C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


IGP security staff encroach on road
Draw power for tents through ‘kundis’ near his residence in Panchkula
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, November 17
A custodian of the law, a senior police officer of Punjab is violating the directive of the Punjab and Haryana High Court by not only allowing six tents for his security staff in the middle of the road in Sector 7, Panchkula, but also letting them draw power illegally through ‘kundi’ connections.

The Punjab Inspector General of Police (IGP), BK Garg, has virtually set up a complete residential unit (six big tents), comprising a bathroom and a kitchen, in the middle of the road for his security staff.

Garg is the Punjab IGP, State Crime Research Bureau. While his security staff enjoy the comforts of a house, the commuters are at the receiving end as the road has been completely blocked.

The nearby vacant plot is also used by the security staff. A white Karizma bike was also parked outside. Power is being supplied to some of the tents through kundi connections. Even sewage is discharged illegally at this ‘residential unit’.

Himanshu Sheokand, Sub-Divisional Officer (SDO), Electricity Department, said, “Yes, we had seen this earlier too and they were warned also that a heavy penalty would be imposed on them. I will certainly get the matter checked again and necessary action will be taken.”

“The entire way has been blocked only because of the ‘lavish facilities’, which the IGP has provided to his security men. Despite the fact that an alternative route can be provided to commuters, the officer is misusing his powers,” said a person residing in the locality, on the condition of anonymity.

Another person said: “I fail to understand as to why the administration is keeping mum? Is it only because he is an official of such a high rank?”

The Estate officer of the Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA), Panchkula, said, “I will surely get it checked on Monday and we will serve a notice on the owner.” 

‘My father-in-law has all the permissions’
A ‘kundi’ fixed by the security staff to draw power illegally.
A ‘kundi’ fixed by the security staff to draw power illegally.

Attempts were made to contact Garg but his cellphone was switched off. His daughter in law, Ritika Garg, said, “My father-in-law is an IPS officer and he already has all the permissions.”



In Chandigarh, encroachment at Gurjar’s house intact

Meanwhile, Punjab IAS officer Sumer Singh Gurjar, at present posted as Director State, Transport, Punjab, has not removed encroachments on the road in front of his house in Sector 7, Chandigarh, a day after The Tribune highlighted his violation. The Municipal Corporation (MC), Chandigarh, has not taken any action on the alleged encroachment by him. He has also got pitched a tent on the road outside his house. Kashmira Singh, Inspector, Enforcement wing, MC, said they would inspect the area on Monday and will take action accordingly. 



pgi exam racket
CBI summons 10 beneficiaries
Aneesha Sareen
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 17
A week after the exposure of the PGI entrance test scam, in which 15 accused have been arrested, the CBI has identified 10 beneficiaries who appeared for exam and had paid hefty amounts to the prime accused, Gurivi Reddy, for helping them clear the exam. The beneficiaries, all of whom are MBBS pass, hail from Andhra Pradesh.

Sources in the CBI said the beneficiaries had been asked to join the investigation at the CBI office on November 19 when they will be confronted with the other accused as part of the investigation.

The beneficiaries had paid Rs 40 lakh to Gurivi Reddy, who, in turn, planted decoy candidates in the form of helper girls to leak the paper through bluetooth devices during the exam in order to help the beneficiaries. The girls transmitted the images of the question paper and then sent it to experts in Patna and Hyderabad through hi-tech devices. The solved paper was then communicated back to Reddy, who sent it to the beneficiaries who were taking the exam.

The CBI officials said the beneficiaries were part of the conspiracy and their interrogation would throw more light on the entire scam. Most of the beneficiaries are juniors of Gurivi Reddy who is a third-year medical student.

Custody of four accused extended

Meanwhile, all the 15 accused arrested in the case were produced before a CBI court today. While 11 accused, including seven girls, were sent to judicial custody till November 19, the prime accused, Gurivi Reddy, was remanded in police custody for six days and will now be produced before the court on November 24. The CBI also got nod for police custody of three other accused, P Bharat Chand, N Jagdish and P Sidhartha for two days. While Bharat Chand arranged the dummy candidates, N Jagdish had dropped the dummy candidates to the exam centres. Sidhartha had arranged all the hi-tech devices used for leaking the paper. The CBI special public prosecutor Pawan Kumar Dogra said prime accused Gurivi Reddy had given incorrect address and he would be taken to Hyderabad to recover stamps and fake documents used in the crime.

