C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Kidnapped girl recovered from jind
Parents hold negotiations with accused, promise to withdraw police complaint
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 20
After six days of intense police operation during which four teams were sent to Haryana to recover a three-year-old kidnapped girl, the UT police today finally recovered the girl even as it failed to arrest the two kidnappers. The police recovered the kidnapped girl, Harmeini, alias Eddu, from Raipura village in Jind, Haryana, at 6 pm. A special investigating team (SIT) under the superivision of DSP (Crime) Satbir Singh was formed to crack the case.

Police sources said the three-year-old girl was safe and was recovered from her relative’s place near Jind where the accused dropped her after negotiations with the girl’s parents, Harish Arora and Priya Arora, whom the main accused was blackmailing to pay ransom.

The sources said the parents of the kidnapped girl reached a settlement with the accused and assured them that they would withdraw the complaint against them, following which the girl was released. The sources said a mediator undertook a written surety from the girl’s parents that no legal proceedings would be filed against the accused.

The police team with the girl is yet to reach the city and the operation is on to arrest the accused, Jagpal Beniwal and his woman accomplice, Chinar.

The girl was recovered at 6 pm by a team of the crime branch. Two police teams are still camping in Haryana to arrest the accused.

Police investigations revealed that Hairsh Arora and Priya Arora owed an amount of Rs 60 lakh to the accused, Jagpal. They had given him some cheques, which had bounced. This had irked Jagpal, who kidnapped their daughter and demanded ransom.

Harmieini was kidnapped from Hotel Royal Inn in Sector 22 on January 15. Her mother Priya Arora had received a ransom call from Jagpal, who demanded an amount of Rs 60 lakh for the girl's release.

Harish Arora, his wife Priya Arora, son Hridev and daughter Harmeini had come to the city on January 12 and were staying in a Sector 22 hotel. Accused Jagpal, who was Harish’s business partner and knows their family for the past 18 months, had joined them in the city and later fled with their daughter.

The kidnapping saga

January 15: Harish Arora, Harmeini's father, reports to the police that his three-year-old daughter has been kidnapped from Hotel Royal Inn and he has received a ransom call of Rs 1 crore from his business partner Jagpal Beniwal.

January 16: Accused calls again and threatens to fly to Dubai if ransom amount is not paid. Reduces ransom amount from Rs 1 crore to Rs 60 lakh. Teams dispatched to Delhi, Karnal, Kaithal and Jind, where the tower locations were traced. Teams also sent to the native places of accused Jagpal and Chinar in Haryana and Delhi, respectively.

January 17: Police rounds up suspects, team sent to Hisar from where again a ransom call was received.

January 18: Police team sent to Panipat, where the accused stayed for a night.

January 19: Accused calls and threatens to shoot the girl if ransom amount is not paid and if the police complaint is not withdrawn.

January 20: Girl recovered from a village near Jind after negotiations with the girl’s parents.

Once bitten twice shy

The UT police seems to have learnt lessons from the Khushpreet kidnap and murder case of 2010 when five-year-old Khushpreet had lost his life after a police trap to arrest the kidnappers failed. In Harmeini’s case, the police made it a priority to recover the girl safe and sound and then only launched an operation to arrest the accused.

'Operation still on'

Our priority was to recover the girl safe and we have achieved success in handing over the girl to her parents. It was due to pressure tactics that the girl has finally been recovered. The operation to arrest the kidnappers is still on.

Ashish Kapoor, DSP

Father thanks police

I am happy that my daughter is back with me. I thank the UT police team, which helped recover my daughter.

Harish Arora, girl's father



Man forces wife to take mosquito repellent, booked
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 20
In a fit of rage, a man allegedly forced his 24-year-old wife to take a mosquito repellent here this afternoon. The victim, Monika Vadhera, a resident of Sector 15, Panchkula, was taken to the General Hospital, Sector 6, Panchkula, where she is undergoing treatment.

The police has registered a case of attempt to murder under Section 307 and Section 498 (dowry) of the IPC against her husband, Vimal Vadehra. Vimal is a property dealer.

According to the police, the woman's in-laws, including her husband, were demanding dowry. A complaint was made to the women cell in August 2012, but the matter was resolved after a compromise was struck and the victim shifted to a rented accommodation in Sector 15 with her husband and three-year-old daughter.

"According to the complaint, the victim called up her parents in the morning saying that her husband wanted to kill her. When her husband went to the office, neighbours saw Monika vomiting," said a police official.

"Monika told neighbours that her husband had forcibly made her drink a mosquito repellent," said the official.

Two empty bottles of a mosquito repellent were found near the spot.

The victim had called up her parents last night also and told them that her husband was beating her up and demanding dowry.

