C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


No stale I-Day speech for Patil
Doesn’t want repetition of old achievements Admn in fix over inclusions
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

An underpass project is pending at Mauli Jagran in Chandigarh.
An underpass project is pending at Mauli Jagran in Chandigarh. Tribune photos: manoj mahajan

Chandigarh, August 3
The UT Administrator does not want to ride on the achievements of his predecessors. Apparently stung by the criticism in the past for cashing in on old achievements in the Independence Day speech, the Administrator today categorically told the top brass of the UT Administration not to include previous projects in the list of achievements compiled as part of the speech.

Administrator Shivraj V Patil made it clear in a meeting with senior officials that announcements which were part of previous speeches on Republic Day and Independence Day functions, should not be included in his August 15 speech. He also told them to prepare a good speech and avoid statistics.

Various departments have now started compiling “new” achievements of their respective departments. But compared to achievements, there is a long list of failure and pending works.

Electricity department

The Administration claims that the electricity department is committed to providing uninterrupted power supply. But this year, the city witnessed major power crises. Southern sectors faced long unscheduled power cuts for 18 to 20 hours. The department failed to complete the upgradation of substations in Sectors 34 and 52, which cater to the southern sectors.

Engineering department

No solution was found to save Sukhna Lake from drying up. Most of the lake has dried up and the water level at the boating area has fallen to a foot. The department also failed to complete the construction of a six-storeyed OPD block at the Government Multi-Speciality Hospital, Sector 16 and the railway under-bridge at the level crossing near Mauli Jagran and Modern Housing Complex, despite announcements made by the UT Adviser in his Republic Day speech.

Licensing authority

This year, the pendency of registration cards is around 10,000 and driver’s licences around 1,000. The RLA is giving three months’ time for the delivery of RC. There were regular complaints of shortage of RCs and snag in server.

City transport undertaking

The CTU has been in news due to several controversies ranging from the tragic death of Anupama, a student, and shortage of diesel and buses. The only achievement of the CTU is the night bus service that was introduced a few days ago. But the bus service on the Metro route, started recently, was a failure as there were not many takers for the service.


Putting an end to the two-year ambitious project of night tourism, the ministry of tourism recently cancelled the project and withheld a grant of Rs 4.98 crore for it. Also, due to the depleting water level at Sukhna Lake, the boating business of CITCO was affected in a big way. The income from boating had gone down to Rs 5,000 every day compared to the earlier business of Rs 80,000 to Rs 90,000 daily.

Chandigarh Housing Board

The board has not earned anything in the last two financial years and has been incurring only losses. One of the worst-hit housing schemes is the General Housing Scheme, Sector 63, which was launched in 2008. Not a single brick has been laid so far. Similar is the status of the UT employees’ special housing scheme, for which the board is yet to take the possession of the land and even get environmental clearance for the six-storeyed flats. The only achievement of the CHB is that it recently handed over 602 flats to slum dwellers at Sector 49-C, which were constructed two years ago.


There is only one smart school in Sector 53, which the education department can count as an achievement. There was a controversy in the process of inviting applications for the recruitment of 653 junior basic teachers (JBTs).

Finally, the Administration decided to invite fresh applications. The Administration failed to implement the RTE in private schools. The education department and private schools are still at loggerheads over the implementation of the RTE.

Information technology

The department has failed to improve the IT infrastructure in the city. The launch of the online grievance redress system is the only achievement of the department. The department has failed to bring any big player in the IT sector to the city.

Estate office

In the infamous booth scam, the estate office failed to complete the inquiry marked by the Administration. In the earlier report prepared by a former UT Additional Deputy Commissioner, PS Shergill, pointed at the involvement of top bureaucrats and politicians. But the estate office has failed to complete another probe marked to it.

Architect department

The department failed to complete the master plan of the city and once again sought six-month extension from the Punjab and Haryana High Court to prepare it. So far, the Administration has taken six extensions for finalising the plan since December 23, 2009, when the court had first directed it to finalise the plan within a year.


In the employment office, over 2,000 jobless people registered themselves from January this year to June-end. But the department managed to provide jobs to only 100 applicants. 



Anupama case: PGI sets up new probe panel
Baba Farid university VC to head committee 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 3
The PGI authorities have constituted a five-member committee headed by Prof SS Gill, Vice-Chancellor of Baba Farid University of Health Sciences, Faridkot, to conduct a broad-based inquiry into the death of Anupama, a 16-year-old school girl who died at the PGI on July 24. The committee will also suggest guidelines and measures to improve services at the PGI.

The other members of the committee are Prof MC Mishra, chief of Advanced Trauma Centre, AIIMS, New Delhi; Dr Rajiv Vadehra, Medical Superintendent of GMSH-16; Prof YK Batra from the department of anaesthesia; and Dr Vipin Kaushal, assistant professor, hospital administration.