CBI came late; accused produced at magistrate’s residence

The CBI team got late in reaching the court and by the time it reached there after 4 pm, the Chief Judicial Magistrate had left. All the 15 accused were then produced before the duty magistrate Parinder Singh at his Sector-39 residence.

Accused allowed to keep infant with her in jail

One of the accused, P Manjula, who is CBI custody, requested the court to allow her to keep her six-month-old son with her while in custody in the Burail jail. She pleaded that her son is too small and she had to feed and look after him. The court allowed the application. Another application moved by the CBI to collect the handwriting samples of the decoy girl candidates was also allowed. The handwriting samples will be sent to the CFSL for matching them with the handwriting of the girls in the forms filled in by them while applying for the entrance examination.



Re-exam: PGI to spend from its pocket
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 17
The MD/MS entrance exam scam, recently unearthed by the CBI, has cost the PGIMER dear. By rescheduling the entrance exam for December 8, the premier health institute will be spending from its pocket on the conduct of the exam.

When asked about the cost involved in the conduct of the exam, the PGI’s official spokesperson, Manju Wadwalkar, said, “The estimates are yet to be finalised.”

“With extra security measures like jammers and metal detectors to be put in place, comparatively more funds would have to be spent compared to the exam held on November 10,” said a senior PGI official.

Incidentally, the institute has earned about Rs 70 lakh from the registration of 7,000 applicants. The admit cards issued to the applicants during the exam earlier will be considered valid for the rescheduled exam, and the applicants will not have to pay Rs 1,000 for the registration again.

Sources reveal that the institute spent about Rs 600 each on about 500 invigilators that accounts for nearly Rs 3 lakh. This does not include the money to be paid to the paper-setters and the evaluators.



Police was tipped off about paper leak
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 17
The unearthing of the PGI entrance exam racket by the CBI has exposed poor policing as the UT police, despite having prior knowledge of the possibility of paper leak in the MD/MS exam, failed to take any action and it was the CBI, which managed to unearth the racket.

Sources in the PGI said the email received by the PGI ahead of the exam about the possibility of cheating was forwarded to senior police officers, including the UT police SSP, but no timely action was taken.

Neither could the police install jammers nor could it get to any of the candidates who planned the entire conspiracy while sitting in a hotel in the heart of the city. The scam also exposes the failure of police intelligence.

Official spokesperson for the PGI Manju Wadwalkar said, “We received a tip-off on the possibility of some of the candidates carrying sophisticated devices for cheating, well in advance. Acting on the basis of information, we had alerted the local police as well as our officials at all the 11 examination centres, two days ahead of the exam”.?

A senior official at the PGI said the email sent across by a doctor (MBBS), cautioning about the possibility of candidates cheating during the exam with hi-tech devices, was also forwarded to the police by the PGI in advance.

Meanwhile, the UT police washed its hands off by saying that its role is just to ensure security and frisking is not its job.

Ashish Kapoor, DSP (Central), said, “When the PGI officials informed us about the email caution, we had categorically told them that the role of the police remains limited to ensuring security at the centres and allowing entry only to those holding admit cards”.?

The police cannot keep a vigil inside the examination hall on those who indulge in cheating. It is the responsibility of the institution to alert the invigilators to keep a tab on those indulging in cheating, he added.?

The DSP also said the PGI had sought the facility of jammers inside the examination centres to disable the sophisticated devices. They had only two jammers operational inside the city. While one has been installed at the Governor’s house, the other is utilised during VIP visits. How can they utilise one jammer at 11 centres that too when its range is limited to 75 meters, the DSP added.?

When contacted, UT SSP, Naunihal Singh, said he was not sure whether he received the email from the PGI or not since he was on leave.