"A case has been registered against the husband. He will be arrested soon. After investigations, we will see whether her inlaws also need to be booked," said Inspector Lalit Kumar, Station House Officer of the Sector 14 police station.



jyoti murder case
HP MLA spent time reading religious scriptures in custody
Hina Rohtaki
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, January 20
Doon MLA Ram Kumar Chaudhary, an accused in the Jyoti murder case, spent most of his time reading religious scriptures while he was in police custody . Even in hiding, while he was evading arrest, he travelled by bus and stayed at various gurdwaras in Delhi and Punjab. He also stayed at Salasar, Rajasthan.

To mislead the police, he disguised as a Sikh by wearing a turban and growing a beard while staying at gurdwaras. “He always carried religious scriptures and kept reading these throughout the day. After we finish our questioning, he goes back and reads religious scriptures,” said a police official on condition of anonymity.

Before surrendering in a court, he took shelter in a house of a friend politician near Kharar. He also visited Anandpur Sahib, said the official. After arrest warrants were issued against him for the second time, the first place which Chaudhary visited was Salasar.

During Chaudhary’s hiding period, a havan, in which 21 priests took part, was held at Chaudhary’s residence in Sandholi, Baddi, to rid him of the ill-effects of bad stars. During the havan, the Panchkula police got a tip-off that Chaudhary took part in the havan for a few minutes, but it failed to arrest him.

Chaudhary was elected the MLA from the Doon constituency in Himachal Pradesh on the Congress ticket on December 20. The Panchkula police had secured his arrest warrants in 24-year-old Jyoti's murder case. He surrendered before the Panchkula court on the day he was to take oath as MLA in Dharamsala .

Accused gets 14-day judicial custody

After the end of the police remand, Chaudhary was sent to 14-day judicial custody by the local court here today. The case had come up for hearing before Duty Magistrate Kanwal Kumar. The police requested the court that the remand of the accused be further extended by two days since it had failed to recover his mobile phone used at the time of the crime. Turning down the plea, the court pulled up the police asking it why if had failed to recover the mobile phone so far. Chaudhary was on police remand since January 8.

The police said Chaudhary was changing statements regarding the recovery of the phone, which was causing the delay. So far, the police has recovered the truck used to run over the victim, Chaudhary’s car, Jyoti’s mobile phone and another accused Gurmeet’s car. The police said Chaudhary's had thrown two mobile phones into a rivulet in Punjab.

The decision on allowing Chaudhary to take oath as MLA will be given on January 22 . On January 18, Chaudhary had moved an application in the court stating that he may be allowed to take oath before the Speaker of the Vidhan Sabha in Himachal Pradesh.

Seeks B-class facilities in jail

Defence counsel AS Sukhija has moved an application requesting that Chaudhary be provided B-class category in the Central Jail, Ambala. The plea has been made on the grounds that Chaudhary holds an MA degree in public administration.



Sunny days are here again
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 20
The local Met Department has predicted sunny days this week with no significant change in the overall temperature.

Surinder Pal, local Met officer, said dry weather had been predicted for this week. Mornings might be foggy, but the days would remain comparatively warm. “Rain may return after a week’s time," he said.

City residents enjoyed a sunny day today. Rain during the past few days had thrown life out of gear. The Sukhna Lake, Sector 17 and other tourist spots in the city had a lot of visitors today. The temperature remained near normal in the city. The daytime temperature was 17°C while the minimum temperature was was 7.6°C.

Man dies of cold

Panchkula: A 30-year-old man died of cold on Saturday night at Bator village near Barwala. The victim, Sanika, died after he spent the night in open fields under the influence of liquor. The victim belonged to Jharkhand and was working as a labourer in Barwala. Local villagers saw the body of the victim on Sunday morning and informed the police. Inspector Satish Kumar, SHO of the Chandimandir police station, said the postmortem report of the deceased revealed that he died of cold and was in an inebriated state. The police has initiated investigations under Section 174 of the CrPC. The deceased is survived by his wife and two children.



India-England ODI: Teams arrive in city
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 20
The cricket teams of India and England arrived in the City Beautiful for the upcoming 4th One-Day International (ODI) match of the ongoing India-England cricket match series, here today.

The teams arrived here at around 3 pm under tight security. Both the teams will undergo a precise practice session at the PCA Stadium, Mohali, from tomorrow for two-days. The Indian side is currently leading the five match series by 2-1. The Punjab Cricket Association Stadium will host the fourth match of the ongoing series on January 23.


Pulse polio drive
15,000 booths set up in Mohali
Tribune News Service

Health workers distribute cricket balls during a Pulse Polio campaign at Phase VI in Mohali on Sunday
Health workers distribute cricket balls during a Pulse Polio campaign at Phase VI in Mohali on Sunday. Tribune photo: Vicky Gharu

Mohali, January 20
To make the pulse polio drive cent per cent successful, the state health authorities have set up 15,000 booths in the area.