Earlier, the report of a fact-finding committee constituted by the PGI in this regard had come under criticism when it failed to fix the responsibility over the alleged negligence in the case and termed the tragedy as a cause of overcrowding at the PGI.

Anupama, the only child of her parents, fell from a CTU bus on July 17 while returning from school. The wheel of the bus ran over her leg. She was admitted to the PGI and her surgery was planned for the same night. However, it was postponed and on July 20, she was found suffering from gas gangrene, leading to the amputation of her leg. She died on July 24. Her family alleged that she had died due to negligence.

The fact-finding committee neither recorded the statements of her parents nor did it answer questions raised after her death. Her parents had alleged that her dressing was not changed since she was admitted to the PGI on July 17 and it led to infection resulting in her death.

On July 28, the PGI director, Prof YK Chawla, announced another inquiry.



Bride kidnapped outside court
Had come along with husband to seek protection n Kin booked
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 3
A 19-year-old girl, who tied the knot this morning, was allegedly kidnapped from the High Court premises, where she had come with her husband to seek protection. The police has booked her father and other relatives, who are residents of Mansa, but they are still to be arrested.

High drama was witnessed outside the court premises when Amandeep Kaur, who had come along with her husband Rajinder Singh, was kidnapped from the parking area. Twentyfour-year-old Rajinder Singh is a resident of Abohar and had married Amandeep at a gurdwara in Panchklula this morning. The couple then went to the High Court to seek protection.

The couple was in the parking when a Bolero came towards them and pulled Amandeep inside the vehicle before speeding away.

Passersby thought that the girl had been kidnapped and called the police. Rajinder Singh told the police that she had been kidnapped by her parents. The police conducted investigations and registered a case of kidnapping against the girl’s father Balwinder Singh, brother Ashok Kumar, uncle Sucha Singh and some others. Inspector Neeraj Sarna, SHO of the Sector 3 police station, said teams had been dispatched to arrest the accused. The youth’s family was present at the court, but the bride’s family was opposed to the marriage.



Jan Aushadhi centres perennially out of stock
Only 49 of the 319 compulsory medicines are available
Ritika Jha
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 3
Despite the initiative of the Centre to provide generic medicines at a number of government hospitals across the country, the scheme appears to have fallen flat, at least in city hospitals.

The three Jan Aushadhi Centres, opened with much fanfare by the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare two years ago, have been running out of stock ever since.

At the centres at the GMCH-32 and GMSH-16, only 49 of the 319 compulsory medicines are available.

While officials blame it on the poor supply of generic drugs from the public sector units (PSUs), sources said the UT Administration, despite having the authority to make purchases at the local level, had turned a blind eye to the erratic supply of drugs.

UT Home Secretary-cum-Secretary Health Anil Kumar said: “The stocks at these centres are being limited due to the condition imposed by the ministry which limits us to purchase drugs only from PSUs. We have taken up the matter with the ministry to relax the condition and allow us to make purchases from private dealers also.”

Due to drug shortage, these centres are being perceived as a failure among visitors and patients at hospitals, defeating the purpose of the centres.

Rupinder Kaur, who had a prescription card requiring Zentamycin injection, an antibiotic (generic) priced at Rs 5, had no choice but to buy a branded alternative from the adjoining chemist shop at the GMCH. Here, the MRP for the same dose was Rs 25.

Officials at these centres also complained that several doctors prescribed branded medicines to patients against the ministry's directions of prescribing only the salt name. The Home Secretary said: “It may be difficult for doctors to suggest salt names in case of drugs made of a combination of salts. But we will try to find a way out.”


Setback for HUDA
Just three out of 36 commercial sites auctioned
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, August 3
The Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) suffered a big jolt today when only three commercial sites out of 36 were auctioned and the authorities had to pack up before the scheduled time. Only a few takers came forward at the auction of commercial sites, which took place on the premises of HUDA office, Sector 6, Panchkula.

Last year, there were 242 bidders for 32 sites and this time HUDA had only 27 bidders for 36 sites. The sites which were to be auctioned included commercial, nursing home site and clinics in various sectors of Panchkula.

Three booths of Sector 15, Panchkula, were auctioned at a cost of Rs 1.31 crore, Rs 1.24 crore and Rs 1.21 crore respectively.

The authorities were so disappointed that they packed up before the scheduled time, which was 5 pm, which is usually extended to 7 pm at the times when there is rush.

“We did not expect this at all that there would be just a few takers for the auction of commercial sites. I think we held the auction in a hurry,” said Ashwini Sharma, Estate officer, HUDA.

He further added, “We should have organised it during Diwali time. Now we have no other option but to hold the auction again. ”The authorities are planning to hold the auction near Diwali, but still the exact date of auction will be decided after a meeting of officials is held.