Bansal talks of conservation as water goes waste
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Garbage scattered around dustbins.
Garbage scattered around dustbins. Tribune photos: s Chandan

Chandigarh, November 17
Practice what you preach. So goes an adage, but Union Railway Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal does not seem to believe in it. As he was exhorting students at the railway station to conserve water, water was going waste from faulty taps, just a few metres away at the same platform where he delivered a speech. The taps have not been repaired for a long time.

Bansal visited the station for the science express exhibition on wheels today.

Ironically, Bansal was seen directing the officials about sanitation at the railway station while, except the passage for the VIP, which was spic and span, the entire railway station presented an ugly picture. Except the area from where the minister walked from platform number one to platform number 5, where the exhibition train has been stationed, garbage was scattered on all other platforms.

While the minister touted the ambitious plans for the railway station, he did not notice that there was no security at the entry and exit points of the station. It was found that metal detectors were not installed by the authorities at the entry and exit points.

Meanwhile, the minister took serious note of the problem of bird droppings at the Chandigarh railway station and at the same time he issued instructions to the railway officials to modify the platform sheds so as to discourage birds from nesting there. But, he did not have anything on stray dogs who can pose a threat to the lives of not only passengers but also visitors who come to receive their guests.

Fresh directions for officials
Water running from a faulty tap at Platform No. 2 at the railway station in Chandigarh.
Water running from a faulty tap at Platform No. 2 at the railway station in Chandigarh. Tribune photos: s Chandan

The Railway Minister directed the railway staff to remove the grills which have been put up on platform sheds where birds usually nest.

Railway officials said by removing these grills the problem of bird breeding at the station will be resolved. They said birds usually litter the platform with their droppings and they had to make special arrangements to clean it regularly. The officials said the department had to drop the idea of installing benches at the platforms as bird droppings would render them useless.

The Railway Minister also instructed the divisional heads to speed up the renovation works, which were discussed by him during his last 2 visits.

Meanwhile, the Additional Division railway manager visited the city station to prepare a report of the execution of the plans which were proposed by the Railway Minister during his last two visits.

Special winter train

For the first time a special winter train is being introduced from Chandigarh to Ramnagar. There will be four scheduled trips of this special train which will be on November 19, 20, 26 and 27 from the city. Railway officials said on the demand of the public this train was being introduced from this season. With the launching of this train, the commuters of Uttarakhand will be the main beneficiaries. The train will have stoppages at Ambala, Saharanpur, Muradhabad and Kashipur. Railway senior division operation manager Nar Singh said this was for the first time that such a train is being started from the city.

For minister’s autographs

The schoolchildren who came to visit the science express exhibition gathered around the Railway Minister to get his autographs. For 15 minutes students kept standing in a queue to have a glimpse of the minister.

No info on location of exhibition train

People found it difficult to locate the platform on which the science exhibition was stationed as no information centre was set up by the railways.


Victim of mc apathy
12-yr-old loses hearing ability after falling into 30-foot-deep pit in Mani Majra
Rajinder Nagarkoti
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 17
Nearly three months have passed when a 12-year-old boy had fell into a 30 feet deep pit in the Shanti Nagar area at Mani Majra, the Municipal Corporation is yet to initiate any inquiry in this matter. Though the UT police has finally registered an FIR in this connection on November 16. But it seems that the MC is not willing to take any action against the contractor and its officials.

MC’s seriousness over the incident can be gauged from the fact that till today, the authorities have not covered the pit properly. They have covered it after placing wooden scaffolding and sand on it. Local residents alleged that it was very dangerous because these woods would not be able to hold the weight of a person, whosoever would stand on them.

When contacted, MC Chief Engineer SS Bidda said he was not aware about any kind of police action but said that there was not fault on the MC’s side. The MC is not conducting any inquiry in this matter, he added.

The boy, identified as Sumit, had received injuries after falling into the uncovered pit where a water booster system was to be installed. Presently, Sumit is finding difficultly in hearing after this incident.

On August 21, Sumit was flying a kite near the site and fell into the pit. Children playing nearby had raised the alarm and called for help. Hearing the noise, a nearby shopkeeper had rushed to the spot with a ladder and saved Sumit. Sumit was rushed to the General Hospital, Sector 6, at Panchkula from where he was referred to the PGI.