This was stated by State Health Minister Madan Mohal Mittal while inaugurating the drive at Balmiki Colony, Phase 6, here.

“We are targeting 38 lakh children in the age group of 0-5 years in the state during the drive. While the government is doing everything to give pulse polio drops to each and every child here, it’s also the duty of parents that their children, falling in the age group, should not be skipped,” said Mittal.

Mittal said Punjab was now a polio-free state and all credit goes to hard work by health officials.

During the occasion, the Health Minister also announced that the tests of persons found with the symptoms of cancer during the recent special survey would be conducted free of cost.

“During our special drive, we have surveyed about 2 crore people of the state. Our motive is to make the people of the state healthy,” said Mittal. For Mohali district, the authorities have constituted 1,080 teams and set up as many as 510 booths to administer pulse polio drops to 2.55 lakh children here.

Apart from that, transit teams have also been deputed at 50 various sites for the purpose.

69,051 children given polio drops

Chandigarh: A total of 69,051 children in the age group of 0-5 years were administered polio drops in the city today during the Pulse Polio campaign.

Around 2,000 officials from various departments were deputed for the campaign. Chandigarh was divided into three zones. As many as 444 booths were installed for the purpose.

The vaccine was also given to children on the railway station, bus stands and all transit/border areas.

In addition, the National Rural Health Mission is currently observing National Girl Child Week from January 18 to January 24. Under this programme, the Health Department aims at reaching out to each every household of the city with a message to “Save Girl Child”.

On January 21 and 22, Pulse Polio teams will be visiting all households to crosscheck as well as vaccinate the left out children, if any.



65 per cent taxi stands illegal in Mohali: Survey
Kulwinder Sangha

Mohali, January 20
The Mohali MC surveyed the illegal taxi stands within the municipal limits after 25 years and found that more than 65 per cent of these were functioning illegally.

It had come as a shock to the Municipal Corporation when it found that only five authorised taxi stands existed in its records since 1986, forcing it to order a survey.

A committee formed by the civic body in 1987 had unanimously approved seven taxi stands in various parts of the town. Two of these were later declared illegal.

It was found that there were 26 taxi stands functioning in various areas, out of which only eight were approved. The illegal taxi stands were found in Phases I, II, III A, III B 2, IV, VI, VIII, X and XI.

Dilraj Singh, Joint Commissioner of the civic body, said the survey was conducted to find out how many taxi stands existed in the town, the area occupied and the number of vehicles at each stand.

It was found during the survey that a large number of taxi stands were functioning illegally. Now, the civic body will identify the sites where taxi stands are required after which the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA) will be approached for approval.

Dilraj Singh said while five taxi stands were approved by the civic body, three were authorised by GMADA.

The civic body has been charging only Rs 30 per taxi per month since 1990, but GMADA is charging Rs 350 per taxi per month at the two stands while the rate is Rs 400 per month per taxi at the third stand. The corporation will now increase the parking fee of taxis at the stands after working out various details.

Persons running illegal taxi stands here have been having a gala time as the owners of such stands have not paid a single penny to the civic body as rent and parking fee. Sources said the rent and parking fee had also not been collected for the past two years from the owners of the authorised taxi stands.



Open House response
New officers will improve policing

The merger of the Chandigarh UT Police Cadre with DANIPS (Delhi and Andaman Nicobar Island Police Services) and the transfer of officers to other UTs like in other forces will go a long way in reforming the policing system and checking the crime rate in the city. The Federation of Sector Welfare Associations (FOSWAC) has been taking up the issue at different levels for sometime. It is well-known that the city has become a stronghold of the Chandigarh cadre DSPs for many years due to their long stay. Factionalism, internal strife, verbal spats in public, developing an image of a divided force, rampant corruption and blemished with accusations of being property sharks and having amassed wealth through unfair means has become a regular feature in the police force, which has tarnished its image. Chandigarh is the only city in the country where DSPs and inspectors have never been transferred out of the city which is against the CVC guidelines. The entry of new incumbents will break the cartel formed by the police officers due to their long stay in the city and it is likely to bring about changes in the overall functioning as well as efficiency of the force. However, for achieving desired results in reforming the policing system and improving the law and order condition in the city, there is a need to merge the Chandigarh cadre posts of inspectors and sub-inspectors with DANIPS cadre.

PC Sanghi, Chairman, FOSWAC Chandigarh

Transfer will help in decreasing crime rate

Transfer of UT police officers and their merger with DANIPS can help in decreasing crime rate and reforming the policing system in Chandigarh to some extent. The transferred police officers will take time to adjust in new cities and environment and have no links with their old touts. As a result, they will not be able to misuse their power or position. Besides this, the officers who perform commendable jobs should be awarded with promotions and appraisals.