About lowering the reserved price, the officer said that, “It is a rule that if we don’t get bidders after the auction is held three times, then we will lower the price.”

“The reserved price of the booths is very high. HUDA should have thought about the price after seeing the property rates in Panchkula. One can’t afford such a cost and that too just for a booth,” said Jagdeep Singh Attri, a property dealer. Attri is the president of the Panchkula Property Dealers Association.

Vishal Virk, another resident of Sector11, Panchkula, said, “ HUDA wants to make a big hole in our pocket. If this continues, I don’t think HUDA will be able to auction any of its commercial sites in future in the first instance.”

HUDA was expecting a large number of bidders who would bid more even for a showroom in Sector11, Panchkula, the reserved price of which was Rs 13 crore.

“The property these days is really down. HUDA should have thought before fixing the reserved prices,” said Vikram Dua, another dealer based in Sector15, Panchkula.



Block E at GMCH-32 to be completed by next year 
Ritika Jha
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 3
Twelve years after the foundation stone of the Block E at Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH), Sector 32, was laid, the construction of the building is far from over. The building meant for housing lecture rooms and 10 non-clinical departments was earlier scheduled to be completed by March 31, 2011.

While the UT Administration is already running late by one year, is now aiming to complete the work by March 31 next year. Initially, the rough cost estimate of the frame structure was Rs 28.6 crore, after completion of five floors the work had to be halted due to delay in approval of the exceeded budget.

It was only last month that the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare approved a budget of Rs 41.5 crore for the purpose, indicating a cost escalation of Rs 12.9 crore.

When contacted, UT Chief Engineer, SK Chadha said, “The work had to be halted due to a delay in approval of the revised budget. The work has already been allocated for the construction of the remaining two floors. The construction will begin within a week.”

Since the establishment of GMCH in 1991, the classes are being held at the “Sarai” building. The key purpose of setting up of the Block E was to provide better studying area, with bigger libraries to the students and also brining the non-clinical departments within the hospital area.

The seven-storeyed building will house all basic non-clinical departments, including physiology, biochemistry, anatomy, pathology, haematology, microbiology, forensic medicine, pharmacology, community medicine and College of Nursing.

Of these, except for forensic medicine and community medicine departments, all the departments are currently located in the “Sarai” building, which is located outside the hospital area.

A dental block is also being set up on the hospital premises, which is scheduled to be inaugurated in the next 10 days.



UT Admn wants mutual solution 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 3
The Chandigarh Administration today made it clear that it was in favour of a mutual solution to the Kajauli Water Works controversy.

As the case came up for hearing this morning before the Punjab and Haryana High Court, UT senior standing counsel Sanjay Kaushal said that time should be given to the states of Punjab and Haryana, along with Chandigarh Administration, for putting their heads together for reaching a common solution.

Just about four months ago, Haryana had reiterated its stand that the state would not allow Chandigarh to share water with Mohali from the Bhakra Main Line through Phase V and VI of the Kajauli Water Works.

In an affidavit before the High Court, Engineer in Chief Harmail Singh had submitted that Chandigarh Municipal Corporation entered into an agreement with Punjab to provide water to Mohali without informing Haryana.

He added that Punjab never laid its claim to Phase V and Phase VI for Mohali. As such, the UT’s action of agreeing to Punjab’s request for apportioning the entire water of Phase V and VI to Mohali without consulting Haryana was neither bonafide not legal.

The state of Haryana has already told the High Court if Punjab wants water for Mohali, it should carry it from Anandpur Sahib Hydel Channel.

Haryana also objected to Punjab’s proposal of laying a wider pipeline for Phase VII and VII of Kajauli Water Works.

Haryana even asserted that the Chandigarh Administration reached a sort of understanding with the Government of Punjab, without involving any officers of the state of Haryana to allocate the entire water of Phase V and VI Punjab. Harmail Singh said the UT even failed to bring this to Haryana’s notice.

The matter came up for hearing before the High Court during the resumed hearing of an ongoing petition filed by Mohali resident Kuljeet Singh Bedi. He was seeking directions to expedite the completion of Phase V and VI of the Kajauli Water Works, which would bring an additional 40-million gallons of water every day for the areas under covered by the tricity.



PB 65-0007 goes for Rs 2.20 lakh

Varinderjit Kaur bought vanity number PB 65- 0007 at an auction in Mohali on Friday.
Varinderjit Kaur bought vanity number PB 65- 0007 at an auction in Mohali on Friday. Tribune photo: Vicky Gharu

Chandigarh, August 3
Passion for the VIP numbers of their vehicles today saw vanity number PB 65 R 0007 being sold for Rs 2.20 lakh. The number was bought by Varinderjit kaur.

During the auction, the Mohali District Transport Officer earned RS 24.79 lakh from the auction.