Officials fail to carry out inspection
Vivek Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 17
“I have no idea about it, please contact to the Education Department,” said Sunil Bhatia, Additional Commissioner-1, Municipal Corporation, UT. “I don’t remember how many schools I visited last month,” Land Acquisition Officer Tilak Raj said.

“Please contact me on Monday, said Rajiv Gupta, Joint secretary, Municipal Corporation, UT.

The response of other UT officials was more or less the same when they were asked a simple question " how many schools they had visited for the inspection of the Mid-Day Meal Scheme in the government schools of Chandigarh last month.

In September, Education Secretary, UT, had appointed 14 HCS and PCS officers to inspect the functioning scheme in the government schools every month till the March next year. The idea behind the regular inspection was to evolve a system that could inspect the quality of meal being served to schoolchildren and their satisfaction level.

However, the inspection exercise has remained ineffective and has not fetched the desired results. Except few officers, hardly anyone visited the schools for the inspection. As per the scheduled framed, every officer was supposed to cover eight schools every month in the zones allotted to them. But not many officers has followed it strictly.

For instance Director (transport) was allotted Zone 8 for inspection in October. The zone had schools, including GHS-35, GMSSS-35, GMHS-34, GMHS-37B, GSSS-37, GMSSS-37D and GMHS-36. But the inspection was not carried. Indira Dhingra, principal of GMSSS-35, said no senior official had visited her school for the inspection.

“I will get back on this issue tomorrow," replied TPS Phoolka, Director (Transport), when asked we him about the inspection.

Similarly Zone 6 includes GMSSS-16, GSSS-15, GMSSS-22, GMSSS-23 and GHS-24 schools, which were to be inspected by MM Sabarwal, Director (Public Relations), UT, in October but the situation was same here too. Anujit Kaur, principal of GMSSS-16 said nobody visited her school for any kind of inspection.

Sabarwal, however, claimed that he had covered six schools last month and would soon visit other schools, which were to be covered by him in November.

SK Setia, Joint secretary (Estates), and Additional Deputy Commissioner Mahavir Kaushik did visit some schools. “I can’t say about others but I had visited several schools as per the schedule given to me," said ADC Kaushik

Meanwhile, the officers remained in the festive mood as none of them visited visited the schools in November . Rahul Gupta, Assistant Estate Officer, said he could not inspect the schools due to festival season but soon he would visit them. 

Officials appointed for the inspection

Joint Secretary (Estates), Additional Director (Admin), GMCH-32, Controller, Printing and Stationary, Additional commissioner-1, Municipal Corporation, Assistant Estate Officer (Estates), Director Public Relation, Superintendent Model Jail, Director, Transport, Joint Commissioner, Municipal Corporation, Additional Deputy Commissioner, Additional Commissioner-11, Municipal Corporation, Land Acquisition Officer, Director Social Welfare, Secretary, Chandigarh Housing Board



Heads of government schools under scanner
Charged money from students for movie show
Vivek Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 17
Collecting money from students for screening an educational movie for them in the school has proved costly for the heads of two government schools in Chandigarh. The District Education office has initiated an enquiry against the heads of Government Model High School, Sector 38 D, and Government Model High School, Sector 41 D, for charging Rs 10 per head for showing movie "Akkad Bakkad Bam Be Bo" to their students. Department officials said all the schools were informed in advance that they would not charge any money or force the students for the movie but despite the orders, these schools violated the guidelines and took money from students.

About 419 students were to be shown the movie at Sector 41-D school while 544 students were to be shown at Sector 38-D school.

DEO Ram Kumar Sharma said Deputy DEO Vinaya Sood had been conducting enquiry in this case and appropriate action would be taken soon. As per the information, a similar case had come into notice two months ago. Head of Government Model High School, Sector 29, had shown a movie to 765 students after taking money from the students. Later, the department had asked her to return the whole money.