Priya Darsh Growar, Mohali

Corruption may increase

The merger of the UT police cadre with DANIPS or any other police will not make any difference as far as the general public is concerned. The police is same everywhere, whether it is Chandigarh, Delhi or Andaman Nicobar. They are accused of bribery, corruption, nepotism and neglecting their duties. With the merger of the UT police with DANIPS, corruption and bribery will not end in the city. Transfer of policemen at new places will give them new opportunities to earn through unfair means. Such a move will only give opportunities to the policemen to visit new places on government funds and accommodation.

RK Kapoor, Chandigarh

Positive attitude needed

The merger of the UT police cadre with DANIPS will not help in reforming the policing system in the city. A police officer of any state will perform similarly in all parts of the country. Only a positive police officer could perform his job well.

Aditya Srihan, Chandigarh

Interaction will help in career growth

The merger of the DSP cadre of the UT with DANIPS will help in reforming the policing system of the city. The reforms in the policing system have been due for many years. The UT police officers never get transferred out of the city. The transfers will provide them an opportunity to attend value-added workshops to interact with officers from other UTs. Due to lack of qualified police officers in the UT police force, the entry of new incumbents will help in developing team spirit and improving the efficiency of the force. Residents feel that long stay at one station develops vested interest. The merger is good for individuals as it would help in their career progression. We hope that this will help in checking crime rate in Chandigarh.

Vidya Sagar Garg, Panchkula

Merger will ensure efficiency

The policing requirement of Chandigarh is more challenging from that of the adjoining states of Punjab and Haryana, from where the officer level ranks are drawn on deputation. Therefore, the merger of the Chandigarh Police cadre with DANIPS is a welcome and long-awaited corrective measure in reforming the policing system in the city. Merger will ensure sharing of policing experience and methods being practiced in Delhi and other union territories. It would also help in getting rid of stagnancy in the CP cadre, especially at inspector level and above, which has been hindering the effective working of the policing system in Chandigarh.

Col KD Pathak (retd), Chandigarh

Dedicated professionals required

Merging of the UT Police with DANIPS will not make any difference. It would have been better if all cadres of constabulary were included as that would break nexus. There is nothing wrong with the UT Police being independent as crime detection and prosecution require dedicated professional men. Traffic hazards cannot be improved by increasing the police force or challans but by better and enforced traffic management.

Tarsem Bhardwaj, Chandigarh

Fear of transfer will make police officers vigilant

The merger of the UT police with DANIPS will help in reforming the policing system in the city. Through merger, the UT police will be able to extract best out of officers. More efficient, experienced, honest, determined and unbiased police officers will be posted in the city who will not ignore their duty for the sake of money and render prompt and courteous services to public. Those policemen should be transferred out of the city who do not fulfil their duties and are unable to resolve complaints and control crime in their locality within specified time period. If crime increases in any locality, the officer concerned should be transferred immediately or sent on deputation to other UTs. The fear of transfer will make the police officers vigilant and help in changing the negligent and callous attitude of officers.

Anamika, Chandigarh

Will ensure accountability

The merger of the UT police cadre with DANIPS can be beneficial as fear psychosis of transfer to far-off territories, like Andaman and Nicobar, in the event of shirking the responsibility and negligence of their work will ensure a sense of accountability among the police officers and they fulfil their duties conscientiously. Further, police-minister nexus will not be formed as there will be less interference from the latter who are usually responsible for creating ruckus and uproar in the city. For instance, children of the VVIPs break traffic rules with impunity. One of the factors of increasing crime rate is the negligence of the police and their belief that if they were recruited in Chandigarh, they will serve here for their entire career without fear of transfer.

Gurmit Singh Saini, Ontario, Canada

Change good for Administration

The recent move of the Ministry of Home Affairs to merge the UT police cadre with DANIPS has come as a surprise and a major step in reforming the policing system as the UT police force was the only force in the country where DSP cadre officers never used to get transferred out of the city. The very purpose of the move is to reform the policing system. It will increase efficiency and change is always good for administrative purposes.

Puran Kant, Chandigarh

Strengthen, improve UT Police

The Chandigarh Police should not merge with DANIPS to reform the policing system in the city. The need of the hour is to strengthen and improve the city police and policing system to check the increasing crime rate in the city. More police officers need to be recruited to check the crime rate. It should be ensured that the officers perform their duty well. Till the policing system is not made strong enough, even transferring police officers from other places will not help. Joint commissionerate system should be followed. The commissionerate should be made responsible to check the erring police officers.

Isha Dahiya, Panchkula

Form state security commission

The Chandigarh administration needs to follow in letter and spirit the Supreme Court directive to implement a slew of measures to streamline the police administration suggesting inter alia the formation of a State Security Commission to ensure independence of the police force, separate wings for investigation and enforcement of law and order and to eliminate interference in the police administration, low level of discipline, indifferent registration of cases, shoddy investigation and mounting public complaints against the police. The move to transfer UT cadre officers to places like Delhi will not help in reforming the policing system in the city because the substitutes are a product of a system that needs reforms to check crime. The real problem is that the non-efficient officers are reaping benefits of their positions.