The other numbers which attracted bidding were PB 65 R 0100 was sold for RS 90,000, PB 65 R 0010 for RS 80,000 , PB 65 R 0044 for RS 65,000, PB 65 R 0066 for Rs 57,000 and PB 65 R 0026 for RS 55,000. — TNS



New DC to join UT by August 15
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 3
The Haryana Government today relieved Mohammed Shayin, a 2002 batch IAS officer from Haryana, for his appointment as the Deputy Commissioner (DC) of Chandigarh. At present, Shayin is undergoing training at the Lal Bahadur Shastri IAS Academy in Mussoorie. Sources added that he would join the UT Administration after August 15.

The MHA had already cleared Shayin’s name as the new DC for Chandigarh. Besides, the MHA had also agreed for the repatriation of present DC Brijendra Singh, who had sought repatriation to his parent state Haryana.

Meanwhile, two HCS official SK Setia and Mandeep Kaur today joined the UT Administration. The sources added that in a day or two, the UT Administration would allot departments to them.



Demolition drive: Challans issued to 40 violators
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 3
The enforcement wing of municipal corporation today removed encroachments from Industrial Area, Phases I and II. Challans were issued to 40 violators.

The enforcement team seized junk and towed away vehicles parked on MC land. The team also seized wires, iron plates and machines.

The drive was carried out under the supervision of Lalit Siwach, Additional Commissioner, and was assisted by Kashmira Singh and other Sub Inspectors of the enforcement wing. 



TB a notifiable disease: UT Admn
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 3
The UT Administration has declared TB (tuberculosis) as a notifiable disease.

Now, all healthcare providers, including clinical establishments run by the government, NGOs, private, corporate or any individual practitioner as well as laboratories and diagnostic centres, will be required to furnish details of TB patients to the local nodal authority.

In Chandigarh, state TB officer Dr Anil Garg has been appointed the nodal person.

"This will lead to a better assessment of TB load in Chandigarh and help stop the spread of TB in the city,"said Dr Chadermohan, director, health services.

Tuberculosis continues to be a major health problem accounting for substantial morbidity and mortality in the country. In Chandigarh, nearly 2,500 new patients reach government hospitals every year. Early diagnosis of TB is the corner-stone of TB prevention and control strategy, inappropriate diagnosis and irregular or incomplete treatment with anti-TB drugs may contribute to complications, disease spread and emergence of drug resistant TB.

"In order to ensure proper TB diagnosis and case management, reduce TB transmission and address the problems of emergence and spread of drug resistant TB, it is essential to have complete information of all TB cases," said Dr Garg.

A TB patient requires medicines worth Rs 3,000 for six months. While all such patients registered with government health facilities undergo complete treatment, a majority of those going to private practitioners stop taking medicines as soon as they get some relief. This results in multi-drug resistance among them and symptoms emerge after sometime.

Now, all healthcare providers, including clinical establishments run by the government, NGOs, private, corporate or any individual practitioner as well as laboratories and diagnostic centres, will be required to submit details of TB patients to the local nodal authority.

Early diagnosis is the corner-stone of TB prevention and control strategy. Inappropriate diagnosis and irregular or incomplete treatment with anti-TB drugs may contribute to complications, disease spread and emergence of drug resistant TB.



Experts dwell on merits of breastfeeding
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 3
A public lecture on merits of breastfeeding was organised for anti-natal counselling of pregnant women at PGI’s Advance Paediatric Centre (APC) here today. The lecture was held as a part of the ongoing programme on Breastfeeding Awareness Week.

A number of women from across the city and aanganwari workers attended the lecture.

Dr Neelam Chaudhary, Chief Medical Officer, department of gynaecology, spoke on the possible complications that could take place during pregnancy and conditions in which immediate attention of a doctor was required.

Dr Sunit Singhi, head of the department of paediatrics, said, “Only 25 per cent of children in India are breastfed in the first hour of the birth. Here at the PGI, we have also started a facility of storing mothers' milk. However, the the milk can be stored only for 4 to 6 hours.”



Stray dog that bit 8 persons five days ago escapes
Residents panic as the dog was under observation at SPCA
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 3
Seven-year-old Piyush, who was an eyewitness to the stray dog bite in Sector-38 (West) five days ago, was jittery, after hearing that the dog which had bitten eight persons in the locality, including his two friends had escaped from the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) Hospital in Sector 38 (West) today. Other residents of the area are also frightened and complained about the lackadaisical approach of the Municipal Corporation (MC) and the NGO in handling the stray dogs.

The incident came to light when Dammi Grover, a resident of Sector-38 (West), visited the SPCA hospital to monitor the condition of the stray dog as recommended by the doctor, who was treating the victims. The attendant of the hospital informed him that the stray dog was very aggressive and broke open the cage and escaped from the hospital. When he enquired from the attendants the status of the dog, they were clueless about it.