Beaten up for not listening to teacher, laughed at by classmates
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 17
Until three months ago, the world around him was loud and cheerful. He could respond to lo ud cheers of his friends, grasp the classroom lessons quickly, and even rush back to home within minutes when his mother would call him for dinner.

All these people appear to be unusually silent to him now. Unable to hear the caution of his teachers, he was beaten up several times and was also laughed at by his fellows, as he could not understand their remarks.

Sumit, a 12-year-old boy, who was critically injured after he fell in a 15 feet deep under construction water booster at Mani Majra in August this year, had become partially deaf over these months.

Doctors at the PGI said, a crack had developed in his bone around his right ear, which needs to be operated upon. A student of Government Senior Secondary School (GSSS), Manimajra, Sumit has always been fond of studying.

“He had sustained injuries on his nose and ear when he fell. After visiting the PGI for about 15 days regularly following the incident, we came to know that he will have to undergo a surgery,” said Sumit’s mother Ramrati.

“He could not appear in the exam in August since the doctors advised us not to send him anywhere till he recovered from external injuries,” Ramrati said.

Sumit’s father Naresh Kumar, who is an autorickshaw-driver, said, “We came to know about his hearing impairment only when he joined the school in September, when he was beaten up by one of his teachers for not obeying him. Later, the teacher apologised to us after being told that Sumit has developed difficulty in hearing.” His surgery is scheduled on December 12 at PGI’s ENT Department. Sumit is a class VII student of Government Senior Secondary School, Manimajra. He had climbed the boundary wall of the water tank to fly a kite when he then slipped.

He had also received injuries on his face and other parts of the body.

The booster was being constructed on the road near Shivalik Park. Sumit is a resident of Shanti Nagar.



GMADA to scrap five-year lock-in policy for Phase II apartments
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Mohali, November 17
Taking a cue from the poor response for skyscraper Purab Apartments in Sector 88, the authorities in the Greater Mohali Area Development Authorities (GMADA) have decided to do away with the condition of five-year lock-in period for successful applicants.

A senior official of GMADA, on the condition of anonymity, said that it has been decided to remove the clause to attract the buyers again.

The clause would be removed while inviting applications again for the Phase II of the project. “The launch of Phase II of the project would take place by March next year the same day when the construction work of Phase I would begin,” said the official adding that it has been decided to do away with the clause which has repelled the potential buyers from the project.

In the Phase I, the GMADA has decided to construct 1,500 flats for the successful candidates. Notably, out of 4,500 successful applicants, about 1,500 candidates have been left in the project while the rest have opted to withdraw their money out of it.

Under the 5-year lock-in period condition, the candidate could not be able to sell his/her flat within duration of five years after its allotment.

Real estate dealers said, due to this condition, several interested persons, especially, the businessmen and investors, did not show interest in the scheme under which GMADA has to construct 4,500 flats in different categories. Even out of the successful applicants, more than 60 per cent have opted to withdraw their money from the project, leaving the GMADA authorities aghast.

The official added that the flats being constructed in the Phase I would be allotted to the applicants till March 2015 as per our deadline.

Notably, GMADA has selected a Mumbai-based firm Mahimtra Consultants (which has constructed India’s highest 100-storeyed building at Mumbai) for the structural designing of the apartments.



Play highlights life of an artist
Tribune News Service

Artistes stage a play at the Tagore Theatre in Chandigarh on Saturday.
Artistes stage a play at the Tagore Theatre in Chandigarh on Saturday. Tribune photo: S Chandan

Chandigarh, November 17
The play "Hum to Aise hi Hain" was staged at the Tagore Theatre today. The play was staged during the annual theatre festival of the Chandigarh Sangeet Natak Academy.

The play was drected by Manish Joshi Bismil and was based on an artist' s ambitions, social stigmas, struggles and the ultimate triumph of the relationship that an artist shares with his craft.

The play consisted of a good story, puppetry and experimental way to attract the audience and overall it was celebration of life.

The festival will conclude tommrow with the play "Karmawali", directed by Sunita Dhir and Gursharn. The story of the play "Karmawali" is written by KL Zakir and depicts the tragedy of partition of India.