Ajit Singh, Canada

Increase manpower

With the rising crime graph in city, the Chandigarh police must increase manpower to ensure 24X7 safety of the residents. Special training camps must be held for strengthening the policing skills. The UT police should not merge with DANIPS. The police force should be strengthened and used for the benefit of its own city. There is need of better coordination among the police of Chandigarh, Panchkula and SAS Nagar in order to maintain law and order in the tricity. To improve police functioning, a system of internal vigilance should be developed to keep a close watch on erring police personnel. Setting a common police commissionerate for the tricity is the need of the hour. This will help end lobbying at the middle level.

Vineet Kapoor, Panchkula

Open House question

The move by most of the private schools to allot more seats to preferential quota over hundreds of general category students created a lot of hue and cry. What needs to be done to strike a balance in the overall admission process in the schools. Write your suggestions to openhouse@tribunemail.com



Swine flu under control, say experts
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 20
The deadly H1N1 virus, which has already claimed two lives in the tricity, has been found to be affecting people in different parts of the region. So far, 27 cases, including 7 deaths, have been reported from the city hospitals. Among these, five patients tested positive for H1N1 from the city, 12 from Punjab, 2 from Himachal, 1 from Jharkhand and 1 from Haryana.

Two weeks ago, a 29-year-old woman from Manimajra died of swine flu at the PGIMER.

Owing to isolation of cases, experts have not been able to tab the primary source of infection among the patients till date. The cases are not epidemiologically linked, said UT Health Department officials. This implies that the patients have not been found to have picked up the infection from each other.

Dr Anil Garg, Nodal Officer for the National Vector-Borne Diseases Control Programme, UT, said: “It has been confirmed that these cases are not epidemiologically linked, which means that except for the three technicians at the PGIMER, none of the patients had picked up the infection from each other.

This indicates that the spread of the disease is quite under control so far. But, it is difficult to determine the primary source of the infection due to isolation of the cases.”

Amid the rising number of cases being reported from the city hospitals, experts advise residents to avoid self-medication and take precautions.

The experts advised that in case of flu, self-medication should be avoided and one must visit a doctor.

According to the experts, use of antibiotics should be avoided during flu as they do more harm than good when taken during flu. Antibiotics do not cure viral infection and instead make the body more susceptible to other infections, if taken when not required.


  • Difficulty in breathing or shortness of breath
  • Pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen
  • Sudden dizziness
  • Severe or persistent vomiting
  • Blood in sputum


Wash hands with soap and water or clean hands with alcohol-based hand cleaner


Tamiflu medicine is available at all three government hospitals - PGIMER, GMSH-16 and GMCH-32 free of cost.



Non-functional streetlights pose threat to motorists
Akash Ghai
Tribune News Service

Mohali, January 20
In the absence of functional streetlights, the road dividing Sector 52, Chandigarh and Phase 7 here, poses a threat to motorists during night hours.

The lights have been non-functional for the past several days, which results in pitch-dark during night hours here. Most of the residents of the area are unaware to whom they should approach to rectify the problem.

In fact, some part of the road falls in the Mohali area, while the rest is in Chandigarh, which virtually makes it ‘no one’s baby’.

“No official concerned in Chandigarh and Mohali is ready to take the responsibility to rectify the problem. They are passing the buck on each other to get the work done,” said Gurcharan Singh, who resides in Phase 7 along the road.

Ram Narayan, who resides in the nearby slum, said it was very difficult to travel on the road during night hours. “There is always pitch-dark on the road in the absence of streetlights. It’s very difficult to ride cycle on it. Minor accidents during night hours have become a routine affair”, said Ram Narayan.

Surinder Singh, another resident of the area, said he used the road daily to go to his home during the late hours. “It’s really difficult to go on it due to pitch-dark. Moreover, it’s a busy road, so some big mishap can occur anytime,” said Surinder.

Tarlochan Singh, chief engineer of the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority, said some stretch near the YPS Chowk and some part near the traffic light point on Phase 7 and 3B2 falls under its area. “Streetlights on the road do not come under the jurisdiction’s purview, so it’s the responsibility of the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation,” said Tarlochan.

The re-carpeting on the stretch was delayed for long due to the controversy over jurisdiction. However, the work was done recently by the agencies of Mohali and Chandigarh in their respective areas.



Soon, GMCH-32 to have fully equipped cardiac centre
Ritika Jha Palial
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 20
Patients suffering from heart ailments in the city will soon have an alternative to the PGIMER’s advance cardiac centre. Another fully equipped cardiac centre, essentially a cath lab, will be set up at the Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH), Sector 32.