SPCA in charge Nandini Kakar admitted that the stray dog which was under observation after biting eight residents had escaped from the hospital after breaking open the cage. She said that the management had informed the corporation about the incident and they informed them that the dog died after it was beaten up by residents in the residential area. She said that when they asked the officials of the corporation to provide them the caracass of the dog they did not get back to them.

When area councillor Arun Sood contacted BK Salwan, MC medical officer of health, to know about the real fact he said that he was clueless about the incident. He assured the councillor that stringent action would be taken against the SPCA if such an incident had taken place.

Arun Sood condemned the negligence of the NGO and the corporation and demanded that action should be taken against those who were responsible for it. 



construction of day market stalled
Shopkeepers oppose decision
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 3
Members of the Azad Rehri Pheri Association, Mauli Jagran, today staged a protest against the Congress for shelving the proposal pertaining to the construction of day market.

They said the decision would force them to encroach upon government land. BJP leaders, who were also present in the protest rally, criticised the decision.

BJP ex-councillor Anil Dubey said it had already been decided that temporary sheds would be rented out to shopkeepers.

The issue was taken up in the General House by the Congress councillor, Subhash Chawla, who demanded that the construction work of 136 temporary sheds in Mauli Jagran should be stopped as no policy had been chalked out for its allotment. He said there was no parking facility near the market. \The BJP councillors alleged that the Congress was doing it at the behest of MP Pawan Kumar Bansal.

Councillors said an approved project could not be shelved.



Sarpanches meet Haryana CM
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 3
A delegation of sarpanches and panches of various gram panchayats of Raipur Rani and Kalka blocks of Panchkula led by the Chief Parliamentary Secretary, Ram Kishan Gujjar, met Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda at his residence here today.

Hooda assured the delegation that funds would be sanctioned as per requirement.

Gujjar said the state government’s nod to various development projects, including four-laning of Yamunanagar-Panchkula section, National Highway 73, would develop the area and generate employment.



UT police to enforce lane driving
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 3
Look before you jump lanes while commuting on city roads. For, the Chandigarh Police is all set to enforce “lane driving” in the city. To begin with, the Chandigarh Police intends to launch a drive from Monday against the violators of lane driving on the Jan Marg.

Information to this effect was given to the Bench of Justice Rajive Bhalla of the Punjab and Haryana High Court during the hearing of the traffic regulation case. Taking up the matter, Justice Bhalla also asked the State of Haryana to demarcate lanes and come out with a traffic management plan for Gurgaon, initially.

Justice Bhalla also directed the State of Punjab to file an affidavit on the availability of alcometer with the Punjab Police. The directions came after the Bench was informed regarding the paucity of meters in the state.

The high court has zeroed in on Gurgaon in Haryana and Amritsar in Punjab as benchmark. The directions issued for the two cities will be made applicable to other cities of the two states after testing their efficacy.

Before parting with the order, Justice Bhalla has already made it clear that the court wanted the provisions of the Motor Vehicles Act be complied with to ensure road safety.



Munna Ki Wapsi: Fine performances bring out nuances of Tagore’s short story 
Vivek Gupta
Tribune News Service,

Chandigarh, August 3
A short story written by Rabindranath Tagore was the theme of the play 'Munna Ki Wapsi' staged in the city at the Tagore Theatre on Friday evening. The subtle nuances that Tagore effortlessly weaved in this short story, based on the guilt-turned-curse of a domestic help, were finely depicted on the stage.

Director of the play Chandreshekhar, who adapted the story along with GS Channi, beautifully brought out the play's understated emotion.

Replete with live music, the play had Kabir's dohas and hymns which kept on unfolding the intricacies of relationships that the play had.

However, the play somewhat lacked flow of the narrative and smooth transition from one scene to another. It could have much more subtle and lyrical changeover of the scenes, considering the nature of the script. The director tried that on some occasions, but could not keep it all through. Perhaps a more smart use of lighting effect was required.

But it does not mean the production lacked in interpretation or performance. Except on one or two occasions where the cast fumbled, the performances remained largely satisfactory. Adaptation had the rightful mixture of live music and text.

Set in a village, the play was about Raicharan, a domestic help, who brought up the master of the house, and later became the main caretaker of the master's baby, fondly called Munna. One day he took the little boy near the bank of a river but the flowing water sucked in the boy. After he was accused of kidnapping and kicked off from the job, he shifted to another city and was blessed with his own child from his wife who died after delivering the baby.

But his guilt of losing Munna never allowed him to act as the father of his own boy. He brought him up like a servant. His guilt reached a crescendo when after some years he became unable to bring him up and took the boy back to his master's home, told him that he was one who kidnapped his son and he was here to return him.

The story ended when the master and his wife hesitantly believing Ram Charan and sent him back with a promise to send some remuneration every month through money order. But the first month money order came back as no one was found at the given address. 