District Legal Service Authority holds awareness camp
Tribune News Service

Chief Judicial Magistrate Jaibir Singh addresses during an awareness camp in Panchkula on Saturday.
Chief Judicial Magistrate Jaibir Singh addresses during an awareness camp in Panchkula on Saturday. A Tribune Photograph

Panchkula, November 17
On the request of Panchkula Senior Citizens Council, an awareness camp was held by the District Legal Services Authority at the day care centre-cum- old age home, Sector 15, Panchkula, last evening.

The legal aid counsel Manbir Singh Rathi and Jaibir Singh, Chief Judicial Magistrate-cum-Secretary of the District Legal Services Authority, delivered a lecture on the the rights of senior citizens under the Maintenance of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007. " Elderly people raised a number of questions and were very keen to know more about their legal rights. Approximately, 250 eldelry people attended the camp," said Jaibir Singh.

President, vice-president and office-bearers of the Senior Citizens Council also attended the camp. They appreciated the efforts of the District Legal Services Authority, Panchkula, and requested to hold more such awareness camps for the benefit of senior citizens in future.

" We just want that justice should be done. That is why we are creating awareness by holding various camp at different places. There are people who are not even aware of their legal rights," said Manbir Singh Rathi.



Admn responsible for blast’
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, November 17
The callous attitude of the Panchkula administration claimed the life of the labourer, Ram Dheer, in the factory blast according to the experts of the forensic team. The team feels that either the safety valve of the boiler might be faulty or it may have got choked because it was not checked on regular basis. Had the boiler been checked regularly by the officials, Ram Dheer would have been alive today.

It was on November 17 when a 35-year-old worker was killed and the other was injured when the boiler on which they were working exploded at the sweets unit of Bengali Sweets, Phase II, Industrial Area, Panchkula. The blast was so powerful that the body of the deceased worker, Ram Dheer was thrown to a distance.

“It is the duty of the officials concerned to check the boilers of the industries on routine basis. You never know the safety valve of the boiler can be faulty. How would the poor worker know about it? It is not an accident,” said a senior forensic team 

He further added, “The officials also have to check this whether the safety valve of boiler is functioning properly or not because it gets choked after a period of time.”

“The Industrial safety and health team and the forensic team who are always there on such blasts spot have to investigate the real truth,” said a senior official of the administration requesting anonymity. He further added, “But since everyone is thinking that the worker has died now, they don’t want to make any efforts.”

It was after Ram Dheer’s life was claimed that the administration served a number of notices to the owner. However, the owner is not being booked by the Panchkula police for 
causing death due to negligence.

The factory belongs to former Haryana financial commissioner, Raj Kumar.



Sappers celebrate 232nd Corps Day

Chandigarh, November 17
The Corps of Engineers, one of the oldest arms of the Army and a major contributor towards development of national infrastructure, observed its 232nd Corps Day at Chandimandir military station today.

On the occasion, a solemn ceremony was held at the Veer Smriti War Memorial in Chandimandir to pay tributes to martyrs at the, Chandimandir. Maj Gen Vishwambhar Singh, Chief Engineer, Western Command, and a large number of serving and retired officers laid wreaths at the memorial.

The entire Sapper fraternity in the tricity of Chandigarh, Panchkula and Mohali joined in to celebrate the event.

The Chief of the Army Staff and General Officer Commanding-in-Chief Western Command conveyed their complimentary messages to all personnel of the Corps of Engineers on this special day. The corps consists of four branches, namely Combat Engineers, Military Engineering Services, Border Road Organisation and Military Survey. It also provides officers to the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). — TNS



Heaps of garbage after Divali irk residents
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 17
The festive season is over but for the sweepers of City Beautiful it seems that it is still on.
The local residents continue to face acute problem of garbage heaps around their localities, here. Earlier, it was reported in the same columns that after Divali celebration, a majority of Municipal Corporation’s sweepers have taken two-day holidays due to Vishkarma Day, Bhai Duj and the residents are still waiting for clearance of the heaps. The inner areas of sectors are littered with burnt crackers and giftwraps.

“The garbage is lying here for four days and no one bothers to clear it. The sweepers or the garbage collecting van have not visited our locality even once after Divali,” said Megha Seth, a resident of Sector 44.