The Rs 9-crore project will be completed within the next three months and will cater to a large number of patients with severe heart ailments. While the technical comparison for the final purchase of equipment is scheduled for Monday (January 21), the cardiologist to be appointed for heading the centre has already been chosen, confirmed officials.

The centre will be set up on the 5th floor of Block C at the hospital. Dr Raj Bahadur, Director-Principal, GMCH, said Dr S Reddy from the Department of Cardiology, PGIMER, had been selected for heading the new centre at the hospital.

The hospital is also going the launch its own MRI and CT scan this year.

Confirming the development, UT Health Secretary Anil Kumar said: “The cardiac centre and the MRI lab will be set up at the hospital soon and will ease the patient load at the PGIMER.”

At present, a private company is running the CT scan centre at the GMCH-32. The new centre will be owned by the hospital and will also provide the facility of MRI test. The centre is likely to be in place by June this year, said the officials.

The CT scan and MRI centre will involve an expenditure of Rs 14 crore.

The PGIMER has been grappling with a problem of patient rush for the past couple of years. The advanced cardiac centre at the institute caters to a large number of patients not only from the city but also from across the country.

What is a cath lab?

TA catheterisation laboratory or cath lab is an examination room in a hospital or clinic with diagnostic imaging equipment used to support the catheterisation procedure. A catheter is inserted into a large artery, and various wires and devices can be inserted through the body via the catheter, which is inside the artery.



Tricity scan

chandigarh scan
Official visits AIDS centres

Lov Verma, Secretary (DAC), and Director-General, National AIDS Control Organisation, on Saturday visited the peripheral units being run by the Chandigarh State AIDS Control Society, along with Dr Vanita Gupta, Project Director, Chandigarh, SACS. He first visited the facilities in the PGIMER, which included the Integrated Counseling and Testing Centres, ART Centre, Centre of Excellence in HIV Care and STI Clinics in the new OPD Block. Dr. Subhash Varma, HOD, Department of Internal Medicine, PGIMER, accompanied him to various facilities. He interacted with the staff at these facilities and showed a keen interest in the research projects being carried out in relation to HIV/AIDS in these centres.

Seminar on drug abuse

Around 60 new colleges are in the pipeline for affiliation with Punjabi University for session 2013-14. There is a four-fold increase in the number of colleges in comparison to the last year. This was stated by Dr Jamshid Ali Khan, Dean, College Development Council, Punjabi University, Patiala. He was addressing mediapersons at a national seminar on “drug abuse among adolescents - issues & challenges”. The seminar was organised by the Aryans Group of Colleges, Chandigarh. It was presided over by Dr Anshu Kataria, Chairman, Aryans Group of Colleges. Dr Khan said out of those 60 applications, more than half of the colleges had requested to start B.Ed course, while others were for management, degree, agriculture, physical education colleges, etc.

Statue unveiled

A meeting of the executive committee of the Society for the Prevention for Cruelty to Animals (SPCA), Chandigarh, was held under the chairmanship of Subash Chawla, Mayor of the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation. Before the start of the meeting, the Mayor unveiled a statue of lord Krishna with a cow installed in front of the gaushala section and took a brief round of the SPCA hospital. Dr JC Kochar, president of the SPCA, Chandigarh, welcomed the Mayor and other members. He praised the Mayor for arranging a grant of Rs 8 lakh from the MP Local Deployment Fund for a new ambulance for the hospital.

Irresponsible acts condemned

The Grain Market Association, Chandigarh, condemned the irresponsible acts of the Secretary Market Committee, Chandigarh. The association demanded immediate transfer of the secretary in the interest of traders and trade activities. In a joint statement, Sat Pal Gupta, chairman; Bhim Sain Garg, president; Raj Bansal, patron; Naresh Gupta, vice-president; Sunil Gupta, general secretary; and advisers Subhash Goyal, Pawan Garg, Vijay Singla and Mahesh Gupta said whenever the traders raised the issue of development, the secretary, instead of taking necessary steps for the proper development of the Market Committee, started demolition drives in the area and diverted the attention of the traders.

Cong decision welcomed

Kamaljit Singh Panchhi, senior leader of the Chandigarh Territorial Congress, has welcomed the decision of Sonia Gandhi and the CWC to appoint Rahul Gandhi as the vice-president of the All-India Congress. He said the step would prove to be beneficial in the upcoming 2014 elections. It would also lead to the strengthening of the organisation and bring fruitful results for the party.

mohali scan
Health awareness session

Fortis Hospital, Mohali, in association with the Senior Citizen Welfare Association, conducted a free health education awareness session on “Coronary Artery Heart Disease, an epidemic in India and its prevention” at the Community Centre, Modern Housing Complex, (Duplex), Manimajra. Dr RK Jaswal, Director, Cardiology, Fortis Hospital, Mohali, conducted the session and educated over 150 senior citizens on “maintenance of healthy lifestyle”, which was the only way to prevent heart attacks. Amrit Dhingra, president of the Senior Citizen Welfare Association, distributed blankets among the needy. Dr Jaswal revealed the statistics about coronary heart disease in the country. He said there were about 6 crore people suffering from heart problems in the country. Fifty years ago, about 4 per cent of the adult Indian population was suffering from this disease, and this figure has jumped to nearly 12 per cent now