Work hit in absence of magistrate
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Magistrate’s office
Magistrate’s office

Panchkula, August 3
Various works of the city are suffering as the post of Panchkula City Magistrate (CTM) has been lying vacant for the past ten days.

Although the charges of the city magistrate have been assigned to the District Revenue Officer in addition to his present duties, the cases that should be attended by the magistrate remain unattended.

Panchkula CTM Ashwini Malik was relieved of his duties on July 24. Malik has been transferred as Sub Divisional Magistrate (SDM), Panipat.

Sources in the office said around 50 to 60 files are pending apart from other miscellaneous work.

“I had some queries regarding an RTI appeal and had come to the magistrate’s room but found that no one was here. I was told that the post is vacant for the past ten days,” said a resident of Sector 12. He further added, “I was told that the additional charge is with the DRO. But when I went to the latter’s office, I was told that he had gone to attend some meeting. I returned home disappointed.” Another person, a resident of Sector 15, Panchkula, voiced similar sentiments. “I had to be produced here before the magistrate and it has been around three days I have been shuttling between one room and the other but there is no relief.”

Apart from miscellaneous works like renewal and issuing licenses of furnaces, production and matters regarding the revenue courts, RTI appeals, magistrate implements all orders of the Deputy Commissioner (DC) regarding the city and other policy matters.

When contacted, DRO Naresh Kumar said, “Who says the work is suffering? Pay of around 20 people had to be paid which I have done. However, a file which has come to me might take some more time.” 



City to hold ‘malhar’ functions
Vivek Gupta
Tribune News Service

Pandit Vidyadhar Vyas
Pandit Vidyadhar Vyas

Shruti Sadolikar
Shruti Sadolikar 

Chandigarh, August 3
While the rain is playing hide-and-seek this monsoon season, the city is ready to hold two “malhar” functions, going back to the medieval period formula to invite rains. If fables are to be believed, Raga Malhar was so powerful that when it was sung, it started raining. Many great artists of the medieval period like Tansen, Baiju Bawra, Baba Ramdas, Bilas Khan and Meera were said to have been capable of starting rains using various kinds of “Raga Malhar”.

“While this may not be happening in today’s era, it does not mean that the sanctity of our Indian ragas is no more left today,”€¯ says Kamal Tiwari, a music expert who thinks that ragas have the power to go beyond the physical boundaries. “How powerfully they are sung may be the issue today, but I think our Indian society will keep celebrating the versatility of our ragas,”€¯ he adds.

The Department of Cultural Affairs, Haryana Government, will organise a classical music evening, “Megh Malhar”€¯ on August 4 at 6.30 pm at Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Sector 27. Two accomplished Hindustani classical vocalist Shruti Sadolikar and Pandit Vidyadhar Vyas will enthrall the audience with various expression and moods of “Ritu Ragas”.

Shruti, the daughter of noted classical vocalist Pandit Wamanrao Sadolikar, has been singing for the past four decades, while Pandit Vyas, whose father Pandit Narayanrao Vyas was an outstanding vocalist himself, has been groomed in Khayal, Tarana and Bhajan Gayaki and represents Gawalior Gharana.

Vijai Vardhan, Principal Secretary, Culture Affairs, said the ancient society in India always remained connected to its seasons and enjoyed them through music and other activities. The idea of this function is to keep intact that ancient heritage as well as spread the classical music among the youth of today. The function is also held to shatter the perception, which people have that the Haryana Cultural Affair Department is not active. “We have plans in the pipeline to hold various functions of music and other activities,”€¯ he adds.

The second function on this theme will be organised by the Chandigarh-based Indian National, which is scheduled to take place on August 9 at 6.30 PM in Tagore Theatre, Sector 18. Titled as “Varsha Ritu Nritya Sandhya”, the evening will witness an Odissi dance by celebrated danseuse Daksha Mashruwala, a disciple of noted Guru Kelucharan Mahapatra.

An exponent, teacher and choreographer, Daksha has regaled audiences in the country and abroad with performances, workshops and lecture-demonstrations for the past two decades. Having performed at various prestigious festivals, she has been honoured and felicitated by The Centre of World Music, San Diego, and the Canadian Museum of Civilisation, Ottawa, among several others.

“This region has not witnessed too much rain this year. Nevertheless, this function aims at invoking the rain god to shower its blessings in abundance in the times to come,”¯ says Vinita Gupta, secretary of Indian National Theatre.



Soon, sub-panel to monitor developmental works

Mohali, August 3
The District Vigilance and Monitoring Committee today decided to directly monitor the progress of developmental works of the district.

The Member of Parliament from Anandpur Sahib, Ravneet Singh Bittu, who chaired the meeting, said it has been observed that funds were not being used properly.

