Nature’ to make the students responsible citizens of tomorrow.

Mohali: The management, staff and students of Gian Jyoti Institute of Management & Technology, Mohali, also organised World Earth Day with great enthusiasm and fervour in the college campus.— TNS 



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