Medical camp
Rita Chari, president of the SBI Ladies Club, inaugurates a medical camp in Mohali
Rita Chari, president of the SBI Ladies Club, inaugurates a medical camp in Mohali. A Tribune photograph

The State Bank Ladies Club, Chandigarh circle, organised a free medical camp in collaboration with Fortis Hospital, Mohali, and State Bank of India, LHO Chandigarh, at the SBI Apartments, Phase 10, Mohali. The camp was inaugurated by Rita Chari, president of the SBI Ladies Club. Rita emphasised the need for regular health check-ups in view of the urban lifestyle. She appealed to the residents to avail maximum benefits from the facilities being provided free of cost at their doorsteps. — TNS



Feedback on teachers gets PU Senate nod
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 20
After much resistance from a majority of the House, the Panjab University Senate finally gave nod to teachers’ feedback by their students.

Fearing that the feedback given by the students might be used as a tool by teachers to victimise the former, the House decided that the feedback would be strictly between the students and the teacher concerned.

After an hour-long heated debate over the exercise, the House finally approved the teacher feedback, which was earlier suggested to be in the form of teacher evaluation. However, the evaluation has been reduced to a toothless effort due to restricting it between the teacher and students.

Vice-Chancellor Arun Grover, while endorsing the teacher feedback in the House, stated that one should not fear feedback and have the confidence in the task we were given. “Many institutes have feedback mechanism in place and thus, we need to introduce the exercise to be in their competition,” Grover said.

While the majority of the House opposed the suggestion, some Senate members backed the VC for introducing the exercise.

RS Jhanji, a Senate member, said, “As the university and colleges go for assessment to the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) for improving the quality of education, what is the harm in taking a feedback from students? As the feedback won’t be linked with the promotion of teachers, there is no harm in taking feedback from students.”

Dean Student Welfare AS Ahluwalia, also a Senator, said, “It is need of the hour to introspect and take feedback from the students.”

Larger section of the House was of the view that the feedback might act as a tool to harm the image of teachers. Many teachers, who had already taken feedback from the students, objected to the suggestion.

SK Sharma, a senior fellow who has been getting himself evaluated for the past two decades, along with another senator Gurpreet Kaur, who also takes feedback from the students, supported the move.

The students will be evaluating the teachers on fixed parameters, including regularity, punctuality, response to queries and informal behaviour. Meanwhile, final modalities over minimum attendance required by the students to give the feedback will be worked out by a committee.

Save paper

As soon as the meeting began, VK Sibal, a Senate member, raised the issue of lengthy and bulky agenda being printed by the university. Sibal stated that though the university had to conduct the meeting in two parts this time, the duration may increase in future. He advised that the university should only include the item and decision in the agenda to make it less bulky and to save paper.

Affiliation matter

The house had an hour-long heated debate over granting affiliation to the colleges which are not even paying minimum required salaries to the teachers. The members demanded that such colleges should not get affiliation from the university.

Five-day week

Dalip Kumar raised the issue of introducing five days’ week in the affiliated colleges of the university. Kumar referring to the UGC regulation 14 stated that the universities have the discretion to adopt five days’ or six days’ week in the affiliated colleges. Kumar said the teaching will not suffer due to introduction of the concept.

Officials must attend meetings

Panjab University will write to the Punjab Government and the UT Administration requesting them to ensure that the Punjab Colleges DPI and UT High Education Director attend the syndicate and senate meetings. PU Vice-Chancellor Arun Grover stated that both the officials should participate in the meetings if they have been nominated as the members of the House.



PU discontinues mathematics, music (vocal) subjects at SGGS College
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 20
Witnessing lukewarm response by students for math and music (vocal) at graduation level in SGGS College for Women, Sector 26, Panjab University has decided to discontinue both the subjects from the next academic session. Math has not been opted by any student in the past two years.

Although the Senate members were of the view that the college should continue with both the subjects, the college principal, who is also a member of the Senate, stated that these were the least sought subjects by the students in the college.

Principal of the college Charanjeet Kaur Sohi said during the meeting, “The UT Director Higher Education (DHE) has scrutinised admission records of the past two years and not even a single candidate opted for Math as an optional subject in graduation. Very few students opted for the subject in the past five years.”

Sohi said only two students of BA III year opted for music (vocal), and no student of BA I and II opted for the subject. A Senate member claimed that the college might have stopped the students from opting these subjects.

After deliberations, the House decided to discontinue both the subjects in BA I year and the decision would be implemented in a phased manner.



Centralised online admissions to BCom only for city colleges, says varsity
Amit Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 20
After failing to implement centralised online admissions to bachelors in commerce (B Com) in the colleges of Ludhiana, the Panjab University Senate has now decided that online admissions will be allowed only in the colleges of Chandigarh. The decision will come into force from the next academic session.

The centralised online admission to B Com in the colleges of Chandigarh, Ludhiana and Hoshiarpur was introduced in 2010 to check the back door entry of students. Two years after introducing the centralised online admissions, the university is witnessing lesser number of online applications for admissions to colleges of Hoshiarpur. The university had decided to conduct the online admissions for Chandigarh and Ludhiana colleges for over 4,200 seats. Now, the admissions for over 2,100 seats in colleges of Chandigarh will be centralised.

RS Jhanji, a Senate member, while addressing the House stated that the online admissions have failed in Ludhiana and Hoshiarpur. “Most of the students of the colleges in Ludhiana and Hoshiarpur belong to rural areas and are not internet savvy. Thus, they used to face many problems in filling the forms online,” Jhanji said.

House members were of the view that the B Com seats used to get filled on time when the colleges used to conduct the admissions at their level, while the centralised system has led to delay in filling up the seats and starting of the course.

Puneet Bedi, principal of MCM college and a Senate member, said, “The colleges used to start the classes on time when the admissions were held at college level. However, due to centralised admissions, the colleges witness delay in starting the classes as the admissions are stretched to various rounds.”

The House members also demanded that a uniform fee structure should be maintained by the colleges. Despite receiving various complaints, many city colleges charged over Rs 26,000 from the students, while the university has fixed the fee at Rs 12,800, they said.

“The university has failed to implement uniform fee structure and students are being fleeced by various colleges,” said a fellow. Karamjeet Singh, a Senator who was the coordinator for B Com admissions in 2010, said, “The demand for B Com is more in Chandigarh as compared to Ludhiana. Thus, centralised online admission is must for Chandigarh colleges.”



from schools
Students pledge to save water

On the occasion of International Water Conservation Day, KBDAV-7, Chandigarh, joined the “Project Boond” programme initiated by president, DAV College Managing Committee, New Delhi, Shri Punam Suri. It organised poster-making, slogan-writing, face-painting competitions and extempore speech contents on the school premises. Nearly 700 schoolchildren participated in various activities. Children took a pledge to try their best to inculcate water-saving habits among themselves. As the UN has declared 2013 as the United Nations International Year of Water Conservation, students came forward enthusiastically to create awareness about saving water. Principal Madhu Bahl expressed the dire need for conserving water resources and was confident that the campaign would definitely pay the future generations in the long run.

DAV School-15

DAV School, Sector 15, Chandigarh, hosted a curtain raiser for “Project Boond, A DAV initiative”, with activities designed to generate awareness and concern about water conservation. Students participated in slogan-writing, article-writing, poetry-writing and poster-making competitions. The NSS Wing of the school and the Eco Club, Sampada, collaborated to deliver a talk to students about the water conservation. Dr Rakesh Sachdeva, principal of the school, said the event would be held for a month and a half.

Educational tour

Gurukul Global School, Chandigarh, recently conducted an educational tour. It comprised about 70 students along with school mentors. The tour aimed at providing hands-on experience to the students about Rajasthan and its cultural heritage. The four-day expedition included visits to Jaipur, Ajmer and Pushkar. During their stay at Jaipur, the students visited the famous Jantar Mantar. Principal Aruna Bhardwaj said the tour gave them a candid exposure to the rich heritage of our country in terms of culture, architecture and science. It further helped them in getting touch with our roots and honed their personality traits.

Nutritious food month

St Teresa Convent School, Sector 25, Panchkula, observed January as the healthy and nutritious food month to inculcate the value of healthy living in its students. Various activities were conducted for all classes. Students of classes I, II and III had healthy tiffin sharing, while the students of classes IV and V showed their creativity by making a snowman with vegetables. Students of classes VI, VII and VIII had an inter-house best magazine-making competition on then theme of “significance of nutritious food”. — TNS



DAV School-15 postpones draw of lots
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 20
DAV Model School, Sector 15, postponed its draw of lots due to the pending order of the Punjab and Haryana High Court on the issue of fee hike. The draw of lots was scheduled for today.

Giving details, Rakesh Sachdeva, principal of the school, said this step was taken for the overall public convenience. “Since the judgement of the court was pending on this issue, we cannot enhance our fee for the next academic year. We hope that the court’s judgement will come within this month. We will take our decision for the draw of lots accordingly only after that,” she said.

She said in case, the decision did not come soon, the school would write to the DAV Managing Committee for the advice. DAV, Sector 15, has a total of 50 seats.



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