He said a sub-committee comprising the MLA, ADC and SDM would personally monitor the developmental works sponsored by the Centre. The physical verification would be done in every three months. Members of NGOs would also be included in the sub-committee.

While seeking details of Indira Awas Yojna, he found that the statistics show the fund has been distributed to over 200 families each in Dera Bassi, Kharar and Majri block. He later found that the entire grant had not reached the intended beneficiaries.

Similarly, in case of distribution of PDS wheat, he pointed out that 1,800 quintals of wheat had been sold in the open market. Recently, the stock meant for 5,200 families had been sold in the open market. — TNS



Chandigarh Scan
Signature campaign

Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha, the youth wing of the BJP, organised a “Congress Hatao, Desh Bachao” signature campaign in the Sector 37 market today. Hundreds of local residents, especially youngster put their signatures and expressed their resentment against the Congress-led UPA government.

Punjabi song filmed in college

The lush green 20 acre campus of Aryans Group of Colleges is being increasingly used by Punjabi singers, producers, directors and actors for the shooting and promotion of movies and songs. The Aryans Group recently hosted the shoot and launch of Boliyan, a song from the Punjabi album "Loving Waves" of Rupinder Handa, the first winner of "Voice of Punjab".

Story-narration session at school

The nursery wing of Saupin's-32 had an interesting story narration session held at the school today. The story of the 'Three Little Pigs' was narrated with lovely props by the teachers in the presence of the parents and their tiny tots.

Floral tribute

Desh Bhagat Group of Institutes paid a floral tribute to veteran Marxist leader Harkishan Singh Surjeet on his fourth death anniversary. Dr Zora Singh chairman, Desh Bhagat Group of Institutes, described him as a great communist leader and a true patriot who was committed to the welfare of the downtrodden.

Plantation drive

A plantation drive was held in the RIMT World School, Chandigarh. In the presence of Mayor Raj Bala Malik, students organised activities promoting greenery. The event comprised awareness rallies, special campaigns calling for a ban on polythene, crackers and smoking. Students also planted saplings and pledged to lead an environmental friendly life.


KG students of St John's High School celebrated Vanmahotsav by planting saplings in the school premises on Friday. School authorities said that the drive aimed at making the students aware of our flora and fauna.

Poetry writing event

A Hindi poetry writing event was conducted in Bhavan Vidyalaya (Junior) on Friday. Students were given two topics related to the independence of India and a choice to write poem on any one. Students wrote thoughtful and expressive poetry with a feeling of nationalism.

CII conclave ends

The three day session of CII Secure North 2012 concluded here today. The event was held to spread awareness and showcase latest security-related products, solutions and technologies.

Blood donation

PACL Limited, one of India’s leading real estate developers, has organised a blood donation and eye checkup camps in 74 cities across India including Chandigarh, Patiala, Barnala, Bathinda, Sangrur, Hanumangarh, Hoshiarpur, Pathankot, Ludhiana, Una, Ambala, Sirsa. The camps were organised from July 26-28.

'Blue day' celebrated

The tiny tots of Gian Jyoti Global School, Phase 2, Mohali, seemed to be thrilled in their blue attires to celebrate 'Blue Day'. According to the kindergarten teachers, this is not only the most effective way of concept building among the students, but also one of the best ways to acquaint them with the blue colour.

—Tribune Reporters



College overcharges students
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 3
Despite Panjab University regulating the fee structure for BCom admissions in its affiliated colleges and deciding Rs 12,800 as the uniform fee for all colleges, SD College, Sector 32, has charged Rs 26,000 from 283 students.

Interestingly, the excess fee has been charged despite the centralised admissions for BCom introduced to keep a check on the fee charged by colleges.

College principal Meena Prabhakar said their college is offering better facilities then other city colleges, and may be the other colleges that also have sections of BCom under self-financed category might charge more fee later.

College coordinator for BCom admissions Ajay Sharma said that out of the four sections of BCom in the college (having 70 seats each), two are aided and two are self-financed (unaided). As a result, the fee of the aided sections is less than that of the self-financed section. However, to maintain a uniform fee structure, we have charged Rs 26,000 from students of both aided and unaided sections. “PU has not revised its fee structure in the last few years and the inflation has forced the college increase the fee,” he said.

However, PU's Deputy Registrar (Colleges) Janak Raj Dhiman said that there was a uniform fee structure of Rs 12,800 for BCom in all the colleges. “There is no such provision of aided or self-financed sections in one course in any college. Every college will have to follow the university rules and charge Rs Rs 12,800 as annual fee,” he said. He added that action against the colleges flouting norms will be taken on getting a complaint from the students.

One of the students admitted at SD College in BCom said that while all the other colleges charged the fee fixed by university, they were asked to pay Rs 26,000. “It was the duty of the university to keep a check on the fee charged by the colleges,” the student said.