A resident of Sector 45, added, “No garbage van has visited here for a long time. Divali garbage in addition to the regular waste turned into big heaps and is now creating problem for us,” said aTanwar, a resident of Sector 45.

Reportedly, the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation has a work force of 1,652 safaiwalas in its regular pay-scales and 112 safaiwalas on daily wages basis for sweeping the roads and lanes and for the collection of street sweepings.

“The sweepers should perform their duty and officials should keep a check on them. Every corner of the area is surrounded with garbage that later will turn on into big heaps,” said Kriti Sharma.



A visit to Infosys

Participants during a family cycle rally in Chandigarh on Saturday
Participants during a family cycle rally in Chandigarh on Saturday. A Tribune photograph

Destination IT@ North 2012 organised an industrial visit to Infosys, Chandigarh, for the students across Punjab on Saturday. Over 400 aspiring students participated in the "Spark" programme, conceptualised by Infosys.The Spark programme was a day-long exploratory exercise to demystify the working of an IT business enterprise. The program intended to create global human resources capable of handling job positions.

Governor mourns Thackery’s death

Punjab Governor and Administrator, Union Territory, Chandigarh, Shivraj V Patil expressed his profound grief and sorrow over the sad demise of Shri Balasahib Thackery who died today. In his message, Patil said Balasahib had made significant contributions in the public life in Maharashtra.


A two-day exhibition and sale of Dayalbagh manufacturing units opened on Saturday. The exhibition was inaugurated by Sapana, chief architect, Punjab, at Dayalbagh Coop House Building Society Campus, Sector 51 B, Chandigarh. Handloom fabrics, hosiery, leather goods, pharmaceuticals and various items of domestic usage, including woolen items, shopping bags, school bags, purses and so many other products.

Martyr remembered

In memory of great freedom fighter Lala Lajpat Rai, a fortnightly function began with the inauguration of an exhibition here on Saturday. The books, written and read by the freedom fighter, are on display at the exhibition. Rare books and manuscripts of the last century are also on display.The exhibition was inaugurated by Onkar Chand, Chairman, Servants of the people Society.

Music album released

Desh Bhagat College of Education released a CD of melodious songs, sung by its alumnus Amanat Ali, who was the first runners-up during the Voice of Desh Bhagat and received second prize in the Zonal Youth Festival 2011. The CD carries variety of songs. On this occasion, chairman of Desh Bhagat Group of Institutes and Chancellor of Desh Bhagat University, Dr Zora Singh, and Pro-Chancellor of Desh Bhagat  University, Tejinder Kaur, congratulated Amanat Ali. Director General of 
Desh Bhagat Group, Dr Shalini Gupta, said the achievement had brought honour to the university.

National Conference

National Conference on "Futuristic Trends in Computing by 2020", hosted by the Computer Science and Information Technology Department of Indo-Global Colleges at Abhipur near Chandigarh, held on Sunday. A total of 300 people participated during the conference.

Pulmonary Disease Day

"As per WHO statistics, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is likely to become the third leading cause of death by 2030. This was stated Dr Amit Kumar Mandal, senior consultant pulmonology and critical care, Fortis Hospital, Mohali, while addressing over 100 members of the Mohali Senior Citizens Association at the auditorium of Fortis Hospital on Saturday. The special session held on the occasion of the World Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Day. "Regular exercise like walking and having a healthy diet can help you remain active and healthy. This is important as COPD can lead to many complications, including irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia), right-side heart failure, pneumonia , pneumothorax , severe weight loss and malnutrition and osteoporosis ," he warned.

Employees honoured

Faculty and staff members of Sri Sukhmani Institute of Engineering and Technology were recognised for their exceptional performance on Saturday. The institute celebrated 14 glorious and successful years of Sri Sukhmani Institute of Engineering and Technology. The Institute, affiliated to PTU and AICTE approved , was established in 1998.

Tribune Reporters



Outsiders to pay more for food at PU
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 17
Panjab University has slashed the rates of food items, served at the Student Centre, for PU students while outsiders will be charged as per present rates.
As per the decision, the shopkeepers at the Student Center will charge old rates from PU students while the fresh rates will be applicable on the outsiders, who come to the PU for food.

The decision was taken in the wake of recent protest over the of food charges at the Student Centre and PU hostels.

Meanwhile, the hostel mess charges may also get costlier for the outsiders, visiting the hostels just to have food, as the university is planning to hike the charges for non-students in a bid to maintain the cost of food in mess and compensate the mess contractors.

Dean Student Welfare (DSW), AS Ahluwalia, said the university was thinking over increasing the prices of food for non-students, who visited the hostels just for having food. “The proposal will help in maintaining the cost of food at the university hostels and will transfer the burden of the hike on the outsiders," Ahluwalia said. “This is the proposal that can only be materialised only if the students agree. This will help in shifting financial burden from students," Ahluwalia said.

SOPU leader Manoj Lubana said they were satisfied with the decision to rollback rates the hike at the Student Centre for the PU students. “We are more concerned about the students rather than outsiders," Lubana said.

Meanwhile, following the massive protest staged by the students, the university is also planning to formulate a policy for defaulters, under which they won’t be getting admission in the hostels.Earlier, PU Vice-Chancellor Arun Grover had also hinted over framing a policy during a recent press briefing.




Seminar on higher education and employability held
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 17
“Higher education and employability are the two sides of a same coin, laying emphasis on ‘padho aur padhao’ dimensions of higher education to push the frontiers of knowledge," said VC Arun Grover during a seminar on "Higher Education and Employability", organised at Panjab University today. He emphasised that the responsibility of a Vice-Chancellor was to ensure that the university become a preferred place, where students had opportunity to pursue their passion in a productive manner.

The seminar was organised by the Association of British Scholars (ABS), Chandigarh chapter, in association with the Department of Public Administration, PU. Prof BS Ghuman, Dean, Faculty of Arts, said the quality of teaching, research and curriculum development were the three factors responsible for low employability.

Ghuman suggested a five-pronged strategy- audit of educational institutions; developing curriculum in tune with the changing needs of society and market; improving quality of teaching; emphasis on finishing schools; and starting community colleges to overcome the employability deficits. Dr Sucha Singh Gill, Director General, CRRID, said the quality of education in most of the colleges was poor. He said one of the major purposes of most of the newly set up colleges and private universities was not education but profit. Gill emphasised on the need of improving the system of governance in higher educational institutions, where several issues relating to recruitment and funding needed immediate attention. He pointed towards the leadership crisis and absence of a culture of dialogue in higher educational institutions. 



Poetry recitation

A poetry recitation competition was held at Gian Jyoti Global School, Phase2, Mohali, on Saturday. The unique element about the contest was that the students searched message oriented poems the help of their parents. Gian Jyot was the judge for the show. Mohd Aftab, Balkaran and Tannu from class I Rose grabbed top three positions, whereas, Rachit, Savya, and Diljeet from class I Sunflower stood bagged top three places respectively.

Pooja thali competition

A pooja thali Competition was organised on Saturday at Government Model High School, Sector 38-D, Chandigarh. Around 50 students of classes V to VIII participated in the competition. Surinder Kumar, headmaster of the school, and Parveen Gupta were the judges of the event. They were impressed by the creative efforts of the students. The children participated with great zeal, interest and enthusiasm. The headmaster praised the efforts of the children and wished them success for future endeavours.

Rally organised

Students of Gem Public School organised a drug abuse rally and spread awareness regarding drugs on Saturday. They acquainted the people with various ailments like cancer, liver problems and certain respiratory problem caused due to the use of drugs. The students interacted with the residents and discussed about various ailments.

Poster-making competition

A poster-making competition was held at Sant Iser Singh Public School school on Saturday. The competition was organised to celebrate the World Diabetes Day. The students created beautiful pictures, depicting importance of girl child . Director Hardip Kaur Gill said the new generation should stand against the evil of female foeticide and admired the creations of children. Principal Inderjeet Kaur Sandhu encouraged all students to take part in such events. — TNS



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