Admissions to 283 seats were made in SD College and the college has also asked for more seats from the university. Prof SK Chadha of the UBS department, who was appointed as the coordinator for BCom admissions by the university this year, said that he was only asked to conduct the admissions as per the merit; the issue of fee structure was not under his purview.

Interestingly, Chadha also recently wrote to the PU authorities on getting information that the colleges in Chandigarh and Ludhiana were overcharging the students.

Parent of one of the students said it was unfortunate that the university was waiting for someone to file a complaint to take action against the college, even after knowing that students have been overcharged. “What is the purpose of fixing a uniform fee structure when the university cannot ensure that the colleges follow it,” he said.

Dinesh Talwar, a Syndic, said that the university is responsible for the issue because the admissions were made by the PU and it should have checked whether the fee structure was being followed or not. “No college can charge two different fee structures for the same course,” Talwar said.



Khosla to continue as DPR at PU
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 3
After resigning from the additional charge of Director Public Relations (DPR), Panjab University, before the departure of previous Vice-Chancellor RC Sobti, Dr Mohanmeet Khosla has been asked by the university to continue as the DPR and Director Publication Bureau till the posts are filled.

Khosla had written to RC Sobti in January, April and May to relieve her from the additional charge. Later, she gave her resignation from both the additional charges before the new Vice Chancellor, Arun Grover, joined.

Now the university, in a communication sent to her, has asked to continue in the office till the vacancies are filled.

Khosla, in the absence of any regular appointment to the post, was given the charge as the DPR soon after Anil Kapoor's one-year contract ended.

After Sanjiv Tewari, who was a regular DPR, retired in 2009, Surinder Sharma from the chemistry department, Dr Sudhir Kumar from the English department, Anil Kapoor and Dr Mohanmeet Khosla functioned as the university's DPR.

A few months back, the university invited fresh applications for the post of DPR. However, the interviews for the post are yet to be conducted.

When contacted, Dr Mohanmeet Khosla confirmed her joining back as the DPR and Director Publication Bureau.



PU gives research scholars a reason to cheer
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 3
Research scholars at Panjab University (PU) who for some reasons had left their research in-between have something to cheer as PU has decided to allow these students to continue their research. Earlier, the students could not continue research once they left it in-between.

The move is going to benefit a large number of students who could not complete their research and now want to pursue it again. A decision was taken on July 30 after a proposal was moved by syndic Dinesh Talwar at a syndicate meeting held in March with a justification that when there was a provision for postgraduate students to complete their degrees in case they had left it after clearing first-year of the course, the same provision should exist for PhD students. A committee was constituted by the house to workout the modalities.

Talwar said there were many cases wherein the students migrated to other universities for pursing career advancement courses such as MPhil or BEd or could not continue the research due to some unavoidable circumstances. Such students wished to return, but were denied by the chance to continue research.

“Now, the students who are registered research scholars will have an opportunity to continue research from the same stage they had left,” Talwar said. The Syndic said it was practically not feasible for a student to start his research from the scratch.

Welcoming the decision, Mehar Verma, a research scholar at PU, said the move would benefit several students who used to leave research following financial constraints.

“The decision will benefit PhD students who used to leave research to earn their living and later on wanted to rejoin, but were not permitted to continue,” Mehar added.



Group contesting PUTA election releases manifesto
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 3
The Ravi Mahajan and Devinder group released their manifesto for the forthcoming Panjab University Teachers Association (PUTA) elections today. Reemployment of teachers for five years (which is presently for a three year period), laptops to all the teachers, status of a Central university for PU, filling vacant posts are some of the few items on the agenda.

The team members contesting the elections stated that they believe in initiating steps to bring about a new academic and research buoyancy imperative to take the university to new heights in academics and research.

The candidates claimed to work together to unleash a new synergy in order to make the university a knowledge hub, with an environment congenial to exploration and dissemination of new ideas.

Ravi Mahajan is contesting for the post of president, Yograj Angrish for the post of vice-president, Devinder Singh for secretary, Anju Rao for joint secretary and Parveen Goyal for treasurer.

One of the main points of the agenda is to ensure pension for all the faculty members who joined Panjab University after January 1, 2004.

"In order to give a fillip to academics and research, we will ensure the appointment of teaching faculty and supporting staff at all levels, and bring about all round academic excellence," the contestants stated.

Timely Career Advancement Scheme (CAS) promotions, rotation of the chairperson of all university teaching departments are also among the promises made to the teachers by the group.

The team claims it will make efforts to ensure a Central university as well as a Centrally-funded university status for the Panjab University.

"In order to increase teachers' participation in governing PU, we shall aim at increasing the representation of PU teachers in the Senate by demanding additional seats for professional courses, besides science and arts," stated the team members.

Team members stated that they will, however, be on alert to gauge the current as well as emerging issues concerning the greatest good of all the faculty members and stakeholders of the university.



HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |